Thursday, October 30, 2014

#BookReview SIDETRACKED by Brandilyn Collins #suspense #mystery

SidetrackedSidetracked by Brandilyn Collins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


This page turner starts with the murder of a young woman right after her bridal shower. Her friend, Delanie, finds the body. Right away, we know Delanie has something to hide. However her sense of justice is even stronger and she does not shirk her duty to tell the truth when an innocent man is arrested for the murder.

The story weaves between present day Delanie and a sixteen year old girl, Laura, who found her mother's body one afternoon after school. I won't give away the connection except that it will keep you wanting to find out more in both storylines, the present day investigation into Clara's murder and the investigation and trial in Laura's mother's murder.

Because I'm a seasoned mystery reader, I very early on identified the real culprit. I realized the author dropped a person who was in the vicinity but purposely did not follow up on that person. I also realized who the real murderer was in the story in the past, because again, there was no examination of motive and the focus was too much on the red herring.

As the story moved along, the past and present collided and all was revealed. The important things is that the protagonist was someone I sympathized with and wanted to follow. I was glad that everything worked out at the end.

Finally, the references to God and Delanie's dependence on him was a bonus. There was no preaching or heavy handed religious message, but God's constant abiding presence was there and carried her even through the worst of times.



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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

#NewRelease NATIVE LANDS by P.C. Zick #fiction #environment

Native Lands by P.C. Zick
Native Lands is a gripping and entertaining thriller with depth, wonderful characters and well-planted
parallels between the two engaging narratives. There is a beautiful and warm feel of Native Lands and an excellent and uplifting moral that won't lecture or patronize. A truly great read.

Christoph Fischer, Author
Native Lands is a novel rich in intrigue and history as a tribe of Native Americans, thought to
be extinct, fight to save their beloved heritage. They join with others willing
to sacrifice everything to save further destruction of the Everglades and St.
Augustine.
Forbidden loves, deceptions, and murder threaten to destroy
nature and families in a saga stretching from the 1760s to the present day.
Join Locka and Mali as they lead their tribe of Timucuans
away from the Spanish near St. Augustine in 1760 and settle into a new life in
the Everglades alongside the Calusa Indians. Their progeny grow up in the
Everglades, attempting to keep their bloodlines pure.
By 2010, Mangrove Mike, Joey Cosmos, and Rob Zodiac live
among the white people and learn that the human connection transcends the fear
of extinction of their people. Barbara Evans in the Everglades and Emily Booth
in St. Augustine are the glue as the different cultures combine forces to fight
a conglomerate of international interests.
It’s a dangerous journey as this oddly matched group attempts
to halt the destruction of the natural world they treasure. Cultural boundaries
established centuries ago are erased as love and nature seek the balance lost
during the battle for power and control of the last of the Florida frontier.
P.C. Zick is the
author of several contemporary novels. Native
Lands
is the third book in her Florida Fiction Series, which also includes Tortoise Stew and Trails in the Sand. She may be contacted through her website at
www.pczick.com.
Barbara Evans sat in the living room of her house on the western edge of Chokoloskee Island, leafing through past issues of Sierra magazine, searching for an idea for her next column. She listened to the news from the television, only looking up when the local weather presented NOAA’s prediction for an active hurricane season. Then the newscaster began a report that caused Barbara to put down the magazine and devote her full attention to the screen.

“Yesterday, wood storks in Big Cypress Wildlife Management Area attacked a young boy as his mother shot this video of the assault,” the announcer said.

Barbara watched as a boy, approximately ten years old, was crying as a wood stork’s beak poked at the Mickey Mouse portrait stamped on the front of his T-shirt. Another stork approached and began nudging the foam snout of the alligator hat on the boy’s head. A man ran into the frame of the video, yelling and scaring off the wood storks as the boy howled.

“Officers from Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Commission are handling the situation. Here to talk with us is the agency’s spokesperson, Larry Castle. Larry, what’s your agency doing to make sure the tourists are safe in the Everglades?”

“Along with the National Park Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, we’re asking residents and visitors to our great state to keep their distance from wildlife,” Larry said, wearing a green shirt and hat with the logo from the state’s fish and wildlife agency. “They shouldn’t feed wildlife or make any attempts to capture or touch them.”

“The parents say the wood storks just came up and attacked their child,” the newscaster said.

“Wildlife usually keeps to itself unless tempted by food. We’re investigating, but the safest thing anyone can do is to enjoy wildlife from a distance with a zoom lens on the camera.

“Thank you, Larry. The family told us they are cutting short their vacation because of this unwarranted aviary violence. Governor Rick Scott offered the family a week’s stay in Miami to make up for the attack, but the family declined the offer.”

“My son may never get over this attack.” The mother, wearing a white visor with a Minnie Mouse label on the front, appeared on the screen. “His favorite hat is now in shreds in the swamp. It has been one horrible experience.”

The newscaster came back on the screen. “The video of the attack was recorded by the mother on her cell phone.”

Barbara ran her fingers through her short curly red hair, and with the other hand reached for her phone to call Stan Hogan, her editor at The Miami Herald.

“Stan, I’ve got to write the story about the wood stork attacking the family at Big Cypress,” Barbara said. “You’ve got to let me do it.”

“If I let you write the article, it’s off limits for your column,” Stan said. “You write an objective piece, but no editorializing. Agreed?”

“Then I can write a column about it in a few weeks.”

“No. You’ve been hired as a columnist. If you want to go back to reporting, then we’ll start you on covering the commission meetings in the communities around Lake Okeechobee.”

“Come on, Stan. You know I can write a good piece. I don’t know why you won’t let me.”

“That’s my final say on the subject. You write your column or you start working the Glades County beat.”

“All right, all right.” Barbara knew being assigned the rural beat near the shores of Lake Okeechobee amounted to a death sentence for a writer. “The column is better because I can ask, ‘why the hell was the mother recording the attack instead of protecting her child?’ The kid deserved getting attacked just for wearing that stupid alligator hat. Tell them to pull the column I wrote for this week. I’ll have the new one to you later this afternoon.”

“No ‘those tourists deserved it’ crap. You got me into a load of trouble with that last piece about the pigeons and doves at that wedding in Disney World. One of the copy editors should have caught the line ‘anyone who chooses to get married in the land of Mickey Mouse deserves dead doves floating down during the vows.’”

“I can’t help it if nature keeps biting back,” Barbara said. “Just be sure they pull my old column.”


P.C. Zick began her writing career in 1998 as a journalist. She's won
various awards for her essays, columns, editorials, articles, and fiction. She
describes herself as a "storyteller" no matter the genre.
She was born in Michigan and moved to Florida in 1980. Even though she now
resides in western Pennsylvania with her husband Robert, she finds the stories
of Florida and its people and environment a rich base for her storytelling
platform. Florida's quirky and abundant wildlife—both human and animal—supply
her fiction with tales almost too weird to be believable.
She writes two blogs, P.C. Zick
and Living Lightly. She has published
three nonfiction books and six novels.
Her writing contains the elements most dear to her heart, ranging from love
to the environment. In her novels, she advances the cause for wildlife
conservation and energy conservation. She believes in living lightly upon this
earth with love, laughter, and passion.

Works by P.C. Zick

Florida
Fiction Series
Tortoise Stew (Florida Fiction Series, Book 1) –
Politics, murder, and chaos in rural Florida reign supreme in a story where
love triumphs over it all.
Trails in the Sand (Florida Fiction Series, Book 2) –
Family secrets, an oil spill, and redemption create a roller coaster ride for
journalist Caroline Carlisle.
Native Lands
(Florida Fiction Series,
Book 3)
- A novel rich in intrigue and history as a tribe of Native
Americans, thought to be extinct, fight to save their beloved heritage.
Other Fiction:

A Lethal Legacy (Psychological
Suspense) - A fascinating study of
human expectations, failings, and redemption filled with lust and forbidden
lovers.

Live from the Road (Fiction takes the reader on an often humorous, yet
harrowing, journey as Meg Newton and Sally Sutton seek a change in the mundane
routine of their lives. Joined by their daughters, they set off on a journey of
salvation enhanced by the glories of the Mother Road.
Behind the Altar (Romance – Behind the Love Trilogy,
Book 1) - All seems perfect in Leah's life until tattoo artist Dean rides his
Harley into her heart in this story of forbidden love.
Nonfiction
From Seed to Table (Blog posts) Gardening techniques, organic gardening, canning vegetables, and
recipes galore
Civil War Journal of a Union Soldier (Memoir nonfiction) – My great
grandfather’s journal from his days as a soldier. It’s a personal account of
war and all its sundry causes and effects from the eyes of a man who fought it.
Odyssey to Myself (Essays nonfiction): The people of
Morocco, Italy, Panama, and Chile come to life through the experiences of the
author as she absorbs the cultures so different from her own.
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Monday, October 27, 2014

#BookReview LOVERS AT HEART by Melissa Foster #romance

Lovers at Heart (Love in Bloom #4; The Bradens, #1)Lovers at Heart by Melissa Foster

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Max was a hard heroine to like, but best friend Kaylie carried the day. I'm thinking it's my personality type, ENFP, that makes me like Kaylie. Max, meanwhile is an introvert, well-organized, and overthinks things. She's the type who would get upset if she thinks someone didn't say "hi" to them, but it turned out that person was nearsighted and didn't see her, meaning she attributes motives to other people when they might not have meant anything.

Anyway, this trait keeps Max very suspicious and closed. That's why she's a workaholic, an organizer, a woman who is all business all the time, because in business, at least in her area of expertise, she can be in control and make things happen.

Unfortunately all bets are off when it comes to love, especially a hot, hunky, wealthy Braden named Treat, a resort owner she is attracted to. The only problem, she thinks Treat gave her a dirty look when she was "caught" in the same clothes she had on the night before. Well, really? A guy who barely knows her is going to put her into an emotional tailspin? I mean, what if she was a software engineer who typically stay up all night and wear the same clothes the next day, all rumpled, with hair standing up? I'm with Kaylie here. I can imagine Kaylie wouldn't give a flying fig what Treat Braden thought about her. But then, there wouldn't be a story if that was the case.

So of course, this incident begins the big misunderstanding between Treat and Max. Their relationship is rocky and both have issues. However the backdrop of family, Bradens, bff Kaylie, and the friends at the Cape make up for the angst of the two main characters and the therapeutic events that happen, i.e. all of the closure with family members, and ex boyfriends, and stuff.

I can see how some people would like Treat, but he was too brooding for me. I did like the introduction to all the brothers, and I think I like Hugh, the race car driver, the best. I also like Savannah, the only girl and think she'll be an awesome heroine. Anyway I do enjoy Melissa Foster's family drama and her stories are always filled with fun characters, although I did miss Danica in this story and hope that Kaylie will appear in more stories.



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Sunday, October 26, 2014

#BookReview ONLY UNI by Camy Tang #asianamerican #christian #fiction

Only UniOnly Uni by Camy Tang

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I can really relate to Trish, the girl who loves yummy guys. She was very likeable, although flawed.

Trish is trying to be a "better Christian," so she swears off guys, flirting, and sexy clothing. She makes rules for herself and sets out to follow them. The rules aren't all that bad, i.e. tell others about Christ, serve at the church, and oh, yes, no guys, especially bad boys who aren't Christian and are so hot.

Unfortunately for her, she has major foot-in-mouth disease. For one, she insults hot coworker Spenser and calls him a flirt, a player, and not a Christian. Meanwhile, her ex-boyfriend, the moody, broody artist type keeps cornering her and begging her to go back to him.

Anyway, poor Trish realizes she has to rely on God's grace rather than following rules to barter with God.

I liked the interplay and flirtation between Trish and Spenser. I liked all of Trish's adventures in church service and how everything kept backfiring on her. But I didn't really like the interference of the cousins and the way they sneered at Trish's ex-boyfriend like he was a leper. They didn't even try to reach him for Christ, even when he showed up at church. I'm not saying to let him back in her bed, but they all treated him like he was the devil when all he did was make romantic gestures of sending her flowers and inviting her to lunch.

I also expected them to try harder with Grandma, especially since the author hinted that Grandma was "affected" by the words of a Christian friend. I guess what bothers me is that they were more concerned about excluding people who were non Christian and painting them as the enemy than reaching them with love and understanding for where they are. Because believe me, God has to dig deep into the pits to save people. They're not all pretty and sweet before they come to Christ.

Also the ending was TOO quick and cliched. the ex turned into a horrible jerk and this kind of let Trish off the hook rather than struggle with her feelings for him [which she had and try to get him to come to Christ] and Spenser rode to the rescue without, in my opinion, enough depth of emotion between them. Yes, he's a great guy and all, but everything was packaged at the end and papered over with a giant bow and to me, the case wasn't made for him to have such a life changing turnaround.

Again, as I said, the people who were non Christian, including Spenser's ex were painted with a broad brush as being totally and completely evil with everything thrown in to slam them as nonredeemable. But this is common in Christian fiction.

All in all, I did enjoy the story and it made for an interesting plane ride. And I definitely liked Trish a heck of a lot better than snooty Alexis her rail thin cousin with the superior attitude. I do want to read the rest of the series though, because it is rare to find entertaining Asian American fiction.



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Saturday, October 25, 2014

99c Sale - Vengeance is Mine by Kasey Millstead #motorcycle #romance






Title: Vengeance is Mine
Author: Kasey Millstead
 Release Date: August 20, 2014 




SYNOPSIS


Target - Spades Motorcycle Club




They call me The Praying Mantis.




Because after I fuck my target, I kill them.


Vengeance is Mine is a dramatic tale of revenge by way of
fatal fucking.






“Look what I did,” I say, grabbing a handful of his cock.
“I’m such a naughty girl.” I rub my hand up and down, never breaking eye
contact with him.




From
USA Today bestselling author Kasey Millstead comes a book that will leave you
gripping the edge of your seat as you live the life of Ella Moore. With a heart
that's been hardened by the tragic death of her parents, she sets in motion a
lethal chain of events that will eventually avenge her parents murders.




'Before my parent’s tragic death, I had never been vengeful
person. I was nice, quiet, friendly and definitely a glass-half-full kind of
girl. But death has a way of changing everything.'




Ella Moore is the epitome of a badass.







LINKS TO BUY

AMAZON US / UK / AU

  


AUTHOR BIO 


Kasey Millstead lives a quiet life in country New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and their four young children. She enjoys baking, singing (ridiculously out of tune) & spending time with friends and family. Kasey has always harboured a deep love for reading and writing, and she is now lucky enough to be living her dream of being an Author.


AUTHOR LINKS






GIVEAWAY 

Friday, October 24, 2014

#CoverReveal ROMANCING CHRISTMAS - 10 love story boxed set #romance #novellas




Romancing Christmas: 10 Love Stories to Spice up the Holidays


Multi-author boxed set
Release Date: November 3, 2014
Genre: Holiday Romance


Cover Artist: http://www.bellamediamanagement.com/


~~Blurb~~
Do you like your Christmas nice...or a little naughty? Bring the season into your heart with love stories to match your mood. This boxed set from 10 of today’s hottest romance authors will warm your heart even on the coldest night.





Just 99 Cents for a limited time!










~~JOIN IN THE FUN AT OUR FACEBOOK PARTY~~

Join the ROMANCING CHRISTMAS authors for their LAUNCH DAY PARTY! The authors and a slew of their sassy friends will be celebrating the release, November 3rd, 4th, and 5th, 10:30 AM to 10:30 PM (EASTERN TIME).

Prizes Galore, Q&A, Authors, Readers, Books, and FUN! So what are you waiting for? Come join us and have a blast!





~~Novellas included in set~~
USA Today Bestselling Author Dale Mayer ~ Broken Protocols 3.5 

Award-winning author H.D. Thomson ~ Shades of Holly

Chantel Rhondeau ~ Season For Love

Award-winning author Leslie Lynch ~ Christmas Hope

Award-winning author Sandy Loyd A Christmas Miracle
Website: www.sandyloyd.com


Barbara Lohr ~ The Salty Carmel Christmas 

Website: www.BarbaraLohrAuthor.com

Marcia JamesHeating Up the Holidays

Carolyn Hughey ~ Insanity Claus  
Website: www.carolynhughey.com


Tallulah Grace ~ A Family for Christmas 

Website: http://www.tallulahgrace.com

Rachelle Ayala A Father for Christmas

Thursday, October 23, 2014

#CoverReveal ALL I WANT by J. Daniels #romance




Title: All I Want
Series: Alabama Summer #2
Author: J Daniels
Cover Design: Cover It Designs
 Release Date: November 24, 2014



Synopsis



Luke Evans is a heartbreaker.




I didn’t want to give mine to him. Not when he kept
me out.




He gave me enough, just enough to make me fall in
love with him. I say this to convince myself. But I know the truth.




I would’ve fallen in love with him at a distance.




Handing my heart over to Luke was the easiest thing
I’ve ever done. I was naive when I wished for more, when I hoped he wanted the
same things I did.




I try to hate him. I try to forget him.




But it’s not that easy. 




Love is a ruthless bitch, and I’m her latest victim.








Tessa Kelly is a man-eater.




When she sets her sights on you, she doesn’t just
consume your heart, she goes for your soul.




What we had was perfect, real, and all I would ever
want.




But she destroyed it.




She destroyed us.




I try to hate her. I try to forget her.




But it’s not that easy.




Love is for people who have hope, and I have none.









Available Now


#1 Where I Belong





  

Author Bio


J. Daniels was born and raised in Maryland.



After putting her kids to bed, she escapes into her cheeky world where some of her characters kiss, and some of them do a lot more than kiss.



She is an avid reader and enjoys everything from unconventional romance to fantasy novels.
 


Author Links

Giveaway