Thursday, December 13, 2018

Guest Blogger: Hope Waters, Author of Twelve Days


Zoey Blake is having a perfect holiday season. Finals are over and it's time to head home for Christmas, but when she wins the Hartbreakers True Love contest to join them on their tour, she has a chance to follow her favorite band for twelve days -- and twelve steamy nights.

Mackenzie has been a player since and joining Hartbreakers has only edged up his game, that is until he meets Zoey. She's turned his world upside down and only she can make it right. Now all he has to do is convince her to stay with him forever. For a guy like Mack, that shouldn't be too hard but it's gonna take all he has and twelve days to win her true love.



Character Interview – Mackenzie Hart

Hi! Today, in our virtual studio, we have the creator of the Hartbreakers vocal group, Mackenzie Hart. Let’s all give him a round of applause.

(claps from our virtual studio audience)

Mack: Thank you! I’m happy to stop by…your…virtual studio. Wait, how did I get here?

Me: That’s not important. Let’s get started with the interview. How did you get all the guys of Hartbreakers together?

Mack: Uh, well, I’ve been singing since I could speak and when my high school vocal group went our separate ways after we graduated, I decided to get another one going. I met Gabe at an audition and it just took off from there.

Me: That’s so cool. Oh my God, I love Gabe.

Mack: Yeah, all the girls like him. Hell, I like him too.

Me: (mouth drops open) you’re my hero.

Mack: Thanks, I think. Next question?

Me: Oh (shuffles note cards) how do you come up with your songs?

Mack: We have had the privilege of working with some of the best songwriters and producers in the business. We’ve had some great ideas that have been shaped and molded into the songs you hear on the album.

Me: Do you have any tidbits about new music from Hartbreakers?

Mack: Our next stop after the Twelve Days tour is a small break for the holidays — and this is the first year we’ll be home for Christmas — then we’re headed for Europe. After all that, we’re headed into the studio to record our next album.

Me: That’s so awesome. Change of direction. Favorite place you would like to take a date?

Mack: I’d love to take a girl out to dinner and then…I love walking on the beach so I’d take her there and hold her hand…

Me: (swoons) I’d love that.

Mack: (nods) did you have another question?

Me: Yes…um… (shuffles note cards again) do you get along with the other guys?

Mack: Oh yeah, we’re like brothers, or at least what I imagine having a brother is like because I’m an only child. We fight sometimes, which is understandable because we’re around each other practically 24/7, especially Brad and Gabe. Their fights can be legendary.

Me: Gotcha. Last, but definitely not the least, what do you think about the contest where a group of girls is going to come on tour with you for twelve days…and twelve nights and have the ultimate fan experience?

Mack: We’re pretty excited about it. The concerts are going to be amazing. We love our fans and are looking forward to giving the winners a great ride.

Me: (raises eyebrows) a great ride?

Mack: Uh… yeah, you know, like on the tour bus… like their tour bus. The winners get their own tour bus and we’ll be on our tour bus. (nods) yeah.

Me: (nods with wide eyes) yeah, that sounds really awesome.

Mack: so… are we good?

Me: Yes.

Mack: You’re not going to ask about whether I’m wearing boxers or briefs?

Me: why would I ask about that?

Mack: We always get that question. I don’t know. I don’t make the rules.

Me: No, I don’t want to know about your underwear.

Mack: Great. Now, how do I leave?

Me: We’re in a virtual realm. We can’t leave.

Mack: Oh. Well I guess we’re stuck here then.

Me: Yup. Good times.

Thanks to The Book Connection for asking Mack and I to stop by. Take care and be excellent to each other!



Hope Waters has been writing romance for over thirty years, traveling the globe but finally finding true love and now lives in Florida with her family.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website Address: http://www.hopewaters.net




Monday, December 10, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? - December 10




It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It's a great post to organize yourself. It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date.

Welcome back! It is Monday again, and it will be a busy one for me. I have a new condo listing and will have two more listings go live by the end of the week. I also have meetings scheduled. I'm hoping to make this coming week hectic, so that maybe the next two won't be so bad. Say a prayer that it works out.

Not a lot of reading going on because I am getting ready for Christmas and have been cleaning out the house. It is amazing the amount of stuff you can collect over 20 years. I'm feeling much better about the state of things right now.

I'm trying to finish these two:



I am also starting this one because I am reviewing it this month:


Then I will go back to this one:


What have you been reading? Anything I should be adding to my list?

Friday, December 7, 2018

Book Spotlight and Giveaway: For the Love of Laura Beth by Aubrey Wynne


The Korean War destroyed their plans, but the battle at home may shatter their hearts...

Laura Beth Walters fell in love with Joe McCall when she was six years old. Now she is counting the days until Joey graduates from college so they can marry and begin their life together. But the Korean War rips their neatly laid plans to shreds. Instead of a college fraternity, Joey joins a platoon. Laura Beth trades a traditional wedding for a quick trip to the courthouse.

The couple endure the hardship of separation, but the true battle is faced when Joey returns from the war. Their marriage is soon tested beyond endurance. Laura must find a way to accept the tragedy thrown in their path or lose the love that has kept them anchored for so long. With a determination that only comes from the heart, Joe relentlessly fights an invisible enemy...for the love of Laura Beth.

Praise for For the Love of Laura Beth

Warmth, compassion, heartache, faithfulness and more are emotions you will experience as you read this. I was completely immersed in this Korean War era tale, the historical details making the story come alive.

Aubrey Wynne did an awesome job with this Historical book. Thank you Aubrey Wynne for a very beautifully written story!!

An emotional read about the life, fears, and love during the Korean War! Aubrey Wynne begins each chapter with a thought-provoking quote. As a Midwesterner, who often visited Chicago in the 1950s, this romance includes well-researched historical details about Chicago, the era, and journalism. Aubrey Wynne blends history with a nicely paced full of family dynamics love story.


EXCERPT

Excerpt 1:

“Men always want to be woman’s first love – women like to be a man’s last romance.”

Oscar Wilde

Chapter One

Late April 1949

Kankakee, south of Chicago



It was the kind of first kiss all girls dreamed of, hoped for, and rarely received. The kind of first kiss a girl saw in the movies or read in romance novels. The kind of first kiss a girl only whispered about because the moment was too precious to share.

A moment Laura Beth Walters had waited over ten years for. She sighed and leaned her cheek into the hand that still cupped her face, afraid to open her eyes.

Joe put his forehead against hers. “So this is love.”

Her lips still tingled from his touch. Her heart clamored against her chest. She wondered briefly if life would ever be this sweet again. Yes, this was love.

She’d known it since first grade, but Mom said boys were a bit slower in the cleverness department. She peeked through her lashes and looked into his deep chocolate eyes. His lids were half closed, and a sated smile played on his lips, as if he’d just tasted something heavenly. Me, she thought wickedly. The moon threw shadows across his strong jaw and square chin. He was the most handsome boy in Kankakee. No, in the state of Illinois. No, in the entire Midwest.

“Yes, Mr. McCall, I do believe it’s love.” She ran her fingertips down his cheek, the coarse, dark stubble bristly on her skin. Warmth spiraled through her with the intimate gesture. “What do you think?”

“I think I understand why my mom smiled at me, and my pa thumped me on the shoulder when I left tonight.” Joe moved his hands around her waist, pulling her close. “So your parents will let you go to the prom with a senior?”

Laura shrugged, trying for poise but failing miserably when the grin would not leave her face. Daddy had been reluctant to let her date. Her mother had come to the rescue, convincing him that sixteen was old enough to date a boy they trusted. The McCalls lived down the street and owned the local mechanic shop. Joe was a hardworking, polite boy. Their families attended neighborhood barbecues, community, and school functions together.

“I’m practically a senior.”

“And Roger Willard will be practically comatose if he ever buys you another soda. I saw him giving you the eye last week.” He leaned closer and whispered in her ear. “I don’t know how I missed you graduating from the Bobbysox Brigade and becoming such a dish, but I’m crazy about you now.”

Their first date had come about by accident. She had been at the drug store, having a malt with a group of friends early last March. Tuesdays and Saturdays were her favorite days because Joe worked then. He looked so handsome in his white hat and jacket—like a sailor or a doctor.

Laura had ordered a strawberry malt and was waiting for Joe to make it. He’d rubbed her head, still treating her like a child. “Give me a minute, kid.”

“I’ll buy that,” Roger said to Joe as he slid onto the stool next to her.

Joe had nodded and glanced over his shoulder, a puzzled expression on his face as he took in the other boy. “Nah, I got it for her.”

“I said I’ll buy Laura Beth the malt,” Roger had repeated through clenched teeth.

Joe, a scowl on his face, had set the malt on the counter with a thud that made the other girls giggle. “Fine. Like I care who buys it for her.”

But Joe had rubbernecked from across the counter while the teenager tipped his head close to Laura’s and made her laugh. He studied Roger, then his sweet childhood friend, and then frowned at the boy as if something was definitely off. She knew the second it hit him, recognized the shock on his face.

“You’re sweet on her. Sweet on my little Laura Beth.” He shook his head and then looked at her again, as if for the first time.

“I’m done here in half an hour. Wait for me,” Joe had said, with a glower at Roger.

“Sure, Joey, I’ll wait,” she replied in her sweetest voice, and then continued to talk Roger.








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 have won
Readers Choice Awards. Dante's Gift and Paper Love received the 2016 Golden Quill, Aspen Gold, Heart of Excellence and the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence.

In addition to her Chicago Christmas novellas, Aubrey will release two more Regency
romances in 2019. Once Upon A Widow series will officially launch in March 2019, the Wicked Earls’ Club will release again just in time for the holidays.





$50 Blast Giveaway

Winner’s choice of a $50 Amazon Gift Code or $50 in PayPal Cash

Ends 1/2/19

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced at I Am A Reader as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. The giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.





a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

My Brother's Bride by Rachael Anderson (Giveaway)










My Brother’s Bride by Rachael Anderson

Abigail Nash leads a lonely existence. Her mother died giving birth to her, her father’s business dealings took him away more often than not, and her ailing great-aunt, unable to provide much in the way of companionship, was a lack-luster guardian at best. So when her dear friends offered to launch her into London society, it appeared Abby’s life was taking a turn for the better, with suitors and social engagements aplenty. When she marries a proclaimed darling of the ton, it seems she will at last settle into the life of her dreams.

But appearances aren’t always what they seem, and dreams often become disappointments.

Just months into her marriage, Abby finds herself widowed, penniless, increasing, and determined to never hope again. But when her late husband’s brother, the Earl of Brigston, attempts to thaw the numbness surrounding her heart, Abby must decide if she has it in her to risk another chance at happiness, knowing the odds are not in her favor.




Excerpt
When Brigston entered the kitchen, Abby’s back was partially to him, so she didn’t immediately see him. Her brow was furrowed in concentration as she whipped something in a bowl. She paused to lift the spoon, only to frown at the white liquid dripping from it.

“Are you certain this will thicken into a cream?” she asked.

A flash of irritation crossed Monsieur Roch's face until he spotted Morgan and seemed to think better of it. He managed a patient tone in his accented French. “It takes time, my lady.”

Morgan stifled a chuckle as Abby examined another spoonful of the liquid. “I’ve been whipping it for several minutes, but it doesn’t seem even a little thicker to me. Have I forgotten to add something?”
“No,” said the cook in clipped tones.

Morgan stepped forward and leaned in close. “If your arm is tired—”

Abby jumped, and what liquid remained on the spoon splattered across Morgan’s face. She spun around, her eyes growing wide with horror when she saw what she’d done.

He wiped a dab from his nose and tasted it. “A little more sugar, perhaps?”

“Brigston! I’m so dreadfully sorry.” She dropped the spoon into the bowl and grabbed a rag from a nearby wash basin, dabbing it across his face.

“Not that rag!” cried the cook. “It was only just used to mop the floors.”

Abby dropped it as though it had burned her, and Morgan tried not to cringe at the thought of filthy water coating his face.

Monsieur Roch retrieved a clean rag and held it out to him, appearing apologetic. He flicked another irritated glance at Abby before returning to his work.

As Morgan wiped the cream from his face, he wondered what Abby would do or say next. Offer another fumbled apology? Make her excuses and flee? Pretend the incident never happened and return to her labors? He never knew what to expect from her.

Her face scarlet, she cleared her throat and lifted her adorably determined chin. “You are most welcome, my lord.”

He raised a brow. “For what, my lady?”

“I have heard that cream does wonders for one’s complexion, and it seems the rumors are correct. Your skin appears much . . . creamier.”



Praise for My Brother's Bride



I haven't read a book by Rachael Anderson that I didn't absolutely love and this awesome book didn't fail to meet that grade. ~Vicki

Enjoyed reading this book. The characters, dialogue, and plotline kept me entertained. Highly recommend this book to those who enjoy clean romances. ~Michele

This is the first full-length novel I've read by Rachael Anderson, but it definitely won't be the last. I really enjoyed the story--the writing was really good with no annoying parts or awkwardness, the plot was interesting, the characters were endearing (I loved the banter between Brigtson and Abby!), and this book was just really good. Highly enjoyable. Great choice for those who like clean, well-written Regency romances. ~AE2

This forbidden Regency romance was excellent! Once I started, it was hard—almost impossible—to put down. The characters—Abigail and Brigston—were super well done. I became invested in their lives, their troubles, their hearts really fast, and the author did a superb job of not letting me go. The plot twist was unique. ~Charissa

A lovely, well-written story. Highly recommended. ~Linda

I always enjoy Ms. Anderson's books! This one is wonderful, filled with great story and characters. Beautiful story of love, family and forgiveness. ~Nichee

I can not praise this author's books enough. I have loved every single one. I love the characters! I love the development of the romance! I love the story line. I love the fun dialogue. I know when I start one of her books I will have a hard time putting it down until I am done and then I am sad the book is over. I love that each story is unique. ~Nari


Author Rachael Anderson

A USA Today bestselling author, Rachael Anderson is the mother of four and is pretty good at breaking up fights, or at least sending guilty parties to their rooms. She can’t sing, doesn’t dance, and despises tragedies. But she recently figured out how yeast works and can now make homemade bread, which she is really good at eating.










Giveaway Details

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/1/19

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced at I Am A Reader as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, December 3, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? - Dec 3




It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It's a great post to organize yourself. It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date.

Welcome to the first Monday of December. Gee, this year is flying by quickly. Hope you had a great weekend. Mine involved a few appointments and cleaning out the shed, so I could pack away all the garden stuff for the winter. Sigh! Not sure I am ready, but it will come whether I am ready or not.

In my reading world, I've been diving into what needs to get accomplished. I reviewed this cute children's book about a boy who finally opens up to his mom about his vision problems.


I also reviewed this great book:


Also, reviewed the first chapter of this one and want to read more:


I'm currently reading these books:





Next up in the schedule is this book due for review:


So what is going on in your reading world? What are some books you've read lately?



Friday, November 30, 2018

First Chapter Review: The Treasure of Cedar Creek by Brenda Stanley


The author of this historical novel sent me the first chapter to review.


BLURB: In 1896, the isolated and vast state of Idaho is a haven for the polygamous splinter group called The Kingdom of Glory, which is hiding more than their outlawed practice of plural marriage.

At the compound called Cedar Creek, the prophet is hoping to increase his congregation, even if that means marrying off girls to men decades older. When Peri, who escaped the compound years earlier, returns to help rescue Grace, a girl betrothed to the prophet himself, she ends up also saving her own sister Emma. As the three women make a frantic and deadly escape from the compound, they take with them both the newborn heir to the church, and their dead mother's cryptic journal to the prophet's hidden treasure. Along their journey, the women realize to truly be free they must face what holds them captive, even if those answers are more horrifying than they ever imagined.

COVER: This cover art is beautiful and the color scheme catches the eye. The font in the title stands out nicely. The artwork captivates with the vastness of the untamed west.

FIRST CHAPTER: Emma Elizabeth Dixon opens by explaining she is sharing this story for a reason. Part of that story is how her strong-willed and confident sister, Peri, ended up with her own horse several years ago and a bit of what transpired to lead them to Idaho.

KEEP READING: I snuck over to Amazon to read a bit more from the sample, if that gives you any idea. There is a lot of emotion in this opening chapter, which draws you right to Emma. You feel the hurt that is evident in her words. I'm glad the author started with her character, since she was the most sympathetic character at that point in time. I'm eager to read more and want to make time for this one in my reading schedule.


Paperback: 262 pages
Publisher: Taylor and Seale Publishers (March 26, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1943789762
ISBN-13: 978-1943789764


Purchase here!

This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Book Review: Going for Broke by Shannon Medisky

Are you looking for a book that can help change your perspective? Then Going for Broke: How to Suffer Well by Shannon Medisky should be on your list.

Medisky has spent the last ten years learning a lot about suffering, but her book isn't going to be about how to get out of it or how to avoid it, because she knows that God allows us to suffer, but also "meets us in our mess." In those moments when life just "sucks," she encourages us to face suffering in "anticipation of meeting God personally in brand new ways."

Providing a fresh perspective on how God called Noah and Moses and what they suffered through, along with sharing her own journey, the reader is inspired to accept suffering, but not be defeated by it. She boils it down to three easy-to-remember steps to help you and guide you to intentionally lean on God in meaningful ways.

I loved everything about this book; especially because Medisky's style of writing makes the reader feel like she is speaking solely to her. I'll be on the lookout for more of the author's work, and have visited her website to check on additional resources.

Paperback: 134 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (September 14, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1986546292
ISBN-13: 978-1986546294

I received a digital copy of this book from the author through Pump Up Your Book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.