Friday, August 17, 2018

Book Review: Little House in the Hollywood Hills by Charlotte Stewart

For those who thought maybe Charlotte Stewart was defined only as the beautiful and kind schoolteacher on Little House on the PrairieLittle House in the Hollywood Hills will show what a diverse and talented actress she really is. Though definitely more well known as Ms. Beadle (LHOP) or Betty Briggs from Twin Peaks, Stewart's career has spanned decades and found her on everything from soap operas to TV shows to big screen movies like Tremors

In her classy, eloquent style Stewart shares her work, her life and her personal struggles. She shares glimpses into what an actor's life is and about the addictions and breast cancer diagnosis she's had to fight along the way. She shares memories of her husbands and the actors she has the chance to work with. You come away feeling like you really know her.

It took me a while to read Little House in the Hollywood Hills, mostly due to my other commitments, but it also reads at a much slower pace than some other celebrity memoirs. Three other female stars from Little House on the Prairie have written memoirs, and you'll notice the slow and steady pace of Stewart's book is different from the others. You're really immersing yourself into her life, and she brings you in calmly and casually and holds you there for a moment or two before bringing you further. It's very much a book that captures the essence of the Charlotte Stewart I met at a cast reunion in 2014.

Little House in the Hollywood Hills is the perfect addition to your Little House on the Prairie book or TV tie-in collection.

Paperback: 326 pages
Publisher: BearManor Media (April 7, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 159393906X
ISBN-13: 978-1593939069

I purchased this book from Amazon. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

I read this book for the following challenges...

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Shelf Control - Aug 15

Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves sponsored by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

Want to join in? Shelf Control posts go up every Wednesday. Here's how to jump on board:

  • Write a blog post about a book that you own that you haven’t read yet.
  • Add your link in the comments!
  • Link back to Bookshelf Fantasies in your own post.
  • Check out other posts, and…

Have fun!


A new meme for exciting! I'm always looking for new memes to try out. This meme will be dedicated to all those authors whose Kindle freebies I so easily grabbed, but have not yet read. Shame on me. Be forewarned--this might take a while. I have about 550 of them. 

BLURB: Set in Manhattan, The Secret Formula follows the adventures of Bella, a cool, skateboarding champion and daughter of a glamorous fashion editor, and her friend Felix, a jazz musician and crime buff. Felix is convinced New York is still a seething mass of hard talking criminals - Bella laughs at him but Felix will have the last laugh.

Doc Gutson and her band of misfits scheme to steal the Secret Formula for a new perfume which will make the wearer irresistible. But, while securing the Secret Formula will bring Doc Gutson riches beyond her wildest dreams, her other motive for moving into Bella's apartment becomes apparent as revenge drives her to destroy Bella's life.

Can Bella and Felix thwart Doc Gutson and her evil henchmen Johnny Sequins and Pauly Three Toes? Or will they end up in the East River wearing cement shoes? Noir for tweens.

DATE BOUGHT: 12/2011 (Yikes!)

WHY I BOUGHT IT: Mysteries have been one of my favorite genres since childhood. I also write for children. I consider this book indulging my love of cozy mysteries and market research.

Do you have books that have been in your TBR pile as long as this one?

Monday, August 13, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? - Aug 13

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.

We have found our way back to Monday again. It was a good weekend filled with family and real estate activities. Today, I am on my way to Devens, MA for a strategic thinking event for the board of directors. I might be late in visiting your blogs.

This week I finished Charlotte Stewart's book. It was good. My review should be coming soon.

I'll start this one today so I'll be ready for my August 20 review.

Next up I'll be continuing with this long overdue book for review...

And I'll be reading this one as well for another review coming up. 

After that, I am hoping for something I just want to read for me. Maybe one of these....

Or another book that is overdue for a review like one of these...

What are you reading? Anything good I should add to my very large Goodreads list?

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Book Spotlight and Giveaway: Flip the Beat by Roxanne D. Howard


Molly Ivers thought she found Prince Charming, but without a devilishly sexy accent, and six months ago she gave into their undeniable attraction. But the swarm of ever-present groupies was so not part of the fairy tale. As much as it hurt her heart, she shut out rocker Evan Castle.

Now, on the verge of finishing her graduate degree and moving to Paris—she even hires a French life coach—Molly begins to realize Evan, who hasn't given up on her, might be the man of her dreams after all.


“So, you’re going through with it?”

“Going through with what?” They both looked into the living room, where a bemused Evan stood half-naked and barefoot in a pair of black pajama bottoms. Molly licked nectar off the peach on the end of her fork to save it from dropping to the floor. Evan’s jaw tightened, and his eyes gleamed as he zeroed in on her. He cleared his throat and lifted an empty half gallon of milk. “Sorry, you left the door cracked open. I came to borrow milk.”

“Jesus, Evan! Knock next time, or at least text. I’m in my panties!” Nell smacked him on the arm and tugged down her nightshirt as she ran past him into her bedroom.

“Sorry,” he said, but he seemed distracted as he strode toward Molly, eyes glued to her lips. She sucked the rest of her peach slice into her mouth and wiped at a little of the nectar at the corner of her lips. Her cheeks blazed at the hungry longing in his eyes. She turned away to open the fridge to get the milk. It wasn’t uncommon for them to borrow food from one another, and he always watched out for them. He had a comforting, protective nature she’d gotten used to.

She grew painfully aware of her night shorts, which had a tendency to ride up her butt and cut off at midthigh, and her thin white tank top. Could he see her nipples? And jeez, Louise, why did they have to harden every time he came near her?

She pushed hair out of her face and began to pour the milk into his empty half gallon. “Help yourself to the fruit in the bowl there. Nell had leftovers. How much milk do you want?”

“Enough for a bowl of cereal, please. I’ll get some at the store later.” She’d only heard his voice drop as low and husky during sex. She stopped after she poured enough milk, then gave him extra.

Evan reached over her to open a nearby drawer. He took out a fork. He inserted it into the flesh of a peach slice and brought it to his lips.

“Forbidden fruit, hmm?”

He teased the fruit around his lips with a wicked smirk. He winked at her and sank his teeth into half the peach as he watched her, licking it. Her mouth went dry. Oh, he knew what he was doing. He chewed, licked his bottom lip, and held out the fork.

“Want some?”

Before she could gain common sense and say no, she closed her eyes and parted her lips. He slid the remaining slice in. Molly closed her mouth around it. He withdrew the fork tines slowly from her closed lips, and his finger grazed her lower lip.

“You’ve got a bit on your…”

She opened her eyes and sharply inhaled. He’d moved closer, right there, and was about to kiss her. She turned away, burning.

Roxanne D. Howard writes sizzling erotic romance with Boroughs Publishing Group and The Wild Rose Press. She is a U.S. Army veteran, and a Columbia College alumni. She loves to read poetry, classical literature, and Stephen King. Also, she is an avid Star Wars fan, musical theater nut, and marine biology geek. Roxanne resides in the western U.S., and when she's not writing, she enjoys spending quality time with her husband, children, and furry companions. Roxanne loves to hear from her readers, and encourages you to contact her via her website and social media.

Follow Roxanne's book releases over the next six months. Be sure to add the books to your TBR pile!



Roxanne D. Howard will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interview with John Alexander, Author of Timeless Tales

John Alexander lives in Frisco, TX. During the last five years of his career in the high tech industry John discovered his love for writing. He now spends full time pursuing that passion.

His work includes:

Technical books:
Co-author of two editions of CallManager Fundamentals (2001 & 2005)

The Enclave (2010)

Children’s Chapter books
Amber – Autumn Mystery Series (Four Books, 2014 – 2017)

Timeless Tales – his debut book of poetry release date August 12, 2018.

John served as Grant Committee chairman for North Texas Book Festival for two years, is an active member of SCWBI, and participates in two monthly critique groups in Frisco.


Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Rusk, a small town in east Texas. I had the privilege of graduating high school with friends I’d known since first grade. After college at the University of Texas, I spent a few years in Florida, a few years in Ohio, and then settled in North Texas, with a two year stay in California inserted during the 90s.

When did you begin writing?

I coauthored two technical books in 2001 and 2004. I completed a mystery suspense novel in 2010. I began writing children's chapter books in 2014, completing a four book mystery series. I began writing stories in rhyme in the spring of 2017, releasing my debut book of ten poems August 12, 2018.

What is this book about?

The rhymes in Timeless Tales grew out of some tough times, and the stories in the book helped me to cope. I pray they will bring hope, courage, and inspiration to others.

What inspired you to write it?

Sitting in the waiting room of a doctor’s office during my wife’s office visit, one of many during the past months, feeling sorry for myself and our situation, a poem rose within me and caused me to smile. It seemed that trash kept falling on us and I wrote the first poem, Mouse in a Dumpster, in doctor’s office waiting rooms over the course of the next two days. I had written a short poem for my wife’s birthday thirty years earlier, and I wrote an open house invitation in the form of a rhyme a few years ago, but I’d never really written poetry. I found writing stories in rhyme soothing and the stories brought my hope and joy. My love of writing stories in rhyme was born out of that experience.

How is it similar to other books in its genre? How is it different?

This book is similar to other books that provide the reader with inspiration through collections of lyrical poems. Many of the poems in those collections are from the past. I think Timeless Tales is different because they are fresh and new, yet reminiscent of rhymes from years gone by.

What is the most important thing readers can learn from your book?
I hope readers are inspired to find peace and joy in the midst of their present circumstances.

Where can readers purchase a copy?

The book is available for pre-order (release date is August 12, 2018) from several sources including Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Here are some links:

What is up next for you?

I am working on my next collection of poems.

Is there anything you would like to add?

I would love feedback from readers. I have no formal training in poetry. I’m just a novice who loves the flow of rhyme and rhythm.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Blurb Blitz & Giveaway: Rescued by the Captain by Laura A. Barnes

Abandoned at sea

When Ivy Mallory awakens; she finds herself on the ship of the man who rejected her love years earlier. While he was away working for the Crown, she embraced the London Seasons trying to forget him. Caught in the middle of a treason plot; she must help save her brother. To do so she needs to put her trust in the one man who can protect her. But can she protect her heart from loving him again?

Found at sea

Captain Marcus Thornhill never imagined he would find a lady floating unconscious in a lifeboat out in the middle of the open sea. But it wasn’t any lady, it was Ivy. Seven years earlier he rejected her love for a life at sea. As he rescues her he gets involved in a treason plot that will bring the war to their beloved shores of England. As he unravels the plot he is unable to deny his desire for her. Is he too late in saving her and the love he has for her?


But he was caught off guard instead; he paused in the doorway stunned by the sight before him. Then he slowly smiled and quietly shut the door. His eyes slowly devouring the sight before him. She thought it would be a perfect time to get cleaned up. As she was sliding off Thorn’s shirt, the door flung open, startling her. Ivy stood in shock as she looked up and saw Thorn standing in the doorway with a growl on his face. Then she watched as he silently shut the door and leaned back against it with a devilish smile covering his face. She didn’t know whether she would rather deal with his growl or the smile. Either way she was in danger and needed to cover herself. She reached for the towel and covered her body. Thorn just stood there smiling at her, watching her become flustered. He had her right where he wanted her now. One way or another he was going to get his answers. Also, he was going to make her his. This was going to be a productive afternoon after all. He didn’t speak; he was waiting for her to talk. His silence would be his weapon. Ivy was speechless. His silence was unnerving. She was caught, she knew it. He was not going to show mercy on her anymore. He was going to get all the answers to his questions. Ivy was powerless to him. She knew deep in her heart that she would be unable to resist whatever he asked or wanted from her.




Barnes & Noble:



I have always dreamed of being an aspiring author. I am making my dreams come true, one word at a time. When I am not writing, I am spending time with my family. I love reading books on lazy afternoons, and late into the night. Anytime really. Married 28 years to the love of my life and we have three wonderful children and two sweet grandbabies. Besides writing, I have always wanted to travel. In the last few years we have gotten our passport stamped in England and Scotland. We are hoping to add Italy to the list soon.







Book+Main Bites:


Laura A. Barnes will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? - Aug 6

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.

Happy Monday! I missed last week's post because of my hectic schedule, but wanted to make sure I chimed in this week. The cleaning out of the in-laws' house is almost complete. By the end of the month, all the hard work will be done. Some of the furniture is going next weekend.

In my reading world, I reviewed the following book at the end of July:

I want to pick up the first book in the series because I loved this one.

I performed a First Chapter Review of The Freedom Club by Cindy Vine.

Right now I'm reading...

I'm almost done with Charlotte Stewart's book. Both of these have been slow going for me, but I think it's partially because I'm tired lately and don't feel like reading much.

Up next is...

Both of these are books I need to review for book tours. 

What's on your reading list for this week?