Month

May 2017

Diary of a Single Wedding Planner by Violet Howe

If you have read my blog for long, you know that I love me a good vampire/shifter/witch story. I don’t read a lot of love or chic lit. However, it is nice to take a break from fantasy and read something with real people. This book was like a restful vacation. I loved it.  Who doesn’t love a good love story? Love is love whether the people have fangs or the ability to tan. Taylor has had a pretty rough time in the dating world. (Wait until you read about the date with the hotel guy!) The author created a non-shallow character who is able to look at her past from many angles and evaluate the options before just jumping in. I liked this. I get tired of the flaky female leads who don’t have much depth.  Now my only problem is finding the time to read the rest of the series.

 

I blame the fairy tales. When you grow up watching every love story end in happily ever after, you come into adulthood with expectations.

I never thought I’d reach twenty-five without finding The One. Of course, I’d know immediately he was The One because angels would sing, a light would shine down from the heavens, and he would be absolutely perfect in every way.
Except that hasn’t happened in real life.
It doesn’t help that being a wedding planner means I’m surrounded by romance every day. Of course, I’m also surrounded by crazy bridezillas and their outlandish demands. If those chicks can find love, then what’s wrong with me?
It’s not like I haven’t been out on dates or tried to find Mr. Right. But have you seen what’s out there?
So go ahead. Read my diary. You might laugh. You might cry. You might question my sanity more than once. Lord knows, I’ve done all that and then some. But if there’s anything I’ve learned from the fairy tales and my crazy life, a lot happens between Once Upon A Time and Happily Ever After.

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Violet Howe enjoys writing romance with humor. She lives in Florida with her husband, who is her knight in shining armor, and their two handsome sons. They share their home with three adorable but spoiled dogs. When she’s not writing, Violet is usually watching movies, reading, or planning her next travel adventure. You can follow Violet’s ramblings on her blog, The Goddess Howe.

 

 

 

 

Violet will be in Florida at  Space Coast Book Lovers

Books Can Save the World ~Guest Post by Jane Bolto

5 Unforgettable Books You Should Read to your Children

Reading to your children reaps lots of benefits. Academic performance, communication skills,

concentration, vocabulary and emotional understanding can all be improved by regularly reading to

your child. And the benefits start young; some research even advocates reading to your baby whilst

they’re still in the womb!

As well as benefits to their education, reading opens up whole new worlds for your children to

explore. Their imagination can run riot with different characters, destinations, and situations each time you open a book together.

When you’re choosing what to read with your children, you’re likely faced with a never-ending list of

children’s literature. There are so many books around that deciding between them can prove tricky.

Whatever you choose to read with your little ones, here are a few unforgettable and timeless books

that should feature on every parent-child reading list:

Matilda by Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl wrote many a children’s classic but Matilda is perhaps the best of an excellent bunch. It

tells the story of a little girl called Matilda who is plagued by terrible parents and the strictest, most

horrible head teacher in history. But, one day, Matilda discovers she has special powers and soon

works out how to use them to get her revenge. Matilda is an inspiring heroine who, in her quest to

overcome adversity, all children will come to love.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

This beautiful picture book was first published back in the 1960s but has certainly stood the test of

time. Maurice Sendak’s stunning words and illustrations tell the story of Max who, after shouting at

his mother, is sent to bed without any supper. From here, he sets off on a magical journey to

discover “where the wild things are”. This is a book about the power of imagination, the intensity of

childhood emotion and the constant love of parents.

The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

One rainy day, Sally and her brother are left home alone. They are expecting to be bored but then

the Cat in the Hat appears and mayhem ensues. Rhyming text and bold, colourful illustrations make

The Cat in the Hat a great book for all ages. Younger children will enjoy the pictures and rhythmic

cadence of the story whilst older children will relish the cheeky antics of the Cat.

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White

Charlotte’s Web is a modern classic and one of the best-selling children’s books of all time. It follows

the story of a little girl called Fern who, along with a spider called Charlotte, tries to save her pig

Wilbur from his fate on the farm. Charlotte’s Web is a tale of friendship, love, and loyalty and offers

children a first poignant understanding of mortality.

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C S Lewis

Mr. Tumnus the Faun, a wicked White Witch and a talking lion called Aslan; when siblings Peter,

Susan, Edmund and Lucy step through a magic wardrobe into Narnia they encounter more than they

could have ever imagined. When Edmund, lured by the promise of Turkish delight, becomes the

White Witch’s servant, his brother, and sisters go on an adventure to save him and the frozen land of

Narnia from her clutches.

 

Reading to your children can be an unforgettable experience for both you and your little ones. It’s a

chance to spend time together without the modern trappings of smartphones, TVs and tablets

getting in the way. It’s also a chance to discover characters and stories that will stay with both of you

forever. So head to the library or your local bookstore to stock up on some wonderful children’s

literature to enjoy together.

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With a background in Marketing, Jane Bolto currently works as a Content Specialist at Nybizdb.com.

Always willing to share her passion for new marketing strategies.

Tyrean reads… #carolinareads

What’s the first book you remember reading?
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

What’s the most recent book you have read or what are you reading right now?
Heroes of Arcania: Fortunes Favor by Liz Long

Why did you choose that book?
I’m into superhero fiction these days because I’m writing a superhero YA novel.

If you could meet one book character or one author, who would you like it to be and why?
I would love to meet C.S. Lewis or Aslan because I would love to take a long walk with Lewis and talk books or I would love to hug Aslan.

You can only choose five books for your bookshelf. What are they?

The Chronicles of Narnia (7 in 1!) by C.S. Lewis, Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, and Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George

I’m a teacher, daydreamer, writer, and believer from the rainy side of Washington state. I love reading, walking, and hugging my family when I’m not writing stories, poems, and books. I hang out online here: and here and lately at the Hero Lost site, too.


Join the movement!
I want to promote reading. I know there are so many out there who have read a book and thought, this is something others need to know about. Reading encourages a lifelong passion for learning. #carolinareads is a movement that will give readers a chance to share what they are reading. There is a five question interview. I will share it on my website and give you a chance to not only promote your love of reading but also to promote yourself as you can include a website in your two sentence biography. Don’t live in the Carolinas? Well, do you know someone who does (hint: the person who created this form) you can still participate. Submit the form and I’ll let you know the date of your spotlight. Spread the word! Join the movement. Please email a picture if you would like it to be included.

Dianna reads… #carolinareads

What’s the first book you remember reading?
An illustrated collection of old fairy tales; I remember the illustrations but sadly not the title.

What’s the most recent book you have read or what are you reading right now?
Right now I’m reading the Lucifer graphic novels in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman universe. It’s the first time I’ve read graphic novels in ages and it’s been a great change of pace!

Why did you choose that book?
I managed to convince a friend to loan it to me as research because I’m co-writing a graphic novel myself. You should read what you write, right?

If you could meet one book character or one author, who would you like it to be and why?
Terry Pratchett! He was brilliant, funny, and by all accounts very kind. And Discworld grew so much, in a way most fantasy authors don’t let their world’s grow.

You can only choose five books for your bookshelf. What are they?

Clariel by Garth Nix, Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy, Lady of Hay by Barbara Erskine, and A Raw Mix of Carelessness and Longing by Cecilia Frey.

Dianna Gunn is a freelance writer by day and a fantasy author by night. Her first YA fantasy novella, Keeper of the Dawn, was released through The Book Smugglers Publishing in April 2017. She also blogs about creativity, books, and life at www.thedabbler.ca


Join the movement!
I want to promote reading. I know there are so many out there who have read a book and thought, this is something others need to know about. Reading encourages a lifelong passion for learning. #carolinareads is a movement that will give readers a chance to share what they are reading. There is a five question interview. I will share it on my website and give you a chance to not only promote your love of reading but also to promote yourself as you can include a website in your two sentence biography. Don’t live in the Carolinas? Well, do you know someone who does (hint: the person who created this form) you can still participate. Submit the form and I’ll let you know the date of your spotlight. Spread the word! Join the movement. Please email a picture if you would like it to be included.

Talk About It Tuesday

Talk About It Tuesday. Talk about whatever writing project you have going on right now. If you’re an author, blogger, or writer share a little from your current WIP (work in progress) or an upcoming book. One random post will be chosen to be featured on my blog, terriluvsbooks.com every Tuesday. Please fill out this form http://goo.gl/forms/ata6k9heyw9fGcwq1 You must like my Facebook page to qualify http://www.facebook.com/wilsonterria/ in order to qualify.

The Glitch by Ramona Finn

**I received a copy of this audio in exchange for a review**

This is a unique book. First, it is written in present tense. Second, it is about artificial intelligence. Neither of these interests me, but I was very interested in the dystopian aspect of this story. I am so glad I decided to try it. It was an incredible whirlwind story. I had to keep listening and find out what happened. The characters are strong and the plot kept pulling me back to the story (my silly kids get in my way of listening to books). It is a unique story blending cyberpunk and dystopia.  It was very easy to see this story in my mind. I think the writing and use of first person only added to the strength of this story.

 

Author: Ramona Finn

Narrator: Genevieve Kaplan

Length: 6 hours 28 minutes

Publisher: Relay Publishing⎮2017

Genre: Science Fiction

Series: The Glitches, Book One

Release date: Jan. 16, 2017

Synopsis: On the brink of extinction, being human means more than just surviving.
In Lib’s world, it’s dangerous to stray from the Norm. In fact, for someone who doesn’t live up to the AI’s standards, it’s practically a death sentence. Lib learns this the hard way when she wakes up with her memories erased in a barren wasteland, and only one thought lodged in her mind:
It’s all her fault.
Lib is a Glitch—an imperfect human component of the utopian Norm. Utterly alone, she’ll have to team up with her fellow Glitches Skye and Raj and the mysterious Rogue Wolf and his clan to survive. Wolf only cares about the survival of his group, but Raj thinks they can hack the AI and change the Norm for the better.

About the Author: Ramona Finn

Ramona Finn writes about courageous characters who fight to live in broken, dystopian worlds. She believes a person’s true characters is often revealed in times of crisis, and there is no greater crisis than the worlds that she drops her characters into!

She grew up sitting cross-legged on her town’s library floor–completely engrossed in science fiction books. It was always the futuristic world or the universe-on-the-brink-of-extinction plotlines that drew her in, but it was the brave characters who chose to fight back that kept her turning the pages.

Her books create deep, intricate worlds with bold characters determined to fight for their survival in their dystopian worlds–with a little help from their friends. And, of course, romance is never out of the question.

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About the Narrator: Genevieve Kaplan

For the past fifteen years I have received extensive training in lyric diction and classical voice. Various experience includes lead roles in multiple opera production through Santa Clara University with semi-professional recording obligations. For a minor in Lyric Diction at Santa Clara University I was required to take 6 units of Lyric Diction learning the correct pronunciation of languages including Italian, German and French (and of course English) as well as four years of private vocal training. Outside of musical endeavors I have experience with various characters and voices of my own creation included in my stand up comedy set.

 

Craig T. reads… #carolinareads

What’s the first book you remember reading?
The Call of the Wild by Jack London. A book told from a dog’s perspective? As I kid I thought it sounded boring. But my mom made me read it and I’m pretty sure that’s the book that ignited my now endless imagination.

What’s the most recent book you have read or what are you reading right now?
Hell’s Children, by John L. Monk.

Why did you choose that book?
I’m a huge fan of the author. John helped get me back into writing and is stellar in everything he does. A truly down-to-earth kind of writer with made skillz!

If you could meet one book character or one author, who would you like it to be and why?
I’d like to meet H.G. Wells, author of The Time Machine, War of the Worlds, and The Island of Dr. Moreau. His sci-fi mind and mine are very similar. I think he’d be a lot of fun to chat with.

You can only choose five books for your bookshelf. What are they?

The Island of Dr. Moreau (H.G. Wells), because it reminds me of how slippery the slope is to losing our humanity
Hush (Jeph Loeb), because Batman, duh!
Something by John Grisham. I’ve yet to read a book by him that I didn’t love.
The Three Trees (Angela Elwell Hunt). As someone with Celtic roots, the retelling of this folktale is as beautiful as they come.
The Bible. Because who is anyone who doesn’t serve a higher calling?

My blog, and my latest novel, Rabbit Punch, a vigilant mystery thriller.


Join the movement!
I want to promote reading. I know there are so many out there who have read a book and thought, this is something others need to know about. Reading encourages a lifelong passion for learning. #carolinareads is a movement that will give readers a chance to share what they are reading. There is a five question interview. I will share it on my website and give you a chance to not only promote your love of reading but also to promote yourself as you can include a website in your two sentence biography. Don’t live in the Carolinas? Well, do you know someone who does (hint: the person who created this form) you can still participate. Submit the form and I’ll let you know the date of your spotlight. Spread the word! Join the movement. Please email a picture if you would like it to be included.

Lucky Penny by Ellie Ashe ~~Giveaway~~ ~~Author Interview~~

 

**I received an audio copy in exchange for a review**

This is the third book in this series, and as I said in this post, I could read 50 more books in this series. This book continues Miranda Vaughn’s adventures as she recovers from her trouble with the law. Even though she was acquitted, people don’t see her as NOT GUILTY. One of the fun parts of reading a series is to see how the characters develop. It gives the reader a chance to truly fall in love with them. These characters are great. They are real. This author does a great job with showing us the story and letting it develop organically. She doesn’t beat us over the head with unnecessary details or treat us as incompetent readers who must be spoon-fed. Trust me when I say combine this cozy series with a poolside lounge chair and free drinks and you will have an excellent summer.

Author: Ellie Ashe

Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Length: 7 hours 17 minutes

Publisher: Ellie Ashe

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Release date:

Synopsis: A year after her acquittal on fraud charges, former financial analyst Miranda Vaughn is finally getting her life back. Not only does she have a chance for romance with her sexy neighbor, FBI Agent Jake Barnes, but she’s also got a new job…one that’s taking her to a vacation paradise!
Perched above the crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe, the Whispering Pines Resort & Spa is a local landmark and a popular destination for the rich and famous who are stressed out from being rich and famous. And down on the water’s edge is the Lucky Penny Casino—an abandoned shell of a once-stylish casino. Max Emmerson, the owner of the Whispering Pines Resort, used to own the Lucky Penny, and he wants it back. Miranda’s job is to get Max’s finances in order so he can borrow the money to buy the casino, and make sure nothing jeopardizes his gaming license. Easy, right?
But the nice boring accounting job spirals out of control with the addition of a Hollywood film crew, an underground gambling ring, and Jake going undercover at the resort as a newlywed—with another woman. As Miranda and Jake each dive into their investigations, they can’t deny their growing feelings for each other. But it’s more important than ever that they keep their attraction hidden. Especially since someone at the resort is watching them very closely, and is willing to do just about anything to keep them from uncovering the truth.

About the Author: Ellie Ashe

USA Today best-selling author Ellie Ashe has always been drawn to jobs where she can tell stories—journalist, lawyer, and now writer. Writing quirky romantic mysteries is how she gets the “happily ever after” that so often is lacking in her day job.

When not writing, you can find her with her nose in a good book, watching far too much TV, or trying out new recipes on unsuspecting friends and family. She lives in Northern California with her husband and three cats, all of whom worry when she starts browsing the puppy listings on petfinder.com.

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About the Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Teri Schnaubelt is a Chicago-based actor, voice actor and audiobook narrator with over 100 titles, including NY Times Bestsellers.

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Interview with author Ellie Ashe

When you worked as a lawyer, did you work with white collar crimes? Is that how you came to know so much or did you just research everything and learned as you wrote?

I did work on white-collar criminal cases, but I should stress that none of my cases even resembled Miranda’s story. I didn’t have to do quite as much research since I was familiar with the law, though I did have to come up with a financial crime. That was actually pretty fun.

What pushed you to write a book?

I’ve always wanted to write a book and attempted many times in the past. I have many half-finished manuscripts on my hard-drive, and on floppy disks (yikes, I’m old), and even old notebooks that should probably stay buried in my attic. The idea behind Chasing the Dollar came about because I wanted to tell a story from an angle we don’t see as often—that of the person accused of a crime—and after all the hype around the high-profile arrest has died down.

How much of you is in Miranda?

Not much, really. You can tell because she’s good at math, and ugh, math. Not my strength. If there’s any similarity, it’s that we’ll both willing to help people who are in trouble and often volunteer without thinking through the commitment. Though I haven’t found myself in quite the same situations as Miranda. Thank goodness.

Describe your writing process?

It changes a little for each book, but I usually have an outline—or at least enough of a plan that I know where I’m going. I write in bursts, when I have time, so that helps me when I get back to my project after a few days off. Sometimes, I’ll start writing and see where it goes, and once I’ve got some traction, I will plot out the next section. Also, I’ve recently started dictating and I really like it.

What is your dream project?

I have an idea and some sketchy plans for a mystery that spans a trilogy. I’m not sure how it will work, but I like to take it out and play around with the outline every few weeks. One day, I’ll figure out how to put this together… And find the time to tackle it!

Are we going to get more stories about Miranda? (I hope so)

Thank you! And yes! Yes! I’m really happy to be working on book 4 in the series, Running the Numbers. I wanted to return to the action-adventure feel of the first book, so this one is a wild ride.

Is writing something you’ve always wanted to do?

It is. When I was very young, I used to write stories out and staple the pages together to make a “book,” so I think is a lifelong ambition.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

Don’t pay attention to the market, just write the story you want to read. Most writers are also readers, so if you want to read it, someone else probably does, too.

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?

Only 5? I don’t know if that’s possible. Can I have five Kindles, instead? I read a lot, and my current favorites change with what I’ve read recently, so I don’t know how I’d survive with only five books on my shelves. Though one would probably be To Kill a Mockingbird since that’s one I re-read frequently.

https://gleam.io/BmPpV/miranda-vaughn-mysteries-giveaway
Miranda Vaughn Mysteries Giveaway

Long Days of Small Things by Catherine McNeil

Author: Catherine McNiel

Narrator: Andrea Emmes

Length: 4 hours 44 minutes

Publisher: Two Words Publishing⎮2017

Genre: Parenting

Release date: Mar. 07, 2017

Synopsis: Rich, soul-inspiring practices for moms who have neither quiet nor time.
Dirty laundry, crayon-smeared bills, and smashed crackers . . . And there’s your Bible–buried under a pile of diapers. Bleary-eyed from lack of sleep, without a moment of peace and quiet, you wonder if the spiritual life you crave is even possible. But God sees you. He designed this parenting journey, after all. He understands the chaos of motherhood. And he joins you in everything–whether you’re scrubbing the floor, nursing a fussy newborn, or driving to soccer practice. Catherine McNiel invites you to connect with God right here, in the sacred mundane of every mothering moment.

Buy Links

Buy on Audible/AmazonTwo Words PublishingiTunesDownpour

About the Author: Catherine McNiel

Catherine McNiel writes to open eyes to the creative and redemptive work of God in each present moment. She serves alongside her husband in a community-based ministry, while caring for three kids, two jobs, and one enormous garden. Receiving each day of life as a gift, Catherine is striving to see beauty, learning to expand her perspective, and praying to keep her eyes and heart open.

Catherine’s works have been published as Bible studies, devotions, and articles for her church, and in publications including Christianity Today’s Her.menuetics and Plough Quarterly. She lives and serves near Wheaton, Illinois.

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About the Narrator: Andrea Emmes

Andrea Emmes started as an SAG-AFTRA, Equity Actor and has been performing for over 20 years on stage, TV and film.  An Audible Approved Narrator known as “The Girl with a Thousand Voices”, her wide range of character voices and dynamic/emotionally invested performances has reviewers and listeners alike commenting on how she effortlessly pulls listeners in, has versatility and charisma and is quite suited for YA.  LA Music Award winner for Best Contemporary Christian Artist for 2008 debut release album, “I’m On My Way”.  Andrea has two degrees: A.A. in Fine Arts and a B.S. in Game Art and Design and resides in Northern, California.

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Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovitch

I like the Stephanie Plum books and I liked this new series just as much. Maybe, even a little better just because I like fantasy. I am always amazed by fantasy authors who come up with just a slight twist to the standard fantasy tropes. This book has the snarky female lead, like the Stephanie Plum series. Maybe that is what draws me to this series. I tend to be way over snarky irl. There were some parts that made me laugh at loud. The other people in the waiting room, probably thought I was crazy. I look forward to reading the rest of this series.

P.S. I got this book for 1.99 through the Goodreads Deal of the Day. If you don’t know about this, sign up now.

 

Life in Marblehead has had a pleasant predictability, until Diesel arrives. Rumor has it that a collection of priceless ancient relics representing the Seven Deadly Sins have made their way to Boston’s North Shore. Partnered with pastry chef Lizzie Tucker, Diesel bullies and charms his way through historic Salem to track them down—and his criminal mastermind cousin Gerewulf Grimorie. The black-haired, black-hearted Wulf is on the hunt for the relic representing gluttony. Caught in a race against time, Diesel and Lizzie soon find out that more isn’t always better, as they battle Wulf and the first of the deadly sins.

With delectable characters and non-stop thrills that have made Janet Evanovich a household name, Wicked Appetite will leave you hungry for more.

Amazon

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Janet Evanovich is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Stephanie Plum series, the Fox and O’Hare series with co-author Lee Goldberg, the Knight and Moon series, and the Lizzy and Diesel series as well as twelve romance novels, the Alexandra Barnaby novels, Troublemaker graphic novel, and How I Write: Secrets of a Bestselling Author.