Friday, October 18, 2013

Book Review: A Timeless Romance Anthology Autumn Collection

Back Cover Blurb
genre: romantic suspense
Amazon #1 Bestselling series in *New Release* for Clean Romance 

Six Award-Winning Authors have contributed new stories to A Timeless Romance Anthology: Autumn Collection. Readers will love this collection of six romantic suspense novellas, all with one thing in common: Romance.

In Heather Horrocks’ charming story, A Hound Dog Named Elvis, interior designer, Kaitlin Hartley returns to her hometown of Aspen Grove, California, to the job of her dreams after a year of specialized training in New York. During the town’s Autumn Festival, she enters her dachshund, Elvis, into the Running of the Hallowieners race. Joshua Moore, the man who hadn’t wanted her to leave Aspen Grove, but hadn’t waited for her either, enters Elvis’s sister, Priscilla. When Kaitlin gets home afterward, she realizes Elvis has left the building—with Joshua. She has the wrong dog! Can she get her dog—and the man she’s never stopped loving—back?

Eye for an Eye, Stephanie Black’s thrilling novella, follows Mallory as she is just getting her life back together, living with her sister and brother-in-law and starting college. After a difficult few years following a family tragedy, she’s finally ready to move forward, which includes getting to know the charming Darien better. But when illegal drugs turn up in her sister’s drawer, the first person accused is Mallory, and suddenly she doesn’t know who to trust. She turns to Darien, but with all evidence pointing at her, she doesn’t know if Darien is the man to save her.

In First Heist, a suspenseful novella by Heather B. Moore, Mia, an undercover agent is about to make a handoff to co-agent, Omar Zagouri. But before she can complete her assignment, her cover is blown, and she finds herself escaping with Omar. The only problem is, her boss warned her about Omar and his sketchy history of landing himself in the middle of danger. After losing her mother in an attack planned for Mia, pulling off any heist with a man like Omar is the last thing she needs for her career . . . or her life. 

Sarah M. Eden’s cozy mystery, Letter for Two, we meet Sophia, who looks forward to the 5:30 p.m. mail sorting she does with her next door neighbor, Ethan. They live in a renovated house, now split into two apartments. Ethan is one of those dreamy, smart guys, but he shows no interest other than being friendly toward Sophia. When they find a mysterious letter addressed to Eleanor, dated to 1953, Sophia and Ethan determine to solve the puzzle together. Sophia knows that spending evenings with Ethan in ‘research’ might be her only chance to convince him that she should be more than just a neighbor.

In the enchanting novella, Silver Cascade Secrets, by Rachelle J. Christensen, Jillian is the master landscaper at a beautiful park. Meeting Travis there soon after breaking up with her boyfriend, Jillian is wary at first. Travis seems like a great guy, but Jillian had fallen for great guys before. When she learns that his brother, Craig, was murdered six months before, her heart goes out to Travis. True to her curious nature, she starts asking questions and learns about Craig’s close connection with the park. But finding the answers puts Jillian’s life in danger, and she must decide who she really trusts.

Chocolate Obsessed, a captivating romantic suspense by Annette Lyon, we meet Whitney, an executive pastry chef who is working her resort’s booth at the New York Chocolate Show. The only problem is that she shares the shift with her arch rival, Stephen. But then an unexpected visitor shows up: Jeremy, a man who lost a dessert competition she judged. When Jeremy confronts her and becomes threatening, Stephen steps in and gets Jeremy dragged off by security. But that doesn’t throw Jeremy off for long; soon Stephen and Whitney are running for their lives.

My Review
5 stars out of 5
How have I not read any of these anthologies yet? I absolutely loved this collection! As a busy mom, I've found my reading time severely limited in the last few years. That made this collection absolutely perfect for me to read! Each story is a bite-size dose of romance with a dash of suspense thrown in. I loved that I could read each story start to finish in an hour or less. 

Some of the stories were heavier on the romance, others heavier on the suspense. I was impressed with how each author was able to balance the two and weave a captivating and exciting tale in such a short amount of words. It's not easy to fit a sub-plot into a novella, I'm sure! I also loved how each story in the collection felt unique, but they all still seemed to fit together in this collection because of their cohesive theme. 

This collection is perfect for those cold nights when you just want to curl up in front of the fireplace with hot chocolate and a book. I am so glad there are three other collections out that I can hurry and go read!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Book Review: Only Half Alive by Konstanz Silverbow

Back Cover Blurb
genre: YA paranormal romance
The world's darkest creature will be their brightest hope! 

While darkness haunts her, she craves the light. Christina is a demon, but she doesn't want to be. She is willing to sacrifice everything to change it. Only one person stands in her way, and he will stop at nothing to keep her the way she is.

The greatest battle of light vs dark threatens every living creature, a battle that could destroy all. And the demon in love will only have one chance to save everyone.

My Review
3 of 5 stars
The concept of Only Half Alive really intrigued me from the beginning. I was immediately interested in the storyline, and felt myself drawn in by Christina and her obviously troubled life. My interest grew as Finn entered the picture, and then Riley. 

However, the book lacked some conflict...I think there were definitely missed opportunities that I really wish the author had explored. I also found a lot of the story line to be a little juvenile and unrealistic. This was obviously written for a YA audience. While I enjoyed the love story, it was too easy--there was nothing to keep them apart, and no conflict in their relationship. The opportunities for conflict were glossed over. I also felt their reason for loving each other--because they were destined to--was a little hard to swallow. When we finally got to the climax of the story, I felt it was rushed and things were resolved both too quickly and too easily. I also found Christina as a narrator to be distant. I had a hard time really getting in her head and feeling what she felt--it felt as though she was keeping the reader at arms' length. 

That being said, this was a fun read and I enjoyed myself. The author obviously has a vivid imagination, with a talent for writing, and I look forward to reading more from her in the future. 

Cover Reveal: Warrior Beautiful by Wendy Knight


Warrior Beautiful (Riders of Paradesos Series, #1)
Author: Wendy Knight
Check out on Goodreads!
Publication Date: October 15, 2013

Synopsis: Working with the ex you secretly love to save the souls of the innocent is almost as bad as working with a mighty battle unicorn who would be thrilled to watch you plummet to your death.

Scout is used to pain. Her body has been broken, her heart has been broken, and the only thing keeping her together is her relationship with her younger sister. Lil Bit believes in unicorns and terrifying monsters she calls soul stealers. But unicorns and monsters aren’t real…are they?

When Lil Bit falls prey to the mysterious disease sweeping the country, Scout has two options – believe the doctors who say it’s a pandemic or believe Lil Bit, who says it’s the soul stealers. She chooses her sister and goes looking for the unicorns who are supposed to save them. What she finds aren’t the cute pastel mythical creatures she expects. Battle unicorns are big and tough and full of attitude. Who knew?

Unicorns are real and so are the monsters. Soul stealers are reaping the souls of the innocent, and the unicorns are fighting to stop them. But to save the world, they need the help of humans – the enemy they’re dying to protect. And first to sign up for the fight is the ex-boyfriend Scout’s heart won’t stop loving, no matter how determined she is to hate him.


*They’d broken up over a year ago. She didn’t care. She wasn’t still in love with him. She wasn’t still devastated over his complete and absolute crushing of her heart.
Not at all.

*She still used the same lotion — lilac scented. If he lived forever, that smell would still remind him of her.

*He watched her, watched those lips, fighting memories again. She’d been his first kiss. And nothing since had ever felt as good.

*Trey loved it when she forgot she hated him.

*“I want someone to make me forget Scout ever existed.”

*Trey had never been tempted to kiss his brother before, but he was pretty tempted now.

*She’d had only a brief glimpse, but it was seared into her brain: a gigantic black horse with a burning horn in the center of its head.

*Scout nodded, wishing she wasn’t trembling like a small, hairless dog in a hurricane.
*“Wait!” Trey ran in front of them, holding his hands up like he could stop beasts the size of small elephants. “I’m coming. I want to fight, too.” 
“You’re kidding me.” Scout nearly fell off her unicorn.

*It wasn’t possible. She couldn’t. She wasn’t brave enough. She wasn’t strong enough.
“But I am,” Ashra said quietly.
*“Forgive me,” she read in a whisper, her finger tracing the hard black letters tattooed on his arm.

*“I like it better when you call me Princess.” Scout smiled. “Things are a little too real when you start calling me Scout.”

*My heart belongs wherever you are. Even if where you are—” he paused and looked around them, swallowing hard, “—is here.”

About the Author

Wendy Knight was born and raised in Utah by a wonderful family who spoiled her rotten because she was the baby. Now she spends her time driving her husband crazy with her many eccentricities (no water after five, terror when faced with a live phone call, etcetera, etcetera). She also enjoys chasing her three adorable kids, playing tennis, watching football, reading, and hiking. Camping is also big: her family is slowly working toward a goal of seeing all the National Parks in the U.S.

You can usually find her with at least one Pepsi nearby, wearing ridiculously high heel for whatever the occasion may be. And if everything works out just right, she will also be writing.
Where to Stalk Wendy!


**Must be 13 or older to enter**
**Winner has 24 HOURS to respond before new winner is selected**
**Opened Internationally**

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Cover Reveal Tour Participants

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Friday, October 4, 2013

Book Review: Awakening by Christy Dorrity and a GIVEAWAY!

I'm so happy to spotlight Christy Dorrity and her debut novel, Awakening! I first met Christy back in May. We were both attending the LDStoryMaker's conference, and happened to end up in the same group at Publication Primer. I instantly liked Christy, and when I read the first chapter of Awakening, I fell in love! Keep reading to the very bottom...Christy has kindly donated on ecopy of Awakening for one of my lucky readers!

Back Cover Blurb
genre: YA mythic fantasy
. . . because some Celtic stories won’t be contained in myth.

A little magic has always run in sixteen-year-old McKayla McCleery's family—at least that’s what she’s been told. McKayla’s eccentric Aunt Avril travels the world as a psychic for the FBI, and her mother can make amazing delicacies out of the most basic of ingredients. But McKayla doesn't think for a second that the magic is real—it’s just good storytelling. Besides, McKayla doesn’t need magic. She recently moved to beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming, and already she has a best friend, a solo in her upcoming ballet recital—and the gorgeous guy in her physics class keeps looking her way.

When an unexpected fascination with Irish dance leads McKayla to seek instruction from the mute, crippled janitor at her high school, she learns that her family is not the only one with unexplained abilities. After Aunt Avril comes to Star Valley in pursuit of a supernatural killer, people begin disappearing, and the lives of those McKayla holds most dear are threatened.

When the janitor reveals that an ancient curse, known as a geis, has awakened deadly powers that defy explanation, McKayla is forced to come to terms with what is real and what is fantasy. A thrilling debut novel based in Celtic mythology, Awakening is a gripping young adult fantasy rife with magic, romance, and mystery.

My Review
4.5 of 5 stars
I was pulled in from this story from the very beginning and sped right through it. One of the things this story really has going for it is the snappy pacing. Every scene seems to move the story forward and kept me flipping (or rather clicking) pages.

Something I really enjoyed about this book was the Celtic flavor. I absolutely loved the Irish dancing throughout the book, and was really impressed with how I could visualize those scenes. I also loved the Celtic names--they were definitely foreign, but still not so hard to pronounce that I stumbled over them. And Roarke was such an engaging and compelling character! I loved how sign language played into the book, and how music and dance worked together.

There are truly interesting and unique characters in this book. There was Roarke, of course. But I also loved Aunt Avril. She was eccentric, but still somehow outside the typical crazy-aunt stereotype that a lot of books have. I also loved McKayla, our main character. She was an interesting narrator, and I was rooting for her the whole time.

I felt that the author did a great job of revealing information as it was needed as opposed to overwhelming me with everything at the beginning. I loved how well thought-out the plot was, and how every piece of information I was given in the story contributed to the overall story.

Some of the transitions in the story were a little rough, and for me the ending was rushed; I would've liked it drawn out for a few more pages. However, the ending came together well and was a satisfying ending to this story. This book is obviously the first in a series, and I cannot wait for the sequel! A fantastic debut novel. Can't wait to see what else comes from this author.

Praise for Awakening
"AWAKENING is a wonder and a delight. Christy Dorrity is a talent to watch."
~David Farland, New York Times bestselling author of Nightingale

"I thoroughly enjoyed AWAKENING, a captivating and unique debut novel that creatively integrates Irish dance."
~ CHRIS NAISH, Riverdance member and Creative Director of Fusion Fighters Irish dancers.

About the Author
Christy Dorrity lives in the mountains with her husband, five children, and a cocker spaniel. She grew up on a trout ranch in Star Valley, Wyoming, and is the author of The Geis series for young adults, and The Book Blogger’s Cookbooks. Christy is a champion Irish dancer and when she’s not reading or writing, she’s probably trying out a new recipe in the kitchen.

Buy Links
Amazon * B&N 

Social Media Links
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Cover Reveal: Adrenaline Rush by Cindy M. Hogan

I am so pleased to participate in the cover reveal for my friend Cindy Hogan's new book, Adrenaline Rush. Are you ready to see the cover?


Isn't it beautiful? Adrenaline Rush is coming out this month. Here's a little about the book.

Back Cover Blurb
genre: YA suspense
A madman with a mission is kidnapping groups of thrill-seeking high school seniors across the country, and it’s up to Christy to stop him.

To do so, she must take on a fearless alter ego and infiltrate a group of adrenaline junkies bent on pushing life to the limit. Death-defying stunts are only the beginning: two groups fit the profile, and Christy must discover the real target before it’s too late.

If she chooses the wrong group, more people will disappear. But choosing right puts her as the prime target—with no guarantee that she’ll get out alive.

Book Links
Goodreads * Amazon

Author Bio
Cindy M. Hogan graduated with a secondary education teaching degree and enjoys spending time with unpredictable teenagers. More than anything she loves the time she has with her own teenage daughters and wishes she could freeze them at this fun age. If she's not reading or writing, you'll find her snuggled up with the love of her life watching a great movie or planning their next party. She loves to bake, garden and be outdoors doing a myriad of activities.

Social Media Links
Blog * Twitter * Goodreads * Facebook

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Cover Reveal: A Fantasy Christmas

What do Witches, Elves, and Greek Gods (Oh My) have in common? They are part of the romantic Christmas anthology, A Fantasy Christmas, written by Cindy C Bennett, Stephanie Fowers, and Sherry Gammon. This exciting collection of fantasy stories will be available on November 1st. Click the link to our blog for a sneak peek at a couple of the individual covers and watch for blog tour info!

Halfling by Cindy C Bennett
Banished from the South Pole, Kara tries to carve out a new life among the elves of the North. It’s not easy with a secret to protect—a secret she's cursed with by the unusual circumstances of her heritage: half-elf, half-fairy. In the North, she’s assigned to work with Seb on a special project. He's the most gorgeous elf she’s ever seen - and the orneriest. 

As if being banished wasn’t punishment enough. 

Seb introduces her to Trystin, a fairy from the nearby fairy forest. Trystin discerns her secret right away and promises to teach her how to use the powers given to her by the very thing she’s fighting to keep hidden.

Aphrodite by Stephanie Fower

Nothing is simple for Aphrodite’s daughter, especially love. 

Scorned by society in regency England, Affry longs for romance. Upon encountering a dashing nobleman at her aunty's Christmas' ball, Affry gets caught in a lovely intrigue with disastrous results. Worse, she wins the interest of the gods. Now the furies of the underworld and Hades himself are after her. 

When all is fair in war,  Affry must use love as her weapon—but only for the one who’s

Loving Marigold by Sherry Gammon
Young Marigold Yarrow has a secret. She’s also in love with Jack Mahoney. In the middle of her ninth grade year, Jack's family up and moves to Port Fare, New York, leaving the small town of Sugar Maple, West Virginia - and Marigold - far behind.

Nine years later Jack and Marigold meet again. They join forces to weed out the shady Abbott boys. The unscrupulous brothers are illegally selling moonshine near her home on Sugar Maple Ridge. And they'll do anything to get Marigold to leave the ridge. Anything.

But this time it could be magic that tears Jack and Marigold apart.