Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Review: Nate Rocks the World by Karen Pokras Toz

Nate Rocks the World by Karen Pokras Toz
Published: 2011
Published by: Grand Daisy Press

Ten-year-old Nathan Rockledge cannot catch a break. After all, life as a fourth-grader can be hazardous what with science projects to deal with and recess football games to avoid. Everyone, including his best friend Tommy, seems to have bad luck when hanging around Nathan. Throw in an older sister who is a royal pain, a dad who is stuck in the past, and a mom who keeps trying to poison him with her awful cooking, and poor Nathan’s life as a fourth grader appears to be completely doomed. Armed only with his sketchpad, his imagination, and his wits, Nathan Rockledge navigates the perils of the fourth grade in style, to emerge heroic, as Nate Rocks, proving that even a ten-year-old can accomplish great things. Follow the quirky and imaginative adventures of ten-year-old Nathan Rockledge as his cartoons come to life.

My thoughts:
Poor Nathan. He has a big sister who is a pain and a mom who cannot cook or sew but still insists on making his lunches and his Halloween costumes. He also has to put up with a science project partner who tells her mom everything, who then in turn tells his mom. Is it any wonder he likes to lose himself in his imagination and his sketching? Unfortunately for Nate, he doesn't always get good ideas when his cartoons come to life.

I found Nate Rocks the World to be cute and funny. It reminded me of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, but without the illustrations. There is a surprise ending that I did not see coming. This book is geared for approximately ages 7 to 12. In some places, it may be just a little too detailed for the attention spans of the younger ones, and they may lose interest. However, overall, this is a great book to read with the kids in the younger range and for the older kids who enjoy chapter books. It would be very easy for kids this age to relate to Nate. Especially if they also have big imaginations. Wait, what kid doesn't?

You can connect with Karen on her website, Twitter and Facebook

A copy of this book was provided by the author.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays: Head Over Heels by Jill Shalvis

Teaser Tuesdays was created by MizB of Should Be Reading.

I almost didn't do a Teaser this week, but here goes. This one is from a book I just finished reading for a blog tour stopping by next week.

"Sure." Chloe once again bent to the computer. "So where are you headed?"
She bit her lip. "LA?"
Chloe looked up from her screen. "Okay, but tomorrow night, when you're standing at another front desk in some other inn, don't say it with a question mark. Own it."

Head Over Heels by Jill Shalvis, p. 211

Anyone can participate in Teaser Tuesdays. Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful to NOT include spoilers! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author.
What do you think about this teaser? Please also share your own.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Stay Tuned Whirlwind Tour 11/28 - 12/2

As part of this special promotional extravaganza sponsored by Novel Publicity, the price of the Stay Tuned eBook edition has dropped to just 99 cents this week.

What’s more, by purchasing this fantastic book at an incredibly low price, you can enter to win many awesome prizes, including lots of Amazon gift cards (up to $100 in amount) and 5 autographed copies of the book. Be sure to enter before the end of the day on Friday, December 2nd, so you don’t miss out.

To Win the Prizes:

1. Purchase your copy of Stay Tuned for just 99 cents on Amazon or Barnes & Noble (You’ll need it for the big contest on Friday)

2. Fill-out the form on Novel Publicity to enter for the prizes

3. Visit today’s featured event; you may win an autographed copy of the book or a $50 gift card!

...And I can win too!

Over 100 bloggers are participating in this gigantic event, and there are plenty of prizes for us too. The blogger who receives the most votes in the traffic-breaker poll will win a $100 gift card as well. So when you visit Novel Publicity’s site to fill-out the contest entry form, don’t forget to say that I referred you, so I can get a point in the poll.

The Featured Events include:

Monday, Radio Interview with Novel Publicity! We’re kicking-off on the Novel Publicity Free Advice blog. We interviewed Lauren on our radio show Sunday night and have embedded the full podcast and blogged about its highlights. Give it a listen and then leave a comment on the blog post. This is a great chance to get to know more about this fun and bubbly author. One commenter will win an autographed copy of Stay Tuned. Don’t forget to enter for the other contest prizes while you’re over there!

Tuesday, Twitter sharing contest! A tweet is tiny,only 140 characters. But on Tuesday, it could win you $50. Send the following tweet across the twittersphere, and you just may win a $50 Amazon gift card. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. The winners will be announced Wednesday morning. Here’s the tweet: Take a break from the holiday frenzy, and read Stay Tuned. It's fast, fun, and reduced to just 99 cents! #whirlwind

Wednesday, Google+ sharing contest! Yup, there’s yet another awesome opportunity to win a $50 Amazon gift card, and this time it just takes a single click! Visit Google+ and share Emlyn Chand’s most recent post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). On Thursday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. Two chances to win with just one click! How about that?

Thursday, Facebook sharing contest! Stop by Novel Publicity’s Facebook page and share their latest post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). It’s ridiculously easy to win! On Friday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs.

Friday, special contest on the author’s site! Are you ready for some more fun? Take a picture of yourself with your copy of Stay Tuned either in paperback or on an eReading device, tag Lauren Clark’s Facebook page, and you can enter to win one of three Amazon gift cards! A $100 prize will go to the most creative photo, $50 to the best BFF photo, and $50 to the photo with the most people in it. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. If you need help learning how to tag a photo, you can visit Lauren’s Facebook page for detailed instructions.

Remember, it’s all about the books!

About Stay Tuned: What happens when a #1 news team becomes the top story instead of reporting it? For TV producer Melissa Moore, crisis management comes with the job. From employee disputes to her high-maintenance boss, there’s not much she hasn’t seen or can’t handle. But no one—including Melissa—expects a fistfight during the ten o’clock news. When sexy-but-crazy Alyssa Andrews lands a punch on her co-anchor’s face, Melissa jumps on set to help.
She’s determined that WSGA’s reputation won’t be destroyed on her watch. Both anchors are fired and Melissa agrees to fill in—but not before polishing her look from haircut to heels. While the new Melissa wows WSGA viewers, her personal life starts fraying at the edges. Melissa’s husband is away more than he’s home, leaving cryptic Post-it notes in his wake. Her mother’s antics spiral out of control at the nursing home and a stalker decides Melissa is her next target. What happens next? Stay Tuned to find out… Get it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

About the Author:
Lauren Clark has been a voracious reader since the age of four and would rather be stranded at the library than on a desert island. In her former life, she worked as an anchor and producer for CBS affiliates in Upstate New York and Alabama. Lauren adores her family, yoga, her new Electra bike, and flavored coffee. She lives near the Florida Gulf Coast. Visit her on her website, Twitter, Facebook, or GoodReads.

Let's get to know Lauren better through a rousing Q&A...

Did you always want to be a writer?

Yes. For as long as I can remember. Of course, my parents always remind that I also wanted to be an Indian princess named Tiger Lily, but that dream was more short-lived. On a serious note, I do have fond memories of spending my summer days toting stacks of books back and forth from my house to our town’s library. It always seemed like a magical place, with endless stories to get lost in.

You worked as both an anchor and producer after graduate school. How did that influence the writing of Stay Tuned?

So much! It was an accident, really, getting into broadcast journalism. I always thought of myself as a behind the scenes kind of girl, but after my first day on the job, I loved it and stuck with it for the next 6 years. Working in television is never boring. There’s always a story, always the next show. The camaraderie in the newsroom is like nothing else I’ve ever experienced. It’s like living in a big, loud, mostly happy, very
dysfunctional family every day.

What gave you the idea for Stay Tuned?

True story: A few months before I took my first television job as a part- time health reporter, the two main anchors at one of the local television stations (who were romantically involved) got into a fistfight. They were outside the building, in the station parking lot. Shortly thereafter, they were both fired. In the months that followed, the two of them bantered back and forth in newspaper editorials, threatened lawsuits, and fueled all sorts of crazy retaliation stories. I never forgot about that incident and always thought about what might happen if such a fistfight happened on air, during a newscast. What would happen? How would it be handled? Who would fix this kind of mess?

What did you learn from being on air?

It’s very humbling, really. As a producer, especially, you are in charge of what’s being put out there—the news stories people watch and talk about each day. It’s a big responsibility to get it right. Not just sometimes, but all of the time. There were many sobering days—car accidents, house fires, school shootings—and those stories should be told with sensitivity and care. It’s someone’s son or daughter or parent. Everyone matters.

What was your most memorable experience as an anchor or reporter?

I was on set during 9-11. I remember sitting there with our weatherman and waiting to be cued to go back on air after the commercial. CBS cut in and showed footage from a plane crashing into the Twin Towers. It was surreal and awful. We were all in shock. It didn’t seem possible. All I wanted to do was go home and hug my son.

Was it a difficult decision to leave television?

Yes and no. I loved so many parts of broadcasting. I was able to meet fascinating people – Vice Presidential Candidate Geraldine Ferraro, then-New York Attorney General Eliott Spitzer among many others. I adored the people I worked with, especially the folks behind the scenes. I was also fortunate enough to win several AP awards for anchoring and reporting.

On the flip side, I worked crazy hours (2 am – 10 am) and, as is typical in the industry, I received very little vacation time. I anchored every holiday (Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, you name it) and wasn’t able to spend much time with my young son. After more than six years, I “retired” from TV news. It was then that I really started to get serious about writing fiction.

How long did it take to write Stay Tuned?

About five years, all said and done. I wrote several other novels before that—and those manuscripts will never see the light of day! When I began Stay Tuned, I had just given birth to my second son, so my writing time was very limited. After putting it away for several years, I picked it back up about 12 months ago, brushed it off, and had an editor-friend look it over. We made some changes, tweaked the story, and fine-tuned the plot. A few months back, I was offered a contract with a small publishing company. Another friend introduced me to the talented and fabulous Emlyn Chand at Novel Publicity, who helped guide me through the entire publishing process. It’s been a wonderful journey!

What’s next? A sequel or a stand-alone novel?

Dancing Naked in Dixie is next (stand alone title) and I’m so excited to share that it’s been selected as a finalist for the 2011 Chick Lit Writers “Get Your Stiletto in the Door” Contest (Winner will be announced December 20, 2011).

Dancing Naked
follows the story of a talented but scattered travel magazine writer who returns from overseas only to find out she’s on the verge of getting fired. To save her job, she reluctantly accepts an assignment in the Deep South. She’ll be writing an article about Eufaula, Alabama's annual Pilgrimage event, which is a long-standing spring tour of antebellum mansions (the location is featured in the Reese Witherspoon’s movie, Sweet Home Alabama). Upon arriving in Eufaula, Julia falls in love with the area, its cast of charming characters, and her handsome tour guide. When she discovers that a developer has big plans to buy up many of the historic homes and turn the area into a tourist site, it’s up to Julia to save the day.

What is your writing schedule like?

With two growing, active boys and a busy husband, finding time to write is like looking for a missing Lego piece in a houseful of toys (Moms should appreciate that!) I often get up very early and write while everyone else is asleep or go to the lovely campus of our local university and shut myself in a study room. I love it there because I have to shut off my phone and I don’t have the password for an internet connection! No
distractions! Of course, I do frequent two or three local coffee shops and draw inspiration from my daily dose of caffeine and good friends!

Who are your favorite writers? Favorite books?

Gosh, there are so many! My all-time favorites include Emily Giffin, Sophie Kinsella, Jodi Picoult, Alice Hoffman, Jennifer Weiner, Chris Bohjalian, John Grisham, Amanda Eyre Ward, and Lisa See. I also love Lisa Scottoline, Janet Evanovich, and James Patterson. Favorite books include: Sue Monk Kidd’s The Secret Life of Bees, Jodi Picoult’s My Sister’s Keeper, and Stellaluna by Janell Cannon (this is a children’s book that I’ve read over and over to my two boys).

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Read. A lot. Write. A lot. Revise. A lot. I’m not joking.

Anyone can write. Writing well is different. It takes focus and tenacity and determination. I've heard Stephen King quoted as saying, "The first million words are practice." Malcolm Gladwell, in Outliers, says, "It takes 10,000 hours of purposeful practice to become expert at anything." Just to be clear, at 4 hours a day (28 hours a week), that’s 7 years. I’m not quoting the experts to scare anyone or be a harbinger of doom. It’s the truth.

Pick up a copy of Stephen King’s On Writing. It’s brilliant and so true and funny in so many sections. If you’re serious about becoming an author, learn as much as you can. Read blogs and books about the craft, network with other writers, or go to a writer’s conference. Above all, write!

Blog Tour: Chasing Clovers by Kat Flannery - Guest Post & Excerpt

Romance author Kat Flannery has provided us with a guest post about mail order brides. Her new book, Chasing Clovers, is a historical romance about a mail order bride.

About the author:
Kat Flannery has loved writing ever since she was a girl. She is often seen jotting her ideas down in a little black book. When not writing or in school, Kat enjoys snuggling on her couch with a hot chocolate and a great book. Kat has had her writing published in numerous periodicals. Her first novel, Chasing Clovers, was released by Imajin Books this Fall. She is now hard at work on her next book. When not focusing on her creative passions, Kat is busy with her three young boys and doting husband.

You can find Kat Flannery at her website, blog, on Twitter and Facebook.

Guest post by Kat Flannery:
Mail Order Brides have always fascinated me. In the 1800's women married for a sense of security, and financial stability. They were widows seeking help to raise their children, lost souls searching for independence.

In the 1800’s Mail Order Brides became very popular. Men migrated west to farm land, build towns and cities, and mine for gold. Most being successful, soon found themselves financially stable. But one thing was missing...women. There were very few women in the early days of the west and if a few popped up, they were always married. Soon men began sending letters to churches and newspapers back east looking for brides.

The women took on the status of Mail Order Bride for many reasons, but one looms above all the rest... security. Times were tough back then and a woman needed to know she was taken care of. This wasn’t a marriage founded on love, but instead on convenience and knowing you had a roof over your head, food in your stomach, and money in your purse. However, this doesn’t mean some didn’t find love, but it wasn’t the reason they were brought together.

In the early stages of writing Chasing Clovers, I knew I wanted to produce a story that touched people’s lives. As a fiction writer, I needed a story that would evoke empathy, from my readers, toward my characters and their plight. I thought of my Grandmother and how she lost 2 children a month a part in the 50’s and I wondered how she continued to live after such a harrowing ordeal. I thought of my own children and wondered how I would cope if something ever happened to them. This is how my protagonist, Livy Green was created. I took the scenario of losing a child, and created Livy as a Mail Order Bride with an elusive past.

Livy is grieving the loss of her child. She is angry and resents those around her. She doesn’t think she deserves a second chance at life, or at love. But John Taylor changes all of that. He demands that Livy, distant and cold, fit into his family and raise his two children.

In Chasing Clovers, Livy and John’s story is an adventure filled with laughter, sorrow, and forgiveness. It is an emotional tale woven solely for you, the reader, to enjoy and fall in love with.

Chasing Clovers
Mail order bride, Livy Green, is desperate to escape the memories of her past. John Taylor will never love another woman again, but his children need a mother. Will they learn to trust each other, or will their pasts interfere?

Longing to escape the awful memories and the saloon she once sang in, Livy Green lies about her past so she can be a wife to John Taylor and mother to his two young children. Overwhelmed by the task, she struggles to put her resentment aside and love them as her own.

John loved his first wife and is still heartbroken over the loss, but he needs a mother for his children. When his distant and unfriendly mail order bride arrives, he begins to doubt his decision, though one glance into Livy's terrified green eyes tells him he can’t turn his back on her.

As Livy's past catches up with her and suspicious accidents begin to happen on the ranch, she is tempted to come clean and tell John the truth. But will he send her back if she does? Or will they forever be CHASING CLOVERS?



Calgary, 1884

The stagecoach pitched to a stop, jostling Livy Green from fitful nightmares of a past she longed to bury and the stranger she was about to marry. Her neck stiff and her back aching, she massaged her shoulders. She straightened and tried to stretch her arms, but the tiny space wouldn't allow it.

A loud sigh blew from her lips when she realized how rumpled her clothes were. Frowning, she ran her hands along her skirt. Nothing but a hot iron would get the wrinkles out. With only two other dresses in her wardrobe, and no time to change anyway, she had no choice but to meet her fiancé looking as she did.

Her stomach dropped. What if I'm not what he's expecting?

She peered out the window and wasn't surprised to see a few North West Mounted Police mingling with the other townspeople. Their bright red uniforms stood out like apples on a tree. She reached for her satchel and held it tightly before she stepped out the small door. You can do this. She squeezed the handle on her luggage. You have to.

Fort Calgary was a bustling town with two hotels on either side of the street, a small dress shop with ladies hats and fabric displayed in the window, and a red-bricked bank on the northwest corner. She watched people walking along the wooden planks and filtering in and out of the shops.

A loud squeal sounded behind her.

Livy jumped. She was almost trampled by a young boy running from his mother. Her heart lurched at the sight of the child. The familiar ache inside her soul willed her to look away. But she continued to watch mother and child until they disappeared inside the mercantile.

She took a deep breath, forced all thoughts of the past out of her mind and scanned the streets again. Her face flushed when she thought of what she was about to do.

Bag in hand, she spotted the blacksmith across the street next to the barbershop. Her stomach twisted at the sight of the saloon two buildings down. The all too familiar swinging doors waved back and forth, taunting her. Two drunken cowboys left the saloon, weaving their way down the boardwalk.

Livy clenched the satchel and tensed.

She turned away, closed her eyes, and took another deep breath. Here she would be the wife to John Taylor―a man she'd never met―and stepmother to his two children.

She took another breath. She would start over. Again.

She surveyed the busy boardwalk in search of a tall man with dark hair. Almost every man she saw fit the description he had given her, so she decided to move over to the bench in front of the mercantile and wait for Mr. Taylor to find her. Hands folded together on her lap. She tapped her toe restlessly. Where could he be?

A rough looking cowboy sauntered toward her. His brown greasy hair, and ripped denims were paired with an evil smile.

Livy tucked her chin into her chest. Oh, please don't let that be him. She'd seen his type before and knew what they were capable of. The man lingered beside her for a few moments before continuing on down the boardwalk.

She sighed with relief. How am I going to do this?

No longer Angel Green, she was now Olivia Green. The past was far behind her, except on those long dark nights that would not allow her to escape it.

She chewed on her bottom lip and stared at the busy street.

Her new life would begin here. She would survive.

She blew out a shaky breath. It was all she knew how to do.

"Olivia?" a male voice asked.

A tall man stood beside her, his hat pulled low so she couldn't see his eyes. He hesitated, then extended his hand. "Olivia?" He had a polite, resonating voice.

She shaded her eyes with a hand. "Livy will do fine." She was uncomfortably aware of his presence as he towered over her.

He smiled and took off his hat. Wavy black hair curled above the collar of his coat and his skin was tanned from the sun. He looked nothing like the dirty cowboy. Thank goodness. Instead, he wore a clean flannel shirt tucked into faded denim pants.

"John Taylor. Good to finally meet you. My buckboard is over there." He pointed the way, then peered around. "Where are your trunks?"

"I only have this one."

Her cheeks reddened as she lifted her tattered brown satchel. She held it slightly behind, not wanting him to see the holes and stains on it.

Nodding, he offered his arm. She ignored it. Friendly eyes stared back at her. After what had happened to her in Great Falls, she hated being touched by men.

"Do not be insulted, Mr. Taylor," she said, staring at his boots, "but I'd rather you show me the way instead."

She headed in the direction he'd pointed out earlier. When she heard a low chuckle from behind, she pursed her lips and walked faster. I need no one, least of all a man.

In truth, she needed John Taylor more than she could admit.

As soon as she reached the buckboard, she tossed the satchel up onto the seat, gathered her skirts and climbed up. She had sat down when she noticed he was still standing on the walk.

"Uh, Miss Green?" He tipped his hat back, crossed well muscled arms and smiled at her. "That's not my buckboard."

Her face flooded with heat.

If this wasn't his wagon, why hadn't he said something earlier, instead of watching her make a fool of herself?

Her eyes misted. How had she gotten here, in this place, with a man she didn't even know? She swallowed. How could she have thought he was the answer to her problems?

Want to win a copy of this book? Go here: End-of-tour Giveaway!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Review: Love Unfinished by Darian Wilk

Love Unfinished by Darian Wilk
Published: October 2011

Soul mates from the past leave their love unfinished when a tragic accident ends their lives on their wedding day. Yet they are destined to meet again to fulfill that love in new incarnations, leading vastly different lives.

Emma thought she had chosen the right path, but too late does she realize her mistake as her husband reveals the monster behind his smile; morphing their fairytale image with loveless obligation. Trapped in a broken marriage to a powerful, abusive husband, she knows this is not the life she was destined to live. As her hope for love withers, she meets James, her love from a lifetime ago.

Emma cannot deny the love pulling her toward James, but courage to abandon her marriage wavers and unknowingly puts her love on the line. If Emma has any hope of life and love, she must trust the bond with James and be with the man destiny has spent two lifetimes guiding her toward. Are they fated to fulfill their love, or will they once again, leave love unfinished?

My thoughts:
Love Unfinished is a touching story of eternal love and finding your soul mate against all odds. In the beginning of the book, you meet the main characters as Carol and Ted. A tragic accident on their wedding day ends their lives, but they have not finished their love story. We meet them again as Emma and James. They don't remember their former lives and have barriers to coming together. However, after meeting again in this second life, they have an instant, unexplainable attraction to each other. This story explores the concept of what someone would do to be with their one true love.

I was worried it wasn't going to come together, but then it does get wrapped up nicely in the end. I only wish the connection from the previous life had been developed a little more. Also, the copy I read had quite a few grammatical errors, but I was assured this was simply a problem with that version that has now been corrected.

Overall, this is a superb story for the "hopeless" romantic that (hopefully) lives in us all to some degree.

You can find Darian Wilk at her website, on Twitter and Facebook.

A copy of this book was provided by the author.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox was created by The Story Siren.

In My Mailbox this week for review:

Head Over Heels by Jill Shalvis 
(For blog tour)

Free-spirited Chloe lives life on the edge. Unlike her soon-to-be married sisters, she isn't ready to settle into a quiet life running their family's newly renovated inn. But soon her love of trouble—and trouble with love-draws the attention of the very stern, very sexy sheriff who'd like nothing better than to tame her wild ways.
Suddenly Chloe can't take a misstep without the sheriff hot on her heels. His rugged swagger and his enigmatic smile are enough to make a girl beg to be handcuffed. For the first time, instead of avoiding the law, Chloe dreams of surrender. Can this rebel find a way to keep the peace with the straitlaced sheriff? Or will Chloe's colorful past keep her from a love that lasts . . . and the safe haven she truly wants in a town called Lucky Harbor?

Pyxis by K.C. Neal
(For blog tour)

Corinne lives an average teenage life working at her dad’s cafe, hanging out with her best friend, and trying to forget a falling-out with her almost-boyfriend Mason. Things take a strange turn when she uses her late grandmother’s food dyes for a bake sale, and her customers suddenly find her irresistibly alluring. Then she discovers she and Mason are haunted by the same dreams of a dark force that consumes everything in its path. Pursued by shadowy figures and a crazy woman with secrets from the past, Corinne must find out who her grandmother really was. In her quest to unravel her family’s history, she learns she is destined to protect this world--and the dark world of her dreams. She races to find the answers she seeks before her nightmares break free. 

World Mart by Leigh M. Lane (signed)

Government and corporate business have merged in an attempt to keep the country from going bankrupt, the effects of global warming and antibiotic-resistant disease having caused a full collapse in infrastructure. The class divide has become profound, leaving most people trapped in an impoverished, working class world with little room for improvement. Complacency and corporate hierarchy control and confound the masses, run by the elite few, collectively referred to as "Corporate." George Irwin remembers a time before the Big Climate Change, back when the airlines were still in business and people still drove their own cars. Sadly, his children have only known an indoor world of endless reconstruction, public shuttles, recycled water, and limited energy. The world has changed much over his lifetime, but he still believes in the American Dream. When an alleged terrorist act lands his wife in the hospital, however, George stumbles upon a Corporate secret that could mean the end of all civilization. 

Collecting Innocents by CK Webb & DJ Weaver

Highway travel can be lonely and treacherous. Broken down vehicles litter the Emergency Lane like corpses on a battlefield. What if you were alone with no one to call when you found yourself stranded? Your only companion; your small child sleeping in the back seat. What would you do?

On I-10 in Louisiana the answer is simple…you use the Emergency Call Box. But while you sigh a breath of relief in the knowledge that help is on it’s way, a much more sinister listener has heard your 911 call.

Calls for help are coming in from Emergency Call Boxes along I-10 in Louisiana. But when the State Trooper or wrecker service arrive to assist, there is no sign of the vehicle. Days later, the driver is found savagely murdered with no trace of their tiny passenger in sight.

When a police officer, formerly of the Aberdeen Police Dept., sees a twisted pattern of murder and child abduction arising from 911 calls, he contacts Sloanne Kelly, now known for her work with child abduction cases. Together, Sloanne, Shawn Tyler and Mac Mackenzie, with the help of reporter Birney Sullivan, go on the hunt for a killer and the innocent children he is collecting.

What do you think about these books? What did you get this week? 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Paranormal Turkey Tour - Win Cash Prizes

Ah yes, Thanksgiving. Nothing says the holidays like sitting around a fully decked out dining room table with mouthwatering temptations waiting to be gobbled up. Everyone waits anxiously for the big reveal… the turkey!

Lovingly prepared since early that morning, the turkey is brought out in a covered, silver serving platter. Aunt Edith smacks little Tommy's hand as he attempts to steal a candied yam dripping with marshmallow. The collective breath is held as the silver cover is removed… revealing… a zombie turkey!

What—what? That's right folks, this year, we are celebrating this American holiday paranormal style. And what says paranormal holiday better than a walking, talking zombie turkey?

This zombie turkey brings you important tidings of great prizes that shall be for all people… who participate and win of course.

November 25-27 you could win up to $200 in prizes!

Three days. Four YA paranormal books. Five chances to win!

And who are these crazy paranormal authors? Check them out. It's like the Nightmare Before Christmas, Thanksgiving style!

Emlyn Chand, author of Farsighted

"Psychic or not, you'll never see the end for this one coming! Emlyn Chand is pioneering 'the next big thing' for YA." ~ Emily Reese, author of Second Death

Alex Kosmitoras may be blind, but he can still “see” things others can’t. When his unwanted visions of the future begin to suggest that the girl he likes could be in danger, he has no choice but to take on destiny and demand it reconsider.

Monster Mash: Emlyn says… I. AM. WEREWOLF! And why's that you ask? First off, my name (Chand) literally means moon in Sanskrit. Next, werewolves are super cool--we can blend in with common folk, and then out of nowhere, kapow! I'm a werewolf, and I sure am hungry. Lastly, Team Jacob 100%. Now excuse me while I cock back my head and howl at my namesake.

Patti Larsen, author of Family Magic

"Patti Larsen is truly gifted because I read Family Magic cover to cover and I'm on the edge of my seat waiting for the next installment!" ~  from Goodreads review

Sixteen-year-old Sydlynn Hayle is the daughter of a powerful witch and a demon lord, but she just wants to be ordinary. When her coven comes under attack, Syd must face the fact only her power can save her family's magic.

Monster Mash: Patti says… I am a witch. Naturally. I weave spells with my words, cast incantations from my keyboard, mix up the very best potions in my cauldron of documents. You want to stay on my good side. Trust me. Unless you enjoy waking up as something... unnatural.

Kimberly Kinrade, author of Forbidden Mind

"Forbidden Mind is a thrilling, dark and deeply romantic read that had me sitting on the edge of my seat and eagerly awaiting the next installment." ~Refracted Light Young Adult Book Reviews

Paranormal teens with unimaginable powers. An evil organization with deep secrets. When Sam, a girl who reads minds, meets a boy who controls minds, she discovers her future isn't what she thought. Together they must escape and free the others… or risk losing everything—and everyone—they love.

Monster Mash: Kimberly says… I may look like a demon, but I'm actually a succubus. Enchanting and seductive, I weave stories that will fuel your passions and make you fall in love. But be warned… once you fall under the spell of my words, your world will never be the same.

John Corwin, author of The Next Thing I Knew

Corwin does a phenomenal job of including humor throughout this novel. This book was like . . . Ghost (the movie) meets The Host (by Stephanie Meyer) meets MIB (Men In Black the movie). ~Maryann, Chapter by Chapter

The afterlife is the last thing on Lucy’s mind until she and every other human on the planet drop dead and find themselves in the hereafter. Lucy drags her social life back from the grave and enlists her friends to figure out the rules of the afterlife and, more importantly, to discover who or what killed everyone and why anyone would do such a mean thing.

Monster Mash: John says… I am a ninja. After all, vampires are simply ninjas with fangs. They can hide in plain sight, right in your living room. Jump out and scare the wits out of you. Drop a smoke bomb and poof! All you’re left with is stinky smoke in your house and soiled underclothes.

The Prizes

Four $25 Book Entries: For each of the four books in the contest, you can enter to win $25 (up to $100 in giveaways!) Simply buy a copy of the book (each is priced at just 99 cents for this special promotion) and email the proof of purchase for that book OR submit the first sentence of the fifth chapter for that book to Winners will be chosen randomly. Each person can submit one entry per book. Here are the links for each book:
And... if you buy all FOUR books, you are entered to win the Grand Prize!

The Grand Prize

One randomly selected reader who enters to win all four book prizes (Family Magic, Farsighted, Forbidden Mind and The Next Thing I Knew) will win the grand prize of $100.

So go on now and pick up a copy of these fantastic paranormal reads before the zombie turkey eats you!

What? Still around? Then enjoy these fun book trailers and Paranormal Turkey Tour trailer. (Then go buy the books.) Also, leave a comment and help your favorite blog host win a $50 prize!

  • All winners will be chosen randomly using
  • Amazon links are provided, but books purchased through any online vendor will qualify with proof of purchase.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays: Love Unfinished by Darian Wilk

Teaser Tuesdays was created by MizB of Should Be Reading.

My teaser for the week: (More than two sentences again, but I just can't help myself.)

She blushed and held a hand over her eyes. "God, I know I look just awful --"

He smiled playfully. "You look amazing."
She self-consciously cringed and tugged her Tom Petty t-shirt. "Oh, I don't but --"

"I like you better like this," he grinned. "Not so stuffy and uppity," he said, brushing off the shoulder of the worn t-shirt.

You've got to love man who likes a girl in her jeans and Tom Petty shirt! 

Anyone can participate in Teaser Tuesdays. Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful to NOT include spoilers! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author.
What do you think about this teaser? Please also share your own.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Interview with Chris Redding

Chris Redding is the author of several books, including two new books, Blonde Demolition and A View to a Kilt.

About the Author:
Chris Redding lives in New Jersey with her husband, two kids, one dog and three rabbits. She graduated from Penn State with a degree in journalism with an English Minor. When she isn't writing she works part time for her local hospital teaching CPR and running the CPR training center.

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing since I was ten, but writing for publication about 13 years.

How did you pick the genre you write in?
The genre picked me. I started out as a romance writer, but I always seemed to end up with a crime in it. I also tend to like stories with more than one plot so thriller and suspense lends itself to that.

What was the best writing advice someone gave you?
This applies to any dream. Every day do at least one thing to work towards your goal.

What was the worst?
An early critique partner told me to write for Harlequin. Nothing wrong with Harlequin, my stories wouldn’t fit there.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Do one thing every single day to get closer to your goal.

What was your favorite book when you were a child?
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle. That may seem an odd choice, as it is middle grade, but I was reading 3 grades ahead of my age.

What’s your favorite quote?
From a John Lennon song called Beautiful Boy. Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.

What is your favorite word?

Tell me one thing about yourself that very few people know?
I’m not fearless.

What are your other interests and hobbies?
I wish I had more time for other things, but writing is very time-consuming. What I used to like to do was cross stitch. The rhythm of it is very relaxing. I also like to hike.

Blonde Demolition
(Available soon in print at Amazon.)

Mallory Sage lives in a small, idyllic town where nothing ever happens. Just the kind of life she has always wanted. No one, not even her fellow volunteer firefighters, knows about her past life as an agent for Homeland Security.

Former partner and lover, Trey McCrane, comes back into Mallory's life. He believes they made a great team once, and that they can do so again. Besides, they don't have much choice. Paul Stanley, a twisted killer and their old nemesis, is back.

Framed for a bombing and drawn together by necessity, Mallory and Trey go on the run and must learn to trust each other again―if they hope to survive. But Mallory has been hiding another secret, one that could destroy their relationship. And time is running out.

A View to a Kilt
(Now available in print at Amazon.)

Waking up next to a dead guy can ruin your whole day.

When a wise-cracking interior decorator wants to put her past behind her, the dead body of the mayor’s son makes it pretty clear that won’t happen too easily.

A conservative former computer geek for the FBI is holding on too tightly to his past. His wife died under suspicious circumstances and he believes the decorator has the information to solve the case. Unfortunately for him, she isn’t talking… until a series of events convinces her she needs protection especially when her biggest secret threatens to destroy both their lives.

You can find out more about Chris Redding at her website and her blog.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox was created by The Story Siren.

In My Mailbox this week for review: 

Forbidden Mind  by Kimberly Kinrade

She reads minds.
He controls minds.
Together, they might get out alive.

Sam thinks she's months away from freedom. After spending her life in a secret school, rented out to the rich and powerful as a paranormal spy, she is ready to head to college like any normal eighteen-year-old.

Only Sam isn't normal. She reads minds. And just before her big going-away party, she links to the mind of a young man who changes everything.

Drake wasn't raised as a 'Rent-A-Kid.' He was kidnapped and taken there by force. But his exceptional physical strength and powers of mind control make him very dangerous, especially to Sam.

When they meet, Sam is forced to face the truth of her situation, and to acknowledge that not all is as it seems in her picture-perfect world. For what awaits her on her eighteenth birthday isn't a trip to college, but an unexpected nightmare from which she may not be able to escape.

To survive, they must work together.

But will their powers be enough to save them before it's too late?

In Leah's Wake by Terri Giuliano Long
(For blog tour)

The Tyler family had the perfect life - until sixteen-year-old Leah decided she didn't want to be perfect anymore.

While Leah's parents fight to save their daughter from destroying her brilliant future, Leah's younger sister, Justine, must cope with the damage her out-of-control sibling leaves in her wake.

Will this family survive? What happens when love just isn't enough?

Jodi Picoult fans will love In Leah's Wake - a heartbreaking, ultimately redemptive story about family, connection and our responsibility to those we love. 

Confessions of a PTA Mafia Mom by Elsie Love

Elaine Jackerson has found herself in quite a predicament. Her husband, Bob, is sleeping with his secretary, her daughter is experimenting in the backseat with random boys, and her eight year old wants nothing to do with her.

In an attempt to get herself out of her midlife rut, Elaine joins the Herschel Grammar School PTA. Little does she know, Suni Calverson, the current president has handpicked her to be the newest member of the group. As soon as the ink is dry on the signup sheet, Elaine is thrust into a world that she never knew existed. A world where the PTA gets things done with blackmail, bribes, threats and quite possibly guns.

Please read the rest of this summary on Goodreads.

Fractured Light by Rachel McClellan
(For blog tour)

I’m dying, I thought. This was unexpected and not at all how I envisioned my death. I was supposed to die gardening in a flowerbed as a hundred-year-old woman, not as a seventeen-year-old trapped in a lake beneath inches of ice.

Llona Reese is used to living on the run. After the Vykens killed her parents, she knew they would eventually come for her too. She can’t take any chances. But when she starts to make friends for the first time in her life, she gets careless and lets her guard down. Big mistake.

As an Aura, Llona can manipulate light and harness its energy. But if she wants to survive, Llona will have to defy the Auran Council and learn to use her power as a weapon against the Vyken whose sole desire is to take her light. Now she’s caught in something even bigger than she can understand, with a power she can’t wield, and no one she can trust, except, just maybe, a mysterious stranger. 

Nightmares and Dreams by Lyn Miller Lacoursiere

When the exterminator jokingly declared, Lady, you better burn it, Lindy Lewis devised a plan and burned her beautiful home to collect the million dollar insurance. When the fraud is discovered by Reed Conners, an investigator for the same insurance company and coincidently a lover from college days, their lives again become entwined.

Enduring Light by Carla Kelly
(For blog tour)

Julia Darling is finally able to marry her Mr. Otto for eternity. But it's a hard world for a rancher in turn-of-the-century Wyoming, especially a Mormon rancher. And when people start talking, it's up to Julia to prove she's her husband's equal in strength and endurance as she learns to let go of scars on the outside and inside.

What do you think about these books? What was in your mailbox this week?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Blog Tour-Review: Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett & Giveaway

Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett
Expected Publication: December 2011
By: Sweetwater Books, an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc

Jen's life of partying and sneaking out has grown stale. So on a whim, Jen makes a bet to turn Trevor, a goody-two-shoes geek, into a "bad boy." As she hangs out with Trevor, however, she finds it's actually kinda fun being a geek. But when Trevor finds out about the bet, Jen must fight for the things she's discovered matter most: friendship, family, and, above all, love.

My review:
Geek Girl is the kind of YA novel that makes the genre so popular. This story may not be a new one, but how many novels these days are completely original thoughts? The plot combined with Cindy C. Bennett's expressive writing style is what makes this one so great. All of the characters are described wonderfully, so that you can picture them in your mind. From the cliche' Mrs. Brady/Cleaver to the bad boy former "almost boyfriend," Cindy has done an excellent job of bringing them to life. The inner turmoil going on inside of Jen has been perfectly portrayed, and you come to understand why she acts the way she does. Whether you have a background similar to Jen's or completely different, you can still relate to how she feels and the struggles she faces. This novel tugged at my heartstrings and brought tears to my eyes more than once. I would definitely recommend this to anyone.

Review from Krazy Book Girl (my 15 year old daughter):
Jen and Trevor are complete opposites, to say the least. Jen is a goth party girl and is regarded as a freak. Trevor does well in school, loves Sci-Fi movies, and is regarded as a geek. Jen decides to make a bet with her friends that she can bring Trevor over to "the dark side." It definitely does not turn out how she expects, or how you would expect. My favorite things about this book are how realistic it was and the word usage. The author really painted a picture of what was happening with her details. I really enjoyed reading this, and I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a fun but emotional read.

While you are here, please also read my interview with Cindy.

Find out more about Cindy, Geek Girl, and her other books at Cindy's website.

An ARC was provided by Cedar Fort for this review.

One (1) copy. If you live outside of North America, Cedar Fort will send you an eBook. If you live inside North America, you have your choice of a hard copy or eBook. Giveaway will be open until midnight November 30. Winner will be selected using Winner will be contacted through email and will have 3 days to respond or a new winner will be selected.

How to enter:
5 total possible entries.
Just follow Krazy Book Lady on GFC and fill out the form below.

Optional extra entries:
+1 Follow Krazy Book Lady on Twitter.
+1 Follow the author Cindy C. Bennett on Twitter.
+1 "Like" Cindy C. Bennett on Facbook.
+1 Leave a comment on this post or on the interview with Cindy.

Thank you for entering and good luck!

Sorry! This giveaway is now closed!

Winner: Jolene A.

Blog Tour: Interview with Cindy C. Bennett

Cindy C. Bennett is the author of Geek Girl. (You can see my review and my teenage daughter's review here.)

About Cindy:
Cindy C. Bennett was born and raised in beautiful Salt Lake City, growing up in the shadows of the majestic Rocky Mountains. She and her husband raised two daughters, two sons, and a plethora of pets.

In addition to writing YA fiction, she volunteers her time working with teen girls between the ages of twelve and eighteen, all of who she finds to be beautiful, fascinating people who constantly inspire her stories. She developed a love of writing in high school English when a teacher introduced her to the joys of escaping reality for ten minutes each day in writing.

When she's not writing, reading, or answering emails (notice there is no mention of cleaning, cooking, or anything domestic), she can often times be found riding her Harley through the beautiful canyons near her home. (Yes, she rides a Harley.)

What has been your most rewarding experience since you began writing?

Definitely my interaction with my readers. I love hearing from them. I’ve gotten some amazing emails from people who maybe have gone through a situation similar to one of my characters, or who just relate to something in the books. I’ve gotten to know some people who have become something of friends through our email exchanges, and I have two readers who write to me fairly regularly who are both so amusing that I look forward to hearing from them. So that has definitely been a most rewarding experience.

When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember, but it always seemed like a pipe dream—an impossibility—I think because I wanted it so much. I wanted to be a mom more than anything (done) and I also wanted to be a teacher. I haven’t ever had the chance to be an official teacher in a school, but I’ve had chances to teach in other settings, and I always enjoy it very much.

What was your favorite book when you were younger?

As a teen the thing that I remember reading most that I thoroughly enjoyed was Romeo & Juliet. I’m such a sucker for romance, and it’s the ultimate in romance. I also very clearly remember reading Forever by Judy Blume. I don’t know that I’d call it my favorite, but it made an impression because it was somewhat forbidden due to some of the content. I read a lot of VC Andrews and Stephen King as well.

What is your favorite quote?
“Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book.” ~Author Unknown

If Geek Girl was made into a movie, who would be in your dream cast?

I don't really have specific actors in mind. I do have actors that the characters looks are based on, but they are all probably a little old to play high-schoolers. I always imagined Jen looking like Rachel Leigh Cook, and Trevor as Zac Efron-esque, especially after I once saw him describe himself in high school as "cool-geek." A younger Topher Grace would be Brian, and a younger Dakota Fanning would be Jane. It’s clear that I picture Trevor’s mom as anyone who looks like Carol from The Brady Bunch, but his dad would be someone more like Pierce Brosnan. Jen’s foster parents might be Mimi Rogers-esque and John Travolta-ish.

What advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Don’t give up. Be persistent. It takes an amazing amount of persistence and hard work to succeed. It also takes the ability to withstand rejection, never an easy thing to be given. Most of all I would tell them to learn the craft, make sure to understand grammar, punctuation, spelling. I’ve been on some sites where authors are writing comments, or whatever, and their spelling or grammar is horrible (mixing up then and than, for example), let alone not using capitalization correctly, and I just think as a reader if I saw that I would be turned off by them as a writer because I’d be afraid their writing would reflect that. Everything you write anywhere, even on Facebook, should be written sort of as if it were a test of your writing skills.

What is a fun, random fact about you that most people don't know?

I am the holder of a concealed weapons permit, and I quite enjoy going out shooting (targets, not animals). I have a .38 Special revolver that I shoot most of the time, but my husband has quite a gun collection and I think I’ve shot most of them. I prefer revolvers over pistols after taking the skin off the top of my hand once by not moving it out of the way of the slide (my bad).

You can find Cindy on her website, on Twitter, and Facebook.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Review: Yesterday's Lies by Terri D.

Yesterday's Lies by Terri D.
Published: March 2011

What secrets do you keep from the one you share everything with? Secrets. Lies. Half-Truths. A poignant tale of a circle of close knit friends whose lives are more intertwined than they realize. That is until the blurred lines of love, lust and friendship begins to reveal the half-truths and lies that exist. Will the secrets they all hold from the past ruin their friendship and lives forever?

My thoughts:
I really thought I was going to like this book from the summary of it. Unfortunately, that was not the case. This story is told from the point of view of 8 different characters. This just seems to be too many in the first place. On top of that, it switches from the point of view of one character to the point of view from another character after only one paragraph in most cases. It was too confusing trying to switch gears and keep up with whose P.O.V. you were reading at the time. The conversations are choppy and unbelievable. Repetition interrupted the flow of reading. A person would think something and then immediately say the exact same thing out loud, so the reader is forced to read the exact same thing twice. A lot of things happen or are unveiled at the end of the book, and you are left feeling like there were too many loose ends left unanswered. 

I would say pass on this one. I hate writing a negative review, but I felt like I was reading a rough draft. (I do have a review copy but I was simply warned about the typos. As far as I know, nothing else was or had been changed between that copy and the final.) It has potential if it is developed more and the writing in general is cleaned up.

A copy of this book was provided by the author for review.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Giveaway Hop: The Secret of Lucianne Dove by Roberta L. Smith

This giveaway is a thank you to followers!
This giveaway is part of the Gratitude Giveaways Blog Hop hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and All-Consuming Books. There are many great blogs participating in this hop. After you enter here, you can hop over to some of the other blogs listed below and enter their giveaways too. While you are here, please also enter my other giveaway.

What's up for grabs in this giveaway?
The Secret of Lucianne Dove by Roberta L. Smith
2 print copies and 2 eBooks 
There will be four (4) winners. Each winner will receive either one (1) print copy or one (1) eBook. 

Summary from Goodreads:
Lucianne Dove came to Virginia City during its heyday, a bride with a past that would eventually destroy her. A century and a quarter later, crusty newspaper reporter Mickey McCoy comes to town. Officially he's been sent by his boss to do a fluff piece. But Mickey has come for reasons of his own. Curious coincidences have convinced him that something important will take place; something that will free him from a painful past. So what happens when Lucianne's spirit makes contact? Mickey begins a quest to find out who she is and what she wants. And when he succeeds, there are far-reaching consequences. Two souls from two different eras seeking to transform their legacies makes for a paranormal tale with a heart, a soul, and a message of forgiveness.

You can read my review here.

How to enter:
Either follow this blog via GFC or follow KrazyBookLady on Twitter.

Fill out the form below. Please select if you want to be entered to win a print copy, an eBook, or either one. Obviously, your chances will be higher if you are entered to win either format.

About this giveaway:
Giveaway ends at midnight on November 27. Giveaway is open internationally. Winners will be selected using Winners will be announced on this blog and by email. Winners will have 3 days to contact me to provide address or a new winner will be selected.

Thank you for entering and good luck!

Sorry! This giveaway is now closed!

Winners of print copy:
Sherry L
Robin R

Winners of eBook:

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays: Geek Girl

Teaser Tuesdays was created by MizB of Should Be Reading.

My teaser for the week: (OK, more than two sentences, but I couldn't help it.)

I slip my arm deliberately under Trevor's, lacing my fingers with his. She notices; so does he.

"Hey," my answer is flippant, a slight feline threat in there that she recognizes instinctively. The mice always do.

Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett, p. 49

Please come back to see my review of Geek Girl during the blog tour on Saturday, November 19.

Anyone can participate in Teaser Tuesdays. Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful to NOT include spoilers! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author.
What do you think about this teaser? Please also share your own.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Guest Post: How I Came To Write Paranormal Novels

Guest post by Roberta L. Smith, author of The Secret of Lucianne Dove.

Aside from writing, my passion is the paranormal and I don’t have a psychic bone in my body. But then again, maybe we all do to some degree.

With my interest so keen, I took classes to try to develop a sixth-sense skill set. I had limited success. I bent a spoon once. In an effort to elicit an out-of-body experience, I lay on my bed stone-still for three hours. When I started to leave my body I jerked in surprise and stopped it from happening. All that effort wiped out in an instant. Grrrr.

Now I like all this stuff, but if I could pick a paranormal experience to happen to me, I’d like to see—or better yet—meet a ghost. So seventeen years ago my husband and I started visiting haunted hotels. That quest, combined with inspirational treks to historic Old West mining towns like Virginia City, Nevada and Bodie, California, resulted in my first novel, The Secret of Lucianne Dove.

In Lucianne I tried to create a story where readers would feel the interaction with my ghost was possible—where they could believe the experience could happen to them. The story’s intent is to intrigue and haunt, not scare. The tale takes place in Virginia City and most of the sites in the book are real. The ghost is a composite of two nineteenth century, real-life soiled doves (term for prostitutes). My lead character is an average Joe, er Mickey, whose life takes a turn for the paranormal, and by the end of the story he’s glad it did.

Mickey is very dear to my heart and after I finished my first book, I needed to spend more time with him. This resulted in two follow-up novels. Chapel Playhouse finds Mickey in a much more frightening situation, unraveling a mystery, saving a life, and battling a malicious, misguided ghost. It is available now. The Accordo, to be released next year, puts Mickey through the wringer. In fact, he may not be up for any more paranormal adventures after this one. That’s why my fourth novel is a romance that has nothing to do with ghosts. Well, not real ones anyway.

About the author:
Roberta is a native of Southern California and a graduate of the University of Redlands. She lives with her husband and writes full time. She is the happy member of two clubs: The High Desert Branch of the California Writers Club and Victor Valley Vettes Corvette Club. Now if she can just figure out a ghost story that involves Corvettes.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Review: The Secret of Lucianne Dove by Roberta L. Smith

The Secret of Lucianne Dove 
by Roberta L. Smith
Published: January 2008
(The Book Depository/Barnes & Noble)

Summary from Goodreads:
Lucianne Dove came to Virginia City during its heyday, a bride with a past that would eventually destroy her. A century and a quarter later, crusty newspaper reporter Mickey McCoy comes to town. Officially he's been sent by his boss to do a fluff piece. But Mickey has come for reasons of his own. Curious coincidences have convinced him that something important will take place; something that will free him from a painful past. So what happens when Lucianne's spirit makes contact? Mickey begins a quest to find out who she is and what she wants. And when he succeeds, there are far-reaching consequences. Two souls from two different eras seeking to transform their legacies makes for a paranormal tale with a heart, a soul, and a message of forgiveness. 

My thoughts:
The Secret of Lucianne Dove is a paranormal novel with a very nice blend of romance, mystery and history. I think this novel is probably the first one I have read in a very long time where one of the main characters is "past retirement age." I was sort of surprised because I didn't realize it before I started reading. It actually was a refreshing change from the typical leading man.

Roberta L. Smith does an excellent job of capturing your attention right from the first chapter and keeping it throughout the book. She unveils bits and pieces of the mystery at perfect intervals to keep you intrigued and wondering what is going to happen next. Definitely keeps you turning the pages to find out. The characters and setting come to life. You can almost feel their sorrows and their happiness right along with them. Unfortunately, I feel like I can't say much more without giving spoilers. If you like paranormal novels, this one should be on your to-be-read list.

You can also read a short teaser I posted recently.

You can find out more about Roberta L. Smith on her website. 

A copy of this book was provided by the author.


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