Posted in 5 paws, Giveaway, Review, suspense on October 11, 2017

THE UNREMEMBERED GIRL

by

ELIZA MAXWELL

  Genre: Psychological Suspense / Mystery

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing

Date of Publication: November 1, 2017

Number of Pages: 332

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In the deep woods of East Texas, Henry supports his family by selling bootleg liquor. It’s all he can do to keep his compassionate but ailing mother and his stepfather—a fanatical grassroots minister with a bruising rhetoric—from ruin. But they have no idea they’ve become the obsession of the girl in the woods.

Abandoned and nearly feral, Eve has been watching them, seduced by the notion of family—something she’s known only in the most brutal sense. Soon she can’t resist the temptation to get close. Where Henry’s mother sees a poor girl in need, his father sees only wickedness. When Henry forges an unexpected bond with Eve, he believes he might be able to save her. He doesn’t know how wrong he is.

Eve is about to take charge of her own destiny—and that of Henry’s family. As both their worlds spin violently out of control, Henry must make an impossible choice: protect the broken young woman who’s claimed a piece of his soul, or put everyone he loves at risk in order to do the right thing.

Amazon ┃ Barnes & Noble┃ Murder by the Book

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Praise for The Grave Tender, Maxwell’s previous book

“An emotional powerhouse of a story that will leave readers reeling from the beginning to the end.” —Christena Stephens, Forgotten Winds

“Beautiful and intoxicating.” —Chelsea Humphrey, The Suspense is Thrilling Me

“Haunting. Lyrical. Beautiful. Dark. At times, sickening.” —Julia Byers, Books in the Garden

“This is dark psychological suspense that skillfully inspires a slow-dawning dread. . .It will shred you.” — Michelle Newby, Lone Star Literary Life

This book contains many scenes that will cause heart break but rays of sunshine peek through to bring some happiness at the end.

I don’t even know where to start with my review of this book! The characters are complex and there are some to love and some to hate. The focus of the book is primarily on Henry and Eve. Henry and Eve has a connection and while they not admit it, everyone else can see they have a love connection. However, Eve has quite the troubled past and is found much like a feral animal. She is dirty and does not know how to interact with people, nor is she able to read or write. Henry and his family change all of that for Eve, but is it enough? Can she get past what she has endured?

Caroline, Henry’s mother, is one of those women that can bring some peace and harmony to a crazy family. I considered her something of a saint for what she had to deal with each day, especially with Livingston, her husband, which was quite the task as he is an Evangelical minister and preached hell fire and brimstone to those that would listen. The family is very dysfunctional to say the least but it is what they know. There are several other characters that round out the book and make it interesting.

This book is not for the faint of heart and might be considered dark by some – it will touch topics such as trafficking, rape and murder. However, I thought it shed light on different scenarios that many of us do not know occur or maybe don’t wish to know happen as they are not pleasant. There were some heart stopping moments near the end that will make you stop and think about why someone would do such a thing to another human being.

We give this 5 paws up.

Eliza Maxwell lives in Texas with her ever patient husband, two impatient kids, a budgie named Sarah, and a bird dog who lives a tortured existence.  She’s an artist and writer, an introvert and a British cop drama addict.  A former bookseller with a lifelong love of the written word, she can often be found barefoot on the front porch lost in a good cup of coffee and a great book.

Website *  Facebook * Twitter *  Goodreads * Pinterest * Amazon Author Page

 

 

GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!

Grand Prize ($90 value): Autographed copy of The Unremembered Girl, 1.75 mL bottle of Deep Eddy Lemon Vodka, Jusalpha white porcelain decorative cake stand, recipe for “Caroline’s Coconut Cake” (featured in the book), $20 Amazon Gift Card.

2nd Prize: Autographed copy of The Unremembered Girl, $10 Amazon Gift Card

3rd Prize: Autographed copy of The Unremembered Girl

October 5-October 14, 2017

(U.S. Only; proof of age 21 or older required to receive vodka)

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10/5 Notable Quotable 1 Texas Book Lover
10/5 Notable Quotable1 Reading by Moonlight
10/6 Review Forgotten Winds
10/7 Top Ten List The Librarian Talks
10/7 Top Ten List Blogging for the Love of Authors & Their Books
10/8 Review Texan Girl Reads
10/9 Review A Page Before Bedtime
10/10 Excerpt Chapter Break Book Blog
10/10 Author Interview Books in the Garden
10/11 Review StoreyBook Reviews
10/11 Guest Post Missus Gonzo
10/12 Review Tangled in Text
10/13 Notable Quotable 2 Books and Broomsticks

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Posted in 5 paws, Giveaway, Middle Grade, Review on October 6, 2017

Synopsis

Based on a true story.

Maddie is a normal twelve-year-old girl. Well, except for the fake mustaches she carries in her pocket. She likes to make people laugh and slapping on a mustache, especially a fuzzy pink or neon green one, always gets a smile. Maddie hopes that the class queen, Cassie, will find her mustaches as funny as she does and want to play with her at recess. She’s been self-conscious lately because her right arm only feels normal when it’s curled against her chest and she’s constantly tripping over her feet. But that’s probably just part of growing up and not something weird, right?

When Maddie’s arm continues to bother her, her parents take her to a doctor who gives them a shocking diagnosis: the cause of the abnormal behavior of her limbs is a brain tumor and she must have surgery to remove it. She’s understandably afraid as he describes the procedure, but knows she must find a way to be brave and must face her fears–all of them–at the hospital, at home and at school.

She will need all of her courage not only to face her illness, but also to face Cassie at school. Both Cassie and Maddie are auditioning for the same role in the school play, but when Cassie accuses Maddie of lying about her tumor in order to get attention, Cassie’s bossiness turns into bullying.

And as Maddie’s surgery approaches, she begins to worry more and more about the outcome. What if something goes wrong? What if the doctors don’t get all the tumor out of her brain? What will happen to her family? What will happen to her?

It will take all of Maddie’s vibrant imagination, a lot of kindness-both given and received-and of course, the perfect mustache to overcome the tough stuff ahead of her.

Mustaches for Maddie is the feature title in our “Compassion in Action” campaign! Stickers, postcards, and a readers guide. This campaign is a great way to teach children the importance of showing compassion.

Take a look at the readers guide

 

Review

This was quite the book to demonstrate the need for compassion. We never know what someone might be going through in their lives and perhaps their actions are a self defense mechanism to protect their feelings.

While this book is a middle grade book, I thoroughly enjoyed it as an adult. The themes cross all age lines and considering what we hear in the news at times about kids being mean to each other, this book is very appropriate. It could also open some dialogue between kids and parents on various topics from bullies to health issues.

This is based on a true story and my heart went out to Maddie (or any child) that has to endure any sort of tough medical treatments. No one should have to go through that. I did like how the parents were not afraid to let Maddie know they were praying for her and it actually made Maddie more at peace with the situation.

Maddie used humor to diffuse any situations where she felt nervous. She also liberally used mustaches to help ease any tensions in tough situation. I can just imagine how funny everyone looked that put on one of these mustaches because of the various colors, textures and styles.

Excellent book!  We give it 5 paws up.

About the Authors

About Mr. Morris

Author of the Cragbridge Hall trilogy; The Inventor’s Secret, The Avatar Battle, and The Impossible Race. Published by Shadow Mountain.

Bald.

About Ms. Brown

A native to the ocean, transplanted into the shadow of the mountains, Small Town Shelly Brown found that if she could not surf or comb the tide pools she would write in the shade.

Mother to many, cleaner of little, friend to the United Way, this actor turned writer has decided that she is addicted to information. Please, arrange an intervention.

Website * Craig’s Twitter * Shelly’s Twitter

 

Giveaway

I am giving away the ARC that I was sent to review this book plus some Compassion in Action stickers and postcards tied to the theme of the book.

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Posted in 5 paws, Giveaway, romance on October 4, 2017

Divinely Yours by Karin Gillespie
Women’s Fiction/Humor
Henery Press (September 26, 2017)
Paperback: 268 pages

Synopsis

Skye Sebring is a hospitality greeter inside the pearly gates of an unorthodox Heaven, where carefree and lusty angels get tipsy in the Live A Little Lounge, practice cloud art, and are guided by a brassy female deity who sounds and looks like Bette Midler. During the course of her duties, Skye meets lawyer Ryan Blaine, who has a brush with death due to a motorcycle accident.

It’s not Ryan’s time to die yet, so he returns back to Earth, but Skye can’t get him out of her mind. Why does Ryan seem so familiar to her and why does she feel an unexplainable attraction to him? She begins spying on Ryan’s life from her perch in heaven and even manages to follow him down to Earth. There she finds a world very different than Heaven, where drinking too much champagne results in hangovers, roses can prick fingers, and hearts are capable of being broken. All seems lost until she remembers that most of life’s lessons can be learned from the lyrics of five Beatles songs and one of the Fab Four’s songs might actually help win her the love of a lifetime.

Divinely Yours is a celestial romantic comedy about a love that crosses all dimensions.

Review

This was a sweet and funny story. It was a little confusing at first trying to sort out all of the characters, but once I knew who was who, I settled right into the story. I had such a hard time putting the book down because there were many parts I didn’t know what was going to happen next and I couldn’t wait to find out.

There is more to Skye than meets the eye (hey that rhymes!). You think she is a greeter in heaven, but she has all these strange dreams that made me wonder maybe there were things she didn’t know about her own life. Then she meets Ryan Blaine when he briefly ends up in her office but disappears before she can really process him into heaven and he seems so familiar to her. Ryan is trying to figure his life out too and why he can’t seem to connect with his wife Susan. I won’t say any more but it is quite the turn of events.

There are several other characters and they all come together in the end for a happy ending.

We give this 5 paws up

 

About the Author

Karin Gillespie is the national-bestselling novelist and has also written for the New York Times,Washington Post and Writer Magazine. She has an MFA from Converse College and lives in Augusta, Georgia and was recently awarded a Georgia Author of the Year award.

Website * FaceBook * Twitter * GoodReads

 

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Check out the other blogs on this tour

 

September 26 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

September 26 – Girl with Book Lungs – REVIEW

September 27 – Book Babble – REVIEW

September 27 – Readsalot – REVIEW COMING SOON

September 28 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT

September 29 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT

September 30 – Brooke Blogs – CHARACTER GUEST POST

October 1 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

October 2 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW

October 3 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

October 4 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

October 5 – A Blue Million Books – INTERVIEW

October 6 – Island Confidential – GUEST POST

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Posted in 5 paws, Cozy, Giveaway, mystery, Review on October 3, 2017

Book Title: HALLOWEEN IS MURDER

Author: Carolyn Arnold

Series: McKinley Mysteries, Book 11

Synopsis

Beware of all that goes bump in the night…

Sean and Sara McKinley are excited about the haunted house they’ve set up as a Halloween charity fund-raiser, but things take a ghoulish turn when the reporter covering their story is found dead. With the media keeping mum about how she died, Sara’s curiosity is piqued, and she convinces Sean to take on the investigation through their PI firm.

But this case is not without its challenges. The police are actively investigating it, as well, and it’s not even clear that the woman was murdered. It will take a little cloak-and-dagger, dress-up, and finesse for the McKinleys to get to the bottom of it, but they aren’t the kind to give up.

As they troll for leads and work through the skeletons in the reporter’s closet, they unearth a few suspects, but they’ll need to carve out the whole truth if they’re going to find her killer. If they do so fast enough, there might even be time for a little trick-or-treating.

Amazon.com * Amazon Universal * Barnes & Noble

Apple iBooks * Kobo * Google Play

Review

I really love this series – they are shorter, quick reads and Sean & Sara have a great relationship together and have not let money become an issue. Plus they like to give a lot of it away and that is always a good thing to read.

When it comes to the mystery itself, I did solve the crime but it wasn’t until near the end when a few clues were laid out and I was able to piece it all together. Until those were revealed I never had any reason to suspect this character.

Definitely a series worth picking up!  We give it 5 paws up

About the Author

carolyn-arnold-authorCAROLYN ARNOLD is an international best-selling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has four continuing fiction series—Detective Madison Knight, Brandon Fisher FBI, McKinley Mysteries, and Matthew Connor Adventures—and has written nearly thirty books. Her genre diversity offers her readers everything from cozy to hard-boiled mysteries, and thrillers to action adventures.

Both her female detective and FBI profiler series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining, leading her to adopt the trademark: POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Carolyn was born in a small town and enjoys spending time outdoors, but she also loves the lights of a big city. Grounded by her roots and lifted by her dreams, her overactive imagination insists that she tell her stories. Her intention is to touch the hearts of millions with her books, to entertain, inspire, and empower.

She currently lives just west of Toronto with her husband and beagle and is a member of Crime Writers of Canada and Sisters in Crime.

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And don’t forget to sign up for her newsletter for up-to-date information on release and special offers

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Posted in 5 paws, Cozy, Giveaway, mystery, Review on September 26, 2017

A Cajun Christmas Killing: A Cajun Country Mystery
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Crooked Lane Books (October 10, 2017)
Hardcover: 304 pages

Synopsis

Maggie Crozat is back home in bayou country during the most magical time of the year. In Pelican, Louisiana, Christmastime is a season of giant bonfires on the levee, zydeco carols, and pots of gumbo. Except, this year, the Grinch has come to stay at the family-run Crozat Plantation B&B. When he floods travel websites with vicious reviews, Maggie thinks she’s identified him as rival businessman Donald Baxter. That is, until he’s found stabbed to death at Maggie’s workplace. And Maggie and her loved ones become top suspects.

The Crozats quickly establish alibis, but Maggie’s boyfriend, Detective Bo Durand, remains under suspicion. With Bo sidelined during the investigation, Maggie finds herself forced to work with an unlikely ally: longtime family enemy Rufus Durand. Her sleuthing uncovers more suspects than drummers drumming, and lands her in the crosshairs of the murderer.

The sleigh bells are jingling, and the clock is ticking for Maggie and Rufus, who must catch the killer or it will be the opposite of a Joyeux Noël in A Cajun Christmas Killing, the recipe-stuffed third installment of USA Today bestselling author Ellen Byron’s Cajun Country mysteries.

Review

I really love this series and I know a lot of it is tied to having family in Louisiana and I can relate/understand many of the situations and traditions but there is something about Pelican that makes me feel right at home.

But that aside, I really enjoy the mystery aspect and I did sort of guess the killer but not the whole situation…so I was about half right! There are some twists at the end that surprised me (hence only guessing half of the mystery).

I enjoy the quirkiness of many of the characters and of course Maggie and Bo’s relationship. It is nice to see it slowly evolve and they are not rushing into anything with each other.

We give this 5 paws up.

About the Author

ellen byronBody on the Bayou, the second in Ellen’s Cajun Country Mystery series, won the Left Coast Crime Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery, and was nominated for a Best Contemporary Novel Agatha Award. Her debut book in the series, Plantation Shuddersmade the USA Today Bestsellers list, and was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards. Ellen is also a recipient of a William F. Deeck-Malice Domestic Grant from the Malice Domestic Convention. Her TV credits include Wings, Still Standing, and Just Shoot Me, as well as network and cable pilots. As a journalist, she’s written over 200 magazine articles for national publications. Her plays, published by Dramatists Play Service, include the popular Graceland and Asleep on the Wind. A native New Yorker and graduate of Tulane University, Ellen lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband, daughter, and the family’s spoiled rescue dogs.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads

 

 

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check out the other blogs on this tour

September 17 – Island Confidential – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

September 17 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT

September 18 – Valerie’s Musings – GUEST POST

September 19 – Bibliophile Reviews – INTERVIEW

September 19 – A Holland Reads – GUEST POST

September 20 – Girl with Book Lung – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

September 20 – A Cozy Experience – REVIEW

September 21 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW, INTERVIEW

September 22 – Readeropolis – INTERVIEW

September 23 – Bookworm Cafe – REVIEW, INTERVIEW

September 24 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

September 25 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST

September 25 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

September 25 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW

September 26 – The Mysterious Ink Spot – REVIEW

September 26 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

September 27 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – INTERVIEW

September 27 – A Blue Million Books – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

September 28 – I Wish I Lived in a Library – REVIEW

September 28 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

September 29 – Brooke Blogs – CHARACTER GUEST POST

September 29 – Teresa Trent Author Blog – REVIEW

September 30 – Varietats – REVIEW

October 1 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW

October 1 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW, GUEST POST

Posted in 5 paws, excerpt, Giveaway, Review, romance on September 16, 2017


The Pursuit of Lady Harriett by Rachael Anderson

When wills clash and hearts collide, who will reign victorious?

Termed an Incomparable during her first London season, Lady Harriett Cavendish is beautiful, spirited, and confident, capturing the attention of a great many suitors. Unfortunately, they all failed to capture her attention, and she concluded the season as unattached as she’d begun it.

Only weeks prior to her second season, Harriett encounters Lieutenant Christopher Jamison while visiting Tanglewood Manor. Recently returned from war, the lieutenant is everything that Harriett’s previous suitors were not. He’s arrogant, ungentlemanly, irritating, and challenges her at every opportunity. When he goes too far, Harriett decides that it’s time to turn the tables on him. But as she sets out to put the lieutenant in his place once and for all, she discovers there is more to him than meets the eye, and when it comes to matters of the heart, she has no control whatsoever.

Excerpt

Harriett looked at what remained of the cake. Appar-ently, he didn’t intend to finish it off after all, so she collected their forks and stood. “Forgive me for saying so, but you look quite done in, Chris. If you do not go up to bed now, you will probably fall asleep here. Only imagine what Mrs. Caddy might say if she discovers you here with the mostly-eaten cake. For your own sake, you ought to retire. I will do my best to tidy things up.”
Before she could move away from him, he grabbed her hand and guided her to sit back down, keeping hold of her fingers. “Not so fast, my lady. I meant it when I said that I’m in desperate need of the distraction that only you can provide. Thus far, all I have done is burden you with my troubles.”
“I do not feel at all burdened, sir.” Indeed, Harriett suddenly felt breathless and somewhat giddy. The effect this man had on her was something of a wonder.
“Sir?” he asked. “I thought we were beyond that.”
“I thought so as well, but you only just called me ‘my lady.’”
He frowned and blinked as though he hadn’t realized he had. “Forgive me, Harry. I fear my exhaustion has muddled my thinking.”
This time, she did not let the name slide. She snatched her hand free and frowned at him. “Obviously it has.”
He laughed—not a tired attempt at a laugh, but a real one filled with the richness that warmed her straight through. Only this time, it did not bother her at all. In fact, it felt wonderful, almost like a compliment.
“I knew you’d come through for me,” he said, leaning close enough to touch shoulders with her. “You have no idea how much I needed to laugh or how good that felt. I could honestly kiss you right now.”
Harriett tried her best not to blush or appear astonished by the suggestion—he had obviously made the comment in jest—but when his smile widened into a devilish grin, she knew she’d failed. He leaned in closer, and his gaze wandered briefly to her mouth before returning to her eyes. She could smell vanilla and lemon and a hint of something else—leather perhaps? A delightful pulse whipped down her arm, and she was hard-pressed not to shiver.
“Admit it,” he said. “You have missed me.”

Review

I didn’t realize this was the 3rd in a series but that didn’t matter because the story stands on its own merit without having the background of the other stories and those characters that appear here as well.

In the craziness of today’s world and how anything seems to go, it is nice to sit back and read a book that kissing is as far as it goes in the romance department. I also enjoy going back in time when men woo’ed women and while women were not meek, they had the grace to let the men do the chasing…with a little help from the women pointing them in the right direction.

Christopher is a strong male lead but he is woefully lack in his wooing skills much to Harriett’s chagrin. But even with his faults he manages to win her heart, but he did have to work at it in the end.

A wonderful story and well worth reading.  We give it 5 paws up.


 

RachaelAbout the Author

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

Website

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Ends 10/1/17

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

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Posted in 5 paws, Review, women on September 10, 2017

Synopsis

Ellie Pringle has spent endless hours and countless dollars working with a therapist to remember the lost years of her childhood. She’s baffled and more than a little intrigued when the grandmother she hasn’t seen in thirty-four years dies and leaves her a fortune. The time has come to face her past in person. Still reeling from a recent breakup of a long-term relationship, and with nothing to keep her in San Francisco, Ellie packs her meager belongings and boards a plane for the South Carolina Lowcountry.

Standing in the entryway of her grandmother’s antebellum home on South Battery Street in Charleston, Ellie faces the first of many ghosts who will soon haunt her. On her first night in the creepy, creaking mansion, as she’s perusing the titles in a dusty bookcase, she comes across her deceased mother’s leather-bound journal. Her mother’s words create more unanswered questions and send her on a quest to find more journals. As Hurricane Irma bears down on the South Carolina coast, Ellie encounters Julian Hagood, a handsome architect who has the talent to restore her dilapidated mansion and the charm to mend her broken heart. But as Ellie reads her mother’s diaries, they dislodge a stone in the wall that safeguards her memories, causing her world to come crumbling down. Revelations about her childhood lead Ellie on a harrowing journey of discovery that will hold readers spellbound until the dramatic conclusion.

Review

I love love love Ashley’s books and this one is no exception. I think I heard this will be a series (or at least a 2nd book) which I am glad of because there is so much more to the story that hasn’t been told yet.

This book is about learning about the past and coming to terms with it, finding love and strengthening family. There is even a little bit of action and mystery – a very well rounded book.

This book also reminded me of Flowers in the Attic with the strict grandmother and her actions and comments to her daughter and granddaughter.

Ellie has inherited the estate from the crazy grandmother. She has mixed feelings, as anyone would, about the house and everything else. But it is also cathartic because she knows she is repressing something but isn’t sure what. You do find out but not giving it away, you’ll have to read the book to find out.

The book does leave you hanging a little bit because Ellie’s story is not complete and there are some other things that are revealed that need to be addressed more fully. Yes I know it is vague but has to be to not spoil part of the story.

We give it 5 paws up.

About the Author

Ashley FarleyAshley Farley is a wife and mother of two college-aged children. She grew up in the salty marshes of South Carolina, but now lives in Richmond, Virginia, a city she loves for its history and traditions.

After her brother died in 1999 of an accidental overdose, she turned to writing as a way of releasing her pent-up emotions. She wrote SAVING BEN in honor of Neal, the boy she worshipped, the man she could not save. SAVING BEN is not a memoir, but a story about the special bond between siblings.

HER SISTER’S SHOES—June 2015—is a women’s novel that proves the healing power of family. Merry Mary—October 2015—a holiday novella, a young woman longing for a child stumbles upon a Christmas miracle. BREAKING THE STORY released on March 17, 2016. A romantic political suspense filled with passion, peril, and a scandal that will rock American politics.

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Posted in 5 paws, Christian, Giveaway, Historical, Review, romance on September 10, 2017

THESE HEALING HILLS

by

ANN GABHART

  Genre: Historical Romance / Christian

Publisher: Revell

Date of Publication: September 5, 2017

Number of Pages: 368

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Bestselling Author Transports Readers to the Appalachian Mountains for Adventure and Healing

Packed with history, These Healing Hills by bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart introduces readers to the fascinating and difficult life of frontier nursing.

When the soldier Francine Howard planned to marry after WWII writes to tell her he is in love with a woman in England, Francine is devastated and in need of a change. She seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Services.

It is in these mountains that Francine crosses paths with Ben Locke, a soldier still very much suffering from the horrors of war. With his future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he’s at a loss when it comes to envisioning what’s next for his life.

While Francine and Ben find they are from completely different worlds and possess very different values, they both learn that things don’t always go the way we plan. Ann H. Gabhart invites readers to witness the healing power of love and step forward to tantalizing new possibilities.

Praise for These Healing Hills

“Reading These Healing Hills is like wrapping up in a beloved quilt and stepping back in time. Ann H. Gabhart captures a fascinating slice of Appalachian history in this tale of a mountain midwife and a soldier, bringing it to life as only a native Kentuckian can. Poignant and romantic, witty and wise, with enduring spiritual truths, this is my favorite novel of hers to date.” —Laura Frantz, author of A Moonbow Night

“What a wonderful story! Filled with true-to-life characters (including some four-footed ones) and fascinating historical details, These Healing Hills is a beautifully written, heartwarming story of life in the Appalachian Mountains at the end of the Second World War. Ann Gabhart combines vivid descriptions, meticulous research, and a deep understanding of the human heart to create a story that will linger in readers’ memories long after the last page is turned. This is a book to savor, not just once, but over and over. A true keeper.” —Amanda Cabot, bestselling author of A Stolen Heart

“Ann H. Gabhart delivers a rich tale set in Kentucky’s Appalachian Mountains at the close of World War II. Francine buries the painful loss of the man she loves beneath the difficult work of a frontier nurse-midwife. The mountain people touch a place deep in her heart, and she gladly sacrifices the life she always wanted in order to serve them. But can she ever be truly happy among the hills and hollows where modern medicine often gives way to ancient folk cures? These Healing Hills is a fascinating and beautifully crafted story that I highly recommend.” —Virginia Smith, bestselling author of The Amish Widower

“You are sure to enjoy this endearing story of love lost and found in the enchanting hills of Kentucky.” —Jan Watson, author of the Troublesome Creek series

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What a lovely story!  It is “Call the Midwife” but in the Appalachian mountains.

I learned so much from this book about the culture of the people that lived in the mountains in the mid 40’s, what the nurses went through to learn and be certified as a midwife and of course was swept away in the love story between Francine (Fran) and Ben.  Since the author is from this general area I’m sure it was easy for her to research details.  I was able to picture the mountains, the homes, the people and what life was like during that time frame – when people did not have a lot but were happy.  Goes to show that money does not make you happy.  I also learned a lot of new words like baby catching, sass patch (garden) and killed – but not as in dead, just wounded.  As I was reading the author’s notes at the end, I discovered that the Frontier Nurses and the Frontier Nursing University are indeed real and was started by Mary Breckenridge in 1925 as a way to help those get nursing care that might not otherwise receive the services.

There is a little tension between Fran and her first boyfriend, Seth.  It takes a certain type of person to do what Fran is doing and Seth is definitely not that kind of person…as they might have said back then, he is “city folk”.  Plus Fran is becoming accustomed to living in the mountains and has grown attached to many of the residents, especially Ben.  She is learning quite a bit from her patients – to have patience, to not dismiss herbal remedies and to take joy in life.

There is some joyful moments throughout the book and I think Woody, Ben’s younger brother, steals the show at various times.  He is quite the talker and happy all the time that it is hard to not like him or root for him in various situations.  There are also some dogs featured in the book.  I loved the descriptions of the dogs and their antics.

This was a very enjoyable story and I did not want it to end.  I want to know more about what happens to many of the characters like Woody, Jeralene and Becca & Carl.  Perhaps the author will grace us with a follow up book.

We give it 5 paws up and suggest you pick this up soon (or enter to win a copy below).

Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels—The OutsiderThe BelieverThe SeekerThe Blessed, and The Gifted—as well as Angel SisterSmall Town GirlLove Comes HomeWords Spoken True, and The Heart of Hollyhill series. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky.

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Copy of These Healing Hills + The Kentucky Snack Basket (11 items including a Derby Pie Tart, Bourbon Pecan Brittle, Bourbon Chocolates, Spiced Pretzels, Modjeskas, Coffee, Snack Mix, Candy Bar, Caramel Corn, and a Horseshoe from Churchill Downs!)

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Check out the other great blogs on this tour

5-Sep Playlist Texan Girl Reads
6-Sep Review Syd Savvy
7-Sep Character Interview Books and Broomsticks
8-Sep Review The Page Unbound
9-Sep Guest Post Forgotten Winds
10-Sep Review StoreyBook Reviews
11-Sep Scrapbook Page Books in the Garden
12-Sep Excerpt Reading by Moonlight
13-Sep Review Missus Gonzo
14-Sep Author Interview The Librarian Talks

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Posted in 5 paws, excerpt, Giveaway, Review, Young Adult on September 8, 2017


Perfectly You by Robin Daniels

Ivy Nixon is the student body Vice President at Franklin High School. Each year, the school holds a date auction to raise funds for the senior class graduation party, and this year, Ivy’s in charge. Planning the event is a huge task and Ivy is determined to prove she can get the job done right. Unfortunately, she’s still one participant short and her deadline is looming.

Andy Walker, her cute but socially reclusive art class table mate, is her last resort. He may not be popular, but he’s funny, talented, and full of surprises. With a makeover and some major social marketing, Ivy is sure he could fetch a decent price at the auction.

Andy reluctantly agrees to help, but the more time Ivy spends with him, the more her feelings shift from professional to romantic in nature. To top it off, she’s done her marketing so well, that other girls are starting to notice Andy too. Come auction time, will Ivy be able to let him go to the highest bidder? Or will she find a way to keep him for herself…

Content Description: This is a stand-alone YA contemporary romance with companion novels set at the same high school. It contains minor language, innuendo, and crude humor, some steamy kissing, a party scene where underage drinking is taking place, and a brief but tasteful conversation about sex. The author has attempted to write characters who make good choices in questionable situations, in effort to keep the content appropriate for teens. This book contains no sex, written or implied, and no explicit language. Recommended for ages 14 and up.


Excerpt

“Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you.” I lunged forward in an exaggerated show of gratitude and threw my arms around his waist, embracing him tightly. He flinched and tensed up for a moment. I’d caught him off guard. Eventually he relaxed and put one arm around me, awkwardly patting my back in some semblance of a hug.

For a moment, I forgot what I was doing and leaned into him. Wow, he smelled unbelievably good. Like soap and dryer sheets and something a little sharper that I couldn’t identify. I needed to ask him what cologne he wore, because it was incredible. I could smell him all day. Not to mention that his chest was a lot firmer than one would guess, since he hides it under baggy button-down shirts all the time.

Andy cleared his throat and I pulled away. He looked embarrassed again. He really needed to get over that, and I was going to help him, starting right now. “Sorry.” I grinned. “You smell amazing. Your cologne is yummy enough to eat. I could sit here and sniff you for the rest of the class.”

He choked on his spit and quickly put his fist over his mouth to stifle his laughter. “Please don’t.” He was trying to sound horrified, but his face gave him away. He appreciated the compliment.

“Ok.” I threw my hands up in surrender. “But fair warning…if I’m having a bad day, I may lean over and smell your neck to induce a calming effect. When that happens, don’t punch me.”

Andy shook his head, bewildered by the turn our conversation had taken. “I’ll try not to punch you, if you decide to randomly press your face against my neck.”

“When you say it like that, I sound like a psycho stalker.”

“Psycho and stalker are your words, not mine. But, if the shoe fits…” He trailed off, and I smacked him on the arm.

“Ouch!” Andy rubbed the place I’d just hit. “I’m only kidding. I don’t think you’re a psycho stalker. I’ve never seen any indication that you’re a stalker. You’re more likely a plain old psycho.” He was grinning nice and big now, and I couldn’t help but grin back.

Review

I picked this book up today and could not put it down! Yes it is a YA book since the characters are seniors in high school, but they have the same sort of problems that everyone has in life. In this case it was Ivy discovering that her friend Andy might be more than what she expected. For Andy it might be that his crush on Ivy could come to fruition. There is also the typical drama you expect among teenagers…hey we were all one at one time or another!

I though Lilly was a hoot. She isn’t your typical kid and marches to her own drummer. She is not afraid to be the wacky one with how she dresses. Many could take lessons from her. It isn’t as if she doesn’t care…but she maybe cares a little less and is comfortable in her own skin.

Definitely worth a read!


About the Author

Robin Daniels is a wife, mother of five and avid consumer of books. She loves reading SO much that she was actually grounded from it as a twelve year old. No Joking! Her mom caught her reading when she was supposed to be cleaning, which was a common occurrence. At that point mom took the books and instructed her to go watch TV or play outside like a normal kid.

Robin is a sucker for home design shows and magazines, watches way too much Netflix and has a very codependent relationship with with a certain diet soda who’s brand shall not be named. (Though anyone with a similar problem could probably guess which one.)

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Posted in 5 paws, Middle Grade, Review on September 5, 2017

Synopsis

Allie Navarro can’t wait to show her best friends the app she built at CodeGirls summer camp. CLICK’D pairs users based on common interests and sends them on a fun (and occasionally rule-breaking) scavenger hunt to find each other. And it’s a hit. By the second day of school, everyone is talking about CLICK’D.

Watching her app go viral is amazing. Leaderboards are filling up! Everyone’s making new friends. And with all the data Allie is collecting, she has an even better shot at beating her archenemy, Nathan, at the upcoming youth coding competition. But when Allie discovers a glitch that threatens to expose everyone’s secrets, she has to figure out how to make things right, even if that means sharing the computer lab with Nathan. Can Allie fix her app, stop it from doing any more damage, and win back the friends it hurt-all before she steps on stage to present CLICK’D to the judges?

New York Times best-selling author Tamara Ireland Stone combines friendship, coding, and lots of popcorn in her fun and empowering middle-grade debut.

Review

I LOVED this book on many levels. I loved that the author is a computer geek and brings that out in her main character, Allie. Allie is only 12 but has already created an app that could take off by leaps and bounds and help those awkward new students at school find friends. Allie has been coding programs for several years by this point and I think that message to all young women out there is a strong one = that math and sciences are just as easy for females to conquer as their male counterparts.

But beyond that message, there is also a message about friendship. That no app can truly decide who your best friends will be or who you will “click” with via this app, but it is a start especially in an unfamiliar situation. It is also about perseverance and working hard to get where you are in life, even at the age of 12.

I would recommend this book to any young woman 10 and up (possibly a bit younger) and even to adults like myself so that we can continue to encourage young women in STEM.

We give it 5 paws up

About the Author

TAMARA IRELAND STONE is the author of Time and Time Again, a collection of her two novels Time Between Us and Time After Time, and the New York Times best seller Every Last Word.

A Silicon Valley-native, she has worked in the technology industry all her life, first testing Atari game boards in her parents’ garage, and later, co-founding a woman-owned marketing strategy firm, where she worked with small startups as well as some of the world’s largest software companies. She enjoys skiing, music, movies, and spending time with her husband and two children. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Want a chuckle?  Check out the Top 10 things about Tamara

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