October 30, 2015

A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love

I received this book from Litfuse in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: October 13, 2015
Number of pages: 384
Genre: Historical Fiction

When India Hartley is accused of murder, she must uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.

India Hartley, a famous and beautiful actress, is now alone after her father's death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah's Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night's performance, something goes horribly wrong. Her co-star, Arthur Sterling, is shot dead on stage in front of a packed house, and India is arrested and accused of the crime.

A benefactor hires Philip Sinclair, the best---and handsomest---lawyer in Savannah to defend India. A widower, Philip is struggling to reinvent his worn-out plantation on St. Simons Island. He needs to increase his income from his law practice in order to restore Indigo Point, and hardly anything will bring him more new clients than successfully defending a famous actress on a murder charge.

Because India can't go anywhere in town without being mobbed, Philip persuades the judge handling her case to let him take her to Indigo Point until her trial date. India is charmed by the beauty of the Georgia lowcountry and is increasingly drawn to Philip. But a locked room that appears to be a shrine to Philip's dead wife and the unsolved disappearance of a former slave girl raise troubling questions. Piecing together clues in an abandoned boat and a burned-out chapel, India discovers a trail of dark secrets that lead back to Philip, secrets that ultimately may hold the key to her freedom. If only he will believe her.

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1MUVRqX

What did I think of this book:
This was an enjoyable book for me. I liked how the author's writing kept the story moving along at a nice pace. I was grabbed on page one and went along for the ups and downs along with India as the story went along. You have to feel bad for India for being arrested for the murder of her co-star. I also enjoyed how Philip and India played off of each other. The characters were well developed as well as the scene description was done very well. This book is full of surprises and mysteries which makes for a good story. Then you add in a little romance and it makes for the perfect rainy day book. If you are a fan of mysteries and history then this is the book for you. 

About the author:
A native of west Tennessee, Dorothy Love makes her home in the Texas hill country with her husband and their golden retriever. An award-winning author of numerous young adult novels, Dorothy made her adult debut with the Hickory Ridge novels. When she isn't busy writing or researching her next book, Love enjoys hiking, traveling, and hanging out with her husband Ron and their rambunctious golden retriever. The Loves make their home in the Texas hill country.

Find Dorothy online: website, Twitter, Facebook

October 29, 2015

A Stitch to Die For by Lois Winston

A Stitch to Die For-ebook

Published: July 7, 2015
Number of pages: 240
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery $5


Ever since her husband died and left her in debt equal to the gross national product of Uzbekistan, magazine crafts editor and reluctant amateur sleuth Anastasia Pollack has stumbled across one dead body after another—but always in work-related settings. When a killer targets the elderly nasty neighbor who lives across the street from her, murder strikes too close to home. Couple that with a series of unsettling events days before Halloween, and Anastasia begins to wonder if someone is sending her a deadly message.

About The Author:
USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

Visit Lois/Emma at www.loiswinston.com and Anastasia at the Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers blog, www.anastasiapollack.blogspot.com
Follow everyone on Tsu at www.tsu.co/loiswinston

Author Links Website: http://www.loiswinston.com 
Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers blog: http://www.anastasiapollack.blogspot.com 

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October 29

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October 28, 2015

Bane by Brenda Jackson - Spotlight and Giveaway

Series: The Westmorelands (Book 2413)
Mass Market Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: Harlequin (December 1, 2015)

New York Times bestselling author Brenda Jackson’s last Westmoreland bachelor is a navy SEAL on a mission to protect the woman who got away…

After five years, navy SEAL Brisbane Westmoreland is back home on his ranch and ready to reclaim the woman he left behind. But when he tracks her to Dallas, he’s in for a shock.

Crystal Newsome isn’t ready to forgive Bane for saying he loved her then vanishing from her life. Only now the beautiful chemist needs his protection. As their own irresistible chemistry takes over once again, can Bane keep Crystal safe and convince her they can have the second chance they both deserve?

Purchase Links
Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Brenda Jackson
A New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling and award-winning author of more than seventy-five romance titles, Brenda is a recent retiree who divides her time between family, writing and traveling with her husband.
Connect with Brenda
Website | Facebook |Twitter

Brenda Jackson’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Friday, October 23rd: Let Them Read Books
Monday, October 26th: Black ‘n Gold Girls Book Spot
Wednesday, October 28th: Griperang’s Bookmarks
Friday, October 30th: The Sassy Bookster
Monday, November 2nd: Read Love Blog
Wednesday, November 4th: Smexy Books
Thursday, November 5th: Romantic Reads and Such
Friday, November 6th: Addicted to Romance
Monday, November 9th: From the TBR Pile
Tuesday, November 10th: Books & Spoons – review
Wednesday, November 11th: Arms of a Sister
Friday, November 13th: Romancing the Readers
Monday, November 16th: Griperang’s Bookmarks – review
Wednesday, November 18th: Book Binge
Friday, November 20th: Written Love Reviews

Click here to enter the contest
Complete Title Listing of Brenda Jackson’s Westmoreland Series!
New to Brenda Jackson’s bestselling Westmoreland series? Here is a complete listing of titles, with photos, to help get you started on your next reading adventure.

Volume 1
Brenda Jackson’s THE WESTMORELAND SERIES Books 1 to 5

Volume 2
Brenda Jackson’s THE WESTMORELAND SERIES Books 6 to 10

Volume 3
Brenda Jackson’s THE WESTMORELAND SERIES Books 11 to 15

Volume 4
Brenda Jackson’s THE WESTMORELAND SERIES Books 16 to 20

Volume 5
Brenda Jackson’s THE WESTMORELAND SERIES Books 21 to 25


October 27, 2015

Thank You, Lord, for Everything by P.J. Lyons

I received this book from Book Look Bloggers in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: September 1, 2015
Number of pages: 16
Genre: Children

A new padded board book with cheerful and upbeat rhymes that teaches children to be thankful.

A comfortable and relaxing rhyme tells the story of God's great blessings in this padded cover board book. P.J. Lyons' engaging text and Tim Warnes' playful illustrations remind readers how much they have to be thankful for.

Love surrounds you, beauty, too. Notice how God blesses you! Clap your hands, shout and sing: Thank you, Lord, for everything.

Thank You, Lord, For Everything, is a sweet and gentle rhyme-perfect for bedtime, quiet time, and anytime in between.

What did I think of this book:
This was a very cute little book for your little one. It is full of little rhymes that will teach your child how to be thankful for everything. Once your child has this book read to them a few times I think they will be repeating them on their own. The drawings will draw their little eyes to the page in a hearbeat. I just loved the drawings they are the cutest things. This is going to a nice board book to give to my little niece when she comes to visit next month. It is nice that it is padded so the little ones can enjoy it but I also think that your older toddler will enjoy it just as much. A cute children's book with a great message for all to read and enjoy. 

Rise of a Queen by Chanta Rand - Spotlight

Rise of a Queen
By Chanta Rand
Pre Order your copy now for only $.99. This price is only for Pre Orders and will end on November 22nd. So hurry and pre order your copy now for this amazing price. 
~*~*~*~*~*~ Blurb:
A dead husband. An unconsummated marriage. She needs an heir. Any man will do.
1061 AD. A sprawling empire rich in gold, resources, and military might dominates West Africa. It’s The Kingdom of Ghana, and it’s at the height of its power.
Twenty-year old Nabeela is grappling with her own power struggle. In order to save her younger sister from their step-brother’s clutches, Nabeela agrees to marry a repulsive African prince and bear him an heir. However, her plans are waylaid when tragedy strikes on her wedding night—her new husband dies—without consummating their marriage.
She must find a replacement to impregnate her immediately. Any man will do—including a drunken soldier her servants find naked taking a bath in a neighboring village. Nabeela holds him captive and coerces him into having sex with her—stealing the one thing he can never get back—his seed.
What she doesn’t know is the soldier is Rafan, Commander of a warring tribe’s royal army, and one of her family’s arch enemies. Eager for revenge, Rafan tracks her down once he’s released. But when these two reunite, they realize their lust for each other is far greater than their disdain.
Enamored by Nabeela’s beauty and bravery, Rafan makes her an offer of marriage, and the promise to help her become queen. He convinces her that they are stronger allies than enemies. Even though they share a commitment to unite, there are others who are determined to destroy them and their plans, including the one person Nabeela would have never suspected. In the end, she’s is forced to choose between her passion and her ambition.
Buy Links:
Amazon ~*~*~*~*~*~ Author Info: Chanta Jefferson Rand is an Emma Award winning Debut Author of the Year, a multi-published, best-selling author of sizzling-hot romance, and the former host of The Chanta Rand Show. An avid reader of all genres, she stepped onto the scene in 2010 with her first published historical romance, Pharaoh's Desire. 

Chanta is a history junkie, a Walking Dead fan, and a recovering shoe addict. She never met a stiletto she didn't like! If you still want more, check her out at www.ChantaRand.com or email her at Chanta@chantarand.com.

Remember: You can't expect any sizzle...if you don't turn up the heat! Chanta's Social Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Mailing List  
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October 26, 2015

A Refuge at Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky

I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: October 20, 2015
Number of pages: 352
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Series: Edwardian Brides #3

In this third and final book in the Edwardian Brides Series, you’ll be swept away to England and France in 1915 as the Ramsey family and their staff and friends face the dramatic challenges and losses of World War One, yet they also experience the hope and triumph that comes as they put their trust in God to carry them through. Penny Ramsey helps the family welcome a group of orphaned children to Highland Hall, but she soon discovers caring for them is more difficult than she’d expected. She writes to Alex Goodwin, a daring British pilot, who chases German zeppelins across the sky over the Front Line in France, and longs for the day she will see him again. You’ll be delighted by two pure and heartwarming romances: Penny and Alex, and Lydia Chambers and Marius Ritter, a lady’s maid and a prisoner of war. But most of all I hope you’ll be inspired by the characters’ examples of trusting God through the trials they face.

Fans of “Downton Abbey” will find many of the same elements in this series: A wealthy, aristocratic family living on a large English country estate with romance, conflicts, and family drama; and loyal servants with troubles and heartaches of their own.

What did I think of this book:
First I have to say that I am sad that this series is now done. From the first book to this one they were all very enjoyable reads. I have enjoyed the journey that the author has taken us on from the beginning. As always the characters are very well developed and you feel as if you really do know them. The description of the scenes was also done very well - you feel as if you right along Penny's side as she goes through her journey. It was nice that Carrie used letters in this book. Since I write a lot of pen pal letters I always enjoy reading letters that others have written. I think it makes the story a little more personal. I can't not imagine being about from somone you love during a war but I know many do it and make it through it. It shows how strong of a person that Penny was. I think this book was a fitting end to this series. If you are looking for a great series to read I suggest that you pick this one especially if you are a fan of Downton Abbey you will enjoy this.

Edwardian Brides Series
#1 The Governess of Highland Hall
#2 The Daughter of Highland Hall
#3 A Refuge of Highland Hall

The Bronte Plot by Katherine Reay

I received this book from Book Look Bloggers in exchange for a fair and  honest review

Published: November 3, 2015
'Number of pages: 352
Genre: Fiction

Lucy Alling makes a living selling rare books, often taking suspicious measures to reach her goals. When her unorthodox methods are discovered, Lucy's secret ruins her relationship with her boss and her boyfriend James—leaving Lucy in a heap of hurt, and trouble. Something has to change; she has to change.

In a sudden turn of events, James's wealthy grandmother Helen hires Lucy as a consultant for a London literary and antiques excursion. Lucy reluctantly agrees and soon discovers Helen holds secrets of her own. In fact, Helen understands Lucy's predicament better than anyone else.

As the two travel across England, Lucy benefits from Helen's wisdom, as Helen confronts the ghosts of her own past. Everything comes to a head at Haworth, home of the Brontë sisters, where Lucy is reminded of the sisters' beloved heroines, who, with tenacity and resolution, endured—even in the midst of change.

Now Lucy must go back into her past in order to move forward. And while it may hold mistakes and regrets, she will prevail—if only she can step into the life that's been waiting for her all along.

What did I think of this book:
This is the first book that I have read by Katherine and I am looking forward to going back to read the other books she wrote. The whole subject of this book is what caught my eye and made me want to read it. I enjoyed that there was a lot of talks of books in this story. It was fun to read about how Lucy was reaching her goals, but at the same time she found out the hard way that it was not worth it. Then she gets a break to work as a consultant for the London literary and antiques excursion. The author did a good job of including the Bronte sisters in the story which for me was an added bonus. I felt the the way the author wrote it made me feel as if I was a part of the story. A good story. 

A Season to Wed by Rachel Hauck, Cindy Kirk & Cheryl Wyatt

I received this book from Book Look Bloggers in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: November 3, 2015
Number of pages: 336
Genre: Romance

They’ve helped orchestrate the perfect day for countless couples. Now twelve new couples will find themselves in the wedding spotlight in the second Year of Weddings novella collection.

Love at Mistletoe Inn by Cindy Kirk
Sometimes the road to happiness is paved with youthful mistakes.

Ten years after what she thought was her almost-wedding, Hope Prentiss discovers that the ceremony counted—and, as fate would have it, the jilted John Burke has just ridden back into town. After spending some time with John and helping plan a Christmas wedding for a mystery couple, Hope begins to wonder if she really wants a divorce . . . or a real wedding of her own.

A Brush with Love by Rachel Hauck
Revealing the beauty in other women might be Ginger Winters’s specialty—but it will take an unexpected kind of love to help Ginger see the beauty in herself.

Ginger Winters will be the “beauty-maker” for the Alabama society wedding of the decade.

But when high-school crush Tom Wells shows up looking for a haircut, Ginger’s thinly veiled insecurities threaten to keep her from love once again . . . despite Tom’s best efforts.

Serving Up a Sweetheart by Cheryl Wyatt
Meadow knows how to serve delicious food to match any wedding theme. But can she accept love when it's served up on a silver platter?

Meadow Larson is having the mother of all Mondays when her roof caves in during a blizzard, right before the most important wedding contract of her career.

Renovation contractor Colin McGrath offers to fix Meadow’s roof, even though he knows he is the last person she would accept help from.

But the more Meadow gets to know the new Colin, the more she realizes God may have something more permanent in store than a new catering kitchen

What did I think of this book:
Only one of these authors have I read before and that was Rachel Hauck. I have enjoyed her books and I enjoy books about weddings so I jumped at the chance to read this book. Each of the stories were very enjoyable quick reads for me. I like how each story is about a wedding planner who ends up finding the happiness they give to all of their clients through the weddings they plan. I can't say as one of the stories is my favorite as I enjoyed each of them in their own way. This book was a nice book to spend the weekend with. I liked how Rachel took Ginger with her insecurities and showed that she was worth loving. Cheryl took Meadow from someone who was down and brought her up and gave her the happiness she needed. Then we have Hope from Cindy's story who was planning a wedding for a mystery couple but ends up getting her own surprise. All in all this is a great book. 

The Ninth Daughter by Barbara Hamilton

Pulished: September 29, 2009
Number of pages: 359
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: Abigail Adams #1

1773: Massachusetts colony is torn between patriots who want independence from British rule and loyalists who support the King. At the center is the educated and beautiful Abigail Adams-wife of John Adams, a leader of the Sons of Liberty, the secret organization opposing the Crown. When her husband is accused of murder, she will clear his name.

What did I think of this book:
This was an enjoyable book for me. It is set in Revolutionary Boston so there was a little bit of history along with the mystery. I liked how the author showed Abigail's and John's relationship. There were many key characters in this book and the author gave you just enough of each of them so you could get to know them a little more. Another thing I liked was how Abigail worked with the Redcoats to solve the mystery even though they did not agree on the politics that was going on in this country at the time. The author had some clues as to the mystery but they kept me guessing until the end of the story. In fact I had no idea that the killer was who it was. I was a little shocked at who it was. I am looking forward to the next book in this series to see what kind of trouble Abigail finds next. 

Abigail Adams Series
#1 The Ninth Daughter
#2 A Marked Man
#3 Sup with the Devil

October 23, 2015

Dead in the Park by B. L. Blair - Spotlight

Mystery / Romance
Date Published: November 12, 2015

When Leah Norwood finds the body of Donald Collins in the city park, she doesn’t know he is a distant relative. Young Donnie was a jewel thief and a career criminal. Hidden in the lining of his suit jacket was an exact replica of a ring that has been in Leah’s family for over a hundred years. After her home is burglarized, the sexy chief of police is convinced the ruby ring has something to do with the murder.

Leah wants to find out what happened to Donnie, but why would someone kill for a hundred year old ring? She discovers a connection between Donnie and the drug-dealing Cantono family, between the Cantono family and a jewelry appraiser, and between the jewelry appraiser and one of her own employees. Chief Griggs might be onto something. All clues lead back to the family ring.

Leah loves a good mystery. Can she find the killer before the killer strikes again?

“You didn’t know the victim?” Griggs asked when he returned his attention to me.
“I don’t think so, but I didn’t really see his face.” I paused and then asked, “Who was he?”
“We don’t know,” he replied. “He didn’t have any identification, no wallet, no keys, nothing.”
“How did he get here?”
“Why do you want to know?”
“Just curious,” I said innocently.

Griggs’ eyes were full of amusement as he looked at me, and Reddish laughed. They both know all about my curiosity. I love a good mystery. I read a lot of detective novels and try to solve the mystery along with the protagonist. Movies that feature a mystery are my favorite. If a crime makes the news, I take notes and follow along. I fancy myself a sideline detective. That trait may have been what got me almost killed just before Christmas.

“We don’t know,” Reddish answered my question. “The uniforms didn’t find any unaccounted for vehicle.”

David Reddish is a hard man to read. He has been a police officer for over thirty years and a detective for the Reed Hill Police Department for eight having moved to town from Dallas. He is a large man, attractive, with broad shoulders and flat stomach. He has skin the color of coffee with a dash cream, but it is his eyes that tell you he’s not someone you want to cross. They are hard and calculating.

“Was he murdered?” I asked softly.
“Oh, yes. It was murder,” Griggs replied.

The last time I found a body it had never occurred to me that the police would consider me a suspect. As a law-abiding citizen, I had just assumed that people knew I was innocent. My experience with the police showed me I was wrong. I looked at both Griggs and Reddish.

“Please tell me you don’t think I killed him.”

Griggs snorted. “No, we don’t think you killed him. He was taller than you, and his neck was broken. No way could you have done that.”

“It was fast and neat,” Reddish added and then turned to Griggs. “Probably someone with military or combat training.”

“Someone who knows how to kill with their hands,” Griggs said softly.

I swallowed. Candace had shot and killed two people in December and tried to kill me twice. She had been crazy, her behavior unexpected and unpredictable, which had made the situation scary. This sounded worse. A person who was calm and rational murdering someone with their bare hands was chilling. And I couldn’t forget about the weird shoe thing.

“Did you find his shoes?”
“No,” Griggs replied turning toward me.
“Why would someone want his shoes?”

“Who knows? There wasn’t much of a struggle although there were multiple sets of footprints. But all appeared to be made by people wearing shoes.” He turned away from me and back toward Reddish. “Between Leah and her dog stomping around, I doubt we’ll get any viable footprints.”

“Hey,” I said indignantly. Both men ignored me.

“Let’s keep the area secure anyway,” Griggs continued. “Send a team out to see if they can find anything. Maybe the shoes will show up somewhere else in the park.”

“Got it,” Reddish replied as he started to walk away. “See you around, Leah.”

“Bye, David,” I said reluctantly. I didn’t want to be alone with Griggs. It was awkward and unpleasant. I’m not exactly sure why he had kissed me and then disappeared from my life, but I wasn’t going to ask. I hadn’t thought he would be interested in me in the first place. Although not traditionally handsome, Griggs is an extremely attractive and sexy man. After waiting weeks for him to call or come by, I finally chalked it up to a gaffe on his part. Instead of telling me he wasn’t interested, he simply disappeared. If I hadn’t found this body, I probably would have never seen him again except in passing.

We stood there in silence for a few moments before Griggs said, “You can leave now. Thank you for your patience.”

He sounded so formal and polite. I didn’t like it. I gathered Harry’s leash, pulled him up, and started to walk away. “Well, I guess…I guess I’ll see you around.”

Griggs stepped back and let me pass. I hadn’t gotten very far before I heard him call my name. When I turned around, he was standing in the same spot with an odd look on his face. He rubbed his hand across his head and then gave me a slight smile. “It was good to see you, Leah.”

“Uh, yeah, you too,” I stuttered before we both turned and walked away.

About the Author
B. L. Blair writes simple and sweet romance and mystery/romance stories. Like most authors, she has been writing most of her life and has dozens of books started. She just needs the time to finish them.

She is the author of the Holton Romance Series and the Leah Norwood Mysteries. She enjoys reading books, writing books, and traveling wherever and as often as time and money allows. She is currently working on her latest book set in Texas, where she lives with her family.

Contact Links

Purchase Links
Barnes and Noble

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October 22, 2015

Jewel of the Thames and Thrice Burned by Angela Misri - Spotlight and Interview

Published: March 25, 2015
Number of pages: 256
Portia Adams Adventures #1

There’s a new detective at 221 Baker Street

Set against the background of 1930s England, Jewel of the Thames introduces Portia Adams, a budding detective with an interesting — and somewhat mysterious — heritage.

Nineteen-year-old Portia Adams has always been inquisitive. There’s nothing she likes better than working her way through a mystery. When her mother dies, Portia puzzles over why she was left in the care of the extravagant Mrs. Jones but doesn’t have long to dwell on it before she is promptly whisked from Toronto to London by her new guardian. Once there Portia discovers that she has inherited 221 Baker Street — the former offices of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson.

Portia settles into her new home and gets to know her downstairs tenants, including the handsome and charming Brian Dawes. She also finds herself entangled in three cases: the first involving stolen jewelry, the second a sick judge and the final case revolving around a kidnapped child. But the greatest mystery of all is her own. How did she come to inherit this townhouse? And why did her mother keep her heritage from her? Portia has a feeling Mrs. Jones knows more than she is letting on. In fact, she thinks her new guardian may be the biggest clue of all.

Published: March 25, 2015
Number of pages: 269
Portia Adams Adventures #2

If you play with fire, you could get burned

Portia is still reeling from finding out that her guardian, Mrs. Jones, is actually the infamous Irene Adler and her grandmother. As if finding that out wasn’t shocking enough, the revelation that Sherlock Holmes is her grandfather has Portia feeling betrayed by her mother who took the secrets of Portia’s lineage to the grave with her.

As a diversion Portia throws herself into work and continues to consult with Scotland Yard on their hard-to-crack cases including a brazen theft that the perpetrator boasted about before it took place as well as the disappearance of prostitutes. While on the case of an arsonist who’s plaguing London she meets Annie Coleson, a disgraced reporter who has clues that can help Portia solve the mystery. The women strike up a friendship and Annie starts to report on “P.C. Adams”, the consulting detective helping to keep London safe, with the promise to keep Portia’s true identity secret.

Downstairs neighbor and friend Constable Brian Dawes takes a shining to Annie just as Portia starts to question her feelings for the him. At the same time Portia garners the attention of Gavin Douglas Whitaker, a medical student and by all accounts Portia intellectual equal, who may just be the distraction from Brian that she needs.

As the press starts to show an interest in P.C. Adams, an impostor comes forward claiming to be the consulting detective and Portia must choose between remaining anonymous and letting the world know who the real P.C. Adams is.

About the author:
Angela Misri is a Toronto author who writes detective fiction inspired by her birth country, Great Britain. The first book in her YA detective series is called Jewel of the Thames and follows her detective Portia Adamsthrough her first three cases as she immigrates from 1930s Toronto to the bustling streets of London. The second book in the series came out in Canada this March and is called Thrice Burned. Misri has Masters degree in Journalism from the University of Western Ontario and has spent most of her career at the CBC in Toronto making CBC Radio extraterrestrial through podcasts, live streams and websites.

1. Who or what inspired you to start writing?
I’ve been a writer since I was a young child, but it was more of a dream than something I thought could become a reality. The moment I truly believed I could become a published writer was at an assembly in junior high. I was sitting in the audience amongst my friends giggling and gossiping when the principal of the school said my name, calling me up to the front of the gym. I had no idea what was going on, I hadn’t been paying attention, but he shook my hand and handed me a bound anthology. It seems my language arts teacher had submitted one of my poems that I had written as an assignment to this publisher and my poem had been picked to be published. That was it. A total surprise but also an incredible moment where a dream turned into a possibility.

2. What do you do to help you get over writer's block?
I’m a big believer in jump-starting your creative neurones. The part of your brain that creates the story is also the part that allows you to play music and create art. So when I get stuck on the writing, I create digital art, or draw or create a scene out of plasticine. I find that usually gets me going again on the actual writing.

3. Do you have scheduled writing time or a certain amount of words you write each day?
Yes, I write in the mornings (8 till noon) and then use the afternoon to ‘pay the bills.’

4. Where do you get your ideas for your books?
Everywhere. Life. Friends. The news. Everywhere. Writers are a little creepy because we’re always observing, always cataloguing basic life events that we intend to use in our books.

5. When you are not writing what do you like to do?
I am a coder, so I love to learn new programs, and to build websites. I also design websites, I produce videos and podcasts. I also read a LOT. Something that every writer does.

6. What one piece of advice would you like to give to aspiring writers?
Write new words every single day. Too many people I know write a little and then spend years going over and over those words trying to refine them into the perfect story. Your story will change dramatically between your first draft and the draft that makes it through an editor, publisher etc. Write the whole story and then go back and refine. Get it all down. Write new words every single day.

7. Who is your favorite author or book that you would like to recommend to your readers?
Too many. Don’t make me pick one! I can tell you the most read book on my shelf is The Stand by Stephen King, but Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy is a close second place. Also I’ve read the original Sherlock Holmes canon too many times to count.

8. If you could meet any famous person dead or alive who would it be and why?

Alive: Stephen King because I think he’s incredible. Dead: Arthur Conan Doyle because I think a lot of his life and inspiration is a mystery.

9. If you could visit anywhere in the world where would you like to visit?
I’ve been fortunate to have travelled a lot in my lifetime, but the pyramids of Egypt are still on my bucket list.

10. List five interesting facts about yourself.
a. I was first published at 13 in the anthology above, and my son was first published at 13 in Owl Magazine.
b. I wrote the first two Portia Adams books in moleskine notebooks on my commute to my full-time job at the CBC - 30 minutes in each direction on transit.
c. I’ve been playing World of Warcraft for six years and my main character is a rogue.
d. I have a book I wrote when I was 20 called Savitri that I only have one copy of in hardcopy (nothing digital) and I haven’t opened it since printing it for fear it is horribly bad. I <think> it is the best thing I have every written but I’m too scared to find out for sure (because what if it’s NOT?!?)
e. My favourite Shakespeare play is The Merchant of Venice (where Portia and Nerissa get their names).

October 21, 2015

Murder at the Courthouse by A.H. Gabhart

I received this book in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: October 20, 2015
Number of pages: 336
Genre: Mystery
Series: Hidden Springs Mystery #1

After a few years as a police officer in Chicago, Michael Keane has no trouble relaxing into the far less stressful job of deputy sheriff in his small hometown. After all, nothing ever happens in Hidden Springs, Kentucky. Nothing, that is, until a dead body is discovered on the courthouse steps. Everyone in town is a little uneasy. Still, no one is terribly worried--after all the man was a stranger--until one of their own is murdered right on Main Street.

As Michael works to solve the case it seems that every nosy resident in town has a theory. When the sheriff insists Michael check out one of these harebrained theories, his surprising discovery sends him on a bewildering search for a mysterious killer that has him questioning everything he has ever believed about life in Hidden Springs.

Bringing with her a knack for creating settings you want to visit and an uncanny ability to bring characters to life, A. H. Gabhart pens a whodunit that will keep readers guessing.

What did I think of this book:
I have enjoyed reading Ann Gabhart's books as well as cozy mysteries so when I was offered the chance to read a mystery written by Ann I thought this has got to be a good book. I was not wrong. This book grabbed me from the first page. The town of Hidden Springs was your typical quiet town until a body was found. Now the new sheriff is trying to find out who was the cause of the murder. The author had me trying to figure out who did it right up until the end. She also has a way of making you feel a part of the story and as if you knew the people all along. There were some twists and turns that kept the story moving right along and kept me guessing. I have to say I felt bad for Michael as times as it seemed that at times everyone had an opinion on who the murderer was. This is the first book in this new series and I can't wait to read the next one to see what happens next in this nice little town. I highly recommend this book to fans of mystery stories. 

About the author:
A. H. Gabhart is Ann H. Gabhart, bestselling author of many novels, including Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, and Love Comes Home, several popular Shaker novels such as The Outsider, The Believer, and The Innocent, and The Heart of Hollyhill series. Ann grew up in a small rural town in Kentucky much like Hidden Springs, but she is happy to report nobody was ever murdered on her hometown's courthouse steps. Ann and her husband still live on a farm near that same little town in Kentucky. Learn more at www.annhgabhart.com.

Streams of Mercy by Lauraine Snelling

I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: October 6, 2015
Number of pages: 384
Genre: Christian Fiction, Historical
Series: Song of Blessing #3

Anji Baard Moen, a recent widow, returns from Norway with her children. She quickly settles back into life in Blessing, teaching Norwegian history in the high school and writing articles for the Blessing Gazette. When tragedy strikes, Anji steps in to run the newspaper and soon finds a kindred spirit in the widower who owns the printing press. As they spend time together, Anji wonders if there's something more than friendship growing between them.

But Anji has also caught the eye of a recent arrival to Blessing. He has put his carpentry skills to good use on the town's building projects, including Anji's house. But Anji is torn between her feelings of loyalty to someone who needs her and the chance to build a new life with this intriguing newcomer.

Where will her choice take her?

What did I think of this book:
I have been a fan of Lauraine's books for a long time now so every chance I get to read a new book by her it is a joy to me. This book did not disappoint in the least. It has been a joy to watch the town of Blessing grow and to continue to follow the journeys of the people that make it such a quaint town. This town has to pull together in their time of need during the illness epidemic. There are many twists, turns and surprises in this book to keep you enjoyed. The author's writing style just flows and is very easy to read. I like how there is a sense of romance and suspense all in one. I highly recommend this book to fans of historical fiction fans. This is a part of a series and I suggest you read them in order. 

Anna's Healing by Vannetta - Interview and Giveaway

Published: October 1, 2015
Number of pages: 352
Genre: Amish, Christian Fiction
Series: Plain and Simple Miracles #1

Anna's Healing is the first book in a brand-new collection from popular author Vannetta Chapman. These stories of love and family and Amish community in Oklahoma tell of the miracles that can happen when lives are lived in service to God and to one another.

When a tornado strikes the farms surrounding Cody's Creek, Anna Schwartz's life is changed forever. She suffers a spinal cord injury and suddenly finds herself learning to live as a paraplegic.

Three people--Chloe Roberts, Jacob Graber, and Ruth Schwartz--join forces to help Anna through her darkest days. Chloe is an Englischer who writes for the local paper. Jacob has recently arrived in town and stays on as a hired hand at her uncle's. And Ruth is her grandmother, a woman of deep faith and a compassionate spirit.

Then one morning Anna wakes and finds herself healed. How did it happen? Why did it happen? And what is she to do now? Her life is again turned upside down as the world's attention is drawn to this young Amish girl who has experienced the unexplainable.

About the author:
Vannetta Chapman writes inspirational fiction full of grace. She has published more than one hundred articles in Christian family magazines, receiving more than two dozen awards from Romance Writers of America chapter groups. She discovered her love for the Amish while researching her grandfather's birthplace of Albion, Pennsylvania. Her novel Falling to Pieces was a 2012 ACFW Carol Award finalist. A Promise for Miriam earned a spot on the June 2012 Christian Retailing Top Ten Fiction list. Chapman was a teacher for 15 years and currently writes full time. She lives in the Texas hill country with her husband. For more information, visit her at www.VannettaChapman.com

For more information, visit her at
webpage -- www.VannettaChapman.com
blog -- http://vannettachapman.wordpress.com
facebook -- www.facebook.com/VannettaChapmanBooks, and
pinterest -- http://pinterest.com/vannettachapman
instagram -- https://instagram.com/vannettachapman
Enter below for a chance to win a small quilt, cookbook, candles, and a copy of Anna's Healing

1. Who or what inspired you to start writing? 
I’ve always been an avid reader, since I was a small child. I think it was natural at some point to wonder, “Hey, could I do that?” After I finished college and started teaching, I decided to give it a try.

2. What do you do to help you get over writer's block? 
I don’t like to even READ that word. But seriously, I don’t worry about writer’s block. If I start feeling depeleted, I spend some time away from the computer.

3. Do you have scheduled writing time or a certain amount of words you write each day? 
I’ve tried several different things. Currently I’m writing 3,000 words a day, 5 days a week – and then I take weekends off!

4. Where do you get your ideas for your books? 
Kind of from all around me – sometimes it’s a person I know, or a news article I read.

5. When you are not writing what do you like to do? 
We like to hike and camp (in a small camper). We also have 2 dogs that keep us quite occupied—a labrador mix named Phoebe and a bulldog/beagle mix named Cola. Both were shelter dogs, and we adore them. We have 2 cats too!

6. What one piece of advice would you like to give to aspiring writers? 
To keep writing! The 9th book I wrote was the 1st book I sold.

7. Who is your favorite author or book that you would like to recommend to your readers? 
I read a lot and across all genres. I like CJ Box for a good mystery. The Storied Life of AJ Fikry was a lovely story, and I recently read my first Virginia Smith book (The Most Famous Illegal Goose Creek Parade) which was a fun, fun read.

8. If you could meet any famous person dead or alive who would it be and why? 
Oh, I don’t know. I’ve always wanted to meet Nolan Ryan and George Strait, two famous Texans.

9. If you could visit anywhere in the world where would you like to visit? 
I love to travel. We were able to go to London, Scotland and Wales last spring and it was the trip of a lifetime. I hope to get to Alaska in the next few years.

10. Five interesting facts about yourself.
I taught high school and college for 15 years.
I have 3 stepchildren and 1 son.
I didn’t earn my college degree until I was 34.
Tall flyover bridges terrify me if I’m the one driving.
Our praise band at church allows me to play the keyboard—which I love!


Happy Homicides - Thirteen Cozy Holiday Mysteries - Spotlight/Interview/Giveaway

A holiday bonanza! A collection of traditional mysteries to celebrate the holidays, written by by thirteen bestselling and award-winning authors. Heartwarming, brain puzzling, craft-centered, and character driven reads that’ll keep you entertained for hours. Nearly 800 pages of reading material, plus a special Recipe and Craft Bonus.

Included are:

Kiki Lowenstein and the Rowan Branch – (Joanna Campbell Slan) When Horace Goldfader is accused of murder, Kiki learns how difficult it can be to maintain peace on earth—and to keep her deathbed promise to her late friend, Dodie.

Cara Mia Delgatto and the Misdirected Gifts — (Joanna Campbell Slan) Two waylaid items cause Cara to take a break from her booming retail business and follow her heart. Can asprinkling of holiday magic create a “happily ever after” ending for all involved?

The Christmas Dog — (Joyce and Jim Lavene) A woman running from her deadly past finds hope, and a dog, at Christmas.

and more.

About This Author
Joanna Campbell Slan is the award-winning author of the Kiki Lowenstein Mysteries (an Agatha Award Finalist) and two other mystery series. Her stories in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series has been read and loved by millions. Her books reviving the classic heroine Jane Eyre have won the prestigious Daphne du Maurier Award. In her past life, Joanna was a television talk show host, an adjunct professor of public relations, a sought-after motivational speaker, and a corporate speechwriter. She is married to David Slan, CEO of Steinway Piano Gallery-DC. The Slans make their home on Jupiter Island, Florida. Visit Joanna’s website at www.JoannaSlan.com

Author Links
Website http://www.joannaslan.com
Blog http://www.joannaslan.blogspot.com
Facebook http://www.Facebook.com/joannacampbellslan
Twitter http://www.twitter.com/joannaslan
Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/joannacampbellslan
Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/joannaslan

Purchase Links –

Interview of Nancy Jill Thames:
1. Who or what inspired you to start writing?
*Sheer boredom and the challenge to do something I'd never done before inspired me to start writing a book.

2. What do you do to help you get over writer's block?
*To get back on track in my writing, I like to take a nap. Or watch a movie.
3. Do you have scheduled writing time or a certain amount of words you write each day?
*Deadlines work best for me. I will move mountains to meet them.

4. Where do you get your ideas for your books?
*I like to write about what I like to read which includes getaways, mysteries, and I what I like to call "Rah-Rah," or enjoying the fun things of life like afternoon tea, collecting fine art, or simply going out for dinner at a fine restaurant.

5. When you are not writing what do you like to do?
*I enjoy early-morning coffee with my husband, sitting in the backyard watching the birds, or traveling to be with my grandchildren and their wonderful parents.

6. What one piece of advice would you like to give to aspiring writers?
*Invest in a good editor, proofreader, formatter, and feedback on whether or not you have a good story.

7. Who is your favorite author or book that you would like to recommend to your readers?
*"Snow Falling on Cedars" by David Guterson is beautifully written - It's a mystery, and an ill-fated love story. I've read it several times to experience the sheer loveliness of his writing. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/067976402X

8. If you could meet any famous person dead or alive who would it be and why?
*I will meet Jesus one day who was once dead but now lives because He's my Savior - How awesome is that?

9. If you could visit anywhere in the world where would you like to visit?
*Lake Cuomo, Italy.

10. Five interesting facts about yourself
* I can wiggle my ears.
* I write about a Yorkie, but adore cats.
* I love disaster and shark movies and anything Disney.
* I love to work jigsaw puzzles.
* Over the years, I've collected 44 China teacups and saucers.


Tour Participants
October 15 – Michelle’s Romantic Tangle – Guest Post
October 16 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too ! – Spotlight, Giveaway
October 16 – Mallory Heart Reviews – Review
October 17 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – Review, Guest Post, Giveaway
October 18 – Community Bookstop – Review, Giveaway
October 19 – THE SELF-TAUGHT COOK – Review, Giveaway
October 19 – MysteriesEtc – Review, Giveaway
October 20 – fuonlyknew – Review, Giveaway
October 20 – Book Babble – Spotlight
October 21 – A Year of Jubilee Reviews – Review
October 21 – Griperang’s Bookmarks – Interview, Giveaway
October 22 – readalot – Review, Giveaway
October 23 – A Fold in the Spine – Review
October 24 – Booklady’s Booknotes – Review, Interview, Giveaway
October 25 – StoreyBook Reviews – Review, Giveaway
October 26 – Cassidy Salem Reads & Writes – Review, Giveaway
October 27 – Laura’s Interests – Review, Giveaway
October 27 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Guest Post, Spotlight
October 28 – Bubble Bath Books – Review

E-Book Giveaway at every stop plus
Rafflecopter Giveaway for a $50 Etsy Gift Card

October 20, 2015

The Beginner's Bible: A Christmas Celebration - Sticker and Activity Book

I received this book from Booklook Bloggers in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: October 6, 2015
Number of pages: 16
Genre: Children's

The Christmas story comes to life through age-appropriate puzzles, activity pages, and 50 reusable stickers in this friendly and fun sticker and activity Book featuring The Beginner s Bible classic art and simply written content

What did I think of this book:
Just like the other activity books I have received by The Beginner's Bible I was very happy with the book. The colors are nice and bright which is appealing to the kids. I also liked the illustrations as they are just fun and inviting. This is a fun way for kids to learn the real story of Christmas while having fun at the same time. This would make a great night before Christmas gift for your younger children to enjoy.