March 31, 2018

Murder with Lemon Tea Cakes by Karen Rose Smith

Book details
Series: A Daisy's Tea Garden Mystery (Book 1)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Kensington (December 26, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 161773960X
ISBN-13: 978-1617739606

Book description
In an old Victorian in the heart of Pennsylvania’s Amish country, Daisy Swanson and her aunt Iris serve soups, scones, and soothing teas to tourists and locals—but a murder in their garden has them in hot water . . .

Daisy, a widowed mom of two teenagers, is used to feeling protective—so when Iris started dating the wealthy and not-quite-divorced Harvey Fitz, she worried . . . especially after his bitter ex stormed in and caused a scene at the party Daisy’s Tea Garden was catering. Then there was the gossip she overheard about Harvey’s grown children being cut out of his will. Daisy didn’t want her aunt to wind up with a broken heart—but she never expected Iris to wind up a suspect in Harvey’s murder.

Now the apple bread and orange pekoe is on the back burner while the cops treat the shop like a crime scene—and Daisy hopes that Jonas Groft, a former detective from Philadelphia, can help her clear her aunt’s name and bag the real killer before things boil over . . .

Includes delicious recipes for Iris’s Lemon Tea Cakes and more!

Meet the author - Karen Rose Smith
Karen Rose Smith is writing mysteries as well as romances now! Her plots, whether in mystery or romance, are all about relationships.

She began writing in her early teens when she listened to music and created stories to accompany the songs. After expressing feelings in poetry, earning a degree in English and French, completing short stories that became too long to find a market, she turned to her fascination with relationships to writing romances and now mysteries. This award-winning best-selling author (USA Today List, Borders Bestseller List, Amazon Romance Bestseller lists, Barnes and Noble Bestseller list) will see her 97th novel released in 2017. She has published with Silhouette, Harlequin, Kensington and Meteor/Kismet. Her awards include two Golden Leaf awards in short contemporary romance, the Golden Quill in traditional romance, two's awards for Best Special Editions and Romance Review's Today's Best series romance award. Jane Bowers of Romance Reviews Today states: "Karen Rose Smith's storyworlds are complete and realistic and lovely places to visit and revisit. She excels at stories that feature couples brought together by infants and children, and she handles her plots and characters with sublime sensitivity."

Karen is well-known for writing emotion-packed novels. An only child, she spent a lot of time in her imagination and with books--Nancy Drew, Zane Gray, The Black Stallion and Anne of Green Gables. She dreamt of brothers and sisters and a big family like her mother and father came from--seven children in her mom's family and ten in her dad's. On weekends she was often surrounded by aunts, uncles and cousins. This is the root of her plotlines that include small communities and family relationships as integral to everyday living. She believes universal emotions unite us all and that is the reason she employs them to propel her plots.

It is no secret that Karen married her college sweetheart and they have been married for 45 years. She believes in the power of commitment and the hope that goes along with the promise of everlasting love. Along with enjoying time with her husband, Karen enjoys cooking, watercolor painting, gardening, shopping, listening to music and keeping her four rescued cats company or vice versa.

She has been busy indie publishing her SEARCH FOR LOVE series. In addition, she is writing her Caprice De Luca mystery series as well as her Daisy's Tea Garden series for Kensington along with romances for Harlequin Special Edition. Readers can follow her on Facebook (Search--Karen Rose Smith) or on Twitter @karenrosesmith. Contact her through her website or if you'd like to belong to her street team or her readers group on Facebook. She welcomes interaction with her readers on Facebook and Twitter, and would love to chat about plotlines, titles, emotions, heroes, heroines, music, books, gardening, cooking, or anything else readers deem noteworthy!

My thoughts
This was a good start to a new series. I enjoyed stepping into Daisy's world. She is such a nice person and I am hoping as the series goes we see good things happening for her. The relationship she has with her daughters and aunt is nice. I liked how she supported her youngest Jazzie in her new adventure. It was sad that Iris lost her love. Like Daisy you could not help but worry about Iris. I am not sure what I think of Cade yet but I did like Jonas - a lot. Detective Rappaport was not very nice - I know that he was investigating the murder but he still could have been nice. I had a couple of suspects in my mind but they ended up not being it. I also hope in the future books we get to know everyone a bit more. 

March 29, 2018

We Own the Sky by Luke Allnutt - Excerpt

Book details
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Park Row (April 3, 2018)

Book description
A triumphant story about love, loss and finding hope—against all odds

“We looked down at the cliff jutting into the sea, a rubber boat full of kids going under the arch, and then you started running and jumping through the grass, dodging the rabbit holes, shouting at the top of your voice, so I started chasing you, trying to catch you, and we were laughing so hard as we ran and ran, kicking up rainbow showers in the leaves.”

Rob Coates feels like he’s won the lottery of life. There is Anna, his incredible wife, their London town house and, most precious of all, Jack, their son, who makes every day an extraordinary adventure. But when a devastating illness befalls his family, Rob’s world begins to unravel. Suddenly finding himself alone, Rob seeks solace in photographing the skyscrapers and clifftops he and his son Jack used to visit. And just when it seems that all hope is lost, Rob embarks on the most unforgettable of journeys to find his way back to life, and forgiveness.

We Own the Sky is a tender, heartrending, but ultimately life-affirming novel that will resonate deeply with anyone who has suffered loss or experienced great love. With stunning eloquence and acumen, Luke Allnutt has penned a soaring debut and a true testament to the power of love, showing how even the most thoroughly broken heart can learn to beat again.

“A breathtaking read that describes perfectly the joy and pain that comes with loving fully and all the compassion and forgiveness it requires. Brimming with hope to the very end.” —Steven Rowley, bestselling author of Lily and the Octopus

“Anyone who wishes David Nicholls would write faster needs to grab this with both hands. It’s a truly stunning achievement.” —Jill Mansell, Meet Me at Beachcomber Bay

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

Meet the author - Luke Allnutt
Luke Allnutt grew up in the U.K. and lives and works in Prague.
Connect with Luke
Website | Twitter

That afternoon, I didn’t think I had ever seen Anna look more relaxed, more at home, her feet up on the coffee table, a can of Carlsberg in her hand. After that, we went to Rom­ford for every Christmas, our family traditions rejuvenated by Anna’s presence. She loved those traditions, the things she said she had never had. The midmorning sparkling wine and cer­emonial opening of the giant tin of chocolates. The pub for a pint while the turkey was cooking. The bingo. The party hats that Dad made us wear from dawn until dusk.

In the afternoon, Dad would get overemotional on the bub­bly and would tell me and Anna how much he loved us, how she was like the daughter he never had. And then, at almost exactly the same time every year, he would fall asleep on the sofa, just after the traditional sing-along of “Hey Jude” on the PlayStation Karaoke.

“We could all spend it together, my dad and your parents,” I said, putting my hand on Anna’s arm. “Although I can’t imag­ine your mother doing the karaoke.”

“Ha,” Anna said and suddenly she leaned over and kissed me, full on the lips, and I felt a wave of lust, a pent-up desire like that urge to fuck after funerals.

“Wow. Be careful, Anna. Definitely a public display of af­fection there.”

She sat back on her stool. “It’s the gin, I think. I’m being se­rious, though. I don’t want to come here for Christmas again. I know they’re my parents, but I don’t want that.” Anna low­ered her head, almost as if she was embarrassed by what she had said. “I missed you last night,” she said.

“In your teenage bedroom?”

“Yes. It made me feel quite randy actually.”

“Really? Well, I could always come to yours.”

“No,” Anna said quickly and then looked around her con­spiratorially. “But, I will come to you.”

I started laughing. “Are you drunk?”

She giggled. “A little actually. It’s the Christmas cheer. But seriously, Rob, I forbid you to come out of your room. It’s much easier for me. I know the times they fall asleep, you see. I know which floorboards squeak on the landing. I know how to close the door without making the latch click.”

“I’m impressed.”

“I’m not quite as square as you think, darling.”

“But what if we make a noise?” I said, half joking, happily buzzed from the beer.

“We won’t. Or at least I won’t.”

I looked at her quizzically.

“I went to boarding school, Rob. I learned how not to make a noise.” She smiled at me mischievously and finally got the bartender’s attention.

“Could I possibly have another gin?”

The bartender nodded.

“A double, please.”

We were a little drunk walking home. For safety, Anna made us walk, single file, facing the oncoming traffic. When cars approached, she pulled me into the shoulder to let them pass.

On the final stretch, there was a sidewalk and we strolled along arm in arm.

“Are you still coming to my room?” I said.

“Yes, of course. We have an agreement,” she said, almost solemnly. She then stopped, I thought for another car, but the road was empty.

“Maybe we should try…” she said.

“Try what?”

“To have children.”

“Are you drunk?”

“Tipsy,” she said.

“Really?” I said. We had never really spoken much about children. We were happy with our childless London lives: An­na’s career; Star Wars marathons and pop-up food festivals on the weekends. Boating in the park, museums on rainy days, lazy afternoons in pubs. It was the London life we had always imagined. A world with children was still in the distant future, a future that was no more real, or no more ours, than a future that would have us living in Peru.

I watched Anna whenever she was around children. She didn’t seem to coo and caw like other women. I saw her hold the baby of a friend once, and she cradled the infant so awk­wardly, like a careless Mary in a nativity play. After she had returned him to his mother, I saw her discreetly wipe some of the baby’s saliva on the back of her trousers.

“Yes, really,” Anna said, biting her lip nervously. “During lunch today, I was thinking about your dad and how much I love going there for Christmas. Just that warmth of being in a family. And I really want to have that as well, to make that my own.”

I pulled her close to me and kissed the top of her head. Loving Anna was like a secret that no one else knew. A secret you kept close to you, that you would never reveal. Because I was the only one, the only who that she let in. We stood like that for a while, on the side of the road, gently swaying in the moonlight.

I think we conceived that night, or perhaps the morning after when Anna’s parents were at church. A couple of weeks later, Anna called me into the bathroom. She was sitting on the side of the bath, examining, up close, in various angles of light, the clear blue line on the pregnancy test. I read the in­structions, to check that we were reading it right. Yes, it was really there, irrefutable, a thick blue stripe.

“I can’t believe it,” I said.

“I know,” Anna said. “Let’s not celebrate yet though. We still don’t know for certain.”

She saw my face drop and put her hand on my arm. “This brand, by the way,” she said, “has the lowest rate of false posi­tives on the market. I chose it precisely because of that.”

I didn’t say anything, and she put her arms around me and buried her face into my neck. “I just don’t want to get too ex­cited, okay?”

“Okay,” I said, and we stood and looked at the strip, the blue line now brighter and clearer than ever before.

Durdle Door

it wasn’t the water, you said, that made the big hole in the rock. it was batman with his batarangs and his blaster. we looked down at the cliff jutting into the sea, a rubber boat full of kids going under the arch, and then you started running and jump­ing through the grass, dodging the rabbit holes, shouting at the top of your voice, so I started chasing you, trying to catch you, and we were laughing so hard as we ran and ran, kicking up rainbow showers in the leaves.

Excerpt tour for WE OWN THE SKY:
Monday, March 12th: The Book Diva’s Reads
Tuesday, March 13th: What is That Book About
Wednesday, March 14th: The Romance Dish
Tuesday, March 20th: Books & Spoons
Wednesday, March 21st: Cheryl’s Book Nook
Thursday, March 22nd: From the TBR Pile
Friday, March 23rd: Just One More Chapter
Monday, March 26th: Books a la Mode
Tuesday, March 27th: Novel Mom
Wednesday, March 28th: The Sketchy Reader
Thursday, March 29th: A Holland Reads
Friday, March 30th: Book Reviews and More by Kathy


March 28, 2018

Cinco De Murder by Rebecca Adler - Excerpt and Giveaway

Book details
Cozy Mystery 3rd in Series 
Setting - Texas 
Berkley (April 3, 2018) 
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages 
ISBN-13: 978-0425275955 
Digital ASIN: B073TJH4FF 

Book description
Tex-Mex waitress and part-time reporter Josie Callahan serves up more Lone Star justice in this spicy mystery from the author of The Good, the Bad, and the Guacamole.

It's fiesta time in Broken Boot, Texas, and tourists are pouring into town faster than free beer at a bull roping for the mouthwatering Cinco de Mayo festivities. Tex-Mex waitress Josie Callahan, her feisty abuela, and even her spunky Chihuahua Lenny are polishing their folklórico dances for Saturday's big parade, while Uncle Eddie is adding his own spicy event to the fiesta menu: Broken Boot's First Annual Charity Chili Cook-off.

But Uncle Eddie's hopes of impressing the town council go up in smoke when cantankerous chili cook Lucky Straw is found dead in his tent. And when Josie's beloved uncle is accused of fatal negligence, she, Lenny, and the steadfast Detective Lightfoot must uncover who ended the ambitious chilihead's life--before another cook kicks the bucket.

Meet the author - Rebecca Adler
Rebecca Adler grew up on the sugar beaches of the Florida Gulf Coast. Drawn to the Big Apple by the sweet smell of wishful thinking, she studied acting on Broadway until a dark-eyed cowboy flung her over his saddle and hightailed it to the Southwest.

Prior to writing women's fiction, Gina always found a way to add a touch of the dramatic to her life: dinner theatre in Mississippi, can-can club in Florida, and playing a giant Furskin in the New York Toy Fair, plus the occasional play and musical. She's currently content to pour her melodramatic tendencies into writing her Taste of Texas culinary mystery series. Set in far West Texas, her humorous stories are filled with delicious suspense and scrumptious Tex-Mex recipes. Her alter ego, Gina Lee Nelson, writes sweet contemporary romances with a sweet, Southern-fried flavor. 

Author Links Webpage: 
Twitter: @CozyTxMysteries 

Purchase Links Amazon B&N Kobo Google Play BAM BookBub 


Chapter 1 
Folklórico Rehearsal 

On such a gorgeous May morning, what could be better than a power walk to Cho’s cleaners with my long-haired Chihuahua, Lenny? The morning sun had tossed a wide blanket of gold over the Davis and Chisos mountains, awakening the piñon pines and the weeping junipers from their slumber, illuminating the bluegrass and scrub so they looked like desert jewels. The plan had been to retrieve my abuela’s folklórico costume and burn some extra calories. And though we made good time—considering the length of my canine sidekick’s pencil-thin appendages—the morning sun galloped down Broken Boot’s cobbled streets while I paid Mr. Cho with a crumpled five-dollar bill and a coupon for a dozen free tamales.

“Yip.” Lenny lapped from the pet fountain in front of Elaine’s Pies, soaking his black-and-white coat.

“¡Vámonos, amigo!” If we were late to the final dance rehearsal before the Cinco de Mayo parade, God only knew when Senora Marisol Martinez, our matriarch, would permit me to call her abuela again.

During my first few months back home, I was elated to find I could accomplish tasks in far less time than in the crowded thoroughfares of Austin. Almost a year later, I was forced to admit the slower pace of our dusty little town didn’t aid me in my quest to check things off my list. It merely encouraged me to meander.

On that happy thought, Lenny and I raced down the sidewalk toward Milagro. Suddenly I tripped over the plastic clothes bag, nearly kissing the pavement with my face. “Whose great idea was it to rehearse this early?”


“That’s what I was afraid of.”

When we barreled through the front door of Milagro, the best, and only, Tex-Mex restaurant on Main Street, I expected the folklórico rehearsal to be in full swing. Instead my best friend, Patti Perez, glared at me, which only made me smile. I was wise to her marshmallow center, in spite of her ghostly Goth appearance.

“Sorry,” I mouthed. After all, it had been my idea for all of us to join the local folklórico troupe—my way of embracing life back in good old Broken Boot, Texas.

“About time,” she chided as I draped Senora Mari’s costume over a stack of hand-painted wooden chairs. In my absence, the other dancers had cleared the dining room to create a dance floor on the beautiful Saltillo tiles.

“I would have called,” I began.

“But I was trapped in a dead zone,” we said in unison. Service was so bad in Broken Boot and its outlying communities that folks were slower here than in the rest of the country in ditching their landlines.

“Where’s Anthony?” When our headwaiter offered his newly formed mariachi band to play for our first performance, I didn’t have the heart to say no. Beggars can’t be choosers, or look a gift band in the mouth.

“Tsk, tsk.” Across the room, Anthony’s new fiancée placed her hand over the bar phone’s mouthpiece. Though christened Lucinda, we’d quickly dubbed her Cindy to avoid calling her Linda, my aunt’s name, and vice versa. “He says his truck has a flat tire.” She scowled at whatever Anthony said next and responded with a flurry of Spanish.

“Who doesn’t keep a spare in the desert?” Patti, whom I referred to as Goth Girl if for no other reason than to hear her snort, delivered this line with a deadpan expression and a flick of her rehearsal skirt.

“Yip,” Lenny said, chasing after her ruffles.

Goth Girl snapped her head in my direction and gave me the stink eye. “Tell me you replaced your spare.”

“Uh, well, not yet, but I will after Cinco de Mayo.” Money was a bit tight, what with the loss of tourists during the winter months.

To my right, Aunt Linda, a stunning middle-aged woman with warm chestnut hair, modeled her bright-colored skirt better than any fashionista in Paris. “That’s what you said about Valentine’s Day.” She was my late mother’s older sister. She might look great in her Wranglers, but she and rhythm had never been introduced.

“And Saint Patrick’s,” chimed in Senora Mari, executing a double spin. This morning she wore a rehearsal skirt of black-tiered lace along with her Milagro uniform of peasant blouse, gray bun at her nape, and large pink flower behind her ear. No matter how much I rehearsed, none of my moves could compare to her sassy head turns and flamboyant poses. Who knew my seventy-something, four-foot-eleven abuela would turn out to be the star of our ragtag troupe?

A sharp clapping interrupted our chatter. “Let’s try it on the counts,” cried Mrs. Felicia Cogburn, mayor’s wife and self-appointed dance captain.

“Yip,” Lenny agreed.

“Why is that dog here?” Mrs. Cogburn demanded, her hands raised in mid-clap.

“He has a key role, remember?” My abuela smiled, an expression so rare on her dear weathered face it made folks uncomfortable.

Mrs. Cogburn blinked several times. “Of course.” Before she could begin, a small truck landed at the curb with a bed full of musicians, trumpets and guitars in full serenade. The band stopped playing long enough to hurry inside.

“¡Ay, Dios! Senora, I had to borrow a spare. Mine was flat.” Anthony waved his friends into a semicircle just inside the door.

Senora Mari thrust a finger into the air. “So you say.” She snapped her head dramatically to the side. “Play.”

With a worried look, Anthony counted off, and the group of dark-haired men and boys began to play the "Jarabe Tapatío", the Mexican hat dance. I spied a familiar face on trumpet. Anthony’s little sister Lily gave me a wink and a nod.

As the trumpets and guitars played, Mrs. Cogburn called out, “And one, two, three, four.”

“Where’s your skirt?” Patti asked as we twirled first right and then left.

“Ah, chicken sticks.” I dodged the dancers, ran up the stairs to my loft apartment, and retrieved my long skirt from a chrome dining chair.

“Yip, yip, yip,” Lenny cried from the bottom of the stairs.

“Sorry.” I found his straw hat on the yellow Formica table and made it downstairs without mishap. “Here you go, handsome.” I perched the hat on his head and tightened the elastic under his chin. As we danced, Lenny would spin in place on his back legs, melting the hearts of the crowd faster than fried ice cream in August.

March 22 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy – GUEST POST 
March 22 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW 
March 23 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 23 – The Self-Rescue Princess – CHARACTER INTERVIEW 
March 24 – Varietats – REVIEW 
March 24 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT 
March 24 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 25 – T's Stuff – AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 25 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 25 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT 
March 26 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 26 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW 
March 27 – Teresa Trent Author Blog – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 27 – Dee-Scoveries – SPOTLIGHT 
March 28 – Texas Book-aholic – REVIEW 
March 28 –Sneaky the Library Cat’s Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW 
March 28 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT 
March 29 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST 
March 29 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 30 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW 
March 30 – Laura's Interests – REVIEW 
March 31 - That's What She's Reading – REVIEW 

A Dangerous Game by Heather Graham - Review

I received this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

Book details

Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: MIRA (March 13, 2018)

Book description

Wrapping up a normal day at the office, criminal psychologist Kieran Finnegan is accosted by a desperate woman who shoves an infant into her arms and then flees, only to be murdered minutes later on a busy Manhattan street.

Who was the woman? Where did the baby come from? Kieran can’t stop thinking about the child and the victim, so her boyfriend, Craig Frasier, does what any good special agent boyfriend would do—he gets the FBI involved. And asks Kieran to keep out of it.

But the Finnegans have a knack for getting into trouble, and Kieran won’t sit idle when a lead surfaces through her family’s pub. Investigating on her own, she uncovers a dangerous group that plays fast and loose with human lives and will stop at nothing to keep their secrets—and they plan to silence Kieran before she can expose their deadly enterprise.

Purchase Links

Meet the author - Heather Graham
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Heather Graham has written more than a hundred novels. She’s a winner of the RWA’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Thriller Writers’ Silver Bullet. She is an active member of International Thriller Writers and Mystery Writers of America. For more information on Heather and her work, check out her websites:,, and You can also find Heather on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

My thoughts
This was a good addition to this series. I like how the author gives you a real sense of adventure when reading this book. She does a good job with her writing and keeps you interested from the first page. She likes to give you some twists and turns to leave you wondering what is going to happen next. I enjoyed hearing what the was happening with the Finnegan this time around. I did like that there was just a hint of romance along with the adventure and mystery. This is the third book in this series but you are able to read it as a stand alone. .Even though the characters are in each book, each story is a new adventure. 

Tour participants
Monday, March 12th: Moonlight Rendezvous
Monday, March 12th: Reading Reality
Tuesday, March 13th: Books & Bindings
Wednesday, March 14th: Romancing the Readers
Monday, March 19th: Patricia’s Wisdom
Tuesday, March 20th: Thoughts of a Blond
Wednesday, March 21st: Books & Spoons
Thursday, March 22nd: Write Read Life
Friday, March 23rd: The Romance Dish
Friday, March 23rd: Jathan & Heather
Monday, March 26th: From the TBR Pile
Tuesday, March 27th: Stranded in Chaos
Wednesday, March 28th: A Holland Reads
Thursday, March 29th: Cheryl’s Book Nook
Friday, March 30th: Bibliotica
Friday, March 30th: Clues & Reviews and @cluesandreviews
Monday, April 2nd: Sultry Sirens Book Blog
Tuesday, April 3rd: Book Nerd
Wednesday, April 4th: OMG Reads – Spotlight
Thursday, April 5th: Mystery Suspense Reviews

March 27, 2018

The Uninvited Corpse by Debra Sennefelder - Review and Giveaway

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

Book details
Cozy Mystery 1st in Series 
Kensington (March 27, 2018) 
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages 
ISBN-13: 978-1496715920 
Digital ASIN: B073NNPM7G

Book description
Leaving behind a failed career as a magazine editor and an embarrassing stint on a reality baking show, newly divorced lifestyle entrepreneur Hope Early thought things were finally on the upswing—until she comes face-to-face with a murderer . . .

Hope’s schedule is already jam packed with recipe testing and shameless plugs for her food blog as she rushes off to attend a spring garden tour in the charming town of Jefferson, Connecticut. Unfortunately, it isn’t the perfectly arranged potted plants that grab her attention—it’s the bloody body of reviled real estate agent Peaches McCoy . . .

One of the tour guests committed murder, and all eyes are on Hope’s older sister, Claire Dixon—who, at best, saw Peaches as a professional rival. And suspicions really heat up when another murder occurs the following night. Now, with two messy murders shaking Jefferson and all evidence pointing to Claire, Hope must set aside her burgeoning brand to prove her sister’s innocence. But the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she gets to a killer intent on making sure her life goes permanently out of style . . .

Includes Recipes from Hope’s Kitchen!

Meet the author - Debra Sennefelder
Debra Sennefelder, the author of the Food Blogger Mystery series and the Resale Boutique Mystery series, is an avid reader who reads across a range of genres, but mystery fiction is her obsession. Her interest in people and relationships is channeled into her novels against a backdrop of crime and mystery. When she’s not reading, she enjoys cooking and baking and as a former food blogger, she is constantly taking photographs of her food. Yeah, she’s that person. Born and raised in New York City, she now lives and writes in Connecticut with her family. She’s worked in pre-hospital care, retail and publishing. Her writing companions are her adorable and slightly spoiled Shih-Tzus, Susie and Billy. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, Women's Fiction Writers Association and Romance Writers of America. 

Author Links: Website – Facebook – Goodreads 
Purchase Links Amazon - Barnes & Noble 

My thoughts
I really enjoyed this first book in this new series. It was fun to get to know the new characters especially Hope. The garden party at author Audrey Bloom's home sounds like a nice time if you forget about the dead person. I also liked learning about all the things Hope is doing for her blog. The author did a good job of making me think I had everything figured out with the killer then up comes a twist. She did a good of keeping me guessing. This makes for a good mystery for me. I am looking forward to the next book in this series and hope I don't have to wait long. 


March 19 – Bibliophile Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 19 – Readsalot – SPOTLIGHT 
March 19 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews - SPOTLIGHT 
March 20 – Laura's Interests – REVIEW 
March 20 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – GUEST POST 
March 21 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 21 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW 
March 22 – The Power of Words - REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 22 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 22 – Ruff Drafts - SPOTLIGHT 
March 23 – Texas Book-aholic – REVIEW 
March 23 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW 
March 23 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 24 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 24 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – SPOTLIGHT 
March 25 – La libreria di Beppe - SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 25 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
March 26 – MJB Reviewers - REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 26 – Mysteries with Character – SPOTLIGHT 
March 27 – Cozy Up With Kathy - REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
March 27 – A Holland Reads - REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 28 – Community Bookstop - AUTHOR INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 28 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too! - SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY March 29 – A Cozy Experience - REVIEW, GUEST POST, GIVEAWAY 
March 29 – Socrates' Book Reviews - REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
March 30 – Melina's Book Blog - REVIEW 
March 30 – Varietats - REVIEW, GUEST POST 
March 31 - Moonlight Rendezvous - REVIEW, GUEST POST 
March 31 - StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW 
April 1 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW 
April 1 – Bookworm Cafe – REVIEW

Clod Makes a Friend by David J. Pedersen - Review and Giveaway

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own

Book Details:

Book Title: Clod Makes a Friend by David J. Pedersen
Category: Middle-Grade Fiction, 174 pages
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Odysia Press
Release date: March 2018
Tour dates: March 26 to April 13, 2018
Content Rating: PG (There is no bad language, but there is one "boss fight" scene.)

Book Description:
Best Friend Ever?

Bullies love to hate Clod. Not just because he’s bigger, clumsier, and uglier than his classmates - he’s also the only student in his school without magic. In a world where all magic is possible and everyone else is born with great gifts to do amazing things, Clod is alone.

Living with his mum in a broken-down cottage on barely enough, the only thing Clod has to play with is the clay she occasionally brings him. Bleak is an understatement. More than anything, Clod wants a friend. The only way that’s going to happen, is to make one himself.

After an angry visit from the worst of the bullies, his teacher Learned Yugen, Clod’s clay sculpture of a little girl comes to life and introduces herself as Ada. For a clay girl barely the size of his hand, she has more confidence and courage than he knows what to do with. Every adventure she leads him on gets Clod into trouble. She may be the friend he wants, but is she the friend he needs?

After many years, and too many pranks, Yugen becomes convinced that Clod is tainted by the evil slowly infiltrating the Kingdom of Pag. Especially when Ada isn’t the only one Clod can bring to life.

Clod Makes A Friend is a bittersweet fairy tale for all ages from David J. Pedersen, author of the Angst series of fantasy novels.

To read reviews, please visit David J. Pedersen's page on iRead Book Tours.

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
Google Play ~ iTunes ~ Kobo
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Meet the Author: David J. Pedersen
David J. Pedersen is a native of Racine, WI who resides in his hometown Kansas City, MO. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. He has worked in sales, management, retail, video and film production, and IT. David has run 2 marathons, climbed several 14,000-foot mountains and marched in The University of Wisconsin Marching Band and written 4 fantasy novels. He is a geek and a fanboy that enjoys carousing, picking on his wife and kids, playing video games, and slowly muddling through his next novel.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook 

My thoughts
This was a nice book with a good meaning behind it. It is a good way for kids to learn about bullying, self-esteem and being nice to others. Being the parent of a child that was bullied when she was young this story hits the spot with teaching kids how to deal with this issues. I liked how the book chapters were done by different stages of Clod's life. I also liked the magic parts of this book since it is a fantasy.

Ends April 21, 2018

March 23, 2018

A Column of Fire by Ken Follett - Review

Book details
Series: Kingsbridge #3
Hardcover: 928 pages
Publisher: Viking; 1st Edition edition (September 12, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 052595497X
ISBN-13: 978-0525954972

Book description
As Europe erupts, can one young spy protect his queen? International bestselling author Ken Follett takes us deep into the treacherous world of powerful monarchs, intrigue, murder, and treason with his magnificent new epic, A Column of Fire.

In 1558, the ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn apart by religious conflict. As power in England shifts precariously between Catholics and Protestants, royalty and commoners clash, testing friendship, loyalty, and love.

Ned Willard wants nothing more than to marry Margery Fitzgerald. But when the lovers find themselves on opposing sides of the religious conflict dividing the country, Ned goes to work for Princess Elizabeth. When she becomes queen, all Europe turns against England. The shrewd, determined young monarch sets up the country’s first secret service to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions, and invasion plans. Over a turbulent half century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. Elizabeth clings to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents.

The real enemies, then as now, are not the rival religions. The true battle pitches those who believe in tolerance and compromise against the tyrants who would impose their ideas on everyone else—no matter what the cost.

Set during one of the most turbulent and revolutionary times in history, A Column of Fire is one of Follett’s most exciting and ambitious works yet. It will delight longtime fans of the Kingsbridge series and is the perfect introduction for readers new to Ken Follett.

Meet the author - Ken Follett
Ken Follett was only twenty-seven when he wrote the award-winning EYE OF THE NEEDLE, which became an international bestseller. His celebrated PILLARS OF THE EARTH was voted into the top 100 of Britain's best-loved books in the BBC's the Big Read and the sequel, WORLD WITHOUT END, will be published in Autumn 2007. He has since written several equally successful novels including, most recently, WHITEOUT. He is also the author of non-fiction bestseller ON WINGS OF EAGLES. He lives with his family in London and Hertfordshire.

My thoughts
I thought this was a good book even though it was quite large. The author did a good job of holding my interest throughout the whole story which was nice. I know this book was the third book in a series but you can read this book as a stand alone. In fact I was having a hard time remembering names from the last book. I liked that this told the story of Queen Elizabeth and Mary Queen of Scots but from a different point of view. My favorite character of the book was Ned Willard. I felt bad for him at times and just wanted him to have a happy comfortable life. I also liked Margery and understood why she did some of the things she did as an adult. It was not nice of her family to not let her be with the man she wanted to be with but the horrible person they thought she should be with. I thought the two strongest people of the book were Margery and Silvia and how they held strong to their beliefs. All in all a very good book. 

Clues in the Sand by Terry Ambrose - Character Guest Post and Giveaway

Book details
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Self Published
Release Date – March 15, 2018
Print Length: 191 pages

Book description
To Rick Atwood’s dismay, the police find a body on the beach near his Seaside Cove B&B. The dead woman held a pottery shard from an ancient rice bowl, which the cops believe is a clue to her murder.

The chief suspect is Flynn O’Connor, a female archaeologist known for her hatred of treasure thieves. Trouble is, Rick’s daughter Alex sees Flynn as a role model and will not believe her friend is a killer.

Alex pressures her dad as only a ten-year-old can to prove Flynn is innocent. The mayor is also making demands—for Rick to stay out of the investigation. With his daughter and the mayor at odds, Rick sees trouble brewing. He knows too well how much Alex loves sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong. Especially when there’s murder involved.

Meet the author - Terry Ambrose
Terry Ambrose is a former skip tracer who only stole cars when it was legal. He’s long since turned his talents to writing mysteries and thrillers. Several of his books have been award finalists and in 2014 his thriller, “Con Game,” won the San Diego Book Awards for Best Action-Thriller. He’s currently working on the Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery series.

Author Links:

Purchase Link

Character Guest Post
Hey Journal,

That author person has gone too far! Do you know what he did to me? He stuck me in the attic in the dark. I’m ten! Everybody totally knows attics can be super spooky places at night! And he was, like, too cheap to have more than one lightbulb up there!

My dad told me the attic was off limits. He used his deep, dad voice for that one. It’s so lame, but I was going along with it because I didn’t want to get grounded again. So what did that author person do? He put some stuff up there I couldn’t stay away from. That’s, like, totally unfair.

I got a way to get my author person back. Me and my fellow characters are going to sign a Characters Declaration of Independence. It’s gonna be just like the real one we studied in school.“We the characters, in order to form a more perfect story…” It’s totally gonna work.

My dad doesn’t like me to say mean things about other people, but my author person isn’t just anybody. He’s the one who’s supposed to be writing down what we tell him. But he, like, doesn’t listen. When I told him I wanted to have a real mom and Marquetta, our cook, was perfect, he was like, “You’ll have to work for it.”

What’s with that? I’m ten years old. I should have a mom who loves me, right? And he was like, “It can’t happen that fast, Alex.”

And I was like, “Are you kidding me? You can’t do this!”

And he was like, “You’ll be okay. You’re resilient.”

I had to go ask my dad what resilient meant. That’s so bogus. And then my author person told me a bunch of his writer friends ganged up on him because a kid wouldn’t know the word bogus. For real? Hello! They’re not ten. How would they know? I gotta give him credit for standing up to them and saying I could keep the word.

But, he was clueless about Daddy and Marquetta. He didn’t know they liked each other so much when he started writing the first book. Talk about a doh moment. I’m a kid and I already know who I’m gonna marry when I grow up. This whole romance thing is super simple.

And when I asked him about it again, he was all, “It’s complicated.”

Get a clue, author person! Being a kid is hard. We have to learn all this new stuff in school. We have to do fifth-grade math! That’s complicated! I tried to tell him he could let Daddy and Marquetta get together right away and everybody would be totally cool with that.

I told him I should have a say in when Daddy and Marquetta get together. And he was like, I’ve got the computer and I do the typing. You know what I did, Journal?

I stuck my tongue out at him and told him I was holding the story hostage until he let them kiss. He was, like, super unhappy about that because he thought he was in control. We the characters, Journal. We’ve totally got this.




March 22 – Socrates’ Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 22 – The Editing Pen – GUEST POST
March 23 – Teresa Trent Author Blog – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 23 – A Holland Reads – CHARACTER GUEST POST 
March 24 – Readeropolis – GUEST POST
March 24 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW
March 25 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 25 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
March 26 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
March 27 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
March 27 – Island Confidential – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 28 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 28 – StoreyBook Reviews – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 29 – Maureen’s Musings – REVIEW
March 29 – La libreria di Beppe – SPOTLIGHT
March 30 – Cassidy’s Bookshelves – REVIEW
March 30 – A Blue Million Books – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 31 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW
March 31 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

March 18, 2018

Playing with Bonbon Fire by Dorothy St. James - Guest Post and Giveaway

Book details
Cozy Mystery 2nd in Series
Crooked Lane Books (March 13, 2018)
Hardcover: 352 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1683314684
Digital ASIN: B074MBXLWX

Book description
Chocoholic Charity Penn must smoke out the killer to stop her newly inherited beachside chocolate shop from going up in flames in Dorothy St. James’ decadent follow-up to Asking for Truffle.

Chocolate shop owner Charity Penn is finally settling into life in the quirky South Carolina seaside town of Camellia Beach cooking up chocolate treats. She’s even helped organize the town’s lively beach music festival which has brought rollicking crowds eager to dance the Carolina shag. That is, until one of the band’s lead singers is found dead beside a beach bonfire.

While also trying to balance the amorous attention of music star Bixby Lewis, in town for the festival, and her quest to perfect a new hot flavored bonbon, Charity dives into the investigation. Though it’s more spice than sugar when she discovers a threatening note, comes across decades of age-old secrets, and Bixby comes into the line of fire when a gas grill explodes on the deck of a beachfront house.

Now Charity must turn up the heat and catch the killer before her chance melts away in Playing With Bonbon Fire, the delightful second Southern Chocolate Shop mystery served up just right for fans of JoAnna Carl and Joanne Fluke.

Meet the author - Dorothy St. James
Mystery author Dorothy St. James was born in New York but raised in South Carolina. She makes her home on an artsy island community in South Carolina with her husband, a neurotic dog, and fluffy cat. Though writing has always been a passion for her, she pursued an undergraduate degree in Wildlife Biology and a graduate degree in Public Administration and Urban Planning. She put her educational experience to use, having worked in all branches and all levels of government including local, regional, state, and federal. She even spent time during college working for a non-profit environmental watchdog organization.

Switching from government service and community planning to fiction writing wasn’t as big of a change as some might think. Her government work was all about the stories of the people and the places where they live. As an urban planner, Dorothy loved telling the stories of the people she met. And from that, her desire to tell the tales that were so alive in her heart grew until she could not ignore it any longer. In 2001, she took a leap of faith and pursued her dream of writing fiction full-time.

Known for the White House Gardener Mystery series, Dorothy is going back to her roots and setting a mystery series in a Southern beach town much like the one she’s called home for the past 20 years. The Southern Chocolate Shop Mysteries combine her love of fine chocolates, quirky Southern charm, with a dash of danger.

* Dorothy St. James is the alter-ego of the award-winning multi-published author, Dorothy McFalls. She enjoys writing in several different genres. Her works have been nominated for many awards including Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, Reviewers International Organization Award, National Reader’s Choice Award, CataRomance Reviewers’ Choice Award, and The Romance Reviews Today Perfect 10! Award. Reviewers have called her work: “amazing”, “perfect”, “filled with emotion”, and “lined with danger.”

Author Links

Purchase Links
Indie Bound
Google Play
Barnes & Noble

Guest post
It’s Okay to Bite the Hand that Feeds You 
By Stella, Penn’s rescue papillon 
I might only be five pounds, but I’m a fearsome little thing. People back up when they see me coming. I like that. It sure beats being accidentally stepped on. So perhaps I bite first and make friends later. And of course I bark to warn everyone around me that something is bothering me. My ears are as big as radar dishes, which means I have super good hearing. And although I’m small, my canine nose is as sensitive as a bloodhound’s. I can smell trouble a mile away.

My owner, Penn, is nice. But she doesn’t listen to me like she should, so I bark and nip her fingers to get her attention or to stop her from doing something I don’t like. Don’t get me wrong. I love her. She gives me bacon. Lots of bacon.

Penn lives with a kindly older lady, Bertie Bays. Bertie is an expert in the kitchen and the one who cooks up all that yummy bacon. <<Bacon? Bacon? Where’s the bacon? What? There’s no bacon. Let me bark for a little while. Yum. Yum. Yum. Ah, Penn just gave me TWO pieces of bacon.>> Where was I? Oh, right. Bertie. I never nip at her even though she’s owned by a cheeky cat who thinks he owns the place. Bertie listens. Like me, she hears things that no one realizes she hears.

There are two men in Penn’s life right now. Harley Dalton. He’s a big guy. Thanks to my bold personality, he has a healthy fear of me. I like that about him. Even so, I try to give him a little nip or two every time he comes around as a reminder that he needs to take care around me. Besides, I don’t like how he smells. His scent isn’t all soft and flowery like Penn’s or Bertie’s. It’s hard. Earthy. Yeah, I’m definitely biting him the next time I see him.

Penn has also been hanging around with this new guy, Bixby Lewis. That one makes her act goofy. I don’t like it when she acts goofy. Makes me feel all insecure and bitey. Although…the sight of Bixby’s expressive brown eyes and handsome face makes me want to act goofy too.

Penn doesn’t realize it, but I’m the best thing that has ever happened to her. I remind her to take care. Without me, she might not realize what a dangerous world it is out there. My little nips and growls and barks keep her safe. She should give me more bacon.

Do you have a special dog in your life that does everything in her power to keep you safe? Stop by and tell us about her (or him.)


March 11 – Babs Book Bistro – GUEST POST
March 11 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW
March 11 – La libreria di Beppe – SPOTLIGHT
March 12 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
March 12 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, INTERVIEW
March 13 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW
March 13 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW
March 13 – Teresa Trent Author Blog – SPOTLIGHT
March 14 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
March 14 – Writing Pearls – REVIEW
March 14 – Sapphyria’s Books – SPOTLIGHT
March 15 – Queen of All She Reads – REVIEW
March 15 – A Cozy Experience – REVIEW
March 16 – StoreyBook Reviews – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 16 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW
March 17 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW
March 17 – The Self-Rescue Princess – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 18 – A Holland Reads – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 18 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
March 18 – T’s Stuff – SPOTLIGHT
March 19 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT
March 19 – Jane Reads – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 20 – Mysteries with Character – GUEST POST
March 20 – Texas Book-aholic – REVIEW
March 20 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
March 21 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW
March 22 – Valerie’s Musings – REVIEW, INTERVIEW
March 22 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
March 23 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW
March 23 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
March 24 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW
March 24 – A Blue Million Books – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 24 – Ms. Cat’s Honest World – SPOTLIGHT

March 17, 2018

His Risk by Shelley Shepard Gray - Review

I received this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Book details
Series: Amish of Hart County (Book 4)
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Avon Inspire (March 6, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062469150
ISBN-13: 978-0062469151

Book description
An undercover English DEA agent will do anything to protect the Amish girl he loves.

Calvin Fisher left the Amish community at fourteen and never looked back. Only his brother's illness can bring him back to Hart County. Now, as Calvin works to make amends, he meets Alice, a local nursery school teacher, and falls hard for her. But he has a secret that could threaten the happiness he's finally found.

Alice shouldn't like-or want-Calvin. He's English, has a questionable past, and an even more questionable job. Still, she can't help being intrigued. Though Calvin assures Alice that he's worthy of her, she's torn between surrendering to her growing feelings and steering clear of him.

When a sudden surge of criminal activity alarms the community and even targets Alice, Calvin fears that his double life has put everyone he loves at risk. As for Alice, she can't help but wonder if the brave and honorable man she's lost her heart to is far more dangerous than she could ever imagine.

Meet the author - Shelley Shepard Gray
Shelley Shepard Gray is a "New York Times" and "USA Today" bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. She lives in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail.

Find out more about Shelley at

My thoughts
This was a good addition to this series. It is not necessarily your typical Amish as it talks about a gentleman leaving his Amish family to do a job you would not expect of an Amish person - a DEA agent. In this book there is a little bit of suspense, mystery and adventure as the town gets targeted for crimes, then you through in a bit of romance and devotion to balance it all out. I did not want to put this book down as I wanted to know what was going to happen next and how Calvin was going to deal with it. Of course I liked Alice as well as who could not she was a nice girl who was trying not to fall for the "bad" guy, but could she help herself - you must read the book to find out. I will be looking forward to the next book in this series to see what the author has in store for us.