Thursday, May 5, 2016

Four Weddings and a Fiasco: The Wedding Secret by Jennifer Shirk {Review}

The Wedding Secret by Jennifer Shrik
Kindle Edition
Published May 2nd 2016 by Kindle Worlds 
 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30103650-four-weddings-and-a-fiasco?from_search=true&search_version=service
 
Ten years after a high school pregnancy left her abandoned by her family, single mother Brenna March is finally getting her life under control. In possession of her dream job as a florist at the Rose Chalet, one of the premier wedding spots in San Francisco, she’s about to prove her worth and take on her first wedding as head florist. Unfortunately, the best man is none other than Senator Ashton Mirenda—her old high school sweetheart and the father of the daughter he knows nothing about.

Ashton doesn't have time for marriage or a family. He has other aspirations and the first is winning the next senate seat election. Or so he believes until he meets a woman from his past. Seeing Brenna again stirs something inside him he'd thought long dead, and he knows that he wants her beside him all the way to the White House.

But Brenna is holding a ten year old secret, one which could not only hurt his chance for re-election but also their chance to rekindle the love they once shared. 
 
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My Review: 5 Stars

I love a good, clean romance and this one fit my mood to a T. Brenna is a florist for a big wedding and runs into her former high school sweetheart...who also happens to be the father of her child, unbeknownst to him. Ashton is now a Senator and it's re-election year. The truth could ruin him, but with the amount of sparks flying, how can she keep things a secret from him any longer?

This is such a swoony and sweet story. The stolen kisses and chemistry almost sizzle off of the pages, but in a clean way. Of course, there is an implied incident from the past that leaves Brenna with a child, but it's tasteful done and in a believable way. Personally, I can't imagine keeping a secret that big, but she has legitimate reasons for doing so.

Brenna is very independent and determined to keep Ashton at arm's length. She's feisty and sweet, a great mom, and a hard worker. I could relate to her and admire her resolve to make her life worth something, even if it leaves her alone. Her aunt is a great asset to the story, as is her daughter. Ashton though. Who could resist him? He's a pleaser, always thinking about others and his career, but he really does have some tenderness in him. Gorgeous, driven, and kind--a winning combination.

I love the way this novella plays out and it's the perfect read for any romantic. As always, I'm looking forward to what Ms. Shirk writes next!

Content: mild language; mild romance (implied intimate relationship, kissing). Clean!

*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*

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Buy Link:

http://amzn.to/1roiiNg
   

About the Author:

Jennifer ShirkJennifer Shirk has a bachelor degree in pharmacy-which has in NO WAY at all helped her with her writing career. But she likes to point it out, since it shows romantic-at-hearts come in all shapes, sizes, and mind-numbing educations.

She writes sweet (and sometimes even funny) romances for Avalon Books/Montlake Romance and now Entangled Publishing. She won third place in the RWA 2006 NYC's Kathryn Hayes Love and Laughter Contest with her first book, THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME. Recently, her novel SUNNY DAYS FOR SAM won the 2013 Golden Quill Published Authors Contest for Best Traditional Romance.

Lately she's been on a serious exercise kick. But don't hold that against her.

Feel free to join her newsletter! eepurl.com/Q6TH1 Monthly giveaways!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Independent One (A Billionaire Bride Pact Romance) by Cami Checketts {Review}

The Independent One (A Billionaire Bride Pact Romance) by Cami Checketts
Kindle Edition
Published April 26th 2016 by Birch River Publishing 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30047151-the-independent-one
Haley Turnbow escapes to the tropical Isla del Sol for an ideal vacation with her five-year old. She doesn’t plan on the resident ghost stalking her and the island’s fine-looking owner drawing her in with his confident, fun personality.
Cal Johnson is king of his own island, happy and busy. A beautiful mom and her wild little boy flip his world upside down. He falls in love with both of them knowing they’re going to leave at the end of their vacation and he might not recover from the loss.
Can these two independent adults trust their hearts or is it not worth the risk?
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My Review: 5 Stars
This Billionaire Bride Pact series has me feeling like I'm sitting in front of a big bowl of deliciousness. As hard as I try, I just can't stop myself from gorging on it. I devour these books and honestly love each and every one of them!
Haley, a strong and capable woman, wins a vacation to the lush and tropical privately owned island of Isla del Sol and takes a much needed break with her adorable and precocious son, Taz. A great first-meet brings Cal, a kind and persistent man, into her life and as much as she wants to let him in, she has baggage and just can't. The personality of Taz, added with the way he's treated by both Cal and his mother, is a complete joy.
  
As soon as I read the first page, I told my husband I wasn't going to be able to read this one because of the setting. Okay, so I'm kidding, but I love the beach and this setting is ideal and perfect! I'm craving beach time now. I loved the descriptions almost as much as I loved the characters. I was so happy to see some of the previous books characters make a brief appearance.
Cami Checketts always does a fantastic job of weaving a suspenseful angle into her books and I loved the way this one played out. Combine that with a swoony, toe-tingling romance, and I found myself in love--with the book, the writing, the characters, the romance, Cal, and really, the whole package. I'm eagerly awaiting my next binge on this series, so bring it on!
Content: mild romance (kissing); mild violence (talk of rape/assaults, an attack). Clean!
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*
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Buy Link:
http://amzn.to/1Y4hzeQ

Excerpt:
A tall, well-built man swept in before Haley could reach Taz and easily lifted her boy into his arms. “Hey, bud, you’re not supposed to do flips on this staircase, that’s for the diving board.”
Taz laughed and Haley’s heart slowed a few beats. “Taz,” she cried out.
The man turned with her son and she noticed dimples and blue eyes, but she could only focus on her boy. Taz launched himself into her arms. Haley held him close, inhaling the baby lotion he kept claiming he was too old for. She took several long breaths as she tried to reassure herself he was okay. 
Their rescuer turned to the older couple. “Are you both all right?” he asked.
“Oh, sure,” the man said, his arm around his wife’s waist. They were a darling couple, dressed to the nines with her hair perfectly coiffed and his hair missing.
“Is the little boy okay?” the woman asked, patting her hair.
“I think so,” Haley said. “I’m so sorry he hit you.”
“No, dear, I’m just fine.”
Haley nodded, grateful for their graciousness. She checked Taz for injuries. He had some rug burns on his face and elbow, but thankfully only the one on his elbow was bleeding. “Oh, bud, you scared me! Do you hurt anywhere?”
“Nothing ‘cept my endbow.” Taz held up his arm for her to see. “Kiss it?”
Haley laughed shakily and kissed near the ouchy spot. “We’ll find you a Band-aid.”
“A Ninja Turtle one?” Taz’s dark eyes lit up. He covered himself in Ninja Turtle Band-aids quite regularly. 
The man with the dimples turned back to her as the older couple wished them well and headed down the hallway to the shops. He placed a warm hand on her back. “Ma’am, can I take him from you? You’re shaking like a belly dancer.”
Haley laughed, but clung tighter to Taz. This was her little man and she wasn’t about to hand him over to some stranger—she couldn’t resist looking the man over—no matter how intriguing the contrast between his dark hair and skin and his deep blue eyes. “I have specialized belly dancer training so it’s okay.”
His dimples deepened. “Nice.”
“Thank you for your help Mr…”
“Johnson.” He kept his arm on her back and wrapped his other hand around her elbow. His hands were strong and warm and she couldn’t help but notice how nicely he smelled, a great combination of musk and man. “Come up to my office so I can check both of you out.”
Haley bristled. The only men she let tell her what to do were her dad and her brother. Scratch that, the only men who ever tried to tell her what to do, but failed, were her dad and her brother. She shook him off. “Sorry, not going to some strange dude’s office and nobody needs to check me out.”
He laughed. “My apologies, ma’am, but I’ve already checked you out.” He pumped his eyebrows and she was struck by the fact that he was much too attractive and much too friendly.


About the Author:

Cami CheckettsCami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Bernstein Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.

Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. She and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn't snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.

www.camichecketts.com

I'MPossible: Desire, Dream, Do by Jeff Griffin {Review}


I'MPossible: Desire, Dream, Do by Jeff Griffin
Kindle Edition, 100 pages
Published June 21st 2015 by BalboaPress 
 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26030935-i-mpossible
 
The sun's rays filtered in from the partially opened shades of the plane. They lit up the world in front of me and warmed my soul, knowing I was almost to my destination. The beautiful golden light replaced the grey and hazy cobwebs from my eyes, revealing the most spectacular scene I had ever seen in my entire life. I looked out the small seven-inch window and witnessed something that I'll never forget! I beheld something in this magnificent world that the majority of people never get to see. I was looking out at Mount Everest, the world's highest peak!

I was at the tail end of a three-flight journey with two layovers in between, nearly logging twenty-four hours of flight time. I hadn't gotten any real sleep in the last thirty-six hours. My bloodshot eyes were heavy, my mind was slow and sluggish, and my body was even slower in response. How did I get here? I thought to myself. Am I d-r-e-a-m-i-n-g?

As Lao and Confucius once said, “A journey of one-thousand miles begins with one step.” My story is about inspiring you to take your own journey one step at a time. It's about dreaming and accomplishing the impossible. It's not only about aiming for the sky and reaching for the stars but enjoying the journey along the way.

Begin your personal journey today, press forward to the top, and don't you ever stop. As you move toward your dreams, there will be obstacles and setbacks along the way; don't be afraid. You can get to the top of your world by following the signs and guide posts within these pages. You can do it with others! You can do it with me! We can do it together, one step at a time!


I'mpossible! - Jeff Griffin
 
 
 
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My Review: 5 Stars
 
I wasn't expecting the story that I got, based on this book description. A true story, Jeff Griffin had a horrific accident that changed his life forever. The first miracle is surviving the accident. I can't even begin to imagine the pain, the horror, the devastation, and the fear that followed, yet instead of wallowing in self pity, Jeff picked himself up and found new dreams to dream. I was completely amazed at how positive and hopeful he was and still is. 
 
Each chapter is set up in a way to cause the reader to make goals, as each of us has our own mountains to climb and challenges to endure. Full of hope, words of wisdom, and personal stories, these chapters are broken down in ways that make it seem attainable to reach the goals, instead of overwhelming. 
 
I can't believe the positive vibes that flow off the pages. I'm so much more grateful for what I do have and not wishing for what I don't. This is a great motivational book for anyone looking for inspiration.
 
Content: some difficult situations and scenes, but nothing too graphic. The author is LDS, so there are religious references.
 
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*
 
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  Buy Links:
 
http://amzn.to/1SVCzTI
 http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/impossible-jeff-griffin/1122312374?ean=9781504335386
 
Jeff is offering the first chapter of his book free on his website. (Visit http://griffinmotivation.com/


Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Solus Series by Devri Walls {Guest Post and Giveaway}

Book 1: Wings of Arian

Series: Solus
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: StoneHouse Ink
Publication Date: April 24, 2012
Number of pages: 484

Kiora thought she had never heard a lie until she was sixteen. But she was wrong. Her entire existence was based on nothing but. She thought that evil did not exist. Lie. That magic was not real. Lie. And that the land of Meros was all there was. One more lie.

With Aleric telling her that evil is knocking on the door and that she is the only one who can stop them she has a choice to make. Refuse, or start the wildest most painful ride of her life.
She reluctantly dips her toe into her new existence of magic and threads, dragons and shapeshifters, and the person who wants to take control of it all: the evil Dralazar.

However, this journey was never meant to be hers alone. She will be accompanied by a Protector. To her disbelief, and utter irritation they name the hotheaded, stubborn, non -magical, (albeit gorgeous) Prince Emane. They will have to trust each other with their lives, but right now Kiora would settle for a non hostile conversation.

And now it comes down to this, If you had never heard a lie, would you know when you heard one? Is knowing good from evil innate? Kiora finds herself having to decide who lives and who dies on those very questions.

Book 2: Wings of Tavea

Series: Solus
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: StoneHouse Ink
Publication Date: February 20, 2013
Number of pages: 364

Kiora is rapidly learning that evil and lies come in shades of black and white and swirling greys, but nothing could have prepared her for the shock of leaving Meros.
Kiora and her protector Emane step through the pass into a world they never knew existed but were always meant to save, only to find it far worse than they could have ever imagined. Good has been forced into hiding for its own survival, while the rest of the land bows to the Shadow, a force that pushes any remaining thoughts of Dralazar from Kiora’s mind. This land is full of new creatures, each more dangerous than the last. Her visions have taken on a deadly twist, and magic, or what comes of it, was never so real. And then there is Alcander: a Tavean, their guide, and an entirely different kind of trouble.

Book 3: Wings of Nestor

Series: Solus
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: StoneHouse Ink
Publication Date: September 20, 2013
Number of pages: 332

​ Kiora needs answers. Who is the Shadow? Who is Jasmine? Are they connected? And even more pressing—how can she stop the Shadow from using her dreams as a map to find them? They have escaped three times, but are living on borrowed time—and everybody knows it.

Kiora’s search will push her closer to Alcander, send her to the dragon mountain of Toopai, and lead straight back to Meros—where magic will finally return to the land of no magic. Answers will be uncovered and plans unearthed that have been waiting for thousands of years.

But with the Shadow’s forces gathering, the rebels are hurtling toward one outcome: war. Armed with knowledge and hope, Kiora is determined to change that path, but will fate allow it? Or will it teach her a hard lesson about following her own destiny? 

Book 4: Wings of Lomay

Series: Solus
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: StoneHouse Ink
Publication Date: December 2, 2014
Number of pages: 372

In defense of the small remaining group of rebels, Kiora has to cross lines she never thought she would, making her redefine not only herself, but what’s right and wrong. Outnumbered and out of time, Kiora turns to the only two groups that could help; the Shifters and the Dragons. But will either of them come to their aid?

As they prepare for a war against the evil army, Kiora must lead the rebels and find the strength within herself to defeat Jasmine.

Kiora’s the Solace. She’s their only hope.
Devri Walls lives in Kuna ID with her husband, two kids and one very bouncy lab. After suffering from an abundance of creativity with not enough places to put it, she turned to writing. Which in the end, turned out to be exactly where she should have been putting it all along.

Guest Post 1: Top 10

​1.). Magic and elemental control. Water, Fire, Wind, Earth. Heeelllllooooo insanely cool scenes.

2.) Romance. Sigh.

3.) Who doesn’t like a telepathic Pegasus?

4.) This series is perfect for when you need a total escape from life.

5.) Dragons- did I mention dragons? They talk, are hot tempered and a whole lot of fun.

6.) Stunning imagery.

7.) Life and death around every corner.

8.) Guardians—think fairies.

9.) Shapeshifters. Snarky, snarky shapeshifters

10.) Epic, and I mean EPIC, magical battles.

And just one more reason…Have you seen those covers!? Those boys need to be on your shelf


IndieLove Magazine by Sarah Gai BLAST

blog header Goddess Fish w url copy.jpg

IndieLove Magazine
by Sarah Gai

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GENRE:  Magazine

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BLURB:

IndieLove Magazine is a new publication showcasing Indie Everything!!! From Independent Authors, Musicians, Film makers, Actors, Art, Etsy Crafters. With Bonus features such as content articles, recipes, DIY, not for profit and travel.

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EXCERPTS:

Excerpt Two:

Question 1. Are you a planner or pantster kind of writer?

Oh a panster, no doubt about it. I don’t plan my books as I feel it steals some of the passion out of it. When I sit at my computer, I want to be able to go anywhere with the characters. No rules. But because I write this way, I have a ton of deleted scenes and it takes me longer on the second and third drafts.



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AUTHOR Bio and Links:







ICON LINK:  


IndieLove Magazine


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GIVEAWAY:


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, May 2, 2016

Mrs. Odboddy Hometown Patriot by Elaine Faber {Review}

Mrs. Odboddy Hometown Patriot by Elaine Faber
Kindle Edition, 258 pages
Published January 21st 2016 by Elk Grove Publications 
 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28685129-mrs-odboddy-hometown-patriot
 
Since the onset of WWII, Agnes Agatha Odboddy, hometown patriot and self-appointed scourge of the underworld, suspects conspiracies around every corner…stolen ration books, German spies running amuck, and a possible Japanese invasion off the California coast. This seventy-year-old, model citizen would set the world aright if she could get Chief Waddlemucker to pay attention to the town's nefarious deeds on any given Meatless Monday.

Mrs. Odboddy vows to bring the villians, both foreign and domestic, to justice, all while keeping chickens in her bathroom, working at the Ration Stamp Office, and knitting argyles for the boys on the front lines.

Imagine the chaos when Agnes’s long-lost WWI lover returns, hoping to find a million dollars in missing Hawaiian money and rekindle their ancient romance. In the thrilling conclusion, Agnes’s predictions become all too real when Mrs. Roosevelt unexpectedly comes to town to attend a funeral and Agnes must prove that she is, indeed, a warrior on the home front.
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My Review: 4 Stars

Mrs. Odboddy is a comforting, nostalgic read. Set in Northern California during WWII, this story embraces the feelings and events of that time in small town America. Agnes Odboddy is in her seventies, but that doesn't stop her from bustling her way into the thick of things, including a mystery. She's a bumbling and suspicious, yet likable, character, one who is far from perfect, but who is trying her best to do the right thing. She's a little naive when it comes to crime and sleuthing, but she's also not experienced in that area.

I enjoyed the characters and found them all a bit eccentric. Their names are all quirky, such as Haggenbottom, Odboddy, Waddlemucker, etc. but these outlandishly named characters only added to the story. The pacing is gentle, and the story unfolds in a natural and gradual way, with unique situations cropping up occasionally. I've recently said that I would love to live in the 1940s or 50s, but after reading this and the in-depth way of life during this time, I'm not so sure. Rations for everything and stipulations on purchases wouldn't be a fun way to live. These people are so good-natured and patriotic, handling it all in stride.

I liked seeing the mystery unfold. There are a few intense moments, as well as several hilarious moments, but overall, this is a cozy mystery that leaves a reader with the warm fuzzies.

Content: mild violence; mild religious elements; very mild romance (implied affair). 

*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*

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Buy Links:
 
http://amzn.to/1Y1Rm0t
 http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mrs-odboddy-hometown-patriot-elaine-faber/1123303129?ean=9781940781136

About the Author:

Elaine FaberElaine Faber's short stories are published in magazines and multiple anthologies. She is an active member of Sisters in Crime, Inspire Christian Writers and Cat Writers Association.

Black Cat's Legacy, Elaine's debut fantasy cat-mystery novel., is the first in a series of three Cat Mysteries involving Thumper, who solves mysteries with the aid of his ancestors' memories.

Elaine lives in Elk Grove, CA, with her husband. They share their home with four house cats, and usually more, counting those at the door night and morning looking for a hand-out.

Mrs. Odboddy - Hometown Patriot is the first in Elaine's WWII humorous mystery series. Mrs. Odboddy fights the war from the home front, seeing conspiracies and spies around every corner. When Mrs. Roosevelt comes to town to attend a funeral, Agnes Odboddy's fears become a reality and she must prove she is, indeed a hometown patriot.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Girl Who Heard Demons by Janette Rallison {Review}


The Girl Who Heard Demons by Janette Rallison
Kindle Edition, 248 pages
Published March 29th 2016 by Kindle Press

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29508636-the-girl-who-heard-demons
 
Shy Adelle Hansen hears demons, but she’s determined to make friends at her new high school by keeping her ability secret.

When she overhears supernatural voices celebrating the impending death of the school quarterback, Levi Anderson, she knows she has to do something to prevent it. However, the demons aren’t the ones plotting; they’re just celebrating the chaos, and Adelle must contend with earthly forces as well if she wants to preserve Levi’s life.


Handsome, popular Levi doesn't appreciate Adelle’s self-appointed role of guardian angel. As Adelle battles to keep him safe, she’ll have to protect her heart, too. Can she do both?



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My Review: 5 Stars

I'm not a huge fan of paranormal, but Janette Rallison has a way of writing that makes anything entertaining, interesting, and adorable! As with her usual style, the story line flows well, the characters are well developed, and the dialog is witty and engaging. I honestly look forward to everything she writes.


Adelle had an incident when she was younger that left her with the ability to see and hear demons, which is, in a way, both a blessing and a curse. I feel sorry for Adelle, since she has such a burden, but she is a likable girl, although shy. I liked watching her grow and to see her take the advice from others, learning more about herself and the world around her in the process.


Levi is a self-proclaimed atheist. Adelle wants someone to believe her more than anything and he just can't quite do that, but he is amazing at keeping secrets and sticking up for her, even going as far as helping her cover for quite a few things. I adored him!


I loved the ebb and flow of this story. There were times when things were really intense and suspenseful, and other moments when it is calm and fun. The mystery element is a good touch. I enjoy a good, clean, swoony romance and this one had a good amount. The emotions rise and fall, as well, and it's just an all-around, great book. This is a great high school, young adult book, but even "older" readers (like me) will enjoy it! 


Content: mild violence (attempted attacks, mention of drugs, deaths, etc); mild romance (kissing). Clean!


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Buy Link:

http://amzn.to/24sF05h


About the Author:

Janette Rallison 
Janette Rallison/CJ Hill writes books because writing is much more fun than cleaning bathrooms.

Her avoidance of housework has led her to writing 24 novels that have sold over 1,000,000 print copies and have been on many reading and state lists.

Her books are fantasy, sci-fi, and romantic comedy because hey, there is enough angst in real life, but there’s a drastic shortage of humor, romance and hot guys who fight dragons.

She lives in Arizona with her husband, kids, and enough cats to classify her as eccentric.