Friday, November 24, 2017

Review: Blue Ridge Sunrise (Blue Ridge Romance #1) by Denise Hunter




Blurb (from Amazon):

Former free spirit Zoe Collins swore she’d never again set foot in Copper Creek or speak to the man who broke her heart. But return she must when her beloved granny dies, leaving the family legacy to Zoe—a peach orchard nestled at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

When Zoe returns home with her daughter and boyfriend Kyle, she finds that she’s the only person in town who doesn’t expect her to give up the life she’s established far away from Copper Creek. Everyone believes she was born to run the orchard, but how can she make it her home after so many years?

Cruz Huntley never quite got over his first love Zoe Collins, the little sister of his best friend Brady. Not when she cheated on him during their “break,” not when she took off to parts unknown with good-for-nothing Kyle Jenkins, and not even now—five years later.


As life-changing decisions and a history with Cruz hang over Zoe’s head, tensions rise between her and Kyle. Even as she comes to terms with the shifting relationships in her life, Zoe still isn’t sure if she can remain in Copper Creek with her new responsibilities . . . and her first love.



My Review:

Blue Ridge Sunrise is the first book from Denise Hunter's whole new series, Blue Ridge Romance. I read this book in one sitting. I loved it so much, I did not want to put it down. I felt an instant connection to Zoe. I knew what she was going through - the heartache, past secrets and regrets. This is a wonderful story of forgiveness, letting go, and moving on, while in a beautiful setting. 

I most definitely believe this is a must read and highly recommend it.

5 plus stars.

I received this book from the publisher, but was not required to write a review. This review is 100% my own honest opinion. 



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Blurb Blitz: Creating Places: The Art of World Building by Randy Ellefson



Creating Places
by Randy Ellefson


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GENRE:   Non-fiction


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BLURB:


Creating a unique, immersive setting one place at a time.

CREATING PLACES (THE ART OF WORLD BUILDING, #2) is a detailed how-to guide on inventing the heart of every imaginary world - places. It includes chapters on inventing planets, moons, continents, mountains, forests, deserts, bodies of water, sovereign powers, settlements, and interesting locales. Extensive, culled research on each is provided to inform your world building decisions and understand the impact on craft, story, and audience. You’ll also learn how and when to create history and maps. Experts and beginners alike will benefit from the free templates that make building worlds easier, quicker, and more fun.

Learn the difference between types of monarchies, democracies, dictatorships and more for realistic variety and believable conflict. Understand how latitude, prevailing winds, and mountains affect climate, rainfall, and what types of forests and deserts will exist in each location. Consistently calculate how long it takes to travel by horse, wagon, sailing vessels, or even dragon over different terrain types and conditions.

CREATING PLACES is the second volume in THE ART OF WORLD BUILDING, the only multi-volume series of its kind. Three times the length, depth, and breadth of other guides, the series can help fantasy and science fiction creators determine how much to build and why, how to use world building in your work, and whether the effort to create places will reap rewards for you and your audience.


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EXCERPT:

All flying animals that are depicted as being ridable are imaginary. The likelihood is that none of them would get off the ground with a rider, but there’s no fun in that. We must take being realistic with a bigger grain of salt than normal. This can suggest doing whatever we want, and we certainly can, but there are often useful details and considerations that arise from trying to being realistic anyway. And these serve to make our work more believable.


While flying can generally be assumed to be done in a straight line, factors change this. Mountains can be tall enough that they must be circumnavigated. Real birds struggle to get over the Himalayas, for example, because the air is thinner. Larger creatures like a dragon would suffer even more from this. Dragons are often depicted as all powerful, but this is one way to make them less formidable and realistic at once. The difficulty of climbing over tall mountains is one reason, along with rain shadows, for characterizing any land features we’ve created; in this case, we’ll decide which mountains ranges are this tall (hint from chapter 4: the tallest peaks are in the interior of a continent, not on its coast).


Hostile territories can also change flight patterns, whether that hostility is other animals or sentient beings like humans. Even dragons are preyed upon by other dragons. A lone dragon might fear to fly through an area full of other dragons, especially if the latter are territorial or of another kind hostile to its own kind. If the dragon is unafraid, his rider might be more cautious.


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:


Randy Ellefson has written fantasy fiction since his teens and is an avid world builder, having spent three decades creating Llurien, which has its own website. He has a Bachelor’s of Music in classical guitar but has always been more of a rocker, having released several albums and earned endorsements from music companies. He’s a professional software developer and runs a consulting firm in the Washington D.C. suburbs. He loves spending time with his son and daughter when not writing, making music, or playing golf.
Creating Places universal buy link: http://www.books2read.com/creatingplaces  
The Art of World Building Podcast http://www.artofworldbuilding.com/podcast (launching a week before the tour)
The Art of World Building Website: http://www.ArtofWorldBuilding.com
Author Website: http://www.RandyEllefson.com
FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/RandyEllefsonAuthor
NOTE: The book series has a new podcast where even more details are discussed. This podcast is free to listen! Follow along here: http://www.artofworldbuilding.com/podcast


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GIVEAWAY:


Randy Ellefson will be awarding an ultimate world builder's package to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Enter for a chance to win an ultimate world builder's giveaway

DON'T FORGET TO COMMENT ON THE OTHER BLOGS ON THE TOUR. 
THE MORE YOU COMMENT THE MORE CHANCES OF WINNING!


November 13The Reading Addict

November 15Edgar's Books
November 15Rogue's Angels 
November 16The Avid Reader
November 17Author C.A.Milson
November 20T's Stuff
November 21Fabulous and Brunette
November 22Mixed Book Bag
November 24Locks, Hooks and Books
November 27Independent Authors
November 28Readeropolis
November 29Kit 'N Kabookle
December 1It's Raining Books




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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Blog Tour: Review and Giveaway: The It Girl and Me: A Novel of Clara Bow by Laini Giles

The It Girl and Me: A Novel of Clara Bow by Laini Giles

Publication Date: March 25, 2017
Sepia Stories Publishing
eBook & Paperback; 341 Pages
Series: Forgotten Actresses, Book #2
Gere: Historical Fiction/Biographical
Daisy DeVoe has left her abusive husband, her father has been pinched for bootlegging, and she’s embarrassed by her rural Kentucky roots. But on the plus side, she’s climbing the ladder in the salon of Paramount Pictures, styling hair for actress Clara Bow. Clara is a handful. The “It” Girl of the Jazz Age personifies the new woman of the 1920s onscreen, smoking, drinking bootleg hooch, and bursting with sex appeal. But her conduct off the set is even more scandalous. Hoping to impose a little order on Clara’s chaotic life, Paramount persuades Daisy to sign on as Clara’s personal secretary. Thanks to Daisy, Clara's bank account is soon flush with cash. And thanks to Clara, Daisy can finally shake off her embarrassing past and achieve respectability for herself and her family. The trouble begins when Clara’s newest fiancĂ©, cowboy star Rex Bell, wants to take over, and he and Daisy battle for control. Torn between her loyalty to Clara and her love for her family, Daisy has to make a difficult choice when she ends up in the county jail. Here, Daisy sets the record straight, from her poverty-stricken childhood to her failed marriage; from a father in San Quentin to her rollercoaster time with Clara, leaving out none of the juicy details.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Chapters

About the Author

Originally from the counterculture mecca of Austin, Texas, Laini discovered a love of reading early on, and when she was eight, decided to be Nancy Drew. This dream was dashed when she realized she was actually a big chicken, and that there were no guarantees of rescue from tarantulas, bad guys with guns, and other fiendish plot twists. She finished her first "mystery novel" (with custom illustrations) when she was nine. She set the writing aside for a while when life got in the way, but was led back to it through her interest in genealogy and 18 months of enforced unemployment due to moving north for maple-flavored goodies and real beer. Reading old microfilm stirred new life into her interest in writing, and watching early silent films struck the match. Like most other writers, most of her monthly budget is spent on coffee and books. She lives with her husband and their two gray cats in Edmonton, Alberta. For more information, please visit Laini Giles' website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Wednesday, November 1 
Kick Off at Passages to the Past 
  Thursday, November 2 
  Friday, November 3 
  Monday, November 6 
Review at Bookish 
  Tuesday, November 7 
Feauture at WS Momma Readers Nook 
  Thursday, November 9 
  Friday, November 10 
Review at A Bookaholic Swede 
  Monday, November 13 
Review at Creating Herstory 
  Wednesday, November 15 
Review at A Chick Who Reads 
  Friday, November 17 
Excerpt at A Literary Vacation 
  Monday, November 20 
Feature at Let Them Read Books 
  Wednesday, November 22 
Feature at The Lit Bitch 
  Thursday, November 23 
  Friday, November 24 
Feature at CelticLady's Reviews 
  Saturday, November 25 
Excerpt at T's Stuff 
  Tuesday, November 28 
  Wednesday, November 29 
Review at A Book Drunkard

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 5 paperback copies of The It Girl and Me! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below. Giveaway Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 29th. You must be 18 or older to enter. – Giveaway is open to US & Canada only. – Only one entry per household. – All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. – Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.





My Review

I was not sure if I would like The It Girl and Me: A Novel of Clara Bow. I am pleasantly surprised how great of a read it is. I was hooked from the first page and was intrigued all the way to the end. I did not know much about Clara Bow before and after reading this, I found myself googling her name to learn more about her. The author sure did do her research! Wow! I liked how she used Clara’s best friend and confidante, Daisy DeVoe, as the main character. I just loved Daisy and rooted for her throughout.

Great book!! I highly recommend it and give 5 plus stars.

I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.




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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Review: The Crooked Path by Irma Joubert





Blurb (from Amazon):

Lettie has always felt different from and overshadowed by the women around her– this friend is richer, that friend is more beautiful, those friends are closer. Still, she doesn’t let this hold her back. She works hard to apply her mind, trying to compensate for her perceived lack of beauty with diligent academic work and a successful career as a doctor. She learns to treasure her friendships, but she still wonders if any man will ever return her interest.

Marco’s experience in the second world war have robbed him of love and health. When winters in his native Italy prove dangerous to his health even after the war has ended, he moves to South Africa to be with his brother, husband to one of Lettie’s best friends. Marco is Lettie’s first patient, and their relationship grows as she aids him on the road back to restored health.

In the company of beloved characters from The Child of the River, Marco and Lettie find a happiness that neither of them thought possible. With that joy comes pain and loss, but Lettie learns that life—while perhaps a crooked path—is always a journey worth taking. 



My Review:

The Crooked Path is a great read. I found the story to be well written. I was captivated from page one and did not want to put it down until I read the last page. The author perfectly knows how to play with the reader's emotions. I felt like I was right there and was transported back in time. I would most definitely recommend this book. It is so so good. One of the best I have read in 2017. 

Five stars. 


I received this book from the publisher, but was not required to write a review. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.



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Excerpt Tour: Sanctuary of Lies by Chad Bishop



Sanctuary of Lies
by Chad Bishop





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GENRE: Thriller (domestic)


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BLURB:


ISABELLA NUNEZ owns a computer firm in Brooklyn with her lover JACOB COSTA. Accepting her infertility they have a blue nose pit bull called Justice as their “child” and live simple lives as techy nerds. Isabella’s idyllic life is shattered when several days after her lover’s ex-wife, SIMONE JOHNS, reported death,  sends Jacob an email to come save their child, he didn’t know they had.


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EXCERPT:


John had been staking out Sanctuary for months. Now when he looked at the people who lived here they all looked alike to him, expendable.  The couple coming on the field reminded him of the first couple he’d buried in the grove.  That couple had been rich.  Both women waved their hands around thinking they could command everyone around them. The dead couple had come to his place saying they needed maintenance. When John told them someone would come she pushed her way into his home and the husband followed.  John had to kill them then. Fortunately, they were visiting and not employees on Sanctuary. That was the challenge of working on Sanctuary, the employees of Safehaven lived in the community.


John walked to the community center and saw a well-toned male at the desk. He was an agent. This guy reminded John of his third kill in the grove.  Another agent had come to the community of Sanctuary. John couldn’t tell if the man at the desk was a government guy or a consultant but he could tell he was in the business.  The agent had a slim body that came from use not from a gym.     


The third guy in the grove had been a freelancer. He explained to John this job was big enough for the both of them. John was a simple man not a sharing man. John knew Simone Johns has created the houdini and it was possible that it was here. He was going to be the owner of that software.


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:


Being a child of divorce, I have experienced both sides of the American Family. I understand there is a loss to the family unit, that no longer has a father in it.  In the face of that loss, I discovered a woman can rise to the occasion and not replace a man but offer her own strength, moral compass and guidance. In this environment a child can grow up feeling loved, accepted and ultimately successful in life.


Those experiences in my formative years have made me more aware of the women around me and the daily feats of resourcefulness and ingenuity that goes unnoticed and unacknowledged by society. My stories highlight societal issues and the ever-changing challenges women face that I've observed during my life.


Fb  Chad Bishop author page :  https://www.amazon.com/Chad-Bishop/e/B076XRXKQG/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_3?qid=1509200256&sr=8-3
Blog: Best Known Secrets  https://www.bishopstories.com/blog-1


Website: https://www.bishopstories.com/


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GIVEAWAY


Chad will be awarding a $10 Amazon GC to

3 randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour.



a Rafflecopter giveaway



Don't forget to comment on the other 
blog stops of the tour for extra entries to win!


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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Review: The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck by Bethany Turner


Blurb:

Becoming a Christian is the best and worst thing that has ever happened to Sarah Hollenbeck. Best because, well, that's obvious. Worst because, up to this point, she's made her very comfortable living as a well-known, bestselling author of steamy romance novels that would leave the members of her new church blushing. Now Sarah is trying to reconcile her past with the future she's chosen. She's still under contract with her publisher and on the hook with her enormous fan base for the kind of book she's not sure she can write anymore. She's beginning to think that the church might frown on her tithing on royalties from a "scandalous" book. And the fact that she's falling in love with her pastor doesn't make things any easier.



My Review:

The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck is my first introduction to Bethany Turner’s work. I thought the book was okay. I liked Sarah but I felt her story was a little rushed. Did not find it as a believable one. What I did like the most, was the humor. That is what kept me reading on. I, also, like the element of how to move on from one’s past and learning to forgive yourself. I would give this book 3 stars.

I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.





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