Monday, September 23, 2019

Review Tour and Giveaway: Gore in the Garden by Colleen J Shogan


Gore in the Garden
by Colleen J. Shogan




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GENRE: Mystery

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BLURB:

After her boss narrowly escaped political defeat, Kit Marshall is settling into life as a busy congressional staffer. While attending an evening reception at the United States Botanic Garden, Kit’s best friend stumbles upon the body of a high-ranking government official. The chairwoman of a congressional committee asks Kit to investigate, and she finds herself once again in the thick of a murder investigation. The complications keep coming with the unexpected arrival of Kit’s younger brother Sebastian, a hippie protestor who seems more concerned about corporate greed than the professional problems he causes for his sister. To make matters even worse, the romantic lives of Kit’s closest friends are driving her crazy, diverting her attention from the mystery she’s been tasked to solve. The search for the killer requires her to tussle with an investigative journalist right out of a noir novel, a congresswoman fixated on getting a statue of James Madison installed on the Capitol grounds, and a bossy botanist who would do anything to protect the plants he loves. When the murderer sends a threatening message to Kit via a highly unusual delivery mechanism, Kit knows she must find the killer or risk the lives of her friends and loved ones.

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EXCERPT

“So, why are we going to a garden to drink beer tonight, Kit? Has Doug’s trust fund dried up?” Sebastian gave me a playful punch on the arm to let me know he was yanking my chain.

I sighed for the umpteenth time before responding. “It’s my job, Sebastian. I’m the chief of staff for a member of the House of Representatives. She’s been assigned to a relatively obscure committee called House Administration. It oversees the legislative branch agencies and the Capitol Grounds.”

Sebastian considered my answer for a few moments before speaking. The snide tone was gone. “That’s actually kind of cool. So, your boss helps run Congress?”

“Partially. The Speaker appointed her to this committee because she’s smart and asks intelligent questions. The nice part about the assignment is that she gets invited to the best events on Capitol Hill. Like tonight.”

We’d just driven past the Washington Monument, on our way due east toward the Botanic Garden, which was situated at the base of the Hill between the Hirshhorn Museum and the Capitol Building.

 “Why is tonight so special again? There’s a special flower you want me to see?”

I punched his arm playfully. “Trust me, Sebastian. Aren’t you a fan of the Earth and everything natural? You’ll be right at home at the Botanic Garden,” I said. “But you’re right. You’ll see something amazing at the reception this evening.”

He cleared his throat. “And what exactly is this awe-inspiring specimen of the plant kingdom?”

In my most ominous voice, I answered my brother. “The corpse flower. We’re going to see the corpse flower.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Colleen J. Shogan has been reading mysteries since the age of six. She conceived of the plot of her first novel one morning while taking a walk in her suburban Washington, D.C. neighborhood. A political scientist by training, Colleen has taught American politics at numerous universities. She previously worked on Capitol Hill as a legislative staffer in the United States Senate. She’s currently a senior executive at the Library of Congress.
Colleen lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband Rob and their beagle mutt Conan. She is a member of Sisters in Crime. "Stabbing in the Senate" was awarded the Next Generation Indie prize for Best Mystery in 2016. "Homicide in the House" was a 2017 finalist for the RONE Award for Best Mystery. “Calamity at the Continental Club” was a 2018 finalist in the “best cozy mystery” at Killer Nashville.








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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION

Colleen J. Shogan will be awarding a $50 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



DON'T FORGET TO FOLLOW THE TOUR AND COMMENT
ON EACH STOP TO EARN MORE ENTRIES TO WIN!

September 9: The Reading Addict
September 16: Iron Canuck
September 23: Locks, Hooks and Books
September 30: Fabulous and Brunette
September 30: Our Town Book Reviews









My Review

Gore in the Garden is my first experience with Colleen J. Shogan’s writing. I believe this fifth installment from the Washington Whodunit series can be read as a stand alone. I was able to jump right in and read it without feeling as though I have missed some information that was in the previous books. I thought this was a great and fun read. I found myself giggling at times and I was enthralled in the mystery. I was definitely surprised at the “whodunit”.

I give Gore in the Garden five plus stars. I would love to read the other books from the Washington Whodunit series. I look forward to more by Colleen J Shogan in the future.

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








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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Audiobook Blog Tour and Giveaway: The Tree That Grew Through Iron by McKenzie Austin

Audiobook Tour: The Tree That Grew Through Iron by McKenzie Austin

Author: McKenzie Austin

Narrator: Gerard Marquez

Length: 15 hours and 30 minutes

Series: The Panagea Tales, Book 1

Publisher: McKenzie Austin

Released: Aug. 6, 2019

Genre: Epic Fantasy

 

 
The world's end was his beginning. Whole chunks of earth are withering away from the mainland and falling into the sea. Natural disasters are claiming thousands of lives. Prayers are no longer answered by gods. Prayers are answered by machines and the Time Fathers of Panagea. Nicholai Addihein, one of the eight ruling Time Fathers, struggles to save the lives of his people. After a single moment of misunderstood treason, he must also save his own. While running from the wrath of Panagea's other Time Fathers, Nicholai lands in peculiar company. Can a fabled immortal, a crew of societal rejects, and a silver-haired woman with a mysterious past breathe life back into a world on the brink of death? With all of existence at stake, Nicholai and the others prepare to fight until their last breath to change the fate of Panagea. Who would ever guess that success might be just as fatal as failure?

 

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  Like many authors, McKenzie took to writing early. She crafted numerous tales throughout childhood that served as an escape from the solitude often accompanying the inability to ‘fit in’ with the normal crowd. The award-winning author now resides with her family in Green Bay, Wisconsin, where she draws inspiration for her fantasy novels through copious amounts of craft beer and cheese.
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Narrator Bio


Gerard got his start at an early age, performing with various Opera companies and teams throughout Australia. After moving to America as an adult he made the transition into musical theater, and voice-over. Gerard has worked with various Opera and Musical theater companies throughout southern California and LA. Gerard has been working as a narrator now for the last couple of years, and was incredibly honored and excited, when McKenzie Austin approached him to work on this great series.
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Giveaway: 3-month Audible Membership

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Saturday, September 21, 2019

Audiobook Blog Tour: The December Protocol by Devin Hanson

Audiobook Series Tour: The Immortal Archives by Devin Hanson

Author: Devin Hanson

Narrator: Rhett Samuel Price

Series: The Immortal Archives, Book 1

Length: 11 hours 50 minutes

Publisher: Devin Hanson

Released: Jan. 12, 2018

Genre: Technothriller

 

  
For Amazon best-selling author Devin Hanson, the question is not how to achieve immortality, the question is what happens when we do? Throughout the entirety of history, humanity has fought against sickness, old age, frailty, even death itself hoping for eternal life. Countless legends and stories share the same hunt: extend our lifetimes beyond the impossibly brief moment we have. Hanson imagines life beyond those legends and stories - a solar system where humanity has discovered the secret to immortal life, at an extreme cost. What horrors await a society that rests an economy on the most scarce resource man has ever known - eternal life? Join The December Protocol in following three characters uniquely affected by the most amazing technological change humanity has ever experienced. Min, an ageless Earth-born marshal older than the very Martian colonies he fights to enforce a brittle and bleak law upon. Angeline, a young girl terrified by the social and scientific necessities prompted by the promise of eternal life. Marcus, a man brought to his knees by that emperor of all maladies, cancer, willing to pay the ultimate price for perfect health through immortality. The December Protocol rockets the listener into the late 24th century and raises thrilling questions about how far mankind would go to preserve the most precious gift we've ever received: immortality.
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  Devin Hanson (1983-present) was born in Beaverton, Oregon. After a childhood spent programming computers and playing Dungeons and Dragons, Devin's career took a random turn to counseling. It was during his years as a counselor that he developed his insight into the human condition and renewed his interest in writing. Currently, Devin works as a web developer, spending his free time creating tales of fantasy and science fiction. Devin has recently escaped Los Angeles and has moved down to San Diego.

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Narrator Bio
After a long career in law enforcement, Rhett switched gears and applied his vocal talents (not to mention the manners and voices of thousands of people he met including celebrities, state and federal dignitaries, numerous presidents and foreign heads of state) into becoming a versatile and notable audiobook narrator. He has honed his acting skills through workshops with Steven Tobolowsky, Willie Garson, VO Peeps' Anne Ganguzza and Kalmenson & Kalmenson Casting Agency in Burbank, CA. His audiobook skills have been sharpened through workshops and seminars with Scott Brick, Jeffrey Kafer, PJ Ochlan, Hillary Huber, and Sean Allen Pratt. Rhett’s has been favorably reviewed by Audiofile Magazine for his work on “The Blood of Emmett Till”. He is noted for his smooth calm, consistent delivery that is easygoing and relaxing to listen to over a long period of time. 

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BOOK 1

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Audiobook Blog Tour and Giveaway: The Return of King Lillian by Suzie Plakson

Audiobook Tour: The Return of King Lillian by Suzie Plakson

Author: Suzie Plakson

Narrator: Suzie Plakson

Length: 11 hours and 54 minutes

Publisher: Pilmsthistle & Co.

Released: Aug. 2, 2019

Genre: Fantasy


THE RETURN OF KING LILLIAN is a new hero's journey for dreamers of all ages. When Lillian, the one and only heir to the throne, is cast out of her kingdom by malevolent forces, she accidentally wanders into the Forest of Forgetfullness, where she is rescued by wolves and raised by an eccentric old wise woman. When she comes of age, she is called by Destiny to return home. The trouble is, when Lillian steps out of the Forest, she has no memory of who she is or from whence she hails. Undaunted, the spirited, self-reliant young woman sets off into the unknown, determined to rediscover her long lost self and to reclaim her stolen birthright. Early readers and listeners have compared this allegorical saga to The Last Unicorn, The Alchemist, The Princess Bride, and The Once and Future King. The Return of King Lillian is a story for people who take the road less traveled, people who live outside the box, people who love fantasy, fairy tales, myth, and metaphysics. This debut novel, written and narrated by multi-media artist Suzie Plakson, is a journey full of comedy, calamity, and a host of unforgettable characters. 2019 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award Winner 2019 Readers’ Favorite Award Winner EDITORIAL REVIEWS: "The Return of King Lillian is entrancing, audacious, and addictive in the very best way. A splendidly creative allegory told by Suzie Plakson with flair, wit, and passion.” — Marianne de Pierres, author of Parrish Plessis and The Peacemaker series "The Return of King Lillian is a basket of magic. Echoing Joseph Campbell's feeling that the world needs new storytellers and new myths to help us greet the coming age, I'll say that Suzie Plakson is one of those storytellers, and King Lillian is one of those myths.” — Jacob Nordby, author of Blessed are the Weird: A Manifesto for Creatives "With The Return of King Lillian, Suzie Plakson has done the impossible, telling a tale that at once seems both like a timeless classic and something modern, fresh, and entirely new. And her audiobook performance is a joy in its own right. Suzie casts you under her spell as she inhabits the character of Lillian, as well as every other magical creature and person Lillian encounters along her journey. This impeccably-produced recording is guaranteed to brighten your day and lift your spirits!” — David Briggs, Supervising Sound Editor, Tales of the City, Divorce "To say that King Lillian thoroughly enchanted me and left me spellbound would be the understatement of the century. I've listened to hundreds of audiobooks, and King Lillian is my favorite of all. Suzie Plakson's voice is velvet mixed with grit mixed with enchantment. It takes you into another realm - into the mystic.” — Kelly Sullivan Walden, author of It's All in Your Dreams

 

 
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  Suzie Plakson has been in love with fairy tale and myth ever since she was a young lass growing up in the wilds of suburbia. The idea for "The Return of King Lillian" first came to her when she was a struggling theatre actor in New York City, doing odd jobs, improv comedy, and various off-off-Broadway productions. She eventually landed a lead in a national tour, which dropped her off in Hollywood, and since that time she has appeared in such films and television shows as "Mad About You," "Love and War," "Wag the Dog," "Dinosaurs," "Everybody Loves Raymond," "How I Met Your Mother" and "Star Trek." She has also done voiceovers, written short stories and poetry, written and recorded an alternative country album, created an allegorical solo show, and produced sculptures large and small in her otherwise unused oven. "The Return of King Lillian" is her debut novel. Read more at: kinglillian.com and suzieplakson.com
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Enter to win an Amazon Echo Dot!

 
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Friday, September 20, 2019

Review: The Girl Behind the Red Rope by Ted Dekker




My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Blurb: 

Ten years ago, Grace saw something that would forever change the course of history. When evil in its purest form is unleashed on the world, she and others from their religious community are already hidden deep in the hills of Tennessee, abiding by every rule that will keep them safe, pure--and alive. As long as they stay there, behind the red perimeter.

Her older brother's questions and the arrival of the first outsiders she's seen in a decade set in motion events that will question everything Grace has built her life on. Enemies rise on all sides--but who is the real enemy? And what will it cost her to uncover the truth?
For the first time, bestselling authors Ted Dekker and Rachelle Dekker team up and deliver an intense, tightly focused ride through the most treacherous world of all.



My Review: 

The Girl Behind the Red Rope is a little different of a read I normally read. That being said, I thought it was refreshing to reading something unique. This is one of those books that made me think and take my time to read. I was intrigued right from the start and stayed that way until the end.

I give The Girl Behind the Red Rope four and a half stars. I am recommending it to other readers who enjoy a thought provoking and clean read.

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


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VBT and Giveaway: New York Orphan by Rosemary J Kind


New York Orphan
by Rosemary J. Kind




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GENRE:   Historical Fiction

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BLURB:

From fleeing the Irish Potato Famine, to losing his parents on the ship to New York, seven-year-old Daniel Flynn knows about adversity. As Daniel sings the songs of home to earn pennies for food, pick-pocket Thomas Reilly becomes his ally and friend, until he too is cast out onto the street.

A destitute refugee in a foreign land, Daniel, together with Thomas and his sister Molly, are swept up by the Orphan Train Movement to find better lives with families across America. For Daniel will the dream prove elusive?

How strong are bonds of loyalty when everything is at stake?



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EXCERPT

“Oh, Miss Ellie, Miss Ellie…” Molly was panting hard as she ran up the steps of the guest house, calling for her friend. “Oh, you’ll never guess what.” Her hands were shaking uncontrollably and she was gasping for air.

“Sit down, child, and start from the beginning.”

“It’s Daniel. Oh, Miss Ellie, he needs our help. I do believe the good Lord has sent us to him in his hour of need.”

“Whatever has happened?” Ellie guided Molly to sit upon the settle.

“I was in the town… wondering whatever we should do. Oh, it’s dreadful!”

Miss Ellie quietly rose and left the room, returning only a minute or two later with a tray of tea. “I’d just asked for this to be prepared when you came back. It looks to me, girl, as though you’re in need of it.” She poured the tea and held the cup to Molly’s trembling hands.

Molly sipped her drink, sat back, took a deep breath and began again. “Daniel is in prison, Miss Ellie. Whatever are we going to do?”

She told Miss Ellie the tale of how she’d met Ben and then how he’d gone to make enquiries. “Anyway, one of the Deputies was there and he told the man about Daniel.”

“Lord have mercy, whatever has he done?”

“He ran away from that dreadful man we met at the farm. Oh, how can one man think he has the right to own another in these times?”


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Rosemary J Kind writes because she has to. You could take almost anything away from her except her pen and paper. Failing to stop after the book that everyone has in them, she has gone on to publish books in both non-fiction and fiction, the latter including novels, humour, short stories and poetry. She also regularly produces magazine articles in a number of areas and writes regularly for the dog press.

As a child she was desolate when at the age of 10 her then teacher would not believe that her poem based on ‘Stig of the Dump’ was her own work and she stopped writing poetry for several years as a result. She was persuaded to continue by the invitation to earn a little extra pocket money by ‘assisting’ others to produce the required poems for English homework!

Always one to spot an opportunity, she started school newspapers and went on to begin providing paid copy to her local newspaper at the age of 16.

For twenty years she followed a traditional business career, before seeing the error of her ways and leaving it all behind to pursue her writing full-time.

She spends her life discussing her plots with the characters in her head and her faithful dogs, who always put the opposing arguments when there are choices to be made.

Always willing to take on challenges that sensible people regard as impossible, she established and ran the short story download site Alfie Dog Fiction for six years building it to become one of the largest in the world, representing over 300 authors and carrying over 1600 short stories. She closed it in order to focus on her own writing.

Her hobby is developing the Entlebucher Mountain Dog in the UK and when she brought her beloved Alfie back from Belgium he was only the tenth in the country.

She started writing Alfie’s Diary as an Internet blog the day Alfie arrived to live with her, intending to continue for a year or two. Thirteen years later it goes from strength to strength and has been repeatedly named as one of the top ten pet blogs in the UK.

For more details about the author please visit her website at www.rjkind.com For more details about her dog then you’re better visiting www.alfiedog.me.uk

Twitter @therealalfiedog
Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/rjkind/

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GIVEAWAY

Rosemary J. Kind will be awarding a $30 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

DON'T FORGET TO FOLLOW THE TOUR AND COMMENT
ON EACH STOP TO EARN MORE ENTRIES TO WIN!


September 16: Christine Young
September 17: Viviana MacKade
September 18: BooksChatter
September 19: Fabulous and Brunette
September 20: Locks, Hooks and Books - review only
September 23: All the Ups and Downs
September 24: The Avid Reader
September 25: It's Raining Books
September 26: Our Town Book Reviews

September 27: Long and Short Reviews








My Review

New York Orphan is a fabulous read. This first installment from Rosemary J Kind’s series, Tales of Flynn and Reilly. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I only intended to sit down to read one chapter and wound up reading the whole book in one sitting. 

I am giving New York Orphan a well deserved 5 stars. I have already recommended it to other readers. I look forward to the second book from the Tales of Flynn and Reilly series. I can not wait to find out what will happen next. 


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







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