Thursday, November 30, 2023

Blog Tour and Giveaway: Countin' On Jesse by Mary Pat Johns

About the Book

Book: Countin’ On Jesse

Author: Mary Pat Johns

Genre: (Inspirational) Contemporary Romance

Release Date: September 12, 2023

Peeps’ gym owner Jesse seeks accreditation. Accountant Brenna wants to help Jesse reach his goal. They’re a great team, but can she count on him when trouble strikes?

Accountant BRENNA MCKINLEY only wants what’s best for Peeps, the wildly popular gym in Valiant, Texas. But when money goes missing, and she’s the obvious suspect, will she be able to clear her name or face criminal charges? Keeping her dream job matters, but falling in love with her boss isn’t part of the plan. Neither is the creepy guy stalking her.

Young veteran JESSE JACOBS manages and co-owns Peeps, an exercise facility in Valiant, Texas. He needs help to gain accreditation for the gym, and his new accountant is all in. But is she who she seems? Too bad he’s falling for her like a man with no parachute. When the pressure builds, PTSD renders him moody and volatile, risking everything he loves.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Mary Pat Johns’ writing career began once she retired from years of teaching speech and writing. She’s written devotions for an online publication and had short stories published by Chicken Soup for the Soul. She currently writes a biweekly faith column for the local newspaper.

Countin’ On Jesse is her debut novel, and she’s hard at work on the rest of the Valiant series. God put it in her heart to tell stories of brave veterans and their reintegration into civilian life after suffering the traumas of war. As she kept writing, her focus generalized to include ordinary people who learn how to move forward after devastating events. Her writing has a strong spiritual thread since she considers a return to faith in God the solution for what ails the civilized world.

She lives in South Texas with her husband and their two dapple dachshunds. Her grown children and five grandchildren are useful sorts who keep her grounded with her reading/writing obsession. You can find her at the gym, at her computer, or reading a good book.

Countin’ On Jesse placed second in inspirational contemporary romance in the TARA contest. It was also a finalist in the Crown and the Maggie contests for unpublished authors.

More from Mary

I wrote Countin’ On Jesse because I couldn’t NOT write it, though learning to write fiction was an act of faith. My son is an army vet and deployed to Afghanistan during the war. When he returned, the adjustment back to civilian life was difficult. The PTSD he suffered was real. His dad and I prayed often for his restoration. I also experienced an urgency to share how people recover from traumatic experiences, but it’s not my MO to tell a sad story. I used humor, but never downplayed the seriousness of the hero’s issues with PTSD and anger. My goal was to impart hope.

One added sweet note. My son helped me craft a short story as a prequel for the series. I believe it was healing for him to revisit the Afghanistan setting through the perspective of time and distance. Readers have shared they felt like they were in the story. In truth, there was an eyewitness. I’m forever grateful that he came home to tell me of such events.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 27

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 28 (Author Interview)

The Lit Lady, November 28

Texas Book-aholic, November 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 30

Back Porch Reads, December 1 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 3

A Reader’s Brain, December 4 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, December 5

Beauty in the Binding, December 6 (Author Interview)

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, December 6

Cover Lover Book Review, December 7

Holly’s Book Corner, December 8

For the Love of Literature, December 9 (Author Interview)

Pause for Tales, December 10


To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 gift Amazon gift card and a signed copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

My Review

Countin' on Jesse is the start to the Romance in Valiant series, as well as, the debut of the talented Mary Pat Johns. I enjoyed this true to life book. I like how the author developed likeable characters that many readers could relate to. I adored Jesse and Brenna’s story. They had good chemistry together but had some rough patches to get through. I like the lessons to be learned in the book. I loved it!

I am giving Countin' on Jesse a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend it for readers who enjoy reading clean and inspiring romantic fiction. I am interested in seeing what happens next from the Romance in Valiant series. 

I received a paperback copy of Mary Pat Johns’ Countin' on Jesse from the publisher, but was not required to write a positive review. This review is one hundred percent my own honest opinion. 

Spotlight Book Tour: The Psychologist's Shadow by Laury A Egan


Book Details:

Book Title:  The Psychologist's Shadow by Laury A. Egan
Category:  Adult Fiction (18+), 336 pages
Genre:  Psychological Suspense
Publisher:  Enigma Books, imprint of Spectrum Books, UK
Release date:   Nov 18, 2023
Content Rating:  PG-13. One scene of violence, no sexual scene

“…a ‘I-read-it-in-two-days’ book. Egan creates a gifted analyst and gripping case studies of her clients, one of whom is a disturbed admirer. The novel delivers chills in a highly sophisticated, wise, and ultimately poignant psychodrama.”—Karla Linn Merrifield, author of Psyche’s Scroll

Book Description:

In October 1992, Dr. Ellen Haskell begins a new therapy practice in Princeton after a tragic error with a former client. Demoralized by her failure, Ellen strives to restore her emotional and professional confidence. Her parents have departed for Greece, leaving Ellen alone in their secluded country house. As the reader is introduced to her roster of clients through their individual sessions, Ellen becomes unnerved when she receives hang-up phone calls and a series of bizarre gifts from an anonymous admirer—at first at her office and then at home. As the obsessive lover increasingly invades her life, Ellen’s anxiety crescendos and she begins to fear the stalker’s behavior will escalate into violence.

The Psychologist’s Shadow is a portrait of a compassionate, introspective therapist who finds herself in a dangerous struggle with an unknown stalker. The novel is a simmering literary suspense, one in which tension accumulates as the reader gains insights during sessions with clients—one of whom may be the psychologist’s shadow—and through the stalker’s journal entries, which serve as a discordant counterpoint.
Buy the Book:
add to Goodreads

Also available at all other fine bookstores!

Meet the Author:

Laury A. Egan is the author of eleven novels, The Firefly; Once, Upon an Island; Wave in D Minor; Turnabout; Doublecrossed; The Swimmer; The Ungodly Hour; A Bittersweet Tale; Fabulous! An Opera Buffa; The Outcast Oracle; and Jenny Kidd; in addition to a collection, Fog and Other Stories. Four limited-edition poetry volumes have been published: Snow, Shadows, a Stranger; Beneath the Lion’s Paw; The Sea & Beyond" and Presence & Absence."She lives on the northern coast of New Jersey.

connect with author: website ~ X/twitter facebook instagram goodreads


1. When did you begin writing?

My first poem was composed at age seven, while I was sitting in a bathtub. I shouted for my mother to bring me paper and a pencil and then wrote four stanzas, which astonished me as much as it did my mother. I continued to write poems, a local newspaper, and then my first novel (age 12); stories and poems in high school, which were published in the school’s literary magazine; and then mostly poems after that until I began phasing out my career as a book designer. Why did I originally begin writing? While I don’t recall specifically what touched off that first poem, most of my early work honored nature. I lived in a beautiful area, on the northern coast of New Jersey, on a high hill above the Atlantic Ocean and Lower Hudson Bay, with views of the Manhattan skyline in the distance. Behind our house was a forest; to the south was a rolling meadow. While my poetry has been described as lyrical, much of my fiction is also sensitive to setting, perhaps reflecting poetic tendencies, but also my artistic background as a fine arts photographer. 

2. Besides the natural beauty of your area, why did you begin writing and when did you decide you wanted to be a writer?

I was an only child, without grandparents or close younger relatives, and lived several miles from school. My mother was an artist who painted all day in her studio (door closed); my father was a building contractor who usually worked late and on weekends. As a result, I didn’t have many social opportunities, nor did I fit in with many of my classmates. I began writing as self-entertainment, but also to create worlds where I could live, characters who could become friends, and as a way to examine what I thought and felt. Then and now, I’ve always been an observer—an important trait for a writer—and one shared by Dr. Ellen Haskell in The Psychologist’s Shadow, who also describes a childhood somewhat similar to my own. As for when I assumed the identity of a writer, this happened at a very young age—I knew this was who I was and what I wanted to do. Unfortunately, when applying to colleges, I veered from this goal and attended Carnegie Mellon University, receiving a degree in graphic design and photography. How I wish I’d accepted Bennington or Bard in creative writing instead! My publishing career would have started in my twenties instead of much later.

3. What were the challenges you faced writing The Psychologist’s Shadow?

This novel was begun in 1992—my third attempt at long fiction except for my early teenage effort and one unpublished work. I don’t recall when I finished the first draft or how many rounds I did until I undertook a serious and more experienced revision in recent years. But my growing knowledge about writing surely improved the work, which I hope is reflected in the present incarnation. 

One of the most challenging aspects was to create a diverse roster of clients, each with his or her unique voice, behavior, history, dress, and psychological issues. The client’s dialogue and manner had to be consistent with the person’s background and the mental/emotional problems presented. While this was a wonderful opportunity to play therapist, it was also a daunting task.

4. What is your typical writing schedule and how long do you take to write a book?

I tend to work seven days a week, almost all day, although writing comprises only a modest percentage of the hours spent at my desk. More time is devoted to marketing and promotional outreach (activities I don’t enjoy!), revising (often 30-40+ rounds prior to professional editing), corresponding with publishers and editors, and—in my case (and a pleasure)—creating cover designs and sometimes photographing images, such as the mask still-life illustration for The Psychologist’s Shadow. As for the total writing time, from start to finish, it varies. This current book is one of the longest in process. Usually, a first draft takes about eight or nine months, but the heavy lifting comes during revision. This stage can take equal or greater time compared to the initial writing.

5. Some writers say they don’t read books in their genre while they have a book in process in that genre. Is that true of you?

No. Rarely do I encounter distractions due to reading in a genre similar to the one I’m working in, though sometimes I’m inspired to improve my style or to consider structural reorganizations, such as adding a prologue. Because I write in different categories, I also enjoy reading widely, though most of my selections are mysteries or suspense novels. Currently, I’m binging on Nordic Noir—Lilja Sigurðardóttir, Jo Nesbø, Ragnar Jónasson, with a sprinkling of UK titles by Val McDermid, Mari Hannah, and my favorite, Kate Atkinson, whose style and plotting make me terrifically envious.  

6. If readers want to learn more about you and your books, are you on social media?

Yes. My website displays a complete list and descriptions of my published and forthcoming titles, with pages devoted to my poetry collections and photography. I’m most active on Facebook: or X/Twitter: LauryA.Egan@EganLaury Sometimes, I post on Instagram: And, though I mostly include reviews of books I’m reading, readers may follow my blog:

Thank you for featuring my novel!

Multi Book Spotlight Tour and Giveaway: Marianne Scott


Books Details:

​Book Title:  Finding Ruby Draker, Shadows in the Aftermath, Reinhardt, and Underneath the Fireflies by Marianne Scott
Category:  Adult Fiction (18+)
Genre: Mystery / Thriller
Publisher:  Crowe Creations
Release dates:  Re-release 2023
Content Rating:  PG-13. Occasional colloquial language is used in dialog. Nothing that would offend the most discerning reader/s.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Movie Review and Giveaway: The Shift


From Angel Studios (The Chosen, Sound of Freedom) comes
The Shift! Get your tickets to see this movie in theaters starting 12/1!

Featuring Sean Astin (The Goonies, Rudy, The Lord of the Rings),
Neal McDonough (Band of Brothers), and Elizabeth Tabish (The Chosen),
THE SHIFT is a movie you and your friends won’t want to miss!

You can help pay for other people's tickets to come to the film at

After a tense encounter with a mysterious stranger with
otherworldly powers, a man is banished to a tyrannical, parallel
Earth where he fights to get back to the woman he loves.


In The Shift, a dystopian drama and sci-fi thriller, one man is faced with infinite worlds and impossible choices. When Kevin Garner meets a nefarious adversary known as The Benefactor and refuses his offer of wealth and power, he must escape an alternate totalitarian reality. With survival on the line, Kevin fights to make it back to the world he knows and the woman he loves.

Buy tickets today to see The Shift in theaters starting December 1st!

My Review:

I have to admit that I am not a huge science fiction or dystopian type movies, but chose to give The Shift to see what it was all about. I thought the film was fantastic. After watching it, I realized that I made an excellent choice. This drama had a lot going on: good vs evil, grief, loss, and putting others first. I believe many viewers will find themselves in Kevin. He lost everything he known and had to fight back and keep faith to find what is important and finding himself again. 

I am giving The Shift a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend it for viewers who love watching dystopian drama and sci-fi thriller films. 

I received an early screener link to watch The Shift from Angel Studios, but was not required to write a positive review. This review is one hundred percent my own honest opinion. 


Many thanks to Angel Studios for providing a sample of the product for this review. Opinions are 100% my own.


2 FREE tickets to see THE SHIFT in theaters!

Leave a more than two word completed sentence telling me who you will be watching The Shift with. Don’t forget to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win. Winner’s name will be drawn on December 1, 2023.

Giveaway Rules:   

Giveaway is limited to US winners only.        

Two word comments will be deleted and will not be entered into the giveaway.

Chosen winner/s will be contacted by email to verify information needed to give to the appropriate channels to get the prize to you. 

Winner/s MUST reply to this email within 24 hours

If no response, a new winner’s name will be drawn and you forfeit the prize.

Locks, Hooks and Books is NOT responsible for lack of response from the chosen winner. 

Winners from previous Momentum campaigns within 90 days will be disqualified. 

Please note: Locks, Hooks and Books is NOT responsible in sending the prize. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Book Tour and Giveaway: The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed by Cheryl DaVeiga


Book Details:

Book Title:  The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed by Cheryl DaVeiga 
Category:  Children's Fiction (Ages 3-7),  44 pages
Genre:  Children's Picture Book
Publisher:  Waterhole Productions LLC
Release date:   November, 2023
Content Rating:  G. This children's book is for everyone.
Book Description:

COMING SOON! A “Fin-tastic” adventure Like No Other!

Fearless Flossy, a mighty great white shark, has a secret—she’s terrified of going to the dentist.  Dr. Dribble, the big-hearted dolphin dentist, has a jaw-dropping fear of his own, and a strict “No Sharks Allowed” policy.  When Fearless Flossy makes an unannounced visit to Dr. Dribble’s office, it’s the start of an underwater adventure like no other!  This ‘fin-tastic’ story is must-read for kids and parents alike. Young readers will be immersed in a tale of courage, compassion, and conquering fear, while giggling and cheering for these unlikely friends along the way.

Dive in with a big Biff Bam Booza smile.
Buy the Book
Biff Bam Booza
add to 

Meet the Author:

Cheryl DaVeiga is an award-winning children’s book author and singer/songwriter residing in New Jersey. After a career in business, Cheryl’s passion for music caught up with her, and she began writing and recording children’s songs as her alter ego, CADi Grace. She then moved on to adult songs, including an ASCAP award-winning veteran’s anthem, the featured song for the State of Alabama Bicentennial Celebration, the theme song to the philanthropic Where Angels Play Foundation, and a NJ Arts' pick for top NJ summer songs. She’s also written songs for artists on critically acclaimed albums.

You can find her books and animated sing-along song videos on her website for kids and kid-lovers-- 
Biff Bam Booza books have received numerous awards and acclaim, including Mom’s Choice Gold, Purple Dragonfly, Eric Hoffer, and Literary Titan book awards, a Readers’ Favorite 5-star rating, and a Kirkus Review Magazine feature.
Cheryl lives in Tucson, Arizona, and spends summers in her native New Jersey.  

connect with the authors:  website ~ facebook ~ instagram ~ twitter ~ bookbub ~ goodreads

Enter the Giveaway:


My Review: 

The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed is a fun and entertaining children’s book by Cheryl DaVeiga.  I thought this was a delightful and “fin” tastic tale to read. I like the lessons to be learned in this book. These lessons include: facing fears and having the courage while doing so, being kind to those who are different from you, and how to make new friends. They are ones that so many readers – young and old – could new from. I enjoyed taking the under the sea adventure and journey along with the characters. There were many scenes that made me giggle and I continued to have a smile on my face until the end. Such a sweet little story. I loved it. 

The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed is beautifully illustrated by the talented Luis Peres. The pictures follow along the story perfectly. I believe they are a great addition to it. I thought they are helpful to keep the youngest of readers’ attention throughout the book. I can imagine their laughter as they see each page. 

I am giving The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend it for readers who are between the ages of three and eight, particularly ones that love reading about the creatures of the sea.

I received a copy of Cheryl DaVeiga’s The Dolphin Dentist: No Sharks Allowed from the publisher, but was not required to write a positive review. This review is one hundred percent my own honest opinion. 

Monday, November 27, 2023

Blog Tour and Giveaway: Bladestay by Jackie Johnson

I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the BLADESTAY by Jackie Johnson Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!


About The Book:


Author: Jackie Johnson

Pub. Date: November 28, 2023

Publisher: CamCat Books

Formats:  Hardcover, Paperback, eBook, Audiobook

Pages: 304

Find it: Goodreads 

Be Careful Who You Root For

When a violent, decades-long feud between two powerful men comes to a head in the small settlement of Bladestay, Colorado, cunning resident Theo Creed must use her wits to stay alive. Disguising herself as a young boy, seventeen-year-old Theo bluffs her way into the inner circle of August Gaines, the magnetic leader of the ruthless gang that has descended on her town. But the deeper Theo gets into the con, the more she starts to question her loyalties. Complicating her subterfuge is a mysterious outlaw whose small moments of kindness contradict the blood he has on his hands, making Theo wonder who, exactly, is conning who. To save her town, Theo must parse façade from reality and choose between the barefaced malevolence she’s infiltrated and an evil she didn’t know lurked at home.


My Review: 

Bladestay is my first introduction to the writings from the talented author, Jackie Johnson. I thought this was a pretty good read. I enjoyed getting to know Theodora. I admired her bravery and courage. Her story was full of action, adventure, and history. I was fascinated from the start and could not put it down until I read the very last page. I loved it. 

I am giving Bladestay a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend it for readers who enjoy reading historical fiction with strong female lead characters. I would be interested in reading more like this from Jackie Johnson in the future. I believe this one should not be missed and definitely worth a read.

I received a digital copy of Jackie Johnson's Bladestay from the publisher, but was not required to write a positive review. This review is one hundred percent my own honest opinion. 



About Jackie Johnson:

Jackie Johnson is a San Diego born poet and novelist. Her background as a journalist, BA in history, and education in armed defense gives her a uniquely authentic voice within the historical genre. She’s been riding horses for over twenty years and had her own real-life cowboy love story when she fell in love with and married a horse trainer. Together, they established a ranch in Southern California where she spends her days writing, riding, and chasing after their dreams, their two children, four horses, six cats, and two dogs. Bladestay is her first novel.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon | BookBub


Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a finished copy of BLADESTAY, US Only.

Ends December 19th, midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:


#BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog

Spotlight Post/IG Post


Writer of Wrongs

Guest Post


Two Chicks on Books

Guest Post/IG Post


YA Books Central

Interview/IG Post


A Backwards Story

Guest Post


Rockstar Book Tours


Week Two:


Rajiv's Reviews

Review/IG Post


Locks, Hooks and Books



Country Mamas With Kids

Review/IG Post


A Blue Box Full of Books

IG Review/LFL Drop Pic/TikTok Post


Kim's Book Reviews and Writing Aha's

Review/IG Post


The Litt Librarian

Review/IG Post


Callisto’s calling

IG Review

Week Three:



IG Review



IG Review/TikTok Post



IG Review



IG Review


The Momma Spot



Confessions of the Perfect Mom

Review/IG Post



IG Review

Week Four:


Lifestyle of Me




IG Review


One More Exclamation

Review/IG Post/LFL Drop Pic


Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer

Review/IG Post



IG Review


More Books Please blog

Review/IG Post