Friday, April 29, 2016

A to Z Challenge: Y


For my Y I chose Yseult Part One.



Yseult the Wise and Yseult the Fair, mother and daughter, are members of the proud race of the Feadh Ree, the Old Race in Eriu. New ways and a new religion are coming to their land, and despite all their magic, they may be powerless to stop it. 

"Yseult" is a retelling of the tragic story of Tristan and Yseult. Yseult is a princess of Ireland, a land on the fringes of Europe, a land that had never been conquered by Rome. What would her life have been like in that pagan land before the advent of Christianity? 

This book is a re-imagining of Yseult's youth, never part of the legends — until now. 

"Yseult: Two Women" is the first book of the four part Yseult. All four parts were originally published in German translation with Random House Germany as "Flamme und Harfe" and followed by translations into Dutch and Italian.

Yseult was so beautifully written that you could practically feel magic coming through the pages.  There's a ring of sadness to the story which makes it that much of a better read.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: X


There are not a lot of books that start with X so this one was an easy choice. Xoe by Sara C. Roethle.


Xoe Meyers had a normal life. So she was stuck going to high school, and she only had a few friends to call her own. She liked her normal life. Things were about to change though, because there's a new guy in her small town, and he is anything but normal. Before Xoe can say, "Werewolf," her best friend's life is in peril, and Xoe's world is turned upside-down. Then, of course, there's Jason. Xoe doesn't trust him as far as she can throw him, and given that he's a vampire, she'd have to be able to catch him first.

This is my favourite genre and the one that I write in so I am perhaps a little pickier about books that I read in it.  Did I like this book?  Yes and no.  I loved the supernatural characterization it in, not forced down your throat but informative.  And demons are my favourite things, I love to write them and I love to read what other writers do with them.

The human elements in this book though, not so much.  Especially how the parents were written, which is something that often irritates me in books, but in this one I felt that it was contradicting itself about how they would act.  It took me out of the story to say "um, no."

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: W



We're so close to the end now that I can almost taste it.  Have you found lots of good blogs to read so far?  I have found a few as always that I will be keeping for the long haul.  On to today's review:


For nearly two years, Cade has been rejecting his Fae gift, his prescient Elsewhens―simply refusing to see or experience them. But the strain is driving a wedge between him and his theater troupe, Touchstone, and making him erratic on stage and off. It takes his best friend Mieka to bully Cade into accepting the visions again. But when Cade finally looks into the possible futures, he sees a royal castle blowing up, though his vision does not tell him who is responsible. But he knows that if it is in his visions, he can take action to stop it from happening. And when he finally discovers the truth, he takes the knowledge to the only man in the Kingdom who would believe him: his deadly enemy the Archduke.

Melanie Rawn's delightful creation of the world of Albeyn is a place where the magical races have joined with humans in a melting pot of powers, and everyone loves the theater of magic. In Window Wall, her irrepressible cast of characters mature―at least a little. Not that they'll ever settle down.

Window Wall is book 4 in Rawn's Glass Thorn Series, one of my favourite series by her so far.  Mieka has quickly developed into one of my favourite book characters, watching how he has developed and grown over the four books has been fantastic.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: V


Just a few more days now and we'll have made it through.  Are you tired?  I don't think I will read a thing in May except for my book club book.

My V book is Veiled Eyes by C.L. Bevill.


A vivid waking dream of giant cypress trees dripping with Spanish moss haunts Anna St. Thais. The trees sit on a black lake that resembles a dark Louisiana bayou with an evocative aura. The dream includes the presence of a man who seems to know Anna all too well and a group of people with strange telepathic powers, sometimes called veiled eyes. 

An orphan from Texas, she is on her way east to help out a friend when she encounters two terrifying things. Psychically, she begins to see and hear things through the eyes of an unknown individual, a man who knows more about her than she ever would have imagined. The second thing is that she has been kidnapped by a sociopathic trucker intent on making her his latest victim. 

When she is rescued by Gabriel Bergeron, a member of the elusive Lake People in Northwestern Louisiana, Anna doesn’t realize that he is her psychic counterpart and she has been inexplicably pulled to the area. She shares their strange colored gold eyes and their distinctive mental powers. They are a reclusive lot and know that Anna is one of them, but has been isolated by unknown circumstances. She is drawn into their incomparable world, something between that of the Creoles and Cajuns, and much in addition to those. 

There Anna finds a romantic link with Gabriel and the spine-tingling fear of not knowing who to trust. Her return has disturbed the inner workings of the group and threatens to expose secrets long concealed in the murky Louisiana bayous. There are secrets to be divulged about her past and why she was spirited away as an infant. Anna isn’t safe until she discovers the answers she so desperately requires.

This was an interesting read.  I liked the concept of it very much and there was lots of action to keep you reading.  It was hard to put down.

Monday, April 25, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: U


The book I picked for the letter U was Uneasy Spirits by M. Louisa Locke.



In this sequel to Maids of Misfortune, it is the fall of 1879 and Annie Fuller, a young San Francisco widow, has a problem. Despite her growing financial success as the clairvoyant Madam Sibyl, Annie doesn't believe in the astrology and palmistry her clients think are the basis for her advice.

Kathleen Hennessey, Annie Fuller's young Irish maid, has a plan. When her mistress is asked to expose a fraudulent trance medium, Arabella Frampton, Kathleen is determined to assist in the investigation, just like the Pinkerton detectives she has read about in the dime novels.

Nate Dawson, up-and-coming San Francisco lawyer, has a dilemma. He wants to marry the unconventional Annie Fuller, but he doesn't feel he can reveal his true feelings until he has a way to make enough money to support her.

In Uneasy Spirits, this cozy, historical mystery of romantic suspense, Annie delves into the intriguing world of 19th century spiritualism, encountering true believers and naïve dupes, clever frauds and unexplained supernatural phenomena.

She will soon find there are as many secrets as there are spirits swirling around the Frampton séance table. Some of those secrets will threaten the foundation of her career as Madam Sibyl and the future of her relationship with Nate Dawson, and, in time, they will threaten her very life itself.

Now this was a pretty good book, I enjoyed how it was written and it kept me wanted to read.  However I knew who the culprit was as soon as the character was introduced, it was all in how they acted.  Still needed to know his motivation though so there was that.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Gratitude Journals Book Blast

Journals

Gratitude Journals by MK McClintock

WHAT TALENTS HAVE YOU BEEN blessed with? What challenges have you faced and overcome? Who has impacted your life in a positive way, no matter how large or small the good deed? How did you feel when someone gave you a helping hand?

When we focus on the positive things in our lives, we are replacing negative energy with positive affirmations. To put it simply, gratitude means being grateful for everything you have and are, every single day.

This journal is a powerful instrument that provides a simple, yet effective foundation for your personal declarations of gratitude and thanksgiving. Discover your voice, your dreams, and the profound moments of your life with daily expressions of appreciation.

100% of all author royalties from the Africa Collection gratitude journals goes to the Africa Heartwood Project. Learn more about them at www.africaheartwoodproject.org.

gratitude journals





amazon





MK Mcclintock

Author MK McClintock

MK McClintock, an award-winning author and life-long seeker and adventurer, is inspired by the good works of mankind and believes that within every person is a better version of themselves waiting to be discovered. She lives a quiet life in the Rocky Mountains.

Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 5/2/16

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Saturday, April 23, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: T

Getting close to the end now. My T book is Those Red High Heels by Katherine May.


When Emma Walker wakes up to what can only be described as the crappiest day of her life, she has no idea that the series of unfortunate events that unfolded that day were going to pave the way to her new destiny. Emma's recently engaged best friend, Brynn, calls for Emma to ditch her life in Chicago, and to come immediately out to the Big Apple to perform her maid of honor duties. What Emma doesn't expect is to find the man of her dreams in Brynn's social circle. Not only is he taken, but he lives in a very different world than Emma is used to. Will Emma be able to fit into this new life, or will she return back to where she started? 

In this witty romantic novel by Katherine May, you will follow Emma on a life-changing adventure to New York City. Will Emma snag the man of her dreams, or just a really cute pair of red high heels?

This was a really fun read, I am a true believer that a great pair of shoes can change your life and I love a book based on that idea.  Emma was a fun character to read and her journey was amusing.

Friday, April 22, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: S



I have actually read a lot of S books recently but as I am trying to stick to a theme of books I found on my Kindle here I had to find a new one for the Challenge. Skeletons in the Closet by Jennifer L. Hart was perfect for this.  I chose to read it mostly because the purple thing on the cover rather reminded me of a Dalek but I am glad that I did.

Maggie Phillips hasn’t had it easy. As the wife of retired Navy SEAL, and the adoptive mother of two little hellions, Maggie is constantly looking for ways to improve her family’s financial situation. She accepts a cleaning position for her new neighbors (who redefine the term ‘eccentric’), never imagining she will end up as the sole alibi for a man with a fascination for medieval torture devices when he is brought up on murder charges. 

While Maggie struggles to prove the man’s innocence, her deadbeat brother arrives, determined to sell Maggie and Neil on his next great scheme and to mooch with a vengeance. If that isn’t bad enough, her in-laws, (the cut-throat corporate attorneys) descend on the house, armed with disapproval and condemnation, for the family’s annual Thanksgiving celebration. 

As the police investigation intensifies, Maggie searches for the killer among the upper echelon of Hudson, Massachusetts in the only way she can— by scrubbing their thrones. 

Of the porcelain variety, that is… 

This book was so much fun, Maggie is a fantastic character and her family is equally as fantastic.  You just kind of lose yourself in their world.  The mystery is great too, even though I really didn't see it coming it was perfect sense in the end.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Change of Heart Blog Tour

Change of Heart

Change of Heart by Jennifer Moore

This summer, Nathaniel Cavanaugh vacations in Lobster Cove to spend quality time with his kids after his estranged wife’s tragic death. Successful and well-connected, he is on the fast-track to the highest legal positions in the country, but his family life suffers. After an accident throws Val nearly into his lap and costs her a job opportunity, Nathaniel surprises himself by overlooking her outlandish appearance and lack of qualifications to offer her a job as his nanny for the summer.

Valdosta McKinley wishes for an internship at a Paris Art Institute to use her newly acquired art-history skills. She knows Nathaniel could never develop feelings for a girl from a trailer in a rural West Virginia holler—a lesson she learned the hard way years earlier.

Will pursuit of their professional goals require Nathaniel and Val to give up the dream of being a family?

Excerpt:

The crashing of waves soothed him and let him relax as he enjoyed the warm drink. His eyes drifted shut.

“Mr. Cavanaugh?”

With a start, he opened his eyes. “I really think you should call me Nathaniel.” He was starting to  get
drowsy.

“Sir, that would be completely inappropriate, not when I’m working for you.”

“That’s true, but sometimes you don’t seem like an employee.” 

Val raised her eyes and their gazes met. “I don’t act very professional, do I?”

“That’s not what I meant. Sometimes, you seem more like a friend.” Nathaniel could tell that his guard was down. Why did talking to someone at night free people of their inhibitions? He needed to be careful not to say anything he’d regret.

Val picked at her nails. “I need to thank you again for coming to get me. It’s the second time you’ve rescued me. I’m not doing very well in the whole ‘being an independent woman’ department, am I?”

“That’s what friends do.” He closed his eyes and let his head fall back against the chair. Moments later, he sleepily registered Val had moved the blanket to cover him and took the empty mug from his hand, but he was too tired to do more than mutter,     “Thanks.”

    “Good night, Nathaniel.” 

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Jennifer

Author Jennifer Moore

Jennifer Moore is a passionate reader and writer of all things romance due to the need to balance the rest of her world that includes a perpetually traveling husband and four active sons, who create heaps of laundry that is anything but romantic. She suffers from an unhealthy addiction to 18th and 19th century military history and literature. Jennifer has a B.A. in Linguistics from the University of Utah and is a Guitar Hero champion. She lives in northern Utah with her family, but most of the time wishes she was on board a frigate during the Age of Sail.



$25 Blog Tour giveaway

Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 5/1/16

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



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Blog Tour Schedule

April 18th
I Am A Reader - Spotlight
Julie Coulter Bellon - Review
Literary Time Out - Review
Cuzinlogic - Spotlight
Literary Chanteuse - Spotlight
Susan Heim on Writing - Spotlight

April 19th
Getting Your Read On - Review
Tifferz and her Sisterz - Review
Heidi Reads... - Spotlight
Why Not? Because I Said So! - Spotlight
beck valley books - Spotlight
Coffee Books & Art - Spotlight

April 20th
My Book a Day - Review
Reading List - Review
Katie's Clean Book Collection - Review
Bunny's Review - Spotlight
LeahSay's Views - Spotlight

April 21st
Wishful Endings - Review
Simple Wyrdings - Review
Kindle and Me - Spotlight
My Creatively Random Life - Spotlight
Queen Of All She Reads - Spotlight

April 22nd
Books Are Sanity!!! - Review
Bookworm Lisa - Spotlight
Hearts & Scribbles - Spotlight
Mel's Shelves - Spotlight
BookHounds - Spotlight

April 26th
Singing Librarian Books - Review
Rockin' Book Reviews - Spotlight
Min Reads and Reviews - Spotlight
Rebecca Belliston - Spotlight
Diana's Book Reviews - Spotlight

A to Z Challenge 2016: R


I have to say I really enjoyed my R book, it almost sent me down another series rabbit hole, but I resisted as I am so close to the finish line.  So close....

For R I read Rise of the Dragons by Morgan Rice, which is a book that Ace has read in French when we went though a kick of downloading French Kindle books and enjoyed.


Kyra, 15, dreams of becoming a famed warrior, like her father, even though she is the only girl in a fort of boys. As she struggles to understand her special skills, her mysterious inner power, she realizes she is different than the others. But a secret is being kept from her about her birth and the prophecy surrounding her, leaving her to wonder who she really is.

When Kyra comes of age and the local lord comes to take her away, her father wants to wed her off to save her. Kyra, though, refuses, and she journeys out on her own, into a dangerous wood, where she encounters a wounded dragon—and ignites a series of events that will change the kingdom forever. 

15 year old Alec, meanwhile, sacrifices for his brother, taking his place in the draft, and is carted off to The Flames, a wall of flames a hundred feet high that wards off the army of Trolls to the east. On the far side of the kingdom, Merk, a mercenary striving to leave behind his dark past, quests through the wood to become a Watcher of the Towers and help guard the Sword of Fire, the magical source of the kingdom’s power. But the Trolls want the Sword, too—and they prepare for a massive invasion that could destroy the kingdoms forever.

With its strong atmosphere and complex characters, RISE OF THE DRAGONS is a sweeping saga of knights and warriors, of kings and lords, of honor and valor, of magic, destiny, monsters and dragons. It is a story of love and broken hearts, of deception, of ambition and betrayal. It is fantasy at its finest, inviting us into a world that will live with us forever, one that will appeal to all ages and genders.

This is a fantastic start to a series, the characters are well introduced and there are many questions raised that make you want to keep reading.  Which is what I would have kept doing if I had more time.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: Q


Wow Q already it feels like the days are just flying by.  I have been reading a lot of interesting blogs this year as I had most of these post already up and done which was much better than the 1-2 blogs a day I usually managed in other years.  I have been hitting up to ten a day this year.  Lots of new blogs to follow now.  And I have found so many more books to read that I may never leave my house again.  I will have to start getting groceries delivered to add extra reading time.

Anyway, my book for Q is Queen Mab by Kate Danley.


"Oh then I see Queen Mab hath been with you..."

Everyone knows Romeo & Juliet, but what if it isn't the whole story? What if Queen Mab, mentioned in only one speech in the entire play, is actually responsible for all the tragedy about to strike the Houses of Montague and Capulet? And her love for Mercutio the key to everything...

Weaving Shakespeare's original text into a new story, fans of The Woodcutter will love this latest retelling by award-winning author Kate Danley. Experience the romance of Romeo & Juliet from a different point of view - through the eyes of the bringer of dreams... Queen Mab

The jury is still out for me as to whether or not I liked this book.  When I read it I was pumped full of cold medication hoping to prevent the cold that I was coming down with from getting any worse and my head was very fuzzy.

Romeo and Juliet is not my favourite of Shakespeare's plays, I find it so utterly depressing and while Danley's version is slightly less depressing I am not sure if that really helps.  There are parts that are very confusing and it is by no means a lighthearted read.

The redeeming quality is Queen Mab herself who is a fantastic character and goes through great development over the course of the story.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: P

The book I chose for the letter P was Project ELE by Rebecca Gober and Courtney Nickels.


Millions have already died, and thousands more are perishing daily. As a last ditch effort to preserve the human race, the government implements Project ELE. With the earth heating at rapid speeds, all remaining survivors are forced to turn to F.E.M.A. shelters to wait out ELE's wrath. 

Fifteen-year-old Willow Mosby's life, as she knows it, ends the moment she walks through the shelter's door. Willow has to quickly adapt to the new challenges that shelter life demands, the least of which includes making new friends and working a full time job.

Soon after making an interesting discovery, Willow and her friends start exhibiting strange abilities. Seeking answers, they embark on a mission to find out what these new abilities mean and whether they are a gift or a curse. 

This new adventure can send her world crashing down around her. The question is: Can Willow survive the fall?

This is a great story idea but I am not sure if the execution quite follows through.  It starts of really well and the ending is fantastic and makes you want to keep reading but the middle is a little blah and to be honest if I hadn't have been reading it as part of a challenge I probably would not have made it to the end.

Monday, April 18, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: O


So far my system for picking a book for each letter of the alphabet has been pretty random, scroll to that letter in my Kindle list and just pick one with a shiny looking cover.  I think if I were to do this again I might pick a more scientific choosing process.

Anyhow, my book for O is On Any Given Sundae by Marilyn Brant.


Nothing tops the sweetness of an unexpected love...

When Elizabeth's uncle Siegfried and Rob's uncle Pauly rush off to Europe for a month, they temporarily relinquish the reins of their ice cream shop to their respective niece and nephew -- two people who may have grown up practically next door to each other but who have next to nothing in common.

Elizabeth "Please Don't Call Me Lizzy" Daniels is a small-town Wisconsin girl at heart. Shy and inexperienced at love, the frizzy-haired dessert cookbook writer still resides in her quaint hometown of Wilmington Bay, stutters painfully when nervous and is only comfortable with her laptop and her tiny circle of cooking pals. She must come out of hiding over the summer to help her uncle, but she's convinced her childhood crush, Rob, barely knows she exists.

Roberto "You'd Better Call Me Rob, or Else" Gabinarri is the town's golden boy and former football star who left home after high school, made a splash in the big city and never looked back. He has to return to Wilmington Bay to uphold a promise to his uncle, but he's counting the minutes until he can escape to the relative anonymity of his fast-paced, commitment-free city life and the sports-themed restaurant he owns in Chicago. Despite his chattiness and charm, Rob was always intimidated by quiet, brainy girls like "Frizzy Lizzy," and he isn't pleased to be back in the place where people like her still see him as that popular but dumb jock -- an image he worked for almost a decade to shed.

The unlikely pair tries to make the best of being stuck together, but Elizabeth has a pressing publication deadline, and Rob has an Italian mother bent on lining up potential hometown brides for him. Rob comes up with an idea -- something that might help them both -- but it involves just a bit of family deception. With time running out to finish her cookbook and her friends already stretched to the max trying to assist them, Elizabeth reluctantly agrees.

Neither Rob nor Elizabeth are used to playing games of pretense, but can love, hot summer nights and, maybe, some chocolate sauce, caramel and whipped cream...turn their farce into reality?

This was not my favourite book that I have read during this challenge, I really felt this story was a bit...done already.  This is a very highly used romance story formula you know and nothing really made this particular telling of it stand out for me.  Except it involved food.  This book did make me really hungry.


Saturday, April 16, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: N



So far I have read an interesting mix of books and have more or less enjoyed it.  This was about the point where my attention started to go though and I started reading for fun again rather than reading books for the challenge.  Then I realized that I still had seven more books to read and it was March 30th.  Oops!

My book for N was Nellie by Cynthia Woolf.


Nellie Wallace is a young widow with two children. In post civil-war New York, the men are scarce and none want the burden of a wife with children. Her dead husband's family is wealthy, and cruel. Desperate to escape their influence, and eager for a home, a husband, and a stable life for her children, Nellie decides to make a new life in San Francisco as a mail order bride. 

Saloon owner Blake Malone is a bachelor and likes it that way. He worked hard for everything he has, but the San Francisco City Council won’t approve his plans to build a family emporium unless he is a family man himself. The solution? A mail order bride from New York who will bring him a ready-made family, stability, and the council's approval. 

Blake expects his future wife to care for his home and, other than helping him impress the city council, to stay out of his business. He expects life as usual. What he gets is an unexpected desire to win Nellie's heart, a dangerous threat to his new bride, and a rich benefactor determined to steal his new family out from under him. Blake believed his battle for success a hard one. But he will discover that the battle to win Nellie's heart and keep his family safe is going to take everything he's got. 

First I just have to say that every time I read Nellie's name I thought of Nellie Olsen from Little House on the Prairie even though the two characters are nothing alike.  That's just how my mind works.

I did not think that I was going to like a book about a mail order bride, but the free Amazon book lists that I subscribe to seem to be full of them so I was bound to read one at some point during this challenge.  I am glad that this was the one that I wound up reading.  It is fantastically well written and very easy to read.

Nellie is a fantastically strong female character who is looking to take care of her family the best was that she can in what is very much a man's world.  The love that blossoms between herself and Blake is beautiful and strong and in no way as corny as I thought that it was going to be.

Friday, April 15, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: M



For M I read Miss Adventure by Geralyn Corcillo.


Best Indie Book of 2013! Best Humor Book of 2013! Double winner of the Rebecca's Reads Choice Awards: It's Chick Lit full force. Can daring adventures with an adrenaline junkie give a daydreaming pushover the courage she needs in order to make her life count for something?  

When a freak fast-food accident almost kills scaredy-cat Lisa Flyte, she decides it's time to get a backbone and really start living out loud. But how is a shrinking violet like Lisa supposed to get tough all of a sudden after a lifetime of watching from the couch? Jack Hawkins, that's how. When Lisa finds out that the outdoor extremist from her MBA classes needs a clueless urbanite to test his top-secret line of adventure gear for beginners, she gets the most outlandish idea of her life: she will be his undercover test dummy if he helps her become brave on their adventures in the wild. They strike a deal. But can Lisa use her outdoor moxie to become the alpha hero of her everyday life? Will she find the grit to pursue a career she really wants or the nerve to stand up to her bullying family? And will she get gutsy enough to go after Jack? He's a man who's not afraid of anything...except maybe of falling for Lisa.


This book was really a fun read, Lisa got to do some fantastically interesting stuff over the course of it.  I wish that I had the lack of fear to get out and do more adventurous stuff in my life.  

The story line progresses along a pretty interesting track as well and comes to a good conclusion.  

Thursday, April 14, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: L


L was a hard read but a wonderful book, Lionheart by Martha Rofheart.


Richard of England was known as ‘Lionheart’. 

He was a King unbeaten in battle. 

His sword carved out a godlike legend from the battlefields of France to the blood-soaked sands of the Holy Land. 

He was England’s most romantic and heroic king, a passionate and sensitive man, great warrior, poet and musician, and a charismatic leader, blindly adored by the knights he commanded, deeply loved by more than one woman. 

But one woman captured his heart. 

She was a woman unchallenged in the lists of love. 

Blondelza, as daringly independent as she was beautiful. She lived by her wits and talent on the stage, and refused to yield to any man who was not her equal. 

In a royal court brimming with political intrigue, delicate alliances, and fierce jealousies, these two came together though all their world conspired to keep them apart — two proud and free spirits held in thrall by a passion that threatened to consume them both… 

In this masterly novel set in the time of the bloody Crusades and the intricate Courts of Love, the fiery Plantagenet rulers come to life: Richard’s father, the boorish womanizer, King Henry II; his mother, a legendary beauty and a unique woman of the medieval world, Eleanor of Aquitaine; his brothers the princes, vying for land and loyalty and power. 

And at the very centre is Richard himself and the woman he loved above all others, the talented and free-spirited Blondelza, mother of his illegitimate son, who mocked the laws of God and man.

Lionheart felt like the book that would never end but in a good way, I enjoy a good long story and Richard's was.  At first I felt that the viewpoint jumps were annoying but once I got used to them I really found that they added to the story.

All in all a great read that i really recommend spending some time on.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: K


Killer Cupcakes by Leighann Dobbs was my quick read for K.


Things are going great for Lexy Baker. She's finally opened her dream bakery, gotten rid of her cheating boyfriend and settled into her grandmothers house with her perky dog Sprinkles at her side.

But her blissful life doesn't last long. When her ex boyfriend is found poisoned with cupcakes from her bakery, Lexy finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation headed up by her hunky neighbor detective Jack Perillo.

With the help of a gang of iPad toting, would-be detective grandmothers, Lexy decides to take it upon herself to find the real murderer in order to clear her name and get her bakery back in business. 

As things heat up on the murder trail, in the kitchen and between Lexy and the hunky detective, it's a race against time to put the real murderer behind bars and get back to baking.

Will Lexy get her man?

This was such a fast read for me that it felt like it was over almost before it began.  That made me a little sad as I was really getting into it.  One of my favourite parts of this book was the shoes descriptions, I am a total shoe addict and this book fed my soul.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: J



J is a great letter and my J book was a really fun read.  Just Ella by Annette K. Larsen.


Ariella was only looking for a distraction, something to break up the monotony of palace life. What she found was a young man willing to overlook her title and show her a new and vibrant way of life. But when her growing feelings for Gavin spiral out of control and clash with the expectations of her station, she will discover that the consequences of her curiosity are far more severe than she'd imagined.

To start, I really love the name Ariella, it's just fantastic.  As is the cover art, I would definitely pick this book up in a store.  The story was an easy read, lots of action, not too much violence and not too many slow spots.

Monday, April 11, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: I



Reading is one of my most favourite things to do so I thought that reviewing a book every day for the challenge would be so easy, turns out I was wrong.  So far I have fallen down the rabbit hole of three authors and I am only at I.

My I book is Imhotep by Jerry Dubs.


"Imhotep" is the first book in a four-novel series about the ancient Egyptian architect. 
Stumbling in the dark of an unfinished tomb beneath the sands of Saqqara, American tourist Tim Hope unknowingly passes through a time portal that leads to ancient Egypt — a time before the Sphinx, before the great pyramids of Giza, and long before the loss of his beloved Addy. 

When he discovers that two other Americans preceded him through the time portal, Tim immerses himself in the ancient world to search for them. As he becomes more comfortable with the simpler, more immediate land, he finds himself irresistibly attracted to the delicate Meryt, a wbt-priestess for the god Re. 

Learning that a seven-year famine has led to a plot to overthrow King Djoser, Tim discovers that his fate, the lives of the two Americans and the future of Egypt rest in the hands of the legendary Imhotep, master architect of the Step Pyramid, renowned physician and intimate adviser to King Djoser.

This was not a book that I would have picked to read on my own, but I really, really got into it.  It even lead to a late night discussion about how the pyramids were really built.  Apparently there is a perfectly logical explanation that has nothing to do with time travel or aliens. (Boring!)

Anyway, the book was fabulous.  A bit violent in spots but the story moved a long really well and I enjoyed it.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: H



I can hardly believe that I have made it this far already and read all these stories, that feels like it's a lot in a short period of time even though I am only on H.  I know my reviews have mostly been short but hey, I don't want to make you guys read a novel.

Today's book is Habored Secrets by Marie F. Martin.


Now over 100,000 kindle downloads. (a contemporary novel with a psychological mystery in the unearthing of family secrets. In May of 1935, Blinny Platt's homestead shack burns to the ground forever leaving her family asunder, scattering them like the embers flew on the Montana wind. She was only eight-years-old, sent away and in charge of her little sister. She could handle that because Platts take care of Platts.

However, it is the hidden secrets of her parents smoldering beneath the charred remains that haunts Blinny until 1982. She once again leaves the home place to build a house for herself. As the foundation is poured and the walls go up, each of the hurtful memories are uncovered. Finally the mystery, left in the ashes of the burned home, is revealed. How could her mother do what she did?

This book was so hard to put down, I got into reading it and I got so absorbed in wanting to know what happened.  Fantastic writing!  It was a very dark book and really not one for reading before you went to bed but I really did enjoy the read overall.  Blinny is such a wonderfully flawed, relatable character.

Friday, April 8, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: G



My favourite substance on Earth is coffee so it comes as no surprise that I chose Ghost in The Coffee Machine by Charity Tahmaseb for my G story.



Katy and her grandmother have always used coffee to catch ghosts. It pays the bills and keeps them in high-end beans. But after Katy’s grandmother dies, it’s as if she’s taken all the ghosts with her. 

Until Katy discovers there’s a rival ghost hunter in town, one who uses tea--of all things--and one who has stolen all her clients. But when an epic infestation threatens, Katy can’t help but get involved. It will take all her wits--and some excellent Kona blend--to fight the ghost in the coffee machine. 

This was a really fun, fun story.  I love the detail that went into it and how one must make all different cups of coffee for the spirits, three of each, as you don't know how they take it.  Personally I take mine light and sweet and I don't imagine that changing in the after life.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

A to Z Challenge 2016: F



Big F little f what begins with f?  No wait wrong book.  For F I choose another fun kids story because really the world needs more fun.  'Fierce Winds and Fiery Dragons' by Nan Sweet.


Ivy and Carrie love their new classroom even if the new teacher is a little strange. When Mrs. Huffity asks for volunteers to care for an egg, Ivy doesn’t budge. She’s had a few scary dreams about that egg and wants nothing to do with it. 

But when trouble comes, Ivy defends the egg. In her desire to save the baby that hatches, Ivy is tossed into the middle of an adventure. She discovers more than she ever wanted to know about fierce winds and fiery dragons. 


This book felt like an old familiar story to me the whole time I was reading it, it was a nice feeling, like comfortable pajamas.  I really enjoyed reading it, I love a good dragon story.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

A To Z Challenge 2016: E



Have you seen anyone with a good theme yet?  Personally I am in love with my theme even though I am getting a little over the reading.


Yes, everybody loves Valentines! From mothers to sisters, brothers, fathers and grandparents to friends to making new friends, Valentines are the perfect way to say you care. This book is filled with charming illustrations of Valentines in many forms. Its sweet message of love and friendship, all in rhyme, is appropriate for everyday as well as Valentine’s Day.

Ok, today was my cheat day and I read a kid's book, not even to my kid, just on my own.  It's a sweet fun book full of lot's of love.  A great read which I think I may read again to Cat.