Monday, January 05, 2015

Prejudice Meets Pride by Rachael Anderson ~ Book Review ~ A Recommended Read!


After years of pinching pennies and struggling to get through art school, Emma Makie’s hard work finally pays off with the offer of a dream job. But when tragedy strikes, she has no choice but to make a cross-country move to Colorado Springs to take temporary custody of her two nieces. She has no money, no job prospects, and no idea how to be a mother to two little girls, but she isn’t about to let that stop her. Nor is she about to accept the help of Kevin Grantham, her handsome neighbor, who seems to think she’s incapable of doing anything on her own.

Prejudice Meets Pride is the story of a guy who thinks he has it all figured out and a girl who isn’t afraid to show him that he doesn’t. It’s about learning what it means to trust, figuring out how to give and to take, and realizing that not everyone gets to pick the person they fall in love with. Sometimes, love picks them.




~Rae's Review~

Rachael is quickly becoming one of my current go to authors for fun and sweet romance whenever I need my fave channel in a book (you guys know which channel ;-)). In her books I've come across, she always writes likeable and relatable characters that bring the chemistry without focusing on the physical only. As readers of this blog knows, I'm a stickler for Hallmark movies in books and Rachael knows how to nail it! I wouldn't mind seeing this pop up on the channel someday soon. With the romance angle and heroine Emma raising her two young nieces it fits right in with the channel's trademark movies. Even though she clashed with our hero Kevin in the beginning, I couldn't help enjoying their interaction knowing these two were already getting under each other's skins.

Fans of Jane Austen may not see the similarities to her famous book of a similar name but Ms. Anderson does a contemporary and very interesting take on the themes of the original. I loved seeing the switch here which made the book all the more fun to read. Can't wait to read more of the series!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop (December 21st to 31st)


2013-Midwinters-Eve-Hop
Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop
Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & Bookhounds
December 21st to 31st

Friday, December 26, 2014

Lexi’s Pathetic Fictional Love Life book blast ($50 Giveaway)


Lexis
Tour Schedule



Lexi's Pathetic Fictional Love LifeLexi's Pathetic Fictional Love Life

Lexi Middleton has been socially invisible to her classmates, but starting her junior year, that’s going to change. First, she’s determined to hook a boyfriend, ensuring dates with flowers and possible kisses on the doorstep. Second, she wants to be a writer for the school paper, even though it freaks her out to think of everyone judging her by her punctuation and metaphors.

High school is difficult enough—keeping up her grades, dealing with increasing sibling rivalry, and trying to stay out of the way of her personal nemesis, Amberlee—but when Lexi catches the eye of her long-time crush, she also becomes the focus of mean-girl tactics.

Caught between who she was and who she wants to be, Lexi must decide how to confront a bully, and choose who to let into her heart.
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Jo NoelleAuthor Jo Noelle

Jo Noelle grew up in Colorado and Utah but also spent time in Idaho and California. She has two adult children and three small kids. She teaches teachers and students about reading and writing, grows freakishly large tomatoes, enjoys cooking especially for desserts, builds furniture, sews beautiful dresses, and likes to go hiking in the nearby mountains. Oh, and by the way, she’s two people—

Canda Mortensen and Deanna Henderson, a mother/daughter writing team.

They began writing separately several years ago but found the process much more fun when they started collaborating. They are debut authors, with Lexi’s Pathetic Fictional Love Life as their first completed work. Other titles include Newbie and Da**ation.

Deanna attended college before marrying and starting her family.

Canda received a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a Reading Specialist endorsement, and a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership. Her day job focuses on teaching teachers and children about literacy.

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Book Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/18/14

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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Thursday, December 18, 2014

If You Believe by Mya O’Malley Blog Tour (December 15th to 24th)

I recently added this to my bookshelf and can't wait to dive into it! Stay tuned for a possible upcoming review. :-) ~R

If You Believe (1)




If you believeIf You Believe by Mya O'Malley

Sometimes love only comes once in a lifetime. For some lucky people, it is possible to love again.

Melody and Jack had shared an unforgettable love story that abruptly came to an end. Melody, left picking up the pieces, finds herself alone years later, with no hope or desire to date again. With the holiday season approaching, Melody finds it particularly difficult to get Jack out of her thoughts.

Jack isn’t sure if he’s an angel or a ghost, but his mind is set on one thing only, finding a new love for Melody by Christmas Eve at midnight. Easier said than done, with many obstacles to tackle, Jack underestimates how difficult the task is. With conflicting emotions, Jack takes it upon himself to find a man for a woman he still loves.

With the clock ticking as the holidays approach, this charming story of finding love the second time around will have you laughing and crying, but ultimately, it will have you believing in true love.



~Excerpt~


Excerpt from If You Believe- Mya O’Malley

He stood, watching her, feeling every ounce of her pain, her anguish. He was probably the only one who understood what it was like to lose the person you loved, the person who was everything in the world to you.
If only he could just touch her, reach out to her, make her feel happy again. But that was just selfish on his part, wasn’t it? It wouldn’t be fair to Melody. Anybody could see that even three years later, she was still struggling. Hadn’t he always told her that if something happened to him, he would want her to fall in love again? It saddened him to think that if she continued down this cold and lonely path, she would be alone forever.
Melody had wanted it all, a home filled with children, a loving marriage. Thinking back to how happy they had once been, it broke his heart to see her this way, and it was always saddest to see her like this around the holidays, which were quickly approaching.
Jack’s mind was whirling with ideas, if only...He wished that he could talk to her just one more time, but alas, that was against the rules. If only there was some way, if only he could help her see the light. The corners of Jack’s mouth crept up as his mind took hold of an impossible thought. Would he be able to pull this off? If he did, could he ever be the same again?....

The electricity was undeniable. It was something that he should have considered, knowing how powerful their attraction and love had been in life. The look on Melody’s face was shock, confusion and curiosity all rolled into one. He would have to remember not to touch her again, it was simply too much of a risk to take. He knew that if his cover was revealed, the rules stated that he could never make contact with her again.
“What was...did you feel?” Poor Melody peered at him with those gorgeous light brown eyes of hers. There was something different about her eyes now; once they had been filled with spark and mischief, but now they were sadder, as if the light had somehow gone out. The same eyes that had looked at him with varying degrees of emotions for all those precious years they had shared together. The same eyes that held him spellbound right now. Jack didn’t know what to expect; he had no way of knowing how hard it would be to not reach out and touch this woman who was his wife, the love of his life. She evoked so much emotion in him that he had to turn his head before she saw the tears that sprang from his eyes. He had known this would be hard, but Melody took his breath away. Melody was always beautiful, but now she also appeared slightly sad and fragile. Looking down at her so many times before, he knew of her sadness, of course, but standing right here beside her, Jack could practically feel her strong emotions within his own heart.
Since he had gone to great lengths to disguise his true identity, Jack would have to do better than this. There was no way that she could recognize him by his appearance. He was once tall,
standing six foot three inches tall, maintaining a trim physique with messy light brown hair. He now stood barely five foot seven with wavy dark hair and a stocky build. The only thing about his appearance that Jack wasn’t able to change was his eyes. Nobody could change their eyes, because it was a fact that eyes were the windows to the soul.
Melody stood before him, her mouth gaping open as if she were caught in a spell. Think of something, quick, he told himself. “Melody. I heard great things about your store. You see, I’m new to this area and I was just walking around and I figured I’d come check out your store.”
Melody appeared as if she had composed herself slightly. Clearing her throat, she finally spoke. “Where are you from, if you don’t mind me asking.”
He really should have been more prepared, how could he have forgotten how inquisitive Melody was?
“Um, I’m from down south, Florida.”
“Whereabouts? I have a friend from the Orlando area.” He should have also remembered her old college roommate from Orlando. Was Miami far enough away to field off further questions?
“Miami.”
“Miami? What brings you all the way up north to the New York area?”
Wow, she should have been a lawyer instead of owning a business. “My job. I work in the city now and live here in the suburbs.”
“What do you do for work?”
Thinking quickly on his feet, Jack steered away from his real occupation in life, working for an insurance company. “I work for a pharmaceutical company. I’m in sales.” That ought to do it. He was reminded of a time when Melody had quizzed him nonstop when they had first met, he had felt like he
was interviewing for a job. They had laughed many times together over that memory.
“Oh. Well, who is it that recommended you to my store?” Her eyes peered cautiously through her striking auburn hair. The long hair that was always slightly out of place, always in her eyes. Wishing that he could reach out and touch her beautiful hair just once more, he reeled himself back in.
“Just some guy at a diner recently. He raved about the selection of books and the coffee. Hmm, if I recall, he also said that you have the best cheesecake in town.” That should do it. Melody loved to bake and could go on and on about her desserts.
And that she did, thank goodness for the distraction of a good cheesecake. When Melody had stopped gushing about how she prepared her cheesecake, she caught herself and chuckled.
“You must think I’m something, rambling on like this. I’m sorry, I just realized that I didn’t catch your name.”
My name, my name. Something unusual perhaps, but fitting for a friend. “Oliver.” Where did that come from?
“Oliver. Well, Oliver, I don’t usually do this because we are closed, but would you like to try some of the cheesecake? We happen to have some left over.”
“Oliver” could tell that he had gotten on Melody’s good side. She wasn’t a particularly outgoing person. As a matter of fact, she was usually pretty shy, but he was delighted to see that he had made an impression on her. Or perhaps it was just good business sense. Either way, Oliver had succeeded in completing the first step of his mission: meeting Melody.


****
Melody couldn’t recall the last time that she had felt so comfortable with a total stranger. It wasn’t like she was even physically attracted to him, Oliver wasn’t her type at all. He was the complete opposite of Jack in every way. Well, in every way except for those captivating blue eyes. It was uncanny how much Oliver’s eyes reminded Melody of Jack’s eyes. It wasn’t just the color or the shape, but it was the intensity of his gaze. That was probably why Melody had felt so comfortable with him from the start.
“I know that you’re going to think this is forward, but would you mind showing me around town sometime?”
Melody sucked in a breath and inwardly panicked.
“My girlfriend is coming up in a few weeks and I wanted to show her around a bit.” He finished.
Melody’s shoulders visibly dropped as she let out a sigh. “Sure, yes, Oliver, I think that would be fine.”
Two finished slices of chocolate cheesecake and decaf coffees later, Melody realized this was the best evening she’d had in, well, just about three years.







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Mya OmalleyAuthor Mya O'Malley
Mya O’Malley was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, where she currently lives with her husband, daughter and three step-daughters. The family also consists of two boxers; Destiny and Dolce and a ragdoll cat named Colby. Mya earned an undergraduate degree in special education and a graduate degree in reading and literacy. She works as a special education teacher and enjoys making a difference in the lives of her students.

Mya currently has two new releases: At First Sight, a contemporary romance about dating in the modern world, published by Astraea Press, and Where There is Love, a contemporary romance in which a woman struggles with past obstacles, ultimately faced with whether or not she will open her heart to love. Where There is Love is published with Solstice Publishing. Mya is excited to say that Astraea Press will be releasing her contemporary holiday paranormal romance titled If You Believe on November 25, 2014. Due to be released late January is The Calm After the Storm, published by TouchPoint Press. This novel is a contemporary romance taking place in the setting of Hurricane Sandy. The story revolves around the idea of a utility worker from Georgia falling in love with a woman in New York.

Mya’s passion is writing; she has been creating stories and poetry since she was a child. Mya spends her free time reading just about anything she can get her hands on. She is a romantic at heart and loves to create stories with unforgettable characters. Mya likes to travel; she has visited several Caribbean Islands, Mexico and Costa Rica. Mya is currently working on her sixth novel.


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$25 Blog Tour Giveaway


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Ends 1/4/15

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 readinglight.com. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.





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Forbidden Blog Tour + $25 Giveaway

How gorgeous is this cover! The blurb also caught my eye, making me eager to add this book to my wishlist. :-)

Forbidden Kimberley
Forbidden by Kimberley Griffiths Little

In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden’s tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden’s turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe’s leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family’s position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden’s heart.

Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden’s heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb’s increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden’s every move, she knows she must find a way to escape—or die trying.

With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family’s survival on the line, Jayden must embark on a deadly journey to save the ones she loves—and find a true love for herself.

Set against the brilliant backdrop of the sprawling desert, the story of Jayden and Kadesh will leave readers absolutely breathless as they defy the odds and risk it all to be together.






Praise for Forbidden

*STARRED* Review, ALA BOOKLIST

". . . At its core, this is a romance, with all the push and pull that goes along with impossible love, and Little elevates the story by creating a perilous landscape, both outward and inward, as Jayden must deal with the hardship of desert life as well as her own desires."

SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

"This is a fast-paced, entertaining choice which will appeal to fans of historical fiction and romance."

"Lush, lyrical, romantic. Forbidden transports readers into a vividly imagined place and time."
--Claudia Gray, New York Times bestselling author

"The harsh beauty of the deserts of ancient Mesopotamia come to life in Forbidden, with beautiful descriptions that will make you crave water and check for sand in your clothes. Your heart will break as you root for Jayden to triumph over the many struggles that threaten to tear her world apart, and the ending will leave you thirsting for more!"
--Sara B. Larson, author of Defy



EXCERPT:

The night was starkly beautiful under a canopy of jeweled stars. I savored my moments of freedom, which were marred by the realization that it was dripping away day by day.

The sizzle of coffee beans roasting in the skillet floated across the still air. Cups clinked on a tray as my father passed them around the circle. The aroma of roasted brew spiced with cardamom seeped into the night.

As I tried to slip past, Horeb’s eyes caught mine. Firelight flickered over his face, outlining his jaw and wind-tangled black hair. He was devastatingly handsome just as all the girls said, but his lips curled into a smile that sent shudders down my spine.

Horeb’s glance lingered on my body, settling not on my face, but lower, as if he was undressing me right there on the dirt path.

His eyes locking onto mine, Horeb rose from the circle of men. I jerked around, breaking off his stare. Walking faster, I turned the corner of the tent just as his arm reached out to stop me.

“So, little cousin,” Horeb said. “Have you been enjoying the betrothal ceremony? Tell me, are the women telling stories of marital relations?”

My breath caught like a thorn in my throat. The women’s ceremonies were not discussed with any male—only inside the privacy of a marriage bed.

“You shouldn’t be saying these things to me,” I said.

Running his fingers down my arm, Horeb continued to study me. “There are many things I’d like to say to you, Jayden. Do to you.”

There used to be a time when my throat pounded every time Horeb turned my direction. A time when he was growing into those big, dark eyes and that hard, muscular body. Moments when I wanted to touch his thick, black hair, or run my finger along his jaw to discover what a boy’s skin felt like with a newly growing beard. But now that I was sixteen, and he twenty, his stares made me uneasy. My heart still pounded, but not from love. And I wasn’t sure what it was or what to call it.

 
Author Kimberley Griffiths Little
Award-winning author Kimberley Griffiths Little was born in San Francisco, but now lives in New Mexico on the banks of the Rio Grande with her husband and their three sons. Her middle-grade novels, When the Butterflies Came, The Last Snake Runner, The Healing Spell, and Circle of Secrets, have been praised as “fast-paced and dramatic,” with “beautifully realized settings.” Kimberley adores anything old and musty with a secret story to tell. She’s stayed in the haunted tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland; sailed the Seine in Paris; ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan; shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul; and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria.





Forbidden


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Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 1/4/15

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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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Last Enchantress ~Freebie Alert~ & $100 Giveaway

This is the last day for the freebie download so grab it while you can! :-D ~ R

last enchantressThe Last Enchantress by Scott & Judith Powell

Being nineteen for over three hundred years bites, and being single in New York with magical powers isn't much better.

Eva is trying to live an everyday life in New York. When this fails, she takes a seemingly unmagical job as a translator for a wealthy American family in Spain. Eva cannot stay out of trouble for long as she runs into a friendly but hungry vampire named Louis. Eva feels drawn to this handsome, dangerous stranger who has problems of his own.

Louis's life was just fine until Eva walked into his church. She smells like heaven. Or is it hell, always smelling but never partaking? Surely she is the devil coming to collect on his lost soul.




Download a FREE copy of The Last Enchantress
Available December 15th to 17th



PowellAuthor Biography

Scott Powell was born in Burlington, Vermont, to a father who was a police officer and a mother who emigrated from South Korea. He received a degree in marketing from the University of Las Vegas, Nevada, and a master's degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Scott served a two-year Spanish-speaking mission for his church. He is a mixed martial artist who continues to train with his father, a second-degree black belt in tae kwon do and a kick boxer.

Besides being married to Scott for almost seventeen years, Judith Powell is a stay-at-home mom whose whole life has been full of stories. Being raised by an Irish storytelling father and a Native American mother, stories have filled her life and her head until they finally had no choice but to flow out through her fingertips.

Praise for the Book
What fun, and new perspective on vampires. And the intro of new specie, Enchantress, gives this novel a wonderful and imaginative take.

It gives us another take on Vampires and the only Enchantress left in the world. The story flows smoothly and the characters are developed well.

Let me just start by saying for the record I am not a huge fan of Vampires or flying humans, but this book has led me away from that concept with a fantastic storyline that focused on a man and woman who were meant to be. The fighting scenes were very detailed and visual as you can tell the authors made this a point of emphasis in preparing this book.

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~Excerpt~

The sun was just starting to rise, and I knew that her disturbing dream would not lead to sleeping late. I could hear her heart beating faster as she began to wake up. Wrapping myself in my cloak to protect my skin from the dawn’s light (the sun’s rays felt like hundreds of tiny needles on my flesh), I departed the room. Closing the French doors behind me, I waited on the roof for her to appear. I planned to spy on her until she exposed herself as the typical mortal that I knew she must be.

A few moments later, she walked out through the same doors I had just used, dressed only in a cream translucent nightgown. Her ankles were bare and slight, and I could just see the outline of her slim legs beneath her nightdress as the sunlight began to touch her skin. She walked purposely to a small stone bench under a tree that had not yet awoken this year and most likely never would. Just as quickly as she had come, she stood and began to walk back toward her room. I was feeling playful. What did it really matter if I revealed myself? I jumped down without a sound and sat on the bench that she had just occupied. Even though she had only been here but a moment, I could still feel her warmth lingering on the surface. Somehow, she sensed I was there, and she began to run, which was not surprising. I was sure fear motivated her movement. There was no need to pursue. I could catch her easily. But then she did something that put all my old questions to rest and created new ones. She jumped up and grabbed the edge of the roof. Using it as leverage, she flipped her body up into the arch, doing more moves than a gymnast at the Olympics, and landed, facing me, on the roof.


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Book Blast Giveaway

$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/31/14

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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Rough Around the Edges Meets Refined Blog Tour & Book Review

 Rough Around the Edges


Rough Around the EdgesAround the Edges Meets Refined (Meet Your Match #2) by Rachael Anderson


For Noah Mackie, life is finally back on track. He has a great support system, a promised promotion is on its way, and he's finally getting the hang of this single father thing. But when the job falls through and his neighbor's matchmaking efforts become more aggressive, Noah is in for yet another unwanted detour. With his career and two spirited daughters to worry about, he doesn't have time for dating—especially not someone like Cassie Ellis, his girls' beautiful and sophisticated dance instructor, who is about as open and approachable as a brick wall.

Rough around the Edges Meets Refined is about two people who think they know exactly what they want but who have no idea what they really need. It's about learning that people aren't always what they seem and that sometimes life’s detours take you exactly where you need to go.


~Rae's Review~

I really enjoyed Cassie and Noah's story! Although the cover depicts their story as a light hearted romance, there are some pretty dramatic moments and themes in the book especially dealing with Cassi'es late husband and her family. I also loved the fact that Cassie and Noah didn't just seem like characters in a romance novel, but people you would tend to know in life. Rachel Anderson writes the story of love, loss and love regained in an engaging way. I liked how even the characters grated each other at times and didn't even like each other at first, but learned to break through their walls to trust. Romance readers looking for more than just a fluffy story will love Rachel Anderson's books. I'm always on the lookout for her works and can't wait to work my way through her backlist. Great story!

I'll be checking out the other books in the Meet Your Match series.




~Excerpt~
Carpet samples were way too small. How was Cassie supposed to know what an entire room would look like from a small little swatch? There were too many choices. Nylon or polyester? Plush, frieze, textured, or cut? Not to mention all the color options. And then there was the tile for the bathroom and the complicated dance flooring, with its subfloor and all of its choices.
She felt a headache coming on.
“How will I ever make up my mind?” Cassie whispered to Noah.
“It’s called trusting your instincts.”
“Instincts? I’m supposed to have an instinct about carpet samples?”
“Doesn’t everyone?” Noah grinned. “Isn’t one calling out to you? Telling you that it’s the one you’ll be able to coexist with for the next ten to fifteen years?”
Ten to fifteen years? Noah wasn’t helping at all. Cassie frowned at the samples, willing one to shake or glow or whatever carpet samples did to call out to a person.
“Which one would you choose?” she finally said.
“Uh-uh. This is your house, your carpet, your choice. I’m just here as a friend, remember?”
A friend who was sitting way too close for comfort, Cassie thought as the touch of his shoulder sent a bunch of tingles down her arm. “Friends are allowed to give opinions.”
“No. Only dates are allowed to do that,” said Noah. “If you really want my opinion, you know what you have to do.” Despite her distress about all the decisions facing her, Cassie couldn’t help but smile. “Okay, fine. It’s a date. Now if you were me, what would you choose?”
Noah blinked as he shook his head. “Wow, that was easy. I should have gone for more. Like a kiss or boyfriend status or—” She nudged him. “Stop it. I need you to help me, not tease me.”
“I wasn’t teasing,” he murmured, pulling the samples toward him.




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RachaelAuthor Rachael Anderson

USA Today bestselling author, Rachael Anderson is the mother of four and is pretty good at breaking up fights, or at least sending guilty parties to their rooms. She can't sing, doesn't dance, and despises tragedies. But she recently figured out how yeast works and can now make homemade bread, which she is really good at eating.









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$25 Blog Tour Giveaway
Enter to win an Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/19/15

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 readinglight.com. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Cranberry Bluff Blog Tour & $50 Giveaway

Here's another treat for cozy mystery buffs! AWD Welcomes author Deborah Garner for the Cranberry Bluff Blog Tour! Check out more info about the book, author and blurb below. And don't forget to enter the giveaway!



Cranberry



Cranberry Bluff

Cranberry Bluff by Deborah Garner

Molly Elliott's quiet life in Tallahassee, Florida, is disrupted when routine errands land her in the wrong place at the wrong time: the middle of a bank robbery. Accused and cleared of the crime, she flees both media attention and mysterious, threatening notes, to move across the country to Cranberry Cove, where she has inherited her Aunt Maggie's bed and breakfast on the Northern California coast. Her new beginning is peaceful - that is, until five guests show up at the inn for a weekend, each with a hidden agenda.

Mix together one blushing honeymoon couple, one flamboyant boutique owner, a deadpan traveling salesman, and a charmingly handsome novelist, and there’s more than scones cooking at Cranberry Cottage Bed and Breakfast. As true motives become apparent, will Molly's past come back to haunt her or will she finally be able to leave it behind?




Author Deborah Garner

Deborah Garner is an accomplished travel writer with a passion for back roads and secret hideaways. Born and raised in California, she studied in France before returning to the U.S. to attend UCLA. After stints in graduate school and teaching, she attempted to clone herself for decades by founding and running a dance and performing arts center, designing and manufacturing clothing and accessories, and tackling both spreadsheets and display racks for corporate retail management. Her passions include photography, hiking and animal rescue. She speaks five languages, some substantially better than others. She now divides her time between California and Wyoming, dragging one human and two canines along whenever possible.



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Book Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/23/14

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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Monday, December 15, 2014

Hotwire Blog Tour ~ Review + $25 Giveaway

Hotwire



HotwireHotwire by Cindy M. Hogan

Division spy Christy Hadden can't wait for her latest assignment posing as a student at a prestigious New York City academy and car thief extraordinaire.

The best part of the mission is her attractive handler, Jeremy, and her new team. The worst part? The sociopath masquerading as the academy's most popular guy.

But soon she realizes the car thieves are much more than they seem. Her simple spying mission becomes more dangerous than anyone imagined. If the organization discovers her true identity, they won't hesitate to kill her, and if she fails, others will suffer the same fate.

Young Adults, teens and adults will love this exciting suspenseful adventure with a dash of romance. You won't want to put it down.



~Rae's Review~
The Christy series has to be my fave new book series! As a suspense fan, it's tough to find a rather clean but tense book with a side of grit that keeps all the things I love about a suspenseful read. Ms. Hogan's Christy series has it all! If you like a side of 21 Jump Street (the awesome 80s series, not the dumbed down movie versions) with a side of old school Bond, Christy will be right up your alley. I reviewed the previous entry Adrenaline Rush here and I plan to check out the first series Watched (book 1 is now available free) to my reading list to see how Christy's adventures began with the agency.

In this entry, Christy is assigned to a high school where groups are stealing expensive cars. I liked Christy's interactions with her team this time around. She butted heads a lot with her agent parents and they didn't get very many scenes together but when they did it was mostly fighting and distrust (which was rather understandable because of her age). This time around, I thought she had more interesting scenes with her partners. I'm really enjoying her developing relationship with Jeremy and I'm rooting for them to get together. I'm glued to this series not only for the tense plots and great action but also to see how their relationship works.

Hotwire has some great plot twists and I loved being surprised at every turn. Although the story deals with high school students, Ms. Hogan doesn't hold back to show how villianous the villains are, especially the ones Christy has to get close to for the job. This is the kind of book I would have loved in my own young adult years. It's an awesome clean read that young and adult suspense fans will definitely enjoy. Can't wait for the next entry in the series!

~Excerpt~
It took me a second to realize it, but Kozlov was speaking in Russian. I flipped my head to Jericho. He clenched his jaw, and a vein pulsed on his temple. He had definitely understood Kozlov’s words. Did that mean that Jericho knew Russian? Did he have a Russian heritage? Were his parents Russian? Or had he been working for Alexander for a while and had taken Russian classes in order to fit in better? That made more sense to me. Besides, it seemed obvious, now that I knew him better, that he was involved with the bratva for the status, the power of it.
The fire in his eyes told me he would find a way to make me pay. Of that, I was sure I thought Kozlov would leave now that he had laid down the law, but he didn’t. He stood there, waiting to watch Jericho succeed or fail.
I watched, despondent, as the kids we’d come to save were led away with the same hopeless acceptance they’d shown when we’d taken them out of the container in the first place. It broke my heart.
With military-like precision, Jericho ordered the rest of the guards to take up positions along the path to some container that would be our home for two weeks. I glanced at Jeremy. What was going to happen to us? Would Halluis and Ace be able to send someone? And even if they did, how would we be able to get to our would-be rescuers?


Cindy HoganAuthor Cindy M. Hogan

Cindy M. Hogan graduated with a BA in education and is inspired by the unpredictable teenagers she teaches. More than anything she loves the time she has with her own teenage daughters and wishes she could freeze them at this fun age. If she's not reading or writing, you'll find her snuggled up with the love of her life watching a great movie or planning their next party. Most of all, she loves to laugh.

She is the bestselling and award winning author of the Watched trilogy, a YA suspense series with a dash of romance. She has since branched off to write a mystery, Gravediggers, that won Best YA novel of 2013, a contemporary romance, Confessions of a 16-Year-Old Virgin Lips, and two in a spy series, Adrenaline Rush and Hotwire.


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Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/26/14

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. a Rafflecopter giveaway


Friday, December 12, 2014

Begin Again Blog Tour + $25 Giveaway

AWD Welcomes author Brittney Mulliner for the Begin Again Blog Tour! Check out the book, excerpt and giveaway below.
Begin Again Book Cover
Begin Again by Brittney Mulliner

Escaping her past, Aubrey Tate moves to Southern California for a fresh start with her older brother, Brandon. Starting over at a new school seems easy with her cousin, Mckayla, and her two best friends at her side, but handling the new guys is another matter. Aubrey ends up in the middle of three rivals that each want her to themselves. Mike claims her first and declare himself her friend and protector. Luke is the school heartthrob that stops Aubrey in her tracks, speechless. Gage is the mysterious, dark outsider that Aubrey can be herself around. How will she navigate her new life while she's still haunted by her past?


add to goodreads new



Begin Again


~Excerpt~

"I don't have a boyfriend. At least not anymore…We had an incident at my family's Christmas party and I have sworn off men."

"Now that's not fair, new girl! Don't let some dirt bag ruin all of our chances. A girl like you shouldn't be allowed to swear off the rest of us."

I didn’t have the nerve to ask him what he meant by ‘a girl like me’ so I ignored it. "You find me a good guy, Mike, someone honest and loyal and I will consider changing my mind."

"Done. You and I are going out on Friday."

I laughed despite his straight face. "Mighty sure of yourself. Are you positive you are the best choice as the representative for all men?"

"Trust me Aubrey, I'm a true gentleman. And this doesn't have to mean anything. I just want to show you how a girl like you deserves to be treated. Any loser who has a chance with you and ruins it should be committed."

Brittney

Author Brittney Mulliner

Brittney had been an avid reader since she can remember. Her parents' form of punishment for her growing up was taking away her books and making her go outside to play. She was born and raised in Southern California, with a brief hiatus in Arizona. She loves the beach, exercising, sleeping in, and cookies. She is an obsessive dog lover, although her affection currently has no outlet. Something that she is planning on remedying soon. She currently lives in Utah while she and her husband finish college.






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Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/29/14

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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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Best of 2014 Giveaway Hop (December 11th to 18th)


best of 2014
Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & Bookhounds


Wooo! It's the end of the year and I'm excited to join this hop to share my fave reads of 2014!


Adrenaline Rush by Cindy M. Hogan - Read Rae's Review
Twist of Fate by Rachael Anderson - Read Rae's Review
Remember Me by Michelle N. Onuorah - Read Rae's Review
Missing Lily by Annette K. Larsen - Read Rae's Review

One of the things I love about reviewing here at AWD is the many, many books that pop up in my inbox. Whenever I find an awesome book, there's nothing more I love than to shout it to the rooftops! For the hop, I'm doing the next best thing.

I'm giving away one book each to three winners, that's right, three! You can choose which book of my 2014 favorites to read in ebook (your format of choice).

To enter:
Leave me a comment below telling me YOUR fave read(s) of 2014! Optional entries within the rafflecopter!

Looking forward to seeing your faves. :-) Don't forget to drop back here the last week of December for a quick glance of my fave movies of 2014!

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Meow If It’s Murder Blog Tour Spotlight

AWD welcomes author Toni LoTempio for the Meow If It's Murder blog tour! Check out the blurb and an excerpt of the book below. Cozy mystery fans definitely want to check this one out!

Meow if its murder


Meow if its murder
Meow If It's Murder by T.C. LoTempio
Nora Charles doesn’t believe in fate, even if she is a crime reporter who shares a name with a character from The Thin Man. In fact, she’s moving back to Cruz, California, to have a quieter life. But after finding an online magazine eager for material, and a stray cat named Nick with a talent for detection, Nora’s not just reporting crimes again. She’s uncovering them...

Back in her hometown, Nora reconnects with old friends and makes some new ones, like Nick, the charming feline who seems determined to be her cat. But not everything about Cruz is friendly. Writing for a local online magazine, Nora investigates the curious death of socialite Lola Grainger. Though it was deemed an accident, Nora suspects foul play. And it seems that her cat does too.

Apparently, Nick used to belong to a P.I. who disappeared while investigating Lola Grainger’s death. The coincidence is spooky, but not as spooky as the clues Nick spells out for her with Scrabble letters—clues that lead her down an increasingly dangerous path. Whether fate put her on this case or not, solving it will take all of Nora’s wits, and maybe a few of Nick’s nine lives.


Amazon * Barnes & Noble

~Excerpt~

I turned back to the table and stopped at the sight of the cat, squatted in front of my laptop, his eyes glued to an article displayed on its screen. I frowned. I’d been certain I’d shut the computer off when I’d gone to answer the phone. I moved closer and peered over the cat’s shoulder. An article from a sister paper, the California Sun, rehashing the details of Lola’s unfortunate ‘accident’. I made a move to shut off the laptop when Nick’s paw lashed out, the tip of his nail grazing the bottom of the screen. I tried to press the power button again – and once more his paw tapped insistently at the monitor. “What do you want me to see?” I squinted at the screen. At the very bottom of the article, no bigger than a footnote, was one line: ‘The deceased’s sister was unavailable for comment, other than to say her sister’s death was a ‘travesty that bears further investigation.’

I frowned. I hadn’t realized Lola Grainger had any relatives. That in itself was interesting, and compounded with the fact it appeared she also thought there was something off about Lola’s untimely demise...
I leaned over, switched off the laptop, and closed the cover, still wondering just how that article had popped up on a computer I’d have bet my last nickel had been shut off. I shook my head, determined not to obsess. Chantal would have called it Fate, and maybe it was.
Sometimes you just had to believe things just…happened. For a reason.
“Hm,” I said. “Two and two make four, right? Lola’s sister - whoever she is – thinks there’s something off about that ‘accident’ too. I bet my hunch is right. I smell foul play – meow if you agree.”
The cat meowed without hesitation. He sat up on his haunches and cocked his head at me.
“Okay, it’s settled then. Lola’s death might not have been accidental. It could have been...murder.”
The cat looked up at me, ears and whiskers back, and I could swear the corners of his mouth tipped up, just a tad, in a sort of half-smile.
I took that as a yes.

ToniAuthor Toni LoTempio

While Toni Lotempio does not commit – or solve – murders in real life, she has no trouble doing it on paper. Her lifelong love of mysteries began early on when she was introduced to her first Nancy Drew mystery at age 10 – The Secret in the Old Attic. She lists among her favorite mystery/suspense writers Erle Stanley Gardner, Mary Higgins Clark and James Patterson, as well as EJ Copperman, Steve Hockensmith, Victoria Laurie, Ali Brandon, Rita Mae Brown, Miranda James and Sofie Kelly to name only a few! Toni is also passionate about her love for animals, as demonstrated with her four cats: Trixie, Princess, Maxx and, of course, ROCCO, who not only provided the inspiration for the character of Nick the cat in the Nick and Nora mystery series, but who also writes his own blog and does charity work for Nathan Fillion’s charity, Kids Need to Read! Toni’s also devoted to miniseries like The Thorn Birds, Dancing with the Stars, reruns of Murder She Wrote and Castle (of course!). She (and ROCCO, albeit he’s uncredited) pen the Nick and Nora mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime – the first volume, MEOW IF ITS MURDER, debuts Dec. 2, 2014. She, Rocco and company make their home in Clifton, New Jersey, just twenty minutes from the Big Apple – New York.


Praise for the Book
"Meow if it's Murder is an absolute delight and Nick and Nora make a purr-fect mystery-solving team. ! I couldn't put it down!" --Michelle Rowen, national bestselling author

“Meow If It's Murder is delightful! Readers will love the mystery and charming cat. You don't want to miss this new series” –Rose Pressey, USA Today Bestselling Author

"Nick and Nora are a winning team. The crafty feline manages to stay one paw ahead of his new owner - and the criminals in Cruz, California." –Rebecca Hale, NY Times Bestselling Author

"Namesakes Nick the cat and Nora the deli owner can teach Hammett’s amateur detective duo a thing or two. Meow if It’s Murder is a fast-paced cozy mystery spiced with a dash of romance and topped with a big slice of “cat-itude.” Enjoy!" ~Ali Brandon, NY Times Bestselling author of the Black Cat Bookshop Mysteries

"Nick and Nora are the purrfect sleuthy duo!" – Victoria Laurie, NY Times Bestselling author of the Psychic Eye Mystery Series



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$25 Blog Tour Giveaway

Enter to win an Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/29/14

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 readinglight.com. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Book Review ~ Who R U Really? ~ A Highly Recommended Read



who are youWho R U Really? by Margo Kelly

Thea's overprotective parents are driving her insane. They invade her privacy, ask too many questions, and restrict her online time so severely that Thea feels she has no life at all. When she discovers a new role-playing game online, Thea breaks the rules by staying up late to play. She's living a double life: on one hand, the obedient daughter; on the other, a girl slipping deeper into darkness. In the world of the game, Thea falls under the spell of Kit, an older boy whose smarts and savvy can't defeat his loneliness and near-suicidal despair. As Kit draws soft-hearted Thea into his drama, she creates a full plate of cover stories for her parents and then even her friends.

Soon, Thea is all alone in the dark world with Kit, who worries her more and more, but also seems to be the only person who really "gets" her. Is he frightening, the way he seems sometimes, or only terribly sad? Should Thea fear Kit, or pity him? And now, Kit wants to come out of the screen and bring Thea into his real-life world. As much as she suspects that this is wrong, Thea is powerless to resist Kit's allure, and hurtles toward the same dark fate her parents feared most. Ripped from a true-life story of Internet stalking, Who R U Really? will excite you and scare you, as Thea's life spins out of control.






who are you (1)


~ Rae's Review~
Wow! Just coming off a roller coaster read from my last book, I didn't realize I was diving into another tense read. Who R U Really is definitely a thriller with much relevance to teenagers today who grow up in the internet and gaming age. I couldn't help relating to the characters as I found myself thinking about my own teen years on the net as I identified with Thea (full name Cynthia in the book) but also wondering how I'd navigate a similar situation with my own daughter as Thea's mother does. 

At times I couldn't help wanting to yell at my reader to Thea to listen to her gut and the cues that her online friend Kit was giving her. I had an inkling of what he was about when she discovered the true origins of his username and what he was saying when she wasn't around. Who R U Really is a lesson in not only safety but also recognizing warning signs when they are made apparent.  

I loved that this book had so many elements where I thought I knew what was coming, but was surprised at every turn. Ms. Kelly writes the characters in a way where you can't help but be sucked into their lives and situations. I read that this book was inspired by a similar situation the author's daughter went through and, considering the final act, I can't imagine the terror of her situation. Thanks to Ms. Kelly for writing this book and for sharing the story in talks around the community.  

One of the library journals said this is a book families should read together and I couldn't help thinking this as I read it. Thea goes through many events in a young person's life that can spark some great family discussion like first loves, eating disorders, dating, trust, internet gaming and friendship and even restriction of rules. 

If I have a daughter, this is definitely a book I'd like to read and discuss with her. I hope this gets turned into a film one day. I can't recommend this book enough!

Blog Tour Giveaway
1 print copy of Who R U Really?

Open to US only

Ends 1/12/15 a Rafflecopter giveaway

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