Thursday, August 31, 2017

Book Blast: The Lost Knight by Candy Atkins



The Lost Knight by Candy Atkins

How am I supposed to save the world when I'm not strong, not brave, not smart, and not particularly good at most things? I ran away from home the day after my thirteenth birthday when Auntie and her weird friend attacked me. Now I'm on the run with the Grim Reaper and a scary soldier. And I'm no longer on Earth. They were expecting me to be a Knight. The savior that's supposed to stop a war and prevent the invasion of Earth. But I'm not. They grabbed the wrong girl. I just don’t know how to tell them.


Praise for the Book:

#2 on GoodReads Middle Grade Novels of 2016

5/5 Stars
“Like Harry Potter meets The Labyrinth.” -Author Adan Ramie


5/5 Stars
“Candy Atkins takes us on an epic adventure reminiscent of the novels of C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien.” –GoodReads/Amazon Reviewer


5/5 Stars
“For all you Potterheads or Harry Potter geeks, how can you not fall in love with this story and appreciate the fact that it is a female lead.” –Rising Indies United


Excerpts:
Three full chapters are free online: Chapter One | Chapter Two | Chapter Three
This is a partial excerpt from Chapter One:

I grab the box of midnight-purple hair dye from my book bag and squeeze my way down the narrow, overstuffed hall into the only bathroom in our apartment. The shower hasn’t worked since it was turned into a storage closet, so I clear the sink of the old cat food cans Auntie has stockpiled, turn on the cold water, and dream about the day when I’ll have my own apartment with a shower, hot water, and food.

“Agatha, are you still pouting?” Auntie yells from her recliner. ”I told you, Uncle will pick something up when he’s done with work.”

My foster parents, I call them Auntie and Uncle, are not what I would describe as parents, or even aunt and uncle, they’re more like babysitters. Uncle hasn’t been home for three days, and I doubt she believes he’ll be here tonight. She just wants me to tell her that I’m okay with her not picking up dinner. I’m not. Today is my thirteenth birthday. It’s not like I was expecting a cake, but something to eat would’ve been nice.

After I dye my hair, I take a shirt from the pile of laundry I’m standing on, wrap it around my head, and carry the remaining hair dye back to my bedroom. I love my tiny room, mostly because I’ve been sketching and painting jumbled and disjointed art on these walls since I was old enough to grip a pencil. Part of the reason I chose what the box calls boysenberry for my hair is because the extra dye is the perfect hue for the raven I’m painting on my ceiling.

Dipping the number-three flat brush into my dye calms me and all is forgiven. Auntie’s not a mean person, she’s just a bit off. Being angry with her is like being mad at one of the cats—pointless.

I wrap a blanket around my shoulders and open the window. Queens is especially chatty tonight with the noise of cars, people fighting, dogs barking, and the laughter that only I can hear. I stand on the bed and fill in the gentle face of my birdie while humming along with the chorus of voices outside.

Tonight, the singing is boldly wafting through my window. I can’t understand the words and don’t know the tune, but the music is sweet and peaceful. It’s sad that I can only hear my songs some of the time, when I’m tired and relaxed, and sadder still that no one else can listen with me.

My dye runs out long before I’m satisfied with my raven so I give up and climb into bed. The song I’m listening to now is particularly soothing, a hymn or possibly an opera. Maybe one day I’ll be a great songwriter or something.

A muffled thud near my window startles me from a sound sleep. There’s an eerie red glow casting moving shadows across my room. I blink a few times to make sure I’m not still dreaming and follow the source of the light. Just to the side of the foot of my bed kneels a tall, hooded figure with luminescent red eyes. It’s stroking the long ears of a much smaller creature that looks withered and dying.

I’m not scared, which is weird, but it might be because I’m not sure I’m awake. I turn on the lamp to make the dream disappear and end up blinding myself. When my eyes adjust, I see the sickly green skin of a long-eared frog-boy lying on the floor and the tall cloaked being that’s cradling it. The tall black monster who closely resembles the Grim Reaper appears to be even more stunned than I am. We stare at each other while my brain struggles to figure out what I’m looking at. These things don’t exist, so how can I be seeing them so clearly? The black-hooded creature never takes its red eyes off me while it stands and lifts the small sickly frog-boy off the floor.

“Agatha?” it whispers.

This monster is actually in my room! My insides seize, trapping my scream. What is this thing and how does it know my name? I want to run, but I can’t move or look away. My fluttering heart stops when my door flies open with a crash. A scream unseals my lips, amplifying my terror.

Auntie charges in, wielding a large kitchen knife. She’s yelling in her nutty made-up language, but it works. The creature jumps out my fifth-floor window, taking the frog-boy with him.

She whips around toward me, still holding the knife, and looking like she means to use it. “What did you see! What was that? What were you doing!”

Auntie has her kind moments, but she’s crazy. I mean, truly mental. Whatever just happened, she mustn’t know that I saw it too. She probably suspects I did, but if I confirm it, she’ll nail my window shut and my songs will disappear forever. “I had a nightmare. Was I yelling in my sleep? Did I wake you?” I’m trying to sound calm, but I’m failing.

She takes a few deep breaths while she sizes me up. She pauses and tilts her head to the side. “There was something here. I saw it. Did you see it?”

“What was here? What did you see? And what’s with the knife?” I want her to tell me if she saw the Grim Reaper and a dead rabbit-frog-boy at the foot of my bed. If she saw them too, then I’m not crazy. But then again, if I see the same thing as a crazy person, we’re probably both insane.




Author Candy Atkins

Candy Atkins is a full-time writer who lives with her husband and two kids in Orlando, Florida. She’s an avid reader and lover of all things fantasy and sci-fi. Her debut novel, The Lost Knight, is volume one of the six-part Lost Knight Series.

Her life’s journey has taken her from dining with the President to being on food stamps to running her own company. And since all author bios end by naming and quantifying pets... she also enjoys spending time with her boxer, Butler, and Wynona the cat.


amazon or paypal

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway

Ends 9/24/17

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, August 30, 2017

Blog Tour/Review: I Can Love Like Jesus, Written by Heidi Poelman; Illustrated by Chase Jensen




I Can Love Like Jesus, Written by Heidi Poelman; Illustrated by Chase Jensen
2017, 32p, Children's Picture Book/Religious
My Rating=5 Stars
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not affect my review in any way



Help your little ones live and love like Jesus did with this adorable picture book. The simple text and beautiful illustrations show children exactly how Jesus loved others and how to emulate Him with small acts of kindness, like sharing, forgiving, and comforting. Invite the Savior into your home and feel His peace each time you read this book together.

This is a fantastic children's book! It explores the question, "How did Jesus Love?" It's full of great examples which are easy for children to understand. It's also a good reminder for adults!

I loved the illustrations! The ideas expressed on each page are cleverly reinforced through the artwork. This is a book that children, as well as adults, will enjoy looking at. It can also be used to discuss scripture stories with older children. It's a high quality book on nice, thick paper. It's one you will want to pick up for yourself, as well as a copy to give away!



About the Author:

Heidi Poelman is the author of A is for Abinadi: An Alphabet Book of Scripture HeroesA Mother’s Greatest GiftThe Two-Minute Marriage Project: Simple Secrets for Staying in Love, and the upcoming books I Can Love Like Jesus and A Is for Adam: An Alphabet Book of Scripture Heroes. Heidi received her degrees in communication from Brigham Young University (BA) and Wake Forest University (MA). When she’s not writing, cooking, cleaning, or carpooling, Heidi loves playing in the outdoors with her family, going out for date night, and reading bedtime stories. She lives in Utah with her husband and four children.


About the Illustrator:

Chase Jensen grew up in Cleveland, Utah, and has always wanted to be an artist. He studied illustration at Brigham Young University, and later moved to live near his small hometown with his wife and two daughters.








Blog Tour Schedule:


Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Book Blast: The Pursuit of Lady Harriett by Rachael Anderson



The Pursuit of Lady Harriett by Rachael Anderson

When wills clash and hearts collide, who will reign victorious?

Termed an Incomparable during her first London season, Lady Harriett Cavendish is beautiful, spirited, and confident, capturing the attention of a great many suitors. Unfortunately, they all failed to capture her attention, and she concluded the season as unattached as she’d begun it.

Only weeks prior to her second season, Harriett encounters Lieutenant Christopher Jamison while visiting Tanglewood Manor. Recently returned from war, the lieutenant is everything that Harriett's previous suitors were not. He’s arrogant, ungentlemanly, irritating, and challenges her at every opportunity. When he goes too far, Harriett decides that it’s time to turn the tables on him. But as she sets out to put the lieutenant in his place once and for all, she discovers there is more to him than meets the eye, and when it comes to matters of the heart, she has no control whatsoever.


Excerpt

The corners of the man’s eyes crinkled in a mild show of amusement. “Lady Harriett, I presume?” Rather than look at her with appreciation as most men did, he appeared amused.

At her nod, he tucked his hands behind his back, remaining a few steps above her. “I am Lieutenant Christopher Jamison, an old friend of Jonathan’s.”

“I was expecting you days ago,” she answered. “Lord Jonathan charged me with the unhappy task of informing you he and his new bride are currently away on their wedding trip. He is sorry he cannot be here to meet with you and has asked that I relay his apologies.”

“May I inquire as to how long they will be away?” he asked.

No, you may not, she wanted to say. Her neck was beginning to ache from looking up at him, but she forced her gaze to remain steady. “They expected to be gone a fortnight, sir.”

“And they have been gone how long, exactly?”

She felt an unaccountable hesitancy to tell him. “A week.”

“Ah.” He sounded disappointed but seemed to take the news in stride, glancing at Charlie as though wondering whether he ought to retrieve his horse or not. Harriett prayed that he would.

When his gaze strayed back to her, he took the unwelcome, and ungentlemanly, liberty of perusing her figure. When his eyes met hers again, his lips twitched into a slight smile. “Forgive me, my lady, but you appear to have had a run-in with a mud puddle and lost.”

How kind of him to point that out. Harriett kept her hands at her side rather than attempt to brush the dirt from her face and pelisse yet again. The damage was done, and no amount of brushing or shaking would remove the muck. What she needed was a hot bath and a change of clothes.

“Actually, sir, I was merely an innocent bystander.”

“Indeed?”

She picked up her skirts and ascended the steps, stopping on the stair above him so that she was eye level with him. “Are you always such a reckless rider, sir? Do you not pay heed to your surroundings?”

“Of course I do.”

“If you had, you would have seen me standing at the side of the road and, I would hope, thought to slow your animal down so as to not splash mud all over my pelisse.”

Her chilly set down did not have the desired effect. He did not appear the least bit repentant. Rather, he looked ready to burst into laughter. “And your face, apparently.” He leaned forward and squinted. “If I’m not mistaken, there is a splash or two of mud on your bonnet as well.”

Harriett glared at him. “How observant you are, Lieutenant Jamison. One can only wonder why you didn’t put that skill to good use earlier. If you had, perhaps my pelisse, face, and bonnet would still be clean.”

“I am always observant, my lady,” he said. “But might I suggest that if you would like to be noticed at the side of the road, you should wear a color that does not blend so perfectly with your surroundings. That particular shade of green looks quite lovely on you, but only someone with the eyes of an eagle would have spotted you in front of a landscape of evergreens.”

Harriett opened her mouth to respond, but no words were forthcoming. The man did not even attempt to behave like a gentleman. How could he be so . . . so . . .

“Have you no apology to offer, sir?” she finally spluttered.

“Oh, did I not apologize? Forgive me.”

“For what? Forgetting to apologize or for not doing so in the first place?”



Rachael

Author Rachael Anderson

A 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.




amazon or paypal

$75 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway

Ends 9/22/17

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, August 28, 2017

Grand Finale Blitz: Courting the Country Miss by Donna Hatch


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Book Tour Grand Finale for

Courting the Country Miss
By Donna Hatch

We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops you can see snippets, as well as the link to each full post, below:

Launch - Note from the Author

Today’s star attraction, Courting the Country Miss, is about letting go, learning to forgive, and finding one’s true self—one’s best self. It’s also about not giving up on dreams or good causes just because of a little (or a lot) of opposition.

— Donna

Bookworm Nation - Review

"There is a reason Ms. Hatch is one of my top favorite Regency authors! . . . Leticia is a likable heroine that you can't help rooting for. She has known Tristan a long time and knows how to keep him on his toes. I thought they had great chemistry and it was fun watching their story unfold. Definitely recommend to any regency fan!"

Bookworm Lisa - Review

"The more books I read written by Donna Hatch, the more I realize what an amazing author she is. She pulls me into the book and the setting. The characters come to life for me. . . . If you love a great regency book that will make you laugh. I would pick this one up!"

Teatime and Books - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part One
England, 1817

Leticia Wentworth was twenty times a fool. Richard Barrett never cared for her beyond a childhood friendship, and Leticia had been naive to believe he would love her as she loved him. With savage ferocity, Leticia squelched the cry of pain her heart made every time Richard turned a gaze of adoration upon his wife—the kind of look he never gave Leticia, not even when she’d been certain he’d approach her father to ask for her hand in marriage. She’d pinned all her hopes and dreams of love and family on a man she would never have.

It's All About the Romance - Interview

Q: Do you have any personal heroes/heroines?

A: My mom is my hero. She’s so hard working and unselfish and loves and serves others all the time. I also really admire Audrey Hepburn, who left behind a life of glamor in the silver screen to dedicate her life helping those who live in third world countries. Another is Esther from the bible, who had the courage to face almost certain death to save her people.

Mel's Shelves - Review

"I didn't read the first book in this series (although now I want to), and this works well as a stand alone. I loved the setting, characters, and, of course, the romance. If you enjoy clean Regency romance, this is a great one to get lost in!"

Katie's Clean Book Collection - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Two

“I’m happy for them. They have what marriage should be.” Softer, she added, “It’s what I’ve always wanted.” She stiffened, cursed herself for her confession, and looked away before her long-time friend saw too much. They used to confide in one another; it had been so easy, so comfortable. But everything had changed.

He fingered his signet ring. “Sorry, Tish. You must hate me for making a muddle of your future.”

Remembrancy - Review

"I love best friends to more stories and I enjoy the Regency period stories, so Courting the Country Miss had two points in its favor before I even began reading it. . . . Donna Hatch does an admirable job of taking readers on an admirable journey of love, bravery, and friendship. Courting the Country Miss is a pleasant and clean story for those who enjoy reading about the Regency period."

Nicole's Book Musings - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Three

He made a tsking sound. “Since when won’t you discuss your thoughts with me?”

Long-suppressed anger roiled up inside her. “Since you ruined a duke’s daughter and forced my intended to wed her to save you from a duel!”

Tristan stared as if she’d slapped him, blinked, then hunched over and rested his elbows on his knees.

Wishful Endings - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Four

“Except you still hate me.”

She attempted to laugh lightly but it sounded as forced as an old key in a rusty lock. “I don’t hate you. I haven’t been avoiding you—I’ve been in Suffolk helping my sister Luciana with her new baby.”

He said nothing, his usual smile absent. “I didn’t mean to hurt you, Tish. I’d only pursued Elizabeth as a flirtation, an interesting diversion. I never dreamed it would go that far, to feel…” He shrugged. “A mistake in many ways, all of it.”

I Am A Reader - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Five

His fears of not measuring up to Richard didn’t touch that inner pain she glimpsed earlier. What secret did he hide? Had it been there all the time?

“Is it because you dislike women?”

He choked. “How can you say that after calling me dissipated, a rake, and a roué?”

underneath the covers - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Six

Still keeping pace with her, he said, “I’m troubled that you believe you’ll never love or marry. Someone like you should not live as a spinster.”

“Someone like me?” she echoed.

He made a helpless gesture. “You have much to offer. You’re gracious and constant and…well…you’d make a good wife and mother—not run off when life gets dull or when your children misbehave.”

Rockin' Book Reviews - Review

"I loved reading this book. Another wonderful story by Donna Hatch. Each one I read seems even better than the one before, if that is possible. . . . I highly recommend this book to other readers. It is a really good read and held my attention well throughout."

Paulette's Papers - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Seven

Memories flitted through her mind of the daring rescue Tristan and Captain Kensington and one of Elizabeth’s reformed servants had orchestrated when Richard had been held captive during the peer trial last year. She’d prayed for Tristan when she’d heard he had been shot freeing his brother. To her regret, she’d been too far away at the time to offer assistance for his care.

Tristan shrugged as a sardonic smile played on his mouth. “Taking a bullet for my brother doesn’t mean I like him.”

She almost laughed. “I see.”

Hearts & Scribbles - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Eight

He tilted his head. “I wager a hundred guineas I can find you a husband by Christmas.”

She waved her hand. “Pish! You’d lose that wager.”

“Don’t be so sure.”

“Besides all the reasons I listed, it’d never work because you’d introduce me to your dissipated comrades, and I refuse to marry someone one like that.”

Singing Librarian Books - Review

"Courting the Country Miss is a delightful new read from author Donna Hatch. From page one, Hatch pulls readers into her enticing regency era story with her charming characters and engaging story. . . . This is a story that readers will not soon forget."

Getting Your Read On - Review

"I fell in love with these characters. I wanted so badly for them to figure things out. I loved the swoony moments (and there were quite a few) that had me reaching for a fan to cool my flushed face. . . . If you have never read a book by Donna Hatch this is an awesome place to start. She really is one of my favorite authors in the Regency Romance genre."

Reading Is My SuperPower - Review

"Donna Hatch is one of the masters of clean romance with electric tension and smokin’ hot kisses. Tristan and Leticia – and their story – are a great example. But even more than the romance, the strength of Courting the Country Miss lies in its character growth and the power of friendship. It’s perhaps not my favorite of Hatch’s novels, but it’s a sweet romance with a hero who will have you reaching for your fan and a heroine who will have you cheering her on."

Colorimetry - Excerpt

Chapter One, Part Nine

“Why is it when I agree with you, you assume I’m mocking you?”

“Because you do it so seldom.”

“Mock you or agree with you?” A grin played around the corners of his eyes.

“Agree with me!” Exasperated, she almost stomped her foot.

His teeth flashed in the darkness. “I vow to agree with you whenever you are right. Pray, continue. Any other virtues you require?”

Heidi Reads... - Review

"I loved reading about the characters again from Courting the Countess and seeing the story continue. . . . The action in the plot that came later made things exciting and it was great to see Leticia and Tristan's relationship develop from sibling-like to romance. Another lovely Regency from this author!"

And don't forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven't already...



Courting the Country Miss
(Courting #2)
by Donna Hatch
Historical Romance

Paperback & ebook, 312 pages
August 4th 2017 by The Wild Rose Press. Inc.

Cynical and broken-hearted, Leticia banishes dreams of marriage. When her childhood friend, Tristan, wagers he can find her the perfect husband, she hopes the challenge will coax him to forgo his devil-may-care lifestyle. Meanwhile, Leticia throws herself into forming her charity school but meets opposition—even from the people she’s helping.

Guilt-ridden that his past mistakes robbed Leticia of true love, Tristan vows to set it right, but match-making has its pitfalls for a repentant scoundrel. When he finds two ‘perfect’ gentlemen to court her, he discovers his own deep feelings for the lady.

Though Tristan seems to reform, Leticia doesn’t dare risk heartbreak with a notorious rake. When opposition for the school takes a deadly turn, can Tristan protect her from a madman bent on destroying their dreams and their lives?


Other Books in the Series

Courting the Countess by [Hatch, Donna]
Courting the Countess
(Courting #1)

by Donna Hatch
Adult Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 388 pages
October 5th 2016 by The Wild Rose Press, Inc.

When charming rake Tristan Barrett sweeps Lady Elizabeth off her feet, stealing both her heart and a kiss in a secluded garden, her brother challenges Tristan to a duel. The only way to save her brother and Tristan from harm—not to mention preserve her reputation—is to get married. But her father, the Duke of Pemberton, refuses to allow his daughter to marry anyone but a titled lord. The duke demands that Elizabeth marry Tristan’s older brother, Richard, the Earl of Averston. Now Elizabeth must give up Tristan to marry a man who despises her, a man who loves another, a man she’ll never love.

Richard fears Elizabeth is as untrustworthy as his mother, who ran off with another man. However, to protect his brother from a duel and their family name from further scandal, he agrees to the wedding, certain his new bride will betray him. Yet when Elizabeth turns his house upside down and worms her way into his reluctant heart, Richard suspects he can’t live without his new countess. Will she stay with him or is it too little, too late?


About the Author


Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty five years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.


Tour Giveaway

1 winner will receive an ebook of Courting the Countess
Open internationally
Ends August 29th

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Friday, August 25, 2017

Blog Tour/Review: The Secret of the India Orchid by Nancy Campbell Allen



The Secret of the India Orchid, by Nancy Campbell Allen
2017, 320p, Clean Regency Romance
My Rating=5 Stars
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher, which did not affect my review in any way



Anthony Blake is in love with his best friend's sister, Sophia Elliot. But his plans to court her are put on hold when he is forced to resume his role as an undercover spy for the Crown. A secret document listing the names of the entire network of British spies-including his own-has been stolen. To protect Sophia, Anthony cuts off all ties to her and exchanges his life as an honorable earl for the façade of a flirtatious playboy.

Heartbroken and confused, Sophia travels to India, hoping to find healing in one of the most exotic regions of the British Empire. But the exotic land isn't as restful as she had hoped. Instead, she finds herself embroiled in a mystery of a missing sea captain, a possible murder, and a plot that could involve the prince of India. And when Anthony appears at the British Residency, asking questions and keeping his distance from her, she is stunned.

She still loves him, and, in her heart, she knows he loves her too. But how can she rebuild her relationship with him if he won't confide in her? Does she dare offer her heart to him a second time, or will their love be lost under the India sun?


I love the Proper Romance line so was excited to read this one! It's a regency that takes place in India, which is different. Anthony loves Sophia but before he can make a formal offer to court her, he is forced to leave since he is also an undercover spy. Two years later, they meet in India when she travels there to heal her broken heart. He still can't reveal the truth of why he left her in the first place so there are some frustrating exchanges between them.

I love how this story unfolded! Anthony works to solve a mystery with plenty of suspects so it was hard to figure out who the villain was. Sophia was looking to heal her broken heart and move on in life but seeing Anthony again caused her to reevaluate what she wanted. They had to decide if they could trust each other.

I've only read (and loved) Nancy Campbell Allen's books that are in the Proper Romance line and thought this book delivered as well! It's well-written and kept me engaged from the first page. I became invested in the characters and what was happening to them. I liked the balance of mystery and romance. I especially love that it's clean so I can easily recommend it to anyone!


Nancy Campbell Allen is the author of thirteen published novels, which span genres from contemporary romantic suspense to historical fiction. In 2005, her work won the Utah Best of State award. She has presented at numerous writing conferences and events since her first book was released in 1999. Nancy received a BS in Elementary Education from Weber State University. She loves to read, write, travel, and research, and enjoys spending time laughing with family and friends. She is married and the mother of three children.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Book Blast: Perfectly You by Robin Daniels


Perfectly You by Robin Daniels

Ivy Nixon is the student body Vice President at Franklin High School. Each year, the school holds a date auction to raise funds for the senior class graduation party, and this year, Ivy’s in charge. Planning the event is a huge task and Ivy is determined to prove she can get the job done right. Unfortunately, she’s still one participant short and her deadline is looming.

Andy Walker, her cute but socially reclusive art class table mate, is her last resort. He may not be popular, but he’s funny, talented, and full of surprises. With a makeover and some major social marketing, Ivy is sure he could fetch a decent price at the auction.

Andy reluctantly agrees to help, but the more time Ivy spends with him, the more her feelings shift from professional to romantic in nature. To top it off, she’s done her marketing so well, that other girls are starting to notice Andy too. Come auction time, will Ivy be able to let him go to the highest bidder? Or will she find a way to keep him for herself…

Content Description: This is a stand-alone YA contemporary romance with companion novels set at the same high school. It contains minor language, innuendo, and crude humor, some steamy kissing, a party scene where underage drinking is taking place, and a brief but tasteful conversation about sex. The author has attempted to write characters who make good choices in questionable situations, in effort to keep the content appropriate for teens. This book contains no sex, written or implied, and no explicit language. Recommended for ages 14 and up.


EXCERPT

He smiled back at me. "Then you approve?" he asked, waving his hand over his body. "I even wore school colors, just for you."

My eyebrows bunched together. "You wore a white polo," I said flatly.

He defended himself. "And the school colors are red and white, are they not?"

"Fine. You win," I conceded, shaking my head. Why was he so difficult? And cute?


Author Robin Daniels

Robin Daniels is a wife, mother of five and avid consumer of books. She loves reading SO much that she was actually grounded from it as a twelve year old. No Joking! Her mom caught her reading when she was supposed to be cleaning, which was a common occurrence. At that point mom took the books and instructed her to go watch TV or play outside like a normal kid.

Robin is a sucker for home design shows and magazines, watches way too much Netflix and has a very codependent relationship with with a certain diet soda who’s brand shall not be named. (Though anyone with a similar problem could probably guess which one.)




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$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway

Ends 9/15/17

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, August 21, 2017

Blog Tour/Review: Double Eagle, Double Cross by M.R. Durbin



Double Eagle, Double Cross, by M.R. Durbin
2017, 272p, Clean Contemporary Suspense
My Rating=4.5 Stars
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not affect my review in any way



After an unexpectedly thrilling summer with his grandfather, Oregon State student Charley Sawyer is ready to catch his breath at his late parents' Oregon beach home. Hoping for some rest and relaxation, Charley is met instead by devastation: the house has been ransacked. In his inventory of the damage, Charley stumbles across the item the trespasser must have been after, the only thing that seems out of place: a mysterious key. And when he learns what it unlocks, Charley is drawn into yet another adventure with a ragtag group more than willing to help.

Mac Bowman, the brainy and beautiful anthropology student who joined Charley in his summer escapade, is thrilled when she is presented with the opportunity to conduct research in Oregon. Maybe a little time together will allow the pair to explore their feelings for one another. But when she arrives, she is disturbed by what she finds: Charley has disappeared without a trace.

As Charley and Mac each work to unravel their mysteries, their searches collide dramatically. Only one thing is clear: the moment he found the key, Charley unwittingly opened the door to a long-held secret—one that could cost him his life. . . .


I read the first book in this series, Beyond the Narrows, and was mixed on it (you can learn more about it and read my review here). I had a couple of issues with the first book which I didn't have with this one. I thought the first book started fast but I got bogged down in the details and descriptions at times. This book started more slowly for me but once the story picked up, I was hooked and couldn't finish reading it fast enough. Charley and Mac's relationship in the first book was awkward (which everyone acknowledges in this one, haha). Without giving anything away, all I'll say is that they weren't awkward in this book.

There are four older men who have been friends for a long time and they are reunited in this book. I love the way they interact with each other, as well as Mac and Charley. They made me laugh out loud several times. It didn't seem too hard to figure out who the villain was, but didn't know why that person behaved as they did until the end.

This is the kind of story I enjoy reading! There's lots of history included, and in the "Author's Notes" at the end, Mr. Durbin shares what is fact and what is fiction. I'm glad the author gave us more of these characters. It's hard to say whether this is the end of Mac and Charley. I'm definitely interested in reading more!


About the Author:

Martin Richard Durbin was born in Fort Ord, California, in 1951. He grew up in Parowan, Utah. He served a mission to England in 1971 and graduated from Brigham Young University in 1976 with a degree in education. He later received a master’s degree in education from Utah State University. Mr. Durbin retired from education after thirty years as a teacher, coach, and principal before beginning a second career writing about the things he loves: scriptures, history, and people.

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Tour Schedule:

Friday, August 18, 2017

Grand Finale Blitz: The Alaskan Catch by Beth Carpenter


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Book Tour Grand Finale for

The Alaskan Catch
By Beth Carpenter

We hope you enjoyed the tour and getting a taste of Alaska! If you missed any
of the stops you can see snippets, as well as the link to each full post, below:



Launch - Author Interview

What inspired you to write THE ALASKAN CATCH?

One thing I hear over and over in Alaska is, “I came for the summer and never left.” I wanted my heroine, Dana, to feel that connection, to recognize that Alaska is a place where she can become the person she wants to be.

What do you hope readers take with them after they’ve read it?

As Sam tells Dana, “You can paddle your own boat or you can throw up your hands and let the current carry you wherever it will.” Find your river and keep on paddling.

Brooke Blogs - Excerpt

“I don’t feel sorry for you.” Dana gave a wry smile. Maybe she did feel bad for that boy whose mother deserted him, but not for the man he’d grown into. “In fact, if I’m honest, this weekend when I saw you and Ursula hug, I was a little jealous. I’d love to have someone in my life who was that glad to see me show up.”

Nicole's Book Musings - Ten Reasons to Fall in Love with Alaska


1. The Views Need I say more?

2. Summer Daylight In Anchorage on June 20th, the sun rises at 4:19am and sets at 11:40pm. In between it never gets completely dark.

Becky on Books - Review

"The Alaskan Catch is a sweet story about family, finding your own path (“paddling your own boat” as it’s put one more than once here–both figuratively and literally), and learning to put your trust in unexpected love even when it seems contrary to the plans you thought you had. Besides finding each other, Dana and Sam also find out some hard truths about their families’ histories during the course of the story, which each has to deal with in their own way. Neither is exactly on the path they thought they’d be by the end of the book, but since they’re on that new path together, it makes all the difference."


“Hold it right there.”

Sam blinked. He knew he was tired, but was he hallucinating? A woman wearing flowery shorts and a pink tank top stood in his living room, near the hallway. She couldn’t have been more than five-two or three, but the red gun in her hands more than made up for her petite size. Especially since the hands seemed to be shaking.


Heidi Reads... - Review

"What an adventure! I loved all the details of Dana's adventure in Alaska. There was a mystery of old family secrets, a friendship-to-romance relationship, exciting excursions, and descriptions of amazing landscapes and wildlife."

Hearts & Scribbles - Character Interview

Today, we’re talking with Dana Raynott, the heroine from THE ALASKAN CATCH.

Dana, what brought you to Alaska?

I came looking for my brother. When I was sixteen, he and my father argued and Chris left home. My father would never tell me what they fought about. Recently my father died, and left Chris some money in his will. I thought it was the perfect time to track him down, get a few answers, and hopefully reunite our family.


"I really enjoyed this new Harlequin Heartwarming book by Beth Carpenter! It had a bit of everything in it- adventure, mystery and romance. I loved the Alaskan setting with so much of the story taking place outdoors with the beauties of nature on full display."

underneath the covers - Even Shopping is Different


My first ever Harlequin, THE ALASKAN CATCH, takes place in my hometown of Anchorage, Alaska. Anchorage is a typical American city in a lot of ways, but with its own personal style. For example, we have an international airport, a small plane airport, and a float plane airport. A wayward moose can throw a real wrench into rush-hour traffic. Many of the pedestrian overpasses are specifically designed to accommodate sled dog teams.

And then there’s shopping...


"This book has a great story-line of friendship, mystery, forgiveness and love. I would recommend this to anyone. The kissing scenes are very modestly done. You cannot help but to fall in love with Alaska and the characters."


"I’ve been a Harlequin fan since high school and I think this is a great addition to my collection. By the time you finish, you will understand why Harlequin has added to their Heartwarming series. . . . Toward the very end, Dana says something to Sam that sums things up nicely – this book was a great adventure. It also left me looking forward to reading more of this series. "

Books to Read Next - Excerpt

He frowned. Dana wasn’t helpless. In fact, two days ago, she’d threatened to shoot him. It was highly unlikely she’d come to any harm on a nice day downtown, surrounded by people. And yet here he was, worrying about her. Maybe Chris was right—Sam hadn’t been out with a woman for too long. He needed to get a grip.


"The Alaskan Catch kept me grinning throughout each chapter. Sam and Dana are so sweet together, and you’ll find yourself rooting for them all along the way. Their backstories are poignant and compelling, and the more they (and we) discover the more compelling it becomes. An awesome dog, vivid supporting characters, and breathtaking kisses scenery (ok… that first kiss is pretty breathtaking too) round out the mix and may have you booking your next vacation in Alaska!"



So, you want to date an Alaskan. Who wouldn’t? You’ve seen the pictures of hunky wilderness firefighters and fishermen. In Alaska, there are around a hundred and seven men for every hundred women. But women in Alaska have a saying. The odds are good, but the goods are odd.


"The book has some suspense and mystery to it and also adventure. Once you start the book it is hard to put down. . . . I really loved all the characters but I think Sam and Dana were my favorite. I definitely recommend this book. I have found another great author."


"Beth Carpenter has earned herself a solid spot in the heart of the Harlequin Heartwarming author line-up with her debut novel in the line! It brings us secrets and despair, gorgeous countryside and the hearts of good, solid people to overcome the turmoil brought forth when lives are turned upside down with shocking revelations. The characters are down to earth, real and well developed and the plot takes us along for the ride of a sweet love story that stands the test of time and tribulation. Looking forward to seeing more from her!"

Harlie's Books - Excerpt & Review

Sam had purposely chosen not to reveal Dana’s last name yet. He wanted Ursula’s unbiased evaluation of her character first. And while he hadn’t talked to Ursula alone, it was obvious the two women clicked. It may have been when Dana offered to make the cornbread, or possibly when she complimented one of Tommy’s whirligigs, but at some point today, Dana had won Ursula over. He wondered if it would stay that way once Ursula knew her last name.

"I loved how Chris, Dana and Sam’s past were intertwined. I’m not going to say anything else because it’s the crust of the book. Hats off to Ms. Carpenter for her originality. Brilliant, actually. And also, that not everything was done in Alaska. Dana still had some things to take care off back home with her new found strength. Oh yes, Dana had some growing to do in the book. It was subtle but in the end, it was well worth it."

Paulette's Papers - Six Ways to Test Your Courage in Alaska


Dana Raynott, the heroine in THE ALASKA CATCH, plays it safe. She’s always done exactly what her father asked her to do, even if it wasn’t what she wanted. But after her father’s death, she travels to Alaska to find her long-lost brother and spends time with his best friend, Sam. In this new place, with Sam by her side, she discovers reserves of courage she never knew she had.

Want a challenge? Here are six ways to test your courage in Alaska...


"A heartwarming novel about creating your own future and not living in the crux your family has left for you. This novel has a lot to learn about appearances not always being what they seem and just possibly our parents have learnt from something in their own past to guide them in the directions they try and push us into following. Everything in life is not as you expect it to be."


"This is my first story by Beth Carpenter, but it won’t be my last. I loved the way the author wove an enticing story of romance and suspense, set in the beautiful backdrop of breathtaking Alaska. The characters were realistic and engaging. They had me cheering for them all the way to the end.

I would highly recommend, The Alaskan Catch to anyone looking for a great romance."

And don't forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven't already...


The Alaskan Catch
(Northern Lights #1)


by Beth Carpenter

Adult Contemporary Romance

Mass Market Paperback & ebook, 368 pages
August 1st 2017 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Where life's currents take you…

Dana Raynott just traveled 3,600 miles to reunite with the brother who changed his name and fled to Alaska nineteen years ago. It's impossible not to be moved by this wild, breathtaking state, even if Dana's no closer to finding the answers she came here for.

Her brother's best friend, Anchorage engineer Sam MacKettrick, might be able to help her. He's strong and kind—a six-foot, irresistible blend of diverse cultures. He's also haunted by a tragic family history with a startling connection to Dana's past…


About the Author


Once upon a time ...

when Beth Carpenter was a little girl, she read everything she could get her hands on, and entertained herself on the school bus by making up stories in her head. Not a lot has changed. She's still consuming books like M&Ms, and spends her days creating happily-ever-afters for her imaginary friends.

She lives in Alaska and Arizona with her husband and an aggressively affectionate fifty-pound lap dog. She loves to hear from readers.

Tour Giveaway


Taste of Alaska Prize Pack (US only), which includes:
  • Alaska cross-body bag
  • Wild Smoked Alaska Salmon for Dip
  • Alaska Wild Berry Company Bering Sea Salt Caramels
  • Gold Nugget Chocolate Chunks
  • Raspberry Herbal Tea
  • Salmon Jerky – Teriyaki and Original
  • Three Bears Postcard
  • Alaska Sourdough Starter
  • Moose Notecards by Alaskan Artist Vonnie Gaither

$25 Amazon Gift Card (open internationally)

Ends August 22nd