Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Review: Eve -Iris Johansen

Are you fans of Iris Johansen's mysteries ? Do you enjoy her Eve Duncan and Joe Quinn Novels ?

Review: Eve - Iris Johansen - April 2011
When an author starts to do a single book about the main characters and then follows two more as Iris Johansen is currently doing as be prepared to read one on Quinn and lastly Bonnie -which by the way I'm so looking forward to the book about Bonnie :). It makes you wonder whether this is the author's way of saying goodbye to the series as it rounds the books off ?. If you are a fan of Iris Johansen's novels then you will be all too familiar with Eve Duncan , her partner Joe Quinn, her adopted daughter Jane and finally her daughter Bonnie who as we read was kidnapped when she was seven and murdered , though of course it still remains an unsolved case.
In Iris Johansen's latest novel Eve, we are drawn back into the world that is holds an obsession for Eve , the world of finding out what happened and who killed her precious Bonnie. The novel starts off with CIA Agent Catherine Ling muttering one name to Eve who happens to be top of their suspect list "John Gallo".  Hearing the name jolts a shock through Eve's body as she thought he died many years ago. The story then flicks back to Eve's past from the age of sixteen when she first met John Gallo, her knight in shining armour and the pure sexual relationship that they had up to the time where he had to go off to the Army and Eve in turn found out the she was pregnant with their daughter Bonnie. The story then flicks back to present time , where the CIA are hot on Gallo's trail and Eve receives a phone call from him , Eve eager as always to find out what happened to their daughter agrees to meet him and what becomes as a simple meeting ends up for Eve a race to save hers and the ones she loves lives as those who know about Bonnie's death and have a bounty for John's head are nearing closer.
Will Eve be able to discover the truth of what happened to John those many years ago and the truth of who killed her darling Bonnie and when she does discover the truth, will she be able to in turn accept it or will it push her over the edge of imbalance?
Find out more in this spine-tingling , fast-paced thriller that will have fans of Eve Duncan's wanting to read it in one sitting.

VBT# Slow Burn - Ednah Walters

Wanting a bit of a steamy read filled with sex, murder, romance and mystery ?

Slow Burn
Review: Slow Burn - Ednah Walters - April 2011
Are you wanting a novel filled to the brim with the perfect recipe of sex, murder, romance and mystery ? Then check out Slow Burn with it's fire burning in more than one way. Our novel starts with Ashley Fitzgerald , who ten years ago was in a house fire and she managed to escape but she had to stand by and watch her parents be killed by the fire. Over the past ten years, she has tried to forget the night but theres always been one thing niggling at her besides the nightmares, she knows that the fire wasn't an accident but foul play and has a suspicion her parents were murdered. Meet Ron Douglass aka Ronald Noble , his family are wealthy and rich beyond their means but they are harboring a dark secret and one that if they are not careful may just be exposed. Ten years ago, Ron's father was the one that set the fire at Carlyle House and killed Ashley's parents and somebody is looking for revenge by sending stalkerish "I know what you did ten years ago" messages to him. As the story goes on, Ron is convinced that it is Ashley who knows and must find her to save his father, as we get on though we discover a passion start to intensify between Ron and Ashley and soon discover that there are stronger forces and players in the game. Can Ashley and Ron get to the bottom of it before they are killed or in this case burnt in a slow painful death ?
In some way this book reminded me of "Blue Smoke" by Nora Roberts.
Find out more in "Slow Burn" , the first in the Fitzgerald Family series by Ednah Walters.

About the Author

E.B. WALTERS grew up reading Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys and dreaming of one day writing her own stories. She finished her PhD in chemistry, married the love of her life, and decided to be a stay-at-home mother. She now lives in a picturesque valley in Utah with her husband, five children and two American short-hair cats. When she is not writing, you can find her doing things with her family, reading or traveling, online chatting with fans. She writes both YA fantasy under the pseudonym Ednah Walters and adult romance under E. B. Walters. AWAKENED the first YA fantasy book in The Guardian Legacy series was released in September 2010 with rave reviews and BETRAYED, book 2, will be released in the fall of 2011. SLOW BURN is the first book on the Fitzgerald family. She is currently revising book 2, MINE UNTIL DAWN. You can visit her online at www.ednahwalters.com .

Top Ten Tuesday : Top Ten Beach Reads

Today's Top Ten Tuesday is the Top Ten Books to take to the beach, now if you are like me , then when you go to the beach or on holiday - you always make a stop at the library and grab like 10 books to last you or if Im at the beach for a day, I always try to take 3-4 Books with me. As I have heaps of books on my bookshelf that I have yet to read , they will be listed in my Top Ten Books to take to the beach.

  1. Thriller 2 : Edited by Clive Cussler and James Patterson : A Collection of Mystery and Thriller Short Stories.
  2. My Sweet Audrina - Virginia Andrews : This is about the only Virginia Andrews Book I haven't read.
  3. In the Blood - JA Kerley - Again the only JA / Jack Kerley book I have not yet read.
  4. The Chosen- Maggie Shayne - A Collection of 2 Vampire Stories, that I bought on sale at The Warehouse "who can't resist a sale"
  5. Paranormalcy - Kiersten White - I have again been meaning to read it but haven't got round to it," Im one of these people that buy lots of books and then other books appear and read those first instead of the ones on my shelves"
  6. Classics - I went out and bought the Twilight Inspired covers of Pride and Prejudice , Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre and Tess of D'Urbevilles. - "I couldn't resist their beautiful covers"
  7. Burn Bright - Marianne De Pierres - I went to a book sale and bought this for a good price and it was on my TBR List.
  8. Collection of James Patterson Novels - Jack and Jill, See How they Run, Kiss the Girls and The Midnight Club - the few James Patterson books I havent read .
  9. Cecilia Ahern Collection - Includes Thanks for the Memories, PS I Love You, Where Rainbows End, The Gift, and If You Could See Me,
  10. The Vampire Diaries Books 1-6 and Stefans Diary Books 1-2 - LJ Smith - Ive read the first 4 books in the Vampire Diaries and would be great to read them all again and then continue with the new 4 books that I own also.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Review: Secrets Monsters and Magic Mirrors - Donald Lemke

Are you wanting to teach your child a collection of fairy-tales ? Are they more into comics than actual novels ?

Review: Secrets, Monsters and Magic Mirrors - Donald Lemke - 2011
Are you a fan of fairytales , enjoy reading graphic novels ? Wanting to teach a younger sibling or child about fairytales ? Then this is the book to get Secrets, Monsters and Maguic Mirrors is a collection of five of our very favourite fairy tales from Rapunzel, Snow White , Thumbelina, Beauty and the Beast and The Princess and the Pea.
Each Fairytale describes the main characters and their pictures and then is condensed into four-five pages of comic book strip. I found personally that this book would be more suitable aimed at children 8-9+ as the fairytales and their drawings gave off a bit of a dark feeling and if you were aiming at an under 8 they may find the pictures a tad scary.
Five of the world's greatest fairy tales are retold in the popular and attractive graphic novel format. Beautiful, bold illustrations give these timeless tales a modern edge.
One thing, that is great about Graphic Novels is that at least though it maybe lots of pictures and least words , the child is still getting some literacy skills by reading it.

Review: Harvest Moon - Krista Ball

Wanting a short novella to read ?

Harvest Moon
Review: Harvest Moon - Krista Ball
When I first turned the pages of this novella , I thought it may have been a werewolf or supernatural novel in that sense as when you think of Harvest Moon with the Full Moon in the background that's what comes to my mind. However, alas that was not the case in Krista Ball's book "Harvest Moon". This story takes us into the world of the American Indians , a culture that I normally don't encounter when Ive read books, only briefly in Patricia Briggs writings and few Christian Historical novels. The story centers around the main character - a women named The Dancing one who after her last two husbands died she was renamed "Cursed One". One day , she is to take a sacred bundle down to the river, wanting to end her life - she decides to pray to the spirits . The spirit ends up turning her into a man , it is now that she must live her life as a male. Along her journey, she/he is injured and taken into care by another Outcast from an opposing tribe called Bearclaw. It seems he has been outcasted due to his sexuality choices as he is bisexual and attracted to men and women. Which for me was weird seeing it in a novel , as many cast their characters has liking either or but rarely both. As the novel goes on, it seems that their paths have intertwined for a reason , however will Dancing One be stuck in a man's body forever or will Bearclaw break the curse she has placed on herself ?

VBT# Author Interview - Jesi Lea Ryan

Today's VBT# spotlight is an Interview with the author Jesi Lea Ryan. Her book is called " Four Thousand Miles".


Author Interview:

1) Tell us about your book Four Thousand Miles ?

Four Thousand Miles is Women’s Fiction with a strong romantic element to it.
When Natalie Spencer loses both her career and marriage in the same morning, the emotional shock sends her on a spontaneous journey to England. There, she is nearly mugged in a Tube station, but an introverted songwriter named Gavin Ashby scares off again?

2) Are you a reader of Women's fiction and if so what are some of your favourite titles to read ?
I’ve been reading Women’s Fiction for a long time. I love Jodi Piccoult. She novels are always so emotional, and I love how she always bases the stories around impossible moral dilemmas. One of my other favorites is Jennifer Weiner. Her novel Good In Bed had me laughing out loud! Her characters are so wonderfully flawed and believable. I also love Maeve Binchy.

3) What gives you the innovation to write a particular genre?
For me, it’s about the story. I didn’t sit down and decide I was going to write Women’s Fiction; I just sat down and started writing. In fact, I’ve written some Literary Fiction, personal memoire, and Young Adult Fiction also.

4) Has your characters or writing been inspired by friends/ family?
Very little! I honestly try not to do that, because I don’t want to put them in uncomfortable positions. As authors, we are not always kind to our characters. Once in a while I will name a very minor bit character after someone I know. In Four Thousand Miles, I named Emma’s teacher at the deaf school Miss Bethany after my sister-in-law who teaches deaf children and gave me a lot of information on how to handle a deaf character. The teacher doesn’t even really appear in the story, she is only mentioned in conversation.

5) Did you experience writers block? If so, what did you do to get rid of it?
If I’m blocked, I walk away and do something else. There is no point in torturing myself by sitting in front of a blank screen and staring at the blinking cursor. I get my best ideas while day dreaming as I’m doing other things.
I also have a writing partner who helps me work out blocks. Since she is a writer as well, we will discuss our plot or character issues and do brainstorming sessions. I can’t tell you how valuable she has been for me!

6) What are you working on now?
I actually have two works-in-progress. Both of them are Young Adult Paranormal which is very different for me. I’ve traditionally written realistic fiction. This is the first time I’ve tried to tackle paranormal or fantasy elements. I’m finding it incredibly fun!

7) What is your favourite scene in your book?
It’s a small one, but my favorite scene to write was when Natalie and Gavin have their first dance alone in his family’s bar. It’s really the first time they get close to each other in a way that goes beyond friendship. I’ve always loved those feelings you get in the beginning of a relationship when everything is new. It’s like a drug!

8) Had you previously written anything?
I’ve published a few short fiction pieces in some regional literary magazines and I’ve written a ton of insurance articles for newsletters, but Four Thousand Miles was my first attempt at a novel. I’m just blown away that it has gotten published and has sold as well as it has! I’ve discovered that I’m actually a much better novel writer than a short story writer. I need room to move around with my characters.

9) Were there any scenes that were cut in the editing process you wish had made it into the book?
Actually, my publisher edited my novel with a very light hand. It only took me two days to complete the entire editing process! No major revisions were needed.

10) Can you give us one fun fact we might not know about Four Thousand Miles? Something about the story itself or the writing process?
The story takes place in several locations. I’ve actually been to every place described in the novel except Harrods Department Store. In order to write that scene, I had to watch YouTube videos posted by tourists who visited the store. I’m so worried that someone will point out some glaring mistake I made!

11) How did you get into writing? Did you always want to become a writer?
I’ve always loved to write, but I didn’t have the confidence in myself when I was younger to turn it into a career. I majored in Creative Writing and Literature when I was in college, but ended up working in insurance for a number of years. It wasn’t until I got downsized out of my job that I turned to writing seriously.

12) If you were stranded on a desert island, what are three material things you couldn't be without?
An e-reader fully stocked with books, a laptop with internet access and Q-Tips!

13) What are you reading now?
Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of Young Adult books. I’m learning the market since that is the genre of my next book. I actually keep a record of the books that I read on my blog. You can check it out at http://diaryofabibliophile-jesilea.blogspot.com/ . I love chating with people about the books I read, so comments are more than welcome!

14) Which author has inspired you most and why?
I read so much that it’s really hard to pinpoint one particular author that has influenced me. I think I am constantly learning my craft through the books that I read. I suppose some of my favorite authors would be Oscar Wilde for his wit, Charlaine Harris for her campy humor, Richelle Mead because her books are like crack to me, Jodi Piccoult for her moral dilemmas and Jack Kerouac for his mastery of the metaphor. I’m not saying I write like any of these people, but I think they influence me in different ways.

15) What advice would you give aspiring authors?
Be prepared to work hard. Don’t take rejection personally. And don’t give up.

16) As a Quotes Person I always like to ask To finish off, do you have a quote or poem that has stuck with you over the years and what is the story behind it?
“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” ~Bertand Russell. I love this quote because so much of my free time is spent on the couch reading books and to people who are not readers, this may look like a waste of time.

Review: First Impressions - Michelle Sutton

Ready for a novel that mixes contemporary with historical ?

Tombstone Treasures Book One: First Impressions

Review: First Impressions - Tombstone Treasures Book #1 - Michelle Sutton
When I first read the blurb and saw the cover of this book, I was thinking along the lines of that it must be another historical christian fiction novel with the theme of Saloon Girls, Cowboys and Mail order Brides . However as I started reading it , it turned out I was half-right as this novel though set in the contemporary and present world had the theme of the 1800's Western ways running through as we meet Sammie who has just applied for a job as a dress-up Saloon Girl . Nervous, and eager to get that confidence buzz growing again - she eagerly but shyly accepts the job offer. It is whilst working one day that she meets Big Jimmy whose goal in life seems to be to save her from her so-called heathen ways . As the story goes along, we start to see Sammie aka Lonesome Lily, start to relax and the passion between Sammie and Jimmy start to flare . However when it comes to truth and honesty, what will Jimmy think when Sammie tells him the truth of who she really is and that the Saloon gig was just a job. What has God got in place for this couple ? Find out and read as we discover that sometimes First Impressions aren't always what they seem and read on to discover whether or not , there will be wedding bells chiming towards the end of the novel.

VBT# Jazz,Java and Jesus - Aleysha Proctor

Today's VBT# is author Aleysha Proctor and her new Christian Non-Fiction titled "Jazz , Java and Jesus ". This is part of the Tywebbin VBT's.

Jazz, Java & Jesus
Review: Jazz , Java and Jesus - Aleysha Proctor - December 2009
Are you looking for the perfect devotional guide , something to help you move closer in your relationship with God as well as something nice to soothe your soul besides reading all those Chicken Soup books. Aiming for something more directed to the Christian audience ?
Well, look no further as I present to you - the perfect solution "Jazz, Java and Jesus" by Aleysha Proctor . It is a collection of daily devotions that are only one-two pages long, so not too overwhelming but just enough to get you thinking. Each devotion comes with a memory verse and then a ancedote or story about the verse and then for all those who love to write notes and jot down ideas from what they have just reflected on , their is an included space after each devotion for those handwritten notes of God.

Why is it called Jazz, Java and Jesus ?
Jazz, Java & Jesus. Why Jazz? Jazz, because I love smooth jazz music. Many times, it’s soothing jazz music that ushers me into worshipping the Lord over other kinds of music. In 1 Samuel 16, King Saul is distressed and troubled and one of his servants tells him that he needs David, the shepherd boy, to come and play his harp for him and then he’ll be at peace. The Bible tells us that Saul would be “refreshed and well” after David played for him.
Why Java? Java, because I love coffee too! It’s times when I’m having a cup of coffee (decaf, of course!) that I can relax and think of the goodness of the Lord. Even if I’m having coffee with friends, I’m usually meditating and talking to God. Jesus told the Samaritan woman in John 4 that true worshippers won’t worship God at a certain time or place, but will worship Him in spirit and in truth (all the time) because He is a spirit and seeks to be worshipped all the time.
Why Jesus? WHO ELSE?! Because I love Jesus, because He’s the Keeper of my soul, because He’s my Savior, because He’s the only true and living God, because He’s my Healer, because He’s my Friend, because He comforts me, because He prays for me, because He holds my future. Do I need to go

About The Author : Aleysha ProctorAleysha Proctor is an award-winning Entrepreneur, award-winning Author, and certified Image Consultant (having studied with Color Me Beautiful, Inc., Beauty for All Seasons and Brenda York Image Management). She also has a BS degree in Management & Leadership, an MBA in Marketing from Hamilton University, and is a certified Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF). Aleysha is a member of the Fashion Group International (FGI), where she served as the president of the Foundation, which awarded scholarships to area students majoring in fashion related fields. She’s also a member of the National Black MBA Association, Inc. (NBMBAA).
Aleysha has authored three inspirational books: With Style & Amazing Grace (2007), He’s the Keeper of My Soul (2008), and Jazz, Java & Jesus (2010). Inc. In 2008, she won Aspicomm Media’s Best Spiritual/Inspirational Book award for her first title, “With Style & Amazing Grace”.
A member of the First Baptist Church of Glenarden, Maryland (FBCG), Aleysha’s passion in life is helping others to live their best lives now by realizing and utilizing their potential. Visit the Aleysha online at http://www.aleyshaproctor.com/

Review: Angel Burn - L.A Weatherly

In the Mood for Teen Angel Fiction ?

Angel Burn
Review: Angel Burn - Angel Book #1 - L.A Weatherly - May 2011
I've always been a fan of L.A Weatherly's books ever since I read her book written under Lee Weatherly - Kat Got your Tongue , Missing Abby and Breakfast at Sadie's. So when I discovered that she was writing a new series starring Angels , I just had to get my book hands onto it.  When It comes to Angel stories, Im always in two minds as Ive read a few that weren't that great and then Ive read others that I've enjoyed. Angel Burn is one that I enjoyed. It tells the story of Willow Fields, who is anything but a normal teen as she has always had the gift of foretelling the future and Alex - he is a seventeen yr old Angel Killer recruited by the CIA. When he is given his next task to kill Willow, all goes accordingly till he realises that something is different about Willow, she doesn't give off the same Angel aura and is more human than anybody he has met before. Willow along with Alex, soon discover that Willow is in fact a half Angel/ half human and the Church of Angels want her head on a platter. So as you can guess , the rest of the first book in a trilogy at this stage sees Alex and Willow on the run , in order to save Willow's life. When Alex's buddies turn their backs on him for harbouring an angel, it is up to him and Willow alone ? Can the two work together to save Willow or when the going gets tough, will Alex side with his friends ?
Find out in this story with a twist - Angel Burn by L.A Weatherly.

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