Mini-Review: Auraria, Devil’s Bargain and Grounds to Kill

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Time for some mini-reviews! What are mini-reviews, you ask? As the title suggests, these are short reviews, consisting of one paragraph tops, about a book. It’s a way to catch up on the books I’ve read a while ago, but never got around to reviewing.

Auraria

Title: Auraria

Author: Tim Westover

Genre: Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Folklore

Rating: 4 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Water spirits, moon maidens, haunted pianos, headless revenants, and an invincible terrapin that lives under the mountains. None of these distract James Holtzclaw from his employer’s mission: to turn the fading gold-rush town of Auraria, GA, into a first-class resort and drown its fortunes below a man-made lake. But when Auraria’s peculiar people and problematic ghosts collide with his own rival ambitions, Holtzclaw must decide what he will save and what will be washed away. Taking its inspiration from a real Georgia ghost town, Auraria is steeped in the folklore of the Southern Appalachians, where the tensions of natural, supernatural and artificial are still alive.

Review: Auraria offers an intriguing blend of folklore, paranormal, history and even some facts, since it takes inspiration from a real Georgian ghost town, and the folklore of the Southern Appalachians. A whimsical, fun experience, with captivating writing. The main character borders on being one-dimensional though, which was a letdown, but overall, I enjoyed it.

Devil’s Bargain

Title: Devil’s Bargain

Author: Rachel Caine

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy

Rating: 4 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Jasmine “Jazz” Callender is on the downhill slide to ruin. Once a decorated homicide detective, she’s lost it all: her former partner’s been convicted of murder, she’s been cashiered out, and she’s drinking away what little self-respect she’s got left. But Jazz has a talent for trouble, and somebody knows it. When a mysterious, sexy stranger comes looking for her with a fateful red envelope in his hand, she’s about to make the deal of her life…for good or bad.

The deal requires her to enter into a partnership with a stranger and investigate cases that arrive in special red envelopes…which is odd enough, but gets weirder as she and her new partner Lucia realize that they may be working for someone with supernatural abilities.

And maybe they’re not on the side of the angels anymore.

Review: Romance only plays a minor part in this book, and that’s a good thing. Detective Jazz is on a downhill slide, but when she gets a red envelope from a mysterious stranger, proposing her the deal of a lifetime, it’s her way out of this mess. The deal requires her to enter a partnership with a strange, and investigate cases arriving in red envelopes. Things get weirder soon, and Jazz finds herself in a complicated moral dillemma. Excellent writing and character development – I absolutely loved Jazz, and wouldn’t mind reading more books in this series.

Grounds to Kill

Title: Grounds to Kill

Author: Wendy Roberts

Genre: Mystery, Cozy Mystery

Rating: 3 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Barista Jen Hanby’s coworkers give her a hard time for bringing coffee and pastries to a homeless man who sits outside her café—but she has a secret. The scruffy man is her father.

She’s also hiding the little matter of why her palm itches. But how can she explain that her hand has a mind of its own and writes messages from the beyond? Right. That’ll get her Employee of the Month.

When she finds herself scrawling your boyfriend is cheating on you! to herself on the bathroom mirror, she immediately dumps the guy. But then his little fling—who just happens to be her half sister—turns up dead, and suddenly Jen’s homeless father is the prime suspect.

Jen knows he is being framed and must take matters into her own hands to protect him. But will anyone believe that the crazy old man is innocent? Or that his spirit-writing daughter holds the truth?

Review: Cozy mystery with a touch of paranormal. Jen is a barista with a homeless father and an itching hand that writes messages from the month. Unfortunately, her life is about to get worse – her boyfriend is cheating on her, his fling turns up dead, and her Dad is the number one suspect. Interesting mystery, but the main character lacked personality, and the story was riddled with adjectives. Suspenseful, at times humorous, but all in all, just “okay”.

Book Tours: Starter Day Party Sex and Sensibility

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I’m hosting the starter day party today for romance novel “Sex and Sensibility”. Please visit all the tour stops and stay tuned for my review on June 26.

Tour Schedule

June 19th: Starter Day Party @ I Heart Reading

June 21st: Book Excerpt @ The Book Daily

June 23rd: Author Interview @ Cassidy Crimson’s Blog

June 25th: Book Excerpt @ Forever Book Lover

June 26th: Book Review @ I Heart Reading

Sex and Sensibility

Mature man offering flowers to his wifeTitle: Sex and Sensibility

Author: Derek Ansell

Genre: Romance

Tommy Fraser seems to have it all – a beautiful wife, an exciting past, and a vibrant life still ahead of him. But when suddenly confronted with the diagnosis of a possible life-threatening illness, his concerns are not only for his own mortality but his overwhelming desire to continue as a fully functioning, sexual male.

His soulmate and wife of thirty years, Cathy, is with him all the way, in total support and accompanying him to all hospital visits. Faced with an uncertain future, Tommy finds himself reflecting back on the past and his life before Cathy…a life that saw him with a different woman in almost every town he visited.

Debbie, Mandy, Diana, and all the many others are in the distant past, but are they gone forever? Is Tommy’s past about to catch up with him? And does Cathy know more about the man she loves and his colourful former life than she is letting on?

Author Bio

Derek Ansell was born in London and has lived in Newbury, Berkshire UK for the past forty years. He writes regular features and record/book reviews on music for Jazz Journal magazine along with music and theatre criticism for a Berkshire weekly newspaper. He is married and has three daughters, three grand-daughters and two grandsons.

Links

www.darkhollowspress.com

Book Review: Triumph! A Battle Plan for Joy by Gladys Simmons Carson

BookCover-TriumphABattlePlanforJoy-JPGTitle: Triumph! A Battle Plan for Joy
Author: Gladys Simmons Carson
Genre: Inspirational Memoir
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

When medical malpractice takes the life of her mother and the offense is dismissed as an unfortunate mistake, it rips a hole in seven-year-old Gladys’ heart and ignites fire in her anger. This act of gross negligence strips her of the joyful delight that has characterized her existence. Before she can grasp the full meaning of her loss, fate takes her on a journey through a series of harsh realities, including devastating child abuse, demeaning segregation and destructive thinking. These unsavory enemies assault her on all fronts, physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally. But the child warrior uses youthful wisdom to triumph over the effects of them all. Her prize is a resurgence of bountiful joy. You may laugh or cry, but you will definitely cheer for the child warrior in TRIUMPH! A BATTLE PLAN FOR JOY.

In her memoir, Triumph! A Battle Plan for Joy, author Gladys Simmons Carson tells readers about her early life, growing up, suffering through abuse, becoming a child warrior and growing up. In a clear, authentic voice she tells the readers her life story, the hardships she had to go through, and the lessons she learned along the way. Even though the subject matter isn’t always cheerful, she relates the story with a dosis of humor, which she mentioned in the book was sometimes one of her only defences.

The first part of the book focuses on the good days, when Gladys is living at home with her brothers and sisters and her Mom and Dad. All goes well in the world, and they sound like the perfect family. They go to Church, they have family dinners at set times, they love each other’s company. But then tragedy strikes and their mother passes away, leaving Gladys and her siblings in the care of their relatives. That’s when the second part of the book begins, which focuses at the abuse and negligence Gladys suffers at the hands of family members.

The third part focuses on Gladys as an adult, and at the racism she has to endure. By that point, I was amazed at how much she had to go through, and how she managed to keep on going despite all that, not giving up, not even giving up on happiness and on enjoying life. The fourth part focuses on the enemies of joy, and how to defeat them. It’s the largest part of the book, and reads like a call to action. While the first three parts are a memoir, the fourth part focuses on inspiring others to conquer their own enemies of joy. There are ten enemies mentioned, and how to handle them.

Triumph! A Battle Plan for Joy is an inspiring read about overcoming hardships, and doing so with joy. The author has a distinct writing style that is quite enjoyable. The book’s interior design looks professional, and it’s a fast read. Once I started reading, I had no trouble finishing it in one go.

 
 

Book Tours: Book Spotlights The Shu:The Gnostic Tao Te Ching

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The ShuTitle: The Shu: The Gnostic Tao Te Ching
Author: Thomax Green
Publisher: CreateSpace
Pages: 110
Genre: Spiritualism
Format: Paperback/Kindle

Purchase at AMAZON

Author Thomax Green has produced a compelling new book so cosmic in its scope that it has the power to change readers’ lives. THE SHU:  THE GNOSTIC TAO TE CHING is a “modern-day Gnostic work which blends all faiths and sciences into a super belief,” Green says. “With this belief system, you can be a faithful individual without the restrictions and classifications that are imposed by religious groups. In short, it is the way to freedom and happiness.”

Book Excerpt:

In the beginning, there was no multiverse. All that existed was a perfect machine called the Light. This light was like a super-giant sun, except it radiated perfect light which did not burn but instead enlightened with complete harmony.

Those who kept the light were creatures of pure energy. We call them angels, and for a time there was bliss like a perfect equation. Until an alien emotion corrupted half the angels; it was a disease born from love. This dark emotion is called desire.

To desire is not evil, if what you obtain does not harm another. But in the beginning this emotion was so concentrated that it created darkness within the corrupted. They are now known as demons.

What they desired the most was the Light itself. They already had it but they wanted to possess it and call it theirs. This caused the angels to defend the Light from the Darkness within the demons. And a battle ensued.

Angels and Demons cannot die, but there were casualties. And when the Darkness tried to touch the Light it caused the perfect machine to explode.

The Light expanded into an infinite amount of pieces.

Mass divided by nothing (or antimatter) equals infinite energy. The perfect machine was broken and time began. It became the multiverse and everything within it is the Light which is called the Inner Light or what we call God. That is how it is all powerful and all knowing. For it is within everything, the suns, the planets, the birds, bees and us. The Inner Light within us we call the soul or mind.

The battle is still being waged, for the machine is broken. The angels are pure Inner Light and the demons are now pure Inner Darkness. As humans we possess both from that original corruption.

The demons want us corrupted for they still crave the Light but they live in Darkness. The angels guide us to become better than we are so we may become pure from harmful desire.

The Multiverse is divided into an infinite number of universes. In some Darkness will prevail in others Light will win. That is why the demons do not stop fighting. For no one knows which universe will prevail good or evil.

This is why we have many lives. For in each incarnation we learn something that makes us either better or worse. Some of us will become one with the Inner Light. This is what we call going to heaven. Others will become one with the Inner Darkness and that is what we call going to hell.

There are those who adopt their inner power completely and when they do they will no longer reincarnate into this world. There are perfect examples from both sides like Jesus, Buddha, Hitler, and Napoleon. There are examples all throughout history of people becoming enlightened by their Inner Light or Inner Darkness. Look at Mother Teresa or Jeffrey Dahmer.

Ultimately when this universe comes to an end it will either be controlled by the Light or the Darkness. And when all universes come to an end whichever power is greater will cast out the other and replace it when time travels in reverse back to the beginning.

And that is the story of all things.

Book Review: Spelled (Amethyst #1) by Kate St. Clair

Screen Shot 2014-01-30 at 10.35.57 PMTitle: Spelled (Amethyst #1)
Author: Kate St. Clair
Genre: YA Paranormal
Age Group: Young Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Magic runs thicker than blood.

16-year-old Georgia Sayers may have just found out she’s descended from two of the most powerful witches in history, but others have known for a long time, and are hunting her. Can she protect her siblings from them before it’s too late?

The opening chapter of Spelled throws the reader right in the middle of the action. It’s a bit confusing though, but from the start we have the feeling all will slowly be revealed; and it is. The second chapter introduces us to Georgia and her five siblings, which was a bit of a shock. It’s hard to keep them apart at first, and to figure out who is who. Also, five siblings in a novella? When I started counting them, I grew a little worried. Novellas only leave so little time for character development, and with so many characters, I feared they might be underdeveloped.

However, the main character, Georgia, certainly doesn’t suffer from this. She’s a well-rounded character with a complex, intriguing personality. She’s obviously struggling with keeping her family together, and protecting her siblings, while trying to come to terms with her mother passing away. Luke is an interesting character too. He’s a senior who seems to know more about Georgia than she knows about herself, at times. He’s mysterious and witty, and his personality matches great with Georgia’s personality.

The story reveals itself layer by layer, one mystery after another. We learn about Georgia’s heritage, and what makes her and her family different from others, and why a dark cult is hunting them. The story mixes past and present in a suspenseful mix, and keeps a fast pace from start to end.  Spelled is an intriguing novella for fans of young adult paranormal. My only complaint? I wouldn’t have minded had it been longer.

Book Tours: Book Spotlights In the Mirror

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In the Mirror 3Title: In the Mirror
Author: Kaira Rouda
Publisher: Real You Publishing Group
Pages: 214
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Format: Paperback/Kindle

Purchase at AMAZON

What choices would you make if you knew you might die soon?

From the multi award-winning, best-selling author of four books, including Here, Home, Hope, a gripping and heart wrenching novel about a young mother who has it all. The only problem is she may be dying.

In her previous works including All the Difference, Rouda’s characters “sparkle with humor and heart,” and the stories are “told with honest insight and humor” (Booklist). “Inspirational and engaging” (ForeWord), these are the novels you’ll turn to for strong female characters and an “engaging read” (Kirkus).

In the Mirror is the story of Jennifer Benson, a woman who seems to have it all. Diagnosed with cancer, she enters an experimental treatment facility to tackle her disease the same way she tackled her life – head on. But while she’s busy fighting for a cure, running her business, planning a party, staying connected with her kids, and trying to keep her sanity, she ignores her own intuition and warnings from others and reignites an old relationship best left behind.

If you knew you might die, what choices would you make? How would it affect your marriage? How would you live each day? And how would you say no to the one who got away?

Book Excerpt:

Rolling over to get out of bed, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and cringed. My reflection said it all. Everything had changed.

I looked like death.

I blinked, moving my gaze from the mirror, and noticed the calendar. It was Monday again. That meant everything in the real world. It meant groaning about the morning and getting the kids off to school. It meant struggling to get to the office on time and then forcing yourself to move through the day. It meant the start of something new and fresh and undetermined. But Mondays meant nothing at Shady Valley. We lived in the “pause” world, between “play” and “stop.” Suspension was the toughest part for me. And loneliness. Sure, I had visitors, but it wasn’t the same as being surrounded by people in motion. I’d been on fast-forward in the real world, juggling two kids and my business, struggling to stay connected to my husband, my friends. At Shady Valley, with beige-colored day after cottage-cheese-tasting day, my pace was, well –

I had to get moving.

I supposed my longing for activity was behind my rather childish wish to throw a party for myself. At least it gave me a mission of sorts. A delineation of time beyond what the latest in a long line of cancer treatments dictated. It had been more than 18 months of treatments, doctor’s appointments, hospitalizations and the like. I embraced the solidity of a deadline. The finality of putting a date on the calendar and knowing that at least this, my party, was something I could control.

I noticed the veins standing tall and blue and bubbly atop my pale, bony hands. I felt a swell of gratitude for the snakelike signs of life, the entry points for experimental treatments; without them, I’d be worse than on pause by now.

I pulled my favorite blue sweatshirt over my head and tugged on my matching blue sweatpants.

Moving at last, I brushed my teeth and then headed next door to Ralph’s. He was my best friend at Shady Valley—a special all-suite, last-ditch-effort experimental facility for the sick and dying—or at least he had been until I began planning my party. I was on his last nerve with this, but he’d welcome the company, if not the topic. He was paused too.

 My thick cotton socks helped me shuffle across my fake wood floor, but it was slow going once I reached the grassy knoll—the leaf-green carpet that had overgrown the hallway. An institutional attempt at Eden, I supposed. On our good days, Ralph and I sometimes sneaked my son’s plastic bowling set out there to partake in vicious matches. We had both been highly competitive, type-A people in the “real” world and the suspended reality of hushed voices and tiptoeing relatives was unbearable at times.

“I’ve narrowed it down to three choices,” I said, reaching Ralph’s open door. “’Please come celebrate my life on the eve of my death. RSVP immediately. I’m running out of time.’”

“Oh, honestly,” Ralph said, rolling his head back onto the pillows propping him up. I knew my time in Shady Valley was only bearable because of this man, his humanizing presence. Even though we both looked like shadows of our outside, real-world selves, we carried on a relationship as if we were healthy, alive. I ignored the surgery scars on his bald, now misshapen head. He constantly told me I was beautiful. It worked for us.

“Too morbid? How about: ‘Only two months left. Come see the incredible, shrinking woman. Learn diet secrets of the doomed,’” I said, smiling then, hoping he’d join in.

“Jennifer, give it a rest would you?” Ralph said.

“You don’t have to be so testy. Do you want me to leave?” I asked, ready to retreat back to my room.

“No, come in. Let’s just talk about something else, OK, beautiful?”

Ralph was lonely, too. Friends from his days as the city’s most promising young investment banker had turned their backs—they didn’t or couldn’t make time for his death. His wife, Barbara, and their three teenage kids were his only regular visitors. Some days, I felt closer to Ralph than to my own family, who seemed increasingly more absorbed in their own lives despite weekly flowers from Daddy and dutiful visits from Henry, my husband of six years. Poor Henry. It was hard to have meaningful visits at Shady Valley, with nurses and treatments and all manner of interruptions. We still held hands and kissed, but intimacy—even when I was feeling up to it—was impossible.

So, there we were, Ralph and I, two near-death invalids fighting for our lives and planning a party to celebrate that fact. It seemed perfectly reasonable, at least to me, because while I knew I should be living in the moment, the future seemed a little hazy without a party to focus on.

“Seriously, I need input on my party invitations. It’s got to be right before I hand it over to Mother. I value your judgment, Ralph; is that too much to ask?”

“For God’s sake, let me see them.” Ralph snatched the paper out of my hand. After a moment, he handed it back to me. “The last one’s the best. The others are too, well, self-pitying and stupid. Are you sure you can’t just have a funeral like the rest of us?”

I glared at him, but agreed, “That’s my favorite, too.”

Mr. & Mrs. E. David Wells

request your presence at a

celebration in honor of their daughter

Jennifer Wells Benson

Please see insert for your party time

Shady Valley Center

2700 Hocking Ridge Road

RSVP to Mrs. Juliana Duncan Wells

No gifts please—donations to breast cancer research appreciated.

#

 At first, I had been incredibly angry about the cancer. Hannah’s birth, so joyous, had marked the end of my life as a “normal” person. Apparently, it happened a lot. While a baby’s cells multiplied, the mom’s got into the act, mutating, turning on each other. Hannah was barely two weeks old when I became violently ill. My fever was 105 degrees when we arrived in the ER. I think the ER doctors suspected a retained placenta or even some sort of infectious disease, although I was so feverish I can’t remember much from that time. All I remember was the feeling of being cut off from my family—Henry, two-year-old Hank, and newborn Hannah—and marooned on the maternity ward, a place for mothers-to-be on bed rest until their due dates. That was hell.

At 33, I was a pathetic sight. My headache was so intense the curtains were drawn at all times. I didn’t look pregnant anymore, so all the nurses thought my baby had died. That first shift tip-toed around me, murmuring. By the second night, one of them posted a sign: “The baby is fine. Mother is sick.” It answered their questions since I couldn’t. It hurt my head too much to try.

By the third day, my headache had receded to a dull roar. Surgery revealed that there was no retained placenta after all. I was ready to go home to my newborn and my life. So with a slight fever and no answers, I escaped from the hospital and went home to a grateful Henry and a chaotic household. I was weak and tired, but everyone agreed that was to be expected. I thanked God for the millionth time for two healthy kids and my blessed, if busy, life.

And then, not two weeks later, I found the lump.

Book Trailer

Book Tours: Starter Day Party Sister Surrendered

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I’m hosting the starter day party for the book tour for memoir “Sister Surrendered”. The tour runs from June 17 to July 17. I’ll be hosting a review on June 25. Stay tuned for the review, and in the mean time, check out the other tour stops.

Tour Schedule

June 17th: Starter Day Party @ I Heart Reading

June 19th: Book Excerpt @ I’m an Eclectic Reader

June 21st: Author Interview @ The Single Librarian

June 23rd: Book Excerpt @ Bookaholic Ramblings

June 24th: Guest Post @ Endazzled Reading

June 25th: Book Review @ I Heart Reading

June 27th: Book Excerpt @ The Reading Guru

June 28th: Author Interview @ The Book Daily

June 29th: Book Review @ Bookish Madness

June 30th: Book Excerpt @ The Book Gazette

July 1st: Author Interview @ Cassidy Crimson’s Bog

July 3rd: Book Excerpt @ Editor Charlene’s Blog

July 5th: Book Review @ Forever Book Lover

July 6th: Book Excerpt @ Hollow Readers

July 7th: Guest Post @ I’m an Eclectic Reader

July 9th: Book Excerpt @ Cajun Book Lover

July 10th: Book Review @ Cassidy Crimson’s Blog

July 11th: Author Interview @ Majanka’s Blog

July 13th: Book Excerpt @ 365 Days of Reading

July 15th: Book Review @ Endazzled Reading

July 16th: Book Excerpt @ Books Direct

July 17th: Guest Post @ Editor Charlene’s Blog

About Sister Surrendered

Sister Surrendered Ebook Cover jpgTitle: Sister Surrendered

Author: Darla Grese

Genre: Memoir

When you’re a twin, loneliness is somewhat unfamiliar because you’ve always had each other. So when a twin passes, the other is left unprepared. Our loyalty was steadfast and our devotion to one another, solid. Our love was unconditional no matter what the circumstances. I’m so grateful every day for the memories of the joy and laughter that we shared together. I know the bond that Kelli and I shared is impossible for anyone to replace.

This memoir has become something so much more than initially intended. It’s become a documented journey barely scratching the surface of the love between two sisters. And surprisingly, it’s also become an outlet for me to speak candidly and honestly about my struggles with the cause of Kelli’s death. This is a love story turned tragedy. An exposure of one of the greatest healthcare failures killing Veterans and civilians, and a cry for help to remedy the fiasco.

I’ve stressed about who I would mention in this book, nervous that I would hurt someone’s feelings by not mentioning their names. But I’ve realized that it’s impossible to do. Kelli had so many great friends, some I’ve never even met.

I need each person to know who has taken the time to reach out to me in whatever capacity that if it weren’t for your heartfelt show of support and love, I don’t know that I would be able to muster the energy to even get up each day. Kelli, we did it.

Author Bio

277920_4153854852406_1828888743_oDarla M. Grese is a twin sister who lost her better half to side effects from prescribed medication. As a U.S. Navy Veteran, she is an advocate of Veteran X and Veteran Hope programs that address mental illness, PTSD, and unintentional addiction issues. Both programs are sponsored by the Veteran Affairs Medical Center and focus on Veteran recovery and independence. She raises money for Team Kelli and annually participates in the Out of the Darkness Walk at Mt. Trashmore in Virginia Beach (http://www.sos-walk.org/sos/). While continuing to bring awareness to this cause, being a loving parent is her favorite passion and the main focus of her life. Darla’s love for the arts has been expressed as a talented actress with appearances in The F.B.I. files, The New Detectives, Diagnosis Unknown, Wicked Attraction, Discovery Channel’s The Haunting, and the movie Atlantis Down. She currently works full time as a respiratory therapist at a trauma center in Norfolk, Virginia.

Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Sister-Surrendered-Darla-M-Grese-ebook/dp/B00JMFPBJO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1402257715&sr=8-1&keywords=sister+surrendered

Book Review: Deceiver by Kelli Owen

21850397Title: Deceiver

Author: Kelli Owen

Genre: Dark Fiction, Novella, HOrror

Age Group: Adult (18+)

Rating: 2 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Matt Newman’s life is turned upside down when his wife is found murdered. The police have no leads and no suspects.
As Matt sinks further into a deep depression, he stumbles across a mysterious notebook among his wife’s belongings. Within its pages are cryptic writings revealing that she led a secret life. The more he reads, the greater his love turns to hatred for the woman he thought he knew.
How had she managed to conceal this double life? Worse, are her tales of debauchery even more terrifying than the mystery surrounding her death?

Deceiver is a short novella, and in my opinion, too short. We learn about main character Matt Newman, who just lost his wife. She was murdered, and the police have no leads. Matt struggles through her funeral and the aftermath, and coming to terms with loosing his spouse. But then he finds a diary supposedly belonging to his deceased spouse. He doesn’t want to at first, but then he starts reading it. The diary reveals a side of his wife Matt had no idea even existed.

Is she still the woman he fell in love with, or a deranged serial killer? Can he still love her if she turns out to be the latter?

The subject matter is dark, sure, but it wasn’t dark enough for my tastes. The murders are described rather superficially. It’s more about Matt’s emotional turmoil than about creepiness. There’s some sense of foreboding, but there’s no creepy atmosphere, no fear crawling up on the reader’s skin. We get a good sense of Matt, and his personality, and considering the limited amount of characters, the novella length makes sense, but it’s too short to establish suspense.

Happy Release Day for His Paris Affair

parisaffairjune16

Author Bio

ETNA PLUSChristina OW writes suspense, thrillers, erotica, interracial and multicultural romance books. She is the author of Contemporary, Fantasy, Paranormal, Regency Romance books and a poet of currently 3 titles. She loves reading novels that take her on a ride of wild emotions. Books have always been an escape for her, for a few hours she gets to live the lives of characters she grows to cherish and admire. She’s always had an active imagination and because of it has lived in her head more than she has been in the outside world. She always imagined scenarios and wondered how they would turn out in the end, and what kind of emotions they would invoke. Thus began her writing career.

Author Contacts

Website
Goodreads
Facebook page- Christina OW
Twitter- @Christina_OW
Google +
Blog- Read Me

Book Blurb

Row of columns (Italy, Vatican)Ruiz Albury went to the Bahamas for one reason, to get back what was his as the rightful heir of his father with rage and resentment that has been festering for years.  But once he gets there, he’s treated as part of a family, shown love and care he’d only dreamed about and all his carefully laid plans are forgotten. In fact, they are buried deep in his mind when he meets Melody Sinclair.

Melody Sinclair thought she’d found one of the good ones.  She loved Ruiz and trusted him enough to make him a part of her life, only to have it shuttered when she finds out his secret. Heart broken and distraught, she gets drunk and decides to get over him by getting under someone else, only for it to turn out to be the worst mistake of her life.  Trapped, with nowhere to turn, Ruiz sweeps in like a knight in shining armor ready to battle her dragon.

This is the last instalment of The Albury Affairs Series.

Book #1 Her Venice Affair

Book #2 His Bahamas Affair

Book #3 His Paris Affair

Book Excerpt

Ruiz slouched in the lawn chair, a bottle of beer in one hand and his cell phone in the other, watching and listening to the sounds of a happy family as the knife of jealousy repeatedly stabbed him in the chest.

He watched as his sister Riana blew her husband a kiss to where he stood at the grill with his best friend Matthew and with a broad smile Allan caught it and pressed it to his chest over his heart. She smiled lovingly at him as she strolled rocking the new addition to her family, Allan Patrick Sinclair III, to sleep. Ruiz knew his nine month old nephew would wake almost immediately after, once the laughter and other happy noises grew louder, penetrating his haze of sleep. He didn’t like to be left out. Ruiz could relate.

And just a few feet away from him, Reno and Loraine were having one of their famous rows that usually ended with them sneaking off together and emerging an hour later with the biggest grins on their faces. Loraine was now four months pregnant so there was no sneaking away this time. They all had their fingers crossed—Reno especially—that she would carry this baby to term with no complications. After the attack over a year ago that resulted in Loraine losing their first baby together they had fingers and toes crossed. Sure they were all worried, treating her like a fragile egg but Reno was a little extreme. From Loraine’s complaints they barely had sex which apparently was like torture to a horny hormonal pregnant woman—who knew? Ruiz was sure one day his brother would lose it and wrap his wife in bubble wrap. The attention was driving Loraine nuts considering she was barely showing. At the beginning of her pregnancy, she had been very understanding but now she really looked ready to punch Reno when she stood up mere seconds after he settled her down on the cushioned chair. Amy, Matthew’s wife watched, quietly laughing as she cradled her second son, seven months old Ethan in her arms.

Why couldn’t he have his happily ever after? Did he not deserve it? Wasn’t his entire life difficult enough to earn one?

 

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Amazon | Secret Cravings Publishing

Book Tours: Guest Post Invitation Book Tour

I’m hosting a guest post today for the book tour for contemporary romance “Invitation”. I hope you enjoy the guest post, and I’ll leave the word to author Christina Hoffman now.

Guest Post

Hello Beloved Readers!

I am Christina Hoffman.

I was born in England and later hop-scotched across the globe (or, rather, I was exposed to multiple wonderful cultures and adventures!) with my family until we finally settled in the United States.

I have put my suitcase down, for now at least, in blissful San Francisco.

If that wasn’t good fortune enough, I am finally making my dream of writing meaningful romances come true.  I love sexy stories with heart, relationships that are sweet and insanely erotic. Enough with the chains and the degradation. I need some romance in my Romance!

I have known so many intelligent and driven men and women who have felt they could be smart OR sexy. Seriously, my when my best girlfriend, who is gorgeous, was in medical school, the women were beautiful. But they didn’t know it. Or they suspected they might be, and worked extra hard to cover it up. They had to take on the role of serious grown-up, and acting like sensual beings was practically a career ender.

Okay, well, we can’t change the world overnight! But after-hours, we can do what we like with our minds AND our bodies. Why not have some amazing adventures? That’s what I write about in my books, and I hope you’ll see yourselves in my heroines or my heroes, and know that you, too, are allowed to feel amazing.

About the Author

Christina HoffmanChristina Hoffman was born in London, England. She moved with her family throughout Canada and the US, and has finally put down her suitcase, for now, in San Francisco.

She believes that everyone has the right to feel both smart and sexy. We don’t have to be one or the other! She writes stories about characters who live in the real world and who, somehow, still believe in love.

She’s starting a mini-revolution. She writes sexy stories, but hasn’t lost the romance from her Romances. Enough with whips — back to lips!

She hopes you enjoy her stories and see yourself in her characters. After all, they are based on smart and sexy people, just like you.

Christina’s latest book is the contemporary romance, Invitation.

Visit her website at www.christinahoffman.com.

Connect & Socialize!

TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

About the Book

Invitation 7Madison Spencer is a serious medical student, focused only on work and hiding her beauty and her once-passionate spirit behind a quiet plain-Jane facade. Since she was drugged, stripped, assaulted and photographed by a vengeful ex, she has stayed away from men and kept her heart and body safe.
But when heart-stoppingly gorgeous Dr. Liam Mason walks into her world, she knows she’s in trouble. After finding out about her devastating past, Liam offers to bring her back to life with physical passion. Madison thinks she should be repelled, but she’s intrigued and can’t turn him away. Together they explore days and nights of pleasure, and slowly develop into something more than bedmates.
Deep inside they each wonder if they’ve found their perfect match. But with Liam’s fear of being dragged down by commitment, and Madison’s fear of being hurt by another man threatening to destroy the world they’ve built together, will they each be strong enough and brave enough to risk their hearts to have it all?

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