Book Review Risking Forever

Title: Risking Forever: Vol. 1
Author: Tara Gallina
Genre: New Adult Romance
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon

Risking Forever: Vol 1 (The Forever Series) by Tara Gallina

My best friend has been obsessed with Sebastian since our freshman year in college. She wants him to herself, which is fine by me. He’s a paycheck, a means to an end goal. He’s temporary. But he’s also tempting—the way he looks at me, the things he says, the way he touches me… If I’m not careful, I might do something I’ll regret. ~Ainsley Belle

THE FOREVER SERIES
At twenty, Ainsley knows it’s time to follow her own dreams and not the future her that was planned for her—a future she never wanted. Losing her job couldn’t have come at a worse time.
Sebastian Gianni isn’t the ideal boss, but he has a position to fill and Ainsley is desperate. The sexy twenty-two-year-old comes from money, owns a successful business, and graduates from college in three months. He has his life together in a way Ainsley could only dream.
No wonder her best friend is obsessed with dating him. Even his ex-girlfriend is determined to get him back, although threatening him seems like the wrong approach. Ainsley would be a fool to fall for the guy, too.
By no means, should she trust him. He has more secrets than anyone she knows, which makes her wonder if the mafia rumors about him are true. It doesn’t matter that he’s a good listener, and sweet and protective at times. That playful flirty side he shares with her alone means nothing. Right?
When a kiss turns into a secret romance neither can give up, Ainsley learns the truth about Sebastian’s corrupt family and why his ex-girlfriend won’t go away. A future together is near impossible and comes with a risk that could get them both killed—or give them everything they’ve ever wanted.

Risking Forever was everything I expected when reading the synopsis, and much more. Main character Ainsley is at that point in life that most of us, if not all of us, have to cross when we’re growing up from young adults into adulthood: where you have to decide who you really are, and what you want your future to be like.

When she loses her job, she’s desperate enough to start working for Sesbastian Gianni: a man her best friend has been obsessed with ever since freshman year in college, and whose ex-girlfriend just can’t seem to get over. With this kind of track record, Ainsley would be stupid to fall for him too… Yet, that’s exactly what happens. Sebastian is playful, confident, flirty, yet he’s also protective and caring, and the more time Ainsley spends with Sebastian, the more she feels attracted to him, until attraction turns into something much more. But can they have a future together, or will secrets from Sebastian’s past drive them apart?

Ainsley’s personality is very engaging. She truly wants to better herself, she’s ambitious, but she’s also kind and caring, and she’s genuinely just a friendly, inviting person. I also liked Sebastian, but he’s more of a mystery – that’s a good trait for a romantic interest, though, since it allows readers the time to get to know him slowly. The writing was solid too, and overall, this was an entertaing romance story that I really enjoyed reading. I can’t wait for the next installment in the series.

 

Book Tours: Starter Day Party My Way To You

I’m hosting the starter day party today for the book tour for romance “My Way To You”. The tour runs from December 6 to December 13. Enjoy the tour!

Tour Schedule

December 6th: Starter Day Party @ I Heart Reading

December 7th: Book Excerpt and Giveaway @ Bright Street Books

December 9th: Book Excerpt @ Bookish Rantings

December 10th: Author Interview @ Editor Charlene’s Blog

December 11th: Book Review @ Crazy KALM

December 13th: Book Excerpt @ Books, Dreams, Life

December 13th: Book Review and Giveaway @ I Heart Reading

About the Book

Title: My Way To You

Author: Lyndell Williams

Genre: Romance

Lawyer Simon Young is smart, confident, and adept at keeping things with women casual—until he meets his best friend Marcus’s sister, Regina. Immediately intrigued by Regina’s beauty, Simon becomes increasingly enthralled and ultimately risks his friendship to have her for himself.

Social justice writer and activist Regina Kent is usually cautious and savvy. Yet, unable to resist her attraction to the handsome Simon, she plunges into a torrid affair, knowing that she chances angering big brother and her less tolerant followers, many of whom will not accept that one of their most popular pro-Black bloggers is dating an Asian man.

As their clandestine romance evolves, Simon and Regina fall deeper in love. Making sure that things stay between them becomes progressively impossible, and neither knows how much longer they can keep Marcus in the dark and the world at bay.

Author Bio

Lyndell Williams is an award-winning writer as well as a multifaceted editor, romance scholar and author.  She is a managing editor and columnist for various media platforms and serves as a content editor for a select group of clients. She’s had numerous short stories published in collections and enjoys a growing list of subscribers to her Layla Writes Love online short story series.

Lyndell is an adjunct instructor as well as an anti-racism and gender equity advocate. She is committed to the traditional use of literature as social commentary to affect positive social change.

 

Links

Amazon

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Pinterest

Book Review: Storm in a cup of coffee by Keren Or

Title: Storm in a cup of coffee
Author: Keren Or
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Can Eli accept the man who psychic Lena insists is her love destiny?

“…I am feeling that his last name has something to do with a stone, some type of stone… If I’m right…Lucas will be your destiny.” On hearing for the first time that Lucas is to be her husband, twenty-five-year-old Eli initially encloses herself within a black cloud of stubbornness. She flatly rejects this insistent prediction of Lena’s, a psychic who reads coffee grounds. Eli cannot accept that fate has determined that she should have a relationship with a divorced single father.

And if Eli believes Lena, what will it take to make Lucas fall in love with her?

But after guaranteeing her a unique love and a fulfilling and enduring life as a couple, Lena manages to get through to Eli. Determined to conquer Lucas and bring the prophecy to fruition, Eli begins a most purposeful journey, aimed at making Lucas fall in love with her. But this could turn out to be… an impossible mission!

Eli’s captivating story brings us a moving tale of love, determination, and faith.

When 25-year-old Eli hears from a psychic in Storm in a Cup of Coffee that her destiny is to wed Lucas, a divorced single father, she can barely believe it. Even more, she refuses to accept it in her typical stubborn fashion. Still, the psychic Lena manages to convince Eli by telling her that they will have an unique love that will transcend anything Eli has ever felt before.

Still, Eli will have to find a way to make Lucas fall in love with her if she wants the psychic’s prediction to come true. Making Lucas fall for her is far harder than Eli could’ve ever thought, though, and she’ll need all her determination to make her own destiny come true.

Eli’s whole life is one failed relationship after another, most of that due to the fact she always chooses the wrong guys. And when a genuinely good guy shows interest, she practically runs away. Believing the psychic’s fortune-telling even makes her chase after a man and try to get him to marry her, even though he doesn’t show much interest in her at the start. The journey takes Eli on a quest of self-discovery though, allowing her to discover things about herself she otherwise would’ve never figured out, and find some of her own hidden strength.

Book Spotlight: Once Upon A Christmas

Is it ever too late for happily ever after…?
 
Callahan is one of the hottest guys to move into Harper’s Corner in a long time, partly because he’s also a complete mystery. 
 
He keeps to himself and leads a quiet life, rumors swirl around that he used to be in the military…but no one knows where he came from, or what brought him to their small town. 
 
When Stevie’s parents have a health crisis, she’s forced to take leave from her very New York existence: including a high-powered job at a big publishing house and explosive sex life with her wealthy, handsome and appropriately pretentious boyfriend, to step in and ensure the preservation of the family’s longstanding bookstore.
 
With the first order of business being to fire Callahan, the unqualified shop assistant her dad hired. 
 
Though as many women from Harper’s Corner can tell you, things change when you come back home.
 
So firing this attractive, brooding, secretive man turns out to be much harder than she originally planned…
 
And when his past comes back to challenge him, he can’t keep hiding from what happened. 
 
I invite you to tuck into another Harper’s Corner story about finding love when you least expect it…once upon a time in a bookstore…

Purchase:
Amazon

 

About Christina George

I’ve worked in publishing for twenty years and I sincerely love books and authors. I started this journey with my own books planning to write just one, and then well – all I can say is the stories kept coming. My original series The Publicist, follows Kate, Mac, Nick, Vivienne and a host of other awesome characters as they make their lives in New York, amidst the chaos that publishing often brings with it.
I am now exploring a fictional small town called Harper’s Corner. This series is so fun, because there are so many characters in this town, from sexy firemen and hot Army guys, to an awesome group of women that I affectionally call “the coven.” These books will explore each of these characters, and their journey to finding the loves of their lives.
I love writing, and I love reading and if I’m not actively writing a book, I’m probably dreaming of what I’ll write next.
 
Please feel free to email me at authorchristinageorge@gmail.com with your thoughts on any of my books. 
 
And if you’d like to connect on social, here are my details:
Instagram: Publicistgal
Twitter: Publicistgal 

Release Blitz The Heart of Aleppo

About the Book

Title: The Heart of Aleppo

Author: Ammar Habib

Genre: Young Adult / Coming of Age / Contemporary

Page Count: 235

After standing for over 7,000 years, Aleppo’s ruin came overnight. Separated from his family during the night the rebels attacked the city, thirteen-year-old Zaid Kadir is lost in the middle of a war zone. Alongside his friends, he is forced to survive the dangers of a civil war he does not even fully understand. Zaid witnesses the destruction of the brutal Syrian Civil War as it grows more deadly by the day and rips his city apart. However, as he braves this destruction, as he desperately tries to survive this catastrophe, he discovers something. Zaid realizes that it is in the darkest hours when humanity’s spirit of hope burns brightest.

Links

Goodreads

Amazon

About the Author

Ammar Habib is a bestselling and award-winning author who was born in Lake Jackson, Texas in 1993. Ammar enjoys crafting stories that are not only entertaining but will also stay with the reader for a long time. Ammar presently resides in his hometown with his family, all of whom are his biggest fans. He draws his inspiration from his family, imagination, and the world around him.

Social Media

Website:www.ammarahsenhabib.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ammarahsenhabib

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AmmarAHabib1

@AmmarAHabib1

Blog: www.ammarhabibblog.wordpress.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/Ammar_Habib

Instagram: https://instagram.com/ammar.a.habib/

@Ammar.A.Habib

Giveaway

In conjunction with the release of The Heart of Aleppo, Ammar is running a giveaway from July 26th to August 3rd. The prize of the giveaway is a signed copy of his national award-winning novel, Memories of My Future. Memories of My Future is a historical/inspirational novel that was published in 2016. It received several accolades after its release, including the Independent Press Award in May 2017.

Go here to visit the giveaway!

Why Ammar wrote The Heart of Aleppo:

I personally believe that the Syrian Civil War is one of this generation’s greatest tragedies. With the way it is proceeding, it’ll be remembered by future generations in the same manner that we remember the Rwandan genocide and the Bosnian War of the 1990s.

The motivation for writing The Heart of Aleppo was simple: I wished to bring more global attention to this crisis. Although the characters are fictitious, this novel accurately depicts the events that transpired in Aleppo during the summer of 2012. I hope that reading this will lead readers to have a greater understanding of the plight those in Syria face, as well as those in other war-torn regions. If this work helps garner more attention for those in Syria, then I will have considered this project a success.

In an over-politicized world, my wish is for this work to humanize those we call “refugees”. The Heart of Aleppo is not about the politics of the Syrian Civil War or any other conflict. Its aim is not to convince readers to support any faction or political party. Instead, this story is about the unbreakable spirit of humanity.  It is about how humanity often shows its true strength during the darkest times.

I truly hope that these themes of hope and strength will resonate with readers. I know that simply writing this The Heart of Aleppo changed me as a person, and it made me more aware of everything that transpires in the world around me. Although the world will never be perfect, I believe that if we keep our faith in the human spirit and keep striving to always better ourselves and those around us, then we can create a little piece of heaven on earth.

 

Writing Playlist for The Heart of Aleppo

  1. “Sadness and Sorrow”

Youtube

  1. “Sound of Hugh Glass”

Youtube

  1. “Despair”

Youtube

  1. “Man of the World”

Youtube
 

First excerpt from The Heart of Aleppo: 

Two days before Nabeel leaves for the last time, I find him standing at the kitchen counter with his friend, Zakariah. I don’t know his rank, but Zakariah serves directly under Nabeel in the army and only lives two miles down the road. The two of them always seem to be on leave at the same time.

Their voices are low, almost secretive, but I catch the look in Nabeel’s eye. Except back then, I didn’t recognize it.

“What are you guys talking about?”

Seeing me enter and hearing my voice, they both look my way before exchanging glances. That gleam in Nabeel’s eyes disappears.

I excitedly run up to the two of them. “Tell me!”

Nabeel looks back down at me as he stops leaning against the counter. Reaching down, he ruffles my hair. “You’re too young to know about that, Zaid.”

“Aww, what’s that about? I’m not part of the group now—”

My brother playfully flicks me on the forehead as he crouches down a little. “I’m sorry, buddy. Maybe next time.”

“You’re always saying that.”

Zakariah laughs as he comes closer to me. He puts his hand on my shoulder. “That’s just not fair, Nabeel. You’re a horrible brother for leaving Zaid out like that.”

I see a concerned expression momentarily wash over Nabeel’s face.

However, Zakariah glances up at Nabeel and shoots him a quick wink as he continues. “Why don’t I just tell you then?”

My eyes light up. “Really! You’re the best, Zakariah.”

Coming to his knees, he puts his arm around my shoulders and leans close, acting as if he is about to tell me the world’s biggest secret. “You see, Zaid, your brother and I were having a discussion about which one of us would win in a wrestling match. We all know that I’m stronger, but he just won’t admit it.” He sighs and shakes his head as he looks back at Nabeel. “But you agree with me, don’t you, Zaid?”

I don’t hesitate to respond. “No way!”

He moves his head back in surprise. “Huh?”

“Sure you’re pretty strong, but my brother would beat you!”

Zakariah is slow to reply, taken aback by the statement. “C’mon, Zaid. You do realize that I’m older than him—”

“Age has nothing to do with it, Zakariah! My brother was the school’s wrestling champion. He wouldn’t lose to you.” I whip my head to look back at Nabeel. “Right, big brother?”

Nabeel is slightly smiling now.

With a chuckle, Zakariah rises back to his feet. “Alright, alright. Well, I best be off, Nabeel. We can finish our little discussion next time.”

Nabeel shakes his hand. “Give my greetings to your folks.”

“I will.” Zakariah grabs my shoulder and gives it a squeeze. “See you, Zaid—no, sorry: Dr. Zaid.”

Did he really just call me that? How did he know?

Hearing Zakariah’s footsteps grow faint, I turn back to Nabeel. He opens the fridge door and rummages through it.

“You told him?” I ask.

Nabeel doesn’t look my way. “I tell everyone.”

I watch him pull out a pound of chicken meat rolled up in brown paper as he turns back to me.

“Aisha is visiting her parents tonight and Abbi and Ummi are having dinner with friends. So looks like it’ll just be you and me.” Nabeel shoots me a wink. “I’m going to make some shwarma for dinner. Just the way you like it: tomatoes, lettuce, onions, lots of chicken, and even more spices.” He starts setting the ingredients on the countertop. “I went by Sohail’s shop today. The mangoes he was selling were ripe, so I picked some up. We can have them for dessert. That is if we have room.”

He looks back at me with a smile, but it fades when he sees my expression.

“What’s wrong, Zaid?”

I glance at the ground before replying, “I don’t think I want to be a doctor anymore.”

“Why not?”

“…I don’t think I can.”

He takes a few steps towards me before crouching down to come to my eye level, urging me to continue.

“Ms. Farooq said I’m not smart enough.”

“She did?”

“I got the lowest score in the class on the last math test. She said I’m not cut out for it.”

“I didn’t realize Ms. Farooq could tell the future.”

I don’t respond.

“Did you tell Abbi or Ummi?”

I shake my head.

He takes a deep breath and glances down at my feet. His eyes look like he’s weighing something, wondering if he should say it or not. When he does speak, his voice is different. It’s no longer speaking to me as his younger brother but as his friend. “You know, Zaid, Zakariah was joking about what we were talking about.”

“Really?”

He nods before his gaze focuses back on me. “Not even a few weeks ago, my soldiers and I were in a bit of a… well, situation.”

“What happened?”

“We were in Homs. The people we were fighting—the rebels—had heavy control of some neighborhoods. We were trying to take them back. It was…”

A silence ensues as he searches for the word.

“Difficult.” Nabeel pauses. “Some soldiers were pinned. The army tried an airstrike to break the rebel lines. It was a heavy bombardment that leveled entire streets. The cost was high. But we couldn’t break their lines.”

I don’t interrupt him.

“Our intelligence said it was a lost cause. We were ordered to abandon the soldiers. They said we would lose more men than we would save. But even the army’s ‘intelligence’ doesn’t know everything.” He looks away. “Zakariah and I disobeyed our commanding officer. As did our men. Those soldiers that were pinned weren’t just men. They were my friends… my brothers. And I would never abandon them, even if it led to…”

For a moment, his eyes again display that same gleam, but it disappears as quickly as it came.

His gaze again meets mine. It’s firmer this time, stronger. “It doesn’t matter what people say, Zaid. It doesn’t matter what the facts say. All that matters is what you say. And, maybe more importantly, what you do.”

I hang on his words, unable to say anything.

“Why do you want to be a doctor, Zaid?”

“I’ve always wanted to.”

“But why?”

“Because… I don’t want to see people suffer. I… I want to be the one to help others. I want to save lives, make a difference and put others before myself. I want to make this world a better place. Just like the Imam always talks about.”

Nabeel smiles. “Never forget that. And never go back on your word. No matter what happens. Please never forget one thing, Zaid: I love you. No matter the circumstance—no matter if I’m so far from you that you may never see me again, know that I’m with you.” He presses his finger against my heart. “I believe in you, Zaid.”

Book Review: A Breath She Took by Ilan Amit

Title: A Breath She Took
Author: Ilan Amit
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Rating: 3,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

A shocking announcement prompts Inbal to just get up and run out of the house

Inbal is an attractive independent woman, a biology researcher who hides the fact that her father disappeared under strange circumstances when she was only ten. He left her, her mother, and her sister struggling in a home turned upside-down. When one morning Inbal’s husband suddenly announces he wants to separate, reality strikes, the walls that she has built around herself all her life begin to crumble, and she runs out of the house and through the city.

But where does she go, and what mysteries does she unravel along the way?

The pointless run gradually becomes a strange voyage toward her past, confronting life-changing secrets, as she tries to unveil the mystery of her father’s disappearance so long ago. This is the story of the tense, strange, and sometimes funny relationship that she has with her sister and mother, both past and present. This is a story about losing one’s old self and finding a stronger, clearer new one.

In “A Breath She Took“, Inbal has struggled her entire life with coming to terms with her past. When she was ten years old, her father disappeared under mysterious circumstances, leaving her, her mother and her sister behind. Now, Inbal has put up walls all around her, to protect herself from the outside world.

When her husband declares he wants a seperation, the walls around Inbal collapse. Panicking, she runs outside, to the city, seemingly aimlessly running from the terrible truth. However, the run soon becomes a voyage, a trip down memory lane, as she tries to unveil the mystery of her father’s disappearance and comes to terms with the past.

This is a compelling, emotional read about the journey to discover one’s true self, to deal with one’s past, and become a stronger person. I found it very inspiring, and a solid read, but the only downside for me was the lack of action in the present – the journeys into the character’s past are interesting, but they don’t hold enough excitement for the “here and now”.

 

Book Spotlight Blast: Daughter of the Sun

About the Book

Title: Daughter of the Sun (Cult of the Cat series, Book 1)

Author: Zoe Kalo

Genre: YA contemporary Egyptian mythological fantasy/paranormal

Word count: 93,000 words / 330 pages

DOWNLOAD FREE at www.ZoeKalo.com

Mystery, adventure, a hint of romance, and the delicious sweep of magic… 

16-year-old Trinity leads a quiet life until fate takes her to the Island of Cats.​

As Trinity tries to solve the mystery of an ancient papyrus, she’s pulled into a vortex of bloody sacrifices, evil curses, and a prophecy that points to a horrifying destiny. 

The author is giving away the first book in the series for FREE to readers who sign up for her mailing list on her website at www.ZoeKalo.com 

 

Praise

“This was an amazing story!” –Hot Off the Shelves

​“Wow- this book was a stunning, magnificent adventure!” –The Recipe Fairy

​“If you are looking for a Young Adult Fantasy book that is different from the norm, then look no further. Daughter of the Sun is full of Egyptian mythology, with layer upon layer of mystery just waiting to be uncovered.” –Archaeolibrarian

About Zoe

 Storyteller at heart…

A certified bookworm and ailurophile, Zoe Kalo has always been obsessed with books and reading. The pleasure of writing and sharing her fantasy worlds has remained. Today, Zoe passes her stories to you with lots of mystery, adventure, a hint of romance, and the delicious sweep of magic.​

Currently, she balances writing with spending time with her family, taking care of her clowder of cats, and searching for the perfect bottle of pinot noir.

Connect with Zoe Kalo on the web: www.ZoeKalo.com / Facebook / Twitter

Release Blitz A Girl Like Her

Teasers

Ruth entered the town car park with a lot on her mind. Major highlights included:

  1. Her stomach cramps, which had gone from mild irritation to knuckle-biting pain in the space of twenty minutes.
  2. The indignity of waddling about town with loo roll stuffed down her knickers.
  3. The absolutely extortionate price she’d just paid for a packet of substandard tampons that didn’t even have bloody applicators.
  4. Mrs. Needham, newsagent proprietor and town gossip, who would tell everyone that Ruth had come in to buy tampons as if they were Year Eight children instead of grown adults.
  5. How much the average person might know about the theory of relativity. Because, the less people knew about it, the more she could get away with fudging the details for the latest issue of her web comic.

Was it really surprising, with all that to ponder, that she ran headlong into a pair of enormous men?

Ruth landed on the tarmac with an unladylike grunt. At least it was more elegant than the word currently burning through her mind: Motherfucker!

This was to be imagined, you understand, as an outraged yowl of pain.

For an instant of blissful, foolish shock, Ruth blinked down at the ground. Then she looked up slightly, just a touch—enough to see two pairs of sturdy, boot-clad feet before her. The sight of those feet, along with her embarrassment, took Ruth from mildly irritated to unreasonably angry.

But really. Those boots were entirely too solid, quite abominably stable. The men hadn’t even wobbled. They might at least pretend to be slightly unbalanced, since she was literally on the floor. Such firm uprightness in a situation like this struck her as rude.

“I’m so sorry,” one of the men said. She didn’t know which, because she refused to look up at their faces. She had quite enough to process right now without bringing faces and expressions and human lifeforms into it.

But one of the men, presumably the one who had spoken, ruined things completely by bending down to her level. He could do that, you see, because he hadn’t fallen. The prick.

He crouched before her, bringing his faded jeans into view, and then his tight, black T-shirt—what a ridiculous outfit in February—and then… well, some rather interesting musculature.

That musculature broke through Ruth’s haze of unreasonable annoyance, prodding her sharply. It said, Look at that chest! Look at those biceps! You’d better check out his face, just to see if it’s equally impressive. Quality control, and all that.

Reigning in the urge to throw a temper tantrum—she was feeling fragile, what with the tissue in her knickers—Ruth looked up.

 

About the Book

Everyone has secrets. He wants all of hers.

Meet the man next door…

After years of military service, Evan Miller wants a quiet life. The small town of Ravenswood seems perfect—until he stumbles upon a vicious web of lies with his new neighbour at its centre.

Ruth Kabbah is rude, awkward, and—according to everyone in town—bad news. Thing is, no-one will tell Evan why. Does she perform ritual sacrifices? Howl at the moon? Pour the milk before the tea? He has no clue.

But he desperately wants to find out. Because Ruth doesn’t seem evil to him; she seems lonely. And funny, and clumsy, and secretly quite sweet, and really f*%king beautiful…

The more Evan’s isolated, eccentric neighbour pushes him away, the more he wants her. Her—and all her secrets. Because there’s no way a girl like Ruth truly deserves the town’s scorn.

…Is there?

A Girl Like Her is a steamy, small town BWWM romance. Warning: this book is 65,000+ words of extreme pleasure and intense romance, ending in a HEA. There are NO cliffhangers and NO cheating. Enjoy responsibly!

Author Bio

Talia Hibbert is a writer and educator from England, U.K., by way of both the West Indies and West Africa. She wrote her first romance aged 12, and was promptly scolded by her teacher because her story of love in the jungle wasn’t ‘proper’.

Since then, Talia’s romances have improved in quality and hugely increased in heat. She now writes erotic, interracial romances about dirty Brits. They still aren’t proper, but they are a lot of fun.

In her free time, she eats too much ice cream and watches K Drama on Netflix.

She also spends a serious amount of time on social media, so make sure you stay connected.

And, as Talia would say… that’s all, folks. Love and biscuits!

Links

U.S. http://amzn.to/2FqDgmo

UK: http://amzn.to/2oZHp9W

Book Review Work of Art: An Intention of Flowers by Ken La Salle

Title: Work of Art: An Intention of Flowers
Author: Ken La Salle
Genre: YA / Contemporary Fiction
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase:
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Oily pavement.

Thick tempera paint.

A parking lot filled with history, fear, and regret.

A young man named Joseph Arillo sits in the parking lot and paints the pavement with flowers.

And Andy Hollis steps in it.

As the new art teacher at Santa Ana High School, he’s too curious about Joseph’s Flowers and unravels both of their lives in his pursuit for answers.

He learns that it’s all part of a rite of passage, an absurd test started by Joseph Arillo’s father, the suspiciously world-renowned artist named only Tom. Which also connects to the drama teacher at Santa Ana High, Katie Bustos. Whose daughter, Desiree, may or may not be dating Joseph. Who is putting himself in danger from a local gang, the lot’s mysterious history, and the police.

Andy puts himself in danger of losing his job, his home, and his freedom. If he can’t solve the riddle of Joseph’s Flowers, both of their lives will go up in smoke – despite any help from Winny, the old, Slovakian bureaucrat at school, or his students, or Tom himself.

But is Tom trying to help? And is Joseph really up to his father’s test?

And is Andy really fit to be a teacher? He doesn’t understand kids, can’t get to school on time, and… doesn’t appear to care about art or families or anything. But Joseph’s Flowers will challenge everything Andy believes: about himself, about the world, and most importantly of all about art.

Before Andy and Joseph are finished, they will witness the power art has to provide inspiration, to waken our hearts, and to shatter everything you ever believed about humanity.

An Intention of Flowers is the first book in a 5-book series, modestly titled Work of Art, about growing into the person you always wanted to be, making the most of what you have to give and not just what you have, and the power in each of us when we chose to be ourselves.

Work of Art: An Intention of Flowers is an intriguing, unique book that is both mysterious and compelling to read. Joseph Arillo is drawing flowers on the pavement. That’s when Andy Hollis, the new art teacher of Santa Ana High School sees him for the first time. Curious about the flowers, and about why Joseph is drawing them, he searches for answers that might unravel both their lives.

Part character study, part a book about growth and personal development, partially about how art can inspire people and change them for the better, this book brings a lot of unique features to the table that make it an intriguing read. The characters were rounded and three-dimensional. I particularly felt intrigued by Tom, a world-renowned artist whose life is cloaked in mystery, and who set up an absurd test for his son, Joseph.

Anyway, if you like contemporary fiction and in particular, if you like art and have ever felt inspired by it, then I would recommend this book. It’s a compelling read about the journey of growing up and finding your true self.

Bewaren
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Guest Post A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle

Guest Post: Let It Snow!

In my novel, A ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle’, my leading lady – Sukie McClaren – is over the moon when she arrives in Salzburg and finds there has been quite a decent snowfall earlier that day. She loves snow and, I have to confess, so do I.

There is a belief that our preferred time of the year is determined by the first six months from our birth. Now, I don’t know how much truth there is in that but, I was born in the autumn and my favourite season is, without doubt, winter.

I grew up in Scotland, and at that time, ‘climate change’ was only just about making itself known. As such, we still had four seasons: Spring – when the rain fell vertically, Summer – when the rain fell vertically but was warmer, Autumn – when the rain was horizontal due to the wind, and Winter – when the snow was up to your knees and you had to scrape the ice off the inside of the windows. Even more fun was trying to eat your breakfast cereal when the milk was still frozen inside the bottle!

All that aside, however, there was still fun to be had – such as, for example, when I attended boarding school for a time, up in the Highlands. There were no ‘snow days’ back then! If you looked out the window in the morning, and the white stuff was on the ground, then your feet were stuck in your wellies and off you went. It was during this time that I recall my very first occasion of going sledging.

There had been a particularly heavy snowfall one night and, after school, everyone was heading up to the big hill just outside the town to go sledging. Our house-mistress gave permission for me and my fellow boarders to go too. This was a BIG treat for a school night! When we arrived, the hill was bustling with people all laughing and squealing with happiness as they went up, and then down, the soft fluffy snow. As we waited for our turn on the sledges, we joined in the massive snowball fight that was also going on around us. When my turn for the sledge finally came, one of the older girls told me to aim for “that hilly bit there, it’s more fun.” What she DIDN’T tell me was that the ‘hilly bit’ dropped away to nothing on the other side and I ended up flying through the air about six feet above the ground! Luckily, being smaller and lighter, I landed further down the hill, past where the snow had become impacted and right in the middle one of the large snow drifts near the bottom. Nothing was hurt and the only bit of damage was snow down my welly boots. Now at this point, dear reader, it would be prudent of me to say that, on my next downhill trip, I made sure I took a more sensible route… Did I ‘eck as like! I aimed straight for the ‘hilly bit’ and did it all over again! Well… You’re only young once!

Another ‘snowy’ occasion that comes to mind happened a few years later. It was Christmas Eve and once again, through the night, there had been a very heavy snowfall. My mum was horrified! You see, whilst she had been very prepared and had already done ‘The Christmas Shop’ (you know, the one where your mum drags you out of bed to be at Marks & Spencer’s for silly o’clock in the morning so you can push the second trolley around because Christmas will ruined if we don’t have M&S Brussel Sprouts on the big day…) on the 23rd December, she had arranged to collect the turkey from the butchers on Christmas Eve. That would be the butchers shop two miles away. Two miles away from our house which sat at the bottom of a very steep hill that out car was never going to be able to climb up, in the snow, in a month of Sundays!

There was only one solution to the dilemma.

Send yours truly, and her best mate, to walk to the butchers, dragging her sledge behind her! Yes! I had to go on foot to collect the turkey and drag it back home on the sledge! To this day my mum still thinks this story is hilarious. Well seeing she wasn’t the one who had to walk four miles in knee-high snow!

Now, you would be forgiven for thinking that such an episode in my teenage years would have put me off snow for life but it hasn’t. You see, I love the unique atmosphere that descends when the snow is falling. Everything goes quiet. There is a very special hush that you only get when the snow falls. The streetlights have a hazy glow as they reflect off the snowflakes and the snow on the ground. The air is so pure and fresh and there is no greater feeling than taking a deep breath and feeling tiny little pin-pricks in your nose and lungs from the sharpness of the cold air. The overall feeling is one of peacefulness and serenity.

And that is why, so many times over the winter, you will find me looking out of my window and whispering “Let it snow. Please… Let it snow.”

A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle

So who exactly is Sukie McClaren?

A Christmas-loving Cat lover? A Sound of Music Fanatic? A Fiercely Independent Woman?

She is all of the above. And when she is sent to Salzburg for a business trip a few weeks before Christmas, she thinks all her dreams have come true. As she packs her suitcase, the only things on her mind are Christmas markets, lots of snow and finally seeing the Doh-Ray-Me steps. Becoming the new best friend of the world’s hottest rock-star doesn’t even get a look in.

Pete Wallace is a reclusive, reluctant, rock-star and the world’s Number One, best-selling, male solo artist. It’s been three years since his last tour and he’s now preparing to go back on the road again. A week in Salzburg, schmoozing with the music press, is one of his worst nightmares.

He can’t wait for it to be over.

When Pete and Sukie meet, it is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Lonely for too long, he begins to remember how it feels to be happy and, for the first time in six years, Christmas feels special again.

Eduardo di Santo however, whose kid sister suffered life-changing injuries at a Pete Wallace concert, is all set on getting revenge. When Pete’s new tour is announced, he begins to make his plans. Plans that will culminate in Pete’s demise.

Will Pete and Sukie’s new friendship die before it has a chance to flourish?

A Christmas tale full of love, laughter, friendship and revenge.

Purchase from Amazon UKhttp://amzn.to/2woAAoF

About Kiltie Jackson

Kiltie grew up in Scotland, Glasgow to be precise. A very unique city with a very unique way of looking at life. When she was old enough to do so, she moved to London and then, after several years of obtaining interesting experiences -which are finding their way into her writing – she moved up to the Midlands.

She currently lives in Staffordshire with five cats and one husband. The cats kindly allow her and her husband to share their house on the condition they keeps paying the mortgage!

Her little home is known as Moggy Towers, even though despite having plenty of moggies, there are no towers!

She loves reading, watching movies, and visiting old castles. She really dislikes going to the gym!

Her biggest desire is that one day she can give up the day job and write her stories for a living.

Kiltie first began writing ‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle’ over ten years ago. The project was shelved on Chapter Seventeen as she felt the story wasn’t flowing as she would like it to.

In her own words “The images in my head would not come out of my fingers!” Fast forward to November 2016 when, having finished reading Lizzie’s Christmas Escape by Christie Barlow, she read more about the author and was inspired with how Christie herself came to be a best-selling author.

In that thunderbolt moment, Kiltie knew – with a deep certainty- that she needed to reacquaint herself with ‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle’ and begin writing again. She did this in January 2017 and found the words flowed faster than she could type them. Finally, the time was right for her to write her novel.

Her determination to finish what she had started all those years ago was absolute and the first draft was completed on Sunday 16th April 2017.

Since beginning to write again, the ideas have not stopped flowing. She has begun typing up her second book, ‘Of All the Unlikely Places’, and book three (not yet titled) has been worked out and is waiting in the wings for its turn in the spotlight.

She currently has a further ten plots and ideas stored in her file (it’s costing a fortune in USB drives as each story has its own memory stick!) and the ideas still keep on coming.

She now lives her life around the following three quotes:
“I love having weird dreams, they’re great fodder for book plots!”
“Why wait for your ship to come in when you can swim out to meet it?”
“Old enough to know better, young enough not to care!”

Website www.kiltiejackson.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/kiltiejackson

Twitter – https://twitter.com/KiltieJackson

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