Wednesday, September 20, 2017

FALL READING CHALLENGE: Emma In The Night by Wendy Walker @BookSparks #FRC2017

memes FRC Walker

Genre: Thriller
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; 1st edition (August 8, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250141435
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250141439
  • ASIN: B01N36Z6DK


Synopsis: One night five years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn't add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister's return might just be the beginning of the crime.

First thoughts after finishing the book: 
Wow, wow, wow!! I did NOT expect this to end the way it did, at all. One of the best thrillers I've read this year. The second book I've read by this author, and I'm hungry for more from her.

Full review:
Cass's family is incredibly dysfunctional, and sometimes difficult to read about, but she never lets them break her or dim her desire for justice, closure, and a new life. 

The entire book is filled with twists, turns, and suspense. Every time I thought I knew what had actually happened, the next twist would send me off in another direction. Things are definitely not always what they seem. I enjoy the alternating viewpoints and the way they keep the reader off balance.

**I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher, with no expectation of a positive review. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.**
Rating:  Five stars

About the author
3111135 Wendy Walker is a former attorney and investment banker in Fairfield County, Connecticut who began writing while at home raising her three sons. Her debut thriller, All Is Not Forgotten, has become an international bestseller and was optioned for film by Warner Brothers with Reese Witherspoon set to produce. The paperback will be released July 18, 2017, followed by her second thriller, Emma In The Night, on August 8.

BOOK TOUR AND GIVEAWAY: Body On Baker Street (Sherlock Holmes Bookshop #2) by Vicki Delany

Body on Baker Street: A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery by Vicki Delany

Cozy Mystery 
2nd in Series 
Crooked Lane Books (September 12, 2017) 
Hardcover: 304 pages 
ISBN-13: 978-1683312994 
sE-Book ASIN: B06XW3K7F5
Gemma Doyle and Jayne Wilson are busy managing the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium on Baker Street and adjoining Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room in anticipation of the store’s upcoming book signing with the illustrious Renalta Van Markoff, author of the controversial Hudson and Holmes mystery series. But during the author Q&A session, dedicated Sherlockian Donald Morris verbally attacks Renalta and her series for disgracing Sherlock’s legacy, only to be publicly humiliated when the author triumphantly lashes back and gains the upper hand. That is until Renalta collapses on the table―dead. Donald insists he didn’t do it and pleads to his friends to clear his name. Fortunately, Gemma and Jayne have no shortage of suspects between author’s bullied personal assistant, her frustrated publicist, the hapless publisher, a handsome rare book dealer, an obsessively rabid fan, and a world of other Sherlock enthusiasts with strong objections to Renalta’s depiction of the Great Detective. It’s up to the shrewd sleuthing duo to eliminate the impossible and deduce the truth before the West London police arrest an innocent man in 's hBody on Baker Street, the second Sherlock Homes Bookshop mystery perfect for fans of Miranda James and Kate Carlisle.
Review: After only two books, I am totally in love with this series. I love Gemma, Jayne, Uncle Arthur, Ryan, Grant, and so many other folks around town--and let's not forget Moriarity, the bookshop cat!

This time around, a famous mystery author is poisoned in the bookshop during an appearance/book signing. There are plenty of suspects, from people who are angry about her interpretation of the Holmes story to people who could profit from her death to people who imitate and stalk her.

When a person in town becomes the number one suspect and asks for Gemma's help to prove their innocence, things begin to heat up for Gemma. Will she solve the case in time to keep the suspect out of jail and herself out of danger?

The author does a marvelous job with these stories. The village and the people who live there seem to come to life on the page, and the reader will begin to care about virtually everyone. The mystery is well done also, surprising you at various times. I wasn't sure who the murderer was until the last minute.

Already looking forward to book #3, The Cat of the Baskervilles.

Rating: Four stars

About the author  
Vicki Delany is one of Canada’s most prolific and varied crime writers and a national bestseller in the U.S. She has written more than twenty-five books: clever cozies to Gothic thrillers to gritty police procedurals, to historical fiction and novellas for adult literacy. Under the name of Eva Gates, she writes the Lighthouse Library cozy series for Penguin Random House. Her latest book is Body on Baker Street, the second in the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series from Crooked Lane. Vicki is the past president of the Crime Writers of Canada. Her work has been nominated for the Derringer, the Bony Blithe, the Ontario Library Association Golden Oak, and the Arthur Ellis Awards. 
Facebook: Vicki Delany & Eva Gates and twitter: @vickidelany and @evagatesauthor

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

BOOK BLAST: Don't Call Me Crazy! I'm Just In Love With God by Swiyyah Woodard

Author: Swiyyah Woodard
Publisher: Swiyyah Productions, Inc.
Pages: 229
Genre: Inspirational / Motivational / Romance / Christian

Because of God, nothing will stop Anika from marrying the love of her life, not even paranoid schizophrenia. You don’t want to miss this spiritual journey filled with inspiration and power.
This book is insightful and perceptive. Inspired by a true story. Few people consider the God factor in mental health. Join Anika and journey with her as she receives revelations from God while on her walk to overcome mental illness and naiveness towards religion. Required reading for High schools and colleges.


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     Anika begins to lose her mind. While continuing to stare at the television set, Anika sees a vision of Jesus. He appears to her in just as perfect form and image as the paintings on Mary’s wall. She then hears Jesus speak, “I am the son of God.” Then just as fast as he appears, he leaves her vision.
     “Did you see him? Did you see Jesus?” Anika turns and looks at her friends. Words are stuck within their throats.
     “Did you see him? Did you see Jesus?” Anika repeats once more.
     “Anika, you’re really scaring us. I thought you were Muslim?” Mary says.

Anika then feels as if someone was controlling her thoughts. “Forgive yourself.”  

She then begins to ramble, “Atoms are neither created nor destroyed. There was always an existence. You have to take baby steps to understand how this existence works, where we came from, how it started. Don’t jump from A to Z. No, you must go from A to C. Take a break. It has been painted. First there was nothing; it was blackness, pitch blackness. There was first the black hole. A plumber can understand the black hole. There was a white light. The creator is positive energy. We all have a little bit of positive energy. A person of positivity can change your life without saying a word. We try to increase positive energy which is the same as increasing spiritually. Once we are of that same positivity as the creator, we become one with him. Only a few souls have reached this level of existence. The rest of us are growing spiritually so we can reach that level.“

     It appears to Anika that she is making sense as she began to explain herself, justifying her words.

   “Positive times positive equals positive. Negative times positive equals negative. Therefore, if you have any negativity in you, you cannot become one with positivity.”

   “The creator is all positive energy. Negative times negative equals positive. If you learn from loads of negativity you will learn from your mistakes and become all positive. It’s mathematics. Everything stems from mathematics. Less than a cup of wine is what I need to rest. Don’t want to scare away this beautiful spirit controlling my thoughts.” While holding the sides of her head trying to rid her racing thoughts, she runs into the kitchen and pours herself a cup of wine. She then thinks, “no one will ever have to go through what I went through again!”

Anika takes a look at her past to see how in the world she got to this point in her life.

Swiyyah Nadirah Woodard was selected as a Bay News 9 Everyday Hero, which was seen by two million viewers, for publishing a book and teaching the community about her own battle with mental
illness. She was hospitalized six times and misdiagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. Her first book, Don't Call Me Crazy! I'm Just in Love, became required and suggested reading in Reading, Writing, Abnormal Psychology, and General Psychology classes at a four year Institution. 

She was born in the housing projects of
Saint Petersburg, FL. Her father left when she was three so she was raised in a single parent home. At the age of five she was
molested by her eight year old brother. She later started school, she had slurred speech and didn't care to make friends so she was bullied by her peers. At the age of eight, she wanted to kill herself because a girl wanted to fight her. She looked into the medicine cabinet for medication. Thank God, she couldn't find any.

As a teenager she was physically abused by her step dad. The abuse was so severe, God blocked it from her memory. At the age of 20 the brother that molested her committed suicide, which was devastating to her and the entire family. Swiyyah has always viewed herself as normal. She never received any disciplinary problems in school, made good grades, and received her BA degree in Psychology from the
University of South Florida.

When the doctors misdiagnosed her with the most debilitating mental disorder known in mental health, paranoid schizophrenia, she denied it. She questioned their expertise. She refused to take medication. She was then hospitalized six times. Her family took a picture of her at her worst and that's when she knew she needed help. She has been taking medication now for ten years without a relapse.

She is now a published author and a National Inspirational Speaker. Her first book is entitled, “Don't Call Me Crazy! I'm just in Love,” and is inspired by her true story. 

She was raised Muslim and the revelations she received from God and placed in her books, didn't make any since until she meet her Christian husband 14 years after her first relapse. 

Please contact Swiyyah to book speaking engagements, life coaching, author and speaker coaching, radio and TV interviews, or to purchase her books at 727-495-3217,



Monday, September 11, 2017

BOOK TOUR AND GIVEAWAY: Lottery In Paradise (Paradise #11) by Deborah Brown

Meet the crime-solving duo of the Florida Keys: Madison who has all the charm of the girl next door, not to mention a deadly aim and Fab, her best friend, a femme fatale private investigator with a taste for danger and stilettos.

When their neighbor is found dead, the headlines read, "It doesn't pay to be a lottery winner." It gets you nothing but an endless line of crazies at your door, greedy relatives and acquaintances. Sleuths Madison and Fab don't have time to be concerned about the latest murder; they have problems of their own trying to figure out why their house has suddenly become the focus of several attempted break-ins. The duo are off on more adventures -- what could go wrong chauffeuring a limousine full of college girls? Or chasing after a custom Ferrari? Along the way, there's a break-up, a wedding, and the usual run-ins with the law.

If you like sassy, exciting crime novels, then you'll love Lottery in Paradise, the eleventh book in the scorching Paradise series about two seductive ladies who use unconventional and highly entertaining measures to maintain the peace in the steamy and twisted paradise of Tarpon Cove.

The Paradise series, are Florida Keys mysteries, “great as stand-alone reads, but they're like won't be able to devour just one!”

Available to buy from.....

"Another FABULOUS book by one of my favorite authors. I love how there are always several different stories going on. I loved the ending..." 

"Another great story in the Paradise series! My love for these quirky characters grows with every book! Hope they never end!"

"An excellent story that is jammed packed with fun, happiness, anger, & a few stupid decisions. She captures the reader's attention & keeps it from beginning to end. This is another winner in the Paradise series!"
Above reviews from Amazon

Review: Another fabulous story of Madison, Fabiana and their friends and family. Their next door neighbor, a recent lottery winner, is murdered, and that seems to set off a series of attempted robberies at Madison's house---coincidence, or something more sinister?

This book also contains some serious issues with Fabiana's relationship with Didier--I was seriously worried how that was going to turn out, just as I would be for any real life friend.

Although this is book eleven in the series, it is easily read as a stand alone. However, I would highly recommend the entire series to anyone who loves cozy mysteries. These books contain mystery, humor, romance, and characters who will become like a part of your own family.

**I received a copy of this book from Beck Valley Books and the author with no expectation of a positive review. All thoughts and opinions are totally my own.**

Rating:  Five stars


Book Excerpt
Fab hit the steering wheel with a closed fist. "I'm going to run that jerk off the road."

"No. You. Are. Not. And you're not going to shoot out his tires either." Though there was a zero chance of that happening. As talented as the hot, sexy woman was, she couldn't steer and shoot at the same time. "We'll act like normal people and call the police." Normal, I laughed to myself. I hadn't heard myself described that way in a long time. Mostly, I heard "weird" bandied about. An over-exaggeration - I'm familiar with weird, and that's not me.

"You better come up with something better than that." Fab pulled up alongside the truck on the driver's side.

I powered the window down and hung my head out, my hand in mid-air, ready to flag the man down, even though I knew that chances were slim that he'd pull over. Pulling my head back in the window, I said, "Change of plans." I pushed my red hair back into place, smoothing it down, certain it was a wind-whipped mess. "The fancy tow truck is one of Brick's."

Brick and I had a tenuous relationship; it was hard to trust him when I knew he never put Fab's safety first, or mine either. He opposed our relationship, knowing that several times I had convinced my daring friend to calm down and rethink her plan. As backup to Super PI Fab, there were few jobs that didn't include flying bullets and running for our lives. I was happy for the respite. So were our boyfriends,who'd had a face-to-face with Brick, laying down the rules: no more withholding details, and if it came out after the fact that he knew there was a high chance of danger, it would be the last mistake he would make. My boyfriend followed that up with a right cross to Brick's eye.

Fab made an outraged sound. "I don't believe you."


Also available in the Paradise Series

About the Author
I've been writing, in one way or another for as long as I can remember; poetry, sappy short stories (my best friend made me swear that I’d never show anyone until I changed the names), and a romance novel shoved under my bed.

I wanted to create books with a wide-range of unforgettable characters, with heat and romance, and lots of guns. It wouldn’t be complete without a slice of humor and charm.

I live with my family and demon children aka rescue cats in South Florida.

Find the author on the following sites...

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Friday, September 8, 2017

BOOK BLAST: A Poet's Diary 1 by Earnest-Navar Williams

Publication Date: May 30, 2017
Publisher: Xlibris
Formats: Ebook
Pages: 58
Genre: Poetry
Tour Dates: September 4 - 15

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A Poet's Diary 1 is a collection of thought-provoking poems such as, "It Doesn't Stop Me from Being Happy," "When I Think of Love," "Police State," and "God's Recipe for Love. " As his poetic words flow, thought-provoking observations and experiences will have the reader mentally and emotionally stimulated.

Monday, September 4
Book featured at Mythical Books
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Tuesday, September 5
Book featured at T's Stuff
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Wednesday, September 6
Book featured at Alaskan Book Cafe
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Thursday, September 7
Book featured at The Hype and the Hoopla
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Book featured at Book Babble
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Book featured at The Dark Phantom
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Book featured at Write and Take Flight
Book featured at Lover of Literature

Thursday, September 14
Book featured at The Bookworm Chronicles
Book featured at I'm Shelf-ish

Friday, September 15
Book featured at My Bookish Pleasures
Book featured at A Title Wave

Friday, September 1, 2017

DVD Review: Patterns Of Evidence--Exodus #Flyby #PatternsOfEvidence

Patterns Film Blu Ray Case right

About the author/filmmaker/producer
Tim Mahoney founded Mahoney Media Group, Inc. (MMG) in 1989. MMG focused its business on television and video production for regional and national companies. In 2014 Tim founded Thinking Man Films & Media as an international documentary & publishing company with a focus on education and the Bible. Tim produced numerous productions for Christian organizations including the Billy Graham Association, World Wide Pictures, and Compassion International. Tim also served as the President of the board for the International Christian Visual Media Association (ICVM). Tim’s first full feature documentary film, “PATTERNS OF EVIDENCE: THE EXODUS”, released in January 2015. The film took 12 years to develop and takes a scientific approach to investigate the events of the biblical Exodus. The overall vision for his film company is to explore “patterns of evidence” that support the biblical narrative and engages the world in a conversation. The film takes a balanced approach and leaves the audience to decide for themselves if the Bible is real history or myth.
About the film
  • Won 13 awards on the film festival circuit in 2014, including a Gold Remi Award winner for Best Director at the Worldfest Houston Intl. Film Festival, the Gold Crown Award for Best Picture and Best Documentary at ICVM 2014, and Official Selection at the Soho International Film Festival in New York.
  • Supplemental resources associated with the film include a nearly 400-page hardcover book, small group Bible study, Movie Event kit, youth version (called Young Explorers), homeschool curriculum and others.
  • It includes powerful interviews with some of the top experts in the fields of archaeology and Egyptology as well as people of influence in the Middle East.
  • The film has an objective, fair-minded and balanced approach. It allows viewpoints from all sides to be heard in a respectful way while asking honest questions of the Bible and scholars’ views. It does not preach and lets the evidence speak for itself. This allows the film to be very shareable with those of different viewpoints.

*Main website (watch movie trailers and see more info):

Review: I accepted this DVD for review with high hopes, but found myself very disappointed after watching it. I don't like the idea of having to twist history to make the events of the Bible fit. The "experts" determined that the Exodus must have taken place about 200 years earlier than the time period described in Biblical writings. To me, that alters the entire timeline of the rest of the Bible, and that makes me extremely uncomfortable.

Rating: Two stars 


Thursday, August 31, 2017

Literary Escapes Challenge--August Update

 photo literary-escapes-2017216_zpsvpok9qpt.jpg
Challenge – Try to read 1 book set in each of the 50 states + the District of Columbia. (51 Points). If you complete the challenge you earn 50 Bonus Points. You also can earn Bonus Points for books set in Countries around the world. 1 Bonus Point for each country. (No repeats – only 1 point can be earned for each country.) Your books can be fiction or non-fiction and can be in any format, print, digital, audio. 

Alabama--To Kill  Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Alaska--(Finding Justice by Kathi Daley)
Arizona--(Sprinkle With Murder by Jenn McKinlay)
Arkansas--Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women Of Little Rock by David Margolick
California--Scheduled To Death by Mary Feliz
Colorado--Fatality By Firelight by Lynn Cahoon
Connecticut--Pick Your Potion by C.C. Dragon
Delaware--Dear John by Nicholas Sparks
District of Columbia--Curious Minds by Janet Evanovich
Florida--Child's Play by Merry Jones
Georgia--15 Minutes by Larissa Reinhart
Hawaii--Murder At Turtle Cove by Kathi Daley
Idaho--(Blue Heaven by C.J. Box)
Illinois--Life After by Katie Ganshert

Indiana--When The Grits Hit The Fan by Maddie Day
Iowa--(Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat Who Touched The World by Vicki Myron)
Kansas--Brake Failure by Alison Brodie
Kentucky--A Ghostly Mortality by Tonya Kappes
Louisiana--A Fatal Romance by June Shaw
Maine--Telling Tails by Sofie Ryan
Maryland--Courtyard Corpse by Sherry Lodge
Massachusetts--The Witch And The Dead by Heather Blake
Michigan--My Perfect Imperfections by Jalpa Williby
Minnesota--(I Can See You by Karen Rose)
Mississippi--(Out Of Circulation by Miranda James)
Missouri--(30 Second Death by Laura Bradford)
Montana--Vangie Vale and the Murdered Macaron by R.L. Syme
Nebraska--(Composing Amelia by Alison Strobel)
Nevada--(Vanilla Beaned by Jenn McKinlay)
New Hampshire--It's Always The Husband by Michele Campbell
New Jersey--(The Plot Against America by Philip Roth)
New Mexico--(The Night Journal by Elizabeth Crook)
New York--(The Christie Curse, by Victoria Abbott)
North Carolina--Purr M For Murder by T.C. LoTempio
North Dakota(Badlands by C. J. Box)
Ohio--Ill Will by Dan Chaon
Oklahoma--(The Girl In 6E by A.R. Torre)
Oregon--The Shadow by Kathi Daley
Pennsylvania--(Never Buried by Edie Claire)
Rhode Island--(Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult)
South Carolina--What She Inherits by Diane V. Mulligan
South Dakota--(These Happy Golden Years by Laura Ingalls Wilder)
Tennessee--The Big Overnight by Libby Kirsch
Texas--Say Goodbye For Now by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Utah--(Bookman Dead Style by Paige Shelton)
Vermont--The Sleepwalker by Chris Bohjalian
Virginia--(The Diva Takes The Cake by Krista Davis)
Washington--A Winter's Tail by Kathi Daley
West Virginia--(Miranda Warning by Heather Day Gilbert)
Wisconsin--Avery: The Case Against Steven Avery and What "Making a Murderer" Gets Wrong by Ken Kratz
Wyoming--(Open Season by C.J. Box)

International Settings

Canada--Holiday Hangover by Kathi Daley
Italy--A Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay
Greece--Evanthia's Gift by Effie Kammenou
France--Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
Egypt--Exodus 95 by Kfir Luzzatto
England--I Found You by Lisa Jewell