BREAKING NEWS

Adult Book Reviews

YA Book Reviews

Children's Book Reviews

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

GenTech by Rick Chromey (Book Spotlight & Giveaway!)


How has technology shaped our society and who we are? This book explores this fascinating topic. Enter the giveaway for a chance to win a copy! 

Book Details:

Book Title: GenTech: An American Story of Technology, Change and Who We Really Are by Dr. Rick Chromey
Category: Adult Non-fiction, 328 pages
Genre: History / Cultural & Technical History
Publisher: Morgan James Publishing
Release date: May 26, 2020
Tour dates: Mar 23 to Apr 3, 2020
Content Rating: G


Book Description:

Every twenty years a new generation rises, but who and what defines these generations? And could current generational tags mislead and miss the point? In this insightful analysis of technology history since 1900, Dr. Rick Chromey offers a fresh perspective for understanding what makes a generation tick and differ from others. Within GenTech, readers learn how every generation uniquely interacts with particular technologies that define historical temperament and personality and why current generational labels are more fluid than fixed, and more loopy than linear. Consequently, three major generational constellations emerge, each containing four, twenty-year generations that overlap, merge, and blend:
  • The Audio Generations (1900-1950): Transportation-Telephone Generation (1900-1920), Motion Picture Generation (1910-1930), Radio Generation (1920-1940), Vinyl Record Generation (1930-1950)
  • The Visual Generations (1940-1990): Television Generation (1940-1960), Space Generation (1950-1970), Gamer Generation (1960-1980) and Cable Television Generation (1970-1990)
  • The Digital Generations (1980-2000): Personal Computer-Cell Phone Generation (1980-2000), Net Generation (1990-2010), iTech Generation (2000-2020), and Robotics Generation (2010-2030). Dive in and revel in this exciting, compelling, and novel perspective to understanding recent American generations with GenTech.


Buy the Book:



View the Trailer:



About the Author:


Rick Chromey is a cultural explorer, social historian and generational futurist. He’s also served as a pastor, professor, speaker/trainer, and consultant. In 2017, he founded MANNA! Educational Services International to inspire and equip leaders, teachers, pastors, and parents. Rick has a doctorate in leadership and the emerging culture; and travels the U.S. and world to speak on culture, faith, history, education, and leadership topics. He has authored over a dozen books on leadership, natural motivation, creative communication, and classroom management. He lives with his wife, Linda, in Meridian, Idaho.

Connect with the Author: website ~ youtube ~ facebook ~ twitter ~ instagram


Enter the Giveaway!
Ends April 10, 2020


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Alycat and the Tournament Tuesday by Alysson Foti Bourque (Review, Guest Post and Giveaway!)


The Alycat series is a fun series, especially for children who love cats. Check out the series and enter for a chance to win an autographed copy of this book!

Book Details:

Book Title: Alycat and the Tournament Tuesday by Alysson Foti Bourque
Illustrated by Chiara Civati
Category: Children's Fiction (Ages 3-7), 32 pages
Genre: Children's Picture Book
Publisher: Mascot Books
Release date: March 17, 2020
Tour dates: March 17 to April 6, 2020
Content Rating: G


Book Description:

A “Mom’s Choice Award Winner”! Alycat’s brother, Bugsy, is playing in a golf tournament with some of his friends and wants to use his lucky ball to win the game. But when Alycat forgets his lucky ball at home, Bugsy learns what luck is really all about. Can Bugsy win the tournament without his lucky ball? Alycat and the Tournament Tuesday is part of the Alycat Series: alycatseries.com.

My Review:
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

The Alycat series is a fun series, especially for children who love cats. I've already featured two books from this series and I was happy to see that another book has been recently released. This series focuses on teaching children life lessons. In Alyvat and the Tournament Tuesday, we learn the importance of working hard and persevering versus relying on good luck. 

Personally, I do not believe in good luck and do not use this expression ever. As shown with Bugsy who believed his lucky ball would help him win his game, it's all the practice he did that helped him play well. Alycat made a mistake and this was turned into an occasion to learn something valuable.

The illustrations by Chiara Civati are fun and bright. Children who love cats will enjoy the cute faces of the different types of kitties representing the diversity among persons.

Alycat and the Tournament Tuesday is the fourth book in this award-winning series. It's a perfect book to add to the library of daycares and early elementary classes.


Buy the Book:


GUEST POST 

The Alycat Series and the 2020 Oscars Hollywood Swag Bag 

by Alysson Foti Bourque

I was honored to have been invited by the Hollywood Swag Bags agency to include The Alycat Series in the swag bags honoring Oscars weekend. I signed and bundled up all four books, including a pre-released copy of Alycat and the Tournament Tuesday, along with a few Alycat and Bugsy plush toys and sent it off a few weeks prior to the event. These Hollywood Swag Bags were presented to the top 30 Oscar nominees and a couple of popular influencers. 

Some of the recipients included Leonardo DiCaprio, Antonio Banderas, Joaquin Phoenix, Adam Driver, Scarlett Johansson, Saoirse Ronan, Jonathan Pryce, Cynthia Erivo, Charlize Theron, Renee Zellweger, Tom Hanks, Anthony Hopkins, Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, Brad Pitt, Kathy Bates, Laura Dern, Florence Pugh, Martin Scorsese, Todd Phillips, Sam Mendes, Margot Robbie, Quentin Tarantino. 

After the Oscars, the Alycat series received exposure from USA Today, The Boston Herald, National Examiner, and many other noteworthy news sources. The opportunity really took Alycat nationwide. Since then, other A-list actresses such as Michelle Stafford and Lilly Melgar have received the Alycat book collection and posted how much they love the series! It is really awesome to see them enjoying the series with their children! The buzz about Alycat going to the Oscars was a fun and huge milestone in my writing career.

Meet the Author:


Alysson Foti Bourque is the author of the award-winning Alycat series. Alysson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and a Juris Doctor degree from the Southern University Law Center.

After practicing law for six years, she traded in writing trial briefs for writing children’s books. Alysson enjoys public speaking opportunities at schools, conferences, and festivals nationwide. She hopes to inspire people of all ages to follow their dreams and believe in themselves wholeheartedly.

AWARDS & HONORS

The Alycat Series has won several prestigious awards including:
Three Mom’s Choice Awards®
Benjamin Franklin Digital Award, Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA)
Best Book Award Finalist
NY Big Book Award
Reviewed by Midwest Book Review
Southern Festival of Books Panelist
Louisiana Book Festival Featured Author

​Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram ~Pinterest





Enter the Giveaway!
Ends April 13, 2020




Monday, March 23, 2020

Notes to My Son by Eric Lynn (Review and Giveaway!)


This book turned out to be an absolute gem. First-time father Eric Lynn pens words of practical wisdom, honest reflections, and unconditional love to his newborn son. Enter the giveaway for a chance to win your own copy!

Book Details:

Book Title: Notes to My Son by Eric Lynn
Category: Adult Non-fiction, 128 pages
Genre: Parenting
Publisher: Sharknado Press
Release date: September 9, 2019
Tour dates: Mar 9 to Mar 27, 2020
Content Rating: G: Advice from a parent to his son


Book Description:

“THE GREATEST GIFT FOR DADS OF ALL AGES AND IN ALL STAGES.”

“Your path is your own.” “No one can tell you how to walk it.” “Responsibility lies with you.”

These are just some of the important conversations we are gently reminded to embrace within Notes to My Son. With parenting, there are so many things we need to do and take care of, but what conversations are we having to be sure we truly impart the wisdom of our lives into our loved ones? Are we having difficult conversations, asking hard questions, and talking about things without regret?

Don’t let another day pass by without this book.

In Notes to My Son, you’ll discover twenty-five topics to inspire deeper, more meaningful conversations throughout your child’s life, even if your child is now an adult on their own.

My Review:
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

I have a son. So the title of this book got my attention. What advice would a parent put into writing with the hopes that his son would one day read it and hopefully apply it? I have to admit, I was curious.

This book turned out to be an absolute gem. First-time father Eric Lynn pens words of practical wisdom, honest reflections, and unconditional love to his newborn son. Although the words are meant for his son Summit, they can be appreciated by anyone who likes good advice. Lynn's life and work experiences shine through and would make any son proud to have such a devoted father.

There are 25 notes in this book, which are short chapters that convey the author's advice to his son in well-written essays. This book is a pleasure to read with topics that range from turning your daydreams to reality to being financially literate to expressions of the joy of being a father.

Notes to my Son is perfect for first-time dads and parents, or even parents who struggle with everyday responsibilities and are overwhelmed with parenting. It's a book that will remind any parent of the amazing (and sometimes scary) role that we play in shaping the life of our children. 



About the Author:

Eric Lynn spends his professional life managing workforce solutions for small, mid-sized and Fortune 1000 companies. With years of professional experience, Eric understands the value of preparation. Thus when his wife, Ashley, became pregnant, Eric sought a way to prepare for his new role as a father. Something shifted within him causing him to ask different questions of life.

As he awaited the arrival of his first child, future conversations with his son, Summit, began to take shape. Eager to prepare for this new role, Notes to My Son was born.

The Lynn family lives in Colorado where they enjoy climbing 14ers, skiing, playing tennis and appreciating the abundance of all nature has to offer. Eric and his family hope that the relatable life wisdom shared in this book touches the hearts of all who read it.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook





Enter the Giveaway!
Ends April 3, 2020


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Everyday Legacy by Codi Shewan (Book Spotlight and Giveaway!)


I'm always attracted to books that encourage us to live our best lives. I haven't read it yet, but it sure appeals to me. If you need inspiration, this book may help. Check it out and be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win a copy!


Book Details:

Book Title: Everyday Legacy: Lessons for Living With Purpose, Right Now by Codi Shewan
Category: Adult NonFiction,  176 pages
Genre: Self-Help, Personal Growth
Publisher: Page Two
Release date: February 18, 2020


Book Description:

What if your legacy isn’t what you leave behind, but something you create, every day of your life?

What if you started acting the way you want to be remembered―right now―and shared your unique gifts with the world? In Everyday Legacy, Codi Shewan inspires readers to redefine how they live and embrace the idea of living―not leaving―a legacy. His message is simple, yet powerful: In each moment, you have the ability to change yourself and those around you, in profound ways.

This book is for anyone who wants to rethink their own legacy and start living it now. Everyday Legacy shares vital lessons for living, informed by Shewan’s experiences as a funeral director who developed a deep understanding of the reality of death. From tales of unexpected friendship as a young volunteer in palliative care to what he learned through his estranged father’s funeral, Everyday Legacy shows us what it means to be deeply human, undeniably mortal―and how to choose a life that matters.

Buy the Book:



About the Author:


CODI SHEWAN spent two decades working in the death-care profession until, in 2014, he leapt from an executive position in corporate funeral services to the entrepreneurial world. As a consultant and speaker, he’s on a mission to redefine “legacy” as something that you personify, each day of your life: you can realize the power of your own positive influence while you’re still here.

Shewan is also the founder of From Strangers To Family, an experience that helps people feel connected, in an often disconnected world.

For more information, visit everydaylegacy.com, or connect with Shewan on InstagramFacebookTwitterLinkedIn.




Enter the Giveaway!
Ends March 26, 2020


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway Rules:

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on March 26, 2020. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is to the US and Canada only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Sunday Post, Mailbox Monday and It's Monday What Are You Reading? March 9 Edition


Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news. A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.


I love spring except for one thing: losing one precious hour of sleep in the morning! I already get up early to get to work, so this week is going to burn me out until I finally adjust.

Early in February, we booked our trip to Italy in May only to realize a few weeks later that our dream trip has to be canceled because of the outbreak of Coronavirus. So disappointed! We are now waiting to see if our plane tickets will be reimbursed. 

Stay safe, wash your hands often and keep reading good books!

Mailbox Monday Edition



Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week. Mailbox Monday now has a permanent home on its blog. Link up to share your MM.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It's a great post to organise yourself. It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever-growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date.


What I reviewed and/or featured last week:

This highlights the bravery of women intelligence agents during WWII. A good read!



Currently Reading:

Bits of wisdom passed from a father to his son.


Stop by and enter my giveaways!

Also posted on the right sidebar.



Hope you all have a great reading week.




Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Landing by Moonlight by Ciji Ware (Review and Giveaway!)


Ciji Ware's latest novel Landing by Moonlight delves into the thrilling lives of WWII spies, in particular, women intelligence agents. If you like WWII stories, don't miss this one. You can also enter the giveaway to win a copy!

Book Details:

Book Title: Landing by Moonlight: a Novel of WWII by Ciji Ware
Category: Adult Fiction, 476 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction, WWII
Publisher: Lion’s Paw Publishing
Release date: October 15, 2019
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Several explicit sex scenes, adultery, and mature subject matter of the horrors of war)

Book Description:

Based on the lives of a small group of American women secret agents working for British intelligence parachuting into France to help the Resistance during WW II.

The year is 1942, and American secret agent Catherine Thornton has no idea whether she will be dropped behind enemy lines in an inflatable raft launched from a submarine or be flung through the moonlit sky from a low-flying British Halifax. Either way, the young embassy wife and erstwhile journalist knows there’s always the chance she’ll be picked off by German sharpshooters, although nothing in her imagination prepares her for the trial-by-fire to come.

Only she understands why she volunteered for such “unwomanly warfare” and the secret reasons she joined a handful of female American spies destined to risk her gilded life on French soil–yet former Vichy diplomat Henri Leblanc, code name Claude Foret, thinks he knows the answers.

As Catherine’s missions grow more harrowing each day, and she fears she’s fallen in love with a captured fellow agent, the German SS begin to close in on the world of Madame “Colette Durand” and her Résistance network embedded in coastal cities along the French Riviera—an exposure that could threaten the Allied victory itself.

And hanging in the air like a half-opened parachute is the life-or-death question: Who is the betrayer and who will be betrayed in this, their finest hour?


My Review:
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

Ciji Ware's latest novel Landing by Moonlight delves into the thrilling lives of WWII spies, in particular, women intelligence agents who were able to get information by using skills in ways men could not. It's a memorable tale, filled with heroic moments and interspersed with sadness and the horrors of an unforgettable war.

Our main character is Catherine Thornton, a wealthy American journalist who craves to follow in her late father's footsteps rather than lead a pampered life in which she is miserable. Catherine is beautiful, intelligent, quick-witted, bold, daring...and not healed from a young life of trauma. It's perhaps this combination that makes her a fascinating character. She is quite fearless and confident, not dwelling on her past, a strong woman that throws herself into danger to save others.

From the beginning, Catherine has an adulterous affair with Henri LeBlanc, and she's almost too blasé about their relationship which made me slow to warm up to her, until I got to know her story better, including her past. Eventually the two fall in love, but they are both spies in a vicious war that takes them apart time and again. I'm glad the author kept their relationship real while focusing primarily on Catherine's work as a spy. There were times, though, that I did want more of an exploration into her psyche - how her past traumas affected her. I wanted to see more of her inner turmoil. She was almost too perfect and got over traumatic events too easily. But on the other hand, perhaps this is how she was meant to be seen, as someone that could move on and do what needed to be done when the going got tough, part of what kept her alive.

I was transported to several places in Europe but loved France best, where Catherine did most of her work with her comrade in arms, Sean Eisenhower, and the network of other spies and members of the French Resistance. This part of the novel was filled with dangerous missions, life in the small towns that were invaded by the German Nazis, descriptions of the Resistance movement, and how war affected all those that experienced it. It's clear that Ciji Ware has done her research and deftly interwoven historical figures with true events into her story.

Fans of WWII stories will be left satisfied as they read about men and women who sacrificed everything to help win the war. According to the author's notes, I was happy to learn that this is the first book in the Spy Sisters Series. I'll definitely look for the next book, and eagerly anticipate learning more about the women who made a difference during WWII.

Disclosure: Thanks to the author and France Book Tours for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.


Buy the Book:


About the Author:


Ciji Ware is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of twelve works of historical and contemporary fiction, two of nonfiction, and was short-listed for the Willa [Cather] Literary Award
for Historical Fiction in 2012. A graduate of Harvard University in History, she is an Emmy-award winning television producer, a Dupont awardee for investigative journalism, and an American Bar Association winner of a Silver Gavel for her magazine work. For eighteen years, she was a broadcaster and commentator for KABC Radio/TV in Los Angeles. A recipient of Harvard’s prestigious Alumni Award in 2004, Ware was the first woman graduate of the university to serve as President of the Harvard Alumni Association, Worldwide. Ware and her husband, Tony Cook, live in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Follow the author on Facebook, Pinterest, and Amazon
Visit her website





Enter the Giveaway!
Ends March 16, 2020


Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Becoming Cinderella by Lecia Crider (Book Review)


A fun retelling for the young teen who loves modern fairytales with a twist!


Book Details:

Book Title: Becoming Cinderella by Lecia Crider
Series: Season One (A The Realm Where Faerie Tales Dwell Series)
Category: YA Fiction, 204 pages
Genre: Fantasy, Fairytale Retelling
Publisher: Fiction Vortex
Release date: Oct 2, 2019
Content Rating: G (There's some kissing)

Book Description:

There’s no escaping midnight.

High school soccer star and part-time truffle hunter Dani Tucker is having a really bad day. As if being publicly humiliated by her boyfriend and suffering a season-ending injury aren’t bad enough, she also finds out her dad is dating again! When Magic offers her the chance to change it all—to live her own Cinderella story—Dani doesn’t hesitate. With visions of Prince Charming and happily ever after swimming through her head, Dani is completely blindsided when Cinderella’s life twists into her own like a tornado, leaving destruction in its wake. And when her midnight moment comes, she has to decide which life to choose and which to give up... forever.

A modern spin on a classic fairy tale, Becoming Cinderella is a story of friendship, family and magical blessings going awry. Fans of H2O: Just Add Water and Gail Carson Levine’s The Wish will love the high school humor, magical mishaps, and step mama drama.

WHAT IS THE REALM WHERE FAERIE TALES DWELL?

Courageous damsels, conniving dragons, dwarves obsessed with beard grooming… The Realm Where Faerie Tales Dwell is home to them all. Traditional fairy tales from Cinderella to The Princess and the Pea blend with murder mystery and good old fashioned adventure. Join heroines and heroes alike as they save princes from ogres, uncover political secrets, and learn why you should never duel someone who’s sitting down.

OTHER FAERIE TALES SERIES INCLUDE:

Pieces in the Cinders
Rose Red
The Faceless Princess
The Dragon’s Maid
Barley and Rye
Transforming Magic

Discover more at www.FictionVortex.com



My Review:
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

Every so often I long for a fairytale retelling. I'm not sure why, but I guess it's because fairytales do have their charm, like that of Cinderella. Who doesn't like a rags-to-riches story?

Becoming Cinderella was a fun and quick book to read. It's YA fiction but geared to the younger YA (13-14 years). Dani is a 16-year-old teen who plays soccer and loves to go truffle hunting in the forest behind her house. Digging for mushrooms is something her mother taught her to do just before she was killed by a drunk driver. Dani has a close relationship with her dad and also her best friend Livvy. When Dani finds a beautiful mysterious ring in the forest she discovers the world of faeries and of magic. Suddenly, her world changes and puts Dani to the test.

One of the best things about this story is that it explores themes of family and friendship, mixed with a good dose of humor. I loved Dani's relationship with her father and her best friend. The author cleverly intertwined Cinderella's story with that of Dani's, keeping the reader entertained and wondering how it would all end. And the fairy godmother? Well, she was not quite what one would expect but this made it all the more interesting.

A fun retelling for the young teen who loves modern fairytales with a twist!

Disclosure: Thanks to the author for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.



Buy the Book:


About the Author:


Lecia is a YA and children's author whose favorite things are being at home, the smell of Barnes and Noble, and currant pie. Unfortunately, currants do not grow well in Mesa, Arizona, where she currently resides, but she remembers them fondly from her Michigan childhood. Lecia is wife to one, mother to five, and confidant to many. Tell her your secrets at leciacriderwrites@gmail.com - they just might pop up in her next book!*
*names will be changed, of course ;)


Monday, February 17, 2020

All's Well in Jingle Valley by Martha Reynolds (Book Spotlight and Giveaway!)


Today I'm featuring the third book in the Happy Ever After Series. If you like women's fiction, you may enjoy this one. You can also enter to win the whole series through the giveaway below!

BOOK DETAILS:

Book Title: All's Well in Jingle Valley (A Happily Ever After Series Book 3) by Martha Reynolds
Category: Adult Fiction
Genre: Women's Fiction, Romance
Publisher: Martha Reynolds
Release date: October 2019
Tour dates: February 10 to February 28, 2020
Content Rating: PG + M: I use this rating because there may be a little profanity (although I tend not to be explicit - there might be a 'shit' in there somewhere). Adults being adults, a hint at adultery, but nothing explicit in language or with sexual content.


BOOK DESCRIPTION:

It's been three years since Julie Tate and her business partner Freddy saved the farm at Jingle Valley and set up their boutique wedding business. After much hard work, and some challenging clients, it finally looks like they're well on their way to success. Newly single, Julie's trying not to envy the happiness enjoyed by her wedding clients. But it's difficult to keep her mind on the job when her days are filled with other people's romances. And when a door she thought was closed appears to open again, her confusion deepens.

Second-chance couple April and Bill clearly adore each other, and they love the idea of getting married at Jingle Valley. But with each bringing complicated histories to their relationship, will their pasts interfere with them tying the knot?

As autumn softens into winter at the beautiful Massachusetts farm, Julie resolves to do everything she can to ensure a happy ending for her clients. But despite her best efforts, will there be fewer weddings than planned at Jingle Valley this year? Or could there be more?

Buy the Book:


Add to Goodreads



About the author:

Author Martha Reynolds

Martha Reynolds was raised in Rhode Island, spent a year of college in Switzerland, and is always planning a return visit. She completed an accomplished career as a fraud investigator and decided it was time to do something she really liked.

She now writes full-time and has set a personal goal of releasing a book a year until she dies. Her writing has appeared in Magnificat magazine and her very short poem was read by journalist Connie Schultz during NPR's Tell Me More poetry challenge.

Her novel VILLA DEL SOL won the 2018 Book Award in Literary Fiction by the Independent Publishers of New England.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram




Enter the Giveaway!
Ends March 6, 2020



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Friday, February 14, 2020

The Winter Companion by Mimi Matthews (Review and Giveaway!)


Another winner by Mimi Matthews! This is a great series. I read the first book and now I want to read the other two books. We also have a giveaway. Check it out.

Book Details:

Book Title: The Winter Companion by Mimi Matthews
Category: Adult Fiction,  pages
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Perfectly Proper Press
Release date: February 11, 2020
Content Rating: G

Book Description:

A winter reunion for the orphans brings romance for Neville Cross in Book 4 of Mimi Matthews’ USA Today bestselling Parish Orphans of Devon series.

She Needed to be Seen…

As a lady’s companion, Clara Hartwright never receives much attention from anyone. And that’s precisely how she likes it. With a stormy past and an unconventional plan for her future, it’s far safer to remain invisible. But when her new employer is invited to a month-long holiday at a remote coastal abbey, Clara discovers that she may not be as invisible as she’d hoped. At least, not as far as one gentleman is concerned.

He Wanted to be Heard…

Neville Cross has always been more comfortable with animals than people. An accident in his youth has left him with a brain injury that affects his speech. Forming the words to speak to his childhood friends is difficult enough. Finding the right things to say to a lovely young lady’s companion seems downright impossible. But Miss Hartwright is no ordinary companion. In fact, there may not be anything ordinary about her at all.

During a bleak Devon winter, two sensitive souls forge an unexpected friendship. But when Clara needs him most, will Neville find the courage to face his fears? Or is saying goodbye to her the most heroic thing he can do?



My Review: 
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

I read the first book in the Parish Orphans of Devon series titled The Matrimonial Advertisement which I loved. This one is the fourth book in the series. These are stand-alone novels with characters from the different stories appearing in the other books.

I enjoyed The Winter Companion very much. Both Clara and Neville were well-developed characters, and I especially had a soft spot for Neville who had a speech impediment. I love the fact that these characters were flawed and unique. I like my romances to be slow-build with substantial interactions and real-life situations. And this one satisfied on all accounts.

Once again, the author includes topics that I found intriguing, and I was happy to read her endnotes that explained some of her research for this book. If you're looking for a good clean romance, look no further. Mimi Matthews has become my go-to author for this kind of reading. I also love the book covers in this series and all of Matthews' books actually.

I have two other books from her on my Kindle that I look forward to reading plus I now want to read the other two books in this series!

Disclosure: Thanks to HFVBT for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.




Buy the Book:




Praise for the Parish Orphans of Devon series:


“For this impressive Victorian romance, Matthews crafts a tale that sparkles with chemistry and impresses with strong character development… an excellent series launch that will appeal to fans of Loretta Chase and Stephanie Laurens.” -Publishers Weekly (The Matrimonial Advertisement)

“Matthews has a knack for creating slow-building chemistry and an intriguing plot with a social history twist.” -Library Journal (The Matrimonial Advertisement)

“As always, Matthews’ attention to historical accuracy is impeccable.” -Kirkus Reviews (A Modest Independence)

“Mimi Matthews is an exceptional story-teller.” -Passages to the Past (The Matrimonial Advertisement)

“Matthews is a bright, shining star in historical romance…” -Austenprose (A Modest Independence)


About the Author:



USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews (A Victorian Lady’s Guide to Fashion and Beauty, The Matrimonial Advertisement) writes both historical non-fiction and traditional historical romances set in Victorian England. Her articles on nineteenth-century history have been published on various academic and history sites, including the Victorian Web and the Journal of Victorian Culture, and are also syndicated weekly at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes an Andalusian dressage horse, two Shelties, and two Siamese cats.

For more information, please visit Mimi Matthews’ website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, BookBub, Pinterest, Google+, and Goodreads.




Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Feb 18, 2020

Embed Code: The Winter Companion

Giveaway Rules:

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on February 18th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

April in Galway by Martha Reynolds (Book Spotlight and Giveaway!)


Today I'm featuring the second book in the Happy Ever After Series. If you like women's fiction, you may enjoy this one. You can also enter to win the whole series through the giveaway below!

BOOK DETAILS:

Book Title: April in Galway (A Happily Ever After Series Book 2) by Martha Reynolds
Category: Adult Fiction
Genre: Women's Fiction, Romance
Publisher: Martha Reynolds
Release date: October 2018
Tour dates: February 3 to February 21, 2020
Content Rating: PG + M: Little if any profanity (maybe a 'shit' in there somewhere), but consenting adults and romantic pursuits. I prefer to close the door when it heats up.


BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Bill Flanagan's no stranger to regrets, so when he stumbles upon the chance to erase one from his long record, he jumps at it. April Tweed's reinvigorated acting career may suggest she's left her past behind, but some memories don't let go easily, even thirty years later. The most important person from her past has tracked her down in Ireland, where she's filming a miniseries. Past collides with the present when April finds herself stuck between her high school sweetheart, Bill, and her persistently amorous co-star, Connor. Both of them are determined to win her heart as fresh starts war against second chances.

Buy the Book:

Add to Goodreads


About the Author:

Author Martha Reynolds
Martha Reynolds was raised in Rhode Island, spent a year of college in Switzerland, and is always planning a return visit. She completed an accomplished career as a fraud investigator and decided it was time to do something she really liked.
She now writes full-time and has set a personal goal of releasing a book a year until she dies. Her writing has appeared in Magnificat magazine and her very short poem was read by journalist Connie Schultz during NPR's Tell Me More poetry challenge.
Her novel VILLA DEL SOL won the 2018 Book Award in Literary Fiction by the Independent Publishers of New England.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram


Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Feb 28, 2020


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, February 10, 2020

A Jingle Valley Wedding by Martha Reynolds (Book Spotlight and Giveaway!)


Today I'm featuring the first book in the Happy Ever After Series. If you like women's fiction, you may enjoy this one. You can also enter to win the whole series through the giveaway below!

BOOK DETAILS:

Book Title: A Jingle Valley Wedding (A Happy Ever After Series Book 1) by Martha Reynolds
Category: Adult Fiction
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Release date: November 2015
Tour dates: January 27 to February 14, 2020
Content Rating: PG + M: No profanity, but it's geared more for adults (there's a one-night stand). No explicit sex at all.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: 

New York executive Julie Tate knows what it takes to win in the financial world, but her big-city success could never prepare her for her latest career move. When her brother abandons the failing family farm, Julie hopes its salvation lies in transforming it into western Massachusetts's newest premier wedding venue. With her social-savvy friend Freddy in her corner, Julie feels infallible. But as their bank account dwindles and one obstacle after another crops up, the business partners wonder if their venture is doomed for failure before the first bride walks down the aisle. Maybe the best way to succeed in a business based on romance is to find one.

Buy the Book:

Add to Goodreads

Meet the Author:

Author Martha Reynolds

​Martha Reynolds was raised in Rhode Island, spent a year of college in Switzerland, and is always planning a return visit. She completed an accomplished career as a fraud investigator and decided it was time to do something she really liked.

She now writes full-time and has set a personal goal of releasing a book a year until she dies. Her writing has appeared in Magnificat magazine and her very short poem was read by journalist Connie Schultz during NPR's Tell Me More poetry challenge.

Her novel VILLA DEL SOL won the 2018 Book Award in Literary Fiction by the Independent Publishers of New England.

Connect with the authors: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram





Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Feb 21, 2020


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, February 3, 2020

Stefan's Promise by Sam Rennick (Book Spotlight, Author Interview & Giveaway!)


A story of friendship and the Vietnam War. Check it out and enter the giveaway to win a copy!

Book Details:

Book Title: Stefan's Promise by Sam Rennick
Category: Adult Fiction, 546 pages
Genre: Literary Fiction
Publisher: Hugo House Publishers
Release date: September 3, 2019
Tour dates: Jan 27 to Feb 7, 2020
Content Rating: PG: Some adult themes but no bad language.


Book Description:

The Vietnam War Changed America. Two Best Friends Weren't Spared. Only One Was Drafted

It’s 1968. America is rocked by assassinations, war protests, and political upheaval. Alan Young, 21, is brooding over having been dumped by his girlfriend. This won’t last long. His draft notice is in the mail. Stefan Kopinski isn’t about to let the war get in his way. He spends his days at the mercy of his reckless ambition. When fate steps in, will he finally understand what has been right in front of him for 30 years? "Stefan’s Promise" is the story of Alan and Stefan. Circumstances part them and sharply diverging temperaments further erode their bond. Yet, Alan and Stefan are wrong in supposing their friendship has ended. It’s just getting started.

Praise for Stefan's Promise:

“We were at war in Vietnam and my fiancé was drafted the day after he proposed to me. I hadn’t thought of that September day for so long, and then I began "Stefan’s Promise." Soon I was recalling that day and others, events and circumstances shared by those of us who lived through the “tumultuous year of 1968” and the following 35 years. In the Preface, Sam Rennick states his intention to deliver a completely absorbing tale. He does!”
—D.W.G.Artist

The author brings great sensitivity to one powerful scene after another. There is Mike Huxtable, victim of an unprovoked blow, aimlessly wandering the aisles of a drug store, day after day. There is Stefan Kopinski, half-pondering his friend’s illness, half-observing the Midwestern city in which he finds himself. These scenes but two among many in this compelling novel.”
—Silvia Lorente-Murphy, PhD Professor Emerita Purdue University


Buy the Book:


Add to Goodreads


My Interview with Sam Rennick:

LCR: Thank you for joining me in this interview. Stefan's Promise sounds like a very compelling story. Can you describe your story in 20 words or less?

SR: Friendship of two men, framed by college and middle age. No bond the 30 years in-between. Portentous circumstances re-unite them.

LCR: In your bio, it's stated that you began to write Stefan's Promise forty years ago. Is there a reason you did not complete it then? What propelled you to, once again, pick up your writer's pen so to speak and continue your story?

SR: I shelved it because more pressing matters, like earning a living, came first, but I never forgot my manuscript. I felt it had potential, and that I could complete it someday. Retirement gave me the opportunity.

LCR: What was the easiest thing about writing your novel? The hardest?

SR: There was nothing easy. The hardest would be the second draft. I wrote the novel three times. First draft was very rough. The second involved converting that rough draft into something resembling a story. The third was working out the remaining issues, which wasn’t easy either, but not as demanding as the second draft.

LCR: What advice would you give to a budding writer?
SR: Put the manuscript away. Get on with your life. Maybe you’ve chosen a trade, or maybe a profession. Regardless, you’re earning a living. What is more important than this? You’ll know when you can resume on that manuscript.

LCR: If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?

SR: I’d return to my boyhood. It was a happy time, mostly. Our childhoods are filled with wonder, which we lose as adults. I’d like to recapture that.

LCR: Thank you for your time!



About the Author:

Sam Rennick began writing Stefan’s Promise forty years ago, but it wasn’t until fairly recently when he retired from his law practice that he was able to take his manuscript from its drawer and finish it. He admits he wishes he could say he planned this all along, since the two books comprising the novel, though written many years apart, combine perfectly into a compelling narrative.

While many authors have influenced him, he singles out Somerset Maugham as his muse, observing that Maugham always starts with a good story, but often finds a way to insert that “something extra” separating merely a nice tale from literature. Sam’s interest in books is only exceeded by his love for baseball, which began when he was nine years old.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook




Enter the Giveaway:
Ends Feb 14, 2020

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Visit Us Today

Visit Us Today
iRead: getting your book in the hands of readers

Wrote a Book Set in Italy?

 
Back To Top
Copyright © 2009-2017 Laura Fabiani Library of Clean Reads . Designed by OddThemes OddThemes