Friday, February 28, 2014

Christine Amsden - Secrets and Lies

14. Secrets and Lies by Christine Amsden (2013)
The Cassie Scot Series Book 2
Length: 269 pages
Genre: Paranormal Mystery
Started: 23 February 2014
Finished: 28 February 2014
Where did it come from?  Many thanks to Tracee at Pump up Your Book for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 14 November 2013
Why do I have it? I like paranormal mysteries and have read and enjoyed Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective by the same author in the past.

Still reeling from her parents' betrayal, Cassie Scot is determined to leave the world of magic behind her. But the magical world isn't letting go that easily. Her family is imploding, and despite everything, Cassie may be the only one powerful enough to save them.

To complicate matters, Cassie owes Evan Blackwood her life, making it extremely difficult to deny him anything he truly wants. And Evan apparently wants Cassie. Sparks fly when they team up to find two girls who go missing from a summer camp in the mountains. But long-buried secrets just may derail their chances at future happiness.

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. The story picked up relatively close to where Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective left off, and while the cliff-hanger certainly did its job - it had me sitting on the edge of my seat, ready to scream with frustration - the further development of the characters, and the pace of the plot drew me in from page one. I'm eagerly awaiting Book 3, because I definitely want to know what happens next.

A! - (90-95%)

May you read well and often

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Gwen Knight - A Hunter's Passion

13. A Hunter's Passion by Gwen Knight (2014)
Harlequin Nocturne Cravings Book 4 (February 2014)
Length: 92 pages
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Started: 22 February 2014
Finished: 25 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Dorothy at Pump up Your Book for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 11 December 2013
Why do I have it? I like paranormal romance and Gwen Knight is a new author for me.

Ryker Bennett has dedicated his entire life to hunting down - and eliminating - creatures of darkness. He and his brothers had learned early - from the deaths of their parents - that the only people they could truly count on and trust implicitly were each other. His occupation was certainly grueling - and dangerous - but never once did he question the righteousness of his duty.

But Ryker's latest assignment has him questioning everything he's ever believed in. Jenna Sinclair may be a witch, but she's also the only woman Ryker has ever loved. The 'one who got away' - who'd left him with a broken heart in the process.

Jenna believed that leaving Ryker two years ago was perhaps the hardest thing she'd ever done in her life. But it was for the best. Her decision to leave would save Ryker from having to choose between their forbidden love and his sworn duty.

However, when he eventually tracks her down, it's clear the desire between them burns as hot as ever - and that they'll have to walk through the flames to be together...

I must say that I generally love reading books from Harlequin. Usually I choose to read Harlequin Historical, Harlequin Intrigue, and some Harlequin Romance Suspense, as well. I guess I may have to add Harlequin Nocturne to my growing list.

I love reading paranormal romance, and although I thoroughly enjoyed reading Ryker and Jenna's story - it left me wondering when or if the rest of Ryker's brothers might get their own stories. I give A Hunter's Passion by Gwen Knight an A! and will definitely keep my eyes open for more from this author in the future.

A! - (90-95%)  
  
May you read well and often

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Greg Messel - Fog City Strangler

12. Fog City Strangler by Greg Messel (2013)
The Sam Slater Mysteries Book 4
Length: 493 pages
Genre: Historical Mystery
Started: 11 February 2014
Finished: 22 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Dorothy from Pump up Your Book for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 8 January 2014
Why do I have it? I like historical mysteries and Greg Messel is a new author for me.

As 1958 nears its end, San Francisco is being terrorized by a man who calls himself the Fog City Strangler. Each victim is a pretty, young blonde woman between the ages of twenty and thirty-five, and the strangler claims credit for each murder by sending a note and a piece of the victim's clothing to the local newspapers. The police have almost no leads to go on, and appear to be absolutely baffled by a suspect who has proven that he's capable of just about anything.

Private eye Sam Slater is just as anxious as everyone else that this murderer is caught soon. He is convinced that his beautiful blonde wife, TWA stewardess Amelia Ryan, will become the Strangler's next victim. His anxiety is further fueled when TWA launches an advertising campaign with Amelia's picture on a series of billboards plastered all over the city. Sam fears the billboards may attract too much attention - the wrong kind of attention.

Meanwhile, Sam and Amelia are hired to try and find the missing daughter of a wealthy dowager who fears she has lost her only child. The missing woman went for a walk with her dog on Stinson Beach, near San Francisco, and seemingly vanished into thin air. The woman's husband arrived at the couple's beach house and found the dog running loose but there was no trace of his wife. After two months, the police are stumped in their investigation.

As Sam and Amelia continue to investigate the disappearance of the woman on the beach, they discover that this particular case is more convoluted than it seemed from first glance. Especially when - on a stormy night - a shadowy figure sets fire to the beach house where the couple is staying - hoping to stop their investigation...permanently.  

I truly enjoyed this mystery. This was the first book by Greg Messel that I've ever read, and this was a standalone mystery - despite it being the fourth book in the Sam Slater Mysteries. The mystery - or should I say, mysteries - captured my attention right from the beginning. The characters were very well drawn - very true to the era in regards to attitude and speech - and I just had to find out how the story ended.

I must say that I found myself employing my various 'armchair detection' skills to solve each mystery. I had several of my own theories as regards to possible suspects, as well as ideas about what their potential motives might be. I wanted to keep reading to find out if my assumptions were correct.

I give Fog City Strangler by Greg Messel a definite A! I look forward to reading more from this author in the future, and will certainly keep an eye open for the three previous books in the Sam Slater Mysteries Series Last of the Seals, Deadly Plunge and San Francisco Secrets.

I actually was hoping I may be able to put up this review on Wednesday, but as I finished reading this book rather late last night - some time after midnight, I think - I opted for posting the review a little later today. Oh well, good things come to those who wait, I suppose. :)

A! - (90-95%)  

May you read well and often

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Introducing Fog City Strangler by Greg Messel!

Meet Greg Messel

Greg Messel grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and now lives in Edmonds, Washington on the Puget Sound with his wife, Carol. Fog City Strangler is his seventh novel and is the fourth in a new series of Sam Slater mystery novels. Greg has lived in Oregon, Washington, California, Wyoming and Utah and has always loved writing, including stints as a reporter, columnist and news editor for a daily newspaper.

Follow news about Mr. Messel’s writings and books at www.gregmessel.com.

Connect and Socialize with Greg!


Fog City Strangler by Greg Messel (2013)
Length: 493 pages
Purchase your copy from Amazon!

Fog City Strangler Blurb: 

As 1958 nears an end San Francisco is being terrorized by a man who calls himself the "Fog City Strangler," who preys on pretty young blonde women. The strangler announces each murder by sending a note and piece of the victim's clothing to the local newspapers. Angst mounts as the strangler continues to claim more victims. Private eye Sam Slater is worried that the Fog City Strangler may be eyeing his beautiful blonde wife, TWA stewardess Amelia Ryan.

His anxiety is further fueled when TWA launches an advertising campaign with Amelia's picture on a series of billboards plastered all over the city. Sam fears the billboards may attract too much attention - the wrong kind of attention.

Meanwhile, Sam and Amelia are hired to try to find the missing daughter of a wealthy dowager who fears she has lost her only child. The missing woman went for a walk with her dog on Stinson Beach, near San Francisco, and seemingly vanished into thin air. The woman's husband arrived at their beach house and found the dog running loose but there was no trace of his wife. The police are stumped in their investigation.

As Sam and Amelia look into the disappearance of the woman on the beach they discover that nothing is as it seems at first glance. On a stormy night a shadowy figure sets fire to the beach house where the couple is staying - hoping to stop their investigation.

Greg Messel's Fog City Strangler is a stand-alone thriller but is part of the Sam Slater Mystery Series - Last of the Seals, Deadly Plunge and San Francisco Secrets.

May you read well and often

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Deborah Rix - External Forces

11. External Forces by Deborah Rix (2013)
The Laws of Motion Series Book 1
Length: 210 pages
Genre: Contemporary Mystery
Started: 26 January 2014
Finished: 19 February 2014
Where did it come from? From Netgalley
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 31 October 2013
Why do I have it? I like contemporary mysteries and Deborah Rix is a new author for me.

A century has passed since the Genetic Integrity Act was enacted and America closed its borders to prevent genetic contamination. Only the genetic anomalies classified as Deviants - known to all as the enemy - remain beyond the heavily guarded border. The Department of Evolution carefully guides the creation of each successive generation and deviations from the divine plan are not permitted.

When sixteen-year-old Jess Grant begins to show signs of deviance, she enlists in the Special Forces, along with her best friend Jay, in a desperate bid to evade detection by the Devotees. Jess is good with data, not so good with a knife. So when the handsome and secretive Sergeant Matt Anderson selects her for his Black Ops squad, Jess is completely baffled and is determined to figure out why.

As her deviance continues to change her, Jess must eventually decide who she can trust with her deadly secret. She needs to know what's out there, in the Deviant wasteland over the border, if she has any hope of surviving to see her seventeenth birthday. Because if the enemy doesn't kill her first, the Department of Evolution probably will.

First let me say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. The characters were wonderfully drawn, and I was completely intrigued by the plot. I'm usually never sure about reading dystopian science fiction, but with External Forces, I was absolutely caught up in the story and wanted to see how it would develop. I give External Forces by Deborah Rix an A! and look forward to reading the next book in the series - Acceleration - some time very soon.

A! - (90-95%)
          
May you read well and often

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Book Blast Blog Tour For A Woman Possessed by Marilyn Hering From March 3, 2014 to March 14, 2014 - Come Join Us!

Hello Everyone! I am delighted to announce that Marilyn Hering will be touring the blogosphere to promote her Historical Fiction novel A Woman Possessed. This is Marilyn's first virtual book blast blog tour with Pump up Your Book! She will be coming to a blog near you from March 3, to March 14, 2014! Come join us for all the fun!

Ms. Hering is also doing an awesome giveaway - she is giving away a $25 Amazon Giftcard to one lucky winner at the end of her Book Blast Blog Tour. Be sure to fill out the Rafflecopter form below, and I wish you all the very best of good luck in taking part!

A Woman Possessed Book Blast Information:

Meet Marilyn Hering

Marilyn Hering’s father was a weaver at the Paterson silk mill for many years, inspiring her to learn its history and write this book. She has previously been an English teacher, but she is currently dedicating her time to writing the sequel to A Woman Possessed. She lives in Harrington Park, New Jersey.

About A Woman Possessed:

In 1913, silk mill workers in Paterson, New Jersey, went on strike, demanding an eight-hour work day and better working conditions - reasonable requests that nevertheless led to the arrest of over 1,800 people. Young Eleanor O’Bannion was not arrested, but she was there. Living in the tenements of Paterson, she survived near starvation, poverty, and illness. She survived with the yearnings of love. Her heart belongs to the charismatic and passionate Dante Ravelli, a union leader, supporting the workers at the Great Silk Strike. But can Eleanor trust him to love her back?

Against her better judgment, she decides to marry Charles Lafferty, the wealthy son of a silk baron. Charles is stable, dependable, and safe. So why does she continue to think about the dashing Ravelli? Eleanor carries her own secret past, and this secret robs her of any happiness as she struggles to look to the future and find fulfilling love with her husband.

She has survived so much; she knows she will continue to thrive. Any choice she makes will hurt a man she loves. Who will she choose in the end: Ravelli or Charles - or perhaps, her own liberation?

Purchase Your Copy From IUniverse!

Pump Up Your Book and Marilyn are teaming up to give you a chance to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!


Terms and Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Amazon Gift Certificate
  • This giveaway begins March 3 and ends on March 14.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on March 15, 2014.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!



A Woman Possessed Virtual Book Blast Blog Tour Information: 

March 3 - Road to Here
March 3 - Plug Your Book
March 4 - The Book Rack
March 4 - I’m Shelf-ish
March 5 - Icefairy’s Treasure Chest
March 5 - Review From Here
March 6 - Confessions of a Reader
March 6 - Literal Exposure
March 7 - Maureen’s Musings
March 7 - As the Pages Turn
March 10 - Becky on Books…and Quilts
March 10 - The Writer’s Life
March 11 - Celticlady’s Reviews
March 11 - Beyond the Books
March 12 - Libby’s Library
March 12 - Emeraldfire’s Bookmark
March 13 - Allvoices
March 13 - Redroom
March 14 - Blogher
March 14 - The Zen Reader

May you read well and often

Friday, February 14, 2014

Book Blast Blog Tour For Requested Surrender by Riley Murphy From February 28, 2014 to March 28, 2014 - Come Join Us!

Hello Everyone! I am delighted to announce that Riley Murphy will be touring the blogosphere to promote her Erotic Romance novel Requested Surrender. This is Riley's first virtual book blast blog tour with Pump up Your Book! She will be coming to a blog near you from February 28, to March 28, 2014! Come join us for all the fun!

Ms. Murphy is also doing an awesome giveaway - she is giving away a $25 Amazon Giftcard to one lucky winner at the end of her Book Blast Blog Tour. Be sure to fill out the Rafflecopter form below, and I wish you all the very best of good luck in taking part!

Requested Surrender Book Blast Information:

Meet Riley Murphy

Riley Murphy writes sexy, humorous and emotional romance, happy ending guaranteed. An optimist, she believes life is awesome, people are complicated, but in a good way, and we should never stop learning. Riley currently resides in Florida with her gorgeous husband. She has two wonderful kids and one very bossy English Bull terrier she has dubbed ‘The Divine One’. 

When Riley’s not working she enjoys reading, oil painting and getting to the Sunday crossword puzzle before anyone else does, so she can fill-in all the easy answers first. If Riley wasn’t a writer she’d be an international spy with top-level security so she could have a peek at Area 51 and decide for herself if those green guys are for real. Failing that she’d probably go with chicken sexer. 

Riley loves to hear from readers.To learn more about her or her upcoming releases swing by her website and say hello at: www.AuthorRileyMurphy.com or connect with her on twitter @Riley__Murphy where she’s always sharing her deep-dark secrets.

Her latest book is the erotic romance, Requested Surrender.

Visit her website at www.authorrileymurphy.com or her blog at http://www.badboyscanbefun.com/blog/.

Connect and Socialize with Riley!


About Requested Surrender:

She knows he’s dangerous for a woman like her.

He knows she’s perfect for a man like him.

From their first meeting, David Hollan is intrigued because Lacy Pembrook is subconsciously hiding someone. Herself. And David wants to know why. He’s patient at first. Willing to give her space, but when she breaks the rules they’ve set between them, he’s ready to hold her accountable. One way or another, he’s going to find the piece of her that’s yet to be uncovered. And when he does? He intends to own it.

Given an ultimatum after she got caught coloring outsides the lines of their “trial” relationship, Lacy decides to fall in with David’s plans. She’ll cancel her trip and spend her vacation time at his house making up for her transgression. No sweat, right? Wrong. What she doesn’t count on when she gets there is him going full-out Dom on her. She quickly learns why they call him the quiet one. He’s dead sexy, watchful and stern at the best of times, and now that he has her all to himself, each of those things are magnified tenfold.

By the time Lacy realizes that he’s completely subjugated her - by way of an emotional striptease - it’s too late. She’s bared her soul to him, so when he requests her surrender she has no choice but to give it to him. Or does she?

Purchase Your Copy From Amazon!

(The Amazon link will be live soon. Meanwhile, visit http://www.badboyscanbefun.com/coming-soon/ to be the first one to hear about its release date!)

Pump Up Your Book and Riley are teaming up to give you a chance to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms and Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Amazon Gift Certificate or Paypal Cash.
  • This giveaway begins February 28 and ends March 28.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on Monday, March 31.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!



Requested Surrender Virtual Book Blast Blog Tour Information:

Friday, February 28 - The Writer’s Life
Tuesday, March 4 - Behind Closed Doors
Tuesday, March 4 - Literarily Speaking
Wednesday, March 5 - A Little Bit of Spice
Wednesday, March 5 - Margay Leah Justice
Thursday, March 6 - Babbling Books and More
Thursday, March 6 - Cherry Mischievious
Thursday, March 6 - I Heart Reading
Friday, March 7 - Literary Meanderings
Friday, March 7 - Queen of the Night Reviews
Monday, March 10 - The Phantom Paragrapher
Monday, March 10 - Naturally Kim B
Tuesday, March 11 - Lori’s Reading Corner
Wednesday, March 12 - Authors and Readers Book Corner
Thursday, March 13 - Sarah’s Organized Chaos
Friday, March 14 - Jersey Girl Sizzling Reviews
Monday, March 17 - Butterfly-O-Meter
Monday, March 17 - I’m Shelf-ish
Tuesday, March 18 - We’re Jumpin’ Books
Wednesday, March 19 - Mary’s Cup of Tea
Wednesday, March 19 - Urban Girl Reader
Wednesday, March 19 - Cheryl’s Book Nook
Wednesday, March 19 - Lori’s Reading Corner
Thursday, March 20 - Deal Sharing Aunt
Friday, March 21 - Escape by Fiction
Monday, March 24 - As the Page Turns
Tuesday, March 25 - Emeraldfire’s Bookmark
Wednesday, March 26 - Crystal’s Many Reviewers
Thursday, March 27 - Reviews by Molly
Friday, March 28 - The Romance Evangelist
Friday, March 28 - My Book Addiction and More

May you read well and often

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Book Blast Blog Tour For There Be Goblins in the Wood by Christopher Gray From March 3, 2014 to March 14, 2013 - Come Join Us!

Hello Everyone! I am delighted to announce that Christopher Gray will be touring the blogosphere to promote his young adult fantasy There Be Goblins in the Wood. This is Christopher's first virtual book blast blog tour with Pump up Your Book! He will be coming to a blog near you from March 3, to March 14, 2014! Come join us for all the fun!

Mr. Gray is also doing an awesome giveaway - he is giving away a $25 Amazon Giftcard to one lucky winner at the end of his Book Blast Blog Tour. Be sure to fill out the Rafflecopter form below, and I wish you all the very best of good luck in taking part!

There Be Goblins in the Wood Book Blast Information:


Meet Christopher Gray

Christopher Gray was born and raised in the English West County. He is a retired Primary School Head teacher and a professional artist and Lay Preacher.

 About There be Goblins in the Wood:

Combe Dingle Wood can be found (if you look really hard) in the heart of the Somerset countryside. It exists in that twilight time between myth and reality. It belongs to the era when walkabout scarecrows and Aunt Sallies wandered the hills and vales of the English West country. The local folk can tell you stories of their experiences when entering the wood. Most people that wander in wander out again with a smile on their faces and a sense of well-being. No one has ever quite put their finger on why this should be- they can only say there is something magical about the place.

The Chronicles of Combe Dingle Wood are a series of stories about the unique folk that inhabit the wood. They have exciting adventures in ‘Between time’ (created for them by a friendly witch). They encounter dangers, but they do so with a sense of humour and fortitude that is typical of the West Country folk. It was a few years after the Second Year War when I first encountered the real inhabitants of Combe Dingle Wood.

Were they people trees or tree people? You know to this day I am still not sure. Perhaps you could decide? The story books I have produced are based on the records and drawings I kept in my diary all those years ago.

Purchase Your Copy From Author House!

Pump Up Your Book and Christopher are teaming up to give you a chance to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms and Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Amazon Gift Certificate
  • This giveaway begins March 3 and ends on March 14.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on March 15, 2014.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



There Be Goblins in the Wood Virtual Book Blast Tour Information:


March 3 - Emeraldfire’s Bookmark
March 3 - As the Page Turns
March 4 - I’m Shelf-ish
March 4 - The Dark Phantom
March 5 - Icefairy’s Treasure Chest
March 5 - She Writes
March 6 - Literal Exposure
March 6 - Redroom
March 7 - All Inclusive Retort
March 7 - Blogher
March 10 - The Road to Here
March 10 - The Book Rack
March 11 - Review From Here
March 11 - Allvoices
March 12 - Inkslinger’s Opus
March 12 - Plug Your Book
March 13 - Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
March 13 - Beyond the Books
March 14 - The Zen Reader
March 14 - The Writer’s Life

May you read well and often

Monday, February 10, 2014

Kathryn Elizabeth Jones - The Feast: A Parable of the Ring

10. The Feast: A Parable of the Ring by Kathryn Elizabeth Jones (2013)
The Parables Series Book 2
Length: 119 pages
Genre: Christian Fiction
Started: 29 January 2014
Finished: 10 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Kathryn for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 7 September 2013
Why do I have it? I like Christian fiction and had read and enjoyed Conquering Your Goliaths: A Parable of the Five Stones by the same author in the past.

Virginia has experienced the power and direction of the five stones, and has grown so much closer in her relationship with God. Now, five years on, Virginia will need to use the stones once again. For entirely different reasons.

Keeping her marriage together is not the only thing on Virginia's mind. Her successful business Just Desserts is beginning to founder, her five-year marriage is in trouble and apparently having a child isn't going to happen in the usual way. Virginia is convinced that adoption is the answer.

So, if she did all the of right things, said all of the right words; if she remembered the five stones in her journey to get her child, God would surely have to answer her.

It shouldn't be too difficult...

I must say that I enjoyed The Feast just as much as I did Conquering Your Goliaths. It was interesting to see how much Virginia had grown in her relationship with God - but how she also had a tendency to forget that her relationship with Him still needed to be nurtured. I give this book an A! and look forward to reading the next book in this series some time soon.

A! - (90-95%)
 
May you read well and often

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Introducing Six Shot. Seven? by Jonn October!

Hello Everyone! I am delighted to announce that Jonn October - author of the mystery/thriller Six Shot. Seven? is hosting a virtual book blast from March 5th to March 8th, 2014 - when his book will be free to download from Amazon.

Meet Jonn October

I believe the first book I read cover to cover was an unabridged Swiss Family Robinson; it was predicated by a bribe from my mother, and it worked. I was nine or ten years old and remember more or less two things from the book: how to manufacture nitroglycerine and how to par-cook ortolans and small birds for long term storage in melted grease. While I'm not sure the benefit of either of those takeaways, the mindset behind it most certainly informs my writing.

From there I transitioned eventually into literary meanderings after a youth spent commercial fishing, feeding lions, and cutting up ancient cedar trees. It was a strange time but I was good for it, and again, it transitions into my work.

I live with my wife and little daughter in the shadow of a mountain on Vancouver Island; as a matter of fact, it has snowed sixteen inches in the past day and completely covered the flowers. That said, I am excited by the possibilities of fiction ebooks and am glad to present this first, Six Shot. Seven? Please enjoy the review, and please by all means read Six Shot. Seven? and pass it around.

Connect and Socialize with Jonn!


Six Shot. Seven? by Jonn October (2014)
Length: 438 pages
Purchase Your Copy From Amazon!

Six Shot. Seven? Blurb: 

A young man returns home to find his pregnant wife murdered. A little girl is sold on the black market. After two decades, their worlds collide, as they are forced to unite against a common enemy who just won't stay dead.

"Six Shot. Seven?" is a tale of resolution, rude Canadians, and improvised homebrew warfare.

It's six shots, with number seven in the chamber.


Six Shot. Seven? Excerpt:

Now it needs to be said for William J. Carleigh that for a liar he played an incredibly cool and steady hand. His facade never wavered. He worked his face back towards forward and spoke in a voice devoid of a trace of any kind of emotion.
“Of course, Earl, that is the story. That is what everybody wants to hear, isn’t it? I think we’d better just stick with the story. Nobody wants to be upset by unfounded allegations and sordid details. It wouldn’t be right to scare people with all these messy little tangents. Sometimes the Universe uses these things for the best, doesn’t it Earl? I think that it is best you speak of this whole situation to nobody. Think of the ministry, Earl. We need to show compassion, not vengeance.”

He paused, the vehicle jolted, he continued, looking straight ahead.

“Earl, it goes without saying but if you speak of this whole situation to anybody, it would be a shame to think of what might happen. It would be a shame to think of who might get hurt. It would be so unfortunate.”

He was looking at me now. We both knew what this was about and he made me angry.

I slammed on the brakes and William “Bill” J. Carleigh nearly bounced off the dash, and dust got on his navy blue jacket.

“Mr. Carleigh...”

I reached over to him and grabbed him by the collar and pulled him in close and the twinkle was no longer in his eye, and I wasn’t hugging him like a brother.

"Mr. Carleigh...” I said, very quietly “...it would be wise to never even think of my name again. It would be so unfortunate. It would be a shame to think of who might get hurt.”

I pulled him right in close.

“Because frankly, Mr. Carleigh, you don’t know a fraction of what a man, least of all me, is capable of. Don’t bother me Mr. Carleigh, and I won’t bother you, and we can call it a truce and you can believe your story and I can go back to what’s left of my life. I want nothing of you and I don’t want to know you exist. Otherwise, Mr. Carleigh...” and I made a pistol with my right forefinger and thumb and held it under his chin “...otherwise, Mr. Carleigh, pow!”

I mouthed the last word without a sound and dropped him back into his seat.

The rest of the drive was silent and that was the last I’d ever heard of it or him or anybody else, and two days later we went our separate ways and that was the last I saw of him or anybody else from that place. He maintained his performance the whole time with all concerned and viewed me as one might view a stone best built around or over top of and I don’t even think he hated me, but he did know full well I meant what I said, even if I was hardly more than a kid.


May you read well and often

Michelle McLean - A Bandit's Betrayed Heart

9. A Bandit's Betrayed Heart by Michelle McLean (2014)
The Blood Blade Sisters Series Book 3
Length: 257 pages
Genre: Historical Romance
Started: 4 February 2014
Finished: 5 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Tracee at Pump up Your Book for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 8 January 2014
Why do I have it? I like historical romance and Michelle McLean is a new author for me.

The Richardson sisters hadn't always been such gently-bred Society ladies. In the past - Brynne, Cylla and Lucy Richardson - as the legendary 'Blood Blade', had battled their corrupt half-brother - the sheriff of their small California town. Having successfully defeated him, the sisters claimed their family's gold mining inheritance, and settled quietly. 'Blood Blade' left the bandit's life behind - Cylla staying in California with her husband Leo, Brynne and Lucy moving to Boston, occasionally helping Brynne's husband Richard, a doctor, to run his clinic.

Lucy Richardson's bandit sisters may have taught her to sling a gun and pick a lock, but nothing prepared her for the agony of her first heartbreak - Finnegan Taggart - at age eighteen. After seven years spent wondering where he was, she finally has a clue where to begin her search. Her sisters taught her to fight like hell for what she wants...and Lucy wants Finn.

Finn Taggart is bad news. His dark and tortured past always finds a way to catch up with him, and Lucy deserves much better than to be tainted by his touch. He couldn't have her years ago, and he definitely can't have her now - no matter how enticing she is. If only he can convince her of that before the danger that follows him brings them both down.

Danger doesn't exactly scare a girl like Lucy, and she knows how to use all kinds of weapons...including her feminine wiles. Finn doesn't stand a chance. Lucy can certainly handle herself - but if trouble arises - the Blood Blade Sisters are never too far away...

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. This the third story in the series, and while A Bandit's Betrayed Heart is basically a stand alone book, there where elements of the story that made me wish that I could read the first two books to find out Brynne's and Cylla's stories as well. I give this book an A! I certainly look forward to reading more from Michelle McLean very soon.

A! - (90-95%)
  
May you read well and often

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sarah Beard - Porcelain Keys

8. Porcelain Keys by Sarah Beard (2013)
Length: 346 pages
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Started: 1 February 2014
Finished: 3 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Sarah Beard for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 2 January 2014
Why do I have it? I like contemporary romance and Sarah Beard is a new author for me.

Aria's life is full of secrets - secrets about her mother's death, her father's cruelty, and her dream to go to Juilliard. In the five years since her mother's death - Aria has grieved silently and essentially alone - playing her mother's piano in secret, so as not to stir up any painful memories for her father. When Aria meets Thomas - her elderly next door neighbor's grandson - he draws out her secrets, captures her heart, and ultimately gives her the courage to defy her father. However when personal tragedy strikes and Thomas disappears, Aria is left alone to transform her heart's melody into something beautiful - courageous enough to follow her dreams, where ever they may take her.

I absolutely loved reading this book. The story was so poignant and engaging - I was captured from the first page, and just had to find out what happened next. This was the first book by Ms. Beard that I've ever read, but it most certainly won't be my last. I give this book an A+! and look forward to reading more by this author in the near future.

A+! - (96-100%)
 
May you read well and often

T. C. Tombs - Run With the Wolves: The Pack

7. Run With the Wolves: The Pack by T. C. Tombs (2011)
The Run With the Wolves Series Book 1
Length: 392 pages
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Started: 22 January 2014
Finished: 3 February 2014
Where did it come from? Many thanks to Tracee at Pump up Your Book for sending me a copy of this book to read.
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 1 January 2014
Why do I have it? I like historical fantasy and T. C. Tombs is a new author for me.

Europe in the fifteenth century is notoriously brutal and enmeshed in dire conflict. So it is for the three kingdoms of Medinia, Skoland and Varakov. Medinia and Skoland have been embroiled in a decade-long war, and Varakov has remained in uneasy neutrality during that time. Now, as a peaceful resolution provides tentative hope that the seemingly endless war will eventually reach an end, no one realizes that sinister forces are waiting to invoke chaos as a full moon rises.

On a farm nestled beneath the Euralene Mountains along the western border of Medinia, young Willie works for the Smythes as a serf. One moonlit evening, when the Smythes travel to a neighboring village to attend the annual fair, Willie hears the terrified cries of animals in the pasture. When he goes to investigate, he discovers a bizarre wolf pack raid unlike any other. Badly injured during the attack, he survives - but is afflicted by the full-moon madness that will soon transform him into one of the wolf creatures he dreads.

With his life seemingly warped forever, Willie must face the prospect of a lifelong descent into horror. In a time rife with witchcraft, superstitious folk lore and fearsome creatures roaming the night, Willie struggles with an uncertain destiny and must seek help from Woodrow, the Pack Leader - the one man he holds most responsible for the dark fate that awaits him during the next full moon cycle.

I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I was drawn into the story from the first page, and needed to know how it ended. It was fast paced, suspenseful, and filled with a varied cast of deeply flawed characters - some suffering from afflictions beyond their control, others that were just distinctly evil. I give this book an A! and look forward to reading the next book in the trilogy some time soon. I want to know how this saga turns out.

A! - (90-95%)
                 
May you read well and often

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Reading Wrap-up For January at Emeraldfire's Bookmark


Hello everyone out there and I hope that you all had a terrific reading month for yourselves. I am known as Emeraldfire around the Internet and this is my new personal reading blog.

Anyway, I started out January with about two hundred unread books lying around the house and ended the month with...umm...uncountable amounts of books unread. All of the books that I acquired this month came from Barnes and Noble, Bookmooch, authors and Amazon

Let me try to break down the influx for you:

Changes to the TBR pile

Read from my TBR pile (Yes! I am a reading machine :))
Accidentally in Love With...A God? by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
The Snow Owl by Jon Hartling
TaleSpins by Michael Mullin
- The Tempest Murders by P. M. Terrell
- He's Faster: A Short Story by Carlyle Clark 
- The Black Song Inside by Carlyle Clark

Added to my TBR pile (oh well, you win some and you lose some! :))
Ashenden: A Novel by Elizabeth Wilhide
Daughter of the God-King by Anne Cleeland
- Run With the Wolves: The Pack by T. C. Tombs
Saving Ben by Ashley H. Farley
The Card Counter by James Kipling
The Price of Innocence by Bryan Devore
- The Rowan Tree by Robert W. Fuller
- Without by Glenis Stott
Across Eternity by Aris Whittier
Highland Shift by Laura Harner
Summer of my Secret Angel by Anna Katmore
The Statue of Ku: Moa Series by Tricia Stewart Shiu
Killer Career by Morgan Mandel
Good, Clean Murder: A Plain Jane Mystery by Traci Tyne Hilton
- Porcelain Keys by Sarah Beard
- Heart of Stone by Christine Warren
- Death by Drowning 2 by Abigail Keam
- An American Outlaw by John Stonehouse
- Enemy in the Room by Parker Hudson
- Heiress of Lies: Bloodtruth by Cege Smith
- Gnome Wars: A Short Tale by Barbra Annino
- The Last King by A. Yasmina Collins
- Branded For Murder by Dick Waters
- Nefarious Doings: A Nell Forrest Mystery by Ilsa Evans
- Hide and Seek by P. S. Brown
- Wanderer's Escape by Simon Goodson 
- Marblestone Mansion by Marti Talbott
- Don't Dare a Dame by M. Ruth Myers
- Something About Her by Jeannie Ruesch
- Parallel by Claudia Lefeve
- Two Pair by Jessica Jackson, Mackenzie Jackson, Meredith Jackson and Stephanie Jackson
- Dangerous by Alycia Linwood
- Accidental Deception by Tina Martin
- Shadow-Love Stalkers by Claudy Conn
- The MacKinnon's Bride by Tanya Anne Crosby
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
- Before Bethlehem by James J. Flerlage
Gaspar And The Fantastical Hats by David A. Lindsay
- Fire and Ice by Patty Jansen
- The Dark Citadel by Michael Wallace
- Still Life With Murder by P. B. Ryan
- Shelf Ice by Aaron Stander
Behind the Bedroom Wall by Laura E. Williams
- Kissing in the Dark by Wendy Lindstrom
- Sacred Fear by Lucy-Anne Smith
- The Demon Calumnius by Samantha Johns
- The Legender by Jason Link
- In Your Dreams by Amy Martin
- The Victim by Jonas Saul
- The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson
- A Bandit's Betrayed Heart by Michelle McLean
- Fog City Strangler by Greg Messel
- The Officer and the Bostoner by Rose Gordon
- Alpha Mine by Brenda Sparks
- Patriot Ghosts by Bruce Gatenby 
- She Pulls Off the Interstate by Eugene Ahn
- On the Street Where You Die by Al Stevens
- The Wanderess by Roman Payne
- Tony Partly Cloudy by Nick Rollins
- Trying the Knot by Todd Erickson
- Deceptive Innocence Part I by Kyra Davis
- Deceptive Innocence Part II by Kyra Davis
- The Weight of Blood: A Novel by Laura McHugh
- The Collector of Dying Breaths: A Novel of Suspense by M. J. Rose
- Hallowed by Bryant Delafosse
- American Ghoul by Walt Morton
- A Watermelon Summer by Anna Hess
- Mine to Tarnish by Janeal Falor
- Malicious by James Raven
- Magic All Around by Marcy L. Peska
- The Gondola Maker by Laura Morelli
- Raytara: Judgement of the Stars by Elke Schuster
- Revelations: The Merlin Chronicles by Daniel Diehl
- The Choosing by Jeremy Laszlo
- Anstice by Marjean Ragsdale
- Graveyard Shift by Angela Roquet
- Jefferson's Road: The Spirit of Resistance by Michael J. Scott
- Soul Stealer by Sam Richardson
- Eye of Darkness by Michael J. Scott
- Finding Love - The Outsider Series: Volume 2 by Lorhainne Eckhart
- Angels With Attitudes Omnibus: Books 1-3 by Mimi Barbour
- Dangerous Loves Romantic Suspense Collection by Dorothy McFalls
- Red Rock's Rebel: Bridge Novella by Taylor Lee
- Lady Justice and the Assassin by Robert Thornhill
- Iron Bloom by Billy Wong
- Chasing Sam by Krystal Shannan
- Blue Violet by Abigail Owen
- Being Prince Charming by D. L. Jackson
- Behind the Facade: Volumes One and Two by Victoria and Rebecca Heap
- The Billionaire Wins the Game by Melody Anne
- Captured Minds by R. A. Odum
- Long Holler Road: A Dark Southern Thriller by David Lee Malone
- Just Add Salt by Jinx Schwartz
- Kalorama Shakedown by Robert Bruce Stewart
- The Midnight Side by Natasha Mostert
- Diviner's Prophecy by Nicolette Andrews
- Windwalker by Natasha Mostert
- His Island Bride by Shadonna Richards
- Sea Scoundrel by Annette Blair
- The Destiny Quest Chronicles by Varun Vashist
- Invisible by Cecily Anne Paterson
- I am Phoenix by S. S. Phoenix
- Hope's Decree by Angela McPherson
- The Lotus Cross by Ray Anderson
- The Tyrant's Daughter by J. C. Carleson
- A Charming Crime by Tonya Kappes
- The Loyal Servant: A Very British Political Thriller by Eva Hudson
A Detective Shakespeare Mysteries Collection (Books 1-3) by J. Robert Kennedy
Georgiana Darcy's Diary: Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice Continued by Anna Elliott
- The First by Jason Mott 
- Nick the Saint by Anthony Szpak
- Dragon Defender by J. A. Blackburn
- Sweet Blood of Mine by John Corwin
- Rae of Hope by W. J. May
- In the Black Room: A Paranormal Romance by Luke Smitherd
- Fairylicious by Tiffany Nicole Smith
- The Eye of Erasmus by Teresa Geering
- Colorworld by Rachel E. Kelly
- Dogs of Orninica by Daniel Unedo
- The Hunter, the Bear and the Seventh Sister by B. I. Woolet
- Time For Love by Emma Kaye
- Scandal: The Death of a Legacy by Johnny Ray
- Murder in the South of France by Susan Kiernan-Lewis
- Death Checks Inn by Sara Robbins
- BlackDown by D. M. Mitchell
- Before the Legend by J. U. Scribe
- Cold Company by A. J. Aalto
- It's the Stars Will be Our Lamps by Alan Walsh
- Rainy Nights: Three Novels by J. R. Rain
- Legendary Lover by Renee Roszel
- Helga: Out of the Hedgelands by Rick Johnson
- Boundless by Brad Cotton
- Where's Lolly? by Stephen Henning
- Rival by Lacy Yager
- War of the Gods by Justine E. Borrego, Marco Antonio Borrego and Juan David Borrego
- Seduction of the Scepter by Rose E. Sabin
- Mango Bay by Bill Myers
- The Cut-Out by Jon King
- Bad Call: A Psychological Thriller by James Harper
- A Distant Melody by Sarah Sundin
- Secret of the Thorns: A Political Thriller by Tom Haase
- Burnt Offerings by Michael Lister
- The Air Singer by K. Huber
- Gifted by Jim Ellis
- Weaver by John Abramowitz
- Beyond the Eyes by Rebekkah Ford
- Warriors: Every Man Matters by Michael Obermire and Gary Zelesky
- Smoke and Mirrors by L. B. Clark
- Breaking Twig by Deborah Epperson
- The Gypsy's Dream by Sara Alexi
- Broken Angel by S. W. Vaughn
- Crazy, VA by Shannon Hill
- Myth: A Wall Street Novel by David A. Mallach
- Thrall by Jennifer Quintenz
- Incubus by Jennifer Quintenz
- The Sixth Sense by Lawrence Gold
- Lingering Echoes by Erica Kiefer
- Blood Feud by Daniel Harris
- Painted Red by Douglas Parks
- The Codex of Vampiric Bloodlines by R. M. Garcia
- Unfinished Business by Richard Levesque
- Shannon's Daughter by Karen Welch
- Shine On by Allison J. Jewell
- Wild Irish Ride: A Southern Steam Novel by Jennifer Saints
- Missing Winter by Chris Folk
- Pale Boundaries by Scott Cleveland
- Death in the Beginning by Gary Williams
- Carrots: A Shelby Nichols Adventure by Colleen Helme
- Dead Radiance by T. G. Ayers
- Give me Reason by Zoey Derrick
- Before the Devil Knows You're Dead by J. L. Murray
- Bitter Fruit: A Taste Of The Antholocaust by Justin Osborne
- Handle With Care by Emily Porterfield
- Our Little Secrets by Merry Farmer
- Born to be Wild by Patti Berg
- Desired to Death by J. M. Maison
- River's Recruit by Charlotte Abel
- Enchantment by Charlotte Abel
- Five by Christie Rich
- 13 on Halloween by Laura A. H. Elliott
- City of the Divine Sun by Holly McCaghren
- Simply, Mine by M. L. Gardner
- Gaia's Secret by Barbara Kloss
- The I. P. O. by Dan Koontz
- One Road to Hell by J. J. Klein
- Fire at Dawn by Lila Ashe
- Through the Wildwood by M. R. Mathias
- Elseerian: The Second Draeken War by Ben Hale
- The Book of Deacon by Joseph Lallo
- Against the Odds by Mara Jacobs
- Black Collar by Daniel Sullivan
- His Leading Lady by Jean Joachim
- Secrets, Spies and Sweet Little Lies by Tara Kingston
- Everblade by G. M. Browning
- Reveal by Brina Courtney
- Always Yours by Somi Ekhasomhi
- Whispers of Murder by Cheryl Bradshaw
- Hook and Peter by Doram Jacoby
- Blue Courage by C. J. Davis
- Gateway to Nifleheim by Glenn G. Thater
- In the Shadow of the Earth by J. P. Borders
- Freedom's Sunset by Elliott Middleton
- Disappearance by Niv Kaplan
- Deep in the Heart by Staci Stallings
- Follow the Heart by Anita Mills
- Fresh Temptation by Reeni Austin
- Space Junque by L. K. Rigel
- Sherdan's Prophecy by Jess Mountfield
- Sleepwalking by Raelke Grimmer
- The Garden Plot by Marty Wingate
- The Dirty Book Murder: A Rare Book Mystery by Thomas Shawver
- The Perfect Wife by Victoria Alexander
- The Parent Trap by Vic Crume
- Demon Witch by Geoffrey Huntington
- Either Side of Midnight by Tori de Clare
- Simpson's Will by Edward A. McCoyd
- Bleeker Hill by Russell Mardell
- Alpha Hybrid: The Becoming by Larissa Ladd
- Untangle my Heart by Maria K. Alexander
- The Dogcatcher by Bruce Luchsinger
- Bone Diamond: Weird Stories by Michael John Grist
- Dark Fate: The Gathering by Matt Howerter
- Drowning Mermaids by Nadia Scrieva
- Invisible Wings by Janell Rhiannon
- Freak of Nature by Katie Lee O'Guinn
- Hunter by Joanne Wadsworth
- Anstractor: Vestalia by Greg Dragon
- Knot in Time by Alan Tucker
- The Eden Project: Humanity's Last Chance by D. P. Fitzsimons
- A Raucous Time by Julia Hughes
- The Woodlands by Lauren Nicolle Taylor
- Annihilation by K. D. McAdams
- Driftwood by Shauna Bickley
- The Overlap by Lynn Costa
- License to Date by Susan Hatler
- A Cry of Honor by Morgan Rice
- Sophia: Within by Jordana Lizama
- Saving Wishes by G. J. Walker-Smith
- Almost a Bride by Patricia McLinn
- Ashes of Roses by Christine Pope
- Chimera by David Kaine
- O'Henry by T. G. Brown
- Stealing Jenny by Ellen Gable
- Nothing is Negotiable by Mark Bentsen
- Buzz Books 2014 by Robin Dellabough
- Gravettian Goddess by B. Alexander Howerton
- Advent of Perpetual Sorrows by A. A. Pencil
- Catered to Death by Marlo Hollinger
- Broken: Nick by Annie Jacoby
- Fighting Fire: The Intern by Emily Stone
- Family Magic by Patti Larsen
- The Crickhowell School For the Muses by Rachel Waxman
- Bloom by A. P. Kensey

Taken off my TBR pile and sent to a new home (Yay! Happy Dance! :))
Accidentally in Love With...A God? by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
The Snow Owl by Jon Hartling
TaleSpins by Michael Mullin
- The Tempest Murders by P. M. Terrell
- The Ghost Light by Fritz Leiber
- He's Faster: A Short Story by Carlyle Clark
- The Black Song Inside by Carlyle Clark

Well, there it is...the breakdown! All in all, a very good reading month for me, considering. Here's a further breakdown:

Books Read: 6
Pages Read: 975
Grade Range: A+! to A!

So, there you go! The reading month that was January. I hope that you all had an equally good reading month; if not a little better. :) See you all next month! :)

May you read well and often