Sunday, January 20, 2019

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 247 - The Cowboy is a Daddy by Mindy Neff, Duchess by Deception by Marie Force

The Cowboy is a DaddyThe Cowboy is a Daddy by Mindy Neff
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I pick this up when I wanted something that was not depressing. This fit the bill. I loved all the characters and the cowboys with the baby were the most fun. Brice and Madison are both such great characters, each hiding behind a wall and not letting their emotions out. The path to their HEA is not smooth but in the end both get what their hearts desire. Great pick me up book.


Duchess by Deception (Gilded #1)Duchess by Deception by Marie Force
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First in a new series and first time to publish a historical romance. Marie Force jumps right into the historical romance field with a familiar trope and a different time period. Set at the turn of the century she blends some of the new inventions into the story line using Derek Eagan, the dashing Duke of Westwood, as a character who invents in things we will see in the future. She also uses a familiar trope when Derek hides his true identity from Catherine McCabe. That is not all he hides and those secrets drive the plot in Duchess d\by Deception. I have loved Force's Fatal series and this one looks like it could be just as good.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Short and Sweet Book Reviews #346 - Contact by M.D. Neu,

ContactContact by M.D. Neu
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Contact is a first contact story that sets the stage for a new series. This starts with the aliens and then enters the life of a normal run of the mill human. From there it goes back and forth between the two. There is a lot of backstory and world building while setting the stage for additional action. In fact this one seems short on action and long on setup. There were some things missing in the story line but all in all a nice addition to first contact stories.

Conspiracy (Mindspace, #2)Conspiracy by A.K. DuBoff
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series is like the old movie serial. Book one solved one problem but ended with another bigger problem revealed. Book two does the same. Once again the characters fight danger and a surprise reveal. As they take care of that reveal another bigger problem comes up. This one is not solved it is left for the next book in the series. This is really fun with great characters, interesting world building, and backstory. Pick this up for a fun read.

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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

The Company of Demons by Michael Jordan - NBTM and Giveaway





THE COMPANY OF DEMONS
by Michael Jordan

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GENRE: Thriller

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BLURB:

The brutal murder of a friend leaves lawyer John Coleman stunned and sends shock waves through the city of Cleveland. The technique of the killing recalls memories of the Torso Murderer, who dismembered at least twelve people decades ago and vanished--eluding even the legendary Eliot Ness. Jennifer, the victim's beautiful daughter, hires John to handle her father's estate, and romantic feelings for her soon complicate his already troubled marriage. When John finds himself entangled with a cold-blooded biker gang, an ex-cop with a fuzzy past, and the drug-addicted son of the dead man, he struggles to make sense of it all. But he cannot escape a growing sense of dread.

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EXCERPT

There was never any trouble at the Tam O’Shanter, even on a rocking weekend night, even when one of the Tribe smacked a homer for a go-ahead run. Tim and Karen ran a tight joint, the perfect hideaway to lounge beneath faded posters of ‘70s rock bands and sip a cold one. So when Karen screamed from the seedy alley behind the bar, our little oasis was shattered. Tim bolted for the back door. 

I rushed after him and squinted in the bright sunlight. Tim was cradling his wife in his arms. She stared at me vacantly, then broke away and retched. Huddled over the rough asphalt, in her thin T-shirt and faded jeans, Karen reminded me of a fragile little girl. The wastebasket she’d intended to empty lay near her, paper napkins and discared receipts fluttering in the humid breeze. Tim waved a hand toward a Dumpster, its lid flung open, wedged tight against the crumbling brick wall. “Don’t look.”

But I did. 
The sight of a naked body, sprawled across plastic, garbage bags, was impossible to miss. Or part of a body, really, because the head was gone. So was everything below the waist. The hairy torso had been split down the middle, and I didn’t need to be a pathologist to know that someone had scooped out the guts and the lungs and the heart. Flies droned incessantly and, in the summer heat, the stench of rancid meat wafted to me. I backed away.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I asked Michael where are five places you might visit for inspiration for your books?   Here are his answers.

The Company of Demons features several dark characters who are not the sort of people you’ll find sipping martinis at the club. I wanted to create believable dialogue and settings, so I visited places where I would most likely encounter the type of people who would drive the story in my book:

1.     The county courthouse. Although I am a trial attorney by training, my criminal justice experience is limited. Accordingly, to make my characters and courtroom scenes ring true, I visited  the courthouse on criminal arraignment days. Believe me, that is not an experience to be missed. 
2.     Greasy spoon diners. These joints are great places to pick up on dialogue. Sit at the counter, nurse a coffee, and listen to the exchange between the waitresses (rarely a waiter) and the regulars. The sometimes rough humor, the rhythm of the conversation, and the typical playful exchanges are all invaluable walking instruction manuals in how to draft believable dialogue. 
3.     Dive bars. Terrific places to eavesdrop, or participate in, offbeat conversations. Visit during the afternoon to minimize the likelihood of encountering the sort who might want to cause trouble after having a few too many. 
4.     Bus stations. Grab a coffee, and sit, watch, and listen. 

5.     Locations where scenes are set: This may seem obvious, but we can always see a place with a fresh set of eyes. A few scenes in Demonsare set in a park that I often visited before writing the book. I decided to visit again during the drafting process, for the express purpose of strolling areas that I had not frequented in the past. By doing so, I found a plaque commemorating an event that occurred over one hundred years ago. I had not previously known of that event, and finding the plaque helped me write what I believe is a very moving chapter. 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Michael Jordan obtained his undergraduate degree from Ohio Wesleyan University, with highest honors, and his law degree from George Washington University, where he was a member of the Law Review. A trial lawyer and arbitrator for over three decades, he has been recognized as an Ohio Super Lawyer and named to Best Lawyers in America. A member of the International Association of Crime Writers, The Company of Demons is his first novel.
An avid traveler, Michael has climbed Mt. Fuji, swam in The Devil’s Pool on the cusp of Victoria Falls, trekked a glacier in Patagonia, and visited numerous other countries. Yes—an international thriller lies in the future! He has also acted in several theatrical productions and his experience on stage is helpful in creating characters for his novels. He is currently working on his next book, a thriller set during the closing stages of WWII. 
A native of Saginaw, Michigan, Michael and his wife, Linda Gross Brown, a soft pastel artist, divide their time between homes in Rocky River, Ohio, and Longboat Key, Florida. They enjoy traveling, pleasure boating, and very cold martinis. 

Twitter: @mjordanauthor (https://twitter.com/mjordanauthor)
Facebook: michaeljordanbooks (https://www.facebook.com/michaeljordanbooks

Buy links:






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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION 

Michael Jordan will be awarding a $50 Amazon/BN GC to one randomly drawn winner and an audio copy of “The Company of Demons” to 10 randomly drawn winners (this prize is US/Canada only) via rafflecopter.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Gunfight at the Old Leake Canal by G.B. Hope - Blurb Blitz and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. GB Hope will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

In Liverpool, England, 18-year-old student and Freerunner, Bodie, survives an assassination attempt and flees for his life. His only thought is to secure the safety of girlfriend, Lily, and reach his journalist cousin, Anthony.

Bodie has stumbled into a diabolical plot from the world's governments to end terrorism, famine and global warming in one swift swoop. So begins a race for survival, joined by a variety of other characters, moving from one set piece to the next, as the world that everyone knows is about to change forever.

Read an Excerpt:

He didn’t have to wait long. But, instead of one or two marked police cars rushing to detain someone who had reported a murder, he was treated to the worrying spectacle of three black Range Rovers, with blacked-out windows, arriving at speed and whizzing up the ramp into the car-park. Very sinister indeed.

He got into the Beetle and drove off. Soon, he noticed that his bimbo manager had left the car with almost no fuel, so he pulled into the first petrol station that he saw. He filled up, before going in to pay with his Visa card. He also bought a packet of cheese and onion crisps, which he proceeded to eat, while he used the outside cash machine. Moving towards the Beetle, he suddenly heard the sound of the helicopter again, seemingly immediately overhead. Quickly, he grabbed the gun and ammunition from the glove compartment and bolted away. If he had driven out, he just knew they would have been straight onto him. Instead, he ran through the garage car wash, skipped a low wall, and was away across wasteland.

About the Author: GB Hope is the author of 11 novels of various genres. He lives in Manchester with his Indonesian wife and their two boys.

https://www.amazon.com/Gunfight-At-Old-Leake-Canal-ebook/dp/B01FBG6MFO
https://www.amazon.com/G.-B.-Hope/e/B005D47I8U

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Monday, January 14, 2019

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 345 - Lavender Blue by Donna Kauffman, Mystic by Cheryl Brooks

Lavender BlueLavender Blue by Donna Kauffman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kauffman brings us back to Blue Hollow Falls with the story of two people who have suffered big looses in their lives. What drives the story is how they reacted in a very different way. I loved both Hannah Montgomery and Will McCall. While the story is about life after loss it is not that dark. In fact there are some entertaining moments that brought a nice laugh. A very nice addition to the series and an introduction to several characters who seem ripe for their own story and HEA.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

Mystic (Cat Star Legacy, #2)Mystic by Cheryl Brooks
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved the Cat Star series and was glad to see that Cheryl has taken us back to that world. This time it is the children of the original character who take center stage. I like the first book in the series but think this one is much better. I liked the danger that the characters find themselves in. Their reaction sets the stage for some very dangerous actions. For a change Sulaksha Enduran does not react to Aidan Banadänsk when they first meet. This time the romance builds as the story progresses. Sula and Aidan do a great job carrying the story and they are aided with some very interesting side characters. Great story with plenty of leads to future Cat Star books.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

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Saturday, January 12, 2019

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 344 - A Soldier's Return by RaeAnne Thayne, The Conspiracy by Kat Martin

A Soldier's ReturnA Soldier's Return by RaeAnne Thayne
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What does a child, dogs and two very nice people have in common. In this case it is a nice sweet story that uses each to keep me reading. I loved the way both of the dogs played a part and it was fun to see everyone in Brambleberry House. The house itself has a personality of its own. This was my first time to visit Brambelerry but not the first time for romances take place, For RaeAnne Thayne this is a return to tell new stories in a treasured place. Great story and interesting lead in to the story of another person living Brambleberry House.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.


The Conspiracy (Maximum Security #1)The Conspiracy by Kat Martin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I once read that a story should be scene/sequel with the scene being the action and the sequel the time for the characters to rest. The Conspiracy uses that outline to keep the characters first in danger and then out only to be in danger again and then repeat, repeat, repeat. I loved how the story flowed with Harper Winston going to Chase Garrett for help in finding her brother Michael only to find that rescuing Michael puts Harper in danger. This is a thrill a minute action adventure with great characters and an over the top plot. First in a new series that looks like a great lead in for more excitement in future books.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

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Thursday, January 10, 2019

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 343 - The Hangman's Secret by Laura Joh Rowland, Touch of Eon by Anna Hackett

The Hangman's Secret (Victorian Mystery, #3)The Hangman's Secret by Laura Joh Rowland
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There is something fascinating about the Victorian Age and mysteries set in that time period. The values and accepted behavior are so different from today. I love the fact that Sarah Bain is a photographer during a time when women are beginning to have more freedom. The two males are as interesting as Sarah. Lord Hugh Staunton is gay in a time when it is a crime and Mick is a street kid who they have taken under their wing. Add in Sarah's love interest Barrett, a police man and you have a great mix of characters to carry the story. The plot here has multiple paths and watching how it plays out made it hard to put down. This is book three and can stand alone but I did wish I had read the first two so I would know exactly what happened when those past cases are mentioned.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.


Touch Of Eon (Eon Warriors, #2)Touch Of Eon by Anna Hackett
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Touch of Eon brings Lara a Special Forces Space Marine from Earth and Security Commander Caze Vann-Jad. They start as enemies but soon have to work together to survive. This is another fun romp in the Eon Warriors series. The two are a great match as they come trust each other. It was easy to see what was going to happen between the two. The plot that drives the two makes it a very fun read as they go from one dangerous condition to another barely surviving each time. Love the series and am looking forward to book three.

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Monday, January 7, 2019

Picture Not Perfect by D.E. Haggerty - Book Blast and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

A picture tells a story. But is it the truth?

When the police find pictures of Melanie hanging up at her murdered colleague’s house, they’re convinced he was stalking her. Maybe she even killed him. Melanie was not being stalked! And she certainly didn’t kill her supposed stalker – as if. But Mel – always up for a bit of drama – jumps at the chance to go search for the real killer. When Mel’s ex-boyfriend, Owen, discovers her plans, he pulls out all the stops to ensure she’s safe and to win her back. No matter what happens with the murder investigation, he’s not letting her go. With the police setting their sights on Mel, he may need to jeopardize his own career on the police force to protect her.

Will Mel find the real killer before the detectives arrest her for murder?

Read an Excerpt:

Melanie opened the driver’s door and slipped into her car. She watched in the rearview mirror as Pru climbed into the back seat. The woman who was almost always wearing flowery clothes was now dressed from top to toe in black. Black tights, black long-sleeved t-shirt, and black knit cap.

“What’s with the knit cap? It’s like 60 degrees out. You’re not sick, are you?” Mel didn’t fancy sitting in a car with someone coughing the entire time.

Pru adjusted her cap to ensure her curly red locks were completely covered. “I thought we were doing a stakeout? I didn’t want my hair to give us away.” She held up the bags she’d brought. “I brought snacks and everything.”

“What kind of snacks?”

Before Pru could answer Mel’s question, Terri butted in. “We’re not doing a stakeout!”

Mel ignored Terri. Of course, they were doing a stakeout. She turned back to Pru. “Seriously, what did you bring? Anything good?”

Terri interrupted her again, “Why are we doing this?”

Mel grunted and turned around and started the car. They fell into silence as they drove the ten minutes to the address Ryder had provided.

Pru handed cups of coffee to Terri and Melanie. “Here. What do we do now?”

Mel took a sip of her coffee before answering, “We wait for something to happen.”

“Like what?”

Mel had no answer. She wasn’t exactly an expert on stakeouts. The previous and only other stakeout she’d been on ended quickly when the bad guys tried to ram their car into hers.

“How do you deal with potty breaks? I’ve got a bladder the size of a pea.”

Terri snickered next to her. “I’m sure we can find a bush for you to squat behind.”

“They never get into these details in books,” Pru grumbled before putting her coffee back into the drink tray without taking a sip.

About the Author:
I grew up reading everything I could get my grubby hands on, from my mom's Harlequin romances, to Nancy Drew, to Little Women. When I wasn't flipping pages in a library book, I was penning horrendous poems, writing songs no one should ever sing, or drafting stories which have thankfully been destroyed. College and a stint in the U.S. Army came along, robbing me of free time to write and read, although on the odd occasion I did manage to sneak a book into my rucksack between rolled up socks, MRIs, t-shirts, and cold weather gear. After surviving the army experience, I went back to school and got my law degree. I jumped ship and joined the hubby in the Netherlands before the graduation ceremony could even begin. A few years into my legal career, I was exhausted, fed up, and just plain done. I quit my job and sat down to write a manuscript, which I promptly hid in the attic before returning to the law. But practicing law really wasn’t my thing, so I quit (again!) and went off to Germany to start a B&B. Turns out running a B&B wasn’t my thing either. I polished off that manuscript languishing in the attic before following the husband to Istanbul where I decided to give the whole writer-thing a go. But ten years was too many to stay away from my adopted home. I packed up again and moved to The Hague where, in between tennis matches and failing to save the world, I’m currently working on my next book. I hope I’ll always be working on my next book.

Picture Not Perfect is my fourteenth novel.

Author links:

Website: http://dehaggerty.wordpress.com
Blog: https://dehaggerty.wordpress.com/category/mymusings/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dehaggerty
Twitter: https://twitter.com/dehaggerty
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dehaggerty/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7210211.D_E_Haggerty
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/D.E.-Haggerty/e/B00ECQBURU/
Newsletter signup: http://eepurl.com/bbmdj9
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+DEHaggerty/posts
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/denahaggerty/
Bookbub author page: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/d-e-haggerty
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/d-e-haggerty-4b49a29/
Email: dena@dehaggerty.com

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Picture-Perfect-Reluctant-Detectives-Book-ebook/dp/B07KG6ZH33/
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/907044
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/nl/en/ebook/picture-not-perfect
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/picture-not-perfect-de-haggerty/1129901203
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42767307-picture-not-perfect

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