Friday, November 30, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Summer I Became A Nerd

Release Date: May 7, 2013
Blurb: On the outside, seventeen-year-old Madelyne Summers looks like your typical blond cheerleader—perky, popular, and dating the star quarterback. But inside, Maddie spends more time agonizing over what will happen in the next issue of her favorite comic book than planning pep rallies with her squad. That she’s a nerd hiding in a popular girl's body isn’t just unknown, it's anti-known. And she needs to keep it that way.

 Summer is the only time Maddie lets her real self out to play, but when she slips up and the adorkable guy behind the local comic shop’s counter uncovers her secret, she’s busted. Before she can shake a pom-pom, Maddie’s whisked into Logan’s world of comic conventions, live-action role-playing, and first-person-shooter video games. And she loves it. But the more she denies who she really is, the deeper her lies become…and the more she risks losing Logan forever.

About The Author: Leah Rae Miller was born and raised in northern Louisiana, Leah Rae Miller still lives there on a windy hill with her husband and kids. She loves comic books, lava lamps, fuzzy socks, and Cherry Coke. She spends most of her days reading things she likes and writing things she hopes other people will like.

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Book Review: The Unadulterated Cat

Author: Terry Pratchett
Title: The Unadulterated Cat
Publisher: Orion Publishing
Publish Date: Sept 26, 2002
Buy: Amazon
Book Blurb: The Unadulterated Cat is becoming an endangered species as more and more of us settle for those boring mass-produced cats the ad-men sell us - the pussies that purr into their gold-plated food bowls on the telly. But the Campaign for Real Cats sets out to change all that by helping us to recognize a true, unadulterated cat when we see one. For example: real cats have ears that look like they've been trimmed with pinking shears; real cats never wear flea collars ...or appear on Christmas cards ...or chase anything with a bell in it; real cats do eat quiche. And giblets. And butter. And anything else left on the table, if they think they can get away with it. Real cats can hear a fridge door opening two rooms away ...

Review: Anyone that loves a feline or felines in general will get a kick out of this book. The writing is typical Pratchett, complete with all the footnotes you expect from a Pratchett book.

The book is also wonderfully illustrated by Gray Jolliffe, whose drawings of cats really bring the humor across.

This book had me laughing out loud, because Pratchett is spot on about cats and all their idiosyncrasies.

There are two types of people that will love this book. People who like Pratchett's writing and people who love cats.

Both will find this book hilarious, and though it isn't up there with some of Pratchett's Discworld Sci Fi offerings, you will find yourself laughing out loud as you read.

A great book to read and clear you mind. Just pure fun!

Rating: 5 flowers

Thursday, November 29, 2012

TLC Book Tours ARC Review: The Lost Art Of Mixing

Author: Erica Bauermeister
Title: The Lost Art Of Mixing
Publisher: Putnam
Publish Date: Jan 24, 2013
Buy: Amazon
Review Copy Provided By: TLC Book Tours & the publisher
Book Blurb:Lillian and her restaurant have a way of drawing people together. There’s Al, the accountant who finds meaning in numbers and ritual; Chloe, a budding chef who hasn’t learned to trust after heartbreak; Finnegan, quiet and steady as a tree, who can disappear into the background despite his massive height; Louise, Al’s wife, whose anger simmers just below the boiling point; and Isabelle, whose memories are slowly slipping from her grasp. And there’s Lillian herself, whose life has taken a turn she didn’t expect. . . . Their lives collide and mix with those around them, sometimes joining in effortless connections, at other times sifting together and separating again, creating a family that is chosen, not given. A beautifully imagined novel about the ties that bind—and links that break—The Lost Art of Mixing is a captivating meditation on the power of love, food, and companionship.

Review: There are some books that you rush through even though you love them and then there some books that you meander through slowly, savoring each word. This is one of the books that you savor.

At first I thought the book was slow, but I came to realize soon that I was wrong.

It felt slow because you were really getting to know all the characters whose lives are connected in this story, and there's quite a cast of characters here; Louise, Al, Lillian, Tom, Chloe, Finnegan and Isabelle. Those are just the characters you really feel attached to.

You also get to know Isabelle's family, Anna, Rory  and Lucy and her grandson Rory.

You have varying feelings about each of them.

Isabelle inspires love. She's the elderly lady with Alzheimer's whose condition is slowly deteriorate. Chloe lives with her.

Anna, is Isabelle's daughter she is just horrible. She's a doctor who really can't be bother to care for her mother, she just seems like she wants to put her away somewhere and forget about her. The other characters  do more of the "caring" when it comes to Isabelle. They also do more of the loving.

What I truly loved was how visual the book was, from the way food is described either with Chloe or Lillian cooking or Lillian buying it at the market. Sometimes the descriptions were so vivid you could almost smell the dishes that they were creating.

Another vivid part of the book is Isabelle's celebration. It is so easy to see everyone hoisting her in her chair and carrying her through the streets to bring her closer to God.

This is a wonderful leisurely read.

Rating: 5 flowers

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Bewitching Book Tours Promo & Review: Not Quite Dating

Not Quite Dating
By Catherine Bybee
Not Quite Series Book One
Publisher Montlake
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Book Description:

Waitress and single mom Jessica “Jessie” Mann is practical to a fault. Even if she had time to date, which she doesn’t, she’d be determined to provide her son with a more secure upbringing than the one she had—and that would mean a husband with big bucks. When Jack Morrison—a sexy-as-sin, seemingly broke customer with a cowboy hat and a seductive grin—tries to flirt with her, she shoots him down. She doubts a carefree dreamer like Jack can provide the financial stability she needs. Yet with Christmas just weeks away, and Jessie not wanting to spend it alone, the charming Texan is proving hard to resist.

As the heir to the Morrison luxury hotel empire, Jack is used to being fawned over. But Jack needs someone who will fall in love with him—not his wealth. He’s set his sights on Jessie, though her hardened heart just might get in the way…To be sure, he conceals his true identity and offers to help Jessie find the rich husband she seeks. But Jack’s daring charade may rob him of the holiday wish he wants most of all…

Book Trailer 

Review: If you are a fan of Debbie Macomber Then you'll love Catherine Bybee. Not Quite Dating reminds me of Debbie's early books for Harlequin Romance. Short and sweet and full of warm fuzzy feelings.

This is a romance novel, one you'll fall in love with.

Jessie feels like someone you know. She feels real and Jack is her knight in shining armor, but she doesn't know it yet.

It reads like a modern day fairy tale. With Jessie as Cinderella and Jake as her Fairy Godmother and Prince Charming all rolled into one.

Toss in her absolutely sweet son Danny and her sister Monica and you have a book that's filled with lots of Awwws.

This is a book you won't be able to put down until you are absolutely sure that Jessie and Jake are together forever.

It even has a touch of holiday goodness, that you wouldn't expect upon a glance at the cover.

Definitely a must read romance!

Rating: 5 flowers

About the Author:
New York Times bestselling author Catherine Bybee was raised in Washington State, but after graduating high school, she moved to Southern California in hopes of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full-time and has penned the novels Wife by Wednesday and Married by Monday. Bybee lives with her husband and two teenage sons in Southern California.

Tour wide giveaway Amazon Gift Card $20.00 2 Amazon Gift Cards $10.00 2 Amazon Gift Cards $5.00 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 26, 2012

Innovative Online Book Tours Review: The Three Lost Kids & The Christmas Curse

BLURB: Christmas everyday sounds like the best thing ever to Bella and her sisters. But when a special Wishing Stone grants her heart's desire, The Three Lost Kids discover the curse hidden in the wish.

Now they have to stop Christmas no matter what--even if that means ending up on Santa's Naughty List.

Will the girls learn the true meaning of Christmas and find a way to break the curse? Or will they be stuck in their self-created Jingle Bells Nightmare forever?
Look for the original Three Lost Kids Trilogy--Lexie World, Bella World and Maddie World--if you like enchanted Dragons, Fairies, and more adventures through magical worlds with great life lessons for kids!

launching November 26th through Evolved Publishing

Review: Kimberly Kinrade's The Three Lost Kids series continues with The Three Lost Kids and The Christmas Curse. This is the perfect holiday book for the little girl in your life that's reading chapter books.

The Christmas Curse is one that every little girl and boy has made at Christmas.

"I wish it could be Christmas everyday!"

However when Bella gets her wish, things go wrong.

This book is great fun, because it reminds us what "Christmas" really should be for. For giving of ourselves to others..

The story will remind you to be careful of what you wish for, and it will have you laughing and maybe even crying along the way.

I came to like Lexie, Bella and Maddie in the The Three Lost Kids and The Death Of The Sugar Fairy, but I fell in love with them in this book.

This is a story kids and parents will love!

Rating: 5 flowers

BIO: Kimberly Kinrade was born with ink in her veins and magic in her heart. She writes fantasy and paranormal stories for children, YA and adults and still believes in magic worlds. Check out her YA paranormal novels Forbidden Mind and Forbidden Fire and her illustrated children's fantasy chapter books Lexie World, and Bella World, all on Amazon.
She lives with her three little girls who think they're ninja princesses with super powers, her two dogs who think they're humans and her husband, also known as the sexy Russian Prince, who is the love of her life and writing partner.

For a list of her books, check out:
For kids and parents of young kids, join the Lost Kids at

The Three Lost Kids & The Christmas Curse

·             Website
·             Twitter: @KimberlyKinrade
·             Facebook: /KimberlyKinrade
·             Three Lost Kids website:

·         Amazon:
·         B&N:
·         iTunes:
·         Kobo:
·         Smashwords:
·         BookieJar:

Giveaway:  All Prizes are being given away during the Release day event on Facebook

Because this book reminded me of one of my favorite Christmas songs, I have to share the Youtube video.

Promo Spot: Bitter Frost

YA Paranormal Fantasy
Title:Bitter Frost
Author: Kailin Gow
Date Published: 6/2010
All her life, Breena had always dreamed about fairies as though she lived among them...beautiful fairies living among mortals and living in Feyland. In her dreams, he was always there the breathtakingly handsome but dangerous Winter Prince, Kian, who is her intended. When Breena turns sixteen, she begins seeing fairies and other creatures mortals don t see. Her best friend Logan, suddenly acts very protective. Then she sees Kian, who seems intent on finding her and carrying her off to Feyland. That's fine and all, but for the fact that humans rarely survive a trip to Feyland, a kiss from a fairy generally means death to the human unless that human has fairy blood in them or is very strong, and although Kian seemed to be her intended, he seems to hate her and wants her dead.

This edgy tale about beautiful and dangerous fairies, based on Dutch lore, will leave you breathless...

Kailin Gow has appeared on top national syndicated talk shows such as ABC Radio, Barbara Dooley show, Chat with Women on KKNW Seattle, Broadminded on Sirius Radio XM, and more as a leading authority on YA and women's issues including self-esteem, body image, dating and sexual relationships, abuse, and bullying. Kailin has been a published author for over 10 years with over 100 titles published under her name and under pen names.

She is the founder of the community social site, The Saving You Saving Me Project, which helps teens, young adults, and women deal with social issues like sexual abuse, self-esteem, body image, bullying, cutting, relationships, and more in a positive community environment. The Saving You Saving Me Project is an extention of her YA-mature fiction Saving You Saving Me.
Kailin Gow began writing books for tween girls to help them with self-confidence and self-esteem. Her book, Gifted Girls Activities Guide to 365 Days of the Week, became a reference book used in girls organizations across the U.S. As her tween fans grew to become teens and young adults, Kailin began writing engaging and entertaining young adult book series for them. The results are book series like the Frost Series, PULSE Series, Wicked Woods Series, Stoker Sisters, Phantom Diaries, The Fire Wars, FADE, DESIRE, and more.

All her books are inspired by personal experiences. Saving You Saving Me was inspired by her experience as a peer counselor for young women during college and from her psychology major college roommate's experience being in a relationship similar to the one portrayed by Sam and Collins in the book. Loving Summer was inspired by Kailin's experience growing up with a family consisting of a mother, two sons, and a daughter who went through a similar experience of tragedy in the book. Aunt Sookie is based on herself and some actor friends she knows. The Frost Series, Circus of Curiosities Series, and FADE Series came about through vivid dreams. Never Say Never was inspired by Kailin's experience as a radio host and working with and interviewing bands, as well as having college friends who were in bands. Kailin also played the drums and keyboard for a band she once started. A classically-trained musician, she was once led her school orchestra, playing first chair violin. Her experience in the music world and her love of Phantom of the Opera, inspired the Phantom Diaries. PULSE was inspired when Kailin was in the hospital suffering from heavy blood loss post surgery and needed several bags of blood to survive (like a vampire). Beautiful Beings was inspired by her college encounter with a young demon exorcist. A pastor once told her she had the gift of sight and that she was destined to become a prolific author, many times over.

She began taking her writing seriously when her daughter was diagnosed as being on the spectrum and her mother was fighting three types of cancer. Four years later, her daughter was no longer on the spectrum, and her mother became cancer free. Kailin believes in hope and miracles, after having been through several struggles and experiences herself. This is why she writes.
When not busy inhaling chocolate and drinking coffee by the gallon, Kailin makes time for writing fantasy books, blogging as an expert blogger for Fast Company, volunteering as an Emergency Responder and volunteering for battered women's shelters. For fun, she plays the electric violin, and puts together a music playlist for her radio and web shows.
Her Frost Series consisting of the Bitter Frost Series, The Wolf Fey Series, and the Fairy Rose Chronicles along with her other book series are being developed into worldwide MMORPG Games by SEE GLOBAL ENTERTAINMENT, which is the world's leading game developer known for developing the top blockbuster films into games.

Contact Links
To sign up for news on new releases, contests, events, and more, join
Twitter - @kailingow

Links To Buy

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Buy The Book Tours Promo Spot: Flappers, Flasks and Foul Play

Blurb: "Boardwalk Empire" meets "The Great Gatsby" in this soft-boiled historical mystery, inspired by actual events. Rival gangs fight over booze and bars during Prohibition in 1920s Galveston: the "Sin City of the Southwest." Jazz Cross, a 21-year-old society reporter, feels caught between two clashing cultures: the seedy speakeasy underworld and the snooty social circles she covers in the Galveston Gazette.

During a night out with her best friend, Jazz witnesses a bar fight at the Oasis--a speakeasy secretly owned by her black-sheep half-brother, Sammy Cook. But when a big-shot banker with a hidden past collapses there and later dies, she suspects foul play. Was it an accident or a mob hit?

Soon handsome young Prohibition Agent James Burton raids the Oasis, threatening to shut it down if Sammy doesn't talk. Suspicious, he pursues Jazz but, despite her mixed feelings, she refuses to rat on Sammy. As turf wars escalate between two real-life Galveston gangs, Sammy is accused of murder. Jazz must risk her life and career to find the killer, exposing the dark side of Galveston's glittering society.

Excerpt: Why in the world was Agent Burton here? Everyone stopped working to watch him make his grand entrance. People don't usually parade around in a newsroom: They sort of shuffle or stumble or stomp—unless a story's really hot, then they'll run. I felt like running away too, but I stayed glued to my chair, pretending to work, my heart racing. What did he want from me?

Burton seemed to enjoy the attention as he headed my way. He was hard to ignore: Standing before me, all six feet-plus of golden skin and hair, he towered over my desk. Looking up, I noticed the curious eyes watching us in the too-quiet newsroom. The reporters stopped typing, fingers poised over keys, hoping for a scoop. My boss stared with unabashed interest.

"To what do I owe this disturbance?" I adjusted my cloche, acting nonchalant.

He grinned at me, then looked around the suddenly still office. "I need to ask you a few questions. Can we go somewhere private?"

"What do you want?" I put on a brave face so the newsboys wouldn't see me sweat.

Burton scanned the hushed room. "You really want to discuss it here, out in public?"

He had a point. Did I want the whole staff listening in on my private conversation? He probably wanted to discuss Sammy, who was no one else's business.

"Let's go outside," I agreed. Head down, I followed him past a leering Hank, feeling like a naughty kid going to the principal's office.

Nathan entered the newsroom, a camera slung over his shoulder, stopping to stare at Burton. "Jazz, is everything jake?"

"Everything's berries." I smiled to pacify him but, I admit, I had the jitters.

"I remember him. Your boyfriend?" Burton seemed amused.

"He's the staff photographer." I ignored his crack. "And a good friend."

Outside, I felt safe among the throng of people and automobiles passing by in a rush. The hustle and bustle of the streets and sidewalks seemed almost comforting. I looked around for Golliwog, our resident stray cat, but she must have been making her daily rounds for scraps.

"How was lunch?" In broad daylight, Burton didn't seem quite as menacing or intimidating. Besides, a group of hard-boiled reporters peered out the newsroom, spying on us.

"Fine." I covered my growling stomach. "What brings you here?"

"Sorry to barge in that way." He smiled, tugging on his hat. "But I had to get your attention. You wouldn't give me the time of day the other night."

"Can you blame me? A raid isn't exactly the best way to meet new people."

"I think we got off on the wrong foot." He stuck his hands in his pockets, jingling some change. "Perhaps we can talk over dinner, instead of standing out here on the sidewalk?"

"Dinner?" Was he serious? "Just like that?" I snapped my fingers. "You waltz in as if you owned the place—like you did at the Oasis—and expect me to dine out with you, a total stranger, because of your badge? You've got a lot of nerve, mister."

"I wouldn't be a Prohibition agent if I didn't." He looked smug. "How about tonight?"

"Tonight? I usually work late." I admit, I was curious. What did he really want?

"Every night?" He raised his brows. "Don't they let you off for good behavior?"

"For starters, I don't even know you and what I do know, I don't like at all." I squinted in the sun. "And I don't appreciate the way you bullied us at the Oasis. I thought people were innocent until proven guilty, not the other way around." I wasn't usually so bold and blunt with strangers, especially lawmen. Maybe it was his youth, or maybe I'd finally found my moxie.

"You must mean Sammy. Fair enough." He held up his hands. "If it makes you feel any better, my gun wasn't loaded that night."

"Small comfort now, after you scared everyone half to death." So it was all an act?

Burton looked down at his boots, as if reconsidering his options. "I hoped you could get to know me over dinner, but how about a quick bite now? I haven't eaten."

"Why not?" I nodded, not wanting to let on that I was famished.

Burton stopped at a sandwich vendor on the corner, and tried to pay for my lunch and Nehi, but I pulled out a quarter before he did. It wasn't a date!

"Where can we talk, in private?" He motioned towards the newsroom. "Away from prying eyes and ears."

Anxious, I led him towards a city park and we sat on opposite ends of a bench, my clutch bag like a barricade, keeping my distance.

"So what's the emergency? Why did you come by today, out of the blue? I hope I'm not under arrest!" I half-joked.

Author Bio: Ellen Mansoor Collier is a Houston-based freelance magazine writer whose articles and essays have been published in several national magazines including: FAMILY CIRCLE, MODERN BRIDE, GLAMOUR, BIOGRAPHY, COSMOPOLITAN, COUNTRY ACCENTS, PLAYGIRL, etc. Several of her short stories (both mystery and romance) have appeared in WOMAN'S WORLD.

A flapper at heart, she’s the owner of DECODAME, specializing in Deco to retro vintage items ( Formerly she's worked as a magazine editor/writer, and in advertising sales and public relations. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Magazine Journalism. During college, she once worked as a cocktail waitress, a short-lived experience since she was clueless about cocktails. Flappers, Flasks and Foul Play is her first novel, inspired by real people and places. Currently, she’s working on the sequel.

"When you grow up in Houston, Galveston becomes like a second home. I had no idea this sleepy beach town had such a wild and colorful past until I began doing research, and became fascinated by the legends and stories of the 1920s. I love the glamour and excitment of The Jazz Age, but Prohibition was also such a dark and dangerous time in American history. Jazz isn’t a debutante or socialite, she’s a reporter caught in between the two halves of Galveston society, struggling to do the right thing despite all the temptations and decadence of the era."

Author Links:

Buy Links:
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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Book Review: The Lady Who Broke The Rules

Author: Marguerite Kaye
Title: The Lady Who Broke The Rule
Publisher: Mills & Boon/Harlequin
Publish Date: Oct 2012
Review Copy Provided By: Net Galley
Buy: Amazon
Book Blurb: 
Anticipating her wedding vows and then breaking off the engagement has left Kate Montague's social status in tatters. She hides her shame behind a resolute facade, but one thing really grates: for a fallen woman, she knows shockingly little about passion.

Could Virgil Jackson be the man to teach her? He's a freed slave turned successful businessman, and his striking good looks and compelling strength prove too much for Kate to resist. She has already scandalized society, but succumbing to her craving for Virgil would damage her status beyond repair….

Review: This is the first mixed race romance I've ever read. To make it even more unique, it is a regency romance!

This is by far one of the best romances I've read this year.

Here's why:

The hero and heroine are both strong and determined characters for their own reasons. Virgil has ghosts from his past when he was a slave to deal with and Kate has family issues that stem from a broken engagement.

The story wasn't all sweetness and light and though the characters had a HEA things weren't all happy. Kate found some peace with her aunt, but her father was still and issue.

There was a lot of conflict between the secondary characters Alicia, Kate's brother Jamie's widow. There's some unfinished business there and you get to thinking something isn't right with her. And then Giles, who is the heir apparent at the current time.

But back to the main characters. Virgil was just the type of man you couldn't help but love and he had such an interesting and sad back story.

There are very few romances that really offer you something different, but this one does.

Oh and did I mention some really hot love scenes?

This is a regency that shouldn't be missed!

Rating: 5 flowers


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Book Review: A Groom For Greta

Author: Anna Schmidt
Title: A Groom For Greta
Publisher: Love Inspired Historical
Publish Date: Oct 2, 2012
Buy: Amazon
Review Copy Provided By: Net Galley & the publisher
Book Blurb: Everyone in their small Amish community expects Greta Goodloe to marry her longtime sweetheart—Greta included. So when he publicly ends their engagement, in front of newcomer Luke Starns no less, she is utterly humiliated. At least she can take comfort in matchmaking between Luke and her quiet schoolmarm sister. Yet the more she tries to throw them together, the more Luke fascinates her. A serious, no-nonsense schoolmarm should be exactly what Luke wants in a wife. Still, he can't help but be charmed by Greta's warm smile and impulsive ways. Does he dare to stray from the sensible choice and take a chance on happiness?

Review: This was one of the best romances I've read in a long time. I couldn't put it down until I finished reading it and considering that it is 280 pages, well that's really saying something. Lately I've been having a hard time reading books the length of a Harlequin Romance!

So what was it about this story that made it stand out from all the others I've been reading

Greta, Lydia and Luke were really engaging characters. Greta at first seems a little flighty and flirty but that isn't the case really. She's really just a people person. And Luke and Lydia both appear serious but they have their own secrets too. Luke's deals with his past life in Canada, and Lydia's deals with a certain someone that we meet near the end of the book.

I also liked the setting of the book, Depression Era Florida.

It is so nice to read Amish stories that aren't always set in PA or OH!

Plus, even though Love Inspired is a Christian line, this book was pure sweet romance, which isn't something that you get with a lot of Amish fiction out there. This is really a love story between Greta and Luke, and it has some ups and downs do to the way the two of them find each other.

Greta has just been jilted by her sweetheart, just a few days before they planned to announce their engagement and Luke thinks he wants to wed Greta's sister Lydia. How the two finally decide to court is quite amusing, but you'll have to read that for yourself. I will give you a hint that Lydia has something to do with it.

But things aren't always easy and fires and secrets make their courtship a little bumpy.

Anna tied the story together nicely without making things too obvious. This is a great afternoon romance and one that I can see myself revisiting again down the line

Rating: 5 flowers

Monday, November 19, 2012

Reading Addiction Book Tours Promo Spot: Bette Lee Crosby - Cupid's Christmas

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction
Title: Cupid’s Christmas
Author: Bette Lee Crosby
Date to be published – early October 2012

In a fun Christmas Romance, Cupid is charged with making certain an older couple gets the love they've been waiting for and a young woman who’s far too attracted to handsome men with sexy eyes finds her perfect match. And, he has to make it happen by Christmas.

In a spot somewhere between Heaven and Earth, Cupid tries to maneuver around the complications that threaten to wreck this romance as he struggles to overcome the forces of lust, jealousy and the events brought on by his nemeses—Life Management. He matched John and Eleanor some thirty years ago, but Life Management stepped in and fouled things up. Now they’re both single and back together again. But before Cupid can give them the happiness they deserve, he’s got to come up with some magic, a few miracles and a dog for John’s daughter.

If you’re a Debbie Macomber fan, you’re gonna love Cupid’s Christmas!

A wonderful feel-good story that I for one am better for having read it. I definitely recommend this book very highly…Goodreads review

by Bette Lee Crosby



The problem with humans is they’re in love with love. Even worse, they’re determined to find it themselves. They stumble in and out of relationships that simply were never meant to be and then wonder why it didn’t work. Females are infinitely more complicated than males. Lindsay Gray for example, she’s dead-set on doing this her way and four times she’s ended up with the wrong male. She’s the kind of female who makes my job a nightmare.

Contrary to popular belief, love isn’t a result of me shooting an arrow into some human’s heart—that whole bit is a lot of hooey. I get my orders from Upstairs. The Boss gives me a rundown of matches then it’s my job to make sure the male and female get together. When things go wrong I’ve got to come up with a Plan B. Unfortunately Lindsay Gray has already used up B through E, I’m now working on Plan F and she’s dangerously close to being reclassified as Love-Challenged. 

Her problem is she can’t tell love from lust. She sees a pair of heavy-lidded dark eyes, or a rippling muscle and thinks she’s in love. This started when she was only ten years old and caught sight of the boy who lived two doors down. The lad was twelve and wanted nothing to do with her, but that didn’t stop Lindsay from developing a preadolescent case of lovesickness. She followed that poor boy around like a faithful puppy until she saw him kissing Sara McLachlan. Once that happened she swore she’d never love again and she didn’t, until she was eleven.

Lindsay’s mistaken love more times than I can count, and every time it ended in a disaster. She can’t understand why this keeps happening to her, but the answer is obvious—humans with do-it-yourself determination are not equipped to identify true love. They inevitably mistake passion for love. Elizabeth Taylor is a perfect example. She refused to let me handle things, so eight times she got married and seven times she got divorced. One poor chap was killed in a plane crash before she had a chance to divorce him—that was not my doing, that unfortunate  event came from Life Management. Not one of those gents was included in Elizabeth’s plan which goes to prove what I’ve been saying.
But I’m digressing, so let me get back to the subject at hand.

One of the advantages of this job is my ability to see the future and I can tell you Lindsay’s got a lot of problems ahead of her. Problems far worse than her bad boyfriend choices. Most of those problems are coming from the guy over in Life Management. Me, I’m a lovable fellow. But Life Management—well suffice it to say he handles things like car crashes, bankruptcies and heart attacks.
 Right now my primary assignment isn’t Lindsay—it’s her father and Eleanor Barrow. But if I don’t step in and take control of Lindsay’s life, she’ll ruin theirs. Eleanor and John deserve better, they’ve been waiting a long time.

This isn’t the first time for Eleanor and John Gray, they were a perfect match back in high school. If Eleanor had gone to Penn State instead of Kentucky, she and John would have had four daughters and a lifetime of happiness. I set up that first match, but once she left the North East, she was out of my region. Raymond, the fellow she married was from Seattle—North West region—and they met at the University of Kentucky—Central region. You probably know where this is going, right? She was out of my region, Raymond was out of his and my counterpart in Kentucky was busy fending off the nineteen girls who thought they were in love with the same basketball player, so Eleanor and Raymond got married and became what we call an MM. (Migratory Mistake)

Despite the fact that I’d let her down, Eleanor made the best of it. If you were standing on the outside looking in, you’d actually think she was happy. Of course I knew the truth because I go to the inside of a person’s heart—I have to, it’s my job. Eleanor was a good wife and a good mother—a bit overindulgent with Ray Junior maybe, but still a good mother. Papa Raymond was another story. It was bad enough that he had an eye for the ladies, but he also had a great fondness for beer and the business sense of a turnip. An insurance salesman who sold life insurance to everybody but himself, how crazy is that?

When Life Management stepped in and did their dirty work, Raymond got an illness nobody wants and it was two years before they finally gave the okay for him to die. Eleanor took care of him that whole time and once he was gone, she worked two jobs so Ray Junior could go on to college.

Eleanor’s a woman with a big heart, lots of grit and steadfast determination, which is fortunate because when it comes to dealing with Lindsay Gray, she’s gonna need all of it. If Eleanor’s got a flaw it’s that she’s blind to the faults of those she loves, which is why Ray Junior is such a problem.

Author Bio

Award-winning novelist Bette Lee Crosby brings the wit and wisdom of her Southern Mama to works of fiction—the result is a delightful blend of humor, mystery and romance along with a cast of quirky charters who will steal your heart away.

Born in Detroit and raised in a plethora of states scattered across the South and Northeast, Crosby originally studied art and began her career as a packaging designer. When asked to write a few lines of copy for the back of a pantyhose package, she discovered a love for words that was irrepressible. After years of writing for business, she turned to works of fiction and never looked back. “Storytelling is in my blood,” Crosby laughingly admits, “My mom was not a writer, but she was a captivating storyteller, so I find myself using bits and pieces of her voice in most everything I write.”

Crosby’s work was first recognized in 2006 when she received The National League of American Pen Women Award for a then unpublished manuscript. Since that, she has gone on to win several more awards, including another NLAPW award, three Royal Palm Literary Awards, the FPA President’s Book Award Gold Medal and most recently the 2011 Reviewer’s Choice Award and Reader’s View Southeast Fiction Literary Award.

Her published works to date are: Cracks in the Sidewalk (2009), Spare Change (2011), The Twelfth Child (2012), and Life in the Land of IS (2012). Life in the Land of IS is a memoir written for Lani Deauville, a woman the Guinness Book of Records lists as the world’s longest living quadriplegic.

Crosby newest novel Cupid’s Christmas is scheduled for release in early October and following that, What Matters Most will be released in early 2013.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

A Chick Ponders Bookish Things: My Continuing Ebook Rant

I love ebooks, especially as my room to store physical books shrinks. However, I have a huge rant about them: the cost.

I've ranted about this before, but every time I go to find a particular ebook the rant comes back.

The only books worth buying in ebook format are ones recently published and indie books.

Anything else is a waste of money.

I'm also annoyed that you can't use your store discount cards on ebooks.

10% at Barnes and Noble or Books-A-Million would make a small dent in that overpriced ebook of a mass market paperback!

Sure these sites sometimes have deals on ebooks but not in the same ways as they have them on the physical books.

Plus libraries are so behind the time on elending. The selection is lousy and the time it takes to get a requested ebook, is so long.

It is no wonder there is piracy.

You would think the publishers would have learned something from the music industry, but it is obvious they haven't.

This is why I still don't buy many ebooks for my Nook. Its all about NetGalley for me.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

TLC Book Tours Book Review: The Lady Risks All

Author: Stephanie Laurens
Title: The Lady Risks All
Publisher: Avon
Publish Date: Sept 19, 2012
Buy: Amazon
Review Copy Provided By: TLC Book Tours & The Publisher
Book Blurb: Neville Roscoe, notorious and enigmatic, lives resolutely outside society, bound only by his own code of honor - until challenged by his desire for the one woman he cannot have.

Miranda Clifford is a lady imprisoned by rigid respectability - until tempted by a passion beyond her power to deny.

Flung together in peril, through danger and intrigue, they discover a love impossible to ignore ... or keep.

Review: Stephanie Laurens is one of those names that are synonymous with period romance, especially regency romance. I absolutely adored the Cynster series. So I was super excited to get my hands on The Lady Risks All.

There are many pros and cons with this book.


Stephanie creates wonderfully fleshed out characters that you really come to love as they make their journey through the story.

The story is always more than just romance. In this case there's the mystery involving Miranda's brother.

Family curses! Gotta love this stuff. Neville's is a gambling curse..and Miranda'a family has an impropriety curse (sort of)


The story is way too long. 500 pages for a historical romance is about 150 pages too many.

Along with being so darn long it was also slow. It seemed like forever before the story started to go anywhere.

The love scenes could have been more balanced...I guess what I'm Neville and Miranda's relationship took forever to get started but when it was too much, but not enough, if that makes sense.

The Lady Risks All is a good read, because all Stephanie Laurens books are good reads, but it certainly would have benefited from a little pruning, ok a lot of pruning. I like my historical romances to easy reads, this one really wasn't, at least not the second time around. There was too much filler and not enough fluff. I wanted something more fast paced. I'm not too keen on romance novels that push 500 pages. It wasn't a fantastic read for me, but Laurens is a good storyteller and if you can deal with the length, you won't be disappointed, especially if you like more intrigue than romance

Rating: 4 flowers

About Stephanie Laurens: New York Times bestselling author STEPHANIE LAURENS began writing as an escape from the dry world of professional science, a hobby that quickly became a career. Her novels set in Regency England have captivated readers around the glove, making her one of the romance world’s most beloved and popular authors. And Then She Fell is her fifty first work.
Readers can contact Stephanie vie email at
For information on all Stephanie’s books, including updates on novels yet to come, visit Stephanie’s website at

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Reading Addiction Book Tours Guest Blog & Review: The Christmas Diary

Stop Reading That Romance Novel

That’s what my high school English teacher told me many years ago, when she found me reading Promise at Midnight, by Lilian Peake. Ms. T. was outraged. She made me put the sizzling sex-drenched book away. She threatened to snatch it from me. “Read something that will improve your mind, young lady!” she said, glaring down at me with her tight lips, tight hair and very tight blouse and skirt. It suddenly occurred to me that, with her sexy body and wide blue eyes, she could have played the heroine, Shona Carroll, in the movie.

I sat listening to Ms. T’s subject and verb orgy, while dreaming of lip-mashing, heart-pumping, polyester pant suit-ripping sex. While Ms T. worked on the coupling of subject and predicate, I worked on recalling how Mr. Faraday’s mouth hit Ms. T’s—no Shona’s lips—“with a force which ground her lips against her teeth.”

When Ms. T asked us to write all this down, I did. I wrote, “...force which ground her lips against her teeth.” Hey, wasn’t there a verb in there somewhere?

Over the years, many romance novels’ plots and characters have been hard-wired into my brain—no doubt altering my already confused and carelessly romantic DNA. Sometimes I feel like I’ve been turned into a romance novel Borg (from Star Trek). Some days I channel Jane Austen; other days I’m a giddy wench in a Nora Robert’s novel. In Starbucks, I might be reading a paranormal romance novel, while occasionally studying some rather paranormal activities going on next to me, as two sticky lovers sip Frappucinos, make half-hooded-eye romance, and pretend to study an obese law book.
People pass me as I read and they glance down, disapprovingly, at my romance novel cover—a hard-jawed, dark-haired hero on horseback, muscles chunky and glistening; a worshipping heroine in a ripped, lacy wedding dress, clutching the hero’s arm, obviously begging him not to go. What’s the title? Something like, Take Me Home to Love.
I can read people’s minds as they pass. “Huh! Romance novel,” they say, with a supercilious sniff. “She should stop reading that stuff and read something more intellectual like, The Old Man and the Sea.” I would read it, if the old man wasn’t so old, had lots of money, and if he had a fetching girlfriend who fawned on him with a simpering adulation. But I can’t get excited about a poor old man who blathers on about trying to catch a big fish.

Which brings us back to English class and Ms. T. “Your assignment this week is to read Ernest Hemmingway’s novel The Old Man and the Sea,” she said. “Then write a two-page book report.”

I drooped, shut my eyes and recalled a few lines from Promise at Midnight. You felt like a woman who's been wandering in the desert for months, devoid of all male contact - and do I mean contact!”

I sighed and thought, “Well, I guess I’ll have to stop reading my romance novel and go fishing with that old man this weekend.”

Copyright © 2012 Elyse Douglas

Book Excerpt: For 10 minutes, Alice searched for a road sign or motel.  She couldn’t see anything and she was beginning to despair.  Traffic slowed to a crawl.
At first, it was only a suggestion of trouble: a cluster of distant blinking tail-lights; little or no on-coming traffic.  Then, as she approached the exit, she saw it: a chaotic tangle of cars ahead and the urgent rush of hooded people waving at her to stop, while others scrambled to help.  A red flare blazed in the center of the road; the distant scream of sirens cut into the eerie howl of the storm.
 Fear surged.  She tapped her brakes and slowed to a crawl.   As she approached the pile- up, she saw the devastation: an ugly mass of cars knotted and melted together.  Some were twisted sideways, car parts strewn along the road, others were beaten and punched, windows shattered; a brown SUV had flipped over entirely and was lying off the shoulder of the road on its top.  Men were frantically trying to open the jammed doors.
A heavy man wearing a dark blue coat and red ski cap waved at her to stop, then hurried over with the look of desperation on his face.  She rolled down her window and he shouted at her, as fat snowflakes blew in.
“You have to turn off!  You can’t get through here!”
“Is anyone hurt?” Alice asked.
“Yes, Yes.  It’s terrible.   Get off the road!”  He pointed to his left.  “Over there.  There’s a road.  Take it.”
“Is there any place to stay around here?”
“I don’t know!  Get off the road, Now!  Clear the road for the ambulances!”
Alice rolled up her window and carefully angled toward the exit, aware that her hands were sweaty and shaky, her legs twitching.  Through her rearview mirror, she watched ambulances arrive at the scene and saw the wide sweep of their red domes stabbing into the night.  She was profoundly sad, deeply sorry for the people injured in the accident.
The road before her was narrow and dark.  There were no street lights, no signs and no cars in front or in back of her.  It eventually led to a lonely two-lane highway, where snow, driven by a stiff wind, was gathering in tall drifts, piling up against tall pines and white birch trees.  In the distance, her headlights revealed the silhouette of a solitary leaning barn that would be lucky to survive the night.  Everywhere she looked were ominous smudges of moving shadows.
Not knowing which direction to go and feeling trapped by nature, Alice took a chance and turned left.  Within minutes, she was completely isolated.  She turned on the radio to comfort and cheer her, but no matter which station she selected, she got white noise.  She turned it off, wiped her damp forehead and reached for her cell phone.  This was an emergency and in an emergency she could call the local police and ask for help.  They could at least tell her where the nearest motel was.
She couldn’t get a signal.  She kept trying, but the phone wouldn’t connect.  “Think of your options, Alice,” she said aloud.  She had an emergency kit in the trunk—some candles, a bottle of water and some matches.  She also had a flashlight in the glove compartment.  “If worse comes to worst, you can stay in the car¾wait until morning, when you can see,” she said aloud, trying to comfort herself with the sound of her own voice.
But what if the storm didn’t subside?  And from the looks of it, it was just getting started.  She glanced at her gas gauge: over half a tank.  That was good.  No problem.  That would be enough.  Surely she would eventually find a house or some place where she could stop and spend the night.  But the further she drove, the more desolate the landscape became; the more she felt she was being swallowed up by darkness.
Fifteen minutes later, her heart was thumping in her ears.  She was edgy and tired.  She was completely alone.  She had not passed a single car and none had approached her from the other direction.  How could that be?  How was it possible not to pass a house, not to see another car, a truck, something?
She reached for the phone and tried again.  Nothing.  No signal.   She cursed and tossed the phone.  It bounced off the seat to the floor.  The further she traveled, the deeper the snow and the more difficult it became for the tires to find traction.  Her hands gripped the steering wheel so tightly that they hurt.
When the man darted out in front of her, she slammed on her breaks. The wheels locked and the car slid right, out of control.  She screamed.  The car spun in a crazy circle, finally coming to rest on the opposite side of the road, facing the opposite direction.
When it stopped, Alice was still gripping the steering wheel, puffing air, stunned and confused.  She suddenly remembered the man and quickly recovered, fumbling to release the seat belt, shoving the door open and stepping out, coatless.  She’d changed into comfortable travel clothes before leaving the shop, but as snow swirled and the wind gusted, she was instantly aware that the red woolen sweater and blue jeans were not going to keep her warm.  She shielded her eyes from the attacking flakes, as her brown loafers sunk into deep snow and her face registered the shock of frigid impact.  Where was the man?!  For warmth, she wrapped her arms tightly around her body.
Then she saw him, a large man in his 70s, hatless, with a cinderblock head, broad chest, angry-looking black spectacles and a ferocious, hawk-like gaze.  He walked toward the glare of the headlights.  He had a grandfatherly menace about him, and a stiff awkward gait.  His dark overcoat flapped in the cruel wind; his thin gray hair was whipped up and wild.  He stopped about 10 feet away, shoved his hands deep into his pockets and hunched his shoulders forward.  Alice stepped back, noticing his iceberg eyes and pallid skin.  A little scar above his right eyebrow added a sinister quality.
Alice finally found a small voice.  “Are you all right?”
“Yeah... no thanks to you,” he said loudly, in a scratchy voice.  “You almost hit me!  You were driving too damned fast!”
Alice shivered in the wind.  “I was barely going 30 miles an hour.  You ran out right in front of me!”
“You’re supposed to reduce your speed in bad weather.”
“I did!  I did reduce my speed.  I always reduce my speed in bad weather,” she said, defensively.
He pointed to her car.  “Then why is your car out in the middle of the road pointing in the wrong direction?”
“Because you ran out in front of me!”
“A man can’t feel safe taking a leisurely walk, without some out-of-towner trying to run him down.  I ought to call the cops on you!”
Sudden anger gave her new strength.  “Great!  You do that.  Call the cops!  I am completely lost and haven’t seen a house or a car in miles.”
The old man shook his head and barked out a laugh. “Unbelievable.  You don’t even know where the hell you are.”
“Look, I’m not going to stand out here arguing with you in the middle of a blizzard.  I’m lost, I’m freezing and I’m scared.  I need to find somewhere to stay for the night.”
“Why didn’t you say so in the first place, instead of babbling on like some silly goose?”
“Because you didn’t give me the chance!”
He scratched his head.  “I know where you can stay,” he said, and then started toward her car.  Alice backed away and watched as he tramped to the passenger side, yanked the door open and slid in, slamming it behind him.  Alice stared in disbelief.  She turned in a circle, her toes feeling like little popsicles.  She didn’t have a good feeling about this.  Who would be out walking in the middle of a blizzard?
She was chilled to the bone.  Her teeth began to chatter.  She couldn’t very well ask him to get out in this weather, could she?  She sighed, resigned but shaky.
She eased in behind the wheel, not closing the door behind her.  The man narrowed his eyes at her.
“You going to drive with the door open?”
Still reluctant, Alice closed it, avoiding the man’s eyes.  The engine purred.  The heat felt good on her wet feet and cold face.
Alice tried for an easy, non-fearful tone. “So... you’re from around here?”
“Not really.”
Alice slowly put the car in gear.  “You said you knew a place where I could spend the night?”
“Yep,” he said, not offering more.
 “Is it close by?” Alice asked.
“Yep,” he said closing his thin mouth tightly.
Alice placed her hands on the steering wheel.  “Which way?”
“The way you were going before you tried to hit me.”
Alice looked away and rolled her eyes.  Applying the gas, she made a slow, careful U-turn and urged the car back into the right lane.  She started off into the uncertain night, stealing occasional glances toward her passenger.  He gave her the impression that he had no particular destination in mind and was in no hurry to get anywhere. 

Contemporary Romance
Title: The Christmas Diary
Author: Elyse Douglas
Date Published: 9/12/12
Book Blurb: A young woman, traveling to meet her wealthy fiancé for a Christmas wedding, loses her way in a snowstorm and is stranded at a bed and breakfast. In her room, she finds an old diary written by a man who had once owned the house. Moved by what she reads, she sets off on a journey to learn what happened to him.

Review:  If you are a fan of Richard Paul Evans novels then you definitely want to grab The Christmas Diary. This is a super quick read that you pick up on a Saturday afternoon and devour in one sitting. One glorious afternoon sitting.

It is a story of love and changes with a paranormal twist.

The story involves Alice, Phillip (her fiancee) and Jack, the author of the journal she reads at the B & B. From that minute on the course of her life changes. She sets off to find out what happened to the man who wrote the journal and kind of puts her own engagement on hold, much to the anger of Phillip.

I adored this book. It was quick and simple and really perfect. I loved how everything was tied together through a ghost.

Jack is probably the best character in the story. He's a good guy, with a hard life, and it is the diary given to him by his wife that Alice finds and reads. That diary changes everyone's life.

Alice is what you'd expect from a romance novel heroine.  Things aren't happening right for her and her relationship isn't quite right. You know that from the start. Her employee doesn't like him, her fiancee's mother doesn't like her. Her business is failing. You know something has to happen, and it does and it makes for a great read!

A quick holiday read that makes me think of Lifetime and Hallmark channel movies.
Rating:  5 flowers

Author Info:Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the husband and wife writing team of Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse's mother was a painter and her father a textile consultant. Elyse began writing poems and short stories at an early age, and graduated from Columbia University with a Master's Degree in English Literature. Douglas grew up in a family of musicians, astrologers and avid readers. His grandfather was a gifted humorist and storyteller from Kentucky.Elyse Douglas' four novels include: The Astrologer's Daughter, Wanting Rita, The Christmas Diary and Christmas Ever After. They live in New York City.

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