Monday, January 13, 2020

Review: Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

Trail of Lightning (The Sixth World, #1)Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was an amazing book that transported me to a different time and realm. A post-apocalyptic story, I would say this is a YA book (or NA, depending on your perspective). Written in first person, present tense, the effects of the story are immediate and impactful. The characters are well-drawn, the dialogue kept me involved, the cultural pieces are well described and explained without lectures, and the needed backstory was artfully dribbled throughout. My one tiny complaint is that the ending was a bit of cliff hanger, so I *must* read the next book to wrap up one story line! No spoilers from me, I give this 5 lightning bolts and highly recommend!

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Review: Second Wind by Alison Henderson

Second Wind (Cypress Coast, #1)Second Wind by Alison Henderson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Laurel McDowell escapes her abusive fiance and runs home to her loving family in Big Sur. Little does she know that not only was he an abusive SOB, he was also a money launderer. When his body washes up, Laurel hopes it's the end of an era in her life. Unfortunately, it's the beginning of a nightmare where mobsters are trying to find something the fiance left with her, something she cannot find.

Jake Carlson, a shorts-wearing, easy going FBI forensic accountant and friend to her family, shows up to help Laurel out in the nick of time repeatedly. Is he really interested in her? Or does he want to get the same thing the mobsters want? He seems like a good guy, but does his interest in Laurel stop when the case is solved.

Laurel and Jake take on bikers, mobsters, and a 30 pound cat. Okay, it's her cat, but still, he's thirty pounds of attack cat. Who will find the elusive thing? And what happens when they do? No spoilers from me! I give this book five big cat shining grins and an enthusiastic recommendation for all those who love romantic suspense.

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Thursday, December 26, 2019

Lights, Camera, Latkes!


As I write this, I am still in recovery mode from the third night of Hanukkah, which we celebrated with turkey, latkes, cookies, candy, candles and two grandchildren, one almost 7-year old and his 9 month old sister. The blue and silver wrapping paper carnage was EPIC.
The hardest part of the evening was getting my husband into the family room with his super-duper digital camera to take pictures. The 7 year old was very patient, waiting for permission to tear into his packages full of the latest Bey Blades, dinosaurs, and more. Too soon, the fun came to an end. Gifts and leftovers were packed up. The little ones were dressed in their pajamas and jackets, ready to fall asleep in their car seats on the way home.
Latkes, in case you don’t know, are potato pancakes, fried in oil. The holiday celebrates the Maccabees (the Hebrew word for “hammer”) victory over the Greeks who wanted the Jews to reject their one G-d and worship pagan gods. When the Jews reclaimed the Temple, they found only enough uncontaminated oil to light the menorah for one night. Instead, the oil lasted for eight nights, a miracle. On each of the eight nights of Hanukkah, we light candles to commemorate this miracle. We also cook in oil to remember the special oil in the lamp. Some families make donuts. We make latkes.
Everyone’s family has a different recipe. Now I’m seeing recipes for latkes with jalapeno peppers! My mother-in-law, may she rest in peace, would not approve. Herewith, I share with you two of my mother-in-law’s recipes for Hanukkah, brisket and latkes.
Brisket Slow Cooker Style
(Serves 4-6 hungry people)

3-4 pounds brisket
Large container Paprika
One large onion
One 1 pound bag carrots
6 Beef bouillon cubes
6 Cups water (depends on size of cooker)
Horseradish

Place peeled carrots on bottom of slow cooker.
Place chopped onions in slow cooker on top of carrots.
Coat brisket in Paprika and place on top of onions.
Put in 6 beef bouillon cube and pour 6 cups of water around everything. Cover and simmer on medium/high for 8-10 hours–depending on your slow cooker.
Serve on a large platter with side of horseradish.

(Serves small army, but remember you want leftovers!)

5 pound bag of white potatoes
2 large sweet onions
1 large container of egg substitute
Black pepper
Olive oil for cooking (lots—don’t skimp or the latkes will stick!)
Sour cream
Applesauce
Using food processor or hand grater, grate onions and set aside in large bowl. (You will cry.) Drain onions and pat with paper towels. They make a lot of water!
Peel potatoes and place in large bowl or pot of salted water to prevent them from turning colors.
Cut potatoes into chunks and grate in food processor or by hand. (Oy! That’s a lot of work. Sure you can’t borrow a food processor from someone?)
Mix onions, potatoes, and egg substitute until all potatoes and onions are covered well with egg. You probably won’t need the entire container. Throw in black pepper to your taste.
Heat olive oil in frying pan. You want it hot, not smoking, but hot.
Place large spoons full of latke mix in pan and turn when golden brown (you will see it on turn color on the edges).
Serve latkes hot with a generous dollop of sour cream and/or applesauce.

I hope you enjoy the recipes. More importantly, I hope you enjoy your time with your families, whatever you celebrate.
Happy healthy holidays to all!

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Review: Lethal Memory by Jannine Gallant

Lethal Memory (Counterstrike, #2)Lethal Memory by Jannine Gallant
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

When Dr. Riley Adair is close to finding a cure for dementia, a shadowy organization comes after her. Do they want to suppress or steal her findings? All she knows is she is attacked, abducted, and assaulted. To the kidnappers dismay, their battery causes her to lose her memory.

Noah Kimball, aka, Patch, is the medical officer as part of an elite extraction team called Counterstrike. When Riley is rescued by the team, she is under Patch's care. While trying to recover her memories, she's making new ones with the handsome and compassionate doctor.

Will she recover her memory or will the assailants succeed in stealing her work? No spoilers from me, you will have to read the book to find out how many plot twists Ms. Gallant works into this story! I give it five (5) shiny stethoscopes and highly recommend this read.

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Monday, December 16, 2019

One Woman Only, The Good Man Series, Book 2 By Dee S. Knight


One Woman Only
The Good Man Series, Book 2
By Dee S. Knight
♥♥ GiveAway ♥♥ 
Dee is giving away an ebook of Only a Good Man Will Do and a $10 Amazon card to giveaway during the tour. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember you may enter every day for your chance to win. You may find the tour locations here http://bit.ly/OWO122019 About One Woman Only: As one of a set of triplets, Jonah always feels the need to make his individuality known. So where his brother Daniel is serious and completely focused, Jonah shuns commitment. Where his genius brother Mark is hailed in the scientific world, Jonah hides beneath a car, tinkering. Thing is, being different isn't all it’s cracked up to be. It takes a woman—the right woman—to make him see that a "good man" can always be a better man. Release date, November 2019 Words:80,310 Publisher: Nomad Authors Publishing Genre: Erotic romance, HOT One Woman Only Buy links:
Excerpt from One Woman Only: "May I have this dance?" Kelly turned at the sound of Jonah's voice behind her. Dinner had ended. All three of the boys had given best man speeches and Eve had even given a very creditable matron of honor speech, considering she had only known Marilyn and Caleb a short time. Lots of toasts had been raised and finally the live band had struck up the music. Caleb led his bride onto the floor for a foxtrot—a dance more than half of the guests had no idea how to do, including her. Facing Jonah she sighed inwardly at how scrumptious he looked. Sure, his face was pretty much displayed on his brothers' heads, too, but there was something different about Jonah. His nose was just a little crooked from when Bobby Hendricks had broken it in ninth grade and his eyes held an especially bright sparkle when he smiled. Maybe… Well, she didn't know what caused the difference between Jonah and his brothers. Whatever it was, she had never been fooled by the so-called identical nature of the identical triplets. She'd wanted to be his girl since elementary school. Thought she would be in high school. And then she’d forced every last thought of him from her mind from senior year on. Until now. "I don't know how to foxtrot." He shrugged. "Who does except those over fifty?" He glanced at his folks, still alone on the dancefloor, although a few couples were wandering out to join them now. "We can pretend." She mentally compared standing on the sidelines alone now that Mama Rio left the party, or being held in Jonah's arms. Smiling, Kelly held out her hands. "Just don't step on my toes, Jonah Goodman, or there'll be hell to pay." "Yes, ma'am." Together they walked onto the dancefloor. He took her right hand in his left and placed his right hand on her waist. Fortunately for them, the music changed to a slow tempo. Kelly laid her head on Jonah's shoulder, and he tugged her closer as they swayed to the music. "This is nice," he murmured. "Yes it is," she replied. So very nice. He smelled good. Beneath the light citrus fragrance of his aftershave was a slight whiff of pure man with maybe a twinge of motor oil or something so Jonah it brought tears to her eyes. He rubbed a path up to her shoulder blades and gave a squeeze. "You fit me perfectly, Kelly." "I do?" "You sure do. I think our hearts can feel each other beat." Kelly chuckled. "Smooth talker. Face to face like this our hearts are on opposite sides." "Hey! I'm trying to be romantic here." She sighed. "Keep on. It's appreciated." "You smell…good." She felt his smile. Raising her head she gave him a mock glare. "Watch it with those pregnant pauses, buster." He used his hand to press her head back to his shoulder. "You do smell good, though. This isn't the same perfume you wore in high school. That was—" "Lilac," they said at the same time. Once more she raised her head to look at him. "How did you remember that?" "I remember much more than you might think." He turned her and moved her closer to the door onto the patio. "Each spring when lilacs are in bloom memories come flooding back. Does that surprise you?" "More like shocks me," she said, grinning. And then she laid her head on his shoulder once more, finding she liked it more and more there in his arms. She stepped slightly closer and his arm tightened about her. "Well, after a while I thought lilac seemed too girlish. I like the vintage scents, so in college I wore Wind Song. Then Shalimar was the scent Brad liked me to wear." She felt Jonah stiffen when she mentioned her ex, and really she didn't blame him. "But when I grew up enough finally to take charge of my own life, I started wearing Chanel No 5. A complex fragrance for what I hope is a complex woman." "It suits you. Complex and beautiful." He kissed her temple. "Want to step outside for a minute?" "Sure. It is a little warm in here." On the patio, they could hear the sounds of the people from the television networks packing up equipment, chatting and laughing. Stars shone brightly in the clear night sky. Wood smoke from someone's fireplace wafted through the air and static electricity fairly crackled in the crispness of the autumn air. "This is my favorite time of year," Kelly said. "The heat of summer is gone and winter nights curled up with a hot drink and blazing fire are ahead." "Not me. I'm a summer boy all the way." "A hothead you mean?" she teased. "Oh, I'm hot all right." He waggled his brows at her. Kelly laughed. "I do seem to remember that about you." "You used to be pretty hot yourself. Still are." He leaned in. His eyes flicked down to her lips. Kelly sucked in a breath. She should stop him, she really should.
About the Author: A few years ago, Dee S. Knight began writing, making getting up in the morning fun. During the day, her characters killed people, fell in love, became drunk with power, or sober with responsibility. And they had sex, lots of sex. Writing was so much fun Dee decided to keep at it. That's how she spends her days. Her nights? Well, she's lucky that her dream man, childhood sweetheart, and long-time hubby are all the same guy, and nights are their secret. For romance ranging from sweet to historical, contemporary to paranormal and more join Dee on Nomad Authors. Contact Dee at dsknight@deesknight.com. Dee's Social Links: Website: https://nomadauthors.com Blog: http://nomadauthors.com/blog Twitter: http://twitter.com/DeeSKnight Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DeeSKnight2018 Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/265222.Dee_S_Knight Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B079BGZNDN Newsletter: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/h8t2y6 LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/in/dee-s-knight-0500749
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Monday, December 9, 2019

FREE! Bedeviled The Beguiling Bachelors, Book 3 By Madison Michael


Bedeviled
The Beguiling Bachelors, Book 3
By Madison Michael
♥♥♥ ~ Free November 7th - November 10th Only ~ ♥♥♥
About Bedeviled:
If You Build Your Love on Lies, You Better Run Faster than the Truth Newly appointed Finance Director, Charlotte Roche escaped dangers lurking in Boston by moving to Chicago. A new name, a new beginning - all built on lies. Believing she is safe, Charlotte drops her guard and sets her sights on her ruggedly handsome and wildly sexy running partner, Alexander Gaines. Can she advance their relationship from the track to the bedroom and still maintain her charade? or will Alex's probing questions pierce her carefully rehearsed story? Alex, with unrevealed secrets of his own, struggles to hold the irresistible Charlotte at arm’s length. But when Charlotte sustains a suspicious injury, Alex seizes the opportunity to cuddle up to the sassy beauty. Does he dare risk his reputation, his fortune, his friends, and his heart by letting her get close? How can they build a bond with deceit on both sides? With exposure imminent, their freshly forged relationship is in jeopardy and so are their lives. Can their love survive or are they bedeviled? Join Alex and Charlotte, in this steamy romance, the third in the five-star rated Beguiling Bachelor series. The suspense builds as the characters you’ve met and loved in “Bedazzled” and “Beholden” help tackle the maze of half-truths and cover-ups threatening the lovers. ASIN: B06WLQL2FT Genre: Steamy Romantic Suspense Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/321d24H
Excerpt from Bedeviled:
Keeping his mind on the topic always took all of Alex’s effort anyway. When Charlotte sat hip-to-hip with him as she had today, he felt the heat of her skin, saw the long length of thigh exposed in front of him, heard her heavy post-run breathing until he was in sensory overload. She smelled so good, not stinky and sweaty like he must. She smelled classy and expensive with all those clean, floral scents. She smelled like a woman he could trust.
More like a woman I want to trust.
Thinking back, Alex recognized that she had been hiding something all along. When he wasn’t lost in a sensual fog, he was able to zero in on where the conversations lagged, when she got testy with his probing or tried to change the subject. It had something to do with her life in Boston before she moved to Chicago and it was something that had been going on for a while. She was practiced at her excuses by the time she used them on him. She was making too many trips back East for ‘Harvard stuff.’ She had met Regan Howe through this same ‘Harvard stuff’ yet Regan went back to her alma mater only once or twice a year, if that.
Oh yeah, Charlotte is definitely up to something and I intend to find out what. I have been patient long enough.
Sitting waiting now for Charlotte to arrive at Starbucks, Alex promised himself that he would get to the bottom of this or walk away.
Since she had declined his offer of a ride, Alex currently sat at a shady outside table enjoying the last of summer, waiting for her to walk over and speculating on her possible secrets. He was planning his subtle interrogation during the few minutes Charlotte would need to make her way across the park,
Stubborn. She should have just accepted the ride.
You driving over or walking?” she had asked him, once they caught their breath.
“I have the car if you want a ride?” When she hesitated, he tried tempting her. “I have the new car.”
Alex was the proud owner of a brand new Mercedes AMG. The sleek, luxury sports car suited him despite most people’s image of him as logical, conservative and staid. The need for speed was actually deep in his blood. “You will love it, tight on the curves, fast and quiet. She purrs,” he had bragged.
Charlotte hesitated on his last remark and Alex had been sure she would accept. “The new car, huh?” she sounded intrigued. “I am excited to see it at last, Alex. You have certainly been talking about it long enough.”
“I need to walk off this tight hamstring, so I’ll have to pass this time,” she had replied reluctantly. “Meet you there in five.” Of course, Charlotte had been Charlotte, and that included being unpredictable.
Charlotte, leaving Alex standing there, had taken off across the park without a backward glance. Alex stood dumbfounded a moment, watching her slow jog-walk toward the trail across the grassy lawns of Lincoln Park. She was heading directly toward their usual post-run Starbucks and if he didn’t get moving, she would be there first.
Still he stood, willing her to look back and flash him that smile that changed her whole face. She didn’t, of course, and Alex was left standing there, admiring her lithe figure and the smooth bunch and release of her muscles in those tiny running shorts as she moved into the distance. Reminding himself to close his gaping mouth, Alex jogged to the parking lot, trading an extra moment of admiring a beautiful woman for a few short moments admiring his beautiful new car.
Arriving at the coffee shop several minutes before Charlotte, Alex was forced to cool his heels. He spent the time piecing together anything he could think of to uncover Charlotte’s deep, dark, secret. Admittedly, he needed the ten-minute head start away from her to give his overheated blood a little cooling time too. He kept envisioning the two of them in that sweet ride, sitting close with their sweat-slicked bodies. The image had intensified the jolts of.electricity already coursing through his veins from running beside her scantily clothed body.
Too bad she turned me down. One of these days we will be in tight quarters, all alone, and I will make my move. I have resisted too long already.
Since the mention of her tight hamstring, all Alex could think about was massaging her leg, and moving up from there. Did the woman not understand what she was doing to him? After all, he was a healthy red-blooded man. How long was he supposed to watch her round little ass wiggle in front of him, or the glide of muscles in those incredible legs – or OMG – her breasts bob up and down in those little running tops. The woman was killing him. He wanted her so badly he could taste it.
He chided himself to stop thinking of her that way, as he always did when he lusted after her. He would catch himself wanting her and repress the overwhelming sexual response that had plagued him since the beginning. She was so much more than just beautiful and sexy. She was a brilliant woman, funny, witty, complex and delightful. She considered him a running partner, and a friend…
…but that body, oh, that body. Stop it!
Alex determined to stay focused on what she might be trying to cover up and got his desire under control. He reviewed the signs – when she changed topics or failed to make eye contact. He carefully dissected her words while he waited for her to arrive. He knew she was being intentionally elusive. Alex resolved again that today would be the day he found out what she was concealing, beginning as soon as she arrived.
Speaking of arriving, Charlotte should have shown up long before now. She would have, unless something had happened. How long had he been sitting, pondering? How much time had passed?
Heart racing like a freight train, Alex ran into the park. Unsure why, he was terrified of what he might find.
About Madison Michael: Madison Michael is an indie publisher, blogger and the author of the Beguiling Bachelor Series as well as the novella Desire & Dessert, from her sizzling B&B Billionaire Bachelor series. A Chicago native and hopeless romantic, Maddy was raised on Chicago culture, fairy tales, great literature and swashbuckling movies. Maddy employs that history, writing steamy contemporary romance novels set against the sumptuous backdrop of Chicago’s elite society. After receiving a BA in Journalism from the University of Illinois and an MBA from Loyola University of Chicago, Madison abandoned her writing to find her way in the corporate business world. Daughter of a librarian, it was inevitable that she would return to the world of books. Maddy writes from high above Chicago where she can stare at its gorgeous skyline or the shores of Lake Michigan surrounded by feline assistants. When she is not writing,, Maddy can be found lost in a book, fighting for the rights of the mentally iil or dining on Chicago’s famous cuisine. Hot dogs and pizza, anyone? Social Links: Website: http://madisonmichael.net/ Maddy's Romance Madness: https://www.madisonmichael.net/maddys-romance-madness/ Maddy's Blog: https://www.madisonmichael.net/maddys-blog/ Facebook: http://facebook.com/madisonmichaelromance Twitter: http://twitter.com/madisonmichael_ Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/Madison-Michael/e/B01EVUGG6G/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1 Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/madisonmichaelromance Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/madisonmichaelromance/

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Review: Gambling on the Artist by Wynter Daniels

Gambling on the Artist (Cat's Paw Cove, #3)Gambling on the Artist by Wynter Daniels
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Artist Samantha (Sam) Cartwright and Eli Kincaid meet in the enchanting town of Cats Paw Cove. Sam is a starving artist, down on her luck with money and men. Eli comes along, a knight in shining armor, willing to help her tend to her Aunt Emma's metaphysical shop while the older woman is out of town.

Sam has inherited a valuable piece of jewelry, one her Aunt Emma told her to keep. Unbeknownst to Sam, Eli is really there to steal the jewelry to protect his fragile older sister and to keep a loan shark from killing him.

Will Sam continue the path of bad money and bad men? Or will the jewelry have a supernatural power to change her luck? No spoilers from me, just 5 shiny sapphires and a recommendation to read this fast-paced, entertaining story.

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