KITTEN CONSTRUCTION COMPANY by JOHN PATRICK GREEN

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Today’s Edition of: THE BOOK LAMP READING ROOM DAILY.

HERE IS THE LINK TO TODAY’S EDITION!

It covers why we buy more books than we can read, 12 easy ways to support Indie Authors, and much more!

Happy Tuesday!

 

Enjoy!

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https://paper.li/f-1526562383#/

EDITING SERVICES & FEES

 

BOOK REVIEWS, BLURBS & AUTHOR SPOTLIGHTS= ALWAYS FREE

e-BOOKS: $10-$35 PER PAGE

BOUND BOOKS: $5-$30 PER PAGE

UP-CHARGE FOR RUSH: +10 PERCENT TO +25 PERCENT

DOWN PAYMENT: 10 PERCENT FOR COMPANIES AND PUBLISHERS, 25 PERCENT FOR INDIVIDUALS/AUTHORS.

TEN PAGE MONEY BACK GUARANTEE INCLUDING DOWN PAYMENT AND ALL FEES PAID TO ME

I WILL SHOW YOU FIRST TEN PAGES OF MY WORK AND WE WILL DISCUSS IF YOU CHOOSE TO CONTINUE WITH ME OR NOT.

COMPLETED WORK WILL NOT BE SENT TO YOU UNTIL FULL PAYMENT IS MADE

YOU CAN MAKE PAYMENTS AS MY WORK PROGRESSES

FEE CAN BE NEGOTIATED

I have spent most of my life working as a Journalist, and Freelancer for many companies and publications across a wide variety of subjects. I worked under the guidance of many incredible and strict Editors, so I promise you will receive top-notch work from me.

Feel free to e-mail me at: Januarygrayreviews@gmail.com

PLEASE READ GUIDELINES FOR AUTHORS TO SEE WHAT GENRES I ACCEPT.

Thank you, I look forward to working with you.

~January

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FULL TIME STARTING SEPTEMBER FIRST! ~Buy me a Coffee~

 

Yes, dear Authors, you are still waiting on your review from me…

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…and waiting

I give you a date and then I miss it. Life has seriously gotten in the way of my reading time, etc…

But…

GOOD NEWS!

Starting September 1, 2018, I will be Reviewing, Editing, and Blogging FULL TIME!

So please continue to patiently wait, as I WILL get to your review!

I will also be  giving a discount for my Editing Services for the rest of the year.

I have added a BUY ME A COFFEE button on the right side of my blog.

ALL proceeds will go towards the Editing Discount for Indie Authors, and Giveaways for ALL!

Thank you, and I look forward to seeing you soon!

~January

 

 

 

ENTER MY AMAZON GIVEAWAY FOR A KINDLE BOOK!

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It’s Wednesday, and I thought someone needs a pick me up to help them through the week. So, here is a Giveaway courtesy of January Gray Reviews!

Enter to win a Free Kindle book!

Remember, you do NOT have to own a Kindle to get Kindle books! You can download the FREE App onto your phone or desktop.

All you need is an Amazon account!

Good luck to all!

And to the winner, please share your thoughts on this book with me!

alice

Here is the link! Happy Wednesday, luvs!

https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/ae65f0a061070aca

If you don’t win (Sorry, but stay tuned as I will be doing more on many books.)

Here is the link to purchase. As of this posting, it is only $1.99 for Kindle.

 

CREEPY, YET UNIQUE. “YOU” by CAROLINE KEPNES

YOU

On a rare day when I was actually watching television, I saw a preview for a new series starting on September 9th on Lifetime.

At the end, the preview told me it was based on a BOOK! YAY!

So, I checked it out on Amazon, downloaded it, and started reading it. It was hard to put down!

There is a link at the bottom of this, where  you can view the trailer.

WARNING

THIS BOOK IS DISTURBING AND MAY TRIGGER YOU.

IT INVOLVES STALKING, VIOLENCE, OVER-SEXUALIZATION, AND A LOT OF SWEARING.

MY THOUGHTS

I enjoyed this book, yet I didn’t. I feel guilty for enjoying it. It’s like passing an accident, and you don’t want to look, but you do.

Every character in this book has major issues. Even the stalking victim, Beck.

Even the Doctor who isn’t a Doctor, has major issues. (Psychologist)

Oddly, at times, I found myself rooting for Joe (the stalker)

He was likable, yet you loathe him as you read further along.

What is unique about this book is the style of writing the Author used.

It is told from Joe’s point of view in a deep and disturbing way.

Although this is Fiction, if you like watching shows on ID, or true crime, you will like this book.

Even though I have already read the book, I’m considering purchasing the Audio version because I’m interested in how this book is read by someone else.

Here is the link to purchase:

It’s available in Hardback, Paperback, Kindle and Audio. The Hardback is almost $50 so good grief, Amazon what is up with that?

Please purchase elsewhere if you prefer Hardback!

 

TRAILER FOR SERIES ON LIFETIME STARTING SEPTEMBER 9TH. 

https://www.mylifetime.com/shows/you/videos/you-trailer?playlist_slug=you-season-1-preview-list

Happy 4th of July!

 

<a href=”https://www.bloglovin.com/blog/19516771/?claim=5u7ucaysckm”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

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I’ve had a blast taking a long vacation. There were a few minor interruptions, but the time away was enjoyable nonetheless.

Soon, I will have a large assortment of incredible books I suggest you get your hands on!

Stay safe this Holiday!

THE WAY HE LOVED ME, by HEATHER TANTI

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Description

PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER! “THE SECRET MOTHER,” by SHALINI BOLAND

Wow what a read! I stayed up WAY too late reading this from cover to cover, but it was worth it!

Tess is a woman who is dealing with a split with her husband due to the deaths of their two children.

She’s recovering from breaking down and losing almost everything while suffering from depression due to all of these events.

So…the book starts out with her walking home from her job at the garden center, and once she enters her home, she finds a little boy sitting in her kitchen drawing.

He tells her an angel brought him, and that she is his new Mom.

The police are summoned, and due to a an event in Tess’s past, she is accused of kidnapping him.

There are also moments throughout the book where she doubts herself and wonders if she indeed did kidnap the boy.

This is not simply a story about proving herself innocent, this is a story where all of the characters have a solid backstory, a goal…an agenda, and it all intertwines perfectly.

I “kinda sorta but not really,” had the conclusion figured out. I did theory wise, but not who and why.

Totally enjoyable book!

The author made you feel like you were there. You could imagine and feel the cold weather, and the emotions of the characters.

I downloaded this last night, planning on reading it while on vacation starting late next week, but when I opened it to see what the first few pages were like, I was hooked and read it all!

Oh, and I adored the character named Ben.

This is an amazing read and I highly -beyond highly- recommend it!

I’m looking forward to reading more from this Author.

Here is the link for purchase. It is available in several formats, including audio!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

Women’s Fiction: GOOD-BYE DEF LEPPARD-I’LL MISS THOSE JEANS by: Stef Kramer

I did not love this book, nor did I hate it. I got it because of the title, because I LOVE Def Leppard. (Yes, for that reason.)

This book would make a good Summer/Vacation or “too busy to really read much,” type of read, as in that it is interesting, however, you won’t miss it if you have to put it down for awhile.

It starts with the main character (Amy) listening to her daughter practice piano, and while doing so, reflects back on her life. It is interesting enough, but then kind of wanders, and sometimes it takes you a minute to realize who is nararating.

I think this was intended to be a Girl Meets Boy-loses boy type of book, but I seriously ended up not caring if she and Nick got  together or not.

I realize Amy was fresh out of college, but she was 12 year old love struck/forlorn all throughout this book.

And, there are several characters in this book who are just there. They really don’t have a reason or story line.

But never fear, this IS worth reading. As light as it is, I recommend still giving it a read.

Amy is one of those types of people who will take the road of least resistance. That is fine, however I was left feeling she was left unhappy with her job choice, and unfortunately took a career path that probably wasn’t of her choosing.

But…that is the point of this book. Looking back at choices made, re-evaluating your life, and possibly going after your original dream.

I could have done without Nick’s journal completely.

Again, this is a good book to read when you are just looking for something entertaining, but don’t expect a deep or complete read.

There were a few annoying spelling errors:

Head over Heels was written: Head Over Heals

And several times, it should have read, “An MBA, not And MBA.”

This book is getting mixed reviews, and in full-disclosure, most of you know a book like this isn’t my particular cup of tea, but I still recommend it. Stick it in your bag for those times you are stuck waiting for the doctor, or want something to read on your lunch break.

It’s an excellent book to take outside when your kids are playing and you want to read, but still need to give them proper supervision :). You will enjoy this book, but you won’t mind when you are interupeted.

Here is the link for purchase, and last I checked it is on Kindle Unlimited.

I think more people will enjoy it than not.

I think the author means for this book to be a stand alone, but I wouldn’t mind reading another book of hers telling Nick’s side of the story, or continue Amy and Nick’s story with him telling it.

 

 

A Mystery with a Twist! THE FLOWER GIRL MURDER~by Keith Hirshland

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Keith Hirshland keeps getting better and better with every book! This is the third book of his that I have read, and I am grateful to him for sending me review copies! 🙂

This book has murder and a bit of romance. Just a bit. Just enough for someone like me who isn’t into romance but likes a bit of it within the story.

There are many twists and turns in this book and you may or may not be satisfied with the ending, but I personally liked it.

I enjoyed the characters and story line, and look forward to reading more books written by Keith.

DESCRIPTION:

Daisy Burns was a likable, devoted wife and mother who spent her spare time volunteering at school events. Everyone loved Daisy. So why would someone shoot her three times and dump her body behind a Planned Parenthood chapter in North Carolina?

With no witnesses and few leads, Raleigh detective Marc Allen turns to the press for help—specifically, veteran news anchor Lancaster Heart. Heart agrees to broadcast the police department’s plea for information in his nightly newscasts.

Elderly viewer and longtime social worker Blanche Avery is positive she recognizes the photograph on the television as an older version of her friend Daisy— the young, heavily pregnant girl she met years before who made the decision to give her child up for adoption.

When Tanner Goochly Jr.—a member of a notorious crime family—becomes the victim of another point-blank shooting, Allen races to discover the connection between the murders. Could it be that Daisy was somehow involved with an illegal enterprise, or was she hiding something else, another secret to be discovered?

The body count is rising, and the suspect pool is widening. As Allen’s investigation reaches a fever pitch, he realizes that a mother’s choice could have killer consequences.

Below are the links for purchase of all of his books.

 

 

Overlooked Voices- Audio book Narrator

headphonesMUSIC TO MY EARS! AUDIO BOOKS!

 

I used to loathe the idea of listening to a book. I do not like being read to, even if it’s something as simple as a news article someone wants to share with me.

But…life got busy, super busy, and finding time to actually sit down with a book became more difficult.

I took a chance on e-bay with a Lot for sale of Brad Meltzer audio books.

I am already a huge fan of his, so I thought that would help make the audio book transition easier.

I have tried various audio books throughout the years, but just could not get into them.

One day, on my long drive into town, I put the first CD of his audio book The Zero Game, into my cars CD player…and fell…in love!

The Narrator  is Scott Brick. His voice is amazing! He uses different voices for each of the characters, but doesn’t go overboard.

His inflection is perfect on each point.

My Mother listens to a lot of audio books, so I asked what draws her to certain ones.

She said the narrator. Some audio books she has to give up on because she finds the voice dull or annoying.

I was thrilled to discover that the other audio books I had purchased from e-bay were also narrarated by Scott Brick.

One is done by Tony Goldwyn, so I’m looking forward to that one.

The kids love their audio books, and I love that there are so many that make learning fun for them and stimulate their blossoming imaginations!

The training and coaching that audio book narrators have to go through is quite long. I was impressed.

In the future, I will do a post about my favorite audio book narrators, but until then, I would LOVE to hear who your favorites are and why!

 

WOW! “THE WIFE BETWEEN US” by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen

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I received this book in my first box from Book of the Month at the end of 2017. When I opened the box and saw the title, I went, “BOTM didn’t pay attention to my ‘What do you like to read’ answers at all! (In full disclosure, I cannot remember if they asked those questions or not, but I was initially disappointed. I love BOTM now.)

I assumed. Even after reading the short description inside the front flap, I assumed.

So, I put the book back in the box and set it aside for ‘some day.’

‘Some day,’ turned out to be around 11:30 pm last night.

When starting the book, I assumed I knew what direction the story was going to take.

WAS I EVER WRONG!

I do not want to give anything away, so bear with me while I try to tell you a little about this book without ruining anything for you.

First, I finished this book maybe a little after 4 a.m. I only paused long enough to absorb what I read, and then continued.

I stayed up reading this book, knowing I had to get up at 5:30 a.m. and had a busy day ahead.

WARNING: Do NOT start this book until you have time to read it cover to cover!

Call out sick from work, call a babysitter, fake an emergency…do whatever it takes to find uninterrupted reading time for this book. (*January Gray Reviews is not responsible for how you choose to find reading time should you choose any of the options above and face consequences. 😉 )

I am SO sleepy today, but it was SO worth it!

First, do not assume you know anything.

You will think this is a story of a jealous ex-wife stalking her ex-husband’s new love.

No.

You will think the ex-wife takes after her Mother and is crazy.

No.

You will think the ex-husband’s new love is simply an ‘upgrade’ from his ex.

No.

Do Not Assume ANYTHING!

You will enjoy  the well rounded characters and  perfectly woven plot.

You will get irritated with certain characters weaknesses, and celebrate their strengths.

At times you will root for all, for some, and none, all in a matter of a few pages.

There were a couple of times I wanted to skim and move on, but only because I was excited about what was coming up. Do Not skim. Every. Word. Is. Important.

That’s what I loved about this book. Every word was important and mattered. There wasn’t any filler.

A TOP RULE OF WRITERS IS:

“Action and reaction propel the scene.”

And that’s exactly what these two authors followed while plotting and writing this book.

Also, if you aren’t into sexual scenes and swearing, this is a perfect read for you.

You will be pulled into the story immediately as you wonder who is who and what are they doing?

I would love to chatter on about this book, but as I said, I do not want to ruin a single bit of it for you, so trust me…you do NOT want to miss this one.

This book was SO awesome, that I wish I could wipe my memory of it, and enjoy it all over again.

I apologize for not telling you more about it, but you will thank me after you read it. Go into it without any assumptions and absorb every single word.

Get back to me with your thoughts about it.

There will be a movie made with the date to be announced in 2019. Read this book first. I have a feeling it will be similar to when The Zoo Keepers wife came out, and those who read the book enjoyed the movie much more than those who hadn’t.

Here is the link for purchase. It is available in several formats, including Audiobook.

ENJOY!

 

 

 

 

 

Guest Blog by Author Leslie Tate!

Leslie reading Heavens Rage The Studio

 

SHADES OF VIOLET

 

When I interview authors on my blog https://leslietate.com/ I want to find out what lies behind their latest book. So I avoid exchanges about sales or promotion, asking them instead about the process of writing. One of the questions I ask is, ‘Can you tell me about the beginning, growth and development your book?’ Applying the same question to ‘Violet’, my latest novel, I came up with the following three-part answer.

BEGINNINGS

I don’t plan my novels. I’ve never felt able to find an anecdote that translates neatly into a finished story. So I set off writing ‘Violet’ knowing only that it was about a late-life love affair. I’d a picture in my head of meeting my wife, Sue Hampton, in a West End restaurant, and I used that as my guide. I wanted to capture the fragile immediacy of our first encounter, how important it was, and how quickly it all happened. Beth and James are not like us, so their words and acts were largely imagined, but the feelings they experience were based on ours.

My first few pages are usually the most autobiographical. After that the characters take over and the ‘me’ in the story narrows down to a few borrowed details.

So here are a few examples of real-life borrowings, taken from ‘Violet’:

  • Before our meeting, Sue and I exchanged numerous letters and talked for hours on the phone.
  • On the day I had difficulty finding the restaurant.
  • Like Beth in the book, Sue turned up very early.

But the 3½ hours of intense table talk that followed between us wasn’t going to work in a novel. It was too static and far too long-winded. Even cut, it wouldn’t hold the reader. So I said goodbye to Sue and Leslie and allowed Beth and James to take over.

But I did want to capture the power of the experience. This was the story of two experienced adults diving in and going through a sea change. Translated into fiction, that meant taking risks. So James oversteps the mark, drinking from a glass smeared with Beth’s lipstick, plays mime games, and invites Beth, in the middle of the restaurant, to dance.

You can read this section of the book, together with a commentary describing how it was written, at https://leslietate.com/2018/01/5265/

I was aware that I was pushing it in the restaurant scene. Of course Beth and James have already had contact, making them more open, but for weeks after writing it I kept revising and re-reading to check for plausibility. In the end it seemed to work, mainly, I believe, because the mind in the act of reading takes things for granted and often jumps ahead.

As an author, I use the selective nature of the novel to foreshorten time and work the changes. The remote is in my hands and I can press ‘hold’, ‘rewind’ or ‘fast forward’. I can also change channels. So the restaurant scene moves quickly from the nervous reality of a conventional first meeting to a lover’s dream. And the dialogue is twofold, mixing short and meaningful quips with going in deep. Everything is imagined: so Beth and James come out with things we’d all like to say but usually keep shtum, while the reported conversations blend author-talk with voices in the head. The aim is to surprise and take a view on life, but not to break the spell.

  1. GROWTH

Once I have a start, the discoveries begin. Mostly I find my direction by writing it, but I also have a long-term feel for what I’d like to happen. If the two are at odds, then the short-term wins. So starting ‘Violet’ with Beth and James meeting at 50 meant I had to find a way to tell their full stories. I’d thought I might be able to flashback during the restaurant scene but found, in the end, I needed to give them separate treatment. And that meant, in James’s case, telling his backstory through his letters to Beth. In her case I began from birth in close third person, using her own juvenile stories to show how she’d changed.

So the book became layered, moving back and forth between present-day romance and Beth’s failed marriage to a born-again minister. At the same time I had an underlying feeling that the story was developing in a direction I had to follow…

  1. DEVELOPMENT

Two things happened when I’d finished the book:

  1. a) Despite my resistance, the old, old tale that unconditional love has no place in an uncaring world took over.
  2. b) My wife and author, Sue Hampton, had already noticed that three of the main characters in the trilogy had traits in common. So during the writing of ‘Blue’ (the novel before ‘Violet) we drew up a family tree. This required me to write in passages connecting Matthew Lavender in ‘Purple’ to Richard Lavender in ‘Blue’ and to James in ‘Violet’.

These changes were structural. They showed me that a book is never finished. And of course there’s a ripple effect, every minor change has its repercussions, and it’s always possible to add in links and connections to improve the flow.

In the end, a novel is complex. It has to be so since people and the world can’t be easily summed up. In ‘Violet’ I tried to reflect that complexity by writing in both third and first person and by including letters, stories and Beth’s diary. But the central idea is simple: boy meets girl in later life, they fall for each other, but have to cope with misfortune. In the words of the blurb: ‘The passionate, late-life love of Beth and James begins in 2003 on a blind date in a London restaurant. Attracted by James’s openness, Beth feels an immediate, deep connection between his honesty and her own romantic faith. From then on they bond, exchanging love-texts, exploring sea walks and gardens and sharing their past lives with flashbacks to Beth’s rural childhood and her marriage to a dark, charismatic minister.

Telling stories runs in Beth’s family, so she keeps up with her friends, following their efforts to find love in a soulless, materialistic world. But Beth’s own passion for giving and commitment is pushed to the limit as she and James struggle with her divorce problems, each other’s children, and life-threatening illness. In the end, tested by pain, they discover something larger than themselves that goes beyond suffering and loss…’

 

  1. Anne Williams March 16th http://beinganne.com/?s=Leslie+Tate

 

WHAT’S IN A GENRE?

 

Books are sold in packages. On the outside they are shiny shop windows; inside they’re arranged in sections with signs and labels pointing the way. If the shop’s online then unseen assistants are steering you to the ‘right’ department where the products are neatly set out to help you ‘know what you’re looking for’. So the book shop browser is looking for the titles she/he has heard of, the nerdfighter wants TV books to act as badges, the book group choose from the competition shortlists, and we’re all conditioned to believe that we know what we want and kept safe and happy under the umbrella of brand and genre.

My new novel ‘Violet’ isn’t so easily labelled. If I had to pigeonhole it, I’d call it literary, meaning that it’s cross-genre, character-driven and language-led, with its own distinctive style. It begins with a story written by my main character Beth when she was eight, called ‘The Girl Who Began Again’, before switching to her meeting, at 50, with teacher and garden designer, James Lavender. From then on, Beth’s backstory alternates with her wildly romantic love affair with James. In the words of the blurb: ‘The passionate, late-life love of Beth and James begins in 2003 on a blind date in a London restaurant. Attracted by James’s openness, Beth feels an immediate, deep connection between his honesty and her own romantic faith. From then on they bond, exchanging love-texts, exploring sea walks and gardens and sharing their past lives with flashbacks to Beth’s rural childhood and her marriage to a dark, charismatic minister…’

So is it Romance? Not really. It doesn’t have a HEA (happily ever after), strong males, glamour or unexpected plot twists. Yes, there is a dark prince, Beth’s ex, whose lurking presence inspires Beth’s Bluebeard’s-Castle-type story, ‘A Housekeeper’s Tale’; and there’s a teen-talk story, full of vampires and dysfunctional American families, written by Hannah, Beth’s step-daughter. But if ‘Violet’ does belong to a category, perhaps it’s lyrical realism, mainly because the novel is written in close third person, examining the intimate detail of a modern relationship. On the other hand, the book also contains sub-genre writing, including texting between lovers, a parent-teen dialogue set out as a play, dream sequences and sixty pages of Beth’s diary in the second part of the book when she’s ill.

An elegy to Beth wasn’t what I’d intended when I began writing. A doomed lovers’ tale felt like a something out of the past, but in the end it forced itself on me. That’s probably because fiction has its own conventions and adds to life rather than mirroring it. And the ‘overheard’ style of a diary allowed me to enter Beth’s mind, mixing memories with reflections, making it more about a state of being than its physical manifestations.

The final part of the book begins with James’s heartfelt, self-questioning, and ultimately therapeutic letter to his dead wife; continuing with tributes to her from old school friends, work colleagues and fellow-spirits.

But the ending, when it came, surprised me, transcending genre and passing through to the ‘other side’, where Beth sees all the characters from outside and inside, embracing even Conrad, her evangelical ex, with an author’s stereoscopic view. In afterlife she retells her father’s story, ‘The Girl Who Didn’t Like Her Name’, writes a valedictory letter to James and ends with Hannah’s picture-book ‘The little boy looked up at the grey sky’, written for Beth and echoing her own story that started the book, ‘The Girl Who Began Again’.

So the story is driven by the characters passing through extreme states, the vehicle is language in all its hybrid forms, and if ‘Violet’ has a genre it’s Relationships.

 

  1. Susan Hampson March 20th https://booksfromdusktilldawn.blog/2018/03/20/violet-by-leslie-tate-guestpost-lstateauthor/

 

VIOLET – ROUNDING IT OUT

 

I began the third novel in my trilogy, ‘Violet’, on a University of East Anglia writing course. At that time the working title was ‘Beth’. I’d chosen that name for my protagonist because it had several shortened forms, but in the end I only used two: Elizabeth and Beth. When I started the course I had the first chapter written where Beth meets James, but no idea what might happen next, except that the book was about a late-life relationship.

Novels are versions of life where we don’t declare our sources. So the beginning of ‘Violet’ drew upon my first meeting with my wife Sue Hampton in a West End restaurant. Like Beth and James we’d exchanged letters and talked for hours on the phone, but what we shared openly – Sue’s alopecia and my cross-dressing – plays no part in the book. I wanted to write about older people in love, and these issues would get in the way. In any case, according to ‘story theory’, key information like that has to be held back for a later ‘reveal’ – raising the question whether plot-driven novels falsify experience. Because in life, Sue and I knew that it was better to be completely modern, declare our secrets and risk rejection, rather than end up trying to make it work against the odds.

So fact is stranger than fiction, and hidden secrets return to haunt you.

Of course, books have their conventions, but they need to be relevant. So one of the challenges to the modern novelist is that we no longer have extended courtships where the characters can be introduced gradually. ‘Bed first, talk later’ leaves the reader with little to discover and nothing to look forward to. The action has all happened and the author is left picking up the pieces – which often translates to a voyeuristic focus on loveless relationships.

I don’t buy that way of viewing people because it’s narrow and predictable, and I’m more interested in what E.M. Foster called ‘round characters’, rather than ‘flat characters’. So ‘Violet’ mixes light and shade, shifting between Beth’s passionate, crazy relationship with James and her dark past with Conrad, an evangelical minister; Beth and James’s children develop during the story, and Beth’s relationship with her parents deepens – even if her friends Amy and Rachael become ‘flat’ materialists and Conrad, at times, turns into a one-dimensional horror stereotype.

The group on my UEA course met weekly to comment on each other’s writing. Although we’d seen advance copy – an improvement on writers’ groups critiquing pieces they’ve only heard once – I found the discussion limited by the belief that novels must be pacey, always look forward, and intrigue, disturb, impress or thrill. It seemed to me a narrow view, suitable for some genre, but lacking the reflective qualities to be found in character-based and language-led work.

There was, perhaps, another reason for this approach. It could have been a way of preparing us for the rigours of the marketplace. Because writing today is all about marketing. An army of agents, editors, promotional gurus and creative writing tutors filter ‘the product’ to fit the latest fad – leaving the authors to ‘read my lips’ and deliver. So the book trade wants action-filled page-turners where the reader is kept in the dark, and most creative writing courses privilege minimalism, post-modern trickiness, and non-disclosure. I prefer Kurt Vonnegut’s version of writing: ‘Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such a complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.’

So writing ‘Violet’ was about fleshing out everything about my two late-life lovers, including their upbringing, letters, telephone conversations and texts; it also meant following them through a series of wild outings, doing the things lovers do, without ending in cliché. In the words of the blurb: ‘The passionate, late-life love of Beth and James begins in 2003 on a blind date in a London restaurant. Attracted by James’s openness, Beth feels an immediate, deep connection between his honesty and her own romantic faith. From then on they bond, exchanging love-texts, exploring sea walks and gardens and sharing their past lives with flashbacks to Beth’s rural childhood and her marriage to a dark, charismatic minister…’

And the story developed from there, going where it had to and alternating past and future to reveal unexpected sides of the characters – including Conrad.

To quote E.M. Foster: ‘The test of a round character is whether it is capable of surprising in a convincing way. If it never surprises it is flat. Flat characters … in their purest form … are constructed round a single idea or quality; when there is more than one factor to them, we get the beginning of the curve toward the round.’

My aim with ‘Violet’ was to flesh out those curves.

 

ABOUT VIOLET:

In the UK you can buy signed copies of ‘Violet’ at https://leslietate.com/shop/violet/

You can buy ‘Violet’ on Amazon USA at https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=leslie+tate+violet&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Aleslie+tate+violet

You can buy ‘Violet’ on Amazon UK at https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=leslie+tate+violet

Reviews:

‘Violet is a captivating novel narrated through letters, diary entries, instant messages, poems, and other writings that create a multi-textured depth to the storyline. Leslie Tate’s fluid, musical sentence structure, vivid use of imagery and description, and skilful storytelling bring to life a memorable protagonist in the character of Beth Jarvis, an imaginative and sensitive woman. A pleasure to read!’ – Beth Copeland, Pushcart Prize nominated poet & winner of the Dogfish Head Poetry Prize

 

‘Leslie Tate has a beautiful turn of phrase and this work is threaded with elegant descriptive passages. The central characters are instantly likeable, and the reader has a quick and affectionate bond that hooks right from the opening pages.’ – Dawn Finch Trustee, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) Children’s Writer & Librarian.

 

ABOUT ALL OF LESLIE’S BOOKS:

Leslie Tate’s Author Page on Amazon USA is at https://www.amazon.com/Leslie-Tate/e/B07BL5L23B/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Leslie Tate’s Author Page on Amazon UK is at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Leslie-Tate/e/B07BL5L23B/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1522493711&sr=1-1

 

In the UK, you can buy:

  1. signed copies of the first novel in the trilogy, ‘Purple’, at: https://leslietate.com/shop/purple/
  2. signed copies of the second novel, Blue, at https://leslietate.com/shop/blue/
  3. signed copies of his trans memoir ‘Heaven’s Rage’ at https://leslietate.com/shop/heavens-rage/

 

Leslie’s website is https://leslietate.com/

 

Bio:

Leslie Tate studied Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia and has been shortlisted for the Bridport, Geoff Stevens and Wivenhoe Prizes. He’s the author of the trilogy of novels ‘Purple’, ‘Blue’ and ‘Violet’, as well as his trans memoir ‘Heaven’s Rage’, which has been turned into a film. Leslie runs a mixed arts show in Berkhamsted, UK, where he lives with his wife, multi-talented author Sue Hampton. On his website he posts up weekly creative interviews and guest blogs showing how people use their imagination in life, in many different ways.

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HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2018!

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MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM JANUARY GRAY REVIEWS!

CHRISTMAS TREE BOOKSI hope everyone is having a very Merry Christmas!

I wish you peace, joy, happiness and much reading and writing success!

I hope you get some reading time in!

What books did you receive or choose with a gift card?

What books did you gift?

What are you looking forward to reading in the coming New Year?

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

~January

 

CHRISTMAS BIRDS-Art & Inspiration for the Season and Beyond- by Kathleen R. Bates

Are you looking for a unique gift for the book or bird lover in your life? This beautiful book not only has artwork and information about beautiful birds, it also has inspirational messages that will be read and reread during the entire year.

This is not just a Christmas book, but it would make a lovely gift!

Here is the Amazon link:

https://www.amazon.com/CHRISTMAS-BIRDS-Inspiration-Season-Beyond/dp/1634520467/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1513693651&sr=8-1&keywords=christmas+birds+kathleen+r+bates

Duet Review with some spoilers.

I apologize in advance for the spoilers, as that is one thing I do not like to do. I will try to keep them at a minimum.  I recommend these books, however the second book is not near the quality of the first one, and the ending of the two book series is sloppy and rushed.

These are the first two books I have read by this author. I found the first one by accident and was so excited for the second one I went ahead and pre-ordered it and waited three weeks.

Okay, so Lyra is the female main character in these books. She can see the date of when someone is going to die, printed on their eyes. She cannot see her own.

This makes her keep to herself and live a quiet uneventful life, until she meets Tavian and he is an outgoing, adventure seeker who changes her life.

If you like squishy, over the top romance, you will love these books, especially the second one.

The Authors’ use of Tavian calling Lyra, “Buttercup” a bazillion times is over the top annoying.

Lyra was not a well fleshed out character, actually neither character was that well evolved.

Lyra went from being a shy almost girlish , over the top teen crush type of woman, to a sexy, flirty seductress. Back and forth, back and forth.

I love a good sex scene, but these were the typical, “she stroked his long, hard c**k, he licked her juices,” typical scenes we’ve all read a million times.

Okay, to cut down on spoilers, let me put it this way.

The premise is GREAT, unique and original.

The delivery lacked horribly.

That being said, I did enjoy the first book, and I read it in one weekend.

The second book, I skimmed a lot because every three pages was sex, second verse same as the first. Bland. Bland sex scenes.

The ending will not answer your questions, and will literally not make sense. It is like the Author needed to wrap it up, so she rushed it.

I typically do not like to leave poor reviews on my blog, but even though I did not LOVE these books, they did make okay reading if you need a break from books that had more depth.

They can be purchased on Amazon.

~January

 

Two chances to win a two series six book set!

 

https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/f2bf7548fae10c1f

 

giveaway

99 CENT SALE ON TWO SERIES SIX BOOK COLLECTION! I READ THESE IN 2 DAYS!

 

 

An unputdownable EMP thriller with a brilliant twist!

Best Selling EMP Thriller author James Hunt, author of “Surviving the Collapse” and “Static”, which have collectively accumulated 200+ five-star reviews come together in this SUPER BOX SET for the first time! That’s TWO complete book SERIES comprised of SIX NOVELS at a discounted price!

Surviving the Collapse:  A Tale Of Survival In A Powerless World

What happens when all means of transportation and communication suddenly vanish? What happens when you can’t call for help? What happens when the only person you can rely on is yourself? Captain Kate Hillman is about to discover those answers after an EMP sends New York City, and it’s nine million residents, back into the stone age.

Static: An EMP Thriller 

The thin thread holding the civilized world together has been severed. Millions of citizens have been thrust into the unknown, breeding fear into the minds and souls of those seeking to survive. Wren Burton, an architect from Chicago, has been engulfed by the chaotic aftermath of an EMP blast. Her family is injured. The enemy is unknown. And help is nowhere to be found.

MY THOUGHTS

I saw the sale for these on social media, and immediately went and purchased them. I read all six books in two days!

I could not put them down!

Great plot, especially if you are concerned about the safety of our electricity grid these days.

Solid, well rounded characters with flaws. I always enjoy books when the characters aren’t perfect in their thoughts and actions.

These books have a lot of twists, turns and action!

I promise you will devour these!

And remember, Christmas is right around the corner!

Here is the link. 99 cents for six books as of this posting!

KEEPING PROMISES

IOU

If I owe you a book review, you will get a book review. I pinky promise.

Thank you for your patience, and understanding, and I look forward to reading, reviewing, editing and promoting your books in the coming year!

January

 

Guest Author Post by: MICHAEL OKON “MONSTERLAND”

How I Got a Publishing Deal and What’s Next

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It’s a pretty incredible story that I have a hard time believing. I wrote Monsterland and self-published it in 2015. My mom is my publicity manager and she blitzed the bloggers with my book. That fall I was reading a book called Selling a Screenplay by Syd Field. In the book, there was an entertainment attorney named Susan Grode who seemed very knowledgeable about the publishing and film industry. I told myself, when I receive my first contract, I’m going to reach out to her to see if she could help me. About two months later, I received a post on Facebook from an agent in London who asked to represent me. I said sure and asked him to send me a contract. I emailed Susan and introduced myself and mentioned that I had someone who wanted to rep me and I was hoping she could read this contract. She told me before I sign with this London agent, why don’t I meet her friend in Brooklyn, an agent named Nick Mullendore with Vertical Ink Literary Agency. I met Nick for lunch and he signed me that day as his client. That evening, Susan brought me on as her client as well.

 

Nick began trying to sell my book Monsterland to the big publishers and, as expected, it was rejected. Throughout his attempts of selling, he had a call with a film agent and he was pitching her a romance novel. She said she wasn’t really into romance and was looking for something with monsters. He sent her my book Monsterland, she read it over a weekend, and we had a call that Monday. She told Nick and me if we get the book published, she will get it into a producer’s hands to make into a film. Nick found a publisher called WordFire Press owned by Kevin J. Anderson, who has written all the Star Wars and Dune canon books. WordFire signed me to a two-book deal for Monsterland 1 & 2. After the deal was signed, my film agent did what she promised and got my book into the hands of a billion-dollar grossing producer who is now shopping my book to certain studios.

 

In two years, I went from a self-published author, to a published author with a literary agent, an entertainment attorney, a film agent, a two-book publishing deal, a publicist, and a producer who is interested in turning my book to a film. It’s been one wild ride, to say the least.

 

Now, what’s next? Well, one may just sit back and relax, and do nothing. Not I. I’ve already completed Monsterland 2 which comes out May 26, 2018. I’m knee-deep in Monsterland 3. I’ve already started beating out the stories for Monsterland 4 and 5. It seems that the next five years are going to be extremely busy with creating stories centered on monsters. What could be wrong with that?

Best,

Michael

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Be sure to follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and SnapChat  @IAmMichaelOkon #Monsterland!

FACEBOOK     |     TWITTER     |     INSTAGRAM     |     SNAPCHAT     |     MICHAELOKON.COM

YouTube – Monsterland Book Trailer #1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LD4rQchBel4

YouTube – Monsterland Book Trailer # 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYvLAl733Js

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FRONT GATE public relations. Christy Awards 2017 winners!

 

 

For Immediate Release
November 9, 2017
LONG WAY GONE Awarded “Book of the Year” at
2017 CHRISTY AWARDS™ Christian Fiction Gala
Annual Christian Fiction Program gives Awards in Nine Categories that Celebrate the Best in Christian Fiction

November 9, 2017. Nashville, TN – Last night, LONG WAY GONE by Charles Martin was awarded top honors at the 2017 CHRISTY AWARDS™ Gala.  Presented by The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA), the 18th annual event was held at Lipscomb University and hosted by a trio of award-winning, bestselling authors in the genre: NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Karen Kingsbury, musician and writer Andrew Peterson, and award-winning author and radio host Chris Fabry. Fabry also took home honors in two categories at the event.
The full list of winners in each category are:
Book of The Year: LONG WAY GONE by Charles Martin (Thomas Nelson)
Contemporary Romance: HER ONE AND ONLY by Becky Wade (Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group)
First Novel: STARS IN THE GRASS by Ann Marie Stewart (Barbour Publishing)
General Fiction: THE PROMISE OF JESSE WOODS by Chris Fabry (Tyndale House Publishers)
Historical Fiction: THE MARK OF THE KING by Jocelyn Green (Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group)
Historical Romance (TIE): A NOTE YET UNSUNG by Tamera Alexander (Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group) and THE LADY AND THE LIONHEART by Joanne Bischof (Mason Jar Books)
Mystery/Suspense/Thriller: WHEN DEATH DRAWS NEAR by Carrie Stuart Parks (Thomas Nelson)
Short Form: LOOKING INTO YOU by Chris Fabry (Tyndale House Publishers)
Visionary: THE LONG JOURNEY TO JAKE PALMER by James Rubart (Thomas Nelson)
Young Adult: THE SILENT SONGBIRD by Melanie Dickerson (Thomas Nelson)
THE CHRISTY AWARDS™ Gala also celebrated the 50th anniversary of the novel “Christy,” the award’s namesake and now rereleased through Evergreen Farm, an imprint of Gilead Publishing.  The evening capped off two days of events that helped inspire, train and encourage those established in the publishing industry as well as those aspiring to break into the market as writers or business leaders.  PubU: The Art of Curation was held as a training and networking event for Christian publishing professionals. The Art of Writing Conference was created to build community and explore the leading questions and pressing issues facing creators and curators.
“We are thrilled with the tremendous response we received to these three writing and publishing events,” said Stan Jantz, executive director of ECPA. “So many talented writers, along with members of the professional publishing community, have reinforced our belief that the art of storytelling is more important than ever. We congratulate this year’s eleven CHRISTY AWARD winners and look forward to another year of incredible storytelling.”
Sign up for award and event updates for the 2018 program at www.ChristyAwards.com, where complete information can be found.
The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA) is an international non-profit trade organization comprised of member companies that are involved in the publishing and distribution of Christian content worldwide. Since 1974, ECPA has strengthened Christian publishing by building networking, information, and advocacy opportunities within the industry and throughout multiple channels so that our members can more effectively produce and deliver transformational Christian content. ECPA.org
The CHRISTY AWARD™ is the foremost award honoring and promoting excellence in Christian fiction since 1999, and is named for Catherine Marshall’s novel, “Christy,” which has sold over 10 million copies since its publication in 1967. ECPA assumed ownership and administration of the award in 2017 to focus and grow the unique opportunity of fiction in Christian publishing. ChristyAwards.com
  
Pictured are the award winning authors present at The Christy Award Gala with ECPA executive director Stan Jantz:
(left to right) Chris Fabry, Tamera Alexander, Jocelyn Green, Becky Wade, Ann Marie Stewart, Melanie Dickerson, Stan Jantz
 
1. Looking Into You (Short Form) and The Promise of Jesse Woods (General Fiction), Chris Fabry, Tyndale House Publishers
2. A Note Yet Unsung (Historical Romance), Tamera Alexander, Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group
3. The Mark of the King (Historical), Jocelyn Green, Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group
4. Her One and Only (Contemporary Romance), Becky Wade, Bethany House/ Baker Publishing Group
5. Stars in the Grass (First Novel), Ann Marie Stewart, Barbour Publishing
6. The Silent Songbird (Young Adult), Melanie Dickerson, Thomas Nelson
7. Stan Jantz, Executive Director, ECPA
Photo credit:  Kristen Fields

NEW BOOK & FREEBIES FROM OUR DARLING: EMMANUELLE de MAUPASSANT

Thank you dear one!

 

Today, I’m delighted to introduce Miss Scruffy.
She’s my own little terrier and the inspiration for ‘Pudding’ – Lady Ophelia’s dog in my 1920s romance, ‘Highland Pursuits’.
If you’ve read the story, you’ll know she’s a feisty little madam, and just as big a character as Ophelia herself.
I’m also excited to tell you that  ‘Highland Pursuits‘ is free today – so please do grab a copy if you haven’t already done so.
(…you can also pre-order the sequel, ‘Highland Christmas‘, for just 99p/99c at the moment)
Also on sale for the first time is my Gothic romance, ‘Italian Sonata‘.
It’s just 99p/99c – but until Friday only.
xxxx
If you’d like a peek at some kinky short stories, you mustn’t miss out on claiming your copy of the latest anthology in which I feature: ‘The Big Book of Submission Volume 2‘.
As a contributor, I may invite you to receive a free download
(with my toes crossed that you’ll kindly leave a review)
Scroll down to find out more.
Last, but not least, you’ll find a selection of guest authors in my ‘steals and deals’ section.

sending you all warmest wishes

Emmanuelle
Sent by

SendinBlue

            FREE   –  for a few days only 
Defiant debutante Lady Ophelia Finchingfield is banished to the Highlands of Scotland, where a bizarre selection of suitors are soon lining up. Ophelia only has eyes for the castle’s estate manager but he’s already spoken for, and glamorous French coquette Felicité has no intention of letting ruggedly attractive Hamish slip from the service of her bed. Intrigue abounds, as Ophelia discovers that the Castle is a hotbed of illicit cavorting.

A wickedly naughty 1920s romance.

psst – if you’ve read and enjoyed ‘Highland Pursuits’, please do leave a review. xxx
Take me to the Highlands
99p/99c – for a few days only
What dark secrets lie within those walls?
Madness, abduction, imprisonment… murder?
The past does not lie quietly.

Towering above its island of wave-lashed rock is Castello di Scogliera.
Look up at the narrow windows, and you might think yourself watched.
Something, or someone, has been waiting for Lady McCaulay to arrive…

A sumptuous Gothic Romance, filled with mystery, intrigue, and the lure of the sensuous.

Give me the shivers…
       Ready for a
feast of erotic
fiction?
Another fabulous anthology release, to which I’m a contributing author, and can invite you to receive a copy with an eye to review. Just click through to complete the form (by end Nov) and editor Rachel will be in touch. Fab if you can review by end Feb 2018.
xxx- Em
ps – the story I’ve written for this anthology is one of my all time favourites – all new and unseen
Bring it on !
Sign me up !
STEALS, DEALS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Scroll down to find books by my fellow authors.
We love helping each other reach new readers and I’m always happy to play host to some intriguing titles.
Amazon Giftcards and free books
Over 35 authors are offering their books FREE – for a limited time. Even better, we’ve pooled funds to offer an awesome giveaway! Enter to win a Kindle and Amazon Gift Cards – just for subscribing to our newsletters or following us on social media.
Freebie-tastic !  
   Rita Stradling
We’d hated each other since childhood. Now he’s occupying my thoughts, and we may soon step over a line that should never be crossed.
Culter isn’t just irresistible. He’s  my stepbrother.
99p/99c
Bad choices are the most fn !
Scorched Anthology
Thirteen new, exclusive dragon-shifter paranormal romances from NYT, USA Today and other bestselling authors.
 Burn me!
  Janine Ashbless
In rural Italy, a priest keeps a dark secret beneath his chapel. This is a thrilling story of an archangel banished from heaven and the human woman with whom he falls in love.
A stunning romance story – with a personal thumbs up from me!
Janine Ashbless
When Milja released the fallen angel Azazel from five thousand years of imprisonment, she did so out of love and dity. What she hadn’t bargained on was being drawn into his plan to free all his incarcerated brothers and wage war against the Powers of Heaven.
The sequel to ‘Cover HIm With Darkness’ – a stunning romance story with a personal thumbs up from me!
Samantha MacLeod
Six juicy, ruby seeds, staining my lips and fingers. Sealing my fate. Damning me.
Every year, as the seasons turn, I must travel to the darkness of the underworld.
You think you know the story but you haven’t heard the truth.
Free
 Tell us more…
  Maggie Carpenter
Avery has been trespassing on a private beach as payback for a broken promise, but the owner catches her and she must pay the price.
If you go down to the beach today…
Six Holiday Inspired Novellas
From humorous Regency and tender historical to quirky contemporary and gritty urban tales of faerie magic, human redemption, and the power of love.
99p/99c
Ooooh !
      Scarlett Scott
.She’s the American heiress he married for her fortune. He’s the heartless English rake who abandoned her after their wedding night. When they’re thrown together again, their marriage of convenience turns into something much steamier.
 We’re with you Baldr 
      Ellie St. Clair
Lord Joshua Greville, seeks adventure, secretly leading a group investigating criminal activity, the latest affecting the peerage. When Violet becomes entangled in his current case, he must act quickly to protect her.
99p/99c
A mystery to solve…
For Kindle Unlimited Readers
All the tiles listed are ‘free reads’ with Kindle Unlimited.
There’s a giveaway to enter too (to win Amazon giftcards).
Yes please!
More from me towards the end of November.

Miss Scruffy sends you a kiss

love
Emmanuelle

DINNER CONVERSATIONS with MARK LOWRY & ANDREW GREER

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
GRAMMY-winning Singer/Songwriter/Comedian
Mark Lowry and DOVE-nominated Songwriter/Author
Andrew Greer Launch All-New Film Series Podcast.
Debut Season of “Dinner Conversations with Mark Lowry
and Andrew Greer” Premieres Today.
Presented by Project Beautiful, First Ten Episodes Capture Table Talk
with Thought-Provoking Artists and Authors.
November 7, 2017, NASHVILLE, Tenn.  GRAMMY and singer/songwriter/author and GMA Mark Lowry-winning singer/songwriter/comedian and GMA Hall of Fame member ®DOVE Award nominee Andrew Greer have launched DINNER CONVERSATIONS WITH MARK LOWRY AND ANDREW GREER, an all-new film series podcast.
Dinner Conversations is based on the concept that communion begins with good conversation, and good conversation often begins around the dinner table. The first season, consisting of 10 episodes, finds Mark and Andrew inviting acclaimed artists, authors, and topic experts to gather around the dinner table to weigh in on a broad range of thought-provoking human interest conversations.
“In our modern day culture where we are constantly striving to be ‘heard,’ it is becoming increasingly important to make space in our lives for good conversation,” explains Andrew. “Some of the best conversations I have been a part of began around the dinner table. I keep thinking, If we could really listen to one another, perhaps we might also hear from God. So I am thrilled to host this series of table talks with my friend, Mark.”
Subtitled “Turning the Light On One Question at a Time,” Mark explains the show’s discussion-starter premise, “I love conversations that make me think. My buddy, Andrew, and I first met last year during an interview that inspired new thoughts and new ideas in both of us. I think the trend in podcasts is to provoke fresh thoughts through good conversation. With the help of our guests—some of our favorite good thinkers and table talkers—I am excited to help fire up a new batch of conversations in our homes, in our communities and within ourselves through Dinner Conversations. There’s one seat left … and it’s yours!”
Some of the season premiere episodes of Dinner Conversations include:
“Comic Grief” featuring Chonda Pierce and Ken Davis
“Blessed Are the Blended” featuring Sandi Patty
“What’s the Point of Grace?” featuring Point of Grace
“Adopted, Aren’t We All?” featuring Mark Schultz
“Fear, Forgiveness and Friendship” featuring Patsy Clairmont, Anita Renfroe and Jan Silvious.
The show’s title sponsor is Project Beautiful, an organization focused on human trafficking prevention. By targeting potential victims, Project Beautiful monitors have strategically intercepted 12,000 people from the traps of sex traffickers. The organization also provides post-rescue care for victims and helps prosecute traffickers.
We are thrilled to partner with Mark and Andrew on Dinner Conversations,” shares Doug Dvoak, Executive Director and Sr. Vice President of Project Beautiful. “Slavery still exists in the world, and that is a conversation everyone needs to hear. We love the desire they have to start the conversation and partner with us at Project Beautiful to save lives from human trafficking.”
Dinner Conversations is Produced and Directed by Andrew Greer and Mark Lowry serves as Co-Producer. Celeste Winstead is Executive Producer, and Chris Cameron of Center Street Recording is Assistant Director.
Viewers can subscribe to Dinner Conversations with Mark Lowry and Andrew Greer by clicking here.  Dinner Conversations can be viewed on YouTube, iTunes, Stitcher Radio, SoundCloud and many other popular audio and video podcast outlets.
ABOUT MARK LOWRY
Mark is an internationally known singer, storyteller, humorist, As a staple member of the GRAMMY®-award-winning Gaither Vocal Band, Mark has served as the sidesplitting comedic sidekick through Bill Gaither’s best-selling HOMECOMING video series and live tours. His musical recordings have earned him multiple Dove Awards, the highest honor in gospel music.author and songwriter. His world-famous lyric to “Mary Did You Know?” resulted in one of the most loved modern Christmas songs of this century. Co-written with Buddy Greene, the captivating Christmas tune has been recorded more than 400 times by a broad base of music luminaries like Pentatonix, Reba McEntire, Michael English, Sandi Patty and Rascal Flatts.
A deep thinker with an outrageous sense of humor (for which he often credits Attention Deficit Disorder), Mark’s life work consists of a deep discography of gold and platinum recordings.  But it is Mark’s desire to communicate profound truths through songs and stories that keep his multi-generational audience on the edge of their seats. “I leave the lights up in the audience so I can see the audience,” Mark comments. “I love getting closer to the people. And I treasure the serendipitous moments when God shows up, without warning, but very expectedly.”
A native Texan, when Mark is not ping-ponging cross-country on tour, he settles down in Houston. Visit Mark online at marklowry.com.
ABOUT ANDREW GREER
A six-time Dove Award-nominated singer/songwriter and respected author, Andrew Greer is known for his old soul sound and thoughtful prose. His folk-gospel discography displays a deep affection for vintage spiritual songs, instinctively captured on his critically acclaimed Angel Band hymn series, having reached the Top 10 on Amazon and iTunes’ mainstream charts upon release.
“Hymns are as true to my human experience as my own catalog of songs,” Andrew shares. “In fact, if it hadn’t been for the impact of those indelible tunes, I may have never fallen in love with musicor been introduced to God.” Andrew’s 2013 recording, All Things Bright & Beautiful, held the #1 position on Nielsen Christian SoundScan’s Instrumental chart for 25 consecutive weeks.
On tour dates at home and abroad, Andrew has shared the stage with folks like Amy Grant, Andrew Peterson, and Brandon Heath. His songs have been recorded by artists like Jaci Velasquez, Seth & Nirva, and John Tibbs. And his stories have appeared in publications like Christianity Today, In Touch and CCM Magazine. Andrew’s second book – Winds of Heaven, Stuff of Earth: Spiritual Conversations Inspired by the Life and Lyrics of Rich Mullins – released on Worthy Publishing this fall.
Also a native Texan, Andrew now gladly calls Franklin, Tennessee home. Visit Andrew online at andrew-greer.com.
ABOUT PROJECT BEAUTIFUL
Project Beautiful is a community of people who give monthly to Love Justice International to save precious lives from sex trafficking and slavery. Since 2004, Love Justice International (formerly Tiny Hands International) has worked primarily in Nepal, Bangladesh,and India, but they have recently expanded into South Africa, Mongolia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, and Thailand. Through transit monitoring and interception, they attack trafficking at the most strategic moment—while it is in the process of occurring and BEFORE women and children have been exploited or enslaved. Love Justice staff have intercepted over 12,000 people to prevent them from being trafficked. For more information, visit www.ProjectBeautiful.org
# # #

A magical, unforgettable read! THE TRICK ~by EMANUEL BERGMAN

The Trick

DESCRIPTION:

Sweeping between Prague during World War II and modern day Los Angeles, this deeply moving debut follows a young Jewish man in 1934 who falls in love and joins the circus as the country descends into war. Decades later, a young boy seeks out the now cynical, elderly magician in the hopes that his spells might keep his family together.
Prague, 1934: The fifteen-year-old rabbi’s son Moshe Goldenhirsch marvels at the legendary circus magician known as the Half-Moon Man. Unexpectedly, he falls madly in love with the magician’s delightful assistant, spurring him to run away from home to join the circus, which is slowly making its way to Germany as war looms on the horizon. Soon, he becomes a world-renowned magician known as the Great Zabbatini, even sought after by Adolf Hitler. But when Moshe is discovered to be a Jew, only his special talent can save him from perishing in a concentration camp.
Los Angeles, 2007: Ten-year-old Max Cohn is convinced that magic can bring his estranged parents back together before they divorce. So one night he climbs out of his bedroom window in search of the Great Zabbatini, certain this powerful magician has the power to reunite his family.
Perfect for fans of All the Light We Cannot See and The Nightingale, this radiant historical novel is both a deeply moving story of a small boy who believes in everything and an old man who believes in nothing—as well as a gripping and heartfelt tale about the beauty and fragility of life.

MY THOUGHTS:

This book grabbed my attention from the very first sentence. The writing is beyond anything I have ever read before. I felt as if the Author was sitting in the same room with me, quietly telling me this tale.

Author Emanuel Bergman seamlessly switches between characters, and the story flows seamlessly.

This is one book I look forward to reading again in the future.

It will be available for purchase on September 19, 2017.

AN AMERICAN CAGE w/trailer by Ted Galdi

 

Three inmates break out of a maximum-security prison in Texas, one of them Danny Marsh, a suburban kid in his twenties who landed in jail because of a crime he never intended to commit.


An American Cage follows Danny and his two escape partners over a twenty-four-hour period as they struggle to cross Texas to freedom in Mexico. On this dangerous journey, Danny has to evade the rabid Texas authorities, and even worse, the schemes of one of his closest allies, who isn’t who he seems.

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35648233-an-american-cage

http://www.tedgaldi.com/

Recipes: “Food52 Mighty Salads” by editors at Food52

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https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ILZPRJ4/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

A steady read. “THE WIDOW OF WALL STREET” ~by RANDY SUSAN MEYERS

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A provocative new novel by bestselling author Randy Susan Meyers about the seemingly blind love of a wife for her husband as he conquers Wall Street, and her extraordinary, perhaps foolish, loyalty during his precipitous fall.

Phoebe recognizes fire in Jake Pierce’s belly from the moment they meet as teenagers. As he creates a financial dynasty, she trusts him without hesitation—unaware his hunger for success hides a dark talent for deception.

When Phoebe learns her husband’s triumph and vast reach rests on an elaborate Ponzi scheme her world unravels. As Jake’s crime is uncovered, the world obsesses about Phoebe. Did she know her life was fabricated by fraud? Was she his accomplice?

While Jake is trapped in the web of his deceit, Phoebe is caught in an unbearable choice. Her children refuse to see her if she remains at their father’s side, but abandoning him feels cruel and impossible.

From penthouse to prison, with tragic consequences rippling well beyond Wall Street, Randy Susan Meyers’s latest novel exposes a woman struggling to survive and then redefine her life as her world crumbles.

MY THOUGHTS:

I requested this book from NetGalley because the description interested me, but I feared it would be too much like the true Bernie Madoff story or even the Trantel true story of Wall Street husband turned bank robber.

I shouldn’t have feared.

This story excels so well on its own that I never gave those two stories a thought while reading.

The pacing is perfect. The Author gives you their life together from teenagers to advanced age without dragging it out.

The main character is Phoebe although both she and her husband Jake tell the story. This too, is handled flawlessly by the Author.

You will love/hate Phoebe because she is so stupid in love, and Jake will make your skin crawl.

But, you will still root for Phoebe as she grows stronger as the story moves along.

I am ignorant at math, numbers and Wall Street, and the Author gives you enough detail about the subject to help understand the story, without confusing you or overwhelming you.

This is more a story of life, love and how we let love blind us to things we should really take note of, and I highly recommend it.

This book will be Available on Amazon April 11th 2017.

 

 

HOLOCAUST NON-FICTION~”TUTTI’S PROMISE” by K. HEIDI FISHMAN

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Recommended Reading

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I WILL BE BACK SOON!

be back soon

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Reading Recommendation! “A HOPE AT THE END OF THE WORLD” by~ SARAH LARK

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A Note From the Publisher

Cookbook:”Burma Superstar”

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Not just for Vegetarians! “Vibrant India” from Chitra Agrawal

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True History graphic novel. The Ukranian & Russian Notebooks by Igort

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Very well written. Broke my heart, but I recommend everyone read it.~January Gray

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The Saga is complete! The Bellator Saga by Cecilia London! <3

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#WatchMe Fan Made Teaser of #Triumph by Cecilia London ► https://youtu.be/o54ghCAoQRo

 
══ What Readers are Saying about Triumph ══
 

5 ✰ Review: “The conclusion to The Bellator Saga is, in a word, epic.” ~ Pop Kitty Reviews


5 ✰ Review: “This whole story was just so well written, and these characters just felt so real. I hope that she writes a spin off of the series with some of the other characters, because I’m not ready to let these guys go yet.” ~Jenn

5 ✰ Review: “ There were moments that were OMG..unbelievable, jaw dropping. The ending was completely satisfying. I must say I went through lots of tissue.’ ~Silvia
____________________________

 
Check out the latest release from Author Cecilia London:
 

►►► SYNOPSIS ◄◄◄

“All of your ideals, your hopes and dreams…they cease to matter if you abandon them in your darkest hour. We have to see this through to the end.”

Jack McIntyre and Caroline Gerard have never shied away from a challenge. As dual commanders of the American rebel forces, they now face the greatest adversity of their lives. Every decision has permanent consequences. Relationships are tested and restored. Hard truths come to light. When the reality of their situation finally hits them, there is one thing they know for certain.

No sacrifice is too great for love.

Triumph 

 is the 

six

th

and final

 book in The Bellator Saga. It should be read after the first 

five

 books in the series.


Buy Links:

Amazon: 

http://bit.ly/2kZV01i

 
Purchase the series today → http://bit.ly/2kaSfqj

Cute little romance. “The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts” by~ Jennifer Joyce

 

 

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Shared post

Originally posted on Nicholas C. Rossis: Image: Publishing Executive (pubexec.com) Written World Media, one of my favorite sources of information on publishing, published earlier this month a post on the trends that will define our industry in 2017 (if you don’t subscribe to its newsletter, you should; it’s free, comes out only once or twice…

via 9 Hot Trends In Publishing In 2017 — Don Massenzio’s Blog

A Favorite of mine! Children’s Book.”The Green Umbrella”by Jackie Azúa Kramer and Maral Sassouni

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Description

When Elephant takes a peaceful walk with his green umbrella he’s interrupted by a hedgehog, cat, bear, and rabbit—each claiming that they’ve had exciting adventures with his umbrella. After all, it is an umbrella, and it certainly hasn’t been on any adventures more exciting than a walk in the rain. Or has it?

Things aren’t always what they seem in this charming tale of imagination, sharing and friendship.
Bios
Jackie Azúa Kramer was born in Manhattan, New York. Many lives ago Jackie was an actor, singer, and school counselor. Her work with children presented her with an opportunity to address their concerns, secrets, and hopes through storytelling.
Many of Jackie’s best ideas happen in a bathtub full of bubbles. Jackie and her family live happily in Long Island, New York. The Green Umbrella is Jackie’s first picture book.

Maral Sassouni was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She has been an illustrator for more than 20 years. In 2013 she won the SCBWI Portfolio Grand Prize. Her work was selected by the Society of Illustrators in New York (2014), and also honored by the 3×3 Picture Book Show in 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Her art has been exhibited in group shows of children’s illustration all over the world: in Sàrmede, Italy, for the Immagini della Fantasia exhibit (2011, 2012); in Mexico City, at the Museo Franz Mayer in conjunction with the IBBY Congress of 2014; in South Korea, at the 2013 Nami Island Illustration exhibit. Also in Geneva, at the United Nations Headquarters, and in Brussels, at the European Parliament.

MY THOUGHTS:

I think this is one of my favorite Children’s books! Such a cute story, and the Illustrations are AMAZING!

I really think you will enjoy sharing this with your child!

I do not have Children, but I have read this book several times. It truly is a treasure of a book.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase, available January 31, 2017

I received this from NetGalley on behalf of the Publisher.

https://www.amazon.com/Green-Umbrella-Jackie-Az%C3%BAa-Kramer/dp/0735842183/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1475594777&sr=1-1&keywords=the+green+umbrella+in+books

 

 

PERSONAL RECOLLECTIONS of VINCENT VAN GOGH ~by ELISABETH DUQUESNE VAN GOGH~

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I am madly in love with this YA fiction book! “THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR” by NICOLA YOON

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This treasure of a book is pure magic.

It is listed as YA Grades 8 and up, and it certainly fits the bill for grown adults as well.

This book really made an impact on me, and I am still thinking about it, days after reading it.

It really portrays how much happens to us and around us and to others we interact with, in the span of one day.

How one brief interaction with a stranger can change their entire life.

The main characters are teenagers, Natasha and Daniel.

Natasha and her family are getting ready to be deported, and Daniel is struggling with what his parents want him to be and what he wants to do with his life.

Their lives touch for a brief random moment, and that brief random moment changes everything.

Nicola Yoon is an amazing and talented writer.

She writes in a way that truly draws you into the story.

I was torn between wanting to read faster and see what happens next, and slowing down to savor every moment.

I did not want this book to end.

And when it did end, I said, “WOW!”

The impact of this story.

It is only January of the new year, but I am positive that when I do my end of year review of my favorite books, this will still be on my top ten list.

I requested this book from Blogging For Books, and read and reviewed at my choosing.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase.

Shared post. A true story of Murder in the Arctic. “AT THE END OF THE WORLD”

A horrific event took place decades ago — but could the key to explaining it exist in the modern day? Author Lawrence Millman asked himself that question as he undertook the writing of At the End of the World, and the answer to it surprised even him. LAWRENCE MILLMAN: Here are the bare bones of…

via The Big Idea: Lawrence Millman — Whatever

How to solicit a book blogger/reviewer and other helpful information.

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BREAKING NEWS! SHARE IMMEDIATELY TO ALL SOURCES! 😉

BOOK BLOGGERS/REVIEWERS HAVE A LIFE OUTSIDE OF BOOKS TOO!

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I know, I know. Hard to believe.

Truth be told, we would love nothing better than to lounge with a book and our favorite beverage and do nothing but read, type out, post and share our reviews all day. Sometimes I myself get lucky enough to do just that, but not often enough.

But, life gets in the way.

So first, please always be understanding and patient. Sometimes you will have a long wait.

Selling books is a marathon, not a sprint.

Okay, now that I’ve gotten that out of the way…

I know you often meet Book bloggers/Reviewers on your social networking. Yes, it seems nice to have such easy access, I mean, you’ve been Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest “friends” for a bit of time, right?

But…this is a very rude way to contact us for a review.

I cannot tell you how many Facebook messages I’ve received of, “Free book for review?”

That’s it.

Look, I have an inbox or messages on my blog full of people asking for reviews. Why would I take the time to go research yours when I don’t even have a title to start searching?

Most Bloggers/Reviewers have Guidelines listed somewhere. Usually on their blog.

If you don’t know, ask.

Ask…ask…ask…

I do not review Romance, Erotica, Paranormal, Horror or Fantasy, and I daily (several times a day), spend a lot of time hitting delete, delete, delete.

Think of your precious time as well.

Why waste your time soliciting someone who does not read your genre?

For example, would you send your Erotica book to a Publisher of Children’s books?

I certainly hope not.

Look, we are here for you. ALL OF YOU, regardless of genre.

But please be thoughtful enough to search for our Guidelines or ask.

Do not automatically attach your book to an e-mail.

I don’t even look at those.

Who are you even? 😉

I want all of you to succeed. People LOVE the genres I don’t read.

Remember one of the biggest rules: FIND YOUR AUDIENCE.

That includes Book Bloggers/Reviewers.

Keep writing! 🙂

~January

book-reviews

 

All Good Things must come to an end. The FINAL book of the Bellator Saga by Cecilia London coming soon!

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The lovely thing about books is we can read them again.

I’m looking forward to reading this 6th and final installment of the Bellator Saga, and I’m looking forward to reading the entire series again.

Drama, sex, romance, politics, this series has it all.

While we are waiting, go check out the other five books in her series. I promise you will love, love, love them! ❤

Always free to download on Amazon! Publishers Lunch Buzz Books! Get Sneak Peeks of upcoming books!

 

 

 

 

 

 

BE KIND & KEEP WRITING…KEEP READING

Must we go over this again?

Some of you Indie Authors and Readers need to throw your “New year, new me”bullshit right out the window!

Why am I still seeing Indie Authors being mean to one another, and why Oh why am I seeing readers still complaining that 99 cents is too much for a book?

Why the jealousy and backstabbing between Authors?

Why the disconnect with readers?

Supporting another author does not extinguish your flame.

And 99 cents for a book is a bargain, even if you don’t like the book. Even if you don’t finish reading the book.

I don’t have the answers.

The true answer is within each individual.

Writing is hard work.

Reading is a treasure.

In a crazy unpredictable world, can we all join together to at least make the Indie World a peaceful place?

This has gotten beyond ridiculous.


Technology thriller! “ADVOCATE OF THE TRUTH” ~by ADRIAAN BOS

 

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This gripping novel paints a grim picture of what the future may have in store for us.

When Thomas, a former partner of a prestigious law firm, promises his best friend Sam to keep his groundbreaking Spider technology away from mankind, he has no clue what awaits him.

A chilling scenario unfolds when Thomas is plunged into a web of greed, corporate espionage, politics, organized crime and murder. As he finds signs pointing to a high-level conspiracy, a mysterious and deadly virus originating in Europe sweeps across the earth. Frightened politicians take advantage of the panic, with populism hitting fear buttons worldwide. A pandemic is looming, and so is anarchy.

Suddenly Sam’s Spider technology has life-saving potential, raising profound ethical questions:

  • Do we allow fear, greed and status to overrule the natural bonds between people?
  • Should the privacy of individuals be sacrificed to the illusion of safety?
  • How do we prevent technology from casting a dark shadow over the future?
  • And ultimately: is mankind nearing its expiration date?

His tense search for the truth leads Thomas to the medieval Italian city Assisi, oppressive boardrooms, back alleys, dimly-lit churches and a former monastery overlooking the Mediterranean. Meanwhile, he has two women vying for his heart: Sophia, a sensitive violinist who cared for his father in the final days of life, and Juliëtte, an alluring and intriguing Parisian he meets by chance in Tuscany.

Advocate of the Truth is a novel about the digital dragon that feeds on our privacy and the serious implications of nanochips registering and managing human behavior. On a more personal level, it is a deeply moving novel about friendship, love and the compassion Francis of Assisi stands for. This thrilling literary novel prompts you to reflect on wisdom from the past and ethics for the future. It is an intense struggle between good and evil that hits home in today’s society.

MY THOUGHTS

This is a must read, especially if you are curious or even fearful of the advances in our technology.

A very touching story about friendship as well, which only makes this book more realistic.

Well written and gripping. I could not put it down.

I received this book from Amsterdam Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

 

NATIONAL SOUP DAY CONTEST! ENTER YOUR SOUP RECIPE TO WIN!

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National Soup Day Contest – Win A Free Private Cooking Lesson & Have Your Soup Recipe On The Menu

Enter for a chance to have your favorite soup recipe featured on the Joel Palmer House Restaurants Menu & win a private cooking lessons with Chef Christopher

Send your favorite soup memory and recipe to info@joelpalmerhouserestaunt.com by 1/31/17 to enter.

CONTENT

The chill of midwinter always revives the tried and true soup recipes that we keep stashed away for “those days” that feel just right. Days that welcome memories of running inside after a long day of jumping in snow piles and being greeted with the silkiness of creamy tomato or gobbling down bowls of chicken noodle. Being the comfort food that it is, soup is so deeply personal and tells a story in a way that no sandwich or salad ever could.

Chef and fourth-generation restaurant owner, Christopher Czarnecki, has many fond memories of soup recipes handed down from grandfather to father to son. To celebrate these honored family traditions, Chef Christopher and the Joel Palmer House restaurant are sponsoring a soup contest throughout January (which is National Soup Month) and in honor of National Soup Day on February 4th. Chef Christopher and his team will be collecting soup recipes and the memories that make them special until January 31st. The winner will be announced on Feb. 4 to celebrate National Soup Day. The winner of the competition will have their recipe featured on the Joel Palmer House’s menu for a week in February and also enjoy a one-on-one Cooking and Q&A session with Chef Christopher Czarnecki to gain tips and tricks about cooking and creating that fine dining experience at home.

The Joel Palmer House is a fine dining restaurant nestled in the magical forests and rolling hills of Oregon’s wine country in the Willamette Valley. The dishes are creative and inviting as Chef Czarnecki makes his own mark on family recipes that have been passed down through 4 generations of Czarnecki Family chefs. The menu showcases the wild mushrooms and truffles unique to the Oregon region that are known for their alluring smell and subtlety they bring to each dish. One dish that highlights both the family’s history and Oregon’s local ingredients is the hearty and vegetarian Joe’s Wild Mushroom Soup.

The Pacific Northwest region’s wild mushrooms and Pinot Noir are a “match made in heaven” for the menu at the Joel Palmer House as the wine’s natural earthiness connects directly with the menu’s theme.

Czarnecki’s ability to take these wild, gnarled, “diamond in the rough” looking ingredients, and reveal its true character in intimate recipes is what makes the Joel Palmer House the unique food destination that it is.

Christopher Czarnecki began his food journey at a very young age, making whipped cream in 4th grade and starting to learn the art of hospitality and how to properly serve food at the family restaurant in Pennsylvania in the 5th grade.

“I literally grew up in the restaurant business,” said Czarnecki, as he recalled his time spent living above their restaurant as a child.

He continued explaining that he had always enjoyed cooking for himself and the joy it brought him to see others appreciate his food. Czarnecki stepped away from the restaurant business to join the United States Army and was deployed to Iraq, but upon his return, his father asked him to carry on the family business.

His days now starts at noon planning the evening for the restaurant where Czarnecki and his sous chef begin to plan the menu and discuss dish development. From there they begin preparing dinner as guests arrive for dinner between 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Once the dinner rush is over, they shut down the restaurant and are home by midnight to get some sleep and prepare for another busy day.

On cold and cloudy days Czarnecki shared that he finds joy in a bowl of rich and creamy clam chowder.

“Days like that I enjoy being able to sit down on the couch with my wife, eat, and enjoy each other’s company.” said Czarnecki.

In case you’re taking notes to try and gain and edge in the competition, French Onion soup is another favorite of Czarnecki’s as well as the wide range of possibilities that are available for Gazpacho.

With respect to pursuing your own culinary adventure and deciding which soup recipe to submit to the competition, Czarnecki advises to be creative and “…don’t let your fear of failure hinder you. Learn as much as possible. You should experiment! Whatever it is that you had at a restaurant, try making it at home. Look up 20 different recipes before you start and see what they have in common. From there you can get creative.”

This sage advice, Czarnecki says, comes from his time spent in the “culinary school of Nanny and PopPop” and his own journey in taking traditional Polish food and intertwining it in a dance with modern cooking methods, beautiful local ingredients and local Oregon wine pairings.

Share your own story through your favorite soup recipe at  http://www.joelpalmerhouse.com/soup-contest-2017 before Jan. 31, 2017 to be considered for the contest.

More information about The Joel Palmer House and their menu can be found at http://www.joelpalmerhouse.com/

GUEST POST by VIV NEWMAN

 

 

Assignations at the Astoria Hotel Brussels, Belgium

August/September 1914

 

When war broke out in August 1914, women everywhere were desperate to “do their bit” for the War Effort.  Amongst them were a British aristocrat and a German Doctor of Political Economy.  Larger than life characters, both were temporarily resident at Brussels’ luxurious Astoria Hotel following the city’s fall to the Germans in late summer 1914.  The ruthless German Governor of Brussels, Field-Marshall Colmar von der Goltz had little idea of what awaited him when these two women, independently, set about battering his defenses.  Who were they and why exactly were they there?

 

In August 1914, 47-year-old Millicent Duchess of Sutherland, an internationally renowned Society hostess, volunteered the services of the Millicent Duchess of Sutherland’s Hospital Unit to the Belgian Red Cross.  Having established a makeshift hospital in a convent in Namur, they were soon in direct and continuous line of fire of German heavy artillery.  When Namur fell on August 24th, they were trapped behind enemy lines.  Hastily burying one of her revolvers under a tree, tucking the other into her bloomers and, throwing all convention to the wind, Millicent laid siege to the German commander General von Bülow demanding her staff and their patients’ release.  In mid-September, no longer able to withstand the daily ducal bombardment, he ordered the imprisoned Unit to proceed to Brussels.  Let the Governor-General of the Belgian capital deal with the woman once dubbed “Meddlesome Milly”.  Ensconced (at German expense) in the Hotel Astoria, amused by the two sentries posted at the door of her suite, delighted by the excellent poached eggs and toast and her well-appointed bathroom (after the Spartan convent one), Millicent resumed the tactics she had used so effectively in Namur and demanded constant audiences with von Goltz.  Eventually the German Commander capitulated, contacting the Kaiser himself for advice about what to do with this woman who was running up a very sizable hotel bill and seemed determined not to understand that Germany faced more pressing concerns than what to do with a small voluntary Hospital Unit.

 

Perhaps having seen the bill, the Kaiser ordered the Unit’s release.  He foresaw endless trouble and expense if Millicent remained a prisoner.  Better, he felt, to save Germany the inconvenience and, to make ensure their immediate departure from their superior prison quarters, he underwrote the cost of the petrol of their return journey to England.

 

In her account Six Weeks at the War, Millicent warned, “spy fever rages on the Continent.”  However, the British authorities were dismissive, “I was told I was overstrung!”  Time would prove Millicent right.  Unbeknownst to her, another Astoria resident was poised to become a key player in the murky role of espionage.  As resolute as Millicent, she too had bombarded von Goltz.  Although he and she were on the same side, he would have been forgiven for doubting this.  Her name: Elisabeth Schragmüller.

 

In 1908, despite few German universities accepting women students, Elisabeth entered the Fribourg-en-Brisgau university.  An able linguist, she proved so brilliant that she was reluctantly allowed to continue her studies.  The first German woman to earn a doctorate in Political Economy, her wealthy family considered her outstanding brain an inconvenience for a female.  Dubbed ‘Fraulein Doktor’ Elisabeth began social work amongst what she termed ‘the broad strain of the population and with the working-class; this increased her knowledge and understanding of human psychology, skills she would put to excellent use in the service of her beloved Fatherland.

 

When war broke out, cursing fate that she was female, she hastened to German-occupied Brussels.  Her sister who was performing a suitably feminine role as a nurse, begged her to do nothing that might endanger the family’s reputation.  Residing at the Astoria, Elisabeth daily waylaid von der Goltz demanding a job.  As worn down by her as he would be by Millicent, he shunted her off to a backwater, a military office handling mail confiscated from Belgian soldiers.  Her ability to pick out every vital nugget of information and create a bigger picture to provide military commanders with an accurate overview of troop morale and movements drew the attention of Walter Nicolaï, Head of the German Intelligence Bureau.  He sent her to be trained in military intelligence.  His staff were outraged when they discovered that she was to head up the entire anti-French Intelligence Bureau.  Unheard of for a woman working alongside members of the German Army, she was placed in charge of the recruitment and training of agents as well as de-briefing them after their mission across the entire Western theatre.  To her, every aspect of intelligence gathering was a ‘mind game’ which she relished and played to the very best of her superb intellectual abilities.

 

She set high standards for those whom she recruited.  What Millicent had termed “systematic espionage”, was a skill which could be taught and learnt, not an adventure to be undertaken for cheap thrills and a quick buck.  From her brief career in social work, she realized that a good spy can be found in unlikely places.  An illiterate florist and a music-hall artiste in Marseille proved amongst her most effective agents, responsible for sinking thousands of tons of Allied shipping and contributing to France’s defeat on the Chemin des Dames.

 

What of the Astoria itself?  Having accommodated the highest echelons of the German Army between 1914 and 1918, in 1919 Brussels’ premier hotel resumed its glittering pre-war life where anyone who was anyone went to be seen.  Its distinguished guest list for the 20th century includes the Crown Prince of Japan, the Shah of Persia, Winston Churchill, David Ben Gurion, Arthur Rubinstein and of course, Millicent, Duchess of Sutherland and Fraulein Doktor Elisabeth Schragmüller.

 

Read about more extraordinary women during World War One in historian Viv Newman’s books:

We Also Served: The Forgotten Women of the First World War

Pen and Sword: http://tinyurl.com/zwjvqep or Amazon http://tinyurl.com/jzbmflt

Nursing Through Shot and Shell: A Great War Nurse’s Story

Pen and Sword: http://tinyurl.com/z42l7pq or Amazon http://tinyurl.com/gpol9v9

Tumult and Tears: The Story of the Great War Through the Eyes and Lives of its Women Poets Pen and Sword: http://tinyurl.com/j295t6y or Amazon http://tinyurl.com/ju4d7wu

Singer, Siren, Spy: The Undercover World of Agent Régina Diana will be published by Pen and Sword n November 2017

Visit www.firstworldwarwomen.co.uk

Trends in book titles

In 2016, I saw many books with Light or Air in their title. I also saw a lot of “50 shades of…”

This year I am seeing a lot with water in the title. Interesting to me. Curious as to how authors come up with their titles.

I am not a reader of Romance novels, and I no longer read (or at least I don’t review) Erotica, but I am sick to pieces of seeing “50 Shades of…” in the title.

Even if I did read Romance or still reviewed Erotica, the lack of originality in the title would turn me away from buying that book.

I’m sure the sales numbers on these books would disagree with me, but I am seriously sick of the “50 Shades” trend. And yes, I got caught up in the excitement of The 50 Shades of Gray noise. I read the first one, skimmed the second one, and barely glanced at the third one.

I did not enjoy them at all. There are WAY better stories out there than 50 Shades of Gray. The BDSM lifestyle was not portrayed accurately at all, in my opinion.

But again…the sales for those books and movies, will be in disagreement with my opinion, and that is okay.

At this point, anything with “50 shades” in its title makes it feel gimmicky to me.

How do you feel about this trend?

How did I not find this one sooner? “UNLUCKY DAY”J.R. McLEAY

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DESCRIPTION:

EVERYONE HAS TO COME OUT IN THE OPEN EVENTUALLY.

A mysterious sniper is killing random New York City citizens every day at the same time.

Detective Joe Bannon and his partner Hannah Trimble follow the breadcrumb trail of clues down repeated blind alleys. With citizens fearing to venture outside, the streets of Manhattan have become nearly deserted.

When the sniper begins escalating the profile of his targets, higher level government agencies are pulled in. But the shooter always seems to be one step ahead of the law and slips away whenever the authorities get close.

As copycat killings begin spreading to other cities across the U.S., the President hatches a dangerous plan to trap the killer. Can Joe and Hannah catch the assassin before he executes the most closely guarded man in history?

MY THOUGHTS:

I opened my Kindle Oasis the other day, to finish reading an entirely different book. Of course, Amazon gives me ads, and this book is what popped up as a suggestion for me.

“One click and that was it!” Those of you addicted to Amazon like I am, know what I mean! 🙂

I read this book cover to cover in one sitting, and did not want to put it down the few times I had to stop to refill my coffee mug.

The plot was believable, especially this day and age in the real world. In this book, the Sniper shoots at a certain time of day, so the general public changes their typical daily routine because of it.

I really like Detective Joe Bannon, and I hope…REALLY hope, that the author is considering maybe doing a series of books with this Detective? (Pretty please.)

Joe is a smart detective, but he makes mistakes and has flaws, which makes him more likable and believable.

So, I’m hoping to see future books with him. I mean, REALLY REALLY hoping!

There are a couple of sad and shocking moments in this book, and the conclusion was realistic.

I am currently reading The Cicada Prophecy by this author. It is a medical thriller. It too would be a ‘read in one sitting book,’ if life would quit interrupting me.

Author J.R. McLeay is an incredible writer and his range is broad. I really think you will enjoy his books!

Here is the Amazon link for purchase. I promise you will not be disappointed. My review for The Cicada Prophecy will be up in a few days.

 

 

The Cicada Prophecy

Check out this book on Goodreads: The Cicada Prophecy https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24901405-the-cicada-prophecy

Unlucky Day: A Crime Thriller

Check out this book on Goodreads: Unlucky Day: A Crime Thriller https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33302078-unlucky-day

JOIN ME ON MY FB PAGE AT BOOK LAMP READING ROOM!

Hello!

Here is the link to my Face Book Page: Book Lamp Reading Room. CJ Soyer has just joined me as an additional administrator.

We post writing/reading tips, book reviews and Giveaways.

Also, the wall is open so you are free to post your book related stuff there as well.

The Page is strictly monitored and anything not writing or reading related will be deleted.

Be sure to post your sales links there too.

Enjoy!

 

https://www.facebook.com/BookLampReadingRoom/

Shared post

The writing I seek to produce is one trimmed of fat. Reading bulky writing is exhausting and has a tendency to ramble. It does pay to switch up sentence length however, so don’t misunderstand me there. One issue that irritates me is the word “that”. Let’s look at the first sentence of this paragraph: “The […]

via Writing Tips: Extraneous “That” — Writings By Ender

BERLIN CALLING~by Kelly Durham

berlin-calling


DESCRIPTION:

Germany 1938. While young and old are captivated by the country’s rapid ascent under the leadership of Adolf Hitler, naive Maggie O’Dea, an American studying abroad, finds her own fortunes turning after falling in love with a handsome soldier and landing a job with the Propaganda Ministry. Embodying the infectious spirit of nationalism sweeping the country, her powerful dispatches launch her broadcasting career as a champion of the Fatherland.

But as Germany invades one peaceful neighbor after another and the wheels of World War II are set in motion, Maggie starts opening her eyes to the grim reality of Hitler’s intentions. Torn between her successful career rooted in the allegiance to her adopted land and a growing dread over her role in a tyrant’s ruthless reign, Maggie—supported by a new love—must fight her own war of conscience. Will she survive a conflict threatening the world…and her own life?

MY THOUGHTS:

It took me a few chapters to get into this book, and to start caring about the characters, but once I did, it was an amazing ride!

It really makes you think about the multitude of decisions people had to make during WW2.

To have to severely examine ones morals and options? More difficult than we realize.

Lake Union Publishing offered me the book to review at my choosing.

Enjoy!

THE NEST~ by TERRY GOODKIND

 

I enjoyed this book for the most part. The main character, Kate Bishop makes a strong heroine. I could see this book being turned into a television mini-series, say six episodes over a two week period.

The book starts off strong, but from about Chapter six through Chapter thirteen, it is nothing but Kate and a female detective talking over coffee. And talking…and talking…and talking… Now, there conversation is very important to the plot and story, however it does drag out for a bit.

Hang in though, because it is worth it.

This is NOT for the faint of heart. It is very graphic, but also a very gripping tale once you get past Chapter 13.

Even though the book slowed for several chapters, I highly recommend this book.

I was approached by SkyHorse Publishing to review this book, and received a complimentary hard back copy to read and review at my choosing. I would like to express my gratitude to the Publisher and Author. 🙂

Here is the Amazon link for purchase:

An update from January in January!

Hello!

I hope everyone is staying safe and warm this Winter season!

Sorry for the silence. I recently had a minor medical procedure and the recovery is taking longer than expected because…well…I am getting older and stuff like this takes longer! Lol!

I have most likely read your book if you have sent it to me or if I have chosen it from the Publisher or places such as LibraryThing or NetGalley.

Please be patient as I get around to turning my notes into a readable review!

This is the year Indie Authors will shine and I will be with you every step of the way, even though at times my steps might be a little slower!

Much love and Happy 2017!

January

The Bellator Saga by Cecilia London concludes.

This is a bittersweet moment. I am looking forward to reading the final book of the Bellator Saga, but I hate to see it end.

I will certainly re-read this series again. I have already read the first four twice.

I highly recommend this entire series. It has everything. Well rounded characters, a thrilling and solid plot, and even Romance!

 

Berlin Calling

Check out this book on Goodreads: Berlin Calling https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18362074-berlin-calling

Thrilling! “Child’s Play” by Merry Jones

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Description

What was your most disappointing read of 2016?

It happens. It is going to happen. Especially if you are an avid or constant reader.

You get hyped about a book, only for it to disappoint your terribly.

I am not talking about a story going in a direction that was unexpected, or you wishing the Author hadn’t killed off one of your favorite minor characters.

I am talking about a book that completely fell flat and you were horribly disappointed.

What book was it for you?

For me, it was this one.

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MY THOUGHTS:

Why was I so disappointed? Because it fell totally flat. I would not consider this a full-length look at Zapple at all, and I feel the Beatles’ was used as a selling point, as it covered very, very little specific to the Beatles.

Even the photos were grainy and disappointing.

I like to promote books. Sometimes I come across a book that just doesn’t hit the spot for me, but I feel others will enjoy it, so I share it.

But sometimes, a book just fails me completely.

What book or books disappointed you in 2016 and what books are you waiting to read in 2017?

Thoughts?

Failed New Year’s Writing Resolutions? Stick to New Writing Goals — Archer’s Aim

Every writer’s New Year’s resolution is to write more. But it’s easy to fall short of those writing goals. Here are tips to set new goals, and stick with them. Source: Failed New Year’s Writing Resolutions? Stick to New Writing Goals

via Failed New Year’s Writing Resolutions? Stick to New Writing Goals — Archer’s Aim

Novel about the Polish Jews during WW 2 ‘WE WERE THE LUCKY ONES’ by~ GEORGIA HUNTER

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DESCRIPTION:

It is the spring of 1939 and three generations of the Kurc family are doing their best to live normal lives, even as the shadow of war grows closer. The talk around the family Seder table is of new babies and budding romance, not of the increasing hardships threatening Jews in their hometown of Radom, Poland. But soon the horrors overtaking Europe will become inescapable and the Kurcs will be flung to the far corners of the world, each desperately trying to navigate his or her own path to safety.

As one sibling is forced into exile, another attempts to flee the continent, while others struggle to escape certain death, either by working grueling hours on empty stomachs in the factories of the ghetto or by hiding as gentiles in plain sight. Driven by an unwavering will to survive and by the fear that they may never see one another again, the Kurcs must rely on hope, ingenuity, and inner strength to persevere.

In a novel of breathtaking sweep and scope that spans five continents and six years and transports readers from the jazz clubs of Paris to Kraków’s most brutal prison to the ports of Northern Africa and the farthest reaches of the Siberian gulag, We Were the Lucky Ones demonstrates how in the face of the twentieth century’s darkest moment, the human spirit can find a way to survive, and even triumph.

MY THOUGHTS:

A novel about so much more than the Holocaust. Expertly told and written. You will read this in one or two sittings.

An epic journey. ‘THE PATRIOTS’ by~SANA KRASIKOV

patriots

Description

A non-fiction Children’s book about the Holocaust that I recommend without hesitation.

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Review in Covers

Gallery

HOPES FOR INDIES IN 2017

I have high hopes for Indie Authors this New Year. January Gray Reviews is going to focus 80% plus of  its the time to Indie Authors starting in 2017.

My biggest hope is that writers find their own voice and write what they want, not what they think the trend is.

2016 was semi-disappointing as I saw a plethora of books with similar titles and story lines, that seemed like attempts to mimic the publishing house best selling books.

Please find YOUR voice. There are many readers who want to hear it.

I also hope that when the negative reviews come in, and they will…every writer gets negative reviews…that you brush them off and keep writing.

Let’s do this:

First, think of the name of your favorite Best Selling Author. You know, the name that even those who do not read books are familiar with.

Now, go look them up on Amazon, and read some of their reviews. Yes, the one, two and even three star reviews.

I’m going to go grab a cup of coffee while I wait for you to do that………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

SEE?

Yes, Stephen King, Jodi Picoult, and gasp even Nicholas Sparks have poor reviews.

So breathe…cry…get mad…swear you will never write again…

and then…

GET. BACK. TO. WRITING.

But my BIGGEST hope for Indie Authors in 2017 is that their work is more appreciated. Actually, I hope that as the world continues to implode on itself around us, that more and more people turn to ALL of the arts as a break from the madness.

I think the movies really make writing look romantic.

And…admittedly, sometimes it is.

But mostly it is work, and sweat and tears, and yes…blood will be drawn.

I want to see Indie Authors more respected. I want the general public to understand why so many people turn away from the big publishing houses and by not going that route does not mean they are not a good or even great writer.

Once I finish catching up with my current stack of books to be read and reviewed, I promise that January Gray Reviews will be there for you Indie Authors.

Every day. All of the way.

Happy New Year (2017)

January Gray

 

A STORY OF LOVE BASED ON GUSTAVE KIMPT’S MASTERPIECE by~EMMA ROSE MILLAR & MIRIAM DRORI

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DESCRIPTION:

Who is the young woman with the haunting gaze in Gustav Klimt’s 1917 masterpiece, The Women Friends?

Selina Brunner is running from the demons of her past, cut off from her family in a sleepy Tyrolean village, and lost in the soulless city of Vienna, where everything – even one’s very existence – is a lie.

When, amidst growing fear of sinister developments in Vienna, an exotic stranger comes to town, Selina finds old passions reignited and her whole world turned upside down.

The Women Friends: Selina is the first in a series of fictional tales about the women who inspired this great artist.

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781911381440
PRICE $2.99 (USD)

 

The Hard Truth About Publishing—What Writers & Readers NEED to Know~Shared Post

Today, dear newbies. I am going to take you on a tour behind the curtain. Also for those who are NOT newbies, feel free to pass this to family in a “Take Your Clueless Friends Who Think You W…

Source: The Hard Truth About Publishing—What Writers & Readers NEED to Know

Recommended Reading! “THE LAST DAYS OF CAFE’ LEILA” by~ DONIA BIJAN

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Description

RECOMMENDED READING. “IN THRALL” by EVA HANAGAN

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Description

Classic Classics Summaries? – Memes… — Chris The Story Reading Ape’s Blog-Shared post

Source: WrongHands1.com Source: WrongHands1.com Source: WrongHands1.com

via Classic Classics Summaries? – Memes… — Chris The Story Reading Ape’s Blog

Heart wrenching must read! “NINE FOLDS MAKE A PAPER SWAN” by~ RUTH GILLIGAN

 

 

nine-folds-make-a-paper-swan

ATTENTION PLEASE! — My train of thoughts on…

Originally posted on The Bingergread Cottage: Ladies and Gentlemen. This is a momentous day for me. I was a very productive writer until I threw myself off a motorbike in a triple somersault. That was two years ago and finally…FINALLY, I have another book ready for release in March 2017 from Crooked Cat Books. This…

via ATTENTION PLEASE! — My train of thoughts on…

I am completely in love with this book! “AN EXALTATION OF LARKS” ~by SUANNE LAQUEUR

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“We’re so alike, you and I. It’s no wonder we kept finding each other.”

September 11, 1973: Eleven-year-old Alejandro Penda watches from his apartment window as Santiago, Chile falls to a military coup, destroying his family and his childhood. Arriving alone in America, he’s taken in by the Larks: a prominent family in the town of Guelisten. Though burdened by unresolved grief for his disappeared parents, he becomes fiercely loyal to the Larks, eventually marrying one of their daughters, Valerie.

September 11, 2001: Javier Landes watches from his apartment window as New York City falls to terrorism. As one of Manhattan’s top-paid male escorts, this professional lover has never lacked for company and is loyal only to himself. But in the wake of 9/11, Jav is named guardian for an orphaned nephew in Guelisten and must open his carefully-guarded heart to pain he’s long suppressed.

Alex, Valerie and Jav meet first in their twenties, with a sudden attraction each finds strange and compelling. When they meet again in their forties, they discover not only is their bond still strong, but their life experiences are strangely similar. All have been shaped by separate 9/11’s, and their unfinished business from the past will change everything they know about love, loyalty and friendship.

“Life has rules. You cannot come in the middle of the night and take what we agreed isn’t yours.”

Across three decades and two continents, Suanne Laqueur’s fifth novel explores the unpredictability of sexual attraction, how family ties are forged, torn and mended, and how love’s downfall can turn to exaltation.

MY THOUGHTS:

I am crazy in love with this book. The writing is brilliant, and the story she weaves is a journey for the reader.

The flaws of the characters make them more lovable and easy to connect with.

This is one of those books I wish I could forget, simply so I could read it again with fresh eyes. I will for certain be reading it again in the future.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Exaltation-Larks-Suanne-Laqueur/dp/1539178749/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1481638161&sr=8-1-spell&keywords=an+exaulation+of+larks

 

 

Welsh Wednesdays: Welsh Crime Books on Amazon – suzannebowditch — writerchristophfischer~ Shared Post

Suzanne Bowditch’s crime book is cruising along at No 46 in the Amazon charts, under ‘Best Sellers in Welsh Crime.’ Stella Windermere The case of the Polish sailor, tells of an older lady, an amate… Source: Welsh Crime Books on Amazon – suzannebowditch Welsh Crime Books on Amazon My new crime book is cruising along at No […]

via Welsh Wednesdays: Welsh Crime Books on Amazon – suzannebowditch — writerchristophfischer

Wrap-up of Best Books of 2016 Lists — Live to Write – Write to Live~ Shared Post

This collection won’t be anything close to complete, but I hope it will at least offer up a few selections that pique your interest. So, peruse and enjoy. And, if you find other lists that should be added to the wrap-up, please feel free to leave links in the comments. (My list is skewed to […]

via Wrap-up of Best Books of 2016 Lists — Live to Write – Write to Live

MUST READ. ‘STRIPPED TO THE BONE~PORTRAITS OF SYRIAN WOMEN’ by~ GHADA ALATRASH

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DESCRIPTION:

Set between war-torn Syria and the West, Stripped to the Bone explores issues of identity, love, strife, courage and resilience in seven fictional portraits of Syrian women.

MY THOUGHTS:
I almost wish this was required reading. Especially for American women. This is a difficult book to read. I had to step away from it several times, as it will wreck your soul.

It will re-enforce how lucky we are to live in America and have the freedoms we do as women. It is also a reminder of things that could happen.

The poetry and stories are so very touching and heartbreaking.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase.

https://www.amazon.com/Stripped-Bone-Portraits-Syrian-Women-ebook/dp/B01FSWKNC4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1481656446&sr=8-1&keywords=stripped+to+the+bone+portraits+of+syrian+women#customerReviews

helsinki

 

DESCRIPTION:

Bettina lies unconscious on the subway tracks. Hanno, Stasi agent and her former lover, is gaining fast on the fugitives. Will she and Thomas make it out alive? Will Hanno shoot them before the next train thunders through?

Berlin, 1989. The Soviet empire is close to financial collapse. The East German public is rioting. The Party is falling apart and the dreaded Stasi is working corruptly to secure its leaders’ futures. In Dresden KGB agent Vladimir Putin sets out to exploit this for his own benefit.

West Berlin economics student and small time currency blackmarketeer Thomas Wundart has been trapped into spying for the feared East German security organisation, the Stasi. His target is his oldest and best friend, Stephan, now important in West German finance as personal assistant to the head of Deutsche Bank and key to critical financial information the Stasi wants.

Thomas’s Stasi manager is Bettina – beautiful, intelligent, strong-minded and feisty – and Thomas’s emotions swing wildly between his growing infatuation with her and his fury at her icy control. He senses she’s attracted to him but loyalty to her country come first.

After the Berlin Wall opens in November Colonel Dieter, a high ranking Stasi officer recognised for his integrity and loyalty to East Germany, sends Bettina and Thomas on a highly secret and very dangerous mission to Dresden and the Stasi HQ where they discover financial fraud, blackmail and murder. They learn also of a mysterious Frankfurt-based organisation with Stasi links, Phoenix Securities, which looks to benefit hugely from currency manipulation on unification.
Recalled urgently to Berlin with hard evidence of Stasi corruption at the highest levels they find tragedy. Realising the serious danger they’re now in they hide away in a secret East Berlin flat before making a perilous run for it, desperately fleeing for their lives towards the West.

This is a taut, urgent, fast-paced thriller set in a totalitarian state, East Germany, in the very recent past. It cleverly mixes real events and real people with an imaginative telling of a gripping tale about financial fraud, chicanery and dodgy politics, hard to put down. The story involves greed, totalitarian brutality, murder and betrayal, love and integrity, Western arrogance and ignorance, but also a fierce commitment to justice. The characters are rounded and real and grow and develop as the story unfolds. Does crime pay? Will Bettina and Thomas both escape? Will the financial mastermind behind Phoenix make a killing? And what about Hanno and about Putin? Because it’s all there, waiting for you to find out, best get a copy of the book now before the price rises!

As of this posting, the Kindle edition is $4.99 and I enjoyed this book so much, that I would gladly pay full hardback copy price.

MY THOUGHTS:

This book was exactly what I completely enjoy reading! It was fast paced and kept your attention. Sometimes it made me a nervous wreck 😉 .

I would love to see this as a movie.

I will read this again in the future.

If you like well developed, fast paced thrillers, this book is for you.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase:

https://www.amazon.com/Helsinki-Pact-Alex-Cugia-ebook/dp/B01HYKVPCU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1481655852&sr=8-1&keywords=the+helsinki+pact

 

 

A SICKNESS IN TIME by~ M.F. THOMAS and NICHOLAS THURKETTLE

time.jpgDESCRIPTION:

THE MOST DANGEROUS OPERATION

In 2038, the human race is in a death spiral, and most people do not even know it yet. Technology that was supposed to make us better and stronger instead is birthing a strange and terrible plague we may not be able to stop. When the young daughter of Josh Scribner, a wealthy tech entrepreneur, starts to succumb to the illness, he dedicates his fortune in a desperate effort to save her life. Working with a friend & celebrated physicist, Josh develops the ability to send objects back through time. Their goal to recruit an agent in the past who might change our fatal path.

In our present day, a broken and traumatized Air Force veteran finds a strange message in the woods, drawing her into an adventure spanning decades. All humanity is at stake, as she and her small group of friends become the unlikely heroes taking up the secret fight against our future doom.

MF Thomas and Nicholas Thurkettle, authors of the acclaimed sci-fi thriller Seeing by Moonlight, are back with this time-twisting adventure that asks if our own destiny can be healed.

MY THOUGHTS:

I completely enjoyed reading this book and I LOVE that a female is the leader and ‘hero’ of this book.

If you like realistic style futuristic books, I highly recommend this one!

Alarmingly realistic, given the way things are going for real these days!

Very believable with a great plot and excellent characters!

I received this book from the Authors and I appreciate their patience!

Here is the Amazon link for purchase. As of this posting the Kindle edition is $2.99. Go grab it now and add it to your TBR!

https://www.amazon.com/Sickness-Time-MF-Thomas-ebook/dp/B01K7UC8S4/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1481654987&sr=8-1

Book recommendation!

I think you might like this book – “Simply Faulkner” by Philip Weinstein.

Start reading it for free: http://amzn.to/2hBComx

One of my new favorite authors! FREDRICK BACKMAN

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Description

From the New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove, My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry, and Britt-Marie Was Herecomes an exquisitely moving portrait of an elderly man’s struggle to hold on to his most precious memories, and his family’s efforts to care for him even as they must find a way to let go.

“Isn’t that the best of all life’s ages, an old man thinks as he looks at his grandchild, when a boy is just big enough to know how the world works but still young enough to refuse to accept it.”

Grandpa and Noah are sitting on a bench in a square that keeps getting smaller every day. The square is strange but also familiar, full of the odds and ends that have made up their lives: Grandpa’s work desk, the stuffed dragon that Grandpa once gave to Noah, the sweet-smelling hyacinths that Grandma loved to grow in her garden.

As they wait together on the bench, they tell jokes and discuss their shared love of mathematics. Grandpa recalls what it was like to fall in love with his wife, what it was like to lose her. She’s as real to him now as the first day he met her, but he dreads the day when he won’t remember her.

Sometimes Grandpa sits on the bench next to Ted, Noah’s father—Ted who never liked math, prefers writing and playing guitar, and has waited his entire life for his father to have time for him, to accept him. But in their love of Noah, they have found a common bond.

Grandpa, Grandma, Ted, and Noah all meet here, in this peculiar space that is growing dimmer and more confusing all the time. And here is where they will learn to say goodbye, the scent of hyacinths in the air, nothing to fear. This little book with a big message is certain to be treasured for generations to come.

A Note From the Publisher

Enjoy Fredrik Backman’s first novella! Please email atriapublicity@simonandschuster.com to discuss review coverage, confirm a date for a blog review, or send links (Netgalley feedback links are fine – direct emails also appreciated).

Advance Praise

“I read this beautifully imagined and moving novella in one sitting, utterly wowed, wanting to share it with everyone I know.”

—Lisa Genova, New York Times bestselling author of Still Alice

Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9781501160486
PRICE $18.00 (USD)

Links

 

MY THOUGHTS:

If you have not read any of Fred Backman’s books, go check them out right now! I highly recommend this one and A MAN CALLED OVE.

His books will really touch you and are enjoyable to read.

RIVALITÀ TRA TRE FRATELLI E UNA VEDOVA ( RIVALRY BETWEEN THREE BROTHERS AND A WIDOW) by JOHANNA HEIDEMAN

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Amsterdam publishing allowed me to review this book, and I would like to extend my gratitude towards them. 🙂

It is in Italian, so it took me a little longer to read, and I appreciate their patience.

DESCRIZIONE (DESCRIPTION)

Sulla base di una profonda ricerca archivistica l’autore ha scoperto perché la chiesa Sta Maria in Aracoeli a Roma ha goduto di donazioni importantissime di tre Mattei-fratelli separati: Savo, Alessandro e Paolo Mattei, e da Savo’s vedova Flaminia Margani. Molti anni di lite familiale e processi concernente loro patrimonio hanno prodotto una rivalità tra i fratelli volendo superare l’uno l’altro con donazioni religiosi. Non solo ha ognuno cercato a promuovere la sua condizione sociale, ma due hanno anche ottenuto il patronato di una cappella nella chiesa, mentre Savo è stato immortalato da suo ritratto nella decorazione dell’abside pagata da sua vedova. Poco dopo Flaminia è stata uccisa a causa della sua ricchezza ereditata.

ENGLISH TRANSLATION

Based on a thorough archival research, the author discovered that the church Sta Maria in Aracoeli in Rome has enjoyed important donations of three Mettei-seperated brethren: Savo, Alessandro and Paolo Mattei, and Savo’s widow Faminia Margani.

Many years, a family dispute concerning their assets and processes have produced a rivalry between the brothers wanting to overcome one another with religious donations. Not only has each one tried to promote its social, but two conditions have also obtained the patronage of a chapel in the church, while Savo was immortalized by his portrayal in the decoration of the apse paid by his widow.

Shortly after, Faminia was killed because of her inherited wealth.

MY THOUGHTS

This is one of the most well researched books I have ever read. The photos are beautiful as well.

The tragedy of this true history, is that the brothers and one of their widows never teamed together. Individually they did amazing things, but together it would have been epic.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase:

https://www.amazon.com/RIVALIT%C3%80-TRA-TRE-FRATELLI-VEDOVA-ebook/dp/B00K8CJPWE/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1481639976&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=RIVALIT%C3%80+TRA+TRE+FRATELLI+E+UNA+VEDOVA+%28+RIVALRY+BETWEEN+THREE+BROTHERS+AND+A+WIDOW%29+by+JOHANNA+HEIDERMAN

 

 


	

Add this to your TBR right now! “Revelation: A Thriller” by Carter Wilson

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Once I started reading this book, the ONLY times I put it down was when I needed to catch my breath from the incredible ride the Author was taking me on!

From the very first page, you are immediately immersed into the story.

I LOVE Carter Wilson’s style of writing.

Set up the scene, add a dash of backstory, and BAM continue on telling the tale!

Description

If you like fast paced, well told stories with characters you care about, hop over to Amazon and reserve your copy of this book NOW! It will be available December 13, 2016

I look forward to reading it again. Well crafted plot and developed characters.

I received my requested copy from NetGally and am giving this review at my choosing.

Run to this link and pre-order your copy, and then buckle up for the ride!

https://www.amazon.com/Revelation-Thriller-Carter-Wilson/dp/1608092186/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1476191687&sr=8-1&keywords=Revelation+a+thriller

 

 

How Different Types of Reading Change Your Writing — Chris The Story Reading Ape’s Blog- Shared post

Originally posted on Kristen Twardowski: ? You are what you read. That is a simple enough concept, but it turns out that it means more than just that people who read mysteries may become better at writing mysteries. What a person reads fundamentally changes the structure of his or her writing. In June of 2016, the International Journal…

via How Different Types of Reading Change Your Writing — Chris The Story Reading Ape’s Blog

Five of the Best Books for Cat-Lovers — Interesting Literature- Shared post

Five great books about cats What gift should one get for the book-lover who is also a cat-lover? Below are our five suggestions, all of which are great books – memoirs, novels, poetry books – which feature cats in some substantial way. What book would you suggest as the ideal gift for a cat-lover or […]

via Five of the Best Books for Cat-Lovers — Interesting Literature

Action packed! Released today! “Dark Fissures” by Matt Coyle

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DESCRIPTION:

Private Investigator Rick Cahill fears the next knock on his door will be a cop holding a warrant for his arrest. For murder. La Jolla Chief of Police Tony Moretti is convinced Rick killed a missing person. No body has been found, but the evidence that’s piling up says murder and it all points to Rick. With Moretti on his tail and the bank about to foreclose on his house, Rick takes a paying case that will stave off the bank, but pits him against Moretti and the La Jolla Police Department.

Brianne Colton, a beautiful country singer, is convinced her estranged husband’s suicide was really murder. Rick is unconvinced, but the mortgage has to be paid. Each new piece of evidence convinces him she’s right. He breaks his number one rule and falls for Brianne even, as he begins to question her motives.

As Moretti cinches the vise tighter, with Rick unable to trust the FBI, evil forces emerge from the shadows who will do anything, including torture and murder, to stop Rick from uncovering the truth.

Here is the Amazon link for purchase:

https://www.amazon.com/Dark-Fissures-Rick-Cahill-Novel/dp/1608092267/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1475081933&sr=1-1&keywords=DARK+FISSURES

 

Glimpses – Launch Day #NewBook #booklaunch — Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life- Shared post

Originally posted on Hugh’s Views & News: Ladies and Gentlemen, I am delighted to announce that we have lift off. Glimpses, my first book, is now available to buy as a paperback. Glimpses – The new book of some of my short stories. Publication Date: Paperback: Now Available. Kindle: Tuesday 6th December 2016. If…

via Glimpses – Launch Day #NewBook #booklaunch — Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life