Sunday, January 6, 2019

Not So Happily Ever After by Susan Barnett Braun

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About the Book


Not So Happily cover
Title: Not So Happily Ever After  
Author: Susan Barnett Braun  
Genre: Young Adult  
Release date: July 12, 2012  
Publisher: Self-published

Think history is boring? Then you’ve never met Mad King Ludwig, who inspired Walt Disney with his magnificent castle in the clouds. He ruled the German kingdom of Bavaria for twenty-two years, inspiring his people by his support for the arts. And yet, “Mad King Ludwig” rarely appeared in the capital or attended any government functions. He slept most of the day and stayed awake all night. He dined with his horse and waved pistols at servants. He created a fantasy world inside his castles, complete with caves and trap-door tables. To this day, no one is sure exactly what caused his untimely death in a lake. Who was this man: fairy tale king? Insane eccentric? Mad King Ludwig’s life followed many twists and turns on its way to Not So Happily Ever After. The book’s intended audience is young adults, but it is perfect for adults wanting to learn more about Ludwig also.

My Thoughts:
Though I am not a history buff and don't read a whole lot of historical novels, I enjoyed this book.  It is a YA book, but really YA and adults can enjoy this look at the 'Mad King Ludwig'. The author did a good job entertaining and keeping you interested in this undeniably odd king.
I wasn't sure what I expected but what the author gave me was more. It wasn't dry, dull history, but entertaining and full of quirks that made me laugh. I am still not certain that King Ludwig was 'mad' but absolutely he was a unique character who is now an entertaining historical character for me!
It was a 4/5 for me.  Honestly entertaining.

Thank you to the author through Celebrate Lit for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.
 
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author


Susan Braun
Susan Barnett Braun earned a BS in retail management from Indiana University and an MA in education from the University of Alabama. She taught for eight years in northeast Indiana, earning a Lilly Endowment Teacher Creativity Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Study Scholarship. Susan has had work published in Parents, Children’s Ministry, and The Secret Place. She also writes online for Fort Wayne Visitor’s Bureau and blogs at Girls in White Dresses. She is married with three wonderful young adult daughters. Susan enjoys reading, playing piano and organ, and spending her time with her family and pets (currently three rabbits and a chinchilla).

Guest Post from Susan

I first learned about King Ludwig II of Bavaria, Germany, while I was a high school German student. He fascinated me then, and he has continued to through several decades now. Ludwig is a hero to the Bavarian people. In America, we too have our heroes: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln. But Ludwig was different. He was so eccentric and unusual that I found him impossible to ignore. As a teacher, I taught my students about this fascinating king each year. They, too, loved him. I decided to write Not So Happily Ever After so that teens could be introduced to Ludwig as I had been. However, since the book has come out, a majority of its readers have been adults. What makes Ludwig so compelling? Oh, where to begin? There are many quirky anecdotes about him: he once invited his favorite horse to dinner in the palace, complete with china and crystal. Ludwig insisted on hiding behind large floral arrangements when he was forced to attend state dinners. He preferred to work at night and sleep during the day. The king built wonderful castles. His most famous, Neuschwanstein, inspired even the talented Walt Disney. If you’ve visited Disneyland or Disney World, the castles at those parks are the Disney version of Ludwig’s real-life home. Ludwig has an air of mystery too, continuing to his still-unexplained death. ”I want to remain an eternal mystery to myself and others,” he once famously said. You’ll have to read the book to learn more. I can pretty much guarantee that this king, who has been dead now for over 130 years, will pique your interest. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you decided to start planning a trip to Bavaria to see Ludwig’s castles in person once you finish reading …

Blog Stops

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Susan is giving away a grand prize of a world/globe necklace and a paperback copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8a1/not-so-happily-ever-after-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Nightchaser by Amanda Bouchet

Nightchaser (Endeavor, #1)Book Description:
A delicious new heart-pounding romantic adventure from USA Today bestseller Amanda Bouchet!

Captain Tess Bailey and her crew of Robin Hood-like thieves are desperate and on the run. Pursued by a vicious military general who wants them dead or alive, Tess has to decide if she can trust Shade Ganavan, a tall, dark and arrogant stranger with ambiguous motivations.

Shade Ganavan had oodles of arrogance, oodles of charm, and oodles of something that made me want to kick him in the nuts.

What Tess and Shade don’t know about each other might get them killed…unless they can set aside their differences and learn to trust each other—while ignoring their off-the-charts chemistry.
 

My Thoughts:
This one pulled me in quick.  Tess is the captain of her rag-tag group and they all respect her.  I love that the crew is more of a family than anything.  Even their additional 'passenger' is treated well and respects Tess. The author does a great job with showing the connections each of the crew members share. 
Shade threw me for a bit.  I understood parts of him but when it was revealed what he did, I was a bit surprised. The way he handled the whole thing had me swooning and cringing at the same time. The book had ups and downs, laughter and tears. I couldnt' put it down once I started and now I'm ready for more.
It was a 5/5 for me.

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy of this book (via netgalley).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Hot Target Cowboy by June Faver

Description

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Magic in Disguise by Katie Salidas

Magic In Disguise (Agents of A.S.S.E.T. #3)Book Description:
You've marveled at the world hidden under our very noses, discovered the four families of magic (Terra, Ethereal, Shade, & Elemental), and witnessed the well-oiled machine that is A.S.S.E.T (Anonymous Supernatural Security and Elimination Taskforce). Now, watch it all fall into anarchy unless one rogue agent can destroy the Weapon of Magical Destruction once and for all. 

All magic comes at a price. 

Using the Weapon of Magical Destruction might not have been Sage's smartest idea, but what choice did she have? Now she's slowly dying from the effects of the magic absorbing seed embedded in her hand. 

If that weren't enough to ruin her day, news of Sage's criminal misconduct has spread like wildfire landing her on top of the Magical Most Wanted list. Can't a girl catch a break? 

Being hunted by the shadow clans, and cut off from A.S.S.E.T. Sage is forced to go deep under cover, on a quest to collect the elements needed invoke the magic of the Mother Goddess to destroy the seed once and for all. 

Not an easy task when every shadow is a potential enemy. 

If she fails, it's game over. If she succeeds, she's still a wanted criminal for using forbidden magic. But at least then she might live long enough to clear her name, right?


My Thoughts:
Oh my gosh!  This book is the 3rd in this series so start with the 1st and get caught up. Sage is dying. Literally. What she used to stop the bad guys in the last book is slowly killing her.  She and Grey have to find a cure. Matt is having his own issues with Zack watching over him (Matt may still be my favorite character with his overprotective streak, but he may have some serious competition now).
I've said before that I wasn't sure I liked Grey, but I am now in love with him! He is a truly good guy and would do anything to help his partner. The story didn't slow down, or let up throughout.  There were twists, turns and surprises. Sage has all sorts of people hunting her, including ASSET and Grey doesn't hesitate with his protection.
It was a 5/5. Loved it. Love the series. Ready for more.
Thank you to the author for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Sabotaged Christmas by Carole Brown

Sabotaged Christmas (An Appleton, WV Romantic Mystery, #1)Book Description:
Toni DeLuca, the Italian owner of DeLuca Construction, finds herself confronted with doubts about her father and his possible deceptions—all because of the mysterious pink notes she’s been receiving. 

Relations with Perrin Douglas who has a troubled history—but the first man in years who’s interested her—is building to a peak. Yet Perrin‘s own personal problems and his doubts about women and God, keep getting in the way. 

Gossip, a Spanish proposal, an inheritance, and a sabotaged construction business may ruin Christmas for Toni’s employees as well as her own happiness.
Will a mysterious person succeed in pulling off the biggest scam Appleton, West Virginia has ever seen? And will this culprit destroy Toni's last chance at happiness with the man of her dreams?


My Thoughts:
I enjoyed this book.  Toni owns her late father's construction business. Strange and unsettling things start happening from threatening letters to missing supplies on job sites.  Perrin is new to town and hires Toni's business to work on his place.
I really enjoyed the characters the author created here. They were flawed, and I appreciated that. I dislike 'perfect' characters who have an easy time of it. Perrin's son is probably my favorite character. I love his personality.  
It was a 4/5 for me. I will absolutely be reading more from this author.

Thank you to the author (via Celebrate Lit) for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

carole brown.JPGBio: Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in Southeast Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Thursday, December 20, 2018

From the Grave by Karina Espinosa

Title: From the Grave
Author: Karina Espinosa
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Cover Designer: Orina Kafe ArtWorks
Editor: Beyond DEF Publication Date: December 13th, 2018
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: Secrets don’t stay buried forever.
Mackenzie Grey is a lone wolf who’s earned her fair share of battle scars from the past, but that’s all over now. Or so she thought.
Known as the Freedom Princess, her heroic deeds have come with a heavy price when a mysterious new villain emerges, one who’s intent on killing Sebastian. As a new breed of danger lurks on the horizon, secrets between Bash and Kenz pile up and her worst nightmare is realized.
Mackenzie spent the last three years learning who she was in Origins. Now she will face her greatest challenges in Trials ...

My Thoughts:
More Mackenzie Grey!  This is a spin off book from the Mackenzie Grey series, but follows the same characters. This book starts off with a 'crisis' and doesn't slow down. There is the relationship between Mackenzie and Bash that isn't brand new but is still in the new stages. I love that Mackenzie speaks her mind, even if occasionally it should have been thought through first! 
I don't want to give too much away but there was a surprise character I wasn't expecting in here and I was happy but conflicted about it. The fact that just because one issue has past, doesn't mean that it will be smooth sailing, is completely true in this book and Mackenzie is ready to jump in with both feet to protect those she loves.
It was a 4/5 for me.  I cannot wait to see what happens next.

Thank you to the author for the review copy of this book (via Lady Amber's Tours).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.


Buy Links:
From the Grave: https://amzn.to/2Pxlmm6
*Disclaimer* While it’s not required to read Mackenzie Grey: Origins before From the Grave, it is recommended.
 Karina Espinosa is the Urban Fantasy author of the Sins of the Fallen series and the Mackenzie Grey novels. Infatuated with travel, pop culture, and the need to write everything down, she spends much of her days in front of a computer working on her next book, shopping online, and listening to music. With nomadic tendencies, she is currently resting her head in South Florida until the itch to move strikes again. You can usually catch her on Facebook, Instagram and live-tweeting during episodes of Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Orphan Black. Follow her on social media!
Author Links:
Buy Links:
From the Grave: https://amzn.to/2Pxlmm6
*Disclaimer* While it’s not required to read Mackenzie Grey: Origins before From the Grave, it is recommended.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Mind Games by Nancy Mehl

Mind Games FB Banner_edited-1.jpg

About the Book

Mind gamesBook: Mind Games
Author: Nancy Mehl
Genre: Suspense
Release Date: December, 2018
Publisher: Bethany House
FBI Behavioral Analyst Kaely Quinn’s methods may be highly unorthodox, but her talent is undeniable. She’s done her best to establish a new life for herself after being demoted and transferred to St. Louis when a reporter revealed she’s the daughter of an infamous serial killer. But when that same reporter claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders, ending with Kaely’s, it seems her old life has followed her.
When a body is found that fits the poem’s morbid predictions, Kaely and her new partner, Special Agent Noah Hunter, are forced to move past his skepticism of her approach and work together to unravel the deadly riddle.
With a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely are tested to their limits to catch the murderer before anyone else, including Kaely, is killed.
 My Thoughts:
This was a truly good book.  Kaely is determined to catch all the bad guys she can.  Her boss is determined to protect her, and in this case that means assigning her a new partner.  Noah Hunter is not thrilled with the idea given Kaely's reputation within the Bureau, but he is going to do his job.
I liked that the author didn't make this into a romance book. It had some mentions here and there but the main focus was the case.  Getting the bad guy caught, and that kept me guessing to the end.  I would decide it was one person only to change my mind and then change it again.  Loved it. There are plenty of twists and I liked that Noah is learning more and more about Kaely as we go.  Can't wait to see where the author takes them next.
It was a 5/5 for me.
Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book (via Celebrate Lit).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Nancy Mehl (www.nancymehl.com) is the author of more than thirty books, including the Road to Kingdom, Finding Sanctuary, and Defenders of Justice series. She received the ACFW Mystery Book of the Year Award in 2009. She has a background in social work and is a member of ACFW and RWA. She writes from her home in Missouri, where she lives with her husband, Norman, and their Puggle, Watson. She is part of The Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com, along with several other popular suspense authors. She is also very active on Facebook.

Guest Post from Nancy

Writing Mind Games is a dream come true. I’ve been interested in FBI profiling for years. I’ve read about it, studied it, and watched every TV special I could find on the subject. So when the chance finally came to write the book I’ve always wanted to write, I jumped at it. Thankfully, through the help of another writer, I was hooked up with a retired FBI profiler. I was so excited. Until I found out I had almost everything wrong. Yes, I had some understanding about profiling, but I knew nothing about the FBI and how it works.
First of all, the FBI doesn’t call the men and women who profile criminals, profilers. They’re called Behavioral Analysts. The plot for Mind Games had my analyst running around the country solving crimes while she was stationed in St. Louis. Uh, no. Behavioral analysts do travel, but they all work out of Quantico in Virginia. So…I rewrote.
There were ways around my conundrum, but one solution led to more and more problems. We finally worked through them. Then I spent the next few months learning acronyms. CIRG, CJIS, NCAVC, HRT, UNSUB, CNU, THU, ViCap, CODIS, SWAT, ERTU, OPU, THRU, ERT… Well, the list goes on and on. The FBI is made up of many specialized units. And a plethora of acronyms, it seems.
I rewrote Mind Games three times before my source said we were good to go.
If you assume I’m out of the woods now, you’d be wrong. I haven’t had the nerve to open up the manuscript I sent her for book two in my Kaely Quinn Profiler series. I figured I had Fire Storm right but… Well, I can tell from her email comments I’ll be doing more rewriting. Sigh.
So is it worth it? A resounding yes! I love learning, and as long as my analyst friend hangs in with me (she has the patience of Job), I’ll keep at it.
I hope you enjoy Mind Games. It’s edgy but fun. Kaely Quinn is a quirky character. She was thrown out of Quantico because her version of profiling is… Well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out!

Blog Stops

The Lit Addict, December 11
amandainpaDecember 11
A Reader’s BrainDecember 12
Daysong ReflectionsDecember 12
Livin’ Lit, December 12
By The Book, December 13
Lighthouse Academy, December 13
Multifarious, December 14
Splashes of JoyDecember 14
Back Porch ReadsDecember 15
Robin is Bookish, December 15
Janices book reviews, December 15
C Jane Read, December 16
Ashley’s BookshelfDecember 16
The Becca Files, December 16
Bigreadersite, December 16
Quiet Quilter, December 17
Margaret Kazmierczak, December 17
Godly Book Reviews, December 17
All-of-a-kind Mom, December 18
Just the Write Escape, December 18
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, December 18
Simple Harvest Reads, December 19 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Mary Hake, December 19
Remembrancy, December 20
Inklings and notionsDecember 20
Carpe Diem, December 20
Locks, Hooks and BooksDecember 21
Pause for Tales, December 21
Have A Wonderful DayDecember 22
Book by Book, December 22
Bibliophile Reviews, December 23
Cafinated Reads, December 24
Texas Book-aholic, December 24

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Nancy is giving away a grand prize of a copy of Mind Games and the three books in Nancy’s Defenders of Justice series, plus a $20 Starbucks gift card!
Two additional winners will also receive a copy of Mind Games!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d73b/mind-games-celebration-tour-giveaway

Thursday, December 13, 2018

From the Grave Release Blitz!

Title: From the Grave
Author: Karina Espinosa
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Cover Designer: Orina Kafe ArtWorks
Editor: Beyond DEF Publication Date: December 13th, 2018
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: Secrets don’t stay buried forever.
Mackenzie Grey is a lone wolf who’s earned her fair share of battle scars from the past, but that’s all over now. Or so she thought.
Known as the Freedom Princess, her heroic deeds have come with a heavy price when a mysterious new villain emerges, one who’s intent on killing Sebastian. As a new breed of danger lurks on the horizon, secrets between Bash and Kenz pile up and her worst nightmare is realized.
Mackenzie spent the last three years learning who she was in Origins. Now she will face her greatest challenges in Trials ...
Buy Links:
From the Grave: https://amzn.to/2Pxlmm6
*Disclaimer* While it’s not required to read Mackenzie Grey: Origins before From the Grave, it is recommended.
 Karina Espinosa is the Urban Fantasy author of the Sins of the Fallen series and the Mackenzie Grey novels. Infatuated with travel, pop culture, and the need to write everything down, she spends much of her days in front of a computer working on her next book, shopping online, and listening to music. With nomadic tendencies, she is currently resting her head in South Florida until the itch to move strikes again. You can usually catch her on Facebook, Instagram and live-tweeting during episodes of Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Orphan Black. Follow her on social media!
Author Links:
Buy Links:
From the Grave: https://amzn.to/2Pxlmm6
*Disclaimer* While it’s not required to read Mackenzie Grey: Origins before From the Grave, it is recommended.