Thursday, May 30, 2013

Cover Reveal!!!

I am so excited to show off this new cover!  It took a while to get it to all come together, but thanks to several people, it's finally here.

The original concept for this cover came from Tessa Konen with  Royal Script.  She had the idea for the layout and worked with photographer Tim Davis to create the image that was used.  Once she came up with this concept, I just couldn't get it out of my mind.

Next I worked with the team at to bring it all together.  I am thrilled with how it turned out and I think it screams romantic suspense, which is exactly what I was going for!

So without further adieu, here it is:

And for all you ebook addicts out there, here's one for you.

I also just found out that our publication or release date is going to be October 1.  So save me a spot on your book shelves:)
I'ld love to hear your thoughts on the new cover.  Comment here, or visit my facebook page.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Book Review: Relentless Pursuit by Kathleen Brooks

BN ID: 2940016441962
Publisher: Laurens Publishing
Publication date: 5/20/2013


Relentless Pursuit is the fourth novel in the Bluegrass Brothers series.

Pierce Davies watched as his older siblings fell in love – something this bachelor was not ready for. After all, he was now the most eligible man in all of Keeneston! Though Pierce enjoys the playboy lifestyle, his life is his work and that hard work is set to pay off big time with the unveiling of a big secret. However, this work hard, play hard attitude may have also landed him in hot water as he finds himself arrested for a brutal murder with all evidence pointing to him.

Tammy Fields has been suffering from the crush to end all crushes. But her flirtations have fallen short as Pierce Davies always ended up in the arms of a Keeneston Belle. Having waited long enough, Tammy decides now is the time to grow up and move on. She has a good job as a paralegal and a hot new boyfriend. But everything changes quickly when Pierce is arrested and Tammy is called upon to help with his case. While working closely with Pierce to prove his innocence, she realizes her crush is something far more meaningful as she risks everything to save him.

Will they finally find love or will the increasing danger prevent their happily ever after?

This book is the fourth in this series, but like the eighth in her stories about this small town.  I would definitely read these books in order.  Not only because I think that her first books are better, but because she has so many character references from previous books, I think it would be confusing to skip over all that.

In my opinion, these books are simple and sweet, slightly suspenseful, romance novels.  All of her characters are unique, even though the brothers have quite a bit in common.  It doesn't feel like she's retelling the same story over and over again as some "small town romance series" are apt to do.

I think some of her dialogue can be too 'fact-forcing' instead of natural speech, meaning she tries to shove facts into her characters mouths that I don't think would be in a natural conversation.  But for the most part, they are easy southern-comfort reads.

I enjoy her books, and for $2.99 a piece, it's an easy decision even if they don't WOW me.

I do like that these books are not full of explicit sex scenes and the characters are more mature, less dramatic than the new genre of New Adult fiction that seems so popular.

For a quiet, rainy afternoon, or a couples hours by the pool, these would be good to have.

Have you read any of Kathleen Brooks' novels?  If so, which story has been your favorite so far?

You can get this book here:

Relentless Pursuit at Barnes and Noble

Relentless Pursuit at Amazon

Friday, May 24, 2013

C.A.R. Book Review: Spirit Fighters by Jerel Law

ISBN-13: 9781400318438
Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
Publication date: 4/3/2012


What if Nephilim-the children of angels and men-still walked the earth? And their very presence put the entire world in danger? In Spirit Fighter, Jonah and Eliza Stone learn that their mother is a Nephilim and that they have special powers as quarter-angels. When their mom is kidnapped by fallen angels, they must use those powers to save her. Along the way, they discover that there is a very real and dangerous war going on between good and evil and that God has a big part for them to play in that war.

Spirit Fighter is a book about two kids, Jonah and Eliza who discover their new powers as quarterlings (1/4 part angel).  Elohim revealed their powers to them.  Jonah had super strength and can run really fast. Eliza could create a shield in mid-air, called the shield of Faith. It is an action book with good vs. evil kind of thing.  This author used good details that made it easy to picture the characters and what was happening.  There was a lot of adventure in the book from battling monsters to entering other dimensions. It was easy for me to read it because the author didn’t use a lot of difficult words.

People who like action books with a lot of adventure will like this book.  This is a good book for both boys and girls.  I think I would give this book to my cousin and say read it, around the end of the week he would always say “Wow”.   

One thing that made this book unique was that it had bible verses in it.  The characters used the armor of God to fight the fallen angels.  I thought the sword of Truth was the coolest weapon in this book.

I liked how he described it like “He turns around the corner in caution.” So it was exiting what to expect what is happening next. My favorite part is when Jonah goes into the hidden realm [ another dimension.] it is cool when I imagine what it looks like. It is the first book in a series I would NEVER start on number 2 or 3 and go through the series backwards. This book made me feel like I could battle monsters.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Book Review: The Next Accident by Lisa Gardner

ISBN-13: 9780553578690
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 4/30/2002

What do you do when a killer targets the people you love the most? When he knows how to make them vulnerable? When he knows the same about you?

These are the questions that haunt FBI Special Agent Pierce Quincy. The police say his daughter’s death was an accident. Quincy will risk everything to learn the truth—and there’s only one person willing to help. Ex-cop Rainie Connor had once been paired professionally—and personally—with the brilliant FBI profiler. He helped her through the darkest days of her life.

Now it’s time for Rainie to return the favor. But this killer is like none these two hard-boiled pros have ever encountered. This twisted psychopath has an insatiable hunger for revenge...and for fear. As the clock ticks down to one unspeakably intimate act of vengeance, the only way Rainie can unmask this killer is to step directly in his murderous path. She will become a murder waiting to happen. She will be...the next accident.

This is my first book by this author and I really liked it.  She is definitely more of a crime/suspense author than a romance writer.  But her romance between these characters was very believable. 
They obviously started their relationship in a previous book, and I wish I had read that one first, but it didn't take away from the relationship between them in this book.

Her plot twists and turns were really interesting.  I was never bored, which after the last few books I've read, that's saying a lot.  I remained in the story the entire time.  I liked that her characters were flawed, but heroic at the same time.  It made them feel very real.

She had a few one liners that made me laugh to myself and she had a couple emotional scenes that made my eyes mist up.  It wasn't an overly funny or sad or emotional book, but it was interesting and a good read.  At midnight last night I realized I had several more chapters to go and I really struggled to put it down.  If I hadn't had meeting the next morning, I would have finished.  I have read books that I would stay up till two or three no matter what, but I was able to put this down.  So, take that for what it's worth.

I will be reading more by this author for sure. 

Have you read anything by Lisa Gardner, or have a favorite romantic suspense author?  I would love to hear your thoughts on who I should read next!  Leave comments here, or stop by my facebook page.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Book Review: The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Guest Reviewer: Kathy Westerfield

ISBN-13: 9780385737951
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 8/24/2010
Series: Maze Runner Series , #1


When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he’s not alone. When the lift’s doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade—a large, open expanse surrounded by stone walls.
Just like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they got to the Glade. All they know is that every morning the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them have opened. Every night they’ve closed tight. And every thirty days a new boy has been delivered in the lift.
Thomas was expected. But the next day, a girl is sent up—the first girl to ever arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers.
Thomas might be more important than he could ever guess. If only he could unlock the dark secrets buried within his mind.

Just read the first book in a series by James Dashner called The Maize Runner. It has the same "feel" as the hunger games (which I loved)! I was intrigued from the very first paragraph.

Every chapter was so  full of twists, turns (literally!) and drama that I  couldn't put it down.  The author keeps, not only you guessing, but the  characters are kept guessing as well.  They have no idea what is going to happen next in the strange world they have been thrust into. 

I thought the book was well written and the dialogue between characters made me feel like I was standing or running right along with them.  At the end of the book you are given only a taste of the truth of the boys' situation.  On to book Two!!


This book is being made into a movie as we speak.  It's set to release on February 14, 2014.  I couldn't find an actual movie trailer yet, but we will keep you up to date on it.  They have a cast list on IMDb.  I'm including the link here:

Have you read this series?  We'ld love to hear your thoughts on this book!  Of all dystopian novels, which is your favorite?

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Book Review: Whiskey Beach by Nora Roberts

Author: Nora Roberts
ISBN-13: 9780399159893
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Publication date: 4/16/2013

For more than three hundred years, Bluff House has sat above Whiskey Beach, guarding its shore—and its secrets. But to Eli Landon, it’s home…
A Boston lawyer, Eli has weathered an intense year of public scrutiny and police investigations after being accused of—but never arrested for—the murder of his soon-to-be-ex wife.
He finds sanctuary at Bluff House, even though his beloved grandmother is in Boston recuperating from a nasty fall. Abra Walsh is always there, though. Whiskey Beach’s resident housekeeper, yoga instructor, jewelry maker, and massage therapist, Abra is a woman of many talents—including helping Eli take control of his life and clear his name. But as they become entangled in each other, they find themselves caught in a net that stretches back for centuries—one that has ensnared a man intent on reaping the rewards of destroying Eli Landon once and for all…

When I first sold my business and found myself with a lot of time on my hands, I picked up the Twilight series.  I became obsessed with it!  Much later than most.  I think most of the movies were already out by the time I picked up the first book.  But after reading that, I began searching out other books to read, preferably romance.  Never having been a big fiction reader, I relied on suggestions from friends and family to fill my to-be-read shelf.

That's when I discovered Nora Roberts.  I think in that first few months, I bought or checked out almost every book she had ever written.  I loved her story telling, how there was always a suspenseful feel to her books.  And I especially liked the ones that had a hint of magic or other-worldly elements. 

She is one of the major reasons I write what I write.

That being said, I did not like this book at all.  The more I read her books, the less I like them.  I really prefer her older books. 

Every thing she writes feels like it was written in 1980 (which was a fantastic year btw) and that was cool when I first started reading them, because they were older books.  But the book she just released has that exact same feel. 

And her dialogue drives me BANANAS!  The male and female characters sound exactly the same.  You could literally switch all their speaking parts and not notice a difference.  It makes it very hard to read because I'm constantly having to look back to see who is actually speaking.

And she writes with a very heavy New England influence.  All her characters are very east coast.  Which is great because that's her comfort zone.  But I just don't think people talk like that.

This book in particular fell very flat for me.  I really struggled to finish it.  The characters seemed to have the same conversation over and over again.  The suspense was borderline boring. 

In the end, I didn't really care who-done-it and I didn't care what happened to these characters.

If you've read Whiskey Beach, or any of Nora Roberts books lately, I would love to hear what you have to say! 

My infatuation with Happily-Ever-After endings began when...

I'm doing a new thing.  Book Quote Thursday. 

There are so many, many amazing books out there.  And in each book, amazing lines. 

So here's my quote for today.  This was the very first romance novel I ever read, and I don't think at the time (5th grade) I realized it was a romance novel at all.  I just wanted to read it because it was the thickest book I'ld ever seen and it would get me all the points I needed after I took my test on it. 

And little did I know that I would end up hating it.  I mean I loved it.  But then years later, I watched the movie with my mom and grandma.  And I remember jumping up and glaring at them. 
"That was how that ended?  That's not right!"

And so began my love affair with happily-ever-after endings...

Do you have a favorite quote from a favorite book?  I would LOVE to hear it.  Share it with us in the comments, please:)

Friday, May 10, 2013

My very own Prince Charming

People often ask me how Chris and I manage such a healthy, loving, fun relationship. 

That's a hard one to explain, so I thought I would provide an example instead.

Setting the scene:  This email train began 1 day before our son's birthday party.

Me:  Chris we are all set for movies tomorrow.  Tickets purchased:)

Chris:  What time is everyone arriving? 

Me: 11:30 and movie starts at 12:45.  We can just grab some  popcorn at the movie and have snack after.

Chris:  Why don't we have pizza and cake first thing.

1.  I guess I can order pizza and have it here, I just didn't think they would be interested that early and it will take a while to get them rounded up...
2.  I wasn't planning on doing a cake.  I thought most of the time would be taken up with the movie....

Chris:  Any games planned after the movie?

Me:  There's not that much time.  I figured they would just hang out and play iron man.  They're ten, not five.  I don't think they need to be entertained.

Chris: I think it's good to have something planned just in case.  We really ought to do a cake after the movie.

Me: I love how you are just jumping into the play event planner at the LAST MINUTE. You have had NO input on any of this, even when I tried to pry it out of you with a crow bar.  And now your ideas are just flowing freely.....
Chris:  That's how I am.....a rescuer of dreams

I deleted a LOT of that last email.  Things that I wouldn't want to be held against you in your company server and things that I wouldn't want held against me in a court of law.... Watch yourself

So, there you go peeps, that's how we keep the love alive.  There's never a dull moment between this procrastinator and her control-freak honey!

We're just living the fairy tale.


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Character Inspiration: Ryan and Austin

Here is the inspiration for the main characters of Lucky for Him.  Meet Austin Sanders and Ryan Taylor.  
Here's the overview for my upcoming book:

When Austin Sanders shoulder injury threw him out of the line up for the Kansas City Royals, and he had to start his life over at thirty one, he did what he had always done and fell back on the luck of an ancient coin that had been passed down through his family for a generation.  But when that coin is ripped from his life, threatening everything he believes in and the people closest to him, will he be able to stop the threat and begin making his own luck?

Austin and his two best friends were each given an ancient coin by their father’s when they entered adulthood.  These coins each blessed the owner with a specific type of luck.  Money, love and longevity based on the legend that they had been told by their fathers who stumbled upon the coins on a trip to China many years before.

As Austin tries to rebuild his life and figure out the kind of man he wants to be, he meets marketing executive Ryan Taylor.  As she helps Austin start his new business venture, she becomes drawn to him.  But she’s also drawn to his secrets.

When Ryan’s curiosity gets the best of her, she hunts down the answers she’s been looking for.  But her search puts her between a murderer and the coin he covets.

Lucky for Him is a story of hope, of loss, of love, of digging deeper that you thought possible and in the end, of making your own luck.  This is the first novel in a two-part series.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Book Review: This Girl by Colleen Hoover

There are two sides to every love story. Now hear Will’s.
Colleen Hoover’s New York Times bestselling Slammed series has brought countless readers to their knees with a whirlwind of love, passion, and heartache. Layken and Will’s love has managed to withstand the toughest of circumstances and the young lovers, now married, are beginning to feel safe and secure in their union. As much as Layken relishes their new life together, she finds herself wanting to know everything there is to know about her husband, even though Will makes it clear he prefers to keep the painful memories of the past where they belong. Still, he can’t resist his wife’s pleas and so he begins to untangle his side of the story, revealing for the first time his most intimate feelings and thoughts, retelling both the good and bad moments, and sharing a few shocking confessions of his own from the time when they first met.
In This Girl, Will tells the story of their complicated relationship from his point of view. Their future rests on how well they deal with the past in this final installment of the beloved Slammed series.

Okay, so normally if I didn't like a book, I just wouldn't review it.  I hate saying anything super critical about another authors work.  So, I usually only pass along books that I have something good to say about them.

This Girl, by Colleen Hoover gets 2 stars from me.  Mostly I give it two stars because the writing is good.  I've read a lot of books that I can't even finish because the writing itself is so poor.  But this author has a great writing style, and I like these characters.  I have liked them from the very first book.

Which is why it is painful to tell you that I thought this book was terrible.  I usually race through Hoover's novels because I can't wait to see what happens.  I raced through this one because I just wanted it to be over.

There is only so many times I can listen to a couple tell each other how much they love each other and how wonderful they think the other person is before it becomes sticky sweet.

And this book had absolutely zero plot.  There was no goal, no conflict.  Yes we like these characters, but a book written in happily ever after land is just boring!

In my opinion, and it pains me to say it, but this wasn't a book.  It was a 300+ page epilogue. 

But on the bright side, it's Friday!!:)  I hope you all have a great book to read over the weekend!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Romance Character Pet Peeves

I love to read, and I do it a lot.  I like romance in all its different genres.  But there are a few things that make me roll my eyes every time I read them.  I thought I would share a few of these pet peeves that make my mind scream "Why did you do that?"

1.  Hero's with a mustache.  Seriously?  I mean some scruffy five o'clock shadow can be sexy, but most facial hair should be a no-no.  I can't picture my hero doing anything anymore, all I can see is lip hair, not good.

2.  'She met him stroke for stroke.'  This phrase makes me roll my eyes EVERY time. 

3.  Female character's who complain about being fat.  I don't mind hearing about character insecurities at all, but when the author is trying to tell me that this character is a bombshell, and then she talks about barely fitting into her jeans, I get annoyed.  And then, I picture her chubby.  It may be shallow, but I want my romance main characters attractive.  It's fiction!

4.  Talking through clenched teeth.  Try it right now.  Clench your teeth and talk out loud.  It just sounds stupid and most people can go their whole life without doing it.  But in some romance novels, characters talk that way through entire books.  Its gotta be exhausting.

5.  And my last one (for today)...I have read two books in the last few months that show the main character on the toilet....doing...things.  Please, please don't tell my about the hero's bowel movements.  That isn't something I would talk about with my best friend, family members, even my doctor, so I don't want to read about it.  And then, like the mustache, all I can picture is this guy on the thank you.

So there are my "please don't" or eye-roll inducing pet peeves.  If you have any, I would LOVE to hear about them!  Comment here, or on my facebook page

Happy Reading!