Tuesday, June 19, 2018

California Summer - release day review & giveaway


Review by Melinda Garza
Anita Hughes brings to life Rosie Keller in California Summer. Rosie met Ben Ford while in college and they live together in LA. Together they have one Indie film under their belts. Ben directed the film and Rosie was the associate producer. As a couple, they had three goals -- get married, go to Africa, and buy a house. To Rosie, Ben seemed like the perfect partner. He was a sleeping giant, never raised his voice, and hardly ever disagreed with Rosie.

One day Rosie came home and found that Ben had slept with MaryBeth Chase, a producer. After admitting that he slept with her, Rosie moved to Montecito for the summer. Montecito was the home of her friend Angelica's parents, Estelle and Oscar. Everyone was friendly there and made Rosie feel welcome. Estelle enforced into Rosie to love what you do and throw out the rule book.

After the breakup, Rosie learned that Ben was going to direct To Catch A Thief and his lover, MaryBeth, was going to be the executive producer. They even had a new production company called MB&B.  In order to keep busy and attempt to move on, Rosie opened up her own taco shop, Rosie's Tacos. She even personalized it to her style. The white sign of the taco shop had her name written in cursive letters. The lettering was done in deep red which was the same color of her favorite Bobbi Brown lip gloss. Rosie even had a heart placed over the I in her name and a red rose after the word Tacos.

At Montecito, she met many people, including Josh and Colby. She and Josh got quite close and at Estelle and Oscar's annual 4th of July party, they kissed. Their romance blossomed.  She and Colby, a famous musician, became good friends. He even wrote a song about her. He titled the song “Rosie.” The song was about breaking free of the fast track and doing what you love. The song made her restaurant famous and super busy. Colby, soon after, offered Rosie to expand her business with him. At the time, she turned down his offer due to Josh. Will she change her mind?
 
Ms. Hughes did it again with California Summer. She gives us a beautiful and charming love story.  It's a captivating read that is a curl up in bed, beach, or just about anywhere read. I would highly recommend it.

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About the author:
Anita Hughes was born in Sydney, Australia and had a charmed childhood that included petting koala bears, riding the waves on Bondi Beach, and putting an occasional shrimp on the barbie. Her writing career began at the age of eight, when she won a national writing contest in THE AUSTRALIAN newspaper, and was named "One of Australia's Next Best Writers." (She still has the newspaper clipping.)

She received a B.A. in English Literature with a minor in Creative Writing from Bard College, and attended UC Berkeley's Masters in Creative Writing program.

She lives in Dana Point, CA with her family, where she interrupts her writing to watch the glorious sunsets.

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One lucky winner a print copy of
California Summer by Anita Hughes

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Monday, June 18, 2018

The Lost For Words Bookshop-release week review & giveaway


Review by Deb Czajkowski
True or false:  Loveday Carlew has spent the better part of the last seven years hiding in the lost for words bookshop.  If you are defining hiding as being concealed or hidden from sight, then false.  Okay, it is true that, occasionally, Loveday does try to hide amongst the bookshelves during her work day (she loves books; people, not so much). But the truest part of that statement is metaphoric: Loveday has spent the better part of the last seven years in the lost for words bookshop hiding from life ─ her past, her present, and her future.  And this is the Loveday we meet today ─apprehensive and introspective.

True or false: Archie Brodie has lived many lives.  If you are defining lived like reincarnation, than false. To hear him tell it, he has traveled the world, associated with royalty of all kinds, lived a lifetime of wild, weird, and wonderful adventures, being whomever he wanted to be in the moment.  The true part is, again, metaphoric.  Now he is the owner and proprietor of the lost for words bookshop.  Archie is also Loveday’s boss (he is the owner), her friend (unspoken), and her guardian (secretly).

True or false: Nathan Avebury enters the lost for words bookshop to reclaim his lost (and found by Loveday) copy of Grinning Jack by Brian Patten. You know this cannot be as simple as just true or false, right? So yes, it is true that the Brian Patten book is Nathan’s. He did accidentally drop it on the sidewalk, and he does want it back. But it is Loveday’s pithy ‘lost and found’ sign in the window that really draws him into the bookshop ─and to Loveday herself.

To quote Harper Lee, “You can choose your friends but you sho’ can’t choose your family, and they’re still kin to you no matter whether you acknowledge ‘em or not.”  You also can’t choose your childhood. Given these two statements, I propose one more true or false statement: Despite your family and/or your childhood, you can, as an adult, choose your own future.

Trick, right? That statement does not ─cannot!─  have a “one size fits all” answer.   It is personal to each person, to each life. Every person, thus every story, is different. Author Stephanie Butland uses unique and quirky Loveday’s narrative in lost for words bookshop to skillfully illustrate one path, one life, one answer.  Using the present to move the Loveday’s story forward, Butland alternatively takes us back in time to live with Loveday the events of her past that accumulate to shape the twenty-five-year-old woman we meet at the beginning of Butland’s book.

When Butland ends her telling of Loveday’s life, where does she stop? Is Loveday still hiding amongst the books and bookshelves in the lost for words bookshop? Has Loveday found a way to navigate people  ─Customers?  Friends? Family? ─ into her solitary life of books?

I can suggest two ways to find out:  1. Stop by the lost for words bookshop (fyi… it’s in London) and ask for Loveday; or 2. Read Stephanie Butland’s lost for words bookshop.  Either way, I can assure you that you will enjoy meeting captivating, intriguing, inquisitive Loveday.

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About the author:
Stephanie Butland is a writer, who is thriving after breast cancer. (She used to say she was a survivor, but that was a bit lacking in joie de vivre.)
Although she’d never have chosen it, her dance with cancer has changed her life in many positive ways. Now she is happier, healthier, and more careful with her precious life and the precious people and things in it.

Her writing career began with her dance with cancer, and now she is  a novelist.

Aside from writing, she works as a speaker and trainer, and she works with charities to help raise awareness and money in the hope that cancer will soon be about as scary as a wart.

She lives in Northumberland.


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Facebook* Twitter * Goodreads

1 lucky winner a print copy of
The Lost For Words Bookshop


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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

The Patchwork Bride - release day giveaway


Ellen is putting the finishing touches on a wedding quilt made from scraps of old dresses when the bride-to-be―her granddaughter June―unexpectedly arrives and announces she’s calling off the marriage. With the tending of June’s uncertain heart in mind, Ellen tells her the story of Nell, a Kansas-born woman who goes to the High Plains of New Mexico Territory in 1898 in search of a husband.
Working as a biscuit-shooter, Nell falls for a cowboy named Buddy. She sees a future together, but she can’t help wondering if his feelings for her are true. When Buddy breaks her heart, she runs away.
In her search for a soul mate, Nell will run away from marriage twice more before finding the love of her life. It’s a tale filled with excitement, heartbreak, disappointment, and self-discovery―as well as with hard-earned life lessons about love. Another stunning, emotional novel from a master storyteller.

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About the author:
A journalism graduate of the University of Denver, Sandra began her writing career as a reporter with Business Week. A staff member for twenty-five years (and the magazine’s first female bureau chief,) she covered the Rocky Mountain region, writing about everything from penny-stock scandals to hard-rock mining, western energy development to contemporary polygamy. Many of her experiences have been incorporated into her novels.

Sandra lives in Denver and Georgetown, Colorado, with her husband, Bob. She is the mother of two daughters, Dana, a lawyer in New Orleans, and Povy, a photographer in Golden, Colorado.

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One lucky winner a print copy of
The Patchwork Bride by Sandra Dallas

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Beach House Reunion - Release Week Giveaway

Cara Rutledge returns to her Southern home on the idyllic Isle of Palms. Everything is comfortingly the same, yet each detail is rife with painful memories. Only through reconnecting with family, friends, and the rhythms of the lowcountry can Cara release the hold of the past and open herself to the possibility of a new love, career, and hope for the future.

Meanwhile, her niece Linnea, a recent college graduate who doesn’t know where her life will take her, leaves her historic home in Charleston, with all its entitlement and expectations, and heads to her aunt’s beach house. On the island, she is part of the freer, natural ocean lifestyle she loves, rejoining the turtle team, learning to surf, and falling in love. Remembering the lessons of her beloved grandmother, Lovie, the original “turtle lady,” Linnea rediscovers a meaningful purpose to her life and finds the courage she needs to break from tradition.

In this heartwarming novel, three generations of the Rutledge family gather together to find the strength, love, and commitment to break destructive family patterns and to forge new bonds that will endure long beyond one summer reunion. 

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About the author:
Mary Alice Monroe is the New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen novels, including The Summer GirlsThe Summer WindThe Summer’s End, Last Light Over CarolinaTime Is a RiverSweetgrassSkywardThe Beach House, Beach House Memories, Swimming Lessons, The Four SeasonsThe Book Club, and Beach House for Rent. Her books have received numerous awards, including the 2008 South Carolina Center for the Book Award for Writing, the 2014 South Carolina Award for Literary Excellence, the 2015 SW Florida Author of Distinction Award, the RT Lifetime Achievement Award, and the International Book Award for Green Fiction. An active conservationist, she lives in the lowcountry of South Carolina.

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Gallery Books is giving
One lucky winner a print copy of
Beach House Reunion by Mary Alice Monroe

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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Best Beach Ever - Release Day Giveaway

Forced to rent out or lose their beloved Bella Flora after the loss of their renovation-turned-reality-TV show Do Over, Maddie, Nikki, Avery, Kyra, and Bitsy move into cottages at the Sunshine Hotel and Beach Club believing the worst is over. Only to discover just how uncertain their futures really are. 

Maddie struggles with the challenges of dating a rock star whose career has come roaring back to life while Nikki faces the daunting realities of mothering twins at forty-seven. Avery buries herself in a tiny home build in an attempt to dodge commitment issues, and Kyra battles to protect her son from the Hollywood world she once dreamed of joining. And Bitsy is about to find out whether the rewards of seeking revenge will outweigh the risks. 

Luckily, when the going gets tough, the ladies of Ten Beach Road know that their friendship--tried and tested--can chase away the darkest clouds and let the sun shine in...

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About the author:
Wendy Wax, a former broadcaster, is the author of fourteen novels and two novellas, including One Good ThingSunshine BeachA Week at the LakeWhile We Were Watching Downton AbbeyThe House on Mermaid PointOcean Beach, and Ten Beach Road. The mother of two grown sons, she lives in Atlanta with her husband and is doing her best to adjust to the quiet of her recently emptied nest.

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Berkley Publishing is giving one
Lucky winner a print copy of
Best Beach Ever by Wendy Wax

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Friday, May 18, 2018

Luke (The Hometown Heroes Series) - Release Day Giveaway


Fourth-generation cattleman Luke Parker looks into his childless future and wonders what will become of the ranch he’s worked so hard to preserve. 

Sarah Magarity’s job with the Department of Children and Family Services has exposed her to the worst side of parenting. So much so that the altruistic redhead doubts she’ll ever have children of her own.

The solution to both their problems might be a five-year-old boy abandoned on DCF’s doorstep just days before Christmas, but only if the cowboy can convince a jaded social worker that he’s good father material on a two-week cattle drive through Florida’s version of the Old West.

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Check out the trailer video for The Hometown Heroes Series!


About the author:
Leigh Duncan is the award-winning author of more than two dozen novels, novellas and short stories. Her first full-length book, The Officer’s Girl, was released by Harlequin American Romance in 2010. Leigh went on to write seven more books for Harlequin, including the highly acclaimed Glades County Cowboys series, before she began writing the more complex, heart-warming and emotional stories that have resonated with her readers. The lead author for Hallmark Publishing's new imprint, an Amazon best-selling author and a National Readers’ Choice Award winner, Leigh lives on Central Florida's East Coast where she writes women’s fiction and contemporary romance with a dash of Southern sass.

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Enter to win an E-copy of Luke 
(The Hometown Heroes Series)

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Thursday, May 17, 2018

The Sugar House Blues - Release Week Giveaway


Allie, Des, and Cara, each having her own reasons for wanting a share of their father's estate, meet in the grand Victorian home in which he grew up, only to be greeted by another secret he purposely hid from them: his sister Bonnie. The women reluctantly band together to take on Fritz's challenge, working with a local contractor to begin the renovations financed by an account Fritz had set up for the task. While the restoration appears to go smoothly at first, it soon becomes apparent that the work will be more extensive than originally thought, and Des, elected to handle the money, needs to find ways to stretch out the remaining savings while searching for new sources of funding.

As strangers linked only by their DNA try to become a family, the Hudson sisters also try to come to terms with the father they only thought they knew. In the process, each woman discovers her own capacity for understanding, forgiveness, love, and the true meaning of family.

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About the author:

Mariah Stewart is the award-winning New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of numerous novels and several novellas and short stories. A native of Hightstown, New Jersey, she lives with her husband and two rambunctious rescue dogs amid the rolling hills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, where she savors country life and tends her gardens while she works on her next novel. 


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Gallery Books is giving one
Lucky winner a print copy of
The Sugarhouse Blues by Mariah Stewart

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