Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Release Day! Beach House Reunion by Mary Alice Monroe ~ My Thoughts

Happy Release Day!! 

Echo Moon

Beach House Reunion by Mary Alice Monroe
Series: Beach House #5
Print and e-book, 400 pages
Published May 22nd 2018 by Gallery Books

Whisking you back to the shores of her bestselling Beach House series, Mary Alice Monroe weaves together a tale of the struggles and triumphs of the historic Rutledge family of Charleston, South Carolina. Beautifully wrought and rich with keen insight, this is an illuminating tale of new beginnings, resilience, and one family’s enduring love.

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.

Congratulations Mary Alice
 on the release today of
Beach House Reunion!

My thoughts about Beach House Reunion ~~ 

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first lines.)

First line—"All roads lead home. That thought mingled with the soothing sound of Debussy as Cara descended from the majestic highlands of Tennessee toward the sultry lowcountry of South Carolina."

I really love reading Southern fiction and this one was a real pleasure to read. Beach House Reunion is only the second book by Mary Alice Monroe that I have read and the first book of her five book Beach House series. I loved that I could jump right into the story, five books in, and not feel like I had missed a thing. I can only imagine how much more I would've loved this book if I had started to meet the characters from the beginning.

This is a wonderful, emotional story as we watch so many of the characters grow, put the past behind them, and move on to discover whatever the futures holds for them. I quickly became a part of their lives and got swept up in their emotions. Parts did bring me to tears, I haven't had a good cry over a book in a long time. I love it when a story touches me to tears.

I am excited to take more trips to the beach house which was just as much of a character in the story as the people were. I am ready to go back to book one to see how it all started.  

I received an ARC from Gallery Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

About the author

New York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe found her true calling in environmental fiction when she moved to coastal South Carolina. Already a successful author, she was captivated by the beauty and fragility of her new home. Her experiences living in the midst of a habitat that was quickly changing gave her a strong and important focus for her novels.

Mary Alice Monroe writes richly textured books that delve into the complexities of interpersonal relationships and the parallels between the land and life. Monroe’s novels are published worldwide. With the same heart of conservation, Monroe has written two children’s picture books as well.

Her novels have achieved many lists, including the New York Times, USA Today and SIBA. She has received numerous awards, including several Readers’ Choice Awards; the 2014 SC Book Festival Award for Excellence in Writing; the 2015 SW Florida Book Festival Distinguished Author Award; RT Lifetime Achievement Award; and the 2008 South Carolina Center for the Book Award for Writing. Most recently, Monroe was named by the South Carolina Academy of Authors as a 2018 inductee of the Literary Hall of Fame.

Monroe’s novel A Lowcountry Christmas won a 2017 Southern Book Prize in fiction, awarded by the Southern Indepedent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA). In 2011, her novel The Butterfly’s Daughter won the International Book Award for Green Fiction. It was also selected as a finalist for the 2012 Book of the Year by SIBA.

Monroe’s novel The Beach House will be adapted into a Hallmark Channel Hall of Fame Movie, starring three-time Golden Globe nominee Andie MacDowell and premiering exclusively on the network in 2018.

Monroe lives with her family on a barrier island outside Charleston, South Carolina. She is an active conservationist and serves on the Board of the South Carolina Aquarium, The Leatherback Trust, and Charleston Literacy Volunteers. She is a frequent speaker at book festivals, conferences, and private events. Monroe is also a frequent contributor to magazines and blogs.

Connect with Mary Alice


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Release Day! Echo Moon by Laura Spinella

Happy Release Day!! 


Echo Moon

Echo Moon by Laura Spinella
Series: A Ghost Gifts Novel Book 3
Print and e-book, 421 pages
Published May 22nd 2018 by Montlake Romance

A past life, a past war, and a past love. Peter St John can’t foresee a future until he confronts his past sins.

When photojournalist Peter St John returns home after a two-year absence, the life he’s been running from catches up. For years his mother’s presence, coupled with Pete’s own psychic gift, has triggered visits to 1917. There, he relives battles of the Great War, captures the heyday of Coney Island on canvas, and falls in love with an enchanting and enigmatic songstress named Esme. Present-day Pete still pines for Esme, and his love endures…but so does his vivid memory of killing her.

When he discovers family heirlooms that serve as proof of his crimes, Pete will have to finally confront his former life. He also meets a young woman—who is more than what she seems—with a curious connection to his family. As century-old secrets unravel, can Pete reconcile a murder from his past before it destroys his future?

Congratulations Laura
 on the release today of
Echo Moon!

I absolutely love this series and can't recommend it enough. Read my thoughts here and check out the series here. I promise you, you won't be sorry—it is amazing! 

About the author

Laura Spinella

Echo Moon is my eighth published novel. Author? Maybe. In truth, I’m a girl from Long Island who fell in love with the South and ended up calling New England home. Along the way, ideas emerged, leading to the books I've written, and Echo Moon is among my favorites—it is the final novel in the Ghost Gifts series.

When Ghost Gifts was published, I never thought I’d write about ghosts again. One and done, as they say.

To my surprise, the book was the #1 bestseller in Kindle store during most of its debut month, and went on to become a RITA awards finalist, RT Book Reviews finalist, and winner of an Audie, for Best Paranormal Romance. Foretold, book two, was an Amazon Editors' Pick the month it debuted. I remain humbled by reader reaction and the desire to hear more of Aubrey Ellis’s story.

Not all my novels are about ghosts, though I seem to have a good relationship with the ethereal world. Unstrung offered a change of pace for me and readers. The mainstream women’s fiction novel met with solid critical acclaim, including a starred review from Publishers Weekly, as well as being named to PW’s seasonal list of most anticipated and notable titles. I hope readers are as taken with quirky and capricious Olivia Klein as I was; I had the most marvelous time writing about her.

I live not far outside Boston with a husband, three technically grown children, two dogs and two cats. That's Auggie in the photo! Life takes place in a 130-year-old house where I can always be found writing my next novel. As always, I love to hear from readers. Feel free to drop me a line here, and many thanks for reading a Laura Spinella novel! ~ Goodreads

Connect with Laura


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Monday, May 21, 2018

New Release! Gone Haunting in Deadwood by Ann Charles #GoneHauntinginDeadwood #AnnWCharles

Gone Haunting in Deadwood

Gone Haunting in Deadwood by Ann Charles
Series: The Deadwood Humorous Mystery
Paperback: 392 pages
Publisher: Ann Charles (May 12, 2018)

Trespassers will be gutted and hung!—Slagton’s Town Motto

Normally, not even drunk on a bet would Violet Parker go to Slagton, a creepy ghost town inhabited by those too stubborn—or deranged—to leave.

But a certain bullheaded Deadwood detective has a problem—his informant from Slagton has gone missing. When Violet is shanghaied into taking a hunting trip to the ghost town to search for the missing snitch, she stumbles into trouble that will take more than a double-barreled shotgun to escape.

Will Violet survive this new Hell that haunts her, or will she end up on Slagton’s growing list of those gutted and hung?


I absolutely love Ann Charles and her Deadwood series! And she recently released book #9 in this fun and crazy world!! More Violet, Doc, Harvey and the rest of her wonderful characters.

Whoot, whoot!! 

About the author

Ann Charles

Ann lives in the beautiful Northern Arizona mountains with her clever husband, charming kids, and an incredibly sassy cat. After many years and several colleges, she managed to obtain her Bachelor’s Degree in English with an emphasis on creative writing from the University of Washington.

Her books are mixed-genre mysteries full of mayhem and fun, romance and comedy, and whatever else feels right. Sisters in Crime was kind enough to let her join their membership years ago. In addition, she’s been a member of Romance Writers of America for so many moons that she’s lost count.

Ann has written a bunch of contemporary, award-winning novels in multiple series full of quirky characters with whom she loves to spend time as much as reality allows. Right now, while you’re reading this, she’s probably frolicking around in another story.

While her reading preferences range from adventure to horror to mystery, ever since she tried on her first training bra, she has loved a good mix of romance, too.

When she’s not dabbling in fiction, she’s penning writing-themed articles or standing on her workshop soapbox, sharing what she has learned over the years about the writing craft and self-promotion.

Connect with Ann


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It's Monday! What Are You Reading? May 21, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It's an opportunity to visit other blogs and to comment on their reads. And ... you can add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. And here we are!


Here we go into another week and summer is trying to make a appearance. We'll have a few days in the 80's and then we drop back to the 50's and then back up. Crazy weather! 

Not too much going on, other than the usual stuff. High school graduation is right around the corner so there are those parties, and a retirement party or two coming up. The beginning for some and the ending for others. Life goes on. 

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you all have a good week. Happy reading!

What I'm currently reading

Beach House Reunion (Beach House #5)
by Mary Alice Monroe
Releases May 22nd.

A Sister's Place audiobook cover art
A Sister's Place
by Savannah Page

What I recently finished

by Stephen King
This is a short story by SK, available to download from his website here

Girls' Night Out
by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke
So, so good! My thoughts will be posted soon.
Releases July 24.

How to Walk Away
by Katherine Center
Amazing! My thoughts will be posted soon.

What I am going to read next

Everything We Give (Everything #3)
by Kerry Lonsdale
Love this series. Book #3 releases July 3.

I really love my reading life!

What are you reading this week?


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Saturday, May 19, 2018

Book Spotlight Giveaway! The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta

I have sooooo many books! The Book Spotlight Giveaway feature that I post every Saturday is a way for me to clear my shelves and to share some of the many books I have. This feature is a way for my to cull my collection and to give someone else the opportunity to enjoy these treasures.


Good luck and be sure to stop back next week!

The Leftovers

The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta
ARC, 355 pages
Published August 30th 2011 by St. Martin's Press

What if — whoosh, right now, with no explanation — a number of us simply vanished? Would some of us collapse? Would others of us go on, one foot in front of the other, as we did before the world turned upside down? That's what the bewildered citizens of Mapleton, who lost many of their neighbors, friends and lovers in the event known as the Sudden Departure, have to figure out. Because nothing has been the same since it happened — not marriages, not friendships, not even the relationships between parents and children.

Kevin Garvey, Mapleton's new mayor, wants to speed up the healing process, to bring a sense of renewed hope and purpose to his traumatized community. Kevin's own family has fallen apart in the wake of the disaster: his wife, Laurie, has left to join the Guilty Remnant, a homegrown cult whose members take a vow of silence; his son, Tom, is gone, too, dropping out of college to follow a sketchy prophet named Holy Wayne. Only Kevin's teenaged daughter, Jill, remains, and she's definitely not the sweet "A" student she used to be. Kevin wants to help her, but he's distracted by his growing relationship with Nora Durst, a woman who lost her entire family on October 14th and is still reeling from the tragedy, even as she struggles to move beyond it and make a new start.

With heart, intelligence and a rare ability to illuminate the struggles inherent in ordinary lives, Tom Perrotta has written a startling, thought-provoking novel about love, connection and loss. 


About the author

Tom Perrotta

Tom Perrotta is the bestselling author of nine works of fiction, including Election and Little Children, both of which were made into Oscar-nominated films, and The Leftovers, which was adapted into a critically acclaimed, Peabody Award-winning HBO series. His work has been translated into a multitude of languages. Perrotta grew up in New Jersey and lives outside of Boston.

Connect with Tom


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Friday, May 18, 2018

The Gibborim Series by B.J. Sheldon ~ My Thoughts and a Giveaway! #HeartheCrickets #FeeltheFlames

27838624   36581666

Hear the Crickets and Feel the Flames by B.J. Sheldon
Series: The Gibborim Series, books 1 and 2
Hear the Crickets published January 7, 2016 
Feel the Flames published February 20, 2018
Published by Whiskey Creek Press

Hear the Crickets (The Gibborim, #1)

Skyy’s a freak. She’ll tell you so herself. Her past – a mystery. Her future – uncertain. Having spent most of her life avoiding humans in an effort to conceal her wings, she wants nothing more than to end it all, leaving behind the solitary life she’s been forced to live. But numerous attempts to die have proven immortality is both a curse and a nuisance.

She now lives out her days in self-imposed seclusion to stay hidden from the world. But that quiet way of life is shattered when mysterious siblings arrive and reveal a destiny which sends her running for the hills. When an earth shattering discovery is made in the Badlands, history and science collide furthering the mystery behind Skyy’s past – and her future. Skyy will need to embrace her fate and confront an evil so ancient, only a miracle can keep the world from ceasing to be.

Feel the Flames

With the apocalypse behind her and new relationships before her, Skyy looks forward to a different kind of life…one filled with peace and contentment. But her idyllic life is interrupted when a startling vision rocks her world, forcing her to confront a brutal truth.

The war isn’t over.

An ancient evil arrives and encourages her to locate a long-forgotten artifact, one which can be used to control demons and spirits, threatening those she loves if she refuses to play along.

Pieces of Skyy’s past are revealed, unmasking the awful truth behind her true destiny. With a final battle between Hell and Heaven imminent, the fate of the world rests in her hands.

In the end, she must decide whose lives she must save: the people she cares about or the rest of humanity.

My thoughts about Hear the Crickets and Feel the Flames ~~

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first lines.)

First line—"Professor Perrin wiped the sweat from his forehead with the back of his shirt sleeve. It had grown warm, but he'd become too far distracted with what his students had discovered that morning to notice." ~ from Hear the Crickets

I read these two books back to back so this post is going to be my thoughts about both of the books – the series as a whole.

I love it when a synopsis and/or author can take me outside of my reading comfort zone and draw me into the story. I connected with the characters immediately, especially Skyy. Oh, to be so different from everyone else, to be alone for so many years, and to know that your life will never end—how hard that must have been for her. But she just carries on, knowing that there is a reason she's here, even if she doesn't know what it is yet. She is such a strong, good person, even when those around her aren't as strong or as good.

This series is classified as supernatural and paranormal, which are both genres I tend to steer clear of, but this is a story about angels, a story about good vs. evil, a story that peaked my interest from the start. Also, BJ Sheldon is a new-to-me author who is from South Dakota (me too) so I needed to read her stories and see what her books were like. (It's that South Dakota-connection thing.) I was very pleasantly surprised by the story-line and thoroughly enjoyed the adventures that I went on with Skyy.

There was plenty of action that kept me turning the pages, as well as some nice personal connections that Skyy has with the people around her. There are some great characters that you are either going to love, or hate. Also, I loved that I was able to go from book one right into book two—it kept the excitement going for me.

I really hope there are more books coming in this series, I can't wait to read more about Skyy. I need to find out what happens next with her as she looks for the answers to the questions she has about her life. 

About the author

B.J. Sheldon's love of writing has developed into a passion for creating exciting characters and story lines that she hopes will enthrall and inspire young readers to pick up a book and use their imaginations.

BJ Sheldon is a Young Adult author who has a penchant for the paranormal and supernatural. She is obsessed with strong female characters and the strength and determination that a young adult protagonist can bring to the page. She is the author of The Dusty Chronicles trilogy and The Gibborim Series. She has a B.S. degree in Project Management and a PhD in life. Throughout the years, BJ has found endless inspiration through her childhood in rural Iowa, the mysteries of the paranormal, and her ceaseless need to question everything.

Most days, she can be found in front of her laptop or reading a good book when she isn't trying to keep her dog and 3 cats from taking over the world. Her hobbies include cuticle care, fighting off zombies, and traveling through space and time with a mad man in a blue box. BJ prides herself in being a Whovian, Sherlockian, Potter Head, and an all-around giant nerd.

BJ lives near the Black Hills in South Dakota with her husband, a veteran of the US military, and is the mother to 3 beautiful daughters, 2 of whom are still living at home and making her crazy. She is represented by Italia Gandolfo of the Gandolfo Helin and Fountain Literary Management agency. ~ Goodreads

Connect with BJ 

The winner of this giveaway wins both copies of this amazing series. The format is EPUB only. More information about downloading Adobe Digital Editions (it's free!) and reading EPUB books can be found here

This giveaway is international!! 


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