10 December 2018

Tour & Giveaway: From Ash and Stone by Julie Daines



From Ash and Stone by Julie Daines.
Audience/Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance, Medievel.
Publication: December 1st 2018 by Covenant Communications, Inc..
Lady Margaret Grey of Hartfell wants for nothing. The daughter of a knight, she has a loving family, wealth, and even a secret romance with the blacksmith's son. But all that is torn from her one fateful night when her home is attacked and her family killed. She is left with nothing but bitterness, an unwavering mistrust of men, and a strange and mysterious curse that allows her to feel the thoughts of anyone who touches her.

Now, after six years away, Margaret is returning home for one reason: revenge. She hopes that by avenging her family's deaths, she will somehow be freed from her curse. But it won't be easy. The identities of the raiders are still unknown, she has little left to her name, and traveling alone in the Northumbrian hills during the border wars is dangerous. Matters are further complicated by handsome Angus Robson, a Scotsman whose charm threatens to distract her from her plans. But the raiders are closer than she knows, and Margaret soon realizes that what she believed to be a curse may be the key to finding those she seeks. One touch will reveal the truth.

Reviewed by Kelly.

I love love LOVE From Ash and Stone! If you are looking for a book that will make you cry, will make you sigh, will give you hope and healing then this is the book for you!! I certainly cried! I sighed at the end! And I felt hope in what the main character learned and it is never too late to change your heart even at the last minute! I felt the healing of the main character and in Angus as well!

I can’t say how much I loved this book. Angus is a good man in some bad times and he loves fiercely. Osanna is such a good friend who doesn’t know if she is a witch or not, even though she consults her bones on every topic daily! Gillis, Angus’s brother, is a mute and carries a deep secret with Angus that could ruin more of the spotty relationship they have with their father. And of course Margaret Grey, who once had a wonderful family and blames herself for their deaths because she snuck off to meet a boy when she was a teenager while her family’s home was burned and her family killed. There was nothing she could have done except die with them but she doesn’t see it that way. She was also assaulted by one of the Reiver’s that night. He bashed her head a few times and from that point on she could see other’s thoughts if she touched their skin. So of course her life is a sad and lonely one, in which she becomes hardened, stone, and avoids human touch. That is a very sad life indeed! SO her life is only to avenge their death and expects to die in the process. She is not afraid to die, maybe a little of the dying process but not of death itself. And so these people and the villains of the story make this book a great learning and healing process! Get your tissues out, you will need them. That is unless your heart too is made of stone!

The ending is perfect. It shows that life in these times isn’t ever really a happy ever after but close enough!

Most of the time, I don’t share quotes because they are what the characters have learned from and they are spoilers. But knowing that for the most part, the characters have learned things and these are what I like to share.

“We each walk our own way, and your fate is not my fate. Each step I take is my own choice and takes me down my own path. We all, each of us, lead ourselves to our own journey’s end.”

Ugh, well darn the other quotes, again, I can not share because they would be spoilers! There are some really good ones too!!!





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Julie Daines was born in Concord, Massachusetts, and was raised in Utah. She spent eighteen months living in London, where she studied and fell in love with English literature, sticky toffee pudding, and the mysterious guy who ran the kebab store around the corner.

She loves reading, writing, and watching movies—anything that transports her to another world. She picks Captain Wentworth over Mr. Darcy, firmly believes in second breakfast, and never leaves home without her verveine.

Julie is an award-winning and best-selling author, and her novel, Unraveled, was a contender for the ALA’s Schneider Family Book Award.






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Schedule:

*Dec. 10th: http://mybookaday.com/ , http://www.kindleandme.com/, http://bonnieharris.blogspot.com/, https://www.rockinbookreviews.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 11th: https://brightlystreet.com/, http://lisaisabookworm.blogspot.com/, http://lifeiswhatitscalled.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 12th: https://rachellechristensen.com/, https://www.singinglibrarianbooks.com/, http://ldswritermom.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 13th: http://minreadsandreviews.blogspot.com/, http://katiescleanbookcollection.blogspot.com/, https://ldsandlovinit.blogspot.com/, https://www.wishfulendings.com/, http://gettingyourreadonaimeebrown.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 14th: https://whynotbecauseisaidso.blogspot.com/, http://heidi-reads.blogspot.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/, http://www.iamareader.com/

07 December 2018

Tour & Giveaway: Wager for a Wife by Karen Tuft


Wager for a Wife by Karen Tuft.
Audience/Genre: Regency Romance.
Publication: December 1st 2018 by Covenant Communications, Inc.
William Barlow's life has been forever altered: his estranged father is dead, and William has inherited the title of Viscount Farleigh. Along with the title comes a neglected estate, an enormous amount of gambling debt, and one astounding acquisition that will turn William's world upside down . . .

It is her first London Season, and Lady Louisa Hargreaves could not be more pleased. She has attracted the attention of the Earl of Kerridge, and the two are on the cusp of an official betrothal. That is, until she learns of a generations-old family debt: her grandfather gambled her hand in marriage and lost, and now Louisa must pay the price. She will marry not the earl but a man she just met, who has taken her freedom in one fell swoop. Even as she struggles to understand the handsome and aloof man she is to wed, Louisa is irresistibly drawn to him—and he to her. But she soon realizes he is harboring secrets, and as her wedding day approaches, she must discover what her future husband is hiding before she makes the gravest mistake of her life.

Reviewed by Kelly.

Ok. I liked William or the new Viscount Farleigh from the beginning. He would use the wager’s vowel and repair his home and somehow fix the debts and the lives of the people he knew growing up when he finds out the debt his deceased father left to him. For he loves them, and the servants have loved William too! I’m not going to describe the wager here. You can read that. I just want you to know the main characters just make up the book. They are both very honorable and good people and want love in their lives and both think they aren’t going to find that. The wager is felt by Louisa to be upheld by honor and for William it will fix his father’s debts over time by marrying someone with clout and money. Who knew that this would work out in the end!


So, we learn that William is a stoic man with few words. We learn why he was like that. I can totally relate to him. But I also thought he was a man of hardly any words and how was he going to accomplish to win over Louisa like that! And how do you get to know anyone who won’t really talk. By the end of the book, you see him change and light up! He was more than just stoic. Louisa brought him to life. I was balling like a baby at the end of the book. I had to stop and get myself under control just so I could read the book from under the tears!!! That moment where his countenance glowed reminded me of the Keira Knightley version of Pride and Prejudice where Mr Darcy lights up when he introduces his sister to Elizabeth and he smiles! It just changed his whole look!

Than there is Louisa, who can babble on at times. William loved that quality in her. She loves to learn and wants to be more than just a mere female! Louisa’s family is very loving and close and her brothers tease Louisa relentlessly! I loved her family!

“And just like that, Louisa found herself betrothed”

I just love this story of finding love in a totally unconventional way!




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Karen Tuft was born with a healthy dose of curiosity about pretty much everything, so as a child she taught herself to read and play the piano. She studied composition at BYU and graduated from the University of Utah in music theory, where she was a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda honor societies.
In addition to being an author, Karen is a wife, mother, pianist, composer, and arranger. She has spent countless hours backstage and in orchestra pits for theater productions along the Wasatch Front. Among her varied interests, she likes to figure out what makes people tick, wander through museums, and travel whether it's by car, plane, or paperback.






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*Dec. 3rd: http://mybookaday.com/, http://bonnieharris.blogspot.com/, https://joyinthemoments.wordpress.com/, https://www.rockinbookreviews.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 4th: https://www.lovebugsandpostcards.com/, http://heidi-reads.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 5th: http://lisaisabookworm.blogspot.com/, http://lifeiswhatitscalled.blogspot.com/, http://ldswritermom.blogspot.com/

*Dec. 6th: http://katiescleanbookcollection.blogspot.com/, https://ldsandlovinit.blogspot.com/, https://www.singinglibrarianbooks.com/, https://whynotbecauseisaidso.blogspot.com/, http://www.iamareader.com/

*Dec. 7th: https://brightlystreet.com/, https://www.wishfulendings.com/, http://www.kindleandme.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/, http://gettingyourreadonaimeebrown.blogspot.com/, http://fireandicereads.com/

28 November 2018

Release & Giveaway: My Brother's Bride by Rachael Anderon



My Brother’s Bride by Rachael Anderson

Abigail Nash leads a lonely existence. Her mother died giving birth to her, her father’s business dealings took him away more often than not, and her ailing great-aunt, unable to provide much in the way of companionship, was a lack-luster guardian at best. So when her dear friends offered to launch her into London society, it appeared Abby’s life was taking a turn for the better, with suitors and social engagements aplenty. When she marries a proclaimed darling of the ton, it seems she will at last settle into the life of her dreams.

But appearances aren’t always what they seem, and dreams often become disappointments.

Just months into her marriage, Abby finds herself widowed, penniless, increasing, and determined to never hope again. But when her late husband’s brother, the Earl of Brigston, attempts to thaw the numbness surrounding her heart, Abby must decide if she has it in her to risk another chance at happiness, knowing the odds are not in her favor.

 

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Excerpt

When Brigston entered the kitchen, Abby’s back was partially to him, so she didn’t immediately see him. Her brow was furrowed in concentration as she whipped something in a bowl. She paused to lift the spoon, only to frown at the white liquid dripping from it.

“Are you certain this will thicken into a cream?” she asked.

A flash of irritation crossed Monsieur Roch's face until he spotted Morgan and seemed to think better of it. He managed a patient tone in his accented French. “It takes time, my lady.”

Morgan stifled a chuckle as Abby examined another spoonful of the liquid. “I’ve been whipping it for several minutes, but it doesn’t seem even a little thicker to me. Have I forgotten to add something?”

“No,” said the cook in clipped tones.

Morgan stepped forward and leaned in close. “If your arm is tired—”

Abby jumped, and what liquid remained on the spoon splattered across Morgan’s face. She spun around, her eyes growing wide with horror when she saw what she’d done.

He wiped a dab from his nose and tasted it. “A little more sugar, perhaps?”

“Brigston! I’m so dreadfully sorry.” She dropped the spoon into the bowl and grabbed a rag from a nearby wash basin, dabbing it across his face.

“Not that rag!” cried the cook. “It was only just used to mop the floors.”

Abby dropped it as though it had burned her, and Morgan tried not to cringe at the thought of filthy water coating his face.

Monsieur Roch retrieved a clean rag and held it out to him, appearing apologetic. He flicked another irritated glance at Abby before returning to his work.

As Morgan wiped the cream from his face, he wondered what Abby would do or say next. Offer another fumbled apology? Make her excuses and flee? Pretend the incident never happened and return to her labors? He never knew what to expect from her.

Her face scarlet, she cleared her throat and lifted her adorably determined chin. “You are most welcome, my lord.”

He raised a brow. “For what, my lady?”

“I have heard that cream does wonders for one’s complexion, and it seems the rumors are correct. Your skin appears much . . . creamier.”

 



Praise for My Brother's Bride

I found this book to be completely unexpected. I have read all the historical novels by this author and they have all been fun and delightful reads and even though this book had those elements as well, it was definitely more emotional than I was expecting... I loved Abby’s quiet strength and Morgan’s protectiveness. These two were great together. ~Melanie

 

My to-read list is long but Rachael is one author I always bump to the top and put all other books on hold for. She never disappoints so it's no surprise that this is another top-notch offering from Rachael. I loved these characters and cheered for them as they overcame obstacles and circumstances that tried to keep them apart. My Brother's Bride is an awesome and needed addition to the clean romance genre. So many authors pump out books so fast that often I find the quality of their work is lacking. Since I read for entertainment I'm able to forgive a lot and typically just overlook the shortcomings that are prevalent with so many books in this genre. Thankfully that is not the case with Rachael's books. I'm grateful for the time she takes to ensure she offers her readers quality books with original storylines that won't disappoint. ~ Kathy

 



 



Giveaway Details

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/16/18

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

 

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13 November 2018

Tour & Giveaway: The Truth about Miss Ashbourne by Joanna Barker



The Truth about Miss Ashbourne by Joanna Barker.
Audience/Genre: Historical Romance.
Publication: November 1st 2018 by Covenant Communications.
Governess Juliana Ashbourne has dreams reaching far beyond the confines of her current position, hoping to someday establish her own school for girls. When she inherits a fortune from her late grandfather, she is shocked to learn that “someday” may soon be within reach. However, there is one condition: she must spend a month at the estate of Havenfield—with the very family who disowned her mother. Intent on securing the money she needs to start her school, Juliana accepts the invitation, vowing to guard her heart against those who shunned her all her life. But Havenfield is far from what she expects. She discovers a grandmother seeking forgiveness, a cold and disapproving aunt, and a painfully shy cousin. And then there is Mr. William Rowley. Though the heir to the estate is a merciless tease, Juliana finds in him a friend and confidant—and perhaps something more. As she struggles to make sense of her new place in the world, her stubborn independence clashes with a yearning to belong and the even more confusing desires of her heart.

Reviewed by Kelly...

How could anyone not fall in love with The Truth about Miss Ashbourne?! The debut author writes a beautifully enticing story of finding what it means to be part of a family, having a desire to do something good and become independent, and finding someone who makes you laugh and fall in love with. I know that was a very overly long sentence but I wanted to put it all out there first!

Miss Ashbourne has guarded her heart and lived only to be a governess with a desire to open a school for girls. A school to teach them all the things of the world that are only taught to boys. She is definitely a modern day woman born in the wrong era for her goals. She has always expected to be a spinster. She never thought she would have love or a husband. She does seem to attract the wrong kind of men though. To find out what I mean by that, you will have to read the book. She learns about her mother’s side of the family and where she thought she would not care for them, she finds their unconditional love and she returns it as well. I loved watching her grow.

What I most loved though, was watching the relationship with Julianna, Miss Ashbourne, and William grow. They have such an easy banter. I found myself smiling and giggling many times with their conversations! I was just a little frustrated that I couldn’t hear what was inside William’s head to know how he felt about her. It was about ⅔ the way in until I could see how he felt for her. It is in first person, so I understand we don’t get to know. But I really wanted to know where Julianna and William were headed. Because William was helping Julianna with her dream of starting her school for girls and well I didn’t want her to start it and leave William. I was totally swooning over him! He was her confidante, her saviour, her friend and teacher. He was a man worthy of Julianna and I would accept nothing less. So the long wait was killing me. I enjoyed every minute of it though.

Just to get a tiny glimpse of Julianna’s personality, Julianna has never ridden a horse and she was a little scared. William was giving her some riding lessons and this was her first encounter with a horse (whose name is Miranda)…

I took a fortifying breath and forced myself to walk to the mounting block. William close behind. I tried to picture Miranda as a great big armchair, one I just needed to climb upon. I failed. She was very clearly a horse.

If you love independent women, stories about love, family, leering men, stories with lots of bantering/teasing, stories that make you smile and laugh,balls, sewing, horses then this might be for you! It definitely was for me!!


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​Joanna Barker was born and raised in northern California. She discovered her love for historical fiction after visiting England as an eleven-year-old, and subsequently read every Jane Austen book she could get her hands on. After graduating Brigham Young University with a degree in English, she worked as an acquisitions editor before devoting herself full-time to writing. She enjoys music, chocolate, and reading everything from romance to science fiction. She lives in Utah and is just a little crazy about her husband and two wild-but-loveable boys.






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Schedule:

*Nov. 12th: http://mybookaday.com/, https://www.rockinbookreviews.com/, https://www.lovebugsandpostcards.com/, http://melsshelves.blogspot.com/

*Nov. 13th: http://empowermoms.net/, http://heidi-reads.blogspot.com/, http://www.craftinessisnotoptional.com/, http://www.kindleandme.com/

*Nov. 14th: http://ldswritermom.blogspot.com/, http://www.blogginboutbooks.com/, http://lifeiswhatitscalled.blogspot.com/

*Nov. 15th: https://www.singinglibrarianbooks.com/, https://ldsandlovinit.blogspot.com/, http://lisaisabookworm.blogspot.com/, https://www.wishfulendings.com/, http://gettingyourreadonaimeebrown.blogspot.com/

*Nov. 16th: https://brightlystreet.com/, http://www.iamareader.com/, https://whynotbecauseisaidso.blogspot.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/

06 November 2018

Tour & Giveaway: The Gem Thief by Sian Ann Bessey



The Gem Thief by Sian Ann Bessey.
Audience/Genre: Romantic Suspense.
Publication: November 2018 by Covenant Communications, Inc..
Gracie Miller is a small-town girl who has landed her dream job in New York City. As jewelry designer for one of the most prestigious jewelers in the world, she completed a particularly stunning piece, a custom setting for a large pink diamond. But when her billionaire client Mrs. Katsaros comes to repair a minor issue with the setting, Gracie is horrified to realize it is not the ring she created. Someone has forged her design, and the priceless diamond is gone.

Mrs. Katsaros has no desire to bring media attention to the jewelry heist, so she recruits her nephew, Quinn, and his FBI agent friend, Steve, to do some sleuthing off the record. When they discover that the missing ring is just one of many forgeries in the widow's collection, they look to Gracie for help. They need her to act the part of Quinn's fiancĂ©e. From the lights of New York to the shimmering islands of the Mediterranean, Gracie is swept into a thrilling hunt. But amid the search for the elusive thief, she and Quinn find themselves increasingly distracted by their growing feelings for each other. What neither realizes is how close the danger lies and how serious the vendetta is—because, apparently, it is worth killing for.

Reviewed by Kelly.

After reading this book, I really want to go to Greece and take a cruise. The descriptions from the heat of the day to the color of the water is so alluring! Hopefully, if I ever get there, I will never have to have the suspense that the characters in the book had! But the romance from the place, I certainly wouldn’t mind experiencing!

Gracie is an easy going, unselfish, and kind person. She loves her job designing jewelry settings. She has been wanting to do that since she was a little girl. She works at a prestigious jewelers in New York.

Quinn is a junior partner at his insurance firm. His aunt Dorcas (who is a widow from a wealthy husband who created a cruise ship line) owns several pieces of jewelry that is insured with his company. He has a sort of girlfriend, who just doesn’t get the hint and is very selfish.

When Quinn’s aunt goes to Gracie to get a ring adjusted, she learns that the ring is a forgery and the gem inside is a fake as well. Dorcas does not want to call the police, she doesn’t want the publicity it brings and decides to have Quinn and his FBI friend Steve to find her jewelry. When it is discovered that many other of her jewelry is a fake as well, they add Gracie to their hunt to find the missing jewelry. I learned a lot about the jewelry world. It is really interesting! It’s also a little scary and I am glad to have my own costume jewelry and not worry about it!

Quinn and Gracie pose as an engaged couple and go to Greece to buy an engagement ring and see if they can figure out how the past three years someone has been replacing her jewelry that she had bought in Greece. So, the crew of them goes to Greece to do the same as she has done year after year and with FBI Steve to help, and find the thief and hope to find her missing jewelry. It’s not about the money for Dorcas but the sentiment that it has with her late husband and her love for him.

Quinn and Gracie had a very rocky start. But they find they are alot alike and their caring natures make it easy for them to find themselves falling for each other. Add in a little jealousy in the book also gives a little laughter to the romance as well.

The story is believable and the characters have depth to them. I liked that this book’s story line was kind of unique. At least to me, as I knew nothing about jewelry in the high society world. I also have never been on a cruise either.

Before they go on the trip to Greece, Quinn and Gracie would talk on the phone every night to learn more about each other to make their “cover” believable. I loved this little part of the conversation:

He said. “What are your top three movies?”
“Uh, Pride and Prejudice (as long as it’s the one with Colin Firth), While You Were Sleeping, and Tangled.”
“You’re a romantic.”
“Maybe,” Gracie said. “But have you ever considered what great ‘how to’ movies they are? They’ve got the answers every woman needs on how to avoid interacting with socially awkward men, how to drop and roll to escape an oncoming train, and how to wield a frying pan as a weapon. Those movies are full of all sorts of life skills”
Quinn laughed. “I’ll never watch them the same way again.”

And this conversation comes to life for them too, so you really need to read it to see how that happens!

If you love stories with the fake engaged couple, very expensive jewelry, fancy cars, cruises, Greece, swimming pools, jealousy, hit and run scenes, suspense, and falling in love with someone that you didn’t expect to then this might be for you!



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Sian Ann Bessey was born in Cambridge, England, but grew up on the island of Anglesey off the coast of North Wales. She left her homeland to attend Brigham Young University in Utah, where she earned a bachelor's degree in communications with a minor in English.
She began her writing career as a student, publishing several magazine articles while still in college. Since then she has published historical romance and romantic suspense novels, along with a variety of children's books. She is a USA Today best selling author and a Whitney Award finalist.
Although Sian doesn't have the opportunity to speak Welsh very often anymore, she can still wrap her tongue around, "Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch." She loves to travel and experience other cultures, but when she's home, her favorite activities are spending time with her family, cooking, and reading.






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Schedule:

* Nov. 5th: http://mybookaday.com/, https://www.rockinbookreviews.com/, http://bonnieharris.blogspot.com/, http://lifeiswhatitscalled.blogspot.com/

*Nov. 6th: https://brightlystreet.com/, http://empowermoms.net, http://heidi-reads.blogspot.com/, http://www.kindleandme.com/

*Nov. 7th: http://ldswritermom.blogspot.com/, http://lisaisabookworm.blogspot.com/, https://www.lovebugsandpostcards.com/

*Nov. 8th: https://www.singinglibrarianbooks.com/, https://ldsandlovinit.blogspot.com/, http://gettingyourreadonaimeebrown.blogspot.com/

*Nov. 9th: http://www.iamareader.com/, https://whynotbecauseisaidso.blogspot.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/, https://www.wishfulendings.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/