Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.” —Groucho Marx

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

All Lined Up by Cora Carmack--A Review




SYNOPSIS:

New York Times an
USA Today bestselling author Cora Carmack follows up her trio of hits—Losing It, Faking It, and Finding It—with this thrilling first novel in an explosive series bursting with the Texas flavor, edge, and steamy romance of Friday Night Lights.

In Texas, two things are cherished above all else—football and gossip. My life has always been ruled by both.

Dallas Cole loathes football. That's what happens when you spend your whole childhood coming in second to a sport. College is her time to step out of the bleachers, and put the playing field (and the players) in her past.

But life doesn't always go as planned. As if going to the same college as her football star ex wasn’t bad enough, her father, a Texas high school coaching phenom, has decided to make the jump to college ball… as the new head coach at Rusk University. Dallas finds herself in the shadows of her father and football all over again.

Carson McClain is determined to go from second-string quarterback to the starting line-up. He needs the scholarship and the future that football provides. But when a beautiful redhead literally falls into his life, his focus is more than tested. It's obliterated.

Dallas doesn't know Carson is on the team. Carson doesn't know that Dallas is his new coach's daughter.

And neither of them know how to walk away from the attraction they feel.


FROM MY MIND'S EYE:

This was a first read for me of Cora Carmack's writing, but it darned sure won't be the last!

Ok, I surrender and must admit I like reading quirky author's books and I am classifying Cora Cormack as a quirky author who writes a fantastically good story with quirky characters.   There I said it.

What a nice little story premise...a daughter of a football coach who has been somewhat neglected for the love of football.  She's also been used by teammates and potential players to score points with her dad.   She hates football.   The guy she meets as she escapes a party scene, is a fellow student and a non-player on the football team.  He doesn't know she is the coaches daughter.....an explosion in the making when all is revealed...even for the coach.

The characters are flawed, but grow and reach a new maturity as the story progresses and that includes Coach Cole as well.   I loved the way Carmack brought the story to a climax and then resolved the issues so smoothly.   I also enjoyed the supporting cast of characters and their journey.

There were plenty of adult and explicit romantic scenes in the story, but I think some of 
this was necessary to explain Dallas's internal issues and the strength of character that Carson exhibited.


A very nice read that had me reading into the wee hours of the night.   I gave All  Lined Up 5 Winks!

Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.  I purchased this book for my personal Kindle Library.






Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Never Never by Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher--A Review

Morning Peeps!    Have you ever read a book after hearing a lot of hype about it and found it confusing, mind boggling and addictive?  Let me assure you Never Never by Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher is just such a book.   When I started it, I was sure I hated it.  But as I read on, Crazy me loved it!   I still don't have the answers as to what happened and why, but I can not wait to read part II and I hope these authors can pull it off to a satisfying conclusion.


SYNOPSIS:

Best friends since they could walk. In love since the age of fourteen. Complete strangers since this morning.
He'll do anything to remember. She'll do anything to forget.


FROM MY MIND'S EYE:

I love Colleen Hoover's writing. She gives her characters a quirkiness that I adore and her books are filled with humor as well as believable relationships. I had never read anything by Tarryn Fisher, but I will investigate her work further.

That being said, my curiosity about Never Never got the best of me and I plunged into it. Talk about a different kind of read! It starts out with a bang when high school student Charlie Wynwood, comes into fourth period and is startled not to remember who she is or who any of her classmates are. Worse yet, at lunch she realizes her "boyfriend" Silas Nash has also lost his memory. The storyline leads these two teens to investigate on their own what happened to them. I loved the characters. They were well developed and reacted to their situation as you would expect anyone to react to such a thing.

To me there was a suspenseful element to this story as they tried to figure it all out. My mind had difficulty with the pretense of the story, but I was hooked within a few pages and did not want to put the book down. The book progressed to a cliffhanger ending, preparing the way for book two which I can not wait to read! And I haven't got a clue as to what caused all this to occur!


I rated this a 4 wink read!


 X 4

Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.  I purchased Never Never for my own personal Kindle library.  


Friday, January 9, 2015

Powerless Consent by Jan Nash--A review

Awhile back, I won a copy of Powerless Consent by Janet Nash from Shauna Allen.   I have read only a brief story of Janet's from the Circle of Redemption Book, a Tre Donne anthology from Janet Nash, Shauna Allen and Susan C Muller.    With the New Year rung in, I knew I wanted to seize the day or night, and read Nash's book.    So I did just that and here is my review.


SYNOPSIS:

Kate Ballard thinks attending a gala on a luxury yacht honoring her old college friend will be the time of her life, but secret cell phone videos, threats to her family's safety, and a hidden sniper force her into a world of deception and lies. Can her faith erase such horror? Though powerless, she relentlessly tries to outsmart her captor and return to the love of her life. Her husband, Tom, refuses to accept his wife's decision to leave and discovers that he must revisit his past. With the help of an unlikely ally, he finds evidence of theft and murder tucked away in an old storage locker. When his investigation starts to uncover the truth, he struggles with whom to believe. Will he trust his heart, or the deception before his eyes? One thing's for sure, nothing can stop him from reuniting his family, not even a force as great as Invisible Surveillance.

FROM MY MIND'S EYE:

First let me say, I enjoy a well written inspirational story.    I also enjoy a good little breath-taking mystery.   More than anything I love clean romance.    So maybe, just maybe, I have found my author of choice!

That being said, I really enjoyed this read by Nash.   The title was more representative of the story at hand than most.    

The characters are strong and either trying to walk the Christian walk, learning to walk the Christian walk, or just plain oblivious of such a thing.  The one lesson the four main protagonists learn is to appreciate the moment they are living and not to take the simple things in life for granted.    Kate and Tom share a love that people could envy, but it came from years of hard work and dedication.  Callie grew from a shallow woman who thought success was the hilight of life to a woman redefining her life so that it mattered...for the right reasons.   Jack Oakes grew from being buried in his work to finding there was more to life to look forward to....and the fifth main character, was also the antagonist, and well, would there be any hope for him?

The storyline was bizarre, but believable in today's world of technology.   It was well plotted and flowed smoothly.   It was easy reading and a very enjoyable book.    Once I began reading, I was hooked, line and sinker!    Which cost me a night of sleep, but since I suffer from insomnia anyway....it fit right in with my unscheduled schedule.

I rated Powerless Consent a 5 Wink read!   I will be sure to followup with Invisible Surveillence.




Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.  I did win a copy of this book and agreed to post an honest review.



Wednesday, January 7, 2015

See Them Run by Stacy Green--A Review

Brrrr, it is cold in the midwest this morning!   Wind chills equivalent of thirty below!!     I guess maybe the Farmer's almanac is much more accurate than the weather man locally.    Well, it is winter after all, so who can be surprised.

Anyway, it's always good to have a warm house and a stack of books on hand to read in weather like this!

SYNOPSIS:

"I couldn’t erase the memory of the video. A little boy with dark brown skin, a little skinny but overall healthy looking, stood naked in the middle of a nondescript room. A disembodied voice ordered him to turn in a circle, to raise his arms over his head, to bend over. He obeyed with a glazed look in his eyes and tears running down his cheeks. A price was named just before the video ended. I would kill someone for that little boy tonight." 

Savvy undercover work leads Lucy Kendall to an underground child sex trafficking ring. But when her best lead is found dead, Lucy becomes a suspect in a murder she didn’t commit. Lucy barrels ahead, determined to take out the trafficking ring no matter the personal cost. Powerful outside forces intervene, and she finds herself on the run for murder. 

Clearing her name means embracing her growing dark side. With Chris by her side, Lucy fights for justice. Is a monster from the past Lucy’s worst enemy, or will the blossoming evil in her own heart be her ultimate destruction? 

Packed with suspense, See Them Run is a dark psychological thriller with a finely crafted mystery that takes readers into the deepest recesses of the human psyche.


FROM MY OF PERSPECTIVE:

I must be getting old.   It is getting harder for me to read suspense, especially at night.   And somehow, it took me awhile to get into this suspense thriller about sex trafficing and child sexual abuse; topics that I abhor.   Or maybe I have seen too much of this on the television screen.   Whatever the real reason, I was reluctant to enter Lucy Kendall's dark world of dark justice.

Lucy had experienced a lot of pain and loss during her child hood with the sexual abuse of her sister Lily, and Lily's subsequent suicide.  As a result, Lucy had  preconceived determinations regarding the victims and the perpetrators of sexual deviancy and especially when it involved children.   Lucy had worked in child protective services and seen the failures of the legal system and how police hands were tied and how hard it was to burrow through the red tape.    So many times the rights of the perp outweighed the rights of the victims.    Thus , her already hardened heart finally surrendered to her primal need for justice...she would fight for the victims herself and alone.

Stacy Green is a master at creating a well plotted suspense story where her heroine is sympathetic to the reader.   Who wouldn't secretly cheer on a heroine taking over where the police and the legal system could not reach and punish the perpetrator of such violent and sickly crimes, especially against children.    The story was fast paced, flowed smoothly and held my attention easily, and Green finished the book with a curious surprise ending...truly a delight.

I rated See Them Run a 4 Wink Read!


Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like. I received a complimentary copy from the author or the author’s representatives in exchange for an honest review.




Friday, January 2, 2015

Gooseberry Island by Steven Manceste---A Review


PTSD is one of the biggest problems facing soldiers as they return from war. As an experienced veteran himself, Steven Manchester understands that. That's why, during the promotion of this book, Steven and The Story Plant are going to be working toward helping returning veterans. And we need your help to do that.

From now until January 31, 2015, we will donate $1 to the Wounded Warrior Project for every copy of Gooseberry Island that is pre-ordered and sold. All you have to do is email us a copy of your receipt and we will make the donation. In addition to that, we will also donate a copy of the e-book to returning soldiers, one donation for each copy sold.

The Storyplant





SYNOPSIS:

They met at the worst possible moment...or maybe it was just in time. David McClain was about to go to war and Lindsey Wood was there at his going-away party, capturing his heart when falling for a woman was the last thing on his mind. While David was serving his country, he stayed in close contact with Lindsey. But war changes a person, and when he came home very little had the same meaning that it had before – including the romance that had sustained him. Was love truly unconquerable, or would it prove to be just another battlefield casualty?

Gooseberry Island is the most nuanced, dramatic, and romantic novel yet from a writer whose ability to plumb the depths of human emotion knows few peers.

FROM MY PERSPECTIVE:

I rated this a five wink read.   It is truly pertinent and heartfelt to the world we live in and it brings the war casualty of PTSD front and center. I believe it is a must read for our generations.   It is romance, it is war and it is loss.    It is the struggle for survival long after you have been removed from dangerous surroundings and it is the story of love and forgiveness.

Steven Manchester is one of my favorite authors and he writes from his heart.    His stories bring emotion with them and beautiful characters come to life right before your eyes.  Gooseberry Island was no exception.    Lindsey and David shared common core values...a belief in God, redemption, love.    They helped each other through the war days David experienced and survived, but his heart and mind were changed during his days in Afghanistan.   He felt like he was much less than what he had been when he first deployed; he couldn't offer that lesser man to Lindsey.    She deserved so much more.   But what could he do to change?    Drinking was obviously not the answer and what help was there?    For him and his buddies?

It seemed to be a realistic tale to me and the fate of returning soldiers was told with a plea for help.   David's healing came not only from within but also with the help of his God and the love of family and friends.   Professional help also played a part in his cure, although he would suffer from his wounds of war for the rest of his life.     Finding the tools and the forgiveness to save himself was tantamount.

I would highly recommend this book to all patriots and any who support our returning vets.   God Bless them everyone.


Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like. I received a complimentary copy from the author or the author’s representatives in exchange for an honest review.









Thursday, January 1, 2015

2015 To Be Read List

Greetings in this New Year!   My prayer for all this year is peace and harmony and may your readings be beneficial to you in all ways!

I have set some goals this year and one of them is to read through  the books on this TBR list.    It's only 37 or 38 books that I have either on my bookshelves or stored in my Kindle.    Some I have read before, Most I have not.    My overall goal is again to reach the 150 total  for the year that I set for myself last year.   I was so close, but that Lord of the Rings series  did me in.   I don't see how anyone could read it fast.

So here it is, my reading list...we'll see together whether I can accomplish this goal!

ReReads from highschool days:





Personal Reading for My Spiritual Growth:




Christmas Reads:


Non Fiction:




Misc Genre Fiction:




































I lift my glass to you, fabulous readers of the world....Salute and may you be successful with your 2015 reading goals!

Miss Beth



December Reading Review






December was a very slow reading month for me.   I wanted to plow through The Two Towers and onto other reading, but that was not to be.    You don't plow through anything Lord of the Rings.....It's impossible.    But I did complete the book at hand and I am enjoying the series.   Anxiously awaiting my trip to the library for book #4.













OMG, Gooseberry Island by one of my favorite authors is a must read.    It is such an awesome book and the publishers are donating $1.00 for each preorder of the book purchased from now through January 31st.    Donations are being made to the Wounded Warrior Project plus an ebook given for each purchase to returning soldiers.  If this book about PTSD affects returning vets as it did me, hopefully many lives can be saved.    A very worthy read.








                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                               



December Kiss finished up my twenty-five days of Christmas reading this year.    This was a very enjoyable and fun Christmas read straight from Katie Mettner's heart.







And I finished up my December reading with Down Solo, suspense tale!
                                                                                                                       



And the high light of my month was being a beta reader for the first time.   I read Crank by Shauna Allen due to be released in late January.   No cover photo at this time, but something to definitely look forward to in January folks!

So only five this month, but they were great reads nonetheless!

Happy New Year Everyone and may 2015 be a great year for your reading purposes!

Miss Beth