Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Pride Book Blast & Giveaway


Pride by Rosie Somers

Seventeen-year-old Gabriella Pierce is used to taking care of herself, but she’s about to become responsible for a whole lot more. When she gets a visit from three men claiming to be defenders of fantastical rings imbued with the powers of THE CARDINAL SINS, her life is changed irrevocably. Gabby is the steward of PRIDE To make matters worse, she’s falling hard for fellow steward, Grant Barnett, and he hates her guts. Now Gabby has to learn to protect Pride without letting her feelings for Grant get in the way.

Praise for the Book:

Iola’s Christian Reads: “Pride is aimed at the YA market, and is the first in a planned series (presumably one for each of the seven deadly sins). It incorporates elements of other well-known YA series such as Harry Potter and Divergent, (an orphan who is the ‘chosen one’ fighting the forces of evil). It has that fast pace and addictive quality which makes it hard to put down.” “...it was thrilling enough to grab my attention and I can’t wait to continue Gabby’s story in the next installment. Rosie Somers has made it to my Author’s to watch for list!”


Copyright © Rosie Somers Gabby

The man didn’t make a sound. He stood stock still for the span of one sharp, inhaled breath, then he crumpled to the floor. After assuring herself there was no one behind him, Gabby flipped her flashlight on and knelt to give the unconscious heap at her feet her full attention. Oh God, she’d killed him. She just knew it.

Save for green streaks coursing through his thick, black hair, and a spot of blood near his temple, there wasn’t any color on him. His clothes were black, his skin winter-pale. Everything about his appearance was smooth, lean, handsome—no feature out of place. Full lips, chiseled jaw, and strikingly thick eyelashes. He was pretty, for a boy. It all fit, even the green hair. And he was still breathing. She wasn’t a murderer.

Suddenly, a strong hand gripped her forearm, and the heavy flashlight was ripped from her grasp. Wrenching free from the iron grip, she tried to turn around as she stood. Instead, she fell backward over Pretty Boy, landing hard on her butt with her legs draped over his torso.

Gabby scrambled to her feet. The moment she was steady, she broke into a run, but only made it as far as the back door before arms like steel bands wrapped around her from behind, pinning her to a rock-solid chest. She couldn’t breathe. “We’re not here to hurt you, Gabriella,” a deep voice murmured into her ear. As if to prove the honesty of his words, the man relaxed his hold just enough for her to breathe normally.

“Yeah, right.” And her foster dad had only wanted to give her a kiss goodnight—with his tongue. Gabby knew what men were like, and she was not about to be fooled by this one. “How do you know my name?”

“It’s a long story, but we’ve been lookin’ for ya for some time now.” He had an Irish accent.

“Who are you?”

He turned their bodies back toward the unconscious man across the room. Now another guy stood over Pretty Boy. He wasseveral years older, thirty maybe. His pale blond hair was short and, even from across the room, it was clear he was much taller than her.

As Vice Guy half-carried her to the other men, a muffled moan floated up to meet them, and the guy on the floor took great care disentangling lanky limbs to pull himself to a kneeling position. He rubbed the side of his head with one hand while he used the other to brace himself against the wall. The look Pretty Boy raked over Gabby as he got up made her cringe.

The guy still holding her spoke. “If I let ya go, will ya promise not to run? We’re not goin’ to hurt ya. We’re here because we need your help.”

She believed him. Maybe because, even though she’d just clobbered his friend, he hadn’t hurt her. She nodded and was immediately released.

She turned, but the guy behind her wasn’t the giant with superhuman strength she’d imagined. Her captor was probably only a couple of years older than her, with dark auburn hair and a hint of a dimple on his right cheek. Despite the seriousness of the situation, his bright blue eyes sparkled with interest, and the corners of his lips were turned up in an amused smile.

He didn’t take his gaze off her, even when he took several steps away. Instead, he stood arms crossed, feet planted apart. Poised to give chase if she fled. Running had crossed her mind, but something compelled her to stay at least long enough to hear what they had to say.

“Well …?” She prompted with a wave of her hand that clearly said, get on with it.

The blond man cleared his throat. “Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Andrew. This is Lucas.” He motioned toward the man who’d grabbed her, then to the one she’d knocked out. “And Grant.”

Grant’s eyes were narrowed. She shifted under his scrutiny and diverted her gaze. Andrew whispered something in his ear, and Grant looked down at his feet. Andrew continued, “We need to go.” They were there to abduct her. At the realization, panic rose in Gabby’s chest, choking her breath into shallow threads. She threw her hands up defensively and backed away with slow, shaky steps. “I’m not going anywhere with you.”

Andrew sighed. “You may not want to now, but you will when you find out why.”

“Then tell me.”

He checked his watch, then squared his shoulders in determination. “Have you ever heard of the seven deadly sins?”

Gabby snorted. “Who hasn’t?”

“I assume you don’t realize how serious they are. We’ve spent our lives protecting humanity from the temptations and you laugh at the mention of them?” Grant’s voice was deep and forceful.

He looked as though he would have continued scolding her, but Lucas uttered a soft “Dude” and shook his head. Grant snapped his mouth shut and raised a hand to rub the back of his neck.

Lucas picked up where Andrew left off. “Do ya know much abou’ the history of the sins?”

She’d only ever heard an Irish brogue on TV. His lilting tone was soothing.

He raised an eyebrow. Oh, he’d asked a question. What was it? Ah yes, history of the sins. Gabby shook her head.

“In the latter half of the fourth century, a monk fled Constantinople to a small monastery in Egypt. There, he penned a list of eight sins which he referred to as the Temptations of Man: Pride, Avarice, Acedia, Gluttony, Impurity, Anger, Sadness, and Vainglory.”

He took a few steps back and leaned against the wall, then continued, “For two centuries, almost all of those not involved with that particular monastery thought the list of Temptations was nothing more than the opinion of one monk, a suggestion of how to lead a good Christian life. Then, sometime around five-ninety A.D., Pope Gregory the First came across a collection of rings tha’ had been housed by this monastic order in utter secrecy. They considered them so powerful only the handler was permitted near them, just one specific monk who devoted his life to ensurin’ no one else came into contact with the Temptations.”

“Listen guys, much as I appreciate the history lesson, I’ve got work in …”she made a show of checking her non-existent watch, “a few hours, so I really hope you’re getting to a point.” This earned her a leveling glare from Grant.

“Pope Gregory had the rings studied and discovered they were in fact imbued with special properties. It seemed they had the power to influence people toward certain … well … temptations,” Andrew replied.

What asylum had these guys broken out of? Did they actually believe this nonsense they were spouting? “Seriously, jewelry that makes people sin? Right.” Gabby moved to her bag and gathered her clothing, making sure to keep the men in her line of sight.

Lucas reached into his shirt and pulled out a chain. He slipped it free of his neck and dangled it from the tips of two fingers. Swinging like a pendulum at the bottom of that chain was a brilliant, red ring.

“What is that?” She already knew the answer.

Lucas took several slow steps in her direction and extended his arm toward her. She clenched her fists and bit down on her tongue to keep from yelling at the men. How dare they sneak into her makeshift home, intruding into her life, practically scaring her to death. Now, they were feeding her this absurd story about sin-possessed rings and crazy monks.

The closer he got, her anger went from muted seething to barely-contained rage. The more she thought about it, the more she wished she was still in possession of her Maglite so she could hit him with it, and maybe again after that. When Lucas was little more than five feet from her, he winked and reversed direction. With each step he took away from her, the violent feelings receded.

“Anger,” Gabby answered her own question.

“Anger,” Andrew affirmed. “Lucas is the steward. I’m the steward of Pride, Grant of Envy.”

Grant’s eyes narrowed at her, while Andrew pulled a matching chain from beneath his own T-shirt and let the attached orange ring fall to rest against his chest. Something about Andrew’s ring was different though. Sure, power emanated from it, too, but she wasn’t experiencing pride. This power was different. It tingled—almost like static electricity.

After slipping the chain back over his head and tucking it under his neckline, Lucas picked up his story from where he’d left off. “Each of the rings has the ability to influence people toward a particular sin. Pope Gregory discovered which ones led to which temptation and labeled them accordingly. As a result, the original list of temptations was amended. It came to be known as the seven deadly sins.”

That was why the list Lucas spouted earlier didn’t sound right.

“The rings didn’t create the sins, of course. They just have the power to promote that particular feeling or action. Each sin has two rings and two custodians.” Lucas was matter-of-fact.

“What, like a janitor?”

He shook his head, but didn’t otherwise acknowledge her interruption. “The stewards are bound to their particular ring, can sense it, can control its influence over others.”

“How come I’ve never heard of these … stewards?”

“We exist in secret. If the world knew about us and the sins, all hell would break loose. We are not equipped to deal with that,” Grant answered in a tone that clearly said she should already know the answer.

“I still don’t understand what any of this has to do with me.” Were they ever going to get to the point?

Lucas took a tentative step toward her. “You’re the other steward of Pride, Gabriella.”    

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Author Rosie Somers

Rosie Somers is a YA author who lives in Florida, soaking up the year round sunshine. She can often be found in her favourite spot on her favourite beach, nose-deep in a good book.


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Solo Book Review

Title: Solo
Author: Kevin V. Symmons
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Pages: 353
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Format: Paperback/Kindle

Jessica Long has the voice of an angel. But Jesse’s cold beauty masks a brutal past filled with privation and cruelty. As the talented soprano approaches her final year at New England Conservatory, she is faced with a choice: stay with her striking young lover or accept the offer of a successful Broadway producer.  
She chooses the latter only to discover that fame can exact a cruel price. After years of yearning, the lovers meet again – at Jesse’s ragged homestead on the Maine Coast. 
Matt will reveal the benefactor who’s followed and protected Jesse as the lovers face a confrontation with the jealous pursuer who’s tried to destroy her. One final choice awaits that may cost Jesse both Matt and her life. The Broadway impresario, a mysterious crime lord, and Matt’s stunning literary agent head a cast of absorbing secondary characters. Filled with unexpected plot twists, Solo is a classic, leading the reader over a bittersweet tapestry spanning fifteen years.
Purchase your copy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Discuss on Goodreads |
My Thoughts:
This book will absolutely break your heart! I think it's one of the saddest stories I have read in awhile and it's all because 2 people didn't take the time to get to know one another long enough to trust each other with the truth. I don't know, but if this is what is happening in real life, no wonder there is so much unhappiness!
Telling the truth for Jesse would have eased all of Matt's uneasiness and suspicious thoughts about what was Jesse really hiding.
When something bad happens to you as a child, it is not your fault and why adults feel like it is, I have no idea. Telling Matt what happened when she was a child would have saved a whole lot of grief and unhappiness for a lot of people, not just the two of them. Their decisions affected quite a lot of people.
I know past hurts are hard to explain to others, but I would have done it in a heartbeat to keep the man who just told me he loved me and that he thought that they were soul mates. Jesse feels the same way but for whatever reasons, she feels she has to do this all alone.
The ending is not what I had thought it would be and that is going to shock a lot of people who read the book. It's well worth it. I say that because I will admit that there are a few slow spots and the total lack of faith on Jesse's part made me want to slap her silly, but all in all, it's a great book to read, just be sure to have plenty of hankies available.
Happy Reading!
About the Author:
Kevin Symmons has a BS and an MBA. He has attended the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music and studied in France. After a successful career in business management and consulting, he returned to his first love: writing.
His first novel, a spell-binding paranormal romance titled “Rite of Passage” is set in the chaotic period after World War II. It’s received dozens of great reviews and was a RomCon Reader’s Crown Finalist for 2013. His second effort is a contemporary romantic thriller set near his Cape Cod home, titled “Out of the Storm.”
Like his first novel, it is an Amazon Best-Seller and received many 5-star reviews. “Solo“, an intense and ambitious women’s fiction work, has been released from The Wild Rose Press, his award-winning publisher. It explores the devastating effects of privation and domestic violence on the beautiful and extraordinarily talented young heroine.
Connect on his Website | Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads | Contact |
Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Nantucket Five Spot Book Review & Giveaway

Nantucket Five-Spot

by Steven Axelrod on Tour March 1-31, 2015

Book Details:
Genre: Mystery
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Publication Date: Jan 6, 2015
Number of Pages: 296
ISBN: 9781464203428
Purchase Links:
Henry Kennis, Nantucket island’s poetry-writing police chief who will remind readers of Robert B. Parker’s Jesse Stone and Spenser, works a second challenging case in Nantucket Five-Spot.  
At the height of the summer tourist season, a threat to bomb the annual Boston Pops Concert could destroy the island’s economy, along with its cachet as a safe, if mostly summer-time, haven for America’s ruling class. The threat of terrorism brings The Department of Homeland Security to the island, along with prospects for a rekindled love affair –Henry’s lost love works for the DHS now.  
The “terrorism” aspects of the attack prove to be a red herring. The truth lies much closer to home. At first suspicion falls on local carpenter Billy Delavane, but Henry investigates the case and proves that Billy is being framed. Then it turns out that Henry’s new suspect is also being framed –for the bizarre and almost undetectable crime of framing someone else. Every piece of evidence works three ways in the investigation of a crime rooted in betrayed friendship, infidelity, and the quiet poisonous feuds of small town life.  
Henry traces the origin of the attacks back almost twenty years and uncovers an obsessive revenge conspiracy that he must unravel –now alone, discredited and on the run –before further disaster strikes.
My Thoughts: 
This is a very good, well thought out mystery that I know that all of you would love to read! It has everything that is needed to make this one of those books that is hard to put down.
Someone is framing just about anyone who might make a great suspect, even the Police Chief, Henry Kennis. He does have one thing going for him and that is his ex-girlfriend works for Homeland Security, so maybe, just maybe he might get out of this jam alive.
The real reason for all of this violence and revenge is based on someone close to the killer died but not from murder and how or why he can blame other people is kind of crazy, but then, crazy people really have no good reason or excuse.
Get ready to read a book that you won't want to put down until you find out all the answers!
Happy Reading!
Read an excerpt:
Chapter One
Finally, I was having dinner alone with Franny Tate. It was a mild summer night, we were dining at Cru, overlooking Nantucket harbor. I was leaning across the table to kiss her when the first bomb went off.

A hole punched into the air, a muffled thump that bypassed my ears and smacked straight into my stomach, like those ominous fireworks that flash once and leave no sparks. The blast wave hit a second later, shaking tables and knocking over glasses, rattling windows in their frames. Franny mouthed the word ‘bomb,’ her lips parting in silence and pressing together again, not wanting to say the word aloud, or thinking I couldn’t hear her through the veil of trembling air.

I pushed my chair back, pointing toward the Steamboat Wharf. We ran out into a night tattered by running feet and sirens. Our romantic evening lay across the stained tablecloth behind us, tipped over and shattered with the restaurant stemware. Something bad had arrived on my little island, an evil alert, a violation and a threat like a dog with its throat cut dropped on a front parlor rug. It was up to me and my officers to answer that threat, to make sense of it and set things right.

I didn’t explain this to Franny. I didn’t need to. She was running right beside me. At that point, I thought it all began with the first bomb threat, two weeks earlier, but I wasn’t even close. It takes a long time to make a bomb from scratch. Lighting the fuse is the quick part. I can tell you the exact moment when the match touched the cord, though.

It was a bright humid morning in June. An eleven-year-old girl named Deborah Garrison stepped off the boat from Hyannis and skipped ahead of her mother down into the crowded seaside streets. As it happened, I was at the Steamship Authority that morning, picking up my assistant chief, Haden Krakauer.

We actually saw Debbie in her pony tails and Justin Bieber t-shirt. She didn’t seem special, just another adorable little girl on a holiday island crowded with them. And Debbie didn’t actually do anything. Nothing that happened later was her fault. The simple, irreducible fact of her presence was enough.

Even years later, the consequences and implications of Debbie’s arrival seem bizarre and implausible, far too weighty to balance on those thin sunburned shoulders. It was like setting off an avalanche with a sigh. The next time I saw Debbie, it was a week later and she was holding hands with my friend Billy Delavane when he came to the station to report a stolen wallet. She’d been tagging along with him everywhere, since the day she came to Nantucket. They had met in the surf at Madaket when he pulled her out of the white water after a bad wipeout.

“She’d launch on anything, but she kept slipping,” Billy told me later. “She couldn’t figure it out. No one told her she had to wax the board.”

She was happy to let Billy get everything organized and push her into some smaller waves and even happier to share a cup of hot chocolate with a few other kids at Billy’s beach shack when hypothermia set in.

They’d been inseparable ever since Barnaby Toll took Billy’s stolen property report and then buzzed my office. He knew I’d be pleased that Billy had shown up at “Valhalla” as he liked to call it. Billy had been one of the more vocal opponents of the new police station, dragging himself to several Town Meetings and fidgeting through all the boring warrant articles to take his stand against the giant new facility on Fairgrounds Road. I understood his point. I had been against the construction myself, initially.

But, like driving in a luxury car or eating at good restaurants, I adapted to the change shockingly fast. Now I couldn’t imagine working in the cramped crumbling building on South Water Street. I found the two downstairs in the administration conference room.

Billy tilted his head as I walked in. “Nice place. Lots of parking. In America, where nothing else matters.” I ignored him, looking down. “Who’s this?” Debbie spoke up without waiting for him. I liked that. “Debbie Garrison.” She extended her hand and I tipped down a little to shake it. “Police Chief Henry Kennis.” “Glad to meet you, Chief Kennis. Can I have a tour? I think this place is awesome.”

“Absolutely. How old are you?” “Eleven,” Billy volunteered. “I’ll be twelve in September,” Debbie corrected him. “That’s my son’s age,” I said. “You should meet him.” “Most eleven-year-old boys are extremely immature.” I let that one go and offered Debbie my arm. “Shall we?” “Yay!”

She grabbed my hand and led me into the corridor. “Can we see the jail cells?” “Sure.”

The place was buzzing on a June morning. We had Girl Scouts gathering in the selectman’s meeting room and people milling in the front lobby, complaining about the neighbors’ noise violations and picking up over-sand stickers. Last night’s DUIs, the unlicensed, uninsured, or unregistered drivers (a couple of them always hit the trifecta).

On the way down to the booking room I asked Debbie what she thought so far. “Well, the upstairs where we came in reminds me of a mall. That hole in the ceiling where you can see up to the second floor? I was like—is there a GAP store up there? This part is more like my school. But nicer.”

“Well, it’s new.” “New is good,” she announced decisively and I thought,you’ve come to the right place. “So are you spending a lot of time with Billy?”

We pushed through into the booking room. It was crowded, phones were ringing. A bald geezer who looked like he was constructed out of sinew and tattoo ink was being hustled inside from the garage. Debbie stared at him. He was obviously sloshed out of his mind at ten in the morning. I took her hand and led her around the big horseshoe-shaped desk toward the holding cells.

“Debbie?” “It—what?” “Billy? You’re spending a lot of time with him?” “That guy is creepy.” “He’s sad. His kid was killed in Afghanistan. He drinks a lot, that’s all.” “Ugh. Those tattoos.” “They’re bad.”

She’d probably have one herself by the time she was sixteen, but you can always hope. She moved on. “Billy’s great.” Then, “What’s behind that door?” I followed her gaze to the corner. “That’s our padded cell.” “For crazy people?” “Well…for people who might try to hurt themselves.” “Cool! Can I see it?” “Sure.”

We went inside. “Padded” is a slight exaggeration—the beige walls and floor have the consistency of a pencil eraser. “Billy’s not like I expected.” She pushed the walls, bouncing tentatively on the balls of her feet. “I mean, he’s not crazy or dangerous or anything.” “Who told you he was dangerous?”

“Oh, I don’t know…just—people.” “They were probably talking about his brother, Ed, who actually is crazy. And dangerous. But he’s going to be in jail for a long, long time. So I wouldn’t worry about him.” “Billy is so the opposite of that. He wouldn’t hurt anyone. I mean, he’s sad about all the changes here, but he knows he can’t stop them. He’s not like some kind of terrorist or anything.” I put a hand on her shoulder to stop the bouncing.

“Debbie.” She looked up at me. “Someone’s been calling Billy Delavane a terrorist?” “I don’t know. I guess so. It’s just—people talk. People say stupid stuff all the time. Gossip and stuff.”

“I guess. But you’ve only been here a week, and you’re already hearing hardcore gossip about Billy Delavane? I don’t see how that’s possible. Are the kids talking about him?” “The kids love him.” “Then who? Your mother? Your mother’s friends?”

“Yeah, right.” The idea of her talking to her mother’s friends was obviously so crazy only a clueless grown-up could entertain it. We went to the jail cells next, three for the women and six for the men, simple rooms with built-in stainless steel sinks and toilets and a blue cement slab bed.

The men’s side was full, so I walked her into the women’s block which was empty for the moment. Debbie pointed at one of the slabs. “How can anyone sleep on that?” “We have special bedding, but people don’t usually stay here overnight.”

“What’s that for?” She was looking at the stainless steel rail than ran along the length of the slab, eight inches off the floor. “That’s called a Murphy bar—it’s for handcuffing people.” “Oooo.”

She shuddered.

Author Bio:
Steven Axelrod holds an MFA in writing from Vermont College of the Fine Arts and remains a member of the WGA despite a long absence from Hollywood. His work has been featured on various websites, including the literary e-zine Numéro Cinq, where he is on the masthead. His work has also appeared at Salon.com and The GoodMen Project, as well as the magazines PulpModern and BigPulp. A father of two, he lives on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts, where he paints houses and writes, often at the same time, much to the annoyance of his customers.
Connect with him on his Website or Facebook.

Tour Participants:


This is a giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Steven Axelrod & Poisoned Pen Press. There will be one winner of 1 Box of Poisoned Pen Press books including Nantucket Fivespot. The giveaway begins on Feb 28th, 2015 and runs through April 3rd, 2015.

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I have also been allowed to give one person an ebook copy of Nantucket Five Spot. Good Luck Everyone!

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Manroot Book Review

Paperback: 312 pages
Publisher: Headline Review (September 22, 1994)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0747245010
ISBN-13: 978-0747245018
I have a really stunning book to share with you today called Manroot written by A.N. Steinberg. This is an older book but I was blown away by how good it was and was very honored to have brought back an older book to some future readers.
In the spring of 1939, Katherine Sheahan and her father, the taciturn Irishman Jesse, are looking for work in the isolated tourist town of Castlewood, Missouri, which offers bathing, gambling and adultery. Jesse gets a job as handyman and Katherine as maid at a small hotel. Jesse drinks and neglects his work and eventually disappears, abandoning his daughter. Katherine discovers the ginseng, the manroot, and other secrets of the foothills; she discovers herself as a natural healer who has inherited this gift from her Navajo Indian mother. She also has a special but unwelcome gift. She can communicate with spirits.

Among the hotel s regular clientele is Judge William Reardon, a local hero who metes out justice by day, then drinks the foul taste away at night. Escaping his sterile marriage, he becomes captivated by Katherine. He is like a man reborn. Theirs is a union of like-minded souls, but a dangerous dark magic is released. Can their love survive?

A powerful, haunting novel that explores the powerful themes of identity and destiny, love everlasting and its brutal twin, violence.
Purchase your copy on Amazon. 
My Thoughts:
I really wasn't sure I would like this book that was written so far back and it took me a few pages to get really involved with the story, but once I did, I was shocked at how Katherine was treated, even in the 1940's!
Katherine and her father wonder around a lot because of his ability to not hold a job long and his obsessive drinking and other awful things that he did. So, when they landed in Castlewood, Katherine thought she had finally found a home. When her father insisted on leaving again, she refused and stayed at the Inn that she had grown to love.
Unfortunately, for her, life did not go well there either. From meeting a man she thought would treat her like a queen and he did for awhile until things got out of control and he turns his back on her and the people at the Inn aren't very nice either.
Katherine wonders around in the woods like an animal for a long time and then another tragedy finds her doing something she never thought she would do and it will become the force that keeps her rooted to Castlewood even though she really should have left long ago.
This story was very riveting and I couldn't put it down once I really grasped the story and I was so mad, angry, upset and shocked at all the things that Katherine had lived through and survived. It's a story that I think all of you should read because it's brilliant but sad at the same time.
Happy Reading!

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours.  

Remember the Lilies Book Review

I have a really great romance and tragic war book to share with you called Remember the Lilies written by Liz Tolsma.
How will two very different people find love—and survive the impossible circumstances of war? 
In 1941 Rand Sterling was a wealthy, womanizing club owner and an American of note among ex-pats and locals alike. Now two years later, Rand is just another civilian prisoner of war—one whose planned escape from the Santo Tomas Internment Camp could put him and others in grave danger. 
Irene Reynolds grew up as a missionary kid in the Philippine jungle. Now she works for the paranoid Japanese authorities, delivering censored messages to the other American prisoners in Santo Tomas. 
When Irene’s negligence leads to Rand’s failed escape attempt, Rand is sent to the torture chambers of Fort Santiago—and Irene suffers under the weight of her guilt. Yet when she crosses paths with Rand again after his unexpected return to the camp, something more than mere survival draws the unlikely pair together. 
As life in Manila becomes more and more desperate, and another threatening letter finds its way from Irene’s hands to Rand’s, the reluctant couple struggles to find a way to stay alive . . . and to keep their growing feelings for each other from compromising the safety of everyone around them.
Purchase your copy on Amazon. 
My Thoughts:
This story is just as good as the one called Snow on the Tulips that I reviewed a little while back. The same author that wrote that one, also wrote this one. She can definitely write some of the most romantic love stories in the middle of a war better than anyone else I can think of right now.
Irene and her Aunt Anita lived in Manila and work as missionaries but now Anita is sick and need of help or she will die. The Japanese are using Irene to keep tabs on the prisoners of war and she has had to do things she is very guilty about.  
This story is about her struggle to survive in a prison camp and trying to keep her Aunt Anita alive when she meets Rand. But, she betrays Rand and because of that, he is taken to another kind of prison that is much worse than where they were.
Can he forgive her when he finally gets back to where she is being held? I don't know what I would have done in her shoes or his for that matter, but whatever happens, I believe you can only take so much torture and pain and anyone can break.
I hope you will take the time to read this story because it's about love, hope and yes, some tragedy but it also gives hope to those who needed it the most.
Happy Reading!

About the Author:

Liz Tolsma has lived in Wisconsin most of her life, and she now resides next to a farm field with her husband and their two daughters. Her son proudly serves as a US Marine. All of their children have been adopted internationally and one has special needs. When not busy putting words to paper, she enjoys reading, walking, working in her large perennial garden, kayaking, and camping with her family.

Connect on her Website | Facebook | Twitter |
Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. 

Teaser Book Review & Giveaway

Hardcover: 280 pages
Publisher: Rare Bird Books, A Vireo Book (February 24, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1940207363
ISBN-13: 978-1940207360
Teaser, the sequel to Inside Passage, takes Corey and Abe into the interconnected worlds of private school kids and the runaways who roam Seattle's streets. Billy attends the Olympic Academy, where two friends, Maisie and Aaron, are experimenting with sex and drugs. They've become close to Star, a streetwise seductress who leads them down a treacherous path.  
Despite the best efforts of Abe and Corey, Maisie is abducted by the diabolical “Teaser,” a man determined to take revenge on her father, his former cellmate. Teaser is a mystery to everyone except Abe and Corey, who alone realize what they must do to rescue Maisie. They contrive a plan that shocks even them.
Purchase your copy on Amazon 
My Thoughts:
Wow! This book is really something! How the author came up with this amazing story I have no idea because it's so diabolical and crazy that it goes beyond lunacy.
Corey and Abe both will end up being totally stunned into what they stumble across while trying to help their son, Billy find his two missing friends. The police don't seem too concerned but the parents know their children and know that they would not just run away.
In fact, they are not the only ones who have disappeared. The absolutely crazy man behind all of this stomach churning crime is so evil that it will boggle your mind.
This is one book you definitely don't want to miss reading because it's one of the best thrillers and if you are a thriller junky, then this one should keep you up all night until the end of the book!
Happy Reading!
About the Author:
Burt Weissbourd is a novelist, screenwriter and producer of feature films. He was born in 1949 and graduated cum laude from Yale University, with honors in psychology. During his student years, he volunteered at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris and taught English to college students in Thailand.
After he graduated, he wrote, directed, and produced educational films for Gilbert Altschul Productions. He began a finance program at the Northwestern University Graduate School of Business, but left to start his own film production company in Los Angeles.
He managed that company from 1977 until 1986, producing films including "Ghost Story" starring Fred Astaire, Melvyn Douglas, John Houseman, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and Patricia Neal, and "Raggedy Man" starring Sissy Spacek and Sam Shepard, which The New York Times called "a movie of sweet, low-keyed charm." In 1987, he founded an investment business, which he still runs.
INSIDE PASSAGE is the first in the Corey Logan trilogy.
Connect with him on his Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads |
This one was too good to pass up and let someone else read this amazing and griping thriller, so I will be giving my print copy to one winner. Open in the Continental U.S. only. Good Luck everyone!
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Epitah Book Review

Title: Epitaph: Reveille
Author: Victor Nieves
Publisher: Acorn Book Services
Pages: 358
Genre: Sci-Fi
Format: Paperback/Kindle
In year 2343, the galaxy receives a deadly wake-up call… 
Nearly three-hundred years have passed since humanity ascended to the stars, joining with a conglomeration of alien races all living under the rule of a single, united community – the United Galactic Coalition – a joint, multi-species alliance that upholds the principles of democracy, freedom, and equality for all races. 
The Milky Way Galaxy’s future looks bright … 
Until a research team uncovers a mysterious crystal buried deep beneath the surface of a frontier world on the edge of settled space. This discovery proves to be the catalyst for an invasion from an unknown alien force that is just as ruthless as they are mysterious. 
As the races of the galaxy are catapulted into a vicious fight for their very survival, fate hastily throws together a legendary admiral with a dark past, a brilliant scientist with precious little time to find the answers, an elite Special Forces Operative who must come to terms with a past failure, a spunky young military officer for whom this war is a baptism by fire, and a top notch Marine who will discover a truth that will define him as a hero. 
These five men and women hold not only the keys to their own survival, but the survival of their entire civilization. With the clock ticking, the race to uncover the truth begins. As they try to fend off this cruel and merciless alien foe, this handful of soldiers must discover what secrets this crystal could hold that would be worth the destruction of all life in the galaxy. But the question is … 
… Can they do it in time?
Purchase your copy on AmazonDiscuss on Goodreads |
My Thoughts:
If you are a lover of Science Fiction, then this book will fascinate you as much as it did me! I love reading books where writers try to imagine what the faraway future might be like and I must admit that this one is slightly different because everything happens in space, none of it is really on land.
This group of space travelers or space patrol gets into a lot of action and adventure in their quest to find all these crystals which they all admit they are not sure what they are suppose to do or how they work.
They will have enemies out for blood just for the sake of it and then there will be the oddball personal revenge, but the scariest enemy is The Vanguards, whom they didn't even know existed until they happened upon an artificial intelligence made by a group of people who no longer exist because these Vanguards wiped them out.
The artificial intelligence's name is Solo and once he has told his story to these brave fighters, one thing is for certain, they must be the ones to find the last crystal and they must prepare themselves for the fight of their life!
Enjoy the space travel ride because it is full of action and suspense! I can't wait to read the sequel!
Happy Reading!
About the Author: 
Victor Nieves lives in West Virginia. He enjoys writing, reading, and is a huge horror movie fan, zombies in particular. At the young age of twenty-one, he found a way to communicate his ideas and imagination with others through writing, which he plans on doing for the rest of his life.
Connect with Victor on his Facebook or on Twitter.
Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours.

Admit to Mayhem Book Review & Giveaway

Title: Admit to Mayhem
Author: D.J. Adamson
Publisher: Horatio Press
Pages: 286
Genre: Mystery/Amateur Sleuth
Format: Paperback/Kindle
With a contrary attitude and an addiction for independence, Lillian Dove admits she has not been a success in life. In fact, she considers failing as one of her addictions. Yet, when she comes across a suspicious house fire with a history of arson and murder, she instinctively attempts to help someone trapped. Lillian becomes the only possible eyewitness to criminal arson, and her life begins to spiral out of control. 
Lillian Dove is an endearing “everywoman” struggling with life issues, emotional complexities and a habit of doing just the opposite of what she’s told to do. These qualities in a heroine give the reader an ability to vicariously struggle along with the protagonist in this intriguing Midwest Noir mystery.
Purchase your copy on AmazonGoodreads |
My Thoughts:
Lillian Dove is definitely some kind of character and you won't want to miss reading this sometimes very funny, sometimes dangerous and a very crazy way to go about solving a mystery and making sense of Lillian Dove and her life!
She does admit to being an alcoholic, drinking Pepsi and being a chocolate fiend. She also loves men and isn't ashamed of any of it. Heck, she even works in a Package Store to show how much willpower she has to not drink if she doesn't want to.
You are going to enjoy reading about Lillian and her brush with an arsonist whom she saw set the fire and all of the antics that happen after that! Heck, even the Sheriff likes her and wants to be more than friends but I am not too sure how his wife would like that idea!
Happy Reading!
About the Author: 
D. J. Adamson is an award-winning author. Her family roots grow deep in the Midwest and it is here she sets much of her work. She juggles her time between her own desk and teaching writing to others at two Los Angeles area colleges. Along with her husband and two Welsh Terriers, she makes her home in Southern California.
Connect with her through her Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Blog |
I thought one of you might like to read this light hearted mystery about a unique woman. This is a print copy book. Open in the Continental U.S. only. Good Luck!
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Friday, March 20, 2015

Terror Never Sleeps Book Review

Title: Terror Never Sleeps
Book 2: Jack Gunn Thriller Series
Author: Richard Blomberg
Publisher: Beaver’s Pond Press
Publication Date: February 15, 2015
Pages: 337
ISBN: 978-1592988952
Genre: Military Thriller / Suspense
Format: Paperback, eBook (.mobi / Kindle), PDF
Navy SEAL Jack Gunn’s life is turned upside down when terrorists kidnap his family and disappear without a trace. While Jack and his team search frantically for clues in Virginia, half-way around the world, his wife, Nina struggles to survive the terrorist’s daily persecutions as his hostage. 
Terror Never Sleeps is an action-packed tale of Nina’s transformation into a warrior who is fighting for her life, and Jack’s relentless pursuit of the terrorists from Mali to Diego Garcia to Pakistan. A military coup, propaganda, dirty bombs, and the launch of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal with one target—Israel—is all part of the terrorist’s master plan, who are hellbent on blowing the world back to the eighth century. The non-stop action keeps the reader constantly off balance with the bizarre and unexpected.
Purchase your copy on AmazonBarnes & Noble | Goodreads |
My Thoughts:
I had a feeling going into this book from the cover and the synopsis that this would be a hard book to read because of the acts that terrorists commit that most human beings would never cross that line. And I was right, right from the get go the book is filled with action and heart pounding thrills that will keep you on the edge of your seat all the time.
This story is about 2 brothers who have had past dealings with a certain terrorist and they basically declared war on them and their family, so I was a little surprised in the storyline that these 2 men did not have some kind of protection or armed security watching over their families. Especially considering that one brother is pretty high up in the ranks of the military.
Of course, he had been on a desk job for a year and this was his first mission back out into the field to try and get back some dirty bombs, but in reality, it was a ruse so that they could get his family.
From that point on, all bets are off on whether he goes by the book or goes renegade and if you love a lot of fighting and some major evil in your stories, then this book will not disappoint you. It will leave you wondering what in the heck would you do if it had been you instead?
Happy Reading!
About the Author: 
Dr. Richard Blomberg has practiced anesthesia in the land of 10,000 lakes for twenty years. He grew up in an Iowa farm town, the oldest of ten, before serving as a Navy hospital corpsman during the Vietnam War. For generations, Richard’s family has proudly served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. He is a graduate of the University of Iowa and currently lives in the Twin Cities with his wife and family, where he is working on his next Jack Gunn thriller.
Connect with author on his Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads |
Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Spring Cleaning 2015 Book Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the Spring Cleaning Giveaway Hop for 2015!
I have a couple of books that I hope you will like and two of them are still pretty new as I just reviewed them this year. All 3 books are print copy books and can only be shipped to the Continental U.S. only. Each book title will be a link back to the review if you need to see what the book was about.
Don't forget to follow the Linky List below the RC Giveaway Form so you can enter to win even more great prizes! Good Luck!
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