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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Mailbox Monday April 1, 2013

Welcome to Mailbox Monday.
For APRIL: the Mailbox Monday Tour host is Mari at MariReads!
Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs.  This Meme started with Marcia at A Girl and Her Books (fka The Printed Page) but is now hosted at Mailbox Monday and through various blog hosts.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists. 

I received several review titles last week plus one win!
How are your mailbox and TBR piles doing?

Review Titles

I received this print title for review:

by Rochelle Alers

I received three Audio titles through Audiobook Jukebox:

Author: Mark Millar, Steve McNiven
from GraphicAudio


by Carla Neggers
from AudioGo 


Hunter: A Thriller 
by Robert Bidinotto
from Bidinotto

Won at CMash Reads
The Best Man
by Kristan Higgins
Thank you to CMash and Muscle Media!

Still waiting for one previous win that is still due.

None this week.


I did download a few free Kindle Titles linked through Inspired Reads, Pixel of Ink and Kindle Review.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? April 1, 2013

This meme starts at Book Journey!

What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

I had another busy week at work but good reading week. I finished five books. I posted four reviews, two with ARC Giveaways.  I also posted the Mailbox Monday meme, Friday Pick Giveaway, Saturday Snapshot, Sharing Beyond Books Comment Giveaway and Sunday Words.

I didn't get to visit last week. I will try harder this week.
Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:
  • Book Review and ARC Giveaway: Free Fall by Catherine Mann; Military Romance; my rating 3.75. Ends 4/5/13.
  • Book Review and Feature: Cross the Line by Jack Patterson; Thriller; my rating 4.0. 
  • Book Review: Girl vs. Earl by Phillipa Ashley; Contemporary Romance; my rating 4.25. 
  • Book Review and ARC GiveawayLast Chance Book Club by Hope Ramsay; Contemporary Romance (series); my rating 4.5.  Ends 4/5/13.
Finished Reading:

1. ebook/Kindle

Girl v. Earl
by Phillipa Ashley
Fun, British romance. 
Review linked above. 
US edition Published March 26th 2013.
Click on title for Book Description

2. Audio Book/MP3

Did You Miss Me [Audiobook, Unabridged]
Karen Rose (Author),
Marguerite Gavin (Reader)
I really enjoyed this. I will post the review this week; for Blackstone Audio, Inc. through Audiobook Jukebox.
Click on title for Book Description

3. eBook/Kindle

by Judy Nichols
I enjoyed this mystery with its internet element
and different PI lead.
I will post a review this week.
Read for review at request of the Author.
Click on title for Book Description

4. Print

A Shot of Sultry
by Macy Beckett
Another fun romance series;
Read from Sourcebooks;
I will be post a review and ARC Giveaway this week.
Book Description
Release date: March 5, 2013 | Series: Sultry Springs
Click on title for Book Description

5. eBook/Kindle

In the Year 2889
by Jules Verne (Author), Michel Verne (Author)
I had this in my Kindle library since 2010.
I picked it as my Just For Fun read in March.
It is a short story showing what life might be like in 2889,
following a rich journalist through a day in his life.
Jules Verne has an absolutely wonderful imagination!
There is a tube transportation system,
telephoto connections (quite similar to Skype), animated housing features like the dining table and bathtub that appear in the bedroom.
This is a very quick read and I highly recommend it particularly to Vernes and Sci Fi buffs!

Line Edits/Releases:
We released another children's title last week:
Rudy Finds a Home by Lynne Bendoly

When Rudy decides to  leave the farm where he has lived all his life, to seek out a place to call his very own home, he encounters many disappointments and finally learns that the very best place to be was back on the farm with all his other cat friends.

Genre: Children's, 5-9 years
Pages: 36 with illustrations

Tomorrow we will release a Venetian Romance: Love is Not Proud by Monica Spense.

Currently reading:
1. Audio

Author: Mark Millar, Steve McNiven
I enjoy these Graphic Audios. 
I have just started this.
Reviewing for GraphicAudio
through Audiobook Jukebox.
The epic story that blows the Marvel Universe apart!
Iron Man and Captain America: two core members of the Avengers, the world's greatest super hero team.
After a tragic battle in Stamford Connecticut, the U.S. government demands that all super heroes unmask and register their powers.
To Tony Stark—Iron Man—it's a regrettable but necessary step.
To Captain America, it's an unbearable assault on civil liberties.
So begins the Civil War.

© Marvel

2. eBook/Kindle

Hammer of Angels: A Novel of Shadowstorm
by G. T. Almasi
I really enjoyed the first book in this series and am excited to read this.
I am reviewing this through NetGalley.

Book Description
Publication Date: November 25, 2014
In G. T. Almasi’s thrilling alternate reality, the United States, the USSR, and the Republic of China share a fragile balance of power with Greater Germany, which emerged from World War II in control of Europe and half of the Middle East. To avoid nuclear Armageddon, the four superpowers pursue their ambitions with elite spies known as Levels, who are modified with mechanical and chemical enhancements.

Nineteen-year-old Alix Nico, code-named Scarlet, is a kick-ass superheroine with killer Mods and an attitude to match. She’s considered one of America’s top Levels, even though her last mission nearly precipitated World War III. So now Scarlet and her new partner, Darwin, have been sent to Greater Germany to help sow the seeds of anarchy and prevent Germany’s defection to Russia and China.

But where Scarlet goes, chaos follows—and when her mission takes an unexpected turn, she and Darwin must go ever deeper into enemy territory. As Scarlet grapples with a troubling attraction to her new partner, explosive information comes to light about the German cloning program and one of its prisoners—a legendary American Level who just happens to be Scarlet’s father.

“First-rate . . . a hell-bent-for-leather mash-up of spy novel and SF.”—Eric Van Lustbader, on Blades of Winter.

3. Print

Jake (A Wyoming Sky Novel)
by R.C. Ryan
I just started a few pages and like the style so far.
Reviewing for Hachette.
Book Description
Release date: February 26, 2013 | Series: A Wyoming Sky Novel

Wild at Heart . . .
Jake Conway is good with his hands. A veterinarian known for his gentle touch, he's also the most eligible bachelor in Wyoming. But like any wild animal, Jake longs to roam free . . . until a sultry redhead with a smile from here to heaven turns up in town.
When her estranged father dies, Meg Stanford inherits his rustic ranch-and all the painful memories that come with it. She's determined to settle the estate and face down the ghosts of her past. But a series of midnight break-ins have Meg running from the ranch-and into the arms of the sexy cowboy next door. As their passion grows hotter, the attacks grow bolder. Can Jake keep her safe, or will he lose the only woman he's ever loved?

I continue to listen to The Listener's Bible NIV read by Max McLean. [Reading and listening on MP3.] I am studying with the Tyndall One Year Bible this year, hoping to read daily along with my DH.

Line Edits: We are doing well with several more releases being prepared. I am also doing more Smashword conversions.

I completed 15 books in March and several have been moved to April.  Now I have only lined up 13 + two TBR for April so I can add others if I have time. There are five print books, three audios and five eBooks on the list.

Three Reviews carried over from March.

April Scheduled: 
4/1 No Joke April Fools Kindle Fire Giveaway
4/7 April Author/Blogger Kindle Fire Giveaway
4/16 Review: Scorned Justice: The Men of the Texas Rangers by Margaret Daley (PUYB)
4/22 Review: The Forever Knight by John Marco (TLC)

Jack Absolute by C.C. Humphreys

Jake by R.C. Ryan
Cowboy Take Me Away by Jane Graves

For Audiobook Jukebox
    Civil War - Graphic Audio
    That Night on Thistle Lane - AudioGo (now Blackstone)
    Hunter: A Thriller - Robert Bidinotto

     Hammer of Angels by G.T. Almasi

     An Angel by Her Side by Ruth Reid 
     The Sword in the Stars (Book1) in The Dark Sea Annals Series by Wayne Thomas Batson
     The Wolf of Tebron by C. S. Lakin

From TBR Collection - TBD
Won Book - Lady of Devices, a steampunk adventure novel (Magnificent Devices)
by Shelley Adina
Free Kindle/Nook or Smashwords: TBD

Sunday Words of Encouragement March 31, 2013 - Happy Easter!

Pastor's message today fit with our songs of redemption and praise. He noted that the three crosses discussed at Calvary have a meaning. The Thief who taunted Jesus was the doubter, signifying Rejection.
The second thief believed Jesus to be good and righteous. Jesus said he would welcome him into Paradise. This cross represents Restoration. Jesus' life and suffering reveal His Love for all men. His death and rising to life represents the Hope He gives us through His Resurrection. He encourages men to live life fully and joyfully in that Hope!

I had a difficult choice of songs to share today.
We sang five for our Easter Service and they were all powerful.
I choose this song which I did not know before we began practicing.
The lyrics include:
"Grace signed my pardon when Christ took my blame.
When I'm called to answer for my history,
Calvary answers for me!"

A Verse for Today:
Romans 5:9-11 The Message (MSG)
9-11 Now that we are set right with God by means of this sacrificial death, the consummate blood sacrifice, there is no longer a question of being at odds with God in any way. If, when we were at our worst, we were put on friendly terms with God by the sacrificial death of his Son, now that we’re at our best, just think of how our lives will expand and deepen by means of his resurrection life! Now that we have actually received this amazing friendship with God, we are no longer content to simply say it in plodding prose. We sing and shout our praises to God through Jesus, the Messiah!

Thank you Lord Jesus for your great sacrifice and for being worthy to open the scroll to redeem this world when the time comes. I rejoice in your resurrection and that I can live even more fully through your resurrected life. 

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Sharing Beyond Books #93 Comment Giveaway March 30, 2013

Hello, Welcome to SBB.
I had a rather busy day with Skype meetings/training. Does anyone have special plans for Easter? I am looking forward to church worship service and a quiet day. I hope everyone gets to enjoy a beautiful day!

Thank you to all who shared last week.

By far the biggest factor mentioned in selecting  book to read was the blurb/summary/premise/plot which was mentioned in 12 comments. Author was mentioned by 9; Price was mentioned by 5 and Series was mentioned by 4. Other factors considered include: cover catches attention; review comment, genre and even size of print. Cindi and Mary ask whether it is a book they will read over and over while Ricki keeps her Q simple: "Do I want it?"

There are a variety of juices we like but the most favorite is orange with 9 mentions. Some of you drink fairly unique flavors like Linda's guava and Carol NW's healthy aloe vera! And while I was noted the choices I had to go get myself some juice! Grape 'cause we didn't have apple.:-)
The Winner from SBB #92 comments is: #11 Jolene, who can make a book choice from the ARC/Review titles, Christmas titles or Love titles - all linked near the end of the post. Please let me know your choice by completing the WINNER FORM.

WEEK #93 Questions

Q1. Emily asks: What book/series influenced you the most as a child??
A: We have previously answered our favorite childhood book but this Q is different. The Bible would be my first answer. The Encyclopedia my second - yes I really spent a year or so reading through it! But for fiction I would choose the Nancy Drew Mystery series -- they were fun to read and they gave a positive image/model for a young girl to follow.
Image found at Wikipedia.

Q2. My non-bookish Question this week: Did you buy anything special this week? For Easter or other celebration or spring break??
A: I didn't buy anything for me but I bought an Easter coloring book for my granddaughters and I helped my daughter buy a few items for their Easter baskets. This has been our Spring Break week so the family has been away enjoying the beach. 
I wish I had seen these adorable DIY gifts sooner!
I could have added it to some small items for my Secret Sister. 
Image found at Trendsetter.

Thanks to those who are sending in Questions. DON'T BE SHY! Surely everyone has a Q or two you'd like to ask. Input suggestions in this Suggested Question Form. At the end of each month I draw from the suggestions I used during the month and that person will get a book choice or GC. I thank everyone for submitting questions. Thanks for sending in questions! We can always use fresh questions.

Your turn to share:

Q1. Emily asks: What book/series influenced you the most as a child??

Q2. My non-bookish Question this week: Did you buy anything special this week? For Easter or other celebration or spring break??

SBB Comment Winners can choose a selection from the new Valentine and "Love" books  or the new Christmas Giveaway Books. Also I have added the Updated ARC/Review List now.

SBB Rules:
a) Must be a follower.
b) Share a comment on any (or all) of the two/three questions above.
Open internationally and an international winner may get a smaller book or a $5.00 GC if I decide the mailing is too much.

I will pick a Comment winner from all comments made by Friday, April 5, 2013 at 10 PM central.

Book Review and ARC #Giveaway: Last Chance Book Club by Hope Ramsay

This is another warm romance with saucy, Southern charm.
Last Chance Book Club
by Hope Ramsay
  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Forever (March 26, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1455522295
  • ISBN-13: 978-1455522293
Genre: Contemporary Romance
My Rating: 4.5 of 5.0

Book Description
Publication Date: March 26, 2013
After a painful divorce, Savannah White wants nothing more than to find her happy place. So when she gets the chance to pack up her life -and her son - and move to the idyllic town where she spent childhood summers, she jumps at the opportunity. Last Chance is just as charming as she remembered. She's even invited to join the local book club, where talk soon turns to Savannah's plan to bring the ramshackle downtown movie theater back to life. A new challenge is just what Savannah needs to move forward.. . .
Dash Randall wants to put his fortune to good use, but he remembers Savannah as the bratty "princess" who descended upon him each June, causing no end of trouble. But the teenager he remembered has grown into a gorgeous and generous woman, and it isn't long before Dash finds himself wanting to make brand new memories with Savannah. But first, Dash and Savannah will need to make peace with their pasts to find a new chance for love.

Savannah inherited a run down movie theater in downtown Last Chance. She leaves behind her ex-husband and controlling, society conscious ex-mother-in-law, and returns, with her 12 year old son, Todd, to restore the theater.  Savannah spent her summers growing up in the small town and thinks to find a new chance there. She is surprised to find her girlhood nemesis, Dash, is living with her Aunt. Dash was another family ‘orphan’ vying for time with the grandparents and Aunt and Uncle, and she remembers him as the bully who put snakes in her bed.

Savannah has been belittled and challenged by her mother and mother-in-law and now she is determined to make it on her own.  The ladies' book club, which is also a knitting center and general support group, welcome Savannah with enthusiasm. The ladies think the theater renovation is a great project to encourage downtown redevelopment. They can get the funds for the renovation but they have to find a creative way to present it to Savannah who is reluctant to accept help.

Dash was a reckless youth and had a promising start and rising career in baseball. Unfortunately a wild evening ended his career and reputation. He returned to Last Chance to seek a quieter life where he could concentrate on his own recovery and help out his Aunt and Uncle. He remembers Savannah as a selfish ‘princess’ and a brat even if she has grown into a desirable woman.

Dash can relate to Todd and the young boy’s desire for a father who doesn’t care about him. Dash slowly begins to help Todd see his worth but to help Savannah he knows he has to turn her feelings around. Matters become more complicated as the theater restoration is sabotaged and threats of improper behavior are brought against Dash.

Savannah and Dash repel each other like magnets turned the wrong way until they are flipped and realize they can’t resist the draw. The romance is saucy, sizzling and warm. I was captivated by the conflict and tension between these characters and kept reading to see how it resolved.

I enjoy the warmth of the supportive people in Last Chance and enjoy the visits with characters from prior books. This is a sweet town with loyal friends and hot-blooded romances. This is a fun series and this is one more captivating installment.

I received this book from Forever/Hachette for an honest review.
Set in South Carolina for my 2013 Where Are You Reading Challenge.


For 3 Extra Bonus entries Visit the author's website and tell me something you find of interest.

* This contest is open US and Canada Only.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on April 5, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
Winners are asked to respond by email or the linked winners form within 72 hours of the announcement.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Saturday Snapshot (March 30, 2013) March Flowers

Here are some images from our March blooming yard.

Azaleas and what I think is White Fringetree

Our single tulip.

My Valentine Amaryllis

Wild violets on 3/29.

One of our fairly sparse Dogwoods

Thanks again to all the nice people who have commented on my Saturday pictures. I did get to visit some of the other Saturday Snapshot sharings!

To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky hosted by Alyce of At Home With Books. Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway March 29, 2013

[** If you are new to Friday Pick Giveaway - Welcome!  Scroll down a bit (below book group #19) for instructions on how to enter.]

Hello all. It's been a strange week but I think it was productive. :-) And what is with the cold whether again? I thought spring had settled in.

[***I'm sorry I have bad news for the international entrants -- I have to ask you to stick with GCs as the new postage rates have almost doubled. What might have been a $6.25 mail out is now close to $12.00.]

Thank you to all who entered the March 22 Pick. With all the wins last week and the blocked titles there are no automatic wins this week. (Automatic winners are those who requested the book four times and I did not note other people asking for that book during those weeks). There were only two titles blocked this week, but they had six picks. One title was won through the block.

to picked Winners from March 22 Pick:

Elizabeth gets a GC
Natasha gets The Laurel Hamilton Pair

All winners please fill in the Winner's Acceptance Form or email me to confirm your win, send your snail mail address information and let me know if you would like bookmarks - sensual or sexy and I have a new supply of sweet bookmarks.

Thank you to A Mile a Minute for today's lovely spring book image!

New Book Group #37 March 22, 2013
As I am linking these titles it is clear to me why they were in my TBR boxes and it is really hard to let them go but I have soooo many. Better that they find good reader homes than sit on my shelves, or in a box, and collect dust. 
Linda Howard:
     While Lies and A Game of Chance
Carly Phillips
     The Heartbreaker and Simply Sinful
Anthology: Something Borrowed, Something Blue - this book has spine creases and minor water damage...I thought I had read it and liked it but now I realize it was another anthology I read with Elaine Barbier.
Bride by Command by Linda Winstead Jones
To Tame a Rebel by Georgina Gentry
While Passion Sleeps by Shirlee Busbee
Lord Liar by Laurie Grant
Silk and Steel by Theresa Michaels
Lady in Red by Karen Hawkins
The Admiral's Bride by Suzanne Brockmann
Marry Me, Maddie by Rita Herron
Lady Ice by Joan Hohl
Dark Roots & Cowboy Boots by LuAnn McLane
Only My Dreams by Anna Blundy

New Book Group #36 February 15, 2013
Laurell K. Hamilton
     Cravings (actually an Anthology) and A Kiss of Shadows
Tara Taylor Quinn
     Father: Unknown and McGillus v.Wright
Tom Clancy
     Power Play: Cold War (paperback) and Power Play: (audio cassette tapes)
Deadline by Fern Michaels
Timeline by Michael Crichton
And Then You Die by Iris Johansen
Bride of Shadow Canyon by Stacey Kayne
Echoes by Maeve Binchy (worn spine)
One Dead Under the Cukoo's Nest by Lori Avocato
The Thunder Keeper by Margaret Coel
The Trailsman: Texas Lead Slingers by Jon Sharpe
Always a Lady by Sharon Sala
Her Wedding Wish by Jillian Hart

New Book Group #35 January 11, 2013
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing 

Beverly Barton:
    Downright Dangerous and What She Doesn't Know
Heather Graham Pozzessere
    Renegades (Western Anthology) and Everytime I Love You (The spine is creased.)
Mary Baxter
    His Touch and One Summer Evening

Singles-- I found a couple of boxes of romances (a lot of Harlequins) that I haven't gotten to read over the past 8 years so... I will send them off to others to read!
Flashpoint by Linda Barnes
Across a Thousand Miles by Nadia Nichols
Lady Beware by Fayrene Preston
Secrets of the Outback by Margaret Way
Never Say Never Again by Tori Carrington
*Merger of Fortunes by Peggy Moreland
*Married to His Business by Elizabeth Bevarly 
*The Banker's Convenient Wife by Lynne Graham
*Chance Adventure by Kelly Eileen Hake
* The Millionaire's Daughter by Sophie Weston

New Book Group #34 December 7, 2012--- (All gone)

New Book Group #33 October 27, 2012
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing

SINGLES - CHRISTMAS TITLES (Better sizes for international) 
*Deck the Halls by Arlene James (slight spine creasing)
*A Holiday Prayer by Deb Kastner  (slight spine creasing)

New Book Group #32 October 5, 2012
- Oops upside down book! NOTE This book has dog bite damage; it is missing half back cover and the edges of pages in the back third of the book... it does not effect the text but I will understand if no one wants this one - A Courtesans Guide to Getting Your Man by Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley
The Gift by Constance O'Day-Flannery
Please Remember This by Katleen Giles Seidel
Twice Upon Time by Nina Beaumont
Heart of the Hawk by Justine Dare
The Boy's Tale (Sister Frevisse Medieval Mysteries) by Margaret Frazer
Calculated Revenge by Jill Elizabeth Nelson

New Book Group #31 August 31, 2012
I pulled some more books from several of my boxes.

An Honorable Man by Rosemary Rogers (spine creases)
Beautiful Dreamer by Elizabeth Lowell

New Book Group #30 July 27, 2012
This time I pulled some books from one of my older boxes.
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing

The Willful Widow by Valerie King (spine wear)
Wild Escapade by Lisa Bingham
Dancing on Snowflakes by Jane Bonander (postage too much - replaced with GC)
Mistress by Amanda Quick - Audio Cassettes
*Long Time Coming by Sandra Brown

New Book Group #29 June 29, 2012
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing

Magic: The Gathering Distant Planes, An Anthology
*One is the Lonliest Number - Tom Clancey's Net Force

New Book Group #28 May 18, 2012 (All gone)

New book Group #27 April 13, 2012 (All gone)

New book Group #26 March 2, 2012--- (All gone)

New Group #25 January 12, 2012---(All gone)

New Group #24 Pick Books November 25, 2011---(All gone)

New Group #23 Pick Books October 14, 2011
I tried to pick some books that would be good for October -
Halloween or dark minded.
Ghost Writer (Shivers #3) by M.D. Spenser
Emily's Good Nightmare by Cosmic Debris Cosmic

New Group #22 Pick Books September 2, 2011---(All gone)

New Group #21 of Pick Books July 29, 2011
Mallory's Oracle (Kathleen Mallory Novels) by Carol O'Connell

May, 2011 New Group of Pick books Group #20
Luciano's Luck by Jack Higgins - Audio Cassettes

3/25/11 I did get to set up a new group of books: Group #19
Primary Colors - audio tapes
*Note of Peril (black strip on cover)

2/19/11 Book Group #18- Pairs!---(All gone).

I have finally updated the intro and Entry paragraphs here:

If you saw the pictures posted of my bookshelves and boxes you know I do have lots of books! And that doesn't include the other eight or so boxes at my office!! And more books as I find deals too good to pass up! I am sharing my book bounty by these Friday Pick Giveaways.

I started Friday Pick in November 27, 2009 and in three years I have posted 33 groups of 16 (528) books to find new homes! (November 2012)

I periodically update the lists - deleting those won. You can still go to the Friday Pick list link to see older posts and the older lists book pictures if you want! I am happy to say that so far about 492 books have found new homes! YAY. I have to update my print out to check the exact number sent out - a few were never claimed.

Note rules here regarding international entries.
Because postage to overseas can be prohibitive I am willing to give a $5.00 book certificate to international winners - Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, ARe, TWRP, ClassAct Books, eTreasures, Desert Breeze, tell me where and I'll set it up. So for my overseas visitors your comment may indicate a smaller book and I'll check postage or note your choice of gift card.

I learned that The Book Depository does not ship to everywhere. The postage for some of the books to far away places runs between $5.00 and $6.00 and up. Since I would award $5.00 for The Book Depository to an international winner, as an alternative you may choose a smaller book and we will hope the postage will not exceed $6.00. If the postage is more, or if you want to pick a larger book and you are willing to pay any extra postage beyond the $6.00 I will work with you on that. This may not make a difference to many but if it helps one or two of you to give one of my books a home that will make me happy too. :o)

Leave a comment and tell me WHICH BOOK you would like to get from the Friday Pick lists.
CUT OFF TIME IS THURSDAY NIGHTS AT 10:00 PM CENTRAL so I do not have to stay up past midnight to do the winner post!
I will randomly pick two winners to announce Friday mornings with the next Pick post.
Automatic wins are those who requested the book four times and I did not note other people asking for that book during those weeks.
WINNERS PLEASE CHECK THE WIN POST ON FRIDAYS AND fill in the Winner's Acceptance Form or email me at [I will confirm receipt of the addresses- well I realize I haven't always done this. But if you filled out the form and don't get the book within two weeks nudge me with an email please!] If I have the winners e-mail I will send a reminder in a week or so....

Thanks for helping these books find new homes!!

Repeating this helpful blog tip: You can right click on a link and you will be given the choice to open the link in a new window or tab so you do not navigate away from the screen you are on!! I use this all the time!

1/14/11 New List #17--- (All gone)

12/3/10 Book Set: #16
Sleight of Hand by Robin Hathaway
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown  (postage too much - replaced with GC)

List #15---(All gone)

List #14---(All gone)

Here is set #13 of Used books! ---(All gone)
Pearl Beyond Price by Claire Delacroix

Group #12---(All gone)

Group #11
Cat's Eyewitness by Rita Mae Brown
Alien Chronicles - The Crimson Claw by Deborah Chester
Looking Back by Belva Plain

List #1
Circle of Stars by Anna Lee Waldo

Pick #2---(All gone)

Pick #3---(All gone)

Pick #4
Talking God by Tony Kellerman
Everything to Gain by Barbara Taylor Bradford
The Shadow by Shelley Munro (PA)

Pick #5
See Jane Lead by Lois P. Frankel
Cold Hit by Linda Fairstein - Audio Tapes

Pick #6---(All gone)

Pick #7
Prey by Michael Crichton - Audio Tape
Princess Charming by Jane Heller (slightly creased)

Pick #8
(sc) = slightly creased on binding otherwise all in good shape
The Jury by Steve Martini - Audio Tapes
No Safe Place by Richard North Patterson - Audio Tapes

Pick #9
On Treacherous Ground by Earl Murray
Guardian by Dee Henderson - Audio Tapes
Time to Hunt by Stephen Hunter - Audio Tapes

Pick #10---(All Gone)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Book Review: Girl v Earl by Phillipa Ashley

This story has wonderful settings for a saucy and emotional romance.
Girl vs. Earl
by Phillipa Ashley
  • File Size: 482 KB
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00C0XU6UY
Genre: Contemporary Romance
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0

US edition Published March 26th 2013
When Miranda finds herself fighting for her home, her job and her heart, sleeping with the enemy may not be the best tactic...

With no family of her own, Miranda Marshall has developed a healthy respect - some would say obsession - with other people's histories. As property manager of a spectacular island castle in Cornwall, she's made St Merryn's Mount one of the UK's most popular heritage attractions. While she may have the castle running like clockwork, Miranda hasn't bargained on its sexy owner returning to claim his birthright.

Dark, handsome and with a rakish reputation,  Jago, the Earl of St Merryn, not only looks like a pirate but is intent on flogging the Mount to a soulless leisure corporation. Miranda faces the battle of her life as she tries to persuade him to face up to his past and continue the St Merryn dynasty. But Jago has his own reasons for jumping ship and when he throws down the gauntlet to Miranda, she's forced to delve into painful memories she'd much rather keep hidden . . .

(Previously published in the UK and Commonwealth by Hachette Digital as Miranda’s Mount)

Miranda had a difficult childhood with a young, unstable mother. She left home at a young age and managed to work her way through University. She always loved history and was thrilled to land a job at St Merryn's Mount, eventually working her way up to manager. She is fiercely devoted to the property and it’s people who have become her stability and her people.

Dark, handsome Jago St Merryn has roamed the world and allowed his mother, Lady St Merryn, to oversee the home--or rather castle--management. He suddenly returns home and tells Miranda, in confidence, of his plans to sell the property to a leisure investment corporation. Miranda is distressed at the thought of losing her “home” and the impact it will have on the other workers and estate families. But she is appalled to find herself sexually drawn to Jago even though she doesn’t like what he is doing and she realizes that any relationship is professionally inappropriate and personally a move toward heartbreak.

Meanwhile, a local heartthrob, Theo, has shown interest in Miranda. He and Jago have clear animosity and, although Theo is well respected in the community, it appears that he may be using Miranda to spite Jago.  Miranda is caught between the alleged 'nice guy' who doesn’t stir her senses as much as the alleged 'bad boy' she can’t have.

Miranda and Jago each have painful pasts that they are running from. I really liked how Ms. Ashley slowly revealed their secrets and developed their characters. The romantic triangle with Theo was a little puzzling as his ‘courtship’ was so slow to get started. I suppose that is fitting with it’s ultimate purpose and result, but it didn’t quite fit with the ‘really nice-guy’ image that was being projected for him.

The castle operations and Cornish seaside make for interesting and beautiful backdrops to the characters’ conflicts and emotional struggles. I enjoyed the visual images of the castle, the harbor, ocean and beach scenes – I’d love to visit!  The dialogue is saucy with plenty of British attitude, sexual fantasy and frivolity to make this lively even as it deals with overcoming emotional issues resulting from abandonment and loss.

I have enjoyed Ms. Ashley's light romances from earlier reads. This one seems to have more emotional depth but still has the likeable characters and wonderful settings.  This is a nice blend of fun and emotional romance. I recommend this to readers who enjoy flirty, British style romance especially with the addition of emotional challenges to overcome.
Miranda’s reaction to Jago:
She’d melted like a bloody snowflake on a bonfire. Location 839
A description I liked:
The evening sun shone through the great cleft in the rock, the late rays dappling the green pool with sun sparkles. Location 3178.
I received this title from the Author for an honest review.
Phillipa shared with me:
St Michael's Mount is a real place by the way - an amazing place that inspired the book.
Take a peek - gorgeous!

Find Phillipa at:
Twitter @PhillipaAshley

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Book Review and Feature: Cross the Line by Jack Patterson

This is an engaging thriller with an interesting plotline.
by Jack Patterson
  • File Size: 481 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Hangman Books; 2nd edition (March 12, 2013)
  • ASIN: B00AA49Y2Q
Purchase Links:  
    Genre: Thriller
    My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0

    When veteran NFL quarterback Noah Larson finally guides his team to the Super Bowl, his dreams -- and life -- are dashed when his six-year-old son is kidnapped for a unique ransom: lose the game or his son dies. Seattle sportswriter Cal Murphy and photographer Kelly Mendoza get pulled into an FBI sting to help rescue Noah's son in Mexico. But when everything falls apart, Cal and Kelly are left to save themselves, save Noah's son, and save the Super Bowl.

    Noah Larson, the respected quarterback of the Seahawks is about to lead his team against the Dolphins in the Super Bowl. The week before the game, Noah’s six-year-old son, Jake, is kidnapped. Noah is instructed to tell no one and to lose the game if he wants to get his son back. Noah is devastated. He knows that his team depends on him and trusts his leadership. But he also knows there is nothing more important than his family and getting his son back safely.

    Cal Murphy is a Seattle reporter sent to cover the Super Bowl. He has interviewed Noah before and wonders why he is so closed and nervous, which is unlike his usual cheerful and outgoing personality. Then Cal sees an image on Noah’s phone and he realizes that Noah has a major problem.  Cal convinces Noah to let him go to an FBI friend to get help.  The FBI decide to send Cal to Mexico to do secret reconnaissance while interviewing the drug lord they believe has Jake. Cal talks his friend, Kelly, who he would like to be more than a friend, into going along as the photographer.

    There is fast paced action and intense suspense as Cal and Kelly dodge first a brutal, sly henchman and then a team of rebels. Although I liked several of the characters and I liked the storyline I felt that some of it was far-fetched. I found it hard to believe that the FBI would use unskilled people as operatives, and send them into a situation knowing their cover is already blown.

    I enjoyed the easy writing style and several of the faith based discussions. I liked Noah’s integrity and there is a wonderful Padre character who gives help to Cal. I felt that some of the writing could have been tighter but I especially liked how Mr. Patterson tied the ending lines to the opening lines. They are really nice images and serve as a great hook and wrap. (See the first chapter in the excerpt below.)

    The combination of sports and mystery is good. Overall the story is enjoyable. I think Mr. Patterson has great potential especially if he works on the realism. This story works well as a stand alone but I think I would enjoy more Cal Murphy mysteries.

    I received this ebook to review as part of Partners in Crime blog tour.
    Meet Jack Patterson:
    The first signs that I might like writing about sports -- and be slightly competitive -- appeared when my year two (or first grade) teacher, Mrs. Holland, asked my class to write and illustrate our day. Mine read like this: “The Red team beat the Blue team, 1 to nil. And I won.” The next 47 entries covered my exploits on the soccer pitch while growing up in Ipswich, England.

    In South Carolina as a teenager, my dad told me that I could get paid to watch sports provided I could write about it. Sounded easy enough and by the time I was 16, I landed a job at my town’s daily newspaper and had a column on Major League Baseball players from our area. I also covered my first riot there at a sporting event -- and it’s safe to say I was smitten with journalism.

    After graduating from one of the best journalism schools in the country, I took a job as a sports editor in South Georgia and learned firsthand about the passion of high school sports in rural America. I thought I knew before, but I didn’t. This was another world.

    I also had the opportunity to cover major sporting events like the Olympic Games, the World Series, the Super Bowl, and the Final Four. It was a thrill!

    But nothing was as thrilling to me as uncovering the truth in investigative assignments. I once broke a story about a prominent southern football team’s NCAA violation -- and found out the violating coach had committed suicide only a few months earlier. The story won a national writing award and stoked my desire to write about these issues. It made me realize that the sports world was just another fantastic backdrop for drama.

    After writing non-fiction books with athletes, for athletes, and ghost writing for many others, I decided to enter the world of fiction writing. It had been something I wanted to do but never found the time. So, I made the time--and am now having a blast. I hope you enjoy reading my novels as much as I enjoy writing them!
    Visit the author:

    “Journalism will kill you, but it will keep you alive while you’re at it.”
    - Horace Greeley


    NOAH LARSON WATCHED RAINDROPS cascading down the window over the kitchen sink, racing to a predictable end. Most drops would find their way to the bottom of the sill before joining others to form a small stream that spilled into a dormant flowerbed. A few lucky ones would take control of their fate, resisting the urge to be like all the others by clinging ever so tenuously to an open spot on the glass. But even they were susceptible to being washed away by a collision with just another raindrop or a blast of air. It was a depressing thought, but momentary when the reality of Noah’s life collided with it. Who had time to ponder the depths of existentialism when there was a Super Bowl to win?

    In three hours, Noah was scheduled to join his teammates on a charter flight to Houston where the Seattle Seahawks would attempt to bring home the city’s first Lombardi Trophy. And it was going to happen—he just knew it. Nothing could stop destiny. Ever since he began playing peewee football, Noah’s talents were apparent to everyone, including himself. He had boxes of personal trophies, plaques and accolades stored in unmarked containers on a shelf in his garage to prove it. The only trophy Noah wanted to show off was the smooth silver one, hoisted above his head while confetti rained down from the rafters of Gillette Stadium. That destiny was only six days away.

    “Dad, did you pack my lunch?” came the question from across the kitchen. Noah snapped back to the present.

    “Sure, Jake. Got it right here.” The pro quarterback handed his six-year-old son a Spiderman lunch box. “I even remembered to put your favorite Capri Sun in there, too.”


    “I thought you liked grape.”

    “Daaaaad! You always mix up my favorite flavors. I like grape jelly but apple juice.”

    “Well, we can fix that right now.”

    Noah shuffled to the pantry and ripped open a six-pack of apple-flavored Capri Suns, grabbing one for Jake.

    “Here you go, son. I’ll get it right next time—don’t you worry.”

    “It’s OK, dad.” The first grader stuffed the bottle into the lunch box. “You know, I’m really gonna miss you this week.”

    “I’m gonna miss you too, sport. But I’ll see you on Friday. You and mom are flying down and we’ll do something fun when I’m not busy.”

    “I can’t wait! Can we go see the Dynamo’s stadium while we’re down there?”

    “The Dynamo? Son, I’m playing in the Super Bowl on Sunday and you want to go see an empty soccer stadium?”

    “Aww, dad. Soccer is cool, too. Maybe if you win, the Seahawks can have a parade just like the Sounders did when they won the MLS Cup.”

    Noah tried not to let his son’s remark bother him. Jake loved soccer and preferred using his dad’s celebrity status to rub shoulders with the city’s star soccer players rather than visit the NFL locker room. What gnawed at Noah the most was the fact that Seattle threw a parade befitting of royalty when the city’s pro soccer team won the championship the previous fall. The cash-strapped city never dreamed another title might come so soon. But if the Seahawks won, forget budget restraints. Seattle would have a Super Bowl champion and it would celebrate.

    Noah knew the city would go into debt in six days to throw a matching parade. He cared less about competing with the city’s other pro sports teams but more about the overall sense of despair hovering over Seahawk fans’ mentality. Doom and gloom held season tickets for the Seahawks—all 67,000 of them. Noah would change all that, maybe even turn his son into a die-hard football fan in the process.

    “Don’t worry, son. You can ride with me in the parade next week after we come back home with a trophy.”

    “Go, Seahawks! Beat the Dolphins!” Jake pumped his fist in the air and without reservation, sprinted across the kitchen to give his dad a high-five. They both laughed. Noah picked his son up and spun him around once. They shared a hug that ended with a tight squeeze.

    “Don’t forget your rain coat, buddy. It looks like you’re going to need it.”

    “Thanks, Dad.”

    “Better hurry before you miss your bus.”

    “Dad, you’re beginning to sound like mom.”

    On cue, Ellen Larson wobbled down the stairs, trying to stay upright in her four-inch stiletto heels. Her naturally blonde hair clung smoothly to her head as her usually flowing locks were twisted into a tight bun and held in place with a diamond-studded hair stick. She wore the shimmering red dress well, which outlined the contours of her curvaceous figure. The silk shawl draped over her shoulders toned down the image of a woman that would put most men’s head on a swivel.

    Noah drew out a long whistle and shook his head in delight as he watched his wife of eight years come down the staircase. Who cared if she wasn’t the most graceful woman at the moment? Noah certainly didn’t. And neither did Jake.

    “Jake, don’t think you’re going to school without giving mommy a kiss.”

    Jake didn’t wait for his mother to make it to the front door. He liked being the first kid to arrive at the bus stop and wasn’t going to let the obligatory kiss from his mom prevent him from achieving his daily goal.

    “I love you, Mommy,” Jake planted a wet kiss on her cheek

    “I’ll pick you up from school today and then we’ll go shopping. We need to get some warm clothes for our trip.”

    “OK, Mom. See you then.”

    Ellen went to plant a kiss on Jake’s cheek, but he dodged and resisted. If there was one thing that was sure to get a first-grade boy laughed at, it was having bright red lipstick on your cheek. Instead of getting her way, Ellen withdrew and blew a kiss. Jake’s face lit up with a toothy grin as he put on his raincoat, grabbed his book bag, and ran toward the door.

    The large number of students living in the Larsons’ neighborhood who attended Westminster Prep necessitated a school bus. Jake’s walk to the bus stop for the city’s most prestigious prep school was less than a block. Noah and Ellen had no reservations about letting their son walk alone to the corner of this quiet, tree-lined street. Even on a day that registered as extra blustery and rainy by Seattle’s sopping wet standards.

    Noah watched Jake pull the door shut and hustle down the steps. Once Jake reached the sidewalk, Noah could see Jake tossing his Sounders soccer ball in the air as he skipped toward the bus stop. Noah craned his neck to watch Jake until he disappeared from his field of view. Noah smiled and shook his head, proud of his little guy.

    “Don’t you look nice,” Noah spun around and turned his gaze toward Ellen.

    “Thanks, honey. I am going to miss you. I can’t wait for Sunday to get here and this season to be over with. It’s so much better when you lose and don’t make the playoffs.”

    Noah moved closer to Ellen. He put his hands on her shoulders and looked her in the eyes.

    “I don’t know how to respond to that. Wouldn’t you rather be married to a Super Bowl champion quarterback to impress all your socialite friends?”

    “I don’t care about that—I just want you to be done with football so we can enjoy life together again. This football stuff just gets in the way all the time.”

    “Well, we’ll see.”

    Ellen suddenly grabbed Noah’s arms.

    “Seriously? Are you going to retire from football?”

    “Well, I’ve been playing football for a long time, living up to a lot of people’s expectations and doing what everyone else thinks I should do. I’m kind of tired of it. Besides, what better way to go out than on top and be the king of this city?”

    Ellen began shaking Noah, giddy with excitement. She was careful not to jump up and down in her unstable shoes.

    “I can’t believe this!”

    “I was hoping you would react like this. Honestly, I’d like for this to be the last game I play and go out with a Super Bowl win. It’s time.”

    Ellen smiled.

    “You’re not just going to win,” she said, poking Noah in the chest, “you’re going to destroy the Dolphins!”

    She turned and headed back upstairs to finish primping for her shopping outing. Noah watched her put her fist in the air and mumble something about “no more football.” He knew retiring would make her happy—and it was time to make it official.

    Noah glanced at his packed bags by the door. He then walked back to the kitchen and resumed raindrop watching. Noah stared out the window, grappling with the fact that he had uttered aloud the thought that had been tormenting him for the past six months: Did he have the nerve to walk away from the game that had consumed his entire life? But there was no going back now. Ellen had likely already committed to memory their entre conversation, word for word. And Noah knew she would make sure he kept his word. It was one of the things he liked best about being married to Ellen. It was also one of the worst.


    Carlos Rivera nursed the cup of coffee in his right hand. It wasn’t cold yet but it was getting there quickly. Another minute or two and it would be undrinkable. Not that he minded. He thought the claim that Seattle was home to the best coffee in the United States was a chiste. It had been a week since he arrived in Seattle, and this was the fifth different brand of coffee he had tried. He remained unimpressed. However, he knew next month Seattle would be invaded by Buenisimo!, the best coffee south of the border. It would make his return trip more palatable.

    Yet a chance to sample Seattle’s famous coffee was hardly the reason Rivera found himself far away from his family. Not that he had a choice. When Mr. Hernandez said, “Go to Seattle,” he went. No questions, no protests. Yet this job made Rivera sick. He told himself he was a professional and he could do this. It’s what he told himself every time that Mr. Hernandez required him to do something distasteful. Rivera hated dipping a rival gang member’s hand in acid. Neither did he care for shooting a man’s beloved dog just to make a point. But this assignment? This one was exceptionally cruel. It was so monstrous in its nature that Rivera wondered if Mr. Hernandez even had a conscience anymore—or a heart. Of course, Rivera could refuse. But he loved his family too much. He preferred ever so slightly this sordid existence over death, even if it was a half-step above. Choosing one over the other was about a 50-50 proposition. Rivera chose to live.

    Rivera shook his partner, Juan Morales, who had just dozed off in the passenger’s seat.

    “It’s time. Wake up.”

    Morales rubbed his face and looked through the rain-speckled windshield at their target meandering down the sidewalk. The pulsing wipers swept away a handful of raindrops, gliding across the glass creating a clean space for more raindrops to gather.

    “That’s him,” Rivera said.

    He eased the car forward and stopped about 10 feet past the target.

    With great precision and efficiency, Morales jumped out of the car and grabbed the confused boy. Jake resisted his abductor yet was only able to make one muted call for help. Rivera secured the boy’s arms and mouth; Morales snatched his legs. The boy squirmed and tried to kick free, but in less than two seconds, he was in the backseat of the Town Car wedged between the seat and Morales’ left knee. It was a fight the boy had no chance of winning. His muffled cries went unheard.

    Morales grinned and patted Rivera on the back as they pulled away from the curb and headed down the street.

    “We got him!” Morales said.

    Rivera said nothing. He adjusted the mirror so he could only see Morales. Seeing the terror in the boy’s eyes as Morales was wrangling him in the street was too intensely personal for Rivera. With a six-year-old son of his own, Rivera could hardly stomach this task. But he couldn’t let this get personal. This was business, a business he had to conduct professionally and efficiently or his own family might end up victims of Mr. Hernandez.

    Morales couldn’t stop grinning as he basked in his moment of triumph, albeit a sick one—a 28-year-old man overpowering a six-year-old boy 180 pounds his junior. He looked down at his catch, brooding over him with a gruff voice.

    “Hola, Jakie boy.”

    Learn more and check out other reviews through the Blog Tour:

    Tour Participants 
    Super Bowl Special:
    Jan 28th -- Showcase by Cheryl @ CMash Reads
    Jan 29th -- Review & Guest Post by Michelle & Tammy @ The Nook Users Book Club
    Jan 30th -- Review by MK @ PopcornReads
    Jan 31st - Review by Barbara @ Views from the Countryside
    Jan 31st -- Review by Lori @ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book
    Feb 1st - Review by Teena in Toronto
    Feb 2nd -- Interview by Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews
    Feb 2nd -- Nicole @ Bless their Hearts Mom

    Regular Tour
    Mar 15th -- Guest Post by Jersey Girl Book Reviews
    Mar 16th -- Showcase by Gina @ Hott Books
    Mar 18th -- Guest Post & Review with Beth Art From The Heart
    Mar 19th Review with Krystal @ Live To Read
    Mar 26th -- Review by Fenny @ Hotchpotch
    Mar 27th -- Review & Interview at Martha's Bookshelf
    Mar 29th --Review & Interview @ Kimberly's Bookshelf
    Mar 30th -- Review by Wendy @ The Minding Spot
    Apr 1st -- Review by Mary's Cup of Tea
    Apr 2nd -- Review by Suzie @ My Cozie Corner
    Apr 2nd -- Showcase @ Lavender & Camomile Press
    Apr 3rd -- Review at Vic's Media Room
    Apr 4th -- Teview by Tina @ Smoochiefrog Reviews
    Apr 5th -- Guest Post @ Writers and Authors
    Apr 8th -- Review by Carrie @ Sweet Southern Home
    Apr 9th -- Review by Kristi @ Reading is my Time Out
    Apr 10th -- Review by William @ Two Weeks From Everywhere
    Apr 15th -- Review by True Media Solutions LLC
    Apr 16th -- Showcase @ 
    Apr 17th -- Review by Yvonne @ Socrates' Book Review Blog
    Apr 18th -- Review by Vicky @ Deal Sharing Aunt
    May 1 -- Review by Heather @ Proud Book Nerd
    May 10th -- Review by Ashna @ Wanted Reader


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