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2017HoHoHothonLRGGiveaway Ending November 15, 2017 (11:59EST)
HoHoHo Readathon Mini Challenge Giveaway: Holiday Sentence

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Sharing Beyond Books #128 Comment Giveaway 11/30/13

Hello again on Saturday night and Welcome to SBB, Sharing Beyond Books.

Arrgh - I forgot to link the SBB again last week. A special thanks to you folks who AGAIN sought out the post to comment during the week. :-)

Many of us would write an honest review even for books we do not like but most of us agreed we would be specific why we didn't like them. A few commenters said they would not write a negative review; not all of us are reviewers anyway; and a couple said they might not write a review but would let the author know if they liked or if not, why.

All of us have much to be thankful for - mostly family, health and friends! I was pleased to see several cancer survivors mentioned as doing well and in remission. Please keep miki and her mom in prayer and in your thoughts.
~~~~
The Winner from SBB #127 comments is: #8 Elizabeth L who can make a GC choice if international or 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 (new) WINNER FORM.

WEEK #128

Q1. Birgit asks: Do you ever buy used books or do you prefer spanky new ones??
A: It is rare for me to buy a new book unless it is for a gift. I am more apt to buy a used book if it is a savings over a new book.  I am always looking for bargain prices for my book club purchases so I often get those books for under $5.00 each.   
Image found at 
she is too fond of books

Choices - Choices!!            


Image found at
 Little Indiana

Q2. My non-bookish 'Question' this week: Are you good at remembering birthdays and anniversaries or do they slip your mind??
A: I am terrible about remembering dates. If it is not on a calendar that pops up to remind me -- and even then-- I am apt to think of it a week before and then forget it again. Fortunately my DH and I are similar in this and neither get upset. This happened today - our 28th anniversary! My DH and I laughed a week ago about all the many times we have both forgotten and sometimes were reminded by our kids or a card from a friend. I happened to mention an item I wanted but said I would put it on my Christmas list. We tend to buy each other items all year long when we see something so it is not important that it be the day of a birthday or anniversary. I woke up this morning with the thought to wish him Happy Anniversary but then I fell back asleep. He went to bed about an hour ago but right before he delivered my gift and I was so chagrined! Of course he will lord this one over me. :-)
I can't say it was the first time though!

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 are getting low on questions so hopefully you will send more in -- even if they are duplicates I'll weed through or try to modify to use. 

This is the end of November and the comments this month were submitted by: Nikki (Abby), MaryP, Brooke, Emily and Birgit.  Random.org pick is: EMILY who gets a book choice or GC.

Your turn to share:

Q1. Birgit asks: Do you ever buy used books or do you prefer spanky new ones??

Q2. My non-bookish 'Question' this week: Are you good at remembering birthdays and anniversaries or do they slip your mind??

SBB Comment Winners can choose a selection from the Valentine and "Love" books , the Christmas Giveaway Books, or the June 2012 Newly Updated ARC/Review List.

SBB Rules:
a) Must be a follower.
b) Share a comment on either of the two 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, December 6, 2013 at 10 PM central.

Book Review and ARC Giveaway: Don't Want to Miss a Thing by Jill Mansell

You don't want to miss this delightful read!
by Jill Mansell
  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark (November 5, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 1402283938
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402283932
Genre: Romantic Comedy
My Rating 4.5 of 5.0


Book Description
Publication Date: November 5, 2013

He knows all about women, or so he thought...

Dexter Yates leads a charmed existence in London, with money, looks, and girlfriends galore. Life's fantastic until Dex's sister dies and his world changes overnight. Astonishing everyone, including himself, Dex leaves the city behind, takes charge of his eight-month-old niece Delphi, moves to a beautiful Cotswolds village, and sets about working on his parenting skills. His neighbors, including cartoonist Molly Hayes, seem friendly enough—but Dex can't shake the notion that he's missing something important.


Review:
Dexter is a charmer who has done well in work and financial investments and has great success with the ladies. His is close with his sister, Laura, and is thrilled when she has a darling little girl, Delphi. But eight months later Laura dies unexpectedly having named Dex to be guardian of the infant girl. Dex may know girls but not infants and he is thrown for a loop.

In shock Dex leaves London and runs to a village where he had looked to purchase a vacation house. Dex recalls that even though many of the town folk were not so warm to an obvious outsider, the next-door neighbor, Molly, was really friendly. Molly is a cartoon artist who worked hard to get a strip that is syndicated and helps her make a living along with money she earns by teaching art classes. She is clearly warm, considerate and an encourager. She listens to Dex’s heartache and his reasons why he can’t raise his niece. She acknowledges those reasons but challenges him pointing out that if he loves Delphi he could be responsible for the child and manage to take care of her.

Dex’s life-style hasn’t exactly set him up to be recommended as a parent choice but he is determined to convince the social workers he can and will change. He decides to move to the village where he is sure he will find help in the better environment for raising a child. When he returns Molly instantly falls in love...with Delphi. But she has to resist falling for Dex too.

Molly apparently is the first woman to reject Dex’s advances but she feels she must out of self-preservation. That doesn’t make it easier to watch him start dating an attractive, outgoing pediatrician, especially since the match seems to please the locals.

As Dex struggles with parenting and Molly tries to protect her heart, there are other family dramas and relationships breaking down and being renewed in the village. Dex and Molly are the primary characters but the secondary characters also enrich the village life and the story.

I found the book delightful, easy to read and hard to put down. Dex may not be the most likeable character as a footloose, easy going playboy but he does have charm and he does mature. Molly is a dear from the get go and you can feel her conflicted passions. Ms. Mansell imbues the characters with natural emotions of doubt, insecurity, reluctance to be rejected, and desire to be loved and find the right person to love. I could feel the angst of the characters and that kept me pulled into the story wanting good things to happen in the end. Which it does and it is a wonderful journey getting there so you don’t miss the important things!

I received this ARC from Sourcebooks for an honest review.

ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY for ARC Copy.

Don't forget to fill in the form for entry! 
I have noticed a few commenters who forgot to enter through the Form.  

For 3 Extra Bonus entries Visit the author's website and tell me something you find of interest; OR tell me about another book by this author that you enjoyed; OR comment on the review.

* This contest is open to U.S. address only.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on December 6, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED after December 6, 2013.
Winners will have 72 hours to respond by email or the winners form linked in the announcement.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway November 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.]

Happy Friday Friends!! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and got to share with some family members. My sister and brother-in-law were visiting and our daughter, s-i-l and the three grandkids were here too  so we had six adults, two children and one toddler. That was a nice gathering and we visited on Skype with our son and d-i-l and our almost one year old granddaughter out in Hawaii. 
Now I guess it is time to start getting ready for Christmas.

[UPDATED NOTE - US entrants I prefer, please, that you pick a book as that is the first purpose of this giveaway - to find new homes for books. The GCs are for the international entrants because postage has jumped up.]

Thank you to all who entered the November 22 Pick. There were No Automatic wins this week  after the wins last 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 was only one blocked title this week.

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from November 22 Pick:
I picked four winners to celebrate the  anniversary month for Friday Picks! :-)
Annie gets Touched by Fire
Liss gets a GC
Jossy gets Remember Me
Miki gets a GC

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. {The form is new because Google changed their forms and the old one wasn't letting me print out the responses.}

Image found at Wired.com

New Book Group! #43 November 1, 2013

Pairs
Mary Higgins Clark
     Before I Say Good-bye and Where Are the Children

Suzanne Enoch
     Lessons in Love The Rake and Sin and Sensibility

Diana Palmer (Choose any two)
    Lawless, Diamond Spur, Long Tall Texan and Brides to Be (spine creased)
Kate Wilhelm
     Desperate Measures and No Defense
SINGLES:

Never Tell by Karen Young (spine torn)
Father for Keeps by Ana Seymour
Crimson Rain by Meg O’Brien
Dove in the Window by Earlene Fowler
Cutwork by Monica Ferris
A Woman Named Damaris by Janette Oke


New Book Group #42 September 27, 2013
Pairs:
Susan Spencer Paul
     Beguiled and The Bride's Portion
Singles:
Whisper on the Wind by Joan Smith
Portrait of Dreams by Victoria Malvey
No Other Lover by Julie Anne Long
Deceptions & Dreams by Debra Deir (spine creases)
Wet & Wild by Sandra Hill
Fulfillment by Barbara Delinsky
Something Extra by Janet Dailey
Trouble Becomes Her by Laura Van Wormer
Dead Silence by Brenda Novak
Remember Me by Mary Higgins Clark
The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter by Sharyn McCrumb

New Book Group #41 August 2, 2013

Singles:
Wicked and Wonderful by Valerie King
Tabitha in Moonlight by Betty Neels
The Nightingale's Song by Jo-Ann Power
Caught in a Bind by Gayle Roper
Cattle Rancher, Secret Son by Margaret Way
White Heather by Jaclyn Reding

New Book Group #40 June 28, 2013
Pairs:
      (Angels) Not Quite An Angel by Bobby Hutchinson and An Angel for Dry Creek by Janet Tronstad
Singles:
Breakfast in Bed by Sandra Brown - Audio Cassette Tapes
Dance With Me by Luanne Rice
A Mother's Day Anthology - three stories
Star Light, Star Bright by Katherine Stone
Another View by Rosamunde Pilcher

New Book Group #39 May 31, 2013 - Plenty of "summer" titles!
Oops - I never added all the links last month so no promises on these either.


Singles:
Touched by Fire by Kathleen O'Reilly
Shetland Summer by Janet Lynnford
That Summer by Joan Wolf
It All Began at Monte Carlo by Elizabeth Adler

New Book Group #38 April 20, 2013
Here is a group with many mysteries.  Links to be added as I get time.


Sheer Dynamite by Jennifer Skully
Golden Chances by Rebbecca Hagen Lee
Awaken the Senses by Nalini Singh

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. 
Pairs:
Singles:
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.
Lady Ice by Joan Hohl

New Book Group #36 February 15, 2013

The Trailsman: Texas Lead Slingers by Jon Sharpe

New Book Group #35 January 11, 2013 (All Gone)

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

New Book Group #33 October 27, 2012


SINGLES - CHRISTMAS TITLES (Better sizes for international) 
*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

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)

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)

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

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

New Group #21 of Pick Books July 29, 2011---(All gone)

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

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 on November 27, 2009 and in four years I have posted 43 groups of 16 (688) books to find new homes! (as of November 2013).

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 592+ 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, etc....you 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 $7.00 and $6.00 $10.00 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)

TO ENTER:
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 mesreads@gmail.com. [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
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)

Group #12---(All gone)

Group #11

Alien Chronicles - The Crimson Claw by Deborah Chester

List #1
Circle of Stars by Anna Lee Waldo

Pick #2---(All gone)

Pick #3---(All gone)

Pick #4---(All gone)

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

Pick #10---(All Gone)

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing everyone Thanksgiving Blessings!
Enjoy your day!
I am looking forward to a lovely day with family here and through skype visiting. :-)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Audio Book Review: The Last Battle by Stephen Harding

This is an interesting and worthwhile presentation of a special historic event.
The Last Battle:
When US and German Soldiers Joined Forces in the Waning Hours of World War II in Europe
by Stephen Harding
Narrated by Joe Barrett
    Unabridged
    LENGTH    7 hrs and 16 mins
    RELEASE DATE    09-03-13
    PUBLISHER    Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Genre: Nonfiction
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Publisher's Summary

May 1945. Hitler is dead, and the Third Reich is little more than smoking rubble. No GI wants to be the last man killed in action against the Nazis. But for cigar-chewing, rough-talking, hard-drinking, hard-charging Captain Jack Lee and his men, there is one more mission: rescue 14 prominent French prisoners held in an SS-guarded castle high in the Austrian Alps. It's a dangerous mission, but Lee has help from a decorated German Wehrmacht officer and his men, who voluntarily join the fight.

Based on personal memoirs, author interviews, and official American, German, and French histories, The Last Battle is the nearly unbelievable story of the most improbable battle of World War II - a tale of unlikely allies, bravery, cowardice, and desperate combat between implacable enemies.


Review:
World War II is almost over in early summer of 1945. The American soldiers want to finish up and get home. None of them want to be the last man killed by the Nazis. There are 14 prominent French officials who are being held as special, political prisoners in a famous, but declining, castle in the Austrian Alps. The prisoners have always been treated fairly well but they are at risk of being killed before the war ceases.

One of the prisoners has been exercising and making unsuccessful escapes during which he learns the surrounding forest paths. A couple of them have become friends with the staff who are secretly working with the resistance. Even some of the German officers have turned to help the resistance forces. One of the staff manages to get out to meet up with the American forces where he has to convince rough Captain Jack Lee that the Americans must take on the mission to rescue the French prisoners.

The book sets out the history of the castle and the prisoners. It then follows the efforts to reach help and the obstacles and mishaps that occur as Jack Lee and only a small group of men make it through to the castle. Some of the troops are diverted and much of the heavier equipment has to be left behind as it would not fit over the narrow, weak bridges. There is tension as the battle begins with the small group of Americans facing the determined German troops surrounding the castle. Some of the German soldiers are no more than boys and have little training or heart for the fight. On the other hand there are the determined, well-trained SS soldiers engaging in what they may realize will be the last battle of the war.

When I saw this title offered for review I thought it would be worthwhile to listen to a real-life battle. This is different than fiction as it is like a documentary in the way it is told. The characters are identified with background and personality traits and the author even follows up to tell what happens to each after the war. The real difficulties of communication, transport and territorial lines of the troops are all part of the remarkable event. It was interesting to hear how the prisoners, who had their own animosities, pulled together during the battle only to separate again as soon as the danger was passed. Although this didn’t have the flair of a novel, anyone who is interested in real-life war history would find this a good listen.

Audio Notes: Joe Barrett manages to keep the documentary approach moving so that it doesn’t fall into ‘too dry’ mode. He provides nuances to convey the challenges, chagrin and frustrations that are faced during the rescue mission.

I received this for review from Blackstone Audio through Audiobook Jukebox.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Book Review: Realm Walker by Kathleen Collins

This is fast paced and full of wonderfully engaging action and strong characters.
Realm Walker
by Kathleen Collins

  • File Size: 381 KB
  • Print Length: 189 pages
  • Publisher: Carina Press (October 28, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • ASIN: B00E1V5S3S
Genre: Urban Fantasy
My Rating: 4.5 of 5.0


Book Description
Publication Date: October 28, 2013
An estranged mate, a mangled body and a powerful demon who calls her by name…

As a Realm Walker for the Agency, Juliana Norris tracks deadly paranormal quarry using her unique ability to see magical signatures. She excels at her job, but her friends worry about her mysterious habit of dying in the line of duty without staying dead. That's only the first of her secrets.

Most people don't know Juliana became the mate of master vampire Thomas Kendrick before he abandoned her seven years ago. Most people don't know the horrors she endured at the hands of the vampire he left in command. Most people don't know her true parentage, or why a demon on a world-threatening rampage has taken a personal interest in her…

Even as Juliana pursues the demon, it goes after all she holds dear—including Thomas, who is back to claim her for his own. But if she can't reconcile her past and learn to trust herself again, she will lose him forever.



Review:
Juliana is a Realm Walker with special abilities that help her hunt, trap and, if need be, kill paranormal entities who refuse to abide by the rules that separate the magical world from the normal, human world. She is half-mage and half dark fae who works side by side with werewolves, mages and others of paranormal ilk. Juliana has been successful in her post and is often sought to lead the teams because of her abilities to see auras, distinguish creatures by scent and speak most known and even forgotten languages. Few know Juliana’s history and even she doesn’t remember all details of her difficult, orphaned childhood.

One person who thinks he knows her pretty well is master vampire, Thomas Kincade. He took Juliana into his household when she was just a street urchin and was befriended by his sister. Thomas helped train Juliana and watched over her as she matured. When she became nineteen he overwhelmed her by saying that she was to be his mate and declaring how powerful they would be together. This frightened Juliana who thought she needed some time to adjust. Thinking he would give her time to live a little life as her own person Thomas left the next morning with instructions for his coven to watch over her.

Now, seven years later, Thomas has returned to discover that Juliana is bitter about his abrupt departure. Bit by bit he learns more secrets, including that she has suffered and nearly died on several occasions. Somehow he has to convince her he left with good intentions and that he wants her for reasons beyond the power she can bring to their union.

First Thomas has to get close to Juliana while she is busy battling a demon who is able to jump from host to host. If that isn’t bad enough, the snarky demon has apparently been summoned to kill Juliana herself. Although Juliana has returned from several death experiences she is not immortal. It will take all her skill and help from some special sources when the demon possesses Thomas as the tool to hunt her down.

This story jumps into battle action right from the opening and never slows down. I really enjoyed the fast pace, full action as well as the conflicted emotions. Both leading characters are really strong personalities and there is great tension between them as they struggle to find a place of trust and sharing of their strengths. There are unexpected and powerful connections revealed that add to the intrigue and intensity of Juliana’s situation. I highly recommend this very engaging story and I look forward to reading more by Ms. Collins.

It's hard always being strong:
There were times like this when she was so utterly tired of being strong, of pretending that she could handle the world on her own that she became tempted to let him rescue her. Hew was the only one that ever cared enough to take care of her. That’s why it broke her heart when he left. Location 1860.
I'm glad I picked this for review from Netgalley.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Book Review, Publisher Feature and Giveaway: Christmas Past by Susanna Fraser

Today I'm happy to be featuring Ever After's November release!
Check below the review for more information about this special line of stories 
and for Gift Card Giveaway.

This is a quick, enjoyable romance.
Christmas Past (Entangled Ever After)
by Susanna Fraser


  • File Size: 1009 KB
  • Print Length: 39 pages
  • Publisher: Entangled: Ever After (November 25, 2013)
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • ASIN: B00GET8RV0
Genre: Time Travel, Historical Romance Novella
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Book Description
Publication Date: November 25, 2013
Time-traveling PhD student Sydney Dahlquist’s first mission sounded simple enough—spend two weeks in December 1810 collecting blood samples from the sick and wounded of Wellington’s army, then go home to modern-day Seattle and Christmas with her family. But when her time machine breaks, stranding her in the past, she must decide whether to sacrifice herself to protect the timeline or to build a new life—and embrace a new love—two centuries before her time.

Rifle captain Miles Griffin has been fascinated by the tall, beautiful "Mrs. Sydney" from the day he met her caring for wounded soldiers. When he stumbles upon her time travel secret on Christmas Eve, he vows to do whatever it takes to seduce her into making her home in his present—by his side.


Review:
Sydney has made her first time travel trip going to December 1810 for medical, scientific and historical research. Her machine is equipped with a bounce-back feature that would return her to the current time if her arrival looks like it would cause a change in the timeline. She hasn’t bounced back but her machine isn’t working to allow her to manually return either.

The travel protocols have strict rules and she knows what is expected of her but it is a hard decision to make. Especially when a handsome rifle captain is doing his best to persuade her to stay.  He has already discovered her secret. Now he just needs to convince her to share time – and hopefully a future – with him.

This is a really fast read, taking less than an hour, yet it is a complete story. There is sufficient development of the characters to make them believable and likeable. I enjoyed the time travel twist but wondered a bit at Sydney’s convenient scientific conclusions. Still, the romance is sweet with a zing of sexual interaction. The writing flows well and the package makes lovely, quick entertainment.

I received this short novella as part of a publisher event to promote their Ever After line.

Find Your Ever After in Under An Hour

Ever After features paranormal, sci-fi, and horror novellas, all with the romance you've come to love from Entangled--just in a shorter format. Make sure to like their new Facebook Page and follow them on Twitter.

Christmas Past by Susanna Fraser

 GIVEAWAY:
$50.00 Gift Card - Choice of Amazon or Barnes & Noble



a Rafflecopter giveaway




Sunday, November 24, 2013

Mailbox Monday 11/25/13

Welcome to Mailbox Monday.
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.
For NOVEMBER: the Mailbox Monday Tour host is Crystal @ I totally paused! 
[Starting September, Bob of Beauty in Ruins will be the new back-up host for Mailbox Monday.]

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


I received one ebook for review that I forgot to include last week. 
I also purchased two Audible titles with my book credits.

Are your mailbox and TBR piles blooming?

Review Titles

Received from Author for review:


Traitor's Knife (Five Gems)
by E. Kaiser








Won

None this week.


Purchased
I purchased these two titles with my Audible Credits.

Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet: Charley Davidson, Book 4
UNABRIDGED
by Darynda Jones
Narrated by Lorelei King
Series: Charley Davidson, Book 4






UNABRIDGED
by Taylor Anderson
Narrated by William Dufris
Series: Destroyermen, Book 8




Free

I actually could have downloaded more but missed a few days being busy.
I downloaded 32 free Kindle Titles this week, linked through Bookbub, Bookfun, Free Par-tayInspired Reads, Pixel of Ink or Kindle ebooks.
I have enough books to read for the rest of my life. :-)

It's Monday What are You Reading? November 25, 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.

It was another busy work week with me coming home tired each evening. I see the oncologist this coming Friday so I will learn what is next in my treatment. 

I wish everyone a Wonderful Thanksgiving and I am looking forward to my sister and brother-in-law joining us.

I had a great reading week - lots of listening while driving to neighboring courthouses. I finished five books but didn't get in as many reviews as I would have liked.  I did post one Tour Giveaway, one Print and one ARC giveaway. 
I also posted the regular weekly memes and posts (except the Saturday Snapshot): Mailbox Monday, Friday Pick Giveaway,  Sharing Beyond Books Comment Giveaway and Sunday Words.

As busy and crazy as my week was I got no visiting done. Phewy. Thinking about it is not going to make it happen.  
Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:
  • Book Review: Sanctuary by Pauline Creeden, Chirstian Fiction, Apocalyptic; my rating 4.5. 
  • Audio Book Review: Million Dollar Cat by Laura Lond, Contemporary Fiction; my rating 4.5. 
  • Book Review and ARC Giveaway: To Have and To Hold by Leigh Greenwood, Historical Romance; my rating 4.25. Ends 11/29.
Finished Reading:
1. eBook/Kindle


Accidentally Married to...A Vampire? (Accidentally Yours)
by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
This was a fun, sassy read.
Book Tour Giveaway and Review linked above.
Click on book title for full description.




2. Audio


The Last Battle:
When US and German Soldiers Joined Forces in the Waning Hours of World War II in Europe
    by Stephen Harding
    Narrated by Joe Barrett
I liked this although it is a bit like a documentary.
I will post a review soon. I received this for review through Audiobook Jukebox.
Click on book title for full description.



3. eBook/Kindle



Christmas Past (Entangled Ever After)
by Susanna Fraser

This is a quick, sweet romance.
I'll post the review with Ever After Feature on November 25, 2013.
Book Description
Publication Date: November 25, 2013
Time-traveling PhD student Sydney Dahlquist’s first mission sounded simple enough—spend two weeks in December 1810 collecting blood samples from the sick and wounded of Wellington’s army, then go home to modern-day Seattle and Christmas with her family. But when her time machine breaks, stranding her in the past, she must decide whether to sacrifice herself to protect the timeline or to build a new life—and embrace a new love—two centuries before her time.

Rifle captain Miles Griffin has been fascinated by the tall, beautiful "Mrs. Sydney" from the day he met her caring for wounded soldiers. When he stumbles upon her time travel secret on Christmas Eve, he vows to do whatever it takes to seduce her into making her home in his present—by his side.



4. Audio


The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle
    UNABRIDGED
    by Arthur Conan Doyle
    Narrated by Alan Cumming 
I popped this classic in as a quick listen before I started my next review audio.
Publisher's Summary
Two-time Emmy Award nominee (The Good Wife) and Audie
Award winner for best narrator Alan Cumming here narrates Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's first-rate Yuletide whodunit "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle". Cumming adds his personal flair to the mystery classic and turns in an outstanding performance of the great detective Sherlock Holmes and his pal, Watson.
Public Domain (P)2012 Audible, Inc.



5.  eBook/Kindle 


Unfinished Business An Angela Panther Novel 
(A Chick-lit Paranormal book)
(The Angela Panther Series)
by Carolyn Ridder Aspenson
This is delightfully fun gem.
I received this from the author
and I'll post a review soon.
Book Description
Publication Date: April 24, 2013
Sometimes the dead need our help and sometimes, we need theirs.
ANGELA PANTHER HAS A PERFECT LIFE:  A lovely home, an attentive, successful husband, two reasonably behaved children, a devoted dog and a lot of coffee and cupcakes. But while her life might border on mundane, she's got it under control. Until her mother, Fran dies-and returns as a ghost. It seems Fran's got some unfinished business and she's determined to get it done.

Now Fran's got some nifty celestial superpowers and isn't opposed to using them to levy a little ghostly retribution on her granddaughter's frienemies and even her own daughter, which doesn't make Angela happy.

While Angela's shocked and grateful to have her mother back, she's not thrilled about the portal to the afterlife Fran opened upon her return. Now every ghost in town is knockin' on Angela's psychic door, looking for help-and it's a royal pain in the butt.

Now Angela's got to find a way to balance her family life with her new gift and keep her mother in line. And it's a lot for one woman to handle.



Line Edits/Releases:
I hope to finish the two print releases this week; plus at least one more before Christmas.
Enter the bi-monthly drawings at eTreasures Publishing Facebook page.
This week's giveaway link: To be linked.

Currently reading:
1. Print


Don't Want to Miss a Thing
by Jill Mansell
I have really enjoyed this. 
I only have about 60 pages left.
I will post review with ARC Giveaway later this week.
Click on book title for full description.



2. Audio/MP3


Title: The New Space Opera 2
Editor: Gardner Dozois, Jonathan Stahan
Author: Various
Narrator: Various
You know - I like sci fi adventure and I am looking forward to start this.
This is 23 hours so may take two weeks.
I received this for review through Audiobook Jukebox.
Publisher/Date: Blackstone Audio, 09/01/13
Following the success of their Locus Award–winning anthology The New Space Opera, editors Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan up the ante with The New Space Opera 2, in which more of the most beloved names in science fiction spin stunning tales of interstellar adventure and wonder. Authors include:  Neal Asher, John Barnes, Cory Doctorow, John Kessel, Jay Lake, John Meaney...



3. eBook/Kindle


Traitor's Knife (Five Gems)
by E. Kaiser
I will start this tomorrow.
I received this from the author for review.
Book Description
Publication Date: July 8, 2013
When the loyalist cause enlists the mountain house into a weaponry, apprentice Fia is confronted with three refugee children, a disturbingly upstart former messenger, and accidents happening everywhere. Are saboteurs out to nix the weapons works... or is it the incognito crown prince they're after?

Traitor's Knife continues where Jeweler's Apprentice ended, and nearly seventeen year old Fia Brithin from the foothills still has a lot to learn about the mountains, and the people now in them.



4. Print


Christmas at Harrington's
by Melody Carlson
This is our next Ladies' Book Club

read for December meeting.
Book Description

Publication Date: October 1, 2010
Christmas is approaching, and Lena Markham finds herself penniless, friendless, and nearly hopeless. She is trying to restart her life after false accusations landed her in prison, but job opportunities are practically nonexistent. When a secondhand red coat unexpectedly lands her a job as Mrs. Santa at a department store, Lena finally thinks her luck is changing. But can she keep her past a secret?

This tender story about fresh starts will charm readers as all of Melody Carlson's Christmas offerings do. Full of redemption and true holiday spirit, Christmas at Harrington's will be readers' newest Christmas tradition.



I am really lagging but still listening to The Listener's Bible NIV read by Max McLean. [Reading and listening on MP3.] I have been remiss and not keeping up with daily reading with my DH.

Line Edits: I will still be finishing poetry formatting this week.

I want to keep enjoying adding stories from my own TBR. :-)
I'm up-to-date on reading but have a small back load for review still. About 7-4 =3 + 5 so now 8. :-) Since a couple of the current reads are longer I hope I will get a chance to catch up. 

November Scheduled
11/25 Entangled Book Blast and Review: Christmas Past by Susanna Fraser

Sourcebooks:
 
NetGalley:
   ---

Authors
   more to come

AudioBook Jukebox 
    The New Space Opera 2 (listening now)

From TBR Collection - TBD
Won Book - TBD
Free Kindle/Nook or Smashwords: TBD

Sunday Words of Encouragement November 24, 2013

I expect to be late home today as we will be staying after church to practice our Christmas program. We are singing some really wonderful music I hope to be able to share during the next few Sundays.

Since this is Thanksgiving Week I am directed and mindful to Give Thanks! While looking up other images I came across this that gave me pause:
 Image found at Parables Blog

I want to print that out and put it above my pillow so I do not forget on any day to give thanks to God.

I was in mind to pick an older, more traditional Thanksgiving hymn to share today. I had a wonderful hour of listening/watching many songs old and new. It was hard to pick just one but this is the one I selected.  It has amazingly sweet images and the lyrics. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
All Creatures of Our God and King

A Verse for today:
Psalm 95:2  (NIV)
2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song.

I thank you Lord for the abundant life you have given me through Your Great love and mercy.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Sharing Beyond Books #127 Comment Giveaway 11/23/13

Hello again on Saturday night and Welcome to SBB, Sharing Beyond Books.

I must apologize for failing to link my giveaways last week. A special thanks to you folks who sought out the post to comment during the week. :-)

I was rather surprised that greater portion of commenters only read one book at a time. There were nine of those which includes three who occasionally read two at a time. Only six of us read more than one at a time and Ricki takes the cake reading 20 books at one time. Not sure how she manages to keep them all straight. :-)

Most of us claim to be good patients although a couple besides me admitted to be cranky sometimes. Natasha stated she was a good patient "always usually." Hmm wonder just what that means. :-) And Mary P has a mother who plays the dying swan whenever she is sick. I bet (hope) Mary's family has lots of patience.
~~~~
The Winner from SBB #126 comments is: #2 Linda who can make a GC choice if international or 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 (new) WINNER FORM.

WEEK #127

Q1. Emily asks: If you disliked a book, would you still take the time to write a negative review? Or would you just give it a bad rating and forget about it??
A: I rarely read a book without doing a review and fortunately I haven't had too many I actually disliked. If I did I would try to give specific reasons why I didn't like it because we all have different tastes. Giving a book a low rating without saying more doesn't really help other readers know what was unpleasant about the book.   

Q2. My non-bookish 'Question' this week: It's that time of year to give thanks so please share something(s) you are thankful for.
A: I started thinking I would say lets state one or two things.  But my own list quickly added up so I decided -- no limits!  Here goes: I am thankful for 1) God creating and blessing me2) Family - parents, siblings, spouse, children, grandchildren and extended, including pets. 3) Church Family - they are special. 4) Work - all three businesses. 5) Blog which includes friends in the blogging community and all the books I get to read! 6) Fairly good health - even with the cancer diagnosis it could have been much worse. I could go on but that covers most of it!
Image found at The Sweetest Petunia.

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 are getting low on questions so hopefully you will send more in -- even if they are duplicates I'll weed through or try to modify to use.

Your turn to share:

Q1. Emily asks: If you disliked a book, would you still take the time to write a negative review? Or would you just give it a bad rating and forget about it????

Q2. My non-bookish 'Question' this week: It's that time of year to give thanks so please share something(s) you are thankful for.

SBB Comment Winners can choose a selection from the Valentine and "Love" books , the Christmas Giveaway Books, or the June 2012 Newly Updated ARC/Review List.

SBB Rules:
a) Must be a follower.
b) Share a comment on either of the two 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, November 29, 2013 at 10 PM central.

Book Review and ARC Giveaway: To Have and To Hold by Leigh Greenwood

This is a solid romance with good characters and good movement in a realistic, historical setting.
To Have and To Hold
by Leigh Greenwood

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (November 5, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 1402284462
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402284465
Genre: Historical Romance
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Book Description
Publication Date: November 5, 2013
"Greenwood's books are bound to become classics."—Rendezvous
A Stranger to the Rescue
Colby Blaine has been a longer his whole life. And he isn't about to change now. But that doesn't mean he can ignore people in trouble. When he rides up to an inexperienced wagon train under attack, he doesn't hesitate to jump into the fray. It's only after the raid that he really lands himself in hot water...

Naomi Kessling is certainly grateful to Colby for saving her family and agreeing to lead their train to safer territory. But the man has an infuriating way of knowing just how to get under her skin—he asks too may questions about a past she doesn't want to remember, and his touch makes her long for far more. Yet the more time they spend together, the more Naomi sees that perhaps it's Colby who needs rescuing the most...

"Greenwood never disappoints. Continuous action, sharp intrigue, and well-rounded characters captivate."—RT Book Reviews.


Review:
Naomi is a strong young woman who has been the “mother’ in her family since the death of her mother. She helps her doctor father and has helped raise her two younger brothers, one 17, only a year younger and the other a 10 year old. Both boys are beginning to assert their own personalities. Naomi and her family are heading west on a small wagon train with all other families in their small Kentucky community. She doesn’t know the true reason they all decided to move but she suspects it has something to do with Union soldiers and perhaps something that is causing her unexplained nightmares.

When the wagon train is attacked by Indians they are saved by Colby, a lone stranger, who rides into their circle to help lead the fight. Colby prefers living his life as a lone wolf but he couldn’t stay by and watch without trying to help. Colby is impressed by Naomi’s bravery and determination as she helps defend the group and then helps reorganize the people, especially the hysterical young mother whose husband was killed in the attack.

Everyone else is friendly and welcoming to Colby except Naomi. He doesn’t understand her hostility towards him and wants to find out, especially since he is surprisingly attracted to her.  Naomi is afraid of the man in the Union Army uniform even if he does attract her more than any other boy or man she has met. He seems so capable in many things but she senses he is hiding a secret too.

The relationship between Colby and Naomi develops slowly through admiration and friendship. Eventually they will learn each others secrets but they will have to decide if they can risk trying to make a life together. The relationships of family and neighbors in the stressed community as it struggles on the trail makes an interesting background to the romance. Colby and Naomi are strong characters but a few of the other participant characters are developed enough to add interest and contrast. The story is not necessarily action packed but it has plenty of forward movement that kept me interested to read on to find how the issues resolved.

Although this may not be spectacular or flashy I enjoyed this very solid romance story. I recommend it to readers who enjoy sweet, historical romance with emphasis on the romantic development with addition of interesting historical detail. This was the first book I have read by this author but I am fairly sure I have another in one of my boxes and I look forward to reading it.

I received this ARC from Sourcebooks for an honest review.

ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY for ARC Copy.


Don't forget to fill in the form for entry! 
I have noticed a few commenters who forgot to enter through the Form.  
For 3 Extra Bonus entries Visit the author's website and tell me something you find of interest; OR tell me about another book by this author that you enjoyed; OR comment on the review.

* This contest is open to U.S. address only.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on November 29, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNERS WILL BE ANNOUNCED after November 29, 2013.
Winners will have 72 hours to respond by email or the winners form linked in the announcement.

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