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

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Book Review and Giveaway: X Marks the Scot by Victoria Roberts

Enjoyable even though parts seemed familiar.
X Marks the Scot
by Victoria Roberts 

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (February 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402270097
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402270093
Genre: Historical Romance
My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0


Book Description:
Release date: February 5, 2013
"An exciting Highland adventure with sensual and compelling romance."—Amanda Forester, author of True Highland Spirit on Temptation in a Kilt

He was a Highland Rogue Wicked with a Bow and Just as Wicked with the Ladies.
 Declan MacGregor hadn't a care in the world beyond finding a soft bed and a willing woman...until he had to escort Lady Liadain Campbell to the English court. The woman needles him at every turn, but he can't just abandon her to that vipers' nest without protection.
She Never Asked for a Bodyguard... 
Liadain wasn't thrilled to be left in the care of her clan's archrival. It was as if the man never had a lady tell him no before! And yet as whispers of treason swirl through the court and the threat of danger grows even sharper, her bitter enemy soon becomes the only one she can trust...


Review:
Liadain is the sister of a clan leader who was an enemy of the MacGregors and who has been killed for treason. She is at court waiting for the king to decide her fate.  As a healer she is always quick to help others but whispers of witchcraft begin to place her life in danger.

Declan is a rascal and a lady’s man. He escorted Liadain to court and now feels responsible to remain and watch over her until a decision is made regarding her future. She is lovely but her independent nature and resistance to his obvious charms has him rankled.

While passing time, Declan is approached by several other men to participate in friendly games, particularly archery where his skills lie. The men talk and pose questions that could raise issues of treason. Declan dances a fine line away from the political and religious pitfalls that surround the court.

Liadain’s first love, who abandoned her without a word, suddenly appears at court with a very pregnant wife. Liadain is stricken to see Robert but can’t turn away when his lady wife needs assistance. The King throws a celebration to honor Robert and an archery contest, with a fine purse prize, is part of the festivities. But Robert whispers to the King who adds a greater prize for the winner – the forfeited lands of Liadain’s brother.

A twist of fate, through whispered hints, result in forcing Declan and Liadain to wed. Neither is pleased to be hastily pushed into marriage and anger, resentment, frustration and misunderstandings mar their mutual attraction. Liadain particular despairs of winning Declan’s heart.

When the King is nearly assassinated by a long distance arrow, Declan is the prime suspect. With the traitors using Declan as a pawn how can Liadain save the man she has come to love?

There is fun banter between Liadain and Declan but I had some difficulty with Declan’s character which is mercurial as he runs from playful and tender to angry and outright cruel.  There are, somewhat usual, conflicts associated with insecure emotions from a forced marriage. The romance is written nicely with good tension. I enjoyed the intrigue in the traitors’ plots that adds some substance beyond the romance.

I think I am losing taste for highland stories. The story is enjoyable but I just didn’t find it special. Still, if you enjoy Highlander stories I think you would enjoy this.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I felt Liadain’s frustration:
Living most of her existence with Archie, unnoticed and alone, had been difficult, but how cruel it was to have the second part of her life beginning very much the same. She and MacGregor had to find a way to reach a compromise.  Page 116.
I received this title from Sourcebooks for an honest review.

ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY FOR ARC COPY.



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 March 8, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED on March 9, 2013.
Winners are asked to respond by email or the linked winners form within 72 hours of the announcement.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Random at Romance Book Offerings AND a Giveaway!

Random House has some great new romance titles to share and a Giveaway for me to Host. :-)
Stay up to date on all of their latest romance news and enter to win books at:  https://www.facebook.com/RomanceAtRandom

Two titles on sale this week – CLICK the title for an Excerpt!

Edge of Dawn 
by Lara Adrian



by Ashlyn Macnamara
(Check my 4.5 rated review HERE!)





Books you can read now:

HOW TO MISBEHAVE by Ruthie Knox


And,

THE NOTORIOUS LADY ANNE by Sharon Cullen, "a swashbuckling romance fans of Johanna Lindsey will adore."


Coming soon:

Along Came Trouble by Ruthie Knox


And,

Hero of My Heart by Megan Frampton


CHECK OUT THE NICE FLASHY COVERS IN THESE WIDGETS!


Ruthie Knox’s Camelot Series:
--> -->

 Toni Aleo’s Assassins Series: --> -->

And, Loveswept Historical Romances: --> --> 


 AND NOW - FOR THE GIVEAWAY!!

Thank you to ROMANCE AT RANDOM for offering a Galley Print for One US Commenter on this post for Debbie Macomber’s next release, STARTING NOW – a Blossom Street novel.

ENTRY REQUIRES COMMENT

FOR ENTRY:
a) Share why you would like to win Starting Now.
Extra entry:
b) Visit RomanceatRandom Facebook page and tell me something you find of interest  and/OR
c)  -- if you don't do FB -- visit the eBook Romance pages at Random House and share a title of an ebook you would like to read. [I might just pick a name for a RAK ebook :-)]
2 Extra entries if you share the giveaway in any fashion - FB, Twitter, blog sidebar or even email a friend. Share the link in a comment below or email me with the info if you don't want to share all of it in a comment. Send to mesreadsATgmail.com

(Total possible entries per person = 4)
* This contest is open US Only.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on March 15, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNER(S) WILL BE ANNOUNCED on March 16, 2013.
Winners are asked to respond by email or the linked winners form within 72 hours of the announcement.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Book Review: Fatal February by Barbara Levenson

This is an entertaining and fun read, filled with legal procedures.
Fatal February (Mary Magruder Katz)
by Barbara Levenson

  • File Size: 335 KB
  • Print Length: 265 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 193351552X
  • Publisher: Oceanview Publishing (February 1, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005Y2AEBY
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Legal Procedures
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0



Book Description
Publication Date: February 1, 2009
For half Jewish, half Southern Baptist Miami criminal defense attorney Mary Macgruder Katz, life starts to spin completely out of control when a minor fender bender turns out to be an unlikely shot from Cupid’s bow.


Review:
Mary is a feisty defense attorney who works in a prestigious law firm with her fiance of five years.  One morning her car is rear-ended coming out of a car wash. She is ready to berate the loud, pushy driver until she gets a full look at the man’s Latin good looks and charming smile. Then things begin to spin out of control.

Carlos grabs Mary to serve as his attorney on a real estate transaction with some strange arrangements. When client relations heat up, Mary and Carlos are caught in a compromising scene by her boyfriend who fires her on the spot. She fires him as a fiancé and off she goes to set up her own office with encouraging support from Carlos.

Mary lands a new client through a referral from her brother who is an estate attorney. Lillian Yarmouth is accused of killing her husband though she claims she found him on the bed already stabbed and bleeding. The police and prosecutors fail to do a thorough job of investigation so Mary is pretty sure she can win a dismissal at an early hearing.

Mary has to fend off some nasty, low-blow proceedings brought by her ex who is more angry about losing to Mary than losing Mary. She is also coping with slashed tires, rocks thrown windows and a ransacked home.

I like Mary’s ‘go get ‘em’ attitude even though she did seem a little reckless (for my conservative nature.) Carlos is a little suspect but you have to appreciate that he is there giving Mary moral-- and other--support. It was fun that he was always sharing Spanish quotes that didn’t “seem to translate very well.”

I enjoyed the several court room scenes where Mary really kicked butt. Ms. Levenson also blends in some commentary on the lack of resources for proper investigations. This is an easy read with writing that flowed well with a chatty feel to it.  The characters are cute and Mary’s dilemmas make for fun revelations, especially with a little extra digging at the end of the case.

I picked this title out of my “Free Kindle” TBR library as it had “February” in the title. I am very glad I got to read such a fun mystery and I would be glad to read more from this author. I recommend this to fans of light, cozy mysteries and those who enjoy legal procedures and courtroom entertainment.

This was my choice for February from my Kindle Free Reads library shelves.
The story is set in Miami, Florida for my 2013 Where Are You Reading Challenge. This is also a New Author for me.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Mailbox Monday February 25, 2013

Welcome to Mailbox Monday.
For FEBRUARY: the Mailbox Monday Tour host is Audra @ Unabridged Chick!

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 added a good group of books this week. :-)
How are your mailbox and TBR piles doing?

Review Titles

I received a print from Glass Road PR
for review on March 7, 2013:

The Return of Cassandra Todd
by Darrel Nelson








 I picked up a new audio for review through Audiobook Jukebox:






Since I haven't booked March with tours, I picked up some eBooks at NetGalley for review:




Hammer of Angels: A Novel of Shadowstorm
by G. T. Almasi

I liked the first book in the series and wanted to read the next.


AND

by Maria V. Snyder

I enjoy Snyder's fantasies.




Wins
I won:



Pilgrims Don't Wear Pink
by  Stephanie Kate Strohm

through
Just Another New Blog
Thank you Stephanie and Dina.




I have another win not yet received. :-)



Purchased
None this week.


Free
I received more books from Free Partay and
I did download more free Kindle Titles linked through Inspired Reads, Pixel of Ink and Kindle Review.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? February 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.

This week I lost work time while helping my daughter clear out the basement and drawers for a Yard sale she is planning. Then they were here most of Saturday to help with a fan installation and.  Children played with my computer as daughter and I watched over her soon to be momma dog. The dog finally had seven pups after they returned home.

I had a good reading week: completed six books (two with summaries below) and posted five reviews. There were two reviews with giveaways. I also posted the usual Friday Pick Giveaway, Saturday Snapshot, Sharing Beyond Books Comment Giveaway and Sunday Words.

I did get to visit although it was late in the week. :-)
Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me too.

These were last week's posts:
  • Book Review and Giveaway: Waiting for Monday by Margaret Brownley; Historical Romance, Inspirational; my rating 4.5. Open US Only. Ends 3/1/13.
  • Book Review: Into the Dark by Stacy Green; Suspense; my rating 4.25.
  • Book Review and ARC Giveaway: Wait Until Dark by M.L. Buchman; Military Romance; my rating 4.25.
Finished Reading:
1. ebook/Kindle
 


Into the Dark
by Stacy Green
I enjoyed this suspense romance. The review is linked above.



2. Print




Wait Until Dark
by M.L. Buchman
I love this series and the review and 
ARC Giveaway are linked above.



3. Audio


Love in a Garden: What Happens After Happily Ever After
by Mia Jasper (Author, Narrator)
[Unabridged] [Audible Audio Edition]
This is a quick, sweet listen.
Review is linked above.



4. ebook/Kindle
First Love Second Chances 
This was a 2008 Holiday Freebie at Samhain Publishing
that I picked from my TBR files.
Sadly, I cannot find a link anywhere.
Dana had recently moved back to her home town and decided to 'deck the halls' for the first time since her divorce two years before. She hadn't been able to fit the tree and all the trimmings into her car so she paid the fee for delivery. A bit later she was surprised to open the door and discover her High School prom date from 15 years earlier. Ben explains that he isn't the delivery boy but the store owner. Before he leaves he asks her out to a choice of events and she accepts in a fun way. It took only about 10 minutes to read.
I liked the crisp writing and sweet implications. It left me wanting to read more.


5. eBook/Kindle


Lights Out
by Ann Campbell
This is another short book in my TBR from an April 2009 Blog Contest win. Ms. Campbell also sent me a few small gifts to go with the pdf. Below is the blurb. The writing is good and I liked the characters. However I skimmed the steamy scene from about 70% to 87% and then read the ending which had a cute surprise.
Book Description
Publication Date: March 6, 2009
Spending time with your best friend makes life on the mountain perfect. But when your best friend is the man who stars every night in her most erotic fantasy--and has a girlfriend--what’s a girl to do? Forced to spend the night alone with Caleb and trapped by a snow storm, Payton finds herself yearning to do much more than talk to pass the long hours.

Caleb has spent the past four years harboring secret fantasies about Payton. When the lights suddenly go out and they find themselves surrounded by candles, will they realize they could be more than just friends?



6. eBook/Kindle
 

Fatal February (Mary Magruder Katz)
by Barbara Levenson
This was my choice from Kindle Free reads. I really enjoyed it and will post a review early this week. 
Book Description
Publication Date: February 1, 2009
For half Jewish, half Southern Baptist Miami criminal defense attorney Mary Macgruder Katz, life starts to spin completely out of control when a minor fender bender turns out to be an unlikely shot from Cupid’s bow.


Line Edits/Releases:
We are completing the last details for more releases.

Currently reading:

1. Print


Lady Eve's Indiscretion
by Grace Burrowes
I am 20% in and I really like Eve and Lucas together! Reviewing for Sourcebooks.
Book Description
Release date: February 5, 2013
"Burrowes delivers red-hot chemistry with a masterful mix of playfulness and sensuality."—Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Lady Eve's Got The Perfect Plan
Pretty, petite Evie Windham has been more indiscreet than her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Moreland, suspect. Fearing that a wedding night would reveal her past, she's running out of excuses to dodge adoring swains. Lucas Denning, the newly titled Marquis of Deene, has reason of his own for avoiding marriage. So Evie and Deene strike a deal, each agreeing to be the other's decoy. At this rate, matrimony could be avoided indefinitely...until the two are caught in a steamy kiss that no one was supposed to see.



2. Print
 

X Marks the Scot
by Victoria Roberts 
I am 20% in to this and
I like Liadain and even the rogue Declan.
Reviewing for Sourcebooks.
Book Description:
Release date: February 5, 2013
"An exciting Highland adventure with sensual and compelling romance."—Amanda Forester, author of True Highland Spirit on Temptation in a Kilt

He was a Highland Rogue Wicked with a Bow and Just as Wicked with the Ladies.
 Declan MacGregor hadn't a care in the world beyond finding a soft bed and a willing woman...until he had to escort Lady Liadain Campbell to the English court. The woman needles him at every turn, but he can't just abandon her to that vipers' nest without protection.
She Never Asked for a Bodyguard... 
Liadain wasn't thrilled to be left in the care of her clan's archrival. It was as if the man never had a lady tell him no before! And yet as whispers of treason swirl through the court and the threat of danger grows even sharper, her bitter enemy soon becomes the only one she can trust...



3. eBook/Kindle
 

The Midwife’s Revolt
by Jodi Daynard
I hope to do this by the end of the week too. 
I picked this up through NetGalley. 
Book Description
Publication Date: December 2, 2012
The Midwife’s Revolt takes the reader on a journey to the founding days of America. It follows one woman’s path, Lizzie Boylston, from her grieving days of widowhood after Bunker Hill, to her deepening friendship with Abigail Adams and midwifery, and finally to her dangerous work as a spy for the Cause. A novel rich in historical detail, The Midwife’s Revolt opens a window onto the real lives of colonial women.
"A charming, unexpected, and decidedly different view of the Revolutionary War."
-- Publishers Weekly
This humorous, exciting and touching story retells the familiar saga of the Revolutionary War in a stunning new way that feels fresh and alive."
-- Kirkus Indie Reviews



4. Audio

Silver (An OgmiosTeam Adventure)
by Steven Savile
I am only a couple of chapters into this and still determining where it is going.
I am reviewing this for Crossroad Press through Audiobook Jukebox.
Book Description
Publication Date: January 5, 2010
Sometimes the truth is anything but honest.

Sometimes the stories everyone knows by heart are lies.

Sometimes lies are all we have left.

Two thousand years ago, thirty silver Tyrian shekels were paid to secure the most infamous betrayal of all time. Melted down by the grandsons of Judas Iscariot, in the dark heart of the Sicarii fortress, Masada, the silver was re-forged as a dagger. When the Sicarii zealots committed mass suicide in AD73 the dagger of Iscariot and the truth of his sacrifice were lost. Until now.

A religious cult calling itself the Disciples of Judas has risen in the Middle East. Its influence is pernicious, its reach long. In thirteen cities across Europe thirteen people martyr themselves in the name of Judas, promising forty days and forty nights of terror. They twist the words of ancient prophecies to drive home the fear. Everything you believe in will be proved wrong. Everything you hold true will fail.

Day by day the West wakes to increasingly harrowing acts of terror. As fear cripples the capitals of Europe, who will be the next to fall? London? Rome? Berlin?

In a race against time - and prophecy - believing the terrorists intend to assassinate the Pope as part of their plan to bring down the Catholic Church, Sir Charles Wyndham's team of combat specialists, codename Ogmios, tracks a labyrinthine course through truth, shades of truth and outright lies that takes them from the backstreets of London to the shadow of Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin and all the way into the heart of the Holy See itself.

Forty days and forty nights of fear. And today is day one.



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: I did well on conversions this week and continue to progress.


I started the month with 17 titles + TBRs. I read 16, reviewed 13, summarized two and have one  to be reviewed this week. That leaves three I hope to finish this week. One title was archived so won't be reviewed and the audio, Silver, will go into next month. A good month. :-)

FEBRUARY Scheduled: completed

Unscheduled 

Sourcebooks
      X Marks the Scot by Victoria Roberts
      Lady Eve's Indiscretion by Grace Burrowes  

Random House - done

Thomas Nelson - done

NetGalley
     Fix-It and Forget-It Holiday Appetizers, Finger Foods, and Beverages - Archived so no longer available.
     The Midwife’s Revolt by Jodi Daynard

Audios: (more to come) 
(Added Silver for March)

From TBR Collection - Done
Won Book - Done 
Free Kindle/Nook or Smashwords: Fatal February (Mary Magruder Katz) - review to be posted

Sunday Words of Encouragement February 24, 2013

[Again I apologize this is posting later than I like but time spent with family came after church today. :-)]
I have two wonderful lessons from this morning - Sunday School and Sermon. I'll share the sermon today and save the other.

Our Pastor is planning to return this week, bringing his mother to live here. This morning one of our members who is a regional Secretary and a pastor shared a very good message he called When God Isn't Enough.

The Bible passages were Numbers 11:1-23 and Psalm 78:12-22.  These passages address the complaining of the people during their journey to the promised land. God arranged to bring them out of slavery, out of Egypt and lead them to a land of 'milk and honey'; a land of fat and plenty.  God was leading them and providing mana for their journey. Yet some became distracted and stopped trusting God. Those on the edges (away from the Ark that represented God's presence) began to complain. First they tried to make the mana more palatable to suit them, next they wanted meat. The problem was not God's failure to provide but it was their greedy appetites. God had provided mercy and mana but they wanted meat - their own desires.

The people had protection, provision and promise yet some allowed their greed and lusts to blind them. We need to be careful that we do not let the world of today distract us into wanting our own desires and failing to acknowledge God's daily provisions. We do not need to keep up with the changes of the world; we do not need to have things more palatable to suit us. What we need is to stand steadfast in obedience to God's plans. He has the best plan for us if we only keep trusting Him with every step in our lives. We do not serve a microwave sort of God but rather a crock-pot sort. We are all on a journey and the only way we are assured to get there safely is to Trust GOD! God is Always Enough - if we allow Him to be.

This is an older praise song that says it:
Jehovah Jireh, You are More than Enough.For Me

A Verse for Today:
Numbers 11:11 (NIV)
The Lord answered Moses, “Is the Lord’s arm too short? Now you will see whether or not what I say will come true for you.”

Thank you Lord for not only supplying all I need but blessing me beyond what I deserve. I pray today Lord that, if (when) I ever start to grumble or complain, You will help me refocus to recognize ALL that you have provided and remind me that You are more than enough when I trust You.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Sharing Beyond Books #88 Comment Giveaway February 23, 2013

Hello, Welcome to SBB.
I hope everyone is staying reasonably warm and dry with this capricious, winter weather. I had a sort of disruptive week as my daughter wanted my help several days clearing our basement and sorting things for a yard sale. So I lost a couple of days but had nice family time. :-)
Thank you to all who shared last week.

There were several good series suggested for Movies or perhaps TV. The one with the multiple votes was the Mercy Thompson series.

Quite a few of you do not sing at all but there are singers. Three admitted singing in the shower and three sing with the TV but more like to sing along with the radio. Jolene sings to annoy her husband but the most interesting is Linda who sings with a 'gym choir' while exercising.
~~~~

The Winner from SBB #87 comments is: #11 Mary.  Mary will get a GC choice. Please let me know your choice if ready by completing the WINNER FORM.

WEEK #88 Questions

Q1. Miki asks: Do you enjoy merchandising, goodies from your favorite books (for example a reproduction of the pendant of one character etc)? do you buy them sometimes??
A: No - I don't pick up goodies connected to books.
I liked this Harry Potter bracelet I found at Fashionably Geek.


Q2. My Question this week: Do you collect other things, like Beenie Babies, Dolls, candles or something else??
A: I have saved the Beenie Babies I collected for and with my children when they were young. But I don't really collect anything but books anymore - and of course I collect plenty of them! :-)
We sure don't have this many!
Image found at Collectors Quest

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.
February questions were provided by: Lissette, Margaret, Abby and Miki. The winner of a book choice or GC is #3 - Abby.

Your turn to share:

1.Miki asks: Do you enjoy merchandising, goodies from your favorite books (for example a reproduction of the pendant of one character etc)? do you buy them sometimes??

2. My Question this week: Do you collect other things, like Beenie Babies, Dolls, candles or something else?? 

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,  March 1, 2013 at 10 PM central.

Book Review and ARC Giveaway: Wait Until Dark by M.L. Buchman

This is an author I can trust to deliver entertaining action and romance.
Wait Until Dark
by M.L. Buchman

  • File Size: 554 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (February 5, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009RXJ2HS
Genre: Military Romance
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Book Description
Release date: February 5, 2013 | Series: The Night Stalkers
Praise for I Own the Dawn:
"A rousing mix of romance and military action thrills...Buchman blends tender feelings with military politics to keep readers riveted."—Publishers Weekly
"I can't wait for the next book."—RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars
"Filled with action, adventure, and danger."—Booklist Starred Review
Name: Big John Wallace
Rank: Staff Sergeant, Chief Mechanic and Gunner
Mission: To serve and protect his crew and country.
Name: Connie Davis
Rank: Sergeant, Flight Engineer, Mechanical Wizard
Mission: To be the best...and survive.
Two Crack Mechanics, One Impossible Mission
Being in The Night Stalkers is Connie Davis's way of facing her demons head-on, but mountain-strong John Wallace is a threat on all fronts. Their passion is explosive, but their conflicts are insurmountable. When duty calls them to a mission no one else could survive, they'll fly into the night together—ready or not.


Review:
Connie Davis is a tough SOAR mechanic and technician. Her brain is nearly photographic and she can spin out facts and details as well as think quickly on her feet. She never knew her mother who died when she was three. She grew up as a military ‘brat’ moving from base to base with her father teaching herto work on the big Huey helicopters as a young girl. Then one day when she was 14 her father didn’t return from a mission.  These losses, on top of her ‘geeky’ smarts, created demons that keep her apart from others.  As a SOAR crew member she has earned respect even if she still doesn’t always feel like she fits in. Most importantly, she recognizes that she might not be returning from the next mission so there is no room in her life for romance and commitment.

Big John Wallace has never worked with a mechanic as sharp as Connie. He may not have realized it at first but he soon sees that she has an awesome ability to function, especially under pressure. Then he suddenly sees her as a woman - sexy, brilliant and competent. A combination that is hard to resist as a gentle friendship begins to grow.

The team is being prepared for a secret mission. First they are sent for downtime and John and others are thrilled with the prospect of maybe getting to visit home through Christmas. John asks Connie to join him when he realizes she has no where to go. Connie reluctantly agrees and she finds a whole family of warmth at John’s home farm. In addition to Mom and Paps, there is quiet, comfortable Grumps who lets her tear into his 1938 John Deere tractor. Noreen, John’s sister, isn’t thrilled at first but soon is sharing secrets with Connie.

John and Connie give in to their blazing passion but Connie is still holding back. He has plenty of friends and history; she has none. The warmth of family and a crisis overwhelm her and send her running back to base leaving John to face grief on his own. John is furious but doesn’t have time to try to resolve his anger before they are assembled for their mission.

John and Connie have to work past their emotions to carry out their crucial tasks for the safety of the team.  They have to face a nuclear threat as well as their own emotional turmoil.

I really enjoy the intensity that M.L. Buchman brings to his stories. Although this book in the series seems a bit more focused on the relationship and emotions of the characters, there is still plenty of action and technical details woven in to keep a high pace and interest. I enjoyed the interaction of characters from prior books as they watched the relationship develop, falter and carry through the mission. If you haven’t tried this series yet, I highly recommend it for romance action fans.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Connie has trouble with feeling emotions:
There was no one left alive to care about her feelings, so why did John?
Without feelings, the requirements of performance were much easier.  Page 149.
John is surprised by the impact Connie has on him:
He knew her kiss blew his knees into butter, and her smile blew his brain into next week. Page 166.

I received this books from Sourcebooks for an honest review.
Partially set in Oklahoma for my 2013 Where in the World Are you Reading Challenge.

ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY FOR ARC COPY.


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 March 1, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED on March 2, 2013.
Winners are asked to respond by email or the linked winners form within 72 hours of the announcement.

Audio Book Review: Love in a Garden: What Happens After Happily Ever After by Mia Jasper

This is definitely a quick, sweet and enjoyable listen.
by Mia Jasper (Author, Narrator)
[Unabridged] [Audible Audio Edition]
  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 26 minutes
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: Ann Tucker
  • Audible.com Release Date: December 5, 2012
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AJD3NNE
Genre: Contemporary Romance
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Book Description
Most romance stories usually end when the couple says "I do". What really happens after happily ever after?

    Can love survive real life year after year?
    What happens when budgets, job responsibilities, and habits take center stage?
    Can love survive the misunderstandings and stress of real life?

This feel-good story will restore your faith in "Happily Ever After". If you believe that love really can conquer all - even real life - then Love in a Garden: What Happens After Happily Ever After is for you!

This is a quick story you can listen to at lunchtime.



Review:
Cathy seems very real in her frustration with her job and long hours. She and Tim are almost passing ships as she gets home late, spends a few minutes relaxing by looking at gardens and flowers on the computer and then dragging off to bed.  Tim realizes it’s been rough on Cathy and he comes up with a great surprise for her birthday which is coming up soon. It takes patience for Tim to not respond negatively after Cathy comes home and takes her extra anger out on him. His gift is heartwarming and shows the care of a love-mate willing to push beyond the stresses of everyday life struggles.

I was pulled into the story right away. It is a sweet and fast listen that left me satisfied but wanting to look for more from this author.

Audio Notes: The author does a nice job of narrating her own story. She does the inflections well and conveys the frustrations and concerned emotions of the characters.  This is an easy and light story to listen too in a short break.  I am often very pleasantly surprised when I choose a small indie pub audio to review and I am glad I tried this one.


I received this audio, for an honest review, from Ann Tucker through Audiobook Jukebox.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Saturday Snapshot (February 23, 2013) December Visit

Here are some family pictures during our December visit with our son and daughter-in-law in Hawaii.

Our first evening the "kids" are ready to go out.


A week later the kids are bringing home the newest kid! :-)
 

My DH in the kitchen where he loves to be -
fixing meatloaf for dinner. :-)

Back in the kitchen the next morning.

 Cinnamon rolls ready to eat - Yum!


Thanks to all the nice people who have commented on my Saturday pictures. I am so sorry I have not had much chance to return the visits. I seem to get to visit a week behind. :-(

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 February 22, 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 fellow bookies! How has your week been? Much rain for some. My week has been fairly good. Although Monday was a day off I worked on formats and conversions so I stayed busy.


[***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 February 15 Pick. Only one automatic winner 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 four titles blocked again this week, with one won.
Texas Book Lover chose the Dick Francis Pair

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from February 15 Pick:

Ingeborg wins The Gift.
Anita wins Death in High Heels (through the block.) :-)

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.

One last heart picture and I really liked this one.
Image found at We Heart It who found it on http://vi.sualize.us/view/ee1bfe4f28b9729fe7e6752d190b055c/
.

New Book Group #36 February 15, 2013
Pairs:
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: Ruthless.com (audio cassette tapes)
Singles:
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 

Pairs
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  ??? checking postage
*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.
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing

Pairs:
Fern Michaels
    Payback and Full Me Once
Luanne Rice
    Silver Bells (spine wear) and True Blue
Janet Evanovich
    Full Tilt and Full Bloom
Singles:
Captain's Woman by Merline Lovelace (This is a favorite author and book of mine)
*Death in High Heels by Christina Brand
*Mrs Mallory and the Silent Killer by Hazel Holt


New Book Group #33 October 27, 2012
*asterisks indicate lighter, smaller books possibly suitable for international mailing
PAIRS:
Dick Francis:
     10 LB Penalty and Risk
Tom Clancy:
     Op-Center State of Siege and Op-Center Mission of Honor
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
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)
Wanna Get Lucky? by Deborah Coonts
Sleeping Alone by Barbara Bretton

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 481 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 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)

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
Sleight of Hand by Robin Hathaway
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

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)

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