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Monday, June 27, 2016

2016 Alphabet Soup Challenge Update Midyear

I am working this 2016 Alphabet Soup Challenge in expanded mode. I am trying to fill the Alphabet with TBR books, ebook and audio if possible, as well as new books. 
(A for audio; E for ebook; P for print; TE for Tour; AE for author ebook).
Books 1 and 2 are will be TBRs: 1 = print or ebook and 2 = audio/Audible. 
Books 3 and 4 will be  new books: 1 = NG (NetGalley), TE (tour ebook) or AE (author ebook); 
4 = new audio/Audible titles.
(A ABB = Audiobook Boom; A ABJ = Audiobook Jukebox)
[Brackets indicate a planned book.]

Title (author to be added if not in yet), date acquired; linked to review when read.
A1. (P/E TBR) Arena by Karen Hancock (fall 2015)
A2. (A TBR) Agenda 21: Into the Shadows by Glenn Beck (Audible credit 1/16)
A3. (NG) Admiral (An Evagardian Novel) by Sean Danker
A4.
B1. (NG TBR) Brilliance (The Brilliance Trilogy Book 1) by Marcus Sakey (Selected Dec 2015);
B2. (A ABJ) Buster the Military Dog by Will Barrow (Rec'd Dec 2015 through ABJ)
B3. (TE) Breaking the Story (Scottie's Adventures Book 2) by Ashley Farley
B4. (A-Narrator) Bad Deeds
C1. (E TBR) [Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles Book 1) by Marissa Meyer; Kindle pick up 2/14]
C2. (A TBR) Classic Love Poems (Free Audible 2/15)
C3. (TE) City of Gold by Carolyn Arnold (Rec'd Jan 2016 for Great Escapes Book Tour)
C3. (NG TBR) Chakana: Encounter In The Sacred Valley by W.E. Lawrence (Rec'd Dec 2015)
C4.
D1.
D2. (A TBR) Daemon by Daniel Suarez Audible 2012
D3. (NG) Dear Emma by Katie Heaney (Rec'd Jan 2016 through Hachette at NG)
D4. (A ABB) Defects: The Reverians by Sara Noffke (Rec'd Jan 2016 through ABB)
E1.
E2. (A TBR) [Eye of the Needle 2012]
E3. (NG) Extreme Honor by Piper J. Drake (Rec'd Dec 2015)
E3. (TE) Emmy Nation Undercover Suffragette (Rec'd Dec 2015 for iRead BookTour)
E4. (A new) Enforcing Home
F1.
F2. (A TBR) For Honor We Stand: Man of War, Book 2 by H. Paul Honsinger (Audible 12/15)
F3. (E) First Fruits by Brad Duncan
F4.
G1.
G2. (A-TBR) Grave Surprise
G3. (E) Guardian of Paradise by W. E. Lawrence
G4. (A) Good Morning... Processes Must Be Improved by Ray Jay Perreault
H1. (E TBR) [His Lady Mistress 2009]
H2. (A TBR) Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips Audible 8/14
H3. (NG) Hold Your Breath (Search and Rescue) by Katie Ruggle
H4.
I1.
I2. (A TBR) [Into the Black 2015 (NOV Sci Fi) Importance Earnest]
I3. (T) Immurement: The Undergrounders Series Book One by Norma Hinkens (Rec'd Feb 2016 for Expresso Book Tour)
I4. (A) In the Mist of Killarney: An Irish Faery Tale by Robert McCallum
J1.
J2. (A TBR) (The) Jewel of Dantenos: The FREE Lee Starfinder Adventure by Brian D. Anderson
J3. (NG) Jessica’s Christmas Kiss by Alison May (Rec'd in Dec 2015)
J3. (TE) Jamie Quinn Mystery Collection: Box Set Books 1-3 by Barbara Venkataraman
J4.
K1.
K2. (A TBR) Kiss an Angel
K3.
K4.
L1.
L2. (A TBR) Lost in a Good Book Audible 3/12
L3. (NG) Laos File (The Shake Davis Series) by Dale Dye
L4.
M1. (P TBR) Mistletoe Memories: Four Generations Transform a House Into a Home for Christmas (LBC purchased in Nov 2015)
M2. (A TBR) [Monster Hunter Audible 11/15]
M3. (NG) Much Ado About Highlanders (The Scottish Relic Trilogy) by May McGoldrick
M4. (A ABB) Making Amends by Melinda Clayton
N1. (NG TBR) Night Study by Maria J. Snyder(Rec'd Nov 2015)
N2. (A TBR) [Nation 2012] [No Easy Hope 2015]
N3. (TE) Nobody But You (Cedar Ridge) by Jill Shalvis
N4. (A ABB) Northern Lights: A Scorched Earth Novel by Boyd Craven III
O1.
O2. (A TBR) Old Man's War by John Scalzi (Audible 2/13)
P1.
P2. (A TBR) Professional Integrity (A Riyria Chronicles Tale) by Michael J. Sullivan (Audible free book 2015)
P3.(NG TBR) (The) Path of the Bullet by MC Jacques (Rec'd Dec 2015)
P4. (A ABJ) Pack: A Paranormal Romance Novelette by Jeaniene Frost
Q1. (E TBR) Quiet As They Come by Angie Chau (Free 2010)
Q3. (E) Quirky Essays
R1.
R2. (A-TBR) Reunion in Death by J.D. Robb (Audible credit 12/15)
R3. (TE) Rarity from the Hollow by Robert Eggleton
R4. (A ABB) Redfall: Fight for Survival: American Prepper Series, Book 1, by Jay J. Falconer
S1. (E TBR) [Snowbound 2009]
S2. (A TBR) Straits of Hell by Taylor Anderson (Audible credit 11/2015)
S3. (NG TBR) Steamborn by Eric R. Asher (Received in Dec 2015)
S4. (A ABJ) Singular by David F. Porteous (ABJ Jan 2016)
T1. (P TBR) Two Tickets to the Christmas Ball by Donita K. Paul (LBC Print purchased Nov 2015)
T2. (A TBR) To Live Forever (Audible credit or purchase August 2015)
T3. (TE) Those Who Walk in Darkness by Joyce Lavene and Jim Lavene
T4.(A TBR) Time Heist: Firstborn Saga Volume 1 by Anthony Vicino (Rec'd from author Dec 2015)
U1.
U2. (A TBR) Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand (Audible 2/15)
U3. (NG T) Ultimate Courage by Piper J. Drake
U4. (A Narrator) Unseemly Pursuits
V1.
V2. (A TBR) Variant by Robison Wells (Audible 2012)
V3. (E PBL) Violets in February by Clare Revell
V4.
W1.
W2. (A TBR) What Happens in London Audible 2012
W3. (NG TBR) What We Find by Robyn Carr
W4.
X1.
X2. (A) X Minus One: Protective Mimicry (October 3, 1956) by Algis Budrys, Ernest Kinoy – adaptation (Audible purchase 12/31)
Y.
Z.

MBS 2016 Audiobook Challenge Midyear Update


2016 Audiobook Challenge
  1. (TBR) Audible Book Reviews: Three X Minus One #VintageSciFi Stories; Vintage Sci Fi; my ratings 4.5, 4.25 and 4.25.
  2. (TBR) Audible Book Review and #Giveaway: Time Heist: Firstborn Saga Volume 1 by #Anthony Vicino; Sci Fi, Mystery; my rating 4.5.
  3. (TBR) Audio Book Review: Buster: The Military Dog Who Saved a Thousand Lives by Will Barrow, Isabel George; Personal Memoir; my rating 4.25.
  4. (TBR) Audible Book Review: The Very First D**ned Thing: An Author-Read Audio Exclusive by Jodi Taylor; Fantasy; my rating 4.5.
  5. (TBR) Audible Book Review: To Live Forever by Jack Vance; Vintage Sci Fi; my rating 4.0.
  6. (TBR) The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein; Sci Fi, Vintage; my rating 5.0.
  7. (ABJ) Audible Book Review: Singular by David F. Porteous; Sci Fi, Thriller; my rating 4.25.
  8. (ABB) Audible Book Review: Star Crusader: Hero of the Alliance by Michael G. Thomas; Sci Fi, Space Adventure; my rating 4.25.
  9. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Classic Love Poems by William Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, Elizabeth, Barrett Browning and others; Poetry; my rating 5.0.
  10. (ABJ) Audible Book Review: The Last Drop: The Last Drop, Book 1 by Andrea Perno; Fantasy, Young Adult; my rating 4.0.
  11. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Reunion in Death: In Death, Book 14, by J.D. Robb; Mystery Thriller, Modern Detective; my rating 4.5.
  12. (ABB) Audio Book Review: Defects: The Reverians, Volume 1 by Sarah Noffke; YA, Dystopian; my rating 4.0.
  13. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Agenda 21: Into the Shadows by Glenn Beck ; Christian, Sci Fi, Dystopian; my rating 4.25.
  14. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Straits of Hell: Destroyermen, Book 10 by Taylor Anderson; Sci Fi, Alternate History; my rating 5.0.
  15. (ABB) Audible Review: Good Morning... Processes Must Be Improved by Ray Jay Perreault; Sci Fi, Short Story; my rating 4.0.
  16. (New) Audible Book Review: Good Fences: A Scorched Earth Novel by Boyd Craven III; Sci Fi, Post-Apocalyptic; my rating 4.5.
  17. (ABB) Audio Book Review: Northern Lights: A Scorched Earth Novel by Boyd Craven III; Sci Fi, Post-Apocalyptic; my rating 4.5.
  18. (ABJ) Audible Book Review: Derelict by LJ Cohen; Sci Fi, YA; my rating 4.0.
  19. (New) Audible Book Review: Fire Touched: Mercy Thompson Series, Book 9, by Patricia Briggs; Paranormal, Urban Fantasy; my rating 4.25.
  20. (ABJ) Audible Book Review: Dream Kisses: Romance on the Ranch Series Book 1 by Verna Clay; Contemporary Romance; my rating 4.25.
  21. (ABB) Audible Book Review: Redfall: Fight for Survival: American Prepper Series, Book 1, by Jay J. Falconer; Sci Fi, Dystopian; my rating 4.25.
  22. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Variant by Robison Wells; Sci Fi, Teens; my rating 3.75.
  23. (Author) Audio Book Review: Bad Deeds by Robert Bidinotto; Thriller, Espionage; my rating 4.5.
  24. (Narrator) Audio Book Review: Dark Sanity by Paul L. Centeno; Sci Fi, Steampunk; my rating 4.5.
  25. (TBR)--Audible Book Review: Professional Integrity (A Riyria Chronicles Tale) by Michael J. Sullivan; Sci Fi, Fantasy; my rating 5.0.
  26. (Narrator) Audio Book Review: In the Mist of Killarney: An Irish Faery Tale by Robert McCallum ; Fantasy; my rating 4.0.
  27. (ABJ) Audio Book Review: Pack: A Paranormal Romance Novelette by Jeaniene Frost; Paranormal Romance; my rating 4.0.
  28. (TBR) Audible Book Review: The Jewel of Dantenos: The FREE Lee Starfinder Adventure by Brian D. Anderson ; Fantasy, Adventure; my rating 4.25.
  29. (Author) Audio Book Review: Redfall: Freedom Fighters: American Prepper Series, Book 2 by Jay J. Falconer; Sci Fi; my rating 4.25.
  30. (ABB) Audio Book Review: Making Amends by Melinda Clayton; Suspense, Drama; my rating 4.25.
  31. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Old Man's War by John Scalzi; Sci Fi, Military Sci Fi; my rating 4.5.
  32. (TBR) Audible Book Review: Enforcing Home: The Survivalist Series, Book 6 by A. American; Post Apocalyptic, Sci Fi; my rating 4.25.
  33. (ABB) Audio Book Review: The Arrival: The Evaran Chronicles Prequel by Adair Hart; Sci Fi; my rating 4.5.
  34. (Author) Audible Book Review: Burning Bright: Ivy Granger Book 3 by E.J. Stevens; Detective, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy; my rating 4.0.
  35. (Author) Audible Book Review: Birthright: Ivy Granger, Psychic Detective, Book 4 by E.J. Stevens Detective, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy; my rating 4.25.
  36. (ABB) Audible Book Review: Dangerous and Unseemly: A Concordia Wells Mystery, Book 1 by K.B. Owen; Historical, Mystery, Amateur Woman Sleuth; my rating 4.25.
  37. (ABJ) Audible Book Review: Beware the Little White Rabbit Anthology; Sci Fi, Fantasy, Steampunk; my rating 4.5.
  38. Audible Book Review: The Pit Stop: This Stop Could Be Life or Death by Carmen DeSousa; Mystery, Paranormal; my rating 4.25.
  39. Audio Book Review: Desolation by M.L. Banner; Post Apocalyptic, Sci Fi; my rating 4.25.
  40. Audio Book Review: The Christmas Kitten: A Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter Cozy Murder Mystery, Book 2 by Liz Dodwell; Cozy Mystery; my rating 4.25.
Through June.
My goal is MARATHONER which is over 50 so I am well on the way for that. My personal goal is 75 and I think I am good to get close.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Sunday Post June 26, 2016/It's Monday! What are You Reading? Plus Mailbox Monday June 27, 2016



I am linking with Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading now at The Book Date.
Thank you to Sheila for the years that she handled this meme.
Thank you to Kathryn for taking up the baton.
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 work week was short by Friday at pre-op with my DH.
His by-pass and valve replacement surgery is scheduled for tomorrow. I appreciate all good thoughts and prayers sent our way.
Our weather is very hot. Of interest, we have a hawk who has decided to perch on our bird feeder each afternoon. As fascinating as that is I am not thrilled at the risk he poses for our cardinals and other birds.

My reading was better this week as I finished three books, one ebook and two audios. I got three reviews posted and my usual memes.

Once again I enjoyed visiting early in the week.
Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:

Finished Reading:
1. eBook/Kindle (iRead Book Tours)


Regina Shen: Vigilance
by Lance Erlick
This is a fairly engaging YA, female society dystopian series.
I received this through iReads Book Tours. Review to post 6/23.

Review and tour giveaway are linked above.



2. Audible/MP3 (Narrator)


The Pit Stop: This Stop Could Be Life or Death
Written by: Carmen DeSousa
Narrated by: Michelle Babb
I enjoyed this quick mystery with a ghostly touch.
I received this from the narrator.
Click on book title for full description.



3. Audible/MP3 (ABJ)


Desolation
Written by: ML Banner
Narrated by: Mikael Naramore
I got wrapped into the characters and situations of conflict in this post-apocalyptic story.
I'll have to go back and read the first book. 
I received this audio from the publisher through Audiobook Jukebox.
Click on book title for full description.




Currently reading:
1. eBook/Kindle (NG)


Laos File (The Shake Davis Series)
by Dale Dye
I am really liking the writing style in this military mystery.
Click on book title for full description.



2. eBook/Kindle (NG)


A Better World (The Brilliance Trilogy Book 2)
by Marcus Sakey
I am several months behind getting back to this series which I received in late February through NetGalley.
I am looking forward to diving back in to the story.
The brilliants changed everything. Since 1980, one percent of the world has been born with gifts we’d only dreamed of. The ability to sense a person’s most intimate secrets, or predict the stock market, or move virtually unseen. For thirty years the world has struggled with a growing divide between the exceptional…and the rest of us.
Now a terrorist network led by brilliants has crippled three cities. Supermarket shelves stand empty. 911 calls go unanswered. Fanatics are burning people alive.
Nick Cooper has always fought to make the world better for his children. As both a brilliant and an advisor to the president of the United States, he’s against everything the terrorists represent. But as America slides toward a devastating civil war, Cooper is forced to play a game he dares not lose—because his opponents have their own vision of a better world.
And to reach it, they’re willing to burn this one down.



3. Audible/MP3 (ABB)


The Christmas Kitten: A Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter Cozy Murder Mystery, Book 2
Written by: Liz Dodwell
Narrated by: Jennifer Fournier
This sounds like a fun mystery even if it is out of season. Maybe I need some Christmas in June.
I received this audio title from the author through AudioBook Boom.
Publisher's Summary
Polly Parrett finds herself in the midst of another murder mystery. This time it involves two little girls, a wicked stepmother, and a missing father. Oh, and Christmas is almost here.
It all begins with a mysterious gift box that’s left on Polly's doorstep. Along the way she encounters problems with her pet-sitting customers and her arch nemesis, Britney Harris, who has her eye on Polly's boyfriend Tyler. An Open House is planned at Welcome Home, the residential home Polly and her mom have created to provide a safe haven for homeless military veterans and their pets. It's all go in Polly's world, but with a killer on the loose and two children in need of her help, she'll do anything she can to keep everyone safe.
Book 2 of the Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter series.
©2015 Liz Dodwell (P)2016 Liz Dodwell


I imagine I will get to another audio but haven't quite decided which.

June 5, 2016 - Current with Reading The One Year Bible again along with my husband and others from our church. I will also be listening (sometimes) to the companion commentary online.

I posted three reviews this past week so I now have four pending reviews so I am not too far behind.

I am finally getting to the five nine, now seven nine (again) back to four five author ebook reviews committed with no specific dates.
My NetGalley shelves are at seven with another one of those pulled to read this week.


I hope to get a couple of backlist titles up at eTreasure's NetGalley page this week.


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) and after a tour of hosts has returned to its permanent home at Mailbox Monday. Thanks to the ladies sharing hosting duties: Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit and Vicki of I'd Rather Be at the Beach. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

This week I request and received one audio book for review.
I resisted purchases but did pick up more free kindle titles.

Are your mailbox and TBR piles blooming?

Review Titles
I received this audio title from the author/narrator through AudioBook Boom.

The Christmas Kitten: A Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter Cozy Murder Mystery, Book 2The Christmas Kitten: A Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter Cozy Murder Mystery, Book 2
Written by: Liz Dodwell
Narrated by: Jennifer Fournier

This looks cute. I might have liked to read it 'seasonally' at Christmastime but it was offered now. See full description above under current reading.

Won
NONE

Purchased
NONE

Free

Over the past week I added 47 free Kindle titles to my library. Titles found linked through Bookbub, Bookfun, Ereader News Today, Free Par-tay, Ignite Your Book, Inspired Reads, Pixel of Ink or Kindle ebooks.

Sunday Words of Encouragement June 26, 2016

We had three grand messages this morning. Our Sunday School teacher taught a lesson from Romans 13 entitled “A Wake Up Call”. I will share more of that another day.  We had a guest evangelist who shared a lovely message on "A True Shepherd" as we prepare to meet candidates to be our new pastor. I am saving that message also.

In between we shared communion and my words today are from that time of sharing. Our church shares an ‘open communion’ which means visitors can partake. They do not have to be members of the church but they must be believers and take the offerings with the remembrance and reverence intended for the Sacrament of Holy Communion. (I was raised in an Episcopal, liturgical church, so I still recall the formal names.) Our Pastor reminded us that sharing in communion should be done after self-reflection so that we do not partake lightly lest we bring judgment on ourselves. I took the warning and wrote this phrase in my Sunday Journal: Self-reflection to submit to God’s discipline so that we may be saved. We will not be judged by worldly standards but by God’s standards which are higher; yet through the loving eyes of grace we are judged with mercy. This tied in with the Sunday School message which talked of the process of salvation which will not be complete until Christ returns.

Evangelical or fundamental churches rarely use ‘rote’ prayers or formal liturgy. But communion time always takes me back to my childhood lessons of the 'general confession'.  That is something I can, and should, pray at the end of every day.

The formal version is from the Book of Common Prayer 1662 (and in the small devotional book In God’s Presence which was given to me in 1965 at my confirmation). I also remember this shorter version that I think of at each communion:

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent, for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.

We sang this song in worship this morning. 
I found it comforting as Bob and I prepare for his open heart surgery tomorrow morning.
Verses for today:
2 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV)
3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

I thank you, Lord, for your great mercies. I seek your strength and guidance daily to do all as I ought; as you desire.
I thank all my family, local church family and friends, and my distant online friends for prayer support!


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Sharing Beyond Books #258 Comment Giveaway June 25, 2016

Hello again and Welcome to Sharing Beyond Books, SBB!

Thanks to everyone who commented last week.

Six commenters have no children; two of those feel they got their love from their parents. Eight of us have passed on their love to their children and grandchildren. Linda and Rubynreba noted that sometimes adults/parents are too busy to read, especially mothers/mums.

~~~~~

The Winner from SBB #257 comments is:#1 Natalija who can make a GC choice if international or book choice from the Updated ARC/Review titles or (not yet updated) Love titles - all linked near the end of the post. [I'm hoping to update the book choices - maybe the beginning of next year, lol.] Please let me know your choice by completing the WINNER FORM.

WEEK #258
(One Question.)
Marjorie asks: Do you skim through the descriptive parts in a when reading a book? I do.??
I am not sure what Marjorie means by descriptive parts... I often enjoy descriptive settings or details of equipment (sci fi/military stories). On the other hand I may skim descriptions of day to day things like kitchen scenes or clothing choices. Also I may skim highly sexual descriptions.
This image is found as part of a presentation on Reading Comprehension at slideplayer.

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! The supply of questions is dwindling so share some if you think of any -- even if they are duplicates I'll weed through or try to modify.
Comments in June have been supplied by: Faith Hope & Cherrytea, Infuse, Rubynreba and Marjorie. Random.org chose 1 so FHCT gets a GC.

Your turn to share:
Marjorie asks: Do you skim through the descriptive parts in a when reading a book? I do.??

SBB Comment Winners can choose a selection from the Valentine and "Love" books or the February 2015 Newly Updated ARC/Review List. (My daughter pulled several of the Christmas titles to give with gift bags we made up for the nursing homes. One of these days I will get together a new box of Christmas titles.)

SBB Rules:
a) Must be a follower.
b) Share a comment on the question 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 through Saturday July 2, 2016 at 5 PM central.

Book Review: Guardian of Paradise by W.E. Lawrence

This story is full of action and romance in a beautiful, exotic setting.
by W.E. Lawrence
File Size: 909 KB
Print Length: 384 pages
Publication Date: October 15, 2014
ASIN: B00OKZVWF8
Genre: Action Adventure, Historical
My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0


In 1888, Kira Wall, surviving daughter of missionaries swept away in a tsunami, lives a primitive, but enjoyable life with natives on an isolated island in the South Pacific. But her serene world is turned upside down when an Australian merchant ship, commanded by the sinister Captain Darcy Coleman, arrives with an overabundance of modern and lavish goods. Kira suspects ill intent. Chief Ariki refuses to listen to Kira’s warning, forcing her to uncover the real plan of the captain on her own. Unfortunately, she has a distraction. A six-foot tall, blond, and handsome distraction. Trevor Marshall, doctor and botanist, hopes to find exotic plants on the island to research new cures and medicines. He is dedicated to science, but when meeting the strong-willed, beautiful Kira Wall, he’d prefer to spend time researching her—all night.

The captain thwarts Kira’s attempts to call him out at every step, turning the village chief against her. With only Trevor and her best friend Malana by her side, she stalks the captain and his officers through the dense, predator infested jungle, toward the island’s inactive volcano. Frustrated by her failure to reveal the captain’s true intentions, Kira begins to think maybe she’s wrong about everything. Then an explosion and earthquake bigger than anyone on the island has ever seen renews her resolve. Was the blast natural or man-made? She is determined to prove it was the captain’s doing. Kira races against time and the island people’s naivety to stop the captain from destroying her home and killing everyone she loves.


Review:
Kira grew up to become part of her island tribe after her missionary parents died. She has more caution about the merchant ship sailors who come to the island than the simple island people. This particular ship’s captain is a smooth talker and has brought modern fabrics and equipment to trade in exchange for harvesting some of the bountiful crops on the island. Chief Ariki is willing to trade with Captain Coleman and pushes aside Kira’s warnings.

One of the men from the ship is handsome doctor and botanist, Trevor Marshall. He is awed by the health of the people and the rich quality of the crops. He is also fascinated by the beautiful young woman, Kira. They become friends while she shows him special plants on the island.

Kira discovers Captain Coleman and his officers digging up river and she is more convinced they are up to no good. An unfamiliar blast could be a natural earthquake caused by their volcano but Kira suspects it is man-made. The shake has caused injury to the chief's son who is also husband of Kira's best friend, Malana. Kira’s angry accusations, with no proof, get her banished from the village until the visitors are gone.

Matters turn more dangerous when Kira and Malana discover the real goal of the Captain. Kira is a strong, clever woman who is willing to face the dangers. But how can one woman ward off the evil men before they destroy her island and injure her naïve people?

I liked Kira’s strong character although she is repeatedly impulsive. This of course creates opening for the action and conflict. Trevor is known as a lady’s man so Kira was clearly out of her depth with him. Other than that trait, Trevor is cheerful, likable and honorable. He has a true heart to help people fight disease and he is willing to help Kira if she will let him.

This is the second book I have read by W.E. Lawrence. They are stand-alone stories but have  similarities. The young, innocent women get caught up in a very sensual situation with the men who ultimately help ‘save the day’ from danger. I emphasis help, as the women have a strong part in the action against the evil forces. I find the sensuality just close to too strong for my preference although the scenes are really more tastefully intense than graphic.

I enjoyed the historical setting and the nuggets about the primitive, simple life-style. Initially I didn’t understand how Malana could be away from her children so much without her absence being notice but later it is noted that the children are in their teens. The action keeps the story moving at a good pace and makes it an enjoyable adventure romance. I recommend it to readers looking for a quick moving romance with adventure.

I received this title for an honest review. This is "G" in my Alphabet Soup Challenge.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway June 24, 2016

Happy Friday!
My Sunday post explained the traumas we had last week. This week was calmer although we are now preparing for my hubby's open heart surgery on Monday 6/27. I am going to the hospital with him today for preop and to watch the video so we will know what to expect.
I have half of a new box of books pulled together and I hope to finish that and add the list on Saturday.

I believe I got all of the Amazon GCs and PayPals sent this week. Two people have "saved" balances and I have emailed your totals. If I missed anyone, please send me an email to check.

TO ENTER FRIDAY PICK
US Entrants: Leave a comment and tell me WHICH BOOK you would like to get from the Friday Pick lists.
INTERNATIONAL: Leave a comment indicating "Gift Card" (see further comments near the end of the post.)


CUT OFF TIME IS THURSDAY NIGHTS AT 9:00 PM CENTRAL so I do not have to stay up too late to do the winner post! I will randomly pick two winners to announce Friday mornings with the next Pick post.

Thank you to all who entered the June 17 Pick. There was no automatic win again this week. Automatic wins are those who requested the book four times without other people asking for that book during those weeks. There were two titles blocked and one was won.
AUTO: NONE Carol thought she was week 4 but I only had her at 3...but she won with random pick. :-)

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from June 17 Pick:
Carol L gets Just the Way You Are
Di gets A Perilous Attraction (through a 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, sexy or sweet bookmarks. {The form is new because Google changed their forms and the old one wasn't letting me print out the responses.}

It is finally summer (for most of us) and maybe we can get extra reading time.
Image found at Porter Schools

New Book Group #66 June 25, 2016
(I will post a picture later into the week. *Four of these books are very old; pulled from a box of gothic novels I have had for many years. They may not be wanted by anyone and if so, I will donate elsewhere in time.)
Sandra Brown: Above and Beyond and Honor Bound (my copy is 1986 edition with a different cover
Joan Johnston: Faron & Garth: The Cowboy and the Princess / The Wrangler and the Rich Girl and Sweetwater Seduction
SINGLES:
Swan for the Money by Donna Andrews (new- hardcover)
*Maggie – Her Marriage by Taylor Caldwell (1953 very old, yellowed pages, some stain damage doesn't effect reading)
*Witch’s Hammer by Caroline Farr (a 1967 yellowed pages - different cover)
*Mistress of Mount Fair by Jane Gordon
Once an Angel by Tammy Hilz
Bound By Temptation by Lavinia Kent
Fire Dancer by Ann Maxwell
On Fire by Carla Neggers (1999 version with different cover)
Breathing Room by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Waiting for Nick & Considering Kate by Nora Roberts
*She Came Back by Patricia Wentworth (1981 yellowed pages)
Freedom's Stand by J. M. Windle


New Book Group #65 April 29, 2016
PAIRS:
Jayne Ann Krentz: Gift of Gold and Man with a Past (spine creased) 
Linda Howard: Cover of Night and Strangers Night
SINGLES:
A Dangerous Fancy by Tracy Cozzens
The Bodyguard and the Snitch by Christy Tillery French (autographed)
When Dashing Met Danger by Shana Galen
The Champion by Heather Grothaus
Never Marry a Cowboy by Lorraine Heath
Just The Way You Are by Donna Jordan
The Second Chair by John Lescroart (hardcover)
What a Rogue Desires by Caroline Linden (spine creased)
Violets are Blue by James Patterson
The Bequest by Candice Proctor
A Perilous Attraction by Patricia Francis Rowell (spine creased)
So Wild A Kiss by Nancy Richards-Akers


New Book Group #64 March 4, 2016

SINGLES:
Short Straw (Ed Eagle Novel) by Stuart Woods Hardcover
First Things First by Stephen R. Covey- Audio Cassette
N is for noose by Sue Grafton -Cassettes
Regretsy: Where DIY Meets WTF by April Winchell


New Book Group #63 January 22, 2016


SINGLES:
Wayward Winds by Michael Phillips - Audio Tapes

New Book Group #62 November 6, 2015
All Gone

New Book Group #61 October 30, 2015
After I noticed the trend I went on a hunt for “bride” titles. I even pulled a couple from some of my long time collections(*). (But they are not getting read on my shelves.)

SINGLES:
Bride of Lochbarr by Margaret Moore (*)
The Ideal Bride by Stephanie Laurens (*)
A Necessary Bride by Debra Mullins
Border Bride by Deborah Hale

New Book Group #60 September 18, 2015
A set of "haunting" tales and a few mysteries for October!

Shannon Drake –  Realm of Shadows (Alliance Vampires#4) 
SINGLES:
The Shadowing by Joan Overfield
The Renegade Hunter by Lynsay Sands
Trilogy Of Mysteries Audio Book Shadow Prey, There Was A Little Girl, Smokescreen Audio Cassettes (NOT CDs)


New Book Group #59 July 31, 2015
A few more summer titles, historicals and mysteries!

SINGLES:
Cruise to a Wedding by Betty Neels

New Book Group #58 June 26, 2015 -- All Gone
SINGLES:
Servant, The Awakening by L.L. Foster

New Book Group #57 May 1, 2015 -- All Gone


New Book Group #56 March 20, 2015
(I'll try to get the rest linked another day.)

SINGLES:
The Sweetheart Dance by Patti Ann Colt
Raintree Haunted by Linda Winstead Jones (spine creases)

New Book Group #55 February 5, 2015 -- All Gone

New Book Group #54 December 26, 2014

SINGLES:
Ender’s Shadow by Orson Scott Card - Tape Cassettes


BOX 4 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 47-53)


The Hidden Truth of Cytech's Randall Forty byVickie Kennedy
First to Fight Anthology
Jezebel by Katherine Sutcliff
The Commander by Kate Bridges
A Garden of Friends by Penny Pierce Rose
Undateable by Ellen Rakieten & Anne Coyle


BOX 3 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 39- 47)

Shetland Summer by Janet Lynnford
Breakfast in Bed by Sandra Brown - Audio Cassette Tapes (link is for mass media version)
A Lady of Consequence by Mary Nichols
Sweet Talking Man by Betina Krain


BOX 2 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 24- 38)

Thinner by Stephen King
Foundation (Foundation Novels) by Isaac Asimov
Magic: The Gathering Distant Planes, An Anthology
The Willful Widow by Valerie King (spine wear)
An Honorable Man by Rosemary Rogers (spine creases)
A Courtesans Guide to Getting Your Man by Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley -- 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
Tara Taylor Quinn: Father: Unknown and McGillus v.Wright
The Trailsman: Texas Lead Slingers by Jon Sharpe
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.


BOX #1 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 1- 23)

Circle of Stars by Anna Lee Waldo
Alien Chronicles - The Crimson Claw by Deborah Chester
Ghost Writer (Shivers #3) by M.D. Spenser


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 almost six years I have posted 62 groups of 16 (992) books to find new homes! (as of November 6, 2015).

I am happy to say that so far about 969+ 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. 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!

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 $7.00 and $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)

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!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Book Review and Tour Giveaway: Regina Shen: Vigilance by Lance Erlick

This dystopian series follows the struggles of one young woman who might make a difference in a restrictive, dying society.
Regina Shen: Vigilance
by Lance Erlick

File Size: 3295 KB
Print Length: 249 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Finlee Augare Books (April 18, 2015)
ASIN: B00WDAQDJW
Genre: Dystopian, YA
My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0


After two years of training, outcast Regina Shen prepares to jump the barrier wall into the World Federation to hunt for her sister, but nothing goes according to plan.
Perfect for fans of the Hunger Games, Divergent, and Maze Runner series, Regina Shen: Vigilance is the second book in an action-packed, science fiction thriller with an ordinary yet strong female heroine facing extraordinary hurdles with tenacity. With the young protagonist having to grow up fast, it appeals to both young adult and adult audiences.
The Federation condemns Regina and her family to live on the seaward side of barrier walls built to hold back rising seas caused by abrupt climate change. For two years she avoided capture. Now the Federation is desperate to exploit her unique DNA in order to stop human extinction. She would rather die than help the people who kidnapped her sister.
The Federation’s notorious Department of Antiquities, under the command of Chief Inspector Joanne Demarco, polices barrier walls, destroys knowledge from the past to suppress dissent, and pursues Regina for her genome. Now Demarco has a ruthless rival who aims to use Regina to overthrow Demarco.
Regina survives by her wits on swampy islands and salvage from sunken cities, including illegal print books from before the Federation. With her photographic memory, she defies Antiquities by consuming books not available in the Federation. That makes her an outcast among peers but may help her reach the university town where they’re holding her sister.
Pursued by Antiquities, Regina jumps the wall into the Federation. While making new friends and enemies, she learns that Federation life isn’t any better than the swamps. Regina must use her wits to avoid letting either of two rival inspectors capture her. Can she rescue her sister from an obvious trap?


Review:
Regina is an outsider in a world that is run by Grand Old Dames (Gods) who have extended their lives for over 300 years. They eliminated men years before and control the population by restricting education and punishing free thinking. Regina and her family are ‘Marginals” who life in the swamps outside of the wall that keep the 'harmonious' citizens within the Federation.

Regina and her younger sister Colleen revealed blood work that could help with the growing infertility problems of the society. Colleen was captured two years before but Regina has managed to evade the Federation agents who have sought her. Now Regina starts her new life as a university student but she doesn’t blend in or make friends like she is supposed to.

Regina still refuses to see the bigger picture or acknowledge her ‘destiny’, as her swamp teacher, Mo-Mere, puts it. I can’t help but seeing Regina’s actions as selfish, with narrow focus and little concern for her friends and those who are trying to help her. I have to be honest that I found this annoying. I was glad to note that as this book nears the end it appears that Regina is finally growing up and acknowledging the consequences effecting others. I liked the new characters who help Regina in this episode and I think the difficult positions of Regina’s ‘enemy’, Federal Agent DeMarco, adds an interesting dynamic.

This is book two in this YA, dystopian series. The pacing of the story is good. The society is all female and some of the relationships are leaning into the lesbian genre although there is nothing overt at this point. I really appreciated the author’s expressions regarding government control through limiting truth, education and discouragement of free thinking. I am not enthralled but I do find the series engaging. I am curious where the author will be taking Regina, DeMarco and the story.

Please check out my review for Book 1, Regina Shen: Resilience.
I received this through iReads Book Tours. I will be reading and reviewing the third and fourth books in July.

GIVEAWAY:
Prizes: ​

Win 1 signed copy of Resilience + $15 Amazon gift card + 2 sets of postcards / 2 winners will receive a signed copy of Resilience / a free ebook copy of The Rebel Within (open to USA)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Audible Book Review: Dangerous and Unseemly: A Concordia Wells Mystery, Book 1 by K.B. Owen

I enjoyed this engaging cozy, historical mystery.
Dangerous and Unseemly: A Concordia Wells Mystery, Book 1
Written by: K.B. Owen
Narrated by: Becket Royce

Length: 9 hrs and 27 mins
Series: Concordia Wells, Book 1
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date:11-10-14
Publisher: K.B. Owen Mysteries
Genre: Historical Mystery
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Publisher's Summary
An unseemly lesson…in murder.
The year is 1896, and college professor Concordia Wells has her hands full: teaching classes, acting as live-in chaperone to a cottage of lively female students, and directing the student play, Macbeth. But mystery and murder are not confined to the stage, especially when the death of Concordia's sister, Mary, appears to be foul play. To make matters worse, the women's college is plagued by malicious pranks, arson, money troubles, and the apparent suicide of a college official.
With her beloved school facing certain ruin, Concordia knows that she must act. As she struggles to seek justice for her sister and discover who is behind the college incidents, there are some closest to Concordia who do not appreciate the unseemly inquiries and bold actions of the young lady professor. Can she discover who is responsible…before she becomes the next target?
©2013 K.B. Owen (P)2014 K.B. Owen


Review:
Concordia is a professor at a woman’s college when higher education for woman was still looked down upon. The president of the school, and other male community leaders, seems to view it as a place for women to prepare for domestic duties, not really for learning towards a career. Concordia is inclined to observe all of the staff members, especially the fairly new Lady Principal, Miss Hamilton, who is a formidable, yet fair, leader. Concordia is juggling her teaching responsibilities, serving as live-in chaperone for one of the student cottages and directing the student end of year performance of Macbeth. Additionally, Concordia tries to make time to visit her sister who has been suffering an undiagnosed illness since marrying many months before.

The College is struggling with financial troubles. The annual spring Sophomore prank includes dark elements that create a stir and is of even more concern when the treasurer of the college is found dead. It might be suicide or it could be more nefarious. When Concordia’s sister dies under less than forthright circumstances, Concordia begins to investigate both deaths. Her sleuthing results in surprises as well as behavior that some might consider ‘dangerous and unseemly'.

I enjoyed Concordia’s personality. She has true concern for her sister and her students. Sadly, she has a very estranged relationship with her mother. She grows closer to Miss Hamilton and a brash, retired teacher who challenges Concordia to see beyond the surface. I was pleased by the strength of Miss Hamilton but I can’t be more specific without giving spoiler info. There is a light touch of romance as Concordia gets the attention of first one male teacher and then she manages to run into another.


Ms. Owen does a wonderful job of presenting the details of the 1980s. She has created a believable character in Concordia who is thoughtful and brave but not flaunting her freedoms and views. She does have a friend who is active in the women’s suffragette movement so that perspective is shared as well.

The mystery and romances are developed at a steady pace. This is nicely consistent with Concordia’s sometimes impulsive response to danger which is tempered by her careful deliberation as she weighs the facts and clues. Although the story is not flashy or intense, it is satisfactorily engaging. I think this is a good start to an interesting series and I recommend this to readers who enjoy a clean read with history and mystery.

Audio Notes: Becket Royce does a very nice job of delivering the conservative characters to suit the time period. The voices are distinct and the emotions are appropriately portrayed. The narration made this a better ‘reading’ experience for me.

I received this audio title from the narrator through AudioBook Boom. It qualifies for my Audio Challenge.

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