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HoHoHo Readathon Mini Challenge Giveaway: Holiday Sentence

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Sunday Post October 30, 2016/It's Monday! What are You Reading? Plus Mailbox Monday October 31, 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.

Once again I worked steadily this week handling current files and preparing for some trials in November.
Weather fluctuates with cool nights and warmer days.
Everyone have a fun, safe Halloween if you celebrate!

My reading and listening was good during the week, although I only finished two books; one ebook and one Audible. I posted three reviews and the usual memes.

I had a nice time visiting other bloggers early last week.
This week I direct you to Rinn Reads who is hosting November Sci Fi. 

Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:
  • Audible Book Review: Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips; Contemporary Romance; my rating 4.0.

Finished Reading:
1. eBook/Kindle (NG)


Written in Fire (The Brilliance Trilogy Book 3)
by Marcus Sakey
Good conclusion to an exciting series.
Click on book title for full description.




2. Audible (ABB-Narrator)


The Colonel's Lady
Written by: Laura Frantz
Narrated by: Laura Jennings
This was wonderfully entertaining.
I received this audio title from the narrator through AudioBook Boom.
Click on book title for full description.




Currently reading:
1. ebook/Kindle


Persecuted: I Will Not Be Silent
by Robin Parrish
I selected this for Ladies Book Club October read 
as I thought it would be rather timely.
We will be discussing this Saturday November 5.
"The framers of our Constitution meant we were to have freedom of religion, not freedom from religion." --Reverend Billy Graham
The Question Is Not If Attempts Will Be Made
to Limit Religious Freedoms, But When.
And When That Day Comes, Will You Stay Silent?
A storm is coming.
The most popular evangelist of his day, John Luther, simply wants to share the Gospel and enjoy a quiet life with his family. He never asked to be at the center of a political controversy, but an ill wind has been blowing through the halls of Congress, and supporters of a new religious-equality bill see Luther's endorsement as critical.
But when Luther refuses to lend his support, he unknowingly sets in motion an explosive plan bent on destroying his reputation and undermining everything for which he stands. His once-normal life is turned upside down as he becomes a fugitive left with only one dangerous option--putting everything he holds most dear at risk while he fights to expose the truth. It is a mission that brings him face-to-face with the coming storm of persecution that could threaten the very fabric of our nation's freedoms.



2. Audible (Audiobook Jukebox)


Five Minutes Alone
By Paul Cleave
Narrated By Paul Ansdell
The summary makes this sound very interesting.
I received the audio book from the publisher through Audiobook Jukebox.
Publisher's Summary
There's a common plea detectives get from the loved ones of victims: When you find the person who did this, give me five minutes alone with them. And that's exactly what someone is doing. Someone is helping these victims get their five minutes alone.
When the body of a convicted rapist is found, the detectives try to determine if this is murder or suicide. The following night two more rapists go missing. It's hard to investigate when everyone on the police force seems to be rooting for the killer. But when innocent people start to die, two detectives find themselves with different objectives, and soon they're battling something they never would've expected: each other.
©2014 Paul Cleave (P)2016 Dreamscape Media, LLC



3. eBook/Kindle (Author)


Shadow Reaper (Shadowlands Series)
by Amos Cassidy
I set this aside for my book club title. 
I am also distracted by the rough language. 
I will pick it up and try again - so we will see.
This is another title I received for free 

Only the bravest go over the Horizon...
Twenty years ago the barriers between worlds came down and our reality was swallowed up by the Shadowlands. Now we scavenge to survive, until one day there’s nothing left to reap. Starvation is around the corner, but I’m not the roll over and wait-to-die kinda girl. Nope, I’m going further than anyone has ever been and returned to tell the tale. I’m going into the Beyond, and I’m not coming back without a solution.
Dark urban fantasy with a post-apocalyptic twist.



October 30, 2016 - I got a few days behind last weekend.
I have been listening to the companion commentary online for the past few days to get caught up.
I am enjoying reading The One Year Bible again along with my husband and others from our church.

I posted three reviews which keeps me up to date with one past and two new for the coming week.

I am still requesting audio titles as I can always squeeze listening in!
I have been lining up Sci Fi titles for November. Here are a few of the ones I plan to read:
Trajectory Book 1 (New Providence) by Robert M. Campbell from Sci Fi Explorations in September 2016
Lost Coast Rocket (Mare Tranquillitatis Series Book 1) by Joel Horn from the author in October 2016
AOB (Return to Earth) by Bria Burton - met author at FWA in October
NetGalley titles:
The Wrong Unit: A Novel by Rob Dircks
Toru: Wayfarer Returns by Stephanie R. Sorensen
The Invisible City by Brian K. Lowe
The Circuit by Rhett C. Bruno
The Reader by MK Harkins
Free Space by Sean Danker
PLUS Some choices from my own TBR shelves:
The Terminals: Spark by Michael F. Stewart (Book win 5/2014)
Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles Book 1) by Marissa Meyer (Feb 2014)
First Colony (Citadel Book 1) by Kevin Tumlinson (Sept 2015) Sci Fi, Steampunk, Military
Galaxy of Heroes by Gus Flory (10/2014) Space Opera
Hero (Epic Book 3) by Stephen Lee (6/2015)
Audible:
Monster Hunter Legion: Monster Hunter, Book 4 by Larry Correia (Nov 2015)
The Synchronicity War Part 1 by Dietmar Wehr (2014)
Eye of the Storm: Legacy of the Aldenata (2012)
Invincible: The Lost Fleet: Beyond the Frontier, Book 2 by Jack Campbell (1/13)
Spider's Bite: Elemental Assassin, Book 1 (9/2012)


We continue to add upcoming releases at eTreasure's NetGalley page.
Two books released on Kindle: Jake's Happy New Year and Murder Crosses the Pond
One to release in print hopefully on Monday.
Had a hiccup with the NetGalley title, but it should be up later 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.

I still have new review requests to consider.
I received a new audiobook title this week and I signed up for  a blog tour for Feb 2017.
I resisted purchasing anything.
I picked up the usual healthy number of free kindle titles -- Note these are in my Amazon library, NOT on my Kindle until I download and transfer them.

Are your mailbox and TBR piles blooming?

Review Titles
I selected this for Ladies Book Club October read to be discussed November 5.
Persecuted: I Will Not Be Silent
by Robin Parrish
(See full description under currently reading.)



I received this audio book from the publisher through Audiobook Jukebox
Five Minutes Alone
By Paul Cleave
Narrated By Paul Ansdell
(See full description under currently reading.)

I received this title from Dancing Lemur Press through MC Book Tours
The Tour is in February and my review and an author guest post are scheduled for February 1, 2017.

The Remnant
by William Michael Davidson
(a Christian Futuristic Fiction novel)


Won
NONE

Purchased
NONE

Free
Fake (Finn Teller Corporate Spy Mystery #1)
by Twist Phelan
"Have you ever thought about buying a counterfeit product? Maybe a watch or a handbag for fun? After you read FAKE, the first book in Twist Phelan's series featuring Finn Teller, corporate spy, you'll think again."


I only added 51 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 October 30, 2016

We had another good Sunday School message today about Spiritual Warfare. I will share that another time. The Pastor continued his sermon series on the Healthy Church.


It is sometimes difficult watching our children grow. We are to train them up. They will go through painful moments. Although we might want to shield or protect our children, the growing process is necessary for development. CIPA is a nervous system disease that exhibits a lack of pain. This can cause danger because the person with the decease doesn’t realize or recognize pain when pain occurs. They can’t learn from painful experiences. The pain of our past can shape how we live the future.
The message was centered around Titus chapter 3. The sermon encouraged us to post verses around our houses and cars. The verses note how division is negative for family, church and country. Unity matters.

The Point: A Healthy Church embodies the attitude and posture of Christ.

The book of James discusses the power of tongue. A careless tongue, or malicious one, can cause offence in family and church. We need to be authentic; not hiding behind masks. People should be our first priority. We should be sensitive to those around us. As followers of Christ we should convey the attitude and posture of Christ. We should be giving and sharing rather than taking and hording. We should give grace towards others, remembering that, in everything we do and say, we are representing our Father. As Paul encourages Titus, we too should learn to surrender and obey in humility. We have been declared righteous by God through Christ’s sacrifice and we need to share that gift with others.

I think this song is appropriate for this message: With Every Act of Love
Verses for Today:
Titus 3:4-7
4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.

Heavenly Father, I pray that you would help me to share kind and graceful words and acts in my everyday living.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Sharing Beyond Books #276 Comment Giveaway October 29, 2016

Hello again and Welcome to Sharing Beyond Books, SBB!

Thanks to everyone who commented last week. (Welcome back Brooke and hello to William.)

I was a little surprised that 12 commenters still prefer print although several have digital readers. Five of us do read more digital. The genre, fiction or nonfiction didn't make any difference. In December 2012 the split was 11 preferred print and 8 used their ereaders.

~~~~~

The Winner from SBB #275 comments is: #12, CarolL 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 #276
(One Question.)
My question tonight: Do you have a strange 'remedy' that works for you??
I saw an blurb on Facebook about using soap in the bed to prevent leg cramps. I put a fresh bar of soap near my feet between the sheets and it works for me! When I was at the hotel last weekend I got a Charley horse/leg cramp. I got up and got the small bar of soap to put near my feet -- no more cramping. It is a nice relief. It does not seem to require any specific soap as I have used several types now.

Image Found at My Central Health.

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.
This is the end of October. The questions this month came from: Marjorie, Becky, bn100 and Elizabeth. Random.org chose #3 so BN100 gets to pick a book.

Your turn to share: My question tonight: Do you have a strange 'remedy' that works for you??

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 November 5, 2016 at 5 PM central.

Audible Book Review: Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

This has SEP’s touch for distinct characters but a Gothic, darker tone to it.
Heroes Are My Weakness
Written by: Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Narrated by: Erin Bennett
Length: 12 hrs and 51 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date:08-26-14
Publisher: HarperAudio
Genre: Contemporary Romance (with Gothic tone)
My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0


Publisher's Summary
Deepest winter.
An isolated island off the coast of Maine.
A man.
A woman.
Puppets. (Yes, puppets…)
And…
A mysterious house looming over the sea…
He's a reclusive writer whose imagination creates chilling horror novels. She's a down-on-her-luck actress reduced to staging kids' puppet shows. He knows a dozen ways to kill his characters with his bare hands. She knows a dozen ways to kill an audience with laughs. But she's not laughing now.
Annie Hewitt has arrived on Peregrine Island in the middle of a snowstorm and at the end of her resources. She's broke, dispirited, but not quite ready to give up. Her red suitcases hold the puppets she uses to make her living: sensible Dilly, spunky Scamp, and Leo, the baddest of bad guys. Her puppets, the romantic novels she loves, and a little bit of courage are all she has left.
Annie couldn't be more ill prepared for what she finds when she reaches Moonraker Cottage or for the man who dwells in Harp House, the mysterious mansion that hovers above the cottage from a windblown cliff. When she was a teenager, he betrayed her in a way she can never forget or forgive. Now they're trapped together on a frozen island along with a lonely widow, a mute little girl, and townspeople who don't know how to mind their own business.
Is he the villain she remembers or has he changed? Her head says no. Her heart says yes.
It's going to be a long, hot winter.
©2014 Susan Elizabeth Phillips (P)2014 HarperCollinsPublishers


Review:
Annie is greatly discouraged. She has lost her flighty and critical mother whom she cared for during her last year of illness. All her mother left was a pile of debt and a deathbed whisper that Annie will find her legacy at the cottage on Peregrine Island. Annie has also suffered rejection from a broken engagement. She has retreated to the Island with only her beloved puppets to give her support while she rests and regains her footing.

Arriving in a storm Annie is startled by a man on a dark horse racing through the snow. She soon learns the man is none other than her childhood crush, the handsome but brooding Theo. Not only did Theo break Annie’s young heart when he spurned her after they became close friends one summer but he tormented her and almost got her killed. Theo has suffered his own heartaches. He and his twin sister were abandoned by their mother. The twins were inseparable until strange problems developed in their teen years, ultimately resulted in his sister’s death. Now he broods in his dark lonely, Gothic house, and writes horror thrillers with a particularly dark villain.

Annie discovers another childhood friend who has her own crush on Theo. Jaci is working as Theo’s housekeeper at Harp House. She is finding the job difficult with a mute child and a broken leg. Someone is harassing Annie and trying to drive her off the Island, adding the Gothic type mystery. She gets some rather questionable help from her mixed group of puppet alter egos and, of course Theo steps up to try to protect her.

I usually enjoy SEP’s distinct characters and the conflicts and obstacles they overcome on the journey to their HEA. These characters were a little difficult to enjoy for a good part of the book. If the reader perseveres the story finally gets to a place where Annie begins to appreciate her own strengths and to recognize the truths about Theo. Even so, it takes patience to put up with Annie’s strange multi-character and a true romantic to see behind the dark, moody character that Theo initially presents.

SEP romances are often fun and delightful, even with down on their luck heroines and cocky, handsome heroes. This one is not light but goes through a lot of despondency and darkness before Annie determines she can make it on her own and Theo gets to be a hero. I did like the ending but it was not a delight getting there. Readers might note that ratings run from 1 star to 5 so it may depend on the reader’s mood and expectations. Do not pick this up expecting the usual SEP light fun. On the other hand, SEP does deliver distinct characters and an engaging, if darker, gothic-type story. I didn’t love it but I came to appreciate it.

Audio Notes: Fortunately, this story has a different tone so I think it was easier to get used to the voices of Erin Bennett. Erin does a good job distinguishing the characters, even the several puppet voices. Erin’s presentation conveyed the tones of the characters and enhanced my enjoyment of the story.

I picked this one from my Audible Library (2014) to listen to for Audio Challenge, Mount TBR and "H" in Alphabet Challenge.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway October 28, 2016

Happy Friday!

Our weather turned wonderfully crisp this week.
The New book list is up but I have to get a picture and link up later.

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 October 21 Pick. This week there was one automatic win again. Automatic wins are those who requested the book four times without other people asking for that book during those weeks. There was one title blocked again by three requests.
AUTO: Rubynreba gets Mysterious.

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from October 21 Pick:
Nikki gets a GC
Linda 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, 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.}
This looks perfect for Halloween week!
Image found at The Literary Hub.

New Book Group #68 October 28, 2016
(I'll post a picture and links later)
PAIR:
Lisa Gardner: The Perfect Husband and The Other Daughter
Stella Cameron: True Bliss and Sheer Pleasures
SINGLE:
Stray by A. N. Wilson (hardcover)
Soul of the Wildcat by Devyn Quinn
The Seventh Tower, Book One by Garth Nix
Plan of Attack by Dan Brown
Kill Chain by Meg Gardiner
Wild Rain by Christine Feehan
The Copper Beach by Maeve Binchy
Beyond Reach: A Novel (Grant County Book 6) by Karin Slaughter
Crimson Shore by Preston & Childs
The Lincoln Myth by Steve Berry
Critical by Robin Cook
Mania by Craig Larsen

New Book Group #67 September 9, 2016

(*Three more very old books from my Gothics box.)
PAIRS:
Into the Night (book 5) and Gone too Far (book 6) by Suzanne Brockmann
The Wedding Night of an English Rogue: A Novel (A Boscastle Affairs Novel Book 3)
The Wicked Games of a Gentleman: A Novel (A Boscastle Affairs Novel Book 4) by Jillian Hunter
SINGLES:
*Bloodstone by Lynn Benedict (1973 - yellowed)
*The Brittany Stones by Lynna Cooper (1974 - yellowed; corner of cover cut)
Her Scoundrel by Geralyn Dawson
In Search of Lucy: A Novel by Lia Fairchild
No Place for a Lady by Katherine Greyle
Wicked by Beth Henderson
To Die For: A Novel (Blair Mallory Book 1) by Linda Howard
The Inheritance by Joan Johnston
A Dark Champion by Kinley MacGregor
*The Man in the Garden by Paule Mason (1969 - yellowed)
Mysterious: The Right Path / This Magic Moment / The Search for Love by Nora Roberts (2008)
The Spitfire by Bertrice Small


New Book Group #66 June 25, 2016
(I will post a picture later. *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.)
SINGLES:
*Maggie – Her Marriage by Taylor Caldwell (1953 very old, yellowed pages, some stain damage doesn't effect reading)
Fire Dancer by Ann Maxwell
Freedom's Stand by J. M. Windle


New Book Group #65 April 29, 2016
SINGLES:
A Dangerous Fancy by Tracy Cozzens
The Champion by Heather Grothaus
So Wild A Kiss by Nancy Richards-Akers


New Book Group #64 March 4, 2016
SINGLES:
First Things First by Stephen R. Covey- Audio Cassette


New Book Group #63 January 22, 2016 -- All Gone
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:
Border Bride by Deborah Hale

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


SINGLES:
The Shadowing by Joan Overfield
Trilogy Of Mysteries Audio Book Shadow Prey, There Was A Little Girl, Smokescreen Audio Cassettes (NOT CDs)

New Book Group #59 July 31, 2015 -- All Gone
Cruise to a Wedding by Betty Neels

New Book Group #58 June 26, 2015 -- All Gone

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

New Book Group #56 March 20, 2015
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 -- All Gone
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
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)
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
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 1008+ 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, October 27, 2016

Book Review: Quirky Essays for Quirky People: The Complete Collection by Barbara Venkataraman

This is a delightful collection of “life” essays!
Quirky Essays for Quirky People: The Complete Collection
by Barbara Venkataraman

File Size: 2389 KB
Print Length: 71 pages
Publication Date: May 13, 2014
ASIN: B00KC7BNNY
Genre: Essays, Humor
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


For the first time, all in one place, the award-winning books, "A Trip to the Hardware Store & Other Calamities," and "I'm Not Talking About You, Of Course," PLUS seven bonus essays. What a collection! If this doesn't make you smile, then you're not even trying.
"A Trip to the Hardware Store"
These humorous essays explore such quirky topics as: disastrous home repairs, ("A Trip to the Hardware Store"), an unfortunate dinner party ("Dinner is Served"), the truth about lazy people ("Lazy Bones"), the weird life of a debt collector ("Your Account is Past Due") and obsessions with gadgets ("Gadget Girl"). Other essays examine how surreal the aging process is ("Where Did the Time Go?"), why you shouldn't judge a person by their job ("Beyond Belief"), and how to complicate simple transactions ("High Finance").
"I'm Not Talking About You, Of Course"
A collection of humorous insights into important topics ranging from annoying pet people ("I'm Not Talking About You, Of Course"), to analyzing your inner child ("Irrational Fears"), to living like the Amish in the aftermath of a hurricane ("A Jolt of Electricity"). Other essays examine just how much damage can be caused by a sneeze ("It All Started with a Loud Sneeze"), why it is so complicated to buy a tube of toothpaste ("Ask Me No Questions"), how a parent's obsessive hobbies can become an inescapable vortex ("Crazy Hobbies"), and why spending the night in a sleep clinic is like being abducted by probing aliens ("Nightmare at the Sleep Clinic").
If you don't see yourself in each of these entertaining essays, then I'm not talking about you, of course.


Review:
These are delightful vignettes that read very quickly. I imagine there is at least one topic in the group that most everyone could relate to. I would listen to one and nod my head with a smile. Then the next would resonate too! Some of the stories are tongue-in-cheek and some are laugh out loud delightful. The stories deal with family, friends, people at work and strangers.

I am a loud sneezer so I could appreciate "It All Started with a Loud Sneeze”. I have lived without electricity during a hurricane so I smiled at "A Jolt of Electricity". “Dinner is Served” was wonderfully funny. The hostess hopes to prepare special dishes for her friends until she realizes some have allergies, some have restrictive diets and they all have different tastes. What to do?

My absolute favorite though is “Words of Wisdom”. Barbara speaks with her usual humor of rushing to her grandmother’s bedside when summoned. She hopes for some true words of wisdom but is given a task instead. Only later does she recognize the gem of wisdom that Nana provided. It is just so lovely.

This is a short, quick read which will lighten your day and bring a smile to your face. Pick it up, make yourself your favorite side drink (coffee, tea, wine), kick off your shoes and be prepared to chuckle.

The author was kind to let me know when this came up free on Kindle. 
I am so glad! It qualifies for "Q" on my Alphabet Challenge.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Book Review: Extracted (The Lost Imperials Series Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin and Tyler H. Jolley

This is a suspenseful and engaging time travel sci fi story with steampunk elements.

Extracted (The Lost Imperials Series Book 1)
by Sherry D. Ficklin and Tyler H. Jolley
File Size: 8963 KB
Print Length: 323 pages
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing; 2 edition (August 15, 2016)
ASIN: B01H9CXU08
Genre: Sci Fi, Steampunk, Time Travel
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Two opposing factions of time travelers vie for control of the future in this thrilling steampunk series opener dubbed "Interesting" and "Unexpected" by Kirkus Reviews.
Lex and Ember—two time travelers with no memories of their lives before being recruited into the time war—are torn between the factions. When Lex accepts a mission that lands him deep within the heart of the Tesla Institute, he meets Ember, and the past that was stolen from them comes flooding back. Now armed with the truth of who they were, Lex and Ember must work together to save the future before the battle for time destroys them once again.
*This special edition contains expanded content and bonus material not found in the first release.


Review:
Ember and Ethan are time travelers with the Tesla Institute. Supposedly they have been trained to ‘protect’ the time line, particularly by stopping the opposition time travel group known as the Hollows. The Hollow travelers are made up of the cast offs from Tesla who have been patched up as best as possible, sometimes with brass or other non-human parts. Each side has different modes of travel although Tesla has more advanced tech. The leaders each claim that their group is protecting the true timeline.

Lex and Stein are two of the Hollow travelers. Stein is lost in a mission and Lex is intent on going back in time to save her. The only way he can do that is to steal some tech from Tesla’s base. Lex and friends sneak into the center of Tesla. All time travelers lose their memories with their first trip in the time stream. When Lex and Ember come face to face they recognize each other and their memories return revealing secrets and lies.

The story is told in the alternating views of Ember and Lex. This provides insight to other characters as well as showing the differences in the team’s methods and motives. I was a little confused on the sides at first but once I identified everyone it became easier to follow. There are numerous interesting secondary characters and there are also Tesla journal entries that add some backstory details. The author blends in an interesting historical mystery. This included a beautiful prayer that I never knew about.

The authors deftly use the steampunk elements to enhance the story. The writing is crisp and moves well. I appreciated the 'clean teen' aspect. I also liked the clothing and dwelling details. The story is engaging with lots of action, suspense and some young romance angst. Although this story has an appropriate ending, the author leaves a last chapter teaser for another installment. I enjoyed the story and recommend it to those who enjoy steampunk, time travel and action.

I received this title through NetGalley. It qualifies for my NetGalley Challenge.



Monday, October 24, 2016

Books Received at FWA 2016 Conference: The Prometheus Saga and more!

As I noted on my Sunday Post, I attended the 15th Annual Florida Writers Conference in Orlando this past weekend.
florida writers association
I didn't win any of the park tickets but I did win two book baskets in the Silent Auction which benefits the Florida Writers Foundation.

Basket One:
I became particularly excited to win The Prometheus Saga Basket after attending a workshop with the panel of authors. Seven of the authors who shared their experience collaborating on a common theme with agreed upon guidelines. The collection contains 13 stories by 12 authors. (Each story in the collection is available as a separate Kindle read.) I was interested in the collection and it came with 10 other books from several of the authors!
I plan to read at least one of the stories for November Sci Fi Month.


These are the 11 books that I received from authors of The Prometheus Saga, which is at the top and center:
(Some links are to currently available editions so the covers may be different.)
Outside/back Row:
The Gullwing Odyssey by Antonio Simon Jr.
Indigo Man by M.J. Carson
Little Angel Helper by Bria Burton - I mentioned this author in Monday Mailbox; I also got to chat with her at table.
Brigands Key (Five Star Mystery Series) by Ken Pelham (Hardcover) - This author also taught a workshop that I attended.
The Prometheus Saga
Shadows And Teeth: Ten Terrifying Tales Of Horror And Suspense
by Antonio Simon Jr. and Trevor Boelter
Solarcidal Tendencies by Martin Garrity
DragonFly (Missions of the DragonFly Squadron) (Volume 1) by Charles A Cornell

Inner/bottom Row:
Windrusher: A Street Smart Cat on an Epic Quest & the Adventure of a Lifetime by Victor DiGenti
Eternal Night by Jade Kerrion
Bring Down the Furies (Quint Mitchell Mystery Series Book 2) by Parker Francis

Basket Two:
I thought this title looked interesting and the author was in another panel workshop I attended.


Vicious Circle by Elle E Ire
After I picked up the basket the author came over to tell me something I hadn’t realized. The Bourbon is made with ale yeast sent into space! (See the gold, center label on the bottle.) I'm not really a Bourbon drinker but that is still cool.

I also won two books as a door prize:
Rehabilitation (no link found) and
A Question of God's Balance by Dr. Joseph c. Thek MD

A big thanks to all of these authors who added to my enjoyment of the event!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sunday Post October 23, 2016/It's Monday! What are You Reading? Plus Mailbox Monday October 24, 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.

I left work early on Thursday to head to the Florida Writer's Association Conference in Orlando. The children's acquisitions editor met me there and we had a good time. I attended several interesting workshops and met a number of nice authors.
I received a couple of review titles. (See Monday Mailbox.)
I also acquired two book baskets at silent auction and won two books as a door prize. I will post that info tomorrow (Monday) after I get pictures.
I'll be working on catching up in office this week.
Our weather dropped into the 40s at home and even 52 in the mornings in Orlando. Quite lovely.

I enjoyed my reading and listening during the week. I finished two ebooks, and one Audible. I posted three reviews and the usual memes.

I had a nice time visiting other bloggers early last week.
My blog "shout out" tonight goes to Caffeinated Book Reviewer. Just in case you don't get to link up to the Sunday Post, I encourage you to visit her blog. It is always full of good reviews, some discussions, a few review opportunities and usually a coffee quip or image. :-) Plus the Sunday Post gets you links to lots of other good bloggers!
Thanks as always to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:
  • Book Review: The Soul Summoner by Elicia Hyder; Paranormal Suspense, Psychics; my rating 4.5.

Finished Reading:
1. eBook/Kindle (NG)


Extracted (The Lost Imperials Series Book 1)
by Sherry D. Ficklin and Tyler H. Jolley
This is a different time travel and steampunk.
Click on book title for full description.




2. eBook/Kindle


Quirky Essays for Quirky People: The Complete Collection
by Barbara Venkataraman
This is fun and quick.
Click on book title for full description.



3. Audible (TBR)


Heroes Are My Weakness
Written by: Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Narrated by: Erin Bennett
This is not quite the usual SEP.
Click on book title for full description.




Currently reading:
1. eBook/Kindle (NG)


Written in Fire (The Brilliance Trilogy Book 3)
by Marcus Sakey
I am half-way through this exciting conclusion.
For thirty years humanity struggled to cope with the brilliants, the one percent of people born with remarkable gifts. For thirty years we tried to avoid a devastating civil war. We failed.
The White House is a smoking ruin. Madison Square Garden is an internment camp. In Wyoming, an armed militia of thousands marches toward a final, apocalyptic battle.
Nick Cooper has spent his life fighting for his children and his country. Now, as the world staggers on the edge of ruin, he must risk everything he loves to face his oldest enemy—a brilliant terrorist so driven by his ideals that he will sacrifice humanity’s future to achieve them.
From “one of our best storytellers” (Michael Connelly) comes the blistering conclusion to the acclaimed series that is a “forget-to-pick-up-milk, forget-to-water-the-plants, forget-to-eat total immersion experience” (Gillian Flynn).
The explosive conclusion to the bestselling Brilliance Trilogy.



2. Audible (ABB-Narrator)


The Colonel's Lady
Written by: Laura Frantz
Narrated by: Laura Jennings
This sounds like an American Revolution romance I will enjoy.
I received this audio title from the narrator through AudioBook Boom.
Publisher's Summary
In 1779, when genteel Virginia spinster Roxanna Rowan arrives at the Kentucky fort commanded by Colonel Cassius McLinn, she finds that her officer father has died. Penniless and destitute, Roxanna is forced to take her father's place as scrivener. Before long, it's clear that the colonel himself is attracted to her. But she soon realizes the colonel has grave secrets of his own - some of which have to do with her father's sudden death. Can she ever truly love him? Listeners will be enchanted by this powerful story of love, faith, and forgiveness from Laura Frantz. Her solid research and deft writing immerse listeners in the world of the early frontier while her realistic characters become intimate friends.
©2011 Laura Frantz (P)2016 Laura Frantz



3. eBook/Kindle (Author)


Shadow Reaper (Shadowlands Series)
by Amos Cassidy
This is another title I received for free 
and am reading for October.
Only the bravest go over the Horizon...
Twenty years ago the barriers between worlds came down and our reality was swallowed up by the Shadowlands. Now we scavenge to survive, until one day there’s nothing left to reap. Starvation is around the corner, but I’m not the roll over and wait-to-die kinda girl. Nope, I’m going further than anyone has ever been and returned to tell the tale. I’m going into the Beyond, and I’m not coming back without a solution.
Dark urban fantasy with a post-apocalyptic twist.



October 2, 2016 - I have really enjoyed reading Isaiah with all of its prophesies. I remain up to date 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 which keeps me up to date with four still due for the coming week.

I am still requesting audio titles as I can always squeeze listening in!
I continue reading author titles with one in current reading this week. I added new requests to the list so it is back up to nine again.
I am reading the last of my older NetGalley titles so my shelf will be at six for Sci Fi Month.
I still hope to read some Sci Fi TBRs in November although I also picked up some new titles at the conference.


We continue to add upcoming releases at eTreasure's NetGalley page.
The next fiction title will go up on NetGalley this week while we release one to Kindle and one to Print.



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.

I still have new review requests to consider.
I received a new audiobook review title this week and I accepted a couple requests and titles from authors.

I picked my two September credits from Audible, plus one extra.
I picked up the usual healthy number of free kindle titles -- Note these are in my Amazon library, NOT on my Kindle until I download and transfer them.

Are your mailbox and TBR piles blooming?

Review Titles
The Colonel's Lady
Written by: Laura Frantz
Narrated by: Laura Jennings
This sounds like an American Revolution romance I will enjoy.
See full description under Currently Reading above.


I have signed up for a 2017 blog tour new release 
by author Stephen Manchester.
(I will post more when I get the book.)
I saw a Christmas title he had and asked to review it for December. He was kind to send me:
by Steven Manchester


I sat with author Don Donovan at lunch on Saturday.
He shared the first two titles of his Miami Crime series for my review:
Who'll Stop The Rain: (Book One Of The Miami Crime Trilogy)
"In this first entry in The Miami Crime Trilogy, Don Donovan has spun a tale of separate South Florida characters whose lives are woven together into a web of money, betrayal, and murder."

Against the Wind (Book Two of The Miami Crime Trilogy)
"In Miami, crime never sleeps. Drugs, prostitution, money laundering, murder … it's all in a day's work."
These sound like nitty, gritty crime thrillers.



I downloaded a title from another author I met who gave a good class on marketing/social media. She is also one of the authors in the basket I will post tomorrow (Monday). This story is still free as of Sunday.
AOB (Return to Earth)
by Bria Burton





Won
Two as door prize - to be posted on Monday.

Purchased
I selected my 2 Audible credits plus one additional for $1.99 because I already had the Kindle version:
The Zoo at the Edge of the World
We Are Legion (We Are Bob): Bobiverse, Book 1
The Zoo at the Edge of the World
Written by: Eric Kahn Gale
Narrated by Julian Elfer
(A "Z" title that looks like fun I can share with my grand kids.)


We Are Legion (We Are Bob): Bobiverse, Book 1
Written by: Dennis E. Taylor
Narrated by Ray Porter
(With a husband named "Bob", I couldn't resist!)


A Quiet Life in the Country: A Lady Hardcastle Mystery, Book 1 Audiobook by T E Kinsey Narrated by Elizabeth KnoweldenA Quiet Life in the Country: A Lady Hardcastle Mystery, Book 1
Written by: T E Kinsey
Narrated by Elizabeth Knowelden
(A "Q" title that I like the looks and sound of.)



Free
I only added 46 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.

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