Friday, October 21, 2016

Everyone Loves You Back

In the three generations since Bob Boland’s family settled into the tired townhouse in Cambridge, Massachusetts where Bob lives, real locals – the guys who deliver the mail, plow the driveways and fix the burners -- have been crowded out by urban tree-huggers and uppity intellectuals with designer dogs. On Bob’s street, they’ve launched a movement to save an antique Japanese maple from a condo developer while nagging him to trim the sun-blocking trees in his own back yard.  A sarcastic, jazz-loving radio technician working the night shift and stuck in the past, Bob just wants silence by day so he can sleep, and status quo in his routine.
When romance buds with two very different women – one from the familiar though evolving world of radio, the other a sophisticated Harvard dance professor – Bob is forced to reconcile the comfort of stagnation with the inevitability of change.

Louie Cronin, author of the novel Everyone Loves You Back, is a writer, radio producer and audio engineer. For ten years she served as NPR’s “Car Talk” traffic cop, producing the show and ensuring that every call was entertaining.  A graduate of Boston University’s Masters program in Creative Writing and a past winner of the Ivan Gold Fiction Fellowship from the Writers’ Room of Boston, Louie has had her fiction and essays published in Compass Rose, The Princeton Arts Review, Long Island Newsday, The Boston Globe Magazine, and on Her short stories have been finalists for both Glimmer Train and New Millennium Writings awards. Louie has been awarded residencies at the Ragdale Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center. Currently she works as a technical director for PRI’s The World and lives in Boston with her husband, the sculptor James Wright.

My Review

This book is my first introduction to this author. The saying is "First impressions matter". Well Mrs. Cronin really made a great impression on me. I recently watched the movie, Gran Torino featuring  Clint Eastwood. In the movie he plays a grumpy, old man, who hates his neighbors due to their race. Yet in the end he becomes fast friends with his neighbors. I am not saying that Bob was that way but this is the image I got of him. His dueling with his neighbors may not have been as bad and in the end I am glad that he grew a back bone.

What I won't give to actually live in Bob's neighborhood. What with all of the quirky characters on both ends...the tree huggers and the developers. I actually felt bad for Bob. I think he did get shafted in the end with his relationship with Leonie. Yet. he was lucky that he was able to get out when he did. Bob was too nice of a guy. Leonie was the one wearing the pants in their brief relationship. Back to Bob's neighbors. I was rooting on the side of the tree huggers. I look forward to reading more work by this author as Everyone Loves You Back.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Crucible of Global War

Nobody outside of despots and tyrants and dictators bent on world domination ever wants to go to war. And yet entire nations of people are moved to do so because, to put it simply, there is no other choice... They can try to put it off. They can institute political and economic policies that ignore the underlying realities and watch as conditions deteriorate to the breaking point. They can try futilely to stem the tide of history. But they can only kick the can so far down the road. Ultimately, people go to war.”

So writes Christopher Petitt in this groundbreaking work. Global economic malaise, record financial inequality, chaos in the Middle East (including the rise of ISIS), Russian expansion, the Eurozone crisis, the growth of China’s military, the loss of American influence – the world is beginning to see turmoil that may rival the global turmoil of the 1930s on the eve of the Second World War. Are there instructive parallels? The power structures of the world are changing, and if history is a guide, the changing will not come quietly.

In "The Crucible of Global War – And the Sequence that is Leading Back to It," Petitt – history devotee, market economist, avid student of Middle East affairs – lays out in chilling detail the connections between today’s geopolitical disorder and the critical moments throughout history that have preceded times of global war. Is it humankind’s destiny to experience global war again? Is war inevitable?

"The Crucible of Global War" is a page-turning exposition of history, politics, economics, current events, and philosophy – a must-read for anyone interested in gaining insight into the nature of history and the inexorable unfolding of the perilous times ahead.

My Review

This book is very appropriate for the present. It has nothing to do with politics, race, clowns, the Kardashians, or any other social media frenzy. In this book Mr. Petitt talks about something more important...Global War. He shares real facts from history and other sources. Which if you have read other books where authors are experts or share quotes; they can some times get too quote happy or ramble on and on using huge words and such. To the point that reading the book becomes a chore. Well I can tell you that this book is not like that. Mr. Petitt does quote and share facts from history but within reason to make a point or explain the trends that are currently plaguing us in today's society that can lead us back into history (not in a good way). Reading this book really gave me a deeper perspective on our society. We really do need to learn from past history and our mistakes. It is very sad that ISIS is able to recruit people so easily as an example. If you are a history buff or are looking for something enlightening to read, then you have to check out this book. A worthy read!

Date Like a Girl Marry Like a Woman + Giveaway Book Spotlight

Book Details:

Book Title:  Date Like a Girl, Marry Like a Woman by Jessica R Bunevacz
Category:  Adult non-fiction, 241 pages
Genre:  Self help, romance, love, memoir
Publisher:  SZ Publishing
Release date:  July 5, 2016
Tour dates:  Oct 17 to Nov 4, 2016
Content Rating:  R (This book has sex advice)

Book Description:  

Navigating our romantic lives can be filled with incredible highs and unfathomable lows. Everyone enters relationships with a unique idea of what makes connection work. But even with our differences, we have a common thread running through all of us: the deep desire to love and be loved.

Based on her experiences, and with the help of her closest friends and the men in her life, author Jessica R. Bunevacz created a series of guidelines for women looking to enjoy dating and romance and avoid common pitfalls and difficulties.

Whether you're dating, getting ready to walk down the aisle, or are already married and looking to take your marriage to the next level, it's profoundly important to celebrate where you are on your journey and make every day special and meaningful for yourself and those around you.

Date like a Girl, Marry like a Woman incorporates Bunevacz's own stories of love, dating, and marriage with practical advice for today's modern relationship and reminds readers not to settle for anything less than the best.

Buy the book:   Amazon  

Meet the Author:

What do you get when you mix a strict Catholic upbringing, a strong curiosity for the opposite sex, and the need to grow up quickly? If you are lucky you get an outcome like Jessica Bunevacz, the vivacious first time author behind "Date Like a Girl, Marry Like a Woman: The Polished Woman's Guide to Love, Romance and Sex."

Jessica is a former actress and fashion model born and raised in the Philippines, and currently living in Los Angeles. A happily married mother of three, she has made the journey from MANnizer to the quintessential polished woman. Utilizing her own past experiences and a passion for helping others, she will quickly become the best friend you wish you had! 

Connect with the author:   Website      Website - book   Twitter
                                                Facebook   Pinterest     YouTube

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An Amish Family Christmas

In Shelley Shepard Gray’s fourth book in her Charmed Amish Life series, an unlikely Amish romance reveals that Christmas is a time for family, miracles—and love. 

Ever since his father died in a tragic fire, Levi Kinsinger has felt adrift. Newly returned to Charm, Ohio, Levi is trying to fit into his old life, only to discover he seems to have outgrown it.

But when Julia, his young widowed neighbor, asks for his help with a Christmas project, Levi finds a sense of purpose for the first time in months. She and her daughter are new to Charm and could use a friend, a job Levi takes personally. Soon enough, friendship grows into attraction, but Levi can’t help having doubts. There’s something about Julia that doesn’t ring quite true…

Like Levi, Julia Kemps has survived her fair share of hardships—but only by hiding the truth of her past. Being an unmarried mother in an Amish community was unthinkable. Feeling hopeless, Julia did the only thing she could do: she moved to a new town and pretended to be a widow. But meeting Levi, she’s hopeful for the first time. Little by little, she begins to imagine telling him her darkest secret, and eventually…perhaps even sharing her life with him.

Christmas is a time for family, and as the holiday draws closer, Julia and Levi will have to face their pasts together…in order to find the healing, support and love they so desperately desire.

My Review

I absolutely fell in love with A Sister's Wish, the third book in this series. That book was also the first one that I had read by this author. As I stated prior that I love the town of Charm as does the author. Shelley has visited it many times and it shows. There is so much love written into these books. In was in the third book that I met Levi. I did not really know too much about him so I was very happy to see that he was the main feature in this book. Levi really does have a kind heart. I kind of saw this in the prior novel. He and Julia was so sweet together. Although, Julia's daughter, Penny was precious. I enjoyed the setting of this story being a Christmas one as it fit perfectly for the situation. Yet, as much as I liked Levi, Julia, and Penny; I was not in as much love with them as I was with Levi's sister's story in the prior novel. Still a good read.

Sweetly, Deeply, Absolutely + Giveaway

Sweet Love #3
Kira Archer
Contemporary Rom Com
227 Pgs. |Heat Level: 3

Blurb Hello, Mr. Right...for Now.

With a month off from culinary school, Jenny Boyd has some serious party plans. Especially when the hottest guy in the club literally lands in her lap.  He’s 6’2” of cocky, sexy, man-candy, and just as commitment-phobic as she is. 

She’s definitely off limits…

Graphic designer Jared Crew is shocked when his best friend's sister-in-law doesn’t remember him right away. Luckily, she is more than willing to let him jog her memory, no complications required.

It’s all fun and games...until the condom breaks.
Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link

Buy Links:      Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes | Google

My Review

What a sweet, charming, funny read. Jenny and Jared made a nice couple. The heat level was raising between them. Yet, if you are thinking this might be too much for you; you are alright as the sex scenes are mild but not too graphic. Even though Jared had the persona of a playboy it was Jenny that made the first move and most of the other moves as well. Jared was so charming that even I had could not help but smile. However as much as I enjoyed the romance of this story, I was also wanting to read this book for the baking. Yes, Jenny and Jared did spend time in the bakery and made some sweets but it was minimal. I wanted more focus on the baking. Overall, this was a nice read. I would read another book by this author.

About The Author

Kira Archer resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kiddos, and far too many animals in the house. She tends to laugh at inappropriate moments, break all the rules she gives her kids (but only when they aren't looking), and would rather be reading a book than doing almost anything else. She has odd, eclectic tastes in just about everything and often lets her imagination run away with her. She loves her romances a little playful, a lot sexy, and always with a happily ever after.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

“So let me draw you, then.”
“What, like pose for you?”
She hesitated. “Like those?” She pointed at the portraits he had hanging on the wall.
He shrugged. “Any way you’d like to pose.”
Hmm. Lying naked on a couch like in Titanic?”
He laughed and pulled her in close. “If you were naked on a couch I’m not sure I’d be able to keep my hands on my pencils.”
“Ah, but touching the model wouldn’t be professional, would it?” She ran her hands up his chest and he put his hands over hers, hoping she’d leave them there. He’d missed her touch. Had begun to crave it like an addict going through a withdrawal. 
For a moment he thought she might draw him closer. But the moment passed. She dropped her hands and stepped away and he closed his eyes against the near physical pain of it.
“Well, I’m nothing if not professional,” he said quietly.
She didn’t look at him for a moment, but when she did her smile was back in place. “How do you want to draw me?” She raised her gaze to him and held it, her sea green eyes boring into his until he felt like he was drowning in them.
He grabbed his sketch pad and a pencil and held out his hand. “Come with me.”
She cocked an eyebrow at him, but took his hand. He led her out of the studio and down the hall to his bathroom where a big, old fashioned claw tub stood.
“You want to draw me taking a bath?”
He chuckled. “I’d actually love to watch you taking a bath, but I’m not sure how long I could remain on the outside of the tub.”
Her cheeks flushed and it was all he could do not to crush her against him and kiss her until she was moaning in his arms. He took a deep breath to get a little control and led her over to the tub and handed her a big, fluffy towel.
“I want to draw you sitting on the edge, your back to me, bare,” he said, his hand tracing the outline of her body down to where her waist met the swell of her hips, “down to here. With the towel draped over the rest of you.”
She watched him watching her, and then she held out her hand for the towel. He’d meant to turn around, give her privacy to undress. He wasn’t sure why. They’d seen each other naked. Several times. The image of her beautiful body would be ingrained in his mind until the day he died and hopefully long afterwards.
But she didn’t give him the option. She pulled her shirt off over her head. Unbuttoned her jeans and pushed them down her legs until she could step out of them. She stared right at him as she reached behind her to unhook her bra and let it slide off her arms. Her panties followed.
She stood before him, bare, breathtakingly beautiful. Neither one of them moved. His heart jack-hammered in his chest, while his body warred with itself. The desire to touch her, draw her into his arms and hold her there forever, made him ache. But the privilege of standing before such perfection was a moment he’d cherish the rest of his life. He wouldn’t ruin it by making an advance that might drive her away. For now, it was enough. More than enough, to just look and worship the unique beauty before him.
A faint smile touched her lips and she turned to sit on the edge of the tub, arranging the towel beneath her. She leaned forward and turned the faucet on. Within moments, steaming water began to fill the tub.
She glanced at him over her shoulder. “Seems a shame to waste the chance to soak in such a beautiful tub. Since I’m right here.”
Jared smiled and began to draw.
She raised her arms to gather her hair in a bun. A few tendrils escaped to tumble down her back. Absolutely perfect. He sketched quickly, his fingers drawing the lines he longed to touch in person, following the contours of her body.
He finished one sketch and pulled out more paper. She shut off the water and stood, swirling the water about with one foot. He drew her from that angle as well. Long, strong lines. Muscles defined beneath the soft curves of her body. He drew until he couldn’t take it anymore.

And then he put the paper aside and went to her.
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Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Killing Forest

Following an extended leave, Louise Rick returns to work at the Special Search Agency, an elite unit of the National Police Department. She's assigned a case involving a fifteen-year-old who vanished a week earlier. When Louise realizes that the missing teenager is the son of a butcher from Hvalsoe, she seizes the opportunity to combine the search for the teen with her personal investigation of her boyfriend's long-ago death . . . Louise's investigation takes her on a journey back through time. She reconnects with figures from her past, including Kim, the principal investigator at the Holbaek Police Department, her former in-laws, fanatic ancient religion believers, and her longtime close friend, journalist Camilla Lind. As she moves through the small town's cramped network of deadly connections, Louise unearths toxic truths left unspoken and dangerous secrets.
My Review

This is the second book I have read by this author and the second Louise Rick novel as well. Yet, this time I was really into the whole story and experience. I don't remember much of the prior novel or the past ordeal that Louise endured; however, it was ok even though it was part of the focal point in this book. Because I felt that Louise did get her closure due to the fact that most of the gaps were brought together in this book, so even if you have not read the prior novel, you will not be lost reading this book and can figure out what happened before.

The legends and rituals of the Nordic ways of praying to the Gods were intriguing. As I stated I was more engaged reading this book thus all of this intrigued me very much. Getting to know Louise more as a person and not just a detective was great. Where she came from and the people helped give me more insight into the type of person she is present. I do look forward to reading more books by this author. The Killing Forest is an engaging story that you won't want to miss!

Beware the Spire

WINNER of IndieReader Discovery Award
Fusion of Cyberpunk and Fantasy

Genetic causes, environmental or self-imposed, the Collective treats all of the maladaptive sort the same way: Plug and Scrub.

The next stage of humankind’s evolution has begun, and the Collective fears the change will unsettle the balance of power.

From the dark interior of that unified world government, a plan is hatched to capture and control any who exhibit the emerging genetic anomaly.

But then came Joshua.

Capture and control is no longer an option.  

My Review

I was first introduced to Mr. Safronoff when I read the first book in the Sunborn Rising series. That book was more like an experience then just reading. I could not stop reading the book. This book was actually written and published back in 2011. Yet, it has been revamped some and republished. I like that at the beginning of this book Mr. Safronoff talks about how he came up with the concept of this story and that he honors the first readers by trying to not alter the story too much. Mr. Safronoff goes on to explain that to him the whole experience of writing is not a mechanical process to him; thus that is the reason why I believe that his books are so good as each one means something to him and it shows. I know I had no problems connecting with the characters, storyline, and the overall concept of this book. Just like Sunborn Rising I had an easy time reading this book. I plan to check out the next book, Fallen Spire in this series. This book did have a bit of the Matrix  and Limitless featuring Bradley Cooper feel to it which I enjoyed. Plus, if this is what the fusion of cyberpunk and fantasy looks like then I am all in. Joshua is the wild card in this story. I look forward to seeing if he does come out on top in the next book.