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Book Review: Irving Titans by Jeff Dawson

15 Jul

1989: The Irving Titans reached an all time low: 1-15. The glory days of NFC Championships and Super Bowls were a distant memory. That was about to change as the collapse of the S&L’s would force the current owner, Bum Reason, to sell the storied franchise to billionaire oilman, Reuben Weitzman.

Weitzman would initiate sweeping changes: eliminate the current collection of players, revitalizing the fan base with the promise of returning to the glory days and fire the most beloved coach of the NFL—Steve Osburn. He would replace him with Marshall Jankowski, an old classmate chum and top coach in the collegiate ranks. 

The one player he’d like to cut but can’t, is veteran quarterback, Jimmy Stone. His occasional lover, Charlene Rivers has more dirt on Jankowski, Weitzman and other NFL notables, than a dump truck could haul-off. 

Strap yourselves in for the most raucous, rambunctious, risqué ride in sports history! 

Available on Amazon.

My Review

I chose to read this e-book after receiving a free copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

What a ride! If you’re a football fan or a Cowboys lover or hater and you don’t mind a lot of sleaze, this is a hilarious book. My husband is a big Cowboys fan and if he was a reader, I would recommend this book to him.

I couldn’t find one person in this book that I liked. I tried to like Jimmy, the protagonist, but I was unable to find any redeeming qualities. It doesn’t matter, though, because Irving Titans is a well-done farce.

This story of the rise and fall of the Titans is also about the rise and fall of most of the characters involved. Interestingly, the main driving force of both the rise and fall of the Titans is Charlene, a woman who will sleep with anyone and has no qualms about bribing anyone either. As a reader (and a woman), I liked the power she had as a woman but hated (yes hated) the way she got that power.

If you’re a football fan and you’re looking for a good laugh, this is the book for you…if you have an open mind.

About the Author

I spent twenty-five years in the wonderful world of road construction. Back surgery in 2010 put the skids on that career. My body couldn’t handle the rigors of twelve to sixteen hour days, six to seven days a week. As I convalesced, licking my wounds, I wondered what to do next. Not being out in the sun getting baked, or dodging traffic, was going to be a hard act to follow. Seriously, what else did I know? An article in the Dallas Morning News caught my eye. It was about being a professional speaker. Hmm. That sounds interesting. Becoming mobile again, I took a seat in front of the blank monitor, pondering what to write. Let’s start with something we know—my life. 
The first work was titled “God’s Plan: A Glimpse Into One’s Life.” I re-titled it six months later to “Why Did Everything Happen?” I looked back at the last twenty-five years and how the death of my partner, father and true love affected my life. I was amazed at the revelations. Since then, I’ve moved on to write in several different genres. Some say I should change my name when diverting from the path. Well, right or wrong, I’m sticking with my name. The current works range from the memoir of my one true love: Debbie Beck—RIP 7-20-2009—Love’s True Second Chance, an alternative historical perspective of Vampires and WWII—Occupation, a newly released Sci-Fi time travel adventure,—Gateway: Pioche. If that isn’t enough, how about two Baseball Coaching Manuals? 

I currently live in the DFW area, spending time with my daughter, her girls and my oldest son. When I was in construction, I never had or took the time to enjoy what surrounded me: love, family and friends. My true love, Debbie and her girls reminded me what was important in life; “we work to live, not live to work.” 

Website: http://www.lddjenterprises.com
Twitter: jeffdawson59

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Book Review: Intermittent Fasting by Ashley Fiorentini

10 Jul

WARNING!!! Reading This Book Will Improve Your Life!

Are you interested in a weight loss program that has been proven to work?
Have you tried and failed to lose weight in the past?
Does intermittent fasting hold the answers?

Losing weight is hard work and often ends in failure. The reasons are complex, but part of it is that dieters often seek advice from books that simply offer basic ideas that have little substance and lead to frustration. Fad diets also play their part in this, and it can result in a long sequence of yo-yo dieting which leads nowhere.

Why do you need to choose this particular book? How does this book differ from the rest?

Most of the information you read online and offline now is either incomplete or just total garbage. Most of the systems and techniques the so-called experts feed you, don’t work. Why? Well, it’s simple, most books out there are just written badly, not thinking about their audience at all. Sometimes those books just repeat information widely available on the internet. You can forget all about that now because this book understands you and your needs.
This book, Intermittent Fasting, is a totally different concept and provides up-to-date and relevant information that has been properly researched and proved to work, including:

  • What is Intermittent Fasting
  • Who can use it and who can’t
  • Food and drink you can take and those to avoid
  • Myths about intermittent fasting
  • Common mistakes to avoid
  • Tips and tricks for success
  • 28-day diet plan
  • And lots more…

Complete with recipes with nutritional values, shopping lists, cooking methods and full color photos, this book not only provides you with exciting and delicious recipes, but also the science that is behind this amazing weight loss program.


Also, by purchasing this book, you will receive a FREE BONUS e-book “The Best 77 Ideas for Breakfast”, which contains delicious and healthy recipes for breakfast.

Available on Amazon.

My Review

I chose to read this e-book after receiving a free copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I had read a little about intermittent fasting in a book about nutrition a while back so when the author offered this book to me, I was happy to read it because I was interested in learning more. Intermittent Fasting has a lot of good information!

The book starts by explaining what intermittent fasting is, the benefits of it, who should not try it, and the many different types of intermittent fasting from just a few hours to a day or two. It also details what foods are best to eat and which ones to avoid. There is plenty more information and then the second half of the book is full of recipes, some of which I’m going to try out.

This book and other sources explain the scientific reasons why fasting is important for our bodies. I think it’s important information for those with Diabetes Type II, those who want to lose weight, and anyone who wants to feel better overall. The most important thing is to pick the one that is best for you and your lifestyle.

I definitely recommend Intermittent Fasting, and I plan on trying it myself. This is not a diet…it is a change in eating habits. I’ve known for a long time that lifestyle changes are what help us lose weight and keep it off.

About the Author

Ashley is a beginner in the writing of culinary books. Based on her passionate cooking hobby, she decided to use her own cookery experience and become a culinary author.

Ashley’s goal is to share the recipes she has changed as well as her personal recipes.

Her books are filled with a description of the beneficial properties of each dish, a detailed description of the cooking, as well as color high-quality photos of the finished dishes.

We hope you enjoy reading her books, as well as creating and enjoying the dishes according to her recipes.

Book Review: This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger

29 Jun

For fans of Before We Were Yours and Where the Crawdads Sing, a magnificent novel about four orphans on a life-changing odyssey during the Great Depression, from the New York Times bestselling author of Ordinary Grace

1932, Minnesota—the Lincoln School is a pitiless place where hundreds of Native American children, forcibly separated from their parents, are sent to be educated. It is also home to an orphan named Odie O’Banion, a lively boy whose exploits earn him the superintendent’s wrath. Forced to flee, he and his brother Albert, their best friend Mose, and a brokenhearted little girl named Emmy steal away in a canoe, heading for the mighty Mississippi and a place to call their own.

Over the course of one unforgettable summer, these four orphans will journey into the unknown and cross paths with others who are adrift, from struggling farmers and traveling faith healers to displaced families and lost souls of all kinds. With the feel of a modern classic, This Tender Land is an en­thralling, big-hearted epic that shows how the magnificent American landscape connects us all, haunts our dreams, and makes us whole.

Publication date Sept. 3: Pre-order on Amazon

My Review

I chose to review this book after requesting a free advanced reading copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

It’s been a while since I read historical fiction even though it’s one of my favorite genres. The description of This Tender Land caught my eye, and I had a feeling I’d like it. I didn’t just like it. I thought it was amazing.

The story takes places in the 1930s during the Great Depression. Odie and his brother are orphans and living in a school for Indians even though they obviously are not Indians. The school has a good reputation, but its conditions are deplorable. Eventually, they have to run away with Mose, another student, and Emmy, a young neighbor girl who has just been orphaned. The situation is getting worse for Odie but, more importantly, they feel they have to save Emmy from the superintendent whose nickname is appropriately the Black Witch.

The four children head from Lincoln, Nebraska, to St. Louis by river. Although the story sounds a bit like Huck Finn, there’s a lot more to it. They have an adventure of a lifetime and they all grow and change and learn a lot about themselves. After the children went through so much, I was wondering if the ending would be gratifying. Absolutely!

Not only is This Tender Land a good tale, but the author’s descriptions are so good that I could picture everything the children encountered as they went down the river in the canoe: the revival tent, the people, the shanty towns, and so much more. I also appreciated the research that the author did about our history, not only in the 1930s but about the Sioux.

This is the first book that I’ve read by William Kent Krueger but it definitely won’t be the last.

About the Author

Raised in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon, William Kent Krueger briefly attended Stanford University—before being kicked out for radical activities. After that, he logged timber, worked construction, tried his hand at freelance journalism, and eventually ended up researching child development at the University of Minnesota. He currently makes his living as a full-time author. He’s been married for over 40 years to a marvelous woman who is an attorney. He makes his home in St. Paul, a city he dearly loves.

Krueger writes a mystery series set in the north woods of Minnesota. His protagonist is Cork O’Connor, the former sheriff of Tamarack County and a man of mixed heritage—part Irish and part Ojibwe. His work has received a number of awards, including the Minnesota Book Award, the Loft-McKnight Fiction Award, the Anthony Award, the Barry Award, the Dilys Award, and the Friends of American Writers Prize. His last five novels were all New York Times bestsellers.

Website: http://www.williamkentkrueger.com/
Twitter: WmKentKrueger

Book Review: The Frights of Fiji by Sunayna Prasad

24 Jun

A world of magic and adventure awaits for 12-year-old Alyssa McCarthy. A sorcerer kidnaps her to an enchanted island, filled with magical creatures and technology, but also danger. It is up to Alyssa to defeat the peril and overcome the warlock.

My Review

I chose to review this book after requesting a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Alyssa McCarthy was an orphan living with her uncle and cousin. She was suddenly introduced to the world of magic. Although she didn’t believe in magic to begin with, she seemed to just take it in stride. I found it odd that she told adults about the things she’d seen and expected them to believe her. Most children her age know that adults wouldn’t believe in such “nonsense.”

After Alyssa leaves home, her adventure and the magic involved is all creative but a little over the top. I don’t think middle grade or young adult readers would go for it. The story does have a good ending, however.

About the Author

Sunayna Prasad has been writing stories for over several years, starting at the age of six. Now twenty-four, she is done with college and will pursue a career in art and design as well as continue to write for children. Aside from that, Sunayna also likes to cook, watch movies, and draw. She lives on Long Island, New York, with her family.

Website http://www.sunaynaprasadbooks.com/

Book Review: Initiation in Paradise (Book 17) by Deborah Brown

18 Jun

Margaritas, mangroves, murder. Just another day at the office. 

One minute, Madison Weston and her bestie, Fab, are tailing Creole and Didier to figure out what they’re hiding. The next, a hail of bullets sends them swamp slogging for their lives. So much for cute shoes. 

Eventually, Creole and Didier come clean: Bodies are turning up in shallow graves, and they didn’t want their women catching wind of it. Too bad, boys, this mystery is too juicy to pass up.

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My Review

I chose to review this book after requesting a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I’ve read most of the books in this series and I love these characters. They’ve become like good friends, and I’m always looking forward to their next story or adventure. Madison and Fab are best friends and although they’ve calmed down over the years, they’re still good private investigators. They’ve also both gotten married recently and have great relationships with their men.

Although Madison and Fab are trying to stay away from the more dangerous cases, danger seems to seek them out whether they’re on a case or not.

Initiation in Paradise has several cases that the girls take from serving divorce papers to a welfare check. None of their cases are simple no matter how easy they sound which results in danger, humor, or both. I can always count on a good laugh when I’m reading a Paradise book.

As with all of the Paradise books, Initiation in Paradise was a quick and enjoyable read. Deborah Brown has a good sense of humor and you never know what’s going to happen. I especially liked the ending although it was not what I expected, and I’m looking forward to Madison and Fab’s next adventure.

Although this series is best read in order, all of the books stand alone. I definitely recommend them if you like independent women who are loyal and passionate about family, life and love. 

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About the Author

The Paradise series, are Florida Keys mysteries, “great as stand-alone reads, but they’re like chips…you won’t be able to devour just one!”

I’ve been writing, in one way or another for as long as I can remember; poetry, sappy short stories (my best friend made me swear that I’d never show anyone until I changed the names), and a romance novel shoved under my bed.

I wanted to create books with a wide-range of unforgettable characters, with heat and romance, and lots of guns. It wouldn’t be complete without a slice of humor and charm.

I live with my family and demon children aka rescue cats in South Florida.

Find the author on the following sites…

Website  Facebook  Twitter  Pinterest  Goodreads  Amazon Author page  Bookbub

Audiobook Review: Primrose’s Curse by Kiara Shankar & Vinay Shankar

16 Jun

Narrator: Laura Welsh

Length: 1 hour and 28 minutes

Publisher: Vinay Shankar SP

Released: Apr. 21, 2019

Genre: Children’s; Fantasy

Synopsis

Primrose Fernetise, a beautiful, audacious 12-year-old girl, and a group of woodland animals with divine mystical abilities set out on an adventurous mission to Hellevue, a murky island on the dreary part of Mystopical. Their daring mission involves vanquishing the evil sorceress Queen Evelyn Velecrona and breaking the curse she has cast on humanity.

How do the woodland animals and Primrose plan and embark on their brave voyage to defeat the wicked sorceress?

Will the bunch of lovable woodland animals and an innocent 12-year-old girl really succeed in bringing down the dreadful Queen Evelyn? Also, will they be able to bring back peace, well-being, and happiness to humanity?

To find out more about this epic fairy tale, please do consider listening to this entire audiobook.

Available on Audible

My Review

I chose to listen to this book after receiving a free audio copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Primrose’s father is sick so she decides to go deep into the forest to find a healing plant. What she finds are magical woodland animals and an exciting adventure. If she and the animals are successful, they won’t just heal Primrose’s father but all of humanity!

Primrose’s Curse is for middle-grade readers. Based on the books I’ve read for middle-grade readers, I’d recommend this one to girls who are just beginning to start middle-grade books.

The narrator has a great voice for this book. She also has a good pace and timing.

About the Authors

KIARA SHANKAR is a young talented author from San Francisco, California, USA. Apart from writing books, she loves reading, artwork, writing poems, playing with her friends, and listening to her favorite Bollywood music.

Kiara’s poem “A Deadly Star” was published in the national level writing contest book “A Celebration of Poets” (Fall 2018 Edition – published by Creative Communication, Utah, USA).

VINAY SHANKAR is Kiara’s dad, a software professional, who found himself inspired by his daughter’s idea of writing fictional fairy tale books and decided to co-write books with her. This collaborative effort of the family is helping to bring great ideas to life!

Viki Publishing * Twitter * Facebook * Pinterest * Instagram

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About the Narrator

Laura Welsh is a Voice Actor currently living in Sunny California. She divides her time between the Studio and maintaining her Succulent Garden, equally passionate about both! Her professional career has spanned from TV and radio commercials, video games, cartoons, and Youtube channels, and of course narrating audiobooks. Delighting in her work, she hopes to be able to bring joy and pleasure in the projects she assists with for many many years to come.

Instagram * Facebook * Twitter * Website

Book Review & Giveaway: Swann’s Down by Charles Salzberg

5 Jun

Genre: Detective/Noir/Mystery
Published by: Down & Out Books
Publication Date: May 14, 2019
Number of Pages: 300
ISBN: 978-1-64396011-1
Series: Henry Swann 
Purchase Links: Amazon | BN.com | Goodreads

When Henry Swann is asked by his quirky partner, Goldblatt, to find a missing psychic who’s swindled his ex-wife out of a small fortune, he just can’t say no. Although he doesn’t actually expect to get paid, he figures it might give him a chance to finally learn more about his partner’s mysterious past. His search takes him into the controversial, arcane world of psychics, fortunetellers, and charlatans, while raising questions in his own mind about whether or not there is an after-life.

While working his partner’s case, he’s approached by a former employer, attorney Paul Rudder, to track down a missing witness who might be able to provide an alibi for his client, Nicky Diamond, a notorious mob hitman who’s scheduled to go on trial for murder he claims he didn’t commit in a week. Swann’s search for the missing witness, who happens to be the defendant’s girlfriend, takes him from Brooklyn to a small beach town across the Bay from Mobile, Ala. But what does she really know and will she even come back with him to testify for her boyfriend?

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Even though this is the fifth book in the Henry Swann series, it stands on its own. In fact, I didn’t know there were other books in the series until I was done and getting ready to write my review. Just what I need…more books to add to my TBR list!

Henry Swann has two mysteries to solve at once. Neither is a run of the mill missing person, and he finds himself doing more investigating than he normally would. It’s too bad he’s not a PI since he’s good at figuring things out.

Swann’s Down is a fast-paced mystery that kept my interest throughout. It’s one of those books that I didn’t get attached to the characters, but they were quite unique! This is a light and fun read. I look forward to reading the first four books in the series.

Praise for Swann’s Down:

“Psychics, double-crosses, missing persons—Charles Salzberg’s latest Henry Swann book has it all. Swann’s Down is a gritty, no-frills PI novel that brings to mind greats like Reed Farrel Coleman’s Moe Prager and Michael Harvey’s Michael Kelly. Whether this is your first Swann adventure or the latest, you won’t want to miss the brass-knuckle punch that is Swann’s Down. Trust me.”
— —Alex Segura, author of Blackout and Dangerous Ends

“From Manhattan to Coney Island to the steamy shores of Alabama, Charles Salzberg delivers a top-flight mystery with his latest Henry Swann outing. Highly recommended.” 
— Tom Straw, New York Times bestselling author as Richard Castle

Swann’s Down gives readers two intriguing mysteries for the price of one, as skip tracer Henry Swann pursues a woman who might alibi a murderer and a psychic who swindled the ex-wife of Swann’s partner. Shamus Award-nominated Salzberg does a superb job cutting between the two investigations. I kept turning pages to stay with both chases as the suspense increased to the very end. Whatever is going on, Swann is at the center of this story. His wry wit, quotes from authors and philosophers, genius for questioning suspects, and dark past make him a character readers will follow anywhere as he seeks his quarry. This is another thrilling addition to this excellent series.
— Rich Zahradnik, Lights Out Summer, winner of the 2018 Shamus Award for Best Paperback Private Eye Novel

Henry Swann dives in where others fear to tread in Swann’s Down: Fast. Funny. And Smart. This time out, Swann crosses paths with a psycho hitman, a phony psychic and Swann’s mysterious partner, a disbarred lawyer. Who could ask for more? I hope we’ll see a lot more of Swann in the future and that this isn’t Swann’s swan song.
— Paul D. Marks, Shamus Award-winning Author of White Heat and Broken Windows.

Read an excerpt:

1
The Age of Aquarius

“We’re partners, right?”

Nothing good can come from that question when it comes from the mouth of Goldblatt.

“I mean, all for one and one for all, am I right?” he quickly added in an attempt, I was sure, to seal the deal.

“I think you’re confusing us with the three musketeers. May I point out there are only two of us, and I’m afraid that’s not the only fallacy in your declaration. But you might as well finish what you’ve started.”

We were having our weekly Friday lunchtime sit-down to discuss what Goldblatt likes to refer to as “business.” I have another name for it: waste of time.

Our venue changes from week to week but the concept is always pretty much the same: a cheap diner-slash-coffee shop somewhere on the island of Manhattan. Today’s eatery of choice (Goldblatt’s choice, my destiny) is the Utopia Diner, on Amsterdam, near 72nd Street. And as for the business we’d just finished discussing, well, to be honest, there never is very much actual business to discuss and today was no exception.

At this particular moment in time, we were going through a bit of a dry spell, which always makes me a little nervous because no matter how much I banish it from my mind, the rent is due the first of every month and at least three times a day I seem to develop a hunger that must be quenched. Still, a good fifteen, twenty years away from Social Security, and with precious little dough in the bank–okay, let’s be honest, no dough in the bank–and no 401-K to fall back on, I need to keep working. And, as much as I don’t like to admit it, lately it’s been my “partner,” as he likes to refer to himself, as opposed to my preferred albatross, who’s brought in the bulk of our clients.

We’d already finished eating–though technically, Goldblatt never actually finishes eating which means a meal can easily turn into an all-day affair, if I don’t apply the brakes–and we were just waiting for the check to arrive. This is a crucial point of any meal with Goldblatt because it is the opening gambit in what has become our weekly routine of watching the check sit there in no-man’s land somewhere between us until I inevitably give in, pick it up, and pay. Otherwise, I risk one of two things: either we’d be there all afternoon or, worst case scenario, Goldblatt will decide he’s still hungry and threaten to order something else. Neither one of these options is the least bit appealing.

“I’ll get right to the point,” he said.

Just then, out of the corner of my eye I spotted the waiter, like a white knight, approaching with our check in hand. If I acted quick enough I might be able to get out of there before I can be sucked into something I don’t want to have anything to do with.

“That would be nice,” I said, reaching for my wallet. “What is your point?”

“I need to hire you.”

I was stopped in my tracks before I got my wallet halfway out of my back pocket.

“Really? To do what?”

“I want you to find someone for me. Well, to be more precise it’s not really for me. It’s for my ex-wife.”

Wait a minute! Goldblatt married? Goldblatt with a wife? Goldblatt a husband? This was a new one on me, something I’d never even considered.

“You…you’ve been married?” I stammered.

Truth is, I never pictured Goldblatt being in any relationship other than with, yes, as irritating as it might be, me. I mean the guy isn’t exactly anyone’s idea of Don Juan, although I suppose in theory there are women who might find him if not attractive in the conventional way at least interesting in a specimen-under-glass way. Or maybe as a project. Women love a project. They love a challenge. They love the idea that they have the opportunity to remake a man in their image. Maybe that was it. But whatever it was, my world was shaken to the core. And what would shake it even more would be to find that he was actually a father, too. But one shock per meal is more than enough, so there was no chance I was going to pursue that line of questioning.

“Unfortunately, the answer is yes. More than once, in fact.”

“Holy Cow,” I blurted out, channeling the Scooter. “You’re kidding me?”

At this point the same bald, squat waiter who seems to serve us in every diner we patronize, reached our table and dropped the check right in front of me.

“This is not something a man usually kids about.”

“How many times?”

He held up three fingers.

“Three times! You’ve been married three times?”

“Yeah.”

I gulped.

“Are you married now?”

He shook his head. “Nah. I’m kinda between wives. Giving it a rest, if you know what I mean.
But chances are I’ll be back in the saddle again soon enough.”

“Okay, so let me get this straight. You’ve been married three times and now you’re single but you would consider getting married again?”

“Man is not meant to be alone, Swannie. You might consider the possibility that your life would be enriched if you found your soulmate.”

You’re fortunate if you find one soul mate in life and I’d already had mine. She was yanked from my life as a result of a freak accident, a matter of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. I didn’t know if Goldblatt knew the circumstances of her bizarre accidental death, but I wouldn’t have been surprised because he seems to know a lot of things he has no business knowing.

“Some men are meant to be alone, Goldblatt. I’m one of them and after three failed marriages maybe you should consider the possibility you are, too.”

He smiled and puffed out his chest. “What can I say, Swann? I’m a friggin’ babe magnet.”

I would have laughed, should have laughed, but I was still processing the scary fact that he’d been married three times. That meant there were three women in the world who not only were willing to marry him but did marry him. I wanted to know more. Much more. Everything, in fact. But this was not the time and certainly not the place to delve into Goldblatt’s mysterious, sordid past. Nevertheless, I promised myself I would revisit this topic in the not too distant future.

Still in shock, I avoided our weekly “who’s paying for this meal” tango, grabbed the check and reached for my wallet…again.

“So, wanna know the story?” he asked.

“Which story would that be?”

“The story of why I want to hire you?”

“Desperately.”

***

Excerpt from Swann’s Down by Charles Salzberg. Copyright 2019 by Charles Salzberg. Reproduced with permission from Charles Salzberg. All rights reserved.

 

About the Author

Charles Salzberg is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in New York magazine, Esquire, GQ, Redbook, The New York Times Book Review and other periodicals. He has written over 20 non-fiction books, including From Set Shot to Slam Dunk, an oral history of the NBA, and Soupy Sez: My Zany Life and Times. He is author of the Shamus Award-nominated Swann’s Last Song, Swann Dives In, Swann’s Lake of Despair, nominated for two Silver Falchions, Swann’s Way Out, Devil in the Hole, named one of the best crime novels of the year by Suspense magazine. He was a Visiting Professor of Magazine at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and he teaches writing the New York Writers Workshop where he is a Founding Member. He is a member of the MWA-NY Board.

Catch Up With Charles Salzberg On:
Charlessalzberg.comGoodreadsTwitter, & Facebook!

Giveaway

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Charles Salzberg. There will be 6 giveaway winners. There will be 1 Grand Prize winner of one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card. There will be 5 2nd Prize winners of one (1) Print Edition of Swann’s Down (U.S. Mailing Addresses only). The giveaway begins on May 1, 2019 and runs through July 2, 2019. Void where prohibited.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Audiobook Review & Giveaway: Crimes Past by Lauren Carr

3 Jun
 

Book Title: Crimes Past by Lauren Carr
Series:  A Mac Faraday Mystery (Volume 13)
Category:  Adult fiction, 322 pages
Genre:  Murder Mystery
Publisher:  Acorn Book Services
Release date:  October 16, 2018
Format available for review:  ebook (mobi, ePub) & Audible
Tour dates:  May 1 – June 28, 2019
Content Rating: PG (mild violence and sexual suggestion)

 

 

It’s a bittersweet reunion for Mac Faraday when members of his former homicide squad arrive at the Spencer Inn. While it is sweet to attend the wedding of a former colleague’s daughter, it is a bitter reminder that the mother of the bride had been the victim of a double homicide on her own wedding night.

The brutal slaying weighing heavy on his mind, Mac is anxious to explore every possibility for a break in the cold case—even a suggestion from disgraced former detective Louis Gannon that one of their former friends was the killer.

When the investigator is brutally slain, Mac Faraday rips open the cold case with a ruthless determination to reveal which of his friends was a cold-blooded murderer.

Buy Crimes Past:
Amazon ~ Audible
Add to Goodreads
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My Review

I chose to listen to this book after receiving a free audio copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.
 

I have read several books in the Mac Faraday series. They all stand alone and they’re all good mysteries. Crimes Past is full of mystery with a little humor on the side. It is the thirteenth book in the series.

As usual, Mac is dealing with more than one mystery at a time. The primary case he’s working on has several twists and multiple murders before it’s solved.

I like Lauren Carr’s writing style because it’s easy to follow and she doesn’t get bogged down with lengthy descriptions. 

The characters are great, and I feel like I know most of them. Gnarly, Mac’s dog, is definitely my favorite character. He’s even the mayor even though it’s well-known he’s a thief!

I like the narrator. I’ve come to associate his voice with Lauren Carr’s books/characters. He has good timing and a pleasant voice.

 

 

 

Meet the Author

 

 

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty titles across three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!Now, Lauren has added one more hit series to her list with the Chris Matheson Cold Case Mysteries. Set in the quaint West Virginia town of Harpers Ferry, Ice introduces Chris Matheson, a retired FBI agent, who joins forces with other law enforcement retirees to heat up those cold cases that keep them up at night.Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr’s seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, crime fiction, police procedurals, romance, and humor.

 

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, and three dogs on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with the author:Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram

 

 

 

Giveaway

Ends July 6, 2019
 
 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

Book Review: The Circle by Mario Escobar

30 May

The famous psychiatrist Solomon Lewin has left his humanitarian work in India to serve as the chief psychiatrist at the Center for Psychological Illness located in London’s Square Mile financial district. Though well paid, the job is monotonous, and Solomon is also going through a rough patch in his marriage with Margaret. He begins scrutinizing the more mysterious cases of the center’s long-term residents hoping to find something worth his time. When he comes across the chart of Maryam Batool, a young broker from London who has lived in the center for seven years, his life will change forever. 
Maryam Batool is an orphan from Pakistan who became one of the most promising female employees of the financial institution General Society, but in the summer of 2007, at the start of the financial crisis, the young broker loses her mind and tries to kill herself. Since then she has been stuck, able only to draw circles yet unable to understand their meaning. 
A snow storm looms over the city at the start of the Christmas holidays. Before Christmas Eve dinner, Solomon receives an urgent call from the center to come at once: Maryam has attacked a nurse and seems to be awakening from her long stupor. 
Solomon heads downtown in the snow, clueless that this will be the most difficult night of his life. The psychiatrist does not trust his patient, the police are after them, and his family seems to be in danger. The only way to protect himself and those he loves is to discover what “The Circle” is and why everyone seems to want his patient dead. It’s a surprise ending and a mystery you won’t believe. 

What is hiding in the City of London? Who is behind the biggest business center in the world? What is the truth behind “The Circle”? Can Solomon save his family? 

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Solomon has had a rewarding career as a psychiatrist but has now settled in London with his family and is the head of a psychiatric facility. He’s afraid that he’s going to be bored, and his wife Margaret is already bored. She loves her children with all her heart but she wants more. Their marriage is suffering but they both want it to work and are starting to take steps to improve it.

Suddenly, everything changes on Christmas Eve when a patient suddenly awakens from a stupor of 7 years. Solomon is called into the hospital when this happens but when he arrives, he finds a couple of the employees murdered and the patient awake but confused.

From this point on, I had to read the rest of the book in one sitting. It’s confusing at times but everything falls into place by the end of the book. There’s a lot of action and suspense. The ending was unexpected and one that I’ll remember for quite a while.

About the Author

Mario Escobar Golderos has a degree in History, with an advanced studies diploma in Modern History. He has written numerous books and articles about the Inquisition, the Protestant Reformation, and religious sects. He is the executive director of an NGO and directs the magazine Nueva historia para el debate, in addition to being a contributing columnist in various publications. Passionate about history and its mysteries, Escobar has delved into the depths of church history, the different sectarian groups that have struggled therein, and the discovery and colonization of the Americas. He specializes in the lives of unorthodox Spaniards and Americans. 

Book Review & Giveaway: And Every Word is True by Gary McAvoy

29 May

Genre: True Crime, Memoir
Published by: Literati Editions
Publication Date: March 4, 2019 
Number of Pages: 310
ISBN: 978-0-9908376-0-2 (HB); 978-0-9908376-1-9 (PB) 
Purchase Links:Amazon Barnes & Noble iBooks Kobo Goodreads

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Truman Capote’s bestselling book “In Cold Blood” has captivated worldwide audiences for over fifty years. It is a gripping story about the consequences of a trivial robbery gone terribly wrong in a remote village of western Kansas.

But what if robbery was not the motive at all, but something more sinister? And why would the Kansas Bureau of Investigation press the Attorney General to launch a ruthless four-year legal battle to prevent fresh details of the State’s most famous crime from being made public, so many years after the case had been solved?

Based on stunning new details discovered in the personal journals and archives of former KBI Director Harold Nye—and corroborated by letters written by Richard Hickock, one of the killers on Death Row—And Every Word Is Truemeticulously lays out a vivid and startling new view of the investigation, one that will keep readers on the edge of their seats as they pick up where Capote left off. Even readers new to the story will find themselves drawn into a spellbinding forensic investigation that reads like a thriller, adding new perspectives to the classic tale of an iconic American crime.

Sixty years after news of the 1959 Clutter murders took the world stage, And Every Word Is True pulls back the curtain for a suspenseful encore to the true story of “In Cold Blood.”

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy from the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I was excited to read And Every Word is True because In Cold Blood always intrigued me for some reason. It wasn’t just the story of the murders, but Truman Capote was such a unique person and it’s always been difficult for me to picture him investigating this story.

There are actually two different stories in this book. One is the evidence that Gary McAvoy “found” which possibly changes much of what we thought we knew about these murders. Also, Kansas didn’t seem to want this information to be made public. Why?

The second story is about the author and his case and fighting the state of Kansas in court to keep the documents. This part of the story was rather cumbersome partly because of repetition.

Even though And Every Word is True was a little difficult to get through, I’d still recommend it to anyone who’s interested in true crime, especially the murders of the Clutter family.

About the Author

Gary McAvoy is a veteran technology executive, entrepreneur, and lifelong writer. For several years he was also a literary media escort in Seattle, during which time he worked with hundreds of authors promoting their books—most notably Dr. Jane Goodall, with whom Gary later collaborated on “Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating” (Hachette, 2005).

Gary is also a professional collector of rare literary manuscripts and historical letters and books, a passion that sparked the intriguing discoveries leading up to his latest book, And Every Word Is True(Literati Editions, March 2019), a revealing look at startling new disclosures about the investigation surrounding the 1959 Clutter family murders, heinous crimes chillingly portrayed in Truman Capote’s “In Cold Blood.” And Every Word Is True pulls back the curtain for a suspenseful encore to Capote’s classic tale, adding new perspectives to an iconic American crime.

Catch Up With Gary McAvoy On:
garymcavoy.comGoodreadsBookBubTwitter, & Facebook!

Tour Participants

04/01 Review/Showcase @ Feather Stone – Author of Romance & Suspense
04/02 Review @ The World As I See It
04/03 Review @ Archaeolibrarian – I Dig Good Books!
04/04 Guest post @ Loris Reading Corner
04/05 Interview @ BooksChatter
04/06 Interview @ A Blue Million Books
04/08 Review @ Nesies Place
04/09 Guest post @ Mythical Books
04/10 Review @ Life at 17
04/11 Review @ Book Reviews From an Avid Reader
04/12 Review @ Cheryls Book Nook
04/13 Guest post @ Cover To Cover Cafe
04/14 Review @ It’s All About the Book
04/15 Showcase @ Just Books
04/19 Guest post @ Read and Review
04/22 Showcase @ Eclectic Moods
04/23 Showcase @ The Bookworm Lodge
04/24 Interview @ CMash Reads
05/04 Review @ sunny island breezes
05/06 Review @ everywhere and nowhere
05/07 Review @ Thats What Shes Reading
05/10 Guest post @ The Book Divas Reads
05/19 Review @ Jessica Rachow, Author & Blogger
05/20 Showcase @ Celticladys Reviews
05/21 Review @ Quiet Fury Books
05/24 Review @ Cozy Up WIth Kathy
05/28 Review @ Book Babble
05/29 Review @ Bound 4 Escape
05/30 Review @ A Room Without Books is Empty

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Giveaway

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Gary McAvoy. There will be four (4) giveaway winners.  One winner will receive one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card and three (3) winners will receive one (1) print copy of And Every Word Is True by Gary McAvoy (Open to U.S. addresses only). The giveaway begins on April 1, 2019 and runs through June 2, 2019. Void where prohibited.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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