Book Review & Giveaway: Song Girl: A Mystery in Two Verses by Keith Hirshland

Song Girl by Keith Hirshland

Song Girl: A Mystery in Two Verses by Keith Hirshland
Publisher:  Beacon Publishing Group (January 21, 2022)
Categories: Mystery Thriller, Detective/Police Procedural
Tour Dates April and May, 2022
ISBN: 978-1949472400
Available in Print and ebook, 388 pages

Song Girl

Description

Detective Marc Allen is ready to leave the Raleigh, North Carolina, Police Department. Two murders that happened on his watch have apparently been solved thanks to a suicide note confession written by a distraught father. But Allen isn’t buying it. He’s convinced that the man’s adopted daughter, Teri Hickox, is the one responsible for the heinous crimes. With his personal life a muddle and his professional career unsettled he decides the best thing for him is a change of scenery. The detective, now in Colorado Springs, is working new cases and making new friends. One of those friends is Hannah Hunt who, after suffering a freak accident, finds herself only able to speak in song titles. Another is a mysterious drifter who lives out of an old Dodge van and goes by “the champ”. But as Allen builds a new future, events unfold showing him that he can’t escape his past. Song Girl is… Part sequel to The Flower Girl Murder Part stand-alone mystery All entertaining

Guest Review by Sal

Author Keith Hirshland is back with a very singular mystery that has to be read to be believed.

The protagonist of this story, Detective Marc Allen, is a man with a problem. The problem is one Teri Hickox. See, Teri is the daughter of a man who recently confessed to the murder of two people in a case that Allen was investigating.

It all seemed to be pretty open and shut, but here is the hiccup: Allen doesn’t believe that Teri’s father, Hank was the real murderer. Allen believes that Teri was the one who committed the heinous crimes, but since Hank’s confession ends the official investigation, there is nothing that Allen can do to justify looking into it any further.

Frustrated with the lack of closure, Allen decides he needs a complete change of scenery, and ends up taking a job across the country in Colorado Springs at a different police department.

After settling in, Allen is given a case involving a young woman named Hannah Hunt who, after being involved in a strange ice-skating accident, is only capable of speaking in song titles. But was the accident really an accident? And what will the Detective’s reaction be when he discovers that Teri Hickox has actually followed him to Colorado Springs?

These are all questions that you will have to read the book to find out the answers to, and trust me, it’s definitely worth it.

‘Song Girl: A Mystery in Two Verses,’ is a reading experience unlike any other I’ve ever had. Hirshland’s story is one that keeps the reader guessing until the very last page—and makes you want to re-read to see how all of the answers were hinted at from the beginning of the book. This is a five star book that you can sink your teeth into!

About Keith HirshlandSong Girl by Keith Hirshland

Keith Hirshland is an Emmy Award–winning sports television producer with more than three decades of experience producing live and pre-recorded programs that aired on ESPN and ESPN2. Among the first forty people to be hired by the Golf Channel in 1994, Hirshland was in the middle of the action when that network debuted in 1995. He provided his talents for Golf Channel, as its live tournament producer, for two decades. Cover Me Boys, I’m Going In: Tales of the Tube from a Broadcast Brat is a memoir about his experiences in the television industry. Published by Beacon Publishing Group, Cover Me Boys was recognized as the Book Talk Radio Club Memoir of the Year. Hirshland’s second book, and first work of fiction, Big Flies, was published in 2016 and is the recipient of the New Apple Awards “Solo Medalist” in the True Crime Category. Hirshland followed that success with his third book, The Flower Girl Murder. In 2020 Beacon Publishing Group released Murphy Murphy and the Case of Serious Crisis, Hirshland’s third mystery novel. It was a Top Shelf Magazine First Place award winner and was named the Book Talk Radio Club Book of the Year for 2020. Song Girl Hirshland’s fifth book is the sequel to The Flower Girl Murder and was released in January of 2022. 

All five books are available at www.keithhirshland.com,  Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other bookstores.

Keith Hirshland lives in Colorado with his wife and their Pyredoodle Mac. Website: https://www.keithhirshland.com/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/khhauthor Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeithHirshlandAuthor/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/khhauthor/?hl=en

Buy Song Girl by Keith Hirshland

Amazon * Barnes&Noble * IndieBound

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 3 print copies. One for each of 3 winners.

This giveaway is open to Canada and the U.S. only and ends on June 1, 2022 midnight, pacific time.  Entries accepted via Rafflecopter only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Book Review: Girl on the Run by Carolyn Arnold

Shivers tear through her, but she must be brave—for herself, for her future. She grips her coat tighter and steps into the night and the cold, pouring rain. Never to be seen again.

An ordinary Monday morning commute turns deadly when a gunman opens fire in the local train station. Detective Madison Knight rushes to the scene, but she’s too late for the victims. Two women were fatally wounded, including an expectant mother, and one is fighting for her life. But it’s the face of one of the dead that has Madison seeing a ghost from her past. She looks just like Madison’s college friend Courtney Middleton, who vanished over fifteen years ago. If it is her, where has she been all these years, and does her resurfacing have anything to do with the shooting?

Eyewitnesses say that a young woman triggered the incident, but both the shooter and the girl seem to have evaporated into thin air. Mounting evidence suggests they may be part of a drug-trafficking operation, the girl being one of their runners. But Madison’s not so sure the girl is the hardened criminal she appears to be.

As Madison races to track down the young woman, more people turn up murdered, and there’s still no sign of the girl. Is her body out there to find or is she on the run? If the latter, is it due to fear or guilt? Could it simply be that the shooting victims were caught in the crosshairs of organized crime? Madison’s not sure, but she can’t shake her niggling suspicion: what if it was something more than that?

An absolutely gripping and addictive crime thriller. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Lisa Regan, and Rachel Caine.

e-book
Amazon.com | Apple | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Google Play | Amazon Universal

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.

I’ve read several of Carolyn Arnold’s books, and the more I read, the more I enjoy them. Girl on the Run is the eleventh book in the Madison Knight series. I haven’t read all of the books in this series, but they each stand alone.

I find it interesting that I like this series because Madison is not my favorite protagonist. I like when characters are flawed because they’re more realistic, but Madison tends to be a little too aggressive and even rude, and her partner, Terry, often has to smooth things over. She’s also obsessed with the mob and although they often have a part in their cases, she tends to want to pursue that avenue first. Despite Madison’s flaws, she’s fiercely independent and talented and gets the case solved.

I recommend this exciting police procedural especially if you enjoy murder mysteries with many suspects and a plot twist or two.

About the Author

CAROLYN ARNOLD is an international bestselling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has several continuing fiction series and has many published books. Her genre diversity offers her readers everything from police procedurals, hard-boiled mysteries, and thrillers to action adventures. Her crime fiction series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining. This led to her adopting the trademark: POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Carolyn was born in a small town and enjoys spending time outdoors, but she also loves the lights of a big city. Grounded by her roots and lifted by her dreams, her overactive imagination insists that she tell her stories. Her intention is to touch the hearts of millions with her books, to entertain, inspire, and empower.

She currently lives near London, Ontario, Canada with her husband and two beagles.

Book Review: Damaged by Pat Herbert

The year is 1958, the place fashionable Chelsea, London. One famous film star commits suicide, and another famous star is run over. An eminent Harley Street plastic surgeon dies under suspicious circumstances.

When a fading film star decides to undergo plastic surgery to help revive her flagging career, it turns out to be the worst decision of her life, culminating in her eventual suicide.

When people close to her, including her former husband, begin to drop like flies, the plot thickens until all the strands come together in the best Agatha Christie tradition.

My Review

I have read several of Pat Herbert’s books and always enjoy reading them. One thing I’ve learned is not to try to figure out where a story is going.

Damaged started out with typical movie stars who had an image to maintain if at all possible. The characters were all so superficial! Lana, Leon Murray, and Victoria were all movie stars and didn’t seem to have any concerns other than what would further their careers.

Their egos led to some twisted relationships which I found interesting. And so many deaths!

There are several twists in this story. Just when you think you have something or someone figured out, you find out that you don’t. I definitely recommend Damaged for anyone who likes a mystery.

About the Author

Pat Herbert lives in London, England and works as an administrator and receptionist at a private health clinic. She worked previously as PA to the Managing Director of Thomson Books before they were taken over by Penguin.  Pat has written nineteen novels to date.

Other novels by Pat Herbert:

The Rev. Paltoquet supernatural mystery series:

The Bockhampton Road Murders
Haunted Christmas
The Possession of November Jones
The Witches of Wandsworth
So Long at the Fair
The Man Who Was Death
The Dark Side of the Mirror
Sleeping With the Dead
The Corpse Wore Red
Seeing Double

The Barney Carmichael Crime series:

Getting Away with Murder
The Murder in Weeping Lane
The Mop and Bucket Murders

Also by Pat Herbert:

Death Comes Gift Wrapped
The Long Shadow
Once You Kiss a Stranger
Hidden
UnOriginal Sin

“Damaged” by Pat Herbert is available in paperback from Amazon UK at:

This new thriller is also available to download in e-book format at:

Press/media Contact Details:

Darin Jewell (Pat Herbert’s literary agent)
Tel. 0208 292 5163
E-mail: darin@theinspiragroup.com

Book Review & Giveaway: Bunster, An Easter Story by Christine Hwang Panzer

Book Title: Bunster, An Easter Story by Christine Hwang Panzer
Category:  Children’s Fictions (ages 0-3), 16 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Mascot
Release date:   April 5, 2022
Content Rating:  G -Suitable for everyone. 

Book Description:

​Join Bunster as he finds friends in unlikely places as a celebration of Easter!

PRE-ORDER THE BOOK:
Mascot
Amazon ~ B&N ~ Target
add to goodreads

My Review

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

This is a sweet book with beautiful illustrations. The story is about Bunster and his friends, new and old. I was disappointed that Easter wasn’t mentioned except for in the title. When I read this book to my grandson this weekend, I think I’ll focus on the animals rather than it being an Easter book.

Children will enjoy the illustrations and since it’s a board book, they can play with it themselves. Unfortunately, I don’t think new readers will be able to read the font, so it will be up to adults to read it to them.

About the Author

Christine is an artist that dabbles in storytelling and enjoys working in different mediums including marker, ink, watercolors and colored pencil. She enjoys drawing fantasy creatures, anthropomorphic animals, and kids. She lives with her husband, Ian and sweet black kitty, Kida in the Bay Area, California and likes to take walks, go out driving, and play video games and board games with her friends.

connect with the author: instagram ~ goodreads

Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy of BUNSTER: AN EASTER STORY
(one winner/USA only)

Gleam

Follow the Tour

April 5 – Working Mommy Journal – book review / giveaway
April 5 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review / giveaway
April 5 – Cover Lover Book Review – book review / giveaway
April 5 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 5 – fundinmental – book spotlight / giveaway
April 6 – Character Madness and Musing – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
April 6 – Kam’s Place – book spotlight
April 6 – Library Lady’s Kid Lit – book review / giveaway
April 6 – Triquetra Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
​April 6 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway
April 6 – Chit Chat with Charity – book review / author interview / giveaway

April 7 – Older & Smarter? – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 7 – Gina Rae Mitchell – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 7 – She Just Loves Books – book review / giveaway
​April 7 –
 Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
April 8 – My Reading Getaway – book review / author interview / giveaway
April 8 – Writer with Wanderlust – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 8 – Westveil Publising – book review / giveaway
April 11 – Splashes of Joy – book review / giveaway
April 11 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
April 11 – Lisa’s Reading – book review / giveaway
April 12 – Reading is My Passion – book review
April 12 – Book Vue – book spotlight
April 13 – Pause for Tales – book review / giveaway
April 13 – The Phantom Paragrapher – book review / giveaway
April 14 – I’m Into Books – book review / giveaway
April 14 – Lamon Reviews – book review / author interview / giveaway
April 14 – Ravenz Reviewz – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 15 – Captive Dreams Window – book review / giveaway
April 15 – Sefina Hawke’s Books – book spotlight
April 15 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
April 15 – Faith And Books – book review / giveaway

Book Review: Ant Trails & Butterfly Dreams: A Story About Happiness by Selwa Berbawy Hamati

Title: Ant Trails and Butterfly Dreams
Subtitle: A Story About Happiness
Category: Children’s Literature
Author: Selwa Berbawy Hamati
Illustrator: Michelle Gamble
Pages: 38
Binding: Softcover and Hardcover editions
Digital eBook: Available Kindle, Nook, iBook

About the Book

Arney the Ant feels sad and wants to be happy like his three buddies, Manny Monarch,
Terry Swallowtail, and Breezy Bee. His friends explain how he can use a super magical
trick to easily switch from sad to happy. Soon, Arney uses the magic trick and he, too,
becomes happy – and the garden is full of glee. In this gorgeously colorful world, the four
friends teach readers how to “choose” to be happy.

My Review

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

This children’s story is a great way to teach children to worry less and to take control of their emotions. Two caterpillars and a bee help Arney the ant to realize that he can control how he’s feeling no matter what is going on around him.

When the caterpillars tell Arney that they’re leaving for a while but that they’ll be back as beautiful butterflies, he misses them but reminds himself that they’ll be back. They do come back, and Arney realizes that they’ve taught him a wonderful lesson about happiness being a choice.

Not only is this a good story but the illustrations are gorgeous with vibrant colors. Even the pages are bright colors rather than plain white!

About the Author

Selwa is the author of the new book Real Resilience –
Once Upon a Pandemic, Once Upon A Recessio
n, and
co-author of 7 Keys to Freedom, and 10 Powerful
Women
. It is her passion to help as many people as
possible to achieve their goals and dreams in order to
live a life full of abundance, happiness, and selffulfillment. She is committed to spreading happiness to
children around the world. Ant Trails and Butterfly
Dreams — A Story About Happiness
is her first
children’s book. Upcoming projects include an
additional booklet and companion workbook, which
are based on Real Resilience and other projects that will support her passion to help
others.

Author Website: http://www.Real-Resilience.com

About the Illustrator

Michelle Gamble is an award-winning author,
publisher, screenwriter, and fine artist. She
began painting and studying art in high school
and college. Today, she specializes in
watercolors. She illustrated Ant Trails and
Butterfly Dreams with the intention to create a
colorful world that both children and adults
alike could appreciate. For more information, please visit her website for 3L Publishing at
http://www.3LPublishing.com

Short Story Review: Faster by Calvin Demmer

Brock Johnson made a deal to return home from the war—alive. It’s a contract that follows him throughout his days, a contract he can’t escape. Or can he? One night on the road, he must decide whether to keep running or surrender. . . Either choice has its price.

A short story.

My Review

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

What a creepy short story! I’ve read The Town that Feared Dusk and The Sea Was a Fair Master by Calvin Demmer so I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed. The thing is that you never know quite what you’re going to get when you start reading one of his stories.

This story starts with Brock picking up a girl on the side of the road and offering to give her a ride to work. She’s happy to get a ride…until she isn’t. I kind of felt sorry for Brock, but he did get himself into this mess. Will he ever choose to stop running?

I liked this story, but I tend to like horror. If you’re looking for something short to read and you enjoy horror, you can’t miss with this one!

About the Author

Calvin Demmer is the author of The Sea Was a Fair Master and Dark Celebrations. When not writing, he is intrigued by that which goes bump in the night and the sciences of our universe.

Website: http://www.calvindemmer.com
Twitter: CalvinDemmer

Audiobook Review: The Cabin Below by N.L. Hinkens

What happens on the water, stays on the water.

Or so they thought. Allison and her handsome, charismatic husband, Doug, are on a Caribbean cruise to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary. But the steady stream of idyllic photos and happy hashtags they post online is hiding a dangerous rift in their relationship. Allison has long suspected that Doug is having an affair. Despite his impassioned denials and smooth-talking alibis, she’s unconvinced of his innocence and determined to dig for the truth, no matter the cost. And she’s not the only one delving into their secrets. The couple they’ve befriended on the cruise has been watching them. And they’ve come to a disturbing conclusion of their own. When Allison disappears the night before the ship docks back in Florida, they bring their terrifying suspicions to the police.

My Review

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

I didn’t care for these relationships. Doug and Allison have a troubled marriage and although they are supposed to be on the cruise to celebrate their anniversary and to move on, it doesn’t seem that either of them truly believes that the cruise will help. Their new friends are also celebrating their anniversary. They profess to have a good marriage but all he does is drink. And then there was the head of security and his girlfriend…there’s not one good relationship!

It took me a little while to get into this book, but I’m glad I stuck with it. The second half was suspenseful with some twists.

The narrator did a good job with timing and pace. I was able to differentiate between men and women but not the specific person, but it worked out fine.

This is the second book I’ve read by this author, and I look forward to reading more.

About the Author

NYT and USA Today bestselling author Norma Hinkens writes psychological suspense thrillers in domestic settings, as well as fast-paced science fiction and fantasy about spunky heroines and epic adventures in dangerous worlds. She’s also a travel junkie, legend lover, and idea wrangler, in no particular order. She grew up in Ireland, land of make-believe and the original little green man. In her spare time she retreats to rural Idaho to hike, bike and boat, but mostly to eavesdrop on mountain men and prepare for the apocalypse. If you like heart-stopping sagas, gritty heroines, and twists you won’t see coming, then you’ll love her turbo-paced thrill-rides! Join her VIP Reader Club for hot new releases, stellar giveaways, exclusive content, behind the scenes and more!

Website

Book Review: Caleb’s Crop by Evelyn Rainey

Giles thinks his big brother Caleb can do anything. He knows how to say just the right things to make their mother smile. He knows how to milk cows and build chicken coops. Most importantly, Caleb knows how to read, and taught Giles how to read, too.  Now Giles and Caleb have immigrated with their mother to a farming planet where no one else knows how to read!  

Amazon

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.

This science fiction book for children is imaginative and teaches the importance of reading. Caleb and Giles move a fourth time to a new planet with their mom. The people in town soon learn that the boys can read, and they want their children to learn to read as well. Apparently, so much is automated and voice activated, that reading isn’t as essential as it once was.

I liked the story, and the illustrations by Susan Krupp are gorgeous with vibrant colors. And it’s my favorite kind of story: one that is cute but also teaches a lesson. This is definitely a book that would be great for any child’s library.

When Caleb’s family arrived
After the success of the school

About the Author

Evelyn Rainey has always loved to tell stories and help others understand. As such, she is a published author and educator. But she is also the caregiver of her mother, an herb and vegetable gardener, cat wrangler, and crochet artist. She is in the process of obtaining her Masters in Biblical Studies. 
 

After 38 years in education, Evelyn retired, having earned degrees and certificates in Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Gifted Education, Integrated Middle School Curriculum, English for Speakers of Other Languages, and Journalism. She also taught all grade levels from Kindergarten through Adult and at many different facilities, including jails and teen pregnancy centers.   

Evelyn has had several books published including science fiction, fantasy, historical fiction, new age urban fantasy, and children’s books.  She currently has a list of a dozen new projects she plans to have published over the next few years. She has facilitated writer groups and been guest speaker and guest author at writer conferences and conventions throughout the southeast US.   

Her love of teaching has expanded into videos for book trailers, crochet lessons, meditations, and Bible studies. Her love of writing has expanded into managing ShelteringTree.Earth, LLC Publishing.  

She loves corresponding with readers and authors and is available for conferences and other book events in person or through online meetings.  

Website

Book Review: Would You Rather? by Sheryl Green

I received a free e-copy of Funny Kids Book by Sheryl Green which contains three separate books that she’s written. The second one I read is Knock Knock Jokes, which is the one I’m reviewing today:

Are you looking for screen-free entertainment for your kids? Search no more, Would You Rather for Kids is the ultimate game book for parties, road trips, sleepovers and more. This interactive book for kids includes more than 200 questions spread over 4 different levels that guarantees hours of fun for the whole family!In this book the most hilarious and witty answers are rewarded. Challenge your kids to see who can come up with the funniest and most creative explanations to win the game!

  • Over 200 silly, and thought provoking questions for the entire family.
  • A great family game to get your kids thinking and expressing themselves.
  • Clean, family-friendly and school appropriate humor
  • Perfect for classroom fun time!
  • Excellent conversation starter
  • Ideal travel game, works amazingly on long car rides
  • Kid tested!
  • The best kids activity book for boys and girls ages 6 to 12!

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.

What a fun game book! This game has four sections of questions where a winner for each question is chosen by a designated judge. The four sections are:

  • The Land of Silly. Example: Would you rather live in a mushroom with the Smurfs or in a pineapple under the sea with SpongeBob SquarePants?
  • The Gross Challenge. Example: Would you rather eat your toenails or eat your ear wax? (YUCK)
  • The Fun Catch. Example: Would you rather visit the International Space Station or an underwater hotel?
  • The Impossible Choice. Example: Would you rather be the funniest person alive or the smartest person alive?

This is a great book for a family to enjoy together. It would be a lot of fun on a long road trip. It would also be good for when friends get together or even in the classroom.

About the Author

A mother of 4 beautiful children and content editor by trade, Sheryl Green set out to write children’s books that her own kids would love and enjoy.

Book Review: Elvin and Brayden, Friends Forever by Sandra Morrison

Would you like to teach your child the importance of family values and true friendship?

Look no further! This adorable friendship book for kids is the right choice for you!

Bonds between friends and family members require many social skills, such as accepting diversity, trusting others, feeling confident, helping, and sharing.

This lovely children’s book about pets shows your child the secret of true friendship and the importance of family.

Kids will enjoy the adventures of two quite different mice: one lost and the other homeless. The mice realize they both need the same thing – a true friend and a family.

This book offers many positives:

  • teaches children to make friends, help others in need, share, accept differences, and understand the importance of family
  • tells the adventures of two mice searching for a home
  • contains fun illustrations and rhymes
  • suits toddlers and preschool kids, as well as elementary children

Since there are so many children’s friendship books on the market, choosing the right one for your youngster is a challenge. The strong connection between friendship and family values is what makes this adventure book about animals unique.

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.

Elvin is a lucky pet mouse owned by a boy named Connor who loves him dearly. When Elvin accidentally ends up outside, he meets Brayden, a skeptical mouse who doesn’t trust anyone. Elvin ends up learning how important friends are, and he and Connor show Brayden friendship and love. He learns to trust again and has a new family!

This cute story about friendship is told in rhymes and the illustrations are bright and colorful. Children will learn the importance of friendship and helping others. There is also a note from the author at the end of the book about the importance of friends and family and a maze for children.

About the Author

Sandra Morrison lives in Chicago, IL, USA. She is a kindergarten teacher and a mom of two, Zach and Chester. Surrounded by children at work and home, Sandra always tries to find new ways to amuse and educate them.

A lover of fairy tales, Sandra has found them helpful on many occasions – to teach the children moral lessons, to entertain them, or to calm them before going to bed. As time went by, Sandra noticed that her sons knew all the stories by heart. This called for some new tales!

Using her imagination and natural gift for storytelling, Sandra created an adventure of two mice. Her sons, kindergarten students, and school parents loved the tale! So Sandra decided to share her story with even more children, all around the world.

Website