Book Review & Giveaway: Medellin: Acapulco Cold ( Rick Fontain Book 3) by Bill Fortin

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Publisher:  Cold War Publications (May, 2019)
Category: Action/Adventure, Cold War, Military, Crime, Historical Fiction
Tour dates: July/August, 2019
ISBN: 978-0996478670
Available in Print and ebook, 356 pages

 Medellin Acapulco Cold

In March 1987, the CIA’s Operation Acapulco Cold took on the Medellín cartel. The journey would be dangerous. The alternative for not recovering the nuke would be too horrible to imagine.  

A theft occurs as a result of President Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev’s treaty agreement in January 1986. Russian SS-20 medium-range missiles were removed from Eastern Europe and their nuclear MIRV packages removed. A shadow group inside the failing Russian government steals three of the nose-cone assembles.

A Russian named Geonov is charged with selling one of these devices to the Medellin cartel. The asking price was $40 million dollars in cash. Pablo Escobar did not even blink when he was offered one.  Operation Acapulco Cold is the detailed action taken by the CIA to address this life-altering situation.

Buy Medellin: Acapulco Cold

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Guest Review by Sol A.

An absolute thrill ride from start to finish– I’ve been a fan of the Rick Fontain books from the very first novel and this installment (the third in the series) did not disappoint.  Action-packed and jam-packed with well written, fast-paced sequences, “Medellin: Acapulco Cold” follows Fontain on his quest to recover a stolen nuclear warhead. 

Set in 1987 during the height of the Cold War, ‘Medellin’ perfectly captures the fear and loathing of that ever-present 80’s boogeyman, the Russians. Fontain has to go to work finding the warhead while simultaneously battling the Russians and struggling internally with his own guilt over being partially responsible for the lapse in security in the first place. I don’t want to spoil anything, so I won’t go too far into the details, but let’s just say that Fontain’s character develops very interestingly throughout the novel and by the end, I was impressed by the author’s ingenuity and creativity. 


Speaking of the author, one of the things I love so much about these books (and the reason I never miss a new one) is Bill Fortin’s cutting sense of humor and talent with words. In his capable hands, a novel that easily could have been another dry spy novel becomes a witty romp. You grow to like Fontain’s character very quickly in these novels for the simple reason that he is a funny guy. Something a lot of thrillers inexplicably leave out for their main character. 


The situations that Fontain gets himself into, the circumstances that he faces with humor and presence are enough to entertain even the most lackadaisical reader and keep them guessing up until the very last page. I cannot recommend this book highly enough and will be eagerly looking forward to the next installment of the Rick Fontain series! I give it a 5 out of 5.

About the Author

Bill Fortin served in the United States Army, 3rd Armored Division, from 1968 to 1970.  He retired from AT&T/Lucent Bell Labs in 2001 and is currently the CEO of Cold War Publications. Bill earned a Bachelor and Master degrees in Management Sciences from the University of Baltimore.

A native of Westminster, Maryland, Bill is an active member of Rotary and retains membership in the Association of the 3AD. He is married to Judy and is surrounded by a host of 4-legged children (Border Collies and cats) plus 2 very noisy feathered companions.

Website: www.coldwarpublications.com
Book Launch Website: https://booklaunch.io/704732506290559/medellin-acapulco-cold
Blog: http://billfortin.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bill.fortin.104
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BillFortin

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 3 winners choice of one print or ebook copy of the book. Print is open to the U.S. only and ebook is available worldwide. This giveaway ends August 30, 2019, midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Playing with a Lion’s Testicles? Really?

Another actual book that I had to look up on Amazon out of curiosity. Playing with a lion’s testicles is an African saying that means to take foolhardy chances.

 

Description from Amazon (sounds like a good read): 

Melissa, an exhausted executive from the city seeks meaning and purpose from her work, and volunteers for a Big Five conservation project in South Africa. Her boss, an over-zealous ranger, nicknamed the Drill Sergeant, has no patience for city folk, especially if they’re women, and tries to send her packing on day one. But Melissa stands her ground with grit and determination, however shaky it may be.

Conflict soon sets the pace with a cast filled with predatory cats, violent elephants, and an on-going battle of wits with the Drill Sergeant. Even Mother Nature pounds the reserve with the worst storm in a century. But the most enduring and profound conflict is the internal battle going on within Melissa, as she tries to come to terms with the guilt surrounding her mother’s death. When death grips the game reserve, it is the very animals Melissa has come to save that end up saving her.

For the reader who has ever dreamed of going to Africa or knows the pain of loss and guilt, LEARNING TO PLAY WITH A LION’S TESTICLES will fill your soul.

Book Review: The Secret of the Lost Pharaoh by Carolyn Arnold

Book Title: THE SECRET OF THE LOST PHARAOH

Author: Carolyn Arnold

Series: Matthew Connor Adventure series, Book 2

 

Emerald Tablets. Myth says that they possess the knowledge of the universe, allowing humankind to traverse Heaven and Earth, and have the power to bestow wealth and wisdom upon whoever possesses them. But if they fall into evil hands, it could cause a global disaster.

So when a former colleague stumbles across an ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic map that promises to lead to a pharaoh’s tomb and the Emerald Tablets, there’s no way he’s turning down her invitation to join the dig. He only has one stipulation: his best friends Robyn Garcia and Cal Myers come with him.

The road ahead isn’t going to be an easy one, and their shared dream of recovering the Emerald Tablets is being crushed at every turn. And just when they think it’s all over, they learn there are a few clues they have overlooked. But they’re no longer the only ones searching for the Tablets. Now, the fate of the world hangs in the balance, and soon they’ll find out that when it comes to hunting legends, they can’t trust anyone.

Buy Links

Amazon US   *   Amazon International   *   Barnes & Noble

Apple iBooks    *   Kobo   *   Google Play

 

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 is the second book in the Matthew Connor Adventure series. Since I’d read the first book, City of Gold, I was looking forward to reading this book.

Matthew Connor is a world-renowned explorer and when he is contacted by a former colleague about possibly finding an unknown pharaoh’s tomb, he’s ready to take a plane to Egypt the following day. Because of the intrigue of such a find, he’s able to talk his best friends, Robyn and Cal, into going with him even though their last adventure had been so dangerous. 

The Secret of the Lost Pharaoh is full of adventure and with that adventure is, of course, danger. It also has murder, mystery, and suspense. The characters are unique and interesting but they irritated me a little at times. There’s a love triangle, kind of, that made me think of teenagers rather than adults. And although Cal has the right to be scared at times, his negativity doesn’t help things. They had their good points too, though. I like Cal’s sense of humor even though it isn’t appreciated by the others most of the time. 

I enjoy Carolyn Arnold’s writing and look forward to the next Matthew Connor book. If you like adventure and suspense, you’ll like these books.

 

 

Excerpt

Excerpt from chapter 9 of The Secret of the Lost Pharaoh (Matthew Connor Adventure series)

 

Robyn had woken up in a hotel room in Cairo. The time difference had messed with her and disrupted her sleep, but she was infused with energy regardless. Or her mind was anyhow. One of her lifelong dreams had finally manifested. She was really in Egypt. At the moment, she was in the hotel restaurant with Cal and Matthew, their luggage beside their table. Matthew’s contact, Alex Leonard, was going to pick them up in the lobby about seven o’clock. They had about half an hour until then.

Robyn sucked back her coffee, hoping that the caffeine would jolt her body into submission.

“Are you going to make it?” Cal quirked an eyebrow, looking at her over his mug.

I’m in Egypt.

“Of course, I will.” She found herself smiling despite her exhaustion.

“Maybe we should have skipped the nightcap,” Matthew teased and smiled back at her. She envied how rested he looked. He was drinking coffee, too, but didn’t have a death grip on his mug like she and Cal did.

“No.” She shook her head. “Being here deserved a toast…or two.”

“I can’t believe I didn’t think of this until now, especially with everything going on with Sophie, but don’t pharaohs’ tombs have curses?” Cal asked out of nowhere. “I know there was one on King Tut’s tomb.” His words relayed more concern than his expression, but maybe that was just because he wasn’t awake enough to project it. He was prone to paranoia, though.

Maybe she could have some fun with this…

Robyn turned to Matthew. “Is now a good time to tell him that curses are standard for Egyptian tombs?”

Matthew frowned. “Probably not.”

“What?” Cal leaned across the table and threw his arms up in the air. “Are you guys being serious?”

Now he was waking up. It took all of Robyn’s self-control not to burst out laughing. What she had said was the truth, but reality had a way of invalidating the curses’ sway.

Cal scowled, and his shoulders sank. “You think I’m being crazy.”

Matthew pinched his fingers together, leaving a small space between them. “Just a little.”

Robyn glanced at Matthew. His belief that some ancient tablets had the power to destroy the world was about as far-fetched as any pharaoh’s curse. Not that she was going to voice her disbelief out loud at the risk of hurting him the way she had in her office.

 

 

 

About the Author

CAROLYN ARNOLD is an international bestselling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has four continuing fiction series—Detective Madison Knight, Brandon Fisher FBI, McKinley Mysteries, and Matthew Connor Adventures—and has written nearly thirty books. Her genre diversity offers her readers everything from cozy to hard-boiled mysteries, and thrillers to action adventures.

Both her female detective and FBI profiler series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining, leading her to adopt 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 in London Ontario with her husband and beagle and is a member of Crime Writers of Canada and Sisters in Crime.

Connect with CAROLYN ARNOLD Online:

Websitehttp://carolynarnold.net/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/Carolyn_Arnold

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolynArnold

 

And don’t forget to sign up for her newsletter for up-to-date information on release and special offers at http://carolynarnold.net/newsletters.

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Blog Tour: Twenty-One Steps of Courage by Sarah Bates

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Publisher: Booklocker.com, Inc.  (Mar 31, 2012)
Category: Literary Fiction, Military Fiction, Adventure, Realistic Fiction
Tour dates: Feb/Mar, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-61434-957-0
Available in Print, ebook, & Audiobook 280 pages

From award-winning author. In 2006, with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan raging, Rod Strong enlists in the Army to achieve the goal his father sought before he tragically died in the Gulf War. His objective: The Old Guard regiment, the elite Soldiers who stand as Sentinels at the Tomb of the Unknown in Arlington National Cemetery. Rod overcomes the obstacles that litter his path until an unexpected firefight in Afghanistan changes his life forever.

Purchase Links

 Amazon   *   Barnes&Noble   *   Book Depository   *   IndieBound

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Guest Review by Kate M.

When you first pick up ‘Twenty-One Steps Of Courage’, you may think it is biography of a soldier.   The detail in the research Sarah Bates did make it feel that way.  However, it is a work of fiction that would appeal to those who like to read biographies, military fiction and non-fiction.

Rod Strong’s father dies in the Gulf War when he is young but his stories have stuck with Rod all through his childhood.  Especially those of his father serving his country.  Rod makes up his mind that he wants to be a soldier just like his dad.  His father shared his dream of someday becoming a Sentinel Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown in Arlington National Cemetery.  He never accomplished this dream, due to his death.

On his 18th birthday, Rod enlists in the Army.  His ultimate goal is to accomplish what his father was unable to do.  However, first he wants to follow in his father’s footsteps and do all of the training that he did.  His mother is upset when he told her he enlisted.  His older brother is already in the army, serving in Afghanistan.  Rod’s girlfriend, Beth, is not surprised when he tells her that he enlisted.  He talked about his dreams a lot with her but promised they would marry one day.

The details of Rod’s training were very detailed and kept me glued to the book.  I read the ebook which is a good thing, because the cover and pages would have bent and creased with my grip!  The book read like a movie in my mind and I felt like I was in it.  The characters are well written and the sense of place is bang on. This book is a masterpiece and should be made into a movie!  I highly recommend it for all!

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About the Author

Award winning author, Sarah Bates’ fiction has appeared in the Greenwich Village Literary Review, the San Diego North County Times (now the Union-Tribune) and the literary magazine Bravura.

She is the author of ‘The Lost Diaries of Elizabeth Cady Stanton’, published in 2016, and co-author of the 2005 short story collection, ‘Out of Our Minds, Wild Stories’ by Wild Women. Bates was an English Department writing tutor at Palomar College in California for ten years. She privately tutors academic and creative writing students and is writing a new novel.

She is a Military Category Finalist for ‘Twenty-One Steps of Courage’, Next Generation Indie Book Awards, (2013) and 2nd Place Finalist, for ‘The Lost Diaries of Elizabeth Cady Stanton’, Unpublished Novel-Category, San Diego Book Awards (2015). It has since been published.

Sarah Bates lives in Fallbrook, California.

Website: http://www.sarahbatesauthor.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bateswriter
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sarahbatesauthor/

 

 

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Book Review & Giveaway: The Adventures of Popcorn and Jellybean by Robert Gillespie

 

Book Title: The Adventures of Popcorn and Jellybean by Robert Gillespie
Category: Children’s Fiction, 48 pages
Genre: Fantasy / Nature
Publisher: Page Publishing
Release date: July 2017
Tour dates: Jan 22 to Feb 2, 2018
Content Rating: G

 

Book Description

Popcorn and Jellybean had never ventured down the path beyond the big tree. But since they never really did anything exciting, and even though it made them a little nervous at first, they decided it would be a fun adventure for a couple of days. What could possibly go wrong? Plenty, as it turned out, if the explorers were not prepared! Join them as they take on new challenges each day, learn how to survive by following the behaviors of the animals they encounter, and go where Mother Nature leads them. And who knows, maybe we could learn as well! 

Buy the Book:
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My Review

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

The Adventures of Popcorn and Jellybean is a fun book for children but it also teaches about nature. Popcorn and Jellybean are bored so they decide to go on an adventure. They’ve never been further than the big tree so they decide to pack up their tent and some supplies and go on an adventure for a couple of days. They get lost and end up spending five days in the forest rather than just two.

During their adventure, Popcorn and Jellybean learn to watch the animals to see what is safe to eat. Even though they’re lost, they learn that they don’t need to be scared and can take care of themselves until they find their way home.

The Adventures of Popcorn and Jellybean is a fun book for children to read or for parents to read as a bedtime story.

 

About the Author

 
Bob has spent more than 13 years as a wildlife conservation educator sharing information and animal encounters with audiences of all ages. He has a passion for teaching about a wide range of topics nature related and loves passing it along to his two sons. His youngest son, Colton, was the inspiration behind The Adventures of Popcorn and Jellybean, where it all started as a simple bedtime story. Bob currently resides in Carlsbad, California, and works as a professional interpreter guide at a world-renowned conservation organization.
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Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook
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Enter the Giveaway!

Ends Feb 10, 2018

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Audiobook Review: The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda

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Author: Jake G. Panda

Narrators: Full Cast

Length: 2 hours 34 minutes

Publisher: Woolly Family Studios

Released: Oct. 3, 2016

Genre: Family Audio Drama

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Listen up. If you’re looking for trouble, you’ve found it. His name’s Jake G. Panda and he’s a wildlife investigator. This hard-boiled bear works at a flophouse for endangered critters called the Last Resort. He’s the hotel snoop. The resident fuzz. It’s his job to keep these unusual guests safe and outta harm’s way.

This hilarious first installment of The Endangered Files is a wild and woolly mystery involving a missing guest, a green bird, and a bunch of double-crossing critters all hot on the trail of The Cursed Dodo. It’s designed to introduce young listeners to the subject of endangered species in a fun and informative way.

So join this tough talking panda detective and a cast of endangered creatures on a globe-trotting audio adventure that will appeal to young and old alike.

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Amazon *  PulpRadio.net

 

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Jake G. Panda is a wildlife investigator. A hardboiled Winnie-the-Pooh. He likes bamboo and saving endangered animals. He is the author of The Endangered Files, a mystery series about his misadventures in the protection business.

His partner in crime, the fella who helps write these books because, let’s be honest, it’s not easy typing with big, clunky bear paws, resides somewhere in New England. He has written his fair share of stuff, mostly for the big screen. And some of it has actually been projected. He likes to keep a low profile and lets Jake do all the talking.

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I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Jake G. Panda. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

What a fun book to listen to! Jake Panda is a detective in the business of protecting endangered species. He may look like a cuddly panda, but he’s more of a hardboiled detective,  the animal version of Philip Marlowe, Sam Spade, or Mike Hammer. 

This is a fun way to introduce young readers/listeners to endangered species as well a popular genre of fiction. Even though it’s written more for children, adults may enjoy listening to it as well. The author is creative and has a unique sense of humor.

Listening to The Case of the Cursed Dodo is almost like listening to a movie. The one thing that wasn’t necessary, though, was the recap of the previous chapter at the beginning of each chapter. The different voices and the sound effects make it fun to listen to and more exciting than many audiobooks.

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Book Review: Without a Doubt by L. J. Greatrex

Following the tragic disappearance of his parents and unborn sibling, Jimmy Giddion is torn from his life in the States to a solitary existence in Africa. During these formative years, he discovers a rare talent for computer hacking and decides to use his skills to find his family, but is soon thrown into a world of corruption embroiled in modern-day diamond mine claim jumping. With the reward for his deception intact and his newly-found ally Paul Max, he embarks on an expedition that fires his imagination as a more sinister element to his family’s last encounter is unearthed.

 

My Review

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

Jimmy Giddion is a world class hacker and has been hired to infiltrate a diamond company and set it up so that the Mafia can take over the company. Because Jimmy actually has to be an employee of the company, it’s suspenseful since he could be discovered at any time. 

Even though Jimmy breaks the law for a living, it’s hard not to like him especially since the money he earns is going to be used to help him find out what happened to his family. Everyone is sure that they were killed but he wants to find out how and why. He has met a new hacker friend who is impressed with Jimmy and vows to help him find answers.

Without a Doubt is full of mystery, adventure, and lots of suspense. Descriptions of Africa were very good. It’s always a plus to me when an author can describe mountains, landscapes, etc., without too much detail but with enough detail that I can picture it.

I definitely recommend Without a Doubt for anyone who likes suspense and adventure.

 

About the Author

J. Greatrex was born one of three siblings in a small village in the Midlands, having only moved around the same village three times with just a small break when living in West Kirby on the Wirral. L. J.’s career began with General Electric and progressed through to the financial sector of the steel Industry, spending the most recent years with a classic car parts company and today as their Financial Health Consultant.

Over many years traveling the globe with family and friends for pleasure, the ideas developed and used in the Hackers series (which includes Conscious Revenge, Payback and Just Deserts), have been in part attributed to these experiences; that and a vivid imagination has helped create the characters and situations in these three novels.

 

Excerpt

 ‘Got ya, you bastards’, I thought, as at last the whole plan seemed crystal clear. I was ecstatic, overwhelmed, sad, angry, but mostly relieved that after all of this time I finally had a clearer picture, one which I now knew not only involved my parents, but in a weird twist of fate myself. I had unwittingly become the perpetrator of their scam, helping these mongrels to continue to claim jump long after their involvement in my parents’ disappearance. I now saw how difficult this task would have been for my uncle, as without the technology and expertise of a hacker he would have had no chance of success. I suddenly became grateful to have been given the gift, one that at last had unravelled the whole sorry mess. It only left two things now to do, decide what to do about it and discover their resting place!

 

 

“Without A Doubt” by L. J. Greatrex is available in paperback and e-book from Amazon UK and from Amazon US.

 

Press/Media Contact Details:

 Contact:  Darin Jewell (L. J. Greatrex’s literary agent)
Managing Director
The Inspira Group Literary Agency
London, UK
darin@theinspiragroup.com
tel. UK +208 292 5163

The Amazon US purchase link in this post is an affiliate link. Purchasing through it helps sustain Bound 4 Escape.