Book Review & Giveaway: Diary of an Adorable Fat Girl by Bernice Bloom

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Mary Brown is funny, gorgeous and bonkers. She’s also about six stone overweight. When she realises she can’t cross her legs, has trouble bending over to tie her shoelaces without wheezing like an elderly chain-smoker, and discovers that even her hands and feet look fat, it’s time to take action. But what action? She’s tried every diet under the sun.
This is the hysterical story of what happens when Mary joins ‘Fat Club’ where she meets a cast of funny characters and one particular man who catches her eye.
The story is laugh-out-loud funny and will resonate with anyone who has dieted, tried to keep up with any sort of exercise programme or spent 10 minutes in a changing room trying to extricate herself from a way-too-small garment that she ambitiously tried on and is now completely stuck in.

Bernice Bloom is the big, new name in comedy writing…this is the first full-length novel after her series of laugh-out-loud mini books.

Purchase from Amazon UK or Amazon US.

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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.

Having been overweight all of my life, I can appreciate both the humor in Diary of an Adorable Fat Girl as well as the horror of realizing that she’s in an embarrassing predicament because of her size. Some of Mary’s situations are hilarious but serious issues are brought up as well. Everyone in Mary’s Fat Club already knows that eating is an emotional response but facing the original triggers and having someone they can call when they’re about to overeat helps, just as AA helps an alcoholic. 

I enjoyed Diary of an Adorable Fat Girl. I was a little disappointed in Mary at times, not because of her low self-esteem but because of her sabotaging a good relationship because of that low self-esteem.  She’s so strong in some ways and has a great sense of humor and I was so proud when she made the right choices when eating out. It can be so difficult! Go Mary!

I hope there will be more stories about Mary’s struggles and triumphs.

 

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About the Author

Hello, my name is Bernice Bloom and I am a writer (I write light-hearted rom-com style novels and also work as a magazine journalist and advertising copywriter) and jewellery designer. My recent series of novels is called ‘Adorable Fat Girl’ and it features a heavily overweight woman called Mary Brown. She is bright, funny, friendly and bonkers. She’s also fat. The books blend the comedy of her efforts to lose weight with a more serious backstory about what happened to her in the past that had led to the issues that make her prone to over-eating. I’m fascinated that there are so few overweight heroines in literature. Women can be manipulative, evil, even murderers in fiction, but not fat! Certainly not fat and beautiful with loads of friends! Then along came Mary and she’s developed quite a fan base of people who love the fact that the heroine is large. She gets lots of letters and I have ended up taking her on lots of adventures!

Social Media Links –

https://www.facebook.com/BerniceBloombooks/

https://twitter.com/Bernice1Bloom

https://www.instagram.com/bernicebloomwriter/?hl=en

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Giveaway

Win a Daisy Bracelet and Earring set created by Bernice Bloom (Open Internationally).

 

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter link below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

 

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c6949469/

 

 

 

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Book Review & Giveaway: Ghost Owl by Nancy Schoellkopf

 

Book Title: Ghost Owl by Nancy Schoellkopf
Category: Adult Fiction, 181 pages
Genre: Literary / Women’s Fiction with magical realism
Publisher: Butterfly Tree Publishing
Release date: October 2017
Tour dates: Nov 20 to Dec 8, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 (There are a few non-explicit sex scenes)

 

Book Description:

Ghost Owl is a magical story of discovery, as a young woman seeks to understand her potential and confront her own shadow. Mariah Easter wakes up in the middle of the night to discover the world is as bright as noon—but for her eyes only. Urged by her godfather, she embarks on a mission to peer into the dark spaces normally hidden from view, leading her to confront the sinister nature of power, the vulnerability of the ill, and the hidden life of a homeless man: a journey that will bring healing to herself and the man she loves.

This compelling and inspirational tale, the third installment of the Avian Series, invites the reader to ponder the extraordinary treasures hidden in the ordinary events of daily life.

To read reviews, please visit Nancy Schoellkopf’s page on iRead Book Tours.

 

Buy the Book:

 Amazon

 

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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. I had read Red-Tailed Hawk and Yellow-Billed Magpie and I was looking forward to reading another book in Nancy Schoellkopf’s Avian series.
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Mariah’s story began in the Red-Tailed Hawk. Even though this is a continuation of her story, this book can definitely be read as a stand-alone. It is quite a bit stranger than the first two books which just had a touch of fantasy.
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Mariah disappears one day after she realizes she has some kind of new power. She tries to figure out exactly what is going on while at the same time, her roommate, mom, stepbrother, and godfather are all trying to find her.
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Mariah’s journey has revelations but at the same time, it was confusing for me. There are still things that I’m not quite sure about. I did like how it ended but I enjoyed the first two books in this series better.

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 Meet the Author

 
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Nancy Schoellkopf is the author of the Avian Series of novels including Yellow-Billed Magpie and Red-Tailed Hawk, as well as the short story collection Rover and Other Magical Tales. She has been telling stories and writing poems for many lifetimes. It goes without saying that she’s needed a second income, so this time around she happily taught amazing children in special education classes in two urban school districts in Sacramento, California. A full time writer now, she enjoys lavishing attention on her cats, her garden and her intriguing circle of family and friends.

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

 

 Enter the Giveaway

Ends Dec 16 
  

a Rafflecopter giveaway 

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

 

Book Review & Giveaway: Beyond Forever by D.D. Marx

 Book Title: Beyond Forever (Book #3)

Author: D.D. Marx
Category: Adult Fiction, 200 pages
Genre: Chick-Lit
Publisher: Beyond Dreams Publishing
Release date: December 2017
Tour dates: Oct 16 to Dec 22, 2017
Content Rating: PG 13 (Light sex scenes/not explicit; language (couple f bombs)

Book Description

Just as their life is seemingly back on track, Finn McDaniel’s gets news that sends him into a tail-spin. He is faced with the prospect of losing Olivia Henry forever. He immediately turns to Dan, Olivia’s deceased best friend, who is her loyal and constant guardian angel from the beyond, imploring him for his help. In the midst of all of the chaos a special package is delivered that changes their lives forever.

While Finn is determined to grow his restaurant to new heights by chasing after the coveted Michelin Star, it is Olivia who finally sees her dream come to fruition in a way never thought possible. Finn is determined to support Olivia through her shocking breakthrough and even has a very special surprise up his sleeve that she never sees coming. Just as their plan is set in to motion and they settle in to their new normal, they have an earth shattering encounter. In that moment it is revealed that they have much more than just a spiritual relationship with the beyond.

To read more reviews, please visit D.D. Marx’s page on iRead Book Tours.

 

Buy Beyond Forever:

 Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble

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My Reviewx

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. I had read Beyond Believing and Beyond Love and enjoyed them so I was looking forward to seeing what happens in the next stage of Olivia and Finn’s journey.

Olivia and Finn are having a baby! Of course, nothing is easy with them but they eventually receive the joy that comes with having a baby. As usual, Olivia and Finn face challenges but they are good at overcoming whatever is thrown at them, especially with the excellent support system they have.

Beyond Forever is one of those books in which I felt like I was reading about old friends. I liked the ending and I’m looking forward to read more books by D.D. Marx.

 

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Meet the Author

 

D.D. Marx is a contemporary romantic fiction writer and blogger, as well as a lover of all things social. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton, as well as the Second City program in Chicago, where she currently resides. A proud aunt and self-described hopeless romantic, Marx has always had a knack for humorous and engaging storytelling. Her pen name is a dedication to her beloved friend Dan, who continues to guide and inspire her in her daily life.

Connect with the Author: Website  ~ Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest

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Enter the Giveaway!

Ends Dec 28

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Red-tailed Hawk by Nancy Schoellkopf

When Mariah Easter encounters a large hawk in her urban midtown neighborhood, her father Charlie is concerned. He can see a wild and mystical path opening before his daughter, a path he himself would never be able to resist. The hawk soon reappears: engraved with its twin on a golden thimble that has been an Easter family heirloom for generations. After the thimble is stolen at a funeral reception, Mariah and her mother Samantha set off on a road trip to find it, a journey that will bring healing to the grieving family and change Mariah’s life forever.

Red-tailed Hawk is a coming of age story, the tale of a young woman’s quest to discover the source of her own longing and to understand the mystical legacy of her family.

 

Buy the Book: Amazon  ~  Add to Goodreads

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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. I previously read Yellow-billed Magpie and was happily surprised to realize that Red-tailed Hawk has the same characters several years later.

Yellow-billed Magpie was about Samantha’s journey and Red-tailed Hawk is about her daughter Mariah’s journey when she is 17 years old.

Samantha was married to Mariah’s father, Charlie, and when Charlie dies, the family has to learn how to deal with his death. They each have their own way of coping but Mariah ends up on a journey and learns a lot about herself. I don’t like how inconsiderate she is, though, of her mother’s feelings.

The characters are interesting and Nancy Schoellkopf does a good job at portraying them like real people, each with flaws and each with strengths. I especially liked how all of the relationships grew in such a short time while everyone was grieving.

I definitely recommend Red-tailed Hawk if you like women’s fiction with a touch of fantasy. It’s the second book about this family but can easily be read as a stand alone.

 

 

 

 

Author’s Bio:

Nancy Schoellkopf is the author of Yellow-billed Magpie, the first in her Easter Family series. Nancy has been telling stories and writing poems for many lifetimes. It goes without saying that she’d need a second income, so this time around she has happily taught amazing children in special education classes in two urban school districts in Sacramento, California. A full time writer now, she enjoys lavishing attention on her cats, her garden, and her intriguing circle of family and friends.

 

Connect with the author:    Website  ~   Twitter  ~   Facebook

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Giveaway

Win a signed copy of Red-tailed Hawk. One winner will also get a $20 Amazon gift card (3 winners total, open to USA & Canada)

Ends May 6

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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

Book Review: Truths Not Spoken by Pamela T. Starr

Single mother Laura Walters had her life under control. She had a jewelry business, a generous best friend and a careful watch on her nine-year-old daughter, Emily. Then, Emily is seen on national television with Vic, the man who could tear their world apart. With one thirty second news clip, Laurel’s life turns into a tailspin. The paparazzi chase her. Two men from her past want her: Vic is a former lover. Kyle a former friend. They both know her secret, and either one could ruin the careful life Laurel built for herself and Emily.

Faced with no other option, Laurel turns to Kyle to protect her and her life with Emily. But just as Laurel and Kyle are beginning to trust each other, they learn of shocking betrayals they each have been hiding. Some secrets are made to be broken. Some secrets never should be. But how does Laurel learn which ones are which? Truths Not Spoken is the debut novel by promising new author Pamela T. Starr. It is a must-read for every woman who balances her dreams of love with a man with the needs of her child. Truths Not Spoken shows readers that yes, dreams can come true.

 

Buy the Book: Amazon

Add to Goodreads

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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.

Truths Not Spoken is about just that, secrets that the characters in this story keep from each other. I became a little frustrated with these people because they caused each other so much pain by keeping secrets. One person would finally come clean and the other one would be upset with them when they were keeping their own secrets! The most frustrating person was Laurel. I don’t know how many times I wanted to just shake her and tell her to calm down. I understand that being a single mom can be scary when you don’t trust the father (been there, done that), but she was constantly jumping to conclusions.

There was some decent drama here and there but I couldn’t really get into any of the characters except for Kyle, Laurel’s old friend. He really tried to help Laurel all he could. Even her daughter Emily didn’t have any qualities that really stuck out. She was a typical nine-year-old who Laurel did a great job raising, but like everyone kept telling her, she really needed to get to know her father.

Truths Not Spoken won’t grab you and knock you over the head but if you like a drama that moves at a good pace, and you don’t mind a little frustration, this is a good read.

 

Author’s Bio

 

Pamela T. Starr has been recognized as an outstanding new author with a promising future. Truths Not Spoken is the first in her Shifting Sands series, all set in her home state of Florida.

An accomplished trainer and public speaker, Pamela has motivated more than 60,000 people at live presentations and workshops. She has also logged more than 30 hours of live national television appearances.

Pamela is inspired by the two men in her life. The one she mothers is still young enough to be excited by life and the many opportunities he discovers. The one who is her life-long partner is old enough to know that life is an adventure and he embraces it every day.

 

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook    

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Giveaway

Prizes:

  1. Win a grand prize A Year of Novels”  A collection of twelve novels by best selling writers, plus a signed copy of Truths Not Spoken by Pamela T. Starr  (1 winner, USA only)

  2. Win a Kindle copy of Truths Not Spoken (5 winners, USA only)

Ends April 29

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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

Audiobook Review: Fling by Lily Iona MacKenzie

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When ninety-year-old Bubbles receives a letter from Mexico City asking her to pick up her mother’s ashes, lost there seventy years earlier and only now surfacing, she hatches a plan. A woman with a mission, Bubbles convinces her hippie daughter Feather to accompany her on the quest. Both women have recently shed husbands and have a secondary agenda: they’d like a little action. And they get it.

Alternating narratives weave together Feather and Bubbles’ odyssey. The two women travel south from Canada to Mexico where Bubbles’ long-dead mother, grandmother, and grandfather turn up, enlivening the narrative with their hilarious antics.

In Mexico, where reality and magic co-exist, Feather gets a new sense of her mother, and Bubbles’ quest for her mother’s ashes—and a new man—increases her zest for life. Unlike most women her age, fun-loving Bubbles takes risks, believing she’s immortal. She doesn’t hold back in any way, eating heartily and lusting after strangers, exulting in her youthful spirit.

Readers will believe they’ve found the fountain of youth themselves in this character. At ninety, Bubbles comes into her own, coming to age, proving it’s never too late to fulfill one’s dreams.

Available on Amazon.

 

My Review

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

While listening to the first quarter or so of Fling, I wondered how I was going to get through the whole thing. The more I listened to it, though, the more it grew on me. Not only did Feather and Bubbles make things interesting, but some strange things were happening and they didn’t seem to think anything of it!

The characters in Fling! are compelling. Bubbles is 90 years old and is quirky. Her daughter, Feather, is in her fifties and has always been unconventional. The two of them taking a trip to Mexico makes for an interesting story, especially once they get the ashes of Bubbles’ mother who died many years ago. When Bubbles’ mother, Heather, and her grandparents show up in the flesh, Bubbles and Feather think nothing of it.

Feather, Bubbles, and Heather take turns thinking about the past. It got a bit confusing for me at times because I was listening to the audiobook and I couldn’t just flip back a couple pages to see who was talking at the time. They all did have interesting experiences in their pasts.

The narrator, Anna Crowe, did a good job narrating. Her voice was clear and pleasant. 

I definitely recommend Fling! It starts out slow but it end up being a good, different story.

 

About the Author

5414100 A Canadian by birth, a high school dropout, and a mother at 17, in my early years, I supported myself as a stock girl in the Hudson’s Bay Company, as a long distance operator for the former Alberta Government Telephones, and as a secretary (Bechtel Corp sponsored me into the States). I also was a cocktail waitress at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, briefly broke into the male-dominated world of the docks as a longshoreman (I was the first woman to work on the SF docks and almost got my legs broken), founded and managed a homeless shelter in Marin County, co-created THE STORY SHOPPE, a weekly radio program for children that aired on KTIM in Marin County, CA, and eventually earned two Master’s degrees (one in Creative writing and one in the Humanities). I have published reviews, interviews, short fiction, poetry, travel pieces, essays, and memoir in over 150 American and Canadian venues. Bone Songs, another novel, will be published in 2017. Freefall: A Divine Comedy will be released in 2018. My poetry collection All This was published in 2011. I also taught writing at the University of San Francisco for over 30 years, and I blog at https://lilyionamackenzie.wordpress.com.

 

 

 

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

Book Review: Daughter of Mine by Laura Fabiani

5820919Title: Daughter of Mine by Laura Fabiani
Genre: Contemporary women’s fiction, 204 pages
Publisher: iUniverse
Published: Sept 2008
Content Rating: G

Book Description

Tiziana Manoretti is an only child in her late twenties blessed with loving parents, a promising career, and a best friend who fiercely protects her. When her mother falls seriously ill and the relationship between her parents becomes suddenly strained, a carefully hidden family secret is revealed and Tiziana’s seemingly idealistic world is turned upside down. After discovering she was born in a Naples orphanage and subsequently given up for adoption, Tiziana sets out for the small town of Gaeta in an attempt to find her birth parents. Meanwhile, her best friend Christopher is sending her mixed messages, causing her to wonder if there is more to their relationship than just companionship.

As she becomes intertwined with a handful of interesting characters who help her uncover her past, Tiziana needs to decide whether her feelings for Christopher are deeper than she realizes. She discovers herself and others all while her family’s resilience and love for one another is tested when confronted with a shocking truth. The answers lie in a box found in a closet in Italy, and Tiziana must determine if she wants to embrace the heartache and the pain from her past in order to learn forgiveness and find peace in the future.

Buy the book: Amazon

 

My Review

I received a free ecopy of this book for an honest review.

Daughter of Mine is about Tiziana, a successful single woman who finds out that she was adopted. She has some difficulty with the fact that her loving parents kept this secret from her for 27 years. She decides she’d like to know more about her birth parents and travels to Italy with the little information her father provided her with.

I enjoyed following Tiziana’s journey as she makes new friends and finds out the truth about her birth. There are a few surprises along the way and within a few short days, she changes the lives of many people. Best of all, she finds love while she is there.

I like Laura Fabiani’s writing. She has a gift for describing the scenery and the people of Italy. I definitely recommend Daughter of Mine.

 

About the Author

(from Goodreads)

2632999My name is Laura Fabiani and I live in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. I’m an author, book reviewer and blogger since 2009. My reading tastes vary greatly and I read both fiction and non-fiction. I review adult, YA and children’s books, since I love reading to my children. I review books for pleasure and learning. I prefer books free of profanity, explicit sex, violence or paranormal themes. I post my reviews on my blog Library of Clean Reads, Goodreads, and Amazon.

As of January 2014, I have started iRead Book Tours in collaboration with Author Marketing Experts. I now coordinate virtual book tours for authors. Find us atwww.iReadBookTours.com.

I have a degree in Special Care Counseling and have worked as a psychiatric child counselor and as a special education technician at various institutions. I hold a diploma in Writing for Children and Teenagers and an advanced certificate in TESOL from the Canadian Institute of English. I am currently working in a community centre developing and implementing adapted programs for senior’s with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. I am married to a wonderful man, have two children and I’m trying to write my second novel. It’s a busy life!