Friday, August 31, 2018

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: Toby's Troubles by Carole Brown


About the Book

Book Title: Toby’s Troubles
Author: Carole Brown
Genre: Romantic Mystery, Cozy Mystery
Release date: July 1, 2018
Everyone loves Toby Gibson. A co-owner of Undiscovered Treasures, a unique shop of antiques, collectables and junk, Toby is friendly, generous to a fault, the director of the local plays in Appleton and supports his church’s youth functions. But the minute his sister, Caroline and her new husband, take off for their honeymoon, a “ghost” begins to haunt the shop—or maybe it’s just an intruder. If so, Toby has no idea for what he is looking. To add to his troubles, he suspects Amy, not only is bidding for the property he’s wanted forever, but is in love with him. And he’s not interested.
Amy Sanderson who owns the only flower shop in Appleton—Bloomin’ Life—is drawn into capturing Toby’s “ghost” when her own business is damaged by a destructive intruder. Having loved Toby from childhood, she’s more than willing to join forces with him. But she has no interest in being his best friend or like a sister to him. And if she has to resort to schemes of outbidding him at his frequent auction attendences to get his attention, then so be it. She can be just as stubborn as the man who’s determined to ignore her love.
In between the break-ins, destruction of property, thefts and personal competitions against each other, Amy and Toby work together to find the thief who seems so determined to find a valuable item, he’ll stop at nothing.
Click here to purchase your copy!
My Thoughts:
I was glad to get to visit Undiscovered Treasures again, and this time through Toby’s eyes.  One of my favorite pastimes is to browse and hopefully find some treasure from antique stores like Toby and Caro’s store. While Caro is on her honeymoon, brother Toby is completely in charge of the store. He is a lighthearted fellow who is trying not to get tied down in the matrimonial department, or at least he doesn’t think he wants to.

Toby’s Troubles is an apt name for this story as he has plenty of them. From a “ghost” that keeps visiting his shop in all hours of the night, to the break-ins of his friend Amy’s shop, to bidding wars on property and antiques, and to top it all off he is trying to direct the town’s annual play. So besides dealing with less than stellar actors, shady characters and visitors from out of town, he is also running from his feelings he insists that he does not have for Amy.

I enjoyed this cozy mystery and even though Toby was often a comical guy, when Amy’s life is jeopardized he certainly steps in and up to be her hero. I am looking forward to Ryle’s story next.
I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and the views and opinions are my own.

About the Author

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?
Guest Post from Carole Brown

Antique Shops, A Thief, the Community Theater, and Love
Toby’s Troubles, Book Four from the Appleton, West Virginia Romantic Mysteries series
I knew when I wrote this book who Toby was. But capturing Toby’s personality and presenting it in the right way, was a challenge for me. Readers can see his teasing, fun-loving character when he labels the person who’s breaking into his shop as a ghost. But Toby is also serious, smart and successful. The side of him who has had plenty of girl friends, but who’s never gotten serious with any of them, is prominent too. But I didn’t want him to seem frivolous and uncaring, because he isn’t that. With a focus on his interests, love has never—as of yet—been a primary concern, so when Amy Sanderson strolls into his life, she turns out to be his confidant in the time of his troubles. The question is: can she not only have a place in his life as a best friend, but also capture his heart?

Let’s talk about:

Antique Shops
Who doesn’t love a place filled with valuable items, interesting history, and hard-to-find items? Undiscovered Treasures—a shop of antiques, collectibles and junk—could be described as the town gathering place. Everyone loves browsing there. Deciding on such a place for the business of brother and sister, Toby and Caroline Gibson, was a fun choice. From grandfather clocks to unique shaped vases, it’s a shop where treasure hunters could just find what they’re looking for.
A Thief:
There are way too many new people visiting Appleton, West Virginia, so how is someone like Toby suppose to guess what the thief is after? The thief definitely knows what he’s looking for, just not where. He’s tall, thin and a fast runner, especially when escaping across a rooftop. But then, maybe it’s not a new person in town. Maybe the thief is Toby’s part time help, who has a mystery all of his own. It makes things interesting, and a bit terrifying for everyone.
The Community Theater:
One of Toby’s loves is directing and overseeing the community theater. Caroline Gibson writes some of the plays, the actors are usually taken from the West Virginia area, and all proceeds go to charities. But when their main actors, of the current play, elope and leave the play desolate, someone has to step in to fill the gaps. Toby struggles with decisions he doesn’t want to make.
Love
Toby is smart, funny, and a resourseful man. He’s also busy with his community theater activities and his business. Known as the one man in town who’s not interested, at the current time, in getting married, his reputation of loving and leaving is in danger of being wrecked by one small woman. Can she sabotage his well-laid plans and help him realize it’s now or never? Could it be the time when real love is captured by two people, even when one of them seems doomed to ignore what God’s put in their hearts?
I love creating characters. Developing them into real people with real desires, moods, troubles 

Blog Stops

Vicky Sluiter, August 21
Godly Book Reviews, August 21
The Avid Reader, August 22
Splashes of Joy, August 27
Maureen’s Musing, August 29
Mary Hake, August 29
Pause for Tales, August 31
Lighthouse Academy, September 1
Texas Book-aholic, September 2
Jeanette’s Thoughts, September 2
Carpe Diem, September 3
Bigreadersite, September 3

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Carole is giving away a grand prize that includes winner’s choice of one of the two attached mugs, winner’s choice of a print or kindle copy of Toby’s Troubles and a tote bag!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d1c2/toby-s-troubles-celebration-tour-giveaway

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: Ties That Blind by Chautona Havig


About the Book


Title: Ties that Blind
Author: Chautona Havig
Release date: August, 2018
Genre: Suspense
He may not be the only person in the Rockland area to wake up without a memory, but he might be the only killer…
Simon Prescott, the latest victim of spontaneous amnesia in Rockland, is under suspicion of murder. The evidence, though weak and circumstantial, points only to him. He’s confident he didn’t do it, but there’s no way to prove it. Grieving for a wife he doesn’t remember, Simon refuses to allow his family in, refuses to cooperate with police, and is heading straight for the pokey if he doesn’t figure out something and fast.
Enter: Ella Weeks and Vikki Jeffries. The previous two victims are determined to help him, and with jail time looming, Simon capitulates. But what Vikki and Ella find as they work through Simon’s life reveals astounding and rather chilling evidence of a bigger scheme than any of them could have imagined.
They’re on the verge of total discovery, but the closer they get, the less confident they are that they want to know.
Click here to purchase your copy!
My Thoughts
Ties that Blind by Chautona Havig was a gripping finale to the trilogy that has kept me waiting for the truth behind the mysterious amnesia until the end. And what an end! In this installment, we meet Simon Prescott, the latest amnesiac, and he has his own issues to wake up to: namely being the main suspect in the murder of a wife he doesn't remember. But not to worry- we don't forget about the protagonists in the previous series! Ella and Vicki are both back, which is great because certain things were unresolved in the last book. Like Vicki's faith and which boy she chooses. I'm team Fahrina, by the way. He's my boy and I love him and I love getting so many of his POVs. Just an honest cop trying to protect people...
Anyway, not to worry, this book answers all of the questions... as we enjoy a story that is not quite, but sort of puts me in the mind of, a domestic thriller. 
I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.
Reviewed by Jes


About the Author

The author of dozens of books in a variety of genres, Chautona Havig lives and writes in California’s Mojave Desert where she uses story to nudge her readers to the feet of the Master Storyteller.

Guest Post from Chautona

What Does It All Mean, Anyway?

“So why is this series called ‘Sight Unseen’ if it’s about people who lose their memories? Why the vision references?”
I can’t pretend I wanted to answer her question. She isn’t the first to ask, and I doubt she’ll be the last. I tried to explain.
Look, it’s a valid question. Originally, the first book was called From the Cinders, and if it had remained a stand-alone book, it still would be. But when I finished with another person waking up to no memories and a hint that something sinister might be behind it all, I had to change it to fit two books—no, three!
Recall. Rewind. Refresh. I liked those titles. But that still didn’t give me the name of a series. I kept studying. Tried again.
I read what would become None So Blind three times in a row, if I recall correctly. And as I read it, a theme emerged. Ella Weeks hadn’t been blind to her faults even before her memory loss. Even her husband hadn’t been, despite his obvious love for her. But those around her had been blind to her awareness of those faults—to her silent cries for help in overcoming them.

Will Not See emerged with a similar theme.

Vikki had a past that she hid from and refused to acknowledge. And even as those around her drew closer to provide support, she still managed to block out all that she found frightening—even physically shutting down and shutting out life.
So, when it came time to plan the final book in the series, the one that would now tie together everything that had happened, I knew I wanted something that also fit with the other titles. And one night it came to me. Ties That Blind. So often our ties to people blind us to their faults—to the destructive influences they have in our lives. And Simon Prescott will learn that lesson in a rather lonely, horrible way.

The Sight Unseen series reminds us of what Paul said in Corinthians.

Now we see through dark glasses… we can’t really make it all out. But with the Lord, when we’re truly with Him in eternity, we’ll see things as clearly as we do when we are face to face.
And that’s what faith is all about, right? It’s the “substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” When we “buy in” to the Lord Jesus, we’re taking it all in faith. We’re trusting in Him, “Sight Unseen,” just as the characters in this series do with every element of their lives.
I hope their journeys bless you as they have me as I wrote them.

Blog Stops

Live. Love. Read. , August 18
Fiction Aficionado, August 20
Among the Reads, August 20
Lots of Helpers, August 22
Cordially Barbara, August 23
All-of-a-kind Mom, August 23
Multifarious, August 24
Texas Book-aholic, August 26
A Reader’s Brain, August 27
Carpe Diem, August 28
Bigreadersite, August 30
Mary Hake, August 30
Pause for Tales, August 31

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize of the entire Sight Unseen series in paperback!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d295/ties-that-blind-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Review: Darkwater Secrets by Robin Caroll




About:


A murder investigation uncovers sordid secrets and haunting mistakes

The Darkwater Inn stands tall and proud in the French Quarter, the hub of New Orleans. Bourbon Street is bustling, and general manager Adelaide Fountaine has her hands full with a hotel at capacity. But she is shocked when a body is found: a hotel guest stabbed with a kitchen knife.

Detective Beau Savoie, Adelaide's childhood friend, is on the case. As Beau digs into the victim's past, he unearths a shocking connection between Adelaide and the murdered guest. Beau is hurt that his friend--the woman he's quietly loved for years--kept the truth from him. To make matters worse, the stress of the investigation has sent Adelaide right into the comforting arms of her coworker Dimitri. But Beau can't press Adelaide too     hard . . . because he's keeping secrets of his own.


Can Adelaide and Beau afford to hide from the truth with a killer on the loose?

My Thoughts:

Darkwater Secrets is the first in a new series by author Robin Caroll, and what a great first book this one was. Taking place in New Orleans after the holidays, that city continues to party even at a business convention. However, things get a little bit out of hand when one of the hotel guests is found murdered.

There are three main characters this story revolves around: Adelaide Fountaine (the manager), Dimitri Pampalon, (the owner’s son), and Detective Beau Savoie. I was invested in all three and I will warn you, this is a bit of a love triangle.

There is a bit of a creepy vibe throughout the book. Besides just the murder and the creepiness of that whole situation, the author shows us what life is like in a town that has very strong superstitions even going so far as having curses placed on a character. The secondary characters are just as unique and The Darkwater Inn though the setting, also seemed like a silent character looming in the background.

There were several explosive secrets that were uncovered which just added to the atmosphere and creepy vibe of the situations. One thing that I liked that the author did was that she gave us more of the story even after the investigation was over. We were given more insight into the characters and their lives which helped set up for more of this series and I look forward to more. I have never been to New Orleans and I did learn a few new things about that culture that the author brought to light in her details.

I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Cover Reveal: A Certain Sort of Madness by Nicki Chapelway

Hello, all my peeps! I am so excited to finally be revealing the cover for my latest novel A Certain Sort of Madness which I hope to release this October. It is a companion novel to A Week of Werewolves, Faeries, and Fancy Dresses, taking place in the same world, but about different characters. Though- and you must promise not to tell anyone- there will be tie ins between these characters in future books.

But, enough of that! It's time to get on with the cover reveal!

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Maybe my favorite of my covers yet
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Just a little further...
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One!
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And here it is!





Isn't it just absolutely lovely??? I couldn't be more pleased with it. I just got my proof copy this past week and I think the paperback version of the cover is even more beautiful. Many thanks to the talented Victoria Cooper Art for designing this cover, and my parents for buying it for me for my graduation, and me for graduating... and writing the book.

But here I am getting carried away. Don't you want to know what the book is about???

Insanity is catching...

Alicia Hareton is crazy. But that's nothing new. Her insanity is inherited from her mother, just like her magical abilities and her blood ties to the strange and alluring world of Amar. She's spent her life on Earth and yet Amar has always called to her, and intoxicating melody that she cannot ignore. Returning to Amar would put her life in danger, but Alicia has never let such technicalities stop her before.

However, when her mother is captured due to her reckless actions, Alicia will do anything to rescue her. That includes trusting her grumpy, sarcastic imaginary friend, who claims he doesn't know her and doesn't seem that imaginary anymore. Or that trustworthy. Together with the help of her cousin and a band of misfits, they partake on an extremely ill-advised heist on the faerie court in order to find a way to defeat the most powerful mage in all Amar, who also happens to be Alicia's grandfather. But not everything in the faerie court is as it seems, and soon this unlikely group find themselves fighting for their lives as well as the lives of those they love.

In a world of madness and magic, the lines between lies and loyalty are blurred and sometimes the only option you have left is to let the insanity loose.



I'm so excited for you guys to read this book and see how the elements of this gorgeous cover fit into this dark and twisted tale.


Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Review: Kingdom Files- Who Was Esther? and Who Was David? by Matt Koceich

To Purchase: Who Was Esther?

To Purchase: Who was David?
About the Book:

Each fascinating book in this series explores the life of a Bible character and draws curious kids into a different time and place as they learn about dozens of key people who were part of God’s kingdom.

My Thoughts:

I have always enjoyed Barbour’s children’s books and in their new series, Kingdom Files, they take kids on an adventure as detectives while they learn about the Bible character in the file.

First off I really like the cover art, that it looks like a file with notes on it and pictures paper clipped. Details like that have always snagged my attention and my children’s as well.

Each book investigates a Bible character. The story of this character is written almost like a fictional story. There are clues scattered throughout that children are to look for and answer concerning the character. At the end of the story is what is called Power Up’s. I would say they are brief synopses of the lessons learned and following each one of them is a memory verse.

I was provided with a complimentary copy of Who Was David? and my boys were enamored with the adventure and I was impressed again with the whole package. I was also provided with a complimentary copy of Who was Esther? And even though my young sons were not quite as eager for this story, my adult daughter did find it interesting and wishing she had these when she was younger. This is a great new way to learn about Bible people and for kids to go deeper into Bible stories.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review. All views and opinions are my own.

My Thoughts and More on Mabel and the Little Green Men by Susan Kimmel Wright

  About the Book Book: Mabel and the Little Green Men Author:  Susan Kimmel Wright Genre: Cozy Mystery Release date: October 5, 2023 The la...