Review: Bucket List





Synopsis:

Leah’s run-of-the-mill teenage life has never been too eventful. That is, until the boy-next-door who’s just moved in, turns out to be none other than her old childhood best friend, Damon. Rekindling their friendship, the two become inseparable and life seems perfect, until Leah learns a tragic secret; Damon is terminally ill and has only one more year to live. 
With the clock ticking and time precious, Leah and Damon decide to embark on an adventure to have the time of their lives and cross out every to-do on their ‘Bucket List’. 
On your last journey of a lifetime, what would you hope to find?

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Bucket List by Emily Ruben is just as good as her previous novel, I Was A Bitch. Here, I instantly liked the main characters. Two old friends catching up again after five years. I liked their teasing banter. I can feel their emotions as if I were in their shoes. The story is entertaining and enjoyable to read. Humor, friendship, and adventure are inside this incredible book. Once more, Emily Ruben has lured me into her world of fiction. I recommend this novel to young adults and adults everywhere. 

Review: The Dark and Other Love Stories



Synopsis:

“The emotional range and depth of [Willis’s stories], the clarity and deftness are astonishing.”—Alice Munro

The characters in the thirteen stories that comprise The Dark and Other Love Stories exist on the edge of danger, where landscapes melt into dreamscapes and every house is haunted. A drug dealer’s girlfriend signs up for the first manned mission to Mars. A girl falls in love with a man who wants to turn her into a bird. A teenage girl and her best friend test their relationship by breaking into suburban houses. A wife finds a gaping hole in the floor of the home she shares with her husband, a hole that only she can see.
Full of longing and strange humor, these subtle, complex stories about the love between a man and his pet crow, an alcoholic and his AA sponsor, a mute migrant and a newspaper reporter—show how love ties us to each other and to the world. 
Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Dark and Other Love Stories by Deborah Willis is a compelling read. Each story inside contains its own set of emotions and powerful tug. Luring me deeper into its core. The characters are believable and well-developed. The stories are easy to read. Every page brings a new sense of excitement. Never knowing what the next tale will contain. Deep, engaging, and well-told. Deborah Willis is definitely talented. It shows in each piece. The Dark and Other Love Stories is a collection of fictional worlds for readers to explore. Meanings that will not be forgotten. The human heart, soul, and mind are brought up in each tale. So sad but rich…I loved reading every single story. Overall, I highly recommend it to others. 

Review: The Insides of Banana Skins

Synopsis:

Sukey is 17. It is 1967 and she moves into a crowded North London flat: her bed is cushions on the floor of the kitchen.Kitty, the official tenant of the flat who Sukey knows from when they were both at college, occupies the main bedroom. She works in a pub, steals money and other people’s husbands. Currently Dennis, a creepy older man who is estranged from his wife, shares her bed. 

Also living in the flat is Jaz, Sukey’s best friend. He is studying drama and is a virgin. He shares a room with Beaky, another student, Minnie who works in an alternative food shop, Ted, her boyfriend, and Malc a drug dealer. They drink, use dope and take LSD. When there’s nothing else available, they smoke the insides of banana skins.

The novel starts a few months earlier as Sukey is dumped by her first boyfriend. Jaz comes to find her and helps her move into the flat. Sukey is aimless, drifting, trying out drugs and men. She’s unable and unwilling to give her life direction. 

Sukey makes friend with Bridie, an Irish woman who lives in the ground floor flat with two children. Separated from her husband, she works part time as a prostitute. Their landlord and his family occupy the top floor. He is an Indian man whose wife speaks no English. 

Relationships in the flat change. Malc meets the beautiful Jojo and goes to live with her. Ted leaves Minnie. Tessa, Sukey’s friend from school, comes to stay and after she and Beaky sleep together they find a place of their own and move out. 

Sukey meets Joe, who works in a strip club. Joe introduces Sukey and Jaz to Vic, a pornographer and his wife, Jules, a stunning-looking woman and successful potter. They live in a beautiful house, have two young children and indulge in unusual sexual practices. 

Through Joe, Kitty and Tessa become strippers. Kitty also poses for Vic, who has a market for various types of obscene photos. Minnie and Sukey, who have barely tolerated each other, become friends.

Jojo moves into the flat, and although she’s still seeing Malc, has insisted that they live apart until he stops taking heroin. Malc now shares with Ted. The flat is rent-free but in return both men have to have sex with its elderly woman owner. 

One night Malc, drunk in Piccadilly Circus, is run over and killed. Soon after, Jules commits suicide. Tessa finds a new boyfriend, a fire-eater who up till now has been homosexual. Beaky leaves her. Kitty disappears.

In the absence of Kitty, Sukey takes charge of the flat. Ted and Jojo get together and Jaz tells Sukey that there’s a man he’s kissed and how he thinks he wants to be with him. 

Weeks after she’s disappeared. Kitty’s body is found. She’s been murdered. It is an unsettling time. Sukey begins to tire of her aimless drifting existence, but she can’t imagine how else to live.

Vic is arrested for Kitty’s murder. Although stunned, the group living in the flat carry on. There is however a sense that the old life is over with new ones starting. Jaz begins an affair with Stevie, Tessa’s homosexual boyfriend. Tessa, now pregnant, moves back into the flat and Jaz goes to live with Stevie. Minnie is negotiating a deal with the owner of the shop where she works, she has ambitions to be a businesswoman. 

The landlord decides to sell the house and the group makes plans to leave. Minnie offers Sukey a room in the flat that she is renting above her shop. Sukey accepts and her new life starts.

Each chapter ends with a short piece written from the future. These give the reader a glimpse of what happens to the characters in thier later lives as well as providing additional insight into the events that have just taken place.

Although parts of the story focus on one of the others who occupy the flat and we see a little bit of what that life looks like for Jaz, Minnie, Beaky, Tessa, Ted, Jojo and even Dennis, this is Sukey’s story, told from her point of view. It’s about a young girl in a strange world and how she gradually learns to live in it.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Insides of Banana Skins by Jane Seaford reminds me so much of The Great Gatsby novel. The similarities of how people live in poverty and the sins they commit. It was quite interesting following each of the characters as their stories progressed. The events led to their new ways of living as well as to their failures. The raw openness of everything was refreshing to read. Characters like Minnie and Sukey were beyond believable. They did what they thought they had to endure to survive. Strong and determined. I didn’t like Dennis as his character was not one that I would like to know better. He is absolutely disgusting. Not just how he treats himself but in how he treats women as well. Using them for his own wants and needs then turning his back as well as verbally abusing them. He made my skin crawl. Ted is another male character that wasn’t on my top favorites lists. His whatever attitude and the fact that treatment of Minnie wasn’t nice. I can see real men out there acting or stooping to these men’s levels…however, I just don’t want to run into the likes of them. Minni thought she was doing fine. The fact that she let a guy like Dennis play her mad me a bit mad. Was she that oblivious? Minni was a college student then meet a married man and front here her life changed.  It seems that Minnie grows as the story unfolds that others seems to roll with the time. Sex isn’t pretty or beautiful. It’s one of the main themes inside this book. Most books make sex into something wonderful but we forget that there’s an ugliness about it as well. Here, readers see that. Jane Seaford has brought together real people’s lives into these characters. Whether they’re bad or good, their actions show that destruction, death, love, and friendships come and go. Some things never change…The Insides of Banana Skins demonstrates the harsh reality of life and the cost of our consequences. Overall, I recommend this read to all. 

Review: Child of the River


Synopsis:

A compelling coming of age story with an unlikely and utterly memorable heroine, Child of the River is a timeless tale of heartbreak and triumph set in South Africa at the dawn of apartheid.

Persomi is young, white, and poor, born the middle child of illiterate sharecroppers on the prosperous Fourie farm in the South African Bushveld. Persomi’s world is extraordinarily small. She has never been to the local village and spends her days absorbed in the rhythms of the natural world around her, escaping the brutality and squalor of her family home through the newspapers and books passed down to her from the main house and through her walks in the nearby mountains.

Persomi’s close relationship with her older brother Gerbrand and her fragile friendship with Boelie Fourie—heir to the Fourie farm and fortune—are her lifeline and her only connection to the outside world. When Gerbrand leaves the farm to fight on the side of the Anglos in WWII and Boelie joins an underground network of Boer nationalists, Persomi’s isolated world is blown wide open. But as her very small world falls apart, bigger dreams become open to her—dreams of an education, a profession, a native country that values justice and equality, and of love. As Persomi navigates the changing world around her—the tragedies of war and the devastating racial strife of her homeland—she finally discovers who she truly is, where she belongs, and why her life—and every life—matters.

The English language publication of Child of the River solidifies Irma Joubert as a unique and powerful voice in historical fiction.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Child of the River by Irma Joubert was a remarkable read. The talent of the writer was phenomenal. I couldn’t stop reading the novel. The tale inside was so captivating…that I kept on turning the pages. I had to know what happened and how and the why. A young girl grows up in South Africa. Her family is beyond poor. In fact, they live off another’s farm for work. The house is tiny only two rooms. A stealness over bears the senses. The roof barley holing up, and then there’s the dark stuff that happens inside the home. A step-father who bullies his wife and kids. As long as Persomi’s older brother Geraband was there. She was safe from her step-father. Her life gets more interesting. She is soon told by Geraband that their father isn’t their real father. Both share the same mother but different dads. Just as Persomi comes to this idea. She is then set on finding out who her father is. 

But then fate takes an interesting twist. Persomi is soon a lead witness against her step-father and Geraband goes to war as a solider thus providing food and money for Persomi and their mother. With these new events happening, Persomi’s life changes forever. She, a dirt poor girl, is soon excelling as fast or faster than the kids who can afford to go to school. Persomi wins scholarships to pay for her high school education. At first the kids don’t like her, because she’s poor, and because of her step-father. But then Persomi ends up winning awards for the best girl in sports. Her grades are good and she makes a new friend Beth. Beth is a girl raised by a reverend and his wife, after her mother died. Both Beth and Persomi have no idea who their fathers are. Persomi is still working on that revelation. However, Irma Joubert keeps readers in suspense. The revelation comes in when readers least expect it. I was surprised at first, but it made sense. I liked how Persomi succeeded despite being humiliated due to a stigma and how she continued to prove to others how wrong they were of her. Persomi’s dream of being a lawyer may work out…love, friendships, betrayal, death, loss, and hope are all tied beautifully inside this read. I loved it. Child of the River is a must read for all. A new historical tale that should be a new classic. Lessons learned and highly entertaining. I was deeply engaged from the beginning to end. Irma Joubert’s novel is the best I have read in quite awhile. OveralL, I highly recommend it to all. 

Review: Love Bears All Things

 

Synopsis:

Could God be o­ffering Charlotte a second chance at true love?

Charlo­tte Dolinsky needs time to recover after breaking up with her boyfriend, Ryan. But when a surprise visitor shows up on her doorstep in Texas, she’s forced to put aside her own worries to help her Amish friends in Lancaster County. Soon she is entangled in a web of deception—and this time, she isn’t the only one keeping secrets.

Daniel Byler struggles each day in his Amish community to heal from his fiancée’s betrayal. When he discovers that a member of his family is in danger of being shunned, his pain turns to fear. His only way to help is by partnering with Charlo­tte, a woman he barely knows who has already deceived them all before.

Charlo­tte begins building a friendship with Daniel that she’ll need to lean on when more surprises surface from her past, and she once again finds herself torn between two worlds. Will Charlotte’s friends in the Amish community be able to show her the power of redemption and lead her home? And can she help young Jacob realize that God offers second chances at happiness when she isn’t even sure herself?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Love Bears All Things by Beth Wiseman is an Amish Secrets Novel. Beth Wiseman’s novels and short stories are amazing. Heartwarming and addictive. This novel was sweet and beautifully told.  I found myself instantly lost, within its plot. The story introduces several characters. The first is Charlotte Dolinsky. She had a breakup with her boyfriend and her mom is hard to handle at times. She has secrets that she kept from someone but secrets have a way of revealing themselves sooner than later. Then there’s Daniel Byler. He feels betrayed and hurt. God soon sends him another obstacle. A family member on a dark path who is close to losing all care about him. Jacob is young has to find his path soon. These three characters are all needing a second chance and a chance at redemption. Friendship, loyalty, trust and a blossoming love are all themes inside this stunning read. I loved following the characters. Their dilemmas and faith were inspiring. When one is in need of help, others come in quick. The strong sense of community was apparent inside of Love Bears All Things. Beth Wisemans has masterfully shown readers how love can conquer all things. There were times, I wasn’t sure what would happen next but Beth Wiseman kept me intrigued with every page. A great emotional journey that softens a heart fast and leads to more reading…that what Love Bears All Things did to me. I was hooked. Suspenseful and unpredictable, I highly recommend this new novel to all.

 

Review: Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky

 

Synopsis:

This year spend a wonderful Christmas on Juniper Island, where love can melt even the iciest of hearts…

Piper Chesterfield lives a glamorous life travelling the world and reviewing the finest hotels. She calls nowhere home, she works alone and that’s how she likes it. For long ago Piper decided that to protect her heart she should lock it away.

So when Piper’s next assignment brings her to the newly opened Stardust Lake Hotel for the festive season, the last person she expects to face is Gabe Whitaker, the man who broke her heart so completely she could never love again.

But Piper isn’t the only one who has been frozen in time by heartbreak. Gabe hasn’t forgotten the golden-eyed girl who disappeared from his world without a trace.

Now fate has reunited them on Juniper island, can the magic of Christmas heal old wounds? And can this enchanting town be the one place Piper can finally call home?

Curl up with this gorgeously romantic tale and let the glistening snow and the roaring fires of Stardust Lake Hotel get you in the festive spirit this Christmas.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky by Holly Martin is hilarious, sweet, and dreamy. A romance like a fairy tale. One that lured me deep into the hearts of the characters. Their lives were interesting. Two best friends who truly love another so much…but then life brings them trouble and heartache. Soon what was destined to be a forever happy ending turned out to be a twelve-year lonely journey separated, frustrated, and wondering what could have been. Life is messy. It has never been easy or anyone. Especially,  when one has gone through a never ending cycle of rejection. Piper’s birth mother never wanted her. She was found abandoned and soon adopted by a caring woman. A woman who couldn’t have any of her own kids. But the husband never wanted Piper. After his wife’s death, he has done his most to make Piper feel unwanted. He led her to believe that her friend and friend’s parents never wanted her. Then, both daughter and father are drowning in a car. Piper makes it out alive. But her father has died. Devasted , stressed, and worried she goes to the one person she has ever loved. But fate would have to play an evil trick on a damaged girl’s heart. She sees something that had her leaving forever without a goodbye. Her best friend has wondered all these years why she left without so much a word. But when fate has them both face-to-face their years of wonder, loss, grief, and heat came back instantly. The love they had as teens is just as strong if not stronger. Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky is full of laughter, family, friendships and reunited love. I fell in love with the characters instantly. Their troubles broke my heart and their passion melted my heart. Holly Martin is indeed a writer with a talent. Overall, I highly recommend this Christma romance story to all.

 

 

Review: Olive & Jumpy (49-51)


Synopsis:

Oliver is an elegant tuxedo cat, who is full of himself. As a matter of fact he says: “I love myself!”, quite often. Naughty, isn’t he? But his best friend Jumpy, a kangaroo lady, is aware that he has a soft heart and will always want to help others. The great thing is Jumpy’s pouch, which Oliver loves to ride in! He calls her his kangaroo taxi! These little bedtime stories with their lovely illustrations are great for small kids. A parent can read the text and tell the child in his own words. These animal stories have sufficient text to keep early readers happy and provide some educational value. Love you all! Meow! 

Story 49: Ice – Joey is getting Oliver into big trouble with an ice bear.

Story 50: Mice Chase – Oliver is the tutor of a bunch of mice.

Story 51: Dragon Heat – A naughty dragon is taught a lesson.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Oliver and Jumpy stories 49-51 by Werner Stejskal were absolutely amazing. Again, the beautifully illustrated pages drew me into the stories. Every page was filled with action. Adventures waiting for readers to jump into with Oliver the cat and Jumpy the kangaroo. The first short story in this collection was about ice. Oliver ended up teaching Joey how to skate. But then Jumpy landed into trouble once again. Oliver his friend came to his rescue. However, they both needed to be rescued by a whale who chased off a mean eating polar bear. Then, the next story was funny. Oliver doesn’t eat mice. He chases his mouse friend just for exercise. Until one day, the mouse asks Oliver to chase his six kids around instead. Oliver agreed. But boy, did Oliver get a workout. The six mice had Oliver chasing them around everywhere. The last story was another adventure rescue by both Oliver and Jumpy. They both come across a door that led into a new land. This time they meet a large ant, a giant, and have to capture a fire breathing dragon. This collection of children’s stories are well-written and highly engaging. I loved reading these stories. Werner Stejskal is a talented writer whose work I would highly recommend to readers everywhere. 

Review: A Tragic Kind of Wonderful

 

Synopsis:

For sixteen-year-old Mel Hannigan, bipolar disorder makes life unpredictable. Her latest struggle is balancing her growing feelings in a new relationship with her instinct to keep everyone at arm’s length. And when a former friend confronts Mel with the truth about the way their relationship ended, deeply buried secrets threaten to come out and upend her shaky equilibrium.

As the walls of Mel’s compartmentalized world crumble, she fears the worst–that her friends will abandon her if they learn the truth about what she’s been hiding. Can Mel bring herself to risk everything to find out?

In A Tragic Kind of Wonderful, Eric Lindstrom, author of the critically acclaimed Not If I See You First, examines the fear that keeps us from exposing our true selves, and the courage it takes to be loved for who we really are.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

A Tragic Kind of Wonderful is one of the best YA tales that I have read. Here, readers will meet a deeply flawed character who has one heck of a journey to find herself. Courage, love, and friendships are easier said than done. When one has a mental disorder such as being bipolar, that brings a lot of insecurity to a teenage girl. Teens go through enough stress and inner turmoil without adding to it. But this, new flaw, will be the disaster or the realization she doesn’t have to be alone anymore. It’s tough keeping people out of one’s circle. Especially, when that said character wants to be around them. Friends can come and go. Who’s to say they will stay if they find out Mel’s deep secret? Then there’s that good guy that every teenage girl wants in her life…David. David is another great character. He struggles with the fact his grandma is being taken care of by others. It puts him in an awkward situation. But his grandma is okay and the girl helping his grandma fascinates him more than anything. But as with all good things, there’s always the deep dark side to that must come with it. Eric Lindstrom takes readers deep into his character’s mind and heart. Feeling and hearing everything through Mel’s eyes. I loved getting to know her and to watch her grow. Facing her struggles is tough but I kept my hopes up…Overall, A Tragic Kind of Wonderful is exactly that. Tragic but wonderful too. I highly recommend this YA story to all.

Review: Wrecked

Wrecked by [Padian, Maria]

 

Synopsis:

Everyone has heard a different version of what happened that night at MacCallum College. Haley was already in bed when her roommate, Jenny, arrived home shell-shocked from the wild Conundrum House party. Richard heard his housemate Jordan brag about the cute freshman he hooked up with. When Jenny formally accuses Jordan of rape, Haley and Richard find themselves pushed onto opposite sides of the school’s investigation. But conflicting interests fueling conflicting versions of the story may make bringing the truth to light nearly impossible–especially when reputations, relationships, and whole futures are riding on the verdict.

Maria Padian offers a kaleidoscopic view of a sexual assault on a college campus. Wrecked will leave readers thinking about how memory and identity, what’s at stake, and who sits in judgment shape what we all decide to believe about the truth.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Wrecked by Maria Padian was indeed the perfect title for this new adult tale. I found the characters completely wrecked whether physically or emotionally. Then there was the usual college peer pressure to add to the mix. This story told about a sad, dark, and unforgettable situation. Alcohol and rape. Typical to most college students. Yet despite the awareness of such things…students still made mistakes. Like, take a perfect academic girl that comes from a wealthy family whom nobody really notices. Then, she takes it upon herself to accept an invitation from a complete stranger. Not only that but an invite to a party known for excessive drinking mixes and hookups. But something more sinister than just a hookup happens to this particular student. Next, there’s this other wealthy college student who has taken advantage of the female while she was drunk or still tipsy from whatever was in her drink.

Once she claims rape from him, everything went downhill. The board found that the woman’s events weren’t adding up but that she was indeed telling the truth about being raped. However, with no witnesses or any evidence nothing can be done or can it? Despite all this trouble, readers will meet two awesome characters. The lead female character was an excellent soccer player up until her third concussion. She ended up meeting her roommate’s ex. The guy who happens to be her math tutor. But he’s the kind of guy that’s easy on the eyes yet wants the forever thing with a woman. But just as things start to click between them, both end up defending the person on each side of the rape case. Let the questions begin…and let fate take the characters where they should be. I found this fictional novel to be entertaining but also, play out an important message to young adults. It spoke out loudly about rape, alcohol, and using consent. Great advice and tips dipped masterfully into a stunning read. Overall, I highly recommend Wrecked to readers worldwide.

 

 

Review: An Amish Harvest

An Amish Harvest: Four Novellas by [Wiseman, Beth, Clipston, Amy, Fuller, Kathleen, Chapman, Vannetta]

 

Synopsis:

Faith, hope, and love remain forever in season in this collection of four richly absorbing novellas set amidst the wonder of an Amish autumn.

Under the Harvest Moon, by Beth Wiseman: When Naomi Dienner is suddenly widowed, she never expects to find love again . . . until she meets Brock Mulligan, an English family friend hired at harvest time. As a sinister presence begins to threaten Naomi, Brock seeks to prove himself trustworthy while struggling with growing feelings for Naomi and her children. Will God open Naomi’s heart—and give Brock his own second chance at love?

Love and Buggy Rides, by Amy Clipston: Janie Lantz is a cashier at Lancaster Souvenirs and Buggy Rides, where Jonathan Stoltfuz is a buggy driver. A frightening accident brings Janie and Jonathan together in a blossoming friendship, yet daunting obstacles stand between them and something deeper. Can love kindle into flames that burn away fear and regret—and lead them to a life together?

Mischief in the Autumn Air, by Vannetta Chapman When items start going above market value at his auction house, Eli Wittmer is first thrilled, and then puzzled. But when the house is broken into, Eli and his new bookkeeper, Martha Beiler track down a trail of clues. Will they solve the mystery before the fall festival ends—and discover an unexpected new love?

A Quiet Love, by Kathleen Fuller Dinah Hochstetler, quiet and bookish, longs for marriage but hides in her shyness. Amos Mullett, a simple farmer, knows he’s different but aches for a loving wife. As Dinah and Amos navigate a budding romance, will the power of love—and the blessing of God—be enough to overcome their doubters?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

An Amish Harvest by four talented writers is an amazing book for all. Inside are four beautifully written novellas for everyone to enjoy. Clean, emotional and heart melting reads. I love reading anything Amish fictional piece because they are truly an enjoyable story of hard work, family, and inspiring faith as well as love. Yes, I read plenty of novels that are much more detailed and a lot more dirty than this collection but I highly recommend this collection of stories to readers everywhere. These are stories readers can come back to time and time again. Stories that not just give off the good feelings but also teach and inspire readers worldwide.

Under the Harvest Moon by Beth Wiseman is the first Amish romance presented to readers. Instantly, I was hooked.  The story follows a young Amish woman who is married at the young age of seventeen. Her husband is well looked up to within her community and to her children. But he hits her when he’s angry. No one knew or so the wife thought. When he husband dies and she mourned his death for several months she decides it’s time to move on with her life. An Englisher comes into her life knocking her off her feet. Her children love the Englisher and want him as the daed. But, her Amish parents don’t want her to like him and she’s not ready to marry again. Will the harvest moon bring these two adults peace and love in their lives or will they only be friends? Beth Wilson’s writing has humor, faith, courage, and love. It was definitely entertaining to read it, especially when two young Amish girls tell their mom they want the Englisher as their daed right in front of him in their own tongue. Surprising the Englisher heard and understood every word they said…overall, I highly recommend reading this tale.

Love and Buggy Rides by Amy Clipston is the next story.  This Amish romance was perfect. I fell in love with the main characters right away. An Amish woman sitting outside having her lunch when she witnessed the crash happening right before her. She saw what the Englisher was doing…he wasn’t paying attention and crashed into the Amish buggy that carried several people. Everyone was shaky and injured including the Amish driver. Janie told her family that she witnessed it all. Her father forbids her to tell anyone. Her daed didn’t want her involved in the Englishers’ suing business. However, a threat of suing the buggy owner and firing the buggy driver come up forcing Janie to choose between betraying her daed or doing what she knows is right. Then there’s the budding romance that is building up between Janie and Jonathan. But her parents also forbid it for two reasons. Jonathan is a decade older than her and he might be moving back to his home. Can Janie and Jonathan find what they are looking for before it’s too late? Amy Clipston writing is superb. I finished reading the story within one sitting. Overall, I highly recommend reading this enchanting novella to all.

A Quite Love by Kathleen Fuller is the third novella within this superb book. Kathleen Fuller’s tale is unlike another Amish romance tale that I have read. This one is about two kind loving Amish souls who find friendship and love in one another. Sweet, addictive, and beautifully done. An Amish man has trouble with reading and remembering some stuff. Yet his talent for drawing is out of this world. Then with a young Amish woman’s help, he learns how to read well and how to do other things as well. Together they learn and fall deeper in love. A quite love falls upon them both. Is a wedding in their future? I highly recommend for readers everywhere to read about them. This novella has tugged at my heart and made me fall in love with each of the main characters. Overall, this was a must read.

Mischief in the Autumn Air by Vannetta Chapman is the last novella in this inspiring collection. This last story was unique as well. It was an Amish historical mystery. The tale ended up reuniting Amish people and creating new beginnings. An old argument between two former Amish friends soon led to a treasure map hunt. The treasure map hunt brought together a group of Amish and led them to find hope, peace, and new love. Vannetta Chapman brought a young man back to his Amish roots and finding work, then helping an older Amish aunt to get the medical help and for two workers to find a love to last a lifetime. Truly an entertaining and suspenseful read. Clean and heart melting too. Overall, I highly recommend this novella to readers everywhere.

Review: Oliver and Jumpy (46-48)

Oliver and Jumpy - the Cat Series, Stories 46-48, Book 16: Bedtime stories for children in illustrated picture book with short stories for early readers. (Oliver and Jumpy, the cat series) by [Stejskal, Werner]

 

Synopsis:

Oliver is an elegant tuxedo cat, who is full of himself. As a matter of fact he says: “I love myself!”, quite often. Naughty, isn’t he? But his best friend Jumpy, a kangaroo lady, is aware that he has a soft heart and will always want to help others. The great thing is Jumpy’s pouch, which Oliver loves to ride in! He calls her his kangaroo taxi! These little bedtime stories with their lovely illustrations are great for small kids. A parent can read the text and tell the child in his own words. These animal stories have sufficient text to keep early readers happy and provide some educational value. Love you all! Meow!

Story 46: Saving Fairyland – The queen of fairyland asks Oliver to help them against the magician.

Story 47: Cat King – Oliver becomes a king for a short while, and even gets married.

Story 48: Gnomes – Oliver’s oak tree receives surprise visitors.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Oliver and Jumpy volumes 46-48 by Werner Stejskal is brilliant. Once again the bright colors and beautiful illustrations lured me further into the adventure ahead. I found myself excited to where and what Oliver (the cat) and his friend Jumpy (the kangaroo) were up to next. This time, readers are brought to another quest to save others, enjoy being royalty, and head back to Oliver’s treehouse. Oliver is a cat that all will love. He’s brave, smart, and a good cat. Jumpy the Kangaroo is also just as brave, smart, and good. They not only make great friends but good heroes. Children everywhere will love these characters. The tales are entertaining, educational, and fascinating to read. Each adventure is thrilling and will leave children in suspense as the stories unfold. Never a dull moment with this amazing duo. Overall, I highly recommend this book to all.

Review: You Know Me Well

You Know Me Well: A Novel by [Levithan, David, LaCour, Nina]

 

Synopsis:

Who knows you well? Your best friend? Your boyfriend or girlfriend? A stranger you meet on a crazy night? No one, really?

Mark and Kate have sat next to each other for an entire year but have never spoken. For whatever reason, their paths outside of class have never crossed.

That is until Kate spots Mark miles away from home, out in the city for a wild, unexpected night. Kate is lost, having just run away from a chance to finally meet the girl she has been in love with from afar. Mark, meanwhile, is in love with his best friend Ryan, who may or may not feel the same way.

When Kate and Mark meet up, little do they know how important they will become to each other — and how, in a very short time, they will know each other better than any of the people who are supposed to know them more.

Rating:  4 stars

Review:

You Know Me Well by both Nina LaCour and David Levithan is a great read. I thought it was wonderful that they portrayed two opposites sexes, each dealing with feelings towards their same-sex. Here, I experienced what struggles both internally and externally teens face when in love with the gender. Different, new, and a deeper understanding develops after reading this novel. However, I wanted to feel a connection with the characters…one the would stay with me even after I finished reading the story. That didn’t happen for me in this tale.

Inside this engaging title, You Know Me Well, readers get to meet two friends. One is a guy and the other is a girl. Both are dealing with their relationships that nobody but them know about…Kate is in love with another girl and Mark loves his another guy. Each friend is there supporting the other one to go after the one they love. Nina LaCour and David Levithan have crafted a realistic, honest, and gritty tale. One that readers will definitely enjoy time and time again. The main theme that stuck out with me was being true to one’s self and taking the risk of going after what makes one happy. Overall, this was a fun read and I recommend it to others.

Review: She’s Got a Way

 

Synopsis:

Gabriela O’Brien is devoted to the girls at Briarwood Academy—even when their bad behavior earns them an entire summer at a remote campground in Echo Lake, Vermont. When the headmaster assigns Gabi to be their chaperone, how can she refuse? A long, hot summer with neither indoor plumbing nor wireless access might be just what she needs to get her own life in order…right?

Before Briarwood took over Camp Echo, Luke Magellan spent years there helping troubled boys. When four spoiled rich girls and their seemingly uptight den mother show up for the summer, it’s hard to hide his amusement as he watches them tackle the great outdoors. But it’s even tougher to resist the passion he sees in Gabi—especially when he learns about her past, and sees how much she cares about her students. Is this destined to be just a grown-up version of a summer-camp romance—or can they find enough in common to build a love for all seasons?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

She’s Got A Way by Maggie McGinnis is an exciting adventure. One that takes readers outdoors to a faraway camp. Welcome to Camp Echo. A beautiful lake and scenery all around it…but there are only two buildings on the site. A place for eating and the administrative building. That’s where the plot gets more exciting…add a group of five teenage girls and their home mother and all hell breaks loose. The girls are taken to Camp Echo which now operates under the rule by their snobbish all girls school. The girls past actions have caused them to be sent to the camp. A way for them to suffer for the trouble they all have caused. The home mother had already made plans to go away for the summer yet the snobbish boss forced her to go with the girls. Now, all five have to learn how to survive the outdoors or drive each other bear crazy. Speaking of bears…readers are in for a sweet surprise.

Maggie McGinnis is a talented writer. Her world of fiction excites, intrigues, and creates emotional attachments to the characters. I really loved how each character is realistically flawed and learns how to let go and move forward despite their situations. The teenage girls learn more at Camp Echo then they will in their rich all girls school. Maybe friendships can be made. Then there’s a possibility of love in the air. Home mother and the handyman at Camp Echo have it bad. It’s hard to put the book down. The characters had me laughing, crying, and falling in love with them. This was definitely a feel-good contemporary romance. Love, life, and new beginnings. She’s Got A Way is a must read for all. Overall, I highly recommend this novel.

 

Review: Regret the Day I Said Yes

Regret the Day I Said Yes: Too Late For Sorry by [Swanson, Regina]

 

Synopsis:

How much of yourself are you really willing to give up to keep a happy home?

After catching her husband with a mouth full of someone else’s vagina, Janelle has to decide if she can forgive and forget.

That thing called LOVE can turn your entire world upside down and knock you on your ass in the blink of an eye.

Alan has done the unthinkable and just might have burned any chance of reconciliation with his wife after leaving her stranded and flown home with his mistress.

Regret the Day I Said Yes: Too Late For Sorry is a story about a group of couples who think they have found the answer to having a happy lifelong marriage.

Bailee & York and Tiffany & Damon have been secretly swinging for years. As they see their friends’ marriages on the brink of disaster they encourage them to give it a try to spice things up.

While it all seems logical at first, time later reveals that every choice has a consequence; Good or bad, their actions can come back to haunt them.

Can these marriages be saved? Can these friendships be rebuilt?

Have you ever regretted the day you said yes? Sometimes it’s too late for sorry.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Regret the Day I Said Yes by Regina Swanson is one brilliant masterpiece. Talk about drama! This story is full of drama. The emotions are so intense and flying everywhere. Readers will be intrigued from the first page. The action and suspense of what will be, keeps readers hooked. Regina Swanson has once again, put her superb writing into another fabulous read. Her characters are three-dimensional. Their issues become the readers’ issues. Marriage can rip apart faster than we thought…just how fast is something readers will be shown. When men have it good with a good decent woman…they somehow think they

When men have it good with a good decent woman…they somehow think they need something more because their lives got too boring or too hard to handle. Wusses. If a man needs another woman on the side then, the issues lie with him. The wives and other women in this story are realistic that it’s funny. I can visualize all the scenes. Regret the Day I Said Yes is more like a fast-paced movie than a novel. Detailed just enough to pop images into readers’ minds. Jealousy, rage, lust and the feeling of loss are all woven into this title. Great emotional journey. Ups and downs just like real life. Regina Swanson has a way of making her novels real. It’s hard to believe they’re just fiction. Juicy, steamy, and addictive. I managed to read the whole novel in an hour. Absolutely, loved reading this urban romance. The harsh realities that couples face when their loved one cheats…hurts. Friends are more entangled in each other’s lives than they thought. Sex with the other person’s partner. Yet not all couples know that their partner is cheating until it comes out in the open. Children are angry because their father cheated on their mom. Then the woman he cheated with is awful towards his kids…now, he’s rethinking his relationship with her. Friendships are forever changed. The sparks and desires are enchanting. Overall, I highly recommend this novel to readers everywhere.

 

Review: The Playboy’s Proposal

 

 

Synopsis:

Doctor Benny Sorensen has had it up to here with her party-throwing playboy neighbor. She’s declaring war. She doesn’t care how gorgeous or charming he is, he’s going down. That is until he proposes something she’s not sure she can say no to…

Wealthy ad man Henry Ellison lives an uncomplicated life that revolves around work, women, and partying. In that order. Until Benny storms into his life. To placate his attractive but hot-headed neighbor, Henry offers to help her land a date with the man of her dreams. Only as Henry makes her over and coaches her on the fine art of flirting, he realizes that the idea of this woman in any other man’s arms but his own is unacceptable. But Benny’s a forever kind of girl and forever might just be the one commitment he can’t make.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Playboy’s Proposal by Ashlee Mallory is one that features a proposal made between two exact opposites. One is a smart loving doctor with no social life but her family. Then there is the neighbor. He’s hot sexy and extremely wealthy. Except there is one minor problem…okay scratch that…a major issue at play. The rich guy plays music way up loud…that a doctor can’t get sleep for the next work day. She bounds over to him and tells him to turn it down as well as to stop blocking her driving spot. Then, he turns it down…only later on, to find out that he’s been fined for so many things. This might be the moment when he loses his home and tons of money for a neighbor’s complaint. But to put a stop to the committee kicking his butt he needs to make a quick but best proposal to his neighbor…one that she won’t be able to let go. It there that they start hanging out in order to up a doctor’s social love life. Only there’s much at stake here. Hearts might just get broken in the process unless fate has other ideas…

The Playboy’s Proposal is the first novel I have read by Ashlee Mallory. I was immediately taken in with her characters. Both of the characters have sad stories. But maybe fate can pull them a happy ending. The chemistry is hot enough to start the pages on fire. Kissing that leads to dreams of wanting more…but is it something that they really want? I got swept off my feet and pulled into the story. Fast-paced and well told. I loved following the hot tale as well as the emotional journey. Overall, The Playboy’s Proposal is definitely a romance novel I recommend to all.

 

 

 

Review: When the Summer Ends

51kAUnCDV4L

 

Synopsis:

A tale of love and friendship set in the 1950s, When the Summer Ends tackles society’s views of the times.

Aika Rowland is a young lady affected by undiagnosed Aspergers, and struggling to live her life; her famous family has its own problems and often she is overlooked, finding it hard to fit in with her outlandish clothes and strange mannerisms. That is, until she meets rough, tough Greaser girl, Cherry Knox, the girl who shows her what love is really about.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Review:

When the Summer Ends by Ellie Morris is well-written and shows a lot of issues at hand that our society faces today. As a reader, I could sympathize with the characters. A family going through many issues. Issues like an older brother being gay, a father who can’t stand up to his demanding wife, and the daughter struggling with who she is and developing an attraction to another female. This was indeed an emotional thrill ride. As each cahracter went through their issues and self-discoveries. But desipte all that was happening the sibblings supported one another. That made me feel good. Gender issues as well as sexuality and racisim were also other issues that were brilliantly brought up within this historical read. Quite a journey to go through. Never a dull moment. Love isn’t something that we can box up and define. It’s something that changes as life evolves. Love isn’t hatred. Ellie Morris brings these themes into her highly entertaining world of fiction. Overall, I recommend this new title to readers everywhere.

Review: The A to Z of You and Me

 

Synopsis:

A striking literary debut of love and mortality, The A to Z of You and Me is the story of a man who doesn’t have much time, his love for a girl who isn’t there, and the game he plays while waiting that illuminates the devastating and beautiful turns of life. The A-Z game. For Ivo, it’s a way to pass the time, a way to avoid the pain and a way to think about what really got him here. His hospice nurse suggested it – think of a body part for each letter, and think of memories connected to each one. And so begins the revealing of his misspent life: the terrible teenage choices, friendships made and cracked, the love he’ll never get back. He remembers the girl who tried to help him, the friend who wouldn’t let her, and the sickness that chases him even now.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Review:

The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah is a journey that sucks me in whole and keeps me turning the pages. Ivo is just a regular everyday kind of man. He fell into the wrong crowd, did stuff that he wasn’t proud of, and lost a chance at love. Now, as an elderly man, in a hospice, he knows his life is short. A nurse has him go through an exercise using every letter of the alphabet to come up with a story or a life memory attached to each letter. As Ivo goes through the alphabet, I got to travel through snippets of his younger self. Ivo lost his father to cancer, he experienced both bad and good days during his younger life. I enjoyed following the person he was back then and the man he has become. He knows what he did wrong and wants to make things better. He’s a little afraid, but soon…he finds some peace and love in the end. I truly enjoyed this talented writer’s style and the well-written plot. The characters were well-developed and were able to drag me into the scenes as though I were experiencing it all for real. The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah is definitely a literary novel that I would recommend to all.

 

Review: China Doll

 

Synopsis:

Jana Lane is back on Broadway in 1984—starring in a murder mystery. Life imitates art when members of the company are murdered. As Jana investigates, it’s clear she may be the next victim. Complicating matters, is Jana’s uncontrollable infatuation, with her leading man, gorgeous and muscular Off-Broadway actor Peter Stevens. Will Jana find the murderer before the curtain comes down on her?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

This is the fourth brilliant mystery novel series by Joe Cosentino. China Doll is a new broadway play that Jana stars in…however, this time…she brings two family members into acting. Her young son BJ and a cousin,  who will do anything to get into acting. Then there’s a male actor who is battling AIDs and only two others besides Jana Lane support him. The others don’t want him to continue acting. Then there’s the new babysitter that Jana Lane has hired to watch over BJ. Everyone thinks he’s gay but he claims that he’s not…is he really trying to convince himself or others? Joe Cosentino also brings in extra drama with a hot male actor that causes Jana Lane to remind herself that she’s a married woman. Drama is high and as the broadway play continues so does the tension of the actors. No matter where the famous Jana Lane goes…there’s always a murder case to be solved. Joe Cosentino never disappoints…his novels are superb. I find myself addicted to each story that he writes and once he writes a new book the characters end up being added to my all-time favorite lists. There’s plenty of action, intrigue, and murder to go around. A talented writer whose words constantly draws me in every time. I look forward to the next masterfully woven story in this series. Jana Lane is definitely a new female sleuth that should be on everyone’s reading list. Overall, I highly recommend China Doll to readers worldwide.

Review: The Divorce

 

Synopsis:

Jenzy: I love my husband, but he doesn’t see me anymore. We were collage sweethearts and for seven years I’ve been his wife. Five of those years were bliss; the last two have been a long fall from grace.

He’s the love of my life, the sexy and smart man I saw my future with, but now I don’t think he sees it too. I’m tired of not being seen, I’m tired of not being heard, and I’m tired of being in love alone.
I was his optimistic hippie girl that he couldn’t get enough of. Now I’m just his annoyance.

So I told him, I finally found the backbone and this is our story….

Chris: My wife just told me she wants a divorce. What the hell do I say to that? I thought we were fine-, well fine is a bad word, I thought we were okay. Doesn’t matter what I think because she’s moving out and I can’t really let this happen.

Yeah, she annoys me, we’re total opposites, but I knew that when I met her, she hasn’t changed…maybe I have? I was her anchor, her safety, her home. Now I’m that guy that’s wreaked her and there are plenty of men willing to repair the damage I did.

So I have a plan. Find out what happened to change my affection for her within the last two years, and win her back before someone else does, because I still love her, and she still loves me….I guess….

Rating: Beyond 5 stars

Review:

The Divorce by Nicole Strycharz is absolutely phenomenal. The story itself sucked me in whole. It devoured me in entire form. I can’t remember reading a novel especially, a romance novel that made me laugh and cry so hard. The emotional journey was just breath taking. I felt everything like it was me experiencing it all first hand. This is a novel that will go to the big screens and be the one everyone talks about…I highly recommend reading it before they make it into a movie.

I have read Nicole Strycharz’s other works and this one moved me in ways I can’t describe. The characters were three dimensional…the scenes popped to life. I felt happy, excited, sad, angry, and wow…the steamy scenes were good too. I happen to read a lot of of books…say 300 books a year if not more. I know a great novel when I find it and this is definitely one of them. The Divorce is a powerful tale of a couple’s marriage. The ups and downs most couples experience are lived in this story. I could feel the fear and frustrations from both the husband and wife as their love, troubles, and growth continued. As a reader, I was instantly hooked and compelled by the brilliant writing of this talented writer. It’s easy to connect with the characters and their situations as they occured. Love is something we all cherish or should. We need to be loved as to love others…and this novel demonstrates that beautifully. Humans can be so blinded at times and it’s not until we lose something that we are awakened by what we have done. Overall, I seriously recommend this riveting romance tale to readers worldwide. I promise you will fall in love…

Review: The Cavendon Luck

 

Synopsis:

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes a captivating epic saga of courage and honor, following the aristocratic Inghams and the loyal Swann family who have served them for centuries.

It is 1938 in England, and Miles and Cecily Ingham have led the family in bringing the Cavendon estate back from the brink of disaster. But now, with the arrival of World War II, Cavendon Hall will face its biggest challenge yet. It is a challenge that will push the Inghams and Swanns to protect each other and the villagers and reveal their true capacity for survival and rebirth.

Told with Bradford’s deft, evocative prose and featuring a beloved cast of characters, The Cavendon Luck is a story of intrigue, romance, sorrow, and joy that readers won’t soon forget.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Cavendon Luck by Barbara Taylor Bradford reminds me so much of my beloved favorite British TV program, The Downton Abbey.  Both are about keeping the family place afloat during tough times. There’s always a disaster of some sort just around the corner and right after everything seems to be doing well. Barbara Taylor Bradford lures her audience back to 1938 where it all begins…The Cavendon Luck is an extraordinary historical fiction that will grab readers instantly with its intrigue and fascinating cast of characters. The emotional journey is quite a ride. Just as in real life, the roads get bumpy, tough or easy and joyous.

After reading this stunning new title by Barbara Taylor Bradford, I would love to see this turned into a big motion picture. The story brings readers in both emotionally and physically. The scenes are so vivid that they pop off the pages into the reader’s mind. The tightly knit family showered with so much love makes readers’ hearts melt into butter. The idea of war and what it might brings sounds alarms within the characters. It causes a curtain of suspense to hang thickly in the air as every page is quickly turned. Cavendon Hall is brought back and safe for the moment but how much longer will that last if war does set in? Readers will love the two families both the Inghams and the Swanns.  The tale is switched from telling it from the character’s point of view to the narrator’s. Excitement, danger, and livelihoods are all on a tight line where the Cavendon Hall is concerned. So many have put in so much to keep it going…World War II is just around the corner fear, death, and loss will soon be upon them all. Friendship, romance, and courage are all a part of this magnificent thrilling novel. I couldn’t put the book down…until I read it all. Readers will indeed fall in love with this second masterpiece by Barbara Taylor Bradford. Overall, I highly recommend The Cavendon Luck to readers worldwide.

 

Review: Shoe Fetish (book 2)

Synopsis:

These three friends continue to find their way through life, love, and its relationships transferring all power and emotions via their shoes, which hold secrets. Some harmless and some deadly; and, though Carmen is untrusting of men and their secrets, she has a few deadly secrets of her own. Women love their shoes for varied reasons. Shoes are not only for protection, beauty, and sex; but, for the life that they can transcend you to, and the secrets that may not have been shared with another person are sometimes within the soles of the shoes.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Inside Shoe Fetish 2, readers will get a glimpse into three women’s lives. Friends who have to go about their life journey finding their way through it all. Romance, shoes, men, and everyday life struggles all part of growing up and learning how to balance. I love how both writers, Sharon Bennett, and Beatrice Moore have bought out a woman’s love of shoes and men into a beautifully woven story that will capture readers everywhere. Going through men is exactly like trying on a pair of shoes, to see, if they fit. Women’s shoes can tell you exactly how she’s feeling…because they bring out certain sides to each and every woman. It’s like dying one’s hair or putting on a particular shade of lipstick. We all have those inner dark secrets that make us who we are.  The tight-knit group of friends helps each woman go through each step of her journey. The ending is just as beautiful as they beginning. I loved reading this tale and following each woman as she changed throughout the book. I  think this portrays a realistic side of women and men in relationships that makes it easy for readers everywhere to connect to…as well as to enjoy. Overall, I highly recommend Shoe Fetish 2 to readers worldwide.

Review: The Year We Turned Forty

 

Synopsis:

If you could repeat one year of your life, what would you do differently? This heartwarming and hilarious novel from the authors of The Status of All Things and Your Perfect Life features three best friends who get the chance to return to the year they turned forty—the year that altered all of their lives, in ways big and small—and also, get the opportunity to change their future.

Jessie loves her son Lucas more than anything, but it tears her up inside that he was conceived in an affair that ended her marriage to a man she still loves, a man who just told her he’s getting remarried. This time around, she’s determined to bury the secret of Lucas’ paternity, and to repair the fissures that sent her wandering the first time.

Gabriela regrets that she wasted her most fertile years in hot pursuit of a publishing career. Yes, she’s one of the biggest authors in the world, but maybe what she really wanted to create was a family. With a chance to do it again, she’s focused on convincing her husband, Colin, to give her the baby she desires.

Claire is the only one who has made peace with her past: her twenty-two-year-old daughter, Emily, is finally on track after the turmoil of adolescence, and she’s recently gotten engaged, with the two-carat diamond on her finger to prove it. But if she’s being honest, Claire still fantasizes about her own missed opportunities: a chance to bond with her mother before it was too late, and the possibility of preventing her daughter from years of anguish. Plus, there’s the man who got away—the man who may have been her one true love.

But it doesn’t take long for all three women to learn that re-living a life and making different decisions only leads to new problems and consequences—and that the mistakes they made may, in fact, have been the best choices of all…

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Year We Turned Forty by both Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke is an intriguing and highly entertaining read. Readers will instantly connect with each of the three women inside this novel. Their journeys are realistic, quirky, and heart melting. Family, friendships, and love are the important themes inside this delightful new title. Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke have beautifully created a women’s novel that will have readers looking at their lives a little bit differently than before. We may never be able to change our pasts, but we should count our blessings for what we have and where we have come…

This is the first novel that I have read by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke. Their writing creates an imagery that sets readers straight into the plot. It feels like we, the readers, have become each of the leading female characters. Everything they have done said,  felt or even thought becomes our own. Amazing in how the emotional journey of fictional women pops off the pages and completely surrounds us. Lives have been lived and created…going back can have drastic changes on our future and they may not come out exactly they way we thought they would…even the best-laid plans fail. The tight knit of the friends and how they support one another brilliant way of luring readers deeper into the story of three strong independent women. I loved reading this masterpiece and I look forward to reading more by these two talented writers. A novel that will move readers…is definitely worth picking up to read. Overall, I highly recommend The Year We Turned Forty to readers everywhere.

 

 

Review: NOOKIETOWN

 

Synopsis:

Recently divorced, 40-something single-mom, Lucy, is lonely, bored and craving physical connection. So, when her trusted long-time married friend, Nancy, begs Lucy to sleep with her husband to save her marriage, Lucy goes for it. It’s such a success, the two friends invent a town-wide underground barter system whereby Nancy’s married girlfriends sub-contract Lucy’s divorcee friends to sleep with their husbands so they don’t have to as often. It’s a win, win, win- for a while. Then it all goes to hell in a hand-basket.

Laugh-out-loud funny, emotionally provocative and at times racy, Nookietown is a story of risk-taking, marriage, honesty and desire, and what one woman rationalizes in order to get what she wants.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

NOOKIETOWN by V.C. Chickering is indeed one realistic yet funny read that readers worldwide can easily enjoy. Readers are introduced to a group of women made up of two sides. The married women and the divorcees. Both come together in this quirky tale that shows the real ups and downs of every marriage. Men want sex. Women want a life and great sex. But when one is married sex life gets complicated. Men are horny and women are picky on when, where, and how they want the sex to be. It’s crazy, insane, but shows a part of life that readers know exists today. Maybe not a group of friends that come up with a silly scheme like contracting their husbands out to their women friends…because we all know sex is complicated. There are no black and white versions. It’s messy, emotional, and dirty. By dirty…I mean both sides play dirty. A woman gets pregnant from having sex with her friend’s husbands…but who the father is…is a mystery. She always wanted to have a baby and maybe she just might get what she asked for…however, everything else will get sticky when it involves her friends and their husbands.  V.C. Chickering masterfully writes a comedy that deals with consenting adults and the marriage life. Funny, addictive, and well-written. Overall, NOOKIETOWN is easy to relate to and to get lost within its page. I look forward to reading more by this talented writer and highly recommend this novel to readers everywhere.

Review: Entanglement

 

Synopsis:

1990s Hollywood, two unlikely friends, one dangerous relationship…

Socially awkward 21-year-old Greta moves in with her best friend Daphne, a troubled young woman with an abusive past. The glamorous and charismatic Daphne teaches Greta how to wear stilettos, tame her wild hair, and navigate L.A. nightlife. Daphne is determined to make it big, and she drags an unwilling Greta into the limelight with her.

But Greta prefers spending time with Timmy, her new boss who has become a lot more than that. Daphne, convinced Timmy’s not the right man for her friend, will do anything to drive them apart—even if her actions throw Greta into the path of danger.

Can Greta survive? Can she forgive?

Tana French meets Donna Tartt in this tense, evocative story of love and friendship—and everything in between. And fans of Lisa Scottoline’s Betrayed will enjoy the strong female protagonists found in Pryal’s novel.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Entanglement by Katie Ross Guest Pryal is one that will captivate audiences from all over the world. Here, readers will see how young women in their twenties act in friendships that are supposed to be more good than bad. The budding friendship between the two females is enough to lure readers in deep. There is definitely enough inner and outer conflicts to keep readers hooked from the beginning until the end. Katie Ross Guest Pryal also shows readers what an obsessive friendship is like, how we deal with it, and what the consequences of it are. Young people can sense or see a conflict yet they will redefine it so as to not make it quite as big as it appears to be.

Entanglement is a confusing and new time for a young woman like Greta. She moves in with another woman who’s tendencies aren’t shown until later in the book. Confused and seeking after something, Greta shrugs it off and lets her new roommate show her how to live her life. At first, the harm isn’t made apparent until danger seeps in and takes over the scene. Unpredictable, complex, and intriguing is one way to describe Greta’s friend and roommate, Daphne. The story as a whole is well-written and is fun to read. Readers will enjoy reading this new adult and coming of age novel. Katie Ross Guest Pryal is one talented writer who has a way of creating a read that readers everywhere can connect with and understand. I enjoyed reading this brilliant piece and I highly recommend it to others.

 

Review: The Paris Effect

 

Synopsis:

Nothing is what it seems in this highly praised debut novel about a food-obsessed young woman who sneaks away to Paris without telling anyone. Not even her husband. Once there she’s robbed, stalked, arrested, kidnapped (almost) and-worse-finds that her numerous issues have come right along with her. Grab a croissant and settle in for a decidedly non-touristy trip to the City of Light.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Paris Effect by K.S.R. Burns is indeed a perfect women’s fiction novel. Readers will see that there is a lot that happens inside, this brilliant well-written story. The main character has issues like the rest of us. She even has a list of rules some that sound great, others creepy, and the rest crazy. This is the first novel I have read by this talented writer. The characters will keep readers constantly one their toes especially, Amy. Amy is a character that readers can’t put one label on…instead, she contains many surprising labels and creates a fascinating adventure ahead.

Inside The Paris Effect, readers find a woman that is not smooth on the edges but rough and a little frayed. Amy and her woman friend Kat take up much of the novel. Everything, Amy does she either has her husband William telling her what to do or her friend Kat whose voice tells her what to do. Amy just doesn’t know what she wants yet or what she wants to do. She is laid off, her best friend died, and she has plans of going to Paris.  K.S.R. Burns takes readers to traveling to Paris where Amy runs into more trouble. Her husband wants kids one day and she’s not so sure. She tries calling her husband yet no answer…does that mean they are done? I can’t wait to read the sequel to this amazing piece. Readers like myself will be enticed from the first page and eager to finish the whole book in one sitting. Then when readers reach the ending…they will be begging to read more. I couldn’t believe how wonderful and adventurous this title would be until I read it. Overall, I highly recommend this novel to readers worldwide.

 

 

Review: Desert Dark

 

Synopsis:

Sixteen-year-old Nadia Riley is delighted to earn a spot at an elite, government-funded boarding school. Nothing sounds better than leaving behind her fraught relationship with her ex-boyfriend and moving to faraway Arizona for a spot at Desert Mountain Academy.  But the Academy is more than Nadia bargained for: it’s a covert CIA program training high-achieving students for the Black-Ops. Nadia struggles to keep up in her new classes while gaining the trust of her assigned teammates. Things get worse when news leaks that there is a double agent on campus, and someone is framing Nadia.  Nadia discovers dark secrets about her fellow teammates and learns one of them is the deserter.  With a setting that is Hogwarts meets The Bourne Identity, this debut YA thriller will make readers mad with suspense.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Desert Dark by Sonja Stone is brilliantly stunning. Her novel is set for YA; however, adults like myself will lose themselves inside this incredible read. I found it enticing, suspenseful and packed with action. There’s also, a mystery surrounding the events that keep readers intrigued from the beginning and until the ending. This new title in YA is exciting, hot, and carries a lot of themes such as family, loyalty, and friendships. I absolutely loved reading this new novel by a very talented writer. Desert Dark is the first novel I have read by this writer and I am now looking forward to book two. Hopefully, there is one. These characters are funny, unpredictable, and sweet. They are also, realistic, smart, and can kick butt.

Inside this suspenseful spy covert mission book, readers will follow a young girl as she is being sent to a private school that she has never signed up for…it gives her a chance to start over rather than staying home having to face her cheating boyfriend and ex best friend. Desert Dark totally fits in with the overall story. As the new girl, Nadia finds herself in the middle of a dessert with a top security governmental school, she finds there are indeed dark things going on…Nadia is smart and a tough student. She soon realizes how far behind she is and works daily to bring herself up to standards with her four-man team. Her roommate has a southern accent and is a little OCD when it comes to keeping things clean…but their friendship blooms despite that…but Nadia soon finds out each member of her team is holding onto a secret. Especially their hot team leader whose secret may crush what they both feel towards one another…then there’s a diary Nadia finds…and it’s after that her whole life gets messier than she ever expected. I loved reading this spy thriller. Desert Dark is not just for teens but can also be for adults. The plot, characters, and the pace were amazing. I couldn’t stop reading it. Overall, this is definitely a novel to read by all.

Review: Her Sexy Marine Valentine

 

Synopsis:

A Sexy Marine Neighbor? 

Oorah! 

The sight of the gorgeous, ripped military man across the street heats Mari McGuire from head to toe—and a whole lot in between. Yes, sir, she definitely has a case of Hot Marine Syndrome. And when First Lieutenant Brody Williams rescues her from an awkward run-in with her ex by pretending to be her boyfriend, Mari can confirm she’s got it bad…

Of course, they’re friends first, and friends help each other out. Mari needs a hand renovating the old Victorian house she just bought and Brody needs a girlfriend to secure his promotion. It’s the perfect temporary arrangement—and then there’s the sizzling chemistry. It’s wickedly racy. It’s addictive. But neither of them expects Cupid’s arrow to aim for their hearts!

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Her Sexy Marine Valentine by Candace Havens is nothing but hot, sexy, and addictive. Her world of fiction is brilliantly spun together in a way that will leave readers falling in love with her characters. First, there’s the inner conflict between two sexes, the outer conflict that both are struggling with and then the emotional struggles that come their way. Frustration, lust, and a whole lot of love ends up happening between two neighbors. What started out as a simple and a way to itch, their desires…turned into a complicated mess that neither one expected. Candace Havens has also created other characters who help shape the path destined for these two main characters. Love conquers all is very strong within Her Sexy Marine Valentine. Readers will feel the heat, the anger, the worry, and most of all the hope at the end. A very satisfying ending…by a talented writer. Overall, I highly recommend this blazing romance to readers everywhere.

Review: The Bookshop

 

Synopsis:

Even I, who had resisted kicking and screaming, had to admit defeat. Why would love be impressed by the protests of a simple bookseller?

Jakoba has had enough. It is 1999 and she looks back on her life that began at the start of the century. Her arrival was unexpected, but joyfully welcomed, by her middle-aged parents. In a time where a middle-class girls has one destiny, namely to become a wife and mother, Jakoba is allowed to start working at a bookshop. Books become one of the loves of her life. Later she will inherit the shop.

She values friendship, but romance has no meaning for her. She values her independence too much and knows all too well what price women pay for being married.

It is German army photographer Armin who will change the course of her life. Jakoba is forty when she meets him. Armin is almost thirty, and Germany has occupied Holland. It does not matter. For him, she’s the one, and despite her hesitation both because of the war and because she can’t understand what this handsome man sees in her—a plain woman—she has to admit her feelings for him.

Such love has consequences for both of them that will reach far beyond the war and in ways, Jakoba could never have imagined.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Bookshop is definitely for fans of women’s fiction. Seeing as this stunning yet brilliantly well-written novel features a woman and her journey back to her younger life. R.A. Padmos takes us to the character’s beginning and all the way back to the present moment in time where the woman is old and sharing her memories with us. The tale is beautiful, sad, and sweet. A strong independent woman who has lived life to the fullest. I enjoyed reading this new book and I highly recommend it to readers everywhere. The journey is inspiring, motivational, and entertaining. Readers won’t be disappointed once they open up this story…

 

 

Review: The Rumor

51EALhMo0eL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

 

Synopsis:

A friendship is tested in this irresistible page-turner from New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand.

Nantucket writer Madeline King couldn’t have picked a worse time to have writer’s block. Her deadline is looming, her bills are piling up, and inspiration is in short supply. Madeline’s best friend Grace, is hard at work transforming her garden into the envy of the island with the help of a ruggedly handsome landscape architect. Before she realizes it, Grace is on the verge of a decision that will irrevocably change her life. Could Grace’s crisis be Madeline’s salvation? As the gossip escalates, and the summer’s explosive events come to a head, Grace and Madeline try desperately to set the record straight–but the truth might be even worse than rumor has it.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

WOW! There isn’t quite a novel like The Rumor…Readers will be on the edge of their seats with suspense and excitement as the buzzing plot spins them further into drama, rumors, and trouble. Elin Hilderbrand has wowed me with her intriguing plotlines and realistic characters. Just as in real life…things go way out off control before we recognize what it is we have done. This was my first novel that I have by this talented writer. Humor on every page…enticing me further into this marvelous read. Besides who can turn down an excellent read about an author who takes what her friend says and turns life inside out…so many what ifs and what will come of it…readers won’t be able to turn away from this book once they open it.

The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand now has me waiting for the summer and all that comes with it. Friendship that has lasted 20 years is now hanging by the threads…it’s amazing what a little fact inside of fiction about real people can do…the damage is something readers must read on to find out…A highly entertaining yet brilliantly well-written novel that will instantly grab readers. I couldn’t stop reading. This novel is indeed the most interesting one I have read in a long while. Juicy, funny, and magnificent story is waiting for readers inside of The Rumor.

Review: When I Grow Up…(Volume 1)

41xEzubYdIL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_

 

 

Synopsis:

“You need a plan B,” said Alicia’s mother when at five years old she told her what she wanted to be when she grew up. Thirty odd years later, Alicia is on plan D: sharing a flat, no tangible savings, and working for hateful Julia, whose sole purpose in life is to make her existence utterly miserable. Good thing she has Oscar and the girls to make the long hours at work bearable. But when a series of events tears the close-knit group apart, putting friendships and motives under suspicion, will Alicia be able to restore balance and set things right? More importantly, will she ever be able to upgrade her life to at least plan C?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

When I Grow Up…by Patricia Asedegbega is a fascinating read. Readers will be instantly pulled in by this writer’s words. Her characters and scenes come to life. I absolutely loved reading this. The suspense and interesting characters kept me hooked until the last page. Readers will find this read full of humor, mystery, and excitement. The ending was super good…Readers will be kept guessing as the plot unfolds. Fast-paced, brilliantly well-written, and the characters are so real. I look forward to reading more by this writer in the future. Her charaters are fun people that if they were real, I would love to meet them. Overall, I highly recommend this novel to readers everywhere.

 

Review: Death by Diploma

 

Synopsis:

Emma Lovett leaves her philandering husband and crosses the country to begin her teaching career at a high school in Pinewood, Colorado.There, she meets Leslie Parker, a fellow teacher given to quoting Shakespeare to fit all situations, and the two become fast friends.

Arriving at work early one morning, Emma discovers the body of the school custodian, a man who reminds her of her late father. When the police struggle to find the killer, the ladies decide to help solve the murder. Their efforts lead them to a myriad of suspects: the schizophrenic librarian, the crude football coach, the mysterious social studies teacher, and even Emma’s new love interest.

As Emma Lovett discovers the perils of teaching high school, she and Leslie learn more than they ever wanted to know about the reasons people kill.

Rating: 5 stars

Review: 

Death by Diploma is a fascinating  sleuth detective story. A story like Nancy Drew but with a more modern twist like a Miss Fisher, Emma and her new friends go about solving one man’s murder.  I loved reading this mystery novel by Kellye Kaye. Her characters are funny, smart, and realistic. I would love to meet them all in person, if they were real. Many of these characters are hiding secrets…that could also, tie in with the recent murder case and the grades of athletic students. Kelley Kaye has created a fictional world full of literary qoutes from famous classic literature pieces. It’s really incredible how this well-writen story is. Humor, friendships, and intrigue will keep readers turning the pages and waiting to find out who the murderer truly is. Death by Diploma is truly an entertaining and laugh-out-loud read. I highly recommend this brilliant read to readers everywhere.

Review: The Rejected Writers’ Book Club

 

Synopsis:

Librarian Janet Johnson is puzzled when she is invited—and practically dragged—to her first meeting of the Rejected Writers’ Book Club. This quirky group of women would much rather celebrate one another’s rejected manuscripts over cups of tea and slices of lemon cake than actually publish a book. But good friends are exactly what Janet needs after moving to the small town of Southsea Bay, Washington. Just as the ladies are about to raise a teacup to their five hundredth rejection letter, they receive bad news that could destroy one member’s reputation—and disband the group forever. To save the club, Janet joins her fellow writers on a wild road trip to San Francisco in search of the local publisher who holds the key to a long-buried secret. As they race to the finish line, they’ll face their fears—landslides, haunted houses, handsome strangers, ungrateful children—and have the time of their lives.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Rejected Writer’s Book Club is a sensational read that will send readers on a journey for a life time. This story is funny, daring, and energetic. For fans of Susan Mallery, Debbie Macomber, and Janet Evanoich than this is definitely for you. Readers will be amazed by the strong bond of friendships these characters have created inside of their neatly organized group. I love anything that deals with reading, writing, and books and this novel by Suzanne Kelman was just the perfect read I was looking for…

A new woman moves into town and is invited to join a group of women. Here readers will be pulled in automatically as the fast-paced plot unfolds with every page. The humor, adventure, and suspense will keep readers turning the pages all night long. When news comes in that will shatter their group completely they set out on a trip to undo the chance of that ever happening.

The Rejected Writer’s Book Club is a fascinating novel for women that won’t be forgotten. The characters are interesting and highly intriguing…and the plot as so much that could or could not happen that readers will be glued to every page wondering what’s next. Suzanne Kelman has a raw talent in drawing her readers into a world of laughter, fun, and memories of a life time. I loved reading this well-developed story and look forward to reading more by this author. Overall, I highly recommend this read to readers everywhere.

Review: Theo Blinkerson & The Copper Coffin

 

Synopsis:

When someone sets out to destroy all electrical technology on the planet, it’s sometimes best to hide under the softest, fluffiest blanket available. Other times you have to run screaming from dangerous robots. In the worst of times, you find out that your best friend has forgotten that you exist and that you have to ride the world’s longest elevator with the scary girl you only met two days ago. Theo Blinkerson is about to have all of those times.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Theo Blinkerson and the Copper Coffin is definitely for fans of Disney’s Big Hero. Here we meet a young boy who didn’t have a lot of friends but had one in a neuorb. A neurob being a robotic person. This is where fans of Big Hero will love. These two friends…one being human and the not keep in touch using a highly advanced piece of technology that is powered by the sunlight…and looks like a credit card. For those who love technology, fantasy, adventure …then this is definitely the right novel for you. Readers will love story and the 14-year-old boy telling the story. Funny, fascinating, and entertaining. I loved this work of fiction by Gregory Butron. I am looking forward to reading more by him in the future. This stunning YA story is a must read for all. I highly recommend this to reader worldwide. Theo Blinkerson and the Copper Coffin is a novel that readers will read and read again. A new and highly intriguing story that will captivate readers from the beginning and keep them hooked until the end.

 

Review: The Friends We Keep

 

Synopsis:

In this insightful and compelling story from book club favorite Susan Mallery, three close friends test the boundaries of how much a woman can give before she has nothing left 

After five years as a stay-at-home mom, Gabby Schaefer can’t wait to return to work. Oh, to use the bathroom in peace! No twins clamoring at the door, no husband barging in, no stepdaughter throwing a tantrum. But when her plans are derailed by some shocking news and her husband’s crushing expectations, Gabby must fight for the right to have a life of her own.

Getting pregnant is easy for Hayley Batchelor. Staying pregnant is the hard part. Her husband is worried about the expensive fertility treatments and frantic about the threat to her health. But to Hayley, a woman who was born to be a mom should risk everything to fulfill her destiny—no matter how high the cost.

Nicole Lord is still shell-shocked by a divorce that wasn’t as painful as it should’ve been. Other than the son they share, her ex-husband left barely a ripple in her life. A great new guy tempts her to believe maybe the second time’s the charm…but how can she trust herself to recognize true love?

As their bonds of friendship deepen against the beautiful backdrop of Mischief Bay, Gabby, Hayley and Nicole will rely on good food, good wine and especially each other to navigate life’s toughest changes.

Rating: 5 stars

Review: 

 

The Friends We Keep by Susan Mallery is heart melting and addictive. Every single novel of hers lures readers in like a moth to a flame. Readers can’t avoid an irresistible story and that’s exactly what The Friends We Keep is. Emotionally readers can easily attach themselves to Susan Mallery’s characters. Especially to Gabby and her step-daughter. Teen pregnancy is hard to deal with and when the young father leaves everything about the young stepdaughter’s life seems to crash. At first, we can feel and understand Gabby’s angry at first and then, later, on it blooms into something else. Family life is the strongest theme, within this novel. Friendships that we keep is another strong theme that readers love. When life comes crumbling downward…our friends are there to pick us back up.

When life comes crumbling downward…our friends are there to pick us back up. I felt my heart tug with sympathy, understanding, and love as the plot moved forward. A steady paced read that reader’s won’t be able to release anything soon.

Susan Mallery is a talented writer by all means. She never disappoints her readers. It’s incredible at how every novel she writes …she takes a piece of us readers with her. The characters will have you crying, laughing, and falling in love. The plot will keep you up all night long reading until the book is finished. The plot is juicy with trouble, drama, and sacrifices that have to be made. The Friends We Keep is just another brilliantly well-written story that all readers must add to their collection. Susan Mallery has done it again in creating another heart-pounding loveable read that readers won’t be forgetting. Overall, I highly recommend this romantic sweet story to readers everywhere.

Susan Mallery is a talented writer by all means. She never disappoints her readers. It’s incredible at how every novel she writes …she takes a piece of us readers with her. The characters will have you crying, laughing, and falling in love. The plot will keep you up all night long reading until the book is finished. The plot is juicy with trouble, drama, and sacrifices that have to be made. The Friends We Keep is just another brilliantly well-written story that all readers must add to their collection. Susan Mallery has done it again in creating another heart-pounding loveable read that readers won’t be forgetting. Overall, I highly recommend this romantic sweet story to readers everywhere.

New Book Release: Shadow Lane

Hi, everyone my latest novel is now up on Amazon. You can click on the following link to grab your copy!

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01073WEPI

Follow Sharon and Matt as their high school year has just gotten worse.Their number one enemy, Angela is jealous that Matt won’t notice her while Sharon is around. Angela wants Matt to herself and she soon goes to drastic measures to try and steal Matt away from Sharon. But not all plans go as planned. Soon all three students will be battling to fight against a common enemy. Love, loss, and and friendship are the three themes readers will find inside this novel. Sacrifices have to be made. Who will stay, who will return and who leaves?

Book Review: The Girls of Mischief Bay by Susan Mallery

The Girls of Mischief Bay is one inspirational novel that will lead readers in discovering how friendship can help heal you in times of woe. Susan Mallery has masterfully created a realistic noel that brings out life’s tragedies and how real women deal with such situations. Readers can easily connect with each of the three women in this delightful and funny piece. I highly enjoyed reading about Nicole, Shannon, and Pam. Each friend comes from a different spot in life and with each other they are able to grow and move forward with new lives. Nicole owns her own business and struggles with taking care of everything including her little boy because her husband is working on a screen play. But as things continue, will her greatest fear of losing her husband come true? Then there’s Shannon, the man she really cares for can’t have kids and that’s one of the things she wants most. Fate will have to decide if they can have kids and each other. And last but not least there’s Pam. Tragedy strikes her the hardest but with her two friends maybe, just maybe she can continue being happy. Overall, I would definitely recommend this sensational novel by Susan Mallery. I no without a doubt readers will fall helplessly in love just as I did. The Girls of Mischief Bay is a must read for all.

Book Review: The Clique by Valerie Thomas

The_Clique_Cover

The Clique is a sensational YA novel that should be read. The characters demonstrate what happens to teens as decisions and choices pop up in life. Sometimes we are forced into doing things we do not want to do. Our decisions have major consequences that pull us down. But then when they seems to be going for the worse we somehow manage to pull ourselves back up and out of our troubles. It may take a while but, we will eventually get there. I loved reading this story about a group of girls and how things didn’t go so perfect for them. It showed a realistic side of teens and their dramas. I enjoyed reading on and learning how one of the girls changed a lot. She went from being carefree to being a mature young adult. Her realizations and her thoughts were interesting to read. Readers will love this stunning book! Its believable, intriguing, and shows the reality of life. Plus, all the characters are easy to connect with. Fun, sassy, and absolutely enjoyable are the words I would use to describe Valerie Thomas’s plot. I definitely would recommend her novel to all readers! I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars!

Starting Over

Phillip had been a drunk for several years until an elderly woman set him straight. At first he took her job offer so that he could buy another bottle of liquor, but he forget all about it after he was done working. There was still so much work the lady needed done. And he was the only one who could help her. Having no money of his own, the lady gave him money for each job he did. She let him sleep on her leather soft comfy couch at night. Every morning he woke to find himself covered in a blanket. He knew the lady was only trying to take care of him. Each day he worked for her. First the roof needed replacement, then the house needed to be painted both inside and outside. Also the gutters needed to be cleaned out and washed. And so much more.

The summer’s heat got worse each day. Phillip could feel water running down his back. His eyes lashes keep ticking shut from his salty sweat dripping onto his eyes. Picking up a small clean towel, he takes a break to wipe the sweat away. Man, the small breeze felt good after wiping the sweat away. The elderly lady was coming towards him. She had her homemade lemonade and a sandwich for him. She told him to call her Nana. Nana was always finding an excuse to check up on him. He smiled as she came closer.

“Here you go, Phillip. Be sure to drink lots of my fresh lemonade. And come into the house when you’re all done and get cleaned up!”, she gently ordered him

Kissing her soft cheek, Phillip said, ” Yes, ma’am.”

Smiling back Nana left him to eat and drink, while she went back into the house. Phillip couldn’t believe how long he stayed away from drinking his life away. Nana rescued him. And she helped him to start over and become a man once again. He loved the elderly lady. Her cooking was perfect, her smiles were sweet, and she knew how to handle herself. Taking a long sip of the iced cold lemonade, she had made for him, Phillip noticed a car pulling up into the driveway. The car was a small black Ford. It looked like used but was still in great shape. Then Nana came running out and hugged the young woman who was the driver of the car. She had on a plain colored tee and matching shorts. Her legs were short and she had curves on all the right places. If he had to guess, she was probably 5’2. Her hair was past her shoulders. Her brown wavy hair looked soft from the sun’s rays.

Remembering that Nana told him to take a shower, he headed to the back of the house.  Quickly stepping inside the house he grabbed clean clothes and headed for the shower.

Death Comes Calling

Kara, sixteen and a poor Jew happened to not have the dark hair like the rest of her Jewish family. Her bestfriend Daniel, also sixteen but a wealthy German boy has taken her safety into his own hands. He had real documents made in advance to protect Kara.  Kara was to be hidden as a cousin of his. His family was fooled by the documents he provided.

Kara didn’t know about the risks her best friend took to protect her. The day the Nazis came into her home. They shot her parents right were they stood. And she just froze. Hidden from the Nazis soldiers. Daniel came to her hidden room. The spot she hid in when she was a kid. He took her hand and lead her to his home. Before going in he showed her the papers and said,”This is you now. Do you understand.”

Shaking her head for a yes, Daniel lead her into the house. “Mom, Dad, here she is.” Pushing Kara closer to his parents, Kara wasn’t sure what to say. She never met his parents. Until now. They looked stressed and they looked like any German couple who weren’t Jews.

“Welcome home”, his parents said to her. His mother hugged her and his father clapped her on the back.  Three blocks away her parents bodies were bleeding on their house floor. Killed outright. No hesitation. No thought into their deaths. No last goodbyes. Just death come calling them away. Away from her forever.

All because there are Jews. All because of one evil man, dictating their lives in his hands. Plucking them all away from life itself.
Will Kara survive during the war under her new disguise? What will happen, if her friend Daniel is called to fight for the devil, called Hitler?
Will he still be the same friend who risked all to save her?

A Prisoner

Pamela a young Jew, was being carted off onto a train headed to war camps. She was separated from her family. Her papa was shot in the back right in front of her brother, her mama, and herself. She was 12.

She cried but didn’t scream. If she screamed she too would be shot just like her papa. The Nazis took her brother away and then her mama. Then she too was lead away. Now on a train boarded with tons of other Jews. All who lost their families, and homes too. They were young just like her. Pamela hears rumors of the wars camps.

The Nazis would take the Jews to camps only to be killed. Some were shot at once in rows. While others were burned in ghastly stone showers. Pamela never felt so frightened in her life. The rest of her people on board were starved, lost and frightened too. All but one. A boy who looked close to her age but just a bit taller.

Pamela walked over to him. And asked, “Aren’t you scared too?”

The boy turns around to look at her. Just starring at her. “No, I’m not scared.”

Pamela starred back at the boy in wonder. Something about him gave her comfort and strength. Nervously she takes his hand in hers, “I’m Pamela.”

Shocked by the girls bold move in taking his hand he squeezes her hand tighter and tells her, “I’m Drake.”

Looking at each other they both hold on. Not knowing where they were headed or what will happen next. Will they die at the camps? Which death camp were they going too? What is happening to their families? These and so many more questions made there silence only grow stronger and darker as the train continued. Will they see tomorrow’s sun? Or will they too die along with countless others.

Everyday Hero

Mike was just an every day guy. Sweating profusively working out in the fields everyday. Until a little girl whose deaf, decides to walk out across the field. There was a wild mustang..the child couldn’t hear the mustang’s snorts nor it’s warning cry.

Mike not knowing the little girl was deaf started shouting for her go back away. The girl stays where shes at. Frightened by the mustang. Standing up, the horse prepares to attack..just as Mike runs grabbing the child in hos arms…

Rolling away from the wild horse and covering the child with his body. Mike feels the little girl shake with sobs. Mike never felt more scared in his life than he did today.
The girl’s mother runs out towards them. Having heard the shouts.

Crying she takes her little girl in her arms and starts to rock her. Soothing her fears away. Mike felt angry that the woman didn’t watch her child better. She could have been hurt.

Getting up, Mike says,” we have to move away now. That horse is wild. Unless you really want to get hurt.”

The mother holding her daughter feeling anger settig in at both her daughter and at the man for some unknown reason. She gets up holding her daughter cliser and heads to the small ranch house. The man following closely behind.

Remember Me Part 3

Julia arrived at school the next morning. Heading to her locker, there was a sticky note attached. Meet me at the back of our library in the custodian’s closet. Rushing to the library, Julia ran as fast as she could wit her books in her arms. Who wanted to meet her and why? Why the back of the library in the small custodian’s closet? Nearing the back of the library, Julia knocks on the door. Then watching it open she steps in. And then blind folded. “Who are you? And why meet here? And why blind fold me?”, Julia asked.

“It doesn’t matter who I am. Just know that Matt killed Luke. He talked about it for days and then had us tags along and do the dirty work for him. We changed Luke’s brakes with ones that didn’t work. And another one placed something into Luke’s gas tank. It was just suppose to be a car accident that injured him. Not a murder. ”

“But why did you guys do it? Where’s the evidence to prove it?And why are you telling me now?”, Julia asked the stranger.

“Here’s the evidence that you will need. Call home sick now and take it to the police. Before Matt finds out what’s been done.”

Then hearing a door open and shut behind her,Julia takes the blind fold off. Looking down in her hands was a huge manilla envelope. She had to go to the nurse’s office. Before Matt did find out. Having a tattle tail isn’t good for Matt. Nor was it good for the one who gave her the evidence. If Matt ever found out, the informer would pay..just like Luke did. Except probably worse. It was up to her now to give the police what was in her hands.

Hiding the envelope using her jacket, Julia rushes to the nurse station and calls home. Asking her mom to come pick her up. It was an emergency! Five minutes later, Julia’s mom picks her up. Then as Julia tells her mom everything, that happened just today, her mom drives to the police station. Walking with her mom inside the station the soon meet with a detective working Luke’s case. Inside the envelope the detective finds all the pictures of evidence that would put Matt behind bars forever. As well as his friends who took part in it.

Thanking Julia and her mom, the detective gets a call. There’s been another accident. Another student was found head this morning. About the time when Julia called her mom. Julia tells the detective about how she got the evidence. The detective agrees that is wasn’t an accident, but an attempt at a cover up.

Getting a force together the detective and other officers head out to arrest Matt and his buddies.

Finding Prince Charming Part 2

Lilly Green was excited to see Zach at lunch. He was drop dead gorgeous and so far proved to be smart. Just by ignoring pretty, yet mean Sydney. Every guy in school drooled over her. It was surprising in a really good way, that Zach was disinterested in her. The most popular girl in school. He choose instead to ask the invisible dork. Me. 
Placing her books into her locker, Lilly heads over to the cafeteria to meet up with Zach.

Meanwhile, Zach was at the cafeteria doors waiting for that girl from his class. Damn it. Why didn’t, he ask her for her name. She was pretty in a natural beauty way. She was smart. When she answered her questions right, her smile was dazzling. A smart, pretty, and one hell of a decent girl. Finally, a girl who was real. Not fake. Like that horrible Sydney chick. Damn. Spoke too soon.

Heading over to him, was Sydney walking like she was a say goddess. As if, Zach thought. Then laughing out loud at his own thoughts. Sydney says, Hey Zach, laughing at my joke about Lilly being such a silly nilly.

Zach stopped laughing. Looking at Sydney, and taking a step close enough to her he said, ” You are the worst silly nilly willy ever to exist, Sydney the blackened kidney.”

Lilly having just step through the doors, and looking from the distance thought that she was wrong. Zach did like Sydney way better than her. From the distance it looked like Zach was kissing Sydney. Of course only Sydney knew that Lilly saw her and Zach. And so to make matters worse for Zach, she hugs him! Lilly seeing that runs off. Zach break in free from Sydney sees Lilly’s back. Dam it, he thought. Running after her, he shouts, “Wait, Lilly! It’s not what you think!”

Lilly turning around says, ” if that’s true then why did it look like you were kissing her? And Sydney hugged you.What am I suppose to think,Zach?”

Seeing the hurt on her face made Zach wanted to comfort her. To hold her in his arms and explain himself.

Novel Writing Challenge 4

Sam, a young 15-year old, who was short, skinny, small chested, super white skin and dark black shiny hair that went past her shoulders a touch had beautiful green alluring eyes. She was a quiet teen, who loved reading, writing, drawing, and swimming. She was the invisible girl at her local public high school. None of the guys asked her out. Thinking they would probably scare her because of her quiet nature. She aced all her school subjects and helped her swim team to the Nationals every year. This year, being a freshman, was tough. Girls were dressing in low tops, short skirts, and wore lots of makeup. Guys were..well the were the same as always. Some were jerks, others were nerdy, and a few were decent guys. Sam only had her academics and swim team to preoccupy her time. Nothing more. Would it be so bad to like a guy? Her mom and dad asked her during dinner yesterday. Sam simply said she wasn’t interested. And the few good guys were not interested in her. So why date? 

Heading to her AP English class, Sam bumps into someone. Someone..who turned out to be a guy. A very good looking guy. Who smelled good. His brown hair in a messy but sexy style, his plain top the fit perfectly over his biceps, and his eyes were so..blue.

“Sorry, I wasn’t paying any attention to where I was going. I’m new here.”

“Hi, I’m Sam. And it’s fine. I was rushing and not paying attention either.”

“I’m Blake. Nice to meet you, Sam.”

Smiling at her and feeling a blush coming on Sam said, “Yeah, it was nice meeting you too. Do you..um..”

“Need help with where to go”, he finished for her.

“Yeah, do you?”

“Yeah, I can definitely use a beautiful lady’s help”, he said smiling even bigger at her.

Laughing and shaking her head slightly,Sam asked him where he was headed. After sharing his schedule with her. They found out they shared a lot of the same classes. They agree upon meeting up for lunch by the cafeteria’s doors. Not believing her luck, Sam felt excited about lunch with her new friend. AP English, Environmental Science,  and Physics went by faster than usual. Heading to her locker to put her books away, Sam walks to the cafeteria’s doors. There she sees, Blake standing there waiting for her. 

“Hey, Sam.”

“Hey, Blake.”

Smiling they get into line and take their lunches to a small table by the side windows. 

“So, how did your classes go?”, asked Sam.

“Great, except for the super blonde chick that is more fake than silicon boobs.”

Laughing, Sam feel great. So far, Blake seemed to be cool. Especially when he said the most popular girl in school was faker than plastic boobs. Really? Where do you guys come up with these phrases. 

“Yeah, so how was your  classes?”, he asked her.

“They were good as usual. Thank you for asking.”

Smiling up at her, Blake felt great. This girl was more real than a lot of the girls in the whole school. And she doesn’t load her face with all that makeup stuff girls put on. She’s pretty just like she is. Her green eyes twinkle when she’s in a good mood. Sam not knowing what to say next asked him if he’d be interested in joining the swim team this year. 

“Are you on the swim team?”

“Yeah, I’ve been on the swim team since 6th grade. I enjoy being in the water. Plus, I enjoy the competition meets as well. We as a team have placed in the Nationals every year so far.”

“Wow, that is impressive. I think I would like to join. When and where do I sign up?”

“Come tomorrow after school is over to the school’s gym at 3:30. We will be having sign ups and try outs.”

“Awesome count me in!”

Sam couldn’t believe his enthusiasm for joining the swim team. He was super excited it seemed.  

The next day after school was over both Sam and Blake headed over to the school’s gym together. Sitting next to each other on the second bleacher they wait and listen as the coach called out names and had everyone try out in the swimming pool. 

“Blake McCain”, the coach yelled. 

“That’s me. Wish me luck.”

“Good luck, Blake!”

Heading over to the coach to introduce himself,he then started doing laps as the coach insisted. Watching him swim, was amazing. He swam with confidence and grace. Sam was impressed. It wasn’t soon before Emily Sanders walked over with her groupie. 

“So, you meet the new guy, Blake”, Emily asked Sam.

“Yes, I have”, Sam briefly stated. Not really caring what Emily had to say.

“Well, did you know that the reason Blake is here at our school is because he was responsible for his girlfriend’s death at his other school. Though they couldn’t find enough evidence to arrest him. But everyone there thinks he killed her. After all, he was the last person to see her alive. And.. she was seeing another guy. The other guys was Blake’s best friend. So that’s a motive to kill his girlfriend, right?”, Emily asked.

Sam suddenly feeling dizzy, couldn’t believe what she just heard. “You’re lying!”

“Am I?”, Emily asked Sam.

“Yes, you are. You are lying because Blake isn’t interested in you.”, Sam retorted back.

“Well, then I guess to prove that I’m not lying all you would have to do is look it up, or..ask Blake himself”, Emily replied back.

Write all this and what happens next. Does Sam believe what Emily told her? Does she ask Blake straight out? And if so, does he give her an honest reply or make her feel that he’s hiding something. Could Blake really be responsible for his girlfriend’s death?  Write all this and more in your response down below in the comment area using only 2500 words!!

Best of luck!!!

 

 

Writing Challenge #10-7 Middle Grade Level

Write about how a male student who is super smart lets a popular mean girl make him think that shes into him. His dog dislikes the popular girl and tries getting rid of her only to have his male owner dislike him. The male student ignores his dog. His dog runs away..the popular girl think she has everything the way she wants it til the another student over hears the popular girl talking about how she’s using the guy and hates his dog. The girl then tells the male student what she over hears. Does he believe her? Or no? Why or why not? And what happens to the dog? Does something bad happen to the male student, where his loyal dog comes to his rescue? Write all this in 2500 words!!!!! Please rate this!! Thanks!!!

Summer’s Love- written by me

As I turn the small door knob made of brass,
I look out into the open field of tall grass,
There far, far in the center is a young lass.
Her golden hair swaying in the summers gentle breeze.
Her skin like porceiln glowing brightly in the morning’s sun.
I try with all my might to shake my mind loose of the thoughts of her and I having fun.
Only if she would look at me,
but then again what shall that do, 
if she to leave soon.
Halfway to me and she starts running as fast as those tall slender legs of hers would take her.
Soon we meet up, but before either one of us can speak, she clings to me tightly ands starts
sobbing upon my sleeve.
Meanwhile, all I can do is hold her tightly to me.
Just when I thought she has stooped crying, she gazes up at me with those pierceing blue eyes,
and says to me, “I’m not leaving.” 
Upon hearing those words coming forth from her, every vein in my body is pounding with joy and happiness with a profound new energy racing through me like never before.
I just stand there as tho frozen in time.
My ears not wanting to believe what was just said.
she clings to me to me even closer, and says in a loud whisper,” I love you”.
Hearing that from her sent my whole mind buzzing with new ideas. 
stuff we could do together for the summer.
sensing her so close to me, mad my arms wrap around her tighter yet.
then very slowly, I brushed my lips upon her forehead, then to the top of her nose, and gently but hestistantly to her soft , lips. the sweetness making my mind buzz even more than ever. 
hastily i kiss her, all over again. hearing her sigh deeply and feeling her whole body relaxing in my grasp.
I casually make my way down to her cheeks, her lips and her jaw. the texture of her silky hair , sends ripples of pleasure up and down my spine.
thy other hand tightly, tightly around her waist keeping her as close as possible. 
neither one of us cared if it was scorching hot out or the tiny mosquitoes biting into our flesh.
Soon, the sun would be setting and casting bright colors into the sky.
Finally after several long moments we take each others hand and depart back to the hotel. Leaving behind us the beauty of nature.