Review: Going Down and Man Candy


“Elise Sax will win your heart.”—NYT bestelling author Jill Shalvis

“Elise Sax will make you laugh. Her larger-than-life characters jump off the page and make crazy seem like a fun place to hang out.”–Christie Craig, New York Times bestselling author of Texas Hold ‘Em

“Elise Sax belongs on every bookshelf.” — Melissa Foster, New York Times Bestselling Author 

The Five Wishes Series: Novellas about wishes that go terribly wrong…fortunately. Five Wishes…A happy ending is just a coin toss away. Each novella is approximately 100 pages with NO cliffhanger.

Book 1: Going Down:

Marion MacAlister wants to nail her audition, not get nailed. Truly. Honestly. All right…maybe she does want to get nailed, but that’s just because her hottie landlord and local diner owner Mack Ryan is confusing her. Can friends become lovers? Especially friends who might not even be friends in the first place? 

Book 2: Man Candy:

Raine Harper is in love with Wade Gates. But Wade likes women who are model thin, and Raine is model thin plus a whole lot of pounds. Desperate to make him love her, she trains just a little too hard and passes out in the arms of superstar movie star Dirk Adams. Dirk thinks Raine’s junk in the trunk is perfect and proposes to make Wade jealous by becoming her pretend boyfriend. Pretend soon seems very real. Is Dirk a great actor, or is something really developing between Raine and the movie star? 

Rating: 4-stars


Going Down and Man Candy by Elise Sax is a 2-in-1 book set. A great summer romance set that is enjoyable to follow. The two stories feature a different woman going through body issues. They also want to be super skinny. One wants to make it as an actress. The other wanting her long time crush to fall in love with her. Each one has a super hot guy after their own hearts. Sweet, sexy, and entertaining. Both stories are easy to read and short. Elise Sax writes funny yet romantic tales. Overall, I recommend her book set to all. 


Author Interview with David Spencer

ULM: What inspired you to write your book, Dark Skinned? 

I was inspired to write Dark Skinned after listening to some people share on Youtube who had went through similar situations growing up that I did. Hearing their stories helped me heal and deal with some issues I had been holding onto. I was eager to share to so could be that motivation for someone else. I started out writing the stories for blog entries but I soon realized the content was more in depth and needed to be housed in a book. Being Dark Skinned was specifically what I had to deal with but that issues are interchangeable- one could be over weight, too short, too tall, not athletic etc. I believe talking about your issues can help others deal with theirs.  


ULM: Did you always want a career as an author? 

That desire came later. I always wanted to motivate and inspire people around me so I have always been in the light. Becoming an author was a natural progression to building greater influence.


ULM: How would you describe your writing style using only three words?

 Open. Honest. Transparent.


ULM: What is the message you would like readers to take from reading your novel?

You can control everything that happens to you but you can control your response to it. Don’t let dark moments make you dark. Use those moments to create light in dark places.


ULM: Why is it challenging to get African American men to share their experiences caused by their darker skin tone?

From youth, African American boys are told to stop crying and to man up. Showing emotions not equated to masculinity. Little boys are often forced to grow up to fast becoming man too soon. It’s easier to suppress the hurt then risk being viewed as weak.


ULM: Do you think the racism in America will ever end?

Honestly, I do not. I think it will become harder to openly display it. Racism is a legacy. Racist pass those ideas down to their children.


ULM: You mentioned holding a B.A. in Ethno-Musicology. Can you explain what it was like studying for that? 

Half of my academic career was spent in the music department and the other was spent in the history department learning about the African Diaspora. Not only were Africans shipped off like cattle but the oppressors tried to erase their history. There is evidence in the music of African American Music that supports Deculturization was not successful.   


ULM: You mentioned that African American men are supposed to be big and strong all the time. That they are not supposed to cry. I’ve also noticed that this stigma sticks to all men despite color of skin tone. Why do you think society view men in this way? 

We are what we see. Men have traditionally been the head of the house hold, the primary provider, and the stronger sex. That image is everywhere in history and media. Anything that doesn’t fit that norm is not accepted.  


ULM: How did your masters in entertainment, help prepare you as a newspaper executive, singer, songwriter and being an author?

It helped me pay more attention to presentation and packaging. A good idea will stay that if you do not connect the right people and get others to buy. We can limit our growth because of our inability to reach out. We do not have to be masters of everything.  


ULM: What songs have you written?

My most recent song is one called “Flawed” that sums up many of the emotions I dealt with growing up dark skinned. I went through a phase where I questioned God’s intentions in creating me flawed. I want my music to articulate feelings people are sometimes reluctant to express.

Listen Here:

Flawed (Dark Skinned)

ULM: Do you have more books planned, if so, can you share that with us, readers?


I want to do another book of “Dark Skinned” stories. I want to change the approach by interviewing others who have stories to tell. I also want to do a children’s book describing how great the world would be if we follow the rules we had on the playground. Be nice and wait your turn.


ULM: What lead you to the media and entertainment industry?

I love to create content for others to enjoy and/or scrutinize. I like tough conservations this career path welcomes those types of conversations.   


David Spencer

Sound of David LLC

DS Designs


Review: Disaster at Roosevelt Ranch


Complete Stand Alone/No Cliffhanger

I slept with the wrong twin.
And all I got for it in return was a broken heart.

Oh yeah, and a baby on the way–there’s that too.

But I’m determined to make it on my own. I don’t need a man, thank you very much. Not rich, charismatic, and decidedly flighty Rex Roosevelt, and especially not his twin brother, Justin.

No matter that the gorgeous former military doctor makes my heart beat a little faster . . . and all spots lower than that pay careful, careful attention.

None of that matters. The Roosevelt men are dangerous and I’m steering clear.

The trouble is, Justin refuses to leave me be.

And deep down, I don’t want to avoid him.

Deep down, I want to be even closer.

Rating: 5-stars


Disaster at Roosevelt Ranch by Elise Faber is hot, steamy, and exciting! I loved it. The characters are swoon worthy. Sexy, smart, and funny too. The leading male character is internally flawed but despite those flaws he’s the man every woman wants in her life. Meet Justin Roosevelt. The older brother of the man who knocked up an employee and left. Justin comes back to handle the family ranch. Once he’s back, he meets a woman who pulls at his heart. She does the unlikely and pukes all over his shoes and clothes. The most embarrassing moment but also the moment when Justin’s realizes her situation. Her love for horses has lead her back into Justin’s life. From there the shocking truth takes them on a beautiful journey. I loved the brickering between characters. Justin is the hero who is strong enough to handle any stubborn woman…and that one stubborn woman has him so tangled up inside he’s not sure to give into his heart or play it safe. The female character yer was easy to relate as well. Her situation was believable. Her spunky no sugar coated talk made her real. Readers with a fondness for animals and comedy will love this sweet romance. Disaster at Roosevelt Ranch is a must read for all. I highly recommend Elise Faber’s  novel to readers everywhere.

Review: The Chocolate Cure


No more chocolate! No more meddling! No more men!

New Year’s resolutions are great. Announcing them in a crowded bar, with a chocolate martini in her hand? Not Maddie Cash’s finest moment. It’s time this new realtor got serious about her life and this time, she means it.
But when hospital volunteering lands her at the bedside of bruised and battered Mick Meyer, who has no knowledge of Maddie’s reputation – and no memory of the kiss he begged from her during that long, pain-filled night, her best-laid plans are put in jeopardy. It’s not just his sweet tooth that’s tempting her.
The hunky bush pilot with the concussion has an old family property to unload. Making this sale could be Maddie’s professional salvation. But when Mick turns on the charm, she’s in danger of forgetting all her best intentions… on chocolate… on meddling… and especially on men.

Rating: 5-stars


If I could rate this novel six-stars, I would. The Chocolate Cure is exactly that. I am a huge lover of chocolate and found this romance super addictive. Roxanne Snopek writes a hilarious, sweet, yet beautifully realistic story. A story that’s bound to lure readers straight into its plot. Fast-paced, exciting, and hot. The main character, Maddie, has recently given up chocolate, men, and meddling. Boy, does she regret it. Her New Years resolution is hard to stick by…yet somehow she manages to pull it off…well, the avoiding chocolate. Men…and meddling not so. Maddie soon finds her way into hospital victim, Mick Meyer’s life. Including his heart. But neither know it. Mick crashed his plane. He has dizziness and doesn’t want to sit. However, his condition leaves him weaker than his cares to admit. But Maddie his volunteer helper has a way with her calling hands, perfect figure, and love of chocolate that makes Mick want her more than anything…sexy, fun, and absolutely one adventure readers do not want to miss! Overall, I highly recommend it to readers everywhere. The Chocolate Cure was a romance I couldn’t stop reading…

Review: Three Fat Singletons


Dotty the virgin, Jesse the divorcee, and Mary the man-eater are best friends with four things in common: they are single, obese, pushing 40, and unsatisfied with life.

Together they explore the fat-underworld of London including blind dates, Internet dating, phone sex and the possibilities of lifetime celibacy.

When a week-long getaway to Greece turns into a whirlwind of romance, sex and horrific embarrassment, each one of them will have to decide what they really want in life.

Rating: 4-stars


The Three Fat Singletons is a laugh-out-loud kind of read. Readers will find themselves relating to the realistic issues of the three women. Being fat is a major issue we see in our world, today. Here, are three friends who are struggling with being over weight. Their heavy weight is the center of their problems. Then, there’s their choices they make…that leads them further into a whole. I thought it was great to read about real women with real issues. Dotty, Jesse, and Mary are as real as characters can get in fiction. It was refreshing. Most books portray skinny or curvy women getting the hot sexy man and lucking out with everything. However, in the Three Fat Singletons, J.M Bartholomew captures reality with ease and flair. I enjoyed following the friends as they went opabout their situations from food to men. Their journeys are not pretty nor the best, but it was quite entertaining. Well-written, funny, and three dimensional characters…I would recommend this novel to readers everywhere. A great women’s fictional piece, as well as a comedy. 

Review: The Lions’ Den


In the waning years of the seventh century BC, one of history’s most notable and terrifying warriors succeeded to the throne of Babylon, a fledgling kingdom barely twenty-one years old. This is the story of Nebuchadnezzar growing into manhood and racing to claim the crown of his dead forgather from the hands of his manipulative younger brother. It is a story of wars as consumed by hatred he sought to kill a boyhood friend that had become his lifelong nemesis. An invincible warrior…a shrewd politician…and an artist. Babylon was his masterpiece featuring the massive artificial mountain he built for his wife-the hanging gardens, fifty-four gold gilt temples, and three-hundred-foot high pyramid piercing the sky to be seen for miles in the distance. 

This is also the story of Daniel, a Jewish captive removed from Judah and placed in the royal palace of Babylon. Imbued with an intense faith in God, Daniel was a man of extraordinary abilities in governance and leadership. Two men as different as could possibly be. A man of boiling passions and volatile temperament, Nebuchadnezzar would never have survived without his most trusted aide, Daniel. Daniel’s closeness to almighty Jehovah was so compelling that even the arrogant and menacing Nebuchadnezzar was forced to come face to face with this creator. No matter who reigns or what is, God is in control.

Rating: 5-stars


The Lions’ Den by Wes Brustad is an incredible tale. One that drags readers back in time to the Egypt. Phonecians and even the important figure, Daniel are alive. I was immediately fascinated. This historical book, brought to life amazing characters. Battles, wars, and a friendship unlike any other. Wes Brustad’s writing is superb. I felt like I was taken from my seat and brought straight into the book. The scenes were animated, engaging, and remarkably realistic. Traveling through the story was another highlight. I got to travel, live, and feel the cultures and peoples around me. The ending was great. A man left in turnmoil wondering if Daniel’s God is indeed the God of all Gods. Then, it ended with him wanting to build a temple for an unlikely friend. The friendship is strange but not impossible. Daniel is a man that is good. It is no wonder that the other main character accepts him. Despite different beliefs these two made it through. I liked how that was portrayed. The writer gained my interest and respect. Showing how to sides can fight and also become friends. Truly a phenomenal read. Overall, I recommend this novel, to readers everywhere. 

Forever Fit and Flexible by Cheryl L. Ilov




Do you believe that getting older means losing health and vitality?

Here is your path to feeling youthful and vibrant.

“…IIov has an engaging style and much to offer….Forever Fit and Flexible is a well written, thorough guide to healthy living that will be enjoyed by a wide spectrum of readers looking for the same.” —Blue Ink Review

Forever Fit and Flexible: Feeling Fabulous at Fifty and Beyond offers you the possibility of living with a new sense of energy and vitality as you move into your fifties, sixties, seventies, and beyond. Once you get moving, you’ll want to keep moving!

Imagine starting each day with a spring in your step. Envision liking what you see in the full-length mirror before you get dressed. Now visualize that you can engage in any activity with strength, grace, and confidence.

In Forever Fit and Flexible, Cheryl Ilov provides a program that will help you create this and more. Her movement lessons provide the building blocks to better posture, core strength, flexibility, balance, and functional strength. As you develop a solid physical foundation, you will also:

eliminate chronic pain
improve injury-related mobility issues
experience increased energy
develop mindful self-awareness and a positive mindset
… and much more!




Cheryl Ilov’s Bio
Cheryl Ilov has always been drawn to health and wellness, the biological sciences, and movement arts, including classical ballet. She began her professional life as a respiratory therapist, and after seventeen years of practice, she returned to school and earned her master’s degree in physical therapy in 1996.

Cheryl discovered The Pilates Method in 1983, and once she began working as a physical therapist, she made the connection that Pilates presented a wonderful tool to help people of all ages recover from injuries and illnesses. She immediately began applying the principles of Pilates to her patients to improve their quality of life and level of function. In 1999, she founded Ilov Integrated Arts, specializing in Pilates-based rehabilitation. Cheryl had her first experience with The Feldenkrais Method® in 2000.
She began the required four-year training program to become a Feldenkrais practitioner in February 2006 and graduated in November 2009. During Cheryl’s remarkable journey of learning, healing, and self-discovery, she also discovered a martial art called Ninpo Tai Jutsu. She fell in love with the art and the training as well as the powerful connection between Feldenkrais and martial arts and their incredible healing power.
Cheryl has dedicated her life to helping others achieve the best quality of life possible. Having personally experienced the anxiety of dealing with chronic pain, stress, and fatigue, she also understands the frustration of feeling out of control, gaining weight, and struggling to find a healthy, effective way to recover after devastating injuries. Cheryl has integrated her education, experience, and expertise to develop a program for people, regardless of their age or current level of function. It is her firm belief that anyone can be fit, flexible, healthy, vibrant, and energetic in their fifties, sixties, seventies, and beyond.

Why did you write “Forever Fit and Flexible?”

Necessity is the mother of invention, and so is adversity. It was through my own personal experience of struggling with my weight, fitness, injuries, and chronic pain syndromes that I found the path to health and vitality. I integrated my education as a physical therapist with my extensive training in Pilates, Feldenkrais, martial arts, and ballet to create a program for people age fifty and over to help them find their way to living with a new sense of energy and vitality as they move into their fifties, sixties, seventies, and beyond.

How is this book different from other fitness books?

That’s an excellent question. Traditional fitness books focus on building muscle strength based on the mantra of “just do it” or “no pain no gain.” Forever Fit and Flexible focuses on approaching movement with mindful awareness instead of pounding your body with mindless exercise. It is much healthier for your joints, muscles, and your well-being.
Also, this program gives you the tools to find your own path to health and fitness based on your individual needs and goals, rather than a one size fits all mentality. The focus is how you move and how you feel rather than how you look. However, when you move better and feel better, you look better as well. And, you want to keep moving.

Could men benefit from your program as well as women?

Certainly! I work with a lot of men in my practice, and they are just as interested in achieving their highest level of fitness and flexibility as women are. As a matter of fact, many of my movement lessons in the program were designed from identifying the issues that were plaguing women and men alike. We just have different ways of expressing our concerns.

If you are already healthy and in good shape, what is the benefit of doing your program?

That’s another great question. The fundamental principles of “Forever Fit and Flexible” can be applied to any and every exercise or fitness routine to enhance the benefits of what you are already doing. The program’s foundation provides the building blocks to better posture, core strength, flexibility, balance, and functional strength. As you develop this solid physical foundation, you’ll see more dramatic results from your current exercise program, no matter how fit you are.

If someone is terribly out of shape or has medical issues, is this a good program for them? How?

Yes, it is. However, I always, always recommend that people with medical issues check with their medical advisor before starting any kind of exercise program. I also suggest that they seek appropriate medical supervision while they begin the program if they are terribly out of shape or have any medical concerns.

The exercises in my book aren’t traditional exercises, they are movement lessons where you gently explore new patterns of moving to improve your posture, core strength, etc. The lessons are intended to be slow and gentle to allow for the changes to take place in your body and your brain as new patterns of healthy movement emerge.

In your book you talk about Feldenkrais. What is Feldenkrais?

Feldenkrais is a highly sophisticated form of neuromuscular re-education based on the scientific principle of neuroplasticity. This simply means that we are capable of learning new patterns of moving, thinking, sensing, and feeling during the course of our entire lifetime.

Feldenkrais uses this principle to help people improve the quality of their life as they recover from chronic pain, improve their physical fitness, and increase their level of function at any age. Feldenkrais is also applicable for every population from and every activity from helping people recover from a stroke to high level athletes looking to gain the competitive edge.

How is Feldenkrais different from traditional exercises?

Feldenkrais isn’t exercise. It is a form or movement therapy which brings your awareness and your attention to how you move. The result is that you move more easily without aches, pains, stress or strain.

Why should I do Feldenkrais instead of yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, etc?

Feldenkrais is not an either/or proposition. It is a method which helps improve your quality of movement that can be applied to your yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi practice as well as sports, dance, and all recreational activities.

What led you to learn it and teach it?

I took my first Feldenkrais class in 2000. After that first class I felt lighter, looser, happier, and was filled with an incredible sense of well-being. Even better, nothing hurt….all of my aches and pains magically disappeared. I knew I had to become a practitioner to share this method with my clients, even though it meant going through an extensive four year program to become a certified practitioner. I love being a practitioner!

Review: Big Bad Wolf



Blythe wants nothing more than to get away from this. Not to just survive it, but forget it.
Strapped down, nearly naked, beaten, scared and drugged she has no idea where this dark and dismal place is. Kidnapped and being set up to be tortured again by the men who hold her, she has to find a way to break free and get away.

Can she dig deep inside and awaken the force that is her alter ego? Can she awaken the beast within? She is drawing hopeless thoughts and losing herself inside of the drugs that are repeatedly given to keep her weak.

Miss Hyde has her own list of ideas and not a single one includes just escape.

Rating: 5 stars


Big Bad Wolf by Kindra Sowder is the third incredible part to a stunning series. Once again, readers met with the bone chilling yet gorgeous man killer. She sells artwork, by day, and lures men to her bed by night. Using sex as a way to lure men to their final death. Blythe doesn’t just murder them but rip their bodies into bloody parts. Her inner dark side, Miss Hyde. Appearances are definitely deceiving. Just like the two before this one, the plot is full of action, murder, and dark events to come. Blythe will finally get a taste in what she does to men…however, it might just be the last thing she ever experiences. Then, there’s her friend who is more than beats the eye. Also, there’s more mystery added in this part than the previous books. A man who seems to be a boss that hires Blythe’s female friend and wants her alive…who and why…and more importantly what happens next is something I highly recommend readers to read. Kindra Sowder is a talented writer. Her words on every page are powerful enough to suck readers into her fictional world and to leave them forever in suspense. Big Bad Wolf is dark, murderous, and intense. Absolutely, a must read for all.

Review: Ride It Til’ the Wheels Fall Off


All good things must come to an end. Eventually.

Faith has finally found the one that she wants to spend the rest of her life with. Brad is everything she thinks that she wants in a husband.

Brad loves Faith, but he also loves to have a string of women in several cities. When he’s away from Faith and out of town his hobby seems to be collecting other women. It’s the perfect setup for him to keep Faith and his other women too.

But Brad will soon find out that there’s a thin line between love and crazy when he crosses paths with Amber. Amber falls hard and fast for Brad. So much so that she follows him back to his hometown to be with him. When Amber uncovers Brad’s web of lies, all hell breaks loose.

Ride It til the Wheels Fall Off will have you on the edge of your seat as true love meets fatal attraction.

Rating: 5 stars


Toca Swanson’s writing is brilliant. Her characters especially , Faith, have wrapped their way around my heart. I was compelled with the plot that builds up into one of the most suspenseful and intense stories I have read. The entire set of characters led readers with a whole set of possibilities of what might occur. As a reader…I wasn’t sure what to expect until something happened.. I love reading fiction that keeps readers like me on our toes constantly. The answers to all of my questions were answered and new questions were formed as the plot came to a close leaving me wondering what’s next. Ride It Til the Wheels Fall Off by Toca Swanson is indeed an Urban fiction novel that also brings up a lot of women’s issues. Here, I have met a variety of strong women dealing with similar issues as well as different issues as well. The drama, lies, and betrayal are thick in inside this incredible read. I tried not to hold my breath but it was hard…addictive, stunning, and well-written.

Ride It Til’ the Wheels Fall Off by Toca Swanson is definitely a must read for all. Readers like myself will have met the most compelling set of characters ever. The characters’ lives and troubles deeply swept over me. I felt everything like I was there experiencing it all instead of just reading it. That just shows how powerful Toca Swanson’s writing is. I easily got lost from my world and plunged deep into this novel. Here, I have met a woman who was the only single lady out of her friends. She met a man named Brad who is the last man a woman like herself would be with…but until another woman stirs up the nests that Brad has kept to secretly…Faith and all the others wouldn’t know what’s about to hit them all. The emotional journey from this steamy hot read packed with tons of action…is superb. It was like riding a roller coaster… and absolutely one thrilling ride I won’t be forgetting anytime soon. Overall, I loved reading this title by Toca Swanson. I highly recommend her novel to readers everywhere.


Review: The Damned of Petersburg




…and warfare changed forever. As Grant pinned Lee to Petersburg and Richmond, the Confederacy’s stubborn Army of Northern Virginia struggled against a relentless Union behemoth, with breathtaking valor and sacrifice on both sides. That confrontation in the bloody summer and autumn of 1864 shaped the nation that we know today.
From the butchery of The Crater, where stunning success collapsed into a massacre, through near-constant battles fought by heat-stricken soldiers, to the crucial election of 1864, The Damned of Petersburg resurrects our Civil War’s hard reality, as plumes and sabers gave way to miles of trenches.

Amid the slaughter of those fateful months, fabled leaders—Grant and Lee, Winfield Scott Hancock and A. P. Hill—turned to rising heroes, Confederates “Little Billy” Mahone and Wade Hampton, last of the cavaliers, or Union warriors such as tragedy-stricken Francis Channing Barlow and the fearless Nelson Miles, a general at twenty-four.
Nor does Ralph Peters forget the men in the ranks, the common soldiers who paid the price for the blunders of leaders who’d never know their names. In desperate battles, now forgotten, such as Deep Bottom, Globe Tavern and Reams Station, soldiers on both sides, pushed to the last human limits, fought on as their superiors struggled to master a terrible new age of warfare.

The Damned of Petersburg revives heroes aplenty—enriching our knowledge of our most terrible war—but, above all, this novel’s a tribute to the endurance and courage of the American soldier, North or South.

Rating: 5 stars


The Damned of Petersburg by Ralph Peters is an extraordinary novel taking readers deep into te heart of Civil War. Ralph Peters has masterfully captured each and every detail and organized his writing to relive the memorable moments in history. This is a novel all readers should read no matter what they’re preferred genre is. This story doesn’t feel real just because it was based, off of historical facts, but because of the talented writing of Ralph Peters. I got to experience the memories and daily lives that some of the men during this era. It was fascinating from page one and still captivated me until the ending.

The Damned of Petersburg brings, to life, the lives, hardships, and bravery of the men who fought during the Civil War. I love anything that is about history or brings, to life, the precious moments fought and lived by those now dead. Famous men such as Grant, Lee, Winfield Scott Hancock and many others will be popping off the pages as readers turn them. Ralph Peters has created a world, that lures readers in from the beginning. It’s fascinating how history can show us cruel life really was and what those moments may have been like if we were to witness them with our own eyes and ears. Many soldiers whose names we don’t know, as well as their leading officers, are also brought to readers’ attention. I loved that about Ralph Peter’s writing. He wrote The Damned of Petersburg in a way to remember everyone and not just the officers with special ranks. Warfare in it’s purest form is brought to readers everywhere. Overall, I found this novel to be remarkable and stunning. I highly recommend this read to readers worldwide.