Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Book Review: Cocktails and Mock-Tales by Julianne McLean & Mark Lynch

Title: Cocktales & Mock-Tales
Authors: Julianne McLean & Mark Lynch
Publisher: ASJ Publishing
Pages: 90
Genre: Humor

Cocktails and Mock- Tales is not just about alcoholic beverages. The book is about sensations that tickle your tastebuds and humour that tickles your fancy. It includes non-alcoholic beverages that the whole family can enjoy and even herbal recipes for the adventurous.

Have one extremely tall high ball glass and a giant cocktail shaker at the ready
Unlimited centilitres of wit and humour
9 cl or 3oz titillating snippets of history and gossip
Add flavours of exotic destinations
A dusting of spice mixed with satire
Several centilitres of high spirits (optional)

Shake with vigour. Garnish with an open mind and your own sense of humour
Now you are ready to truly laugh and savour Cocktails and Mock Tales!
Amaze your friends and family with your knowledge of the origins of international beverages and excite their tastebuds with these exotic sensations.

For More Information

  • Cocktails & Mock-Tales is available at Amazon.
My Review:

I remember the first alcoholic drink I ever had in my life.  I had just gotten married (I know, late bloomer) and we were invited over to a couple's house to watch a new show just aired that fall called Walton's Mountain.  The drink was a frozen lime daiquiri.  I don't know whether it was the alcohol, the ambience with friends or the fact that they were joking with me about coming from Virginia as that's the locale Walton's Mountain was based, but I had never laughed so much in all my life.

The next time I laughed so hard was reading Julianne McLean and Mark Lynch's new humor book, COCKTAILS AND MOCK-TALES.  Oh what can I say about this book?  My goodness, everything!  First lets start off with the illustrations by Mark Lynch..omg I want him to illustrate my next book!  Colorful, whimsy, cute, funny, omg.  Love them and they add so much to this adoringly charming book.

Next, the narrative.  Julianne McLean does and EXCELLENT job.  It is so cute!  Amidst the wonderful recipes that are out of this world and nowhere else will you learn of these ingredients but this book, she starts out by explaining the funny story of how this book was conceived, then goes on to explain the origin of the cocktail which I didn't know and I'm sure a lot of people don't either and would love to know! Did you know that alcohol started out as a preventative of disease?  It's not just for escaping, there were medicinal uses for alcohol.  It reminds me of the cowboy days when someone would get shot and they'd throw down alcohol to aleviate the pain while the doctor wrenched the bullet out of them.

This book is so much fun to read and if you ever want to make a cocktail and don't know the ingredients - and I mean special cocktails not something you grab over the Internet, this book is for you.  It would make a great gift for that bartender in your life.

I give this book 5 book trees (wish I could give more!)!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Book Feature: The Thirteenth Man by J.L. Doty


Inside the Book:

 Title: The Thirteenth Man 
Author: J.L. Doty 
Release Date: September 6, 2016 
Publisher: Harper Voyager Impulse 
Genre: Action/Adventure 
Format: Ebook

After five years as a prisoner of war, Commander Charlie Cass-bastard son of the Duke de Maris-is finally home. But his arrival is cause for consternation as much as celebration, because when he was thought dead, he was considered a hero to the Empire.

Alive, he's a political liability. Because the war with the Syndonese is not yet over, and while the King technically answers to the Nine-the Dukes of the various planets and moons of the Empire-there are others actually pulling his strings. And they certainly don't need Charlie Cass messing up their delicate plans. Unfortunately for them, that's what he's best at. And when the next war always seems to begin as soon as the ink is dry on the peace treaty, only a true hero can set things right.
  amazon barnes-and-noble goodreads

Meet the Author:

J.L. Doty

Jim has eight published SF&F books, with two more due out in 2015. He's been unusually successful as a self-published writer; Child of the Sword went word-of-mouth viral about two years ago, and among all his books he has since sold close to 50,000 copies. With that success, he was able to quit his day-job as a running-dog-lackey for the Bourgeois capitalist establishment, and work for himself as a fulltime writer. He says his new boss is a real jerk--so demanding.

Jim writes in three sub-genres: epic-fantasy, hard science fiction, and contemporary urban fantasy--no vampires--frequently with strong young-adult themes. The infamous "they" say that one should not write in multiple genres, but "they" also say, "write what you read," and Jim reads copious quantities of all three.

Jim is also a scientist with a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering; his specialty is laser physics. He has a big pet peeve regarding lasers as weapons in science fiction. He spent decades working in the laser and electro-optics industry, even did some research on laser weapons in the 80's. And when writers use a laser as a weapon in a story, they invariably get it wrong, usually by violating some basic law of physics. Jim gives a workshop on laser weapons, and what writers do wrong--no names please.

Jim was born in Seattle, but he's lived most of his life in California, though he did live on the east coast and in Europe for a while. He now resides in Arizona with his wife Karen and their three cats: Tilda, Julia and Natasha. From a very early age he made up stories in his head, but he never considered writing. In his family you went to college, got a degree in something useful and got a real job, so he did the Ph.D. thing. But he was still making up those stories in his head, so he sat down and wrote a science fiction novel, and as he says, "It was 250,000 words of pure crap." It was the hardest decision he ever made, but he literally threw it away and turned to other writing projects.

Science has always been a passion of Jim's, but writing is an addiction. He just recently published The Name of the Sword, the 4th and final book in the series that started with Child of the Sword. Right now he's working on Treason's Child, the prequel to A Choice of Treasons, which should be out in Q3 2015.

Never Dead Enough, the 3rd took in The Dead Among Us, will follow near the end of 2015.

Jim intends to keep on writing and publishing more stories, but no laser weapons.

Visit him at


Tour Schedule

 Monday, August 22 - Interviewed at The Review From Here
Book featured at A Title Wave
Tuesday, August 23 - Guest blogging at The Book Tree
Book featured at Inkslinger's Opus
Wednesday, August 24 - Book featured at Bound 2 Escape
Interviewed at Literal Exposure
Thursday, August 25 - Guest blogging at Whispering Stories
Interviewed at Deal Sharing Aunt
Friday, August 26 - Book featured at Celticlady's Reviews
Interviewed at The Writer's Life
Monday, August 29 - Book featured at Cover2Cover
Guest blogging at Lover of Literature
Tuesday, August 30 - Book featured at CBY Book Club
Book featured at The Literary Nook
Wednesday, August 31 -Book featured at The Bookworm Lodge
Guest blogging at Voodoo Princess
Thursday, September 1 - Interviewed at I'm Shelf-ish
Guest blogging at Write and Take Flight
Friday, September 2 - Guest blogging at The Dark Phantom
Book featured at As the Page Turns

Beautiful Belly Dancers Adult Coloring Book - Win a Free Coloring Book for Yourself!

We are pleased to be hosting Richard G. Lowe Jr.'s BEAUTIFUL BELLY DANCERS ADULT COLORING BOOK Book Blast today! Leave a comment on this blog and you could win a free copy!  Winner will be selected on August 31.  Only U.S. residents please.

About the Book:

Title: Beautiful Belly Dancer Coloring Book
Author: Richard G. Lowe Jr.
Publisher: The Writing King
Pages: 110
Genre: Adult Coloring Book

What could be better than an adult coloring book of beautiful belly dancers? These gorgeous ladies have performed all over the world, and now their images are presented here for your coloring pleasure. All pages are printed on one side to make your coloring easy.

For More Information

  • Beautiful Belly Dancer Adult Coloring Book is available at Amazon.


About the Author

After spending over 33 years in the computer and information technology industry, Richard Lowe Jr. decided to take an early retirement to pursue his dreams of becoming a professional writer and published author. Richard is a leader in the computer industry, serving as Vice President of Consulting at Software Techniques and Beck Computer Systems before settling down as Director of Computer Operations at Trader Joe’s. During his twenty-year tenure at that esteemed company, he focused on computer security and preparing for the possibility of disaster.

In addition to creating hundreds of articles for the web and blogs, Richard actively works as a professional ghostwriter. In that role, he has completed books on a wide variety of subjects including memoirs, business volumes, and novels. Because of his in-depth background in software management and computer security, Richard has ghostwritten a number of major books in those areas.

Additionally, Richard has published books of his own. His first two volumes, Safe Computing is Like Safe Sex and Real World Survival Tips and Survival Guide, respectively touch on the subjects of computer security and how to survive emergencies and disasters. Richard has also written and published a series of short eBooks on the aspects of freelance writing, including blogging and ghostwriting. Other published books include How to Plan a Party and How to Surround Yourself with Beautiful Women without Being a Sleazeball. 

An avid adventurer, Richard has been a photographer for much of his life, with a focus on nature, scenic, performance and event photography. He has done everything from hiking in dozens of national parks throughout the country, to photographing various unique festivals and events, such as the Labyrinth of Jareth Masquerade Ball and the World Mermaid Awards Convention. He is well known in the Renaissance Festival and Belly Dance communities, having photographed over 1,200 dance events and 400 festivals. For several years, he photographed the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena, California.

Richard is currently working on a large number of short Kindle eBooks on a wide variety of subjects. Beginning in 2016, the first of a ten volume series of Science Fiction novels will be published.

One of Richard’s passions is to use the power of words to educate people on human rights. He believes the world will be a better place when human beings are treated with the full respect and dignity they are due.

For More Information

Book Spotlight: Raising Sleepy Stones by P.H.T. Bennet

I'm happy to be hosting P.H.T. Bennet's RAISING SLEEPY STONES Blog Tour today! Leave a comment to let him know you stopped by!

Title: Raising Sleepy Stones
Author: P.H.T. Bennet
Publisher: Dramkeeper Publishing
Pages: 360
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy

Like every kid in Solasenda, Kiva Stone has been far too busy training for one of the five town guilds to think about something as useless as dreaming. But when she and her sister DeeDee uncover a mysterious plot to get rid of them, their only hope lies with a shadowy group of people who wield unimaginable powers drawn from their dreams. As the girls escape with them up the Varruvyen river, they start learning secret Dreaming Way techniques that have been forbidden for centuries. But how can they learn enough to stand against the enemies chasing them? The answer lies in the shattered history of Orora Crona, the lost Valley of Dreams, and whoever can piece it together first will rule for centuries to come.

For More Information

Book Excerpt:

Kiva looked closely at the sun’s golden face. Wavy rays representing shimmering heat radiated out from it. Its cheeks were plump, the lips full and curved, the nose wide, and the eyes were a little almond-shaped, like hers. In the middle of its forehead was a weird circle with six curving parts swirling around a six-pointed star. She’d never seen the sun drawn like that. Wondering what was on the back of the pendant, Kiva turned it over.
            The instant she saw the moon’s closed eyes, her hair flew back in the wind, her stomach dropped, and she was pressed back against the cushions of a vessel that was flying just inches above the river. She jerked her head back up and found she was in the back of a crescent-shaped boat piloted by an old man sitting up front. She was about to call out to him when he pointed at a tree that had fallen across the river and shouted, “When you get here, you must take a detour that even old Jacques didn’t know about! Hold on!”
            Before she could, though, he turned the boat around so quickly that Kiva was thrown against the side of her boat and the wind was knocked out of her. She only got her breath back when he straightened out and followed the river back down.
            “Look there!” he shouted moments later. “Turn right between the tall twins!”

Watch the Trailer!

About the Author

P.H.T. Bennet began exploring his dreams when he was a child and has never bothered to stop. He had the good luck to have two daughters, Juliette and Paola, who not only served as the inspirations for DeeDee and Kiva, the main characters of Raising Sleeping Stones, but also helped him turn their family dreamwork sessions into this book. His lucky streak grew when he married his lovely wife, Mim, who tolerates his turning on a light in the middle of the night to write down ever-crazier dreams and talking about them in the morning as long as he lets her sleep in, first. His favorite dreams involve flying, visiting the dead, and replaying nightmares until they reveal their secrets.

Pratt’s latest projects are editing Book Two of the Orora Crona Chronicles and planning a virtual summer dreaming camp with other dream authors.

For More Information

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Book Blast: The Tinfoil Prince of Harlem by Cyril H. Price


Inside the Book:

Title: The Tinfoil Prince of Harlem 
Author: Cyril H. Price 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Biography 
Format: Ebook/Paperback

By all reasonable calculations, a black child who started life with as many formidable challenges as author Cyril H. Price shouldn’t have prospered to the point of happiness he currently enjoys. In fact, at eight years of age, Price’s policy was to stay out of trouble, eat, and just survive. Growing up in the heart of Harlem during the Great Depression, Price and his family did what they could to survive. In The Tinfoil Prince of Harlem, he shares the details of his life living in the midst of poverty, hunger, racism, family upheavals, and gangs. From his birth in New York City, to Ethiopia, to Trinidad, and back to New York City, Price tells about the death of his father at the age of forty-three and how his mother barely made ends meet to feed Price and his older sister. Including details about his schooling, living conditions, and scrounging for bottles to earn money, The Tinfoil Prince of Harlem shares how one African-American boy rose to the challenge. He eventually became a dentist, an author, and a professor and raised a family of his own.

About the Author

Cyril H. Price, a graduate of Howard University, is a retired dentist, professor, and dean of a community college in New York City. He has written three books, including a novel, Confessions of a Crusader. Price and his wife, Doris, have three grown children, and live in Millsboro, Delaware


Cyril is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 26.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 27.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Book Blast: The Escape by Mac Kinnon - Win a $25 Gift Card

Inside the Book:

The Escape

Title: The Escape 
Author: Mac Kinnon 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Fiction/Political 
Format: Ebook

Jack made comments about a prominent political figure when he and his wife, Joanne were living in Las Vegas. Jack lost his job and no employer would even talk to him. Joanne lost her job, too. They were blacklisted. They were informed that a warrant had been issued for their arrest, the charge being terrorism. They hit the road in an act of survival. They spent time in a native-American commune for a few months and then on to Texas, Louisiana and Tennessee. They were being chased everywhere. Finally, the law in Texas informed them that was never a warrant for their arrest. The whole time they depended on God for their protection as their faith grew stronger with every episode they encountered.
Meet the Author:
Mac Kinnon, currently retired, has 40 years of on-the-job training in the construction industry. He is a talented musician and song-writer. Currently, he has published one book, Breaux, An American Icon. He and his wife presently live in Las Vegas, NV, and enjoy two grown children and two beautiful granddaughters and a handsome grandson


Mac is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 26.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 27.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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Monday, August 22, 2016

Book Feature: Geertje by Gerda Blokhuis Vandenhaak - Win a $25 Gift Card


Inside the Book:

Title: Geertje: Was Seen Through the Eyes of a Child as an Adult 
Author: Gerda Blokhuis Vandenhaak 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Biography 
Format: Ebook

World War II officially ended some seventy years ago, but for some people, it lives on. Gerda Blokhuis Vandenhaak, who spent the war in the Netherlands, still recalls the hunger and fear she felt throughout the war-that sticks out more than hearing about the two little boys killed or the blank expression of her father when she visited him in a concentration camp. She looks back at the confusion she felt as a child, and how she always managed to get food for her family as a seven-year-old-even if it meant breaking curfew to roam the countryside and beg at a farmhouse. When the war ended, her troubles did not: Her family took in another family because so many homes had been destroyed. They took up three rooms, and they had to share the bathroom, and she recalls being angry. But those early experiences showed her what it meant to suffer, which is one of the reasons she's dedicated her life to helping others. Join her as she celebrates love and joy and moves past pain in this inspirational account that shows the power of the human spirit.

Meet the Author:
Gerda Blokhuis Vandenhaak is a facilitator with Darkness to Light, which is devoted to ending the sexual abuse of children. She was recognized with The Global Woman of Vision award as a result of her work on behalf of children. She has five children and twenty-three grandchildren.


Gerda is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 26.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 27.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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Book Blast: Quintessential Bellydance by Evyenia Karmi - Win a $25 Gift Card

Inside the Book:

Title: Quintessential Bellydance 
Author: Evyenia Karmi 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Health and Fitness 
Format: Ebook

If you're looking for a fun, effective, low-impact workout that will build stamina, enhance flexibility, and improve your cardiovascular well-being, look no more. This gentle and effective dance is not only exciting to learn; it's also a great workout. Bellydance strengthens your core muscles gracefully, giving you new confidence in your body's natural sway and movement. These popular dance steps have been embraced by women of all ages everywhere.

Here, Evyenia Karmi, an experienced dancer, teacher, and member of the International Dance Council, introduces students to the basic terminology and movements of bellydance. Through careful, easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions, you can quickly begin learning the vocabulary of this ancient and beautiful dance.

Once you master the basic steps, the addition of sultry veil work can add a whole new dimension and excitement to your experience and performance. This compact and easy-to-use guide is an excellent teaching tool, featuring a gentle warm-up routine, to prepare your body for this energetic workout experience.

Create your own choreography or just have fun dancing! You'll learn basic arm movements, technique for both the upper and lower body, directional and travelling steps, the basics of veil work-and much more.  
Meet the Author:
Evyenia Karmi started dancing as a small child learning the traditional dance of her family. She has appeared in film and television; training includes the community adult ballet program at the National Ballet School of Canada, and The American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Evyenia performs internationally as a member of CID-Unesco in Greece. She lives and teaches in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Evyenia is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 26.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 27.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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Book Blast: A Beginner's Guide to God by Eric Neal - Win a $25 Gift Card

Inside the Book:

Title: A Beginner's Guide to God 
Author: Eric Neal 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Pages: 64 
Genre: Religion/Faith 
Format: Ebook

When it comes to religion, people often have more questions than answers. In A Beginner’s Guide to God, author Eric Neal hopes to eliminate some confusion surrounding religion and provide a clear and universal pathway to the creator. In this guide, Neal addresses some of life’s biggest questions: Does God exist? What happens when we die? Is this our only life? Who created the universe? How was the universe created? Why was it created? What is the spiritual realm? Why do people believe in a higher power? In addition to addressing the large questions, A Beginner’s Guide to God explores the origins, history, and leadership of some of the world’s major religions and provides a synopsis of their teachings. A Beginner’s Guide to God offers a general guide to spark interest and clarify aspects of mankind’s most important questions. Its goal is to help us make sense of religion, its progression, and the existence of a higher power. This is Eric Neal’s first book, produced after many years of contemplation on the plight of religion in the modern age.

Meet the Author:

This is Eric Neal’s first book, produced after many years of contemplation on the plight of religion in the modern age. Visit him online at


Eric is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 27.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 28.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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What I Learned in Acting Class by Chris Delyani, author of You Are Here


Inside the Book:
You Are Here
Title: You Are Here 
Author: Chris Delyani 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Romance 
Format: Ebook/Paperback

All Peter Bankston ever wanted to do was paint.

An aspiring painter, Peter scratches out a pauper’s living in San Francisco, wanting nothing more than to be left alone. Instead, he finds himself getting involved with not one but two very different men.

Like Peter, getting involved with another man is the last thing on Nick Katsaris’s mind. Smart, handsome, and good-humored, Nick’s done more than just survive—he’s positively thriving in San Francisco. But when he meets Peter, what begins as fun and games quickly turns into a game he can’t control.

Miles Bettencourt’s days are filled with longing. For him, San Francisco is haunted by Stuart, his missing ex-lover. Desperate to win him back, Miles wanders the streets in the hope of running into Stuart again. Instead, he runs into Peter—the one man who might hold the key to what Miles is looking for.

These three gay men soon form one very unlikely love triangle. Sometimes, when people break apart and then come together, they learn that discovering that where you are is the key to knowing who you are.  

What I Learned in Acting Class

The best writing class I ever took was at the Berkeley Rep School of Theater in Berkeley, California. The class I took wasn’t for screenwriting. It was for acting. Beginner’s acting. I’d never acted in my life. And in all my years of going to school, I’d never been so nervous about taking a class in my life.

I signed up for the acting class as a present to myself for my 45th birthday, a couple of years after I’d finished work on my novel You Are Here and had begun work on my latest work, Best Man. I’d always wanted to take an acting class, and I had a vague notion that acting classes would help me with writing scenes in my novels. What I didn’t expect was how thrilling—and terrifying—the experience would be.

I’d grown used to having a private experience as a writer. Of course “the reader” was never far from my mind when I sat down to write before work in the morning. But in acting class, “the reader” had become “the viewer,” and “the viewer” was the teacher, my classmates, several pairs of eyes trained on me in the harsh white lights of the acting space. One of our first exercises was to choose a partner and stare into the partner’s eyes. Thirty seconds of staring and I my heart was pounding as if it would burst. That first class was the longest of my life.

“Play to win,” our teacher had taught us in that first class. That is, when actors are playing roles, they are usually taking a position when they are competing with each other to get what they want. Scene work, we learned, is little more than figuring out what the character you are playing wants, what is standing in the way of what he wants, and what tactics he uses to “win” the scene. As simple as that.

I took that lesson and started applying it to my own scenes, with me, as the writer, playing all the roles. I quickly learned that writing scenes were much more fun when the competition was evenly balanced—in other words, not to let one character “win” too easily against his adversary. I also figured out that scenes in which characters weren’t competing with each other, that there was no conflicting “want” between the two of them, weren’t worth the bother to write.

So if you’re wondering what kind of writing class is right for you, maybe try an acting class instead. If your experience is anything like mine was, you’ll never write a scene the same way again.

Meet the Author:

In 1993, Chris Delyani moved to San Francisco from his native Boston to devote his life to writing fiction—and he’s been at it ever since. His first novel, The Love Thing, was published in 2009. He lives in Oakland, California.    

Book Feature: Can This Be Home? by Bobbe Palmer - Win a $25 Gift Card


Inside the Book:

Title: Can This Be Home? And Four Other Stories 
Author: Bobbe Palmer 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Fiction 
Format: Ebook

Annie has just suffered an unimaginable loss. While she spirals into the darkness of grief, her rancher husband, Ray, appears to lack emotion. But as a storm approaches their Wyoming ranch, Annie finally sees something in Ray's blue eyes that transforms everything. In a compelling collection of stories, Bobbe Palmer shines a light on five women of different ages and circumstances as each faces unique challenges. After little Ally witnesses a fight between her father and another farmer over water, she soon discovers what happens when a man thinks he can do everything for himself. Janie was once happy with Brad. But that was before he let the drink overtake his life. Now all she worries about is which one of them it will kill first. Odd Ida does not like boys. But when one appears at her door, she invites him into her home-and unwittingly, into her life, where she learns loneliness can be cured. Sandy knows something is visiting her farmhouse at night. Now all she has to do is determine its identity and what it wants. Can This Be Home? is a compilation of tales that offer powerful descriptions, tormented characters, and heartbreak as five women bravely confront their trials.
Meet the Author:
Bobbe Palmer attended Grinnell College in Iowa and the University of Denver. After teaching school one year in Kansas, she married a Presbyterian minister. She assisted him as he served churches in Wyoming, and then in mission work in Alaska. Now a widow, Bobbe lives in Estes Park, Colorado.


Bobbe is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins August 15 and ends on August 26.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 27.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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First Chapter Reveal: Missing Piece by Uzo Okoye

Title: Missing Piece
Author: Uzo Okoye
Publisher: Independent
Pages: 164
Genre: Inspirational/Legal Thriller

John Williams' picture perfect life is stripped apart, piece by piece and lies in a crumpled heap, just after he finds true fulfilment. And to make matters worse, a troubling dark secret from his past returns to haunt him.  
Will John accept his new reality? Is he brave enough to fight for the truth? Or will the enticement to return to his seemingly perfect past prove too much of a temptation to resist?

For More Information

  • Missing Piece is available at Amazon.

Chapter 1

HOME FANS ROARED their displeasure to intimidate the referee and dissuade him from giving a penalty. It fell on deaf ears.
The fans knew the rules of the game, and even worse, that a penalty decision could turn the tide of the match against their side. Their only hope was that their keeper could predict which way the dreaded striker would shoot as he had done in the twelfth minute.
Luck was certainly not on their side. The away fans screamed their delight as their team equalised.
Sat in his cinema room, John was beginning to feel the tension ease. He had decided to watch the game on his new 85-inch 3D Sony Bravia flat screen with two of his mates, and although it was not the same as being in the stadium, it was a great atmosphere.
The equaliser came just before the whistle, signalling the end of the first half. John’s wife, Amy, served the boys some drinks and her indigenous hot pepper soup to hold off the wintry shivers.
“This is the game changer,” Sam said, apparently intoxicated and struggling to get his words out.
John’s other friend, Josh was more vocal: “With the equaliser, hopefully, Chelsea now have the confidence to take Arsenal to the cleaners. They have done it before; why not now? We need those three points to stay clear of them at the top of the table.”
The camera zoomed in on the players as they returned to the pitch for the second half. It started slow, and for the next forty minutes, neither side could make an impact. But in the 90th minute, the striker from the visiting team struck from 20 yards, slotting the ball past the goalkeeper. He’d left three defenders in his wake, two of them crashing into each other like cars colliding in a motorway smash, as they scrambled for the ball. But it was now past their keeper, tucked neatly in the back of the net leaving just two minutes of extra time for the home team at the Emirates, to make any reasonable counter attack.
The visiting fans roared their delight at the goal that secured victory. The boys in John’s cinema room were no different – ecstatic in the euphoria of the moment. It took them ten minutes to settle down after the match ended. They thanked Amy profusely for hosting them as they made their way out of the house into the full blast of the November night winds. She acknowledged their gratitude, glad her hosting skills that night was a success.
John saw them out and then returned to the room, sliding onto the Egyptian hand-crafted sofa.
 “Thanks for hosting the boys,” he said. Amy nodded her acknowledgement for the second time that evening.
John watched her through the corner of his eyes and remembered the day he first saw her. She was standing in a lovely red dress on six-inch platform heels in the club TwoPoint0. The waiter was filling her slim wine glass with some Rouviére Rosé. His favourite. He noticed she came in with his mate, Daniel King.
John spent the rest of the evening stealing glances at her. She had her hair all braided, falling down to her sides and almost covering her big brown eyes. Underneath was a pointed nose and red lips that pouted. She was petite, at five feet five inches, attractive, elegant and unassuming. He particularly loved how she tilted her head backwards, closed her eyes and laughed throatily when she was amused. She didn’t do much of that these days.
A month later, he met Daniel with another girl at a friend’s birthday party. He couldn’t help but ask about his previous date, and was visibly relieved to hear she was not a date but Daniel’s cousin. She was also free – having just escaped an abusive relationship.
He took her number from Daniel. He wasn’t sure if he was her type. It seemed unlikely at the time. She would be the ultimate prize if she happened to like him. He would consider himself the luckiest man alive. Could he dare make a move on her? It would be an African Shakespearian love story… or tragedy if it all went wrong!
Luck seemed to be on his side when she agreed on a date. Time stood still during their six-month whirlwind romance and in spring of the following year, they were married.
John believed Amy was the woman who would fill the emptiness and void that plagued him.
But a few months after their wedding, he noticed the same old feeling resurface. She was perfect. He couldn’t fault her in any way. Then, even though he didn’t want to admit it, he came to the cold realisation that she couldn’t fill the yawning, aching need down in the very core of his being. There was still the profound sense that something was off. The harrowing gap remained in his guts.
The darkness hovering over his life was suffocating him, and he began to realise that, getting married was, a pointless exercise. Yes, he was happy to have found her – no doubt. But his marriage didn’t give him the answers he had envisioned. If anything, it created more stress and widened the gap of dissatisfaction.
What if all the uneasiness was just a phase? With renewed hoped John focused on the birth of their baby. Surely, this new addition would be the answer to his deep longings?
Dave was ushered into their lives screaming at the top of his lungs at exactly ten past one on 21st May 1996. He gave John the most beautiful experience – the feeling of being a father – he was now responsible for another person. A little man.
Amy came back from the hospital the day after Dave was born. Dave was very fragile, weighing just 6.5 pounds at birth. They hardly had any sleep. And Amy, far from being the happy new mum, was often teary-eyed. John expected an upheaval in their lives, but he also expected it to go back to normal afterwards. It didn’t.
He desperately wanted Dave to settle down so their lives – or his at least – could return to some kind of normality. But life as he knew it was over - the tragic demise of their idyllic honeymoon period. The beautiful experience of being a father came with a price tag – the responsibility for another person, for life.
John and Amy never recovered. Amy continually nagged and cried at the drop of a hat. What was wrong with her? They fought and argued more times than not. It drove him away from the house.
That was when he started the secret rendezvous with Kayleigh. The first time was the day they worked late together alone, on the Silicon Case. She was soon his mistress. They met twice a week. Yes, he was attracted to Kayleigh but he didn’t love her. She was just a necessary evil. He did it to relieve the pressure of home life.
He also wouldn’t say he didn’t love Amy. As long as she didn’t know, it wouldn’t hurt her. After all, a man had to do what a man had to do. The feeling of guilt, though, made him even emptier on the inside. He hated to cheat on Amy, but couldn’t do anything to stop himself. It was like a magnetic pull, and the worst thing was that he couldn’t help notice how deep and empty every night with Kayleigh left him.
He desperately needed something to fill the void.
Eighteen months later, their daughter Lola was born, a second intrusion thrust into John and Amy’s already chaotic lives. But this time John knew – Lola wouldn’t be and wasn’t the answer he was searching for.
Fifteen years later and nothing much had changed. The emptiness remained at the core of his being.
John switched off the TV. Five minutes later he was in bed next to Amy. She was snoring softly.
John wondered, as he always did when left to his thoughts, about one unanswered question – what could possibly fill the void in his life?

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About the Author

Little did Uzo Okoye know what God had in store for her when six years ago, she was awakened by a restlessness that persisted. Thus, would begin a journey of many doubts, frustrations, in an attempt to discern answers.

During this time of unsettledness and a deep cry for real answers, surprisingly she is ignited with a desire to write, the answers that formed the basis of a book idea.

No sooner, risking leaving the familiar, her comfort zone and stepping into the unknown, Uzo began the challenging but exciting work of writing her debut fiction novel, ‘Missing Piece’.

Forever grateful to God for entrusting her with this gift, she looks forward to hearing the many testimonies of how ‘Missing Piece’ inspires hope and produces lasting peace, joy and new way of living realised through a personal encounter and walk with Jesus Christ.

Missing Piece will be published in June 2016 and will be available on Amazon, Apple and other retailers where mentioned. The ebook is currently available for pre order on Apple, Kobo and other retailers. 

Uzo is a Management graduate from the University of Port Harcourt in Nigeria, and currently works as an IT professional in the United Kingdom.

She is a member of the dynamic and flourishing church Kings Court Chapel, located in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire under the senior leadership of Pastor Sola and Pastor Tumise Ewedemi. On Sundays, she enjoys using her gift of teaching Kingdom truths to the delightful and inquisitive kids aged seven and eight.

Married to Ejike Okoye, the couple share their home with their three beautiful children in Hemel Hempstead, the eastern part of England.

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Fairly Certain: Interview with Author Deborah Ann Davis

DEBORAH ANN DAVIS has been writing since she was assigned to keep a Journal in her 5th grade English class. She began to look around for writing inspiration. Lo and behold, she found her world was full of funny stories just waiting to be told. As she grew older, occasionally she could manipulate one into some school assignment, but it never occurred to her to pursue writing, not even when she discovered her flare for telling stories at college parties.

After a string of college majors, she realized she could have a captive audience EVERY DAY in the public school system. As it turns out, teenagers love to laugh, and what could be more entertaining than Biology, Earth Science, and Environmental Science? Then there's the added bonus that once kids know you like to laugh, they want to make you laugh.

Go figure.

In addition to Writing, she is also an Educational Speaker and a Certified Personal Trainer. She taught for 25+ years, although somewhere in the middle of all that educating, she stepped out of teaching for 6 years to do the Mommy Thing, and run the office for their family construction company.

Even though they had followed separate paths, Deborah reunited with, and married her childhood sweetheart, twelve years after their first kiss.  Together they coached their daughter’s AAU Basketball Team, which swept States two years in a row. (Yay!) Then, for several years their daughter and their money went to college.

They currently reside on a lovely lake in Connecticut. She enjoys dabbling with living a sustainable life, writing novels for her Love of Fairs series, dancing, playing outside, and laughing really hard every day. She promotes increasing the amount of movement throughout your day via Wiggle Writer posts on Merry Meddling.

Remember, you can do anything if you set your mind to it— including becoming an author at any age— but it’s way more fun if you are grinning back when the Universe smiles down on you.

Deborah’s latest book is the new adult novel, Fairly Certain.
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About the Book:

What happens when a Computer Geek challenges a Medieval Outlaw?

PETIR TAKES A ROUGH TUMBLE IN THE CONNECTICUT WOODS, and awakens in the middle of old England. His instinct to freak out is tempered by the arrival of a fair maiden wearing a bow… and arrow. In his college world, fair maiden types don’t ordinarily go for computer geek
types, but for some reason, he is no longer in his world. Petir’s fairly certain he can try whatever he wants without consequence… but the fair maiden isn’t playing fair.

WITH THE CONFLICT BETWEEN THE ROYALS ESCALATING, MAID RIANNE has joined the outlaws hiding in the woods, outwardly defying the handsome and accomplished knight to whom she is promised. She is fairly certain she is simply flattered by Lord Petir’s uncensored admiration of her skills with the staff and bow, the same unmaidenly pursuits disdained by her knight. But, that doesn’t explain her reaction to Lord Petir’s unguarded gaze.

TO PETIR’S DELIGHT, AND MAID RIANNE’S DISMAY, the outlaws invite him to join their merry band. What better way to get close to her? Throwing caution to the wind, Petir decides he has nothing to lose by pursuing Maid Rianne. It’s fun and games, until Maid Rianne is captured by the enemy. Now, a geek with no ability to defend himself must find a way to rescue a fair maiden who has become much more than fair game.

“Adorably romantic!”   An absolutely fun, adorable, romantic read that will thoroughly entertain you, no ifs, ands, or buts! The plot was extremely unique and I l-o-v-e-d just how unusual it was. It was thoughtfully planned out and written with a smooth glide, seemingly effortless on the author’s part. The ending was surprisingly unexpected and I’m thinking I really, really like this new-to-me-author, Ms. Deborah Ann Davis! I’m already anxiously awaiting her next book. Don’t miss Fairly Certain or I’m completely certain you’ll be upset you did!
-- Review by bookshellz

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Thanks for this interview, Deborah Ann Davis.  Can we begin by having you tell us about yourself from a writer’s standpoint?

I started warming a chair at a monthly writers group meeting because someone somewhere once said something I wrote (an essay) should be published. So I unobtrusively sat in the back and listened to the speakers. Until one day a speaker told us you don’t have to have a plot to write a book. I thought, “Well, hey! I don’t have a plot, so I can write a book!” and I began to write.

When not writing, what do you like to do for relaxation and/or fun?

I love to go dancing but I hardly ever do because there aren’t any dance places for my age group. So I dance around the living room with my husband. I try to go to the gym every day, and hang out with my husband in the morning. I like biking and laughing.

Congratulations on your new book! Can you give us the very first page of your book so that we can get a glimpse inside?

Here is the first page of Fairly Certain:

To Climb, or Not to Climb
“What do you mean, you can’t go?” Petir Capota stopped stuffing his backpack to stare at his roommate, Chris Dunbar, who leaned against his doorframe. Disappointment bubbled up. “Chris, this is our chance to advance in the rankings.”
“I know, I know. But my boss called and asked if I could add a few shifts.” Chris shrugged, avoiding Petir’s glare as he drifted toward his friend’s computer array. “I need the dough, bro.” From the top of his red head to the bottom of his raggedy Sketchers, Chris was the picture of remorse. Even his crisp buzz-cut drooped. His summer job, a vital financial component for keeping their new apartment, had not panned out as expected. Blowing off his chance to put in some extra hours would be a serious mistake.
“Oh, isn’t that just great? First Jimmy bails; now you.” Heaving a sigh, Petir plopped down on his bed. He snatched up his favorite Ping-Pong paddle and swiped the air. Like that would change things. “And get your carcass away from my computers.”
Unoffended, Chris stepped away from Petir’s pride and joy. “You can always go by yourself, dude.”
“I can’t go by myself. We’re supposed to be a team.” Swish. Swish. The paddle attacked an imaginary ball.
“Dude, no one will know.” Chris hung his head, then scraped at something on his shirt.
A shaggy blond head popped through the doorway belonging to their third roommate. “Yeah, Pete, take one for the team,” chided Jimmy Montana. “Make Jackie Chan proud.”
“Aww, c’mon, you guys. I thought we were taking a week for ourselves.” Petir’s vacation plans were heading for the toilet. 

Would you say it’s been a rocky road for you in regards to getting your book written and published or pretty much smooth sailing?  Can you tell us about your journey?

I’m a pretty upbeat person so I rarely find the road rocky. I began writing while I was teaching high school Science, so I made myself wait until the summers write. Meanwhile, I copied down conversations from eavesdropping in crowds, and threw the scraps of paper they were on into a big envelope. I got a lot of ideas from songs. (All my books have a playlist at the end.) Ideas jotted on sticky notes used up most of the room in there. It basically took me close to three years to finish the book.

Two years ago I stopped teaching to become a writer full-time. I knew I would miss the kids, but I was so excited to finally be able to devote my time to writing. But, I am an Indie writer. Instead, I found my hands full with trying to do marketing and promotions. To my surprise, I didn’t write hardly anything that first year. Last year I did some writing, but nothing that I would call productive. However this year I have two books started, one of which is almost completed. And my second book, Fairly Safe, is being published in July.

If you had to summarize your book in one sentence, what would that be?

What happens when a Computer Geek challenges a Medieval Outlaw?

What makes your book stand out from the rest?

Besides the quirky characters, and the plot twists? That would be humor and insight to teenage angst.

If your book was put in the holiday section of the store, what holiday would that be and why?

Summer Vacation…because that’s when the story takes place. Everybody goes to fairs, carnivals and festivals during the summer. There is so much anticipation and excitement associated with them.

Would you consider turning your book into a series or has that already been done?

The series is Love of Fairs. Fairly Certain is the first book, in which a Connecticut geek falls out of a tree playing a GPS game in the woods, only to find himself back in old England. His instinct to freak out is tempered by the arrival of a fair maiden wearing a bow…and arrow. When she is captured by the enemy, a geek with no ability to protect himself must find a way to save the fair maiden.
My second book, Fairly Safe, tells about a successful former foster kid who is trying to have a relationship with a girl in Witness Protection…whose cover has been blown. It will be available in July. (Yay!)
The third upcoming story, Fairly Obvious, follows a seventeen-year-old who whisks away her younger siblings to a traveling carnival so they can avoid foster care until she turns eighteen.

What’s next for you?

Fairly Obvious won’t be out until 2017 because I have another project in the works, Girl’s Guide to Good Guys: The Power of Being Patient and Picky, my first non-fiction workbook for teenage girls.
I’m on a mission to help the countless teenage girls who repeatedly make bad dating choices. They’re stuck in a loop because they’re afraid to be alone, afraid of being unpopular, and afraid they’ll never find a good guy. After 20+ years teaching high school, raising a daughter of my own, and spending seven years as a teenage girl myself, I created a series of challenges to help teenage girls become self-appreciating and independent. The exercises teach girls to become comfortable with being single, to live their lives more fully, and to be patient and picky until they are ready for a healthy relationship.