Archives for January 2017

Heather’s Review: Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

Voyager (Outlander, #3)

Voyager (Outlander #3)
written by Diana Gabaldon
published by Delta, 2001

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, Book Depository, Target, WalmartGoodreads


Did I enjoy this book: 
Yes. This is the book that made the long reads of the first two worth it. Claire returns to the stone circle and travels back to find Jamie. Can you imagine a love so strong, so true that you would willingly leave behind your child and take a chance? The two of them struggle with their reunion–after all, 20 years have passed and a lot of water flows under that bridge. But their love survives and flourishes and it’s a great book. And to keep you on your toes, Brianna has a love affair!

 

 

Would I recommend it: Absolutely. ​Definitely worth the time investment!

 

About the book – from Goodreads: From the author of the breathtaking bestsellers Outlander and Dragonfly in Amber, the extraordinary saga continues.

Their passionate encounter happened long ago by whatever measurement Claire Randall took. Two decades before, she had traveled back in time and into the arms of a gallant eighteenth-century Scot named Jamie Fraser. Then she returned to her own century to bear his child, believing him dead in the tragic battle of Culloden. Yet his memory has never lessened its hold on her… and her body still cries out for him in her dreams.

Then Claire discovers that Jamie survived. Torn between returning to him and staying with their daughter in her own era, Claire must choose her destiny. And as time and space come full circle, she must find the courage to face the passion and pain awaiting her…the deadly intrigues raging in a divided Scotland… and the daring voyage into the dark unknown that can reunite or forever doom her timeless love.

 

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EFC Promotions Blog Tour Wrap-Up: Faith In Every Footstep by Wesley Banks

 

efc-promotions-blog-tourfaith-in-every-footstep-2

 

faith-in-every-footstep-cover-640x1024Faith in Every Footstep
written by Wesley Banks
published by Chasing Pace Publishing, 2016

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, AmazonGoodreads

If you would like to review this book, please email us at efcpromotions@gmail.com.

 

About the book – from Goodreads: On the eve of one of mankind’s toughest races, accompanied by thirteen of America’s rarest dog breed, rookie musher Kyle Walker only has one thought in mind: win. Discovered in the lowlands of South Carolina, the Carolina grays have traveled over five thousand miles to face off in the 2003 Yukon Quest. But one dog stands above the rest—King.

When an unexpected storm strikes, Kyle Walker and the reigning champion are forced to turn back. Stranded at the checkpoint, Kyle and his dogs find solace in a young veterinarian with auburn hair and keen green eyes—Jenna Maynor.

In this storm another race is forming, one of an Inuit man racing to save his family. Presented with the choice to help, but at the risk of his and his dogs’ lives, Kyle Walker ventures into the unknown in search of a mom and two young daughters.

The Yukon Quest was founded on the premise that a dog driver and his team should be a self-sufficient unit capable of challenging varied terrain and severe weather. But these conditions may prove to be too much, even for Kyle and King.

wesley-banks-600x800About the author: Wesley Banks was born in 1983 and grew up on the west coast of Florida. He graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Civil Engineering.  After spending over 7 years building movable bridges from Florida to Washington he decided to focus on his true passion: writing.

Wesley recently moved from Florida to Oregon to get back to the great outdoors that he loves so much. He lives with his wife Lindsey, and his two dogs Linkin and Story. Most of his time these days is spent writing, with as much rock climbing, hiking, or skiing as he can fit in.

Find Mr. Banks here: webblogFacebookTwitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, Instagram

 

blog-tourjanuary-9-14-2017

 

We would like to thank everyone who participated in the blog tour! You can see the bloggers’ posts below.

 

TOUR SCHEDULE

Jan 9: EFC Kickoff Post (review, spotlight)

Jan 10: The Pages In-Between (review)

Maureen’s Books (review)

Writing Pearls (spotlight)

Jan 11: Underneath the Covers (spotlight, excerpt)

Jan 12: Books, Dreams, Life (spotlight)

Jan 13: Girl of 1,000 Wonders (review)

Jan 14: Leels Loves Books (review)

CBY (spotlight)

Jan 15: Laura’s Reading (review)

Jan 16: Romantic Escapes (review)

Jan 17: Zerina Blossom’s Books (guest post)

Jan 18: NJKinny’s World of Books and Stuff (review, spotlight, author interview)

Second Run Reviews (guest post)

Jan 19: Book Lover in Florida (spotlight)

Jan 20: Sip, Read, Love (spotlight)

Jan 21: Always a Book to Read (spotlight)

Jan 22: Books, Dreams, Life (review)

Always a Book to Read (review)

Congratulations to at Alecia at CBY for winning our Host Incentive Reward!

 

 

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Chrissy’s Review: Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library
written by Chris Grabenstein
published by Random House Books for Young Readers, 2013

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, Book Depository, Target, Walmart, Goodreads

Did I enjoy this book: 
I adored this book. I loved it so much that I read it in a day. I read it every free chance I had.

I bought this book for my son because it looked like something he would enjoy. However, I wanted to read it first to check it out for him, and I am so glad I did. I absolutely loved this story. I wish there was a real Mr. Lemoncello’s library. I’d go every day. I’d love to play some of Mr. Lemoncello’s games, too. They sounded like a blast.

 

And now for the story, Kyle and his friends are locked in Mr. Lemoncello’s library overnight because they won an essay contest. They are the first to experience the awesomeness of the library on opening night, but when morning comes, they learn there is a new game to be played. And what a game it is. The kids have to solve clues, think, play, and of course read in order to make it out of the library. I’ll tell you what . . . this story moves. It had me hooked from the very first page and it kept me reading until the very end. It teaches kids about teamwork and the power of reading.

 

Would I recommend it: Yes, to you or your younger readers!

 

Chrissy


About the book – from Goodreads: 
Kyle Keeley is the class clown, popular with most kids, (if not the teachers), and an ardent fan of all games: board games, word games, and particularly video games. His hero, Luigi Lemoncello, the most notorious and creative gamemaker in the world, just so happens to be the genius behind the building of the new town library.

Lucky Kyle wins a coveted spot to be one of the first 12 kids in the library for an overnight of fun, food, and lots and lots of games. But when morning comes, the doors remain locked. Kyle and the other winners must solve every clue and every secret puzzle to find the hidden escape route. And the stakes are very high.

In this cross between Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and A Night in the Museum, Agatha Award winner Chris Grabenstein uses rib-tickling humor to create the perfect tale for his quirky characters. Old fans and new readers will become enthralled with the crafty twists and turns of this ultimate library experience.

 

 

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Blog Tour: Stack a Deck by Sue Duff (spotlight, interview, giveaway)

 

Stack a Deck (Book 4: The Weir Chronicles)
written by Sue Duff
published by Crosswinds Publishing, 2017

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, Book Depository, Goodreads

About the book – from Goodreads: Ian’s alliance with the rebels brings the wrath of the Pur army crashing down on them, but he is forced to abandon his new allies and travels to Earth’s alternate universe to rescue Rayne.  As Ian combs the strange, desolate planet in search for her, he discovers the true story of the Weir and his connection to Earth’s imminent destruction.

Interview

We’re now on book four in the Weir Chronicles. Can you tell us where readers will find Ian Black in Stack a Deck?

Ian has been forced to turn his back on the Pur Weir and align himself with the rebels to rescue Rayne.  When he travels to Earth’s alternate universe, he finds himself powerless and struggles to survive the dangerous planet while staying one step ahead of Aeros.

Since there may be some readers that haven’t yet read Fade to Black, Masks and Mirrors and Sleight of Hand, can you catch them up on what they’ve missed?

In Fade to Black, the main protagonist and “superhero” is Ian Black. Born the last of the Weir, all hope rests on him to save the planet, but he doesn’t inherit the powers as predicted. Tortured in a last ditch effort to bring his supposed powers to the surface, he escapes and hides among the humans as an illusionist – until a nosy college reporter uncovers his secret. Together, they discover a malevolent Weir who is sucking Earth’s energy and depleting its resources at an alarming rate.

The Weir are a race of magical beings who have served as caretakers of Earth for thousands of years and it is their connection to the planet that keeps what roams above in harmony with the energies that churn below. Unfortunately, they are becoming extinct and as a result, there is an intense rise of natural disasters across the globe. Desperate to save the earth and prevent the end of their race, the Weir turn to modern science to perpetuate themselves. But this philosophy separates their kind into two warring factions – the Pur and the Duach. To keep them from killing each other, and all but guaranteeing their extinction, a Curse is created by the Ancient counsel as a means of keeping them apart. Of course, as you could predict, the Weir soon discover it’s not wise to mess with Mother Nature!

A band of rebels, committed to stopping their mutual enemy, come on the scene in Masks and Mirrors, and give Ian reason to be suspicious as he struggles to uncover what ulterior motive they have for saving Earth.

In the third book, Sleight of Hand, Ian pursues answers in order to stop Earth’s natural disasters and eminent self-destruction, but the rebels have their own agenda and poison him.  Patrick and Rayne search for a cure and in so doing, Rayne ends up on Thrae, Earth’s alternate universe, while Patrick confronts the rebel leaders and learns the truth about the Weir.

What are your initial thoughts when thinking about your book(s)?

I write the way I like to read – short chapters that end with a cliffhanger so you can’t help but turn the page and read just ‘one more chapter.’ I’ve received feedback from individuals, who don’t typically read my genre, but end up loving my books. Others that aren’t big readers have finished my novels in one, two or three sittings!

What kind of research did you have to do for your book / series?

The fourth book was the most challenging of all, because I had to consider the worst future for Earth and ask the “what if” questions.  What if the ozone layer decayed? What if asteroids weren’t destroyed by the outer atmosphere and impacted the early regularly? What if the Earth’s core slowed its rotation and what affect that would have on the planet and to the gravitational pull on the moon? These facts are the basis for how Aeros affected Thrae, and since it ‘used to be’ the mirror image of Earth, I had to apply those results in this novel.

Do any pieces of the book come from personal experience?

When I was a teenager, we took a road trip up the California Coast and spent time in the redwood forests. I thought it was the most breathtaking place on Earth, which is why I have Ian living there in my stories.

What do you hope readers most get out of your book (or the series as a whole)?

Regardless of the naysayers,  believe in yourself and follow your own strengths and path in the world. Ian didn’t develop his powers as the prophecy predicted, and Rayne wasn’t the firstborn male Sar that her father desired. The fact that Ian turned to illusions in order to do what he couldn’t naturally (lack of powers in a magical world) is key to his character.  Tortured for what he had no control over, he discovered and nurtured something that he could control.

I also hope that my readers can accept that science can’t explain everything and embrace the wonders and mysteries in the universe. My favorite line from the first book is, “There will always be magic in the world, as long as we believe in what we don’t understand.”

You also released TICK TOCK, an anthology with six other Colorado authors this past year. How did that come together, and do you have anything planned for 2017?

Our first anthology, TICK TOCK: Seven Tales of Time, was nominated as Best Anthology of 2016 by UTOPIA Con in June, and we also won the silver medal for Best Anthology of 2016 and the gold medal for Best Book Cover through Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Awards in August! Our next anthology is based on short stories inspired by our favorite song.  In addition, we opened the second book up to submissions and received more than 45 from all over the world! After the marathon readings and critiques, we chose two that stood out above the rest and we’re excited to include them in the second anthology, releasing this spring.

So after working both solo and in tandem with other authors on a project, do you have a favorite method of writing?

There are pros to doing both!  I love my Wicked Ink team and we do so much to support each other.  It can be daunting to self-publish a novel, but with having a team, the burden can be shared by all – which makes it easier.  But…I also love writing on my own, because the final decisions and content are solely mine and I don’t feel so stressed by deadlines – albeit the ones I put on myself.  But truly, I have the best of both worlds!

 

 

“A stunning debut with a thrilling mix of sci-fi and fantasy. Duff has a real hit on her hands.” ~ Roxanne Kade, blogger at Therian

“I recommend this to anyone who loves a good Sci-fi esque, fantasy, dystopian, secret-war-going-on-behind-the-human’s-backs-and-right-under-their-noses sort of book.” ~ Jaay V, blogger at Reckless Indulgence

“This is one series that I recommend to readers of fantasy and paranormal romances.  It just keeps getting better and better. Just when you think you might know what’s going on, there are new twists that get added in.” ~ Jessica Bronder, blogger at J Bronder Book Reviews

 

 

Catch up on the series by reading Fade to BlackMasks and Mirrors, and Sleight of Hand!

Love Audiobooks? You can also listen to Fade to Black through Audible.

 

 

Want more? Join The Weir Chronicles Fan List for exciting news and updates on special events, giveaways and upcoming books in the series!

 

 

About the author: Sue Duff has dreamed of dragons and spaceships before she could even read, so it’s only natural that she now combines both fantasy and science fiction as her favorite genre.  Having written since high school, Duff never took it seriously until a skiing accident laid her up for an entire summer and she turned on the word processor to combat the boredom.

A few years later, her first urban fantasy novel, Fade to Black, was one of five finalists in the RMFW Colorado Gold Writing Contest. Duff’s writing has also earned her a PEN Award, a nomination for 2015-2016 RMFW Independent Writer of the Year, three consecutive years as a featured panelist at Denver ComicCon and a coveted spot on the Denver Post Bestseller list.

She is the second oldest of six girls with an avid reader mom and her dad, the family’s single drop of testosterone in a sea of estrogen.

By day, Duff is a dedicated speech-language therapist at an inner city school district, a career she pursued much in part to her aunt who got her hooked on stories of the profession when Duff was younger. She is passionate about the work she does and regularly works to help those students that need it the most.

Sue is a member of the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and The Pikes Peak Writers. She calls Colorado home and when not saving the world one page at a time, she can be found walking her great dane, getting her hands dirty in her garden, or creating something delicious in her kitchen.

Check out her blog, A Cook’s Guide to Writing and other musings on her website.

 

Find Ms. Duff here: Official WebsiteFacebookTwitterGoodreadsInstagramLinkedInNewsletterAmazon

 

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My Favorite . . . Holiday — January 25, 2017

 

My Favorite . . . is a weekly meme hosted by Maureen’s Books. In this meme we share every week something we love with each other. Because let’s face it, the world can be a dark place and it’s time to share something positive.

 

Each week I will post a new My Favorite . . . post about one subject and I’ll tell you all about it. And the best part? Everyone is welcome to join. The only thing you’ll have to do is sign up on the weekly post, link back to that post, and visit others.

 

This week’s Favorite is: Holiday

 

Christmas. I love the excitement in my kids, I love the magic of the season, and I love spending time with family and friends. I also love the Christmas lights; they make everything look peaceful and joyful.

 

 

Thanksgiving. No BS, no expectations, just a good meal with family and a reminder to be thankful for what you have.

 

 

Christmas.

 

 

Boost It Tuesday! – January 24, 2017

BIT banner

Have you noticed that despite ALL of your Facebook “Likes” you are only “reaching” a very small portion of those followers? Does that bother you? It bothers us, and we want to boost each other up. Link up with Every Free Chance BooksIf These Books Could Talk, and Between My Lines.

 

What is Boost It Tuesday, you ask? Well, we want to help each other out. We are a great community of bloggers and authors, and we should be supporting each other. Share your Facebook address below, then visit the Facebook pages, like 3-5 posts, share or comment on 1 or 2 posts. That’s it. You don’t have to “like” the page if you don’t want to, just “like” some posts. Let’s help expand each other’s page reach. Who knows! You may find a new blog or author to follow along the away. Please be aware that any non-Facebook links will be deleted.

 

Here are some tips for Boosting. A big thanks to Kate at If These Books Could Talk for the image!

Boost It Poster

 

We will be featuring one blogger or author on the Boost It Tuesday post. We hope that you will visit that blogger or author and give their page a bit of extra BIT attention!

 

If you would like to be featured one week, please fill out the form below.

Click Here to Sign Up to Be a Featured Booster!

Remember: Like, comment, and share!  Let’s all give each other a boost!




If These Books Could Talk,

 

    if these books could talk   Between My Lines
 

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Melissa’s Review: Exile (The Oneness Cycle #1) by Rachel Starr Thomson

Exile (The Oneness Cycle #1)Exile (The Oneness Cycle #1)
written by Rachel Starr Thomson
published by Little Dozen Press, 2014

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, AmazoniBooksBook Depository, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
I didn’t expect to. It’s marketed as a Christian fantasy series, so I was expecting a sort of Left Behind, over-the-top-Christian vibe, which is typically a turnoff for me. Thomson, though, offers a refreshingly Omnist view of spirituality, and I totally dig it. She blurs the lines between prayer and meditation, good and evil, saints and sinners. It’s fabulous (and, despite the fantasy aspects, more real-life than I’ve found many Christian novels to be).

I will say Reese runs away just a little too often to be believable (hello, plot device!), but other than that my only complaint is that I don’t have the next book in the series yet. Sad.

 

GOLDEN LINES

“Diane had never learned to pray. It was a skill, something to be trained in, and she had resisted. Had refused to learn, in fact. Prayer was a full entering in. It was a flinging wide, a plunge, a total surrender to Oneness, bringing the Spirit surging and then riding the wave like a surfer racing toward shore. One with the wave, the exhilaration, the spray; One with the very ocean. Some were better at it than others.”

 

 

Would I recommend it: As someone decidedly annoyed by cut-and-dry labels, I’m especially fond of the way Thomson describes her book as “genre-bending,” and I think you should be too. It’s a fun, exciting read, and I hope to read more of the series.

 

 

Melissa

 

About the book – from Goodreads: The battle is real. Page-turning, suspenseful Christian fantasy on the border between earth and spirit.
When Tyler fishes the girl out of the bay, he thinks she’s dead.

She wishes she was.

For Reese, life ended when the supernatural entity called the Oneness threw her out. For Tyler, dredging Reese out of the water means life is nothing he thought.

In a world where the Oneness exists, nothing looks the same. Dead men walk. Demons prowl the air. Old friends peel back their mundane masks and prove as supernatural as angels.

The Oneness changes everything.

And getting Reese home, making her One again, will change Tyler—and his roommate, Chris, whose connections with the Oneness have been buried most of his life—forever.

 

 

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December 2016 Subscription Boxes

what's in the box 4

Hi, Everyone!

Here are our subscriptions from the month of December:

 

Lit-Cube

Lit-Cube

Stars Hollow Monthly

This necklace is gorgeous! It reads, “Where You lead, I will follow.”

 

 

Owl Crate

The Bookish Box

GeekGear – World of Wizardry



What do you think of month’s boxes?

Do you subscribe to any boxes? If so, which ones? I did include my referral links, so if you’re interested, please feel free to use them! I know I would appreciate it.

 

Chrissy

 

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In the Kitchen: Blue Apron Subscription: Chicken Khao Soi

In theKitchen

 

Hi, Everyone!

In an effort to spend less time meal planning and more time reading, I decided to give Blue Apron a try. It costs less than taking the whole family to a restaurant, and it seemed like a fun way to add some new recipes to my repertoire.

Tonight: Chicken Khao Soi

You know, I love cookbooks. I really do. I have a ton and I use them! But these recipe cards from the subscription boxes are pretty awesome. I love the step-by-step instructions WITH pictures.

This meal was soooooo good!

 

 

If I make it again: I know I will definitely be making crispy wonton noodles. They are great for snacking, too! When I make this recipe again, I think I’ll try adding some mushrooms, maybe shiitake, to it. I may try it with shrimp at some point.

Did my kids eat it: We didn’t share this one with the kids, but I will make it for them. They like all of the ingredients, so theoretically . . . we’ll see how it goes.

 

 

Chrissy kitchen

 

Heather’s Review: Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon

Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, #2)Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander #2)
written by Diana Gabaldon
published by Bantam, 2001

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & NobleAmazoniBooks, Book Depository, Target, WalmartGoodreads

Did I enjoy this book: Yes. I was at first confused when I opened this book. It begins 20 years into the future and Claire’s baby is now a grown woman. For a few chapters I thought I’d bought the wrong book and was reading them out of order–but as I turned pages, it finally made sense. In this book, you learn of Claire’s life once she’s back in her own time and it’s not until her husband dies that Claire is free to dig into history and find out what happened to her true love, Jamie. She and her daughter return to Scotland and engage the assistance of a friend to aid in the search. It’s a great follow-up to the first book and I really enjoyed the story.

 

 

Would I recommend it: Yes. As I said, a great follow-up, and while it answers many questions, it leaves just as many on the table. Time for book three!

 

 

About the book – from Goodreads: With her now-classic novel Outlander, Diana Gabaldon introduced two unforgettable characters—Claire Randall and Jamie Fraser—delighting readers with a story of adventure and love that spanned two centuries. Now Gabaldon returns to that extraordinary time and place in this vivid, powerful follow-up to Outlander.

DRAGONFLY IN AMBER
 
For nearly twenty years Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones… about a love that transcends the boundaries of time… and about Jamie Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his.

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart… in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising… and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves.

 

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