Archives for March 2017

Winter Reading Challenge: It Happens All the Time by Amy Hatvany (spotlight)

It Happens All the TimeIt Happens All the Time
written by Amy Hatvany
published by Atria Books, 2017

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

About the book – from Goodreads: From master storyteller Amy Hatvany—whose writing has been hailed as “gripping and emotionally honest” (Stephanie Evanovich, New York Times betselling author)—comes a provocative and compelling novel about two friends whose lives are changed by a drunken kiss.

I want to rewind the clock, take back the night when the world shattered. I want to erase everything that went wrong.

Amber Bryant and Tyler Hicks have been best friends since they were teenagers—trusting and depending on each other through some of the darkest periods of their young lives. And while Amber has always felt that their relationship is strictly platonic, Tyler has long harbored the secret desire that they might one day become more than friends.

Returning home for the summer after her college graduation, Amber begins spending more time with Tyler than she has in years. Despite the fact that Amber is engaged to her college sweetheart, a flirtation begins to grow between them. One night, fueled by alcohol and concerns about whether she’s getting married too young, Amber kisses Tyler.

What happens next will change them forever.

In alternating points of view, It Happens All the Time examines the complexity of sexual dynamics between men and women and offers an incisive exploration of gender roles, expectations, and the ever-timely issue of consent.

Amy HatvanyAbout the author: Amy Hatvany was born in Seattle, WA in 1972, the youngest of three children. She graduated from Western Washington University in 1994 with a degree in Sociology only to discover most sociologists are unemployed. Soon followed a variety of jobs – some of which she loved, like decorating wedding cakes; others which she merely tolerated, like receptionist. In 1998, Amy finally decided to sell her car, quit her job, and take a chance on writing books.

The literary gods took kindly to her aspirations and THE KIND OF LOVE THAT SAVES YOU was published in 2000 by Bantam Doubleday. THE LANGUAGE OF SISTERS was picked up by NAL in 2002. (Both titles published under “Yurk.”)

Amy spends most of her time today with her second and final husband, Stephan. (Seriously, if this one doesn’t work out, she’s done.) She stays busy with her two children, Scarlett and Miles, and her “bonus child,” Anna. Their blended family also includes two four-legged hairy children, commonly known as Black Lab mutts, Kenda and Dolcé. When Amy’s not with friends or family, she is most likely reading, cooking or zoning out on certain reality television shows. Top Chef is a current favorite. She eagerly awaits auditions for the cast of “Top Author.” (“Quick Edit” instead of “Quick Fire” Challenge? C’mon, producers! That’s gripping television!)

Find Ms. Hatvany here: web, FacebookTwitter, Goodreads

 

 

Happy 2

 

Winter Reading Challenge: Drop In by Sara Harvey Yao (spotlight)

 

 

Drop in: Lead with Clarity, Connection, and CourageDrop In
written by Sara Harvey Yao
published by She Writes Press, 2016

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

About the book – from Goodreads: In a society that deeply values productivity, speed, and external rewards, we often find ourselves with less of what we really long for: space, clarity, connection with others, and a sense of well-being. Our attempts to improve our lives and bottom lines by adding more to our calendars, expanding our to-do lists, and constantly being plugged in to technology is backfiring. Instead of getting more done, our minds are spinning, leaving us stressed, disconnected, and unable to focus.

Drop In challenges our assumptions about the effectiveness of our busy lives and offers a compelling alternative approach to success by inviting people to learn how to drop in to the present moment. Deepening our awareness of the present moment, asserts Sara Harvey Yao, is the most efficient and sustainable way to navigate the complexities of work and life and to access our clarity, connection, and courage so we can lead more powerfully. Full of practical tools, Drop In will help busy professionals get out of the spin cycle of their minds and tune in to their already-existing wisdom and clarity”

 

 

Sara Harvey Yao

About the author: Sara Harvey Yao is the founder of Yao Consulting Group and has personally developed more than 4,000 leaders across the globe and specializes in the area of executive leadership and presence. Sara’s skills are favored by countless executives from leading companies – among them Microsoft, Brooks Athletics and Coinstar. Whether working one-on-one with clients, as a team facilitator or as an inspiring speaker, Sara is deeply committed to guiding clients to deeper awareness and clarity about unconscious behaviors, ego tactics and communication styles that hamper aware leadership.

Sara’s Background and Education: In 2002, Sara left her decade-long career as a Leadership Development Director for several technology and communications firms. During her role as an internal consultant and coach, she earned her frequent flyer gold status on dozens of trips to work with leaders in places as far-flung as London, Lubbock, Seoul and St. Paul. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Communications and a master’s degree in Organizational Management.

Find Ms. Yao here: webFacebook, Twitter

 

 

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My Favorite . . . Bookstore — March 15, 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: Bookstore

 

I love all bookstores. But I would have to say my favorite is Barnes & Noble. I love it when I get to go and look around. My kids love it, too!

 

Any of them. All of them, but especially the little ones that sell old, used books; they smell like heaven!

 

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop – 2017

 

Welcome to my stop on the Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop hosted by BookHounds!

 

I am giving away a $15 gift card to Amazon or Barnes & Noble or $15 in books from the Book Depository.

 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Be sure to check out the other giveaways on the hop!



 

Boost It Tuesday! – March 14, 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
 

Happy 2
 

 

Jaclyn’s Review: What’s Left of Us by Amanda Maxlyn

What's Left of Us (What's Left of Me, #2)What’s Left of Us
written by Amanda Maxlyn
published by Amanda Maxlyn, LLC, 2014

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & NobleAmazon, iBooksBook Depository, Goodreads

Did I enjoy this book: Yes! This one was another good read! I like the idea of following up on characters after the end of a story I enjoy, so I’m a big fan of sequels. This one definitely delivered. This book kept things (mostly) light and happy, with enough drama to keep the story moving forward. It became a little predictable–around the middle of the book, you could tell how it was going to end. This book is also just as steamy as the first book–whew!

You can read my review of the first book, What’s Left of Me, here.

 

Would I recommend it: Absolutely. This was a quick and easy read. Like the first book, this leaves you feeling connected to the characters and happy at the end. Sometimes it’s nice to read a book that doesn’t make you think too hard and just lets you happily escape into someone else’s world–this is that book.

 

jaclyn

 

About the book – from Goodreads:

The heartwarming conclusion to What’s Left of Me.

Love found me three years ago.

I’m cancer free, happily married to the love of my life, and working toward my dream career.

Our life is complete. Perfect, really.

Or is it?

I’ve always wanted a family of my own, but never dreamed I could have one. Now Parker’s ready to make my dream our reality.

But sometimes our dreams are haunted by our deepest fears. Fears of failure, having a child, and in our case … death. How do I help the person I love get over his fear when I’m still trying to overcome that same fear myself?

Together we must learn What’s Left of Us.

 

Happy 2

Jaclyn’s Review: The Next by Stephanie Gangi

The Next 
written by Stephanie Gangi
published by St. Martin’s Press, 2016

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

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

Did I enjoy this book: 
This one is tough. I love the plot of this book–I love the idea of it. The first 1/3 of this book was written SO WELL. This book frequently switches voices/perspectives, so you’ll see the same scene played out through the eyes of different characters. I love this approach to writing. This was especially great at the beginning of this book, since Joanna is dying of cancer and doesn’t speak–you get her inner monologue as well as the external view of the situation from her daughters.

 Unfortunately, the writing really dragged down the plot of the story for the rest of the book. Once Joanna dies, you get her perspective as a ghost (not a spoiler, since this book is described as a “ghost story”). The writer spends so much time describing mundane details and, essentially, whining through Joanna’s voice–the book just gets difficult to read. The plot is still good, and I think it was a good decision to keep part of it told through Joanna’s voice–it just wasn’t executed well.

 

All in all, this book was OK. I wanted to like it more than I did.

 

Would I recommend it: I struggled with this, but I would not recommend this book. I would return to this book night after night, but not to find out what happens next–only to get to the end.

 

jaclyn

About the book – from Goodreads: Is there a right way to die? If so, Joanna DeAngelis has it all wrong. She’s consumed by betrayal, spending her numbered days obsessing over Ned McGowan, her much younger ex, and watching him thrive in the spotlight with someone new, while she wastes away. She’s every woman scorned, fantasizing about revenge … except she’s out of time.

Joanna falls from her life, from the love of her daughters and devoted dog, into an otherworldly landscape, a bleak infinity she can’t escape until she rises up and returns and sets it right―makes Ned pay―so she can truly move on.

From the other side into right this minute, Jo embarks on a sexy, spiritual odyssey. As she travels beyond memory, beyond desire, she is transformed into a fierce female force of life, determined to know how to die, happily ever after.

 

Happy 2

EFC Promotions Blog Tour Wrap-Up: The Wolf Mirror by Caroline Healy

 

The Wolf MirrorThe Wolf Mirror
written by Caroline Healy
expected publication February 2017

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

 

About the book – from Goodreads: Changing places doesn’t always help you see things differently.

Cassie throws the first punch in a brawl at Winchester Abbey Girl’s School. Her subsequent suspension is a glitch in Cassie’s master plan; Finish School/Get Job/Leave Home (and never come back). As punishment her mother banishes her to Ludlow Park, their creepy ancestral home. In the dark of a stormy night Cassie finds herself transported to 1714, the beginning of the Georgian period.

With the help of a lady’s maid and an obnoxious gentleman, Mr Charles Stafford, Cassie must unravel the mysterious illness afflicting Lord Miller. If Lord Miller kicks the bucket the house goes to Reginald Huxley, the brainless cousin from London.

Cassie’s task is to figure out who is poisoning the Lord of Ludlow without exposing herself to the ridicule of her peers, getting herself committed to the asylum or worse, married off to the first man who will have her.

Cassie must learn to hold her tongue, keep her pride in check and reign in her rebellious nature – because the fate of her entire family, for generations, rests on her shoulders.

Meanwhile, Lady Cassandra Miller frantically searches for her smelling salts or her trusted governess Miss. Blythe, whose soothing advice she would dearly love. Instead Cassandra finds some woman and a boy squatting in the Ludlow mansion; her father, her lady’s maid and all the servants have magically disappeared.

Tell-a-vision, the In-her-net, horseless carriages and women wearing pantaloons; Cassandra is afraid that she might have inhaled fowl air causing her to temporarily lose her senses.

Only when both girls can get over their pride, societal prejudices and self-importance will they be able to return to their rightful century. Until then, they are free to wreak maximum damage on their respective centuries.

 

 

About the author: Caroline Healy is a writer and community arts facilitator. She recently completed her M.A. in Creative Writing at the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queen’s University. She alternates her time between procrastination and making art.

In 2012 her award winning short story collection A Stitch in Time was published by Doire Press. Fiction and commentary has been featured in publications across Ireland, the U.K. and more recently in the U.S. Caroline’s work can be found in journals such as Wordlegs,The BohemythShort Story IrelandShort Stop U.K., Five Stop StoryProle, Literary Orphans and the Irish Writers’ Centre Lonely Voice

Her debut Y.A. novel, Blood Entwines was published by Bloomsbury Spark in August 2014 and she is in the process of writing the second book in the series, Blood Betrayal, as well as a short story collection, The House of Water.

She has a fondness for dark chocolate, cups of tea and winter woollies.

(More details can be found on her website www.carolinehealy.com)

Find Ms. Healy here: Web, FacebookTwitterGoodreadsInstagramPinterest

 

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

 

Tour Stops

Feb 13: EFC Kickoff (review)

A Good Book Can Change Your View For Life (spotlight, interview)

Feb 14: The Desert Bibliophile (review)

Feb 16: Maureen’s Books (review)

Rainy Thursdays (review)

Feb 17: Glorious Panic (review)

Feb 18: CBY (spotlight)

Sip, Read, Love (review)

Feb 19: Bound4Escape (review)

Feb 20: Second Run Reviews (guest post)

 Daughter of Moonlight (review)

Feb 21: Romantic Escapes (review)

Feb 22: A Page to Turn (review)

Feb 23: Zerina Blossom’s Books (review)

Writing Pearls (spotlight)

Feb 24: Underneath the Covers (spotlight)

Feb 25: The Pages In-Between (review)

March 7: Yetstillshereads book blog (review)

 

Congratulations to at Heather at Romantic Escapes for winning our Host Incentive Reward!

 

 

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Happy 2

 

My Favorite . . . City — March 8, 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: CITY

 

Duck, North Carolina, is my favorite place to vacation. But I’m from the Pittsburgh area, and Pittsburgh is also my favorite city!

 

 

Outer Banks, North Carolina. I like vacations.

 

 

Melissa’s Review: Caught Between Two Curses by Margo L. Dill

Caught Between Two Curses
written by Margo L. Dill
published by Rocking Horse Publishing, 2014

find it here: (affiliate links) AmazonBook Depository, Goodreads

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

Did I enjoy this book: 
I’ll be honest with you: If I’d have seen the cover of this book before I started reading, I’d have given it a pass. I know, I know, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but yeesh. So yeah. It’s . . . cute, I guess. Utterly predictable but fun. Maybe I’d have enjoyed it more if I was a baseball fan.

 

Would I recommend it: Not really.

 

 

Melissa

 

About the book – from Goodreads: Seventeen-year-old Julie Nigelson is cursed. So is her entire family. And it’s not just any-old-regular curse, either-it’s strangely connected to the famous “Curse of the Billy Goat” on the Chicago Cubs. Julie must figure out this mystery while her uncle lies in a coma and her entire love life is in ruins: her boyfriend Gus is pressuring her to have sex, while her best friend Matt is growing more attractive to her all the time. Somehow, Julie must figure out how to save her uncle, her family’s future, and her own love life-and time is running out!

 

Happy 2