Category: book tour

The Way to Remember Book Review

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Set in New England at the time of the American Bicentennial, The Way to Remember is the poignant story of a displaced young woman struggling to figure out who she is within the context of her hometown and the carefully masked dysfunction of her family.

About The Way to Remember

Set in New England at the time of the American Bicentennial, The Way to Remember is the poignant story of a displaced young woman struggling to figure out who she is within the context of her hometown and the carefully masked dysfunction of her family.

“Everything can be fixed by writing a check.” Words to live by for Robin Fortune’s wealthy father, until he can’t buy her way back into college after she’s expelled for dealing pot. Now he chooses not to speak to her anymore, but that’s just one of the out-of-whack situations Robin’s facing. At nineteen, she feels rudderless, working in a diner by day and sleeping with a buddy from high school by night – all so strange for her because she was always the one with the plan. While her college friends plotted how to ensnare husbands, she plotted a novel, which she scratched out into a series of spiral-bound notebooks she hides in the closet. But now, there’s nothing. No vision, no future, no point. In fact, the only thing she feels she has to look forward to is that her favorite author, Maryana Capture, is paying a visit to the local Thousand Words bookstore. Robin surmises that if she can convince Maryana to help her get her novel published, she’ll finally get herself back on track. Except that life never takes a straight path in this intensely satisfying coming-of-age novel.

My Thoughts

Robin, who has led a very privileged life, is very much like any other young woman (and man) in their early adult years. She craves freedom, and not the type of freedom that sees her friends moving from their family home into marriage but the type of freedom that sees her on her own, independent and self-reliant. One bad decision (or multiple bad decisions but only caught once), sees her expelled from college despite her Father attempting to use his own influence and wealth to see her remain there.

She returns to her hometown a bit battered but fighting. I loved how she refuses to return to the family home (although she still has a bit of her Father’s help) and instead decides to work as a waitress to support herself. She does this while dreaming of one day being a successful author as she continues to work on her very first novel. What follows is a whirlwind of events and people entering her life – some of whom are helpful, some of whom take advantage of her youth and trusting nature and a slew of life lessons for Robin (and those around her).

I loved watching Robin develop during this story. She is very much your typical young adult who is incredibly trusting and kind. She makes rash decisions and puts her trust in her others, who do not always have her best interests at heart. It was the ultimate betrayal by someone she respected, that really helped Robin open her eyes to the world around her and force her to take a stand. Robin learns so much about life, judging others, relationships and independence in this novel.

The Way to Remember was an excellent novel from start to finish. I loved the tone, the way it was written and the well developed characters. You will love reading this novel cuddled up under the covers with a hot cup of coffee this fall.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4/5

About the Author

Martha Reynolds was raised in Rhode Island, spent a year of college in Switzerland, and is always planning a return visit. She completed an accomplished career as a fraud investigator and decided it was time to do something she really liked.

She now writes full-time and has set a personal goal of releasing a book a year until she dies. Her writing has appeared in Magnificat magazine and her very short poem was read by journalist Connie Schultz during NPR’s Tell Me More poetry challenge.

Her novel VILLA DEL SOL won the 2018 Book Award in Literary Fiction by the Independent Publishers of New England.

You can connect with her on her website, Twitter and Facebook.

The Giveaway!

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Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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The Moon is Missing Spotlight Tour

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From Jenni Ogden, author of multiple-award-winning A DROP IN THE OCEAN, comes a page-turning tale of family secrets and mother–daughter conflict set in London, New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, and on a remote and spectacular island off the coast of New Zealand.

About The Moon is Missing

A daughter who cries “Who am I?”
A mother who can’t tell her…
A hurricane called Katrina…
A family secret exposed…
An island at the bottom of the world.

From Jenni Ogden, author of multiple-award-winning A DROP IN THE OCEAN, comes a page-turning tale of family secrets and mother–daughter conflict set in London, New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, and on a remote and spectacular island off the coast of New Zealand.

Georgia Grayson has perfected the art of being two people: a neurosurgeon on track to becoming the first female Director of Neurosurgery at a large London hospital, and a wife and mother. Home is her haven where, with husband Adam’s support, she copes with her occasional anxiety attacks. That is until her daughter, 15-year-old Lara, demands to know more about Danny, her mysterious biological father from New Orleans who died before she was born. “Who was he? Why did he die? WHO AM I?” Trouble is, Georgia can’t tell her. As escalating panic attacks prevent her from operating, and therapy fails to bring back the memories she has repressed, fractures rip through her once happy family. Georgia sees only one way forward; to return to New Orleans where Danny first sang his way into her heart, and then to the rugged island where he fell to his death. Somehow she must uncover the truth Lara deserves, whatever the cost.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BAM and Indiebound.

You can purchase an audiobook on GooglePlay, Chirp, Scribd, Kobo, Walmart, hibooks, Audiobooks and Apple.

About the Author

Jenni Ogden and her husband live off-grid on spectacular Great Barrier Island, 100 kms off the coast of New Zealand, a perfect place to write and for grandchildren to spend their holidays. Winters are spent near a beach in Far North Tropical Queensland. Jenni’s debut novel, ‘A Drop in the Ocean’, won multiple awards and has sold over 80,000 copies. As a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist, she is well-known for her books featuring her patients’ moving stories:’Fractured Minds: A Case-Study Approach to Clinical Neuropsychology’, and ‘Trouble In Mind: Stories from a Neuropsychologist’s Casebook’. Please visit her author website, sign up for her e-newsletter, and friend and follow her everywhere.

You can connect with her on her website, Twitter and Facebook.

The Giveaway!

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Disclosure: This is a spotlight tour, I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

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These Nameless Things

Shawn Smucker is back with an unsettling story that asks us to consider two challenging questions: To what lengths will we go to assuage our own guilt? and Is there a limit to the things we will do for the people we love?

About These Nameless Things

Before Dan opened his door to find a wounded woman who had escaped from the tormentors in the mountain, his life had become rather quiet. He and the eight other people in the mostly abandoned town had become friends. They spent peaceful evenings around the campfire and even made vague plans to journey east one day and leave the ominous mountain behind.

But her arrival changes everything. 

Who is she? How does she know so much about Dan’s brother, who is still held captive in the mountain? Why are long-forgotten memories rising to the surface? And why does Dan feel so compelled to keep her presence in his house a secret?

My Thoughts

When I started reading These Nameless Things, I felt lost – what was the mountain? What had the members of this community endured? What and who would have tortured these people? And why?

The beginning of the story I found at times hard to follow as we are almost left in the dark (similar to how the characters appeared to be feeling). We are introduced to Dan who is living with other members of a community (for lack of better words) who have escaped something awful up in the mountains but what they experienced we do not quite find out – just that they endured torture and live in fear of returning. Dan is waiting for his brother to also find a way to escape the mountain and feels a tremendous amount of guilt that his brother is still in the mountain. All of the members of this community struggle with remembering their past and why they are waiting, but they know they must wait. Slowly, some of the members start to regain their memory and this is when I began to truly appreciate the story and how are characters are connected.

What follows is a slow unravelling of pain, guilt and the burden that these emotions carry in life. We learn how one bad decision caused a ripple affect in others lives and were torn apart. But we also see compassion, understanding and forgiveness. That sometimes we need to learn to forgive in order to move forward.

These Nameless Things is a powerful novel of pain, guilt and the power of forgiveness. Each character carried their own burden of pain, anger and guilt that centered around one awful decision. It is through forgiveness and compassion that they are able to move forward and release the pain of the past. This novel has an amazing plot, which was a bit harder to follow for the first bit but definitely worth it to keep reading and well developed characters. A definite must read novel!

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4/5

About the Author

Shawn Smucker is the award-winning author of Light from Distant Stars, the young adult novels The Day the Angels Fell and The Edge of Over There, and the memoir Once We Were Strangers. He lives with his wife and six children in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. You can find him online at www.shawnsmucker.com.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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A Mosaic of Wings

It’s 1885, and all Nora Shipley wants, now that she’s graduating from Cornell University as valedictorian of the entomology program, is to follow in her late father’s footsteps by getting her master’s degree and taking over the scientific journal he started.

About A Mosaic of Wings

It’s 1885, and all Nora Shipley wants, now that she’s graduating from Cornell University as valedictorian of the entomology program, is to follow in her late father’s footsteps by getting her master’s degree and taking over the scientific journal he started. The only way to uphold her father’s legacy is to win a scholarship, so she joins a research expedition in Kodaikanal, India, to prove herself in the field.

India isn’t what she expects, though, and neither is the rival classmate who accompanies her, Owen Epps. As her preconceptions of India–and of Owen–fall away, she finds both far more captivating than she expected. Forced by the expedition leader to stay at camp and illustrate exotic butterflies the men of the team find without her, Nora befriends Sita, a young Indian girl who has been dedicated to a goddess against her will.

In this spellbinding new land, Nora is soon faced with impossible choices–between saving Sita and saving her career, and between what she’s always thought she wanted and the man she’s come to love.

My Thoughts

I fell in love with the book cover and I couldn’t wait to start reading this novel – and it did not disappoint me at all. I could not put this novel down, and read it in one night (I drove my husband a bit crazy as he was trying so hard to sleep and I just couldn’t turn off the light and put the book down).

Nora is a strong, determined young woman who does not let society tell her what she can or cannot do. Her Father was an entomologist with his own journal, and she is determined to follow in his own steps. She has accomplished what so many other woman would love to do (or perhaps were too afraid to say they wanted to do) – earning an undergraduate degree and applying for her Masters in entomology. She is awarded a rare opportunity to prove herself on a research trip in India – where she is again confronted with male figures that did not believe in a female scientist.

What she doesn’t expect in these travels is to find love in a classmate who has always been her rival, a culture that is beautiful but with some beliefs that she just can’t stand by and let happen and an experience that opens her mind and heart to her future and what really matters in life.

Nora is just an amazing character – she is everything that you want to see in a novel. I loved how so many times throughout the novel she corrected her classmates about the difficulty of being a woman in the academic world (not to mention society in general during this time period). She is constantly having to prove herself, where a man could shrug and laugh off the same mistake. Women were supposed to get married, have children and take care of the house – their feelings and thoughts never really considered. Nora defied this at every turn – earning her degree, her spot on the research expedition and continuing her studies. She stood up for what she believed in, which many times got her in a lot of trouble but in her heart she knew that it was the right thing to do.

This was an incredible novel from start to finish, I enjoyed every moment and could not put it down. I loved the characters, the plot and the way the story was written (I have never read a story quite like this before!). It is a definite must read novel.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 5/5

About the Author

Kimberly Duffy is a Long Island native currently living in Southwest Ohio, via six months in India. When she’s not homeschooling her four kids, she writes historical fiction that takes her readers back in time and across oceans. She loves trips that require a passport, recipe books, and practicing kissing scenes with her husband of twenty years. He doesn’t mind. You can find Kimberly at www.kimberlyduffy.com.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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A Highlander is Coming to Town Book Review

The third book in the Highland, Georgia romantic comedy series from Laura Trentham, A Highlander is Coming to Town, full of love, laughs and highlanders!

About A Highlander is Coming to Town

Holt Pierson is dreading Christmas. His parents absconded to Florida for the season and left him to handle the family farm which will be his one day—whether he wants it or not. Driven by duty, Holt has always followed the path expected of him. But lately, he’s been questioning what he wants and where he belongs. Will assuming the responsibility of the Pierson farm make him happy or is there something—or someone—else out in the wider world calling to him?

To Claire Smythe, the Scottish lead singer of a touring band, Highland, Georgia, is the perfect place to hide . . .until a very handsome and deeply curious Holt begins to ask all the questions Claire doesn’t want to answer. As Holt draws Claire out from under and into the fabric of small-town life, can Claire put the past behind her and embrace the unexpected gifts of the season—including the new and lasting love?

My Thoughts

Claire has never felt that she belongs – not with her rich family, their rich friends, their business and how society expects her to behave. She loves performing but she is stuck at a point in her life where she is struggling with how she should move forward – does she carve her own future or does she cave and take her place in the family business. She finds her way to the small town of Highland, Georgia, a place where she can hide and attempt to work her way mentally and emotionally through her problems and what she really wants from her future.

Holt is the sweet, sexy guy next door that you just can’t help but love. He has struggled with his own past, a future that has been written in stone for him since birth but a future he fully embraces. He is lonely, he has some friends but being in charge of the farm takes up a lot of his time (especially given that his parents are always on the road). He has a chance encounter with Claire and this sends them both down a road that neither saw coming and neither is quite sure that they are ready for (love can be frightening!).

This is a light, fun read that makes it a perfect curl up on the couch with a cup of coffee and read (especially now with the change in weather!). It made me laugh and it made me want to shake Claire’s shoulders (how could she not see how perfect Holt was for her?). The novel is well written and keeps you on your toes, you are never quite sure what Claire will do. I loved watching our main characters grow in this novel – they are from perfect, they struggle and make bad decisions, but in the end can they find a way to make it work?

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4/5

About the Author

Laura Trentham is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance, including the Cottonbloom, Heart of a Hero, and Sweet Home Alabama series. She is a member of RWA, and has finaled multiple times in the Golden Heart competition. A chemical engineer by training and a lover of books by nature, she lives in South Carolina.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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