Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Review Catch Up Marathon!: The Legacy by Michael Phillips

Bethany House; 464 pages; $15.99; Amazon

Since I'm up late at night drinking a cup of coffee, I decided to write my review for The Legacy by Michael Phillips, which is the third novel in the Secrets of the Shetlands series.  I had read this last year, but never got around to writing the review for it; so here I am finally writing my thoughts about it.

The Legacy continues the story of Loni Ford, a woman from Washington, D.C., who believes she has inherited some property from a long-distant relative in the Shetland Islands. However, upon arriving she learns she's inherited the entire island of Whales Reef!

Let's just say that the locals don't care much for her, as they would have preferred the island to be left in the hands of David Tulloch. To make a long story short, David and Loni fell in love towards the end of the second book, The Cottage. While the characters are front and center in The Legacy, there's another love story here; one that involves Lori's great-grandparents, Brogan Tulloch and Emily Hanson.

Final Thoughts

Sheena: Queen of the Jungle Collection DVD Review

PG; 29 hours 25 minutes; $14.98

I think I need to have my head examined, as I could of sworn that I had already written a review for Sheena: Queen of the Jungle Collection DVD set, but to my own dismay, I was completely wrong.

Anyway, the Sheena: Queen of the Jungle Collection DVD set was released to DVD last fall by Mill Creek Entertainment. The six disc set features the 1984 feature film Sheena and all 35 episodes from the 2000-2002 series. As added bonus, there are five episodes from the 1955-1956 series Sheena: Queen of the Jungle.

Created by Will Eisner and Jerry Iger, Sheena first debuted as a comic book character in by Fiction House during the late 1930s. The character was basically the female version of Tarzan. Sheena was forced to grow up in the African jungle after her parents were killed. she has the ability to communicate with animals, and spends most her time saving the jungle from bad guys.

Sheena was turned into a short-lived television series starring model Irish McCalla, which wasn't well received by critics or viewers. Sheena wouldn't get a feature film movie until 1984's Sheena, which was directed by John Guillermin and starred Tanya Roberts as the queen of the jungle. Despite a decent budget, the film was held down by a campy, uneven script. Upon it's release, it became a critical and box-office flop. It was even nominated for five Golden Raspberry Awards! However, like most films from the 1980s, Sheena has found a cult following over the years.

Sheena was revived as a television series in 2000 starring Gena Lee Nolin, but thanks to cheap special effects, bad scripts, and wooden acting, the series only lasted two seasons.

Final Thoughts

Monday, 29 January 2018

Interview & Giveaway with Dani Harper

Now available to purchase on Amazon from Montlake Romance is Storm Crossed, book 4 in the Grimm Series, by Dani Harper.

What's your writing routine? Do you write in the mornings, nights, daily, or when the mood strikes you?

Mornings are often the best, right around 5:30 or 6. I can write for a long stretch then. I think it’s because my brain is awake (yes, I’m one of those annoying “morning people” – providing there’s COFFEE!). The rest of the day, writing has to compete with daily life. Lately, my brain has been getting a “second wind” for a writing stretch at around 8:00 at night, and my hubs kindly puts on earphones to listen to the TV so I can have some quiet time.

When I’m not writing, however, I’m always, always, ALWAYS thinking about the story.

What’s the most difficult thing about writing for you?

Physically, it’s making sure that I get up from the laptop regularly and move around! Luckily I have a flock of chickens that get me outdoors a few times a day. I also spend time daily on my exercise bike – I look forward to it because I allow myself to read my favorite novels there! Needless to say, I often end up biking much longer than planned…

As far as the actual writing goes, the trouble starts when the characters abandon the storyline I’d so carefully planned, and head off in another direction. I often feel like I’m running after them, yelling “Wait, I thought we were going to do (fill in the blank)” or “Hey, you can’t do that!” Sometimes I end up written into a corner for a while… It all works out in the end, thank goodness, as soon as I stop struggling and really listen to my characters. They often take the story to places I hadn’t even imagined. They surprise me, and the story is better for it.

What’s your favorite non-essential item on your desk?

I’ve always loved things that make me smile – stuffed chickens, ceramic gnomes, space aliens, rubber brains, etc. But ever since I started the Grim series, I’ve noticed more metaphysical and fantasy items have made a home for themselves on my desk: crystals and rocks, decks of tarot cards, a tiny statue of a mechanical dragon. My absolute FAVORITE is a small figurine of a winged black horse (see the photo!). My sister found it when we were shopping together, and it reminded me SO much of something that one of my characters would ride in the Wild Hunt. My imagination starts revving every time I see it!

Which one character out of all your books was your favorite to write about?

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Review Catch Up Marathon!: The Cottage by Michael Phillips

Bethany House; 416 pages; $14.99; Amazon

After a week of dealing with a sore throat and the flu, I'm continuing my quest of finishing all my need-to-be read books. The good news is that I have reread all of those books this month, but now I need to write all the reviews for them.

Up first is my review for The Cottage, book two in the Secrets of the Shetlands series, by Michael Phillips. Some of you might recall me reviewing the first book in the series, The Inheritance, a few years ago. You can read my review for it here.

The Cottage centers on Loni Ford, a woman who has inherited some property from a distant ancestor that's located in the Shetland Islands. Her intentions is to sell the property as quickly as possible, but she changes her mind once she laid eyes on "the Cottage." Plus, she finds out that she has inherited the entire island of Whales Reef.

The locals aren't thrilled that an American woman is heir to "the Cottage." They all believe that David Tulloch is rightful heir to the estate. Her decision to stay upsets a local fisherman named Hardy Tulloch (David's cousin), who wants to claim the island for himself, as he has a few oil investors interested in the land.

Final Thoughts

Saturday, 27 January 2018

Cute & Simple Valentine's Day Gift Ideas!

Believe it or not! Valentine's Day is only a few weeks away. If your on a budget, then you probably can't afford to give your loved ones diamonds and roses. This year, I've teamed up with Oriental Trading to provide you with a few Cute & Simple Valentine's Day Gift Ideas that are very affordable. All the products featured in this post can be purchased on the Oriental Trading's 2018 Valentine's Day Party Supply landing page.

Notebooks, Bookmarks, & Pencils!

Many people, young and old, love to write in journals and diaries. I recommend giving them the Fuzzy Valentine Notepads (retails for $14.99, but it's currently on sale for $11.98). The 5 3/4" x 8 1/4" notepads have 30 blank pages. The cover is made out of a fuzzy material. One package comes with 6 notepads; three notepads have hearts on the cover and the other three have a swirl design.

If you're going to give a journal as as gift, then I recommending getting some writing utensils to go with it. Oriental Trading has gobs of pencils and pens to choose from, but for this post I went with the Valentine Monster Pencils (retails for $4.49), which comes in a package of 24 pencils. Each pencil has a cute little monster on it along with a heart-shaped saying, such as "Eye Like You."

You might need to mark what page you're on in your journal, so I'm recommending giving a bookmark along with the notepads and pencils. As you can see in the photo above, I picked out the Peanuts Valentine Bookmarks (retails for $4.29), which comes in a package of 24 bookmarks, featuring either Snoopy, Charlie Brown, or Lucy.  There are five different sayings, "Be a Friend," "Be Sweet," "Be Mine," "Be Kind,"Be My Valentine," or "Be Huggy." The back of the bookmarks have a "To:" and "From:" spots.

Chocolate Roses

If you can't afford to give roses as a Valentine's gift, then your next logical step is to give a box of candy. Or you could give a mixture of both.

Pictured above are the Red Foil-Wrapped Chocolate Candy Roses (retails for $11.99, but is on sale for $8.98 per dozen). Each rose has a 14" plastic stem with leaves and a 2" chocolate rose that is wrapped in red foil. The chocolate rose is hollow and has a nice rich flavor.

Bears & Pillows

Besides candy and roses, one of the most popular Valentine's gift is a teddy bear. Prices and sizes of teddy bears vary, some are expensive and others are affordable. Oriental Trading has a cute 15" Valentine Stuffed Polar Bear that's currently on sale for $4.78. The white fluffy bear is wearing a bow-tie and is holding a red heart that says,"I love you."

Then there's the Red Heart Chenille Pillow (retails for $11.99) that would make a great gift. It measures 14"L x 14"W and features a chenille front and felt backing.


Friday, 26 January 2018

Book Blogger Hop: January 26th - February 1st

Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews.

Do you ever go back to older posts and change things?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

My Answer:

Once in a great while I will go back and make a few changes on older posts.

Linky List:

Thursday, 25 January 2018

The Deuce: The Complete First Season Digital HD Review

Now available on Digital HD from HBO Home Entertainment is the 1970s drama The Deuce: The Complete First Season, featuring all 8 episodes. Created by George Pelecanos and David Simon, the series stars James Franco, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Chris Bauer, Gary Carr, Chris Coy, Dominique Fishback, Lawrence Gilliard Jr., Margarita Levieva, Emily Meade, Natalie Paul, and Michael Rispoli. It will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on February 13, 2018.

Set in New York City during the early 1970s, the series centers on a variety of characters that get caught up in the gritty world of sex, crime, and the rising porn industry.

James Fransco plays dual roles as Vincent and Frankie Martino, twin brothers from Brooklyn, who end up working as fronts for the mob. The series focuses on multiple characters, such as prostitutes Eileen "Candy" Merrell (played by Maggie Gyllenhaal) and Lori (played by Emily Meade), the Martino's brother-in-law Bobby Dwyer (played by Chris Bauer), and an ex-college student turned waitress Abigail "Abby" Parker (played by Margarita Levieva). 

Digital HD special features include:
  • The Deuce in Focus- Delve inside The Deuce with Michelle MacLaren, James Franco and Roxann Dawson as they talk about bringing the show to life.
  • The Wild West: New York in the Early '70s- Head back in time in this featurette that focuses on the frontier of the pornography business--New York City in the early 1970s--with the cast and crew of The Deuce. Creators David Simon and George Pelecanos plus James Franco and his co-stars open up about this unique period in NYC history as porn moved from the street to the mainstream screen.

Final Thoughts

Woody Woodpecker DVD Giveaway

Arriving on DVD, Digital, and On Demand from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment is the family comedy WOODY WOODPECKER.

Directed by Alex Zamm (Inspector Gadget 2, The Little Rascals Save the Day), Woody Woodpecker stars Timothy Omundson (“Psych”), Thaila Ayala (“Rio Heat”), Graham Verchere (“Fargo”) Jordana Largy (Monster Trucks) and Eric Bauza (The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water), as the voice of Woody. The Woody Woodpecker DVD and digital features deleted scenes and an exclusive inside look at the making of the film as well as the evolution of Woody’s iconic cartoon character.

DVD Special Features include:
  • Guess Who? The Evolution of WoodyWoody Woodpecker is one of the world’s most iconic animated characters. In this featurette, we explore how Woody’s look and personality have changed since his introduction in 1940. 
  • The Making of Woody Woodpecker – Filmmakers and cast discuss why this version of the Woody character is so appealing and how his brand of physical humor translates across audiences. 
  • Working with Woody Filmmakers, cast and crew reveal the specific challenges of filming a movie whose main character is CGI.

Giveaway Details

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Review - Vegan Dessert Recipes

I'm not a vegan my any means and I have no plans on to become one. However, I've put myself on a diet, where I'm trying to stay stay away from sugars as much as I can.

The week I've been reading the two Vegan Dessert Recipes eBooks. The cookbooks are titled: Chocolate Vegan Recipes and Ice Cream Vegan Recipes; both written by Sam Kuma. The cookbooks are available to download in a box set (2 Books in 1 with Free Gift; 150+ Recipes Included) on Amazon for $4.99.

Come on! Who doesn't like ice cream? I love it, but I don't like to eat it very often because all the sugar that's in it. I've tried the sugar-free ones, but they always make me sick after eating it. 

There's many different kinds of ice creams, sundae sauces, and slushes in the Ice Cream Vegan Recipes. I only had time to test out one recipe and it's called "Soy Pumpkin Ice Cream." There's a little bit of creamer and brown sugar in it! So there goes my sugar-free diet! But it tastes wonderful. It does contain 2 cups of pumpkin puree! Which I do love!

The Chocolate Vegan Recipes cookbook has about every chocolate dessert recipe imaginable, but with a vegan twist. I have had time to try out several of these, including the rich flavored Chocolate Chia Smoothie Pudding, Chocolate Hazelnuts Spread (no added sugar, besides from maple syrup), and Pumpkin Chocolate Loaf (It has a little bit of coffee in it!). 

Final Thoughts

Q&A with Jonathan Doyle, author of The Last Line Of A Goat Song

Now available to buy on Amazon, BN, Kobo, iBooks, and Goodreads from Wild Thorn Publishing is the is the action-adventure The Last Line Of A Goat Story by Jonathan Doyle.

The author has taken a few minutes out of his busy schedule for a Q&A about his book.

Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Storyteller: When did you become interested in storytelling?

Jon Doyle: When I was about seven, my family’s TV set broke and we couldn’t afford to buy a new one. So my Mom would read to us every night from Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books. I fell in love. Soon after, I wrote my first story about a lonely tiger, roaming around Africa, looking for his long lost family. Sure, I got the continent wrong, but a writer was born!

RCAS: What was your first book/story published?

JD: This one. I’ve never tried to get any other book or poem or short story sold. Though I do have a self-published novel floating out there in the ether.

RCAS: What inspired you to write The Last Line of Goat Song?

JD: My book is about a stutterer rendered mute. I had a terrible childhood stutter when I was a kid and wanted to write about that experience which so influenced my life. I don’t think many realize how difficult it is to navigate through life without having fluency. This novel also deals with illegal immigration. I worked in bars and restaurants for years, so I know many “illegals”. I refuse to equate that with “alien”. These are people and I wanted to show that Maggie, my lead, is complex and flawed and wonderful and deserves respect.

RCAS: What character in The Last Line of Goat Song is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

JD: William is the most like me. Obviously, because of our stutter, but also our reclusive inquisitiveness. Who’s least like me? Probably Anna. She’s a go-getter, a bit of a game player. She holds grudges. I love Anna as a character, but we’re not built the same!

RCAS: What is your favorite part in The Last Line of Goat Song?

Interview with Aletta Thorne, author of The Chef and The Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins

Now available on Evernight Publishing is the paranormal romance The Chef and The Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins by Aletta Thorne.

The author has taken a few minutes out of her busy schedule to talk about her new book.

When did you become interested in storytelling?

I honestly can’t remember. I started writing stories as a little girl. Then, when I was in my teens and undergrad college, I switched over to writing poems and feature journalism, and wrote in both those genres for years. About five years ago, I started thinking about writing book-length fiction. 
What was your first book/story published? 

I published poems from the time I was in my early twenties—and I sold stories about food and music to newspapers then, too. Then I taught and cooked. The Chef and the Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins is my first grownup romance. Only took me forty years to get there!

What inspired you to write The Chef and the Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins?

I like ghosts! My house has been investigated for them, and we have two. And my husband and I have experienced ghosts in places we’ve traveled. The woman who did the investigation in our house, Linda Zimmerman (who writes on the subject), says that ghosts know when they have friends among the living. The Chef and The Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins just takes that thought to the next level!

What character in The Chef and The Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins is the most/least like you, and in what ways? 

Alma, the protagonist, is a chef—and I was one too, back in the 80’s, when the book is set. She’s a lot gutsier than I was then, and a lot tougher. She has some of my insecurities, but not about what she looks like, which was something I struggled with back then. Which, of course, was silly. I looked fine.

What is your favorite part in The Chef And The Ghost of Bartholomew Addison Jenkins?

I like the funny parts, and there are lots of them. There’s a lot of kitchen humor: raccoons in the bread order, a wire scrubber hidden in my main character’s bra! I like the ending a lot. There are a lot of twists at the end of the book, and knitting everything together was very satisfying to me as I wrote the last couple of chapters. 

What was the hardest part to write?

I hadn’t written adult romance before—I have a bunch of YA out under another name—and while I loved the freedom to write sex scenes, I am grateful for my anatomy-specific editor! (Managed to shock my husband with that part of the book when it was all done, I did!)

What would your ideal career be, if you couldn't be an author?

Monday, 22 January 2018

Book Tour & Giveaway: Escape Claws

Escape Claws
A Cat Lady Mystery
by Linda Reilly
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Pages: 204

Here, killer, killer, killer . . .

For the first time in sixteen years, Lara Caphart has returned to her hometown of Whisker Jog, New Hampshire. She wants to reconnect with her estranged Aunt Fran, who’s having some difficulty looking after herself—and her eleven cats. Taking care of a clowder of kitties is easy, but keeping Fran from being harassed by local bully Theo Barnes is hard. The wealthy builder has his sights set on Fran’s property, and is determined to make her an offer she doesn’t dare refuse.

Then Lara spots a blue-eyed ragdoll cat that she swears is the reincarnation of her beloved Blue, her childhood pet. Pursuing the feline to the edge of Fran’s yard, she stumbles upon the body of Theo Barnes, clearly a victim of foul play. To get her and Fran off the suspect list, Lara finds herself following the cat’s clues in search of a killer. Is Blue’s ghost really trying to help her solve a murder, or has Lara inhaled too much catnip?

Friday, 19 January 2018

Book Blogger Hop: January 19th - 25th

Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books.

When reading a mass paperback book, many people fold the cover back, as if they were reading a magazine. Doing this will eventually create creases in the spine. How do you feel about this common bookish habit?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

My Answer:

It doesn't bother me too much. I buy many used books that have creases down the spine. However, if I'm planning on giving away one of my reviews copies after I finish reading it, I always make sure to not to fold back the pages.

Linky List:

CacheAlaska Beanie Review

For those of you don't know, I actually have a YouTube Channel. Though I don't appear in the my videos very often, when I do, I normally wear a stocking cap or what some people refer to as a "beanie." My main reason for wearing it is because I don't like showing my bald head to entire world. Don't ask why it bothers me, as I don't have an answer for it.

Anyway, I recently received a cool new beanie from CacheAlaska, a family-owned company in Alaska. A cache is place to store supplies in Alaska that's out of reach from bears.

The beanie is available in three different colors: grey, black, and multicolor. I was sent the "grey" color, which is currently priced at $11.95 on Amazon. It's 100% acrylic.

Me wearing the beanie!

Final Thoughts

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Dating Websites That Appeal To Me!

Some of you might remember me writing a few posts about my interests in online dating. My depression had kicked in around Thanksgiving and got worse around Christmas, due mostly to the fact that I'm still single. Plus, I always feel a bit lonely around the holidays. A few of my followers were kind enough to leave some comments on my posts. One person mentioned that there should be a dating site for book lovers.

After doing an internet search, I learned that there is in fact a dating site for book lovers. I went ahead and compiled a list of dating sites that appeal to me.

Reading Passions

Yes, there's a dating site for readers! It's called Reading Passions. The site is 100% free. I haven't joined this site yet, but I'm considering it. From glancing at the website, it looks like it has groups, instant messaging, webcam video chat, and message forums.

As long as you're an adult, there's no age limit to join Reading Passions. This is somewhat of a surprise to me, as I did find similar sites that are aimed for older people. (If you're looking for older singles, try joining a Surrey dating site or a Leeds dating website.)

If you know me, then you would know that I love reading books! So, naturally, this is the one website that I'm most interested in joining.

Star Trek Dating

Believe it or not! There's two dating websites related to Star Trek. They're called Star Trek Dating and Trek Passions (similar to Reading Passions).

If you're not into Star Trek, then you're in luck. There's also a dating website called Whovian Love  (Doctor Who fans), Dating for Muggles (Harry Potter fans), BronyMate (My Little Pony Fans), and Mouse Mingle (Disney fans).

No matter what country you're from I'm sure there are many science fiction and fantasy fans looking for love. So if you live in another country, then there's a good chance there's a few geeky dating websites that will appeal to you, such as Nottinghamshire dating websites and Bristol dating sites.

Geeky Dating

Winter Reads: Long Black Veil

 Broadway Books; 308 pages; Amazon
Typically, I don't read a book right away after receiving a review copy, but that wasn't the case with Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan. The book arrived in the mail on Tuesday afternoon and I ended up reading several chapters that night. I had the story on my mind throughout that night, so I finished reading it yesterday morning.

Long Black Veil is a murder mystery thriller that spans over thirty-five-years. It all began in 1980 when six college friends (Jon Casey, Rachel Steinberg, Masie Lenfest, Tripper Pennypacker, Wailer Curtin, and Quentin Pheaney), a boy (Lenny Lenfest), and a college professor (Nathan Krystal) went inside the abandoned Eastern State Penitentiary in Pennsylvania in the middle of the night. They only wanted to take a look around the supposedly "haunted" prison, but they ended up staying the entire night, as someone traps them inside the place. Eight people went inside the prison, but only seven come out the next morning.

Thirty-five-years later, a body is found inside a prison cell's wall and the prime suspect is celebrity chef John Casey. As the media gets a hold of the story, the remaining survivors of the1980 incident come aware that one of their friends died that night. If Casey is innocent, then who is the murderer?

The answer to the truth might lie within Judith, a fifty-something journalist who knows a bit too much about what occurred that miserable summer night in 1980.

The paperback edition has a Reader's Guide and a few recipes in the back of the book.

Final Thoughts

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Interview with Christina Elliott, author of IN THE HEAT OF THE TROPICS

Now available Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and Kobo is the romantic novel In The Heat Of The Tropics by Christina Elliott.

Amid a sweltering Miami summer, a serial killer is haunting the city. Reporter Ingrid Sorenson is assigned the story and her primary source is brusque detective Rick Gonzalez. The pair clash, but sparks of passion ignite. They risk their jobs to give in to their desire, but mistrust of each other’s career motives wedges them apart. Then Ingrid gets a tip that leads her into the killer’s lair. She and Rick must choose between saving themselves or rescuing their love.

The author has taken a few minutes out her busy schedule to talk about her new book.

When did you become interested in storytelling?

When I was about five, I won a prize for “writing interesting stories.” I have no idea what I wrote at that early age. They must have been very simple stories with one-syllable words but they obviously impressed the teacher! I’ve always been a bookworm and that made me want to write books since I was little. In high school I discovered journalism and that became my career goal since it was about writing.

What was your first book/story published?

I had a short story published in my high school literary magazine when I was in 10th grade so I guess that was my first publication. Then there was a huge gap until about 2007 when I started writing creatively in earnest. I brushed off a bunch of dusty old short stories and submitted them to literary journals. The Internet made submissions much easier!

What inspired you to write In the Heat of the Tropics?

I love both gritty crime fiction and romances so to me romantic suspense is a great genre that combines both elements. I used to be a newspaper reporter in Miami so that was my obvious lead character, Ingrid, and knowing that reporters often clash with cops over big stories, that formed the basis for the romantic and thriller plot. It seemed a natural fit and I knew about both cops (having dated two of them!) and reporters.

What character in In the Heat of the Tropics is the most like you, and in what ways?

Ingrid, the lead character, is based on myself. She’s an intrepid reporter, heads off to follow a story wherever that may take her. She doesn’t get scared easily. She goes to interview prostitutes on the street by herself and follows a lead on the killer. I’ve done many such things myself. As a foreign correspondent, I was in a number of dangerous situations doing my job, although I didn’t realize they were potentially dangerous until I was in them or until afterward and I thought “what was I doing?!” It can be difficult for some to understand that mindset but many journalists have a strong sense of adventure, and that’s what drives Ingrid.

What is your favorite part in In the Heat of the Tropics?

Early date scenes are always fun because there’s a lot of quick, light banter in the dialogue, plus a lot of discovery about the characters. It’s flirtatious and fun, with a lot eyeing each other up and down in the heat of the initial attraction.

What was the hardest part to write?

Any action scene of violence is always the hardest to write for me. You have to choreograph the struggle, where various limbs are positioned, the feasibility of one character being able to do something against the other’s reactions. Not having done a lot of physical fighting I my life, I find these scenes tedious. Maybe I should take a boxing lesson or two!

What would your ideal career be, if you couldn't be an author?

I’d love to be a comedic actor. I took some acting classes some years ago and not only found them hugely therapeutic, but also that I have a knack for comedy. I find being zany and way out a huge release. It’s weird because I love reading, writing and watching drama, but when I act, it’s comedy all the way!

Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Review Catch Up Marathon!: To Follow Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino

Revell; 352 pages; $14.99; Amazon

I'd originally read To Follow Her Heart, book three in The Southold Chronicles, back in 2016, but like several other books, I never got around to writing the review for it. I reread the book right after I reread the second book in the series a few nights ago. I meant to have this review written & posted over the weekend, but I ended up binge watching Anne with an E on NETFLIX instead.

Set in 1664, To Follow Her Heart centers on Captain Jeremy Horton, who's ship goes down near the coast of Barbados. Everyone who knows him in Southold, Long Island, including his love Patience Terry, believes he died at sea. Unknowingly to them, Jeremy is the lone survivor of the shipwreck.

While his funeral services is being planned, Jeremy hops aboard a British warship, which has orders to attack New Amsterdam and claim it for the British Crown. Eventually, Jeremy returns to Southold, but the homecoming he had hope for doesn't exist.

Final Thoughts

Monday, 15 January 2018

Review - Self Love Yoga: 369 Days of Evolving with Radical Self Love

Now available on Amazon Kindle is Self Love Yoga: 369 Days of Evolving with Radical Self Love by Phoebe Del Mar!

Typically, I wouldn't even be interested in reading a book like this, but I'm trying to involve this year, so I thought I would give the book a chance.

Let me start out by saying this isn't a "Yoga" book. If you're looking to read a book about practicing Yoga or looking for new Yoga exercises, this isn't the book for you. Instead the book is about "radical self love"  or learning to love yourself.

In the book there are 369 affirmations, which you'll read one to yourself everyday, multiple times per day. These affirmations are all nice sayings that'll teach you to love yourself. Additionally, there are some days where there will be questions for you to answer about yourself.

For example, day one asks: "Am I being mindful of my thoughts? Am I being mindful of my actions? Am I being mindful of my emotions?"

Final Thoughts

Product Review: VIVE Leg Cast Protector

If you have ever tried to take a shower while you're wearing cast on your foot or leg, then you would know that it's a difficult thing to accomplish unless you have some sort of plastic wrapped around the cast to prevent it from getting wet.

Luckily, in today's day of age, you can purchase just about anything online, including arm and leg cast protectors.

Honestly, I didn't know such a thing existed until I heard about the VIVE Leg Cast Protector. I wished I had known about this protector last year when I twisted my ankle and had to wear a brace for most of the summer.

The protector is made from durable, composite material. Each seam was created to be tear-resistant and leakproof. It features a rubber diaphragm that will create a watertight leakproof seal around your leg. The seal will regain its shape after each use; meaning you can reuse the cast protector over and over and it'll still produce a watertight seal every time.

The Leg Cast Protector stretched out.

Picture of me wearing the leg cast protector on my right leg.
Final Thoughts

A Better Shelter, for a Better Living

In this age of ever increasing inflation smart decisions are required to save yourself from binging a hole in one’s pocket. A roof is a shelter. It encloses the house building an aura of protection and warmth. Roofs are the most essential components as they keep the harsh weather out and provide protection to you in all type of climates. The condition of a roof worsens over time, but it varies from roof to roof as different types of materials are used in the construction of any roof. The better the material used, the slower is the speed of degeneration and lesser is the environmental damage caused which may put one in need of a new roof.

While getting a roof repaired or while building an entire new roof it has to be kept in mind that roofs give a great outlook to the house and when seen from a distance a bad roof with broken debris visible may distort the opinion of passersby’s. A roof not inspected for a long time can prove to be hazardous in bad weather conditions. Best roofers with reviews Ann Arbor Michigan is a digital aid which can help one in knowing about the materials to be used while constructing a new roof and the contractors that can make your house better and long lasting. The materials to be used in the roofing must have qualities which can enable them to cope with the harsh environment.

Standards of good material

  • Durable
  • Cost effective
  • It should be degradable
  • Environment friendly materials should be used
  • Recyclable materials should be used
  • Should be leak proof

Construction with such materials can help build a long-lasting roof that will not worsen in a few years span. Use of cheap and non-durable materials might be light on your pocket, but it will burn a big hole in your pockets in years to come as you will be looking for new roofing shortly, as the inexpensive materials will not be able to withstand harsh environmental conditions. Hiring a professional that uses standardized material and is trained in roofing might be a little expensive than the cheapskates, but you won't have to worry about the roofing in a good few years as it will last a lot longer than expected. There is a wide range of outlook of roof to select from.

Types of materials for roofing

Sunday, 14 January 2018

An Apocalypse Guide For Book Lovers!

Do you know there are people who are actually preparing for the zombie apocalypse? And, no, I'm not referring to a viewing party for an episode of The Walking Dead. I'm referring to an actual zombie apocalypse!

I can understand preparing yourself for a natural disaster or some sort of emergency by stocking up on emergency survival food kits, bottle water, blankets, first aid kits, and many other useful things from My Patriot Supply. But come on! A zombie apocalypse! That's just a bit insane to me! And that's coming from a Walking Dead fan!

Anyway, the subject got me thinking about what items book lovers would stock up on in case of an emergency or an apocalypse. After a bit of brainstorming, I came with 5 things book lover's would want to have on hand in case of an emergency!


Yes, I'm well aware that coffee isn't exactly a book related item, but I always enjoy sipping on coffee while reading a good book, which is why it's on the top of this list.

If a natural disaster or an apocalypse has occurred, then mostly likely there will be no electricity. Unless you have a generator, then you'll have no use for an electric coffee maker. I recommend getting an old-fashioned kettle and a pour over coffee maker, as well stocking up on your favorite ground coffee brand. This way you can have a cup of coffee anytime you want; even when there are zombies walking among us!

A Book Light

While you should definitely have a flashlight nearby during an emergency, when it comes to reading, I would settle for a simple book light. Preferably a LED book light that has a long-lasting battery. It might be little, but it can give off plenty of light, so you can read a good book in the dark.


Get a good bookmark to mark where you're at in book. While I do like the paper kind, I recommend getting a metal bookmark that will clip onto the book pages. This way you won't have to worry about the bookmark falling out of your book while you're being chased by a herd of zombies.

Your Favorite Books

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Review Catch Up Marathon!: To Capture Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino

Revell; 352 pages; $14.99; Amazon

 To Capture Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarnio has been sitting my desk collecting dust for awhile now. I had originally read it back in 2016 and it's one of those books that I never got around to writing the review for it. In my quest to catch up on the needs-to-be-reviewed titles, I'm reading at least one book per day; sometimes even two.

This novel is book two in The Southold Chronicles series. Set in Southold, Long Island in 1653, it centers on Heather Flower, the princess of the Montaukett tribe. During her wedding feast, her tribe is attacked by a rival tribe, the groom is killed, and Heather is kidnapped!

Flower's kidnappers demand a ransom from her father, but they don't ever plan on returning her. Eventually, Flower is rescued by Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren, who brings her to the Hortons, an English family who are friends to her people. There she attempts to mourn her loss, but she's quickly torn between the affections from Dirk and Ben Horton.

Final Thoughts

Friday, 12 January 2018

Book Blogger Hop: January 12th - 18th

Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Billy @  Coffee Addicted Writer.


What upcoming titles are looking forward to reading in 2018?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

My Answer:

The 17th Suspect
by James Patterson  & Maxine Petro
Pub. Date: April 30th 
As You Wish 
by Jude Deverux 
Pub. Date: March 6th

The Road Home 
by Beverly Lewis 
Pub. Date: April 3rd

Linky List:

Review Catch Up Marathon!: Dark Deception by Nancy Mehl

Bethany House; 320 pages; $15.99; Amazon
It's been a busy 24 hours for me. I meant to have this review written and posted last night, but I ended watching the movie "The Foreigner" instead. Instead of procrastinating (again), here I am writing my review for the mystery-thriller Dark Deception by Nancy Mehl. It's the second book in the Defenders of Justice series. I had reviewed the first book, Fatal Frost, yesterday. You can read my review here!

Dark Deception centers a woman named Kate O'Brien, who has been living in Shelter Cove, Arkansas. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by a serial killer. Her sister was murdered, but she survived. The killer was caught, tried, and sentenced to prison. Kate's life has never been the same. Not only did she lost her sister, but she also had to leave behind her entire life and join the witness protection.

Suddenly new evidence comes forward that suggests the man who was sent to prison wasn't the real killer, which means Kate will have to come out of hiding and testify in court again.

Tony DeLuca is assigned to escort her back to St. Louis. He's the same deputy marshal who protected her during the original trial. Tony is excited about his new assignment, as he has romantic feelings for Kate. Of course this is supposed to be a thriller, so there isn't too much time for romance, as he must protect Kate from an unexpected threat.

Final Thoughts