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Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Idea of Him by Holly Peterson

[ 11 ] April 15, 2014

IdeaOfHim-680x1024Please join Holly Peterson, author of The Idea of Him, as she tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Enter to win a copy of the book and a beautiful candle from Andrea Schroder below! Open to US residents only

Reviewed by Lindsay Yocum

Allie Crawford is a fantastic mother of two, a struggling writer and a highly respected public relations executive who has a seriously exhausting husband. She is all too often frustrated and exasperated, to say the least. And while her character was very relatable in some aspects, her blatant insecurities and blind eye made me cringe at times.

In this story we meet Allie’s over the top “high rolling” boss, Murray Hillsinger, who heavily relies on Allie’s way with words to get high profile clients and personalities to support his firm. We also get to know Allie’s magazine editor husband, Wade, (who is without a doubt the most self-centered, exhausting individual on the planet) and the elusive and gorgeous, Jackie Malone, who turns Allie’s world upside down after catching her in a not so innocent situation with her husband.

The story wavers back and forth between Allie coming to terms with a marriage that always seems to be on the cusp of breaking, and being oblivious to things happening right in front of her nose.

Even though I really enjoyed this book, there were parts and characters that didn’t seem to quite fit in it–at least to me. We learned of Allie’s childhood tragedy in the first chapter of this book and while that in itself was riveting, The Idea of Him candle2it didn’t make much sense to me to throw it in there. It was revisited a few times but only to bring in James, Allie’s childhood friend and “first love” who experienced the tragedy with her. James fit in the story because he acted as a muse for Allie during her screen writing class, where we met Tommy. Tommy and Allie’s relationship stifled me at times because it just didn’t seem realistic and was always going nowhere.

Allie always seemed to be at war with herself. She was so unforgiving of things she couldn’t change in her past, but was so forgiving towards the men in her life that continuously let her down. Her unlikely friendship with Jackie was a saving grace in this book because sometimes you wanted to reach inside the book to shake some sense into Allie. Jackie was able to maneuver Allie where she needed to be to open her eyes to the grim reality of her marriage, finances, and her job.

I honestly could not put this book down, or finish it fast enough. There was a lot going on in the book that made taking a break from it feel like torture. There were some definite shockers that happened – especially at the end – that I did not see coming at all. However, the ending of the book seemed forced and after enduring a roller coaster ride for most of the book, I was slightly disappointed. Overall though, it was a great read. It was gripping, at times intense, and always left you guessing. I’d highly recommend it. Holly Peterson did a wonderful job, and I look forward to reading more by her.

Visit Holly Peterson on Facebook and Twitter

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Lindsay Yocum resides in California with her 5 year old firecracker daughter, Bear, and her hilarious husband. She spends her free time traveling, baking, ruining DIY crafts she finds on Pinterest, and running, when she isn’t nose deep in a book.

Review and giveaway prizes were provided free of any obligation by William Morrow Paperbacks and Andrea Schroder. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

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Interview & Giveaway: Anne-Marie Casey, author of No One Could Have Guessed the Weather

[ 8 ] April 14, 2014

16158568Please welcome Anne-Marie Casey, author of No One Could Have Guessed the Weather!

Enter to win a copy below – open to US residents only

We asked Anne-Marie Casey: 

What was your favorite part of being a transplant in New York City? What did you like about it? What did you hate about it? 

This is what I love about New York City: in no particular order (although I find myself starting with food): breakfast at Balthazar, lunch at Momofuku, dinner at Bar Pitti or a splurge at Babbo; Chris Botti at the Blue Note over Christmas; the High Line; the Temple of Dendur at the Met; the Morgan Library; the Imagine Memorial in Central Park; the portraits by Whistler at the Frick; coffee at Abraço in the East Village; the Third Street Music School Settlement; the Lyceum Theatre. And the feeling you get walking uptown on a perfect spring morning, as the spire of the Empire State Building rises ahead of you, glinting in the sunlight as it scrapes the sky, and for one moment you are the star of your own Manhattan movie. 

I could not say I ‘hate’ anything about the city, it feels too strong a word, but it’s good to love it a lot on the days when the weather is dreadful (freezing in winter, boiling in summer), the noise is overwhelming, the rats are particularly active round the garbage, and you sit down and realize that the fifty dollar note you put in your pocket at 8am has been spent two hours later, and you can only remember buying a cup of coffee and a newspaper. 

How did your TV script-editing experience help you write this novel? 

I spent many so many years editing and writing episodes of TV shows that my default settings are all about story structure; character arcs, opening sequences, plot points, turning points etc. etc.. When I decided to try writing fiction, I forced myself to let all those rules go and just write, trusting that my sixth sense about plot and structure would kick in. It did and it didn’t, but I knew I needed to be very free and explore characters and storylines in ways that the ruthless pace of television (and often film) doesn’t allow. Often, my editor will give me notes that say “expand more here”, “don’t just trust to dialogue”, and at those points I see where I am writing like a screenwriter, not a novelist. In a TV show or a film, you know that the director and the actors will supply a layer of detail and nuance to your words.

Giveaway copy was provided free of any obligation by Berkley/NAL. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

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Giveaway: Blackwell’s Paradise by V.E. Ulett

[ 0 ] April 14, 2014

Blackwell's ParadiseBlackwell’s Paradise by V.E. Ulett

Publication Date: January 8, 2014

Old Salt Press LLC

Formats: Ebook, Paperback

Series: Blackwell’s Adventures, Volume II

Genre: Historical Adventure/Naval HF

Relive the pleasure of falling into the past with the author of Captain Blackwell’s Prize, in Volume II of Blackwell’s Adventures.

The repercussions of a court martial and the ill-will of powerful men at the Admiralty pursue Royal Navy captain James Blackwell into the Pacific, where danger lurks around every coral reef. Even if Captain Blackwell and Mercedes survive the venture into the world of early nineteenth century exploration, can they emerge unchanged with their love intact. The mission to the Great South Sea will test their loyalties and strength, and define the characters of Captain Blackwell and his lady in Blackwell’s Paradise.

Enter the Goodreads Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Blackwell's Paradise by V.E. Ulett

Blackwell’s Paradise

by V.E. Ulett

Giveaway ends April 30, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Praise for Blackwell’s Paradise

“Not for the faint hearted – Captain Blackwell pulls no punches! Prepare for a right roaring romp in the company of two of the most captivating characters in historical fiction.” – Alaric Bond, author of Turn A Blind Eye, and the Fighting Sail Series

Buy the Book

Amazon (eBook)

Amazon (Paperback)

Barnes & Noble (Nook)

Barnes & Noble (Paperback)

Book Depository

iTunes

About the AuthorVE Ulett

A long time resident of California, V.E. Ulett is an avid reader as well as writer of historical fiction.

Proud to be an Old Salt Press author, V.E. is also a member of the National Books Critics Circle and an active member and reviewer for the Historical Novel Society.

As the long war in Europe comes to its conclusion, so does Captain Blackwell’s career in the Royal Navy in BLACKWELLS’ HOMECOMING, a story of the dangers and rewards of desire.

Author Links

Website

Goodreads

Old Salt Press

Book Blast Schedule

April 1 Historical Tapestry

April 2 Broken Teepee

April 3 Confessions of an Avid Reader

April 4 The True Book Addict

April 7 Layered Pages

April 8 The Maiden’s Court

April 9 Passages the Past

April 10 Just One More Chapter

April 11 Closed the Cover

April 12 Words and Peace

April 14 Luxury Reading

April 15 To Read or Not to Read

April 16 Peeking Between the Pages

April 18 So Many Books, So Little Time

April 21 Flashlight Commentary

April 22 Curling Up With a Good Book

April 23 HF Book Muse-News

April 24 A Bookish Affair

April 25 Oh, For the Hook of a Book

April 27 Kincavel Korner

April 28 CelticLady’s Reviews

April 29 Historical Fiction Connection

April 30 Reading the Ages

Giveaway
To enter to win a copy of Blackwell’s Paradise please complete the Rafflecopter giveaway form below. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only.

Giveaway ends at 11:59pm on April 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter on May 1st and notified via email.

Winners have 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

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Giveaway: Giving In by Maya Banks

[ 4 ] April 12, 2014

GIVING-IN-682x1024I have a copy of Giving In by Maya Banks to give away!

Open to US residents only

About the book

The Surrender trilogy investigates three couples exploring BDSM relationships and each couple’s hope for a fulfilling love and enduring happiness. The third and final book in the trilogy, Taking It All, will be available in August 2014 to wrap up this seductive and enticing series.

Giving In picks up after the events of Letting Go, but centers on vivacious Kylie, Joss’ former sister-in-law, and Jensen, one of the partners at the consulting company where he works with Dash. Kylie is driven, feisty and uses sarcasm to deflect her pain from her abusive childhood. Working at the same company as Dash and Jensen, she notices the way Jensen stares at her and can see his desire for both her and her dominance in his eyes. Jensen has long been lusting after Kylie, but the way he craves her is unlike any previous relationship. He wants to show Kylie that dominance doesn’t have to mean pain or constraint, but instead submitting her heart to him.

As Kylie considers the ramifications of such a relationship, she struggles between a desire to escape her abusive past and embrace a future with Jensen and a deep-rooted fear to give up total control to a man.

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Giveaway: Getting By by Claudia Y. Burgoa

[ 5 ] April 11, 2014

Getting-By-by-Claudia-Y.-BurgoaI have one eBook (Kindle or Nook) of Getting By by Claudia Y. Burgoa to give away!

Open internationally

About the book

Getting By (A Knight’s Tale) by Claudia Y. Burgoa is a new-adult contemporary romance novel, published February 18, 2014.

When Emma Anderson arrived at San Francisco International Airport, she regretted accepting the distinction of being the maid of honor to Gaby’s—her childhood friend—wedding. It had been years since the last time she set foot in Menlo Park, where her parents had been killed. The rug where she had been shoving her feelings since that day looked bumpier than a camel’s hump. Who could blame her; if she hadn’t been selfish they’d still be around. Ever since that fateful day, Emma has been perfecting the knack of Getting By.

Cade’s wedding in Menlo Park—a city close to San Francisco—might be the perfect place for Jake Knight to shake the memories of his ex, Emma Anderson for good. Single, available women galore for an entire week was the perfect medication, one he intended to take three times a day for an entire week to return to his player days. It was a plan the former spy thought flawless until he came face to face with the maid of honor. Jake’s perfect retreat turns into a flight, fight or hide week of celebrations.

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Review & Giveaway: A Hundred Summers by Beatriz Williams

[ 16 ] April 11, 2014

Jacket A HUNDRED SUMMERSEnter to win a copy below! Open to US residents only.

Reviewed by Vera Pereskokova (Luxury Reading)

From the moment Lily Dane first spots quarterback Nick Greenwald at a Darmouth football game, she’s smitten, and he’s equally so. That same weekend, Nick begins making regular trips to visit Lily at Smith College. When the couple makes plans to meet each other’s parents over winter break in New York City, Lily hopes against hope that her parents – or at least her kind father – will understand how she feels about Nick and look past the fact that his father is Jewish. It is 1932; the world is slowly inching towards World War II and young women from good families only marry Jewish young men if they have few other options left – that was the case with Nicholas’ own mother.

Six years later Lily Dane is spending her summer in Seaview, Rhode Island, with her mother and young sister, Kiki, in tow when her former best friend, Budgie, blows into town. Budgie is recently married—to Nick Greenwald. Bereft of any other adequate company, Lily finds herself drawn in once again by Budgie’s charm. Kiki’s quick bond with Nick does not help matters and the girl is soon spending many afternoons building sand castles and visiting with her new friend.

There was too much left unspoken between Lily and Nick all those years ago and Lily cannot help but wonder about what brought her former best friend and the love of her life together. And as the 1938 hurricane bears down on Seaview and threatens the very lives of its inhabitants, the long held secrets that drove Lily and Nick apart are also creating a storm of their own.

I’ve heard so much about A Hundred Summers when it came out in hardcover last summer, and was thrilled to finally have the chance to read it. I must say, I absolutely loved this book. Beatriz Williams expertly navigated between past and present before bringing all the pieces together in an excellent climax to the story. It was the perfect mix of romance, history, and family drama. Lily’s and Nick’s relationship was so touching and relatable; I kept hoping they would come together despite the obstacles that life threw their way. Their romance alone would have kept me glued to the pages and the added historical aspect was the perfect icing on an already great “cake”.

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Review and giveaway copies were provided free of any obligation by Penguin Group. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

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