At this time I will no longer be taking any new review requests or participating in any memes. There will still be author interviews, blasts, guest posts and occasionally reviews posted (as I climb through by TBR pile!!). Life is kind of hectic and I have to focus on a few other commitments before coming back full-time to my blog. Thank you to everyone that has supported me and I won't be gone forever. I will still be around on my social media sites!

CURRENT GIVEAWAYS


My interview over at The Art and Craft of Writing Creatively is HERE

Purchase my book Images of America: Detroit Lakes HERE

Thursday, November 28, 2013

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!


I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! 

Today I will be preparing the meal for my parents, brother and grandma and my other brother who is stationed out in Washington D.C. will be home to celebrate with us with his wife and two kids. The only sad part about him being home is because he gets leave for my other grandma's funeral which will take place on Saturday. It has been another whirlwind week but we will make the best of it. 

Today I plan to make turkey, sweet potatoes, and green bean casserole. The mashed potatoes are made the day before and put in a crock pot to be placed on high in the morning. Love this recipe because it is one less think to worry about in the morning..:D Since I am not the baker in the family, my grandma made lemon pie and my FAVORITE pie, sour cream raisin (num num num)!

I am very thankful for my family and as much as I complain sometimes, they truly are a blessing in my life. I am also thankful for all of my readers. It has been another fantastic year!!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Teaser Tuesday: The Troop by Nick Cutter

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

It is a fact that cannot be denied: the wickedness of others becomes our own wickedness because it kindles something evil in our own hearts.

Boy Scouts live by the motto “Be Prepared.” However, nothing can prepare this group of young boys and their scoutmaster for what they encounter on a small, deserted island, as they settle down for a weekend of campfires, merit badges, and survival lessons. 

Everything changes when a haggard stranger in tattered clothing appears out of nowhere and collapses on the campers’ doorstep. Before the night is through, this stranger will end up infecting one of the troop’s own with a bioengineered horror that’s straight out of their worst nightmares. Now stranded on the island with no communication to the outside world, the troop learns to battle much more than the elements, as they are pitted against something nature never intended…and eventually each other.

 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Stacking the Shelves: November 25, 2013

What is Stacking The Shelves all about?

We are all book lovers and the need to share our enthusiasm is sometimes overwhelming. Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

If you’re anything like me, you are probably hoarding books and even though you are excited about your latest book arrival, it might be a while before you get to review it and Stacking The Shelves is a good way to express your undying enthusiasm for those titles!

How to participate? Just head on over to Tynga's Reviews and sign up!

FOR REVIEW


More Than You Know by Nan Rossiter
Two Times as Hot by Cat Johnson
No Strings Attached by Kate Angell
Echoes of My Soul by Robert K. Tanenbaum
The Blossom Sisters by Fern Michaels



The Devil's Woods by Brian Moreland

PURCHASED
from Paperbackswap


The Farm by Emily McKay

Friday, November 22, 2013

Book Beginnings + The Friday 56: The Hungry Dead by John Russo


Book Beginning hosted by Rose City Reader is where I share the first sentence (or so) of the book I am currently reading, along with my initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

In the beginning, the most serious question was: How to feed them?
~pg. 3


The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice. The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find any sentence, or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

"Drop the phone, Jeff!" she told him sternly. "Drop it or I'll shoot you."
~pg. 56

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00CICDCAS/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00CICDCAS&linkCode=as2&tag=kelsboocor-20

John Russo's brilliantly chilling screenplay for the 1968 groundbreaking Night of the Living Dead helped pave the wave for the flesh-eating spectacles that have thrilled zombie fans for three generations. Here, for the first time in one volume, are two of the master's most gruesome and demented novels of gut-wrenching mayhem. . .

Midnight

First, they captured small animals. Then, they moved on to bigger prey. Now the backwoods family that slays together stays together for one last midnight snack: a pair of unsuspecting travelers whose ritual torture and sacrifice will only intensify the demonic clan's cravings. . .for more.

Yeah, they're dead. . .they're all messed up.

Escape From The Living Dead

In an isolated roadside diner, a desperate group of strangers barricade themselves against a ravenous horde of undead customers who crave something more than the early bird special. They want flesh. Human flesh. With a side order of brains and stomach-turning terror.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Author Interview + Giveaway: David-Michael Harding @DMichaelHarding



How did you come up with the title?
The first story in the collection, The Cats of Savone, chronicles the appearance of cats within a maximum security prison. The cover photograph was taken at Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The cat is a sculpture by Linda Brenner and is a part of her installation, Ghost Cats.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
The messages are as varied as the eight stories. As with most good stories, conflict and love – love of an animal, a person, a town – is reflected in the lines. In The Cats of Savone, an abandoned feline conquers the hearts of a thousand hardened criminals. In The History of West Texas, a young man is enamored with respect for an old story teller. Forever Beneath the Celtic Sea pitches love of country and duty versus morality and humanity.

Tell us about a favorite character from The Cats of Savone.
The character of Mr. Christian in St. Alden’s has marvelous depth. He is elderly but vibrant due to a mystical dual life. As the Guardian of St. Alden’s University he manages the treasury. This requires battling forces bent on destroying the university and its unique mandate. Within this context, Mr. Christian begins to train his grandson as his replacement, but circumstances interfere and take the old man to the limit.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Several stories required comprehensive research in order to correctly represent the historical setting. Black Men in Bright Blue is set in South Carolina during the latter stages of the Civil War. The story chronicles ten-year-old Rachel Justice as she grows in the shadows of war, slavery, and her secret knowledge of the underground railroad. Forever Beneath the Celtic Sea follows the World War I German submarine the U-20, as it patrols the cold water of the coast of Ireland and encounters the luxury passenger liner, the Lusitania.

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Writers should learn with each exercise and compiling this collection was no exception. The myriad of topics – from baseball (My Boo Radley) to war (Forever Beneath the Celtic Sea) to music (The Jazz Bridge) – and genres – fantasy (St. Alden’s), contemporary (My Boo Radley and The Junket), and historical (Black Men in Bright Blue and The History of West Texas) – compels the writer to employ an assortment of skill sets and writing techniques. The comingling of topics and genres also proves highly entertaining for the reader as they weave through the ever further flung reaches of stories.

Tell us your latest news.
The next scheduled release will be the much anticipated sequel to Cherokee Talisman (2012), Losing St. Christopher. The novel continues the saga of the Cherokee Indian Nation through the lives of the shaman Totsuhwa and his son Chancellor. The impact of the murder of their wife and mother is reflected in their choices as the infamous Trail of Tears approaches. Losing St. Christopher is in its final stages of editing and is scheduled for release in the spring of 2014.

What book are you reading now?
Thomas Steinbeck’s short story collection, Down to a Soundless Sea.

What are you passionate about these days?
My next release, Losing St. Christopher, consumes my time and energy. The research, crafting, creating, and editing, editing, editing is that marvelously painful process we call writing. The passion is in figuratively holding the pen as I eavesdrop on my characters and jot down what they say and do. I love the surprises that come from the creative process.

What do you do to unwind and relax? 
Sail (and think of the next scene…). If a person is truly destined to be a writer – COMPELLED to be a writer – they quickly discover it to be both blessing and curse. The nature of the process is such that it seldom leaves you. Mr. Hemmingway wrote of always leaving something in the well, stopping when you knew what would come next, so as to never face ‘writer’s block’. Because there was always something “left in the well”, the story was forever with him, but he also wrote of the danger in not being able to turn off the switch that attempts to control the unwieldy process of creativity.
 

“Most novels begin their lives as short stories. Writing, much like any gift, skill, habit, or hope, is strengthened through practice, training, and exercise. The short story is the stretching and dedication to a running regime long before the marathon. It is the repetition of scales on the piano, years before the recital.” – David-Michael Harding

The Cats of Savone is an exemplary collection of stories from the pen of historical fiction author David-Michael Harding. Eight short stories and novellas make up his first installment in The Completely Abridged Series – Short Novels for Busy People. The title story is the PEN International Winner, The Cats of Savone, which follows a pregnant cat beneath a mammoth steel gate into the exercise yard of the Savone Correctional Facility. The hardened convicts in the maximum security prison adopt the cat as much as she adopts them. But an accident in the prison leads to murder and a host of tough choices for tough men – inmates and guards.

Black Men in Bright Blue traces the steps of ten-year-old Rachel Justice in 1864 while she explores her father’s plantation in South Carolina. As she learns of slavery beneath the shadow of the Civil War, her secret knowledge of the underground railroad pushes her family and her young mind into decisions none are ready for. Eavesdrop on the captain and crew in Forever Beneath the Celtic Sea as the story follows in the cold wake of the World War I German submarine the U-20, and its deadly encounter with the luxury passenger liner Lusitania in 1917.

The History of West Texas According to Henry Brass sits beside the bed of a of a old soldier, trapper, and patriot who is dying from consumption. He hasn’t lost his sense of humor however as he relates story after story to a young man who cares for him in his last days. Henry lived under most of the six different flags that flew over Texas and weaves wonderful tales for his caretaker whose own agenda is taken up by the old man. Then move from West Texas in the 19th Century to another continent and another time in St. Alden’s where a classic fight between good and evil comes to life on a university campus. An aged Guardian of the campus needs to pass down the secrets of a mysterious silver and the power of goodness to his grandson before night demons put an end to a magical spring and its unique life giving water.

Additional stories provide glimpses into the life of a man who has gone through a lifetime of labels – retarded in the 50’s, handicapped in the 70’s, and now with special needs – Jonny Archer finds himself on an unlikely trip in The Junket. The Jazz Bridge chronicles the history and anniversary of an ordinary bridge in an ordinary town as something extraordinary happens. The collection is rounded out by My Boo Radley and the high school baseball pitcher who learns lessons from an old fan who the world viewed as a monster.

For fans of the author, these shorts and novellas are glimpses into the stories, talents, and passion his characters are layered in. Readers care about the people in a Harding story. You’ll cheer, jeer, laugh, cry, and then VOTE for the one that becomes the next full length NOVEL!

Read, enjoy, and VOTE at DavidMichaelHarding.com 

PURCHASE THE CATS OF SAVONE

GIVEWAY

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Teaser Tuesday: The Hungry Dead by John Russo

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00CICDCAS/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00CICDCAS&linkCode=as2&tag=kelsboocor-20

At that moment, the fangs that had been folded back against the roof of her mouth sprang forward, and she said, "You're such a lovely man, and I'm going to love you to death."
~pg. 59

Friday, November 15, 2013

Book Beginnings + Friday 56: The Spider by @Jennifer_Estep


Book Beginning hosted by Rose City Reader is where I share the first sentence (or so) of the book I am currently reading, along with my initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

The day the box came started out like any other.
~pg. 1% eARC



The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice. The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find any sentence, or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

I smiled, once again feeling that peculiar mix of longing, desire, guilt, and sorrow thrumming through my chest. "It's a date."
~56% eARC
 
How did I end up in a career where I always have blood on my hands? Well, let me tell you a story about an assassin who thought she could do no wrong. . . .

Ten years ago. A blistering hot August night. I remember like it was yesterday. The night I, Gin Blanco, truly became the Spider. Killing people is what I do best, especially now that I’ve honed my Ice and Stone magic. But back then, I had yet to learn one very important rule: arrogance will get you, every single time.

This particular job seemed simple: murder a crooked building contractor with ties to ruthless Fire elemental Mab Monroe. My mentor, Fletcher Lane, had some misgivings, but I was certain that I had the situation under control . . . right up until I exposed my weaknesses to a merciless opponent who exploited every single one of them. There’s a reason assassins aren’t supposed to feel anything. Luckily, a knife to the heart can fix that problem, especially when I’m the one wielding it. . . .

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Book Promo: Getting Rooted in New Zealand by @JamieBaywood


ABOUT THE BOOK
Craving change and lacking logic, at 26, Jamie, a cute and quirky Californian, impulsively moves to New Zealand to avoid dating after reading that the country's population has 100,000 fewer men. In her journal, she captures a hysterically honest look at herself, her past and her new wonderfully weird world filled with curious characters and slapstick situations in unbelievably bizarre jobs. It takes a zany jaunt to the end of the Earth and a serendipitous meeting with a fellow traveler before Jamie learns what it really means to get rooted.

PURCHASE

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 Jamie Baywood grew up in Petaluma, California. In 2010, she made the most impulsive decision of her life by moving to New Zealand. Getting Rooted in New Zealand is her first book about her experiences living there. Jamie is now married and living happily ever after in the United Kingdom. She is working on her second book.

AUTHOR LINKS

 REVIEWS
 “Getting Rooted In New Zealand is a diary of a California girl's introduction to a completely different life experience in a new country and never has the phrase `stranger in a strange land' been more relevant than in reading her intriguing and often insightful diary entries! Her observations about both culture and language are a wonderful mix of observation about one person's reaction to the differences that make up the wonderful human race and the minutiae of daily living. I'll be looking forward to seeing if Jamie produces another book about her experiences of coming to live in the UK.” (4 out of 5 stars) Linda Parkinson-Hardman (Amazon Customer Reviews)

"I've got this book and finished read it all so quickly, because I couldn't stop reading it. it's just so hilarious!! I can't wait to read her next book. I highly recommend to read this book for everybody. I absolutely loved it!!" (5 out of 5 stars) S Halls (Amazon Customer Reviews)

“This book is perfect for travel-reading! It's light, in small sections (as a diary), totally hilarious and also quite amazing. So many crazy experiences Jamie Baywood had in one year, some wonderful and some truly horrific, all taken together adds up to fruitful reading indeed. This book is like a rough diamond - I look forward to reading future novels as Jamie becomes more and more polished through life's experiences” (5 out of 5 stars) Anna H(Amazon Customer Reviews)



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Book Review: Lady of the Forest by Jennifer Roberson



By: Jennifer Roberson
Publication Date:May 28, 2013
Format: paperback
Source: publisher

Robin of Locksley comes home after being away on the Crusades with King Richard and attempts to go back to normal life. His childhood friend, Marian of Ravenskeep, attends his coming home party in hopes of news on how her father died. Marian only has to look into his eyes to know that Robin is deeply troubled from his time as a prisoner of war. Robin must battle his personal demons before he can but he knows that he has his own demons to fight before he can fight for her.

Lady of the Forest is based on how the Robin Hood and Maid Marian legend began. Roberson fleshes out all the characters from the traditional telling of Robin and his Merry Men and gives each one a storyline of their own. Robin starts out a broken man but with the help of Marian he finds he doesn’t have to follow in his father’s footsteps and takes his future into his own hands. Marian starts out as weak but grows into a woman who can stand on her own. The Sheriff is depicted even more villainous and twisted which added a skin crawling creepiness to this dark tale of honor, greed and betrayal.

I had very mixed feelings while reading this. I was cringing at times at the crudeness. This is not a fairy tale by any means. I liked the meat of the story but there seemed to be a lot of padding put in making this a lengthy novel (589 pages). In the beginning I was not a fan of Marian because of how pathetic she was acting but I grew to love her. Other characters I just loved to hate. If you are looking for a story about Robin’s adventures, this is not for you. This is how he became that man.


PURCHASE LADY OF THE FOREST
Amazon  /  Barnes and Noble  /  Book Depository

DISCLOSURE: I received this paperback from the publisher at no charge and in no way did it influence my review.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Stacking the Shelves (November 12, 2013)

What is Stacking The Shelves all about?

We are all book lovers and the need to share our enthusiasm is sometimes overwhelming. Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

If you’re anything like me, you are probably hoarding books and even though you are excited about your latest book arrival, it might be a while before you get to review it and Stacking The Shelves is a good way to express your undying enthusiasm for those titles!

How to participate? Just head on over to Tynga's Reviews and sign up!

FOR REVIEW

Bellman & Black by Diane Setterfield



PURCHASED

 Intertwined by Gena Showalter

Friday, November 8, 2013

Book Beginnings + Friday 56: Predatory by @AlexandraIvy @ninabangs @DianneDuvall @Hannah_Jayne1


Book Beginning hosted by Rose City Reader is where I share the first sentence (or so) of the book I am currently reading, along with my initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

Valhalla was the stuff of myths.
~pg. 3



The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice. The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find any sentence, or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

So this was what a kitchen was supposed to look like, she wryly acknowledged.
~pg. 56


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AY48QUI/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00AY48QUI&linkCode=as2&tag=kelsboocor-20

Out Of Control by Alexandra Ivy
Ph.D student Angela Locke has a crush on her sexy professor, Dr. Nikolo Bartrev. When she learns he's actually a Sentinel with extraordinary powers, she joins forces with him to catch a psychopath. But soon, their hottest pursuit is of each other...

Ties That Bind by Nina Bangs
Cassie Tyler agrees to sub for her friend at the funeral home where she works. But she gets more than she bargained for when a group of men attack her and a vampire comes to her rescue. . .

In Still Darkness by Dianne Duvall
Immortal Richart d'Alençon can't forget the woman who rewarded him with a sensuous kiss after he saved her from a trio of vampires. While Richart knows that loving a human can only bring trouble, the taste of forbidden lust is too great to resist. . .

High Stakes by Hannah Jayne
When vampire fashionista Nina LaShay's design contest rival is found dead, she's the prime suspect. Sexy photographer Pike is number two. He's the kind of man who makes Nina salivate. But will she have to reveal herself to have him--and to save them both? Or does Pike have a secret of his own?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Audio Book Review: Bones of the Lost by @KathyReichs



Series: Temperance Brennan, Book 16


Publication Date: August 27, 2013
Format: Audio CD
Source: Publisher

Temperance Brennan is tasked with discovering the identity of a female body that was found on a stretch of highway and might very well have a connection to John-Henry Story, who died in a fire months before. Most of the police have written this body off as an illegal immigrant and don’t want to waste their resources on her. Tempe must also look into a bundle of Peruvian dog mummies that were confiscated. And to top it all off she is also asked to head to Afghanistan to exhume some bodies and figure out how they were shot. With this much going on in her life, Tempe has her plate full.

Her personal life is extremely complicated also. Her daughter has decided to join the military and has been sent to Afghanistan (which is why when Brennan gets the chance to go, she does) and her soon to be ex-husband, Pete, is pushing for her to finalize the divorce because he is ready to remarry. Her on-again off-again lover, Ryan, isn’t returning her calls.

With all the different plot lines running it was a lot to keep straight considering it has been awhile since I have gotten to enjoy a Brennan novel. I felt that Reichs was using this novel to bring to light the horrors of human trafficking. Though a very good topic to bring up, at times it felt too heavy with all the explanations and I was noticing that I would skim though some of it. Even with that being said, it was still an enjoyable mystery to read. There was non-stop action and the typical bluntness that I love in Brennan.

The audio format that I listen to featured Linda Emond who did an amazing job considering how much medical jargon is infused into Reichs novels. She is known for her roles as Dr. Emily Sopher on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and currently as Dr. Candace Reed from Elementary. I wouldn’t be opposed to listening to another audio by her.


PURCHASE BONES OF THE LOST

DISCLOSURE: I received this audio CD from the publisher at no charge and in no way did it influence my review.


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