Sheila: Book Reviewer,writer and great lover of books...sharing her wonderful finds of fantastic authors,their books, writing tips, and also other things of interest to her and those following the blog. Thanks for visiting! Follow today and don't miss out on news of great new books and giveaways!
Can you believe that Summer is almost over? As a teacher, I'm feeling it even more than most people.
I've had a great summer of reading, relaxing, and hanging out with my kids.
What are you doing during your last Lazy Days of Summer?
I thought that the best thing I could offer people on this hop is what I like to win.
A $10 gift card to Amazon. This way you can get whatever you want to help you enjoy your last days of summer: a book, e-books, movie, food, etc. Make sure to enter on the Giveaway Form down below and thanks so much for visiting and following my blog.
Publisher: Covenant Communications, Inc. (August 1, 2018)
****I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review****
Anna the Prophetess is the dramatic chronicle of the only woman to be called a prophetess in the Gospels. When Anna’s great-niece Julia is exiled to Jerusalem as punishment for her refusal to marry a man old enough to be her father, Anna shares the story of her early days of courtship with her husband. Although Julia’s parents admonished her to observe firsthand how lonely Anna’s life is, Julia instead discovers that her great-aunt’s life is far from lonely—it is full of love, peace, and incredible faith. As Anna shares her unwavering testimony of the coming Messiah with her great-niece, these two faithful women are changed forever as they seek the Lord’s will in their lives and joyfully witness the long-awaited miracles of Christ’s birth. My Review I have loved all of the past books written by H.B. Moore about historical figures from either the Book of Mormon or the Bible. Anna the Prophetess now is one of my favorites. I started reading and was swept up into the story from the first pages. I've long wondered who Anna really was. I knew she'd been a Prophetess that worked in the temple in Jerusalem and was there when Mary and Joseph brought in the baby Jesus after his birth. I was amazed at how Moore brought to life Anna's story using true facts and fiction. The story is told from several different viewpoints, but mainly Anna's. The novel starts when Anna is very old and her great-niece, Julia, comes to stay with her awhile. Then Anna shares the story of her life and we go into the past. This was such a wonderful way to get to know Anna and grow to love this character. There were many tender scenes between Julia, her father Phanuel, brother Michael, and her future husband Josiah. The main theme that I found in the story was one of patience,especially as one is going through trials in life. This is so timely in my life and many others may find it the same for them. In this novel Anna is shown as living through many trials, but her faith and patience brought many blessings to her, especially at the end of her life when she was able to meet the baby Jesus. The end of the story brought me to tears and gave me chills. Honestly, this is such a beautiful story with great characters and a setting from a wonderful part of the New Testament. If you love retellings from the scriptures, a fabulously written story, and a love story that will warm your heart, then Anna the Prophetess would be a good read for you. Meet Author H.B. Moore:
Heather B. Moore is a four-time USA Today bestseller and award-winning author of more than a dozen historical novels which are set in Ancient Arabia and Mesoamerica. She’s not old and doesn’t remember the time period, so Google has become a great friend. Although she spent several years living in the Middle East, she prefers to forget the smells. Heather writes historicals and thrillers under H.B. Moore. She also writes women’s fiction, romance, and inspirational non-fiction under Heather B. Moore, including The Newport Ladies Book Club, and the Amazon bestselling Timeless Romance Anthologies. Heather’s USA Today bestselling titles include Heart of the Ocean, Mail Order Bride, Mistress Grim, and Poetic Justice. Heather also writes Young Adult speculative under pen name Jane Redd, which includes the Solstice series. Foreign publications include Das Grab der Konigin (Germany), Drommen om lykke (Norway), and Sommer og kjaerlighet (Norway).
Heather graduated from Brigham Young University with a major in Fashion Merchandising and minor in Business Management–which has absolutely nothing to do with writing novels. But at least she can balance a mean checkbook and color-coordinate her kids’ school clothes.
Heather is represented by Jane Dystel of Dystel, Goderich & Bourret Literary Agency. Foreign rights or subsidiary rights inquiries, please contact Lauren Abramo: labramo (at) dystel (dot) com
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton My rating: 4 of 5 stars I read this the first time many years ago before Goodreads was even a thing. I decided to listen to the audio version this time and liked it even better. Even though I really love the 1st Jurassic Park movie, I love this book even more! The ideas about the park and the people that ran the park are better developed in the book. I understand there's only so much you can do in a movie, but reading the book version gives you a different experience. I would even dare say that the dinosaurs are even more frightening as you read/listen to the book. Now many people complain about the "science" in the book. You have to take into account when this book was written in 1990. Science has changed a lot since then. I found something very interesting about how Michael Crichton came up with the idea to write this book. I'm going to quote what I read... "The novel began as a screenplay Crichton wrote in 1983, about a graduate student who recreates a dinosaur. Eventually, given his reasoning that genetic research is expensive and "there is no pressing need to create a dinosaur", Crichton concluded that it would emerge from a "desire to entertain", leading to a wildlife park of extinct animals. Originally, the story was told from the point of view of a child, but Crichton changed it as everyone who read the draft felt it would be better if told by an adult." I found this fascinating about it's original origins in Crichton's mind. I have to say to all the fans of the Jurassic Park/World movies, if you loved them, then you must read the books. I'm now going to start listening to the 2nd book which I never read before when it came out. Since so many things were different in the first book from the movie, it will be interesting to see where Crichton went with the plot.
Purchase the Book Here:
I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review
Five a.m.: Amanda Mallorie wakes to the knowledge that her son Robbie is gone. And a new chapter of her own life must begin. She has spent four years as her son’s only support, desperately trying to understand the actions that landed him on death row and to change his fate. Now Amanda faces an even more difficult task—finding a way, and a reason, to move forward with her own life.
Before the tragedy that unfolded in a South Dakota mall, Robbie was just like other people’s sons or daughters. Sometimes troubled, but sweet and full of goodness too. That’s the little boy Amanda remembers as she packs up his childhood treasures and progress reports, and discovers a class ring she’s never seen before. Who does it belong to and why did Robbie have it in his possession? So begins a journey that will remind her not only of who Robbie used to be, but of a time when she wasn’t afraid—to talk to strangers, to help those in need, to reach out. Robbie’s choices can never be unmade, but there may still be time for forgiveness and trust to grow again. For a future as wide as the sky.
As Wide as The Sky is the compelling story of a mother's journey through grief, pain, and finding a way to live again. The story starts with Amanda waking up, thinking of her son that died in the night. Right off you are shocked by the feelings and emotions this mother is going through. Soon, you learn that her son was a convicted murderer who died from lethal injection. This novel is a train ride of various emotions that will take you from highs to lows in a matter of seconds. This book will also be a lesson in reflection for the reader. You will be thinking of your own life and how big and small decisions we make along the way affect so many other lives. I'll be honest, this book is not always a pleasant read because it may mess with your emotions and beliefs, but I had to keep reading. I actually cried through many of the chapters I read of Amanda, a single mom, who had tried her hardest to raise her two kids to be good people. I ached at her sorry and loneliness as other's judged her by her son's actions of shooting and killing people in a mall. The writing in this book is beautiful and gripping at the same time. This author has written in the past as Josi Kilpack, so I've read a lot of her books. This book is up there right along with the best ones I've ever read from her. The story told from Amanda's and other's viewpoints gives you insight to those affected by Robbie's actions. Some gut wrenching scenes, such as when Amanda was cleaning out Robbie's room and looking through the only things she had left of her son made me hurt emotionally and physically. She finds a class ring that didn't belong to Robbie and from there a new storyline opens. Amanda is determined to find out why Robbie had a class ring that belonged to someone close to her age. Her final act of closure in laying Robbie to rest is to return the ring to it's owner and find out why Robbie had it. This book touches on some hard subjects of mental illness, violence (the mass shooting), abuse, alcoholism, and death. The realities of life shown here truly make this novel strong but fascinating until the last page. The surprising last part of the book brings satisfying closure to Amanda's journey of self examination, forgiveness, healing, and second chances. Purchase the book Here:
Meet the Author: Jessica Pack(Josi Kilpack)
Josi S. Kilpack hated to read until her mother handed her a copy of The Witch of Blackbird Pond when she was 13. From that day forward, she read everything she could get her hands on and credits her writing “education” to the many novels she has “studied” since then. She began writing her first novel in 1998 and has written twenty-five novels, one cookbook, and been part of multiple collaborations since then. She is a four-time Whitney Award winner and Best of State winner in Fiction. Josi currently lives in Willard, Utah, with her husband and children.
When Kensington Press picked up her first national women's fiction novel, As Wide as the Sky, Josi was in need of a pen name to differentiate between her other genres. For years, Josi has been called Jessica Pack by people who hear her name but don't know her. It made her new pen name easy to choose. As Wide as the Sky will be released in paperback sometime in 2018.
Laurie (L.C.) Lewis will always be a Marylander at heart—a weather-whining lover of crabs, American history, and the sea. She admits to being craft-challenged, particularly lethal with a glue gun, and a devotee of sappy movies. Her ninth published novel, her first romance novella, Sweet Water, was inspired by a visit to Oregon’s magnificent coastline, and time spent with Mother Eugenie, upon whom the character Mother Thomasine is based.
Laurie’s women’s fiction novels include The Dragons of Alsace Farm (2016), Awakening Avery (2010), and Unspoken (2004), written as Laurie Lewis.
Using the pen name L.C. Lewis, she wrote the five volumes of her award-winning FREE MEN and DREAMERS historical fiction series, set against the backdrop of the War of 1812: Dark Sky at Dawn (2007), Twilight’s Last Gleaming (2008), Dawn’s Early Light (2009), Oh, Say Can You See? (2010), and In God is Our Trust, (2011).
She is currently completing a political suspense novel planned for a summer 2017 release, a re -release of a romantic comedy, and she’s working on another historical fiction novel for a 2018 release. She loves to hear from readers.
Matthew Grayken is young, successful, and dying, which is why he’s about to propose to a total stranger. He isn’t interested in love. He needs a caregiver, a companion, and someone to be his legal voice when he can no longer speak for himself.
Lonely, compassionate nurse Mikaela Compton is intrigued by Matt Grayken’s tender request, but when their friendly marriage turns into love, she rejects the inevitability of Matt’s death and prays for a miracle instead.
Mikaela succeeds in reigniting Matt’s will to fight, but his body is losing the battle, and her determination to save him causes her to betray the fundamental promise she made him--to help him die peaceably.
Their last hope at saving Matt's life will require a sacrifice from each of them, and force them to decide how far out on a limb they're willing to go for love.
Jane Hartford fell head over heels for Jackson at the tender age of fifteen. She spent most of high school pining for him, until she realized he wasn’t going to see her as anything more than his baby sister’s best friend. Now she finds herself single with a daughter, a broken heart, and songs that remind her of a long lost love.
Jackson Wright is a man living with regret. His biggest one, never acting on his feelings for Jane. When he returns to Bellebrook, the town they grew up in, he literally runs into her and his world gets tossed upside down and sideways.
This time, Jackson isn’t willing to give up. With a meddling sister eager to push both of them together, he believes things might actually work out. That is, if they can overcome the heavy baggage they both carry. Follow Jackson and Jane as they revisit their past, figuring out what went wrong so long ago.
Will they learn they have the power to make things right in the present?
The Songs of You and Me was a wonderful read. The story of Jane and Jackson is told from both of the main character's perspective. There is also a jump from present day in one chapter to sometime in the past in the next, alternating like this throughout the whole book. Personally I felt these jumps were done well and not too jarring. Jane and Jackson are characters I liked from the start, even though I wish they would have spoken up about their feelings way back in high school. With the three year age difference you can understand why Jackson held off in the early years. When they meet up in present time, both characters have experienced great heartache that makes them falter a bit in jumping into their old relationship. I also loved how cute Jackson was with Jane's daughter Emma. The story flows so well that you want to keep reading. This is such an emotional journey for both Jane and Jackson. You could feel every up and down emotion that they felt. I was so impressed with this new author. I can guarantee that I will be reading anything else she writes. I was happy with the ending of the story and I hated that it was the end. When I get that attached to characters I know that the novel is a winner.
This is another book I'm recommending for your Summer Reading. It's truly earned it place to be read far and wide with it's captivating story and characters. P.S. I also loved the playlist with songs to listen to as you read each chapter!
What Readers are saying:
-A tender debut novel that will leave you remembering the sweet angst of first love. The Songs of You and Me is a charmer. - Taylor Dean, author of I’m With You and Chasing Fireflies. - In this romantic debut about first love, second chances, Ms. DeMeyere weaves the past and present together in a way that brings the characters' hearts to life as they heal from tragedies and struggle to move on in life. Sweet and heartwarming. – Charissa Stastny, author of Between Hope and the Highway and the Rules out Romances Series. - A fun and enticing love story that combines the bitter with the sweet and keeps you laughing amidst the tears. You won't want to miss this touching story that explores true love in all its depth and beauty. – Aubrey, Amazon Reviewer - The Songs of You and Me pulled me in from page one. The characters came to life and I felt as if I was part of their story. I stayed up night after night fascinated with their personal and individual challenges. Their obstacles were relatable and tugged at my heart. I couldn’t wait to finish and yet I didn’t want it to end. As I read the last page, I was ecstatic to see what would come next from Mylissa Demeyere. – Jamie, Amazon Reviewer
The whole idea for this book started out as a scene after listening to a song. Then I would listen to that song over and over and see more of the pieces fall into place.
Soon, I had an entire playlist, with scenes mapped out, and a whole story ready to write. This book tells the story of Jane and Jackson, the songs of them.
Included in the book is a unique playlist. Here is the list, but in the back of the book, I give you a full breakdown of how I saw each scene and how I felt that song was best fitted for the chapter. Enjoy!
Prologue: Tears in Heaven – Eric Clapton
C1: Lay Me Down – Sam Smith
C2 : It’s a Beautiful Day – U2
C3: Hello – Martin Solveig
C4: Hanging by a Moment – Lifehouse
C5: This Girl – Kungs
C6: Disappointment – The Cranberries
C7: Everybody Hurts – R.E.M
C8: My Father’s Eyes – Eric Clapton
C9: It’s Time – Imagine Dragons
C10: Could this be love? – The Wanted
C11: Hold Back the River – James Bay
C12: September Song – J.B. Cooper
C13: Count on Me – Bruno Mars
C14: The Other – Stripped / Lauv
C15: Breathing – Oscar and the Wolf
C16: Love Love – Amy MacDonald
C17: Push the Button – Sugababes
C18: Animal – Neon Trees
C19: Perfect – Ed Sheeren
C20: Someday – Sugar Ray
C21: What Lovers Do (feat. SZA) – Maroon 5, SZA
C22: Gotta Get Thru This – Daniel Bedingfield
C23: It’s Gotta Be You – Isaiah
C24: Welcome to New York – Taylor Swift
C25: Best Day of My Life – American Authors
C26: Over My Head – The Fray
C27: Water under the Bridge – Adele
C28: The Middle – Jimmy Eat World
C29: Silence – Marshmellow ft Khalid
C30: Demons – Imagine Dragons
C31: Walking The Wire – Imagine Dragons
C32: Home – Dotan
C33: No Sound But The Wind – Editors
C34: WhoKnew – Pink
C35: Stargazing – Kygo
C36: Love – Jana Kramer
C37: Quicksand – Tom Chaplin
Epilogue: False Alarm – Matoma , Becky Hill
Author Mylissa Demeyere
Mylissa Demeyere was born in Belgium, and resides in the beautiful city of Ghent. She lives in a somewhat organized home with her four beautiful children and the love of her life. If she isn’t working, she’s writing, running, reading, or enjoying time with her kids, who are growing up way too fast.
The Songs of You and Me is her debut novel, with a sequel already in the works.
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
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TJ Amberson hails from the Pacific
Northwest, where she lives with her husband and nutty cocker spaniel. Her most
recent novels include The Kingdom of Nereth, The Council of Nereth, Fusion, and
Love at Lakewood Med. When she's not writing, TJ can probably be found enjoying
a hot chocolate, pretending to know how to garden, riding her bike, playing the
piano, or surfing the Internet for cheap plane tickets.
With a love of writing in multiple
genres, TJ Amberson strives to provide well-written, age-appropriate, and
original novels for tweens, teens, and new adults.
Savannah Drake would be thrilled about starting her final year of medical school if it weren't for one thing: she has to spend a month working in the emergency room with cold, aloof Dr. Wesley Kent as her mentor.
When her first day in the ER proves to be a humiliating disaster, Savannah is ready to swear off emergency medicine forever. Gradually, though, she finds that the unpredictable, emotional experience of caring for patients in the emergency room is affecting her far differently than she expected--and Dr. Kent turns out to be anything but the arrogant attending physician that she assumed him to be.
But just when Savannah finally admits to herself that she is falling for Dr. Kent, she learns that things at the hospital are not all what they seem.
Faced with a seemingly impossible choice, Savannah must decide between her future career and everything that she has come to care so much about.