Favorite Quotes on Books and Reading

"A book is a gift you can open again and again." Garrison Keillor

Literature is a textually transmitted disease, normally contracted in childhood.” Jane Yolen

"It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." Oscar Wilde

"Books have furnished, burnished, and enabled my life." Julia Keller

Monday, September 16, 2019

Book Spotlight: THE LADY AND THE HIGHWAYMAN by Sarah M. Eden



The Lady and the Highwayman by Sarah M. Eden
ISBN: 9781629726052 (paperback)
ISBN: 9781629726052 (ebook)
ASIN: B07W3ND25D (Kindle edition)
Publisher:  Shadow Mountain Publishing
Release Date: September 3, 2019


Elizabeth Black is the headmistress of a girls' school and a well-respected author of "silver-fork" novels, stories written both for and about the upper-class ladies of Victorian society. But by night, she writes very different kinds of stories—the Penny Dreadfuls that are all the rage among the working-class men. Under the pseudonym Mr. King, Elizabeth has written about dashing heroes fighting supernatural threats and dangerous outlaws romancing helpless women. They contain all the adventure and mystery that her real-life lacks.

Fletcher Walker began life as a street urchin but is now the most successful author in the Penny Dreadful market, that is until Mr. King started taking all of his readers—and his profits. No one knows who King is, including Fletcher's fellow members of the Dread Penny Society, a fraternity of authors dedicated to secretly fighting for the rights of the less fortunate.


Determined to find the elusive Mr. King, Fletcher approaches Miss Black. As a fellow-author, she is well-known among the high-class writers; perhaps she could be persuaded to make some inquiries as to Mr. King's whereabouts? Elizabeth agrees to help Fletcher, if only to insure her secret identity is never discovered. 

 For the first time, Elizabeth experiences the thrill of a cat-and-mouse adventure reminiscent of one of her own novels as she tries to throw Fletcher off her scent. But the more time they spend together, the more she loses her heart. It's upper-class against working-class, author against author where readers, reputations, and romance are all on the line.





Purchase Links:  IndieBound  |  Amazon  |  Amazon Kindle  |  Barnes and Noble  |  B&N Nook eBook  |  BookDepository  |  Books-A-Million





Meet the author


Sarah M. Eden is the author of several well-received historical romances. Her previous Proper Romance novel Longing for Home won the Foreword Reviews 2013 IndieFab Book of the Year award for romance. Hope Springs won the 2014 Whitney Award for "Best Novel of the Year" and The Sheriffs of Savage Wells was a Foreword Reviews 2016 Book of the Year finalist for romance. Combining her obsession with history and an affinity for tender love stories, Sarah loves crafting witty characters and heartfelt romances. She happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library and dreams of one day traveling to all the places she reads about.


Connect with the author via Twitter, Facebook, her website, and Goodreads


This spotlight and blog tour brought to you by Shadow Mountain Publishing

Friday, September 13, 2019

2019 Book 277: WHAT SHE NEVER SAID by Catharine Riggs

What She Never Said by Catharine Riggs Banner



What She Never Said, Santa Barbara Suspense #2, by Catharine Riggs 
ISBN: 9781542042130 (paperback)
ISBN: 9781721356669 (audiobook)
ISBN: B07VZND54P (Audible audiobook)
ASIN: B07GDG2BT5 (Kindle edition)
Publication date: September 10, 2019 
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer



People are dying at a luxury retirement community . . . and not from natural causes.

Ruth Mosby is the VP of operations at Serenity Acres, where the privileged elite go to die. For a hefty fee, wealthy retirees can live the good life in this posh Santa Barbara community—even after they outlive their money. Ruth thinks this is a fine arrangement, but the savvy new boss has a new rule: if you can't pay, you can't stay.

Ruth is deeply disturbed when destitute residents start dying at an alarming rate, as if on cue. Even more troubling, a macabre note accompanies each departed guest. Surviving guests whisper about an "Angel" who assists with suicides. Ruth has another word for it: murder.

Ruth enlists her neighbor, an ex-detective named Zach, to discover the Angel's secret identity. However, the two have a painful history, and Ruth has dark secrets all her own. To solve the mystery, Ruth must descend from her golden tower—but can she bear the consequences of revealing her own sinister truths?





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Ruth Mosby and Zach Richards have been friends and neighbors for more than 30 years. Zach bore witness to Ruth's divorce, her son's gradual decline into depression and drugs, and the tenuous relationship Ruth has had with her adult children. Ruth witnessed the tragic loss of Zach's only child, the death of his wife by suicide, his battle with alcoholism, and the eventual loss of his job with the local police department. The years have impacted them both in very different ways. Zach is relatively laid back and able to see all sides of an issue without prejudice. Ruth has become very rigid and structured in her life, adhering to the rules above all else. The one shining light in Ruth's life is her job at Serenity Acres, but now that seems to be in jeopardy when her boss retires, a coworker is promoted above her, the company is sold, and the elderly that were put in the company's care appear to be murdered by an "angel of mercy." Ruth is at a loss at how to deal with her new boss, the new company and their new rules, her son's reappearance in her life. Then Zach gets hired as security at Serenity and then talks her into getting her son, Adam, hired on to work in the kitchens. All seems well until another murder takes place and both Adam and Zach have something to hide. Can their secrets be any worse than the secret that Ruth and Zach have been hiding for years? Can Ruth and Zach protect their secrets, protect Adam, and uncover the identity of the "angel of mercy" before it's too late for them all?

I initially found What She Never Said by Catharine Riggs to be a bit of slow read or at least slow-paced read for me simply because it took me quite some time to get invested in the action and characters. Of course, I was also dealing with a series of migraine headaches at the time and my sleep patterns where completely out-of-whack, so I don't know if that had anything to do with it or not (we'll presume it did). This story is presented from the perspective of Ruth Mosby, Zach Richards, and the Angel. I rather enjoyed the chapters dealing with Zach and the Angel's perspectives but struggled with Ruth simply because I found her to be hyper-critical, judgmental, and not a very likable character. Normally that doesn't bother me, but for some reason, I had issues with Ruth. However, once I hit about the halfway point in the story, my reading seemed to pick up the pace and I began to empathize a bit with Ruth. She isn't a mean-spirited person, simply someone that's struggling with guilt and it manifests in a strange way - her rigidly adhering to the rules (trust me when you read the book, this will all make sense). There are so many themes discussed in this story, elder care, assisted suicide, drug addiction, the many facets and presentations of depression, family drama, workplace drama, and, of course, murder and suspense. After reading What She Never Said, which can be read as a stand-alone although it is part of a series, I've added What She Gave Away to my TBR list. I encourage you to add What She Never Said by Catharine Riggs to your TBR list, especially if you're a fan of suspense stories featuring family angst and drama. 



Disclaimer: I received a free digital review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. I was not paid, required, or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."



Author Bio:


Catharine Riggs
Catharine Riggs lives and writes on California's central coast. Before her dive into thrillers, Riggs worked as a business banker, adjunct college instructor, and a nonprofit executive. What She Never Said is the second novel in her loosely linked Santa Barbara Suspense series. The first, What She Gave Away, was published by Thomas & Mercer in September of 2018.


Catch Up With Catharine Riggs On:


www.CatharineRiggs.com, Goodreads, & BookBub, Twitter!




Tour Participants:


Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!







Enter To Win!:




This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Catharine Riggs. There will be 4 winners. Two (2) winners will each receive one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card and Two (2) winners will each receive one (1) print copy of What She Never Said by Catharine Riggs. The giveaway begins on August 18, 2019, and runs through September 22, 2019. Open to U.S. addresses only. Void where prohibited.

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Wednesday, September 11, 2019

2019 Book 275: THE LIES WE TELL by Debra Webb

The Lies We Tell, The Undertaker's Daughter #2, by Debra Webb 
ISBN: 9780778308317 (paperback)
ISBN: 9781488085802 (ebook)
ISBN: 9781974966417 (audiobook)
ISBN: 9781974966424 (audiobook on CD)
ASIN: B07L6YKZHG (Kindle edition)
Publication date: September 17, 2019 
Publisher: MIRA Books


Nothing hurts like the truth.

Doctor Rowan Dupont knows a serial killer is coming for her. Julian Addington has been waiting. Watching. And it's only a matter of time before he strikes. But what Julian doesn't know is that Rowan is ready for him. And more than anything she wants answers. How well did the depraved killer actually know her mother? And how many lies have been spun in the years since she took her own life?

Working alongside her childhood friend Police Chief Billy Brannigan, Rowan is determined to get to the bottom of her mother's puzzling suicide once and for all—even if it means exposing an unsettling past. It certainly seems like her family's Victorian funeral home has borne witness to more than one dark secret, but when a recent double homicide leads to an even grislier discovery, separating the truth from the lies might be the last thing Rowan does. 





Purchase Links:  IndieBound  |  Amazon  |  Amazon Kindle  |  Barnes and Noble  |  B&N Audiobook  |  B&N Nook  |  BookDepository  |  Books-A-Million  |  eBooks  |  !ndigo Books  |  Kobo eBook  |  Kobo Audiobook  


Rowan Dupont's life has been turned upside down several times in her life. Her twin sister drowns, her mother commits suicide, and then Rowan attempts suicide. Rowan's mentor, Dr. Julian Addington, was instrumental in getting her life back on track and on her studies in psychiatry. Little did Rowan know, but Julian Addington had been a fixture in her life well before her suicide attempts. Addington apparently knew Rowan's mother, and his own daughter was killed in the same area where Rowan's twin drowned. Now Addington is the prime suspect in Rowan's father's murder as well as the murder of her coworker in Nashville. Rowan resigns from the Nashville Police Department and returns to Winchester, Tennessee to reluctantly take over her family's funeral home. But her home isn't the safe place she presumed as a previous mortuary assistant and one of her father's best friends has been arrested for dealing in body parts. Although the Dupont Funeral Home wasn't investigated, the scandal still taints the funeral home. And Rowan still has a serial killer after her. The only thing left for Rowan to do is to use her knowledge of Addington along with her years of psychiatric experience to help her childhood best friend and Winchester chief of Police, Billy Brannigan, snare Addington. Just when it seems like Rowan is uncovering answers to the questions she has about her mother and Addington, more unanswered questions arise and then a body is taken from the mortuary. What possible link could this recently deceased man have with Rowan's mother since she's been dead for years? Can Rowan and Billy find the answers to all of Rowan's questions and protect her life before Addington strikes again?

The Lies We Tell is the second book in the Undertaker's Daughter series (third if you count the prequel novella). Rowan Dupont isn't a wilting Southern Belle out to be saved from the bad guy. She's the type to grab her weapon and go out looking for the bad guy before he can find her. Given the fact she isn't a law enforcement officer, I enjoyed this facet of her personality. I also enjoyed the kindling romantic attraction between Rowan and Billy. This attraction or romance isn't the main component of the story, but it does spice things up just a bit. There's quite a bit happening in The Lies We Tell including murder, theft of a body, discovery of a cache of dead bodies (read the book to learn more about this fascinating bit of the story), and more. This story provides quite a bit of mystery and intrigue, a bit of mayhem and mischief, a few murders, and a little bit of romance...something for everyone. I've previously read and reviewed The Secrets We Bury, the first book in this series, so I was excited when I received the opportunity to read and review The Lies We Tell. Something tells me I'll be reading both books again, along with the prequel novella The Undertaker's Daughter before the third book in this series is released next year, The Darkness We Hide. If you're into mystery thrillers with a hint of romance, then I encourage you to grab a copy of The Secrets We Bury and The Lies We Tell for your next long weekend. (Can you tell I enjoyed reading The Lies We Tell?)


Disclaimer: I received a free digital review copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss+. I was not paid, required, or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Saturday, September 7, 2019

2019 Book 270: ICE COLD HEART by P. J. Tracy

Ice Cold Heart, Monkeewrench #10, by P. J. Tracy 
ISBN: 9781643851327 (hardcover)
ISBN: 9781643851334 (ebook)
ASIN: B07NTX8TGH (Kindle edition)
Publication date: September 10, 2019 
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books



On a bitterly cold winter night, Kelly Ramage leaves her suburban home, telling her husband she's going to meet a friend.

She never comes back.

When her body is discovered, murdered in what seems to be a sex game gone horribly wrong, Detectives Gino and Magozzi take the case, expecting to find a flirtatious trail leading straight to the killer.

However, Kelly's sinister lover has done a disturbingly good job of hiding his identity. This isn't his first victim - and that she won't be the last...





Purchase Links:  IndieBound  |  Amazon  |  Amazon Kindle  |  Barnes and Noble  |  B&N Nook  |  BookDepository  |  Books-A-Million  |  eBooks  |  !ndigo Books  |  Kobo eBook 



Grace MacBride and Leo Magozzi are enjoying a quiet winter with their lovely five-month-old daughter, Elizabeth. The Monkeewrench gang are also having a blast spoiling the daughter, aka princess, of their friend as well, especially Annie Belinsky and Harley Davidson. Roadrunner, yes that's his legal name, enjoys the baby, but isn't quite sure what to do with her just yet. The Monkeewrench team is working on a cryptocurrency theft, while Magozzi and his police partner, Gino Rolseth, are delighting in a homicide-free break. Of course, as soon as Magozzi says he's enjoying the homicide-free break, a homicide occurs and it does so right after a so-called psychic comes into the station to forwarn him and Gino of an impending murder. The victim was apparently exploring a BDSM relationship outside the boundaries of her marriage and was found handcuffed to a bed, tortured, and her head wrapped in duct tape. The strange thing was that there were no signs of an apparent sexual component. When Magozzi and Gino discover that there was a similar crime over a thousand miles away and it appeared to be linked to an art show that their victim attended they begin to wonder if this is one coincidence too many. Just when it seems like there are too many coincidences and random occurrences happening with this case, Roadrunner saves the life of one of his neighbors who just happens to be a friend of the psychic who just happens to be the next murder victim. What does this all have to do with the strange and twisted art of one seriously introverted artist? What, if anything, ties all of this to a sadistic war criminal in the former Czech Republic? What does cryptocurrency have to do with any of this? Will Magozzi, Gino, and the Monkeewrench crew be able to figure things out before someone else dies or is this criminal too smart and too fast to be caught?

Grace, Annie, Harley, and Roadrunner have come a long way since the first book in the Monkeewrench series. They are all a bit more trusting of law enforcement and willing to work with agencies across the United States by offering free software to help these agencies stop and capture criminals. Grace is in a stable, romantic relationship and has softened quite a bit since the birth of her daughter, Elizabeth. She still carries a firearm with her at all times, but she's down to one gun instead of two (massive improvement). Annie and Harley are still at the bickering push-pull stage of their relationship and it is questionable if it will ever develop into anything beyond that. Roadrunner has remained an enigma throughout these books and remains so, but Ice Cold Heart reveals a bit more about his background and softens him quite a bit with his attraction to his neighbor, Petra. Magozzi and Gino are the perfect cop partnership in that they complement one another in almost every way, know each other's weaknesses, and have one another's backs when necessary. Ice Cold Heart is the tenth book in the Monkeewrench series and the characters now seem like old friends. I enjoyed the international component to this story with the vicious and sadistic Czech war criminal, the incorporation of the cryptocurrency theft, and of course the ever popular murder, mayhem, mischief, and mystery. For those of you that have read and enjoyed the previous books in the Monkeewrench series, I encourage you to grab a copy of Ice Cold Heart to read. For those of you that have never read the Monkeewrench series but enjoy reading topical mystery thrillers that incorporate a bit of high-tech to spice things up, then I encourage you to add all of the books in this series to your TBR list. I hope there will be more to read in the Monkeewrench series in the future. You know how much I love to reread books, so yes you guessed it, I'll have to comfort myself by re-reading the entire series from book 1, Monkeewrench through to book 10, Ice Cold Heart while I wait. I only hope you enjoy this series as much as I do. Happy Reading, y'all!


Disclaimer: I received a free digital review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. I was not paid, required, or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Book Showcase: THE SEA OF JAPAN by Keita Nagano

The Sea of Japan by Keita Nagano
ISBN: 9781684630127 (paperback)
ISBN: 9781684630134  (ebook)
ASIN: B07L96R7HG (Kindle edition)
Publisher:  Spark Press
Release Date: September 3, 2019


After fleeing a disastrous teaching job (and a bad gambling habit) in Boston, Lindsey starts teaching English in Hime, a small fishing town in Japan. One morning, while trying to snap the perfect ocean sunrise photo for her mother, she slips off a rock at the edge of Toyama Bay, hits her head, and plunges into the sea—and in doing so, sets off an unexpected chain of events.

When Lindsey comes to in the hospital, she learns that she owes her life to a young man named Ichiro—a local fisherman who also happens to be the older brother of one of her students. She begins to spend time with her lifesaver, and in the ensuing months, she becomes increasingly enmeshed in her new life: when she is not busy teaching, she splits her time between an apprenticeship with the local master sushi chef and going out fishing with Ichiro. As she and Ichiro grow closer, however, she also learns that not all is well in Hime, and she is drawn into a war to stop the town next door from overfishing their shared bay. Soon, she, Ichiro, and her pastrami-obsessed best friend, Judy—the person who talked Lindsey into coming to Japan in the first place—are spending all their free time working together to rescue the town. But when their efforts backfire, Hime gets closer to falling apart—putting Lindsey's friends, her budding relationship with Ichiro, and her career in jeopardy. To save Hime, Lindsey realizes, she'll have to become a true American fisherwoman and fight for her new home with everything she has.





Purchase Links:  IndieBound  |  Amazon  |  Amazon Kindle  |  Barnes and Noble  |  B&N Nook  |  BookDepository  |  Books-A-Million  |   !ndigo  |  Kobo eBook



Praise:

"Love, survival, conflict…Lindsey runs wild in The Sea of Japan. When her loved ones are attacked, her American spirit stands tall. When her friends are in danger, her Japanese fans get united. The Hollywood-like climax where Lindsey competes in a fishing duel will leave you hanging on the edge of your seat." — Tetsu Fujimura, Executive producer of Ghost in the Shell (Starring Scarlett Johansson)


"Keita Nagano has created a fascinating tale blending the best of two literary worlds, the American and the Japanese. It is a story of friendship, transformation, and journey for the meaning of life. What's really marvelous about this novel is the unique style with its apparent simplicity and deep meaning. A true Japanese delight." — Elvira Baryakina, author of Russian Treasures series

"Win or lose. Sports are loved by Americans because they're tough and challenging, just like this story. At the climax of the book, the readers are on Lindsey's fishing competition boat with her, watching her struggle to save the people she loves and get justice for her adopted town. Imagine you are standing on the 10-meter high diving board. The tension is just that, on the beautiful Sea of Japan." — Thomas Gompf, 1964 Tokyo Olympic Medalist & Former President of United States Aquatic Sports.



Read an excerpt:


#1

The mountains were also still covered with white-silver snow, reflecting on the Sea of Japan.

It was still half-dark and chilly. I brought whiskey to keep me warm while I waited for the sunrise. It worked perfectly. I gently played some smooth jazz from my iPhone and sipped whiskey.

Finally, the tip of the sun appeared on the horizon, illuminating the dark sky. The orange light even illuminated the white snow on top of the Tateyama Mountains beyond the dark ocean. It was the most beautiful sunrise I had ever seen.

This was going to be the best scenery picture for Mom. I stood up and got the camera ready. But the rock was slippery, and as I stood, I lost my footing. I fell off the rock, hitting my head hard. I was thrown into the sea.

The last thing I saw before I lost consciousness was the water rising over my head.

Excerpt from The Sea of Japan by Keita Nagano. Copyright © 2019 by Keita Nagano. All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.



Meet the author

Keita Nagano is an award-winning Japanese author who has lived almost equally in Nevada and Tokyo—more than twenty years in each place—and reflects the difference of the two cultures in his novels. He has a bachelor's degree in economics from Keio University in Japan, as well as an MBA in global business and Ph.D. in management from Walden University in Minnesota. 

The pursuit of the authentic American experience is his hobby: he has been to all fifty states, all thirty major league ballparks, and the top sixty big cities in America. He has published seventeen business nonfiction and eight fiction books in Japan. In 2013, he received a Nikkei (Japanese Wall Street Journal) Award for Contemporary Novel for his missing-child thriller, Kamikakushi. He is also an official weekly columnist for Forbes Japan

Nagano lives in Henderson, Nevada, with his wife and Welsh corgi, and their teenage daughter is currently studying in Tennessee. 


Connect with the author via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and his website



This excerpt and blog tour brought to you by PR by the Book

Monday, September 2, 2019

Book Showcase: SILENT VOICES by Fran Lewis

Silent Voices

by Fran Lewis

on Tour September 1-30, 2019


Synopsis:


Silent Voices by Fran Lewis


Driving down a rocky road I saw the overgrown grass, weeds, and poison ivy overtaking the outer perimeter of the bushes. The smell of mildew permeated the air, along with the stench of animals killed by cars coming up from the ground along this dirt road. I could see the sadness on the faces in the cars behind me; I could feel the pain and sorrow. As I looked inside the cars and saw the faces of the drivers, I began to wonder what they were thinking, their thoughts and feelings as they traveled down life's highway, maybe for the very last time.

What stories lay behind the faces behind the wheel of each oncoming car?

What stories were hidden?

Whose voices are now silenced?



Reviews:



"Unique, haunting, terrifying, incredibly moving: Fran Lewis' Silent Voices is all that and more as people tell spell-binding stories of their lives - and their deaths - from beyond the grave. You won't forget this one!" - R.G. Belsky, award-winning author of the Clare Carlson mystery series.


"Silent Voices is a shrewd, sensitive and scintillating collection of short stories that make us feel and think. Noted talk show host Fran Lewis proves herself to be as skilled a storyteller as she is a listener, adept at both tugging on our heartstrings and exposing the raw emotion between the lines. Her tales reach beyond the grave in fashioning rich tapestries drawn on a sprawling landscape at once both rich in color and gray-toned. A can't miss effort certain to live with you far beyond the turn of the final page." - Jon Land, USA Today bestselling author


"Once again, Fran Lewis knocks it out of the park with the latest in the Silent Voices series. At once chilling, but also inspirational, these stories do not fail to entertain. They will also raise the goosebumps on your skin. Prepare to be thrilled." - Vincent Zandri, New York Times bestselling Thriller Award-winning author of The Remains and The Caretaker's Wife



Book Details:


Genre: Horror, Suspense
Published by: Southern Owl Publications, LLC
Publication Date: June 10th 2019
Number of Pages: 51
ASIN: B07S75JPQW
Series: Silent Voices
Purchase Links: Amazon | Goodreads



Author Bio:



Fran Lewis
Fran Lewis taught for 36 years as a staff developer in reading and writing and a dean. She is the author of the Bertha and Tillie series and the author of the Faces Behind The Stones series as well as her books for caregivers on Alzheimer's and MJ magazine and MJ network.

Catch Up With Fran Lewis On:



tillie49.wordpress.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Twitter, & Facebook!


Tour Participants:



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