Dec 292018
 


I found this book on my shelf. It did not arrive in time to offer as a giveaway when I reviewed the book so I am rerunning my review with a giveaway today! 

 

The Yellow Rose Beauty Shop
The Cadillac Series

Romantic Comedy/Women’s Fiction
3rd in Series
Setting – Texas
Montlake Romance (July 14, 2015)
Paperback: 313 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1477830604
E-Book ASIN: B00S6Z3S8C

 

 

Stella’s mama never should’ve put Stella on the church prayer list. With Stella’s twenty-seventh birthday coming up fast, Nancy desperately wants to see her daughter married and giving her grandbabies. Petitioning heaven seems like a surefire way to get it done. But in Cadillac, Texas, where the gossip’s hotter than the city’s famous jalapeño peppers, it isn’t long before all hell breaks loose.

Heather, the bossy leader of the church’s Prayer Angels, thinks a summer ball will get Stella and the town’s other single gals paired off. But nobody can tell redheaded spitfire Stella what to do—not her mama, not Heather, and not even the sexy beau Stella’s been seeing in secret. Together, Stella, her best friends Charlotte and Piper, and the loyal customers of the Yellow Rose Beauty Shop hatch a good old-fashioned scheme to sabotage the ball. But will it wreck Stella’s relationship with her mama forever? And what will the church folk think when Stella reveals the identity of her mystery man?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I did not know this was a series when I purchased it but I had no trouble following the characters or the story.

Welcome to Cadillac Texas, where everyone knows your business and gossip runs rampant. Nancy wants her daughter to get married and start giving her grandchildren. So at the weekly meeting of the “prayer angels” at her church, she asks them to “prayer for my daughter, she needs a husband”. No one was more surprised that Stella when her mother’s request was posted for all the world to see on the sign in front of the church.  Add the that, the head of the group thinks the way to help Stella is to have a gala ball and maybe she can help other singles as well. Stella and her friends Charlotte and Piper run The Yellow Rose Beauty Shop so Stella has to face the public every day. Why in the world did her mother put in this predicament? There is no way she is going along with this. She already has a man in her life, but she is not ready to make her relationship public just yet. So, she and her friends are going to do anything they can to sabotage this ball/barn dance.

This story is a HILARIOUS HOOT!

Set in a small southern town all the characters are very realistic. They could be in a small town anywhere with the exception of the dialogue that I read hearing a bit of southern twang. There is a bit of swearing, the sh*t word is used frequently but it fits with the characters and the story.

Heather, the head of the “prayer angels” really doesn’t like Nancy or Stella. She has dreams way beyond Cadillac and she will use just about anyone and anything to make her dream come true. Stella and  Nancy are the typical mother and daughter, but Stella is not ready to forgive and forget the position her mother has put her in. Agnes Flynn is a redhead like Stella, and at 80 years old she still likes to be right in the mix of all the drama especially if she is the one creating it. Some of her one-liners had me laughing out loud. Stella, Charlotte, Piper, Nancy, and Agnes compare themselves to the characters in Steel Magnolias and that hits the nail right on the head.

At the heart, this is a story of friendship and the friend’s romances and family life. A funny and heartwarming story with some fun and sassy characters set in the hotter than hot Cadillac Texas right in the middle of the summer. With the temp getting lower and lower here in Wisconsin, I enjoyed the virtual heat and always love a happy ending.

This is my first Carolyn Brown story but it definitely will not be my last. I have already ordered The Blue-Ribbon Jalapeño Society Jubilee, book 1 in this series. 

 

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

You can find out more about Carolyn Brown and her books on her webpage here.


You can find more of Carolyn Brown’s books on Amazon here.

I have 1 copy to give away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Follow Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

Leave a comment for the author for 5 Bonus Entries.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End January 12, 2019, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Nov 222016
 

I reviewed the 2nd book in this series back in September and loved it so I jumped at the chance when the author asked me to review this one.

christmas-morning
Christmas Morning: A Cape Harriet Novel
Women’s Fiction – Romance- Holiday
Setting – Virginia
Self Published
Print Length: 334 pages
ASIN: B01M3U4FBO
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A cozy, heartwarming Christmas Story, full of holiday cheer – Christmas Morning will make you believe in the power of true love

Christmas has come to Cape Harriet, and this year, it’s all about second chances! Christmas Morning is an emotionally gripping novel that will light a fire in your heart and make you want to fall in love again.

James & Sandhya have found unexpected love, but their future will be decided by a tormented child. A newly married couple find their vows tested to the limit. A wounded vet finds himself in a Christmas nightmare.

Zadie’s dishing up special Christmas treats, and the town is decked up for the holidays. As the mercury dips, everyone eagerly awaits Christmas Morning.

Stoke up the fire, have a warm drink at hand, and snuggle up to enjoy this sweet contemporary romance, spiced up with a dash of intrigue.

*includes festive recipes from Zadie’s kitchen

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This story brings back together the couple the met at the Rising Tides Inn in the novella that started the series, Clipper Beach. (A story I intended to read before I jumped into this one but completely forgot to do. I caught up pretty fast.) James & Sandhya return to Cape Harriet to celebrate the holidays with owners Pete and Zadie Strathmore. The Inn has a few other guests too including a young couple with a baby and a man recovering from some injuries. Sandhya’s 12 year old daughter also comes to the cape for the holidays. Zadie and Pete try to give them all the best Christmas they can including them in some Cape Harriet traditions.

This is one of those stories perfect for the Hallmark Network. A new romance with some bumps to endure that can bring a couple even closer. A man with a traumatic event in his past trying to recover not only from his physical injuries but his emotional ones as well. A young family with a secret that could tear them apart or bring them together. Pete and Zadie standing by with comfort, advice and so much delicious food.

Roma Brooks brings her characters to life in such a realistic way. They are all engaging and people I wanted to get to know better. Pete and Zadie seem to be salt of the earth type people who take everything in stride. So warm and welcoming, Pete spends a lot of time with Leena, Sandhya’s daughter who had been living with her grandmother while single mom Sandhya focused on her career. The Strathmore’s know her coming to Virginia is stressful on not only her and her mother but James as he wants them to all be a family. Zadie and Pete also try to get Dylan to open up about his pain and maybe open his heart just a little bit. They don’t butt in to what Trey and Muffy are struggling with but let them proceed at their own pace and be available to them if needed, well maybe just a little push here and there. We get to know these characters on such a personal level thanks to some excellent writing by Ms. Brooks.

In addition to the wonderful people at at inn, the story focuses on the food they are eating. Whether Zadie is cooking up something delicious or they stop by a local eatery, the descriptions had my mouth watering. There are recipes included in the book but like Sandhya cooking is not my strongest talent so I probably wouldn’t do them justice.  Zadie does have some interesting foodie ideas for Christmas too.

It seems the Rising Tides Inn is a wonderful getaway no matter what time of the year. It is a place I would love to visit in reality but these little virtual excursions will have to do. I am ready to pack my things and head there right now. I am sure Thanksgiving is a great time in Cape Harriet, but I am willing to travel there at anytime. I hope the author doesn’t make us wait too long for our next escape to the cape!

Fantastic location, believable characters, and food, glorious food! If you need a story to get you in the holiday spirit this one is absolutely perfect!

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author
Roma Brooks writes stories featuring real life characters, the kind you would come across in your own family. Her books will make you laugh, cry, love, hate and bite your nails. She dreams of retiring to a seaside town like Cape Harriet where the gentle waves of the ocean lull you into sweet dreams.


Click the covers to order from Amazon.
Christmas Morning is just 99 cents!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Nov 052016
 

I am pleased to introduce you to this
new author, Stacy Cotter.
Her debut novel was just released this week.

harris-estate

Harris Estate: Some Secrets Can’t be Buried
Fiction/Mystery/Drama/Romance
3L Publishing (November 1, 2016)
Paperback: 217 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0996677639
E-Book ASIN: B01M3VZ2UL
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About the Book

A family mystery unfolds deep in the heart of Texas as a grisly discovery is made in the farmhouse that a young woman has inherited. As the truth unravels so does the woman’s sense of identity and self.

Leah Murphy arrives in the small town of Oakdale, Texas with the intention of selling the Harris Estate, a property left to her by her Uncle Kent Harris. She soon learns about hidden family secrets buried in the dark reaches of the decaying old farmhouse. A grisly discovery on the property sparks an investigation with local authorities, which opens up Pandora’s box. Leah’s entire identity falls apart as her family becomes a jigsaw puzzle of new pieces rearranged and fit back together. During these trials and tribulations, her marriage is tested, her desires are amplified, and she has decisions to make that will affect everyone she loves.

Harris Estate is a cryptic and intriguing story of betrayal, buried secrets, and a woman’s life come undone.

Frequent Asked Questions

What is the Harris Estate about?
Harris Estate is an alluring mystery that takes our protagonist, Leah Murphy, from San Francisco, California to Oakdale, Texas when she inherits a long abandoned ranch estate. A grisly discovery on the property sparks an investigation with local authorities, which opens up Pandora’s box and everything Leah knew about her life is changed forever. During the trials and
tribulations, her marriage is tested, her desires are amplified, and she has
decisions to make that will affect everyone she loves.

Why did you write the book?

In January, my grandmother passed away at the age of 96. We celebrated her life and the love that she gave to all of us. Like many people after losing someone special, I found myself analyzing my life, past, present and future. A week after the service, I was on a several-days-long road trip for work when I drove past an abandoned farmhouse. My mind and imagination went into overdrive as I was curious what had taken place there over the past decades. By the time I finished work and was checked into my hotel, I had a blank Word document in front of me begging for words. That night I wrote the first chapter of Harris Estate and had the entire novel written within just a few weeks. The story and words just poured out of me, sometimes faster than I could fathom. Writing a novel was something that I had always wanted to do, but there was always an excuse or reason not to do it.

Who is your favorite character in the Harris Estate and why?
The story is centered around our lead character, Leah Murphy, who I would deem as my favorite character in Harris Estate. Being a wife, mother and associate of a family-run IT Firm makes Leah a very busy, yet relatable character. So many of us are constantly juggling various activities in our daily life, I felt that it was vital for our main character to be someone that we could all relate to.

What theme in the book do you hope readers understand and take away from it?

I’m in hopes that the reader enjoys taking a wild ride that makes them question what they might do in the various scenarios that our characters are thrown into. My goal is for them to experience the same range of emotions: shock, fear, humor, passion and vengeance. Harris Estate, is the type of book that allows you to escape the day-to-day stresses of life, and take you into another person’s life of challenges and personal strife.

This book is your first novel. What are your plans for the future?
Writing Harris Estate has opened up a door that I had always kept securely closed. Taking the risk and finally jumping in with both feet, has freed my imagination and put it into overdrive. Since the decision was made to publish, I have gone ahead and written several more stories. Harris Estate, The Aftermath, is the sequel and the conclusion to Harris Estate. That novel has already been written and it is in the final editing phase. Closure, a heart-wrenching novel of mystery and revenge, has been written and I am optimistic for release in 2017. Finally, The Faithful One, is an in-depth philosophical novel that takes symbolism to another level and offers the reader a way to analyze their lives and how they live it. That is currently in the works and more are coming to mind each and every day.

stacy-cotterABOUT THE AUTHOR – STACEY COTTER

Stacey Cotter has a degree in psychology and business administration, which led her to a career path in long-term care. With a passion for literature, several stories had been in her mind for years, but weren’t ready to come out until now. Harris Estate was worth the wait, as it is her first published novel. The sequel, Harris Estate, The Aftermath, will be forthcoming in late 2016. Closure, a new fictional mystery, will follow in 2017. Stacey lives with her husband and two children.

Visit Stacey on Facebook and on Twitter @StaceyCotter5

You can purchase Harris Estate at Amazon and B&N

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Mar 022016
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am conflicted over this post. I strive to share with you original content on my blog, especially when it comes to guest posts from authors. It was recently came to my attention that some posts from authors, that I was given, were also being posted on other blogs. One person even emailed me to ask why I had stolen the post from another blogger. I had not stolen the post; it was the post sent to me by the publicist for me to, what I thought was, solely use. I didn’t realize the same post was sent to several other bloggers.

In the future I am going to make sure I personally contact the authors myself, to guarantee the content is new, fresh, and solely for my use.  Since I have committed to the posts for this month already and I do what to share the books with you, as well as to help the authors promote their books, I will use the content sent to me already. So from now on if I receive a post from a publicist the post will be prominently labeled as such, so that you will be alert to the fact that it may not have only been sent to me. If I review the book, that of course is original from me.

Lori

I am thrilled to have Denise visit today! 
This post was provided by the publicist.

Denise Swanson Author PhotoThe Top Five Reasons I Love Libraries

As a writer, I know the importance of libraries. But before I ever dreamed of becoming a published author, I was a little girl living in a small town. An only child, living on a farm with no neighbors within walking distance, I suffered panic attacks if I didn’t have a pile of books waiting for me to read.

Which was why, when I heard about all the libraries being closed due to lack of funding, I decided to focus the plot of my next Devereaux’s Dime Store mystery on the offer of a philanthropist to reopen the Shadow Bend Library.

Like me, my sleuth Dev, grew up on a farm outside of town, so she too would have depended on the library for entertainment, knowledge, and companionship. Knowing that it was important to the story that she feels conflicted about the library re-opening, I decided that the philanthropist would turn out to be her stepfather. A man she’d never met, married to the woman who had abandoned Dev and run off seeking greener pastures.

BETWEEN A BOOK AND A HARD PLACENext, I took a good hard look at what libraries meant to their towns in the twenty-first century versus what they had been when I was growing up in the late sixties and early seventies. I found out that in this ever increasing digital world, the role of libraries are undervalued. Many public officials have no idea that libraries are community and cultural centers and when there’s a shortfall in the budgets, libraries are among the first institutions to suffer.

With this in mind, I came up with the Top Five Reasons I Love Libraries

1. Libraries can strengthen a community’s bond. Libraries, especially in small towns, are one of the few remaining places where folks from diverse backgrounds can gather to interact.

2. Libraries are centers for the arts. In rural communities there are few places where creative souls can freely express themselves.

3. Libraries are safe places for children and adolescents to socialize and learn how to interact. Unlike Dev’s dime store, most businesses don’t like kids or teens hanging out. The library does.

4. Libraries are quiet. In today’s busy world with people shouting into cell phones or screaming at each other, a library provides a refuge from all the noise pollution.

5. Libraries are where the librarians hang out and librarians are special people sweet, who are knowledgeable, and great at coming up with suggestions for new books and authors to check out.

With that in mind, I wrote Between a Book and a Hard Place. It saddened me that because of the way the plot developed, I was going to have to deprive Dev’s hometown of the library they were counting on regaining. But rest assured, sometime in the near future, like the next book, Shadow Bend will get its library and it will be bigger and better than ever. Because as we all know every town needs a good library.

~Denise

Thanks you Denise for visiting today! 

Find Denise at www.DeniseSwanson.com
Facebook at www.facebook.com/#!/DeniseSwansonAuthor
Twitter at DeniseSwansonAu


Denise Swanson also writes the Scumble River Mysteries. You can find them all here.

 BETWEEN A BOOK AND A HARD PLACEBetween a Book and a Hard Place:
A Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery

Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – Missouri
An Obsidian Mystery (March 1, 2016)
Published by New American Library
An Imprint of Penguin Random House LLC
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0451477767
E-Book ASIN: B00Z8VTQT2
goodreads-badge-add-plusShop Indie Bookstores

Five-and-dime store owner Devereaux “Dev” Sinclair moved to Shadow Bend for her family. But when her long-lost mother shows up in town, she realizes too much kin can be killer…

Shadow Bend’s library closed years ago because of budgetary problems, so when a wealthy benefactor offers to reopen it, everyone, including Dev, is thrilled. But Dev’s excitement wanes when she realizes the mysterious donor is actually her runaway mother Yvette’s latest husband, Jett Benedict.

Dev suspects that Yvette and Jett’s intentions aren’t as noble as they appear, but before she can discover what they’re really up to, Jett turns up dead—and all clues point to Yvette as the prime suspect.

Even though Dev has no loyalty to Yvette, she’s in a bind. Setting the record straight could prove her mother is a killer. But doing nothing might get her mother booked for a crime she didn’t commit…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A tangled web, Dev’s mom returns to Shadow Bend and it is a complete surprise to Dev but not a surprise to everyone. Her mother, Yvette, moved on years ago leaving Dev behind. Why come back now? and with another new husband? Dev is on high alert, her mother is up to something. Her husband Jett has offered a huge amount of money to reopen and refurbish the town’s library. He says he is a history buff and all he asks is that he be able to do a little research in the library’s archives. Before he can delve too deeply someone kills him and Yvette is the prime suspect but Dev and her dad could be on the suspect list as well. Dev doesn’t really want to help her mom but she would do anything for her dad so she is going to track down the real killer and be sure he is booked for murder.

I whipped right through this story. Unlike the the last  installment Noah and Jake are both back in town vying for Dev’s affection. Things get a little steamy with both of them but they both have their share of excess baggage. She is going to have to choose one or set them both free soon, but I certainly don’t know what I would do in her situation. It does make for fascinating reading.

The author gives us a fun mystery to solve too. One that takes us visiting all over Shadow Bend and searching back in history too. You know Missouri was kind of split during the Civil War and Shadow Bend families were also affected. I loved tagging along following the clues and putting the pieces together.

Denise Swanson writes a fantastic story with characters I have grown to care about. She fills the story with mystery, mayhem, suspense, and a liberal dose of romance and romantic tension. Seriously, those guys are going to come to blows one day 🙂

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY
Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

This year I am trying to build my Twitter following so for this giveaway 4 Bonus Entries will be awarded by following me on Twitter. @dollycas

Leave a comment for Denise for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 16, 2016 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Feb 062015
 

great escape tour banner large death and the red headed woman640I was set to review this book later in the month but today’s blogger has disappeared from the internet so I popped myself in as a replacement. I was originally just going to post a spotlight but I squeezed the book into my reading schedule and boy I am so glad I did!

Death and the Redheaded Woman
Death and the Redheaded Woman
(An Auction Block Mystery)

Mystery
Setting – Missouri
Publisher: MIDNIGHT INK (February 8, 2015)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738743936
E-Book ASIN: B00S1MTLCW
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Next Up for Auction: Murder

When auctioneer Wren Morgan begins cataloging the contents of the Campbell mansion, she’s unprepared to find something that can’t be appraised—a dead man. After the body turns out to be a criminal with ties to a recent jewel heist, Wren comes face-to-face with Death Bogart. A private eye and part-time bounty hunter, Death is searching for the stolen jewels needed to convict a murderer.

Death finds a friend and willing ally in Wren, but they aren’t the only ones searching for treasure. Two ruthless men are also on the hunt, and they will do anything to eliminate the competition. To survive, Death and Wren must solve two mysteries spanning a century and a half and outwit a pair of cold-blooded killers.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This book is just amazing! When a book starts out with

He was gorgeous and he was naked but, unfortunately, he was dead.

you sit up and pay attention because you have not idea where this story is going to take you. But I quickly knew this was going to be an extremely entertaining read.

Wren Morgan is an assistant auctioneer. She arrived at the Campbell Victorian to start an inventory of the oldest house in the county for an upcoming auction. Barely in the door she finds the dead body, something tells her this auction won’t be taking place anytime soon.

Death (Dee-th) “it’s a family name” Bogart, a private eye/bounty hunter has just arrived in town chasing down a bail jumper. Death is also a veteran, who had to leave the military for health reasons. The government is taking its good sweet time processing his military benefits so he is presently living in his Jeep Grand Cherokee. He arrives at the police station to drop off his detainee and sees Wren across the room and is immediately captivated.

The relationship that has begun between Death and Wren was a pleasure to read as they quickly grew comfortable with each other. Death has been through so much and Wren opens her heart to him. Like many war vets he not only has a physical disability, he also suffers with PTSD.  His self esteem is pretty darn low and he has a hard time accepting help. Wren knows to tread lightly and allow Death to share things with her at his own pace. She too has a bit of drama in her past and he knows she needs someone to help her get on with her life and someone she can trust. Ross was written both characters in a way that you become engaged into their lives and what they are feeling pretty rapidly.

The main mystery plot of the story is excellent. We are not only following clues to solve a murder but there are some valuable items that have gone missing and there may be a tie in to some objects that disappeared back during the Civil War. The “aha moment” was absolutely priceless and something I never saw coming.

Loretta Ross has a fantastic sense of humor and liberally injects into this story. I was smiling and giggling throughout.

The author also knows how to tempt us readers. As this story wraps up she give us just a bit of a tease of the next Auction Block Mystery.

To learn this is Loretta Ross’ debut novel just blows my mind. I don’t need an appraisal to tell you this is an author we need to watch! She is going places! I am completely SOLD!!

paradise5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

Author Photo

 

About This Author

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Death and the Redheaded Woman will be her first published novel.

My Website is at http://www.lorettasueross.com.

My blog is connected to my website at http://lorettasueross.com/blog/

My Facebook page is at https://www.facebook.com/lorettasueross

My author page at Goodreads is at https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/236665.Loretta_Ross

I’m on Twitter as @lorettasueross and my profile page is at https://twitter.com/lorettasueross

Other Purchase Links: B&N Book Depository

a Rafflecopter giveaway

In addition to the Rafflecopter above I also have
1 Print Copy of this fantastic book to giveaway!

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Loretta for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 20, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

 

Check out the rest of the tour!

Tour Participants

February 1 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Interview

February 2 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review, Guest Post, Giveaway

February 3 – The Ninja Librarian – Review

February 4 – readalot – Review

February 5 – Kelly P’s Blog – Guest Post

February 6 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – Spotlight, Giveaway

February 7 – LibriAmoriMiei – Review, Giveaway

February 8 – Jane Reads – Review, Giveaway

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Jul 252014
 

FIT-TO-BE-DEAD-set-webFit To Be Dead by Nancy G. West
(An Aggie Mundeen Mystery) (Volume 1)

Brand New Series
Cozy Mystery
Published by Henery Press (July 29, 2014)
Paperback: 280 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1940976372
E-Book will be available July 29
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Aggie Mundeen, single and pushing forty, fears nothing but middle age. When she moves from Chicago to San Antonio, she decides she better shape up before anybody discovers she writes the column, “Stay Young with Aggie.” She takes Aspects of Aging at University of the Holy Trinity and plunges into exercise at Fit and Firm.

Rusty at flirting and mechanically inept, she irritates a slew of male exercisers, then stumbles into murder. She’d like to impress the attractive detective with her sleuthing skills. But when the killer comes after her, the health club evacuates semi-clad patrons, and the detective has to stall his investigation to save Aggie’s derriere.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This story takes place in 1997 as Angie has left behind the stressful banking life in Chicago and has moved to San Antonio. She has enrolled in Graduate School and writes the Staying Fit With Angie column. Sam Vanderhoven has also moved from Chicago to San Antonio where he is a detective with the SAPD. He moved there about a year before Angie after losing his wife and child in a terrible accident.

Angie Mundeen is a very engaging character who has had some heartache in her life and she has a secret. A secret that is trying to desperately keep from her friend Sam, who could become more than just a friend.

Angie is well past the age of 30 and her body is out of shape, not a good thing for someone writing about keeping fit. She decides to join a gym to lose some weight and gain some muscle tone and life just gets crazy from there. Within moments of entering the gym she finds an unconscious woman floating in the pool.

From there the author pens an entertaining mystery. Nancy G. West has a great sense of humor, this book is really funny. Angie’s interactions with the people at gym are hilarious as she learns to use the equipment at the gym. Blended with the humor are fantastic clues that help solve the mystery with some very interesting twists.

My only negative critique would be that more groundwork needs to be laid regarding Angie’s column. Readers see her receive the letters and write her advice but we need to know where and how they are published.

West has laid a foundation with these characters that can lead to a very enjoyable cozy mystery series. I hope she meets Mr. Pilates in the next installment.

just you and a friend4 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Nancy G. West on her webpage here.

Watch for DANG NEAR DEAD (Aggie Mundeen #2) September 30, 2014

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Mar 062014
 

DEAD BETWEEN
Dead Between the Lines:
A Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery

3rd Book in Series
Cozy Romance Mystery
Obsidian (March 4, 2014)
Published by The Penguin Group
Mass Market Paperback: 272 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0451418883
E-Book File Size: 1278 KB
ASIN: B00EOARAFU
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Opening an old-fashioned five-and-dime shop in her small Missouri hometown has been a great change for Devereaux “Dev” Sinclair. But when she hosts a reading group there, she learns that bad writing can mean life or death.

To keep her new business in the black, Dev opens up her shop to local clubs. But in the first meeting of the Stepping Out Book Club, the speaker storms out after members attack his poetry’s sexism and scorn for small towns. Later that night, the poet’s body is found outside Dev’s store.

Dev can’t afford for the murder to close her down, so she does a little stepping out of her own to investigate, with help from her two sexy suitors, Dr. Noah Underwood and Deputy U.S. Marshal Jake Del Vecchio. But when the killer threatens Dev, they will have to use every trick in the book to solve the case before she becomes the final chapter in this murder mystery.…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Another great story from Denise Swanson. I categorized this one as a Cozy Romance Mystery because the romantic triangle of Dev, Dr. Noah and Deputy U.S. Marshall Jake is really the prime storyline in my opinion. With Jake back in town and thinking about making that permanent, Dev is going to have to make a decision sooner rather than later. You can only keep these two men in limbo for so long or there may a murder that will be easy to solve. Thankfully I am sure one man will back off gracefully but unhappily when she makes her decision.

I love that Dev opens up the extra room to local groups to make a little extra money. This time it is the Stepping Out Book Club that is featured when their guest speaker turns up dead way too close to the five and dime. I was surprised the entire group didn’t strike him down right in the middle of the meeting. What a first class jerk he was!! I will say that final twist that unveils the killer was jaw dropping. I did not see it coming at all.

This series is filled with very interesting characters and I can’t wait to see where the author takes them next.  The possibilities seem endless.

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Denise Swanson and her books here.
Denise Swanson – Amazon

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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Feb 142013
 

special guest heart

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

When I “met” Dan and we discussed his book we both thought today was the perfect day to share his book with you. I was excited when he agreed to stop by today too.

Writing A Novel
by Dan Chabot

Dan chabot

The best thing about writing a novel is that you actually get to create people — a privilege normally reserved to a much higher power. You can create nice people, evil people, funny people, unhappy people, regular people, irregular people.

The second best thing about writing a novel is picking names for them. What should they be called?

One of the characters in Godspeed: a love story, is named Harold Dunser. A fairly common, solid name, you might think, except that Harold Dunser was the name of my imaginary childhood friend. He lives again!

godspeed

Another character is named Ossie Puddo. An unusual name, with an unusual pedigree: He was the imaginary friend of my older brother. I often wonder if Harold and Ossie ever met. After all, they lived in the same house…

Every author has his or her own favorite method for picking character names. Mine is to reach into my past and retrieve names that meant something to me. Sometimes I combine familiar names. And sometimes I just see a name in a newspaper or on the web that has a nice ring to it and borrow it for my story.

But possible character names can pop up just about anywhere. Out on the freeway, for example, I like to watch for the signs that tell the names of the towns coming up at the next exit. Some of them when used together have a distinctive ring. That’s how Dawson Steele became a character in my book.

My wife and I had three boys. We wanted a girl, too, but it was not to be. We even had a name picked out — Amedee. Our Amedee never arrived, but a fictional one did…

And if you’re a vindictive sort, you can get even with old adversaries. A very disagreeable character in the book has the same name of somebody who tormented me in the second grade. Take that, John!

Like characters, story ideas themselves can come from unlikely places. For example, the words funeral and love story are not often found together in the same sentence, but the idea behind Godspeed: a love story is based on a tragic real-life incident that had troubled me for years.

I was a young newspaperman when a good friend wound up in the situation that confronts Derry in my novel. My friend was engaged to a lovely young woman who was struck down without warning by ovarian cancer. She had no family to speak of, so it was left to him to make funeral arrangements. In his grief and the daze induced by tranquilizers, he watched helplessly as a shabby funeral home staged an embarrassing service. The rent-a-minister mispronounced her name, fumbled her biographical details, and in general presided over an ignominious travesty. Another friend, on leaving the humiliating ceremony, hissed in his wife’s ear, “Don’t ever let this happen to me.”

As I thought about my friend’s experience, turning it over in my mind and speculating on what I would have done in that situation, the idea for a novel began to take shape. I embellished and embroidered it considerably, added some interesting characters patterned after people I knew in the newspaper business, came up with some surprising twists, and created what I hope is an inspirational, sentimental story about the resilience of the human spirit, love beyond the grave, and a faith in tomorrow.

Because of the serious theme, I had to leaven the story with some doses of humor. Much of it was provided by Derry’s stable of eccentric newspaper colleagues. One of them relates how as a little girl she asked her father why people like Charlie Chaplin walked so jerkily in those old movies, and he told her it was because that’s the way people walked in those days. In another incident, when Derry invites Amedee up to his apartment, she makes friends immediately with his dog, who is scratching furiously at an ear. “Oh, now I get it,” she says impishly. “You lured me up here, an innocent maiden, to see your itchings.” And Derry’s encounter with an earthy, profane, inner-city minister also adds some counterbalance to the overall message

But writing the book took a while. I dabbled at it here and there, writing a chapter now and then, revising it, rewriting it, but the progress was pretty slow. Then one day I read a quotation that got my attention. It said, “Most people die with their music still inside.”

That comment inspired me to finally finish the book. I certainly don’t pretend to have written a symphony, but at least I whistled a little tune! And if any of you have an idea for a book, or a poem, or a song, or any kind of a project, my advice to you is: Get going! Go do it! Sing your song!

In this era of self-publishing it’s not difficult to turn your manuscript into a finished product. The hard part is getting it noticed, because you don’t have a big publishing house and its promotional resources behind you. After you tell your friends and family about your new adventure, you’re on your own to promote it.

That’s why a lot of authors turn to reviewers like Lori. You ask them to take a look at your book, and in a perfect world maybe they’ll like it and tell others about it. A lot of authors have been ignored by agents and the big publishing houses, and yet went on to write best-sellers because bloggers like Lori noticed their work and spread the word.

So thank you, Lori, for the chance to put my book out there before your many followers. I hope they come away from it with both a smile and a tear.

~Dan

Dan, you are so welcome!! Now let me tell you more about this book!

godspeed

Godspeed: A love story
Self Published (June 20, 2012)
Contemporary Fiction/Romance
Paperback: 306 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1477435366
E-Book File Size: 469 KB
ASIN: B009JLYDDQ

Godspeed: A Love Story

Derry and Amedee meet during her first day on the job at the Milwaukee Ledger. Their love affair is intense and pure and should last forever. Life throws us curves and Derry receives a big one. Will he survive? 

Dollycas’s Thoughts
I purposely gave you a very short synopsis. I think the reason I such a powerful reaction to the story was because I read it cold, with only scant details of where the story would lead.

It is a love story of an enduring love, told in a ingenious way that really leaves the reader solving a bit of a mystery. A rich tender story filled with emotion but tempered with humor and uplifting moments that balance out what could have turned this into a very heavy story. There is a message  –  an inspirational one  –  but this really is a story about life and how one man deals with the cards he is dealt.

Beautifully written, clever characters and the stories within the story, the testimonials,  really moved me. My only criticism was when the author tried to take this old fashioned love story to a steamy place for a few paragraphs.  The story is so strong he really didn’t need to go there at all.

Have some tissues handy,  pour a nice glass wine and curl up with Godspeed. It is a love story you will truly love.

a perfect escape

5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent


About This Author
Chabot spent 35 years in the newspaper business as a writer, editor and columnist, so he is comfortable writing about big-city newsrooms, the primary setting for his inspirational tale of love and loss, despair and redemption.

He grew up in Ontonagon, Michigan, and worked for several newspapers before joining the staff of the Milwaukee Journal. For many years he was the editor of the Journal’s popular and beloved Green Sheet feature section.

Chabot and his wife, Mary Ellen, now reside in Florida. They are the parents of three grown sons and just recently welcomed a fifth grandchild.

For more information check out his webpage www.godspeed-lovestory.com

 

 

Would you like to win a copy of Godspeed?

I am giving away my review copy!!!

U.S. and CANADIAN RESIDENTS

Leave a comment for Dan for 5 Bonus Entries !

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 28, 2013 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

readalattechallenge_zps01d248d0a-z challenge 2013large2013where are you readingliterary road trip 2012

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Jan 182013
 

out of the blue

Out of the Blue
Self Published
Women’s Fiction
Print Length: 282 pages
E-Book File Size: 656 KB
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1480245461
ASIN: B009AB2U2Q

Out of the Blue

Sylvia Gardner comes from a typical dysfunctional family. Absent father and an abusive mother with men issues she projects on her daughter. After Sylvia is dumped by her very first boyfriend she becomes fixated on a much older British actor. For two years she researches the actor intensely and then takes off for the small village in England where she believes he lives. She is hoping to meet the actor and fall in love and live happily ever after. Things don’t go exactly as she had planned.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I had issues with this story on so many levels. I just can’t imagine a shy girl from Illinois  just packing up, taking off to track down a man she has only seen on television. She can barely communicate with her peers but she is going to win over this much older man.

All the characters have monumental issues. The actor’s career is going nowhere. The owner of the hotel where she stays in England is a drunk and a real pig, I understand why his wife left him. The barmaid who went to college and can only finding a job tending bar and she is living a very risky life. 

The end of the story was the best part as we meet a mature Sylvia. A Sylvia with confidence. A Sylvia who can stand on her own but then while the ending was a happy one for her it left me really disappointed.

I did enjoy the descriptions of quaint English village. The snow falling, the pubs, and the homes. But the rest of the story just missed the mark for me. 

should have stayed home

2 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Review: The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury

 Reviews 2012  Comments Off on Review: The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury
Nov 022012
 

The Bridge: A Novel
Howard Books (October 23, 2012)
Contemporary Fiction – Romance – Christian
Hardcover: 272 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1451647013

Molly Allen and Ryan Kelly were fixtures at The Bridge during their college years. Charles and Donna thought these kids would be together forever but their relationship falls apart and Molly walks away not realizing they had a rare sort of love she hasn’t found since.

Charlie and Donna Barton have run The Bridge, a bookstore, for 30 years providing wonderful books and great conversation and sometimes inspiration. Then a devastating flood sweeps through Franklin, Tennessee and destroyed almost everything in the store. They don’t have the money to restore their store or their inventory. Then the bank decides to sell the building offering the Barton’s the first chance at purchasing the property. Charlie considers the unthinkable. Then tragedy strikes, and suddenly, everything changes. In the face of desperate brokenness and lost opportunities, could the miracle of a second chance actually unfold?

Dollycas’s Thoughts
What a moving and inspirational story. A true story of second chances.

For me Charlie’s accident hit me in the heart. As a survivor of a motor vehicle accident myself, an accident I shouldn’t have survived, I am proof prayers work and miracles happen. Of course my life is still a struggle and not tied up with a pretty little bow but it stories like this one that give me hope.

It was also interesting reading this book as the East Coast was getting ready for “The Perfect Storm” and writing this review as I am seeing pictures of the devastation. The people effected by this storm will all be needing their own miracles.

This story is well written but be aware it is what I would call a novella. It is a very quick read. Be sure to have the tissues ready, you will need them. 


Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Check out Karen Kingsbury’s Webpage Here.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”

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