Thursday, July 25, 2019

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: Secrets Never Die by Laurie Lewis


ABOUT THE BOOK

Tallie Brown's life has never made any sense. Raised in isolation by her mother, Julia, Tallie was dragged suddenly and without explanation from one third-world outpost to another until life normalized seven years ago when Julia took a position on a mountaintop in the Pacific northwest. But when Julia unexpectedly dies, Tallie uncovers clues suggesting that Julia had a secret life.

Journalistic phenom Jackson James is still recovering from the devastating mistake that flatlined his promising career. Now he's paying the price, working as the editor of a syrupy community rag in a posh D.C. suburb. But when the very man who destroyed him drops a tantalizing lead about a potential D.C. scandal, the reporter sees his chance for redemption and sets off to chase the story.

Jackson's investigation leads him to Cutler's Ridge, a dying Virginia coal town, and directly into the path of the mysterious and beautiful Tallie. As these two mistrustful loners follow their leads, their stories begin to intertwine until they reach an alarming conclusion - something terrible happened in Cutler's Ridge. As they doggedly pursue the story, the town's cold reception spirals into threats and danger, proving that there are those who will stop at nothing to keep the past hidden forever - because secrets never die. 

REVIEW

Coming soon!  Haven't finished it yet. 

GIVEAWAY

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Thursday, July 18, 2019

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: The Emerald Heart of Courtenay by Anita Stansfield


ABOUT THE BOOK

The moment her father takes his final breath, Sarah Courtenay becomes the sole heir of her family's sprawling castle—and something far more unexpected. For on his deathbed, Lord Courtenay left his daughter a cryptic message: a dark curse will fall upon the house should Sarah fail to obtain and protect a priceless treasure. Sarah's astonishment upon discovering the carefully hidden sword sparkling with jewels is nothing compared to the shock she feels when she learns the true nature of her father's death: he was poisoned. And now Sarah herself might possess something worth killing for. Desperate to avoid her father's fate, Sarah flees the only home she's ever known, taking with her a loyal maid and a hired bodyguard who will stop at nothing to protect the beautiful woman in his care. From the safety of a remote farm, Sarah finds a renewed measure of peace and hope for the future. But the sinister weapon that glitters amid her belongings in that small farmhouse beckons a shadowy enemy, one who will not be deterred from taking everything from Sarah—including her life.

REVIEW

When Sarah's father dies from a sudden illness, she has no idea that he's been murdered.  When she learns that he was poisoned and that it might be related to a family heirloom that her father just barely revealed to her, she's not sure what to do.  When some of those closest to her insist on hiring a bodyguard for her, in case she to is a target, she's not happy about it.  But another tragedy makes it clear that she is indeed at risk.  She doesn't expect to fall in love with her new bodyguard or feel so at home in her hiding spot.  As she faces the unknown she must decide what she really wants and what's she's willing to give up to get it.  I quite enjoyed this new book by Anita Stansfield.  The build-up and suspense is superbly done with the tension building from the very first page.  I especially enjoyed Sarah as a character, she's rather an unusual lady in that she's not proud or greedy, her best friend is her personal maid.  And she has no trouble accepting her growing feelings for her bodyguard, even though he's from a different class.  The author also does an excellent job disguising the culprit.  The guilty party isn't really obvious, which leads Sarah and Darius back to Castle Courtenay in search of answers when hiding doesn't get them any closer to answers.  The love story between the two is sweet and gentle, but Darius has his past to deal with and Sarah of course must deal with the challenges of her present.  If you enjoy historical suspense with great details and a sweet romance, I can easily recommend this one.

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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: The Redgrave Murders by A.L. Sowards


ABOUT THE BOOK

Loss is inevitable, as Evie Hampton knows all too well. But despite losing her mother to can er and her older brother to a war, she knows she's one of the lucky ones. After all, she still has her father, a distinguished professor of medieval history. And she has Gary Redhawk, the man she loves despite the emotional scars he carries from the Second World War—and despite her father's opposition to their relationship.

When Evie's car suddenly careens off the road, she chalks it up to poor maintenance or sheer bad luck making another appearance in her life. Little does she know a host of hardships is just beginning—the car was her father's, and the brake lines were deliberately cut. Someone wants them dead—but why? All fingers point to Gary, a man with a troubled past and no solid alibi, but Evie is unwilling to believe he's involved. Determined to uncover the truth, she begins to piece together a startling picture of deception and vice. But as she closes in on the truth, it is clear that someone is determined to silence her—and the next attempt on her life may be a deadly success.

REVIEW

A.L. Sowards knows how to write a suspense novel full of historical detail.  In this one, Evie Hampton's life takes an awful turn when someone murders her father and frames her boyfriend for it.  Her efforts to clear her boyfriend, Gary Redhawk, lead her in directions she could never have imagined.  Unfortunately for her, the murderer doesn't seem to be finished and she's clearly his next target.  I enjoyed reading this both for the mystery aspects, but also for the historical setting.  In addition to the murders, her relationship with Gary is uncertain as he struggles with serious PTSD and trauma from his childhood.  As a Seneca Indian, he was forced to attend an Indian Boarding School as a child, where abuse was rampant.  But Evie loves him and wants to help, she just doesn't know how.  So unlike many of Sowards previous books, this one doesn't take place in the middle of war, but it deals with the aftereffects of war and the emotional damage it causes.  The inclusion of Gary's Indian school experiences adds additional historical context.  Although reading about it and Gary's PTSD was difficult, it certainly made him an empathetic character.  One of the things I especially enjoy about Sowards books is the depth of her characters.  They feel like real people dealing with real problems in a flawed but determined way. A great book for readers who enjoy romantic suspense, but also those who enjoy a book with a solid historical setting.

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