Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility by Hillary Manton Lodge book review

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Synopsis

“Know your own happiness. You want nothing but patience – or give it a more fascinating name, call it hope.”―Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility

Just a few years after their father’s business scandal shatters their lives, Jane and Celia Woodward find themselves forced out of their San Francisco tea shop. The last thing Jane wants is to leave their beloved shop on Valencia Street, but when Celia insists on a move to Austin, Texas, the sisters pack up their kid sister Margot and Jane’s tea plants, determined to start over yet again. But life in Austin isn’t all sweet tea and breakfast tacos. Their unusual living situation is challenging and unspoken words begin to fester between Jane and Celia. When Jane meets and falls for up-and-coming musician Sean Willis, the chasm grows deeper. While Sean seems to charm everyone in his path, one person is immune – retired Marine Captain Callum Beckett. Callum never meant to leave the military, but the twin losses of his father and his left leg have returned him to the place he least expected—Texas.

In this modern spin on the Austen classic, Sense and Sensibility, the Woodward sisters must contend with new ingredients in unfamiliar kitchens, a dash of heartbreak, and the fragile hope that maybe home isn’t so far away.

Review

Totally loved this book! i am a Jane Austen addict and this is a delightful modern spin on Sense and Sensibility. Told in alternate pov’s between Callum and Jane, this book made my heart swell. i loved seeing how each character dealt with their problems as well as how they interacted around others concerning them. This story was sweet and endearing. Each of the three sisters brought a refreshing take on this classic story. The book is very close to Jane Austen’s writing, just with a more updated twist. I appreciated the homage to one of my favorite classics. The dynamic between the sisters was delightful and I could not put this book down!  I read it all in one day. One thing I thoroughly enjoyed was how the author included recipes of foods, and drinks mentioned throughout the book! I’m eagerly anticipating making them all. The other thing I enjoyed were all the quotes at the beginning of each chapter! I love quotes like that in books! I truly can not say enough good things about this book! 5 stars from me!

Pink Slips by Beth Aldrich book review

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Synopsis
Betsy Ryan is pregnant with her third child, and receiving threatening notes from an anonymous person. During what should be a joyful time in her life, she’s forced to face a decade old memory, and relive one of the most devastating nights of her life

To uncover the mystery behind the threats, she enlists the help of an unlikely, but oddly reliable source, her dog Barney. As the menacing notes continue to arrive, her husband is still out of town for work, and she struggles to keep her composure while shielding her two young sons from danger. She trusts no one except her parents, best friend Misty, and her extraordinary dog—who has proven to literally understand everything she says. Is this person out to harm her? And how do they have so much personal information about Betsy? She can’t help but think it’s the same person who attacked her at the train station almost a decade ago, and changed the course of her life forever. To save herself and her unborn child—Betsy must face her fears and find her strength, to reveal who is after her and most importantly…why.

Review

MAN, what a nail biting read!!!! I literally could not put this book down!!!!! From page one Beth had me hooked as she throws you into a whirl wind of a mystery. I have no stayed up all night straight, just to finish this novel. It is full of twists and turns and when I thought I had something figured out, I was thrown another curve ball. All the supporting cast was fun to read as they each contributed to the story and each had their own personality. Nobody out shined the other or took away from the main point of the story. This book had me on the edge the entire time. The writing was phenomenal and I never lost interest once. Also I really loved the cover as it is quite eye catchy. Also, what an ending! Jeez! The ending was perfect. It tied everything up nicely and I truly liked the way it was done. There were some surprises and things I slightly expected, but was hoping would happen. I feel this book will probably slip onto a chart topper, so it should be added to most tbr lists. I’m so glad I got to read this! 5 stars from me.

New Boy (Hogarth Shakespeare) by Tracy Chevalier book review

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Synopsis

Arriving at his fifth school in as many years, a diplomat’s son, Osei Kokote, knows he needs an ally if he is to survive his first day so he’s lucky to hit it off with Dee, the most popular girl in school. But one student can’t stand to witness this budding relationship: Ian decides to destroy the friendship between the black boy and the golden girl. By the end of the day, the school and its key players – teachers and pupils alike – will never be the same again.

The tragedy of Othello is transposed to a 1970’s suburban Washington schoolyard, where kids fall in and out of love with each other before lunchtime, and practice a casual racism picked up from their parents and teachers. Peeking over the shoulders of four 11 year olds Osei, Dee, Ian, and his reluctant girlfriend Mimi, Tracy Chevalier’s powerful drama of friends torn apart by jealousy, bullying and betrayal will leave you reeling.

Review

I really enjoyed this installment of the Hogarth Shakespeare. It was wonderfully done with few flaws. I liked how the hierarchies between the classmates was written as it is quite believable and relateable. The racism that was brought to light was done in a politically sound way and contributed to the story, as it showed how it is learned vs being innate. This shows us how we also come to believe things and how opinion can be easily swayed. This story shows us how children grow up and when facing puberty handle their emotions and how they come to term with the line of being an adult/ child and right vs wrong. The ending though in inevitable was well timed. 4 stars from me!

Frost on my Pillow (The Fire Bringer Series #1) by Leah Hamrick book review

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Synopsis

One girl, one voice, one necklace with the power to change the universe if fallen into the wrong hands…

One love that’s sure to show in the stars…

One boy who will do anything to protect her, even if that means laying down his own life to keep the demons from her…

One Fire, one Ice.

Review

This story is wonderful! Most of the time young love triangles and dystopian type novels get over-hyped or tends to all be the same. This one however is not. I really rather quite enjoyed it. This book was a fun, new read for me. I feel that this book is great for an audience who enjoys reading about self discovery and finding out your true power within. There was such well written character development and the story flowed smoothly. This book was a great page turner and kept me hanging on the whole way through. Lyla was a great character and I felt she had tons of depth ad developed well throughout the novel. Ethan was a wonderful person and was very protective and i admired him for that. Rylan was fun to read, i mean seriously, i really enjoyed reading him. He was very refreshing. 5 stars from me!

Parker S. Huntington author of Asher Black: A Five Syndicates Novel (book one) Interview

Parker S. Huntington author of Asher Black: A Five Syndicates Novel (book one) Interview

First off, thank you, Parker for agreeing to this interview! I’m so excited to have you here!

 

Q: So, tell us a little about yourself. How did you get into writing?

 

A: My freshman year of college, a TA for a creative nonfiction breadth course pulled me aside and said that I should consider pursuing writing. Honestly, I thought it was a fool’s dream. I was on track to become a doctor, and surely, I couldn’t risk that, right? But… he was hot (LOL), and I decided to take more (of his) creative writing classes… And I fell in love (to clarify: with writing not him). I ended up majoring in Creative Writing and am now pursuing a Master’s in it.

 

Q: In your book, you mention Lucy’s obsession with Starbursts. I must know, is this an obsession of yours? Lol.

 

A: Yes. Starbursts are life. They’re second to no other candy, though frozen Sour Patch Kids give Starbursts a run for their money.

 

Q: How did you come up with Asher? How did his character end up transpiring to paper? And Lucy’s?

 

A: Asher is inspired by John Wick, which is one of my all-time favorite series! It felt so natural writing him, and everything I wanted him to be—alpha, respectful, hot, broody, etc.—ended up being so easy to write. He felt real in my head. As for Lucy, she’s inspired by a combination of myself and a friend. On my friend’s side, she was a CA foster child who volunteered in Africa prior to attending an Ivy League. On my side, I’m a total goof with ridiculous mental thoughts like Lucy’s. Because Lucy and I share the same thought processes, it was easy to write her character.

 

Q: I also noticed Lucy is a bit of a dork; muttering to herself and sometimes accidently talking aloud instead of to herself. Is this a quirk of yours? A friends?

 

A: Yes! Of mine! One time, in middle school, I was talking to myself, and I didn’t realize I was mouthing my thoughts. My crush happened to be beside me and was giving me WTF looks. That was when I realized I had the Dork Virus. LOL.

 

Q: I already know there are plans for more books. Can you give us any ideas of a hopeful timeline for when the rest will be published?

 

A: Niccolaio Andretti (July 18th), Bastiano Romano (Sept. 12th); Marco Camerino (Nov. 7th); Rafaello Rossi (Jan 2nd). Aside from Niccolaio, which is up for preorder already, these are all VERY tentative dates.

 

Q: Also, I love you covers! Want to give a shout to a cover designer or the models in the photos?

 

A: Thank you! I design my own covers. As for the models, the model for Niccolaio Andretti is the very talented, very gorgeous Sebastian Cole. He no longer models (much), and he has transitioned into acting as of late! You can find him on Freeform’s (ABC Family’s) Recovery Road and Amazon’s Original Series I Love Dick.

 

Q: Did you self-publish or go with a publisher?

 

A: I self-published! I love having control of every aspect of my writing, which is the best part about self-publishing.

 

Q: What was the hardest thing about writing this book? And the easiest?

 

A: The hardest thing part was starting and finishing the novel. I’m notorious for starting novels without finishing them, so it surprised me that this is the one that I made it to the end with. The easiest part was Lucy. She’s so fun, and I love her sense of humor. I think it brings everything together.

 

Q: What advice for aspiring authors do you have?

 

A: Write at least 1K words at least three times a week. There are times when I’d write no words a week, and that’s the worst. I’d feel very discouraged, but if I’m not in the mood for writing one week, I’ll do 1K three times that week and feel like I at least did something!

 

Q: Did you write this book a computer? Typewriter? Pen and paper?

 

A: I wrote this book on my laptop and phone. LOL. Most of it was written on a laptop, but sometimes inspiration will strike randomly, and I’ll be writing scenes on my phone (i.e. in line at the grocery store).

 

Q: Can you tell me fun little tidbits about book two without giving anything away?

 

A: Nick and Minka have a slow burning relationship, mostly because they can’t stand each other in the beginning. Nick is suspicious about everyone and everything, since he has a hit on his head. Minka is struggling to become a better person, but she’s still got that sass, and it’s directed toward Nick!

 

Q: Where can your fans reach you?

 

A: Instagram: @parkershuntington

Website: http://www.parkershuntington.com

Facebook: facebook.com/parkershuntington

Fan Group: facebook.com/groups/parkerettes

Twitter: @authorPSH

Email: parkershuntington@gmail.com

 

Q: Is there anything else you would like to add?

 

A: Here’s an EXCLUSIVE excerpt from Niccolaio Andretti (subject to change post-edits).

 

I wait patiently as he takes me in, and I wonder what he’s thinking. His eyes are unfriendly and aloof, but he’s the one who’s approaching me. Not the other way around. What that means, I’m not sure.

But I wait for him anyway, because I can’t not wait for him.

Everything about this man is magnetic.

His face, his body, his voice, his aura—all of it entices me and draws me in, until I’m no longer listening to the voice in my head that’s begging me to think of Mina and her future. The way I react to him is pathetic and disgusting, but I can’t stop it all the same.

I just stand there, watching him watch me, and I hate myself for it.

I hate him for it, too.

“What do you want?” I finally ask.

“John Clinton?” He arches a condescending brow and nods his head in the direction of the brownstone behind me.

“He’s a friend.” I cross my arms defensively, the movement drawing his attention to my chest. I narrow my eyes in an attempt to convince him—and myself—that I don’t like the way he stares at me. And just because I hate the way he has me reacting, I add some extra attitude in my voice. “What’s it to you?”

He smirks, the lift of his lips so beautiful and foreign and wasted on such an irritating person. “He’s a friend.”

I snort, hardly believing it. “John doesn’t have friends.”

“Maybe I’m his only friend.” He takes a step closer. “Maybe I’m his best friend.” Another step. “Maybe I’m looking out for him.”

“And I’m the threat?” I look down at my petite body pointedly, but I regret it immediately when his eyes trail the same path down my body.

My breathing hitches, and his eyes flare with lust.

And I recognize that look immediately.

I just never thought I’d see it in someone I’m attracted to.

“You look pretty threatening to me,” he says, surprising me.

This man, who has tree trunks for thighs, a chest that spans the distance of the Pacific and arms with ridges like hills, thinks I look threatening.

What has this world come to?

 

Thanks again for dropping by! I loved getting to know more about you!

If you would like to check out my review of her book you can here:

https://thereadingwolf.wordpress.com/2017/05/31/asher-black-by-parker-s-huntington-book-review/

To buy her book you can here:

Counting On You by J.C. Reed book review

Synopsis

I have everything I want. Success. Wealth. Women…and make that plenty of those. As a filthy-rich CEO, I would say I’m pretty much close to perfection. Except for that one weakness: I’m cocky as hell, and an irresistible magnet for women.

So when one tiny mistake lands me in hot waters with the investors, I have one hell of a choice to make:
Restore my reputation…
Or risk losing my company.

I’m a man of my word and failure is not an option. Not now. Not ever. I fully intend to uphold my responsibilities.

Sharing an apartment should be easy, right? And it’s only for six weeks.
That’s what I thought before I found out that my new roommate is female.
And wow.
Vicky Sullivan is unlike any woman I’ve ever met.
She’s hot as sin, and crazy.
Definitely not my kind of crazy, but too hot to pass up.
There’s something about her that makes me rage with want.
I don’t like her, but obviously my dick does. And what he wants, he gets.

Six weeks…
Living together shouldn’t be too hard…
Until my best friend challenges me to a bet…
I make it my mission to make her mine.

There’s only one problem.
I have to break…Every. Single. Rule.
And did I mention she’s completely off-limits?

It’s too late to say no.

 

 

 

Review

This First Person-Dual novel was wonderful! It is a fun, short, contemporary, stand-alone read. I loved both views in this novel. Kade and Vicky’s story was wonderful. I loved the small inserts in between where Vicky is writing open letters to Jane Austen! (This was probably actually some of my favorite parts as I’m a die hard Jane Austen fan) Vicky is funny, charming, but needs to see herself more as Kade sees her for the strong, and beautiful woman she is! I originally thought I had this story figured out but I was wrong. There are lots of little surprises along the way. I saw so much personal growth behind=d each character. The past that unravels showing their scars and what made them into the person they are/were and why/ how it landed them in the rehab facility. I got one hell of a curve ball thrown at me towards the end and was panicked reading to find out what would happen to a certain someone’s health. (thanks for tat mini stroke J.C lol) Overall I loved this book for its writing and its many felt emotions. I loved both characters and were rooting for them the whole way! 5 stars from me for this enticing read.

Huntress (Life After #1) by Julie Hall book review

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Synopsis

No one’s afterlife is as dispiriting as Audrey’s―at least that’s what she believes after waking up dead without her memories and being promptly assigned to hunt demons for the rest of eternity. She’s convinced God’s made a cosmic mistake; after all, she’d rather discuss the color of her nails than break them on angelic weapons.

It doesn’t help that her trainer, Logan, is as infuriating as he is attractive. And just when Audrey and Logan appear close to developing an amicable relationship, a decision made under duress pushes their hearts in a direction neither of them saw coming.

Despite her sub-par fighting abilities, an ancient weapon of unparalleled power chooses Audrey as its wielder, attracting the cautious gazes of her fellow hunters and the attention of Satan himself. With Satan’s eyes now fixed on Audrey, a battle for the safety of the living looms in the shadows.

Review

WOW! Talk about an amazing book. So first off make sure you have plenty of time on your hands because you will not put this book down! I really loved the plot to this book as it centers on after life and heaven vs hell. This book follows Audrey who is so amazingly written! She is smart, a little obstinate, and has a big heart. Logan, is stubborn, a little dense with emotions at times lol and tough but in a good way. The supporting cast is well written and some of them turn out not to be so supporting and play a bigger role in the scheme of things. Julie’s description of Heaven is wonderfully written and is so magical! The colors and the way she paints a picture is vivid and breath taking in your minds eye. I loved the way she describes the places to eat in Heaven (some of the scene at the restaurant were hilarious). Also the way she describes the rooms of where they sleep and how they decorate them is completely amazing. She also describes demons the way I would picture them. From their head down to their tail(s) was written amazingly. This book is an absolute page turner and I lost a lot of sleep wanting to stay up to read what would happen next. When I finally finished the book (talk about a cliff hanger) I was left with my jaw dropped. I need answers to things now and need book 2 so I will know what happens next. This book deserves so many stars. Definitely more than the standard 5. Seriously guys read this book, you wont be sorry!