Sunday, December 31, 2017

Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin



Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin is the last read I read during 2017!! It's a cozy mystery short story and is approximately 43 pages in length.

I was able to download Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review for Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin.

I didn't care for Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin very much. I didn't like the storyline, plot, or characters. Additionally, the formatting for this eRead was not well done either. I'll skip reading the rest of the books in this cozy mystery series.

The following is a plot summary for Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin from Amazon:
Julia Blake runs her own cleaning business. 
The first time she sees a dead body is when she discovers one of her clients, Mark Castle, lying dead on the floor of his luxury apartment. 
She remembers things that Mark mentioned to her a few days before his death, things he was worried about. 
A bottle of pills is lying open at Mark’s side, but they’re not his usual ones. 
And why is his computer playing a continuous game? 
Julia soon suspects that Mark was murdered. He was a good friend and she is determined to find out who killed him.
I am giving Virtually Scared To Death by Gillian Larkin a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Reading Goals For 2018!!


I have so many unread books, it's not even funny... I have unread hardbacks, paperbacks, ebooks, and audiobooks!! Let's just say that I've lost track of how many unread books I currently have in my personal collection. 

I've tried setting book buying goals in previous years, where I try to convince myself not to purchase any more new books in a given calendar until I drastically reduce the amount of books I already have... Or skip on downloading anymore freebies from Amazon. But neither of those scenarios has worked out so well as I have a difficult time passing up books whether they're free or not! 

So, I'll simply try to set some basic reading goals for 2018. I won't select specify book titles to read during 2018 as I am very prone to change my mind based on whatever I'm interested in reading at that given moment in time. Instead, I will focus on selecting books that fall into the following four categories:

1. Read 24 physical books (not ebooks) that I purchased prior to May 2014.
2. Read 12 books that I've received for FREE through Goodreads or from another source (InKitt, author, publisher, etc.).
3. Read 12 physical books that fall into the cozy mystery genre.
4. Read 12 books that were obtained after May 2014 that do not fall into the cozy mystery genre category.

Total = 60 Books For My Above Goals. If I read any additional books after I reach my 2018 reading goals... That would simply be icing on the cake!

So, what are your 2018 reading goals? Happy reading whatever your goals may be!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Scotsman by Laura Hart

Short Story Romance
The Scotsman by Laura Hart is a 66 page romance short story, which I was able to download for FREE from Amazon to my Kindle.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Scotsman by Laura Hart.

The Scotsman by Laura Hart is definitely not my favorite romance read. I didn't like how some of the romances (or potential romances) between the characters were portrayed... It was kind of difficult to believe that women and men could be as cold as the way some of them were portrayed. 

I also didn't like how things between Ria and Andrew ended at the end of this read... When they got together things went so smoothly and then suddenly, Andrew sees things about Ria he doesn't like and now wants to change her!! 

The Scotsman by Laura Hart is a prequel and I have no interest in reading anything else in this series.

The following is a plot summary for The Scotsman by Laura Hart from Amazon:
Ria: a Southern girl from Raleigh who studied design in Philadelphia and stayed in New Jersey to work. Now she's thinking maybe it's time to move back home.
Andrew: a Scottish architect who came to America for a few years with his parents when he was young and then stayed when tragedy struck. Maybe the time has come to return to his roots.
Ria, a free spirit, and Andrew, a disciplined Scotsman. What happens when they meet and realize they've unexpectedly found that elusive 'other' they've each been wishing for?
Publisher’s Note: Enjoy this sweet romantic short story which is just the beginning of a journey into a blissful life of domestic discipline for this feisty Southern girl and the dominant Scottish man of her dreams.
I am giving The Scotsman by Laura Hart a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Little Free Library in Del Mar, California

Just returned this afternoon from spending over a week in Southern California visiting my parents and my in-laws with my husband. We has a lovely time visiting family and friends over Christmas.

On Christmas Eve, we discovered a new to us Little Free Library in Del Mar, California where I left two hardback books written by J. D. Robb. 

I didn't discover any books to take from this particular Little Free Library that peaked my reading interest, so left after snapping a photograph of this cute Little Free Library for my post!

Have you recently discovered any new to you Little Free Libraries?

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas ~ 2017!



Wishing you and your family and friends a very Merry Christmas today!! May you be blessed with an abundance of holiday cheer, happiness, good health and surrounded by those you love!! ...And may you even receive a few great books under the tree from Santa Claus to read as well!!

Have a very Happy New Year as well... May your 2018 be filled with an abundance of prosperity and success!! Cheers, Lisa

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly

Holiday Themed Short Story
Yes, I've read another Christmas themed short story this holiday season! 

I read Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly, which is approximately 37 pages in length (although it felt a lot shorter than 37 pages!!)

I was able to download Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon!

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly.

Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly is a Victorian, Christmas themed short story with a sweet and charming romance. I liked the two main characters and the story, BUT as I've already mentioned this short was way TOO SHORT for my liking!

The following is a plot summary for Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly from Amazon:
Eleanor Morris has loved her brother's best friend, Lord Michael Hawley, for years and he has no idea. That's exactly why she doesn't want to spend Christmas at his country estate. But Michael has plans of his own to make this a Christmas she'll never forget.
I am giving Under The Pear Tree by Julia Kelly a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars. 

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday -- Top Ten Books I Hope Santa Brings



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

1. Human Acts by Han Kang
2. Furry Logic: The Physics of Animal Life by Matin Durrani
3. Allie and Bea by Catherine Ryan Hyde Received for Christmas
4. His Bloody Project: Documents Relating to the Case of Roderick Macrae by Graeme MaCrae Burne
5. Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh
6. The Nakano Thrift Shop by Hiromi Kawakami
7. The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald
8. Lives of the Monster Dogs by Kirsten Bakis
9. Enchanted Islands by Alison Amend
10. The Wisdom of Sundays by Oprah Winfrey Received for Christmas.

Which books would you enjoy receiving during the holiday season this year?

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff

Historical Fiction Short Story
I read The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff, which is a historical fiction short story approximately 41 pages in length.

I was able to download The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff.

I enjoyed Daphne James Huff's writing style and storytelling. The characters and storyline for The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff make for fun reading.

The following is a plot summary for The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff from Amazon:
A Dreamer in the 1920s has found success as a medium, hiding her abilities behind parlor tricks. Her young assistant suspects that she must be more than she claims to be, while the great Houdini is out to expose mediums as frauds. Will she keep her true talent a secret, or share it and risk losing everything she's worked for?
I am giving The Magician's Test by Daphne James Huff a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica



I listened to the unabridged version of The Good Girl by Mary Kubica and narrated by Lindy Nettleton, Johnny Heller, Tom Taylorson, and Andi Arndt. 

Listening time for The Good Girl by Mary Kubica is 10 hours, 38 minutes.

I was able to download The Good Girl by Mary Kubica from Audible for FREE!! 

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Good Girl by Mary Kubica.

Wow, great read! I listened to The Good Girl by Mary Kubica over the course of three days. I found The Good Girl by Mary Kubica to be very suspenseful, with a surprise ending!! In fact, the ending was the best part of an already wonderful novel!

I liked Mary Kubica's writing and storytelling as the The Good Girl is told mainly through the points of view of Detective Gabe Hoffman, Eve Denett, and Colin Thatcher in alternating chapters that weave the past and the present together to make for a very suspenseful novel that has one captivated from start to finish.

The narrators for The Good Girl by Mary Kubica were really good although I thought that the audio quality could have been better overall.

The following is a plot summary for The Good Girl by Mary Kubica from Audible:
"I've been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don't know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she's scared. But I will."
Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, Colin Thatcher seems at first like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life.
Colin's job was to abduct Mia as part of a wild extortion plot and deliver her to his employers. But the plan takes an unexpected turn when Colin suddenly decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota, evading the police and his deadly superiors. Mia's mother, Eve, and Detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them, but no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family's world to shatter.
An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a compulsive debut that reveals how, even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems.
I am giving The Good Girl by Mary Kubica a rating 4 of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz

I decided to read Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz, which is an erotica, holiday themed short story approximately 27 pages in length.

I was able to download Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz.

I liked this cozy mystery short story quite a bit. Not a perfect read by any means, but light and entertaining nonetheless. Writing and storytelling were decent. Not sure if I will read other stories in the series though.

The following is a plot summary for Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz from Amazon:
When struggling freelance writer, Clarissa Hayes, and her trouble-making Saint Bernard, Paw, visit their relatives in Upstate New York, they are saddened to find the family in mourning. Clarissa's amateur sleuth uncle has died, evidently from a heart attack.

But was the death truly an accident? An anonymous note hints that her uncle was murdered, and now Clarissa and Paw are determined to sniff out the truth.
Soon the duo find themselves nose deep in their uncle's final baffling case: the theft of the fabulous Blue Dolphin diamonds. Clarissa's determination to find her uncle's killer leads her deep into a world of glittering gems and deadly secrets, where each new discovery threatens to bring her to the notice of a ruthless murderer who will stop at nothing to cover his tracks. Can Clarissa and her detective dog Paw crack the case, or will they become the killer's next victims?
I am giving Mystery of the Blue Dolphins by Sandra Baublitz a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel

Erotica Short Story
It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

I decided to read Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel, which is an erotica, holiday themed short story approximately 42 pages in length.

I was able to download Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel.

Usually, an erotica, holiday themed short story featuring a sexy shape shifting wolf would make for an exciting read... But Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel wasn't such an exciting read for me after all! Jaz, the leading female character had to many hang ups for me about her body image. The writing was okay and the characters needed more development to make them more 3-dimensional... I also didn't like the bad case of instalove (or should I say instalust??) between Jaz and Ridge. I think a longer storyline with more plot development could have made this read really pop.

The following is a plot summary for Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel from Amazon:
Jaz, Chaylea, and Gabby escape to a secluded cabin for a writing retreat.
The holidays were never easy for the three single women, so even a snow storm wasn’t going to force them back to all of their well meaning family and the happy couples they would have to deal with back home.
Then the wolves appeared.
Jaz couldn’t understand the connection that she felt for the huge beasts and her heart ached when the owner of the cabin showed up with a rifle. 
A dream out of one of their books.
Jaz isn’t sure what to make of the three naked men that appeared out of the storm, but the instant lust has her doing things that are very out of character for her.
Is Ridge Jaz’s dream man? Will she cave to the passion between them or will she allow fear to keep her from what she wants?
I am giving Wolves For The Holiday 1.1 by Josette Reuel a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Saturday, December 16, 2017

The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons

The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons is a short story approximately 15 pages in length, which I was able to download to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons.

Even though The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons is a very short read, I found it to be well written and was a good read with an unexpected ending.

I've heard that there are some women that eat/crave dirt when they are pregnant... But I didn't know there is a term for eating substances like dirt, etc. that have no nutritional value called Pica... Or that the term geophagia refers to the specific practice of eating dirt, chalk, or clay until reading The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons. The topic of pica/geophagia does make for an interesting storyline.

The following is a plot summary for The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons from Amazon:
Set in the 1960s of America's rural south, a young African American woman is forced to reckon with her cultural eating disorder of eating dirt.
I am giving The Dirt Eaters by H. D. Timmons a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Joyce Maynard ~ Author Speaking Event!!



The San Ramon Public Library has has some really cool author events and book signings this past quarter!

On the evening of Thursday, December 14, 2017 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm, author, Joyce Maynard, spoke at the San Ramon Public Library and signed copies of her books afterward.

I've yet to read anything written by Joyce Maynard, but had heard of her as a writer before attending the speaking engagement two evenings ago.

I really enjoyed attending Joyce Maynard's speaking event... It was a lot of fun and Ms. Maynard had a lot of fun things to share with those of us who attended her talk.

Joyce Maynard started out by having us watch a short video and then went on to discussing her most recently published memoir titled, The Best of Us, which focuses on her marriage and the passing away of her husband due to pancreatic cancer. She then did a short reading of The Best of Us.

The bulk of the evening was Joyce Maynard interacting with the audience by asking us to ask her questions and then answering them. I learned a lot about Ms. Maynard... Like the fact that she has been writing and publishing her writing since she was 14 years old! I also learned that Joyce Maynard received a scholarship to attend Yale University, but dropped out during her freshman year to live with author J. D. Salinger! Her memoir At Home In The World is about her relationship with J. D. Salinger.

Above is a picture of me taken with Joyce Maynard after she signed copies of her books for me. I now have signed copies of Under The Influence (novel), Labor Day (novel), and At Home In The World (memoir). Joyce Maynard drew pictures inside each of the books she signed for me. I look forward to reading each of the novels!

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Friday, December 15, 2017

Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe

Christmas Short Story
It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

So, I decided to read Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe, which is a mystery short story approximately 53 pages in length.

I was able to download Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe.

I chose this short story as I have been in the mood to read some holiday themed reads for Christmas. I felt the Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe was a decent read. Not that much to my liking, but passable enough. The storyline and characters just didn't suit my personal taste very much.

The following is a plot summary for Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe from Amazon:
A gift that keeps on giving…or not.
Trinket Banks is enjoying her first Christmas in Jagged Grove, even with her reluctant husband Angelo along for the ride. They’re still married, thanks to an evil warlock and a binding spell, and Angelo has promised to make it snow in Jagged Grove, just for her.
Trinket can’t wait.
But thoughts of snow and shopping fall by the wayside when Bilda and Rain start handing out enchanted Christmas cookies. The cookies are supposed to bring luck for the coming New Year, but this batch turns everyone in Jagged Grove into a scrooge.
Now Trinket and Angelo have to figure out what happened and fix the goof before Christmas is ruined forever.
I am giving Christmas Witch by Willow Monroe a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Fowl Play by P Bodi

Cozy Mystery Short Story
Fowl Play by P Bodi is a cozy mystery short story approximately 46 pages in length.

I was able to download Fowl Play by P Bodi to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Fowl Play by P Bodi.

I love animals and cozy mysteries, so I was delighted to read Fowl Play by P Bodi. It is a cute cozy mystery short story despite being a bit predictable.

The following is a plot summary for Fowl Play by P Bodi from Amazon:
Being a single woman owning and operating the only pet store in town can get pretty lonely. After a rough day at the shop, Leah decided she could use some human interaction and good conversation with some friends. After closing the shop for the day she met some friends at the local restaurant. The following morning after her fun night out with friends, Sheriff Burt shows up at her store with an animal emergency. Could it be related to a murder?
I am giving Fowl Play by P Bodi a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Joy by Celina Grace

Mystery Short Story
It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

So, I decided to read Joy by Celina Grace, which is a mystery short story approximately 52 pages in length.

I was able to download Joy by Celina Grace to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Joy by Celina Grace.

Joy by Celina Grace started out to be a very promising read. All was going really well until this short story ended very abruptly! Wow, what a BIG disappointment to say the least... One can only assume what the eventual outcome of several events will be, but there were just too many loose ends and not enough answers to make Joy by Celina Grace a satisfactory read. 

The following is a plot summary for Joy by Celina Grace from Amazon:
The last person Detective Sergeant Kate Redman wants to see while she's doing her Christmas shopping is habitual petty thief and homeless alcoholic Charlie Petworth. While she knows that Charlie steals small things in part to get a warm bed for the night, it's still annoying, particularly in the season of good will.
Then a far more serious crime occurs and Kate realises that Charlie might well be involved. But why would he go from stealing a packet of flower seeds to stealing a little toddler? And is there more to this case than at first meets the eye?
I am giving Joy by Celina Grace a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars. I am only giving this short story such a high rating as it started out so well.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin

Cozy Mystery Short Story
Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin is a cozy mystery short story by a new to me author. It is approximately 55 pages in length.

I was able to download Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiaseed review of Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin.

I really enjoyed reading Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin!! I never know what to expect from new to me authors or from short stories... But I really enjoyed the storyline, writing, dialogue between characters, the characters themselves, and the pace of the story itself and how the story unfolded. So, I'd say that Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin was a hit!

The following is a plot summary for Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin from Amazon:
It’s always been a dream of Connie Butterworth’s to be a private investigator. Now that she’s retired, she makes that dream a reality and sets herself up as an investigator.With reluctant help from her sister-in-law, Sable, Connie takes on her first client. 
What starts out as a simple case of tracking down a missing person soon turns into an intriguing case of deception, phone hacking and murder.
I am giving Playing At Murder by Gillian Larkin a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday -- Top Ten Favorite Books of 2017



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


My list features books that I not only gave a high rating, but would also reread again in a heartbeat!

1. The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating by Elisabeth Tova Bailey
2. The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel
3. The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers
4. Kentucky on the Rocks by Gwendolyn Grace
5. Bone Deep by Bonnie Dee (Read this book twice this year!!)
6. Imperfect Chemistry by Mary Frame
7. The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
8. The Vegetarian by Han Kang
9. Juliet Takes A Breath by Gabby Rivera
10. Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks

Which books were your favorites in 2017??

Monday, December 11, 2017

Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy

Cozy Mystery Novella
I enjoy reading cozy mystery novels, so I decided to read Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy, which is a novella approximately 162 pages in length.

Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy is the first novella in the 'Mom and Christy's Cozy Mysteries' series.

I was able to download Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy.

I enjoyed reading this cozy mystery novella featuring a mother daughter duo who are caterers and also amateur sleuths! I did think it was a bit odd that the mom, Jo, did seem to know things with so much certainty that it was a tad over the top... Or how Jo was able to get the murderer to confess to murder in front of a police detective was also a bit over the top as well... However, Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy did make for an entertaining read, so I will give it that.

The following is a plot summary for Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy from Amazon:
What do you get when you combine mango cake, murder, and Mom?

An unlikely recipe for a better life!

When Mom convinces Christy to ditch her "lousy" job and help with the catering business, their fledgling partnership suffers a few setbacks. One of them can't cook, they're short a catering van, and the guest of honor at their first party is murdered.That would be bad enough, but then, Christy's cousin, Celia, becomes the prime suspect.

Solving a murder is no easy task, but when drunken death threats, a dashing detective, and terrifying taxidermy are added into the mix, the case becomes almost impossible to crack. Who knew a small town like Fletcher Canyon could be filled with so much craziness?

Will the disaster-prone duo find the real killer before Celia's reputation is destroyed, or will Celia end up in prison for murder? Find out in this quick comedy cozy!

This novella is the first book in the Mom and Christy's Cozy Mysteries series, and is a complete mystery that you can read in an hour or two. It does NOT contain strong language or graphic violence. But it does contain a cute cat!
I am giving Mango Cake and Murder by Christy Murphy a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my nest post, happy reading!

Bookcrossing Goodies + New Book!



As usual, I am feeling blessed to be part of the Bookcrossing community! 

Over the weekend, I received a small package of goodies from another Bookcrosser in Pennsylvania, who sent me a bunch of Bookcrossing supplies and also the novel from my reading wishlist titled, The True Story of Hansel and Gretel: A Novel of War and Survival by Louise Murphy. How cool is that!?

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Mistletoe and Fire Glow by Nicole R. Locker

Christmas Themed Short Story
It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

I read Mistletoe and Fire Glow by Nicole R. Locker, which is a short story approximately 25 pages in length that I was able to download for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Mistletoe and Fire Glow by Nicole R. Locker.

This is a cute Christmas themed short story, which features two people that meet through a blind date and start a romance... But of course a misunderstanding happens along the way! The writing is good... The characters are fun. I liked this short story quite a bit. This short story features a lot of Christmas songs and there is even a playlist on Spotify for this short story, which I found to be unique.

The following is a plot summary for Mistletoe and Fire Glow by Nicole R. Locker from Amazon:
A jilted blind date turns into an unexpected chance meeting for Cordi, but when she runs into the same, handsome stranger at her friend's Christmas party, all bets are off.
A sweet, holiday romance full of hope, wonder, and holiday cheer. Follow Cordi as she learns to believe in Christmas miracles when a chance meeting turns into something more.
I am giving Mistletoe and Fire Glow by Nicole R. Locker a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson

Christmas Themed Short Story
More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson is a holiday themed short story approximately 34 pages in length, which I was able to download for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson.

I really liked reading More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson! The two main characters, Evelyn & Foster, are fun! I liked Renee Ericson's writing and the witty, engaging dialogue between the characters themselves, especially the two main characters. The storyline and plot kept me engaged from the very start of this holiday themed short story.

The following is a plot summary for More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson from Amazon:
A night with five of their closest friends was all that Evelyn and Foster had planned for when they decided to take part in a holiday progressive dinner party. However, when an unexpected guest makes an appearance and throws Evelyn off her game, it’s up to Foster to bring her back to her senses. His plan involves a little more than kisses.
A More Than Water short story complete with sexy times and a hair fetish, told from the dual POV of Evelyn and Foster.
I am giving More Than Kisses by Renee Ericson a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta

Christmas Themed Short Story
It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

I read 
Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta, which is a Christmas themed short story approximately 26 pages in length that I was able to download for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta.

Alright, so I am sucker for holiday themed reads!! I also couldn't resist a short story set in Hawaii... I mean really, who wouldn't want to be somewhere warm and tropical this time of year? 

As far as, Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta goes, I thought it was okay. A bit more sophomoric than I would have liked, but a nice way to escape during the holiday season.

Below is the plot summary for Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta from Amazon:
Kalea has been warned repeatedly about the temporary nature and heartbreaking consequences of falling for a handsome tourist passing through her little slice of Hawaiian paradise.
Will the fear of being hurt keep her from experiencing all of the delightful surprises that life has to offer?

Or will the trifecta of gorgeous Russ, a freak storm, and an unforgettable Christmas allow her to open her heart to the possibility of finding her happily-ever-after ending?
This sweet and romantic short story is part of The Escape Series, which includes the Kindle Scout winning book, Getting Lei'd, as well as its prequel novella, Aloha, Baby!, and the follow-up novel, Cruising for Love. You can read and enjoy these books in any order!
I am giving Coconutty Christmas Holiday In Hawaii by Ann Omasta a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

The Fruitcake by Caren Rich

It's the count down to Christmas, so I couldn't resist reading some holiday themed short stories!

I read The Fruitcake by Caren Rich, which is a short story approximately 12 pages in length that I was able to download for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Fruitcake by Caren Rich.

I liked this funny holiday themed reading with a twist for an ending. The writing and storyline are fun.

The following is the plot summary for The Fruitcake by Caren Rich from Amazon:

A humorous short story about the dreaded holiday classic. Retirement's not what Robert expected. His wife feeds him twigs and is afraid of mailbox bombs. If that's not enough a fruitcake shows up on his doorstep. Fruitcakes may be a Southern tradition, but it's one Robert can do without. Find out how he deals with the holiday classic.
I am giving The Fruitcake by Caren Rich a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Revenge by Emily Josephine

Short Story
Revenge by Emily Josephine is a short story approximately 17 pages in length that I was able to download to my Kindle for FREE from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Revenge by Emily Josephine.

This was an easy, breezy light read to pass the time. Although, I enjoyed reading Revenge by Emily Josephine overall, it was predictable. 

The following is a plot summary for Revenge by Emily Josephine from Amazon:
I am not a country-clubbing kind of woman. In fact, I’d rather get a root canal than mingle with the kind of women that socialize at country clubs. I don’t fit in with them. I am what you might call unconventional when it comes to the mainstream ideas of beauty and fashion. But when my best friend – and cousin’s wife – Marilyn invites me to her pool party with her country club friends, I kind of have to accept.

First, my children and I have been staying with her and my cousin for the past month while my husband has been away. So we’re already at her house. It would be kind of awkward not to show up in her backyard. Besides, the kids love to swim.
Second, my husband is coming home today, and I have nothing else to do while I’m waiting for him.
As I predicted, one of Marilyn’s country club buddies immediately begins to find fault with me. Then another comes to join her in her subtle insults. At least the third who shows up is actually nice, and begins to stick up for me.

But, whatever. Let the snooty, perfectly manicured, new-hairstyle-every-week women look down on me. Because my husband will be here soon, and when he shows up, I will get sweet revenge…and they will get the shock of their lives.
I am giving Revenge by Emily Josephine a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx

eBook Short Story
The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx is a short story approximately 22 pages in length that I was about to download fro FREE to my Kindle from Amazon.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx.

The Outlaw Women is the first thing I can ever recall reading by author, Amber Foxx. The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx is an introductory short story to the Mae Martin Psychic Mystery Series, which I'd never heard of until now. 

Although, I can't say that I fell in love with The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx, I am curious enough now to want to read Mae Martin Psychic Mystery Series.

The following is a plot summary for The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx from Amazon:
Folk healer and seer Rhoda-Sue Outlaw Jackson knows her time on earth is running out when she hears the voice of her late husband telling her she has only but so many heartbeats left. She’s had a troubled relationship with her daughter, and has little hope of passing on her extraordinary gifts, either to this difficult daughter or to her granddaughter. With the final hour around the corner, she brings her family together for one more try. Can she leave the world at peace with them, as well as with her legacy?
This short story prequel to the Mae Martin Psychic Mystery Series introduces Mae at age ten, as seen through the eyes of her grandmother
I am giving The Outlaw Women by Amber Foxx a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Two Flash Fiction Reads by Annaliese Lemmon

Every so often I enjoy reading flash fiction, especially when I don't have a lot of time to read because I am commuting, waiting around, etc.

I recently read two flash fiction reads by Annaliese Lemmon. I read Disability, Death, Or Other Circumstances and The Gift Of Tongues

I read the digital version of each of these flash fiction reads and was able to download them for FREE to my Kindle from Amazon. Below is my honest, unbiased read for each short read.




A 400 word work of flash fiction.
Too fast of a read for me.
I liked the premise of this story,
but would have loved to see it flushed
out a bit more.

Below is a blurb about Disability, Death,
Or Other Circumstance from Amazon:

Count your blessings, they say. Overcome trials with humor, they say. This Mormon housewife is trying, but having her husband transformed Kafka-esque into a giant rabbit is still hard to deal with.



This is a 600 word work of flash fiction.
Too fast of a read for me.
I liked the premise of this story,
but would have loved to see it flushed
out a bit more.

Below is a blurb about The Gift Of Tongues
from Amazon:
Sister Morgan has a gift of tongues, but it is not helping her to learn Spanish on her mission. Then a bird flies to her window, offering to exchange her ability to speak with animals for a gift of her choosing, including the ability to know Spanish. Sister Morgan doesn’t believe that exchange is worth it, but what would be?


I am giving Disability, Death, Or Other Circumstances by Annaliese Lemmon a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars. I am also giving The Gift Of Tongues by Annaliese Lemmon a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent

Paperback Mystery Novel
I discovered Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent through Bookcrossing! In fact, I received a copy of Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent from a Bookcrosser as part of a bookray and blogged about 'The Joys of Bookcrossing'.

Devil-Devil is the first novel I've read by G. W. Kent. I enjoyed reading it very much. The writing and storytelling are very well done. I enjoyed the characters of Sergeant Ben Kella and Sister Conchita immensely.

The following is a plot summary for Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent from Amazon:
It's 1960 and Sergeant Ben Kella of the Solomon Islands police force is only a few days into a routine patrol of the most beautiful yet dangerous and primitive areas of the South Pacific. Yet, already, he has been cursed by a magic man, stumbled across evidence of a cult uprising and failed to find an American anthropologist who has been scouring the mountainous jungle in search of a priceless erotic icon.To complicate matters further, at a local mission station, Kella discovers the redoubtable Sister Conchita secretly trying to bury a skeleton, before a mysterious gunman tries to kill her.Mission-educated yet an aofia - the traditional peacemaker of the islands - Kella is forced to link up with Sister Conchita, an independent and rebellious young American nun, in order to track down the perpetrators of a series of bizarre murders . . .
I am giving Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Are These The 11 Worst Brats In Literature?

I came across an article on Electric Lit titled, The 11 Worst Brats in Literature by Natalee Cruz. In the article Natalee Cruz wrote the following: 
I wish this was an article about bratwürsts, but alas, in my reading I haven’t come across many references to hot dogs in literature (if you have, let me know). Instead, I want to highlight some of the würst brats — as in the child kind — in fiction. Like hot dogs, they are the result of some gloriously congealed nastiness, but they don’t need any condiments to spice things up. Of course, if I came across any of these trouble-makers in real life, I would likely find them unbearable. Safely tucked away in words and pages, however, the pranks, cackles, and uproar these brats bring to their stories makes for some choice reading.
Intrigued by the topic of the worst brats in literature, I decided to check out which bratty characters in literature made the list. I was familiar with some of the characters mentioned, but some of them I was not familiar with at all. 

I was, however, surprised that the character of Veruca Salt, from Charlie and The Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, didn't make the list of worst brats in literature. Do you have a favorite brat from literature? Veruca Salt would be mine.