November Book Reviews Part 3! @JacqBiggar @JanSikes3 @bakeandwrite #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #whattoread #bookreviews

Letting Go- The Defiant Sisters Book 1

By Jacquie Biggar

Renee left home after her father committed suicide, leaving her boyfriend, mother, sister, and brother behind. She returns after her mother dies, knowing her sister, Izzie, would be angry and that her brother was not a little boy anymore. Renee immediately runs into her ex-boyfriend, Simon, who is engaged to be married. She considers leaving again more than once. The story unfolds in first person through three points of view: Izzie, Renee, and Simon. I rooted for each of them to find peace and happiness. The family dynamics made this a hard story to stop reading, along with finding out what made Renee leave after her dad passed. Each person has their grief to deal with, and I kept hoping Renee and Izzie would reconcile, at least for the younger brother who needed a guardian. I loved Simon’s grandma, who is not only tough but direct with both Simon and Renee. This story tugged on my heartstrings as there were no bad people, only people in bad situations. I can’t wait for the second book to come out so I can see what happens next. I can highly recommend “Letting Go.”

Saddled Heart (The White Rune Series Book 3)

By Jan Sikes

I read and loved the first two White Rune Series stories and was looking forward to this one. Colt runs a horse sanctuary ranch. I love his relationship with the horses and the beautiful setting of the ranch. He is their first suspect when a stranger dies after a run-in with Colt. Now he needs help from the beyond and finds that in a medium, Sage. The blend of a western romance with spirituality and the developing relationship between Colt and Sage makes this a hard story to put down. Seeing other characters from previous stories was heartwarming, and the music was woven in naturally. I went back and forth about who the killer might be, and none of my guesses were correct. This might be my favorite of the three because of the ranch, but this has been a fantastic series that I can highly recommend!

Haunted Halloween Holiday

Robbie Cheadle and Michael Cheadle

Another fun young children’s adventure from Robbie and Michael Cheadle with beautiful fondant creatures. Each character is introduced with a cute limerick. Count Sugular and Witch Honey travel to a Halloween party with Baby Howler. A charming Halloween read parents can share with their children or beginning readers can appreciate. I enjoyed this tale and will happily pass it on to my six- and seven-year-old granddaughters!

NOTE:

If you are subcribed to my Newsletter check your email, I sent it out on the 20th. Don’t miss the new Book of the Month and not only a chance to win a gift card but one of the amazing Books of the Month 🙂

I will be off next weekend for the Thanksgiving Holiday. For those in the US who celebrate it, I wish you a peaceful and magical day.  Book reviews will be back on December 5th.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews here! If I don’t like I book, I won’t finish it. I don’t think it wouldn’t be fair to leave a review for an unfinished story, and life is too short not to enjoy my reading journey!

Embrace your inner child, and read a good book! D. L. Finn

November Book Reviews Part 1! @JacqBiggar @Ivyloganauthor @JItakali #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #whattoread #mustreads

The Beast Within(Mended Souls #2)

by Jacquie Biggar

I loved the first Mended Souls book and was eager to read “The Beast Within.” I wasn’t disappointed; there was a mystery, suspense, romance, and my favorite part, angels. Lucas is a new angel trying to find his way while partnered with the man who hates him the most, Mike. They have much pain to work through while someone Lucas cares about has become part of heartbroken Mike’s revenge. On earth, Mike’s widow, Julie, comes across something unexpected on a walk along a beach, and she catches a killer’s eye. Conner is a skeptical cop with a massive attraction to Julie, who is still grieving her losses while finding her place as a mother and journalist. Together and separately, they attempt to find the killer, while from the other side, Lucas tries to help keep her alive in ways Mike can’t. A lot of healing must take place in both angels’ hearts so they can move forward, but Julie must survive for this to happen. This well-written story had a few twists I didn’t expect and a killer I didn’t guess. I hope there is another book because I’ve grown fond of these troubled angels. This is a story I can highly recommend.

Broken The Breach Chronicles #1

By Ivy Logan

“Broken” is a uniquely written YA fantasy about two generations of sorceresses. Caitlin is born a fully developed sorceress as a guardian of the earth who is warned by the wraiths about what could happen in her future. Her sister, Aster, helped an orphaned boy find a new home. These two events come together when Caitlin falls in love with a mortal, Michael. They have two children, Talia, a half-sorceress, and a magic-less son. Meanwhile, the orphaned boy grows into something Aster couldn’t have expected. Caitlin makes some poor choices out of love and her daughter Talia lives with the consequences of them. This was a story with strong female characters, which I appreciated. I enjoyed the family bond, especially between Talia and her little brother. An evil king, a conflicted dragon, and a desire to protect loved ones made this a fascinating read. A fast-paced story with a twist I didn’t see coming. I look forward to reading the next book in the series to see what happens next.

Realms of the Mist

By Jude Kirya Itakali

“Realms of the Mist” takes place in the mountains of Africa within the hidden areas where the gifted live. Kamau is a part of the Hadiza, who are guardians of the veil between the living and the afterlife. They not only repress their emotions but are separated from family. There was a mistake, and Kamau and his sister, Kimya, ended up together. When his sister suddenly dies, he questions everything before becoming a full member of this community. He starts a quest to find answers about his sister but finds more than he could have ever imagined. I love the people he meets along the way that join him. His best friend, Irina, is the first to help, and their relationship is a favorite. When Ninwe from another realm becomes a part of this quest, the exchanges and undercurrent between her and Irina are a lot of fun and, at times, painful. The settings and poetic descriptions were amazing as they weaved a special depth to this story. As Kamau learns more about himself and his quest, it only gives him more questions. Each stop in his journey added to his knowledge, and there were some twists I didn’t expect. Although the ending answered some questions, it left many unanswered, making me eager for the next book. This unique fantasy offers gods, love, danger, hidden agendas, duty, and a young man trying to do the right thing as he must figure out what, and who, he can trust. I can easily recommend this fast-paced story I found hard to put down.

I only post my 4 & 5 star reviews here! If I don’t like I book, I won’t finish it. I don’t think it wouldn’t be fair to leave a review for an unfinished story, and life is too short not to enjoy my reading journey!

UPDATE:

I had a great break! First I went to Disneyland/Universal with my youngest daughter and renewed that inner child. After being back for a couple of days went on part two vacation with the hubby. Stayed close to home but enjoyed Halloween, and some much needed rain and snow! The Go-Bag was put away as I offically declared fire season over for this year 🙂 We drove to see the summit snow, did some fun couple holiday projects at home, and visted the Hard Rock Cafe in Sacramento. I posted some pictures on Instagram and Facebook of my adventures.

I won’t try to catch up but look forward making my rounds.

Embrace your inner child, and read a good book! D. L. Finn

New Release: “Letting Go” by Jacquie Biggar! @JacqBiggar @XpressoTours⁣ #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #newrelease

I’m thrilled to have friend, and fellow writer here today, Jacquie Biggar, to share her latest release, Letting Go The Defiant Sisters Book 1!

Letting Go
Jacquie Biggar
(The Defiant Sisters, #1)
Publication date: October 21st 2022
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

A coming-of-age novel about the pain of misconceptions and learning from them.

When life gives you lemons…

 

 

Izzy

Mom is barely in the grave and the prodigal child is here to pick the bones clean.

I don’t want her here. My sister’s defection is a wound that won’t heal, and her return simply rubs at the scabs covering my heart.

I’ve managed just fine without her. She can go back to her fancy college and forget about us- that’s what she does best anyway.

If only I didn’t need her help. Or miss her so much.

Renee

The day my dad committed suicide I ran. I’ve been running ever since.

Going home is supposed to be the answer. Instead, it makes me question every thoughtless decision I’ve made.

My sister hates me. My little brother barely knows me. And Simon… is engaged.

None of it matters- or so I tell myself. I’m here to make amends and face a past haunted by regret.

As long as I can convince myself to stay.

Letting Go is a young adult romance dealing with tragedy, restitution, and love in all its aspects. The story relates to sensitive topics that may be triggering for some readers.

Goodreads / Amazon

SNEAK PEEK:

Izzy

The shock of finding Renée on the doorstep is fading, taken over by the sheer hypocrisy of her arrival. Why now? It’s a little late if she wants to make amends. Not a word for two stinking years and she shows up thinking I’m going to be grateful she’s here?

Not in this lifetime.

The warm sincerity of her embrace, though… it tries to weaken the resentment I’ve fostered since she walked out on her family, leaving me to pick up the pieces.

“I don’t want you here,” I snarl, unable to hide my bitterness. I’d rather act as though I don’t care.

Renée eyes me warily, rubbing a reddened palm. I feel a childish delight to have caused her even a minuscule amount of the pain she’s caused me.

“I’m aware,” she says calmly, bending to pick up a bulging overnight bag. “But I’m here now, so let’s make the best of it—for Mom.”

Red hot rage rises from the pit of my stomach to spit and steam from my ears. “Do. Not. Use Mom against me. You lost that right a long time ago.”

Months of caregiving flicker behind my eyes. My father’s suicide did something to Mom. She shouldered the blame and wore it like a hairshirt, ripping the blinders away from their relationship to show the fractures in the foundation. She shut down. Stopped eating, washing, and caring. It was left to me to get Benjamin off to school, clothes washed, and a semblance of normalcy when everything was insane.

“You should have called.” Renée’s empathetic gaze gets on my last nerve.

I whirl away before I plant my fist in her face. “Your room is the way you left it. You can stay the weekend, then I want you to leave. Ben doesn’t need to get his hopes up.” And neither do I.

Jacquie Biggar is a USA Today bestselling author of romance who loves to write about tough, alpha males and strong, contemporary women willing to show their men that true power comes from love. She lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and loves to hear from readers all over the world!

 

“My name is Jacquie Biggar. When I’m not acting like a total klutz, I am a wife, mother of one, grandmother, and a butler to my calico cat.

My guilty pleasures are reality tv shows like Amazing Race and The Voice. Every Monday night, I can be in my armchair plastered to the television laughing at Blake’s shenanigans.

I love to hang out at the beach with DH (darling hubby) taking pictures or reading romance novels (what else?).

I have a slight Tim Hortons obsession, enjoy gardening, everything pink, and talking to my friends.”

She has been blessed with a long, happy marriage and enjoys writing romance novels that end with happily-ever-afters.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Bookbub / Amazon / Pinterest / Newsletter

 

Giveaway!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


October Book Reviews Part 3! @WriterMSmith @Virgilante @NoFacilities #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #bookreviews #whattoread #mustreads

The Power of Love 

by Marlena Smith

Scarlet is on the run from her past. She ends up in a charming little Montana town but hides away in an old, abandoned house while enjoying her new freedom. She is slowly pulled out of her protective shell when she runs into a town resident. Scarlet’s story slowly unfolds, and I couldn’t help rooting for her. I love the relationships she develops as she rediscovers what has been lost. This is a town and people I’d love to be a part of. A heartwarming short story about second chances if only the past doesn’t ruin it. I can easily recommend this!

The Midnight Rambler (The Hat Book 6)

by C. S. Boyack

“The Midnight Rambler” was another fun addition to the Hat Book Series. Lizzie and the Hat run into some crazy fruit at a roadside stand. This is when Hat realizes his old enemy is after him. The flood they had to deal with creates an obstacle when their time is limited to find this clever monster while trying to save Lizzie’s friend, Ray. I could feel the cold water sloshing through Lizzie’s slippers and her concern for her friends. The relationship between Ray and Lizzie added another layer to the story and created extra tension in the hunt for where Hat’s enemy had Ray’s creator. The Midnight Rambler was always one step ahead and seemed to enjoy a good hunt, but that never stopped their search. A mystery to solve with all the humor, music, and danger blended nicely with every day worries. The ending has me looking forward to the next story. Although this is a perfect Halloween read, it can be enjoyed any time of the year.

The Evil You Choose

By Daniel Antion

I enjoyed “Knuckleheads” and was excited to see where the story went next. Blessed with unusual gifts, Zach and Billy are now adults and Zach is enjoying retirement. An FBI agent contacts Zach with a proposition that unfortunately he can’t refuse. Zach is unwillingly thrust into a world of criminals on both sides, and there is no one to trust but family. Zach must figure out how to protect himself and make sure they don’t find out about Billy. I found it interesting how Zach navigated with the help of Billy in dealing with not only the FBI, but the man they wanted to put in jail. The direction Zach took, along with a few twists, kept me guessing how it would all turn out. There is a wonderful and supportive relationship between Zach and his daughter, brother and Billy that balance all the corruption that surrounds him. Zach’s gifts had me wishing for a good night’s sleep for him. An exciting read for those who enjoy a thriller with the depth of family relationships and a criminal element weaved in.

I only post my 4 & 5 star reviews here! If I don’t like I book, I won’t finish it. I don’t think it wouldn’t be fair to leave a review for a unfinished story, and life is too short not to enjoy my reading journey!

UPDATES:

I have a couple of vacations coming up. The first one is October 20-24th. I will be going to Disneyland & Universal with my youngest daughter, Danielle. My monthly newsletter will be a few days late because of this or coming out late on the 24th and there will be no weekly blog here on October 24th & 31st .

Then, I will be around for a few days and off a week starting October 29th to hang out with the hubby. I’ll be back November 7th with a new book review post.

In the middle of all this I’m excited to be hosting a guest you won’t want to miss on October 27th.

I will wish you an early Happy Halloween here and post photos as I can on Instagram.

Embrace your beautiful inner soul by reading a book! D. L. Finn

New Release! “The Power of Love” by Marlena Smith. #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #newrelease #whattoread #contemporaryromance

I’m thrilled to have Marlena Smith here today to share the good news about her new book, “The Power of Love.” Here’s my review: LINK

Welcome to Day 2 of my book launch blog tour! I’m so excited you’ve joined us. A huge shout out to Denise for hosting and all those that have supported my writing journey. It’s a powerful feeling to know you’re not alone.

Today, we’re going to focus on the reason we’re here–The Power of Love. This project has been a very long battle. The manuscript was actually put away for a while because of some negativity, but the story kept resurfacing. Even though I can’t recall where the whole idea came from, I remember how the story flowed almost effortlessly. I immediately fell in love with Scarlet and knew I needed to share her story. So The Power of Love was brought out of hiding and the work began.

Now, how about we share some book facts? Some behind-the-scenes details and such.

  • The cover of this book was the first one I created. (Thank you Canva!!) And I was hooked from that point forward. I love making covers now!
  • The original story had a very different ending.
  • I’ve always loved the name Scarlet, inspired of course, by Gone With the Wind. I adored Miss O’Hara’s determination and spunk. She was such a sassy character!
  • I became quite emotional writing Scarlet’s story. I’ve never experienced pain quite like hers, but I still felt every emotion as we journeyed the story together. I hope readers feel it, too.
  • I knew from the beginning I wanted the main setting to be somewhere in Montana because of its proximity to California. Plus, I’ve always wanted to visit the mountainous state. I felt like there could easily be a small town with that southern-like charm. So I used Google maps, did some research, and discovered this tiny blip on the map–Belmont.
  • The longest part of this book was the editing. I’ve made countless revisions trying to make the story the best it could be. I eventually grew tired of the process and sent it to my editor. I knew she could work some magic on it. She did not disappoint.

 

 Book Blurb:

She only wants a fresh start and a life away from the big city. 

Scarlet finds herself in the small town of Belmont, Montana. It’s a quiet town with a lot of charm. One she didn’t expect to fall in love with, but it offers something magical. 

Will her past catch up to her? Will she be forced back into the life she hates? Will she risk everything for a chance at love? 

Purchase Links:

Amazon Paperback

Amazon Ebook

 

About the Author:

Marlena Smith is a multi-genre author that uses her own small town life experiences to create stories of the same. Her publications include:

Marlena grew up in Alabama with a love of words and creativity. She still lives in that small town today with her family and has never lost that passion. She spends her days working with churches to help them grow and her nights creating tales.

Three Random Facts  (I stole this idea from fellow writer, D.L. Finn!)

  1. I find it very difficult to watch movies about war and slavery. That’s not to say I don’t watch the films because I do think the stories are important to learn and understand. I believe it’s because I’m an empath and become really emotional watching the stories play out. It’s like I’m in the character’s shoes.
  2. I have two tattoos, one on each wrist. Each design was carefully selected. The first I received is an infinity symbol. One side of the symbol has a 4-leaf clover and the other side says faith. The second tattoo reads Ehfar, which means everything happens for a reason.
  3. As a senior in high school, I wanted to earn a degree in business. Instead, I was pushed into education, and have yet to use my Bachelors degree.

If you’d like to connect with Marlena, you can find her online:

I can’t thank you enough for joining us today. I hope you’re enjoying the blog tour as much as I am! A huge shout out to Denise and all those that have taken part in the tour. Thank you & happy reading!! <3

October Book Reviews Part 1! @Sandra_Cox @mhurdle112 @stacitroilo @MaeClair1 #whattoread #readersoftwitter #writingcommunity

Geller’s Find

By Sandra Cox

Luke Geller is a professor and part-time archeologist. While out hunting potshards, he comes across an old gun and a strange crystal. This find takes him to the same place, but not at the same time. The gun owner, Lily, helps him out and takes him back to her ranch. I love the immediate connection between these two, even though Luke realizes he must leave and return to his life. There are so many great characters in this story that I even rooted for a character I didn’t even trust. The three women running the ranch were terrific, especially Saffron. Her humor always made me smile, including when she suggested a horse for Luke to ride. The setting brought Nevada to life during the gold rush, including a budding town. The ranch named No Gold has other treasures, including fruit and cattle. Ms. Cox has created another place I’d love to live in, but maybe with a few more present-day amenities. I was so drawn into the story that I felt the peaceful pleasure of riding a horse out on the ranch and enjoying nature’s beauty. A fantastic blend of time-traveling, a brewing romance, and the old west. A story that I can highly recommend!

The Haunting of Chatham Hollow

By Mae Clair and Staci Troilo

I was excited to see two authors I admire co-author a book. They blended their talents together seamlessly to create a must-read for those who love paranormal mysteries. “The Haunting of Chatham Hollow” has two timelines and moves with ease between them. In 1888, Victor is a likable authentic medium that cuts corners. He is persuaded to attend a séance run by another medium. Benedict and his very tall sidekick put on a good show but are just cons looking for gold. Then something unexpected happens. That event affects what is going on in 2022. In the present time journalist, Aiden is against the town having a popular ghost show come and film the reenactment of the séance. It isn’t because he’s worried about the curse but doesn’t believe in ghosts and all that goes with that. Aiden is plunged into his own mystery that concerns his boss, while his grandmother pushes him to embrace his natural talents. Each timeline has its own compelling stories within the main one that concerns the town and what happened during that first séance. The settings were vivid in both timelines, with characters to root for and dislike with a couple of surprise twists. This is a story I can highly recommend.

The Winding Road: A Journey of Survival

By Miriam Hurdle

“The Winding Road” is a heartfelt memoir that takes the reader through a cancer diagnosis to the outcome. I felt like I was experiencing this journey with Ms. Hurdle, as she not only talks about how she is feeling, but how she had to deal with insurance, appointments, and the physical toll of the treatments. Once Ms. Hurdle learned how rare and deadly the cancer was, a decision was made to try experimental treatments for six months. I’m not sure I could have handled what she endured. Being so ill during the treatments with no guarantees would be hard, but a strong will to live shined through and balanced that out. This was a painful insight into the reality of cancer, mixed with her belief that life is precious, that left me inspired and full of hope. A read that not only shows us the darker side of life when illness strikes, but how the love and support of family and friends can help carry some of that heavy burden. A highly recommended story that can inspire anyone going through not only illness but other challenges.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right to leave a review in that case. Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

Embrace your inner child by reading a good book! D. L. Finn

September Book Reviews Part 3 and UPDATES @Sandra_Cox @JacqBiggar @Dwallacepeach #writingcommunity #whattoread #readersoftwitter #bookreviews

The Necromancer’s Daughter

By Wallace Peach

Aster is the necromancer’s daughter. She and her queen-mother die when Aster is born. The healer, Barus, sees the baby and steals her away to bring her back to life. The king stays in the background but watches as the healer raises this girl as his own because he knows no one would accept a child brought back to life. When the King finally approaches Aster, his only heir, he triggers his enemies to act, who upends her peaceful life as a healer. Determined to set things right and help Barus, Aster sets off to find help. I love the people she meets along her journey, especially when she crosses the mountain. The son of her enemy is a very complex character. Although he helps her more than once, his upbringing and devotion to the Blessed One aren’t too far behind and weigh him down. Aster shows what genuine goodness is over those who use it to seek power. Even if Aster’s actions aren’t popular, her innocence and ability to do the right thing guide her through some dark times. This is a fantasy filled with magic, danger, love, loyalty, fantastic imagery, and dragons that I can highly recommend.

The Guardian Mended Souls #1

By Jacquie Biggar

After a horrible crash that killed three adults and an unborn baby, Scott tries to regain his life. He has money and fame but lost a best friend and sister. Needing closure, he goes to see the bodies but runs into the Medical Examiner, Tracy, and a badly hurt dog. This throws them together while someone seems determined to add to the body count. On the other side is Scott’s best friend, Lucas, who is now an angel and is placed with a surly partner to help people. Lucas was the driver and carried the guilt of being responsible for the accident, but he also has depth and humor mixed in. He doesn’t understand what is required from him as he navigates this afterworld. I felt for all characters’ loss and appreciated the wit weaved into it. There is redemption and learning for these characters, plus some needed justice and forgiveness. I can’t wait to read the next book to see what happens next. A fast-paced paranormal romance with second chances I can easily recommend.

Amulets #2 Rose Quartz

By Sandra Cox

Amulets #1 followed Maureen and her journey, “Rose Quartz,” focuses on her new friend, Bella. Back home, Bella quickly finds out that the killer being in jail doesn’t keep her or her amulet safe. She’s a painter gifted with beauty and creativity from her stones and has the help of Maureen’s ranch hand, Hank. He is the ultimate cowboy she is trying not to fall for but is used to using her charms and looks to get what she wants, which doesn’t go over well with him. Bella is a fun character who quickly discovers she can’t take on a madman alone. This leads her back to old friends she desperately needs and the introduction to another woman gifted with an amulet. I love the relationship developing between Hank and Bella and was rooting for them to work it out. This series is not only about the women wearing the amulets but a strong group of friends that look out for each other, especially when a madman is determined to be a god. Another fun read with love, magic, friendship, and danger perfectly mixed in for those who enjoy a paranormal romance.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right to leave a review in that case. Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

UPDATES

  • I ‘ve been hosting many great new releases in the past couple of weeks. Watch for one this week that you don’t want to miss!
  • I will be sending out my September Newsletter on the 20th. If you are subcribed watch for it in your email. I have a brand new book of the month you don’t want to miss. I read a lot and love sharing some of those great reads. My picks are booked until the until end of 2023 .
  • My “Books That Changed Me” goes out on the 22nd or first day of fall. That will post here. These are books that have stayed with me after reading them. You’ve already seen the reviews here but they are well worth a second share. If you have missed any of the past posts, I have them here on my site so you can catch up and maybe find a great new read! This is the closest you will get to my picks for books of the year.
  • The air has been hazardous on and off here. Makes it hard to think or function sometimes, even if I stay indoors with my air purifers running. So, sometimes I can’t write or do the things I want to like visit blogs, not because I don’t want to but it’s hard to focus. Luckily the fires haven’t come our way so far. I’m looking forward to the predicted rain the next couple of days. I hope it keeps coming and we can end this fire year early, instead of November. You’d think this would be normal for me after 32 years living in the forest, but the worries have ramped up the last few years. Hopefully the drought will take a nice long break.
  • And I’m feeling much better. Although, I am helping out some family members that requires more of my time, but glad I am able to do it.

Embrace your inner child by reading an enchanting story! D. L. Finn

New Release! “Geller’s Find” by Sandra Cox. #newrelease #western #timetravel #readersofttwitter #writingcommunity #whattoread

I’m thrilled to have fellow author and friend Sandra Cox here today to share her latest release, Geller’s Find. Review to follow soon—after my re-read 🙂

Character Facts

Doctor Luke Geller is a full-time history professor and part-time
archeologist.
His specialty is Native American artifacts.
Instead of a gun, he carries a Hopi throwing stick.
He likes cats and horses and has a sense of humor.

Excerpt

“Dammit.”

His heels caught in a patch of fuzzy green and gray weeds. Buried in
their center was a large piece of chiastolite. Ancient markings all but
obliterating the standard graphite cross that long ago was used to ward off
evil. The hair on the back of his neck rose and his nerves twitched. He’d
never seen anything like that rock before. He nudged it with his foot. When
it didn’t budge, he bent to pick it up.

The ground under his feet trembled.

The chiastolite glowed. The markings shimmered.

What the hell?

He flapped his arms, trying to balance himself as the ground dropped
an inch. A perfect circle below his feet gave way, the stone still in place.

He fell into a mineral cylinder.

The bottom dropped.

His stomach flopped and he swirled down.

The wind whistled in his ears as he tumbled into a black hole that went
on forever. The chill in the air fell away. The further down he went, the
hotter the air. The rocks around him began to glow. Good God. Either he
was heading for hell or the earth’s core, and neither was where he wanted
to be. His grip on the rifle tightened as he bounced off the hot stones that
closed around him as he whirled in a tube of rock.

Time had no meaning. Seconds, minutes, maybe more passed as the
cyclone of air spun him around. His stomach pushed up to his throat and
he fought off nausea.

With a scraping sound, the spinning lurched to a stop.

Then as if an elevator button was punched, he started upward. Only
unlike an elevator there was no floor, just rough rock gravity glued him
against.

Up. Up. Up. Faster and faster. Then momentum stopped. His body
quivered. A force thrust upward and opened.

He dropped.

Hard earth rose to meet him.

With a thud, he landed.

US AMAZON PURCHASE LINK

UK AMAZON PURCHASE LINK

 

Sandra Cox has written over thirty books. Her works consist of all things Western and more. Sandra is a vegetarian, Muay Thai
enthusiast, animal lover and avid gardener. She lives with her
husband, their dog and cats in sunny North Carolina.

Foodie Facts:
She spent a number of years in the Midwest chasing down good
Southern BBQ. By the time she moved to North Carolina where Southern
BBQ is practically a staple, she’d become a vegetarian.
Pineapple is a must-have on pizza, along with black olives and onions.
She loves pumpkin waffles. Pumpkin cream cheese, not so much.

Links:
https://sandracoxwriter.com
https://cowboytrivia.blogspot.com

September Book Reviews! @sgc58 @JacqBiggar #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter #whattoread #mustread

The Sister Pact: Home is Where The Heart is

by Jacquie Biggar

Holly has been ill and came home for the holidays after eight years away. It was time to heal old wounds between Holly and her younger sister, Susan, who stole Holly’s boyfriend, Steven, away and married him. What Holly comes home to seems broken on many levels, not only between her sister but her mother and father. Thrown into this dysfunctional mix is not only the man Holly lost, Steven but his brother, Levi, who she slept with at her sister’s wedding. Information is gently rolled out as relationships clash and communication is limited. There’s a lot of pain and hurt that needs to be healed. Levi was my favorite character with his patience and long-time quiet devotion to Holly. Their fun moments at the beach highlighted what it could be if Holly could get past her fears and past. When Susan needs her help, Holly is there for her. I love the message that no matter what happens, the family will survive and eventually pull together, no matter how long it takes. What a beautiful, well-written reminder of what is important in life, not only finding a soul mate but healing a family, too. I can highly recommend this story.

Dr. Metifunger’s Transdimensional Veterinary Clinic

by Dennis Strubbe

I picked up “Dr. Metifunger’s Transdimensional Veterinary Clinic” after seeing a review that captured my attention and curiosity. A book that offers interdimensional traveling, animals, a mystery, and some romance all mixed with humor—how could I pass that up? I wasn’t disappointed in this unique tale. Dr. Mabel Sassani is offered a job in Florida after having issues in California and having her license suspended. What Mabel found on day one was a disappearing dog, and oh, the clinic was in several dimensions. I love the animals she treats that are unlike anything Mabel has treated in her dimension, and the techs, Sandy, are a lot of fun. There is the silent partner, Karen, who seems to have given Mabel a break, but might be a criminal. Then there’s the handsome Bryce, who is there when Mabel needs help. Mabel is determined to figure this out no matter what world she must do it in, and Bryce becomes the person to do that with. Throwing Dr. Metifunger’s overbearing parents into this mix made for a fun read. A well-written adventure with entertaining characters in and outside of our dimension.

Just an Odd Job Girl

by Sally Cronin

This is a fun read told through the eyes of a recently divorced middle-aged woman, Imogen. She believes she has a perfect life; her kids have moved out, and she has her dream house, but her husband isn’t on the same page. Out of the blue, Imogen is presented with a divorce because a younger woman, who was humorously labeled a “fast-tracker” has replaced her. Her soon-to-be ex-husband offers Imogen a smaller house. She retreats into this home, comforting herself with food. Finally, she concludes it’s time to work. This is where she goes to her first job interview in years and meets a kind man who asks her to tell him about all the jobs she’s ever had. This journey to her past is not only fascinating, and many times hilarious, but opened her eyes to the person she used to be. She gets through part of her life and then is encouraged to keep reminiscing. There are so many parts that had me laughing out loud, like when she got ready for this job interview or visited the hairdresser. As I was reading, it felt like Imogen was sitting next to me telling her story. “Just an Odd Job Girl” dove into a woman’s journey where she found her strength and perhaps another chance at love. I was completely invested in Imogen’s outcome. I can highly recommend this book.

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right leaving a review, in that case:) Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

August Book Reviews Part 2! @Danantion1 @RituBhathal @JoyYorkAuthor @Lizzie_Chantree #bookreviews #whattoread #mustreads #writingcommunity #readersoftwitter

My Perfect Ex

by Lizzie Chantree

A fun romantic read where the heavier subject of mental health is woven into it. Poppy is hardworking and is trying to get her business going while her boyfriend, Dylan, is more laid back with his company. Also, Dylan has a reputation of being a lady’s man. These issues push doubt into Poppy’s mind about her relationship with Dylan. Although Poppy loves her job and Dylan, her friends encourage her to give her business partner, Jared, a chance, since he is more like her. Poppy’s powerful side is how she steps up to help others, and her pods are a version of that. There is some miscommunication, jealousy, and hidden motives mixed in, which add depth. I enjoyed the friendship between Poppy and her assistant, and her devotion to those she loves. Poppy has some important lessons to learn who to trust and where she can offer forgiveness. A read I can recommend for those who love romantic stories.

Genuine Deceit

by Joy York

Reagan comes home after her grandmother was killed during a house robbery in this fast-paced mystery. Her best friend, Mattie, enlists her ex-seal brother-in-law, Aiden, to look after Reagan when she can’t be there. It’s soon apparent Reagan needs some help since another burglary follows the first. There is a slowly developing relationship between the two as they uncover clues that only add more questions about what happened. Some old play jewelry may be part of the answer, while it becomes apparent that someone wants something in Reagan’s grandmother’s house. Reagan not only runs across old pictures she’s never seen before but begins to piece together her family’s history. There were many twists, and I kept reading to see what would happen next. The end had a surprise that I didn’t see coming. The story was packed with several side stories and shifting suspects. A layered whodunit with a touch of romance and friendship. This is a fun read for all mystery lovers.

Marriage Unarranged

by Ritu Bhathal

“Marriage Unarranged” is a charming romantic story that completely hooked me. Aashti found out her fiancé had been unfaithful to her, so she called off the wedding. Seems simple enough, but it wasn’t as acceptable in her community to break off engagements. So, after much consideration, Aashti, her two brothers, and her best friend decide to take the trip to India that was to be for her wedding shopping. Told through several points of view, including her ex-Ravi, added a lot of depth and insight to the story. My favorite part, though, was learning more about the Sikh culture in Britain and India. Although it seemed like their customs were old-fashioned, the family was always there for each other. It was wonderful how much unconditional love Aashti had, including from her very overprotective brother. This was a journey where Aashti finds not only her way after being devastated by her loss, but her strength. Developing relationships were an important part of the traveling group’s growth and the trip through India was vivid with images and experiences that shined through the pages. A marvelous story that I found hard to put down and I can’t wait for the next book to see what happens next.

Knuckleheads

by Daniel Antion

“Knuckleheads” is a unique and compelling read that focuses on two boys growing up in the late sixties and seventies. Zach and Billy have found a bonding friendship in their differences from other children their own age. Zach has dreams which he can go into, and Billy knows the future outcome of events, but not how they come to that ending. Billy struggles in school and has a label for his supposed lack of intelligence. He is moved into another school for such children. Zach is put into therapy and learns to just say what is expected of him. Their abilities and how they had to deal with them were my favorite parts of the story. I love the connection between the boys and the gifts they were given, but unfortunately, no one was ready for them. They had to hide what they really were. This was a time of not only war and civil unrest but when computers were in their early stages before they were common in households, yet they captured the boy’s attention—especially Billy. Lots of good details went into not only the town, people, and the computers. Zach’s father owns a bowling alley and both boys work there while Zach tried to learn to control going into his dreams. The bowling alley brought back a lot of good memories of when I grew up, it was the place to go,  just like in the story. Zach is retelling the story of his childhood to his daughter Abbie, about him and Billy. So, father and daughter would comment on the story as it went along. A great debut that is a prequel of stories to come. I am looking forward to reading the next book to find out what happens next!

I only post my 4 & 5-star reviews. If I don’t like a book, I won’t finish it. It doesn’t feel right leaving a review, in that case:) Life is too short not to enjoy every book you read!

Embrace your inner child this summer, read a book! D. L. Finn