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Showing posts from 2019

Release Day Blast & Cover Reveal for The Ghost of Madison Avenue by Nancy Bilyeau

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The Ghost of Madison Avenue by Nancy Bilyeau Publication Date: December 13, 2019 eBook, 108 pages Genre: Historical Mystery

Christmas Ghost Story in Old New York

In this compelling and poignant story, bestselling author Nancy Bilyeau takes readers to New York City’s Morgan Library in December 1912, when two very different people haunted by lost love come together in an unexpected way.

Helen O’Neill, part of a tight-knit Irish-American family in the Bronx, is only too happy to report to work at the spectacular private library built on Madison Avenue by millionaire financier J. P. Morgan. The head librarian, the brilliant and beautiful Belle da Costa Greene, had hired Helen away from the Metropolitan Museum of Art after she witnessed Helen’s unusual talent with handling artifacts.

Helen soon discovers the Morgan Library is a place like no other, with its secret staircases, magical manuscripts, and mysterious murals. But that’s nothing compared to a person who Helen alone can see: a you…

An Encyclopedia of Tolkien by David Day

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An Encyclopedia of Tolkien by David Day Hardcover, 544 pages Published October 8th 2019 by Canterbury Classics 9781645170099

A comprehensive, illustrated guide to the history, lands, and inhabitants of Middle-earth.
The fantasy world of J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth contains a rich assortment of people, cities, and creatures—as well as a deep, intertwined history that spans thousands of years. In this beautifully illustrated, leather-bound volume, best-selling author and Tolkien scholar David Day presents four decades of research and writing on the lands and inhabitants Middle-earth. Sections of this A-to-Z dictionary are devoted to discussion of the battles, history, beasts, and heroes of Tolkien’s stories, and are accompanied by black-and-white illustrations. This comprehensive volume on Tolkien’s world also includes an appendix of three primary legends that served as sources for Tolkien’s creations—the Volsunga saga, the Nibelungenlied, and Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle—and more t…

Entertaining Mr. Pepys by Deborah Swift @swiftstory @hfvbt

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Entertaining Mr. Pepys by Deborah Swift Publication Date: September 12, 2019 Hachette Book Group eBook. Paperback, Audiobook; 400 Pages Genre: Historical Fiction

London 1666

Elizabeth 'Bird' Carpenter has a wonderful singing voice, and music is her chief passion. When her father persuades her to marry horse-dealer Christopher Knepp, she suspects she is marrying beneath her station, but nothing prepares her for the reality of life with Knepp. Her father has betrayed her trust, for Knepp cares only for his horses; he is a tyrant and a bully, and will allow Bird no life of her own.

When Knepp goes away, she grasps her chance and, encouraged by her maidservant Livvy, makes a secret visit to the theatre. Entranced by the music, the glitter and glamour of the surroundings, and the free and outspoken manner of the women on the stage, she falls in love with the theatre and is determined to forge a path of her own as an actress.

But life in the theatre was never going to be straightfo…

Distant Signs by Anne Richter Excerpt and Giveaway

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Distant Signs by Anne Richter Publication Date: November 7, 2019 Neem Tree Press Hardcover; 240 Pages Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance/Saga

Distant Signs is an intimate portrait of two families spanning three generations amidst turbulent political change, behind and beyond the Berlin Wall. In 1960s East Germany, Margret, a professor's daughter from the city, meets and marries Hans, from a small village in Thuringia. The couple struggle to contend with their different backgrounds, and the emotional scars they bear from childhood in the aftermath of war. As East German history gradually unravels, with collision of the personal and political, their two families' hidden truths are quietly revealed. An exquisitely written novel with strongly etched characters that stay with you long after the book is finished and an authentic portrayal of family life behind the iron curtain based on personal experience of the author who is East German and was 16 years old at the fall of the Berli…

Review: Marley by Jon Clinch

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Marley by Jon Clinch Narrated by: Matthew Lloyd Davies Length: 7 hrs and 15 mins Published October 8th 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio 9781508299202
Young Ebenezer Scrooge and Jacob Marley are very different in temperament when they meet in the gloomy confines of Professor Drabb’s Academy for Boys, but they form a bond that will endure for the rest of their lives.

My ThoughtsMarley by Jon Clinch is a prequel to Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. Readers are not entirely sure what exactly Jacob Marley did in his life, but we know it's bad. We know that because when Scrooge is visited by Marley, he is weighed down by heavy chains of his own making. Chains he forged in life. Without knowing exactly who he is and what he's done, we can deduce from Scrooge's life that Marley wasn't a good character. However, there is a redemptive quality to Marley. After all, he does come to Scrooge to warn him that if he doesn't change his ways, he'll end up the same way. "…

5 nonfiction audiobooks for your consideration

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How to Connect: Stories on the Power of Human Connection by Brian Grazer Narrated by: Brian Grazer - introduction, Steven Weber Published September 17, 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio  Length: 4 hrs and 42 mins  9781508282495

"New York Times bestselling author and iconic Hollywood producer Brian Grazer reveals a new secret to forge a happier and more successful life. Through his own personal stories, discover how eye contact—a power available to nearly everyone—can change your life too."

Are you ready for the secret? Let me save you 4 hours and 42 minutes. Make eye contact. Yep, that's it. I didn't think this was a secret, per se. After all, any communications class will tell you how important it is. But it's also no secret that today's society tend to be looking at their phones more than each other, so maybe we need this reminder. Brian Grazer goes on to illustrate his points about eye contact by telling stories (heavy on the name dropping) about his life and …

The Stranger from the Sea and The Miller's Dance by Winston Graham.

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The Stranger from the Sea (The Poldark Saga #8)
by Winston Graham

I struggled with reading The Stranger from the Sea now as opposed to after the final season of Poldark aired. But temptation got the better of me. I couldn't wait to read what life after Elizabeth would entail. But to my surprise, this book picks up ten years after The Angry Tide. And while the main characters of the first seven books are still around, it's their children that are brought to the forefront. Jeremy and Clowance are now of age, as is Valentine Warleggan and John Conan Whitworth. It took a minute to get used to this idea, as I love Ross and Demelza, Dwight and Carolyn. However, Graham doesn't disappoint with his epic storytelling. In The Stranger from the Sea, Stephen Carrington makes his way to Nampara where he brings danger and love and temptation to the Poldark estate. This book was not what I was expecting, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I especially love that Verity and Jud are very much st…

Audiobook Review: A Keeper by Graham Norton

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A Keeper: A Novel by Graham Norton Audiobook Published August 13th 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio Length: 7 hrs and 45 mins 9781508295792
Summary When Elizabeth Keane returns to Ireland after her mother’s death, she’s focused only on saying goodbye to that dark and dismal part of her life. Her childhood home is packed solid with useless junk, her mother’s presence already fading. But within this mess, she discovers a small stash of letters—and ultimately, the truth.
Forty years earlier, a young woman stumbles from a remote stone house, the night quiet except for the constant wind that encircles her as she hurries deeper into the darkness away from the cliffs and the sea. She has no sense of where she is going, only that she must keep on.
My Thoughts Graham Norton emerged onto the literary scene a few years ago with his first mystery novel Holding, which I enjoyed immensely. I too listened to it on audio. Norton has a pleasant voice full of personality that makes for a wonderful narrato…

Audiobook Roundup

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This brand-new audio collection from the iconic Pulitzer and Nobel Prize–winning author is a listener’s delight. The two dozen short stories presented here have never been published on audio; these new recordings of classic stories will remind listeners of Ernest Hemingway’s incomparable mastery of the short story form.

John Beford Lloyd was the perfect choice to narrate this short story collection. Fans of Heminway will love it!








Discover the unforgettable and inspiring true story of Brian Banks—a young man who was wrongfully convicted as a teenager and imprisoned for more than five years, only to emerge with his spirit unbroken and determined to achieve his dream of playing in the NFL.

This is a powerful memoir about a man who was failed by the judicial system--from his lawyers to the broken prison system system. Everybody needs to listen to/read this book. It will change the way you look at the world.







From the author of The Other Boleyn Girl—a book about the devastating consequence…

Review and Giveaway: The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare

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The Wallflower Wager (Girl Meets Duke #3) by Tessa Dare ebook, 368 pages Expected publication: August 13th 2019 by Avon  9780062672155
Summary They call him the Duke of Ruin.
To an undaunted wallflower, he's just the beast next door. 
Wealthy and ruthless, Gabriel Duke clawed his way from the lowliest slums to the pinnacle of high society—and now he wants to get even.
Loyal and passionate, Lady Penelope Campion never met a lost or wounded creature she wouldn’t take into her home and her heart.
When her imposing—and attractive—new neighbor demands she clear out the rescued animals, Penny sets him a challenge. She will part with her precious charges, if he can find them loving homes.
Done, Gabriel says. How hard can it be to find homes for a few kittens?
And a two-legged dog.
And a foul-mouthed parrot.
And a goat, an otter, a hedgehog . . .
Easier said than done, for a cold-blooded bastard who wouldn’t know a loving home from a workhouse. Soon he’s covered in cat hair, knee-deep in…

Review and Giveaway: Brazen and the Beast by Sarah MacLean

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Brazen and the Beast (The Bareknuckle Bastards #2) by Sarah MacLean ebook, 400 pages Expected publication: July 30th 2019 by Avon 9780062691989
Summary The Lady’s Plan
When Lady Henrietta Sedley declares her twenty-ninth year her own, she has plans to inherit her father’s business, to make her own fortune, and to live her own life. But first, she intends to experience a taste of the pleasure she’ll forgo as a confirmed spinster. Everything is going perfectly…until she discovers the most beautiful man she’s ever seen tied up in her carriage and threatening to ruin the Year of Hattie before it’s even begun.
The Bastard’s Proposal
When he wakes in a carriage at Hattie’s feet, Whit, a king of Covent Garden known to all the world as Beast, can’t help but wonder about the strange woman who frees him—especially when he discovers she’s headed for a night of pleasure . . . on his turf. He is more than happy to offer Hattie all she desires…for a price.
An Unexpected Passion
Soon, Hattie and Wh…

Audiobook Review Sorcery of Thorns

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Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson Narrated by Emily Ellet Published June 4th 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio Length: 14 hrs and 20 mins 9781508282877
Summary
All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.
Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in f…

Audiobook Review: Temper

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Temper by Layne Fargo Narrated by  Jayme Mattler and Hillary Huber Audiobook, Unabridged Published July 2nd 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio Length: 9 hrs and 57 mins 9781508286608
Summary After years of struggling in the Chicago theater scene, ambitious actress Kira Rascher finally lands the role of a lifetime. The catch? Starring in Temper means working with Malcolm Mercer, a mercurial director who’s known for pushing his performers past their limits—on stage and off.
Kira’s convinced she can handle Malcolm, but the theater’s co-founder, Joanna Cuyler, is another story. Joanna sees Kira as a threat—to her own thwarted artistic ambitions, her twisted relationship with Malcolm, and the shocking secret she’s keeping about the upcoming production. But as opening night draws near, Kira and Joanna both start to realize that Malcolm’s dangerous extremes are nothing compared to what they're capable of themselves.


*I received a digital file of Temper from the publisher for review purposes. …

Audiobook Review: The Other Queen

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The Other Queen: A Novel (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels #15) by Philippa Gregory  Narrated by Richard Armitage, Alex Kingston, Madeleine Leslay  Published June 25th 2019 by Simon Schuster Audio Length: 16 hrs and 32 mins 9781508292814
Summary
Fleeing violent rebellions in Scotland, Mary looks to Queen Elizabeth of England for sanctuary. Though promised protection, Mary, perceived as a serious threat to the English crown, is soon imprisoned by her former friend as a “guest” in the house of George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, and his indomitable wife, Bess of Hardwick. The newly married couple welcomes the condemned queen into their home, certain that serving as her hosts and jailers will bring them an advantage in the cutthroat world of the Elizabethan court. 
To their horror, they grow to realize that the task will bankrupt their estate and lose them what little favor they’ve managed to gain as their home becomes the epicenter of intrigue and rebellion against Queen Elizabeth. And …

One Fine Duke by Leora Bell

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Title: One Fine Duke Author: Lenora Bell ISBN: 9780062692504 Price: $7.99 On-Sale Date: 7/23/19

USA Today bestselling author Lenora Bell returns with her third book in the sexy School for Dukes series.

Ready. Raised in the countryside by her overprotective uncle, Miss Mina Penny’s dream of a triumphant London season is finally here. She determined her perfect match long ago: Rafe Bentley, the wickedest rake of them all. There’s only one very large, very unyielding obstacle: Rafe’s brother Drew, the reclusive Duke of Thorndon. Aim. This was supposed to be simple. Duke goes to London. Duke selects suitable bride. Love match? Not a chance. But when Drew meets Mina, she complicates everything. How can a lady armed with such beauty and brains fall for his irresponsible degenerate of a brother? Drew vows to save her from heartbreak and ruin, no matter the cost. Desire! But Mina is no damsel in distress. She’s daring, intuitive, passionate…and halfway to melting Drew’s cold heart. And although Mina …