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Saturday, January 18, 2020

#Spotlight on Inherent Truth by Alicia Anthony




Inherent Truth
(Blood Secrets #1)
by Alicia Anthony
Paperback, 376 pages
Published January 14th 2020 by Drury Lane Books, LLC

A woman with buried secrets…An agent with an impossible mission…An inheritance that will destroy them both…When Liv Sullivan’s dead grandmother beckons for help from beyond the grave, the reluctant psychic is forced back to her small Ohio hometown. Scrambling to make sense of her grandmother’s legacy, Liv finds herself face to face with undercover Agent Ridge McCaffrey.Assigned to protect the woman whose gifts unnerve him, all for a covert psychic intelligence operation he doesn’t understand, Ridge struggles to place duty over desire. But when a body is found at Sullivan Farm and Liv’s allegiance is called into question, Ridge’s mission becomes clear.Can Liv unearth family secrets that are best left buried before the ghosts of her past destroy her dreams of a normal future?







About the Author:


Alicia Anthony’s first novels were illegible scribbles on the back of her truck driver father’s logbook trip tickets. Having graduated from scribbles to laptop, she now pens novels of psychological suspense in the quiet of the wee morning hours. A full-time elementary school Literacy Specialist, Alicia hopes to pass on her passion for books and writing to the students she teaches.A two time Golden Heart® finalist and Silver Quill Award winner, Alicia finds her inspiration in exploring the dark, dusty corners of the human experience. Alicia is a graduate of Spalding University’s School of Creative & Professional Writing (MFA), Ashland University (M.Ed.) and THE Ohio State University (BA). Go Bucks! She lives in rural south-central Ohio with her amazingly patient and supportive husband, incredibly understanding teenage daughter, two dogs, three horses, a plethora of both visiting and resident barn cats, and some feral raccoons who have worn out their welcome.When she’s not writing or teaching, Alicia loves to travel and experience new places. Connect with her online. She’d love to hear from you!

Excerpt:
My grandmother’s voice pierced the haze of sleep. “It’s time, Olivia.”
Her spoken words transformed into the melodic chorus of “Danny Boy,” a song I’d heard countless times over lazy summer days spent at my grandparents’ farm. Perfectly in tune, and full of my grandmother’s usual warmth, only the intense melancholy in her voice signaled that life was about to change.
I roused as the shroud of sleep fell away–not completely awake, but somewhere in that in-between state that exists only in dreams. That fine line between reality and the whims of the subconscious. I knew the space too well.
My grandmother was not really here, not in my tiny apartment in Southern California. Yet this was more than just a dream, a fabrication of the typical sleeping mind. Walking the line of the normal subconscious would have been a blessing. But no, as usual, I’d gone beyond, straddling this world and the next.
I rubbed my eyes and turned toward her voice. She stood at the kitchen sink, not my own nondescript stainless steel version, but the old porcelain apron-front atop the aged wood cabinetry in the Sullivan farmhouse. I sat up on the edge of my bed and listened as she digressed from singing and began to hum the remaining stanzas of the classic Irish tune. A red and white gingham dishtowel flicked expertly around a bright floral-patterned dish, finally coming to rest across her shoulder.
She turned toward me, and the breath caught in my lungs. No matter how many visions I had, I never seemed prepared. Her apparition as real as if she’d landed that afternoon at LAX. More fully-formed than the intense grip of daytime visions, the nighttime images were easier to immerse myself in. I forced a breath and took in the full vision of my grandmother. She winked at me as she made her way from the kitchen toward the antique dining table that had materialized in my living room. All that remained of my studio apartment was the bed on which I sat. My familiar walls and dΓ©cor slid away into the foggy abyss that framed the vision in front of me.
Grandma’s pale blue dressing gown fluttered gently against sun-starved legs. How many Saturday mornings had I come downstairs to the kitchen at Sullivan farm to see exactly this image? For anyone else, that’s what this would be–a memory-induced dream, a creation of the subconscious. But not for me.
The blue of her gown, coupled with the stream of light filtering through an imaginary window, added a shimmer to her eyes. My grandmother had the most beautiful eyes. Rich pools of pale cornflower blue that twinkled when she laughed. A knot rose in my throat. How I longed to hear that laugh.
“Do you remember this one, Liv?” She looked at me. Her gaze pulling like the fingers of some unseen force, coaxing me to join her at the table. I worked my toes into the carpet beneath my feet and I stood from the side of the bed, shuffling toward the vignette in front of me. She pushed a grainy photograph across well-worn oak as I slid into the chair opposite her. The spindles of the oak chair pressing into my spine were the only proof I’d moved from my perch on the bed.
“I took that when he was on a weekend leave in Germany. Can you believe I flew all the way over there just for a weekend with your grandfather?” A light chuckle, like a breeze through well-tuned wind chimes, escaped her lips.
I smiled at the mischievous glint in my grandma’s watery blue eyes. “I bet he was glad you made the effort.”
She reached her hand to cover mine and gave a squeeze. The warmth of her touch spiraled a note of helplessness down my spine as I battled the nugget of comprehension that explained her appearance. I clenched my jaw against the tears pricking at the backs of my eyes, determined to focus on the smiling faces of my young grandparents, primitively colorized in the photograph in front of me. They’d looked so happy.
“It’s time.” Playfulness evaporated from her voice. “You ignored the warning, but you can’t ignore your legacy.”
My stomach tightened as she took the photograph from my hand and replaced it in the leather-bound photo album I remembered seeing at the farm.
“This is about the girl in the woods, isn’t it?” My voice rose above the tentative whisper I usually used with visiting spirits. The call had come a couple months ago, just after New Year’s, but there wasn’t a day that slipped by it didn’t weigh on me.
Every time I closed my eyes, I saw her. Fearful, wide, blue eyes, freckles sprinkled across the bridge of her nose, but what haunted me the most were the familiar trees, the boat house where I’d played hide-n-seek as a child. The gentle lap of water against the nearby shore. All tarnished now. I once knew every square foot of that woods. But that seemed like a lifetime ago. The last time I’d been at Sullivan Farm was over three years ago when we’d moved my grandmother into an assisted living center.
“I expect you’ll take good care of these.” She ignored my question and patted the cover of the album gently, running both hands over it as if she didn’t want to let it go. “There’s something I need you to find, Liv.” Before I could respond, my grandmother turned, ushering a little girl from the bluish fog behind her. I shoved away the flash of blue eyes that pricked from my memory. This wasn’t the missing girl from that mysterious call, the color and shape of her eyes was proof enough for me. I waited for her to speak, but she remained mute. Rosebud lips pressed in a hard line. She just stared at me with enormous deep green eyes.
Her strawberry blonde hair was arranged in pigtail braids and tied with blue satin ribbons, one of which was dirty, the bow bedraggled. She wore a pale yellow dress with short sleeves, the hem draping just above the dimples of her knees. Tiny blue embroidered flowers danced in rows across the smocked bodice. A pair of matching socks and well-worn Stride Rite Mary Janes completed the look. She was cute. Haunting, but adorable.
I shrugged off the eerie familiarity. Images of family photos flew like microfiche files through my brain. I searched each one for someone who could match the girl’s description but came up empty. One thought nagged. I shoved against it, but it persisted–she looked like me.
“Who is she?” My voice a whisper, a waver in the silence.
“The answers rest with her. Come home, Liv.” My grandmother’s voice hung like an echo as the vision faded, dissipating like sun-burned fog. I searched Grandma’s eyes. The knot in my throat thickened with the understanding that I’d never again see their sparkle in the light of day. She raised her long, thin fingers to her lips and blew me a kiss.

Friday, January 17, 2020

🍷🍷 #Review of My Fake Rake by Eva Leigh

 



42872108Title:  My Fake Rake
Series:  Union of Rakes #1
Author: Eva Leigh
Format: Paperback/eBook, 384 pages
Publication: Nov. 26, 2019 by Avon
ASIN:    B07P2WLV63 
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Source: Edelweiss
Reviewer: Kimberly
Rating: 2 out of 5 Wine Glasses

In the first book in Eva Leigh's new Union of the Rakes series, a bluestocking hires a faux suitor to help her land an ideal husband only to be blindsided by real desire…
Lady Grace Wyatt is content as a wallflower, focusing on scientific pursuits rather than the complications of society matches. But when a handsome, celebrated naturalist returns from abroad, Grace wishes, for once, to be noticed. Her solution: to "build" the perfect man, who will court her publicly and help her catch his eye. Grace's colleague, anthropologist Sebastian Holloway, is just the blank slate she requires.

In exchange for funding his passage on an expedition leaving London in a few months, Sebastian allows Grace to transform him from a bespectacled, bookish academic into a dashing—albeit fake—rake. Between secret lessons on how to be a rogue and exaggerated public flirtations, Grace's feelings for Sebastian grow from friendship into undeniable, inconvenient, real attraction. If only she hadn't hired him to help her marry someone else...

Sebastian is in love with brilliant, beautiful Grace, but their bargain is complete, and she desires another. Yet when he's faced with losing her forever, Sebastian will do whatever it takes to tell her the truth, even if it means risking his own future—and his heart.



Kimberly's Thoughts:
“There’s no should when it comes to what we feel. There aren’t scientific laws when it comes to the human heart.”

Thursday, January 16, 2020

🍷🍷🍷.7 #Review of Aurora Blazing by Jessie Mihalik




41951623Title:  Aurora Blazing
Series:  Consortium Rebellion #2
Author: Jessie Mihalik
Format: Paperback/eBook, 400 pages
Publication: Oct. 1, 2019 by Harper Voyager
ASIN:   B07MP75872 
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Source: Edelweiss
Reviewer: Kimberly
Rating: 3.7 out of 5 Wine Glasses

Bianca von Hasenberg did her duty for High House von Hasenberg and ended up trapped in a terrible marriage. When her husband dies unexpectedly and leaves her a happy widow, she vows never to marry again. Instead, she uses her connections to save other young women. Information is power and Bianca has a network that would be the envy of the ’verse—if anyone knew about it.

After an attack, Bianca’s oldest brother, the House von Hasenberg heir, disappears from Earth without a trace. Determined to find him, Bianca leaves against orders. When she refuses to return, her father sends Ian Bishop, the director of House von Hasenberg security, to haul her home like a recalcitrant child.

Bianca leads Ian on a merry chase across the universe, but when their paths finally collide, she persuades him that they would be far more successful at finding her brother if they worked together. She will do anything to save her sibling, even if it means spending time alone on a small ship with the handsome, infuriating man who once broke her heart.

As clues lead them deep into rival House Rockhurst territory, Bianca must decide if she can trust Ian with the one piece of information that could destroy her completely. . .



Kimberly's Thoughts:
Lady Bianca von Hasenberg still emotionally and physically deals with the trauma her first marriage caused. Now a widow, she works to help other girls and women through her network of spies and her technological skills. When her brother Ferdinand and the von Hasenberg heir disappears, she won't be patted on the head and told to stay home by her father or their Director of Security, Ian Bishop.
Ian shut down Bianca's flirting when he was her bodyguard and even now as the Director of Security, he still doesn't think he is worthy of her, but he can't stop his protective feelings for her. Bianca manages to get information he needs and she won't take no for an answer when it comes to rescuing her brother. Ian needs to rescue the heir, keep his own secrets, and never let Bianca know how deep his feelings really go.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Read an #Excerpt from The Bishop: A Tanglewood Novella by Skye Warren




46728434. sy475 The Bishop: A Tanglewood Novella
by Skye Warren
Kindle Edition, 97 pages
Published January 14th 2020 by 1001 Dark Nights Press
ASINB07TN1525H
A million dollar chess piece goes missing hours before the auction.

Anders Sorenson will do anything to get it back. His family name and fortune rests on finding two inches of medieval ivory. Instead he finds an injured woman with terrible secrets.

He isn't letting her go until she helps him find the piece. But there's more at stake in this strategic game of lust and danger. When she confesses everything, he might lose more than his future. He might lose his heart.


Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Happy #BookBirthday to Wolf Gone Wild by Juliette Cross




44167691. sy475 Wolf Gone Wild
(Stay a Spell #1)
by Juliette Cross 
ebook
Published January 14th 2020
What's the worst thing that can happen to a werewolf? Unable to shift for three months, Mateo Cruz knows all too well. His wolf has taken up residence in his head, taunting him night and day with vividly violent and carnal thoughts. Convinced he's cursed, he needs the help of a powerful witch before he literally goes insane.

​Evie Savoie has always obeyed the house rules of her coven--no werewolves. They're known for being moody and volatile. So, when a distempered, dangerous werewolf strolls into the bar and almost strangles one of her late-night customers, she's ready to bounce him through the door. But the desperation in his eyes when he begs her to help him softens her heart and convinces her to bend the rules.

​What Evie doesn't know is that Mateo's wolf has a mind of his own. And now that she's in his sights, he wants only one thing. Her. 

Monday, January 13, 2020

Read an #Excerpt from Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly + #Giveaway




48499902. sy475 Twisted Hearts
(The Camorra Chronicles #5)
by Cora Reilly
Kindle Edition, 340 pages
Published January 7th 2020
ASINB07Z91MBD2
Savio Falcone has a few non-negotiable rules when it comes to girls.
They need to be hot as f*ck.
Spread their legs without much prompting.
And leave as soon as the fun is over. Preferably minus any bitching or tears.
With his easy-going bad boy attitude, a last name that rules over Las Vegas and a body to die for, girls have always been at Savio’s disposal.
Unfortunately, the hottest girl in Vegas comes with a price Savio isn’t willing to pay. For Savio to get Gemma he’d need to seal the deal and put a ring on her finger. Settling down is out of the question, no matter how hot a piece of ass waits at the altar.
Gemma Bazzoli has had a crush on Savio from the first moment she came face to face with his arrogant smile, but for him she was always his best friend's annoying little sister—until her hard-earned curves catch even his attention.
But Savio likes it easy, and Gemma is anything but. When she’s promised to another man, Gemma resigns herself to the fact that the man she’s wanted all her life, doesn’t want her badly enough.
Savio has to decide how much work he’s willing to invest, because bending the rules in his usual style might not be enough to get the girl that haunts his wet dreams.