Thursday, December 31, 2015

Send 2015 out with a FANG!: Between a Vamp and a Hard Place by Jessica Sims

Hi guys and gals!
Welcome to THE FINAL POST from Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers...
...for 2015 that is.  ^-^


Image result for new years eve


Today is New Year's Eve.  We're closing out another year and saying hello to the next in less than 24 hours.  I wrestled with my ideas for the final post this year, and while a TOP 10 or BEST PICKS was definitely a thought, I went with a review.  Even that simple choice presented its own problems though.  How so?  Well, My mind had been circling around the lyrics to the classic NYE song Auld Lange Syne



Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne?


On one hand, I was going to feature two titles presenting a favorite and not-so-favorite comparison.  On the other hand, I had recently finished a book that fit the lyrics so well, I simply couldn't resist the puns a plenty.  So, today fair readers as you go about your merriment activities, I invite you to add yet another title to your reading list for the new year!  It comes to us via Pocket Books and stars the latest release from an author well known in the Paranormal Romance junket, though it was my first experience with her work.  Ready or not, here comes today's book of choice...



Between a Vamp and a Hard Place


Between a Vamp and a Hard Place
by
9781476753997
Pocket Books


About the book....
In the wickedly funny spirit of bestselling authors Kerrelyn Sparks and Molly Harper, this sexy paranormal romance features an estate broker and a 600-year-old vampire out for revenge.

Lindsey Hughes loves antiques and couldn’t be happier to make a living in the estate sale business. But when her assistant accidentally buys an entire estate without her approval, Lindsey is forced to clean up the mess herself.


Lindsey travels to the newly purchased, age-old house in Venice, Italy, and soon discovers more than she (never) bargained for. While digging through the hoarder’s trove that fills every floor, she finds a secret staircase behind a wall that leads to a strange coffin…with an even stranger inhabitant.


Vampire Rand FitzWulf has been in his coffin for 600 years. But now that he’s awake, he’s ravenous, and there’s a delicious-smelling woman with a rare blood type in his basement. Luckily, Lindsey has more to offer than blood: she agrees to travel throughout Europe with Rand to help him get revenge on the one who turned him. But as the unlikely pair grows closer, will the billionaire vampire be overtaken by his thirst for blood—or his thirst for love?







AMAZON   |   B&N   |   APPLE   |   KOBO   |   EBOOKS






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So, SHOULD auld acquaintance be forget?
In this case, the answer is both YES and NO.  It all depends on who you are and where you fall in the remembrances because a few folks have some payback coming their way so being forgotten, not such a bad thing!


While not my usual read, I chuckled upon seeing the title pop up in my inbox and after the synopsis, I thought...why not?  It's always good to try new things, right?  Right!  So glad I did.  Though a bit more on the steamy side of things a few times more than my own preference, it was still good.  The story pulled me in with Lindsey our likeable heroine and her bestie Gemma hightailing it to Italy on a mission that sounded too good to be true...and of course, it was.  Well okay, perhaps that's not being fair because they got some AMAZING stories out of it and a future for their business that they could never have seen coming, but they also had their lives put in jeopardy multiple times and learned that all those paranormal movies may have gotten a thing or two right....like the existence of vampires.


 


Image result for medieval coffin





Before you go thinking a campy romp through the pages ensued, fear not...it didn't.  After our lady lead awakens the man in the box, we find out that some of the lore we took as solid truth may not be so accurate, the history of the blood drinkers may be a bit more connected than we first realized (to the point of time, customs, and language), and that while you can take the man out of the box, you can't take the vamp out of the man in both needs, desires (*wink wink*), and arrogance.  Sorry Rand, you are definitely big on the arrogance side of things but once you get a bit more acquainted with the here, now, and women's lib, you're a much better man...I mean vamp.  There's old enemies to uncover, wrongs to set right, and many deaths to be had before the days are done...all with enough smirks, mirth, and good times to carry you into the new year.


Overall, a fun read for a weekend escape across the waters (which apparently IS possible) and back again...just with a bit more than cargo tailing along.  While not for the kiddos due to some sexy versus steamy times, I would definitely recommend it to Paranormal Romance fans with a wink and a nod.  Vampire or not, Rand is a pretty hot specimen...and I'm not talking about in direct sunlight either!








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About the author...


jillsmallcolorfix


Jessica Clare is a New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author who writes under three different names. As Jill Myles, she writes a little bit of everything, from sexy, comedic urban fantasy to zombie fairy tales. As Jessica Clare, she writes erotic contemporary romance.

She also has a third pen name (because why stop at two?). As Jessica Sims, she writes fun, sexy shifter paranormals. She lives in Texas with her husband, cats, and too many dust-bunnies. Jill spends her time writing, reading, writing, playing video games, and doing even more writing.







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Special thanks to Melissa at Simon & Schuster for the copy for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, or those books forthcoming, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title just celebrated its BOOK BIRTHDAY December 29th, 2015 via Pocket Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.


Until next YEAR....happy reading!



^_^









Wednesday, December 30, 2015

If Only in My Dreams by Mariah Stewart

Hi guys!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers, where we're determined to send 2015 off with a BOOKISH BANG!


Today, we're shining the spotlight on a wintery title that is sure to warm your heart from an author who's proven her talent many times over.  It comes to us via Pocket Star eBooks and stars a novella previously released in anthology Upon a Midnight Clear, that is now available as a standalone.  Ready or not, here comes today's ebook of choice...





25674126


by

About the book...
A lively family reunion on a Montana ranch brings on a flurry of memories for a beautiful young writer—and a winter storm that rekindles an old flame—in this “warmly magical” (Library Journal) feel-good holiday gem!  




S&S  IBOOKSTORE  |  KINDLE  |  NOOK  |  GOOGLE PLAY








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A story that wields its own brand of magic and reminds us that oh so much heartache can be avoided if only we'd say what we mean!


To me, it was a sweet holiday read with an ending fit for the masses. Though short in length it's BIG on spirit...and spirits too, if you catch my snow drift.  (^-^) Cale and Quinn make a wonderful couple with the twin boys rounding out the group.  Now, if they can only get their acts and hearts together to actually MAKE it happen...time will be the revealer of all things worth waiting for and thank goodness Mother Nature saw fit to throw a snowstorm in their paths to force an eye-to-eye (and heart-to-heart) conversation. 


I admit, I was totally drawn in by this little holiday escape; something that doesn't always happen when I venture into the land of short stories.  I became rather attached to the characters and personally involved in their stories at a rapid rate.  When Quinn became lost in the storm, I was so worried!  I couldn't imagine her fate had someone else not intervened.  Well I could imagine it, but I didn't want to.  When the truth behind Cale's return to his hometown is revealed, my heart broke for him but I also respected the choices he made.  The family histories presented, the past connections of the heart made clear, the current of otherworldly influence coloring the here and now, all work together in harmony to create a story you'll hold close to your heart for many holiday seasons to come.  




Image result for reading by the fire



Overall, a great read that's perfect for a winter afternoon sitting by the fire with a hot cup of cocoa and a furry friend.  Also a great read for those that like me, the fire is actually the OUTSIDE weather so not only your venue changes but your drink of choice morphs into something icy cold (hello Diet Coke!)...and you still keep your choice furry friend nearby.  Recommended read for all Contemporary Romance fans who like a bit of spirit in their stories and a fire in their hearts.










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About the author...


Image result for author mariah stewart


Mariah Stewart is the award-winning New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of numerous novels and several novellas and short stories.  A native of Hightstown, New Jersey, she lives with her husband and two rambunctious rescue dogs amid the rolling hills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, where she savors country life and tends her gardens.  Visit her website at www.mariahstewart.com, and like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AuthorMariahStewart.








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Special thanks to Melissa at Simon & Schuster for the print ARC for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, or the publisher, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title released the end of November, so seek out a copy to warm your heart this winter at an eBook retailer of your choosing.


Until next time...happy reading!









Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Taste Testing Tuesdays

Boy it's been awhile since I've done one of these posts. I know I miss them, how about you? ^-^

Anywho...today's teaser post comes from a BOOK BIRTHDAY celebrant that I've been itching it read. Yes, if not for other obligations and my will of steel, this little gem would've been devoured way back when but as it is, I'm only just begun...and can't wait to dig in! Here's a glimpse at the first passage to peak your curiosity....



ANYTHING FOR YOU
(A Blue Heron novel)
by
Kristan Higgins
9780373789085


Thoughts? Comments? Teaser of your own? 
Do tell....in the comments below that is. 



Until next time....happy reading!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Guarded by Angela Correll

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, I'm coming to you not from a borrowed laptop (though I was DEEPLY grateful for its use) but from my brand spanking new Dell Laptop with Touchscreen!  (Thanks Mom...I mean, Santa!)  Obviously, I'm over the moon and still figuring out all the new stuff (but I gotta say Windows 10 thus far is a DREAM compared to 8 and Contara is pretty cool) but that's not going to stop my from blogging up a storm.  A STORM I TELL YOU!  Hence, the beginning of the storm...

The featured title of the day comes to us from an author featured here once before.  Several moons ago, you may recall a post highlighting the work of Angela Correll, or more specifically the book Grounded.  It was rather memorable is not for the story but the characters.  You really form a bond with both Annie and Beulah that lasts beyond the page.  If you haven't checked it out, I highly suggest you do.  That being said, today we're shining the spotlight on the follow up to that work that just released this month and is more than ready for your reading pleasure.  Ladies and gents, let's get to it!  Today's book of choice is....


26489429
by
Angela Correll
9781633931367
Koehler Books

About the book...
Former New York City flight attendant Annie Taylor is adjusting to farm life when her grandmother threatens to tear down the old stone house, unable to finance a restoration after the summer fire. Annie s boyfriend Jake has severed his corporate life in Cincinnati and is jumping headlong into sustainable farming on the land next door. Their new relationship is wonderful--but can it last? As they take steps forward, a paralyzing fear of abandonment threatens to destroy her trust in Jake. As Annie works to save the old stone house she finds letters written during World War II that reveal a family mystery and an Italian connection. Her grandmother is hesitant to uncover the secret, afraid of what it might mean to her family s name if the truth is laid bare. Comments from a nosy neighbor solidify Annie s fears about herself and when Beulah agrees for Annie to travel to Italy to search out the family mystery, Annie is happy for the time away to sort out all her feelings. In the meantime, Beulah is left with an unexpected Italian-Catholic houseguest who wreaks havoc with Beulah s Baptist ways and country routine. As the family mystery in Italy unfolds, Annie is forced to face her own past. She is ultimately faced with a choice: will she let history sabotage the future?"



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A beautiful visit with old friends that reveals a past formerly unknown, and a future never imagined.

First things first, that title!
I'm thinking of starting a new trend in my reviews where we discuss the potential meaning of the given title/image, perhaps before AND after the read. Sound good? Well let's give it a try now. This particular one had a young woman holding a set of letters. They appear to be international in origin given the envelope detail and handwritten for certain.  In referencing the title, she could be guarding the letters themselves, the content, or keeping herself guarded from what's within them. Is it good news she's anticipating but unsure of? Is it bad news that she'd rather not reveal? Are they memories kept at bay so long as in the envelope they remain? Add it turns out, most of the above is true...

The story itself isn't set at a fast pace. It develops slowly over time and draws the reader in with each revelation. As Annie strives to find a way to keep her grandmother from demolishing the old stone house, we feel the loss she's anticipating. As her bond with Jake seems to become more and more tenuous, we feel that potential heartbreak. As Beulah discovers the past hidden from her and a future she never saw coming, our hearts to go out to with open arms. Even when she's dealing with an interesting house guest, we share in the misadventures that come her way. We ride the highs and lows with them because that's what the author has bid us to do upon entering this world not so far from our own doorsteps...and once we do, we are anything but disappointed.




My favorite character this time around though wasn't who I thought I would be.  I mean Annie is sweet and tries so very hard, often times to her own detriment.  Beulah is just as strong as always, even when faced with her own past potentially crumbling around her.  Jake is present, but not completely thus essentially removing him from my "faves" list; sorry old chum, but I was on the same boat as Annie in the worrying department thanks to your lack of communication there.  Nosey neighbors (no matter how well meaning) have never done a thing for me and the slow blooming love affair of the heart in someone else's cards must be given space.  That left but one soul in my book and what a soul it was...Ms. Givens.  She was the sweetest of hearts, the most congenial of hostesses, the most memorable of the many to be remembered and yet she played more of a behind the scenes role than most.  Funny how that happens sometimes, isn't it?

Overall, a book to be read not in a moment but a few pages at a time as the mood strikes you. You have to let the story marinate, the lessons it has to share reveal themselves as they see fit, and be reminded that no matter how high the pedastool we place someone, no one is perfect. It's how we love them, just as they are, that really matters. Recommended for Fiction fans of all ages that like a taste of the old country with a Southern twist. 



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About the author....


Angela Correll lives on a farm with her husband and an assortment of grass-fed cattle, horses, goats and chickens. She is owner of a retail shop and co-owner of a farm-to-table restaurant. Her debut novel Grounded was an Amazon bestseller and was adapted into a play by Chelsea Marcantel and premiered in July 2015 to record-breaking crowds at the Pioneer Playhouse.


SITE   |   TWITTER


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Special thanks to Jordan and the author herself for the copy for review. (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, or her other works, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title celebrated its book birthday the 1st of December via Koehler Books, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf of virtual retailer of your choosing.

Until next time...happy reading!





Sunday, December 27, 2015

Home and Away by Dean Hughes

Hi guys and gals!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're spreading the word and shining the spotlight on a title that came to my attention earlier this month.  It comes to us from Shadow Mountain Publishing and stars a book that impacts the holiday yet spans a much larger timeframe and affects more than just one family.  It'll touch your heart in many ways and for some hit home more than you may realize at this point in time.  Ladies and gents, those you've served and those who have stood by those serving, please join me as we welcome today's book of choice...


A WWII Christmas Story
by
9781629720937
Shadow Mountain

About the book...
A historical fiction novel told from the perspective of a son fighting on the battlefields of Europe during World War II and his mother, struggling with worry and uncertainty about her soldier son while she tries to keep a semblenance of a normal, happy Christmas holiday back on the homefront.Norma Hayes has always tried to make Christmas special for her family, but 1944 will make that more difficult with money being tight and wartime rationing making everything hard to come by. Aware of his mother's hardships and the worry from having her eldest son at war, second son, Dennis, is determined to buy his mother a special gift this Christmas, a lavendar blue dress he hopes will bring her comfort as a symbol of special times gone by and the hope of a brighter future with the family reunited at war's end. Meantime, on a battlefield far from home in Holland with his 101st Airborne battalion, her soldier son catches a familiar scent of lavendar which briefly transports him back to the homefront to the perfume scent his mother wore, giving him a short respite and reuniting the family once again if only in his imagination.




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This is the story of the Hayes family, but also that of many families around the world whose loved ones are serving or have served their countries throughout the years.  Our particular tale centers around WWII sharing both outlooks from HOME and those AWAY on the front lines.  It shares the heartache felt everyday as their absence is realized anew.  It shows the strength of heart they were forced to show in order to keep their daily lives going as well as the fortitude necessary to stay strong in the face of the enemy.  It also makes us privy to the particular twists and turns that life took for young Dennis Hayes while his brother was off at war.


Image result for mechanic tools


Dennis was your average lad; afterschool job, average grades, navigating first love, helping his mom, while steering clear of his pops...the usual.  He and his father never really saw eye to eye and the absence of his older brother didn't help things in that department.  You know how some siblings simply are closer to one parent or the other?  Such was the case here and Dennis was much tighter with his mother.  His father was someone present yet not, for him at least.  He had quite a temper and when stoked by alcohol, things only got worse.  Dennis tried to be the fire blanket to his temper but things didn't always work out that way.  Theirs was a relationship that could only be grown into, not forced. 

The familial bonds were definitely stretched but when you add in the stress of having a loved one on the front lines, it became even more intense.  The lack of communication back then, or rather the delay in its arrival, was enough to put a loved one back home in one fashion or another before word of their whereabouts made it to your door.  All the while, life marches on.  Siblings grow up (in some cases faster than they need to), marriages evolve, and all that was put on hold on that fateful departure day is unrecognizable upon return.  I admit, I wasn't certain what was in the cards for Dennis' brother but when word came, I was hanging on every syllable as much as they, which brings me to another point...


Image result for shining christmas present


There are plenty of opportunities to grab the old tissue box here, but around page 89-90, I had met my match.  I was tearing up at the sheer love Dennis showed for his mother as well as the generosity of the saleswoman in aiding his cause.  What cause you ask?  To put it simply, to purchase a Christmas present for his mom, but with money tight and expectations (on his part) high, achieving that goal was going to take a little heaven-on-earth assistance.  It was a joy to behold the kindness shown in this simple scene and a testament to the author's ability to write emotively.  If I wasn't a fan of Dennis already, that page alone would have done the trick. 

Overall, I'd say a winning read for any time of year for those that have served our country, those that kept the fires burning at home, or anyone really.  It's a Fiction read straight from the History books that reflects seasonal celebrations both then and now with spot on accuracy.  Whenever a family or friend is missing from the family photo, it's felt, more so at the festive time of year that heralds the enjoyment of that very thing.  The real yet tender way it was portrayed here leaves a lasting impression and reminds us to celebrate EVERY moment because we never know when it will be our last.


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About the author...


Dean Hughes is the author of more than eighty books for young readers, including the popular sports series Angel Park All-Stars, the Scrappers series, the Nutty series, the widely acclaimed companion novels Family Pose and Team Picture, and Search and Destroy. Soldier Boys was selected for the 2001 New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age list. Dean Hughes and his wife, Kathleen, have three children and six grandchildren. They live in Midway, Utah.



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Shadow Mountain Publishing -


Special thanks to Austin at Shadow Mountain for the copy for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, or the publisher, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title is available now, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.

Until next time....happy reading!




Are you an avid reader looking for your next "fix"? Can't bear to be without some form of reading material in your spare time? Welcome to my world! Whether you are seeking a new book to "feed your need", or you are an author seeking an unbiased point of view on your own recent masterpiece, this is the place to be. With life as with books, you never know where the next step might take you...
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