TBR: Strawberries by Casey Bartsch

Strawberries is the name he has been given.

When they let him out, they had no way of knowing what he was. A psychopath. A killer. The body count is at twenty already, and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. Agent Harry Bland can’t see one anyway. He doesn’t have a single clue to go on. It doesn’t help that his mind won’t focus. His heart just isn’t in it anymore. Half way across the country, Sylvia is in a different state of mind. When she isn’t selling sex to the rich, she is doing her best to disappear. She lives a life of assumed names, one night stands, and a constant stream of narcotics. Sylvia has heard of Strawberries. Of course she has. So has everyone who has turned on the television or surfed the net. Yet, she has no way of knowing just how much his life will affect hers.

Seedy hotels, cross country truckers looking for the meaning of life, homemade pie, a reporter with her own secret agenda, obscenely expensive champagne, and plenty of spilled blood await our cast. But make sure to read fast…..Strawberries has killed number 21.

I, too, have heard of strawberries. They have a lot of pesticides, I hear. Super deadly.

View on Goodreads.

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TBR: The Ruby-Eyed Child (The Seventh Order Book 1) by J. Walter Brockmann

Leaf Bottlestopper is a perfectly ordinary half-elf. Until, that is, his foster mother is killed and his infant foster sister, a ruby-eyed girl named Sage, is kidnapped. Leaf is thrown into a brewing conflict—decades in the making—that’s now about to erupt. With help, he learns the deep secrets of the Six Orders of magic—secrets that the enemy’s leader has worked hard to suppress. As the time to save his sister dwindles, the question becomes: Is the enemy truly after Sage… or Leaf himself?

I like how this seems to use fantasy to explain modern family dynamics.

View on Goodreads. 

 

TBR: Jane of Manchester by J.G. Dow

“A cross between Coronation Street and Bridget Jones…many laugh out loud moments.” Top 500 Amazon UK Reviewer

“An impressively fine first novel.” Top 100 Amazon US Hall of Fame Reviewer

Jane’s life on the face of it isn’t really too bad…she has great friends like party girl Natasha who’s always up for a laugh and her close pal Polly, always there for her and of course her loving parents, but things could still be better…

Most people she knows are either married or have kids and she has been single a while now and wonders if a good man is ever to be encountered again. The single life is far from a quiet one for Jane however, as she is constantly getting dragged to night clubs and bars by Natasha and the crew as well as enduring a particularly boozy weekend away at the seaside!

Jane loves a lot about her life, disregarding rude plumbers in her flat and dealing with annoying superiors and a smug sister, but as a certain someone takes her eye, is everything about to change and get a whole lot more serious or is the single life determined to keep her captive a while longer yet…

Most people I know are married or have kids, too.

Buy on Amazon.

TBR: A White Picket Fence by Laura Branchflower

Lina and Phil Hunter have shared an uncanny psychic connection since they were teenagers and he saved her life, so when Lina’s mother cautions her to be on guard against a new love interest she sees in her astrological chart, it confirms what Lina already suspects, her mother is crazy. Sure her marriage has been under extra stress lately, dealing with a rebellious teenager, but Lina’s never even looked at another man, well besides her daughter’s psychiatrist, Dr. Drayton, but that’s more in awe.

When a betrayal shakes the foundation of her marriage, Lina begins confiding in the child psychiatrist, blurring the lines between whether she or her daughter is the patient. As a mutual attraction grows, Lina begins to question whether the boy she fell in love with twenty-five years earlier still exists.

Laura Branchflower is a compelling new voice in contemporary fiction with believable characters dealing with real life struggles.

A White Picket Fence is a family drama.

I feeeel like I’ll be reading this just for the family drama. I mean, psychiatrists automatically mean drama anyway, right? Right.

Read more about it on Goodreads.

 

TBR Harkworth Hall by L.S. Johnson

“Ask him about his wives.”

Caroline Daniels must marry, and marry well. But in her remote corner of England eligible suitors are few and far between, and none hold a candle to her closest friend, Diana Fitzroy.

When Sir Edward Masterson arrives, he seems the answer to Caroline’s financial worries, though she instinctively dislikes the reticent, older merchant. Soon Sir Edward has set his sights on acquiring both Caroline and the decaying Harkworth Hall.

Caroline’s future seems secure, save that his enigmatic secretary hints at a dark secret, and Sir Edward shows an unusual interest in tales of monsters … and the blood in Caroline’s veins.

 

Ohhh. Like Northanger Abbey and Jane Eyre. Seems like a perfect Halloween read.

View on Goodreads.

TBR: Wild Magic by Eileen Troemel

Mallory’s magi gifts send her north into Linos Province. A province where her gifts could get her killed or worse. But she must go where her gifts send her. Traveling to an ancient city, she uses her gifts to see where she must go. A boy needs her help or he will die. Reluctantly, Mallory follows her gifts.

Leland, Pintra, Faolan, Jadan, Ovra, and Erga have been sent by a powerful seer to find a magi master. They travel to a small village where Jadan gets separated from the rest and is accused of theft. Without Mallory’s help, the angry mob will kill him. Mallory steps in, uses her gifts to save him but puts herself at risk.

The seven escape the angry village and hide out in caves. When Jadan’s injuries turn deadly, Mallory is forced to use her gifts, exposing herself to the group of strangers she doesn’t trust. They face her past, the bleeding hill, where all the magi were murdered. In facing her past, Mallory is reminded of the morals and ethics the magi live by. If she can help, she must. Even if it costs her her life.

 

So, I think the term “magi” should be used more in fantasy. “Magician” is so overrated.

View this on Goodreads.

TBR – To Raise a Clenched Fist to the Sky (The Panther Chronicles Book 1) by T. Thorn Coyle

1968: magic and tear gas fill the air.

Eighteen year old Jasmine Jones, hereditary sorcerer, steps off a Greyhound bus in Oakland and walks straight into the arms of revolution…

Battling the shadowy danger stalking her family and friends, Jasmine must shake up the stodgy Association of Magical Arts and Sorcery and find her place among the Black Panthers, who keep secrets of their own.

Patricia Briggs meets L.A. Banks in this exciting urban fantasy series.

I love how the Black Panther movement is no longer taboo.

View on Goodreads.

TBR: We’re All Bad in Bed by Shelby Simpson

They say that sex is a lot like pizza: Even when it’s bad, it’s still pretty good. The difference is that no one wants to hear about your worst slice of pizza. But what about your most embarrassing, mortifying, and hilarious sexual escapades? Trade in the cheese for some sleaze, and people are all ears. In We’re All Bad in Bed, award-winning author and unrepentant ragamuffin Shelby Simpson mines her past (and the past of her most trusted friends) for the ultimate bedroom debacles. From hitting puberty in small-town Oklahoma to traveling the world with a flask of vodka and a contagious smile, Shelby’s unique perspective on sexual education, intimacy, and doin’ the nasty is sure to please anyone who’s ever been caught with their pants around their knees. Shelby’s highly entertaining and deliciously scandalous stories will have you pondering the word “blowjob” as the ultimate misnomer, whether the legend of the Killer Coochie could be more than just a legend, and the worst way to completely and utterly embarrass yourself sexually in front of the worst person imaginable. Inside these pages, there is no judgment. There is only uncensored and uncircumcised honesty. This book is the most fun you can have with your pants on (or ditch the pants, your call). Take two parts hilarity, one part poignant self-reflection, bake it on a crust of gangsta rap and top it with a dollop of Southern twang, and you have a healthy helping of the juiciest and jauntiest nookie book of the year. Dig in. Pizza optional.

I only like vegan pizza, honestly.

Buy on Amazon.

TBR: Forgotten Reflections by Young-Im Lee

1945. Rice fields seem endless in a quaint farming village of South Korea, yet Iseul the villagers have been starving for as long as they can remember. Their Japanese colonizers have taken every last grain with them as they are finally forced out of the Peninsula. In the newly independent Korea, Iseul and Jung-Soo dream of what their future might bring. Yet, war is on the horizon, and Iseul has fallen for an alleged North Korean communist spy.

Men are conscripted and rice is taken to feed the growing army as the Peninsula is thrust into an international war that would determine if the strategic region will become communist or democratic. With nothing but the news of death and hunger awaiting the village of women, children and the aged, Iseul musters up whatever hope she has left to bring the village together to make paper. Soon, the village once known for its rice, becomes famous for its paper, becoming a beacon of hope for their battle-worn soldiers awaiting letters from their loved ones.

Yet spies and communists continue to roam South Korea, turning neighbors and families against one another. For years, Jung-Soo has been suspicious of his father’s allegiances. With a series of mysterious revelations about his father, Jung-Soo is forced to choose between his tainted communist past, and the future he hopes to have with Iseul after the war.

In the current international climate where North Korea takes center stage, “Forgotten Reflections” weaves an inspirational tale of family, lost memories, folklore and an unforgotten history, spanning three generations as South Korea rises from the ashes.

This book is getting a lot of good reviews on Goodreads.

Now offering author interviews!

Hi everyone! I’m now offering sponsored author interviews to help maintain the site. You can answer all questions or only some. It’s up to you! It’s meant to be informal in nature and a way for you to reach out to potential readers. Copy and paste the interview questions below with your responses into an email using the guidelines from my advertisement content post here. Put “Author Interview” in the subject line so I can identify it quickly.  Please contact me in advance if wanting to schedule it for a specific date.  I cannot promise a quick turnaround time otherwise. If no date is supplied when you send your responses, interviews will go live as soon as payment is received. Interviews will be $25 $5 via PayPal.  All interviews will have a disclaimer of “Sponsored content” at the bottom. 

Interview Questions:

Who are you?! What are your credentials? Where are you from?

 

What book(s) have you written?

 

What is the title of your most recent book and how did it come to be named?

 

What does the cover look like?

 

Describe the book in 5 words.

 

What genre(s) do you think it fits into or breaks?

 

What’s the synopsis for the book?

 

What is one thing you want readers to know about this book that the official synopsis doesn’t cover?

 

Where can we buy the book?

 

Where did your main sources of inspiration come from for this story?

 

Who is the book dedicated to and why?

 

What three other books would you use to describe your book?

 

Why is indie publishing important to you and why do you think it is important to our culture?

 

If you could choose one ideal reader – no matter who – to read your book, who would it be and why?

 

If your book was an animal, what would it be and why?

 

What is your favorite sentence from the book?

 

If you were to collaborate with another writer, who would they be and why?

 

What books do you think the world needs to read more of and why?

 

What does diversity in publishing mean to you?

 

How have libraries affected your writing?

 

What do you see as problems that need to be fixed in the traditional publishing model?

 

What is the best piece of advice you got from another writer?

 

What indie authors have influenced you and how?

 

Is the Amazon publishing model scary to you in any way?

 

What is something you learned about writing when writing your most recent book?

 

What do you think of the focus on indie bookstores over indie authors and indie books?

 

What are some ways you think gatekeepers in publishing (literary agents, librarians, book bloggers) can help indie authors gain discoverability?

 

What is one book that changed your life and how?

 

What is your favorite online resource as an author?

 

How do you feel about authors giving their work away for free?

 

What are you reading now?

 

What music do you write to or find inspiration in?

 

What roadblocks did you encounter when publishing your work?

 

What TV show are you watching now?

 

Cat or dog or both person?

 

Alice in Wonderland or Wizard of Oz – and why?

 

Coffee or tea or both person?

 

Print book or ebook or both person?

 

How do you see book culture changing, other than the ways it already has, because of ebooks?

 

How do you see book culture changing, if at all, because of indie publishing?

 

What is one thing you would like to say to millennial readers?

 

What is one cause or charity you support and want to give a shout-out to?

 

What is your biggest grammatical struggle to overcome in your writing, or what is your most common typo?

 

Where can we stalk you? (What are the links to your social media platforms and blog?)