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Crazy Love – Book Trailer

Danny Fenton and Dawn Robinson are two twenty-something misfit dreamers. They have fled their down-and-out existence in backwoods Arkansas, hoping to make a new life for themselves in the big city of St. Louis. Leaving sketchy jobs behind, Danny is starting afresh as a private investigator while Dawn schemes to open her own restaurant, The Dawn of Good Eats.

But they soon find that it’s not so easy to outrun their past as dangerous and depressing connections catch up with them. Dawn finds herself unwittingly entangled in an illegal scheme that Danny accidentally exposes in an off-the-books investigative effort. With criminal activity that Danny can’t ignore, Dawn finds her dream threatened by the very person she loves the most.

How they find their way through this tragicomic clash of their desperate but endearing ambitions reveals the magic of their crazy love.

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The Immortal

The Immortal by [Creel, E. G. ,]

The Immortal follows an ordinary forty year old woman, Emma Anderson, who has always put others first. She suddenly finds herself gripped by a midlife crisis and decides to take a break from her technician job. Leaving behind only her two cats, she packs her bags and hops on a plane to French Polynesia. While on vacation, Emma finds her life changing more profoundly than she ever could have imagined. After witnessing a mass murder and fleeing through the jungle, she realizes that she has no choice but to take to the sea with a group of savage Vikings.

The Immortal is a fast-paced fantasy story that I found difficult to put down. Author E.G. Creel captivates her audience from the very first page of the book. Emma is a highly relatable character who is easy to empathize with. She has lived an average life as an x-ray technician who never married or had kids. Her sudden desire to travel and have new experiences comes from the feeling that she has led a lackluster existence. This makes her a character that is easily relatable, and one that readers will easily be able to root for. When she meets Bjorn, the ruler of an ancient clan of Vikings, she finds herself having tumultuous feelings for him, and this emotional-rollercoaster was very entertaining.

As she is whisked away on a journey across the globe to settle an ancient score, Emma realizes that she is capable of much more than she ever thought possible and I really enjoyed how this story slowly evolved her character into being a strong female protagonist. The tension between her and Bjorn is palpable, and the reader is constantly left wondering what is going to happen between them. Their relationship was riveting and one of the main reasons why I kept picking this book up.

This is a relentlessly entertaining fantasy adventure novel with an interesting cast of characters that keeps things fresh and ensures there is never a dull moment. Readers just can’t help but to fall in love with the flamboyant Stacey, a High Priest and quite possibly the most fashionable Viking in history. E.G. Creel’s romance novel tells a tragic and at times heartbreaking tale of justice. The Immortal is a must-read for anyone who has ever felt like they are not living up to their full potential.

Pages: 141 | ASIN: B09HWMP7CH

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The MoonStone Girls

The MoonStone Girls by [Brooke Skipstone]

Brooke Skipstone’s The MoonStone Girls is the story of Tracy, a seventeen-year-old who leaves her home to discover herself and pursue her dreams. She and her brother are gay, and when this fact is revealed to their family, her father violently opposes it. The turmoil of the Vietnam war, the pain of losing her beloved brother, and the calling of an unknown girl from Alaska push Tracy to undertake a soul-searching journey. 

We see how Tracy cross-dresses as a boy and starts dating Ava because society wouldn’t accept two girls who are in love. Tracy continues to defy gender stereotypes and attempts to find her own place in the world. She finds her ideal partner in Jackie, and what follows is a beautiful love story. 

The author’s handling of the lesbian relationship is different from standard romance tropes. Their relationship is shown to be deeply embedded in friendship, understanding of the mutual struggles, and revolting against a homophobic society. This powerful emotional turmoil is delivered through potent and impassioned language that will steal the heart of readers. I really enjoyed how the physical proximity between the women has been described with such clarity that the reader can fully grasp the nuances of their relationship. 

The stigma surrounding the queer community in the 1960’s has been portrayed articulately through the stories of Tracy, Spencer, Jackie, and Jeff. Sadly enough, the stigma still continues to pose a threat to the community, and that’s why the novel is a relevant read today.  

Tracy’s emotionally-resonant journey of self-discovery, dealing with grief, bearing the rage of a homophobic father, and ultimately finding her way through life and putting her heart and soul into the music band MoonStone Girls is captured in vivid emotional detail that feels authentic and is relayed in a story that is absolutley enthralling.

Author Brooke Skipstone is an exceptional storyteller and one that is able to capture the uniqueness of their characters in a way that makes those pieces really stand out in ways that are captivating. The LGBTQ+ commentary throughout the novel is sincere and sheds a much needed light on the variety of issues that the community faces even today. While this novel is high in social commentary it never forgets to entertain the reader with intriguing characters and a compelling plot that will make this book hard to put down.

Pages: 397 | ASIN: B09MP9FF3Q

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If You Have A Dead Cereus Craving

Kira Seamon
Kira Seamon Author Interview

Dead Cereus follows a college student with a tendency to attract trouble including the witnessing of a murder. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

Oh, thank you for this question! I do love answering it! As I explain in my afterword in the book, I visited the Wellesley College greenhouse complex every day in the winter of 2017. It occurred to me that a greenhouse could be a great setting for a mystery, and once I thought that, I persevered and wrote this cozy mystery overflowing with plants and flowers. The main complex at Wellesley College had five major rooms and a few student nurseries. So I kept the general layout of Wellesley College’s greenhouse as inspiration, but I added in many more rare tropical plants in my story. I always knew that I wanted it to be a “botanical murder”, without using a gun, or something like that, and that the murder should occur in the greenhouse. I wanted it to be a “botanical murder with a plant-based murder weapon”, as I also gave every character a botanical or plant name. I was trying to keep the botanical theme going in as many ways as I possibly could. I also wove in many “botanical jokes and puns”. I wouldn’t want to give away right here where the dead body is found, but suffice to say, it is in a “botanical place”. The placement of the dead body is a highlight at that point in the novel and my editor told me she’s almost 100% sure no one ever did that before, so she thought it was a cool addition to the botanical theme running throughout the book.

What were some driving ideals behind Holly’s character development?

This is such a great question! Holly seems to me very open to input from other people. She can be headstrong at times and once she gets the bit between her teeth, she has a hard time letting go. However, I think she has an endearing quality of being open to input from other people and not disappointing people who mean a lot to her is very important to Holly. Holly’s mentor, Heather, is always trying to encourage her to “be the best version of Holly that she can be.” Subconsciously, Holly is taking it all in. She is very impulsive and has a hard time controlling her outsized emotions, but she is striving to be her best self and wants to make people she cares about proud of her. William is her kryptonite. She literally is crushed by any disapproval from him, and he in turn, also is a mentor to Holly, as well as her boyfriend. He has very high expectations of her, as he knows she is a formidable young woman with a ton of potential. He also knows that her emotions get the best of her and he tries to teach her better ways of coping when it’s crunch time. She is very lucky to have people invested in her character development. She knows this as well, and does strive to learn, nay, grow from her mistakes!

Was there anything from your own life that you put into the characters in your novel?

Haha, this is a great question, because my editors and beta-readers who know me in real life absolutely think I am Holly! So…is Holly me? Well, I do remember when I was 20-24 years old, and I was developing as a new adult, I experienced my emotions very strongly. I would be extremely crushed by disappointments and extremely elated by positive events. My mother was my mentor and she taught me to try not to take everything so seriously…or is it “cereusly”? Haha! So thinking back on how I felt at 20-24, I remembered my own out-sized emotions and thought they could be great for Holly. Holly’s emotions leap off the page and she becomes very vivid to readers.

With William, the inspiration for him came from a trusted dance partner I used to dance with for a couple of years. We had an amazing bond that was almost instinctual. By “instinctual” I mean a bond that almost defies explanation, but is the most amazing closeness to another human being that you can ever find. It’s trusting them instantly without even knowing why and literally being able to read their thoughts. William reads Holly like a book and as he says, “Baby, nothing, I mean nothing, is getting between us. You and I are an inseparable team. There’s no daylight between us.” So I think there are definitely aspects from my own life and experiences that found their way into the book.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I am pleased to say that I am continuing the Dead Cereus cozy mystery series and am also developing a Dead Cereus romance series! In this book, William and Holly have known each other for two years. Wouldn’t you like to know how they met? I certainly would…and I have actually no clue right now. William and Holly will have to tell me how they met, (I just bet that is a riveting story!), and then I will write it up and publish it for all of us to read. I hope to release the new books in the spring. If you have a Dead Cereus craving and need more, I got you! More books are on the way!

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

Holy holly berries! Holly Jackson creates shenanigans on the Olympic level. This mischievous charmer has found herself in many strange messes, but this one takes the carrot cake!
When the rare night-blooming cereus plant is scheduled to open its petals at Shellesby College’s Night Lights Gala, Holly is there-and so is a killer. Events unfold that not only place her scholarship on the line, but also her life…and that of her rival.  Holly finds herself racing the clock to save her arch nemesis, secure her scholarship, and catch a murderer… if she can!
Filled with humor, breathtaking tropical plants, and foods that will make your stomach growl, this is an epic romance and a fantastic, unique mystery rolled into one hilarious story. With all the feels, this novel can’t help but implant itself in your heart and grow into one of your favorite reads. Kira Seamon is the debut author with the killer imagination.
Dead Cereus earned FIRST PLACE in the Royal Dragonfly Book Awards in the romance category.

Love Not Lust

Elise Stoltenbreck
Elise Stoltenbreck Author Interview

Braiding Roses is a romance between two doctors in the Australian outback. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

I wanted to show two people who were so perfect for one another that they just had to end up together, even though they’re kind of a mismatch of city vs country. And I wanted to build it very slowly!

Along the way I aimed for it to be stimulating for the reader’s brain in other ways, not least by presenting some very detailed medical information in simple terms. And as a backdrop I chose an amazing location, which is a real place in Western Australia, and actually has lavender farms, wild dolphins, and a massive tree to climb. Surely one of the most romantic places on the planet!

What were the morals you were trying to capture while creating your characters?

Love not lust. What I was aiming for was to show that true love is a connection between two brains, each with their own personalities and feelings, falling in love just from talking, and not so much about the body.

What experience in your life has had the biggest impact on your writing?

In writing Braiding Roses I drew from so many different life experiences, for all the varied perspectives on the different types of love. Sometimes I don’t even know where things came from! When you’re stuck for ideas and desperately trying to get that word count higher, you’ll grab onto anything that floats into your mind.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

When I finished Braiding Roses, I discovered that rather than being joyous, I was actually feeling a little sad to leave that beautiful place. I miss my mornings with Mandy. So I’d like to go back there to visit again, but I’m not sure how to do that, or with what pair of lovebirds. I’ve also found a couple of other beautiful locations that I might write about instead. So I’m still in the “fiddling” stage and have nothing immediate to announce.

Author Links: GoodReads | Amazon

For new doctor Mandy, being forced into a post at an outback hospital in the small town of Manjimup for a year is bad enough when it derails her five-year plan in the city with her incredibly romantic boyfriend, Kevin. Things nosedive from bad to terrible when she finds herself in a shouting match with Gareth, resident doctor and her boss, on her first day.
Between the love of her life urging her to return to Perth and a prickly, dismissive, and rude boss practically tossing her to the curb on day one, Mandy faces the coming year with thorns bared, determined to come out with her head held high. While she hones her doctoring skills in order to prove herself to the highly capable Gareth after their less-than-ideal first encounter, she might learn a little something about herself, too.

A Ballad of Love and Glory

A Ballad of Love and Glory: A Novel by [Reyna Grande]

Reyna Grande’s novel A Ballad of Love and Glory is a historical fiction novel that will remind the reader not only of the romantic atmosphere between the main characters but the tension of living on the boarder between Mexico and the United States. Ximena is the main character who lives with her husband Joaquín, who dreams of starting a family in a post-war context. The author treats with great care the bond between the couple and how affection developed between them. And she does the same to narrate the tragic death of Joaquín during an attack. After his death Ximena joins the war effort as a nurse where she meets John Riley. The two form a bond over shared sorrows.

The narrative takes place in two worlds, the ability to experience the context of Ximena in Mexico and at the same time of the Irish soldier John Riley. The suffering of the two characters is described clearly and strongly, as they both experience significant dramas until one day they meet in Mexico. The torrid romance between the two becomes more and more intriguing for readers, after all, what seems improbable is exciting, thus keeping the reader increasingly entertained and engaged in the story. The story will incite a variety of emotions with the impending war and the bloody scenario that comes from it, and at the same time the narrative being unfolded for the forbidden couple, who become prisoners of their feelings.

A Ballad of Love and Glory takes readers back in time to a place where war and survival are all the inhabitants know. Finding love in this chaotic environment seams impossible but readers will find hope and see that through all the sufferings, there is a chance for happiness. Romance and historical fiction lovers alike will find something to cling to in this impassioned romance novel.

Pages: 352 | ASIN: B0984M86DV

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No Other Name

No Other Name by Robert Beatty is a memorable and expressive love story, but it cannot be described so simply. It is a complex yet heartfelt story set a century ago. It starts with our narrator, Samuel Martin who is at the edge of adulthood and starts his journey into the unknown in a quite literal sense after high school. He does not find any romantic prospects in his little town, so he turns to the one place that most people and society shame. A bordello, or in his hometown it is popularly known as Mrs. Richardson’s house of pleasures. Samuel and his friend dare to go in the dead of the night to give up their virginity. What Samuel finds is a person that will change the trajectory of his life.

As cliché as it may seem, Samuel finds the girl of his dreams. A sex worker, who is beautiful yet exquisite, and I enjoyed how this contrast is drawn in the story. He instantly falls in love with her, a love at first sight situation. In his heart he knows, he will never find another one to love as he loves her, this is all a bit melodramatic but the emotions are vivid and deeply felt and really draw the reader in. With their one night of passion he knew he would spend the rest of his life with this girl. The girl who had no name. The girl who left her name in her past life and chose a new name for herself.

This is a contemplative and impassioned story that has a good pace and great emotional depth that will engross readers. The setting is set with clear details, allowing readers to easily dive into the old word. This is a character driven story where we see the relationship unfold between the two characters, even though the girl rejects his romantic gestures. The affect the girl has on Samuel is profound and readers will be able to empathize with his emotional turmoil.

I fell in love with the writing style in this novel. There were some moments of humor, even deadpan humor, which helped to break up the emotional strife that colors this novel. This ensures the novel never falls into a melancholic hole and instead feels much more approachable. While the story has moments where it dives deep into prosaic activities, I think readers will still find the romantic adventure behind all of it to be fascinating.

With a slow buildup this book will appeal to readers who enjoy a slow-burn style of writing where the joy comes in letting the story play out in its own time. No Other Name is a thought-provoking historical romance novel that provides readers with a thoughtful reflection on life and the odd ways it can play out.

Pages: 877 | ASIN : B08P89Q7CF

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Braiding Roses

Braiding Roses: An outback doctor sweet romance by [Elise Stoltenbreck]

Braiding Roses, by Elise Stoltenbreck, is the story of a young doctor named Mandy who has her five-year plan all figured out and is ready to start her future. Her plans are derailed after having to do a year’s residency in the town of Manjimup working under meticulous Gareth, the head doctor.

Stoltenbreck does a great job capturing imagery through her scenes with vibrant descriptions. She brings a authenticity to her characters that had me feeling like I could walk into Manjimup hospital and ask to see Gareth.

This inspirational romance novel will appeal to readers that want an authentic Australian experience. The story is set in the Australian outback, an area that I love seeing in literature. Stoltenbreck uses Aussie dialect in the novel adding to it’s realistic nature and giving the characters real personality and depth. Care was taken by the author to allow the reader to be fully immersed in Aussie culture.

While classified as a romance novel, I think that this story is more about the building of a relationship. You will not find steamy sex scenes and pages of passion, but this book had one of the biggest build-ups between the female and male character that I’ve ever read. This impassioned book has shown me, romance is a story about love, and lust isn’t always needed.

This book is near perfection as it shows two stubborn minds falling in love instead of the typical lust-filled stories out there. This book sends an emotionally-resonant message of love. While predictable at times, it is still a fun contemporary romance story.

Braiding Roses by Elise Stoltenbreck is a sweet and clean romance story between two people that get thrown together in life due to unforeseen circumstances. This riveting novel will appeal to readers that enjoy a love story without sex and that focuses on the personalities and genuine feelings of the characters. This is also a great book for readers looking for an alluring romance story in an exotic setting.

Pages: 317 | ASIN: B09DB7TQH1

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