Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Book Blitz! In the Heart of Windy Pines by Holly Tierney-Bedord ~ Excerpt and a Giveaway!



In the Heart of Windy Pines by Holly Tierney-Bedord
Publication date: November 24th 2019
Genres: Adult, Cozy Mystery


From the author of Kindle Unlimited All-Star winner Sweet Hollow Women comes a new novella featuring characters from Murder at Mistletoe Manor, Carnage at the Christmas Party, and The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club!

Klarinda Snow is the innkeeper of Mistletoe Manor in beautiful, remote, Windy Pines, Idaho, where she brings her unique brand of hospitality to the tiny mountain town.

When she finds her inn unexpectedly fully booked on a snowy Tuesday night in November, it brings back memories of a tragedy years before. Before she knows what hit her, she and her trusty team of employees (Myrtle, Pierre, and her new night manager, Josephine), have found themselves back at the task of solving another mystery at Mistletoe Manor!

While this book can be enjoyed as a stand-alone novella, if you plan to read the books in the Windy Pines Mystery series or The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club, it’s highly recommended you read those first, as this book contains spoilers that could affect your ability to enjoy them.


EXCERPT

In all his life, the man in the Mercedes had never had a car break down on him. Plenty of other catastrophes had befallen him, but a failing automobile was a problem he had no experience with. Lately, however, his life had been full of firsts.

Just as the three-year-old Mercedes-Benz GLS he was driving began slowing and lurching like some old junker, a series of four small, weathered, peeling billboards, each lit up in the failing twilight by a single yellow bulb, came into view.

You’re just two miles from a good night’s sleep!

Stay with us at Mistletoe Manor!

Best dinner in town is at Mistletoe Manor!

Take your next right to Mistletoe Manor. Closed Mondays.


“It’s a… Tuesday!” he decided. Funny how the days ran together now that he was retired.

He put on his blinker and veered off the highway onto Pine Lookout Road. It was a narrow road and only the center of it had been plowed. It swooped down a bit and then rounded a corner, and then went up, up, up. It would have been plenty for any vehicle to take, but his malfunctioning automobile was hardly having it. It sputtered and lurched even more violently. A low guardrail and the chunks of snow and ice on the side of the road were all that separated him from the steeply cascading mountainside on his right. His hands gripped the steering wheel in white-knuckled fear, as he pressed the gas pedal to the floor.

“Come on, you can make it,” he told his vehicle, just as it shot ahead and began behaving normally again. “Thank you. You’ve got this,” he told it, in the same tone he’d used years ago when his kids were little and they were playing soccer or field hockey. “Good job, good job. Keep it up.”

About the author


Holly Tierney-Bedord is the author of over twenty novels and novellas including Kindle Unlimited All-Star winner Sweet Hollow Women. Her books feature quirky, flawed characters and the kind of crazy scenarios that could only happen to someone you probably know. Count on her stories to have unexpected twists and turns, dark secrets, and lots of laughs.

Holly is also an artist and miniaturist, creator of the mid-century dollhouse restoration blog flipthisminihouse.com, and the author of several non-fiction books about creating miniatures.

She lives in Madison, Wisconsin. When she's not writing or decorating her real house or mini houses, she's traveling. Visit her website at www.hollytierneybedord.com where you can connect to her blogs and subscribe to her newsletter.

Connect with Holly
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Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Release Day! Stay by Catherine Ryan Hyde ~ My Thoughts #Stay #NetGalley

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Congrats Catherine
on the release today of
Stay!

Stay by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Print and e-book, 292 pages
Published December 3rd 2019 by Lake Union Publishing

An unforgettable novel about the power of friendship and kindness by the New York Times bestselling author of Pay It Forward.

In the summer of 1969, fourteen-year-old Lucas Painter carries a huge weight on his shoulders. His brother is fighting in Vietnam. His embattled parents are locked in a never-ending war. And his best friend, Connor, is struggling with his own family issues. To find relief from the chaos, Lucas takes long, meandering walks, and one day he veers into the woods.

There he discovers an isolated cabin and two huge dogs. Frightened, he runs. And the dogs run with him. Lucas finds unusual peace in running with the dogs, and eventually he meets their owner, Zoe Dinsmore. Closed off and haunted by a tragic past, Zoe has given up. She doesn’t want to be saved. She wants out. But Lucas doesn’t want her to go, and he sees an opportunity to bring more than one friend back into the light. It’s either the best or worst idea he’s ever had, but Lucas isn’t giving up on Zoe or Connor.

Their unexpected connection might be the saving grace that Zoe thought she’d lost, that Connor needs, and that Lucas has been running toward.

   

My thoughts about Stay ~~

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first line.)

First line—"Is it just me, or does everybody have a day in their life like the one I'm about to retell?"

Catherine has written another heartfelt story, full of troubled, caring people—people who are in need of love and understanding. Stay is the perfect example of how, when it's all said and done, humans should treat other humans. We should all befriend those who may not seem to want or need friends, because you know what, everyone can use a good friend. 

Throughout the whole story, the word 'stay' takes on so many different meanings and applies to so many situations. It really becomes the central theme and made me think of the people that I want and need to stay in my life. 

This author writes with such beautiful and flowing words, words that are easy to settle into and savor to the end. Fans of Catherine Ryan Hyde will not be disappointed with this story and I know you will enjoy Stay as much as I did. 

I received an ARC of Stay from the publisher via NetGalley and this is my honest review. 

About the author

Catherine Ryan Hyde

I am the author of more than 30 published and forthcoming books, including ALLIE AND BEA, SAY GOODBYE FOR NOW, LEAVING BLYTHE RIVER, ASK HIM WHY, WORTHY, THE LANGUAGE OF HOOFBEATS, TAKE ME WITH YOU, WHERE WE BELONG, WHEN I FOUND YOU, WALK ME HOME, SECOND HAND HEART, DON'T LET ME GO, and WHEN YOU WERE OLDER.

I'm an avid hiker, traveler, equestrian, and amateur photographer, and have released my first book of photos, 365 DAYS OF GRATITUDE: PHOTOS FROM A BEAUTIFUL WORLD.

I am co-author, with fellow author and publishing industry blogger Anne R. Allen, of HOW TO BE A WRITER IN THE E-AGE: A SELF-HELP GUIDE.

My novel PAY IT FORWARD was adapted into a major motion picture, chosen by the American Library Association for its Best Books for Young Adults list, and translated into more than 23 languages for distribution in over 30 countries. The paperback was released in October 2000 by Pocket Books and quickly became a national bestseller. Simon & Schuster released PAY IT FORWARD: YOUNG READERS' EDITION in August of '14. It is suitable for kids as young as eight. A special Fifteenth Anniversary Edition of the original PAY IT FORWARD was released in December of '14. ~ Goodreads

Connect with Catherine
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Monday, December 2, 2019

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? December 2, 2019


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It's an opportunity to visit other blogs and to comment on their reads. And ... you can add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. And here we are!

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Thanks for stopping by. I hope you all have a good week. Happy reading!

What I'm currently reading

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The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club
by Holly Tierney-Bedord


The Memory Child
(Memory #1)
by Steena Holmes
Narrated by Amy McFadden

Thankless in Death (In Death, #37)
Thankless in Death
(In Death #37)
by J.D. Robb

What I recently finished

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Chronicles of a Radical Hag (with Recipes)
by Lorna Landvik

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Stay
by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Pub date 12/3

What I am going to read next

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In the Heart of Windy Pines: a Mystery Novella
by Holly Tierney-Bedord
Look for my stop on it's book blitz tour on Wednesday. There will be a giveaway!

I really love my reading life!

What are you reading this week?

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Sunday, December 1, 2019

Before and After by Judy Christie and Lisa Wingate ~ My Thoughts #BeforeAndAfter #NetGalley

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Before and After: The Incredible Real-Life Stories of Orphans Who Survived the Tennessee Children's Home Society by Judy Christie and Lisa Wingate
Print and e-book, 320 pages
Published October 22nd 2019 by Ballantine Books

The compelling, poignant true stories of victims of a notorious adoption scandal--some of whom learned the truth from Lisa Wingate's bestselling novel Before We Were Yours and were reunited with birth family members as a result of its wide reach.

From the 1920s to 1950, Georgia Tann ran a black-market baby business at the Tennessee Children's Home Society in Memphis. She offered up more than 5,000 orphans tailored to the wish lists of eager parents--hiding the fact that many weren't orphans at all, but stolen sons and daughters of poor families, desperate single mothers, and women told in maternity wards that their babies had died.

The publication of Lisa Wingate's novel Before We Were Yours brought new awareness of Tann's lucrative career in child trafficking. Adoptees who knew little about their pasts gained insight into the startling facts behind their family histories. Encouraged by their contact with Wingate and award-winning journalist Judy Christie, who documented the stories of fifteen adoptees in this book, many determined Tann survivors set out to trace their roots and find their birth families.

Before and After includes moving and sometimes shocking accounts of the ways in which adoptees were separated from their first families. Often raised as only children, many have joyfully reunited with siblings in the final decades of their lives. Christie and Wingate tell of first meetings that are all the sweeter and more intense for time missed and of families from very different social backgrounds reaching out to embrace better-late-than-never brothers, sisters, and cousins. In a poignant culmination of art meeting life, many of the long-silent victims of the tragically corrupt system return to Memphis with the authors to reclaim their stories at a Tennessee Children's Home Society reunion . . . with extraordinary results.


My thoughts about Before and After ~~

Before and After was a book that was hard to read but also hard to put down. Hard to read because it told the stories of some of the children who lived at the Tennessee Children's Home Society and the hard lives that they lived there. But it was also hard to put down because I became so involved in those lives that I had to find out what happened to them as they got older. 

I read Lisa' book, Before We Were Yours and loved it! Before and After touches on some of the real-life stories of the children who were affected by living at the Tennessee Children's Home Society—stories that are both heartbreaking and touching. It was amazing to me, and I'm sure to Lisa Wingate as well, the response her book got from the children, now adults, who lived in this home, sometimes wrenched away from their families. 

Before and After brings some of those children and their families together so they can get some closure on that time in their lives and move on. What a beautiful thing it would have been to witness these reunions. This truly is an amazing story! 

I received an ARC of Before and After from NetGalley and this is my honest review.  

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Before We Were Yours

About the authors

Judy Christie

Judy Christie is an author and consultant who lives in Northwest Louisiana.

She writes inspirational fiction and nonfiction. Her popular Green series chronicles the goings-on in the small Louisiana town of Green and is part of Abingdon Press’s new inspirational fiction line.

Judy is also the author of the popular Hurry Less, Worry Less nonfiction series, published by Abingdon Press.

Wreath, published in October 2011, is Judy’s first young adult book. Look for it and a free download on her books page!

Judy was a journalist for many years and is a frequent speaker at retreats and workshops. She works with clients around the country on how to slow down and enjoy each day more and how ~ Goodreads

Connect with Judy

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

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Lisa Wingate

Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the bestselling author of more than thirty books. Her blockbuster Before We Were Yours was on the NYT best seller list for over one year. Her work has won or been nominated for many awards, including the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize, the Oklahoma Book Award, the Utah Library Award, the Carol Award, the Christy Award, and the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. Lisa believes stories can change the world. ~ Goodreads

Connect with Lisa

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Saturday, November 30, 2019

This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger ~ My Thoughts #ThisTenderLand

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This Tender Land

This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger
Print and e-book, 464 pages
Published September 3rd 2019 by Atria Books

For fans of Before We Were Yours and Where the Crawdads Sing, a magnificent novel about four orphans on a life-changing odyssey during the Great Depression, from the New York Times bestselling author of Ordinary Grace.

1932, Minnesota—the Lincoln School is a pitiless place where hundreds of Native American children, forcibly separated from their parents, are sent to be educated. It is also home to an orphan named Odie O’Banion, a lively boy whose exploits earn him the superintendent’s wrath. Forced to flee, he and his brother Albert, their best friend Mose, and a brokenhearted little girl named Emmy steal away in a canoe, heading for the mighty Mississippi and a place to call their own.

Over the course of one unforgettable summer, these four orphans will journey into the unknown and cross paths with others who are adrift, from struggling farmers and traveling faith healers to displaced families and lost souls of all kinds. With the feel of a modern classic, This Tender Land is an en­thralling, big-hearted epic that shows how the magnificent American landscape connects us all, haunts our dreams, and makes us whole.


My thoughts about This Tender Land ~~

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first line.)

First line—"Albert named the rat. He called it Faria."

This Tender Land takes the reader on a roller coaster ride, along with the four young orphans, as they set out on their own to escape the lives they have found themselves in. There are plenty of ups and downs along the way but they are resourceful and loyal to each other, so somehow they get by.

This is a beautifully written story that follows the adventures of these four amazing young people. You will be rooting for them, crying with them, fearful for them, and celebrating their victories as they journey along their way.

William Kent Krueger has written an exquisite piece of literature that I highly recommend. I loved every word of it!

I received a copy of This Tender Land from the publisher via NetGalley and this is my honest review. 

About the author

William Kent Krueger

Raised in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon, William Kent Krueger briefly attended Stanford University—before being kicked out for radical activities. After that, he logged timber, worked construction, tried his hand at freelance journalism, and eventually ended up researching child development at the University of Minnesota. He currently makes his living as a full-time author. He’s been married for over 40 years to a marvelous woman who is a retired attorney. He makes his home in St. Paul, a city he dearly loves.

Krueger writes a mystery series set in the north woods of Minnesota. His protagonist is Cork O’Connor, the former sheriff of Tamarack County and a man of mixed heritage—part Irish and part Ojibwe. His work has received a number of awards, including the Minnesota Book Award, the Loft-McKnight Fiction Award, the Anthony Award, the Barry Award, the Dilys Award, and the Friends of American Writers Prize. His last nine novels were all New York Times bestsellers.

Ordinary Grace, his stand-alone novel published in 2013, received the Edgar Award, given by the Mystery Writers of America in recognition for the best novel published in that year. The companion novel, This Tender Land, is scheduled for publication in September 2019. ~ Author's website

Connect with Kent

Website | Facebook | Twitter | InstagramGoodreads

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Book Spotlight Giveaway! The Secret Diamond Sisters by Michelle Madow #TheSecretDiamondSisters


I have sooooo many books! The Book Spotlight Giveaway feature that I post every Saturday is a way for me to clear my shelves and to share some of the many books I have. This feature is a way for my to cull my collection and to give someone else the opportunity to enjoy these treasures.

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This week, I have a copy of The Secret Diamond Sisters by Michelle Madow. I read and reviewed this book in 2014 and loved it! It was wonderful to escape into the rich world of these sisters. You can read my thoughts here

Good luck and be sure to stop back next week!

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The Secret Diamond Sisters

The Secret Diamond Sisters by Michelle Madow
Series: The Secret Diamond Sisters #1
Paperback, 382 pages
Published February 25th 2014 by Harlequin Teen

Three sisters. One billionaire father. What could go wrong?

Savannah. Courtney. Peyton.

The three sisters grew up not knowing their father and not quite catching a break. But it looks like their luck is about to change when they find out the secret identity of their long-lost dad -- a billionaire Las Vegas hotel owner who wants them to come live in a gorgeous penthouse hotel suite.

Suddenly the Strip's most exclusive clubs are all-access, and with an unlimited credit card each, it should be easier than ever to fit right in. But in a town full of secrets and illusion, fitting in is nothing compared to finding out the truth about their past.


Check out the whole series here.

About the author

Michelle Madow

Michelle Madow is a USA Today bestselling author of fast paced fantasy novels that will leave you turning the pages wanting more!

She grew up in Maryland and now lives in Florida. Some of her favorite things are: reading, traveling, pizza, time travel, Broadway musicals, and spending time with friends and family. Someday, she hopes to travel the world for a year on a cruise ship. ~ Goodreads

Connect with Michelle

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads



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