Saturday, August 30, 2014

Book Review - Cocoa and Chanel - Donna Joy Usher


Title:  Cocoa and Chanel

AuthorDonna Joy Usher

Review:  The story takes place in New South Wales Australia and follows a young female who decides to join the NSW Police Force and follows her thru training and her first assignment. After a rocky start she becomes involved in a serial murder case which she solves. I found this to be a very humorous but still serious book. Reminded me of British humor which I really like.

I would rate it 4 stars and would read other offerings by this author.

I picked this book up at because the synopsis appealed to my sense of humor.

Thanks Frank for this review -

Published:  Published July 17th 2013 by Lush Publications
ISBN:  9780987320
Page Count: 224
Quick Review:  4 out 5 stars –
Why I Read this Title:  Kindle Buffet

Synopsis:   Faced with the unattractive options of an affair with her boss’s husband or the unknown, Chanel Smith chooses the unknown and unwittingly traps herself into joining the New South Wales’ Police Force. More interested in fashion than felony, Chanel staggers through training and finds herself posted to the forces most notorious crime hot spot - King's Cross, where she becomes entangled in a case of the worst kind. A serial killer targeting young women.

As she is drawn further into the seedy underworld in her attempt to unravel the truth, Chanel makes new friends, new enemies and draws the attention of the killer. Can she solve the case in time, or will she become the killer’s next victim?

 Donna Joy Usher
Author Information:   Hi there, I’m Donna Joy Usher. I started writing my first novel when I was seven. With no idea about plot or character development (I mean I was only seven) my storyline quickly disintegrated into a muddled jumble of boring dialogue between two horses. Disillusioned, I gave up writing stories for quite a while after that. Instead, I concentrated on my studies, eventually graduating as a dentist.

After many years of ‘drilling and filling’ I turned to writing in an effort to escape the seriousness of my day job. During that time I created my first book, The Seven Steps to Closure, and discovered that I love nothing more than making other people laugh. Well that, and my husband and two miniature schnauzers, Chloe and Xena.

I currently live near the beach on the beautiful New South Wales Central Coast. When I am not working or writing, I love to paddle board, walk on the beach and sip chai lattes at the local cafe.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Product Review - Mega Mesh Screen Door - Hearne Unltd - Easy to Install

Product Name:  Mega Mesh Screen Door –

Manufacturer:  Hearne Unltd –  Easy to Install

Review:  Great product one set back is that you need to remove your screen door if you have it.  The dogs love it and can go in and out as they like instead of waiting for us to open the door and this way I am not swatting flies every minutes of the day - that part I love - fly free kitchen and happy dogs able to bark at everything that looks like it might get close - especially the squirrels who try to get close to the bird the freedom this gives me to not worry about letting the dogs in and out on a regular basis - it is like they grew a set of hands and can open the door themselves - 

Thank you Mega Mesh for this freedom - love it - I wish I did not have to remove my door because now it needs to go back up before winter - it is both a screen and storm door - thanks.

Description: The Secret To A Bug Free Home...Do you sweat at home in summer with the doors shut to keep bugs out?......Are you getting bitten by mosquitos in your own home?......Are you concerned about dangerous chemicals in repellants that your family use?

Your search for the best magnetic bug screen stops here. Introducing 'Mega Mesh' the solution for a bug-free home by Easy Install.

What You'll Get:

Unrivaled Quality

Strong magnets sewn in, to provide seamless automatic closure
High quality micro mesh keeps the smallest bugs out
Easy install bug screens have been developed to stay up and withstand heavy traffic

Multiple Uses

Can be used in all homes for effective pest control
Great for use in RVs
Fits easily where swing doors cannot fit

Benefits of Mega Mesh

Magnetic hands-free entry
Pet friendly access
The low-cost way to economically cool your home
Protection for your family from invading insects
Easy installation
Optional push-pin fixings included

Buy Risk Free with our 100% money back guarantee

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I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Book Review - Ben's Day! - Marc C Collins

Title:  Ben’s Day

Review:  This is a cute rhyming book about a boys first day of summer – he is quite a character that reminds me of my boys who are crazy and want to do everything at once and not have to wait for anything – we have run through the zoo so we can turn around and walk through at a normal pace just so we make sure we have not missed anything in our first run through – literally a run through – So I think I understand where this little guy is coming from – the need to do everything now and now is a common experience around here with 5 kids.

I love the illustrations they are well done and go with the story – so fun to see what he is doing along with the cute phrasing of the story – I think this is a great story for kids and I think they will really enjoy it since they love to be busy and run around all summer long not to mention winter, fall and spring.  Kids are busy and this book makes that funny and fun to read about.

Give it a try I think this is a book you and your children will enjoy.

Published:  Published February 13th 2014 by Self published
ISBN:  9781495491139
Page Count: 36
Quick Review:  5 out 5 stars –
Why I Read this Title:  sent by the publisher for a review

Synopsis:  A linear, fast-paced, non-segue look at a day in the life of Ben; an only-child on his first day of summer.
 Mark C. Collins
Author Information:  Been an artist all my life, professionally since about 1986, and have written poetry and short stories as a hobby along the way. Now I write and illustrate children's books of my own.

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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Please Vote for Qatar's Photo on Facebook =

Qatar's senior photo is on Facebook at this link.  He can really use an Ipad for school and I know a fantastic teacher to give the supplies to - Ms. Olson a middle school teacher who specializes in Autism Spectrum Disorder - the classroom has 1 Ipad and it in high demand during choice time - I know she would love to have another and also all those wonderful school supplies since funds are tight - most teachers spend between 250-1000 dollars out of their own pocket for supplies needed in their classroom each year and I know Ms. Olson is doing just that every year.  Lets give her a surprise !!!!
Here is the photo you are looking for - please vote - thanks so much - I really do appreciate it - Lisa

Friday, August 22, 2014

Book Review - Turning Grace - J Q Davis

Title:  Turning Grace

Author:  J Q Davis

Review:  My husband recommended this book to me and since he doesn't normally do that I thought I should read the book.
Turning Grace is a d├ębut Young Adult\Teen Novel by J.Q. Davis.  The book is written from the prospective of Grace your typical teenage girl. (Boys, Clothes, school and life) The difference between Grace and other girls is Grace is a Zombie.  J.Q. Davis takes a tried and overused genre and creates a new twist bring life to an almost dead genre.

Possible Spoiler.
The first chapter of the book pulled me in quickly with a missing finger and a little girl but soon I found the book to have it typical teen drama that I try avoid when it comes to YA grene. I found myself struggling to read the book because I am not the focal age group but around half way through the story the teen drama turned and the story picked up again pulling me back in. Grace likes a boy the boy has a girlfriend and the girlfriend hates Grace.  Mom and Daughter have issues only because mom is keeping secrets.  Grace soon finds she is in love with boy and the boy is in love with the Grace and will do anything to protect her.  Yup teen drama however when you mix in the fact that Grace is a Zombie and she has to be constantly eating -the story because more interesting until I find myself at the end of the book which has a cliff hanger.  I'm not a fan of this particular cliff hanger because I feel it left the story incomplete.  Grace does some horrible things to satisfy her need to eat and the author creates a kind of foreshadowing with Tristan ie. the boy- the love interest and why she doesn't ever eat him.

As a Zombie book Genre I enjoyed the new twist I hadn't read before as a YA\Teen Romance I had a more difficult time because the romance was slightly unbelievable. J.Q. Davis has this book set up as a series with her cliff hanger which I mention left me a bit sour. Again I am not the target age group for this book so what a teen might enjoy reading I disliked.

Thanks Heidi for this review

Published:  Published June 10th 2014
Page Count: 242
Quick Review:  3 1/2 out 5 stars –
Why I Read this Title:  Suggestion from husband

Synopsis:   “Each taste, each mouthful awakened a part of me that I had never known. The sweet and bitter tenderness of every chew sent my body into a whirlwind…”

Grace Elizabeth Watkins is the typical 17-year-old. She is a girl with simple tastes, who enjoys nature, a gory B-rated slasher movie, and her mother’s homestyle cookin’.

A high-schooler at Middleton High, Grace experiences everything a normal girl would: A spunky best friend, a Mean Girl who hates her whole existence for no reason at all, and an unavailable crush.

But as one of her favorite nights of the year approaches, Grace soon realizes there is nothing…normal about her. There are sudden and uncontrollable changes occurring right before her eyes. Urges intensify, senses are lost, and questions soon arise as to what could be causing Grace’s life to flip upside down.

How will Grace cope with this frightening and eye-opening journey?

Turn the pages to Turning Grace and find out…
 J.Q. Davis
Author Information:   JoAnna Quintana-Davis currently resides in the desert of Southern California. Her and her husband were stationed there due to her husband's orders in the Marine Corps. She has no children, but considers her pooches, Lucy, Cassie, and Bella, her daughters. She is eagerly awaiting her return to New Orleans, Louisiana to be with her family and friends. In the meantime, she will continue to add more pages to Turning Grace.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Children's Book Review - Grandma Stinks!! - Marc C Collins


Title:  Grandma Stinks

Review:  I enjoyed the cute illustrations and the story – At first I thought it was strange that the little girl in the story thought her grandmother stunk and had to hold her nose – but then I remembered visiting my great grandmothers home and later visiting her at the rest home and I have to say that both experiences made me think that she did smell a bit strange and not in a good way. 

This book brought back many of those memories that I had forgotten – I do visit a few elderly friends in assisted living facilities and well I can understand this book much better looking at it through those lenses.  But this book is not cruel and it is well written with fabulous illustration that jump of the page with how cute they are and how well they follow the story.  It is a sweet story about a family who is now having their grandmother come and live with them and how the little girl decides what is more important – stink or grandma being there with the family.

Great book for kids.

Published:  Published December 20th 2013 by Createspace
ISBN:  9781494735487
Page Count: 46
Quick Review:  4 out 5 stars –
Why I Read this Title:  sent by the publisher for a review

Synopsis:  When Grandma comes to stay with Emma and her family, something funky comes along with Grandma! Find out what Emma does about it in this smelly, but sensitive story.
 Mark C. Collins
Author Information:  Been an artist all my life, professionally since about 1986, and have written poetry and short stories as a hobby along the way. Now I write and illustrate children's books of my own.

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Book Feature - The Magician's Land - Lev Grossman

Title:  The Magician’s Land

Author Lev Grossman

Published:  Published August 5th 2014 by Viking Adult
Page Count: 416

Synopsis:   In The Magician’s Land, the stunning conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Magicians trilogy—on-sale from Viking on August 5—Quentin Coldwater has been cast out of Fillory, the secret magical land of his childhood dreams. With nothing left to lose he returns to where his story be­gan, the Brakebills Preparatory College of Magic. But he can’t hide from his past, and it’s not long before it comes looking for him.

Along with Plum, a brilliant young under­graduate with a dark secret of her own, Quentin sets out on a crooked path through a magical demi­monde of gray magic and desperate characters. But all roads lead back to Fillory, and his new life takes him to old haunts, like Antarctica, and to buried secrets and old friends he thought were lost for­ever. He uncovers the key to a sorcery masterwork, a spell that could create magical utopia, a new Fillory—but casting it will set in motion a chain of events that will bring Earth and Fillory crashing together. To save them he will have to risk sacrific­ing everything.

The Magician’s Land is an intricate thriller, a fantastical epic, and an epic of love and redemp­tion that brings the Magicians trilogy to a magnifi­cent conclusion, confirming it as one of the great achievements in modern fantasy. It’s the story of a boy becoming a man, an apprentice becoming a master, and a broken land finally becoming whole.

Author Information:   My novel The Magicians was a New York Times bestseller. So was the sequel, The Magician King. The third book in the trilogy, The Magician's Land, will be published in August 2014.


Burlington, MA                       Readercon                                                       July 10-13
San Diego, CA                         Comic Con                                                      July 24 – 27
Orlando, FL                            LeakyCon                                                        July 30 – Aug 3
Brooklyn, NY                          St. Joseph’s College / 7pm                              August 5
                                                Sponsored by Greenlight Bookstore
New York, NY                                    Barnes & Noble (Upper West Side) / 7pm      August 6
Boston, MA                             Brookline Booksmith / 7pm                           August 7
Minneapolis, MN                     Club Book, Roseville Library / 7pm               August 11
Houston, TX                           Murder by the Book / 6:30pm                        August 12
Los Angeles, CA                      Vroman’s / 7pm                                              August 13
San Francisco, CA                   Rakestraw / 7pm                                             August 14
San Francisco, CA                   Kepler’s / 7:30pm                                           August 15
Chapel Hill, NC                       Flyleaf Books / 7pm                                       August 28
Atlanta, GA                             Decatur Book Festival                                                August 29 – 31
                                                Dragon Con                                                     August 29 – 31
Winston-Salem, NC                 Bookmarks Festival                                         September 6               

Viking ▪ $27.95.00 ▪ On-sale date: August 5, 2014 ▪ ISBN: 978-0-670-01567-2
Also available as an e-book

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Monday, August 18, 2014

Book Review - Calamity Jayne and the Trouble with Tandems - Kathleen Bacus

Title:  Calamity Jayne and the Trouble with Tandems (Calamity Jayne Mysteries Book 7)

AuthorKathleen Bacus

Review:  Thankful I found the Calamity Jayne series about two years ago and enjoyed all six books over several weeks of a very long pregnancy.  However most readers had to wait six years for the next book in the Calamity Jayne series and it was well worth the wait.  Kathleen Bacus pick up where we left Calamity Jane returning from her cruise with a certain Ranger who she has been avoiding because she isn’t sure she is in Love or Lust. Tressa takes a newspaper assignment that will have her butt sore and pain in places she didn’t know could hurt.  However this isn’t your normal bike ride she will be riding Tandem with her newspaper competitor’s son Drew Van Vleet and his endless desire to report on the news and smut across Iowa’s TribRide.

Kathleen Bacus is able to write with so much humor I doubt anyone would find themselves not laughing from the endless Star Trek puns to the ever creative biking humor on Tressa tee shirts.  I personally enjoyed the witty banter between Dixie and Tressa and the dynamics of Tressa and her perfect sister Taylor. Kathleen showed that over the last year in Tressa’s world (six Years for the rest of us.)Tressa has matured and she wasn’t stuck turning circles that so many authors seem to do to keep the readers hooked. I loved that we finally got to see Taylor have a personality and the author didn’t leave her in the background as the pretty sister. I enjoyed that Tressa was able to grow, change and learn and I can’t wait to see what is in store for Tressa in the next book in the series. HINT. HINT. WINK.WINK Kathleen Bacus. Please don’t make us wait six years.

The book is clean of sex but there is sexual innuendos but they will make you laugh and giggle more than blushing.  It’s perfect to read when you need time away from your kids or relaxing at the pool during this long hot summer.

Thanks Heidi for this review

Published:  Published July 18th 2014 by GemmaHalliday Publishing
Page Count: 291
Quick Review:  5 out 5 stars –
Why I Read this Title:  Sent by the publisher

Synopsis:   From National Bestselling author, Kathleen Bacus comes the next installment in the hilarious Calamity Jayne series...

What's the hardest part of learning to ride a tandem?
The pavement.

It's late July, and Tressa Jayne Turner's summer is as sizzling as Ranger Rick Townsend! But is Tressa in love or lust with the hot ranger? There's not time to find out as Tressa's boss at the Gazette, Stan Rodgers, wants his Ace Cub Reporter to cover TribRide—the state's ginormous bicycle ride across the state—but not from the sidelines. This assignment is a little more...hands on. Hands on the handlebars, that is. Not only that, but Tressa's ticket to ride is on a bicycle built for two! And at the tandem's helm? Sleazy rival reporter Drew Van Vleet, aka, "the missing link."

Could things get any worse? You decide. Tressa's parents are on the outs. Her sister is on the warpath. Van Vleet's insisting on a Star Trek theme. And Tressa is the number one suspect in a series of SO-not-funny pranks targeting reality TV star Keelie Keller. Talk about strange new worlds! Tressa is about to go where no "Calamity" has gone before—and where the ultimate wedgie is bound to be the least of this uneasy rider's worries! Hang on, folks. It's gonna be a bumpy ride. (I am a Vulcan. I feel no pain.)
 Gemma Halliday
Author Information:  Gemma had a hard time figuring out what she wanted to be when she grew up. She worked as a film and television actress, a teddy bear importer, a department store administrator, a preschool teacher, a temporary tattoo artist, and a 900 number psychic, before finally selling her first book, Spying in High Heels, in 2005 and deciding to be a writer.

Since then, Gemma has written several mystery novels and been the recipient of numerous awards, including a National Reader's Choice award and three RITA nominations. Her books have hit both the USA Today and the New York Times Bestseller lists.

Gemma now makes her home in the San Francisco Bay area where she is hard at work on her next book.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Book Feature - A Secret Women - Rose Solari - Amazon Kindle Daily Deal Pickup Today Only 1.99

Title:  A Secret Women Amazon buy link today only $1.99 Kindle Edition

AuthorRose Solari

Published:  Santa Fe Writer's Project
ISBN:  978-0982625194
Page Count: 320

Synopsis:   Louise Terry is the quintessential, modern American woman; a successful and independent artist, sexually liberated and head strong, she’s determined to carve out a life for herself where her painting comes first and where she can avoid messy romantic entanglements. But when her estranged mother, Margaret, dies, leaving a box of documents, photos, and journals, Louise discovers in its contents a new and very different woman from the one who raised her. This Margaret was admired by Catholic priests and Wiccan priestesses alike for her spiritual gifts and was working, at the time of her death, on assembling her visions of a 12th-century cross-dressing woman mystic who not only managed to infiltrate the male bastion of Glastonbury Abbey, but who instigated the tragic fire that burned it to the ground in 1184. Determined to pursue the fragments her mother left behind, Louise travels to England where she meets a cast of characters whom she must depend on to find her way. Blurring the boundaries between past and present, between the body and the spirit, between female and male, this page-turning mystery is a sexy romp through time and space, a profound meditation on the mother-daughter connection, and an enlightening exploration of what it means to make love, to make art, and to make a life worth living.
 photo of Rose Solari

Author Information:   Rose Solari is the author of two full-length collections of poetry, Difficult Weather and Orpheus in the Park, and the play Looking for Guenevere, which retells Arthurian legend from a woman’s perspective. Her poetry and prose have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including American Poetry: The Next Generation, Just Like A Girl: A Manifesta, and Initiate: New Oxford Writing. She is the recipient of the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize, an Academy of American Poets University Prize, an EMMA Award for excellence in print journalism, and grants from the Maryland State Arts Council and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities. In spring of 2012, she will be a visiting fellow at Kellogg College, Oxford. She lives in Bethesda, Maryland.

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Disclaimer for all reviews sent by the publisher, publicist or author for review.