Saturday, February 25, 2017

Stacking the Shelves & Sunday Post - 2.25.17

Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga's Reviews (details)
Sunday Post hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer (details)


Romance heavy with the incoming this week. Yeah, feeling like some feel good reads.



Pushing Limit series, volume 1 by Katie McGarry - Amazon -Romance, YA
Pushing the Limits - Amazon | Goodreads
Crossing the Line - Amazon | Goodreads
Dare You To - Amazon | Goodreads
Crash Into You - Amazon | Goodreads

For Review:

Block & Tackle
by Elise Faber, Stephanie Fournet & Kristin Vayden
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads

Releasing the Demons
by L.D. Rose
-Paranormal Romance
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads

Black Bullet
by L.D. Rose
-Paranormal Romance
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads


From Owlcrate package (details & signup):
OwlCrate is a subscription service that sends you magical monthly boxes tailored to a chosen theme. Each OwlCrate will contain one new Young Adult novel, as well as 3-5 other bookish treats to help you get your nerd on. @owlcrate

February Box includes:
theme: Circus

- Caraval by Stephanie Garber Amazon | Goodreads
- Caraval themed bookmark, quote card, sneak peek audio book, signed bookplate and letter from author
- The Night Circus themed tote bag created by Evie Bookish
- Le Cirque des Reves candle by Frostbeard Studio
- Lip balm with mini dough theme by Geek Fire Labs
- Notepad with casino playing card theme by Attic Journals
- Sticky page flags with circus theme by Girl Of All Work
- Owlcrate button - circus theme
- TEASER card: March theme - Sailors Ships & Seas

AND watched: in theatre

A Quiet Passion (2016)
Director/Writer: Terence Davies
Starring: Cynthia Nixon, Jennifer Ehle, Duncan Duff
-Biography, Drama | imdb | my rating: 5

The story of American poet Emily Dickinson from her early days as a young schoolgirl to her later years as a reclusive, unrecognized artist.

WELL casted and well played by all. Got a good sense of this poet and her lifestyle.

Lion (2016)
Director: Garth Davis
Screenplay: Luke Davies
Based on book by: Saroo Brierley
Starring: Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara
-Drama | imdb | my rating: 5

A five-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometers from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia; 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.

Oscar nominated for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Original Score, Adapted Screenplay.

Based on a true event. Beautifully made story that has some slow artsy moments but turns out well. Make sure to stay through the end credits to see pictures of the actual people portrayed. And, most importantly to find out the meaning of the title ;-)

AND watched: on DVD

Trolls (2016)
Directors: Walt Dohrn, Mike Mitchell
Screenplay: Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger
Story by: Erica Rivinoja
Based on book by: Thomas Dam
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake
-Animation, Adventure, Comedy | imdb | my rating: 5

After the Bergens invade Troll Village, Poppy, the happiest Troll ever born, and the curmudgeonly Branch set off on a journey to rescue her friends.

Oscar nominated for Original Song, Can't Stop the Feeling!. Delightful and colorful tale that tackles the topic of "happy" with a danceable soundtrack.

Sully (2016)
Director: Clint Eastwood
Screenplay: Todd Komarnicki
Based on book by: Chesley Sullenberger, Jeffrey Zaslow
Starring: Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart
-Biography, Drama | imdb | my rating: 4

The story of Chesley Sullenberger, an American pilot who became a hero after landing his damaged plane on the Hudson River in order to save the flight's passengers and crew.

Oscar nominated for Sound Editing.

Based on a true event. Steady and even storytelling of what went down. Interesting to how heroics are questioned and analyzed.


* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently

Friday, February 24, 2017

Luna Rising by Selene Castrovilla

Luna Rising
by Selene Castrovilla

Find out more about this book and author:
Website | Blog
Facebook | Pinterest

Release date: April 25, 2017
Publisher: Last Syllable Books
Genre: Chicklit
Paperback: 450 pages
Rating: 3.5

First sentence(s):
Luna peered through her peephole, watching Trip cut across her yard past the inflated Santa. He was an hour late—early for him.

Life begins at thirty-eight for Long Island mom and writer Luna Lampanelli, when she kicks her secretly gay husband to the curb. She’s got her freedom, but what she wants is love.

Luna knows she doesn’t need a man to exist, but try telling that to her heart. Against the advice of Sunny, her snarky best friend, and Jiminy, the cautioning voice in Luna’s head that just won’t shut up, Luna sets course to find a mate.

Luna speed and on-line dates her way into several short-lived, surreal relationships. There’s Ari, the humorless Israeli who refuses to assimilate – to America, and to humanity. There’s Alex, the young and handsome ex-crackhead who informs Luna he doesn’t want to be monogamous while they’re in bed. There’s Memphis, the wild-eyed sadomasochist. There’s Red, angry and crippled, who becomes the catalyst for Luna to join Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous.

But before Luna can proceed to recovery, she meets the elusive but oh so appealing Trip. He’s emotionally unavailable and has the Madonna-Whore Complex, but how can Luna (aka “whore”) let him go when she enjoys his dry wit so much, and his naked body even more?

Humorously haunting and packed with unspeakable truths, Luna Rising follows a woman’s funny and heart-breaking struggle to relate with un-relatable men and an un-relatable world, and to figure out something even more un-relatable: herself.

My two-bits:

This story explores the contemporary singles scene as a newly divorced mother of two young children.

Navigating through the dating world and trying to forge relationships to avoid singledom is the focus. The theme "looking for love in all the wrong places" hits home with this read. At some points it was frustrating and painful to see the main character, Luna, make the choices she did.

Loved Luna's best friend, Sunny, who provided a chuckle or two.

A lot of inner dialogue going on, so beware if you are not into this.

About the author:
Selene Castrovilla is the award-winning author of multiple narrative nonfiction picture books and young adult novels. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School and a BA in English from New York University. She lives on Long Island with her two sons and too many cats.

--~ Blog Tour Giveaway ~--

WIN $25 Gift Card to Amazon or Book Depository (International)

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* review copy courtesy of book tour (here) sponsored by JHPR

Feb 1st - A Nook for Books
Feb 2nd - Her Book Thoughts
Feb 3rd - A Leisure Moment
Feb 7th - Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf
Feb 10th - A Chick Who Reads
Feb 13th - Actin' Up With Books
Feb 14th - The Invisible Diva
Feb 16th - Reese's Reviews
Feb 20th - Bookish
Feb 22nd - Jersey Girl Book Reviews
Feb 24th - vvb32 reads​

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Book Blast Giveaway: The Rise of Miss Notley by Rachael Anderson

The Rise of Miss Notley
by Rachael Anderson
-Historical Romance
Amazon | Goodreads

When Miss Coralynn Notley’s father barters her off to the first titled gentleman to come along, she realizes she must flee her home or be forced to wed a despicable man. Driven by desperation, she applies for the position of housekeeper at Tanglewood Manor, the home of the handsome Mr. Jonathan Ludlow. The moment Jonathan sees Miss Notley, he is intrigued. She is far too young and inexperienced, yet there is something about her that that inspires a certain hope within him. Does he dare offer her the position of housekeeper or will doing so result in catastrophe?


Cora nodded and followed Mr. Ludlow into the parlor. He closed the doors and stood in front of them with his arms folded, looking far more intimidating than he had during their last meeting. He said nothing, merely lifted an inquiring eyebrow and waited.

Caught unprepared, Cora stared at him, trying to organize her thoughts into words. After a few moments of awkward silence, he lost patience. “What is it you wished to speak with me about, Mrs. Notley? Or are we to stand here staring at each other all afternoon?”

Not knowing how else to begin, Cora blurted, “Why have you hired me, sir?”

He blinked a few times before frowning. “I believe I have made that perfectly clear. You are to be the housekeeper, are you not?”

This was going to be more difficult than she had imagined. “Yes, of course, but there has been some talk about, or rather concerns expressed . . .” How did one put this delicately?

“About . . .?” he prodded, obviously not thrilled that his morning regime had been waylaid.

“About the reasons I have been offered the position,” she quickly said, hoping that would be enough to make him understand her meaning.

Unfortunately, his brows drew together in confusion. “What are you saying, Mrs. Notley? I have hired you to do certain duties that will hopefully make my household run more smoothly. What other reason could I possibly have for offering you the position?”

“You have hired me to do a job I am untrained to do,” she said. “While I am grateful for the opportunity, I also find it necessary to clarify that I have come here to be a housekeeper and only a housekeeper. Even though I am young and...” Her voice drifted off. Had she almost referred to herself as pretty? Goodness, this was proving to be very awkward indeed.

“Beautiful?” he finally guessed, not looking at all pleased with the direction the conversation was taking.

“I was going to say not repulsive,” she fibbed.

“Very well,” he said. “Even though you are young and not repulsive . . .” He moved his hand in a circular gesture, urging her to finish her thought.

Cora straightened her shoulders and forced herself to continue. “I am not the sort of girl who would ever... fraternize with her employer.” Her face infused with heat, but she forced her gaze to remain steady.

“I see.” He walked slowly towards her, rubbing his chin with his hand. A few steps away, he stopped and eyed her quizzically. “Have I made any improper advances towards you?”

“No, sir.”

“Have I spoken to you in an unprofessional manner?”


“Have I looked at you in a way that has made you feel uncomfortable?”

“No.” Cora suddenly wished she had not felt the need to clarify anything. He made her feel as though she had put the cart before the horse when what she had been trying to do was see that the cart and horse simply stayed in their proper places. Was that so wrong?

“Might I ask who, exactly, has led you to believe that I am the sort of man capable of—how did you put it? Fraternizing with my help?”

“I, er, would rather not say, sir.” Though Cora felt no loyalty towards Sally, she refused to bring Mr. and Mrs. Shepherd’s names into the conversation. “I did not mean to besmirch your name or cause any offense, Mr. Ludlow. I merely wanted to make my feelings on the matter clear.”

“And you have.”

“Good.” Cora dropped into a quick curtsy, anxious to get away. “I shall go and find Watts now.”

She was almost to the door when his voice stopped her. “Once again, you are attempting to scuttle away before we have completed our conversation.”

Slowly, she turned around and lifted her eyes to his. “I never scuttle, sir.”

“What would you call that rapid walk of yours?”

“A rapid walk.”

About the author:

A USA Today bestselling author, Rachael Anderson is the mother of four and is pretty good at breaking up fights, or at least sending guilty parties to their rooms. She can’t sing, doesn’t dance, and despises tragedies. But she recently figured out how yeast works and can now make homemade bread, which she is really good at eating. Visit Rachael (here).

--~ Giveaway ~--

WIN $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway

Ends 3/15/17

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday - 2.22.17

Waiting on Wednesday
hosted by Breaking the Spine
Spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I'm waiting for...

The Song Rising
(The Bone Season #3)
by Samantha Shannon
-Fantasy, SciFi, YA
Release date: March 7, 2017
Amazon | Goodreads

The hotly anticipated third book in the bestselling Bone Season series – a ground-breaking, dystopian fantasy of extraordinary imagination

Following a bloody battle against foes on every side, Paige Mahoney has risen to the dangerous position of Underqueen, ruling over London's criminal population.

But, having turned her back on Jaxon Hall and with vengeful enemies still at large, the task of stabilising the fractured underworld has never seemed so challenging.

Little does Paige know that her reign may be cut short by the introduction of Senshield, a deadly technology that spells doom for the clairvoyant community and the world as they know it…

HAVE not yet read book 2, but I am excited to see that the series continues.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Spotlight: Pipeliner by Shawn Hartje

by Shawn Hartje
-Coming of Age, YA
Amazon | Goodreads

For seventeen-year-old Jason Krabb, high school life in 1990s Idaho is a world of cargo shorts, cassette tapes, and junk food. Plagued equally by algebra and puberty, Jason sets out to find a girlfriend and become a rock guitarist. His quest is irreversibly jolted when he attends a bonfire and meets an alluring girl from the other side of town and a rag tag crew who are bringing gas lines through the desert in order to keep the lights on in Portland and Seattle, places where Jason hopes to find his nirvana as a guitarist.

Meanwhile, things deteriorate at home. Jason's pediatrician mom, Leah, sadly faces the twilight of her parenting years while his father, Curtis, contends with the enormity of running a big ticket research laboratory and coming to terms with his son's wayward path.

Pipeliner is at once a coming of age love story and a comical timestamp of early 90s family life. Set in the fictional Idaho town of Helen Springs, pop. 58,000, its characters are as vibrant as the lofty peaks and purple sunsets of the high desert. Here we find rich farmers, poor ranchers, dutiful Mormons, government honchos, disgruntled vets, drug-dealing bruisers, irksome teachers, and spirited students, all doing their best to keep the lights on.


In the Trail King parking lot, Jason Krabb saw his friend Isabel Perkins’s brown Dodge Aries sedan parked between giant pickups, a good sign since she’d lately been hanging with Shelly Stewart, whom Jason had been flirting with in algebra II. He found Isabel by herself in a diner booth, smoking Camel Lights and acting older than she was.

“Hey Jason.” Isabel looked happy to see him. “Did you cut your hair?”

Jason shook the long blond hair from his face and sat close beside her, making sure his hips pushed into hers.

“Watch it!” Isabel smiled, pushed him back, and combed a lock of hair behind his ears.

Jason had known Isabel since back when her mom ran a home daycare on their small ranch directly across the interstate from the Trail King Truck Stop. Isabel had long straight hair that she was always dying in various patterns. Today it was blond up top, black at the ears, and maroon-tipped. She was quite pretty, with a tanning-bed complexion, a seductive smile, and sporting a huge chip on her shoulder.

“Where’s the party tonight Izzy?” Jason asked.

“You think I’m sharing that with high schoolers?” Isabel sounded disgusted.

Like Jason, Isabel was fiercely independent of anything to do with high school. As a freshman she’d been mocked for being too country, favoring embroidered getups with horses and lariats and her name stitched golden upon sharp blue denim. Jason remembered how Becca Black, queen of the top tier girls, used to bully Isabel, pushing her into the lockers and pulling on her fringes and tassels.

Isabel was now more ambiguously outfitted, playing to whatever scene she was currently interested in. Today she wore a men’s V-neck shirt in winter camouflage with black Capri pants above white slip-on Vans. Her skin looked too lustrous, as if coated in caramel.

“Your new boyfriend in town?” Jason asked.

Isabel turned serious. “Ben’s partying with his crew up in the Black Elks. He just bought a camper trailer. It’s badass, has a TV with a VCR above the bed.”

Jason laughed at this. “Sounds like a nice fuck pad.”

Isabel winked at him. “We call it the stabbin’ cabin.”

Jason loved this about Isabel. He could relax and be his horny teenaged self around her, could talk about anything sexual and she’d gamely jump in the conversation. “How’d he buy that?” Jason was curious about her latest boyfriend, Ben Stone, who’d graduated high school last year. All Jason remembered about him was that he’d never talked and wore Metallica T-shirts.

“Pipeliners make serious money,” Isabel said. “His parents don’t like me at all. So he bought the camper and moved out. Now we don’t have to put up with them anymore.” “What a stud,” Jason said. “Dude’s hanging around poaching high school girls.” Isabel was into older guys. When Jason started hanging around the Trail King as a depressed freshman, she’d been dating one of the clerks, a mustachioed guy in his twenties who bought her cigarettes and let her wear his worker’s smock.

Isabel blew smoke at Jason. “You high school boys aren’t up to snuff.”

“Whatever,” Jason said. “Hooking up with older guys doesn’t change the fact that you’re stuck in Idaho. Just like me.”

About the author:
Shawn Hartje was raised in Sioux City, Iowa and has lived in Idaho, Colorado and West Virginia. He has lived in Northern California since 2002. He enjoys high desert scenery and skateboarding with his kids.

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