Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review for Knights in Shining Apron

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

Starli Cameron gave up her career plans to be a concert pianist to marry the man of her dreams. He turned out to be a nightmare. When he dies in a car accident, Starli takes the insurance money and builds a successful and upscale restaurant: Apple Blossoms in rural West Virginia. Threats from someone determined to ruin her life and the suspicious romantic advances from her new chef force Starli to search her heart and finally turn to God for real healing. Sir Joel Peterman-Blair, top-notch chef from England, is roped by his uncle, into filling in as head Chef at Apple Blossoms. Joel, with his sanguine-personality, has always laughed and flirted his way through life. But now, confronted with and attracted to the most beautiful woman he’s ever met, Joel has to prove his sincerity and depth of character to his icy-cold employer. Can his love for God and for this woman reach out far enough to rescue her from her own mistrust and bitterness? Will he learn that life is not all play? And can they both work together to find the source of threats that seem to be coming from Starli’s past?

You can purchase the book here.

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Knights in Shining Apron combines domestic violence, cooking, music, ice-skating, and British royalty into one unbelievable book.  Starli brings a depth to the story through her brokeness from domestic violence and her determination to ensure her restaurant succeeds.  She managed to make me love her from the very beginning.  I wanted to see her open her heart to love and find true happiness.

Sir Joel Peterman-Blair enters in a dramatic fashion when he is accidentally mistaken for a new dishwasher for Starli’s restaurant.  He demonstrates compassion, determination, and cooking skills throughout the pages of the book.

Starli’s friends help bring the story to life.  They provide encouragement, support, love, and even tough-love when necessary.  This story continues tales of other characters previously introduced.  Truly, this is a book worth reading.

Bio:

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Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

 

Social Media:

Personal blog: http://sunnebnkwrtr.blogspot.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CaroleBrown.author

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/Carole-Brown/e/B00EZV4RFY/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1427898838&sr=8-1

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/browncarole212

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/carole-brown

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/browncarole212/?hl=en

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/sunnywrtr/boards/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/5237997-carole-brown

Linkedin:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/carole-brown-79b6951a/

Google+:    https://plus.google.com/u/0/113068871986311965415/posts

Stitches in Time:  http://stitchesthrutime.blogspot.com/

 

 

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review of Hugo

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ABOUT THE BOOK

In September 21, 1989, Hurricane Hugo came in the dead of night, slamming Category 4 power into Charleston, South Carolina at the worst possible time—high tide. Painter Place is scoured by the writing Atlantic storm surge, forcing Caroline Painter Gregory to say goodbye to a life she loves and face a future that may hold the worst that might happen. On the devastated South Carolina coastline of 1989 and then in Arles, France during the centennial of Van Gogh’s life there, Hugo continues the saga of Painter Place.

You can purchase a copy of the book here.

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Having read Painter Place, the first book in this series, I was looking forward to reading this second book.  While someone could possibly read this book without reading the first, I would definitely recommend reading them in order.

I have to say one reason why I definitely wanted to read this book was that I was living in Eastern North Carolina at the time Hurricane Hugo roared into the Carolinas.  Because of the track the storm took, we missed being impacted by the storm personally.  On the other hand, my parents had friends living in the direct path of the storm.  Also, living in Eastern North Carolina and then Texas, we have experienced quite a few hurricanes personally.  So I was interested to see how Pamela Poole would handle the details of a hurricane.

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The amazing way Pamela Poole ties together art, separate characters,  separate locations, and Christianity captured my attention when I first started reading. The artistic aspects of this book filled my mind with pictures of what I was reading.  I appreciated how this story picked up the story ended in Painter Place.  However, I also have to say, I can not wait to read the next book in this series.  So if you love fiction that includes art, storms, family, and Christianity, check out this book for yourself.

Author bio:

Pamela Poole's Sunflower Hat
Pamela Poole’s love for the South inspires all her books and paintings. She has written three novels and two short stories that take place on the fictional island in the Painter Place Saga, and she will launch the fourth book. Landmark, in 2019. Pamela lives life loving Jesus and her family as a wife, mother, and Gigi, and she is blessed with true friends. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and various author and artist organizations. She and her husband Mark live in Raleigh, North Carolina.

“Now to Him who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us— to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20,21

Social Media links:

You can find Pamela Poole on Social Media at the following links:
Pamela Poole, Artist and Author, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PamelaPooleArt

Pamela Poole, Artist and Author, Twitter:
https://twitter.com/PamelaPooleArt

Pamela P. Poole, Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/pamelapooleart

Author blog on Southern Sky Publishing:
https://www.southernskypublishing.com/blog

Twitter page for Southern Sky Publishing:
https://twitter.com/southernskypubs

Disclaimer

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review of Riptide Rumors

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About the Book

If the Tide Doesn’t Change, Who Will Pay the Price?

As autumn of 1916 descends upon the once-peaceful town of Sunset Cove, Anna McDowell has great hopes that the excitement of the summer will be over, now that a few of the key players in the rum-running ring have been arrested. But with a daring jailbreak getting the town in a dither again, she knows that the danger hasn’t passed for anyone in her coastal hometown.

With a mayoral election keeping tensions high and the authorities busy searching for those behind the jailbreak, Anna has plenty to keep the newspaper busy. But when her sixteen-year-old daughter begins making noises about leaving high school and abandoning dreams of college, Anna realizes that prohibition isn’t the only thing she needs to be worrying about.

How deep does the root of corruption run in their town? As she digs deeper, Anna is forced to put the concerns of her own heart on hold in an effort to save some of the people dearest to her.

Click here to purchase a copy.

MY THOUGHTS (1)

Having read the first book in this series, I was looking forward to reading this second book set in 1916.  Anna, her daughter, Daniel, and all the other characters in this story bring the book to life. Prohibition, a jailbreak, a dress shop opening and more add to the storyline.  The characters are believable and the dialogue makes this book interesting to read.

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With running a newspaper, Anna sets out to expose the truth about what is going on in her community.  Melody Carlson truly brings life to the story.  She combines family, dreams,   danger, and intrigue in a way that makes it impossible to put the book down.  A few new characters join the cast of characters in this story.  Some I liked, others I did not like.

I loved watching Anna’s daughter Katy find her way and explore the possibilities of graduating early from high school and opening a dress shop with her grandmother, her best friend, and her best friend’s mother.  While some questions are answered in this book, I still feel there is a long way to go and hope to read more books in this series in the future.

I definitely recommend this book.  I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

author photo Melody Carlson

Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women, and children. That’s a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a “storyteller.” Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, True Colors etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She’s won a number of awards (including RT’s Career Achievement Award, the Rita, and the Gold Medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog.

 

Social Media:

You can find Melody Carlson on Social Media at the following places:

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Melody-Carlson/e/B000APR3DC/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_4?qid=1549482870&sr=8-4

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/melodycarlsonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authormelodycarlson/?hl=en

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCarlson

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7383.Melody_Carlson?from_search=true

Website: http://www.melodycarlson.com/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/melody-carlson

Disclaimer

Posted in Uncategorized

Tasty Tuesdays – July 30, 2019s

Tasty Tuesdays

Last night I planned on having Shrimp for dinner.  I had bought these wonderful Argentina Shrimp from Sam’s Club.  I was excited to cook them but had to decide how we wanted them cooked. I threw out the ideas of grilling them, sauteeing them, or making Shrimp pasta.

Our 18-year-old son felt like sauteed shrimp, so that is how I fixed them. We took three cloves of garlic and minced them.  Once minced, I sauteed the garlic in a cast-iron pan with some olive oil.  When I was satisfied with the garlic, I threw in the shrimp along with some butter, salt, pepper, and Old Bay Seasoning.  Then I added a splash of lemon juice and some white wine and let it cook some more.  In the meantime, my husband fixed some wild rice in our Instant Pot along with opening a couple of cans of green beans.  I also prepared a salad of mixed greens, bell pepper, cucumber, and red onion.  Oh and we also cut up a cabbage into slices and placed salt, pepper, butter, and bacon on top and placed in the broiler for less than 10 minutes.  I have to say our meal came out delicious.

Tonight we will be having Ham ‘n’ Bean Soup.

What are you having for dinner tonight?  I would love to hear from you.

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction

Review and Giveaway for Fragments of Fear

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 About the Book

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Book: Fragments of Fear

Author: Carrie Stuart Parks

Genre: Suspense

Release date: July 23, 2019

From award-winning author Carrie Stuart Parks comes a new novel with danger that reaches from a New Mexico Anasazi archaeological dig to micro- and nano-chip technology.

Evelyn Yvonne McTavish-Tavish to her friends-had her almost perfect world in Albuquerque, New Mexico, come to a crashing end with the suicide of her fiancé. As she struggles to put her life back together and make a living from her art, she’s given the news that her dog is about to be destroyed at the dog pound. Except she doesn’t own a dog. The shelter is adamant that the microchip embedded in the canine-with her name and address-makes it hers.

Tavish recognizes the dog as one owned by an archaeologist named Pat Caron because she did a commissioned drawing of the two of them months earlier. The simple solution is to return the dog to his owner, but she arrives only to discover Caron’s murdered body.

After meeting undercover FBI agent Sawyer Price the mystery deepens as more people start disappearing and Tavish becomes a target as well. Her only solution is to find the links between microchip technology, an Anasazi site in the desert, her fiancé’s death, a late-night radio show, and the dog. And the clock is ticking.

 

Click here to purchase your copy.

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Fragments of Fear brought me slowly into the storyline.  At first, I felt Tavish was one of those characters I might find it difficult to like.  Because I am not a dog person, the dog did not initially capture my attention.  But as I kept reading I found myself drawn into the story.

Sawyer Price, FBI agent, immediately caused me to like him.  I also found myself wanting him to help Tavish find her way out of the chaos and intrigue she was in when they first met.

The mysterious and dangerous aspects of the story kept me reading.  I found myself wanting to know how the story would turn out in the end.  The mysterious woman who shows up at Tavish’s fiance’s funeral made me angry.  She was a rude and ill-mannered individual.  I have to say I appreciated the journey Tavish found herself on and her willingness to stick to her claims that her fiance was murdered instead of someone who would commit suicide.

The storyline took me a while to get into, but once I started enjoying it, I was glad I stuck with reading it.  I have to say in the end the dog played a necessary role in the story.

So if you like books with mystery, danger, or pets, check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

Carrie Stuart Parks is a Christy finalist as well as a Carol Award-winning author. She has won numerous awards for her fine art as well. An internationally known forensic artist, she travels with her husband, Rick, across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law-enforcement professionals. The author/illustrator of numerous books on drawing and painting, Carrie continues to create dramatic watercolors from her studio in the mountains of Idaho.

 

More from Carrie

Using Art to Solve Crime: Techniques Used by Forensic Artists

 

Since 1981, I’ve been a forensic artist—an amazing feat since I’m only . . .um. . . well, younger than that. In those years, I’ve seen some shifts and trends, but some things have never changed. Despite the overwhelming prevalence of computers in almost every other field, they have never been able to replace a trained forensic artist. Artists have an amazing toolbox of techniques we use to gather the information we need to help solve crime.

  1. The pencil. Any forensic artist worth her weight in graphite knows the power of the lowly pencil and a sketchpad. Law enforcement would love a photographic image of the suspect, but all we have to work with is memory…and memory is faulty. The more the image looks perfect, the more imperfect it is for helping to identify a suspect. We want the drawing to just suggest a likeness and eliminate those not similar.
  2. Now that we brought up the subject of memory, a forensic artist needs to understand how memory works. The average witness will remember between four and five facial features. When they describe the person they saw, they will do so from their strongest memory to their weakest memory, from most important to least important. We listen carefully to the order of facial features.
  3. Whole vs Parts. We don’t look at faces as individual parts, although a particularly outstanding nose or Marty Feldman eyes might catch our attention. We will remember the face as a whole, with the proportions of the face an unacknowledged part of that. Forensic artist prefer to use reference photographs where the whole face is viewed.

Want more? Check out the rest of my article at The Strand Magazine

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 23

All-of-a-kind Mom, July 23

Blogging With Carol, July 23

A Reader’s Brain, July 23

A Baker’s Perspective, July 24

The Avid Reader, July 24

CarpeDiem, July 24

Fiction Aficionado, July 25

Christian Bookaholic, July 25

Godly Book Reviews, July 25

Through the Fire Blogs, July 26

Livin’ Lit, July 26

The Becca Files, July 26

Inklings and notions , July 26

Real World Bible Study, July 27

Cathe Swanson, July 27

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, July 27

For Him and My Family, July 28

Lights in a Dark World, July 28

Retrospective Spines, July 28

Bigreadersite, July 29

Simple Harvest Reads, July 29 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Mary Hake, July 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Acdemy, July 30

Blossoms and Blessings, July 30

EmpowerMoms, July 30

Aryn The Libraryan, July 31

Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, July 31

For the Love of Literature, July 31

Inspired by fiction, August 1

Ashley’s Bookshelf, August 1

By The Book, August 1

Tell Tale Book Reviews, August 2

Remembrancy, August 2

amandainpa, August 2

Pause for Tales, August 3

For the Love of Books, August 3

Just Your Average reviews, August 3

Hallie Reads, August 4

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, August 4

Daysong Reflections, August 4

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, August 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 5

Texas Book-aholic, August 5

janicesbookreviews, August 5

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away a grand prize of her book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/e592/fragments-of-fear-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction

Review and Giveaway for Identity Theft by Alana Terry

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About the Book

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Book: Identity Theft

Author: Alana Terry

Genre: Christian fiction, mystery/suspense

Release date: March 15, 2019

She imagined Alaska would be the perfect place to hide. She found out it’s the most dangerous place to be found …
Lacy has a secret. A secret nobody knows — not even her fiancé.
A secret that would cost her life … and so much more.
So it’s a good thing she’s tucked away in the very heart of rural Alaska, where for once in her life she is finally safe.
But can she stay that way for long?
Suspenseful, thrilling, and impossible to put downIdentity Theft is an unforgettable novel by bestselling Christian author Alana Terry.
Buy your copy today … but be prepared to stay up late!

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From the moment I started reading Identity Theft, I could not put the book down.  This story about a woman forced into Witness Protection and moved from the East Coast to Alaska captured my imagination.

The characters were multi-dimensional and realistic.  The plotline was believable.  Lacey/Jo only wants her life back, and I could not blame her.   Lacey’s current fiance and her past significant other collide in a heart-wrenching manner.  The twists, turns, and danger keeps the reader wondering how things will turn out.  I have to say the ending of this book made the entire book worth reading.

Lacey’s contact for the Witness Protection program adds such a meaningful part to this story.  Sandy, Lacey’s foster mom from the East Coast appearing to care for Lacey adds a lot to the story as well.

So if you like Christian suspense novels, check out this book for yourself.  It is definitely worth reading.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

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Alana is a pastor’s wife, homeschooling mom, self-diagnosed chicken lady, and Christian suspense author. Her novels have won awards from Women of Faith, Book Club Network, Grace Awards, Readers’ Favorite, and more. Alana’s passion for social justice, human rights, and religious freedom shines through her writing, and her books are known for raising tough questions without preaching. She and her family live in rural Alaska where the northern lights in the winter and midnight sun in the summer make hauling water, surviving the annual mosquito apocalypse, and cleaning goat stalls in negative forty degrees worth every second.

 

More from Alana

What’s the first thing that pops into your mind when you think about Alaska? Are you a city soul or do you prefer the country? I’m pretty happy in small-town Alaska, but I’m afraid that wasn’t always the case.

Have you ever lived in a town with 400 residents? Even with all the wide-open spaces, it’s enough to make some personalities feel claustrophobic.

I thought of our move to rural living as our big adventure. (Because what’s more adventurous than feeding chickens and milking goats at negative 40 degrees?) Then I read my first draft of Identity Theft and realized the adjustment wasn’t going as smoothly as I hoped. It was more autobiographical than I had realized!

However, I learned to love rural Alaska, and that’s the main reason I wanted to write my Alaskan Refuge Christian Suspense Novel series – so I could share some of my favorite parts with you.

Identity Theft is the first of three stand-alone novels, all filled with adventure, suspense and thrills, and all set against the backdrop of Alaska. I hope as you settle in to readyou will begin to experience a little of what I’ve grown to love living in this spectacular state.

Blog Stops

Genesis 5020, July 25

EmpowerMoms, July 25

Inklings and notions, July 26

Blogging With Carol, July 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 27

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, July 27

Just the Write Escape, July 27

Just Your Average reviews, July 28

Splashes of Joy, July 28

Carla Loves To Read, July 29

Retrospective Spines, July 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 29

All-of-a-kind Mom, July 30

The Becca Files, July 30

Quiet Quilter, July 31

Maureen’s Musings, July 31

Godly Book Reviews, August 1

For Him and My Family, August 1

Texas Book-aholic, August 1

Literary Reflections Book Blog, August 2

Mary Hake, August 2

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, August 3

CarpeDiem, August 3

Through the Fire Blogs, August 4

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, August 4

Tell Tale Book Reviews, August 5

Moments, August 5

Henry Happens, August 6

Livin’ Lit, August 6

janicesbookreviews, August 6

As He Leads is Joy, August 7

A Readers Brian, August 7

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Alana is giving away a $30 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/e546/identity-theft-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for All In

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About the Book

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Book: All In

Author: L.K. Simonds

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Release date: May 7, 2019

Cami Taylor: a blackjack dealer, a bestselling author, and a fraud. Cami’s boyfriend, Joel, loves her in spite of her flaws. He wants to marry her, buy a house on Long Island, and raise a family–a life that’s a million miles from Cami’s idea of happiness. Her therapist suggests compromise and trust, but Cami bolts like a deer. She breaks off the relationship and launches on a new quest for happiness, not knowing that a nasty surprise waits around the corner. What follows is a fight to the death. Who will be the one left standing?

 

Click here to purchase your copy

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I wish I could say I liked this book, but I can not.  This book does not exactly fit my views of what a Christian book should be.  I found the language and material coarse and on the verge of being vulgar.

While the basic premise of the story is good – a woman being forced to examine her life and come to a relationship with God, the execution left a lot to be desired for me.  I do not believe it is necessary to use profanity in order to make a point.  I believe the author could have left these words out and still conveyed the type of character Cami was.

While I recognize that casual sex is a thing, in a book that is supposed to from the Christian genre it is not expected in such an abundance.  The one redeeming factor in this book for me what the final pages after Cami has come to accept Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior.

So if you do not mind a book with coarse language and sexual matters, check out this book for yourself.  As a matter of conscience, I do not feel comfortable recommending this book.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

L.K. SimmondsL. K. Simonds is a Fort Worth local. She has worked as a waitress, KFC hostess, telephone marketer, assembly-line worker, nanny, hospital lab technician, and air traffic controller. She’s an instrument-rated pilot and an alumna of Christ for the Nations Institute in Dallas. All In is her first novel.

 

More from L.K. Simonds

How I came to write ALL IN.

Back in the 1990s, I was vacationing in NYC with my buddies. We got out the phonebook—as we always did while traveling—to see how many people with our last names were listed. In that thick Manhattan phonebook was one listing for a person with the same name as my friend’s. Two initials and a surname, as a single woman might’ve listed her number back in those days. The address was only a few blocks from our Midtown hotel, and we joked about calling to see if she was a long-lost cousin, who might take us to her favorite shops and restaurants.

We didn’t call, but the “what if?” stuck with me. What if you did call? What if the person you called was in crisis? Or about to face a crisis? What if that serendipitous phone call resulted in a friendship that became a lifeline? That notion was the inception of ALL IN.

ALL IN is my first offering as a novelist—my best writing to date. I hope you enjoy it!

Blog Stops

Just the Write Escape, July 18

Reflections From My Bookshelves, July 19

Carpe Diem, July 20

For Him and My Family, July 21

Through the Fire Blogs, July 22

Moments, July 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 24

Seasons of Opportunities, July 25

amandainpa, July 26

Pause for Tales, July 27

janicesbookreviews, July 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 28

Texas Book-aholic, July 29

Inklings and notions, July 30

A Reader’s Brain, July 31

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, L.K. Simonds is giving away a $25 Visa gift card and a hardback copy of All In!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/e545/all-in-celebration-tour-giveaway