Thursday, March 26, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
This is one of my all time favorite types of novels - a mystery, set in the past, with a modern frame. Love it!
The full title of this book is: The Cosgrove Report: Being the Private Inquiry of a Pinkerton Detective into the Death of President Lincoln. And that's the premise. The heart of the story is about a Pinkerton detective who has been hired by the Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, to find John Wilkes Booth and disover why Lincoln was really murdered.
But it's not just that. It's also a story, within a story, within a story. Because it begins with a modern day (this was written in the 70's, so that's modern day) detective, Michael Croft, who has been hired by a judge post-mortem. The judge had promised his grandfather to have his manuscript published, but it was so incredulous, this investigation into Lincoln's death, that he didn't want to do it in his lifetime. So he's left funds for Croft to investigate whether or not this manuscript is true, and if so, to have it published.
G.J.A. O'Toole, the author, has crafted an intricate and beautiful story and I highly recommend it. If you enjoy it, I'd also recommend One Thousand White Women: The Journal of May Dodd by Jim Fergus, and The Tenderness of Wolves, by Stef Penney.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Monday, March 16, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
It's because she's 'beached' on the sofa!
Good morning, Blog Buds! I'm moving into a time in my pregnancy when I'm increasingly more tired and uncomfortable. I will, inevitably, develop complications soon, as well.
And so I wanted to warn you in advance that I will be posting sporadically and may even stop posting for days, weeks, even months at a time. It all depends on how complicated this High Risk pregnancy becomes. After three High Risk pregnancies and one devestating miscarriage, I think it goes without saying that my husband and I are neurotically overprotective of Baby #5, and the only way to protect him or her right now is to protect me.
I won't divulge all the gory details of my risks. Suffice it to say, I'm forty years old and have a history of preterm labor. We work very hard to keep our babies in long enough. Besides the miscarriage, the earliest I've delivered was at 36 weeks. I think it helps that my babies are larger than average due to being happily married to a very large man for a very long time. Even my 36 week Preemie didn't need any extra help following birth. It's the pregnancy part that's difficult for us.
The good news is I'll have more time to read, which means when I'm able to get on the Internet I'll have multiple reviews to post at Enduring Romance and/or Young Adult Science Fiction. Also, please remember there are several reviewers who post regularly at Enduring Romance and I'm sure they'll do fine without me. If you're an author, keep those ARCs comin'! I need them now more than ever.
Checking email will be my priority as I become less and less able to log on, plus getting out this requested Full for MANIC KNIGHT. I should have that in the mail by this weekend. I still have two queries out for MK, but no way of knowing if I'll receive a response at all. I don't query agents or editors who don't respond to all queries, regardless, but an aspiring author never knows. You know?
I'll post when I can as often as I can. If you want to keep up with this blog and don't want to have to check in, I suggest you subscribe to the RSS Feed which you will find on the left hand side bar.
Thanks to all who've extended best wishes. We continue to desire your prayers and good vibes.
Monday, March 9, 2009
Here's the link to Dear Author- http://dearauthor.com/wordpress/2009/03/08/how-to-decide-between-the-sony-and-the-kindle-eink-readers/ -click on the tag 'ebooks' at the top of the post to read all the other posts on ebooks.
And here's a link to Cerridwen Press's free eBook for this lovely celebration- http://www.jasminejade.com/p-4329-gryphons-quest.aspx -It's YA Fantasy.
If you don't have an eBook reader, eBooks can be read on your computer too.
Invisible is a contemporary treasure hunt romance through the world of hidden identities. It has quite a bit of cussing though and the bedroom door is open (it is not erotica - I DO read erotica but I don't write it). There are some violent bits too. Maeve, my heroine, gets attacked by some baddies.
On the flipside, the reviews on it are rockin'. Invisible received a recommended read from Fallen Angel Reviews (their top spot) and 5 Blue Ribbons from Chrissy at Romance Junkies.
Most of all, I love this book. I don't think authors should ever publish books they're not proud of. I'm extremely proud of this book.
To get your free copy,
or you can also get there from here
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Good morning, Blog Buds! I just finished reading this memoir, but I won't be writing a regular review. Suffice it to say, this is a powerful story everyone needs to know about. If domestic violence has never darkened your life, it will foster compassion in your heart for those who have endured such atrocities. If you've been invaded and abused by those you ought to have been able to trust, this story will give you courage to take charge of your life. It can be found at any decent sized public library for free and just came out in paperback at the grocery store too.
We know domestic violence happens all over the world, but when we think of girls being forced to marry men, often much older men, against their will, we think of uncivilized countries far away. This story happened right here in the United States where 'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' is supposed to be protected by law. As someone who believes God is loving and good, it's especially appalling to know these crimes are being committed in His Name. Besides violating these girls' civil rights, the *basic human right* to choose one's own mate is violated. I am totally Pro-Freedom of Religion, but when a sect violates the civil and human rights of it's members it becomes evil. That is not religion. That is dictatorship.
Here is the Barnes & Noble synopsis-
In September 2007, a packed courtroom in St. George, Utah, sat hushed as Elissa Wall, the star witness against polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs, gave captivating testimony of how Jeffs forced her to marry her first cousin at age fourteen. This harrowing and vivid account proved to be the most compelling evidence against Jeffs, showing the harsh realities of this closed community and the lengths to which Jeffs went in order to control the sect's women.
Now, in this courageous memoir, Elissa Wall tells the incredible and inspirational story of how she emerged from the confines of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) and helped bring one of America's most notorious criminals to justice. Offering a child's perspective on life in the FLDS, Wall discusses her tumultuous youth, explaining how her family's turbulent past intersected with her strong will and identified her as a girl who needed to be controlled through marriage. Detailing how Warren Jeffs's influence over the church twisted its already rigid beliefs in dangerous new directions, Wall portrays the inescapable mind-set and unrelenting pressure that forced her to wed despite her repeated protests that she was too young.
Once she was married, Wall's childhood shattered as she was obligated to follow Jeffs's directives and submit to her husband in "mind, body, and soul." With little money and no knowledge of the outside world, she was trapped and forced to endure the pain and abuse of her loveless relationship, which eventually pushed her to spend nights sleeping in her truck rather than face the tormentor in her bed.
Yet even in those bleak times, she retained a sliver of hope that one day shewould find a way out, and one snowy night that came in the form of a rugged stranger named Lamont Barlow. Their chance encounter set in motion a friendship and eventual romance that gave her the strength she needed to break free from her past and sever the chains of the church.
But though she was out of the FLDS, Wall would still have to face Jeffs—this time in court. In Stolen Innocence, she delves into the difficult months on the outside that led her to come forward against him, working with prosecutors on one of the biggest criminal cases in Utah's history, so that other girls still inside the church might be spared her cruel fate.
More than a tale of survival and freedom, Stolen Innocence is the story of one heroic woman who stood up for what was right and reclaimed her life.
Here's the synopsis-
The dramatic first-person account of life inside an ultra-fundamentalist American religious sect, and one woman’s courageous flight to freedom with her eight children.
When she was eighteen years old, Carolyn Jessop was coerced into an arranged marriage with a total stranger: a man thirty-two years her senior. Merril Jessop already had three wives. But arranged plural marriages were an integral part of Carolyn’s heritage: She was born into and raised in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), the radical offshoot of the Mormon Church that had settled in small communities along the Arizona-Utah border. Over the next fifteen years, Carolyn had eight children and withstood her husband’s psychological abuse and the watchful eyes of his other wives who were locked in a constant battle for supremacy.
Carolyn’s every move was dictated by her husband’s whims. He decided where she lived and how her children would be treated. He controlled the money she earned as a school teacher. He chose when they had sex; Carolyn could only refuse—at her peril. For in the FLDS, a wife’s compliance with her husband determined how much status both she and her children held in the family. Carolyn was miserable for years and wanted out, but she knew that if she tried to leave and got caught, her children would be taken away from her. No woman in the country had ever escaped from the FLDS and managed to get her children out, too. But in 2003, Carolyn chose freedom over fear and fled her home with her eight children. She had $20 to her name.
Escape exposes a world tantamount to a prison camp, created byreligious fanatics who, in the name of God, deprive their followers the right to make choices, force women to be totally subservient to men, and brainwash children in church-run schools. Against this background, Carolyn Jessop’s flight takes on an extraordinary, inspiring power. Not only did she manage a daring escape from a brutal environment, she became the first woman ever granted full custody of her children in a contested suit involving the FLDS. And in 2006, her reports to the Utah attorney general on church abuses formed a crucial part of the case that led to the arrest of their notorious leader, Warren Jeffs.
To learn more, click on the following links-
Barnes & Noble's page on STOLEN INNOCENCE
An organization which educates the public and helps girls escape this cult, created by a girl who escaped at 16
Dr. Phil's show on this topic. He's done several shows on it. You might want to do a website search while there.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Friday, March 6, 2009
Thursday, March 5, 2009
First off, ignore the Christmas-themed cover. Secret Wishes is set around Christmas but I wouldn’t consider it a Christmas romance. There’s no decorating of trees or anything like that. This is a good ol’ Regency, a good ol’ PARANORMAL Regency.
I know, I know… I’m not usually a paranormal lover (though I did gobble up J.K. Coi’s latest installment of her Immortal Series, Dark Immortal – what a tear jerker!). I’m squeamish about blood and scary supernatural beings.
Although Secret Wishes has ghosts, it has no blood or gore and the ghosts are more charming than frightening. The heroine Emma is haunted by a former Rake (former because he’s dead, not that he’s given up being a Rake). The dead Rake, having made a dreadful mess of his own life, decides to help Emma pursue her true love. She is head over heels in love with Ross Stanton, Earl Of Brynmor, the only other person she knows who can also see ghosts. Yes, they are perfect for each other!
Ross, however, doesn’t see that. He came back from the war wounded not only physically but psychologically, and refuses to have anything to do with Emma. He has troubles of his own, being haunted by a squabbling brother/sister duo.
Give Emma a real live squabbling brother, add one money hungry suitor, and you have a wonderful Regency read with a few twists. Ross is deliciously broken. Emma is healing yet strong (and stubborn as an ox but she’d have to be to deal with Ross). Our dear dead Rake proves that dying doesn’t make you more savvy about life. Secret Wishes is a fun, fresh read from beginning to end.
Note: Secret Wishes does contain different types of romantic relationships (as secondary storylines) but then with ghosts in the story, you know this is not a traditional Regency.
To read more about Secret Wishes and Catherine Stang’s other novels, please visit http://www.catherinestang.com/