fbpx
Book Review: Coraline

Book Review: Coraline

Coraline

by Neil Gaiman

How have I missed this book? I really enjoy the movie, but for some reason, I’ve never investigated the book.

And that’s a bummer because it’s such a fun read! The story moves fast and the characters are wonderful. I liked the side characters much better in the book than I did in the movie. The story strikes exactly the right tone between whimsical and creepy and it’s a very quick read.

My rating: 5 stars

Have you read Coraline? What did you think of it? Do you prefer the book or the movie?

New Adventure – Write with me!

New Adventure – Write with me!

Hi Bookworms!

I have been working on this project for several weeks and I’m so excited to announce this new adventure. Introducing … Write with Me! Happening every week on YouTube and Instagram Live!

This will be a place where you can shut the rest of the world out and join me to work on creative projects. Whether it’s brainstorming a new series or going through final edits, I will have a quiet, peaceful space for you to relax in. No music, no ambient tracks — though there may be a few live interruptions from the cat. I’m going for periods of quiet productivity, punctuated by short breaks. The length of time between breaks will change based on what I’m doing – for example, brainstorming might need a few uninterrupted hours while actual writing needs more frequent breaks.

The schedule is still a work in progress since I have kids that need chauffeuring and a part-time job out of the house. And, I can’t use YouTube live’s features until I reach 1000 subscribers, so for now, those videos will be prerecorded. But, I’ll be going live on Instagram or Facebook. I don’t know about live chat or live comments, we’ll see how it goes, but hopefully, we can have some fun and build a community around creativity.

I will post the exact schedule here ASAP. In the meantime, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel – here.

Hope to see you soon!

Book Excerpt – Sweet Noel

Book Excerpt – Sweet Noel

Sweet Noel

by Jeanette Lewis

Neither is looking for love, but is love looking for them?

****

“How was the drive?” he asked, unable to help himself.

She rolled her eyes. “That thing is a devil to drive, and you know it.”

“Oh, come on, it couldn’t have been that bad,” he said.

“You’re lucky I didn’t leave it by the side of the road and call an Uber,” Gina huffed. “If you make big money-winning sculpture contests, why do you drive such a piece of crap?”

“Hey!” He was genuinely offended on behalf of the van. “That old girl and I have been through a lot together.”

“Obviously,” she sniffed. But beneath the frown, he caught a gleam in her eye, a teasing spark he hadn’t seen before.

“Well, I need to go help start dinner,” Gina finally said when the silence had stretched too long.

Noel’s brain felt stuck. Here was the perfect chance to find something clever to say, something to impress her, and he’d choked. “Hey, before you go …”

She stopped, giving him a questioning look, and his brain churned frantically. Before you go … what? Tell me why you got divorced. Are you over him? When’s your birthday? Do you like sushi?

“Help me prop up my leg?” he finally said. Oh, good one, Hamilton.

Gina pointed at the stack of throw pillows on the bed. “You can’t prop up your own leg?”

“I can, but what if those are look-at pillows?”

Her eyebrows came together. “Look-at pillows?”

He nodded. “Doesn’t every mom have decorations around the house you’re not allowed to touch, only look at, and you’ll get in big trouble if you mess with them? I’d hate to make your mom mad; she’s being so nice to me.”

Gina’s lips twitched like she was fighting back a smile, and Noel mentally high-fived himself. He’d saved it … barely.

“Here, let me help you.” She grabbed several of the pillows and stacked them near the end of the mattress. “These are not look-at pillows.”

He tried to stifle a groan as he twisted to lift his leg onto the pillows. Gina rearranged them, helping to position them so the strain was off his knee. She was quick and efficient, but surprisingly gentle.

“Thanks,” Noel said softly.

Gina looked up, and their eyes met. Their faces were only a few feet apart, so close he could count the faint freckles dotting her nose and forehead. His heart started pounding entirely too fast. That had to be bad for someone just out of surgery, right?

“What was it at your house?” Gina asked.

“What?”

“The look-at stuff. Every mom has some, right? What was yours?”

***

To read more of Sweet Noel, go here 

Available as an eBook or paperback on Amazon, or as an ebook at your favorite book retailer.

Are you ready for Christmas books?

Are you ready for Christmas books?

 

 

A sweet romance about second chances and finding the love of your life right where you left him.

Christmas in Snow Valley is the perfect way for April Winston to introduce her city slicker fiance, Scott Mecham, to life on a farm. If only Wade Hadley, hometown boy and high school sweetheart, will cooperate! But Wade has no intention of letting April go without a fight. This Christmas, he is determined to overcome their painful past and show April that she already has what she’s been seeking all along.

 

Neither is looking for love, but is love looking for them?

Gina Andrews never imagined she’d be a single mother forced to move back to Indigo Bay and live with her parents. But she’s managing, all the while holding on to hope that her ex-husband will wake up to what he’s missing and agree to try again.

Noel Hamilton is a professional drifter and artist, in that order. He’s happy going wherever the wind takes him. He seeks freedom, art, and serenity.

When Noel meets the business end of Gina’s car and ends up in the hospital, he realizes he’s going nowhere fast. And when Gina’s mother steps in to help him, Gina and Noel are thrown together to stew in their mutual dislike.

But slowly, things change and as Indigo Bay prepares for the Christmas season, Gina begins to wonder if this year could be her sweetest Noel ever.

Available as an eBook or in paperback: Here

 

She wanted to step into the warm embrace of his arms. But he was the enemy.

Lindsey Asher took the Billionaire Bride Pact at girl’s camp, but she’s never taken it seriously. Her dreams were always about building her own a bakery empire, not marrying a billionaire. Years later and all grown up, Lindsey has poured her heart and soul into Sugarbee’s Sweets in downtown Manhattan. All she wants for Christmas are good reviews from a pair of big-name food bloggers and plenty of customers to enjoy her sweet treats.

When Eric Kasabov parks his cookie cart in front of Sugarbee’s and starts stealing her customers, Lindsey’s resolve is tested. And when Eric’s partner starts causing trouble, Lindsey has to make a choice. How far will she go to save her store? Can rivalry turn to love?

Available as an eBook or in paperback: Here

Book Review: The Sergeant’s Daughter

Book Review: The Sergeant’s Daughter

The Sergeant’s Daughter

by Teressa Shelton

Critiquing a memoir is always tricky, especially one that includes allegations of abuse. I think Teressa was treated very unfairly, I am deeply sorry that this happens to anyone, and I really admire her for surviving what had to have been horrific.

I read this entire book in one day and it’s not a short story. The writing style is engaging and the story is so engrossing, and yes, disturbing at times. It doesn’t get too graphic, but there are definitely some heartbreaking moments and I got very invested in the fate of each sister.

I probably won’t read it again, but it was definitely worth reading once.

My rating: 4 stars

Starlight Kisses is Free – today and tomorrow!!

Starlight Kisses is Free – today and tomorrow!!

Mariah Lacoste has come to Snow Valley to help her cousin revive Artisan’s Knack, a boutique on Main Street that has definitely seen better days. Yeah, the timing might not be great—a major overhaul of the store plus maid of honor duties for a wedding, all during the worst winter Snow Valley has seen in a decade—but Mariah is confident she can handle it.

But can she handle Riker Carmichael, the best man and rumored player, who sets out to steal her heart?

Get Starlight Kisses Here

Book excerpt – Much Ado About a Boy

Book excerpt – Much Ado About a Boy

I have always loved YA romance and I absolutely loved writing Bailey and Bentley’s story! Their personalities seemed to jump off the page at me and after a few false starts, their chemistry began to flow. Here is one of my favorite scenes.

Excerpt:

I clicked on Bentley’s number and opened my chat app. It was one of those apps that makes you send a picture, so I took a quick snap of the purple sequin Converse I wore and typed a text over the top. Hey. I know you probably don’t want to do this Shakespeare scene with me either, so it’s okay if you tell Meadows you won’t.

Was there a worse way to start a text message than hey? No one ever started good news with hey and a period. Maybe hey and an exclamation point, but even then, it’s suspect.

I expected him to reply right away, and when he didn’t, I put my phone on the carpet at my side and closed my eyes. Typical Bentley. Maybe he wouldn’t reply at all, and I’d have the double humiliation of having to confront him on Monday in the hall. Or maybe he’d deleted my number and thought I was a spammer.

A fresh wave of anger surged through me, and I grabbed the phone again and took an identical picture of my sneakers, then typed: This is Bailey, BTW.

I set the phone back down and stared at the shadow boxes that hung on the wall above my bookshelf. My mom made a new one for every show I did and included the program, a couple of pictures, and other memorabilia like dried flowers from the bouquets my grandparents sent me on opening night, or the heel of my shoe that had broken in the middle of the show when I’d played Gertrude McFuzz in the eighth grade’s production of Seussical Jr.

I could look at that wall and watch myself grow up, from a skinny six-year-old playing a generic orphan in the elementary production of Annie, all the way to last year when I was Marguerite in Pimpernel, decked out in a tall wig and a huge red ball gown with panniers so wide I had to turn sideways to get through the doors.

My phone beeped with the alert for the picture app and I yanked my attention away from the wall. My heart flew to my throat as I swiped to open the screen. There was a picture of an adorable white cat with bright blue eyes staring straight into my soul. The text beneath the picture read: Why would you think I don’t want to do the scene with you? And I know it’s Bailey, you goofball.

My breath caught in my throat, and before I could stop it, a smile broke across my face. Bentley had called me a goofball.

No, I didn’t care. This wasn’t about anything but the drama competition.

I aimed my phone at my feet and took another picture of my shoes, then applied a filter to make them black and white and sent it back. Did Meadows talk to you?

A moment later, Bentley’s reply popped up. This time the cat was curled on its side, waving its fluffy tail. What’s with the shoes?

I took another picture of the carpet. What’s with the cat?

A close-up of a blue eye. Meet Coconut.

Another zoom-in on the purple sequins. Meet my shoes. And coconuts are brown, not white.

White fur. Tell her that.

Shoelaces. What about Meadows?

A tiny pink paw. What about him?

The white stripe of rubber around the sole of my shoe. He wants us to do a scene from Much Ado for regionals.

Whiskers. I know.

I put the phone down and sighed. Why was he doing this to me?

Get Much Ado About a Boy on Amazon. Free for KU users!

Get it Here
Book Review: The Outsider

Book Review: The Outsider

This book … eh.

I have tried and tried and tried to read Stephen King. The Outsider is my latest attempt to get into the thrills and chills promised by his name.

But I can’t do it. I abandon every single one at about the 30 percent mark and go to Wikipedia to read the plot summary. So I guess that means I’m interested enough to find out what happens, but not interested enough to invest the time reading the other 70 percent of the book.

The plot was compelling – how can DNA evidence put a man in two places at the same time – and becomes especially relevant when one of the timelines includes a horrendous crime. (Warning: not for the faint of heart.) But I couldn’t get into it. I know Stephen King is a master at building suspense, but honestly, I just got bored. The climax wasn’t even very scary, but I was reading it on Wikipedia at nine in the morning, not breathlessly turning pages to learn the resolution after I’d spent all night reading.

This isn’t the first scary book I’ve tried to read this year, only to get bored and either start skimming or give up entirely. The horror genre just isn’t for me, even during spooky season.

My rating: 2.5 stars