Roses & Thorns

Roses & Thorns

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Vengeance is Mine by Kat Henry Doran


Ever consider going back to study hall and face down the school bully?

The mean girls?

The brainless jocks who made your life a pure misery?

For Dru Horvath, gypsy orphan turned Pulitzer Prize winner; Rafe Archangeli, once the Scourge of Summerville and now leader of a multi-million dollar trust; and Fiona “Fat Aggie” Thorpe, current high fashion model with her own A-list agency, the opportunity to exact revenge is too good to pass up.

Will they find vengeance they crave?

Or something more valuable?

About the Author:

Nurse, paralegal, insurance investigator, victim advocate, sexual assault forensic examiner. Kat Henry Doran has been there and done that. More than once. Now she spends her time writing and sewing and occasionally acting as chauffeur to the four best things in her life: Meredith, Ashlin, Owen, and Kieran. Join Kat and her alter-ego Veronica Lynch, as they explore the north country of New York State, including the wild shores of Lake Ontario and the Saint Lawrence River, and as they create tales which always include strong women and the men who love them.


Vengeance is Mine is a collection of novellas about three people from the town of Summerville, New York, which is located on the shore of Lake Ontario somewhere between Syracuse and Buffalo.

The first story is about Rafael (Rafe) Angeli. Having been called the “Scourge of Summerville,” Rafe went on to team up with his AA sponsor to become a very elusive, high class thief/con-man. Somehow I think he and his sponsor missed the part in the Twelve Steps about honesty. At any rate, when he returns to Summerville for his best friend’s funeral, he’s shocked to find his friend left him in charge of a charitable trust. And even more shocked to find himself falling for a feisty, crusading do-gooder whose past is nothing he would ever be drawn to.

Our next heroine is Fiona (Fat Aggie) Thorpe. Few people recognize her when she returns to town. Having lost a couple-few hundred pounds, Fiona is now a well-known model and the owner of a respected modeling agency. She’s out for revenge against the bullies who taunted her, drove her into the next county and left her to walk home after dark in a rain storm, and even caused the death of a friend with cerebral palsy. They greased the handicapped toilet seat and the girl fell off. Not only did she break her wrist, but the resulting back injury caused pressure on her lungs and Fiona’s friend eventually died of related complications. The bullies thought the elbow cast was funny and never related the girl’s death to their pranks.

And finally, Dru Horvath, bullied simply because she’s an orphaned child of gypsies.

Vengeance is Mine was unfortunately marred by editing problems. There were words missing and some grammar issues. I realize editing can be expensive, but at least buy a subscription to the Chicago Manual of Style. When asked what her advice to new writers was, Dorothy Parker said, “First buy a copy of The Elements of Style.” My second bit of advice is, go through your galleys backward. You’ll be amazed what you find that way.

Otherwise, it’s a pretty good read. Each story could stand alone, but they also segue together nicely—especially Fiona and Dru’s stories, since they’re best friends and it’s Dru who convinces Fiona to attend their reunion. I recommend Vengeance is Mine, as a great example of what happens when people grow up and move on.

Heat Rating:  PG-13
Length:  203 Pages
Print:  $15.00
Digital:  $3.99

Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Cooked Goose: Big Mike and Minne by Susan Amanda Kelly


Mistletoe mayhem! Cooked Goose is a hilarious holiday love story filled with sizzle, sugar, and sass.

“Your father called me. He invited me for Christmas. I have a ticket for the same flight as you. Tonight.”

With those words, Big Mike sucked the oxygen out of the room. Minnie intended her father would meet her new man, Big Mike… eventually. Minnie wanted to give Daddy time to get used to the idea that his “little girl” is embroiled in a serious relationship. A few decades, perhaps. Because Daddy’s not your run-of-the-mill protective father—he’s a criminal. But now Minnie is heading home for the holidays with Big Mike in tow.

Big Mike is no delicate violet. He’s quiet and lethal—an ex-Special Forces soldier whose day job involves “keeping the Free World safe.” But Big Mike doesn’t want to spoil Minnie’s Christmas and promises not to hurt anyone. His resolve will be tested by Minnie’s father, her psycho brother, and three outlaw lieutenants who want his woman.

About the Author:

Susan Amanda Kelly loves making up stuff in her head. She drives her husband to distraction by suddenly stopping mid-conversation and staring off into space. She once spent five hours at sea on a boat, muttering, “Where would he hide the body?” She hopes the video footage of that trip has been wiped. She finally decided to put the characters that inhabit her head, onto paper. It was like opening the door on a lunatic asylum—glorious bedlam. She hopes her readers come to love her characters as much as she does. She writes action-packed romantic comedies. And her husband is convinced her male leads are based on him. Not the body-hiding psychopath, of course. Sign up to be the first to hear about her new releases:


Cooked Goose: Big Mike and Minnie is the kind of short fiction one can only get with an e-reader. At less than fifty pages, you can chuckle and laugh your way through it in a little over half an hour. Although he’s promised Minnie not to hurt anyone, the men surrounding her at her father’s when they arrive for Christmas make it pretty much impossible for Big Mike to keep his fists to himself. The challenge becomes keeping the altercations—and the evidence thereof—from Minnie. Especially when the turkey ends up being one of the casualties. Now what’ll they eat? Someone’s goose is about to be cooked.

Big Mike and Minnie are an unlikely couple. The offspring of rival biker gangs, Big Mike is a killing machine whose interests include motorcycles and martial arts. Minnie is an internationally known model whose interests include shoes and Fashion Week. But, she also knows where to place her stilettos when grabbed for behind.

Short story or long, you can count on Big Mike and Minnie to keep you laughing and on the edge of your seat wondering what happens next. Because ya know it’s gonna be good! Grab Cooked Goose: Big Mike and Minnie and find out for yourself.

Author Website:
Heat Rating:  R
Length:  49 Pages
Digital Price:  $0.99

Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Steal it All: Donovan Thief for Hire, Book Three by Chuck Bowie


The third story in the series Donovan: Thief For Hire, begins with a brutal daylight murder of an English citizen in the Canadian embassy in London, England. The ambassador calls upon a combination of Scotland Yard and the RCMP.

Then there’s the ace up his sleeve. Sean Donovan, a thief for hire who doubles as a security consultant.

But Donovan isn’t nearby. He’s in Canada, learning about the business of winemaking and thinking about his new girl, and contemplating his recent exit from the business of theft.

Even as he inches away from a life of crime, an art collector he owes a favor to, approaches him: is he willing to do the tiniest of thefts? Would Donovan track down a missing piece of art? Can the collector, Gaia, be trusted? Of course not. Can Donovan resist? Of course not. Is there easy money to be made? Oh, yes.

Nothing is ever easy for him.

Donovan may be betting his life on this gig.

About the Author:

Chuck Bowie graduated from the University of New Brunswick in Canada with a bachelor degree in Science. He still lives in on the East Coast of Canada, an hour north or east of Maine. Growing up as an Air Force brat, his writing is influenced by the study of human nature and how people behave, habits he picked up as his family moved nineteen times in his first twenty-one years. Chuck loves food, wine, music and travel—and all play a role in his work.

His writing will often draw upon elements of these experiences to round out his characters and plotlines. Chuck is involved in the world of music, supporting local musicians—occasionally playing with them and always celebrating their successes. Because he enjoys venting as much as the next fellow, Chuck will at times share his thoughts with a brief essay, some of which can be found on his website.

He is working through the fourth novel in the suspense-thriller series: Donovan: Thief For Hire. It is titled The Body On The Underwater Road, and is the first in the series with scenes from his home province.

Chuck is married with two adult musician sons. He and his wife, Lois, live in Fredericton, New Brunswick.


In Steal it All, Book Three of the Donovan: Thief for Hire series, Sean Donovan has retired from his career as a security agent/master thief, and has been quietly working his way through the various at a family-owned Ontario winery having financial problems, with an eye toward buying the place and working side-by-side with the current owners to keep it running with the family feeling for the workers and quality the label has always represented. He neither wants to see the winery turned into a corporate factory, nor the family and workers ousted. Donavan could use a few more dollars to do so comfortably, however.

Enter the Canadian government. And his old nemesis, Gaia,—both of whom have jobs for him. The government wants him to travel to England to join a task force investigating the murder of an Embassy employee that took place in his office, and the suicide of his murderer. The case isn’t as open/shut as it appears, as no one, not even Scotland Yard, can identify the murderer. Gaia’s little art theft seems quite simple in comparison. But then, when is anything ever simple?

I confess—I’m a fan of Sean Donovan. I’ve read the entire series, and so far, the quality remains high. Each book is a stand-alone. Mr. Bowie relies on the page-burning twisty plots and the character-driven high quality of his writing to keep fans coming back to his books, rather than cliff-hanger endings. It’s fun trying to guess who the bad guys are and why they do what they do. Mr. Bowie is an author who manages to stump me, at least partly. I highly recommend Steal it All, and all of the Donovan: Thief for Hire books. You don’t necessarily have to read them in order, but I like to do so with series.

Author Website:
Heat Rating:  PG-13
Length:  254 Pages
Digital Price:  $5.99

You’ll notice we always include the publisher’s buy link. That’s because authors usually receive 40-50% of the net proceeds from the publisher. Editors and cover artists usually receive about 5%. When you buy a book from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or another third-party vendor, they take a hefty cut and the author, editors and cover artists receive their cuts from what is left. So, if a book costs $5.99 at E-Book and you buy from there, the author will receive about $2.40-$2.99. If you buy the book at Amazon, the author will receive about $1.70-$2.10.

Download the file from the publisher onto your computer as you would any other file. I’ve created a folder for books on my computer, with subfolders by source (Marketing for Romance Writers, Net Galley, Authors who find me on Kindle lists, etc.). That way, if there’s a glitch with your Kindle, the books are on your computer. Some publishers send books in all digital formats. If my Kindle breaks and my kids buy me a Nook, I won’t have to replace all of my books. If you have a Kindle and your hubby has a Nook, you won’t have to buy separate copies, so buying directly from the publisher can save you money.

Moving the file from your computer to your e-reader is as easy as transferring any file from your computer to a USB flash drive. Plug the larger USB end of your e-reader charging chord into a USB port on your computer and simply move the file from the folder into which you’ve downloaded the book to Documents/Books directory on your e-reader. You can move the file by highlighting it and dragging it to the documents directory in you Kindle you want to move it to. Or right click on it, and then left click copy or move. Or hit Control/C for copy, Control/X for cut, and Control/V for paste.

Your author will be happy you did when he/she sees his/her royalty statement.

Thanks for visiting.