Roses & Thorns

Roses & Thorns

Sunday, August 30, 2015

School of Deaths by Christopher Mannino



Blurb:

Thirteen-year-old Suzie Sarnio always believed the Grim Reaper was a fairy tale image of a skeleton with a scythe. Now, forced to enter the College of Deaths, she finds herself training to bring souls from the Living World to the Hereafter. The task is demanding enough, but as the only female in the all-male College, she quickly becomes a target. Attacked by both classmates and strangers, Suzie is alone in a world where even her teachers want her to fail.

Caught in the middle of a plot to overthrow the World of Deaths, Suzie must uncover the reason she’s been brought there: the first female Death in a million years.

Review by Rochelle:

The summer between eighth grade and high school is supposed to be fun, but Suzie Sarnio spends hers bouncing between nutritionists and shrinks while her family tries to get to the bottom of her “anorexia.” They don’t believe her protests that she’s eating more this summer than she ever has before as she wastes away before their eyes. Her older brother even stops teasing her about it. The answer comes when an old man arrives at the door wearing a black robe and carrying a scythe. He whisks her away to the College of Deaths. She has to remain there for one year. If she passes her final exam, she can return to her family. If not, she must remain and become a Death—a grim reaper. If she tries to return home, she will cease. Not only will she die; no one will remember she ever existed.

Suzie is certain she can pass whatever test they give her until she realizes she’s the only female in the school, and no one wants her there. Only one other female student has ever attended the Death School. It was a million years ago, and Lovethar was so evil she started a war between the Deaths and the Dragons, who have been mortal enemies ever since. Suzie is not only alone—she’s hated and feared.

Thus begins a young adult fantasy that will appeal to youth of all ages. School of Deaths is a page-burning mystery that kept me up at night and distracted me from “real” work. When I was on deadline, I didn’t dare even look at my Kindle while I was reading School of Deaths, and while I can’t wait for the next book in the series, Mr. Mannino tied up everything quite nicely and did not leave Suzie dangling from any cliffs. Bravo! By all means—buy the book and see for yourself. But do so when you have time to be mesmerized.

Length:  272 Pages
Price:  $5.95

You’ll notice we always include the publisher’s buy link. That’s because authors usually receive about 40-50% of the book price from the publisher. Editors and cover artists usually receive about 5-10%. 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 royalties from what is left. So, if a book costs $5.99 at E-BookPublisher.com and you buy from there, the author will receive about $2.40. If you buy the book at Amazon, the author will receive about $0.83.

Downloading the file from your computer to your e-reader is as easy as transferring any file from a USB flash drive to your computer. You can download your books onto your computer using “Save As” to a “Books” folder you create and sort them into sub-folders by genre, author, or however you wish before transferring them to your e-reader. That way, if there’s a glitch with your e-reader, the books are on your computer. Once you’ve saved the book to your computer plug the larger USB end of your chord into a USB port on your computer and simply move the file from the folder you created to your E-Reader/Documents/Books directory. Your author will be happy you did when he/she sees his/her royalty statement.

Thanks for visiting. Julie, Donna, & Rochelle

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Die for Me by Jack Lynch

Blurb:

A psychic Peter Bragg once saved from suicide has seen her future—death at the hands of a serial killer—and turns to Bragg to save her life again. As one corpse after another is unearthed in the woods of Jack London State Park, Bragg teams up with a Sheriff’s detective in a race against time, and perhaps fate, to hunt down a killer stalking the nightmare landscape of the psychic’s visions, and the dark, deadly streets of San Francisco.

Review by Rochelle Weber:

Die for Me is the second Peter Bragg book by Jack Lynch I’ve read. He’s cut from the same mold as Hammer and Marlowe. Bragg’s a loner who cares more about people than he wants to let on. You can always count on him to do the right thing, even if that means standing you up when you have a date with him. Yeah, the job comes first.

I had a clue who the killer was, but not why he was doing it, but I wasn’t positive until the end. I have to say, it was pretty amazing when Bragg put the puzzle together. The answer came a bit out of left field and truly surprised me. It’s difficult to write this review without giving away too much. Take my word for it—Die for Me will grab you on the first page and keep you burning through to the end.

Length:  217 Pages
Prices:
Print:  $11.99
Digital:  $2.99

Thanks for visiting. Rose, Julie, Donna, & Rochelle

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Highand Revenge (Fated Hearts Book 1) by Ceci Giltenan

Blurb:

Does he hate her clan enough to visit his vengeance on her? Or will he listen to her secret and his own heart’s yearning?

Hatred lives and breathes between medieval clans who often don’t remember why feuds began in the shadowed past.

But Eoin MacKay remembers.

He will never forget how he was treated by Bhaltair MacNicol—the acting head of Clan MacNicol. He was lucky to escape alive, and vows to have revenge.

Years later, as laird of Clan MacKay, he gets his chance when he captures Lady Fiona MacNicol. His desire for revenge is strong but he is beguiled by his captive.

Can he forget his stubborn hatred long enough to listen to the secret she has kept for so long? And once he knows the truth, can he show her she is not alone and forsaken? In the end, is he strong enough to fight the combined hostilities and age-old grudges that demand he give her up?

Donna's Review:

What does a person do when a tree falls into the power line and the electricity in the south is out, and not even the laptop will power up? A person reads—an entire book in a matter of HOURS.

Ceci Giltenann's book was the only bright spot in that day. Fast paced, tight plotting, and characters that jumped from the page kept me turning and turning and turning. I couldn't get to the end fast enough.

I particularly enjoyed her portrayal of the main characters - Eoin MacKay and Lady Fiona MacNicol. Giltenan sets up the hatred MacKay feels for the MacNicol's, and then not only slowly peels back the layers of a heart desperate to forgive and love, but the secrets as to who Lady Fiona is as well.

Giltenan's prose is excellent as well, and I felt as if I was in the Highlands themselves.

I will caution my readers, though, that this is not a totally clean book. There is no pre-marital sex, but there is a scene that, while not erotic or long, does entail a bit more detail than what some readers might be willing to read.

If mild sex does not bother you, then this is definitely a read you can't pass up!

Five roses!

Length:  131 Pages
Prices:
Print:  $7.95
Digital:  $.99

Thanks for visiting. Julie, Donna, & Rochelle

Sunday, August 16, 2015

See You in the Morning by A. T. Weaver



Blurb:

Jake wonders if he'll ever find a long-term, loving relationship like his parents have. After all, same-sex marriage is just a pipe-dream.

Then he meets Dave. From the first kiss, they know they belong together. For over fifty years they're together, living their happily ever after in spite of bigotry.

They raise four wonderful children, always counting on the promise they give each other every night—"see you in the morning."

Review by Rochelle:

I stopped reviewing gay books awhile ago, because I’m not fond of erotica and I really don’t like BDS&M regardless of the gender of the participants. It seemed to me that was all I found in so-called gay romance. But when I read the blurb and excerpt for See You in the Morning while I was putting together the Marketing for Romance Writers’ Newsletter, it sounded different. It sounded like a real romance.

And that’s exactly what See You in the Morning is—an old-fashioned, sweet romance. Jake and Dave meet in a bar, decide it’s too noisy, and go out for pizza. They sit talking late into the night and exchange phone numbers. Jake’s amazed when Dave calls him that night and asks him to go hiking the next day. Before he hangs up, he says, “See you in the morning.” After that, they’re practically inseparable and they never part or go to sleep without saying, “See you in the morning.”

Jake’s family is open-minded, loving, and accepting. His uncle is gay and has been with one partner for years. Dave’s amazed at his welcome. Not five minutes inside the door the first time, Jake’s dad has him on a ladder placing the angel atop the family Christmas tree, and in the morning there are gifts from the family as well as Jake.

The story is told in flashbacks as Jake goes through family photos after Dave’s funeral. I smiled, frowned, laughed and cried as I sat with Jake while he reminisced about their fifty-plus-year life together, and the wonderful love they shared with each other, Jake’s family, and eventually, their children. Whether you’re a fan of gay books or not, I highly recommend See You in the Morning. It’s inspirational.

Length:  338 Pages
Prices:
Print:  $18.27
Digital:  $5.99

Thanks for visiting. Julie, Donna, & Rochelle

Sunday, August 9, 2015

AMACAT by Charles Bowie



Blurb:

Second in the Donovan: Thief For Hire thriller series, Sean Donovan is embroiled in a triplet of trouble.

His sister’s newly ex-boyfriend, an obsessed art collector, dumped an ugly, but valuable fish mask in her lap. A mask being hunted by a lethal insurance agent.

Beth McLean, barely an acquaintance from London, is being framed. She reaches out to the only person she believes can help clear her name. Who at the Canadian embassy is behind this treachery?

Or is it all connected to his nemesis, Gaia? And did the multimillionaire art dealer order the murder of Donovan’s ex-girlfriend as the ultimate payback?

All this falls into Donovan’s lap, and he still cannot stop himself from a small side trip to find a stolen cask of the last great batch of Proven├žal pinot noir wine. Too much baggage? Read A Mask, A Cask and A Task: AMACAT.

Review by Rochelle:

I love to travel, and Sean Donovan travels a lot. I always cry on take-off when I fly from the sheer joy of taking to the air—and again on landing from the disappointment of being back on the ground. I am sooooo jealous of Sean! At least I get to fly vicariously through him, and travel the rivers of France aboard luxury cruise ships. Although, if I ever get to travel that way, I could do without the danger and intrigue he is fleeing. But as fiction it’s darned fun to read.

And, oh yeah—even though we know who did it, Mr. Bowie keeps us guessing just who hired the thugs and the reason why. I thought I knew, but I was wrong. That rarely happens! Kudos, Mr. Bowie!

Length: 308 Pages
Digital Price: $5.95
Buy Link:

You’ll notice we always include the publisher’s buy link. That’s because authors usually receive about 40-50% of the book price from the publisher. Editors and cover artists usually receive about 5-10%. 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 royalties from what is left. So, if a book costs $5.99 at E-BookPublisher.com and you buy from there, the author will receive about $2.40. If you buy the book at Amazon, the author will receive about $0.83.

Downloading the file from your computer to your e-reader is as easy as transferring any file from a USB flash drive to your computer. You can download your books onto your computer using “Save As” to a “Books” folder you create and sort them into sub-folders by genre, author, or however you wish before transferring them to your e-reader. That way, if there’s a glitch with your e-reader, the books are on your computer. Once you’ve saved the book to your computer plug the larger USB end of your chord into a USB port on your computer and simply move the file from the folder you created to your E-Reader/Documents/Books directory. Your author will be happy you did when he/she sees his/her royalty statement.

Thanks for visiting. Julie, Donna, & Rochelle