#Spotlight & #Excerpt ~ “The New Mrs. D” by Heather Hill

The New Mrs. Dclp button

 

The New Mrs DSummary:
Four days into their honeymoon in Greece, Bernice and David Dando have yet to consummate their marriage and after having accepted his almost non-existent desire for sex throughout the relationship, Bernice finally discovers the reason; he is addicted to porn. Learning that the love of her life chooses the cheap thrill of fantasy over her is devastating but then, ‘every man does it; it’s just looking, right?’ If she leaves the relationship because of virtual adultery, will she be labelled as pathological, overreacting, or even worse, frigid?

When funny, feisty, forty-something Bernice plans the adventure trip of a lifetime, she doesn’t expect to be spending it alone. But as it turns out, unintentionally contributing to a Greek fish explosion, nude karaoke and hilarious misadventures with volcanoes are exactly what she needs to stop fretting about errant husbands and really start living. But when Mr D tries to win her back, Bernice has a decision to make: is this a holiday from her humdrum life, or the start of a whole new adventure?

“The New Mrs D is a refreshing, sharp-witted and empowering romp that reflects real life, delves into unspoken about subjects and slaps the reader in the face with honesty.” Fleur Ferris, author

It is a story about one woman’s midlife awakening… on her honeymoon alone.

Click Here for My Review

Excerpt:

Would a stolen pencil really warrant such an elaborate daylight operation? Of course not, stupid woman. Maybe I was being mugged. Was it the stash of Euros in my purse I’d flashed while paying for the moped? Oh no, wait – they surely weren’t after my faux diamond emblazoned Primark flip-flops?

In a panic, I kicked one off into the path of an elderly couple as they strolled out from a hotel car park. The shoe shot straight into the old man’s portly, bare stomach with a sickening slap.

‘They have the diamonds!’ I called, mercilessly pointing them out to the gangsters before whizzing onwards to make my getaway.

But it was all for nothing; the roar of bikes continued behind me. I slowed to turn a corner into another side street and heard a shout.

‘Stop! Mrs Dando! You stop NOW!’

What on earth could they want? I reached down with one hand, trying to take the other flip-flop off to throw back as a ransom, but dropping it instead. As I cursed myself and looked up, an ancient Greek woman on a scooter was zipping round a bend straight at me, only swerving at the last second to avoid a collision.

‘What the…’

‘WAAAAHHHH!!!’ We screamed the last part in unison; ‘Waaaahhhh’, it transpired, being the international synonym for ‘OH SHIIIIIT!’ In an instant, her front wheel bounced off the kerb, sending both the old lady, and the basket of lemons balanced on her handlebars, flying, Frank Spencer style through the air towards a couple of teenage boys. Christ, I’m in a Carry On film.

‘Save the lemons!’ I called back, rattling onwards with no time to look behind again or wonder why my first manic thoughts were for Frank Spencer and the fruit – not the little old lady. Speeding away from the increasing chaos behind, I rounded a honking car pulling out from a driveway and yelled at its startled occupants, ‘CALL THE POLICE!’

Despite the throttle being fully open it seemed the tiny moped engine had no more to give and the roar from the biker gang got closer. Turning round once more, I could see the two bikes were still in hot pursuit, and for the first time I noticed the boy had a very fat man riding pillion. So there were four of them! And the fourth had mad lady-killer written all over him. Heart pounding with fear, I grabbed the nearest thing to a weapon from the moped basket and began hurling ammunition overhead at the assailants. However, taking my eyes off the road to lob miniature chocolate croissants was a last, fatal mistake.

Crunch!

The moped bumped straight up a kerb, sending my stomach boinging up to my lungs and my knicker tops rolling back down below my belly again, as the bike came to a near halt. This was it, the end. I waited for my life to flash in front of me… but a massive, spiny bush got there first. Without testing the moped’s brakes and fuelled by an extraordinary burst of adrenaline, I dived off, sending it ploughing, un-helmed, into the bush. This was where, in a moment of TV cop-esque brilliance, I rolled over-and-over onto a grass bank before springing back to my feet.

‘Whoa!’ For a split second, Mrs David Dando was Lara Croft; crime-fighting, tomb raiding stunt rider. That was until My Big Fat Greek Assassin got off his bike and made towards me and I remembered who I actually was. Bawling Binnie – with her knickers rolling down again.

‘Don’t kill me! Don’t kill me! I’m unarmed!’ I yelled, trying – and failing – to get my helmet off before throwing up my hands in surrender to the waiting gang.

‘Other side, Mrs Dando! Other side!’ yelled Zorba the Crook, taking a handkerchief from his pocket to wipe bits of chocolate and pastry from his fat sweaty face. Spying his accomplices coming up behind, I turned around and flung myself face down in the dirt with my hands behind my still helmeted head.

‘Okay, okay,’ I whimpered, ‘just, please don’t hurt me.’

There are moments that should flash through your mind when you think death is imminent; the faces of loved ones, lifelong friends, long-forgotten happy moments, childhood memories. This was my crucial moment – and I was going to die wondering if Greece had body bags big enough for me in this colossal monstrosity of a biking helmet.

The Fat Assassin flopped down beside me and prodded my shoulder. ‘Oh God,’ I thought. ‘He’s really mad! Goodbye cruel world!’

Dear Facebook, today I was so hot. Oops, bloody mobile phone typos! I was s-h-o-t. 

‘Mrs Dando…’

As I lay there with my eyes screwed shut waiting to feel a gun in my ribs, (please God let it be a gun in his pocket) hearing him huffing like a muddy, wet contestant on Total Wipeout, his voice took on a calmer, more sinister tone.

‘I not kill you. You kill yourself.’

I froze. Oh my God, he was going to make me shoot me.

I heard him take another deep breath and cough. ‘Mrs Dando,’ he said finally. ‘You drive with the moped on the other side!’

‘I didn’t mean… I wasn’t… oh!’ Ah. Right… I rolled back over to face him, but again, met with nothing but blackness. Bloody helmet! So, I wasn’t going to be bumped off for stealing the island’s only pencil. Or for assault with a supersized bag of mini croissants.

Twisting the monstrous headgear off and easing myself upright, I was met by four nonplussed faces caked in, well… cake.

‘Oh,’ I said, smoothing my hair in an attempt to recuperate some composure. ‘Well, er… why didn’t you just say so?’

heather hillAuthor Bio
Heather Hill is a Scotland based comedy writer, author and mum of five (not the band). She is one of a rare kind; the rare kind being one of only 0.5% of women who are colourblind. She has been known to leave the house with blue eyebrows on at least one occasion. Her debut novel, ‘The New Mrs D’ is being pitched for film by a British TV comedy producer and Snipper Films.

Website: www.hell4heather.com
Twitter & Instagram name: @hell4heather
Links to buy The New Mrs D:
Amazon UK 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00P4D57KQ
Amazon US http://www.amazon.com/The-New-Mrs-Heather-Hill-ebook/dp/B00P4D57KQ
Paperback: 
https://www.bookdepository.com/New-Mrs-D-Heather-Hill/9781634157735

Also available to order at all UK Waterstones, Foyles Bookstores & WH Smiths branches

CLICK HERE FOR GIVEAWAY

 

 

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#AuthorSpotlight ~ Barbara Hinske

Barbara HinskeThis week we will be meeting Barbara Hinske! Her Interview and Giveaway will be posted on Friday! I will introduce you to all of her books, as well as my review of “Coming to Rosemont”!!!

Be sure to check back every day for new and exciting information!

Author Bio:

Barbara Hinske is a BookBub Bestselling Author. She is an attorney by day; novelist by night. Barb inherited the writing gene from her father who wrote mysteries when he retired and told her a story every night of her childhood. She and her husband share their own Rosemont with two adorable and spoiled dogs. The old house keeps her husband busy with repair projects and her happily decorating, entertaining, cooking, and gardening. Together they have four grown children.

#BookReview: “Plan Bea” by Hilary Grossman

Plan BeaSummary:

Could falling in love allow a cold, stubborn, and selfish woman to open her heart back up to her family?

Beatrice Buchanan has spent more years than she can remember distancing herself from everyone close to her. She has no relationship with her grandchildren and the only time she speaks to her daughter is during her weekly fifteen-minute commute to the nail salon. When Bea meets Walter on a cruise she realizes there may be more to life than designer clothes and impressing the ladies at her country club.

We live our entire lives thinking we know those closest to us. But do we ever really?

On the outside, Annabel O’Conner has it all – the perfect husband, two adorable children, and an amazing job. The only thing missing is her mother’s love. When Bea begs her daughter to help plan her wedding, Annabel reluctantly agrees. Little does she know the impact of her decision or the surprise that is in store for her!

This emotional and honest women’s contemporary fiction novel will tug at your heartstrings and the twist ending will shock you.

Review:

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

AWESOME!! AWESOME! AWESOME! I read this in one sitting, and the ending was perfection!

Hilary Grossman wrote a story that will touch your heart. She hit the nail on the head regarding Mother and Daughter relationships that need healing.

I was so very absorbed in this story, that I stayed up late just to find out what was going to happen to this family. Annabel and Bea had a turbulent relationship, rocked by family secrets that will either make or break them. Annabel would hold on to her mother in the hopes of her loving her, even after many years of feeling second rate. Her husband, Cole tells her to give up…. but, she won’t.

The question is…will the wait pay off, or is Cole right?

I loved that this story may have been shorter in pages, but still chuck full of a wonderful story!!

(I will be getting this book for some of my friends)

5 Stars

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PS…..I will be reading her other book “Dangled Carat”, ASAP!! I am thinking it will be as awesome as this book..

I want to be her fan before she has written all of her books! Hilary Grossman is an author to follow!!

#BookReview & #Excerpt ~ “What the Heart Remembers” by Bette Lee Crosby

What the heart remembersSummary:

TWO LOVERS. ONE CHANCE AT HAPPINESS….When Max Martinelli returns to Paris in search of her lost love, what she finds will change her life forever.
For three years the memory of Julien Marceau has haunted Max. Her life is stuck on hold simply because she can’t stop wondering what would have happened if she had gone back. Was Julien simply part of the magic of Paris? Or was he meant to be her destiny?
After a New Year’s Eve party that ends in disaster, Max decides to find out once and for all. She is going to return to Paris and search for Julien. But will her search bring forever after happiness or a truth so ugly it will change her life forever?
What the Heart Remembers is Book 3 in the Award-Winning Memory House Series

Excerpt:

Before I left Wyattsville Annie told me that after her mother died she kept going back to the places they’d gone together. The same restaurant, the same beauty parlor. She even went crosstown to the same library. She claims doing that was a big mistake. It was never the same, according to Annie, and going back spoiled her good memories. She said when you’re happy and having a good time you can’t see the imperfections of a place, but if you go back and look at it with a critical eye trying to figure out what it was that you enjoyed so much you’ll discover it’s nothing like you remembered. I’m beginning to wonder if maybe she isn’t right.

Review:

This is the Book 3 in the “Memory House Series”, and once again, I was enamored.

Bette Lee Crosby’s writing is just so beautiful.  Especially when writing about Paris in this story. I felt like I was given a guided tour of the city!! When she writes about her character’s thoughts, you feel as though you are in their head. She paints a very vivid picture, and it is truly magical.

Annie and Ophelia are still a huge part of this story, but the main character in this book is Maxine (Max) Martinelli. She has been Annie’s best friend for about one year now. Their connection is powerful.

It was a year of love; the best love Max has ever known. She will not be able to move on in her life until she finds Julien, and gets answers. She met him in Paris, where she spent her junior year of college, studying abroad.

It has been three years since she has seen him, but he is ingrained in her heart and mind so deeply, that her life is limited. As if he is going to show up at her doorstep one day.

As Bette wrote in this book, “What the heart remembers isn’t always a true picture of what was”!! I could not wait to find out what the true picture was…

A return trip to Paris is definitely in order! She is determined to find out why Julien had never joined her to the United States as he had promised her. She believes with all of her heart that whatever happened, it was not because he simply chose not to join her.

Will she find Julien? Will their love be restored? Or, will she regret this trip forever? Going against everyone’s advice, she heads for Paris.

If you have a lost love…. you do not want to miss this book. If you want to travel from your couch, you do not want to miss this book.

If you love a great story, I highly recommend “What the Heart Remembers” by Bette Lee Crosby.

You do not want to miss this book.

5 Stars.

#BookReview ~ “A Matter of Time” by Margaret Locke (my quote is on the back of this book!)

A Matter of TimeSummary:

Love comes when least expected.

Nobody would blame widowed doctoral student Eliza James for giving up on Happily Ever After; at twenty-nine, she’s suffered more loss than most people do in a lifetime. But Eliza’s convinced her own hero is still out there, waiting for her, just like in the beloved romance novels she devours. Every girl deserves a Darcy, right?

Only Eliza doesn’t dream of a modern-day affair: she wants the whole Regency experience. When a magical manuscript thrusts her back two hundred years into the arms and life of one Deveric Mattersley, Duke of Claremont, however, Eliza soon realizes some fantasies aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, especially when her duke proves himself less than a Prince Charming.

Deveric Mattersley has no interest in women, much less marriage. Determined to atone for his sins after convincing himself he’s at fault for the death of his first wife, he decrees himself content to focus on running his family’s estates, and on raising his son–until the mysterious Mrs. James appears. Who is she? What does she want? And why does she make Dev’s blood run hot in a way no woman ever has?

Can a man with a past and a woman from the future forge a love for all time?


“I fell in love with this book, just as I did with the Jane Austen classics. There’s a new Mr. Darcy in town.” – Annie, ARC reader, reviewer for The Write Review and ChickLitPlus.com.

A Matter of Time back coverReview:

I fell in deep love with the first book in this series; called “A Man of Character”, so the anticipation of this release was exciting to say the least. Margaret Locke quickly went on to my list of favorite authors to follow!!!

This book can be a stand-alone read, but I have to say that you should not miss out on “A Man of Character” because it is such a wonderful story. Her new book, does not disappoint, either.

This is not your typical love story. Margaret Locke is a true gift to romance lovers everywhere. This is a magical romp not to be missed.

In her book, “A Matter of Time”, she takes us to England in the year 1812, right in the middle of what we call the Regency Period. In the present day, 2011, Eliza has always dreamed of meeting her “Duke” and living a life like a character in one of Jane Austen’s books. So, when a magical manuscript shows up in the hands of her best friend, Cat…what more could Eliza wish for.

Eliza is thrust back two hundred years, and she enters the lives of the Mattersley family like a tornado!! Is Deveric Mattersley, her Mr. Darcy? Either way, there is certainly a new Mr. Darcy in town. He is the Duke of Claremont, after all…her dream man! Right? Or, maybe this is not really her dream?

Watching her integrate in to this new lifestyle was very entertaining. Margaret Locke really did her research on this time period, because I really felt like I was back there. Seeing her struggles were real…like not using the proper words or etiquette.

Once again, Margaret Locke took me on a journey that I enjoyed thoroughly. Her characters are awesome, and you will find yourself invested in them. You will be disappointed when the book ends, wondering when her next one will be released.

I am TEAM ELIZA!!

5 Stars.

Another #Excerpt ~ Courtney Psak’s book, “Thirty Days to Thirty”

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(I had to share two excerpts from this book, as they are very intriguing)

Summary:

What if you were on the cusp of marrying the guy of your dreams and reaching that career goal you set for yourself, only for all of it to be taken away in one fell swoop? 

What if this all happened a month before you turned 30?

This is the story of Jill Stevens, who after moving back home, finds a list she made in high school of thirty things she wanted to accomplish before her thirtieth birthday.

With a month left and hardly anything crossed off her list, she teams up with old friends to accomplish as much as she can before the big 3-0. Along the way, she discovers her true self and realizes it’s not about the material successes in life but the journey. 

Thirty days to ThirtyExcerpt:

So what is the Boys and Girls Club?” I ask.
“It’s kind of like a summer camp. We do everything from educational programs to athletics. A lot of these kids’ parents work. It’s a great place for them to go in the summer and be active. If they didn’t have it, a lot of them would be with a babysitter who’d sit them in front of a TV all day.”
“It sounds great,” I say honestly. “I wish I’d had something like that. Would’ve been better than staying with that crazy old bat Mrs. Mildred next door, who made me watch marathons of the Golden Girls.”
As soon as we get out of the car, the kids run up to Chris.
“Mr. Matthews,” they all yell.
“Hey.” He smiles.
“I hit my first home run,” one of the kids tells him.
“Just now?” he asks him enthusiastically.
“Yup.” He smiles.
“All right! Nice job, man,” he says, tipping the brim of his hat. “See what happens when you keep your head down like I told you?”
“Will you come play with us?” one of the other kids asks. He’s dressed in full-on baseball gear with the pants and a shirt from, I’m assuming, last year, and punching his fist into his glove, eager to get back out there and play.
“I will, but we gotta bring all this food over to that picnic table first. If you all help, the quicker I can join you,” he says.
All of them cheer. “Everyone, this is Jill. She cooked all of this awesome food for you,” he says.
“Is she your girrrrl-friennd?” one boy says in a mocking tone.
“She’s just a friend,” he says, looking slightly embarrassed.
“Mr. Matthews and Jill sitting in a tree k-i-s-s-i-n-g,” they all start to chant.|
“All right, enough, enough,” he breaks in, handing a filled piece of Tupperware to each kid.
“You certainly have a way with kids,” I say, smiling, as we walk towards the picnic table and the rest of the volunteers.
“Well, I am one myself,” he jokes.
“That’s true.” I smile.
“Jill, do you want to play with us, too?” a little girl with blonde braided pigtails asks when she approaches me.
“I’d love to, but I don’t have a glove,” I say, thinking about the sundress and heels I’m wearing.
“I’ve got one for you.” She smiles and runs over to a plastic Rubbermaid box and pulls one out.
“Great,” I say, trying to sound enthusiastic.
“You don’t have to you if you don’t want to,” Chris tells me.
I’m not very familiar with baseball, but I also don’t want to be a stick in the mud.
“Oh, it’s on,” I say.
“Yeah,” the little girl cries. “You can be on our team. It’s boys versus girls.”
“All right, let’s do this,” I say and high-five her. When she runs away I stand up and give Chris a terrified look.
“You’ll be fine,” he smiles.
“I wish I’d known—I wouldn’t have worn a dress,” I say, nudging him.
“Well, I didn’t know we were going to play baseball,” he tells me. “You think you can manage?”
“I’ll be fine,” I tell him. “So they didn’t play baseball last year?”
“Nope, last year we played soccer.”
I can’t help but roll my eyes. Boys just don’t get it sometimes.
“Okay,” I say to the girls as we huddle. It’s me, one other volunteer who looks likes she’s in her late teens, and a bunch of twelve-years-olds. “Does anyone have any advice for me?” I ask. I’m definitely at a disadvantage in a dress. Everyone else is in gym clothes.
“I think you should just tell Chris you like him,” one girl says.
“I mean about how to play the game,” I say, trying not to blush. Children have no filters; they say exactly what’s on their minds. So how obvious must I be? I can’t help but think.
“Oh. Well, just stand in the outfield, and if the ball comes to you, chase it, and we’ll tell you where to throw it,” one of the girls tells me.
“Okay, sounds good,” I say. We clap our hands together and run out to the center of the outfield. Well, everyone else runs. I hobble and soon realize it’s probably just best to take my shoes off. I toss them over to the foul line. The glove is too small for my hand and I desperately try to shove my fingers into it. There goes that manicure, I think.
Sure enough, the first hit goes flying into the air right towards me. I watch it as it’s coming, coming, then I lose it in the sun and suddenly I feel a hard thud. Before I know it, my head is slamming into the ground.
“Ow,” the crowd says collectively. I force myself to get up, and I quickly throw the ball—not very well—to the second baseman.
Once the ball is out of my hands, I feel the top of my head throb. I put my hand over it and can already feel the bump starting to swell. I don’t know what’s bruised more, my head or my ego
“Are you okay?” Chris runs towards me once the play’s done.
“I’m fine,” I tell him, waving him back.
“Guys, easier on her, okay?” he tells them.
“I can take it,” I yell back with my hands on my hips.
I try not to stress over the grass stain I now have on my dress. Instead, I hit my glove and my fist together—the universal sign for “let’s go.”
Fortunately nothing else comes my way for the rest of the inning, and we’re called in to bat.
“Are you sure you’re okay?” one of the women asks. “I’m a nurse and you look like you got nailed pretty bad.”
“I’m sure I’m fine,” I tell her, “but thanks.”
“Thought I’d give you some tips on how to hit.” Chris turns up behind me.
“Don’t you have to be out there warming up?” I ask him.
“I’ll be fine,” he says. “I don’t want you to embarrass yourself again,” he adds teasingly.
I give him a mean look.
“Okay,” he says. “First, you’re going to hold the bat like this.” He stacks his fists on top of each other on the lower part of the bat. Then he juts his elbows out, indicating to me how far apart they are. I note he has the bat about an inch and a half above his shoulders. I mimic his position with the second bat he hands me.
“Good,” he says. “Now, you’ll swing like this. Lead with your wrists and just follow through …”
Once again, I mimic him, but I guess he isn’t far enough away from me.
I hear a grunt as he drops his bat and grabs for his shoulder, falling to his knees.
“Oh, I’m sorry,” I say, putting my hand over my mouth and dropping the bat. “Are you okay?”
I see his eyes are a little glassy, but he takes a deep breath.
“Nice, I think you’ll be fine,” he says, trying to shake it off. Then he gets up, pats me on the shoulder, and runs onto the field.
After a few batters have been up, I get called. I pull my hair back and shove a dirty helmet over my head.
The girls cheer for me as the boys yell at Chris to strike me out.
Chris points towards his eyes to indicate he’s watching me.
“Really intimidating,” I yell to him. I kick my feet on the dirt like a bull ready to charge.
I
n slow motion, the ball heads my way. I swing as hard as I can and miss it completely.
“Keep your head down and watch the ball,” he says.
“If one more person tells me to keep my head down …” That was all I heard golfing with my dad.
Another pitch comes my way, and this time I’m too ahead of the ball.
“I’m not going to say it,” he tells me.
“All right already,” I say in frustration.
The third pitch comes down the line, and this time I’m determined. I watch the ball leave Chris’s hand and it makes its way towards me. At the last second I shut my eyes and hear a ping. I’ve made contact with the ball. I immediately drop the bat and start to run. It isn’t until I make it to first, though, that I realize I’ve hit the ball directly into Chris’s stomach and he’s keeled over on the pitcher’s mound. Everyone’s running towards him.
“Oh my gosh, are you okay?” I say to him.
“Fine.” I can barely hear him as the wind was obviously completely knocked out of him.
“I’m sorry,” I say.
“Nice hit.” He coughs. I can’t help but laugh at this, which leaves me to snort yet again.
He looks up and smiles at me.

courtney psakAuthor Bio:

Courtney Psak is a New Jersey native who grew up with a passion for reading and writing.
After traveling the world, she settled into New York City where she earned her Masters in Publishing.
She is a member of the National Writers Association and the Women’s Fiction Writers Association.
She currently resides in Hoboken with her husband. 
She spends her weekends seeking adventure through hiking, skiing and traveling.

website:
http://www.courtneypsak.com/

goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14358396.Courtney_Psak

Author Central/ Amazon
https://authorcentral.amazon.com/gp/profile

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/CourtneyPsak

Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/courtneypsak/

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

Blog:
https://courtneypsakauthor.wordpress.com/ 

Purchase Links below: 

Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Thirty-Days-Courtney-Psak/dp/0996815910/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1447422443&sr=8-1&keywords=courtney+psak

Barnes and Noble:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/thirty-days-to-thirty-courtney-psak/1122917276?ean=2940152449723

Smashwords:
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/589711

CLICK HERE TO ENTER GIVEAWAY

 

#Giveaway & #Excerpt ~ Courtney Psak’s book, “Thirty Days to Thirty”

clp buttonSummary:

What if you were on the cusp of marrying the guy of your dreams and reaching that career goal you set for yourself, only for all of it to be taken away in one fell swoop? 

What if this all happened a month before you turned 30?

This is the story of Jill Stevens, who after moving back home, finds a list she made in high school of thirty things she wanted to accomplish before her thirtieth birthday.

With a month left and hardly anything crossed off her list, she teams up with old friends to accomplish as much as she can before the big 3-0. Along the way, she discovers her true self and realizes it’s not about the material successes in life but the journey. 

 Thirty days to ThirtyExcerpt:

“So do you want to talk about it?” my mom finally asks me, taking a seat next to me with a cup of tea.
“I’m not really ready to recap,” I tell her with a mouth full of peanut butter. “I’m still trying to process everything.”
My mother basically got the hysterical gist of it when I called her at midnight, crying, and all she could make out was “pig head … boyfriend … cheated on me … fired … homeless.” She sat on the phone with me while I tried to pull myself together, and finally ordered me to pack up and get on the next train home.
“I understand,” she says, sounding disappointed. “We can talk about what you want to do for your birthday coming up.”
I look up mid-bite to stare at her.
“It’s your thirtieth, it’s a big deal,” she presses.
Yes, I know it’s a big deal. It’s a big deal because that’s when you’re supposed to have your life together. “Mom, that’s really the last thing I want to think about right now.
“Fine,” she says getting frustrated. After a few minutes of silence, she leans forward as if to say something and then retreats.
“What’s wrong?” I ask her, knowing I won’t be able to avoid hearing what she wants to say.
“Well, I mean, aside from wanting to know what happened, I want to know what your plan is to get past this? I don’t want you just sulking around the house for the next few weeks.”
“Come on, Mom it’s been twelve hours since my life fell apart. I can’t get a full day to mourn here?”
“I didn’t mean it like that,” she defends herself, shaking her head as if I’ve blown things all out of proportion. “I was just reading this pamphlet about how to handle adult children living at home that I downloaded off the Internet.” She stands up and pulls it out of a drawer underneath the phone. Then she hands it to me. I scan it over. “When the Empty Nest Becomes Full Again,” I read. “I don’t plan on being here that long,” I say, handing it back to her. “Think of it as a two-week vacation.”
She doesn’t say anything. She simply shrugs and puts the pamphlet back in the drawer.
Finally, I give in and proceed to tell her what happened. My father, who’s come in from the garage to get his keys out of the drawer, listens in and eventually joins us at the table.
“Those bastards,” he contributes.
“Tell me about it,” I say, looking down at my milk and swirling the liquid inside the glass.
“Can you sue them?” my mom suggests.
“For what, exactly? Even if I could, it’s a law firm. You ever try to sue a bunch of lawyers?”
They’re both silent for a moment and give each other nervous looks. It’s obvious they’re trying to be supportive but they don’t really know what to say.
“It’s fine.” I try to convince them and myself. “I’m going to call a headhunter first thing Monday morning and I’m going to bounce back from this in no time. I’ll start looking at apartment listings today. Everything will be fine.” I stand up from my chair.
“I think you should at least stay here until you find another job,” my mother says. “There’s no sense in you getting an apartment somewhere and finding out your job is a far commute.”
Stay here? I do a double take. I can’t imagine doing that. “Mom, it’s New York. No matter where I get an apartment, as long as it’s in Manhattan, the commute will be doable.” I stand up and dump the remainder of my milk in the sink and load my glass and plate into the dishwasher.
“Well, what if you don’t get a job in New York?” she says, turning around in her chair to face me.
“Why wouldn’t I get a job in New York?” I ask, confused, as I close the dishwasher and stare out the window. I feel my body turn to ice at the thought.
“Well, Jill,” my dad says, “the job market is pretty bad, and as great as your resume and your education are, there may not be a lot of opportunities out there.”
“All we’re saying is maybe you’ve outgrown the city, and maybe now it’s time to settle somewhere closer to home. Maybe you’ll meet someone and settle down,” my mom concludes.
“Really?” I say, shaking my head. “You’re really giving me the you-aren’t-getting-any-younger speech when I’m already at the lowest point in my life?” I start to storm towards the hallway. I really don’t need to be hearing this right now.
“Sweetie, it’s not that I’m trying to kick you while you’re down, I’m just saying maybe it’s time to start reassessing your life.” My mom stands up to follow me.
“Thanks for the talk,” I say, walking past her and back up to my room. I suddenly feel like I’m a teenager again as I slam the door to my room.
“Marilynn, she just got home. Go easy on her,” I hear my dad defend me.
“Martin, I’m just following the pamphlet,” she insists.
“Well stop reading,” he says. “This is our daughter, not a case study.”
Living at home with my parents in my thirties? Maybe I really am a case study. I barely made it out alive the first time, how the hell am I supposed to do it all over again?

Blog Tour

November 17 – Chick Lit Plus – Review

November 18 – Book Groupies – Review

November 19 – Chick Lit Goddess – Q&A& Excerpt

November 19 – Change the Word – Q&A

November 24 – Love Chick Lit – Review & Excerpt

November 25 – Queen of All She Reads – Excerpt

November 27 – Authors and Readers Book Corner – Excerpt

November 27 – Granny Loves to Read – Review & Excerpt

December 1 – Annabel and Alice – Review

December 2 – Wendi Nunnery – Review

December 2 – A British Bookworm – Excerpt

December 3- The Write Review – Excerpt

December 4 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – Review, Q&A & Excerpt

December 4 – The Phantom Paragrapher – Review

December 7 – Reecas Pieces – Review & Excerpt

courtney psakAuthor Bio:

Courtney Psak is a New Jersey native who grew up with a passion for reading and writing.
After traveling the world, she settled into New York City where she earned her Masters in Publishing.
She is a member of the National Writers Association and the Women’s Fiction Writers Association.
She currently resides in Hoboken with her husband. 
She spends her weekends seeking adventure through hiking, skiing and traveling.

website:
http://www.courtneypsak.com/

goodreads:
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Amazon
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#BookReview: The Lei Crime Series: Esther’s Gift (Kindle Worlds Novella) by Bette Lee Crosby

Esthers GiftsSummary:

In the days before hurricane Iniki hit the island of Kauai the forecasters predicted it would stay south of Hilo. But Esther Ka’awai, a psychic and gifted wise woman of the ancient culture has seen the future. She knows of the devastation that will come to the island. She has warned those she loves; now all she can do is pray.

As she struggles to accept this gift of knowing, Esther discovers that even the most wonderful gift can sometimes break your heart.

A story of love, faith and a belief in the future.

Review:

Once again, Bette Lee Crosby delivers a story that will grab you on the first page.

Esther has the gift of knowing things before they happen, like the hurricane coming to the island she lived on in Hawaii.

She meets a man named John who came to Hawaii after purchasing a local Resort. He meets Esther, and their lives are changed forever.

This book will prove that even though things fall apart…they can be rebuilt. Both your home and heart can come alive again where you thought it wouldn’t.

Bette Lee Crosby is by far one of the most talented writers I know. I admire her. For 2016, I plan to read the rest of her books!

Her words are always a “lyrical dance”.

5 Stars

#BookReview ~ “The Beauty of What Remains” by Susan Johnson Hadler

The Beauty of What RemainsSummary:

Where are they now, the lost, the forgotten? With the love in her mother’s silence as her guide, Susan Johnson Hadler began a quest to find out who the missing people in her family were and what happened to them. The search led her to Germany, where her father was killed just before the end of WWII; then to a Buddhist monastery in France, where she learned new ways to relate to life and death; and ultimately to a state mental hospital in Ohio, where the family abandoned her mother’s older sister years earlier. She believed that her aunt had died―but Hadler, to her great surprise, found her still alive at age ninety-four. And the story didn’t end there. Captivating and often heartwrenching, The Beauty of What Remains is a story of liberating a family from secrets, ghosts, and untold pain; of reuniting four generations shattered by shame and fear; and of finding the ineffable beauty in what remains.

Review:

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

If you don’t have an ancestry.com account, you will want to open one. I know I did.

“The Beauty of What Remains” is a wonderfully written story of Susan Johnson Hadler finding her father’s history and family. I was taken in right away as she learns more about her father’s death during WWII. I was in awe that she and her husband were able to go walk in the places he was when he was alive. This book was a true walking history of her father’s life. And, her father’s death.

This is a story that will show you that you can love someone you never met, you can want to know more about them, and you can have a relationship with them even after their passing.

I know want to learn more about my mother’s father. The grandfather I never met. I wonder how this will go for me??

But, this book, is a must read for anyone with a family history that they want to learn more about. If you don’t…You will once you start reading this book. I guarantee this story will inspire you to learn more about your family tree.

This is a fabulous tale.

5 Stars.

 

#BookReview ~ “The King’s Sisters” by Sarah Kennedy

The Kings SistersSummary:

It is now 1542 and another queen, Catherine Howard, has been beheaded for adultery. Although young Prince Edward is thriving, and the line of Tudor succession seems secure, the king falls into a deep melancholy and questions the faith and loyalty of those around him. Catherine has found herself in a unique position as a married former nun. Now she is a wealthy widow. She has two children, a boy who has successfully joined the young prince’s household and a daughter who lives with her at Richmond Palace, home to Henry’s cast-off fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, now designated “The King’s Beloved Sister.” Catherine also enjoys the attentions of widower Benjamin Davies, and in the festive court atmosphere, she has furtively indulged her passion for him. But England has changed again. Anne of Cleves hopes for reinstatement as queen―until questions arise about the finances of the houses she keeps. Catherine, as one of the king’s “reformed sisters,” is singled out, just as she realizes that she is carrying a third child. The King’s Sisters explores the Tudor court under an aging Henry VIII. He now has a son and heir, but his two daughters remain players in the political intrigues. The Cross and the Crown series follows the very private Catherine as she is thrust into the scheming. She is skilled enough to serve a former queen . . . but this may be the very quality that endangers her future.

Review:

Again, another wonderful cover!

This is the third book in Sarah Kennedy’s “The Cross and The Crown Series”. It is now 1542, and Henry VIII’s young queen Catherine Howard has been beheaded for adultery. Catherine Haven Overton is now a widow with her two children living with Sister Ann of Cleve.

This book was not as exciting as book two in the series. This was really a book that described their lives in this time in English history in such detail…I got a bit involved, as Sarah Kennedy writes with the depictions of someone that was truly there, as in all three of the books in this series. The only thing is that there was not a lot going in the beginning of the book….but, it picked up in the second half.

I was really invested in her character, Catherine, and I kept reading to find out her fate.

This was disappointing compared to “City of Ladies”, but if I did not have that to compare this book to, I think I would have given it more stars.

3.5 Stars