#NewRelease & #BookReview: A Dog’s Chance by Casey Wilson

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Summary:

Sometimes the dogs we rescue… also rescue us.

A heart-wrenching and beautiful story perfect for dog lovers everywhere. Fans of A Dog’s Purpose, The Art of Racing in the Rain and Marley and Me will be utterly entranced by this gorgeous page-turner.

Madison knows her fourteen-year-old daughter Abbie is struggling. She wishes she could give Abbie stability, the promise of a forever home in Millbury, but she is scared to stay in one town for too long, and every day Abbie seems more anxious. Until a chance encounter with a beautiful, boisterous golden retriever puppy called Duke changes everything…

Duke bounces into the community centre where Madison is working and when Abbie meets him she stops pacing the room. Duke is tugging his owner, seventy-five-year-old Arthur, along for the ride, and instantly Madison sees a way she and Arthur can help each other. She offers to train Duke so that Abbie gets to see him, and from that moment the four of them become a family.

Madison finally feels like she has a second chance at life and a reason to stay in town, but when her past catches up with her they are all at risk. Duke may have united this family, but will he be able to keep them together?

A reminder of the unbelievable bonds we form with the dogs in our lives. No matter how broken you are, the unconditional love of a dog can piece you back together.

Review:

What a truly heartwarming novel Casey Wilson has written!!!

“A Dog’s Chance” tells an emotional yet charming tale of Madison, Abbie, Arthur and Sonny and their relationship development.

Even Duke, the adorable pup tells some of story from his point of view! Which was really entertaining because a dog’s perspective is different from us humans.

It was hard to put the book down and the whimsical whirlwind of emotions it put my heart through.

I absolutely adored this novel!! This is a must read!!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#BlogTour, #BookReview & #Giveaway: Dignity and Grace by Alison Ragsdale

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Dignity & Grace by Alison Ragsdale

Date of Release: July 27, 2020

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Summary:

On her 21st birthday, gifted cellist Iona Muir receives a package from her estranged father containing a letter from her mother, Grace, a talented musician who tragically died ten years earlier. Reeling from what she reads, Iona soon discovers a mysterious, faded photograph of Grace, hidden inside her cello case.

Honoring her mother’s request, Iona visits Grace’s beloved music teacher, taking the first step on an emotional trail of discovery that has been left for her. As Grace’s story unfolds, Iona gains a deeper insight into the mother she lost and the heartbreaking truth about Grace’s last months. The more Iona learns, the more she is drawn back to her family home, on the remote Scottish island of Orkney, and to her father.

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Serena visited Scotland, too! She Loved Edinburgh Castle!

Reviewer: Serena Soape

Alison Ragsdale has touched my heart deeply with this poignant, heart-wrenching novel.

With recently losing my mom, “Dignity & Grace “ evoked many emotions from the very first page when Iona received the package from her Dad about the things that her mother wrote her so many years ago.

The characters were magnificently interesting as they were introduced during Iona’s emotional journey. I felt like I was sitting next to Iona as she traveled from place to place.

Alison Ragsdale has a brilliant writing style that never disappoints, through both the smiles as well as the tears.

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

I never visited Scotland! But, Alison Ragsdale truly had the Orkney Islands and the Ring of Brodgar to Edinburgh Come alive for me!

Reviewer: Annie McDonnell

Every once in a while I meet a book that stops my heart from beating so often I find myself actually catching my breath! Stirring my Soul a bit Loose!

“Dignity & Grace” by Alison Ragsdale moved me, both profoundly and evocatively! I was enamored with the British vernacular and sharp writing! All of the Characters I adored! I was taken away completely, from place to person to emotion! All levels! I was deep into this novel!

Losing her Mum’s very essence changed the vibration of Iona’s life. This is the story of Iona’s aching reach to regain it once again. Iona is coming full circle with a wondrous guide in Grace!

I was capturing the very heartbeat of this experience! Extremely palpable! From Orkney to Edinburgh! From first learning to play the cello to becoming a gifted cellist, Iona played her way into my heart!

I was drawn to the Cello because it was such a huge character! I felt it’s cries!! Such Aloneness….It’s unbearable aches!! It’s Pains…it’s relief!! It’s Release….It’s love for its owner! The Cello has a voice and a heart like a human, and the way Alison used this instrument and its music is breathtaking! It came alive!

Rhythmically, Alison’s story moved me gently between tears of anger and laughter and sadness. Like the cello playing it’s own life’s song!

Written with tender hearted story-telling and super smart accuracy for its serious subject matter, Alison Ragsdale scores a standing ovation from me!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

Side-bar I must include for myself outside of my review, Annie:

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You see, this story was personal for two reasons.

First, I was my (step)Mother’s caregiver for the last nine months of her life. She had decided both graciously and heroically that it was time to stop her treatments for Breast Cancer. I had already been a volunteer for years at Hospice, so I was well-equipped at end-of-life care with Dignity. I was determined that my Mom was going to have the very best End-of-Life experience! Each day was anew for us. It was beautiful. Poignant yet celebratory. She actually thanked me for creating an extremely special time for her. Fun! She called it! It has been my highest honor. I felt as though Grace was my Carmela. The letters evoked extreme emotions from me. Iona laying her head in Grace’s lap was truly my experience in life! #TissuesToTheMax

Alison truly understands the end of life experience.

Secondly, I have a neurological disorder, which I am now in the “tremor”, and “in-bed-all-the-time” phase. I understand choosing to remain in the heart of my home, as a Grace did. While it’s not ALS, it is in the same classification, and they are both on the Compassionate Allowance List for Social Security Disability. My end of life will be quite similar, and knowing this is difficult. Reading Alison’s book, I’m realizing my truth, I also have a lot going through my head. I believe if I had a daughter, I would have chosen to leave something like letters. “Dignity & Grace” has me realizing, my heart breaks that there is no one I’m leaving behind, so I need to find my persons! I’m thinking my nephews Xander & Adam will be my Legacy’s! I realized no one will be looking in the mirror and seeing my image, or missing much of anything about me because I haven’t accomplished much. So, I’m determined to write a story!

Alison hit the nail on the head with neurological changes in the body, and what it does to the people around you.

I also googled a lot of the places in the story! It was too overwhelming not too! I had to know if they were real.

Dignity & Grace” is a call to action for me! I’m on it!!

I’m going to leave part of me somewhere! Thank you, Alison Ragsdale for this reminder!

E96AFACA-0D25-46BE-B16F-E35BF7A47DC3Author Bio:

Originally from Edinburgh, Alison now lives in the US with her husband and dog. Educated in England, she holds an MBA from Leicester University.

Alison’s Amazon best sellers include: TUESDAY’S SOCKS, THE FATHER-DAUGHTER CLUB, FINDING HEATHER, A LIFE UNEXPECTED, THE ART OF REMEMBERING and THE LIAR AND OTHER STORIES.

THE FATHER-DAUGHTER CLUB was awarded the 2016, IPPY Bronze medal for Best regional fiction – Europe.

A LIFE UNEXPECTED, was awarded a 2018, IPPY Bronze medal in the Popular Fiction category.

THE ART OF REMEMBERING, debuted as an Amazon best seller, was honored as a finalist in the 2019 American Fiction Awards, was a finalist in the 2020 Eric Hoffer Award, was a BookBub Best Book Club Book pick and was nominated for the Goodreads Readers Choice Award.

THE LIAR AND OTHER STORIES, a collection of short stories was released on May 12th, 2020.

Ms. Ragsdale’s seventh novel, DIGNITY AND GRACE, will be released on July 27th, 2020.

For more information: www.alisonragsdale.com.

 Order Here:

Giveaway:

0B335780-BF64-4039-9A45-2B124EC4B838Tell us one thing you’d like to pass on, or leave to the next generation! Words of wisdom! Please post directly in the comments!

*One “Dignity & Grace” EBook winner will be announced when Annie returns from her temporary leave of absence.

Thank you!

The Write Review loved

“Dignity & Grace” by Alison Ragsdale!!!

and we really appreciate you stopping by our

Blog Tour Stop

FOR KATE ROCK BOOK TOURS.

 

#BookReview: The Safe Place by Anna Downes

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: July 14th, 2020

Summary:

Emily is a mess.

Emily Proudman just lost her acting agent, her job, and her apartment in one miserable day.

Emily is desperate.

Scott Denny, a successful and charismatic CEO, has a problem that neither his business acumen nor vast wealth can fix. Until he meets Emily.

Emily is perfect.

Scott offers Emily a summer job as a housekeeper on his remote, beautiful French estate. Enchanted by his lovely wife Nina, and his eccentric young daughter, Aurelia, Emily falls headlong into this oasis of wine-soaked days by the pool. But soon Emily realizes that Scott and Nina are hiding dangerous secrets, and if she doesn’t play along, the consequences could be deadly.

Superbly tense and oozing with atmosphere, Anna Downs’s debut is the perfect summer suspense, with the modern gothic feel of Ruth Ware and the morally complex family dynamics of Lisa Jewell.

Welcome to paradise…will you ever be able to leave?

Review:

This captivating debut novel by Anna Downes had me hooked the moment I picked it up.

The exhilarating unexpected things that were happening to Emily kept me on the edge of my seat, looking for more thrills.

“The Safe Place” was suspenseful and riveting. You will love the surprising ride you go one when you read this novel.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:


ANNA DOWNES was born and raised in Sheffield, UK, but now lives just north of Sydney, Australia with her husband and two children. She worked as an actress before turning her attention to writing. She was shortlisted for the Sydney Writers Room Short Story Prize (2017) and longlisted for the Margaret River Short Story Competition (2018).
The Safe Place was inspired by Anna’s experiences working as a live-in housekeeper on a remote French estate in 2009-10.

Order Here:

 

#NewRelease & #BookReview: Perfectly Imperfect Us (Nickel Bay Brothers #2) by Marika Ray

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: July 23, 2020

Summary:

How’s an ordinary girl to keep her cool when an international male model moves in next door?

Ava
With hard work and a complete belief in myself, combined with enough time to build momentum, I’d been able to create quite an online following with my beauty channel. If only my fans knew my makeup skills were born from a desperate need to cover up my secret. They would have never known any better had that stupid model not shown up next door and cat-walked his way into my life with his sculpted cheekbones and his sea glass eyes.

Ryder
Modeling was an interesting sport. Some of the most beautiful women were actually quite ugly under all the glamour. Coming home to Nickel Bay, I saw that sometimes the most ordinary women were truly the most beautiful. Ava is exactly that. Gorgeous. Even after we become friends and her secret is exposed publicly. Unfortunately, I’m to blame for that and I’m not sure she’ll ever forgive me. Why can’t she see past her perception of perfect?

Review:

“Perfectly Imperfect Us” is a truly charming romantic page turner.

Marika Ray always seems to keep me smiling and laughing throughout her novels and this was definitely one of those whimsical reads.

This is the second book in the “Nickel Bay Series” but can be read as stand alone or any order.

Ryder and Ava had a rocky start but they muddled through some of the intense situations they had. Their relationship definitely “perfectly imperfect”.

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:

Marika is a national best selling author writing steamy RomComs and sweet romances to make your heart explode and bring a smile to your face. She lives by the beach and posts a delightful number of hot lifeguard pictures.

Drop your email to be notified when each book releases: http://bit.ly/MarikaRayNews

Order Here:

#BookReview: Side Trip by Kerry Lonsdale

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: July 7, 2020

Summary:

An unforgettable and breathtaking novel of love, loss, and the unexpected routes that life takes from Amazon Charts and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Kerry Lonsdale.

With her deceased sister’s Route 66 bucket list in hand, California girl Joy Evers sets out on a cross-country road trip to meet up with her fiancé, checking off the bullets along the way.

Singer-songwriter Dylan Westfield has a serious case of wanderlust and a broken-down car. Stuck at a diner between LA and Flagstaff, he meets Joy, his complete opposite. She’s energetic. He’s moody. She’s by the book. He’s spontaneous. She believes in love at first sight. He thinks love is a complicated mess. But Joy has a brand-new convertible.

They strike a deal. She’ll drive him to New York. He’ll pay for gas. Only three rules apply: no exchanging of last names; what happens on the road, stays on the road; and if one of them wants to take a side trip, they both must agree.

A heart-stirring love story that spans a decade, Side Trip explores what-if. What if Joy and Dylan had exchanged last names? What if he’d told her she made him believe love was worth the risk? And what if they hadn’t made that second deal when they couldn’t say goodbye?

Review:

If I could give this book more than 5 stars, I absolutely would.

The poignant emotional “side trips” that Kerry Lonsdale took me on were heart-wrenching and I had tears in my eyes more than once while reading “Side Trip”.

I was instantly drawn in from the very first page and was on the edge of my seat!

Even heartbroken, but I had to continue …… I had to know how it all ended!!!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:

Kerry Lonsdale is the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Amazon Charts & #1 Kindle bestselling author of standalone and series-based emotionally charged domestic drama. A mash-up of domestic suspense, family drama, and contemporary romance, her novels straddle genres, and with over twenty-seven foreign language translations, they appeal to a wide, global audience. She lives in Northern California with her husband, teenage son and daughter, two cats, and an aging Golden Retriever convinced she’s still a puppy. When Kerry’s not writing, she can be found binge-watching anything with big CGI effects or high drama. She’s a sucker for stories about second chance romance, strong women overcoming odds, and families with dark secrets.

Website:

http://www.kerrylonsdale.com/

Order Here:

#BookReview: Crushing It by Lorelei Parker

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: June 30, 2020

Summary:

In life, as in gaming, there’s a way around every obstacle . . .

To pitch her new role-playing game at a European conference, developer Sierra Reid needs to overcome her terror of public speaking. What better practice than competing in a local bar’s diary slam, regaling an audience with old journal entries about her completely humiliating college crush on gorgeous Tristan Spencer?

Until the moderator says, “Next up, Tristan Spencer . . .”

Sierra is mortified, but Tristan is flattered. Caught up in memories of her decade-old obsession as they reconnect, Sierra tries to dismiss her growing qualms about him. But it’s not so easy to ignore her deepening friendship with Alfie, the cute, supportive bar owner. She and Alfie were college classmates too, and little by little, Sierra is starting to wonder if she’s been focusing her moves on the wrong target all along, misreading every player’s motivations.

Maybe the only winning strategy is to start playing by her heart . . .

Review:

“Crushing It” was an entertaining and funny rom-com /chick-lit with a little bit of sexy slipped in there.

This novel by Lorelei Parker was engaging and witty. I literally laughed loud a few times at some of the crazy adventures that Sierra had.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:

Bouncing all over the north throughout her childhood, Lorelei Parker grew up believing she was a Yankee. However, raised by transplanted Alabamans, she was destined to eventually wind up in the south. After graduating from Auburn University, she disappointed her entire family by defecting to SEC rival University of Florida and eventually settled as far north as central Virginia for grad school in French literature. After a major career shift and a brief detour through New York City, she now works as a computer programmer in Charlottesville. In her free time, when she isn’t playing video games, she writes contemporary romantic comedy.

 

 

 

#BookReview: The Nanny’s Secret (A Locke Industries Novel) by Kiersten Modglin

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: June 16, 2020

Summary:

Olivia Mendes has a secret.
With her new position as a nanny for the prestigious Locke family, she’s learning just how powerful secrets can be.

Orrick and Iris Locke, owners of the billion-dollar security company known as Locke Industries, are beautiful, mysterious, and seemingly perfect. When she enters their home, Olivia quickly discovers everything is not what it seems. The Lockes’ elusive empire is built on dark and terrifying truths and with Olivia now a part of their lives, she has no choice but to play her role.

As she finds herself digging deeper into the Lockes’ web of lies, Olivia begins to question everything she’s learned. When the family’s insidious nature is revealed, her loyalties will be put to the ultimate test.

In this installment of the standalone LOCKE INDUSTRIES SERIES, The Nanny’s Secret may be the one to destroy everything…

 

Review:

Holy thriller !!!!! I was truly shocked at the spine-tingling ending of this fantastic novel!!!

Kiersten Modglin is the queen of twists and “The Nanny’s Secret “ is no exception.

You are instantly trapped in the tangled web of secrets from the beginning of this page-turner until the riveting ending!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:


Kiersten Modglin is an award-winning author of bestselling psychological suspense novels. Kiersten lives in the rural Midwest with her husband, daughter, and their two Boston Terriers: Cedric and Georgie. She is best known for her unpredictable suspense and her readers have dubbed her ‘The Queen of Twists.’ A Netflix addict, Shonda Rhimes super-fan, psychology fanatic, and indoor enthusiast, Kiersten enjoys rainy days spent with her nose in a book.

 

#BookReview & #NewRelease: A Summer of Surprises by Judith Keim

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Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: June 23, 2020

Summary:

Jill Conroy is tricked by her sister into becoming the housekeeper and cook for the summer at Seashell Cottage where Greg Campbell and his nephew, Brody, have been hired to do maintenance projects on the house. Annoyed at first, Jill soon realizes how wonderful it is to be away from her home in New York and the memories of her deceased, emotionally abusive husband. Soon the magic of the beach heals Jill enough for her to decide to move to Florida permanently to make a new life for herself. Her part-time work at a summer camp and the promise of a new job as a third-grade teacher in the fall make it seem as if her future is set. But a visit from her sister, followed by her mother, reveals secrets that surprise them all. Jill learns to accept the idea of love not only from Brody but from his daughter, Kacy, as the summer brings even more surprises.

 

Review:

“A Summer of Surprises” is a poignant novel in the “Seashell Cottage Series” that tells us all about Jill starting her life over and starting fresh on many levels.

Judith Keim has given us a charming, whimsical & emotional romance. I found myself teary-eyed a few different times while reading.

My heart broke for Jill during some of these difficult decisions that she had to make.

This was my first book in the Series and can be read as standalone.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Author Bio:

Judith Keim enjoyed her childhood and young-adult years in Elmira, New York, and now makes her home in Boise, Idaho, with her husband and their two dachshunds, Winston and Wally, and other members of her family.

While growing up, she was drawn to the idea of writing stories from a young age. Books were always present, being read, ready to go back to the library, or about to be discovered. All in her family shared information from the books in general conversation, giving them a wealth of knowledge and vivid imaginations.

A hybrid author who both has a publisher and self-publishes, Ms. Keim writes heart-warming novels about women who face unexpected challenges, meet them with strength, and find love and happiness along the way. Her best-selling books are based, in part, on many of the places she’s lived or visited and on the interesting people she’s met, creating believable characters and realistic settings her many loyal readers love. Ms. Keim loves to hear from her readers and appreciates their enthusiasm for her stories.

*Please Come Join Us at The Write Review when Judith Visits on July 15th at 7PM EST*

#BookReview: You Can’t Catch Me by Catherine McKenzie

0E47E713-FB52-4E7C-B45D-CB67AE6F2D47Reviewer: Serena Soape

Date of Release: June 9, 2020

Summary:

When the game is deception, nothing is as it seems in this novel of cunning psychological suspense by the #1 Amazon Charts bestselling author of I’ll Never Tell.

Do you want to play a game?

Twelve years ago Jessica Williams escaped a cult. Thanks to the private detective who rescued her, she reintegrated into society, endured an uncomfortable notoriety, and tried to put it all behind her. Then, at an airport bar, Jessica meets a woman with an identical name and birth date. It appears to be just an odd coincidence—until a week later, when Jessica finds her bank account drained and her personal information stolen.

Following a trail of the grifter’s victims, each with the same name, Jessica gathers players—one by one—for her own game. According to her plan, they’ll set a trap and wait for the impostor to strike again. But plans can go awry, and trust can fray, and as Jessica tries to escape the shadows of her childhood, the risks are greater than she imagined. Now, confronting the casualties of her past, Jessica can’t help but wonder…

Who will pay the price?

 

Review:

I was truly shocked by the ending of Catherine McKenzie’s thriller “You Can’t Catch Me”.

I was instantly lured in with the horrible things that happened to Jessica Williams from page 1.

There were quite a few unexpected turns in this novel all the way to the end.

Page turning and mysterious, this was definitely unputdownable.

You should definitely pick this one up and see for yourself what could possibly happen when you run across someone with the same name.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

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Bio:

Catherine McKenzie was born and raised in Montreal, Canada. A graduate of McGill in History and Law, Catherine practices law in Montreal. An avid runner and skier, she’s the author of numerous bestsellers including HIDDEN, FRACTURED, THE GOOD LIAR and I’LL NEVER TELL. Her works have been translated into multiple languages.

In 2019, I’LL NEVER TELL was a #1 Amazon Bestseller, a Globe & Mail and Toronto Star Bestseller, was shortlisted for the Hugh McLennan Prize for Fiction and was optioned for a television series by Paramount TV.