Bookish Art by Jen Bissu

I just wanted to share some of the great book art by Jen Bissu. I discovered her on Litsy (and if you have not been on Litsy, you are missing out!) I love her work and I own several prints and even a pillow. Check her out!

Litsy handle: @BookBabe

Website: http://www.bookishart.com

Jen is a professional artist. She’s had a lifelong love of reading, and makes the bookmarks, prints, and other items on her Bookish Art Boutique website to bring her love of art and reading together and share them with the reading community. What reader wouldn’t love some art featuring books on their walls? And if you ever read print books, it’s always fun to have pretty bookmarks on hand. These are unique items you won’t find anywhere else!

If you’d like to contact Jen, you can reach her via email on her website. She’s always adding new designs and expanding her offerings, so check back often!

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Jar of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier

Overview

This is the story of three best friends: one who was murdered, one who went to prison, and one who’s been searching for the truth all these years . . .

When she was sixteen years old, Angela Wong—one of the most popular girls in school—disappeared without a trace. Nobody ever suspected that her best friend, Georgina Shaw, now an executive and rising star at her Seattle pharmaceutical company, was involved in any way. Certainly not Kaiser Brody, who was close with both girls back in high school.

But fourteen years later, Angela Wong’s remains are discovered in the woods near Geo’s childhood home. And Kaiser—now a detective with Seattle PD—finally learns the truth: Angela was a victim of Calvin James. The same Calvin James who murdered at least three other women.

To the authorities, Calvin is a serial killer. But to Geo, he’s something else entirely. Back in high school, Calvin was Geo’s first love. Turbulent and often volatile, their relationship bordered on obsession from the moment they met right up until the night Angela was killed.

For fourteen years, Geo knew what happened to Angela and told no one. For fourteen years, she carried the secret of Angela’s death until Geo was arrested and sent to prison.

While everyone thinks they finally know the truth, there are dark secrets buried deep. And what happened that fateful night is more complex and more chilling than anyone really knows. Now the obsessive past catches up with the deadly present when new bodies begin to turn up, killed in the exact same manner as Angela Wong.

How far will someone go to bury her secrets and hide her grief? How long can you get away with a lie? How long can you live with it?

Review

Three high school friends, Geo, Angela and Kaiser are together most of the time. Slurpees, parties, studying, they are just the best of friends. Then Geo starts dating Calvin. Calvin is controlling and not a guy she needs to be with. But, she is young and stupid. Then, Angela comes up missing. 14 years later, Angela’s body is found.

I love it when an author creates a character you are supposed to hate…but you just can’t. Well! Geo is the best of these I have ever come across. She is so flawed but, I could not help but like her and feel sorry for her. She is just 16 when she makes one of the worst mistakes of her life. This mistake stays hidden for 14 years. Then, Geo goes to prison. She is arrested by Kaiser, no less.

The author SLOWLY draws out Geo’s past and what actually happened to Angela. This creates such tremendous anticipation. If I had to put this book down because of life…I was constantly thinking about it. What is about to happen next??? The secrets and the lies just build constant pressure. There were places I was a nervous wreck!

Amazingly done! OVER THE TOP GOOD READ!

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Hart of Darkness by S.B. Alexander plus GIVEAWAY

Hart of Darkness (The Hart Series, Book 1)

By S.B. Alexander

Romantic Suspense

Releasing June 12, 2018

Book Description

The road to love is paved in the dark.

Former gang member Dillon Hart abandoned the streets to join the US Merchant Marines. He feels his life is finally on track until he returns home to discover that his sixteen-year-old sister is missing. With his younger brother in jail and his older brother living a life of crime, it’s up to Dillon to find Grace. After four years of searching, a phone call from a morgue gives him a lead that he can’t pass up. Enlisting the help of a cutthroat reporter may be his only hope.

Crime reporter Maggie Marx has just the right mix of grit and sex appeal to get anything she wants, even the darkest stories on the street. Growing up in a gang, she had her fair share of setbacks and obstacles. When Dillon Hart seeks her help, she’s more than ready to take down the street’s biggest enemy. Her actions could help her exact revenge or land her in the belly of the beast.

As Dillon and Maggie team up to search for Dillon’s sister, they aren’t prepared to find what lies ahead. One family is torn apart. Another is brought together. Hearts are shredded, secrets are uncovered, and love takes on a whole new meaning.

Intended for audiences 18+ Strong language and sexual content.

About the Author

S.B. Alexander is a bestselling romance author of the Maxwell Series. Her books are filled with stories that tug at your heart, and are filled with romance, drama, action and suspense. As much as she loves to write, she also loves to read. Some of her favorite authors growing up were Stephen King and Edgar Allen Poe. She stills enjoy reading Stephen King. In fact, she loves most genres, although in the past three years she has gravitated toward the romance genre, which is when she started her journey to write her first book. Her motto: write what you love to read.

Aside from writing, she’s a huge sports fan, in particular, baseball. Since she hails from New England, she is a diehard Red Sox fan. She’s also a navy veteran and former math teacher, loves white powdered donuts, and handbags. Her husband calls her the bag lady. When she’s not writing, she enjoys playing golf and hanging out with friends and family.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sbalexander.authorpage

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SBAlex_author

Website: http://sbalexander.com/

AMAZON: http://sbalexander.com/wwskAZ

B&N: http://sbalexander.com/4tfwbn

GOODREADS: http://sbalexander.com/hodgoodreads

GIVEAWAY

The author is giving away a $100 Amazon GC to one lucky

Direct link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/70954c79170/?

Excerpt

I parked two blocks from a sea of red and blue flashing lights. I grabbed my bag, hopped out of my car, and ran up to the crowd that had gathered around.

I sidled up to an older lady. “What’s going on?”

She didn’t even look my way. Instead, she lifted up on her tiptoes to see over others’ heads. “Word is the cops are in a standoff with some gang.”

My internal radar was firing on all cylinders. “What gang?”

She clutched the robe she was wearing. “Not sure.”

I plowed through the throng to get a better view. Some protested as I wiggled my way up to a man in blue, whose name read Miladin on his uniform shirt. I knew some cops but not him.

Police cruisers and unmarked cars littered the street on the other side of the police barricade.

I flashed my reporter credentials. “I’m here to see Detective Ted Hughes.” I scanned the men in blue and some in plain clothes. Ted was tall, lanky, and sometimes hard to miss with his thick mustache that was similar to the actor Tom Selleck’s. I did another once-over and spotted Rick. He wasn’t as tall as Ted, but he was husky, compliments of the gym he lived at during his off-duty hours.

Officer Miladin narrowed his dark eyes. “Civilians are not allowed past this barrier.”

“I work for the paper, so let me through.” I knew working as a reporter held no clout to get me into an active police scene, but most cops knew I was close to Ted.

Officer Miladin stabbed a finger at another police barrier along the sidewalk in front of the brick homes that lined the street. “The media is over there.”

I didn’t budge from my spot. “You’re new. Aren’t you?”

Miladin’s voice dropped an octave. “I said over there.”

I huffed and decided it wasn’t worth arguing. Ted would only kick me out anyway.

I spotted Deidre, a news reporter for CBNT, a local station in the city. If anyone had a lead, it would be Deidre. She was relentless in her hunt to get the big story. I was about to make my way over to her, when a shot rang out through the humid night.

People screamed and scattered.

The cops took cover behind their vehicles.

I managed to duck behind one of many cars parked along the curb. The lady in the robe joined me, breathing heavily, while the crowd scattered to take cover.

Then silence ensued.

I slowly peeked through the car window, when the lady in the robe nudged me.

She pointed a red-painted nail toward the driveway of the house across from us. “Look.”

A girl with bold red hair darted from the back of the house, setting off the motion sensor.

Miladin, who had abandoned his position, edged along the base of the house and down the driveway. He said something into his radio, when the redhead climbed the chain-link fence.

Considering the girl was running, I suspected the cops didn’t have the house completely surrounded. Or if they did, then their attention wasn’t on the girl.

The crowd seemed to be holding its breath.

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Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson

Overview

A woman inherits a beloved bookstore and sets forth on a journey of self-discovery in this poignant debut about family, forgiveness and a love of reading.

Miranda Brooks grew up in the stacks of her eccentric Uncle Billy’s bookstore, solving the inventive scavenger hunts he created just for her. But on Miranda’s twelfth birthday, Billy has a mysterious falling-out with her mother and suddenly disappears from Miranda’s life. She doesn’t hear from him again until sixteen years later when she receives unexpected news: Billy has died and left her Prospero Books, which is teetering on bankruptcy–and one final scavenger hunt.

When Miranda returns home to Los Angeles and to Prospero Books–now as its owner–she finds clues that Billy has hidden for her inside novels on the store’s shelves, in locked drawers of his apartment upstairs, in the name of the store itself. Miranda becomes determined to save Prospero Books and to solve Billy’s last scavenger hunt. She soon finds herself drawn into a journey where she meets people from Billy’s past, people whose stories reveal a history that Miranda’s mother has kept hidden–and the terrible secret that tore her family apart.

Bighearted and trenchantly observant, The Bookshop of Yesterdays is a lyrical story of family, love and the healing power of community. It’s a love letter to reading and bookstores, and a testament to how our histories shape who we become.

Review

Miranda has no plans to stay in Los Angeles. Her life is in Philadelphia where she is a history teacher plus, she just moved in with her boyfriend. But, when her uncle passes away he leaves her everything, including one of her favorite places ever, Prospero Books. He also leaves her clues to a scavenger hunt. This opens up a whole new world of secrets that may be better off left alone.

Well! Any book about a bookstore or books…I am ON TOP OF THAT! I love that this book creates the perfect spot for a reader. The book shop employees and patrons fit the story perfectly. They are a creative bunch which add so much to the tale and Miranda’s quest to keep the store afloat.

Miranda has really been kept in the dark. I love the way the author created a specific set of clues for her. They are in books, with different people and even at an old cabin. I have to be careful with what I say. I do not want to give away a spoiler and there is a pretty big turn toward the end. I did see it coming…so pay attention.

This is a wonderful read for a bibliophile. All the books and the mystery are a perfect companion for any type of reader.

I received this novel from Netgalley for a honest review

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Only With You by Nicole McLaughlin

Overview

The men in Nicole McLaughlin’s Man Enough series are tough Alphas devoted to serving their country and the women who love them.

National Guardsman Aiden King has been attracted to Hannah Walters for a while, but he never made a move because of her close relationship with his best friend. But when circumstances change, Aiden is surprised when his friend gives his blessing. Problem is, there’s a reason he’s still alone after all these years, and as much as he wants her, that secret keeps him from acting on his desires.

Hannah has finally decided to wait for the kind of love you read about in books and see in movies. After her failed engagement, Aiden’s unassuming support has become a touchstone for Hannah. It soon becomes apparent that he may be exactly the kind of man she’s been looking for. But the closer they become, the more he keeps her at arm’s length.

When Aiden suggests a road trip to take Hannah’s mind off her troubles, the two of them go on a journey neither one expected. She just hopes that the final destination is them together for good.

Review

When I was offered this book, I thought, I don’t want to read that! I am not drawn to covers like this. I know, I know! I am not supposed to judge a book by its cover. Needless to say, I am very glad I read this. It was the perfect travel companion. I read it on the airplane to NYC. It kept me entertained and captivated.

Hannah is a cute, young lady with a lot going for her. Except love! She has decided she wants the fairy tale, so to speak. She just never expected it to come from Aiden. Aiden is the strong, silent type. He has adored her from afar for a long time. Hannah has a close relationship with Aiden’s best friend. He truly did not want to get in the way.

Aiden’s grandmother passes away and this leads him to question some of his past. He and Hannah take off on a journey which leads to answers and to love!

I enjoyed the connection between Hannah and Aiden. These two work so well together. It takes a while, but they heat up the pages nicely. I mean who can resist Aiden! Ooooolala!

I received this novel from the publisher and Netgalley.

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Lowcountry Bookshop by Susan M. Boyer

Overview

Lowcountry PI Liz Talbot returns to the streets of Charleston in the seventh installment of Susan M. Boyer’s USA TODAY bestselling mystery series.

Between an epic downpour and a King Tide, those historic streets are flooded—and dangerous. A late night tragic accident along the Lower Battery leads Liz Talbot straight to her next case.

Who’s the client? Well, now, therein lies the first puzzle. When the police arrive at the scene of the accident, Poppy Oliver claims she’s only trying to help.

But the dent on the front of her Subaru and the victim’s injuries provoke a certain Charleston police detective’s suspicious nature. A wealthy, anonymous benefactor hires Liz and her partner Nate Andrews to prove Poppy Oliver’s innocence.

What exactly was Poppy Oliver up to? Is she a random good Samaritan who happens upon the accident scene? Or perhaps this tragedy wasn’t an accident. She just might be his abused wife’s accomplice.

Why does everyone involved in this case have a sudden burning urge for reading material, leading them to the same charming bookshop along the waterfront?

From a risqué, exclusive club in an old plantation to an upscale resale shop in the historic King Street shopping district to a downtown graveyard crawling with ghosts, Liz tracks a group of women who band together to help victims of domestic violence.

In her most challenging case yet, Liz fears she may find a killer, but justice may prove elusive.

Review

I just adore this series. All the stories are light and funny and such great mysteries. This one is no different. Liz has been pulled into a murder because she is positive Poppy is innocent. There is no way, in Liz’s mind, that Poppy ran over and killed Phillip Drayton. Now, to find out exactly what happened and who is responsible.

Let’s start with the some of the characters in this story. I love Colleen. She is a ghost…yes you heard me….a ghost. You cannot have a story set in Charleston without a ghost. The city is rampant with them. She helps Liz with her work! As a matter of fact, Liz can hardly solve a mystery without her. Then there is Nate. Nate is Liz’s hot husband. Not only is he a stud…he is a southern gentleman to boot! He is soooo dreamy. Then, there are Liz’s parents. These two crack me up, especially about the goats…you need to read this book…just for the goats.

The characters make this book. The mystery is a little thin in this one. But…I really read it for the great characters. Need a good series…pick these up. So funny and entertaining!

I received this novel from Edelweiss for a honest review.

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Nothing is Predictable by Adelina Mae

Nothing Is Predictable

By Adalina Mae

Genre: Memoir

Zara is eight years old, her father, in a drunken rampage, accidentally shoots himself dead.

Her childhood memories leave her struggling with romantic attachments and hinder her from developing healthy relationships.

Seeking answers, She meets a monk for wisdom, and a gypsy for insight.

The journeys Adalina Mae takes us on are interspersed with heartbreaking moments as well as hilarious escapades.

This is life and nothing is predictable. The story keeps you on your toes and offers mysteries to solve:

Why does Zara have recurrent nightmares of her last night with her father?

Why does she struggle with love?

Review

Zara has had a rough life. Her father was a hopeless alcoholic. He destroyed his family in one tragic night. This leaves Zara, basically with PTSD. She has recurring nightmares and struggles with all relationships.

Zara is such a strong lady! I am so impressed with all she has overcome to achieve her goals. She has overcome tragedy to become successful in just about all she attempts. This story basically covers her relationships. She is struggling to find the right person to settle down with. However,it should focus more on how strong and resilient Zara really is.

The story does have some areas were it seems rushed. I wanted to know more in some areas. But, in honesty, the author may not have been ready to divulge that part of her life. I can understand how writing this memoir was such a healing aspect. I really felt the author opening up and getting stronger as the story moved along.

About the Author

Adalina Mae is the author of Nothing Is Predictable.

After leaving the corporate world of management, she decided to pursue her lifelong passion to write.

She’s also a lover of movies and hopes that her novels become a motion picture.

Adalina wrote Nothing Is Predictable to inspire optimism and positive thoughts, reminding us we are strong and can overcome life’s challenges. Particularly those who suffered childhood trauma like she has. She is determined to spread the message of forgiveness and love. Her life’s incidents have taught her, that Nothing Is Predictable and Nothing Can Last Forever.

On Facebook: http://bit.ly/AdalinaMaeAuthorFacebook

On Instagram: http://bit.ly/AdalinaMaeAuthorInstagram

Website: www.adalinamae.com

On Amazon: http://bit.ly/buybookfromamazon

Excerpt

“Run sweetheart, hurry, run! We will hide in the neighbor’s storeroom, he can’t find us there,” Mom whispered as we ran for our lives away from home hoping Dad would not find us. We entered the storeroom beside our neighbor’s old cottage. It was dark and moldy and infested with rats. From a distance, we could hear him following us and approaching.

I cried silently with my eyes shut, fearful about what was going to happen. That dreadful monster is back, what damage is he going to cause tonight?

“Shhh, don’t cry, he won’t find us here, we’ll be okay darling, don’t worry,” Mom whispered as she held me tight to comfort me, yet I could see in her eyes she was not convinced.

“Where are you? You think you can hide from me! I’ll show you who the man of the house is! You’re taking my daughter away from me, I’ll show you woman!” Dad shouted, his voice approaching closer and closer.

He was so drunk he didn’t realize Mom was only running to safety. He thought she was taking me away from him. How on earth do you come to that conclusion? His footsteps stomped louder, as he walked toward the storeroom where we were hiding.

“Where are you? How dare you run away!” his voice projected from outside the room.

And then, BANG! The wooden door was flung open and it bounced off the wall.

“Aaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!” I screamed so loudly I can still hear the echo of my voice.

I was eight years old.

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