No More Black Magic by A.L. Kessler

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Blurb 
Explosions, body parts, and black magic are all part of Abby Collins’ typical day. As the top Paranormal Investigation Bureau agent, she only gets the best cases, but when the Cult of Ra comes to play she might in be over her head. Finding a murderer while up against a hex, an overprotective coven, and a stubborn werewolf reminds her that nothing in the paranormal world is easy. As the death toll rises and a decades old crime, linked to Abby, is uncovered, disturbing information is brought to light. Abby must unlock an ancient language steeped in black magic to uncover the truth before the murderer comes for her.

 

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Northwoods Wolfman by Scott Burtness – Humor, Paranormal Mystery

Northwoods Wolfman coverI’m a fan of the author and eagerly awaited this second book in the series – I wasn’t disappointed!  While you can read this book as a stand-alone novel, I’d encourage readers to read the 1st book in the series, Wisconsin Vamp.

First and foremost, potential readers should know is that this is a humorous take on the vampire-werewolf-witch stories.  If you don’t enjoy tongue-in-cheek paranormal stories, then this book isn’t for you.  However, if you have a sense of humor about the paranormal then get ready for funny (and occasionally gory) romp in the woods with Dallas, Lois and Stanley.

Dallas, the main character, is the Hero of Trappersville after he staked a vampire (Wisconsin Vamp) and ‘saved the town’ from a vampire outbreak.  He might have remained a hero if it weren’t for a pesky tick that happened to bite a werewolf, and then bit him.  His loyal friend Stanley apparently tumbled to the fact that he was a werewolf, but it took a while for him to figure it out.  By the time he did it was a little late.  He had joined a Society of paranormal creature hunters, and as you may imagine the tables were turned on him.

The story takes on a peculiar and hilarious turn when the girlfriend of the ‘dead’ vampire, Lois, becomes a witch.  I don’t want to spoil the story, but you should know it has to do with using a beer can in a totally new way.  This part of the story had me choking on my morning coffee, laughing out loud!

If you enjoy books by Charlaine Harris and Janet Evanovich, this paranormal series may tickle your funny bone.  I can’t wait to see if there is a book 3, and what insect may be at the bottom of THAT story!

I gave this story 5 stars out of 5.

Where to Buy Northwoods Wolfman

Amazon:  Northwoods Wolfman by Scott Burtness

About the Author

Scott Burtness

Scott Burtness, Author

I live in the Midwest with my wonderful wife, Liz, and our pitt-boxer mix, Frank. I’ve always enjoyed reading horror, sci-fi, thrillers, and comedic takes on all three genres. For me, reading is a fun escape, a chance to live vicariously through someone else’s adventures. I decided to start writing with the hope of entertaining readers like myself.

I’m also usually hanging around karaoke bars and bowling alleys in the Midwest. Come visit!

Love in the Time of Murder by D.E. Haggerty – Review

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Love in the Time of Murder

Series: The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives, Book 3

Genre: Romantic Comedy

My Review:

Love in the Time of Murder is the third book in this series written by D.E. Haggerty.  It has the familiar characters that we have learned to love, and unfortunately will miss at the end of this one.  The author has decided to end the series with this book, and I for one will miss the gray haired ladies!

In this story, we are thrown into the drama of Dee (Delilah) who is fleeing an abusive husband.  Dee is the granddaughter of one of the Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives, and is living with her while figuring out how to end her marriage.

Dee doesn’t have wrestle with this problem for very long because her husband turns up dead, and his body is found not far from her new home.  Since she is his spouse and his body is found nearby, she immediately becomes the prime suspect.

The Gray Haired Knitting Detectives spare no time in getting together to help Dee.  They are determined, as always, to prove that they aren’t old and irrelevant.  If solving a murder isn’t enough, they are also playing matchmaker.  The ladies have decided that Dee needs a new, dependable, non-threatening man in her life.  While Dee isn’t on board with some of the antics, she is compelled to go along with just about everything the ladies decide to do on her behalf.  Other familiar characters (and gray haired lady enablers) Tommy, Izzy, Jack, and Noel are along for this one last crazy ride.

I love how the Gray Haired Knitting Detectives always dive in head first to solve a problem and to help their friends and family.  Their hearts are always in the right place, and it makes me wish that I had a group like them around.  This book makes you cheer for the underdog, feel guilty about being happy that an abusive husband is dead, and genuinely heartened that this group of friends have each other to rely on.

Obviously I won’t give away the ending because I hate spoiler alerts, but I will tell you that it is a fun whodunit murder mystery.  I would recommend this book to people who enjoy cozy mysteries, as well as people who enjoy a little romance in their stories.

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Synopsis:

In Love in the Time of Murder, the Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives face their toughest case yet. Delilah, or Dee as she wishes everyone would just call her already, is the granddaughter of one of the knitting detectives and her life is in a bit of a shambles. She finally manages to pry herself away from her husband’s clutches, move out on her own, and start her own business. But then her estranged husband is murdered and she’s the number one suspect. The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives aren’t about to let one of their own get sent to the slammer and jump at the chance to search for the true killer. As if Dee doesn’t have enough problems, the knitting detectives decide that Delilah being a widow is the perfect opportunity to find her a new man and decide to put their matchmaking skills to use. Will Dee end up in prison for a murder she didn’t commit or will she be taking another walk down the aisle?

Where to buy:

Barnes & Noble:  Love in the Time of Murder

About the Author:

DE Haggerty
I was born and raised in Wisconsin, but think I’m a European. After spending my senior year of high school in Germany, I developed a bad case of wanderlust that is yet to be cured. My flying Dutch husband and I have lived in Ohio, Virginia, the Netherlands, Germany and now Istanbul. We still haven’t decided if we want to settle down somewhere – let alone where. I’m leaning towards somewhere I can learn to surf even though the hubby thinks that’s a less than sound way to decide where to live.

Although I’ve been a military policewoman, a commercial lawyer, and a B&B owner, I think with writing I may have finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up. That’s assuming I ever grow up, of course. Between playing tennis, running much slower than I would like, trying to adopt every stray dog within a 5-mile radius, traveling to exotic new locales, singing off tune, drinking entirely too many adult beverages, addictively watching new movies and reading books like they are going out of style, I write articles for a local expat magazine and various websites, review other indie authors’ books, and write a blog about whatever comes to mind.

Connect with the Author:

Jack Gets His Man by D.E. Haggerty – Romantic Comedy – Book Review

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Jack Gets His Man

Series: The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives, Book 2

Genre: Romantic Comedy (M/M)

Published: July 1, 2015

My Review:

Jack Gets His Man is the second book in the “Gray Haired Knitting Detective Series” by D.E. Haggerty.  I read and reviewed the first book in the series, “Murder, Mystery, & Dating Mayhem”, and was happy to have the chance to review this new book by the author.

The main characters are back, but this new book is told from the point of view of a sub-character from the first book, Jack.  Jack is the co-owner of a unique store that caters to cross-dressers and plus-sized women.  When his store manager has a melt-down, a new book keeper is hired to lighten the work load.  Unfortunately, the new book keeper discovers some huge accounting discrepancies, and there the mystery ensues.  In addition to the mystery, Jack has relationship troubles that threaten to bubble over at work.  His ex-business partner and love interest appears to be emotionally unstable, which makes his new book keeper all the more attractive.  This makes for more than a few awkward moments throughout the story.

The “gray haired detectives” are back, which I’m happy to say are in their usual rare form.  There is nothing feeble about them and they use their skills to do recon missions, perform accounting audits, and get in a little bit of trouble with the local police.  In their spare time they play matchmaker to the single people in their church, whether or not the poor souls want any help.  I’d like to learn more about the gray haired gals individually, and hopefully these characters will be explored a little more in future books.

Overall, this book was a great, light, summer read.  I enjoyed the characters, which for me included wanting to smack a few of them around.  I’m not sure if this new love interest between Jack and his new book keeper, Damien, will last, but they seem to be off to a good start.  Jack may have gotten his man, but will he be able to keep him?  I guess I’ll have to wait until the next book in the series to find out.

As a side note, this is a standalone book, and the first book doesn’t have to be read in order to follow the story.

I rated this book 5 out of 5.  I would recommend this book to mystery fans who enjoy a quick read with a little romance thrown in.

Synopsis:

Jack’s life is awesome. His store is making money hand over fist and his best friend has found love. So what if he’s feeling a bit restless and put out about his upcoming birthday and his ex is being a pain in his fabulous behind? That’s nothing he can’t handle. But then his smoking hot new bookkeeper discovers things at the store aren’t actually as they seem. Someone is playing fast and loose with the finances. Jack’s bestie and his gal pals, the gray-haired knitting detectives, jump at the chance to solve Jack’s problems. When they aren’t re-enacting scenes from spy thrillers, they’re setting Jack up on dates and generally insinuating themselves into his love life. They’re determined to find love for Jack as well as his missing money. Will Jack catch a thief or find love? Either way Jack’s going to get his man.

Buy links:

Amazon:  Jack Gets His Man

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25552260-jack-gets-his-man

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/551332

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1122163358?ean=2940151977913

DE Haggerty

Author bio:

I was born and raised in Wisconsin, but think I’m a European. After spending my senior year of high school in Germany, I developed a bad case of wanderlust that is yet to be cured. My flying Dutch husband and I have lived in Ohio, Virginia, the Netherlands, Germany and now Istanbul. We still haven’t decided if we want to settle down somewhere – let alone where. I’m leaning towards somewhere I can learn to surf even though the hubby thinks that’s a less than sound way to decide where to live. Although I’ve been a military policewoman, a commercial lawyer, and a B&B owner, I think with writing I may have finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up. That’s assuming I ever grow up, of course. Between playing tennis, running much slower than I would like, trying to adopt every stray dog within a 5-mile radius, traveling to exotic new locales, singing off tune, drinking entirely too many adult beverages, addictively watching new movies and reading books like they are going out of style, I write articles for a local expat magazine and various websites, review other indie authors’ books, write a blog about whatever comes to mind and am working on my sixth book.

Author links:

Website: http://www.dehaggerty.com

Blog: http://www.dehaggerty.com/mymusings

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/denaehaggerty

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+DEHaggerty/posts

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/denahaggerty/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7210211.D_E_Haggerty

Email: dena@dehaggerty.com

Book Review: Murder, Mystery and Dating Mayhem by D.E. Haggerty

24787493If you are a fan of Victoria Laurie or Janet Evanovich, you’ll probably enjoy this book. The writer has a conversational tone and the main character, Izzy, has an inner monologue that is humorous all the way through the story.

Without giving too much away, Izzy and her best guy-pal Jack are trying to figure out who wanted to kill her “grandmother” (in actuality she is the grandmother of her dear departed husband). Izzy is unable to stop searching for the person responsible for the evil deed; she is like a bulldog once she gets an idea in her head. Someone is going to be brought to justice, come hell or high water.

In the midst of this murder mystery, another character emerges – a love interest for Izzy. Noel is everything she seems to want in a man, and as a bonus, he is a cop. Unfortunately, she doesn’t feel ready to be in a relationship and lacks confidence (especially when wearing high heels).

My favorite parts of the book, however, were scenes involving the Ben-Gay gang, which consists of little old ladies that were friends of her grandmother. Just like the television character Jessica Fletcher from Murder She Wrote, they become amateur detectives in order to find out who killed their knitting buddy.

I thoroughly enjoyed Murder, Mystery, & Dating Mayhem, and would be interested in reading a sequel if there were to be one.  This story is worth reading for the Ben-Gay gang alone!

I gave this book 5 out of 5 Stars.  I was given a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Buy Link:  Amazon

Author Bio

DE Haggerty

I was born and raised in Wisconsin but think I’m a European. After spending my senior year of high school in Germany, I developed a bad case of wanderlust that is yet to be cured. After high school I returned to the U.S. to go to college ending up with a Bachelor’s degree in History at the tender age of twenty while still managing to spend time bouncing back and forth to Europe during vacations. Unable to find a job after college and still suffering from wanderlust, I joined the U.S. Army as a Military Policewoman for five years. While stationed in Heidelberg, Germany, I met my future husband, a flying – literally – Dutchman. After being given my freedom from the Army, I went off to law school. I finished law school and moved to the Netherlands with my husband and became a commercial lawyer for more than a decade. During a six-month break from the lawyering world, I wrote my first book, Unforeseen Consequences. Although I finished the book, I went back to the law until I could no longer take it and upped stakes and moved to Germany to start a B&B.

Three years after starting the B&B, I got the itch to try something new and decided to pull the manuscript for Unforeseen Consequences out of the attic and get it published as an e-book. Deciding that I may have indeed finally found what I want to do with my life, I went on to write Buried Appearances. After moving to Istanbul, I wrote Life Discarded. Feeling pressured by my girlfriends to write a chick lit novel, I tried my hand at humor with Murder, Mystery & Dating Mayhem. Between tennis, running, traveling, singing off tune, drinking entirely too many adult drinks, and reading books like they are going out of style, I write articles for a local expat magazine and various websites, review other indie authors’ books, write a blog about whatever comes to mind and am working on my fifth book.

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Journey to Jazzland by Gia Volterra de Saulnier – Children’s Picture Book and Review

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ISBN-13: 9780985149284

Publisher: Flying Turtle Publishing LLC

Publication date: 7/1/2013

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My Review

Journey to Jazzland is a story about a group of instruments in an orchestra.  One of the characters, Windy Flute, discovers that she likes to deviate from what has been written on her sheet music.  She enjoys the sounds that she creates on her own.  She decides to go in search of a mythical place called ‘Jazzland’ so that she can continue to create her own melodies.

Some of her fellow orchestra instruments join her on her journey, and along the way she finds other instruments that want to be part of her group.  A few of the new band mates include a piano named Ebony (who has a toothy grin), a guitar named Sly, and a bass named Boomer, among others.  As they grow in numbers, so does the fullness of their sound.

Soon they discover that they need to cross a ‘bridge’ in order to get to Jazzland, and they are a little nervous; the bridge is only as strong as the melody that they create.  When they play together, each creating their own melody, the bridge becomes stronger.

I think children will enjoy this book because of the vibrant colors of the illustrations and the creative descriptions of the instruments.  Children will learn a little about music, the importance of working together as a team, as well as finding out it is okay to be different.  As an added bonus, paper doll cutouts of each character are included in the back of the book so that children can make their own little jazz band to play with!

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

 

Blurb

One day during an orchestra rehearsal, Windy Flute was playing a piece of music and her mind started to wander. Over and over, she had practiced the piece and played the piece. Feeling bored, she felt that she wanted to be a little different.

Then something special happened. She began to hear notes that weren’t on the page of sheet music on her stand!
When she started playing what she heard, Windy realized these new notes made her feel better. The harmonies and the melodies were the same, but the music moved differently. Before she could figure things out, she was interrupted by a stern voice.

“Excuse me, Ms. Flute, do you mind playing with the rest of us? Where do you think you are — Jazzland?” said Mr. Conductor, scowling down at her.

After the rehearsal, Mr. Conductor gave Windy a severe look and stomped off the stage.

Windy turned to her friends in the woodwind section. “What’s Jazzland?” she asked. She was still thinking about the good feelings she got from playing different notes.

“It’s a myth,” said Mr. Bassoon.
“That’s right,” said Mr. Oboe, “It’s a legend. It doesn’t really exist.”
“I think it exists,” said Spitz Trumpet.
“Really, you do? What is it?” Windy was so excited; she almost knocked over her music stand.
“I think Jazzland is a place where instruments in a group have the freedom to play their own music.” Spitz said with a big smile.
“That sounds great!” Windy said to Spitz. “I wonder how I can get there!”

 

About the Author

Gia Volterra de Saulnier

Gia Volterra de Saulnier was born and raised in Fairhaven, Massachusetts and attended University of Lowell (now University of Massachusetts, Lowell). It was there that she learned to love jazz. Gia’s been performing jazz and other kinds of music for over 20 years, throughout the New England area. She lives in North Reading, Massachusetts with her husband and son.

 

Where to Buy

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Phase One: Identify by Rose Wynters – YA Romance Book Tour, Giveaway and Review

 

 

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Virtual Book Tour Dates: 12/30/14 – 1/13/15

Genres: Young Adult Romance, Horror, Zombies, Science Fiction

Series: Territory of the Dead

Tour Promo: All books in this series are $.99!

Available free with Kindle Unlimited.

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My Review:

Meet “Tabs”, a teenager working at a cashier at a local grocery store when the zombie apocalypse happens – with zombies trying to get into the grocery story in a rather grotesque way. She manages to leave and get to her house where she watches the TV with her mom and dad, seeing events unfold on various channels. Eventually all channels go blank as the reporters are killed by the zombies.

This novella is quick paced, and soon Tabs and her family, along with a cute neighbor boy, are running for their lives. Luckily, they meet up with a man named Kellan who promises to keep them safe. He is a prepper that has a hideout, which he claims will protect them from the hungry masses.

The story ends with an epilogue that promises future installments. The next book in the series is “Phase Two: Evaluate” for those who wish to continue the story.

I recommend this book to young adults who want to read a good adventure that has just the right balance of zombie gore and a little romance.

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars for a believable zombie story and clean language for young adults.

 

Blurb:

Eighteen-year-old Tabitha Alexander had just graduated from high school when the dead invaded her small town of Pleasant, Louisiana. Working as a checkout girl in the only grocery store in town, she barely made it out with her life.

But the night was only beginning.

What started out as a group of three grows, as they are joined by the few that are still alive. New bonds are formed as old ones die, and Tabitha suddenly finds that the guy she’s always wanted might just want her back.

The timing couldn’t be worse, though. The zombies in Pleasant are smart, with an awareness that’s horrifying. And when the zombies discover the house full of survivors, those inside realize that the walls aren’t strong enough to keep them out.

All hope is lost. Or is it? Salvation comes in the form of a mysterious man, with a pair of steely-gray eyes and an arsenal to match. He rescues them, but at what cost? Kellan can’t seem to keep his otherworldly eyes off of her.

She’s no match for him. She knows this. Yet, he intrigues her… and Tabitha knows it’s the most dangerous reaction of all.

 

Excerpt:

I exhaled deeply as I finished scanning the last coupon. The woman gave me a sharp look of annoyance, as if I had no room for complaint. Really, what did she expect? Was I supposed to grovel and thank her for allowing me the honor of scanning her precious coupons ten minutes before closing time?

Apparently so. “You know, young lady, it wouldn’t hurt you to smile at your customers and thank them when they offer you their coupons. I don’t think I’ve ever had such poor customer service. I don’t have to shop here, especially with this kind of attitude.” She was working herself up into a rage, her expression full of self-righteous indignation.

I didn’t reply, but instead pushed the total button. Some of the customers in line groaned, while others shifted in impatience. They really didn’t want to be further delayed by her rant. She slammed a hundred dollar bill down on the counter. “Where is your manager? I want to speak with him now.”

I pointed towards Jim, as he straightened his shoulders and attempted to look professional. I could only imagine the holier-than-thou attitude he would have as he sympathetically agreed with her. Around here, I could never do anything right, or so it seemed.

I didn’t see anyone else standing around, though, willing to put up with his crap. If I didn’t need the money so badly, I’d walk out the door faster than he could blink. I was tired of the humiliation and tired of being blamed for the lines, just because he was too tight to hire on adequate staff.

I was silent as I quickly made her change. What could any person say? She was mad due to reasons of her own, something that really didn’t concern me. With one last glare, she huffed and moved on in his direction. She never made it, though.

It would have been worth the complaint and subsequent chewing out I would have received, if the events of the night just wouldn’t have happened. I would later look back on it and pray that things had ended differently. You can’t change events that are completely out of your control, though.

Even so, anything would have been preferable to that one moment when you find your reality has just been blown to pieces and would never be the same again. That’s assuming you live to survive it.

She was halfway to Jim, her teased hairdo bouncing, when it happened. A loud, panicked scream tore through the night, originating somewhere from the parking lot in front of the store. Even through the thick glass, we could hear it loudly. It sounded like someone was being murdered. I immediately stopped scanning, turning in an attempt to see what was happening.

A body slammed against the glass, his face and palms pressed to the surface. It was a horrid sight. His pupils were red and crazed, his face extremely pale and dirty. Dark red blood was smeared across his cheeks and chin. The man stood still for a moment, just watching us with his crazy eyes. Something reanimated him. He slid his palms down the clear, clean glass, leaving a trail of bloody streaks.

 

Buy Link:

Amazon

 

About the Author:

Rose Wynters resides in the southern portion of the USA. When not writing, she enjoys traveling, camping, and meeting new people.

 

Connect With The Author:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

 

Giveaway:

Win a $10 Amazon gift card! This giveaway will run 12/30/14 – 1/13/15. Open worldwide!Click here to enter the Rafflecopter.

 


 

Book Tour Information:

 

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