Bookin' It

So Many Books. So Little Time. Let's Review!

#4thOfJulySale – #Blowout!

Figured I’d let you Bookin’ It folks know about this sale, too. If you have time to share, that would be great! Thanks!

The Write Stuff

After offering up That Darkest Place for a holiday sale, I decided to go all in! I’m putting all the rest of my books on sale, too, for a mere $.99 each. Yep. You can get all three Wake-Robin Ridge books and the first two Riverbend books for $.99 each. If you’ve been waiting to check out either of these series, now’s your chance. Three days only, though: July 4, 5, and 6. (Unless they go live later today, of course.)  So, knock yourself out, folks! And spend part of your holiday getting to know the things that go bump in the night on Wake-Robin Ridge, or the eccentric characters who make up the sleepy little Florida town of Riverbend. (And don’t forget to let others know, too. I mean, really . . . why should you have ALL the fun? 😀 )  THANKS!

DOWNLOAD YOUR $.99 COPIES HERE:

Wake-Robin…

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#ThatDarkestPlace 4th of July Special!

A good chance to download your copy of That Darkest Place: Riverbend Book 3 at a $3 savings! 🙂

The Write Stuff

Mark your calendars. In honor of Independence Day, I’m lowering the price on That Darkest Place to $1.99! Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday only, so don’t miss out. If you haven’t yet downloaded your copy of this 3rd book in the Riverbend series, now’s your chance to get it at a $3.00 savings! (It could go live at that price a few hours early, if you want to take a look tomorrow.)  Be sure to let your friends, neighbors, and followers know, too. THANKS!

Amazon Blurb:

The new year is a chance for new beginnings—usually hopeful, positive ones. But when Jackson Painter plows his car into a tree shortly after midnight on January 1, his new beginnings are tragic. His brothers, Forrest and Hunter, take up a grim bedside vigil at the hospital, waiting for Jackson to regain consciousness and anxious over how he’ll take the news that he’s lost a leg and…

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Lovely Review of That Darkest Place from Judith Barrow

This was a great week for reviews for me, on private blogs and on Goodreads. I wanted to share this one from Judith Barrow, of my latest Riverbend Book, That Darkest Place. It was another one that just made my morning! Go HERE to see what Judith has to say.  Hope you’ll enjoy the review, and pass it along. Thanks!

And go HERE to find That Darkest Place on Amazon.com.

 

Staci Troilo’s Wonderful Review of Swamp Ghosts

I’m so excited to be receiving some stellar reviews of my Riverbend books. I’ll be posting a few of them over the next week or two, and hope you’ll check them out and share far and wide. THANKS!

Go HERE to read what Staci has to say about Riverbend Book 1, Swamp Ghosts.

Today: Guest Author Tony Riches

Check out Tony Riches, my guest blogger today on The Write Stuff. If you like historical fiction, you’ll love these!

The Write Stuff

My guest today is Tudor specialist Tony Riches, author of the best-selling Tudor Trilogy.  Welcome to The Write Stuff, Tony. Let’s talk about your books.

Where did the idea for writing the Tudor trilogy come from?

I began looking into the life of Owen Tudor, the Welsh servant who married a queen, and was surprised to discover his amazing story. As my research progressed I began to collect fascinating details of the lives of Owen’s sons, Edmund and Jasper. I realised that if I planned it as a trilogy, Henry Tudor would be born in the first book, come of age in the second and become King of England in the final book.

Why do you think this is the first full-length novel about Henry Tudor?

Everyone from Shakespeare to Alison Weir has written about Henry, but this trilogy is the first time his full story has been told through historical…

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#ThatDarkestPlace On Sale 3 More Days Only!

On Sale for $2.99 through Sunday, May 21
Grab your copy today!
That Darkest Place: Riverbend Book 3

Also on sale thru Sunday, May 21:

Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2 – $.99

Swamp Ghosts: Riverbend Book 1 – $.99

And:

Wake-Robin Ridge Book 1 – $.99

A Boy Named Rabbit: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 2 – $.99

Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3 – $.99

BEST PRICE ALL YEAR!
DON’T MISS OUT!

#ThatDarkestPlace Has Arrived!

Woohooo! Look what’s OUT, and at a greatly reduced price, too. One Week Only for these low prices on ALL my books! Grab yours today. 🙂

The Write Stuff

It’s here at last! That Darkest Place is now available on Kindle, and will soon be out in print. And I’m so excited, I’m running a One Week Only sale on it, and ALL of my other books, as well. Yep, my characters are celebrating from Riverbend, Florida, all the way to Wake-Robin Ridge, North Carolina! The Painter Brothers, Maggie & Gunn, Sarah & Mac, and even Little Rabbit are putting out the word that this is the best deal you’ll get all year, and a chance to begin each series from the beginning, if you haven’t already done so. 

Starting today, and continuing through Sunday, 5/21, you can download my books at the following prices:

That Darkest Place: Riverbend Book 3 – $2.99
Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2$.99
Swamp Ghosts: Riverbend Book 1 $.99

Harbinger: Riverbend Book 3– $.99
A Boy Named Rabbit: Wake-Robin Ridge Book…

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#SwampGhosts Presentation at DeBary Hall 5/20/17

If you’re in the area, hope you’ll come join us for a really fun afternoon!

The Write Stuff

“Big Blue”
Opening Slide from My Swamp Ghosts Presentation

On May 20, 2017, I’ll be doing my favorite presentation at DeBary Hall Historic Site, and if you are in the area, I’d love to see you there. This talk features many beautiful photographs of the St. Johns River basin habitat, including birds and wildlife of the area. There is also a brief introduction to albino and leucistic alligators, and a section on the easiest way to ID the very few snakes in our area that you do not want to handle. The last section covers a bit on how I write, my inspiration board photos, and the challenges of starting a brand new career at a time when most are thinking about retirement.

I always include plenty of time for Questions & Answers during and after the presentation, and I can pretty much guarantee that there will be a whole lotta…

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Touching Base with a Quick Update

Still sick, here.

The Write Stuff

Just want to let you guys know that my uninvited “bug” is lingering much longer than I had hoped. While I am vastly improved over last week, I’m most definitely not back at 100% and my doctor keeps telling me rest is what I need most right now.

Apparently this is one mean, miserable cold/flu/bronchitis/pneumonia/vicious thingie, and shaking it takes a long time. With that in mind, I’m going to try to behave in a way that will make my doctor proud of me, and stay in bed (or at least bundled up in the comfy chair) for a few more days.

Don’t worry. I’m here, and keeping an eye on things via my iPhone, so if you need help, just give a holler. And those of you who are regular contributors to this blog, please feel free to post anything you’d like to share while I’m away. I’ll be back…

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#CoverReveal & #ThatDarkestPlace Update – #wwwblogs

Woohoo! Finally have my cover for That Darkest Place: Riverbend Book 3. I think it is my favorite cover to date, and I hope you guys love it as much as I do!

The Write Stuff

I may be slaving away at editing the last five chapters of #ThatDarkestPlace, but at last I have something to share with you guys! My cover designer, Graphics Goddess Nicki Forde (of Nicki Forde Designs) has done me proud, once again. I do believe this is my favorite of all my covers. So far. (You never know what she’ll come up with for the next one.) I just had to share this today, and I hope you agree that it’s a glorious thing. Full of mystery,  hinting at disaster, and perfectly encompassing a man in despair.

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Happy St. Pat’s Day! Hope you enjoy reading about my most wonderful of birthday presents.

The Write Stuff

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Everyone! Erin go bragh!

On this day, in 1944, at St. Vincent’s Hospital, Jacksonville, Florida, guess who was born? Yep. Me. I arrived kicking and screaming, and pretty much kept on in that vein for the next 73 years. Well, I don’t scream as loud as used to, and I hardly ever kick anyone these days, but you get my drift. Today is my birthday, and do you know what I plan to do? Ahem. ANYTHING I DARN WELL PLEASE! All day long! 😀

My daughter gave me a lovely piece of art for Christmas, and the first thing I’m doing tomorrow is taking it in to be framed. Then I’m going to do some fun shopping, hitting the local bookstores (what’s left of ’em, anyway) and some garden centers I love to browse. After that, I’m getting a haircut, so I won’t scare the dogs…

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The Turn by Kim Harrison #TuesdayBookBlog


My Rating: 3.5 Stars

BLURB:

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kim Harrison returns to her beloved Hollows series with The Turn, the official prequel to the series that will introduce you to a whole new side of Rachel Morgan’s world as they’ve never seen it before!

Can science save us when all else fails?

Trisk and her hated rival, Kal, have the same goal: save their species from extinction.

But death comes in the guise of hope when a genetically modified tomato created to feed the world combines with the government’s new tactical virus, giving it an unexpected host and a mode of transport. Plague rises, giving the paranormal species the choice to stay hidden and allow humanity to die, or to show themselves in a bid to save them.

Under accusations of scientific misconduct, Trisk and Kal flee across a plague-torn United States to convince leaders of the major paranormal species to save their supposedly weaker kin, but not everyone thinks humanity should be saved, and Trisk fights the prejudices of two societies to prove that not only does humanity have something to offer, but that long-accepted beliefs against women, dark magic, and humanity itself can turn to understanding; that when people are at their worst that the best show their true strength, and that love can hold the world together as a new balance is found.

~~~

When I saw that a prequel to Harrison’s very popular Rachel Morgan/Hollows series was coming out, I had mixed feelings. Yes, I read every one of the Hollows books, right to the end, but I might not have done so, had I started them after reading a lot of other urban fantasy books. (Thus having more experience with what the genre ought to feel like.) For me, the books were always a mixed bag. There were some story lines and some characters I really loved, and some I definitely did not. And sadly, several of the ones I truly didn’t like were supposed to be the good guys. Not a single book made me happy all the way through, I’m sorry to say. And yet I kept reading.

I think I stuck with the series primarily because I really enjoyed the character of Trent Kalamack, and wanted to watch his relationship with Rachel grow into something permanent. No way to tell you whether or not that happened, without spoiling the books for those who might still like to read them. I can say that the final book was not nearly as well done as I had hoped it would be, and the ending felt rushed and incomplete to me. (Ducking for cover, here, because Harrison’s fans are legion, and I don’t want anyone throwing things at me. Like lethal, virus-riddled tomatoes.)

I will say this. You have to be doing something right to keep a reader coming back for thirteen books, which I did, so my hat’s off to Kim Harrison for creating series that, to me, was flawed, but was still absolutely addictive. I will also add that the things I did like, I liked very, very much, and they mostly made up for the things I hated.

Now, comes the prequel. Did I like it? Yes and no. Was I engaged with any of the characters the way I was with some of the ones from the Hollows book? No. They weren’t badly done, per se. They just didn’t pull me into their stories as much as I’d hoped. The book isn’t bad, by any means, and since I seldom gave any of the Hollows books more than 4 stars, 3.5 for this one feels about right. I did very much enjoy finding out how the tomato virus happened. And I must say that meeting Kal explained a lot about what made Trent Kalamack the conflicted and complicated character he was in the Hollows books. Oh, my. Talk about the sins of the fathers.

All in all, I would recommend The Turn to anyone who enjoyed the Rachel Morgan books. You’ll have to decide for yourself how it stacks up against those. I believe that there will be more books in this new series, and I’ll probably read the next one, too, having come this far. If the characters start to engage me a bit more, I’ll continue, but if not, I’ve got a TBR list as long as my arm, waiting. So, you Hollows fans, read this one  for yourself, and let me know how it works for you. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy it, and we’ll find out together if the next one is a bit stronger. Sometimes a new series just needs to get its sea legs under it, and then, it’s smooth sailing.

The Turn: The Hollows Begins With Death

Johannes Cabal the Necromancer by Jonathan L. Howard #TuesdayBookBlog

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My Rating: 4-1/2 of 5 Stars

Because I have so little time to read right now, I’m digging back through books I’ve read over the last year or so, and haven’t yet reviewed. This one popped up in my Unreviewed Books folder, and I decided it would be a quick, easy one for today. It’s good. Read it.

What, you want more? Okay, you asked for it.

Blurb

A charmingly gothic, fiendishly funny Faustian tale about a brilliant scientist who makes a deal with the Devil, twice. 
 
Johannes Cabal sold his soul years ago in order to learn the laws of necromancy. Now he wants it back. Amused and slightly bored, Satan proposes a little wager: Johannes has to persuade one hundred people to sign over their souls or he will be damned forever. This time for real. Accepting the bargain, Jonathan is given one calendar year and a traveling carnival to complete his task. With little time to waste, Johannes raises a motley crew from the dead and enlists his brother, Horst, a charismatic vampire, to help him run his nefarious road show, resulting in mayhem at every turn.

My Thoughts

Fiendishly funny, yes. Gothic, sort of. Charming? Not so much. Disturbing? Check. Weird? Check. Relentless? Double checks, with stars beside them. But Charming? Nope. Didn’t see that at all. Instead, I would describe Cabal as entertaining and thought-provoking, and frighteningly capable of pursuing his unknown goal with a  vengeance.

There are many things in this book to make you laugh. Deliciously clever one-liners, coupled with Cabal’s falling apart (Literally, believe me!) companions, make for laugh out loud moments galore. But make no mistake. This book is dark. There’s an undercurrent of horror running through it, and you are never quite sure where the tale is headed. If this type of thing intrigues you as much as it does me, you probably should give Johannes Cabal a go. Getting to the end and finding out what’s really driving his actions is like being on one of the truly terrifying rides in his traveling carnival. My only serious complaint with the book is the loss of a character that really touched me, and I doubt Johannes Cabal will be able to bring him back from the dead, no matter how skilled he is at necromancy. That’s the reason I dropped half a star. I always hate losing characters I like.

If you are looking for something very, VERY different, I highly recommend you check this one out. If you enjoy it, there are several more books in the series, always a good thing to know.

Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Last Day! $.99 Sale On All #WakeRobinRidge and #Riverbend Books! #TuesdayBookBlog

Just a reminder for those of you who haven’t yet read my books. Last day for the $.99 offer. 🙂

The Write Stuff

beware1-saleLAST DAY!

Don’t miss out on this one! If you haven’t downloaded your copies yet–RUN, don’t walk–to Amazon.com, and take advantage of these rock-bottom prices. Offer good for a limited time only, as they say, and that time ends tonight.

This is your chance to read Books 1 and 2 of the Riverbend series, before Book 3 is released next month.  That way, you can move right from the shocking ending of Finding Hunter to the even more shocking beginning of That Darkest Place. No waiting required! 😉 And if you haven’t read any of these, what are you waiting for? Grab ’em today!

~~~

Wake-Robin Ridge, where ghosts walk, ancient legends abound, and things still go bump in the night!

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Wake-Robin Ridge Book 1
A Boy Named Rabbit: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 2
Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3

~~~

Riverbend, where the beasts that lurk in the dark river…

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$.99 #ValentineSale – #WakeRobinRidge Series and #Riverbend Series – One Week Only! #TuesdayBookBlog

Now’s your chance to get a great deal on any or all of my books! One week only, at $.99! Please share, thanks!

The Write Stuff

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Don’t miss this opportunity to grab any and all books in either of my series! This is your chance to meet Wake-Robin Ridge’s MackKenzie Cole, Sarah Gray, and the amazing little boy named Rabbit. Or, if you prefer something a bit less mystical and ghostly, there’s always Riverbend’s Maggie Devlin, that Viking of a man, Gunnar Wolfe, the wise and beautiful Willow Greene, and all three of those  mostly lovable Painter brothers, Jackson, Forrest, and Hunter. Go for it! And please let the world know about this great deal. THANKS!

Wake-Robin Ridge
A Boy Named Rabbit: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 2
Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3

Swamp Ghosts: Riverbend Book 1
Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2

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#BookinItTuesdayReview #TuesdayBookBlog – A Cold Tomorrow by Mae Clair

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

BLURB

Stopping to help a motorist in trouble, Katie Lynch stumbles upon a mystery as elusive as the Mothman legend that haunts her hometown of Point Pleasant, West Virginia. Could the coded message she finds herald an extraterrestrial visitor? According to locals, it wouldn’t be the first time. And what sense should she make of her young son’s sudden spate of bizarre drawings—and his claim of a late-night visitation? Determined to uncover the truth, Katie only breaks the surface when a new threat erupts. Suddenly her long-gone ex-boyfriend is back and it’s as if he’s under someone else’s control. Not only is he half-crazed, he’s intent on murder…. As a sergeant in the sheriff’s office of the famously uncanny Point Pleasant, Officer Ryan Flynn has learned to tolerate reports of puzzling paranormal events.   But single mom Katie Lynch appears to be in very real danger—and somehow Ryan’s own brother, Caden, is caught up in the madness, too. What the skeptical lawman discovers astounds him—and sends him into action. For stopping whatever evil forces are at play may just keep Katie and Caden alive….

~~~

I read and enjoyed A Thousand Yesteryears, and was eagerly awaiting another visit to Point Pleasant. Fascinated by the way Mae Clair made Mothman so much more interesting than he ever seemed to me before, I couldn’t wait to see what new developments were in store. I was not disappointed. While I enjoyed Yesteryears, A Cold Tomorrow ratcheted everything up several notches, and Clair knocks this one right out of the ballpark. The characters were truly engaging, the mystery intensifies, and an element of shivery danger overlays every page.

Not going to go into details here, because I never like to give away too much of any plot, but my favorite character this time around is Officer Ryan Flynn. Try as he might to disbelieve in the Point Pleasant paranormal shenanigans, Flynn can’t ignore a truth that becomes more and more clear to him every day: what seemed solidly real to him for most of his life isn’t, and a creature he’s never really believed in, is.

The tale makes me want to visit Point Pleasant, and take a look around for Mothman, myself. If you love a good, creepy mystery, with everything from Men in Black to flying humanoids, this book is for you. You can read it as a standalone, but I wouldn’t. The first book, A Thousand Yesteryears, gives you a more solid grounding in both the real life tragedy that occurred in Point Pleasant, and the mysterious mythology that haunts the little town.  A Cold Tomorrow takes you to the next level. I recommend both books, and I’m looking forward to the final installment in this shivery trilogy.

A Thousand Yesteryears

A Cold Tomorrow

 

#TuesdayBookBlog – The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks @BrentWeeks

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars for EACH Book!
Pure Enjoyment!

I’m sorry to admit this, but I’m so pressed for time this week, it was either no review at all today, or a very, very short one. I opted for short: Read this trilogy.

For those who might require more depth to their reviews, I’ll add this: If you love well-written fantasy, with strong characters, intricate plotting, friendship that knows no bounds, painful and heartbreaking sacrifice, and really, really weird names: READ THIS TRILOGY!

And to back up my suggestion, here are the blurbs and links for each of  the three Night Angel books. (I’m serious. Read. This. Trilogy.)

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5 of 5 Stars

For Durzo Blint, assassination is an art-and he is the city’s most accomplished artist.

For Azoth, survival is precarious. Something you never take for granted. As a guild rat, he’s grown up in the slums, and learned to judge people quickly – and to take risks. Risks like apprenticing himself to Durzo Blint.

But to be accepted, Azoth must turn his back on his old life and embrace a new identity and name. As Kylar Stern, he must learn to navigate the assassins’ world of dangerous politics and strange magics – and cultivate a flair for death.

Way of Shadows

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5 of 5 Stars

Kylar Stern has rejected the assassin’s life. The Godking’s successful coup has left Kylar’s master, Durzo, and his best friend, Logan, dead. He is starting over: new city, new friends, and new profession.

But when he learns that Logan might actually be alive and in hiding, Kylar is faced with an agonizing choice: will he give up the way of shadows forever and live in peace with his new family, or will he risk everything by taking on the ultimate hit?

Shadow’s Edge

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5 of 5 Stars

Logan Gyre is king of Cenaria, a country under siege, with a threadbare army and little hope. He has one chance – a desperate gamble, but one that could destroy his kingdom.

In the north, the new Godking has a plan. If it comes to fruition, no one will have the power to stop him.

Kylar Stern has no choice. To save his friends-and perhaps his enemies-he must accomplish the impossible: assassinate a goddess.

Beyond the Shadows is the action-packed conclusion to the Night Angel Trilogy.

 

 

 

#TuesdayBookBlog Among Thieves & Sworn in Steel by Douglas Hulick @DougHulick

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars for Each

Among Thieves Blurb:

Drothe has been a member of the Kin for years, rubbing elbows with thieves and murderers in the employ of a crime lord, while smuggling relics on the side. But when an ancient book falls into his hands, Drothe finds himself in a possession of a relic capable of bringing down emperors–a relic everyone in the underworld would kill to obtain.

Sworn in Steel Blurb:

It’s been three months since Drothe killed a legend, burned down a portion of the imperial capital, and found himself unexpectedly elevated into the ranks of the criminal elite. As the newest Gray Prince in the underworld, he’s not only gained friends, but also rivals—and some of them aren’t bothered by his newfound title. A prince’s blood, as the saying goes, flows just as red as a beggar’s.

So when another Gray Prince is murdered and all signs point to Drothe as the hand behind the knife, he knows it’s his blood that’s in danger of being spilled. As former allies turn their backs and dark rumors begin to circulate, Drothe is approached by a man who says he can make everything right again. All he wants in exchange is a single favor.

Now Drothe finds himself traveling to the Despotate of Djan, the empire’s long-standing enemy, to search for the friend he betrayed—and the only person who can get him out of this mess. But the grains of sand are running out fast, and even if Drothe can find his friend, he may not be able to persuade him to help in time…

~~~

I’ve never made any secret of how much I love beautiful book covers. I own an overabundance of print books, filling floor-to-ceiling bookshelves in my library, even though these days, I read almost exclusively on my Kindle. (Old eyes, adjustable fonts, ’nuff said.) Bearing my nearly OCD Cover-Love in mind, it might not surprise you that the cover of Among Thieves pulled me right in, but trust me–the story inside did not disappoint. In fact, it was so engaging, I downloaded and read Book 2 of the series immediately upon finishing Book 1. And happily, I loved Sworn in Steel just as much.

As another reviewer pointed out, Drothe is exceptional among fantasy book heroes because he’s not. Exceptional. At least, not particularly so. He’s smart and scrappy, sure, but not impossibly smart or annoyingly scrappy. He has no magical powers, nor any supernatural strength to mention. What he is, is determined. Once he’s made up his mind, he’s damn hard to stop. And he’s loyal to his friend, Degan.

In fact, the friendship between Drothe and Degan is one of the things I loved most about both of these books. The sincerity of their commitment, even when it was put to the most severe of tests, left me rooting for each of them, throughout both their separate, and combined, journeys. It was a reminder that true friendship can withstand terrible hardship and trauma, and put me to mind of the bond between Scott Lynch’s Locke Lamora and his friend, Jean–but that’s a review for another day.

Hulick’s world building worked for me, with just enough political intrigue to make sense, but not so much as to slow down the plot, which, btw, is filled with action, drama, some very bad (and scary) players, and some great swordplay.

I’ve read there is to be a 3rd book in the series, but have found nothing definite as to when. I’m sincerely hoping the rumors are correct. I’d love to join Drothe and Degan on another adventure, and I highly recommend that you folks who enjoy the realm of fantasy check out the world of the Kin. I don’t think you’ll be sorry.

Among Thieves

Sworn in Steel

 

 

 

A Reason to Live (A Marty Singer Mystery) by Matthew Iden

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My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

BLURB:

In the late nineties, a bad cop killed a good woman and DC Homicide detective Marty Singer got to watch as the murderer walked out of the courtroom a free man. Twelve years later, the victim’s daughter comes to Marty begging for help: the killer is stalking her now. There’s just one problem: Marty’s retired…and he’s retired because he’s battling cancer. But with a second shot at the killer—and a first chance at redemption—Marty’s just found A Reason to Live.

~~~

I don’t often read “straight-up” mysteries, but something about this blurb appealed to me, so I gave it a try, and was happily surprised. I found Marty Singer to be a very likable guy, and I was engaged with the plot all the way.

It’s often difficult to make a character suffering from something like colon cancer sympathetic to the reader in just the right amount. Too much, and it’s uncomfortable. Too little, and it’s not realistic. I felt Matthew Iden hit the perfect balance. I believed Marty had cancer, and was floundering as he tried to figure out what to do with whatever was left of his life, but I never felt it overwhelmed the story, or became maudlin or depressing.

The murder mystery was well done and believable, too, if not earth-shattering at the conclusion. And most important of all when you are writing a series, A Reason to Live made me want to read the next book.

If you are a fan of mysteries with a bit more grit to them than most cozy ones, but without the heavy-handed violence and gratuitous sex of so many on the other end of the spectrum, I recommend you give this one a go. You just might find yourself a whole new series.

A Reason to Live

Some Exciting #News – #StJohnsRiverEcoTours – #NotesFromTheRiver Weekly Blog

2017 is off to a great start, and I’m full of ambition. I have a list of books ready to review here on Bookin’ It, and I have great news about St. Johns River Eco Tours, and a brand new blog “Notes From The River.” Check it out! 🙂

The Write Stuff

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As many of you know, my Riverbend series is based on a fictional small Florida town, located not very far from where I live, and peopled with the eccentric characters who dwell in my slightly warped brain. The first book in the series, Swamp Ghosts, was inspired by my real life friends, Captain Jeanne Bell and her photographer husband, Doug Little. Sadly, we lost Jeanne a few months ago (see my posthere), but Doug has decided the very best way to honor her memory is to continue with their extremely popular Eco tours aboard Jeanne’s custom-built boat, the Naiad.

doug-smallDoug Little

Doug is an excellent wildlife photographer, and is filled with interesting and often amazing information on the habitat and history of the St. Johns River. He’s eager to share all of it, and to that end, Doug has completely revamped the St. Johns River Eco Tours website. Let me tell you, it…

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#MeetTheAuthor St. Johns River #EcoTour @marciameara

If you are in the area, hope you’ll join us for a great afternoon tour!

The Write Stuff

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Join me on Thursday, December 8, at 1:30pm, for a two-hour ecotour on the beautiful St. Johns River, with a brief break mid-point for a reading and some Q&A. See the REAL Florida from the comfort of the Naiad, while enjoying nature in all its glory. Birds, alligators, manatees, bears, deer, and more can be spotted during these tours. Some pretty amazing wildlife (and that’s not counting ME! 😀 ) And there will be time for a book signing afterward, too.

The ecotour departs from Highbanks Marina, in DeBary, and is the best bang for your buck in all of central Florida. Call Doug at (386) 626-9004 to make your reservations today! You’ll be glad you did!

Hope to see you there!

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“Tea With the Author” at DeBary Hall Historic Site

Really excited about this. Hope you’ll come see us, if you live in the area. Accepting reservations now! 🙂

The Write Stuff

e2e34b70c37d5a532547760e7fcc041a_1394171917_lDeBary Hall Historic Site

If you live in the central Florida area, you are cordially invited to attend a catered luncheon and tea at historic DeBary Hall, on November 12, 2016. I’m  exited to say I’ll be the featured guest that day, and I can’t wait! Here are all the details .

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Tea With the Author

61BoUFj9+HL._UX250_Marcia Meara

Saturday, November 12, 2016 11:30 AM
***Ticket Includes***
Catered Luncheon with Custom Blended Teas
A Reading from My Latest Book,
A Question & Answer Session & Book Signing
And an Autographed copy of Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3

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Limited Space Available.
Reserve Your Seat Today!

For Tickets,  Call DeBary Hall at 386-686-3840
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Think about it, folks! A yummy catered lunch of tea sandwiches and delicious desserts, served by staff members in period costume. Piping hot cups of custom blended teas, named for characters from my novels, such…

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#ABoyNamedRabbit – Wake-Robin Ridge Book 2 – $.99 Sale Starts Tomorrow!

Was unable to post a review this week, but wanted to share my Kindle Countdown sale of A Boy Named Rabbit with you guys, anyway.

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ABNRSmall*Amazon Average Rating – 5.0 Stars*

Because Wake-Robin Ridgeis already permanently priced at $.99, my first Kindle Countdown of the fall will feature the second book in the series,  A Boy Named Rabbit. If you haven’t yet read the story of this very special little boy, this is your chance to download it for a mere $.99 all day tomorrow, after which it will slowly increase in price each day until Tuesday, at which time, it will revert to the normal price of $4.99. (Don’t forget to share, thanks!)

Amazon Blurb

In Book 2 of the Wake-Robin Ridge series, Marcia Meara, author of Swamp Ghostsand Finding Hunter, returns to the rugged beauty of the North Carolina mountains, introducing a little boy whose remarkable gift will change the world for everyone he meets.

“Evil’s comin’, boy . . . comin’ fast. Look for the man with eyes like winter skies…

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#TuesdayBookBlog – A Thousand Yesteryears by Mae Clair

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Amazon Blurb: Behind a legend lies the truth…

As a child, Eve Parrish lost her father and her best friend, Maggie Flynn, in a tragic bridge collapse. Fifteen years later, she returns to Point Pleasant to settle her deceased aunt’s estate. Though much has changed about the once thriving river community, the ghost of tragedy still weighs heavily on the town, as do rumors and sightings of the Mothman, a local legend. When Eve uncovers startling information about her aunt’s death, that legend is in danger of becoming all too real . . .

So begins Mae Clair’s very shivery novel about a town still trying desperately to recover from the terrible tragedy that caused Eve Parrish and her mother to abandon their home, friends, and family for nearly fifteen years. Upon Eve’s return, she discovers, among other things, that the legend of Mothman still hangs over the town, and believe me, it adds an unexpected dimension to this tale of buried secrets and soul-crushing guilt.

As a fan of Appalachian folklore, I’ve read about Mothman many times, but have to give kudos to Mae Clair for her skillful rendition of what I originally thought was a pretty silly concept. In her able hands, it most definitely is not silly. In fact, I can’t wait for the next book to find out more. In addition to the continuing story of the Eve’s future plans and growing relationship with her childhood crush, Caden Flynn, the mystery of just who, or what, Mothman actually is, just might get laid to rest. I’m dying to learn exactly what the title of the book only hints at.

If you like your mysteries filled with evil aplenty of the human kind, and a touch of what might be something supernatural . . . or not . . . you should definitely check out A Thousand Yesteryears. And may I add, it’s always a pleasure to read a well constructed, well-edited, and solidly written book like this. I will be following along with this story, and will definitely continue reading more of Mae Clair’s work.

A Thousand Yesteryears

#TuesdayBookBlog – The Pax Arcana Series by Elliott James

 

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My Rating 5 of 5 Stars

“John Charming isn’t your average Prince…

He comes from a line of Charmings — an illustrious family of dragon slayers, witch-finders and killers dating back to before the fall of Rome. Trained by a modern day version of the Knights Templar, monster hunters who have updated their methods from chain mail and crossbows to Kevlar and shotguns, John Charming was one of the best–until a curse made him one of the abominations the Knights were sworn to hunt.” (Amazon Blurb for Charming: Pax Arcana Book 1)

All of the above is true, but due to the aforementioned curse, John is now leading a very low-key life, tending bar–hiding–in rural Virginia, until the wrong people walk through the door, and turn his safe but humdrum life upside down. Not exactly an unusual premise as urban fantasy goes, but the surprise is in the writing, folks. Elliott James has a way with words. Especially funny, snarky words.

The adventures in Books 1, 2, and 3 are well written, believable, and yes, charming. But most of all, the ever-present one-liners are utterly addicting. I knew I was going to love the series the  minute I read, “Wait . . . did I just write that last part out loud?” That did it for me, and onward I went, pausing only to savor and highlight other droll and witty lines.

Combine those great lines with chapter titles that are worth the price of admission alone, and I’m a fan for life. How can you resist chapters like “If Shoving You is Wrong, I Don’t Want to do  Right,” or “The Norse Whisperer,” or my favorite, “Psychopomp and  Circumstance.”

Now for those of you who can take or leave that kind of humor, there’s still plenty of adventure and action, with all the usual suspects, and a few who aren’t so usual, like Valkyries and a very creepy Naga.

There are currently four books in the series out. I’ve only read the first three, but I’m quite confident I’ll enjoy #4 just as much. Highly recommended for fans of urban fantasy, magic, various and sundry supernatural creatures, and an extremely funny and appealing hero, determined to do the right thing, in spite of his bad luck so far. And if you don’t believe me, check out what Patricia Briggs, Kevin Hearne, Richard Kadrey, and my idol, Seanan McGuire have to say. It’s all there on the Amazon page! 🙂

Charming

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Daring

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Fearless

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In Shining Armor

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