Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Ben Sinclair receives a letter that turns his world upside down. The letter is postmarked from Medicine Gore. It is unsigned. The contents of the letter inform Ben that he is the father of a fifteen year old boy named, Michael. Ben hires an investigator and discovers that the letter is true. He is a father. Ben fell in love with a girl named Kelly, who is Michael’s mother. Kelly disappeared ten years ago, leaving Michael to be raised by his Aunt Emma.

Ben returns to Medicine Gore but not under good circumstances. Emma remembers Ben and has her guard up about him. Ben may be Michael’s father but Emma is the one that raised Michael and she won’t let him go without a fight.

Tempt Me If You Can did tempt me some. It is also book two of the Sinclair brothers’ novels. I thought the chemistry shared between Ben and Emma was nice but I was wanting more passion between them. I did like how Ben and Michael bonded quickly. Ben really stepped up as a father figure for Michael. There was a good storyline that took place in this book besides just the romance with Emma and Ben. I don’t want to give anything away but the ending had a nice twist to it.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Never Tell Our Business to Strangers

There are many memoirs currently available to read but how many people can say that their father was wanted by the FBI and who used to be a business associate with Joey Gallo, a big time mobster before the Gotti family. Author and nighttime news assistant of the New York Times, Jennifer Mascia calls this life.

When Jennifer was a little girl, she can remember a time when the FBI came to arrest her father right before Christmas. Jennifer asked her mother’s boss if this was real and her mother’s boss responded that this was not real and they were filming a movie. Though, Jennifer wanted so hard to believe him, Jennifer knew that what was happening was for real.

Due to her father’s involvement with drugs, mobsters and shooting someone, Jennifer and her family were always on the move. They live in California, Florida, and New York. Even with all of the things Jennifer’s father did, he was still a good father to Jennifer and her mother. People can change.

I read this book in one sitting. I found it fascinating that I couldn’t stop reading. For the short time I was reading this book, I felt like I was part of Jennifer’s family. Part of this was due to the family pictures included throughout this memoir. Jennifer’s father was a nice guy. I am not usually a fan of memoirs but I was a fan of this one. So glad that Ms. Mascia decided to go ahead and share about her family and childhood unlike the title of this book…Never Tell Our Business to Strangers.

Come take a Wild Ride with me

Mary Alice “Mab” Brannigan is helping out her uncle at Dreamland, an amusement park. Mab is in charge of fixing and repairing all of the amusement park rides and statues. Mab enjoys her work, especially since she is a bit of a loner. What Mab doesn’t know is that Dreamland is the home to five of the most dangerous demons. They were banished by a group known as the Guardia. The Guardia contained the demons’ souls in containers. The demons can never leave Dreamland.

Ethan, Glenda’s son has returned home from the military. Glenda is one of the Guardia’s. Things quickly get out of control, when several of the demons escape and start causing havoc with the tourist. Kharos, the Devil is plotting his release and how he is going to take control. The Guardia with Ethan and Mab’s help must stop the demons before Kharos is loose and it is too late. Here you thought nothing could hurt you at an amusement park!

It has been a while since I have read a Jennifer Crusie novel. This is the first book I have read where Ms. Cruise has collaborated with Mr. Mayer. Even though they have written several novels together. Wild Ride is one wild reading adventure…filled with excitement, thrills, chills, and laughs. Mab, Ethan, Glenda and the rest of the Guardia are a very likable bunch. They are like a dysfunctional family, who you don’t want to be seen with but still love and can’t get enough of. Paranormal and urban fans alike will enjoy this book. So why don’t you pick up a copy of this book today and take a Wild Ride. You won’t regret it.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Reversing Antidepressant Weight Gain

Reversing Antidepressant Weight Gain
By Judith J. Wurtman, PhD,
Co-author of The Serotonin Power Diet: Eat Carbs -- Nature's Own Appetite Suppressant -- to Stop Emotional Overeating and Halt Antidepressant-Associated Weight Gain

Antidepressants have been associated with weight gain since they were first used about 50 years ago. Tricyclic antidepressants (TCA) relieved depression but left patients considerably heavier as a consequence of treatment. One in particular, amitryptyline, was associated with uncontrollable sugar cravings. When Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Blockers (SSRIs) were introduced as the new generation of antidepressants, it was hoped that weight gain would not be a problem. Unfortunately this expectation has not been realized. Clinician were optimistic about Prozac, the first of the SSRIs, as patients lost weight during the early months of treatment. Prozac was viewed not only as an effective mood regulator but a potential weight-loss drug as well. It was tested in a national study and although weight loss did occur early in the study, weight gain followed. By the end of the study, patients on the drug weighed the same as they had before starting the program.

The potential to cause weight gain is not limited to Prozac; at this point there is no effective antidepressant that does not have the potential to cause weight gain. Moreover, drugs used to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia may leave the patient with l00 or more unwanted pounds.

There is still no explanation of how the drugs interfere with appetite and weight regulation. Some animal studies focusing on drugs like Zyprexa that cause substantial weight gain suggest that the drug interferes with other brain chemicals such as histamine or a sub-group of serotonin-containing cells, thereby promoting hunger. But so far no one understands how drugs like Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro or Prozac are able to limit or prevent control over food intake.

Several years ago, I was asked to set up and run a weight management center at McLean Hospital, a psychiatric facility associated with Harvard Medical School. Our clients were drawn from the surrounding communities but what many had in common was weight gain during treatment with psychotropic drugs; some took two or three medications. What was striking about their problem is that almost all had been thin before starting on their medications. Before getting sick, these men and women never had emotional issues with food. They ate healthily, had never been on diet, and tended to enjoy exercise. All were startled by the change in their eating habits and, of course, in their bodies. Weight gain ranged between 15 and 40 pounds for those on antidepressants and between 75 and 125 pounds for those on mood stabilizers and atypical antipsychotic drugs. What they all had in common was the inability to turn off their urge to eat, regardless of how much food they were consuming.

Since then, as now, no one really knew how to deal with this type of weight gain we decided to try an approach that had worked with typical obese clients. We knew from our research and previous clinical experience that increasing serotonin synthesis increased satiety. The SSRIs that theoretically should have activated this serotoninergic function was doing just the opposite, i.e. causing the patients to feel a chronic need to eat.

All carbohydrates with the exception of fructose (fruit sugar) will lead to an increase in serotonin synthesis if the carbohydrate is consumed without protein. The process involves the uptake into the brain of the amino acid tryptophan, the precursor to serotonin. Insulin release after carbohydrate digestion removes from the circulation other amino acids that compete with tryptophan for brain uptake. Tryptophan enters the brain easily and is quickly converted into serotonin. Protein consumption, even if eaten along with carbohydrates, floods the circulation with these competitor amino acids and tryptophan, the scarcest amino acid in protein, does not get into the brain.

Thus the diet we developed to increase serotonin synthesis consisted of scheduled consumption of easily digested carbohydrates during the day and in the evening. Clients were given a carbohydrate-containing beverage previously developed at an MIT research study to drink late in the morning, late in the afternoon and if needed about two hours before bedtime. The drink contained a mixture of fast and slowly digesting carbohydrates and no fat or protein. Clients were also given a list of carbohydrate snack foods that could substitute for the drink. In addition we gave the clients a nutrient-rich, reduced calorie food plan to follow. They were also encouraged to resume the exercise some of them had abandoned after gaining weight.

The satiating effects of the increased serotonin synthesis were felt within an hour or so of consuming the carbohydrate drink. Our clients told us that the nagging need to eat went away. They had no trouble following the reduced-calorie food plan because they were not hungry. And they lost weight, despite continuing on the medications that had caused their weight gain.

This approach to reversing antidepressant weight gain, now detailed in The Serotonin Power Diet, is simple and effective. For maximum efficacy, it should be put in place at the start of treatment so that weight gain can be prevented. However, because consuming carbohydrates is such an integral part of the plan, those whose medications have caused them to develop obesity-associated diabetes cannot use it without supervision by a dietician.

One interesting benefit of this approach to weight loss is that many of our clients reported simply feeling better. They told us they felt calmer, less anxious, slept better and were more relaxed. The opposite was also reported by some of our clients who had been told to avoid eating carbohydrates by their physicians in order to lose weight. Many reported a worsening of their mood and one told us that she contemplated suicide after being taken off carbohydrates.

It is hoped that soon there will be a new class of drugs to regulate mood disorders without causing the distress of weight gain. But in the meanwhile, the best solution to this weight gain is to take advantage of serotonin’s ability to turn off the appetite by simply eating therapeutic amounts of carbohydrates.

© 2010 Judith J. Wurtman, PhD, co-author of The Serotonin Power Diet: Eat Carbs -- Nature's Own Appetite Suppressant -- to Stop Emotional Overeating and Halt Antidepressant-Associated Weight Gain

Author Bio
Judith J. Wurtman, PhD, co-author of The Serotonin Power Diet: Eat Carbs -- Nature's Own Appetite Suppressant -- to Stop Emotional Overeating and Halt Antidepressant-Associated Weight Gain, has discovered the connection between carbohydrate craving, serotonin, and emotional well-being in her MIT clinical studies. She received her PhD from George Washington University, is the founder of a Harvard University hospital weight-loss facility and counsels private weight management clients. She has written five books, including The Serotonin Solution, and more than 40 peer-reviewed articles for professional publications. She lives in Miami Beach, Florida.

For more information, please visit www.SerotoninPowerDiet.com

Friday, March 26, 2010

Lisa Jackson is Without Mercy

Jules Farentino’s half sister, Shay is such a trouble maker. Unfortunately, Shay has used up all of her chances. Their mother sends Shay to Blue Rock Academy. A school for troubled teens. Jules has a bad feeling about Blue Rock Academy. Jules’s mother tells Jules there is nothing to worry about. Yeah then why has Lauren Conway, a student at Blue Rock Academy been missing for six months and no one knows of her whereabouts? Jules must find a way to get Shay out of Blue Rock Academy before she becomes the next victim.

Without Mercy really packs the punches and the adrenaline rush. I am a big fan of Lisa Jackson’s and have read almost all of her books. I have to admit that it has been a little while since I have enjoyed myself reading one of her books, until now. The ending for this book leaves much to be desired. I know it is intentional as there will be a follow up book. I just finished this one and already am impatient for the next one. Julies is a fighter. She is the best big sister anyone could ask for. Shay turned out to be a huge surprise. I don’t want to get on her bad side. Without Mercy will make you scream mercy for more!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Watch out for the Hazard!

Hazard, Kentucky is a small town. The biggest revenue for this town is the mine. Amos Blevin and several other men were working down in the mines when a cave in happened. Amos rescued his fellow co-workers. Inspector Will Murphy has been sent to investigate the cave in. It seems to be an accident but then why does it seem that the local authorities are hiding something including Will’s brother? Will investigation will lead him to a place where the truth just may hurt him. There is no turning back.

Hazard is the first book I have read by this author. I thought this book did turn out pretty well. I say this only because as much as I really wanted to love this book, I had some difficulties trying to figure out what was happening at times throughout this book. The miners would be inside the mine and then outside going about their business. Just when I thought I had things straighten out, the story would switched from past to present and I would get lost again. If the transaction between the shifting of past to present had been smoother for me then I know I would have be able to just sit back and really enjoy this book. Overall, I did like this book and the characters. I look forward to Mr. Harris’s next piece of work.

Down to the Wire

Chris Turley works as a reporter for the Bergen News. Chris is a good reporter but he will never be like his father…the legendary Edward Turley. Chris dreams of one day winning a Pulitzer for his work. He just may get the Pulitzer sooner then he thought. Chris receives a phone call from a tipster. The caller tells Chris that he has some information regarding corruption involving a high level government official. Chris agrees to meet the caller at the park. Chris arrives only to the building next door to him blow up. Chris becomes a hero and saves five lives. Chris’s career quickly picks up. Chris soon realizes that he is just a pawn in a sick psycho’s game and it is up to Chris to stop him, before the price gets too high.

I have been eyeing Mr. Rosenfelt’s books for a while now but haven’t tried one until now. Let me start off by saying…WOW! Down to the Wire is a thrill ride every page from beginning until the end. I couldn’t read this book fast enough. I was on the edge of my seat almost the whole time. Chris had a lot of character and depth. He was fully-rounded versus being one-dimensional. There were enough twists and turns to make a suspense/thriller fan like me pleased. I am fully invested in reading more books by David Rosenfelt.

Montana Legacy + Free Books

Jesse McCord and his cousins have heard the stories that supposedly there is a fortune in McCord gold to be found. There grandfather searched for years but never found any as did many of the other generations, until the stories were regarded more as just that stories.

Amy Parrish left a long time ago. When she did, she took Jesse’s heart. She has now returned. Jesse isn’t sure he wants to give Amy another chance but he can’t deny the feelings he still has for her. Will Amy and Jesse finally have the happy ending they wish for?

Montana Legacy is book one in this trilogy. I thought this book was a pretty good start to this trilogy. Amy and Jesse’s relationship was more on the sweeter side. While there were some good moments in this book, there wasn’t anything that really jumped out at me and kept my interest going full speed. I do have to admit that this is a quick read, even though I couldn’t fully get into this book as much as everyone else seemed to enjoy it. The setting for this story…Montana ranch with hot cousins is enough to make me willing to give a second chance to RC Ryan and check out Montana Destiny, the next book.

Five Fun Facts

1. The names of all three cousins in this series are famous Western names that I've always loved: Jesse (James), Wyatt (Earp), and Zane (Grey).

2. There really was a gold strike in 1862 Montana at Grasshopper Creek. I doubt the nuggets were as big as a man's fist or thumb, but why not dream big? I love the idea of a treasure lost for a century or more, leading a family into the treasure hunt.

3. In Montana Legacy, part of the fun of reading is that Jesse McCord and Amy Parrish were childhood sweethearts, separated by circumstances. I think everybody can recall their first big love. A few very lucky people actually reconnect with that first love and make it work. Oh, I'm one of them. Very happily married to the guy I met in first grade.

4. Montana is one of my favorite locations in which to set a series because it has such an ever-changing landscape. In that single state, you can find plains, hills, mountains, waterfalls, and four distinct seasons, each of which is simply more spectacular than the last, and I purposefully tried to use all of them in this series.

5. I'm not certain this story could work anywhere else but in the rough, rugged west. Though Jesse tries to be politically correct, there's just something in his genes that has him breaking a lot of rules. I find readers are much more willing to give a pass to a cowboy. Don't you agree? But maybe I'm prejudiced, since Jesse was inspired by my husband—a blunt, plain-spoken rule-breaker. A warrior who would risk his life for the people he loves. And for all his rough edges, he's the most loving, tender-hearted man I know.

Courtesy of Anna with Hachette, I am giving away 5 copies of this book. Open to US and Canada Only. Must be a follower.

Contest ends April 6th


The year is 1217.

There is a feuding war going on between the kingdoms of Oakharn and Langmyr.

Brys Tarnell is a mercenary. He was part of Sir Galefrid of Bulls’ March entourage. An ambush was waiting for Sir Galefrid outside the church, they were praying in. Brys was not in the church. On his way out of town, Brys is handed a baby. The baby is Wistan, who is heir to the throne.

Odosse and her newborn son, Aubry are all alone. When Brys comes upon them promising safety, Odosse agrees to become nurse maid to Wistan.

Sir Kelland Knight of the Sun. Bitharn is Sir Kelland friend and companion. She is deadly with a bow and arrow. What Sir Kelland doesn’t know is that Bitharn loves him.

Leferic is the brother of Sir Galefrid’s. He already has dreams of power and glory now that his brother is dead. The only person who could crush Leferic’s dreams is Wistan. It is going to be a long journey on The River Kings’ Road.

The River Kings’ Road is author, Liane Merciel’s debut novel. This book is a mixture of Lord of the Rings for the adventure, The Sword and the Stone for the theme, and The Riyria Revelations series for the great story line and characters. I have to admit through I really enjoyed all of the characters; my favorite parts of this book were when Brys and Odosse were featured. From the first page to the last page, this book grabbed me. There was not a dull moment to be found in this book. All of the characters interacted well with each other. The River Kings’ Road is one book you will be recommending to your friends, over and over again.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Scandal On Rincon Hill

Sarah Woolson awakens to the pebbles hitting her bedroom window. It is Samuel, a good friend of Sarah’s brother, George Lewis. George is a crime reporter. He goes but the alias of Ian Fearless. This is because their father is the Honorable Horace T. Woolson. The judge despises reporters.

There has been a body found, a few blocks away from their home. Sarah gets involved in the murder investigation. Someone is trying to cover up the murder. Sarah’s nose leads her to a brothel. Things are really heating up. Sarah better be careful or she could end up next in the morgue.

Scandal on Rincon Hill is the fourth Sarah Woolson novel. These books can be read as stand alone novels. I have wanted to check these books out since I first heard about this series but just haven’t gotten around to trying a book out until now. I was expecting a little more of a hook, which didn’t happen for me. It started off good and slowed a bit in the middle and ended alright. Though, I did still like this book. Sarah has guts and usually does things before she fully thinks them though. Somehow things always work out in the end. This book kind of took me back to the Sherlock Holmes vibe with Shirley Tallman’s writing style.

Our Lady of Immaculate Deception

Roxana “Roxy” Marie Abruzzo is in the business of collecting and selling architectural items as part of her salvage business. Roxy’s half brother is New Jersey’s crime boss, Michael Abruzzo. Roxy is trying to break away from her family’s influence and turn straight but it isn’t easy, especially when friends and family come calling. Roxy soon finds herself in over her head, when she feels the need for the five finger discount.

Our Lady of Immaculate Deception is the first book in a new series by author, Nancy Martin. This book turned out to be a bit of a disappointment for me. I was expecting tons of laughs and a rip, roaring good time. This did not happen for me. I had a hard time getting into this book. It started out slow and I even put it down for a while, thinking it will pick up but it never did. I had a really hard time finishing this book. I never connected with the characters and the storyline was kind of weak. I thought it was only me, who felt this way but it appears that many others agreed with me. Though, I didn’t care for this book, I have read good things about Ms. Martin’s other books and am willing to give them a try.

The Association of Biblical Counselors

Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX—The Association of Biblical Counselors (ABC) has announced its annual conference to be held on May 20-22, 2010 at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, TX. The keynote speaker will be Tullian Tchividjian, addressing this year’s theme of The Gospel Revolution.

Tchividjian is the pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, founded by the late Dr. D. James Kennedy, and is the grandson of renowned evangelist Dr. Billy Graham. Tchividjian has authored several books, including Unfashionable and Do I Know God?, and speaks at conferences throughout the US. His sermons are broadcast daily on the radio program Godward Living.

The conference is an experience designed for both the young and old of our culture and those who lead them. The Gospel Revolution: Rediscovering the Power of the Cross will teach a new generation of Christians how to effectively apply the Gospel of the Cross to the real issues of everyday life. Tchividjian explains, “I am absolutely convinced that most Christians believe that the gospel ignites the Christian in life, but they fail to believe the gospel is the fuel that keeps Christians going and growing every day.”

Although the conference is targeted to counselors, the event is open to anyone who would like to better apply Biblical principles to own their lives, as well to those who are seeking to become better equipped to offer counsel within their churches and ministries.

The Gospel Revolution conference will feature several authors and international speakers, including Dr. Paul David Tripp, Elyse Fitzpatrick, and Dr. Mike Emlet. Speakers with local ties include Beau Hughes (Lead Pastor of The Village Church in Denton, TX), Elliott Greene (Redeemer Seminary), and Jeremy Lelek (President of ABC).

Based in Bedford, TX, the Association of Biblical Counselors exists to encourage, equip, and empower all believers everywhere to live and counsel the Word. ABC offers resources designed to equip professional counselors, pastoral staff, and all Christians to provide wise counsel that comes straight from Scripture—and only from Scripture. ABC believes that the Bible answers every single question that psychology tries to answer.

For more information about ABC and for conference details and registration, visit http://www.christiancounseling.com/

Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy: Curiouser and Curiouser

We are all familiar with the story and movie of Alice in Wonderland but have you ever wondered how Alice’s adventures related to real life? Well you can get all your questions or curiosities answered in Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy: Curiouser and Curiouser.

This book is edited by two professors of philosophy but this book does not read like a boring college text book. All the different characters and situations Alice encountered while in Wonderland is dissected and broken out into mini chapters. Chapters like Jam yesterday, jam tomorrow, but never jam today: On procrastination, hiking, and…The Spice Girls? Or Reasoning Down the Rabbit-Hole: Logical Lessons in Wonderland.

I found the topics and the discussions very interesting. I thought this book also showed that fairy tales and movie characters still have to deal with the same issues we do in real life, only you don’t see the behind the scenes. This book would make a good book club selection to discuss with fellow readers. Check this book out but be warned as you will journey down the rabbit hole but you may not want to know how deep it really is.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Former Dallas police officer Claudia Cruz has gained a bad rap. She shot and killed an unarmed rapist. Claudia is now part of an elite organization known as Avalon. It is composed of skilled individuals including mercenaries whose mission is to recover stolen artwork.

FBI agent Vincent DeLuca is teamed up with Claudia. Vincent doesn’t trust Claudia. In fact he even has her locked up. If Vincent wants to play games…Two can play. Claudia has a few tricks up her sleeves. Things quickly heat up between Claudia and Vincent.

Her Last Chance is book two in the Avalon series. It can be read and enjoyed as a stand alone novel. The zinging banter between Claudia and Vincent was good four play leading up to some really hot sex scenes. I thought that the romance involving Claudia and Vincent was balanced out really nicely with the rest of the story. Because there was such good dynamics with Claudia and Vincent and the story line was appealing, it made reading this book a breeze. Make this your chance to try Her Last Chance by Michele Albert.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

It’s a Wicked Spring Giveaway!

Are you bored? Hate spring clean up? Looking for something exciting to do? Well how about heading over to the Three Wicked Writers blog and become a follower. You could win an ebook from one of the Three Wicked Writers. Details below.

At Three Wicked Writers we’ve decided to leap into spring with a fun, easy contest. All you have to do is ‘follow us’ on our BLOG and you’re entered to win. Three followers will be picked, each will receive an ebook from Regina Carlysle, Madison Scott and Anne Rainey.

You can follow us by going to our blog and clicking the *follow* button—beneath the about us section on the sidebar.

(NOT the Twitter button!)

The winners will be announced on our blog Thursday, April 1st!!!

A Dog's Inspiration to a Writer and the World

A Dog's Inspiration to a Writer and the World: How the Life and Death of a Golden Retriever Might Save Us From Ourselves By Michael Cogdill, Author of She-Rain: A Story of Hope

On the morning of May 29, 2008, I lifted Savannah from her bed, carried her to the car, and made the longest seven-mile drive of my life. At the office of a veterinarian, welcomed by that profession's unique form of love, I soon lay on a cushioned floor beside a golden retriever who showed virtually none of her age, watching both my hands stroke the face that had welcomed me home for thirteen years.

The answer to a yearning awaited us that morning. It was part of the quiet covenant I made with Savannah the day my wife, Jill, and I adopted her. When a sweet dog's bloodline comes in confluence with our own, we human animals take on a sacred devotion. As sickness comes on hard and takes down the joy of living, caring dog owners are committed to shouldering our beloved family member to a merciful death. On the floor that morning, I answered Savannah's courageous outreach for that death, allowing her to carry me. The peace that arrived in her final breath lifted the tide of my heartbreak. As I nearly drowned in sadness, Savannah showed me to the shore of a graceful goodbye.

Later that day, a prominent friend in Hollywood, fresh from the same grief in his own family, shared with us some comfort, but also a spiritual yearning of his own: Why would God measure the lifetime of dogs, and other animals we love, by a virtual hourglass when we live by a calendar? Why so little time on earth for those so good and loyal? It seems a cruelty.

After these months of healing, and the reporting of countless human tragedies on television, I've arrived at a conclusion: Savannah's too-short life, like that of all sweet dogs, calls us to a fine urgency dogs get after big living. They seem illiterate of worry, yet able to read joys that elude us. They quietly shout to us: Wag your backside to music instead of your tongue to malice. Wallow less in pity and more on the bed of the one you adore. Give yourself, extravagantly, away.

I still fail her, of course. I live too much in my worries and sorrows and too little on the joy path she wore for me. Yet in these times of media-saturated human disaster, a thought of Savannah improves me as a man, recalls me to life as a writer. Her memory sets off some musing about the hope found in the life and death of a good dog. See if these truths make the news of your times easier to bear:

Savannah feared nothing about death. She went to it with eyes full of gratitude for the way her life had been. Her eyes seemed to draw from some deep well of love, way beyond the crust of words. Even in her final hour, sick as she was, she lived as a divining rod to this love. No matter how I tried to comfort her, she served me -- right to her last moment. The kidney failure that was stalling her life was no match for the servant's heart within her.

The high pitch of biased media, politics, and the vitriol of social debate held no allure for Savannah. She made grace her way of life. She ran from loud voices and bounded to gentility wherever she found it. We could trust her to be tender, even with the smallest child. Savannah taught me there's nothing so powerful in this life as a truly gentle woman or man.

There is no vanity in such dogs. They split mud holes, then track adoration across the floors of the humans who forgive them. They surely wonder why we care so much for things and so little for helping one another have simple wellness and fun. Savannah never cared for the size of my car. She simply loved the ride. She measured none of my money in how she valued me. In times of my sorrow, she made certain to place her head under my hand, letting me read a sense of all-will-be-more-than-well in its Braille.

With the too-often forgotten elderly in a nursing home, Savannah visited with no consciousness of herself. The sights and smells that repulse too many humans never seem to repel a good dog. Something innate about Savannah longed to care for everyone. She never appraised anyone by their politics, religion, or race. No human bloodline or job pedigree held any sway. Savannah treated the ignorant as kings and the malicious as queens. Even avowed dog haters valued what they found in her, and she loved them without pause.

Such a dog will forgive to the point of endangering itself. Some may argue enough hatefulness will turn any dog, even the most generous and kind. Perhaps this forms a caveat to us as well. Maybe good dogs teach us we will eventually draw back what we put into the world. Or is it that forgiveness becomes a form of capital we spend to the great shock of our enemies, an investment from which we draw the interest of turning enemies into friends? After every trip to the vet, on the heels of cavity exams every sane creature loathes, Savannah forgave Jill and me. We never had to ask.

In the afterglow of thinking of her, I adore considering how living so might change humankind. What might the news look like if everyone were so devotedly kind to everyone else? My job -- as a writer of news and fiction -- would so beautifully change.

Within an hour after putting her into that permanent sleep, I sat weeping at our kitchen table and wrote an open letter to Savannah. It let my grief out to run, with the memory of her a comfort at my knee. I leave you with a passage of it here, and a wish that the news of our future days will improve, changed in some small way by the legacy of Savannah.

"You tracked to the child who lives in me always. In this man you found a boy who loves you, sweet girl. Even in death, somehow you will always lead the boy in me home. I will follow your trail. And together, in the grand wet and muddy fun places of memory, we will be glad."

© 2010 Michael Cogdill, author of She-Rain: A Story of Hope

Author Bio
Michael Cogdill is blessed as one of the most honored television storytellers in America. His cache of awards includes 24 Emmys and the National Edward R. Murrow for a broad range of achievement, from live reporting to long-form storytelling. His television credits as a journalist include CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, and The Today Show, and Michael's interview history crosses a wide horizon: The Reverend Billy Graham, Dr. Mehmet Oz of Oprah fame, Dr. Henry Kissinger, Abby Hoffman, Senator Hillary Clinton, Senator John McCain, Howard K. Smith, James Brown, Keith Lockhart of the Boston Pops and many other newsmakers. His coverage credits include Presidents and Vice Presidents of the United States.

Michael spent ten years writing She-Rain, letting it evolve into a world of fiction drawn from his upbringing in Western North Carolina but reaching far beyond. His other writing credits are Cracker the Crab and the Sideways Afternoon -- a children's motivational book, and a self-help volume, Raise the Haze. Michael makes his home in South Carolina with his wife, Jill (a publishing entrepreneur), and their second-generation golden retriever, Maggie. He's currently working on his second novel.

For more information, please visit http://she-rain.blogspot.com.


Megan Chase and her demon boyfriend, Greyson Dante are heading off to a retreat for a bunch of demon leaders. It is going to be on crazy time. All of Megan’s demon friends want Megan to complete the ritual and release her demon inside and join them on the immortal side.

Megan and Greyson arrive at the resort. You can guarantee that there is never a dull moment when Megan is involved. A crazy lunatic is out to kill Megan. As if a crazy psycho is going to scare Megan when he hangs out with demons all day.

Demon Possessed is the third Megan Chase novel. I did not read the prior two novels. This is a time where I am wondering if it would have made a difference in my enjoying this book more. I say this not because I felt you had to read these books in order but because I wasn’t fully invested in the characters from the beginning, so it took me a while to warm up to them and by then the book was half over. Having said all this, I thought this book had some high points. The ending was a bit of a twist. I liked Megan. She seemed to be the only sane person in this book, which I found funny as she is both a psychologist and psychic. I do plan to go back and check out Personal Demons and Demon Inside.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Succubi Like It Hot

Newly made succubus, Jackie Brighton is back. Life as a succubus is not as easy as it seems. Oh the way guys are now interested in Jackie is nice as well as getting the promotion at work but dealing with boyfriend issues and being cursed…sucks.

Jackie is trying to deal with both Noah, who is a fallen angel and Zane, a vampire. The male testosorone levels between these two are in full force. Jackie somehow becomes cursed. She put the pizza guy into a coma. Remy, Jackie’s good friend and fellow succubus suggests that Jackie and her take a road trip to New Orleans to visit the oldest living succubus t help Jackie. In the meantime, Jackie is also dealing with her itch for sex and with neither of Noah or Zane talking to Jackie; it is going to be a long road trip.

Just like the last book, Succubi Like It Hot brings the fire, humor, and pure enjoyment! Jackie is so hilarious. When you throw Remy into the mix, she and Remy are like Thelma and Louise. It is easy to see why Jackie can’t choose between Noah and Zane. They are both tall, sexy guys. Noah is the good guy and Zane is the bad boy.

If you haven’t tried these books out yet then now is the perfect time. Pick up a copy of Gentlemen Prefer Succubi; book one in the Succubus Diaries series today. Jill Myles has been added to my favorite author list. I only had one issue with this book…that is I finished it. Now I have a long wait till the next book in this series, My Fair Succubi is released.

The Right Call

Everyone has adjusted to the recent uproar in their lives, when Vanessa announced she was pregnant by one of her college professors. Vanessa’s son, Carter is growing up fast.

Before Ethan Langley went back to college; He and Vanessa were starting up a romantic relationship. Now that Ethan is back in town, Vanessa can’t wait to see Ethan again. Before things can really get heated up, Ethan’s Cousin, Drew’s room mate is killed in a drive by shooting. There is something about the shooting that doesn’t seem right to Ethan. The more Ethan digs the deeper things get. He uncovers something that could tear two families apart. Ethan must make a difficult choice.

The Right Call is the third and final novel in the Sophie Trace Trilogy. It can be read and enjoyed as a stand alone novel. This story line doesn’t intertwine with the prior events in the last novel. I like that Ethan had a stronger part in this book. He seemed like a nice guy in the last book from the brief appearance that he made. This story had just the right amount of romance mixed with intrigue to make it The Right Call about reading it. I have grown to like the Jessup family. I will be sorry to see them go. I will be keeping an eye on author, Kathy Herman and what she comes out with next.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Lumby Lines

Married couple, Mark and Pam Walker is on their vacation, when they stumble upon the small town of Lumby. It is in Lumby that the Walkers discover their dream come true. There was an abbey, Montis Abbey that burned down a long time ago. The abbey is nestled on a bunch of land that overlooks an orchard. The Walkers purchase the abbey. They decide to turn it into a bed and breakfast. They people of Lumby are excited to have new life in the old abbey. Well most people are excited. William Beezer, owner of The Lumby Lines newspaper is anything but thrilled. In fact he is trying his best to run the Walkers out of town.

I loved every moment of this book from the beginning, middle and end. I liked this book so much that I was sad when it did end. My favorite parts of this book were reading the Sheriff’s Complaints section in The Lumby Lines newspaper. Who knew that the small town of Lumby could get so crazy? No wonder Sheriff Dixon is always busy with complaints like: 11:22pm Pickup vs. Deer. Pickup wins, or 5:11 pm Brian Beezer and Terry McGuire arrested for shooting trout in Goose Creek or 1:14 pm A caller reported someone had stolen his daughter’s lawn mower and left an older one as a replacement. All these complaints of course are very serious and valid.

All the residents of Lumby are great. They are like one big family. As I was reading this book, I couldn’t help but compare Gail Fraser to another one of my favorite authors Robyn Carr. Gail is right up there with Robyn. Gail Fraser has a whole line of these types of books that focus on the town of Lumby. I plan to check them all out

The Skull Ring

Even moving to a new town can’t stop Julia Stone from still having nightmares about an evil person known only as The Creep. Luckily for Julia, Dr. Forrest is helping Julia get over her fears of The Creep. As much as Julia appreciates Dr. Forrest’s help, strange things are happening to Julia. For example… Julia awakes to find the clock time always stops at 4:06 am. The nightmares that Julia keeps having don’t really seem like nightmares at all but images of events that are real. Will Julia ever find the peace she desires?

The Skull Ring by Scott Nicholson is the first novel I have read by this author. If you are looking for a new horror book mixed with both mystery and psychological elements incorporated into the story then you should give this book a try. Be warned as this book does touch into cults and a few points in this story related the cults might be a little graphic for those who are weak in the stomach. My only issue was that Julia kind of got on my nerves. She would jump at every noise and sound. Overall, though I really did find myself enjoying this book.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Distant Melody

The year is 1942.

Allie Miller is leaving for a week to attend her good friend, Betty Jamison’s wedding. While on the train ride, Allie meets Lt. Walter Novak. Lt. Novak is a fighter pilot. Instantly, Lt. Novak feels something for Allie. What he doesn’t know is that Allie has a boyfriend back home. His name is J. Baxter Hicks. Allie's parents are already planning their wedding, though Baxter hasn’t proposed to Allie yet.

Allie and Walter develop a friendship that lasts even when Allie goes back home. Of course it starts to blossom into something more. Now Allie has to make a choice whether to continue her friendship with Walter and risk everything that was planned for her future.

A Distant Melody is the debut novel from author, Sarah Sundin. It is also book one in the Wings of Glory series. I instantly was captivated by this book and Allie and Lt. Novak. This book transported me back in time. This story is a classic love story but with deeper meaning than…girl meets boy…girl falls in love with boy…girl gets married. It has a powerful message as well. It was nice to see that Allie and Walter stuck to their beliefs and put their friendship as well as relationship in God’s hands. Author, Sarah Sundin has definitely made a name with A Distant Melody. I am flying high wanting for the next book in this series.

“Available March 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Postcards from a Dead Girl

Sid works as a telemarketer at a travel agency. His life gets turned upside down when he starts receiving postcards from his girlfriend, Zoe. Sid receives about a dozen. The postcards range from Amsterdam to Paris. Zoe doesn’t say much on the postcards other than the standard “Have a good time, wish you were here”. So now you would wonder, how can postcards cause so much uproar? It is because Zoe is dead! What does Zoe want from Sid? Sid decides to follow the trail of postcards from all over Europe that Zoe visited.

This book had some witty moments. This book kind of reminded me of the movie, P.S., I Love You with the concept and funny times but Postcards from a Dead Girl was a little more on the black side of the humor versus the white side. Sid was definitely the star of this book. The kooky and craziness that followed Sid made for entertaining times. Though, I do have to admit that there was a few times where my mind would start to wander. Kirk Farber has a good talent as a story teller and writer. It showed in this book. I plan to check out his other books.

He is Bad Blake and he has a Crazy Heart

Bad Blake used to be really popular country-western song writer and guitar picker in his younger years. It has been over five years since Bad Blake put out an album. Now, he still has some fans but mostly he can be seen playing in bowling alleys and cheap motels. Bad Blake is worn out, depressed, and about ready to hang up his hat forever.

Jean Craddock, a reporter from The Sun Scene approaches Bad Blake. She wants to get to know the man behind the name and legend of Bad Blake. Jean and Bad Blake form both a friendship and relationship. Will Bad Blake live up to his name or will he open his heart and let Jean in?

Crazy Heart is the first time I have tried author Thomas Cobb. Crazy Heart is just like a country-western song. It is filled with heart ache, characters you can relate to, long days and even harder nights, and a good story line…combine this all together…you get a engaging and enjoyable novel. I like that in this story, Bad Blake wasn’t just portrayed as a washed out singer but someone who was also human and did have flaws but left you cheering for him. If this book wasn’t already made into a movie, I would have suggested that it needed to be.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Miracles of Prato

The year is 1456.

With the sudden passing of her father, Lucrezia has been sent to the Convent Santa Margherita. She is trying to adjust to her new life. It isn’t easy. She wants to obey.

Fra Filippo Lippi is a monk but besides that, he has a very great talent as a famed painter. He is acting Chaplain for the convent. Fra is pretty rough around the edges. It is while at the convent that he meets the lovely and beautiful, Lucrezia. She becomes Fra’s muse. She has inspired him to create some of his best artwork. Fra and Lucrezia begin a romantic relationship. Their love for each other has consequences that could destroy everything they hold dear.

The love that Fra and Lucrezia shared as a real one. I have to admit that I would never have pictured them belong together so well as they did. Lucrezia was more on the quiet side; whereas Fra is more outgoing and does not have trouble expressing himself. There was a few times where I wished this book moved a little faster but for the most part it was pretty good. The writing duo of authors Laurie Albanese and Laura Morowitz worked well together. I couldn’t tell where one left off and the other one picked up. For anyone who likes to read romantic stories filled with historical figures then you may enjoy The Miracles of Prato.

Win a $100 gift card

Did you know that author Emily Bryan has a online novel called A Duke for All Seasons? She lets readers read the book and then help dictate on how the story should progress. She needs your help. Click on Emily's name to be directed to her contest page. Read the book from the beginning and then give her your thoughts and enter to win a $100 gift card.

Good Luck

Watch out as he will cut your heart out!

Detective Sergeant Michael McCabe is trying to get settled with his new life in Portland, Maine with his daughter. Detective McCabe has barely been in town and already he is on a hot case. There is a serial killer on the loose. Two women have already gone missing. One has been found with her heart cut out. This is not just any serial killer. This killer kills with precision of a surgical hand.

It is up to Detective McCabe and his partner, Maggie Savage to bring down the killer before the body count gets too high.

The Cutting is author, James Hayman’s first novel. The first few pages of this book really grabbed my attention. Detective McCabe seemed like a pretty straight arrow. It was nice to see that he was human and had to deal with family issues amongst trying to stop a serial killer. For me the wished the serial killer was more prominent in this story. When the story line would flash to the serial killer the parts were too short. I wanted more. Also, there were a few times in the middle where I would lose some interest but than the story line would pick up speed again and I would jump right back into this book. Overall, this book did leave me willing to check out his next novel.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Raven Stole the Moon+ Giveaway

Ever since the drowning her heir son, Bobby two years ago, Jenna Rosen and her husband, Robert are more like strangers then husband and wife. Jenna decides to get away from her life and Robert for a while. She takes off for Alaska. This is where it all began. Where Bobby drowned. Jenna experiences some strange things like…a wolf or wolf type dog chases her through the woods. Jenna meets a man named David. He is a shaman. He tells Jenna of a legend hat the Tlingits believe. It has to do with the belief that not all people die peacefully, so people’s souls are trapped to wither wander aimlessly or take form in another being. What does this have to do with Bobby? Could this mean that he might be alive after all?

Raven Stole the Moon is the first book I have read by Garth Stein. I have wanted to try his work out when I first heard about The Art of Racing in the Rain but just haven’t gotten around to it. After reading this book, I definitely plan to check the book out. I have to admit that I did get a little lost at first trying to figure out in my mind about how the shaman and the Tlingit beliefs really played a part in this story and Jenna’s son’s death. Once I out it all straight, I was able to fully sit back and immerse myself in this book. I found that I absolutely was delighted with this book as well as Mr. Stein’s writing style. He really brought the characters to alive on an emotional level that made you connect with them in the moment. I only have one last comment to make and that is… you have got to check Raven Stole the Moon for yourself.

Courtesy of Sarah Daily with Terra Communications I have one copy of this book to give away to readers. Open to US and Canada only.

Must be a follower and share this post either on your blog, twitter, facebook, myspace, etc

I will pick a winner on March 16th. Good Luck and Happy Reading!

Who is Zan-Gah?

Zan-Gah is the youngest warrior from his tribe. He and the rest of the men are prepared to capture and kill the lioness. Zan-Gah becomes known as a fierce warrior when he kills the lioness. This gives Zan-Gah the strength to go out in search of his lost twin brother, Dael. His brother has been missing for a long time. Zan-Gah’s spirit won’t rest until he finds out what happened to him. Can Zan-Gah battle the great big jungle?

These books are geared towards the younger reading populations and I found them to be appropriate for this age group. This book took readers on an exciting journey across the jungle. The main character Zan-Gah is very courageous and likable. The other characters and creatures that Zan-Gah encounters are interesting in a good way. I could picture this book being made into a movie or television series. This book is a quick read.

Zan-Gah survived his battle with the Wasp men and found his brother, Dael. Dael and Zan-Gah are both all grown up. Dael is married. Despite being happily married and reunited with his brother; Dael has become depressed and not the same care free young boy that Zan-Gah remembered. Will Dael ever find that boy again or is he a lost cause?

Zan-Gah and the Beautiful Country is book two. It continues this adventure with Zan-Gah. It is recommended that in order to fully enjoy this book that you read Zan-Gah: A Prehistoric Adventure first. I have to admit that while I did like this book, I enjoyed the first one just a little more. Though, this story is a little darker on an emotional level. Overall, author Allan Richard Shickman did a pretty good job on these books.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Secret of the Glass

Sophia Fiolario is the daughter of the famous Fiolario glass makers. Her father is one of the most sought after glass makers. There is just one problem…for the past several years it has been Sophia and not her father who has been making the blown glass pieces. If any one were to ever learn that Sophia knew the secret of the glass there will be serious consequences.

Sophia’s parents plan to marry Sophia off to Pasquale da Fuligna. Sophia is devastated by the arrangement. First off, Pasquale is old enough to be her father, second, he is not that good looking, and third, he has many dark secrets. To make matters worse, Sophia’s father has fallen deadly ill. Sophia must make a decision on whether to reveal her knowledge of the glass and possibly lose everything she holds dear to her.

The Secret of the Glass by Donna Russo Morin is a book to not be missed by historical readers alike. While the events aren’t exact and to the point, they are still pretty accurate of the trade of glass maker that was and still is popular to date. I have to admit that this story moved a bit slowly at first but as I got about a third of the way into this book, is when things really started to progress and move smoothly for me. I really liked that despise having the odds stacked against her, during a time when men were the dominant ones, that Sophia was such a strong character. To learn more about The Secret of the Glass, try this book out for yourself.

Liz Claiborne... the Legend, the Woman

Anyone and everyone in the fashion industry is familiar with Liz Claiborne fashion. Though are you familiar with the woman who created this successful fashion empire? Unless you were one of the few lucky ones who got to work with Liz then you don’t really know who Liz is and was.

Liz Claiborne grew up always knowing exactly what she wanted to be…a fashion designer. She had a great fashion sense. In 1976, Liz started Liz Claiborne Inc. Sadly on June 26, 2007, Liz passed way from cancer. Even up to the very end, Liz was still smiling and a fighter.

In Liz Claiborne, the Legend, the Woman, author, business partner and Liz’s husband, Art Ortenberg shares with readers just who Liz really was…a nice person, wife and entrepreneur with great smile and warm heart.

This book truly was a celebration of a Liz Claiborne. She was loved by many people The pictures inserted through out this book were a nice bonus. If you are looking to read this book expecting a memoir of Liz Claiborne and how she started out in the business and maybe learn a couple of interesting facts, then this may not be the book for you. Though, if you are wanting to treasure a moment or two about Liz the woman, then you should check this book out. This would make a good collector’s item or make a nice gift to that fashionable person in your life.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

How to obtain the career you wanted online.

Online Degrees – Great Educational Options for the Computer Savvy and Not-So-Savvy

I was never a big fan of online degrees until forced to enroll in one for professional reasons, but once I was a few months into the course, I realized what a godsend it was for people who are limited by the circumstances and not able to afford the time and money that a regular degree costs. The best part about studying online is that you don’t have to really be computer savvy in order to earn a degree from an online school. The technology is pretty easy to pick up and you’re bound to be at home in the environment in no time at all. Online degrees are good for both the computer savvy and not-so-savvy because:

• They are meant for people of all ages: If you’re much older than the average college-going student, there’s no need to feel like a fish out of water if you want to resume your education or earn a higher degree. Online education allows you to learn at your own pace and set your own schedules, so you don’t have to worry about keeping up with the youngsters or directly competing with them. Online education offers you the chance to continue an unfinished degree or earn a new one, for personal or professional reasons.

• They offer flexible schedules: Working professionals don’t have to worry about taking time off from their careers in order to earn another degree. Online education allows you to attend classes on weekends or at other times convenient to you. You can balance your work and lessons easily if you’re dedicated to both tasks.

• They provide opportunities: Online education opens up opportunities that were hitherto non-existent – they allow you to climb up the career ladder, switch jobs, ask for a raise at your workplace, or just achieve a personal milestone. Online degrees are offered in almost all disciplines, except perhaps medicine and other complicated subjects.

Today, various reputable institutions offer online degrees, so it’s easy to pick and choose the one you want without worrying about the quality of education you’re going to receive. However, before you sign up, ensure that your school and degree are accredited by the right agencies or you’re going to end up with a degree that’s not worth even the paper it’s printed on.

This guest post is contributed by Anna Miller, who writes on the topic of degree online . She welcomes your comments at her email id:

He is "The Tourist"

Milo Weaver used to work for the CIA as a “tourist”. Unfortunately, once a tourist…always a tourist. Milo quickly gets sucked back into the high adrenaline world of espionage, intrigue, and foreign enemies. Milo receives a call that his expertise is required. A suitcase containing three million dollars has disappeared. So why does Milo care? A blast from Milo’s past is somehow tied to this case. The temptation is too strong for Milo to resist. Grab your passport as The Tourist will have you racing all over the country.

The Tourist kind of reminded me of Jason Bourne meets Mission Impossible. It had the action, suspense and a character whom the bad guys should be scared of. Though, I do have to admit that there were a few times in the middle where Milo wasn’t featured that I found it a little dry and wish the story line would hurry. Other than Milo, I didn’t connect with any of the other characters. The word tourist will now have another meaning to it for me. Overall, I did like where this book took me. I would check out another book by Olen Steinhauer.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Jordan = Giveaway

Vivianne Blackstone is captain of a space craft. Jordan is part of the crew. Their mission is to save the planet, Earth. While that is their mission, the crew wasn’t totally prepared to deal with the enemy. This will be the battle to end all battles.

Jordan is the last book in the Pendragon Legacy trilogy. I have enjoyed this trilogy. The way that Susan Kearney connected the men to King Arthur was interesting. These books can be read as stand alone novels. The story line for this book was good. It was the chemistry that I would somewhat lacking between Vivianne and Jordan. When they would get together it was rushed. I was bummed that this book ended on a low note. At this is book tied up the trilogy. I still do enjoy Susan Kearney books and will read more books by her again.

Courtesy of Anna with Hachette Book Group. I have 5 copies of this book to give away.

Must be a follower. Open to US and Canada only. No PO Boxes.

Contest ends March 20th.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Blood Hina

Mas Arai is the best man in his friend’s wedding. It is a good thing that people have wedding rehearsals as Mas has dropped the wedding ring into the koi fish pond. Well things can only get better from here…right? No things can get worse…a lot worse. Mas’s friend’s fiancĂ©e’s priceless Japanese doll collection has been stolen. Who would want to steal a doll collection and why? These are the questions Mas must find answers to in Blood Hina.

Author Naomi Hirahara has written several novels but Blood Hina is the first book I have read by this author. After finishing this book, I plan to check out the other novels that this author has written. I liked that Ms. Hirahara used her ethic background and infused it into this book. It showed that Ms. Hirahra is proud of whom she is and wants to share what that culture what readers. Being of Asian background myself, I always find it intriguing when authors incorporate their lifestyle or diversity into their books. Mas Arai is a very likable character. The story line was fast paced and had me trying to figure out the ending before Mas, which I didn’t. This is always a plus for a mystery fan like me to now have the ending solved until right up to the big reveal.

Paul Harris' Book Tour + Giveaway

War time journalist, Danny Kellerman receives a letter in the mail from an ex-lover. Her name is Maria Consuela Tirado. Maria worked in Africa as an aid worker. Inside the envelope is a note from Maria asking for Danny’s help. Unfortunately as Danny is reading the letter, Maria is already dead.

Danny books the first flight out of London to Africa. He has to know what happened to Maria. Once in Africa, Danny is greeted by an old friend, Kam. When Danny learns that Maria was murdered, his reporter instincts kick in. Danny is on the trail of one of the biggest stories of his career.

Mr. Harris’s experience as a journalist covering the Sierra Leone war in Africa really was the meat that made The Secret Keeper so wonderfully good. His first hand knowledge of basing this book on what he saw, really made this story come alive. Instantly, I was transported to Africa…following in Danny’s footsteps every step of the way. This book switched back and forth between the past and the present and it did it very well. Mr. Harris put real emotions to his characters. They were not one dimensional. Anyone looking to read a really good book that has adventure, romance, great characters, and a author who knows how to write…then you have to check out The Secret Keeper by Paul Harris.

About the Author

Photo courtesy Paul Harris.
Paul Harris is currently the US Correspondent of the British weekly newspaper The Observer, the world’s oldest Sunday newspaper. He has held the post since 2003. Prior to that he reported from Africa for the Daily Telegraph, the Associated Press and Reuters. He has covered conflicts and trouble spots all around the world, including Iraq, Sudan, Burundi, Somalia, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Pakistan. In 2003 he was embedded with British forces during the invasion of Iraq.

The Secret Keeper was inspired by his reporting on events in 2000 in Sierra Leone as that country’s long civil war came to an end.

Paul now lives in New York and is happy to have swapped the dangers of the front line for the less obvious perils of writing about American politics and culture.

To learn more about the author and the book, visit his website

To Enter to win a copy of this book, you can go here and remember to use this pin #5852. You have to hurry to enter as this pin # is vaild for only 36 hours from today's date.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Vampire and the Virgin

Move over Bella and Edward as there is a new couple in town and here names are Olivia Sotiris and Robby MacKay.

Olivia is a FBI psychologist. She had traveled to the Greek island of Patmos for some R&R and to visit her grand mother. Olivia’s grand mother is hoping to fix Olivia up with one of the nice men on the island. Olivia isn’t interested in any of the men.

Robby has been instructed to take some time off after his last mission. From the first moment Robby lays eyes on Olivia, he feels something that he hasn’t felt in a long time. Robby wants Olivia for himself. Will there be a happy ending in Robby and Olivia’s future when she learns that Robby is a vampire?

The Vampire and the Virgin is book eight in the Love Stake series. This is only been the second book that I have read in this series but I have enjoyed both books. Having said this, you can read these books as stand alone novels. Olivia and Robby were the perfect couple. Robby maybe cold blooded but he is one hot vampire.

If you enjoy vampires, romance and humor then you will really enjoy this series. There are books where you hear all this hype and wonder if they really can live up it the hype, well I can tell you that The Vampire and the Virgin does. It is a blood sucking good time. Kerrelyn Sparks is on fire.

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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Do you like it rough in bed? + Contest

I am proud to promote this new sexy anthology by some of my favorite erotic authors...Anne Rainey and Susan Lyons. Kate Pearce is a new author to me. I have not read this anthology yet but you can bet I plan to. The cover alone would make me say "Yes".

Anne Rainey is sharing her thoughts about anthologies. Keep reading for how you can enter to win a copy of Some Like It Rough.

Sometimes all you need is a taste…

It’s true though, don’t you think? Sometimes all you need is a novella as opposed to a big story. Sometimes that’s all you have time for! Personally, I’ll read anything. I don’t base quality on how big the book. If I did that I’d never read Stephen King, Lori Foster, Shannon McKenna, Lora Leigh, Sarah McCarty, Lucy Monroe. Heck most of my ALL TIME FAVORITE authors have written novella length stories. That’s how I discovered some of them to begin with! For me, anthologies are a great way to try out a new author.

Nevertheless, from what I’ve seen on various reader message boards and yahoo groups, there are plenty of readers who feel novellas are second rate. As if a novella isn’t going to have the same intensity and depth as a full length story. I do understand how hard it is to write a short story and get all that drama, emotion, laughs, HEA, etc in there. You don’t have a lot of time to fit all that in. In some ways, a novella can be pretty tough to write. However, it’s my opinion, from the various books I’ve read, that some authors can pack quite a punch in their novellas. And as far as plot? I’ve read plenty of 500 page books that didn’t have squat for plot. Many times I’ve sat holding a ‘New York Times Bestseller’ and thought, “That’s it?”

So, no, it’s not length that makes a great book, it’s how well an author executes the concept. One of my wonderful editors once said: “Ideas aren’t unique, it’s what the author does with that idea that makes it exceptional.”

So, here’s my question. Does length really matter? LOL...come on, you knew it was coming!

Some Like It Rough by Kate Pearce
Luke Warner wants to chill out when he cashes in his hectic life in Silicon Valley and returns to his hometown. But things heat up when he reunites with his best friends, Julia and Paul, and invites them both to share in a sexual adventure like they’ve never had before…

Private Eyes by Susan Lyons
Assigned to work undercover as an exotic dancer, straight-laced Haley Croft discovers the thrill of strutting her stuff. And when she catches sexy PI Ry Montana checking out her moves, she can’t wait to give him his own private show…

Cherry on Top by Anne Rainey
When massage therapist Cherry DuBois rubs her oil-slicked hands all over Dante Ricci’s rock-hard body, red-hot desire courses through her. She longs to lose control and give herself to the pleasures of sexual submission…

To read the first chapter of Cherry on Top visit my website: http://annerainey.com/

Holly at Romance Reviews Today gives it a “Perfect 10″ and says: “Each tale stands alone, but each one brings together some terrific writing from three outstanding authors. By the time I finished SOME LIKE IT ROUGH, I knew it richly deserved a Perfect 10 and would go on my keeper shelf. If you are looking for a sizzling read that is time well spent, then pick up SOME LIKE IT ROUGH.”

BUY IT AT: AMAZON http://www.amazon.com/Some-Like-Rough-Kate-Pearce/dp/0758238983/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1255106209&sr=8-1
Also at BORDERS, BOOKS A MILLION, BARNES & NOBLE and other major retailers!


And for a chance to win a print copy of “Some Like it Rough” simply send me an email at annerainey11@gmail.com with MARCH CONTEST in the subject line. I’ll be picking 3 winners on March 18th and announcing it on my blog: http://threewickedwriters.blogspot.com/

Magnolia Wednesdays

Vivien Armstrong Gray was covering one of the biggest stories when things went terribly wrong and Vivien ended up getting shot in the butt. After this incident, Vivien has become the butt of everyone’s jokes. Vivien needs a break, so she heads down to stay with her sister, Melanie and her two children, Sheila and Trip.

Vivien soon realizes things aren’t always as they seem in the suburbs. Vivien comes up with the idea to write a news column about the burbs. She calls it Postcards from Suburbia. She writes under a pen name of Scarlett Leigh. Things don’t quite add up in the death of Melanie’s husband, J.J. Vivien decides to do some investigating into his death. How long will Vivien be able to survive in the suburbs?

Magnolia Wednesdays is the first book I have read by author, Wendy Wax. I have wanted to check out her books but just haven’t until now. Vivien has so much life and character to her. The funniest moments were when she was driving. Anyone and everyone had better stay in their homes when Vivien is on the roads. I felt sorry for the poor cop who kept having run ins with Vivien. Though, he got back at her when he made her walk to the gas station in her bath robe. Magnolia Wednesdays does not have to be read on a Wednesday, it can be enjoyed any day or time of the week. Don’t take my word for it, pick up a copy today and see for yourself.