"All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape."
--Author Christopher Benson



Friday, April 30, 2010




Elise & Sheila


No, I am not a host but some of my friends are.  There are 123 different blogs giving away great prizes, books, jewelery, DVDs, all kinds of stuff. Start below with the link to Between the Pages and have a great day just blogging around entering contests.



Thursday, April 29, 2010


Movers and Shakers
This "MeMe" comes from Lynda at Between The Pages 
and it looked like fun so I thought we would try it out here.  
Let me know what you think. 

The Movers and Shakers MeMe is a post that will explore the explosive and impelling force of just 20 words or less. Words that impel me to continue turning pages. They might be an unexpected plot twist, startling revelation, special bit of humor, or frigid warning of things to come. Sometimes they may be words that shove me on an emotional roller coaster. Whatever their purpose, the author has succeeded in pulling me further into his/her story. In my selection, I'll be careful not to use 'spoilers'.

Here are my Movers and Shakers for this week.

1.  Tape shrieked, and then a nooselike pressure encased Charlie Conlan's neck, 
closing the bag with an airtight seal.  
-Step on a Crack by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge-
2.  stopped in the doorway, so quickly and completely as if he had 
walked into a invisible wall.  
-A Cutthroat Business by Bente Gallagher-
If you have a Movers and Shakers selection from your current read, why not share it with us.  Add it in the comment section below and if you wish to share it on Lynda's blog too, here is the link to Lynda's Movers and Shakers.


A Dead End Job Mystery
Paperback Release May 4, 2010

In this eighth edition of the Dead End Mysteries Helen Hawthorne is working at Miguel's Angel's Hair Salon, where celebrities and the rich and famous of Fort Lauderdale come for their very pricey makeovers.  Helen works as a gofer for the manager, sweeps up hair and keeps the place tidy.

Helen also accompanies Miguel Angel as his assistant to help him prepare some of his most famous clients for their wedding day, gossip blogger and cable TV show host Kingman "King" Oden and his latest fiancee are expecting a baby, tying the knot and hoping to live happily ever after.  At least that is the plan until the groom is found floating in the pool during the reception. Things get really "hairy" when Miguel Angel becomes the prime suspect.  Never fear, Helen is on the case, to find the real murderer to save Miguel's shoppe, while at the same time trying to plan her own wedding.  She must be on to something because she starts to receive threatening notes.  How close is she is catching the murderer? And who is really living in the cursed apartment 2C this time?

I have really enjoyed this entire series and this edition doesn't disappoint.  There is action right up to the final page, all the quirky characters are back, humorous dialogue, and just the right amount of suspense for this popular cozy series.

The next edition of this series Half-Price Homicide: A Dead-End Job Mystery also comes out in hardcover on May 4th.  It has Helen working at a high-end designer consignment shop.  I haven't read this one yet but it looks as good as the others.  Two more books to add to your Summer Reading Lists.

To find out more about Elaine Viets, her books and even a sneak preview of Half-Price Homicide, check out her website at http://www.elaineviets.com/.  She is also the author of Mystery Shopper Series, featuring Josie Marcus.

FTC Disclosure:  From my personal collection.

Reminder: Last Day to Enter to Win A Copy of:

Parting River Jordan by ML Barnes

Winners will be announced tomorrow!! So Enter TODAY!!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Cutthroat Business by Bente Gallagher

A Brand New Series 
Release Date June 1, 2010

Savannah Martin has a brand new real estate license and has signed on to work for The Walker Lamont Real Estate Agency, where so far she has sold absolutely nothing. She had been warned that Real Estate was "A Cutthroat Business" but when she stepped in the help a colleague she found out it was the truth quite literally.  Brenda Puckett hadn't forgotten her appointment, she was there, but she was very dead, and her throat was most definitely cut!!  

The client Brenda was meeting sure looked like he could be a killer, but after really looking at him Savannah realized she knew him, he was in high school a few years ahead of her, but she had heard he was in prison, the plot thickens.

This is a must read for your Summer Reading List.  
The plot of this book really runs deep with a few surprises and just when you think you may have it figured out, you're wrong.  Twists and turns doesn't describe this wild ride.   The characters are wonderfully developed, Savannah's mother is priceless. The humorous dialogue is pure delight!!  I have given this book a "Complete Appraisal" and deem it ready for "MLS Listing" and  "Quick Sales", without an "addendum".

This is sure to be a fantastic new cozy series.  I have heard the next book is entitled "HOT PROPERTY" and will be out early next year.

To purchase this book or any other book published by Publishing Works, 
visit their online store here
At checkout, include the Coupon Code BLOG for a 20% DISCOUNT
courtesy of Publishing Works, Inc. and their continued support 
of book blogging! 
Happy reading!

To find out more about Bente and her alter ego Jennie Bentley who writes the Do-It-Yourself Home Renovation mystery series, be sure to check out her (their) website http://www.bentegallagher.com/

 This book was provided free of any obligation by Publishing Works, Inc. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

Publishing Works was launched in 2003 as an independent press specializing in regional titles. Since then, the company has grown dramatically to embody a list of titles that spans diverse genres, age levels, and subject matter. Please visit them at their website, www.publishingworks.com, or view their catalog for a complete list of titles.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Celebrating Poetry

National Poetry Month is almost over.  
Thought I would share another of my favorites.

Casey at the Bat
By Ernest Lawrence Thayer

The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville nine that day;
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play,
And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, "If only Casey could but get a whack at that —
We'd put up even money now, with Casey at the bat."

But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a hoodoo, while the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat;
For there seemed but little chance of Casey getting to the bat.

But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Blake, the much despised, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.

Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It pounded on the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.

There was ease in Casey's manner as he stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey's bearing and a smile lit Casey's face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt 'twas Casey at the bat.

Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt.
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt.
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance flashed in Casey's eye, a sneer curled Casey's lip.

And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped —
"That ain't my style," said Casey. "Strike one!" the umpire said.

From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore;
"Kill him! Kill the umpire!" shouted some one on the stand;
And it's likely they'd have killed him had not Casey raised his hand.

With a smile of Christian charity great Casey's visage shone;
He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;
He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the dun sphere flew;
But Casey still ignored it, and the umpire said "Strike two!"

"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered "Fraud!"
But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
And they knew that Casey wouldn't let that ball go by again.

The sneer has fled from Casey's lip, the teeth are clenched in hate;
He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate.
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey's blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright,
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,
And somewhere men are laughing, and little children shout;
But there is no joy in Mudville — mighty Casey has struck out.

I hope you had time to enjoy some poetry this month.

This copy from http://ops.tamu.edu/x075bb/poems/casey.html

New Release Tuesday

My Recommendations

Available Everywhere Today Where Books Are Sold

Moon Spinners: A Seaside Knitters Mystery

Hannah's List 
Summer on Blossom Street

This book comes out in paperback today.  I read the hardcover before starting this blog and really enjoyed it, as I have with the whole Blossom Street Series.

I was unable to get an early copy of this book to review. I reviewed the first book in the series back in March and gave it a "I LIKE IT ****" so this one is on my Wish List.

These books will make good Springtime Reading.  Remember Moon Spinners is the 3rd book in the series and Path of the Wicked is the second book in the series.  Hannah's List can be enjoyed as a stand alone but ties into Debbie Macomber's Blossom Street Series.  Summer on Blossom Street is the sixth book in that series.


Monday, April 26, 2010

It's Monday!! What Are You Reading???

This great meme is hosted by Sheila at "Book Journey" formerly
"One Person's Journey Through a World of Books"

Finished Last Week
  • Killer Cuts by Elaine Viets Killer Cuts: A Dead-End Job MysteryPaperback on Sale MAY 4, 2010. Watch for review this week.
  • Dead Man of the Year by Stephen Hawley Martin. Dead Man of the Year: A Whodunit(ARC) Release Date July 1, 2010  Click Here For Review   
  • A Cutthroat Business by Bente Gallagher A Cutthroat Business: A Savannah Martin Mystery(ARC) Release Date June 1, 2010  Watch for upcoming review.
  • The Bridge: Between "Cell Block A" and a "Miracle" Is Psalm 91 by Jackie Carpenter The BridgeClick Here For Review
Currently Reading
  • Run For Your Life by James PattersonRun for Your Life
On Deck
  • Step on a Crack by James Patterson Step on a Crack [Book Club Edition] (Detective Michael Bennett NYPD & His Ten Children, Volume 1) 
  • Worst Case by James PattersonWorst Case 
  • Just Don't Call Me Ma'am by Anna MitchaelJust Don't Call Me Ma'am: How I Ditched the South, Forgot My Manners, and Managed to Survive My Twenties with (Most of) My Dignity Still Intact 
  • Miniskirts, Mothers & Muslims by Christine A. MallouhiMiniskirts, Mothers, and Muslims: A Christian Woman in a Muslim Land

I couldn't believe it was almost May and I hadn't read one book by one of favorite authors, James Patterson and my To-Be-Read pile has one whole stack of just his books, so this next month I going to try to catch up on as many of his books as I can.  I also have a whole stack of books by Stuart Woods, so there may be a month soon that I will get to attack that stack.  Plus there are so many good books coming out in June, hopefully I will get some early copies so I can help you start to plan your summer reading lists.  The first one to put on your list is one I read last week, A Cutthroat Business by Bente Gallagher, which I will be reviewing this week.  It's a good one.

If you are visiting my blog today from Sheila's meme, please take a moment to take the poll in the upper right hand corner.

I hope you all have a great week.  HAPPY READING!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A Book Of Poetry For Everyone's Keeper Shelf

Journey Through HeartsongsThis book has been on my shelf since my accident in 2001.  Someone brought it to the hospital and left it for me.  Since that time I read from it several times a year.  The poetry covers it all, life, death, love, loss, faith, hope, joy and sorrow.

For those who don't know the story, Mattie suffered from a rare form of muscular dystrophy and passed away June 22, 2004.  Prior to his death he appeared on many morning and talk shows and was featured in many newspapers and other publications.  This book was a New York Times Bestseller and even includes a forward by former president Jimmy Carter.  This young man wrote with such insight, well beyond his age.  This book and all the others he has written will stand the test of time and be on must read lists forever.

Facing the Future

Every journey begins
With but a small step.
And every day is a chance
For a new, small step
In the right direction.
Just follow your Heartsong.
by Mattie Stepanek

As we celebrate National Poetry Month I feel it is important to celebrate the life of Mattie J. T. Stepanek and the wonderful poetry he has written.

To find about more about Mattie and all his books go to www.mattieonline.com.

Friday, April 23, 2010

The Bridge: Between "Cell Block A" and a "Miracle" Is: Psalm 91 by Jackie Carpenter

This is a true story of Jason Veitch, a contractor who was the victim of theft of copper from several of his job sites, who then following the advice of a sheriff's deputy, "staked out" one of his job sites to try to catch the thieves.  Unfortunately a man was accidentally killed by Jason, which started the worst 10 months of his life and the lives of his family and friends.

The author, his mother endured this time while leaning heavily on her faith which she shares with us in this heartbreaking story.  Psalm 91 is pretty powerful and I am glad it gave her strength (see below).  

I am a  Christian who believes I am still on this earth after a horrid car accident in 2001, my own "miracle".  I looked at this book from two sides, one from the Christian view point, where I know God's loving hands touch all things, but also from a secular viewpoint where I believe the defense attorneys did their job, presented the truth, and the jurors and judge did their jobs in finding the right verdict.   The author's faith is genuine and I am not questioning that all, but it would have been a terrible injustice for the verdict to go any other way and would leave many questioning the system.  I do believe that Jason was wrong to handle the situation the way he did, if he wanted to "stake out" his job site, I think he should have carried a camera instead of a gun and let the sheriff apprehend the criminals using the pictures as evidence.  I feel he was very lucky to have escaped with his own life and not to receive any penalty for his actions.  He put himself in a very dangerous position and would not encourage others to follow in his footsteps, they may not be as lucky.

While this is a very strong story topic and the mother's words compelling I feel the book was just okay.  Some readers will love it, other will hate it.  It left me feeling very conflicted.

Psalm 91

 1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
       will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. [a]
 2 I will say [b] of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress,
       my God, in whom I trust."
 3 Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare
       and from the deadly pestilence.
 4 He will cover you with his feathers,
       and under his wings you will find refuge;
       his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
 5 You will not fear the terror of night,
       nor the arrow that flies by day,
 6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
       nor the plague that destroys at midday.
 7 A thousand may fall at your side,
       ten thousand at your right hand,
       but it will not come near you.
 8 You will only observe with your eyes
       and see the punishment of the wicked.
 9 If you make the Most High your dwelling—
       even the LORD, who is my refuge-
 10 then no harm will befall you,
       no disaster will come near your tent.
 11 For he will command his angels concerning you
       to guard you in all your ways;
 12 they will lift you up in their hands,
       so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
 13 You will tread upon the lion and the cobra;
       you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
 14 "Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him;
       I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
 15 He will call upon me, and I will answer him;
       I will be with him in trouble,
       I will deliver him and honor him.
 16 With long life will I satisfy him
       and show him my salvation."

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bostick Communications. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


It's Friday!  Time for another Book Blogger HOP!! 
Sponsored by CRAZY FOR BOOKS
This is for ALL BOOK BLOGGERS (NEW AND OLD) and READERS!  Let's make some new friends and have fun!  It's FRIDAY!!!
In the spirit of the Friday Follow, she thought it would be cool to do a Book Blogger Hop to give us all book bloggers and readers a chance to connect and find new blogs that we may be missing out on!  So, she created this weekly BOOK PARTY where book bloggers and readers can connect to find new blogs to read, make new friends, support each other, and generally just share our love of books!  It will also give blog readers a chance to find other book blogs that they may not know existed!  So, grab the logo, post about the Hop on your blog, and start PARTYING!!

Your blog should have content related to books, including, but not limited to book reviews.

If you start following someone through the Hop, leave a comment on their blog to let them know!  Stop back during the week to see other blogs that are added!  And, most importantly, the idea is to HAVE FUN!!
The Hop isn't just for you to throw your link in there and not visit any other blogs.  It's all about networking and finding new blogs that are of interest.  So, in the spirit of the Hop, try to make some time to visit other blogs and don't post your link if you are not planning on visiting other blogs in the Hop that week.  This is a weekly event, so if you don't have time this week, that's fine!  We'll see you next week!

If you sign McLinky, please share the love and POST ABOUT THE HOP ON YOUR BLOG!  How else will anyone else find out about it and come join the party?

Please use the following format when entering your link below (be careful - I don't always have time to go in and edit your link!!):

NAME OF BLOG (How long you've been blogging; what genres you PRIMARILY review)
I know a lot of us read all different genres, but if you had to choose ONE OR TWO genres that you review more often than others, what would they be??

Crazy-for-Books (21 months; contemporary fiction/mystery)

So, let's do the Hop!  Go To CRAZY FOR BOOKS To Enter Your LINK and GET HOPPING!!!