Meet Featured Author Beth Hale

I have the pleasure of introducing you to author Beth Hale!  I’ve enjoyed Beth’s books, and I know you will too!
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Beth Hale grew up on a small farm on the Tennessee / Mississippi line. While she no longer lives on the farm, she does live in a small Mississippi town with her real-life hero, Nathan, and their two amazing children, Clay and Lily.
 By night, Beth works as an E-911 dispatcher. She loves her job but writing is her real passion. When she’s not planted in her dispatch chair, you can usually find her at home, putting her characters’ lives down on paper.
“There is nothing I love more than  to curl up with a great cup of coffee, an even better book, and a cozy blanket. I imagine quite a few of you are the same.  When I’m not working at my “day job”, I carve out time for writing my own stories before I indulge in reading sprees.”

Contact Beth Hale!

Twitter Handle: @writes4coffee

Facebook Page URL: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Beth-Hale/458435490953994

 

Trusting Jack

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After a devastating divorce, Emma is picking up the pieces of her shattered heart and life. Her first step in reclaiming her old job as a personal assistant to famous actress, Norah Jackson. Work takes her to London, where she meets sexy fledgling actor, Jack Brandon. The sizzling attraction is immediate and mutual. Little by little, Emma begins to open her heart again. But Jack has a past, too. And it’s come back to haunt him, wreaking havoc on their budding romance.

Can Emma let go of the hurt and learn to trust Jack completely? Or is their relationship doomed to be a one act play?

Reviews for Trusting Jack
I was engaged quickly and really wanted to know what would happen between Emma and Jack.

It was a great love story with humor, passion and a pretty well developed plot.

I absolutely love this book. I read it cover to cover in one day. This book has a lot of twist and turn that’s keeps you intrigued. I would recommend it any day. Can not wait for her next one.

Magnolia Secrets

http://www.amazon.com/Magnolia-Secrets-Book-1-ebook/dp/B013EDNRBS/ref=la_B00EDH7RAW_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1439837283&sr=1-2

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Walker and Lainey share one explosive night together, and he awakens to find her gone. Shrugging it off as just a glorious one-night stand, he accepts a new job in a small town: New Hope, Mississippi. That’s where he finds Lainey again. She just happens to be married to the Chief of Police-and Walker’s new boss.

Lainey is terrified that Walker will divulge their secret. If he does, Lainey is a dead woman. But despite the danger, she can’t forget the one passionate night she spent in Walker’s arms. Walker demands answers from Lainey: What secret is she hiding? Why is she so afraid? And when people begin dying, he wants to get to the bottom of it. Why is the police chief trying to brush off the deaths? Why doesn’t he want Walker to work the cases? What kind of secrets is he hiding?

Drawn together, unable to deny their passion, they risk their lives. Lainey is trapped. Walker is determined to save her and uncover the truth. Can they expose the secrets before a ruthless man destroys any hope for a brighter future?

Reviews for Magnolia Secrets

It was an edge-of-your-seat, deep-in-good-drama, AWESOMELY TOLD story!!

Lainey is a well-crafted heroine whose secret life rocks a small town and captures the heart of her hero. Her story is compelling and emotional–because sadly, spousal abuse is a real problem in the world. It was riveting to see her grow and become stronger throughout the story, and finally begin to feel comfortable in who she was as a woman and a person with a purpose in life other than to serving as a punching bag for her controlling husband. The scenes were written in vivid detail and one could almost see feel the burn on Lainey’s cheek and taste the salty blood on her lip when she “took her punishment” as she often phrased it.

Beth has written a steamy romance with much heart and a real compassion for her characters.

Meet Featured Author Misha Elliot!

One of the best parts of being a member of the fabulous Rave Reviews Book Club is getting to know other authors.  I enjoyed perusing Misha’s website, and I wish we lived close enough to meet face to face and talk books.  I think you’ll feel the same after you meet her here.  Let me introduce you to author Misha Elliot.

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Who is Misha Elliott?

Misha Elliott is an old movie watching, wine drinking, book-lover.  Once a northerner she now calls the sweet state of Alabama her home.  She can’t remember a time when books weren’t a part of her life.   Writing gives her a reason to talk to the voices in her head.

You Can Follow Misha here:             

http://www.mishaelliott.com

Twitter @cphoenixrising

Facebook  www.facebook.com/elliottmisha

You Can Purchase Misha Elliot’s Books Here:

http://www.amazon.com/Misha-Elliott/e/B00FCWP81M/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1430191402&sr=8-1

https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/misha-elliott/id828162967?mt=11

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/misha-elliott

Misha’s Books

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Learning To Fly-Flying Series Book 1

Typical isn’t a word you would use to describe Sophia Ann Marshall’s life. Is she the parent? The daughter? The caretaker? Or the one who ruined it all? is there really a white knight that could come rescue her? Sophia’s not so sure anymore. When her mom’s latest breakup and firing causes them to move the summer before her senior year, Sophie is devastated.
Until she meets star QB, Alexander Matthews. Alex is the beginning of all the firsts Sophie has been dreaming of. Moving has turned her life and the life of her mom, around to exactly where she wanted it to be. Everything is great but will the price of happiness be too high? Can she really give up her dream? Why is life always filled with choices?
But he wants her to choose…Will she give him up to follow her dreams, or give up her dreams to follow him…

The Reviews Say…

“The flow and writing were phenomenal and paired well with an original storyline.”

“This story is going to bring to a lot of emotions, you’re going to want to kill some of the people and then your going to fall in love with them. Misha did a great job and I’m looking forward to read Come Fly with Me!!!”

 “…it transported me back to the moment when I met the man who is now my husband, and I enjoyed every minute of it.”

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Fearless

Leah Campbell and Asher Sky are two fractured souls. Each of them carry scars from a past they can’t make peace with. When an accident causes their paths to intertwine, they are given a chance to start over. Together they must find the one thing that is stronger than any fear ~ hope. They need hope, without it they will remain broken. This isn’t your typical love story of girl-meets-boy, love at first sight. It’s about healing, hope, and finding the ultimate strength that comes from within ~ pushing forward to become fearless.

The Reviews Say…

“I have to say that I have been reading all my life but more so over the past year. I have never had a book leave a mark until I read fearless. I loved this story from the get go.” 

“I really enjoyed the essence of this story! The characters are great and showing the separate Point of views were nice and added depth to the story line.”

“I enjoyed this story line, and I thought that the characters were very well developed. I really loved the fact that even though they each has been dealt a bad hand in life, they never gave up. Their strength and determination was quite inspiring. I would certainly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a quick and enjoyable read.”

Meet Featured Author Maggie Thom

It is my pleasure to introduce you to RRBC suspense/thriller author, Maggie Thom!  

maggie thomMaggie’s Motto: Escape to read and Read to escape.

Award-winning author Maggie Thom, writes suspense/thrillers. Her works include: Captured Lies, Deceitful Truths and Tainted Waters. Her novels have won various awards, including: suspense and thriller book of the year.

               Connect with Maggie:                                                                                            Website: http://maggiethom.com/
Twitter Handle: @maggiethom2
Facebook Page URL: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMaggieThom

Purchase Her Award-Winning Books:                          http://www.amazon.com/Maggie-Thom/e/B009WSTDG8/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1435009408&sr=8-1

“Maggie Thom writes a fast paced thriller laced with romance that keeps the reader interested and on edge!”                                                                                             InDtale Magazine

Captured Lies: Book One of The Caspian Wine Series

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She was kidnapped not once but twice and now someone wants her dead because of it…  Her life was a lie! 
Everyone seems to have a story… but who’s telling the truth? And who wants her dead? Is Guy part of the solution? Or part of the problem? To discover the facts, she’ll have to untangle a web of deceit, lies, and secrets, dating back over thirty years.

What The Reviewers Say About Captured Lies:

“This is a action packed thriller that leaves you wanting to find the answers just as badly as Bailey (the main character of the book).”

“Maggie Thom writing style had me setting up and taking notice.”

“Maggie Thom liberally enriches her writing with supremely descriptive, inventive phrases. She is an expert wordsmith who has produced a great suspenseful thriller.”

Deceitful Truths (The Caspian Wine Series Book 2)

A standalone novel and a Sequel/Companion to Captured Lies

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He created a legacy that no one could imagine… Tarin has lost a week of her life.
Tarin and Graham discover that although they don’t trust each other, they are forced to work together to solve several seemingly unrelated crimes that may lead to one disastrous conclusion. Can they figure it all out before Tarin’s nightmare plays out? An eighty year old woman pays with her life? Or before Tarin learns a truth that may seal her fate and be the one secret that will keep her and Graham apart as neither one of them may be able to forgive or forget… 

What The Reviewers Say About Deceitful Truths:

“Maggie really knows how to weave a tale and to draw the reader in.”

“Deceitful Truths has more twists than a grape vine, more jagged edges than broken glass and some pure, raw emotional turmoil that will squeeze at the heart of anyone who would do whatever is necessary to protect someone they love. I think the only thing that kept me from breaking skin clenching my fists were those moments of heart-melting romance that flickered through.”

“The way in which the author crafts the book will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat – brilliant!”

Tainted Waters

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He didn’t commit suicide but who’s going to believe her… 
The descendants of the four families, who own the land around the lagoon, are dying off. Since Sam and Keegan are the only ones questioning the deaths, they find themselves working together to seek the truth. Are people being murdered? Who would benefit from their deaths? Why would there be barricades and armed guards at the north end of the lake? To stay alive, Sam and Keegan must find the answers and convince others, before more people are killed… including them.

What The Reviewers Say About Tainted Waters:

 “…it was not a routine story. There was suspense almost from the very beginning of the book. It was so exciting, and a lot suspense and there was just enough romance to make me happy.”

“An edge of your seat thriller that offers chills galore.”

“The author weaves a pretty complex mystery with its share of potential bad guys and red herrings. Odds are you won’t figure out “whodunnit” until the end, and you’ll enjoy the trip to get there.”

Meet Featured Author Marc Estes!

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It is my great honor to introduce you to fellow RRBC author, Marc Estes!  Marc is not only an accomplished and award-winning writer, he is an avid supporter of others!  Please check out his work!

http://estesmarcw.wix.com/author-page

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Marc-Estes/e/B00II5XX9Y/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Twitter: @vendicatori33

The Impressive Bio of                                                                                                Marc Estes

Accomplished writer, Marc Estes, is the award winning author of the Vendicatori Series. His 2014 debut novel, Four Pieces For Power, Book One of the Vendicatori marks the first in a series of Vendicatori novels developed by Mr. Estes. Book Two of the Vendicatori: Rekindle the Flame was released in 2015. He is a two-time winner of the Vermont Playwright’s Award for his plays, What Would Dickens Do? and Glass Closets. What Would Dickens Do? also won the 2012 Robert J. Pickering Award for Playwriting Excellence. His play, Gumbo (adapted from the short story by Charles Huckelbury) was a finalist in the 2011 Safe Streets Arts Foundation Short Play Competition and was presented at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. His play The Practice of Killing (co-written with Robert Johnson, and adapted from the short story by Mr. Johnson) has been published in the Spring 2013 edition of Tacenda Literary Magazine. In 2013 he was also awarded the Robert Chesley Award from the Chesley/Bumbalow Foundation in Los Angeles and selected to receive the Artist in Residence Grant from the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, New Mexico. His play Going Home was presented at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in the Fall of 2014. Mr. Estes is currently at work on the third installment in the Vendicatori Series, The Dragon and the Phoenix, as well as developing his new 33 series (expected early 2016). Estes is a native of New England and graduate of the University of New Hampshire.

 

Announcing the JUST RELEASED 2nd Installment of the critically acclaimed Vendicatori Series

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Rekindle the Flame: Book 2 of the Vendicatori

Picking up where Four Pieces For Power leaves off, Andrew continues to delve deeper into the world of the Vendicatori, where more secrets from his past shake his present. A mysterious woman has somehow escaped the Vendicatori compound, but were they holding her as a prisoner, or for her own safety? The Stavero family is now even more focused on revenge and the downfall of the Correos. Magda Stavero takes the reigns and is ready to be more evil than Robert ever dreamed of being. With her granddaughter, Kayla, at her side, she is given the chance to infiltrate Edson from afar and begins to unravel her plan for vengeance. Now John, a newly added member to the Correo family, is starting to ask questions as Andrew becomes more elusive. A recent clue leads him down a path he cannot return from. A path that may provide more questions than answers. As Dominic and Ramos scramble to find their missing guest, she is about to arrive in Edson, and become a revelation that no one saw coming. Is she a friend or a foe? Will Dominic and Ramos find her before she reveals herself? Are the Staveros behind her “escape”, or are they merely using it to their advantage?

Early Reviews for Rekindle the Flame

“Mr Estes writes with the eye of a moviemaker: every scene is so vivid that you walk with Andrew into shocking explosions and peer through his blood. The flame truly has been rekindled: danger and death burn bright in this action-packed thriller, a worthy sequel to Mr Estes debut novel, Four Pieces For Power.”

Danger and death burn bright in this action-packed thriller!”

If You Want to Begin at the Beginning…

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Four Pieces For Power: Book 1 of the Vendicatori

When mysterious strangers arrive at the home of Andrew Correo, they provide him with life changing news. He learns of the Vedicatori, a secret organization established by his ancestors, an organization he now has the chance to inherit control over. In order to gain this control, he needs to compete with Robert Stavero in a global scavenger hunt. They must search for four illusive crystals that, when brought together, will tell them their final destination. Also in Edson, Monica Correo is planning a wedding to her love, John Weaver. With the wedding so close to Halloween, the pair decide to have a masquerade ball for the wedding reception. It will be an event no one in Edson will ever forget. With just a clue and limited guidance, both Andrew and Robert set out on their secretive journey. For both, the path leads to mystery, suspense, and self-discovery. As Andrew looks forward to his future, while putting parts of his past behind him, Robert grows greedy and develops a love for deception and hate. The hunt brings them through the ruins of Teotihuacan to the Eternal City and its history, but who will have the cunning to come out on top?

Comments from Reviewers of 

Four Pieces For Power: Book 1 of the Vendicatori

“Acclaimed playwright Mark Estes’ debut novel is an adrenaline-filled adventure, wrought with danger and deception at every turn.”

“Four Pieces For Power: an enjoyable thriller, a journey down a labyrinth worth taking.

A Clue Solving Adventure!

Shades of Indiana Jones!”

Meet Featured Author John Fioravanti

Author PhotoToday we welcome John Fioravanti on the first stop of his The Heart of Teaching Blog Tour.  The Heart of Teaching was one of the first books I read after I joined Rave Reviews Book Club.  By reading his work, and seeing the enormous amount of support he gives other authors,I discovered that “HEART” is something John has in abundance.  

The Heart of Teaching Tour

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 I’m grateful to Rebecca, my host of this first post of THE HEART OF TEACHING TOUR, and to Nonnie Jules of 4WillsPublishing who arranged it all! The full lineup for this tour can be found @ http://wp.me/P43s9i-2g

Why did I write A Personal Journey to the Heart of Teaching?

The best answer is that I was attracted to this project for the very same reasons I was attracted to my chosen profession. In a nutshell: I wanted to help people. Just as I wished to give teenagers a helping hand through those often-difficult years, I wanted to support young teachers as they broke into the profession.

heart teach cover
Often, in the staff room, I would see new teachers who were visibly stressed as they photocopied materials for their classes and socialized. I knew, only too well, what they were up against: mastering curriculum, pedagogies, or teaching methods, dealing with students, parents, and administration. We all faced the same stressors each day – veterans and rookies alike, but these youngsters didn’t have the experience they needed to feel the confidence necessary to better manage their stress.

My heart went out to these young professionals, because I knew most of them would be unwilling to sit down with a veteran and share their innermost anxieties. Thinking back to my own rookie years, I remember that I was loath to reveal my insecurities and fears to a kindly veteran. Yet, if I had, I might have been less debilitated by the stress I experienced.

So what could I do? I cared about these people; I greeted them warmly, asked how things were going, and I always got the same kinds of guarded responses that I would have given thirty years earlier. But I never let that deter me, remaining hopeful that one day I might have the opportunity to help someone by alleviating their stress somewhat.

In 2006, when Kenneth Tam of Iceberg Publishing asked me to write this book for them, I got very enthusiastic, once I dispatched my self-doubt. We launched the book one September evening in 2007 – my final year of teaching. Two weeks later, a young substitute teacher stopped me in the hall. I saw she had a copy of the book on top of the other books she had in her arms. She wanted to thank me for writing the book. What struck me and pulled at my heartstrings was the emotion in her eyes and voice. It wasn’t a message of congratulations about the book; no, it was pure gratitude she was communicating. I walked away feeling very humbled by this young girl. All those hours of work put into this project became totally justified in that moment. If the book helped just one person, I would be satisfied.

Eight years later, I see this book differently. I’ve had a large number of readers who are not teachers and found it to be an inspirational read for them. My story is that of a young teacher finding his way, but it is not a story unique to the teaching profession. People in all walks of life struggle to succeed in their work, and often, personal issues or ‘demons’, which are hard to overcome, complicate that effort.

My struggle with my personal ‘demons’ is unique to me. But my upbringing, my faith, my wife and family, all contributed to my determination to battle those ‘demons’ every single day – and never give up. Did I defeat them? Yes and No. I was victorious in the sense that I learned and grew over the years and became a man that students were grateful to have in their lives for a short time each day throughout a semester. But the ‘demons’ are still a very real part of me. As I struggle in my new career as an Indie writer and publisher, they torment me daily. But I am no longer the fresh-faced kid from Dundas, terrified by these inner ‘demons’. We are like old friends – they know me, and I know them.

So this dance continues… and I know it well.

Author Bio:

John Fioravanti is a retired secondary school educator who completed his thirty-five year career in the classroom in June, 2008.

Throughout his career, John focused on developing research, analysis, and essay writing skills in his History Classroom. This led to the publication of his first non-fiction work for student use, Getting It Right in History Class. A Personal Journey to the Heart of Teaching is his second non-fiction work; it attempts to crystallize the struggles, accomplishments, and setbacks experienced in more than three decades of effort to achieve excellence in his chosen field.

John’s first work of fiction is Passion & Struggle, Book One of The Genesis Saga, and is set within Kenneth Tam’s Equations universe (Iceberg Publishing). He claims that, after two non-fiction books, he’s having the time of his life bringing new stories and characters to life!

At present, John lives in Waterloo, Ontario with Anne, his bride of forty-one years. They have three children and three grandchildren. In December of 2013, John and Anne founded Fiora Books for the express purpose of publishing John’s books.

Contacts:

 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fiora-Books/516763875088924?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/FioraBooks

Website: https://fiorabooks.cm

Book Purchase Links:

 Amazon USA: http://dld.bz/dCm6v

Amazon Canada: http://dld.bz/dCm64

 Amazon UK : http://dld.bz/dCm6P

Amazon Australia: http://dld.bz/dCmBB

Chapters/Indigo Canada: http://dld.bz/dCp5A

Barnes & Noble: http://dld.bz/dCp5E

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Crazy! Hot! And Living on the Edge! Welcome Shirley Harris-Slaughter​!

Today we welcome Shirley Harris-Slaughter on her Crazy! Hot! And Living On The Edge Blog Tour.  I became of fan of Shirley’s after reading her book OUR LADY OF VICTORY, THE SAGA OF AN AFRICAN AMERICAN CATHOLIC COMMUNITY.  It is my very great pleasure to host the first stop on her tour.

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From Shirley Harris-Slaughter:

To my Host – Thank you, I appreciate you, and I’m so thrilled to be here.

4WillsPublishing — Thank you for putting all this together!

CRAZY! HOT! AND LIVING ON THE EDGE!!

 From the Author:

 Shirley Harris-Slaughter

Let me tell you why I decided to write this book. First of all, certain individuals kept after me to do it after I talked about my issues far too many times. It had always been in the back of my mind to tell my story but quite a bit of it was too painful to talk about. So I put it on the backburner never intending to tell it at all, until I was forced out of hiding. That is the way it is with me. I write out of necessity and not necessarily for the pure joy of it.

I made a few bad decisions that impacted my life negatively and in a physical way. Stress and a difficult marriage and family tragedies landed me into a full blown health crisis. I developed an intolerance to drugs after having them prescribed too many times; I broke out in hives; I had digestive issues that incapacitated me; I suffered emotional ups and downs, and I suffered from panic attack disorders without consciously being aware of it.

How is that even possible? To have attacks and not be able to identify what you are going through.

I honestly didn’t have a clue as to what direction I was going in when I decided to write this book. I had a half-done manuscript that needed some serious work. I realized that there were a lot of gaps left out, on purpose but I would have to talk if I expected to have a real impact. That is when the new title suddenly appeared in my thoughts. I had to find some way to justify what I was about to say and injecting humor and a flair for drama was a good way to do it.

A friend of the family drew the cover on a canvas board and I photographed and uploaded the drawing to my computer, and after adding the graphics this is the finished product.

I hope this book can give you what I never got. I had to find my answers as best I could and I don’t want anyone else to be as unaware as I was.

To everyone, get ready for a wild ride!

 book blurb:

Crazy!_Hot!_And_Livi_Cover_for_Kindle

Imagine experiencing emotions that have you questioning your sanity. Your body gets overheated at the least bit of excitement and you scramble to find a fan or some air. Or you find yourself in the throes of a panic attack and can’t understand how to shut it off, so you are filled with anxiety wondering when the next one is coming. What if every time you take a drug you experience side-affects that you are warned about on the label?

The title was conceived in my mind after I thought over all the situations I had found myself in, getting out of them, and the affect all of this had on my overall physical and mental well-being.

Crazy! Hot! And Living On the Edge!!  Is the True Story of My Upside Down Life!

JUST PUBLISHED: http://wp.me/P48F9L-9T            

THREE REVIEWS: http://amzn.to/1DOGVBl

PURCHASE LINKS:

CRAZY! HOT! AND LIVING ON THE EDGE!!

AMAZON — http://bit.ly/CrazyHotLiving

OUR LADY OF VICTORY, THE SAGA OF AN AFRICAN AMERICAN CATHOLIC COMMUNITY

AMAZON — http://bit.ly/OLVTheSaga

CONNECT:

Email Address: sharrislaughter@gmail.com

Author Facebook Page: http://bit.ly/SHarrriSlaughter

Twitter Page: @sharrislaughter

Email: sharrislaughter@gmail.com

Blog: www.shirleyslaughter.com

SPECIAL PROMOTION!!!

NEW RELEASE – CRAZY! HOT! AND LIVING ON THE EDGE!! BLOG TOUR STARTS MAY 2 to May 8, 2015 SPONSORED BY @4WillsPub FREE DOWNLOADS – 2 DAYS ONLY!! SAT MAY 2 & SUN MAY 3rd! http://bit.ly/CrazyHotLiving

Leave a comment at each stop (including this one) and get your name entered that number of times into a random drawing for:

1st Prize:  $15 Amazon Gift Card

2nd Prize:  Autographed copy of “Crazy! Hot! and Living On The Edge!!”

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Meet Featured Author Jan Hawke

It is my honor to introduce you to fantasy author Jan Hawke.  Jan is not only a beautiful writer, she is one of the most supportive women of my acquaintance.  When you follow her on Twitter, or go to her website, you will find much more information about others than you will find about Jan.

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 Jan Hawke

Fantasy writer, ‪#RRBC reviewer and author of Milele Safari ~ An Eternal Journey. The never-ending story of life, love and death in the wild places of Africa

Milele Safari – An Eternal Journey

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Milele Safari – An Eternal Journey …twines around a single day, in an unremarkable border village that snuffs out the lives of four people and shatters many others, only to draw the survivors back to a different time and, perhaps, a hope of atonement and peace. Step out on the journey and discover an Africa that could have been, is and might one day come to be.

 

 

 

 

What Readers Say about 

Milele Safari – An Eternal Journey

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If you are looking for a book filled with fast-paced action and adventure on an African safari, this is not the book for you. Although it has all of those things, and beautifully written descriptions of the land and wildlife of Africa, the book is more more thought-provoking. It is a story about the tragedies individuals and nations have suffered. It is a story of genocide, personal loss, despair, grief, acceptance, and forgiveness. You learn about the killing of a nun and Brit from the perspective of all parties involved and how this tragic event affected each of them and those they came in contact with. Don’t expect to read this book quickly; it is one you need to contemplate as you go.

________

Touching and Well Written

________

Well written and incredibly well researched. The book doesn’t shy away from the horror of genocide, but neither does it revel in the gory details of what humans can be capable of at their worst.

Through a series of journal-like entries from several different perspectives, we follow a set of characters through different stages of their lives, and see how one horrible event can change their lives forever.
The characters were well developed and well rounded, and as a reader you were able to empathise with both the victims of and the perpetrators of the situation in Hawke’s fictional Zyanda.
I highly recommend this book.

________

Set in Africa, this is not a light read as it contains themes of love, loss and genocide. The Rwandan conflict has been adapted by the author Jan Hawke as a focal point. She sets her tale in an imagined country called Zyanda where one tribe abruptly turns on their peaceful neighbours.

MILELE SAFARI – the African word means eternal – follows Sophie Taylor from England. She revisits the Zambezi River and Victoria Falls in today’s calm setting. Memories of learning that her aid-worker fiancé Tom had been killed when he was in the wrong place during 1994’s abrupt brutality return to haunt her. Sophie had been pregnant and the shock combined with malaria caused her to miscarry before she returned to England to open a therapy clinic. Today she still cannot come to terms with her trauma.

Other characters surviving violence include a village girl of ten who lets herself be raped in return for food to share with her family. When she is left for dead by her soldier abusers, she is fortunate to be found and brought to an aid station where her wounds are cleaned. She gives herself a new name, Teresa. The Dutch couple who care for her are burnt out from all they have seen and her recovery gives them hope. This girl goes on to become a nun, and an aid worker.

On safari in the modern day, Sophie deals briskly with scorpions and learns about leopards. The friendly voices around her, from the group’s guide to people needing the benefit of her experience, help her to come out and face the past. This is not an easy task as there are witnesses and letters to remind her of her soul-wrenching loss.

Predatory animals range from lions to egg-laying flies, while baboons are as dangerous as they wish to be and tourists hoping to spot ‘the big five’ are warned to stay in their vehicles. Game hunters also tour, underestimating the danger from buffalo. Elephants, rhinos and less exotic creatures are all poached but African countries have come to realise that tourism brings money so animals are somewhat protected. Appalling roads, reluctance to try new farming methods, extreme weather and lack of dietary protein or clean water are just some of the challenges Sophie observes. People from outside the vast continent still throw up their hands and say “This is Africa!”

I was impressed by the attention to detail, the graphic realism (though personally I could have done with fewer retellings of people being hacked to death) and the differing viewpoints. I liked seeing through the eyes of a mother leopard with cubs who had a kill to protect and share with her young, and who wished the two-legged apes would leave her in peace. Brief footnotes help to keep the story flowing as new terms are introduced. I also was pleased to see that the story is ultimately a hopeful one and Sophie begins to relive her life and rediscover love. MILELE SAFARI is Jan Hawke’s first novel and I admire the way that she has addressed the challenge of her difficult and absorbing theme.

________

This is a powerfully evocative book in which the fulcrum for the narrative is a violent scene taken from the kind of circumstances seen in the Rwandan massacre. The survivors’ lives are all affected in various ways. This leads to some excellent characterisations of Europeans and Africans caught up in the violence. An emotional rollercoaster, it dissects the brutal events of the massacre, and extrapolates to the subsequent cold assessment of police and doctors, nuns, local people, men and woman, who have contributed to the carnage or who have attempted to prevent or mollify it – sometimes at the cost of their lives. Then it probes deeper still, to the longer term personal implications and reactions, including those much further afield, back in England, and years later in Africa.

There are flashbacks to happier times, contrasting the horror to the tranquillity and beauty of daily life in Africa, and to the happiness of the people involved prior to the massacre. There’s a powerful love story, like a stream of hope, winding through the narrative.

Buy Link for

Milele Safari – An Eternal Journey

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Milele+Safari+-+An+Eternal+Journey

Connect with Jan Hawke

Website:  https://janhawke.wordpress.com

Twitter:  @JanHawke

 

 

 

Meet Featured Author Lizzie Chantree

I am happy to introduce you to Romance Author Lizzie Chantree!  Her creative life as an inventor/entrepreneur/writer/businesswoman impressed me so much I looked into her novel, Babe Driven.  I bought it immediately!

  About Lizzie

lizzie-chantree-imageLizzie is an enthusiastic inventor, businesswoman and artist. She founded her first company at the age of 17 and has been creating products and driving her family mad ever since.

Lizzie appeared on Sky News, ITV Lunchtime News, This Morning, The Big Breakfast, BBC’s Worldwide Radio Service, amongst others for becoming one of Fair Play London’s Female Innovators.

Lizzie lives in Essex, with her gorgeous family and a very unusual dog.  In between the school run and baking cakes (or burning them!), she sits in her rooftop studio daydreaming about gaps in the market and how she can fill them. Babe Driven is her first novel and she is currently working on her second.

 Lizzie’s Inspirations

I don’t know if it is the same for everyone, but as a writer I’m constantly taking note of the things that are going on around me. I often scribble a record of things that inspire me and it can be something small, like an interesting stone on the beach, to something profound that someone says to another as I am walking past them in the street.

Sometimes these things can develop into an idea for a story, but every so often  it is good just to sit down and enjoy finding or seeing something that makes the world seem incredible. We have so much technology at our fingertips to help us communicate with each other, but it is still the little things that mean so much.

A kind word, or a supportive smile are what brings us all together. I have met so many talented writers since I published my first novel. Every single one is wonderfully different, but they inspire me the same way. They reach out to people through the stories they tell and share their dreams and imagination.  They make you want to take time out of your day and sit for a while, to share the journey and enjoy the ride.

 

Babe Driven
Driving straight out of trouble and into paradise! 

babedrivenHarriet’s crazily successful business idea is under serious threat, and the danger seems to be coming from inside her own family. She whisks her sister and her friends away to an exotic location to try and work out whose side they are on. It’s time to start damage limitation.

When the girls arrive at the glorious villa owned by Harriet’s maverick business partner Nikki, they find a gorgeous band and their sexy lead singer Max staying next door, out to entice their new neighbours into all kinds of trouble.

This isn’t a holiday for Harriet and she can’t afford to be distracted. She has to sell her business idea to the powerful resort owner, the elusive Mr Grant, while she is there, or she may not have a business to go back to. Harriet will have to choose between family and friends, business or pleasure. For someone who stays out of the limelight, even though her new company is the hottest ticket in town, she’s going to have to avoid the front pages of every newspaper if she wants to survive the ride!

Some Snippets from the Fabulous Reviews for Babe Driven

What a great book! Got me hooked from beginning and l didn’t want to put it down. Hope there’s a follow up as I really enjoyed reading it.

I had no idea how much fun this book would be to read. It has a good plot and the characters are quite complex. The book is based around a woman called Harriet who runs a very successful business. I was intrigued to find out more about this business and was amazed at how involved I became in wanting to find out how she fares, in the twists and turns of the story. A thoroughly enjoyable read. I would like to read more from this author.

This was a fun light read. There is romance involved but it’s more than that. It’s mostly the story of a strong independent businesswoman who’s trying to save her business. She happens to be beautiful, and so everyone underestimates her. I really like this character and enjoyed the plot. You keep getting little surprises along the way that keep you guessing, and you discover a good villain which is always fun to spice things up. But most of the characters are more complex than just “good guys” and “bad guys”. They are more real—not perfect, sometimes selfish, but they still have redeeming qualities.

Buy Link for Babe Driven

http://www.amazon.com/Babe-Driven-Lizzie-Chantree-ebook/dp/B00FAUT0SS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1430417186&sr=8-1&keywords=babe+driven+lizzie+chantree

Connect with Lizzie Chantree

Website:   http://lizziechantree.wordpress.com

Twitter:  @Lizzie_Chantree

Facebook:   Facebook.com/LizzieChantree

 This is Bethany Turner Pay It Forward Week at Rave Reviews Book Club. It is the goal of Rave Reviews Book Club to Profile, Promote and Propel our member-authors via as many viable vehicles as possible.  Are you an author or a reader?  Think about joining this amazing group of supportive and creative people–https://ravereviewsbynonniejules.wordpress.com

Featured Author: Carl Stevens

Today, I am happy to introduce you to literary fiction author Carl Stevens.  The following quote from Carl’s website grabbed me.  His book descriptions intrigue me.

carlstevens“I wanted to write a classic regular folks would actually read.  I wanted to write an adventure academics would find resonant with meaning.  You tell me how well I did.”

 

 

 

 

 

In the words of Carl Stevens:

Jack London lamented that he had spent his life as a working class intellectual rubbing shoulders with the underprivileged on tramp steamers, in gold mining camps, on wharfs and in warehouses while reading extensively and writing books of serious social and philosophical merit only to be renowned for writing about dogs. It irked him yet inspired me decades later. Eighteen-wheelers, psych wards, factory floors and the halls of academia and corporate America may not be perfect matches to London’s, but they have all been part of my own working class adventures. I have lived in numerous careers the fiction that each was intrinsically important while in fact each was merely research for the role of Carl Stevens, Writer. Professor-in-training (in three fields so far, philosophy, history and psychology), nurse in a psychiatric facility, long-haul truck driver, security guard, waiter, bartender, clerical worker, manual laborer, engineer – they were all facades I presented while my true life’s work went on behind the scenes, reading and writing and incorporating life experience with the scholarly to create the self-identity that is now creating novels.

Three novels speak for the success of this creative self-identity. If a hundred years from now people neglect the layers of substance and only praise my exciting tales of adventure and if I am still alive, then I will be proud to have failed like Jack.

The Novels of Carl Stevens

The Time Traveler’s Fool

 timetravlerIn a dialogue over six days between a psychiatrist and a man claiming to be a time traveler you decide if he is a lunatic, a time traveler, a murderer, a victim, all of the above or none. Start reading convinced that he is insane and end satisfied that you were right all along. Start reading convinced that he travels through time and end satisfied that you were right all along. Then begin the endless discussion with yourself or others about how both readings can be right or must be wrong.

Whoever he may be he is an articulate weaver of tales hilarious and horrible which include writing love poetry in the body of a shepherd boy wooing his first love, leading a small group of would-be legionaries in the body of a commander who has gotten them into a royal mess in the desert, fleeing a lynch mob in the body of a slave who may have been better off before a helping hand (or mind) and much more.
The Time Traveler’s Fool is a rollicking good read but the reader who cares to dig deeper will also find serious literary themes of reality, perception, identity and the unintended consequences of good deeds.

 The Canterbury Tales in Neverland

canteburytalesTHE CANTERBURY TALES IN NEVERLAND makes a post-apocalyptic detective thriller resonate with literary history and ask what it means to be well-read . . .and to get the joke. This is a post-apocalyptic mystery wherein the detective’s need for hard facts clashes with a culture’s need to reinvent itself on the ever shifting sands of story telling. There are two main stories. In one, Jackson Thomas, a former mayor of a small town known as The Ville, is trying to avoid being stoned to death on false charges of conspiracy to incite riot and murder. He is hampered by being under arrest and dependent on a friend to wear out shoe leather poking into what really happened. Meanwhile Jackson’s son and several of the son’s friends have all talked themselves into believing that the wisest solution to Jackson’s dilemma is to trek across a hostile landscape in search of angels and a miracle. Both stories work on multiple levels. They are each an adventure on their own, a detective thriller in town, a road trip through chaos in the wilds. They are also each a metaphor for the epistemological quandries of story telling. Jackson is trying to find his way through a dark woods of conflicting witness accounts. His son and fellow travellers are finding their way through a physical wilderness while sharing with each other the stories which make up their culture . . .and enough puns to choke The Bard.

The Charging Bull of Terry County

chargingbullBicentennial Day for America is going to be a long one for LarryTreegarden. There’s a fifth of Southern Comfort to kill before noon. There’s all the memory other people won’t let the fifth kill off. The woman who’s divorced him three times wants to talk. His older son wants to publish Granddad’s Civil War Journal. Everyone wants to talk war history with a World War II vet. The mayor wants Larry’s crane to lift the statue of a fictional hero into place in time for the fireworks. The only person not bothering him is his younger son shipped home from Viet Nam and resting for five years under a plain flat stone on the edge of town. This day will resonate with history – of one person, of one family, of one nation shaped by war– and all Larry wants is a little peace.

They Call Me Merlin Sherlock (The Merry Mysteries of Thaddeus and Melda) (Volume 1)

chargingbullHe looks like a young adult, claims to be born in the 19th century and laments that the other wizards call him Merlin Sherlock as a taunt. Thaddeus Barlow has wanted to be a detective from when he read newly published stories of Edgar Allan Poe before disappearing into a kindergarten for wizards. Now, after 169 years of learning the basics of wizardry and reading detective stories on the side, he has graduated into the world with the hopes of fulfilling that youthful fancy. He would do so gladly if it were not for the mockery of his fellow wizards who do not consider snooping a respectable endeavor for a newly minted wizard. They Call Me Merlin Sherlock is Thad’s lament as well as his memoir through which he hopes his first case as a detective will convince all that his chosen life is more than a laughing matter. Is he a true wizard, a daft poseur, or a deft publicist for a new and struggling agency? Clues, adventure and humor abound in this tale told from the perspective of an early nineteenth century lad steeped in ancient lore and practicing in an early twenty-first century theme park. Why the park? You really must read the book to find out.

You can purchase these Carl Stevens’ books here:

http://www.amazon.com/Carl-Stevens/e/B00ENI99DE/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1 

Connect with Carl Stevens

http://www.carlstevenswriter.com

Twitter:  @carlstevenswrit

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/carl.stevens.1069

 This is Bethany Turner Pay It Forward Week at Rave Reviews Book Club. It is the goal of Rave Reviews Book Club to Profile, Promote and Propel our member-authors via as many viable vehicles as possible.  Are you an author or a reader?  Think about joining this amazing group of supportive and creative people–https://ravereviewsbynonniejules.wordpress.com

 

 

 

Meet Featured Author: Honey Boudreaux

honey

It is my privilege to introduce you to Rave Reviews Book Club author of Young Adult Fiction, Honey Boudreaux.  This is how she describes herself:

Busy, busy Honey-bug. I am a mom to five beautiful daughters. They range in age from 32 to 14; which is why I’ve managed to keep up with the YA world. Fo’ shizzle!!—(just kiddin)  Trying to find a balance with volunteering at the high school where my youngest daughters attend; working and spending time with my grandbugs has kept my life a constant whirlwind.

I have lived in Southern Louisiana all of my life.  Living in a city right outside of New Orleans had gotten old.  Moving with my youngest two, to the small town of Abita Springs a little calm was brought to our lives.  We have lived here for a little more than 10 years and have grown to love the small town living.  The older three?  Yeah, they followed us!  Their families in tow, we are all within minutes of each other. (I know—they never go away!)  Gotta luv ’em!!  I know I do.

Eventually, I found time for myself and the nagging voices locked inside the vault in my mind.  With several ideas swirling around, the most persistent voices won!  I would like to introduce you to my very frist YA Novel:  Fool Me Once. Now, I have completed book 2: Enter Eternity!!!  Go me!

Honey Boudreaux’s Books

Fool Me Once

Foolme[1]Being a Dreamer has its perks; unfortunately, Shelby is having one dream too many about people meeting their tragic end.  She is not alone. Since childhood Shelby and Tristan have been frequent characters in each other’s subconcious world but have never met, until now.


Shelby catches sight of her familiar visitor in the halls of their school and realizes he is more than just a player in her visions. She is determined to warn Tristan of his impending doom, even if it means he’ll think she is insane. Before she has an opportunity to approach him though, Tristan introduces himself and shares some unsettling news. He is also a Dreamer and it is Shelby’s lifeless body he sees in his dreams.

Shelby and Tristan should have died. What they see as a gift, Death sees as interference with fate. Despite keeping their gift hidden, one figure has taken notice. Death intends to stop them from meddling with the fate of others… permanently.

Death is now their shared nemesis. Eluding Death’s fatal designs will take vigilance, wit and the insight of their prophetic dreams. Even with the ability to see the enemy’s master plan, it may not be enough if Death throws in a twist, unless Shelby comes up with a twist of her own. Would it be enough to win round two? Sometimes you can cheat Death.

Enter Eternity

enter eternityA rogue wave, a struggling swimmer — Jillian goes to help. It could be the last thing she does… in this realm. As doctors sturggle to save her, she takes her own journey, choosing to open that door and walk through to another time. She sees herself as Hotohke’e, a Native American; getting married, raising her family, then dying from disease that was unknown to her people. On her death, she passes through more doors, more lives, struggling to hide her family from the sadistic monsters who rule over the future realm; servicing her master in one way and his children in another; as they too die. Each door reveals another skin Jillian once wore. She will experience England and France in the time of Henry the Eighth — Germany during the second world war, and even purgatory; unwillingly doing the will of a supreme commander. Will she linger too long at one of these lives or is she off to find a new one to live?

You can purchase

Fool Me Once at http://www.amazon.com/Honey-Boudreaux/e/B00IY34J8O/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Enter Eternity will be released on May 26

Visit Honey Boudreaux at

Twitter:  @Honey_Boud

Visit Rave Reviews Book Club – https://ravereviewsbynonniejules.wordpress.com

Take it from me–it’s the best online book club!