Book Giveaway: The Comfort of Lies by Randy Susan Meyers

 

THE COMFORT OF LIES

by Randy Susan Meyers

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 My Review:

This is a FANTASTIC book to read!! It makes for the PERFECT book club book to discuss, too! Oh, the many topics you could chat with amongst book members and the points of view each of the member would support/not support. I would love to be a fly on a wall to hear what everyone has to say.

This is also a fantastic s we all know someone that has had an affair at one time or another. This is a very raw and emotionally charged book.  The author really did her homework and truly left no stone uncovered with the emotional, physical, and relational m not talking about the pregnancy/baby.

Even before the baby, just having the affair really left everyone involved vulnerable and the author addresses every s point of view is also explored, through her so her questions are going to be more basic than those of the adults, which I loved.   t saturate the little girl with so much complexities and thoughts that are really beyond a child so young. She kept each character as realistic and vulnerable as possible, while showing the good/bad parts to each relationship and how they all move past the affair.

I could not put this book down and thought this was a perfect book for anyone that loves contemporary fiction. Their is mystery, drama, and such an authentic realness, that it almost read like a non-fiction book. It is easily the best book for me of 2012…although it won’t be available until February 2013.

*I reviewed this book back in 2012.  This is the post I wrote on LibraryThing, and wanted to add it here, because I ABSOLUTELY view this book as a must read, an awesome read for a book club or group discussion, and a book that will leave you with hard to forget characters!

Scroll further down for the giveaway details!

“Sharp and biting, and sometimes wickedly funny…Meyers writes beautifully about a formerly good marriage.”

The Boston Globe

“Meyers’ complex characters feel familiar yet flawed, and this sharply woven tale demonstrates her uncanny ability to explore and illuminate the nuances of life’s most thorny dilemmas.”

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle

 “Meyers’ carefully told story is a satisfying examination of the imperfect paths we all walk.”

BookPage

 

“The characters crackle with both intelligence and wit…Meyers’ women resonate as strong, complicated and conflicted, and the writing flows effortlessly in this sweet yet sassy novel about love, women and motherhood.”

Kirkus Reviews

“Meyers has crafted an absorbing and layered drama that explores the complexities of infidelity, forgiveness, and family”

Booklist

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Since the release of her debut The Murderer’s Daughters in 2010, international bestselling author Randy Susan Meyers has earned glowing critical praise, award nominations, and a devoted readership around the globe for her thought-provoking, emotionally-resonant novels.

Now available in an affordable paperback format, Meyers returns with her bestselling second novel, THE COMFORT OF LIES (Washington Square Press/Atria Books; On-sale: January 28, 2014; $16.00), a richly textured story that explores the complications of love and collateral damage of infidelity, as well as universal themes of motherhood, identity, trust, and forgiveness.

Told in alternating points of view, THE COMFORT OF LIES reveals the darkest and most private thoughts of three very different women all connected to a five-year-old girl: Tia, the birth mother; Caroline, the adopted mother; and Juliette, the wife of the birth father. The year their lives collide, the women must confront their choices while discovering sobering truths about their relationships and most importantly, themselves.

Five years ago, Tia fell into obsessive love with a man she could never have. A married man and a father, Nathan was unavailable in every way. When she became pregnant, he disappeared and Tia gave the baby up for adoption. Five years later, she struggles with the decision and yearns to connect with her daughter—and her former lover.

Caroline, a dedicated pathologist, had always been a bit ambivalent about motherhood, much preferring the freedom of her childless, work-addicted lifestyle, but attempting to please her husband, she agreed to adopt, hoping her misgivings would disappear. However after five years, she’s questioning whether or not she’s really cut out for a domestic life.

Juliette thought she had it all—a loving husband, two healthy sons, and a successful business. Then she discovered Nathan’s affair. He promised he’d never stray again and she trusted him. Five years later, when Juliette intercepts a letter meant for Nathan containing photos of his daughter, her world crumbles, again. How could he keep this from her? What else is he hiding? Most importantly, how could he deny his daughter?

Desperate for the truth, Juliette goes in search of the little girl. Her quest leads her first to Caroline, then Tia, and before long, the women are on a collision course with consequences none of them could have predicted.

THE COMFORT OF LIES: A Novel

By Randy Susan Meyers

Washington Square Press/Atria Books || January 28, 2014 || $16.00 || Paperback

ISBN: 978-1-45-167302-9

Photo credit, Jill Meyers.

I was born in Brooklyn, New York, where I quickly moved from playing with dolls to incessantly reading, spending most of my time at the Kensington Branch Library. Early on I developed a penchant for books rooted in social issues, my early favorites being Karen and The Family Nobody Wanted. Shortly I moved onto Jubilee and The Diary of Anne Frank.

My dreams of justice simmered at the fantastically broadminded Camp Mikan, where I went from camper to counselor, culminating in a high point when (with the help of my strongly Brooklyn-accented singing voice), I landed the role of Adelaide in the staff production of Guys and Dolls.

Soon I was ready to change the world, starting with my protests at Tilden High and City College of New York . . .. . .  until I left to pursue the dream in Berkeley, California, where I supported myself by selling candy, nuts, and ice cream in Bartons of San Francisco. Then, world weary at too tender an age, I returned to New York, married, and traded demonstrations for diapers.

While raising two daughters, I tended bar, co-authored a nonfiction book on parenting, ran a summer camp, and (in my all-time favorite job, other than writing) helped resurrect and run a community center.

Follow Randy Susan Meyers

Facebook/ Twitter/ Goodreads/ Blog

Giveaway Details:

Enter your name & email address in the comment section.

Answer the following question: What interests you most about this book?

1 random winner will be selected and notified.

The book will be mailed directly to the winner by the publisher.  US entries only. Sorry!!

Giveaway ends: February 14, 2014.

Closed the Cover Virtual Book Tour: Interview with Author, Kat Latham of Mine Under the Mistletoe

Goodreads Synopsis:
Thanks to a transatlantic house swap, California girl Ashley Turner is finally going to fulfill her lifelong dream of a proper English Christmas. Her holiday plans did not include a sexy stranger climbing into her borrowed bed in the middle of the night. But in the light of day, Ashley can’t help but wonder if Santa has delivered early…Game designer Oliver Stansfeld can’t wait to leave dreary London—and all its difficult holiday memories—for sunny San Diego. But a freak ice storm and a grounded plane have forced him back to his already-occupied flat. To make up for the mix-up, the least he can do is show his pretty houseguest where to get the perfect Christmas tree before he leaves.

The more time they spend together, the more their attraction grows, and soon Ashley is tempting Oliver to give in to the spirit of the season and snuggle up for the rest of the winter. As the ice melts and flights start taking off again, he must choose between giving in to the past or risking his heart on a chance at love.

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About The Author:
Kat Latham writes sexy contemporary romance set all around the world. Her debut novel, Knowing the Score, is out now.  She’s a California girl who moved to Europe the day after graduating from UCLA, ditching her tank tops for raincoats. She spent several years teaching English in Prague followed by several more working for a humanitarian organization in London. She now lives with her British husband and baby girl in a small town in the rural Netherlands surrounded by miles and miles of green pasture, canals and Shetland ponies. Kat’s slowly adjusting to life in a place where bicycles and cows seem to outnumber people.  With degrees in English lit and human rights, she loves reading and writing stories that reflect the depth, humor and emotion of real life. She’s been fortunate enough to win some contests, including the Golden Pen and Ignite the Flame, though her Mom is most proud of Kat winning the sex-scene contest, Between the Sheets.  Through her British husband (Dr Smarty Pants, PhD), Kat’s gained a keen appreciation for rugby, cricket, and the sound of a pucka English accent saying words ending in ‘-er’. He inspired her to write a series about hot rugby players with incredibly sexy voices. The first in the series, Knowing the Score, was published by Carina Press in summer 2013.  Kat’s other career involves writing and editing for charities, and she’s had the privilege of traveling to Kenya, Ethiopia, Bosnia and Northern Ireland to write about the heroic people helping their communities survive poverty, inequality and hunger.  When she’s not traveling, reading or writing, Kat can be found sharing overly personal things on her blog, Twitter and Facebook.
Kat, your author bio is fascinating.  You moved to Europe immediately after
graduating from UCLA, taught English in Prague, worked for a humanitarian
organization in London and now live in the Netherlands. Talk to us a little
about your travels.  Which location has been your favorite?
I love to travel. When I was a kid, I used to dream of traveling the world, but I was
quite shy and fearful of unfamiliar things. I started traveling as a way of challenging
myself and building my self-reliance. It worked!  My favorite location? Hmm…that’s really tough. There’s a town a couple hours south of Prague calledČesky Krumlov, which has beautifully preserved medieval architecture and is a really chilled-out place. I tried to go there every few months when I lived in Prague.  A few years ago, my husband and I went to Japan to visit his brother’s family (my husband is British, but two of his brothers are married to Japanese women, so I have nieces and a nephew who speak Japanese as their mother tongue). I fell in love with Hiroshima. I think I expected it to be a very somber, depressing place, but it was a vibrant and startling example of what people can endure and overcome.
What can you tell us about the humanitarian organization that you worked for
in London?  What kind of work does the organization do and how did you first
become involved with them?
I worked for the British Red Cross for nearly five years. After living in Prague, my
husband and I moved to London so I could get my MA in Human Rights. Once I’d
finished that, I got a job as a writer in the Red Cross’s communications division. A
year later I was promoted and became their first web editor.  I feel really lucky to have worked for the Red Cross—and in such an interesting role.  I got to interview people from across the organization and hear about what they went through to save lives in some of the most awful disasters. I have friends who relocated to Haiti after the earthquake, for example. They have amazing stories, and that was how I started writing my debut novel,
Knowing the Score, which features an aid-worker heroine and a rugby-playing hero. People say write what you know, and I’ve spent so much time around aid workers that the heroine came easily to me. The hero…he was more of an enigma—but one I really enjoyed figuring out.
I know that you write contemporary romance, like Mine Under the Mistletoe, but you also state that you have travelled to Kenya, Ethiopia and India to write about the heroic people helping their communities survive disasters. What can you tell us about that writing and where could interested readers find out more?
Sure. My trip to Kenya was in August 2011. I went to Turkana, in rural northern
Kenya on the border with South Sudan, to write stories about the drought and food
crisis people there were suffering and how the Kenyan Red Cross was distributing food and working on water and health projects.  Here are a couple of my favorite
stories from that trip.  I’ve been to Ethiopia a couple of times. Once was for the Foundation I work for, which funds UNICEF projects in Africa; I visited several schools that were being rebuilt. Right now, I’m on my way back from my second trip to Ethiopia. I’m actually answering this while I have a layover at Istanbul airport on my way from Addis Ababa to Amsterdam. This time I went there to lead workshops on writing, blogging and social media for African journalists who write stories for the International HIV/AIDS Alliance.  Last year I went to India with the Foundation I work for, again to visit UNICEF projects we fund.  It was a very inspiring trip, but I had just found out I was pregnant—I was seven weeks pregnant, in fact—and I’ve never felt so sick as I did on that trip. Traveling on bumpy dirt roads in monsoon rain while the driver dodges cows is really not good for helping a pregnant lady keep her breakfast down.
I know it’s hard to imagine but if you were not a writer what other pastime
would you use to fill your time?  Is writing your only creative outlet or are you
also a musician, painter, illustrator? 
Ooh…I love to sew. I’m not one of those ultra-creative types who can whip up a dress without a pattern. I always have to have a pattern. But I’ve made quilts for friends and for their babies, and there are a whole load of people I feel like I owe quilts to. They just take so stinkin’ long!  I made a quilt for my daughter when I was pregnant, and I’ve made one for one of my nieces. That means I have two more nieces and two nephews I haven’t made anything for. Perhaps by the time they get married…
I love how you brought your characters together in Mine Under the Mistletoe.
It’s a nice change from the usual plots and the idea of a trans-atlantic house
swap is very unique.  Can you tell my readers about what a trans-atlantic
house swap is?  Have you ever participated in a house swap?  If you did,
where would you go? 
A house swap is where you use a website to exchange houses with someone so you
can have a homey place to stay on vacation. It’s trans-atlantic because my heroine’s from San Diego and my hero’s from London. Ashley has always wanted a traditional Christmas—the kind with snow and scarves and hot chocolate like she’s seen in movies. Ollie’s grieving and wants to escape Christmas cheer; he figures a warm climate and beaches will help him forget it’s the holiday season. But when they’re both stuck in London together, they figure out that the holiday has more in store for them than they’d anticipated.  I’ve never done a house swap. I don’t own my own home, and I doubt any of my landlords would’ve reacted well if I’d said, “I’d like to let some strangers spend a
couple of weeks in your house so I can save on hotel bills.” *shrugs* Maybe one day…
3 Fantastic Authors come together for 1 Christmas Anthology!
Edition: First Edition

Format: eBook
Publication Date: December, 2013
Publisher: Carina
#ChristmasAnthology
Included Novellas:

Tinsel My Heart by Christi Barth

Season of Second Chances by Brighton Walsh

Mine Under the Mistletoe by Kat Latham

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Click here to enter the book giveaway!

Click here to enter the book giveaway!

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Tour Schedule

November 29, 2013 Closed the Cover – Tour Kick-Off Post & Giveaway Tome Tender – Book Promo Kelly P’s Blog - Author Q&A with Kat Latham, Brighton Walsh & Christi Barth November 30, 2013 Oh My Books! – Book Review December 3, 2013 Closed the Cover – Guest Post by Christi Barth December 4, 2013 Not Drinking Coffee - Book Promo
December 5, 2013 Nerd Alert Book Love - Book Review & Q&A with Brighton Walsh Listful Booking - Book Review
December 6, 2013 Wicked Book Addict – Guest Post by Kat Latham & Excerpt of Mine Under the Mistletoe
December 7, 2013 Stark Raven Mad – Radio Interview
December 8, 2013 Books in the ‘Burbs – Q&A with Kat Latham For the Love of Books – Book Review & Promo
December 9, 2013 My Nook, Books & More – Book Review & Guest Post by Brighton Walsh
December 10, 2013 Books, Books & More Books – Book Spotlight & Excerpt of Tinsel My Heart
December 11, 2013 Curse of the Bibliophile – Q&A with Christi Barth & Promo  My Tangled Skeins Book Reviews – Book Review Twin Opinions – Book Review
December 12, 2013 Love Romance Books – Book Review & Excerpt of Season of Second Chances Smut & Bonbons – Book Promo and Giveaway December 13, 2013 My Life. One Story at a Time - Book Review

Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop: July 2-July 9th!

 

Click here to visit other blogs!

Let Freedom Ring!!

I Am a Reader, Not A Writer and Bookhounds are hosting this giveaway hop!

I’m absolutely excited to participate, because this is a way for us to give books to readers, and also to meet fellow bloggers and readers!

This is by far, one of the largest hops I’ve ever participated in! I hope you will join me and hop around to other blogs and enter their giveaways!

Win this Book!

I thought it was quite fitting to give this book away for Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop!

The genre is YA/Dystopian Fiction, that deals with suppression and control.

Click on the icon for my full review.

How to Enter:

Simply enter your email address in the comment form.

One winner will be randomly selected on July 10, 2013.

Have fun and hop around to other blogs!

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Have you checked out my other giveaway? Click here for details!

Want a free book? Click here for details!

Armchair BEA-Wrapping Up the Week!

I have come across some fantastic books, written by Indie authors!  Because e-books exist now, it has become quite easy for these self-published and/or authors working with small, independent publishing companies to get their books into the hands of readers.  I must admit, I have come across some great books that were free on my Nook and have met great authors requesting book reviews.

Here are some of the books I’ve read from Indie authors:

I came across Heather Wardell’s book a couple of years ago, and loved this book.  It was my first book in the chick-lit genre that I enjoyed!  As a gift to her readers, this book has continued to be free for e-readers and her other books are about .99 cents.  A fantastic buy!!

Judy Leslie is another fantastic writer.  This is her first book, which is Historical fiction.  I absolutely love her writing style, loved the book, and have found her to be a charming and sweet person to get to know.  In my opinion, working with Indie authors, I have been able to get to know the authors on a more personal level and find them more interactive with bloggers.

While I have also met fantastic authors, who aren’t Indie, I do find that I often have to go through their publicist or publishing company.  The authors are just stretched thin with book tours, so that is why I’ve also signed up for more tours this year, too.

This was my first year to ever participate in Armchair BEA.  Thanks to Judy Leslie, author of For the Love of Ireland, for letting me know :D

I think this is the first time I’ve ever posted every day for a week!!  Well, it will be a week tomorrow-when I announce the winners for the book giveaway ;)

I’m actually tired-brain tired, but I’ve enjoyed every moment!  It was a lot of fun meeting bloggers and being introduced to different genres, books I’d never read, and just overall the interactions with everyone!

Here’s my Weekly Wrap-Up:

Day 1:  Weekly Introductions & Classical Literature

Day 2:  Genre Fiction

Day 3:  Book Giveaway! (ends at midnight, today!)

Day 4: Non-fiction

Day 5:  Genre-Picture Books to Young Adults

Thanks to all those that helped with Armchair BEA!! It was quite fun and I hope to be back next year!

TLC Book Tours-Review & Giveaway: Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

About Into the Darkest Corner

• Paperback: 432 pages

• Publisher: Harper Paperbacks (January 2, 2013)

 

When young, pretty Catherine Bailey meets Lee Brightman, she can’t believe her luck. Gorgeous, charismatic, and a bit mysterious, Lee seems almost too perfect to be true.

But what begins as flattering attention and spontaneous, passionate sex transforms into raging jealousy, and Catherine soon discovers that Lee’s dazzling blue eyes and blond good looks hide a dark, violent nature. Disturbed by his increasingly erratic, controlling behavior, she tries to break it off; turning to her friends for support, she’s stunned to find they don’t believe her. Increasingly isolated and driven into the darkest corner of her world, a desperate Catherine plans a meticulous escape.

Four years later, Lee is behind bars and Catherine—now Cathy—is trying to build a new life in a new city. Though her body has healed, the trauma of the past still haunts her. Then Stuart Richardson, her attractive new neighbor, moves in. Encouraging her to confront her fears, he sparks unexpected hope and the possibility of love and a normal life.

Until the day the phone rings . . .

My Review:

This is a psychological thriller that will keep the reader engrossed in the novel until the very end.  It starts with a bang and ends with chills running down your body.  It’s that good!  The story begins with a court hearing, then moves to a murder scene. After that, each chapter alternates with flashbacks from the past and the present.  Eventually, the past catches up with her present and the story stays in the present.  While it was a bit confusing at first, once the story fell into place, it wasn’t difficult to make the mental shift.

Catherine (the past) is a vibrant, confident, who loves to go partying with her girlfriends.  One night, she meets Lee and they quickly develop an intimate relationship.  While Catherine loves everything about Lee, with time, she starts to see a darker side to him that keeps her on her toes.  Coming home to find that he’s been there, seeing small insignifcant items moved, feeling that she’s being followed, and having to tell him everything she does so that he won’t freak out on her begins to take its toll on her mental well-being.  She becomes jumpy and scared that she will provoke him to hit her or become sexually violent with her.

Lee is a charmer and not only seduces her, but begins to tell her friends things that aren’t true about Catherine, to make excuses for her bruises, scratches, and somber attitude.  Soon, her friends begin to believe him and she is isolated from her social circle and feels alone and unable to escape from him.  Because of his charisma and line of work (special units police officer), he begins to play mind games with her and she soon realizes that her only way of escaping is leaving the country.  Because of Lee’s abuse of power, Catherine is kidnapped, raped, mutiliated, and is slowly dying.  However, a neighbor notices something and saves Catherine from any further torment….or so she thinks.

Present time Cathy (Catherine) is suffering from PTSD, OCD, and becomes so paranoid that she isolates herself from anyone and limits her time away from her apartment.  Because of her past, Cathy doesn’t trust anyone in authority, doesn’t trust her own instincts, and is always on high alert that Lee is watching her even though he is in jail.  Living in a flat with 2 other neighbors, she meets Stuart, a psychologist.  He is recovering from a failed engagement, she is recovering from the trauma and abuse she endured with Lee.  Both begin a very “safe” and slow relationship,with Stuart encouraging Cathy to seek treatment for her OCD.  While in outpatient therapy, Cathy  begins to address the trauma, learns coping skills, and slowly begins to reclaim her life.  I loved the Cognitive-Behavioral techniques addressed in the book.

While this book isn’t a self-help book, it does address in detail the ways Cathy was taught to overcome her anxiety and no longer fear the unknown or the illusion of Lee.  This helps Cathy handle Lee differently and the situations she finds herself in, as she reconnects with an old friend and soon has to confront her fears.  This is a creepy, psychological thriller that readers may identify with.  We’ve all had “bad” relationships, hopefully not near as bad as Catherine’s….but enough to make the reader sympathize with her.  Lee was a charmer and the more he scared Catherine, the more turned on he becomes, which in turn equates to the level of violence he demonstrates.  Abuse of power and his charasmatic attitude means that he will do anything to keep Catherine under his thumb, isolated from friends, and dependent on him.  Having Stuart in her life, Cathy learns what it’s like to have a healthy relationship, slowly learns to let her defenses down around him, and begins to face her anxiety and fears.

I loved this book and read it in one day! This hasn’t happened in a very long time, but I just had to keep reading to find out what happens next.  The ending was chilling and sinister because it leaves the reader wondering if Lee’s letter and “gift” is really trying to show how he is ready to take responsibility or if it’s a threat to what will happen to her when he gets out.  Cathy only shows the first part of the letter to the detective and wants to hold on to the ending for herself, until she sees his “gift”.  I wondered why she wanted to keep it, but it is obvious that she will always feel connected to him in some way.  After mutilating her body, in my opinion, it’s the later, going along the lines, “if I can’t have you, no one else can”.  In Lee’s mind, Catherine is his and only time will tell what he means by that….I look forward to hearing your thoughts about the book, once you read it!

5 plus more

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Book Giveaway Details:

Along with your email address, please leave a comment answering this question:

“What interests you about this book?”

1 random winner will be selected.  The winner must live in the U.S. for this book giveaway.

Giveaway ends: March 1, 20133.

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About Elizabeth Haynes      

ELIZABETH HAYNES is a police intelligence analyst. She started writing fiction in 2006 with the annual challenge of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and the encouragement of the creative writing courses at West Dean College. She lives in a village near Maidstone, Kent, with her husband and son.

Visit her at elizabeth-haynes.com, connect with her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter.

tlc book tours

Elizabeth’s Tour Stops

Wednesday, January 2nd: Mockingbird Hill Cottage

Thursday, January 3rd: Booked on a Feeling

Monday, January 7th: Peppermint PhD

Tuesday, January 8th: Drey’s Library

Thursday, January 10th: The Blog of Lit Wits

Thursday, January 17th: Sara’s Organized Chaos

Monday, January 21st: All Grown Up?

Tuesday, January 22nd: Kristina’s Favorites

Wednesday, January 23rd: Seaside Book Corner

Thursday, January 24th: Bookworm Meets Bookworm

Monday, January 28th: Kelly’s [Former] France Blog

Tuesday, January 29th: Proud Book Nerd

Wednesday, January 30th: Literary Feline

Thursday, January 31st: It’s a Crazy, Beautiful Life

Monday, February 4th: Books in the Burbs

Tuesday, February 5th: Book Journey

Wednesday, February 6th: Tina’s Book Reviews

TLC Book Tours-Review & Giveaway: The Long Way Home by Mariah Stewart

Book Information:

  • File Size: 1126 KB
  • Print Length: 434 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0345538412
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (January 29, 2013)
  • Sold by: Random House Digital, Inc.

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author Mariah Stewart presents a
captivating contemporary romance novel in the tradition of Robyn Carr, Susan
Mallery, and Barbara Freethy.

As the only child of a wealthy investment manager, Ellie Chapman has never known anything besides a life of perfect privilege. But her years of good fortune come to an abrupt end when her
father is exposed for swindling billions of dollars from innocent investors in a massive Ponzi scheme. And just like that, Ellie loses everything: money, job, home—even her fiancé, who’s jailed as her father’s partner in crime. With no job prospects on the horizon, no cash, and her family name in tatters, Ellie has only one place to go.

Sleepy St. Dennis, Maryland, is hardly where Ellie intends to stay, however. Keeping her identity a secret, she plans to sell the house her late mother left her in the small town and use the proceeds to move on with her life. Unfortunately, her ticket to a new beginning is in dire need of a
laundry list of pricey improvements, many of which she’ll have to do herself.  And until the house on Bay View Road is fit to be sold, the sole place Ellie will be traveling is the hardware store. But as the many charms of St. Dennis—not to mention Cameron O’Connor, the handsome local contractor who has secrets of his own—begin to work their magic, what begins as a lesson in
do-it-yourself renovations might just end up as Ellie’s very own rejuvenation.

mariah stewartAbout Mariah Stewart

Mariah Stewart is the award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty novels of contemporary romance and romantic suspense. A native of Hightstown, New Jersey, she lives with her husband and their dogs amid the rolling hills and Amish farms of southern Chester County, Pennsylvania, where she gardens, reads, and enjoys country life.

Mariah’s website:  http://www.mariahstewart.com/

My Review:

“The Chesapeake Diaries”, is a series that fans will love reading.  Mariah Stewart’s latest book, “The Long Way Home” is her latest book that can be read as a stand alone. I loved reading about this small quaint town!! Mariah Stewart created a gorgeous town, where everyone knows your name and loves you as family.  This book focuses on Ellie and her renovations on a home left to her by her deceased aunt.  With the renovations, Ellie finds out family secrets and learns more about her own mother with whom she had a distant relationship with.

There is a sweet love story, of course, which I loved did not include anything too raunchy or inappropriate.  If the reader has followed the series, there will be lots of great updates from certain people in St. Dennis that appeared in other books.  It’s a slow read because there are a lot of characters to get acclimated too, however the plot does move along well.  Overall, it was a good read and is a fantastic series to immerse oneself in!

Book Giveaway:

Before you read the final book in The Chesapeake Diaries, win book #5.

Home for the Summer

Simply add your email in the comments section and 1 winner will randomly be chosen.

The winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond.

If not, a new winner will be selected.

Giveaway ends March February 15, 2013

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tlc book tours

Mariah Stewart’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Monday, November 26th:  Literally JenHome for the Summer review

Sunday, December 30th:  Reviews from the HeartHome for the Summer review

Monday, January 28th:  Reviews from the Heart

Tuesday, January 29th:  Novel Reaction

Wednesday, January 30th:  A Cozy Reader’s Corner

Thursday, January 31st: I Am A Reader, Not A Writer – Q&A

Monday, February 4th:  Books in the Burbs

Tuesday, February 5th:  Literally Jen

Wednesday, February 6th:  Reviews by Molly

Wednesday, February 6th:  Romancing the Book - guest post

Thursday, February 7th:  Joyfully Retired

Friday, February 8th:  Romancing the Book

Monday, February 11th:  Seaside Book Nook

Tuesday, February 12th:  I’m Booking It

Wednesday, February 13th:  Lesa’s Book Critiques

Thursday, February 14th:  Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews

Friday, February 15th:  Kelly’s Lucky You

Monday, February 18th:  Adventures of an Intrepid Reader

Tuesday, February 19th:  Good Girl Gone Redneck

Wednesday, February 20th:  Life in the Thumb

Thursday, February 21st:  Booked on a Feeling

Monday, February 25th:  From the TBR Pile

Tuesday, February 26th:  From L.A. to LA

Wednesday, February 27th:  Mom in Love with Fiction

Thursday, February 28th:  Sara’s Organized Chaos

Friday, March 1st:  The Book Pushers

Giving Thanks and Books, too!

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving this year!  Every year, I prepare a huge meal and my family and I eat and watch movies together.  I used to split my time between families, which can really add up when I have divorced parents.  However, it left me exhausted, emotionally spent, and it seemed that me and my kids spent more time on the road than in any one place.  So many years ago, my husband and I decided to cook at home and enjoy our day of thanks with our children.  It has been the best new tradition for us and it means eating in your pj’s, relaxing, cooking at my own speed, and spending the day with those that matter most to me.  I realized that we already see our family and can see them any other time, why add stress and travel to our day, too…right?!  Later that evening, my dad and his family joined us for some dessert and we all got to watch a movie.  It really was a great relaxing day for us.

I know you all realize this a blog that I do on my spare time and write about books that I’ve read.  I also love sharing books…what better way to recycle?!?  So, I’d like to give you some books that I have sitting on my shelf waiting to be opened and enjoyed. I have quite a few genres available and rather than let you know the title of the books, I’ll have you pick a genre and 3 winners will be chosen.  I will email you that you won and give you 24 hours to give me your address and a surprise book in your genre will be sent to you by mail!  How fun that would be, right?

I have never done this and it’s kinda like a Secret Santa, only I’m not getting anything back in return and it doesn’t cost you anything.  It’s just my way to say thanks to you for subscribing to my blog, reading my entries, and joining me on my reading adventure!  I hope you have a great weekend and know how thankful I am for you!

In the comments section, please add your email and the genre you would like to enter for.

There are no requirements to enter!

The genres available are:

  • Chick-lit
  • Non-Fiction
  • Contemporary Fiction
  • Historical Fiction
  • Christian Fiction
  • Mystery

Giveaway ends: December 15, 2012.  3 Random Winners using Random.org!

Also, don’t forget to enter the book giveaway for Yellow Crocus!

Guest Post by Author, Nancy Scrofano

My Favorite Episodes of I Love Lucy

 Like main character Marlo Spencer in my debut novel, True Love Way, I love I Love Lucy. I haven’t gone as far as dyeing my hair red like Marlo did, but I’ve been a fan of the show and of Lucy’s since I was a little girl. I’ve seen every episode so many times that I lost count long ago, and I know more trivia than I probably should. Most people say that “Job Switching” (also known as “The Chocolate Factory”) is their favorite episode, or “Lucy Does A TV Commercial” (also known as “Vitameatavegamin”). Those are the popular choices. Though I do love those two episodes, they aren’t necessarily my favorites. I think all the episodes are fantastic and timeless, but if I had to make a list, the following episodes would make the cut and here’s why:

“Ethel’s Hometown” – On their way to California, the Ricardos and the Mertzes stop in Ethel’s hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her father is under the impression that she is the star, not Ricky, and that she will be in a movie when they get to Hollywood. The town makes a big fuss over her homecoming, and the episode ends with her putting on a show for everyone. While she’s singing, Lucy, Ricky, and Fred are literally behind her on the stage in what is the funniest scene of television I’ve ever seen. For me, nothing tops that routine. When Fred walks out time after time with the tree…and it keeps growing… I laugh hysterically every time I see it. It’s brilliant. If you haven’t seen this episode, watch it.

“Lucy Is Enceinte” – I love this episode because it’s when Lucy tells Ricky that she’s pregnant. He’s singing at the club and thinks a random audience member is pregnant, but it turns out to be Lucy. The moment they share is so heartwarming. I read a memoir by one of the writers and she said the director thought that Lucy and Desi ruined the take because they were both so emotional. So, he had them do it again, but when he watched both back, he knew the first take was the one to air. Their feelings in that scene are real, and it’s touching to watch.

“Lucy’s Last Birthday” – In this episode, Lucy thinks everyone forgot her birthday, but Ricky actually planned a surprise party for her. When she shows up at his nightclub, she is completely stunned to find all her friends there. What makes this episode so special is that Ricky sings the I Love Lucy theme song to Lucy. Yes, the theme song does have words!

“Ricky Thinks He’s Going Bald” – Ricky is convinced that his hairline is receding, so Lucy goes to great lengths to get him to think otherwise. She comes up with a ridiculous method that she tells him will help his hair grow back. It involves a heat cap over a stocking on his head and basically rubbing the ingredients of a salad into his hair. She thinks he will realize that all of this is silly, especially when she tells him how often they have to do this, but to her surprise, he’s okay with it.

I could go on and on about the episodes I love, but I’ll stop there. Some other favorites of mine that I recommend are “The Handcuffs,” “Lucy and Ethel Buy the Same Dress,” “The Million Dollar Idea,” “The Diner,” “First Stop,” “Lucy’s Italian Movie,” and “Lucy Does the Tango.” Something else to mention is that “Lucy Does the Tango” has the longest studio audience laugh ever recorded in television history. It clocks in at 65 seconds. Lucy was able to keep the audience continuously roaring with laughter for over a minute! And that’s one of the many reasons why she’s a legend.

Author Bio

Nancy Scrofano is the author of True Love Way. She is a freelance writer, and she is the founder and managing editor of The Chick Lit Bee, a book blog that promotes and celebrates women’s fiction. Nancy is at work on her next novel. For more information, please visit http://www.nancyscrofano.com.

Click the link below to read my review and enter in Nancy’s e-book giveaway!

Win Nancy’s Book: True Love Way!

Top 25 Book Bloggers of 2012 by Skinny Scoop

Wow! I am sooo honored to have been selected as one of the top 25 book bloggers for 2012 by Skinny Scoop.  As most of you know, I blog because I love books and enjoy sharing my thoughts on books I’ve read to those who also love reading.  This is not a full-time job for me, as my full-time job is being a mom.  There are so many wonderful blogs that I follow, which were also selected as one of the top book bloggers for 2012.  I encourage you to also visit their blogs, if you aren’t already!

Top 25 Book Bloggers of 2012

As a huge thank-you to Skinny Scoop and those who also voted, I’m offering 3 free book giveaways!

Giveaway Rules:

1 book per winner

Be a new or existing follower of Books in the Burbs blog

Like/Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

Fill out the form below.

By filling it out, your information will not be  displayed in the comment sections of this blog. It will be sent to me privately, via email.

Giveaway ends October 10, 2012.