Book Highlight​: Beauty’s Curse

Don’t you just love a good fairytale retelling? Today I have this gorgeous book to share with you, along with an excerpt to read, and a chance to win a print copy of this stunner!

Beauty's Curse

Beauty’s Curse (Once Upon a Princess #1)

Publication Date: January 2016

Genre: Fairytale Retelling/ Historical Fantasy/ Romance

For four years, Princess Aurora of Rhone—Rose to her friends—has searched the world for a way to break the curse placed on her by Magdalina, the wicked ruler of the fairies at war with her kingdom. Under the curse, Rose is doomed to die on her eighteenth birthday after pricking her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel. And time is running out.

On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Rose makes the journey home with her friends—Theo, a priest with a penchant for revenge; Mary, a young and talented fairy; and Ethan and Sophia, siblings with a troubled past–as pressure from her father, King Stefanos, leaves her with two equally unsatisfying options: Abdicate the throne, or get married.

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Excerpt

Rose and Theo discuss their next move in finding Titania, the queen of the fairies, in hopes she will be able to tell them how to break Rose’s curse.

***

She had never been one to waste her time; after all, she had so little of it left. But whether or not the weather cooperated with her was another matter entirely.

Rose looked up at the bleak sky, feeling the hood of her protective cloak sliding down from her face, exposing her nape at the end of her close-cropped hair. The wind tickled her skin, and rather than finding it charming and pleasant as she might have when she was younger, she found it taunting and terrifying.

Her gaze moved down from the crying skies to the sea, the rough and tumbling creature so keen on hogging every inch it could of the world’s edge.

There was nothing to it, she decided. They would have to enter into the cavern during the rain. According to the map Ethan had found, the entrance to Titania’s realm was not far down the cliff, and while it would be easier if the rain would stop and the tide would recede, Rose knew she could never count on life to make things easier for her if it could.

That was how Theo found her; looking down the edge of the cliffs, standing in the rain, and declaring all the world her enemy. No wonder she had insisted leaving the palace when she’d been thirteen, he thought. Even the grand palace would have demolished itself, had she been unable to fight her own way free of it. She was a warrior through and through.

Theo shook his head and pushed back the cover of his cloak. “I know that look,” he muttered, coming up from behind her. “And the answer is no.”

Rose would have normally grinned at the sight of her best friend following her out of the safety of the camp to talk. But ever since she and her group had finally found the location of the home of a powerful Fairy Queen, time seemed to crush into her a little bit more each day, pushing her into possible tomorrows long before her today’s had finished.

She pursed her lips together. “Come on. I’m the princess, remember? I’m the one in command here, Theo.”

He smiled at her. “You only pull rank when you know I’m right.” Crossing his arms, he added, “It’s only been two days, Rosary. We’ll give it at least one more before we go barreling in.”

He was not fooled by the calm look on her face; there would be a battle in getting her to agree.

He had known Rose–officially Princess Aurora Rosemarie Mohanagan of Rhone–for over ten years, ever since he arrived to work in the royal chapel, and he knew well her charms. It was impossible not to notice them, and knowing her well enough, it was impossible for him to fall for them–which, he knew, she both liked and hated on different occasions. Knowing her expressions just as well, Theo knew this time she hated it.

“Mary can protect us with a weather spell,” she argued.

He had to admit, halfway begrudgingly, he admired her tenacity as she refused to back down. “Mary is still tired from our battle with the Eastern Warlords. We’re all still tired, even you. The rest will be good for us. We have time enough for rest.”

“No, I don’t have time, Theo. My birthday is coming up.” Frustration and fear crept into the pattern of her speech.

“And you can spare a day now, and we’ll make up for it later.”

“What if we don’t?”

“You still have a whole year afterwards, Rosary.” Patience melted away into concern at her words. He knew she was upset and afraid, and there was little he could do about it.

That was why he had come, though, wasn’t it? The thought hit him with a disgruntled air. There were few reasons besides counsel and comfort that would cause one to bring a priest across continents and into battle. He was fortunate to have found a friend in the doomed princess of Rhone.

Available on Amazon

For your chance to win a paperback copy of Beauty’s Curse, click on the link below!

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The author has also made the book available for anyone who signs up to her newsletter: https://dl.bookfunnel.com/vj2gi40ho8



About the Author

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C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

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Blog Tour Schedule

May 13th

Reads & Reels (Excerpt) http://readsandreels.com

Triquetra Reviews (Excerpt) http://www.triquetrareviews.blogspot.com

I Love Books and Stuff (Excerpt) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com

Pages and Paw Prints (Review) http://pagesandpawprints.com/

Jessica Belmont (Review) http://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com

Speedy Reader (Review) https://speedyreadercom.wordpress.com/

May 14th

I Smell Sheep (Excerpt) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Daily Waffle (Excerpt) http://www.dailywaffle.co.uk

Sophril Reads (Excerpt) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

Love Books Group (Review) https://lovebooksgroup.com/

May 15th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

The Cozy Pages (Excerpt) http://thecozypages.wordpress.com/

Stacy is Reading (Review) https://stacyisreading.blogspot.com/?m=0

Breakeven Books (Excerpt) https://breakevenbooks.com

May 16th

Reading Nook (Excerpt) http://readingnook84.wordpress.com

An Ocean a Glimmer (Review) http://anoceanglimmer.wordpress.com

The Bookworm Drinketh (Excerpt) http://thebookwormdrinketh.wordpress.com/

Tsarina Press (Excerpt) https://www.tsarinapress.com

May 17th

B is for Book Review (Review) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com

Darque Dreamer Reads (Review) https://darquedreamerreads.wordpress.com/

Misty’s Book Space (Review) http://mistysbookspace.wordpress.com

The Must Reads (Review) http://themustreads.com/

Eclectic Review (Review) https://eclecticreview.com/

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I did my first Wrap Up video and talk about all the books I read in April including my selections for the magical readathon!

Plan your trip around the world with MyFlightSearch & Save up to $20.00** off our fee with promo code – ATW20. Book Now!

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Help a great cause: Furever Home Friends!​

Hey bookworms! I have some pretty cool news for you! As many of you know, I have started making Youtube videos to talk about books. I am one with the “booktube” ways now…just kidding, I still have a lot to learn in terms of filming and editing. But along the way, I have made some really cool fellow booktuber friends!

One of these such friends is Savy. She is an author and booktuber based in Chicago and she talks about tips on writing, books, and other social issues. I will link her Youtube channel so you can go check her out!

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She has a company that she runs called Furever Home Friends. They sell stuffed animals that are super adorable along with other merchandise such as T-shirts, posters, and books. All of these stuffed animals are based on real animals and they are looking to build their collection of stuffed animals they can offer.

They recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the production of these new additions to the Furever Home Friends family. Plus, they give 10% of all proceeds made to Chicago Animal shelters so you would be helping out animals in need at the same time as supporting a good, wholesome business.

I know it would mean the world to Savy if you could check out the campaign! She has worked very hard to make this small business a reality. Feel free to share the campaign as a way of support if you can’t pledge anything. That way more people will see and learn about this wonderful business that helps kids learn about social issues through children’s stories involving lovable animals. And the fact that some of this money helps those sheltered animals, in turn, makes it even better!

I hope everyone is having a great weekend and I will be sharing more bookish posts with you in the upcoming week! Happy ready bookworms!


I did my first Wrap Up video and talk about all the books I read in April including my selections for the magical readathon!

Plan your trip around the world with MyFlightSearch & Save up to $20.00** off our fee with promo code – ATW20. Book Now!

Book Review: Hilt Cyan by Blair Selph

Hye bookies! Sara wrote another review for us. She has been an awesome partner with us and has been helping with reviews pretty much since we established Breakeven Books and we are super grateful for her.  Go check out her Etsy shop Adorkable Little Crafties and support her little yarn creature creations if you are into that! This one was called Hilt Cyan by Blair Selph.

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Book Synopsis: What is the knowledge of the Shiron? Georgia Millward, a mercenary living in a steampunk land of floating islands, wants to know. After a mission goes awry and she’s caught by the police, Georgia’s given a chance at that power by Henry Entwistle, the vice president of the monolithic Bell Industries. If she travels with him to a far off world and survives a deadly sniper tournament where all of her skills and magical equipment will be put to the test, she will become a Shiron.

Can Georgia defeat the other competitors, who want to become Shiron just as much as she does? Can she learn from her mistakes, or will she be controlled by her guilt? Can she find love under these life-threatening conditions? And what do memories of her past, of a childhood and a relationship long gone, have to do with this journey? Find out in the pages of Blair Selph’s first novel, with artwork by Amy Hao and editing by Kiran O’Farrell.

Hilt Cyan by Blair Selph is a strange book about a person? creature? named Georgia (she and all the other characters seem to be human, except that they have cat ears. I wasn’t quite sure what to make of this as its never actually addressed in the book, the character’s ears just start moving). In the book, Georgia is a hit-woman, and is invited to join in on a battle to the death with other criminals to become a Shiron. What is a Shiron? We’re never told. All we know is that they are gifted with the knowledge of the universe.

Throughout the book, Georgia has short, supposedly comedic conversations with the other characters, that never develop them beyond the surface level. We are given short flashbacks into Georgia’s life that don’t really enable the reader to understand her or the world any better, beyond the fact that she had a rough upbringing, apparently primarily because she was gay.

This book feels like it was an interesting idea that never got fleshed out. We don’t get enough action in the action scenes, we learn almost nothing about this interesting world they exist in, we barely get to know the characters, and many things are left unexplained. In this world that is supposed to be steampunk, futuristic, action-packed, and interesting, we only get a glimpse of what I imagine the author wanted to show us.

As is common with first novels, it has some gaps that would have been great if they were filled in. This seems like a neat idea that never quite got off the ground. I just wish there was more to it!

P.S. The ending was irritating and anticlimactic. On purpose, I think, so I can’t tell if that makes it funny or not?

Book Rating: 2.5/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to us by the author in ebook format to read and give an honest review.


I recently got back from my vacation to Ireland and Scotland and made a video about it. Feel free to check it out if you want to see how my trip went!

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Cover Reveal: The Heart Of The Matter

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A Mother’s Love: The HEART of the Matter

Genre: Anthology/ Short Stories

Expected Publication Date: May 14th (Mother’s Day)

Where would we be without the LOVE of a Mother? That’s what’s so special about this anthology, it’s all about a Mother’s Love!

An endearing novel about the strength and resiliency of a mother’s love. . . . By loving their children more than themselves, the women in this anthology go to the extreme to protect and safe-guard their children. Oftentimes, at the cost of their own happiness.
These nine authors provide readers with heartening tales of inspiration, forgiveness and sacrifices, all coming from a place of love…A mother’s heart!

The Scent of a Man: Dr. Julia E. Antoine
Holding On to Love: Solange St. Brice
A Mother’s Miracle: P. A. Smith
A Very British Mother: Lucinda E. Clarke
Dead Witch Talking: T. A. Moorman
The Blue Box: Jan Raymond
One Night of Love: Izzibella Beau
Welcome Home: Erin Eldridge
No Greater Love: Mariyam Hasnain

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About the Author

JULIA E. ANTOINE, aka Ju Ephraime, is the author of numerous bestsellers and award-winning novels, including, I Will Follow: to Eternity and Beyond and her highlander historical series, The Campbell Brothers. Dr. Antoine always knew she would be a writer. She started writing short stories for the local radio station in her hometown before she had even graduated high school. These days her time is spent plotting and creating new stories. When she’s not plotting out her next book, she travels extensively researching new locations to color her stories. She lives in the New England area with her wonderful life companion and her favorite pet, her dog, Gus.

Visit her at www.juliaeantoine.com or www.too-clever.com

Pre-Order in Time for Mother’s Day!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks

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I recently got back from my vacation to Ireland and Scotland and made a video about it. Feel free to check it out if you want to see how my trip went!

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April Wrap-up

Hey bookworms! I just got back from a dodgeball tournament and I am pooped. My team did very well and we had a lot of fun playing dodgeball against people from all over. Anyways, I am writing this post to update you on everything that I read during the month of April! BTW, I successfully completed the harry potter magical readathon and passed my OWL’s.

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So I am pretty excited about that! Alright now to tell you about the books I read in April. I have reviewed all of them so I will post the links to each one in case you want a more in-depth idea of what I thought about that specific book. This is my first kid of wrap up post so what I will do is show each book and then put their synopsis with the link to my review below that.

The Warrior Heir

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Before he knew about the Roses, 16-year-old Jack lived an unremarkable life in the small Ohio town of Trinity. Only the medicine he has to take daily and the thick scar above his heart set him apart from the other high schoolers. Then one day Jack skips his medicine. Suddenly, he is stronger, fiercer, and more confident than ever before. And it feels great – until he loses control of his own strength and nearly kills another player during soccer team tryouts.

Soon, Jack learns the startling truth about himself: he is Weirlind, part of an underground society of magical people who live among us. At their helm sits the feuding houses of the Red Rose and the White Rose, whose power is determined by playing The Game – a magical tournament in which each house sponsors a warrior to fight to the death. The winning house rules the Weir.

As if his bizarre heritage isn’t enough, Jack finds out that he’s not just another member of Weirlind – he’s one of the last of the warriors – at a time when both houses are scouting for a player.

Full Review Here!

Rarity of the Century

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Chucho, an aimless tramp of Palestinian/Latino decent, has reached a lull in his young adult life that he surmises is directly linked to a long ago, barely spoken of family tragedy that left him an orphan.

After a brief stint and stellar downfall in the fetish porn industry, he is forced to move back home with his flamboyant uncle in South Beach and get a job at a Brazilian steak house. Just as he is getting used to his new position in life, he falls for the hostess Shiraz Zirel who first torments him via her unattainable beauty and then by ignoring him.

Frustrated with Shiraz, Chucho decides to give up on love. But when a Rapture event of unknown origins occurs over all of South Florida, Chucho and Shiraz find that they are the sole survivors. In fact, Chucho realizes with new-found excitement, they may be the last two people on earth.

Can they be together? Are they fated for love? And what is that strange thing in the sky over South Beach anyway? As the star-crossed lovers journey to investigate the inexplicable phenomenon, they encounter a mysterious, yet familiar third survivor that will force them into a fight for their lives.

Full Review Here!

Roses in December: Haunting and Macabre Tales

The book Roses in December lying on a blanket

Roses in December is a short story collection which defies categorisation. Some of the stories are haunting – others are deeply troubling.

A man receives a religious vision in his ordinary back garden; a nuclear physicist in Australia experiences a great surprise where he least expects it; a duct-tape salesman unsettles his faithful customer; Voltaire does not put his best foot forward; someone makes a grim discovery upon waking up in a prison; a psychiatrist does his best to treat a political extremist; a nineteenth-century photographer goes about his usual (and highly unusual) business; and a wealthy neighbourhood in Montreal becomes the scene of an immense and avoidable tragedy.

Full Review Here!

High School Queens

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They all thought they did a masterful job of keeping their secrets close to their chest. These stupid fools thought they were the high court of this kingdom, but they had no clue who was really pulling the strings. You might wonder to yourself, who would be that heartless to make them backstab their friends, expose other’s secrets, and lose their morals? You don’t need to know who I am, but you better remember my name, The Marked Queen.

Danielle, Andrew, Delilah, Aman, and Jasmine all are now faced with a mysterious villain whose one goal is to ruin each of their lives. They must protect their secrets at all cost, or they’ll be the next victim on Marked Day. They know what’s at stake, and they’ll stop at nothing to continue being: the rich spoiled girl, the normal teenager, the girl who isn’t banging the principal, the straight vlogger, and the girl who isn’t her dad’s punching bag. What happens when The Marked Queen changes up the game just in time for prom? Will each of our favorite puppets survive? Or are they willing to backstab each other just to keep up their personas? The only thing lost at this prom wasn’t going to be their virginity.

Sex, Lies, and High School Queens explores the major theme of self-acceptance. Can they learn to accept all their flaws or pray victim to The Marked Queen? Each chapter continues to fill your sweet tooth until the climactic moment at the prom where you get to have that final bite of the bitch cake you’ve been dying to consume.

Full Review Here!

Red, White & Royal Blue

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A big-hearted romantic comedy in which First Son Alex falls in love with Prince Henry of Wales after an incident of international proportions forces them to pretend to be best friends…

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

Full Review Here!

The Secrets You Hide

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A knock-out read for fans of Clare Mackintosh, Anatomy of a Scandal and Apple Tree Yard.

Georgia Sage has a gift: she can see evil in people. As a courtroom artist she uses her skills to help condemn those who commit terrible crimes. After all, her own brutal past means she knows innocence is even rarer than justice.

But when she is drawn back into the trial that defined her career, a case of twisted family betrayal, she realises her own reckless pursuit of justice may have helped the guilty go free.

As Georgia gets closer to the truth behind the Slater family, something happens that threatens not only her career – but even her own sanity. At first, she fears her guilt around the events of her terrible childhood is finally coming back to haunt her.

The truth turns out to be even more terrifying . . .

Full Review Here!

The Wizard Heir

The Wizard Heir book on a bookshelf

Sixteen-year-old Seph McCauley has spent the past three years getting kicked out of one exclusive private school after another. And it’s not his attitude that’s the problem: it’s the trail of magical accidents – lately, disasters – that follow in his wake. Seph is a wizard, orphaned and untrained, and his powers are escalating out of control.

After causing a tragic fire at an after-hours party, Seph is sent to the Havens, a secluded boys’ school on the coast of Maine. Gregory Leicester, the headmaster, promises to train Seph in magic and initiate him into his mysterious order of wizards. But Seph’s enthusiasm dampens when he learns that training comes at a steep cost, and that Leicester plans to use his students’ powers to serve his own mysterious agenda.

Full Review Here!


I recently got back from my vacation to Ireland and Scotland and made a video about it. Feel free to check it out if you want to see how my trip went!

Gold Gods

Book Review: The Wizard Heir

What up reader fam? Hey Hi Hello. Any guesses what this is? These are the intros to popular booktuber videos. But I will just say, hey it’s me again. I want to start this off by saying that I successfully completed my OWLS for the magical readathon! This was the last book I tackled. It was called The Wizard Heir by Cinda Williams Chima and is the sequel to The Warrior Heir.

The Wizard Heir book on a bookshelf

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Seph McCauley has spent the past three years getting kicked out of one exclusive private school after another. And it’s not his attitude that’s the problem: it’s the trail of magical accidents – lately, disasters – that follow in his wake. Seph is a wizard, orphaned and untrained, and his powers are escalating out of control.

After causing a tragic fire at an after-hours party, Seph is sent to the Havens, a secluded boys’ school on the coast of Maine. Gregory Leicester, the headmaster, promises to train Seph in magic and initiate him into his mysterious order of wizards. But Seph’s enthusiasm dampens when he learns that training comes at a steep cost and that Leicester plans to use his students’ powers to serve his own mysterious agenda.

This sequel begins with a new character named Seph and the book is set in his point of view instead of Jack’s from the first book. It deals a lot more with wizards instead of warriors in this one.

It starts off in Toronto which is really cool and then progresses to Maine for rest of it (at least for the most part). I love when books include places that I have either visited or are a part of the country I live in.

There were magical battles. A private school. Some tense family issues. What more could you want? I really enjoyed the friendships he made and I liked that his character was very different from Jack’s.

I found that some plot points were very easy to figure out but it didn’t hinder the book’s capability to dazzle me with its magical elements. And there was more discussion about this urban fantasy’s wizarding world and the different factions of magical folk which I really liked learning about.

The wizarding world seems to be very flawed and Seph and the other characters are working to fix it so that all the factions are treated equally. I look forward to reading the next book in this series to see where Cinda takes it.

I would recommend this book for anyone that likes a good urban fantasy tale!

Book Rating: 4/5

You can buy this on Book Depository and Amazon or find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: I read this book because I wanted to. It was not sent to me in exchange for a review.


I did some book hauling while I was away on vacation because who doesn’t like UK book covers. Check out the video below to see what book I picked up!

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Book Review: The Secrets You Hide

Gimme a Thriller! Gimme a Psycho! What does that equal? A Psychological Thriller! I read this one during the day tours we took while in Scotland. All those long bus rides gave me ample time to read and then I finished this book on the airplane on the way back home. This one was called The Secrets You Hide by Kate Helm and was sent to me by NetGalley.

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Synopsis: In her eyes, no-one is innocent…

A knock-out read for fans of Clare Mackintosh, Anatomy of a Scandal and Apple Tree Yard.

Georgia Sage has a gift: she can see evil in people. As a courtroom artist she uses her skills to help condemn those who commit terrible crimes. After all, her own brutal past means she knows innocence is even rarer than justice.

But when she is drawn back into the trial that defined her career, a case of twisted family betrayal, she realises her own reckless pursuit of justice may have helped the guilty go free.

As Georgia gets closer to the truth behind the Slater family, something happens that threatens not only her career – but even her own sanity. At first, she fears her guilt around the events of her terrible childhood is finally coming back to haunt her.

The truth turns out to be even more terrifying . . .

This book was phenomenal. The way the author fleshed out the characters and had them start out as one type of person and eventually become another type of person was just fantastic.

It was written in such a way that you could almost feel what the characters were going through. And the main character had a backstory that was slowly revealed as the book progressed, giving you layer by layer of her past (like peeling an onion).

I can honestly say that I did not see the end coming. It was like one of those things where you read and read and think that you have it all figured out and then get to the end and realize that you knew nothing.

I couldn’t put this one down. It was so captivating and thrilling. I wish I would have got to it sooner. It was fun too because it is a book based in the UK and I noticed that they were using some of the slang terms from the UK that I was actually hearing people say while exploring Ireland and Scotland. For example, when someone is asking you to come for tea, they will say “want to come in for a cuppa”. Things like this added to the book and gave it that authentic feel.

I would recommend this book to anyone that wants a very well written psychological thriller that will keep you on your toes!

Book Rating: 5/5

You can buy this book on Book Depository and Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by NetGalley and Bonnier Zaffre in ebook format to read and give my honest review.


I did some book hauling while I was away on vacation because who doesn’t like UK book covers. Check out the video below to see what book I picked up!

Visitors Coverage

Author Spotlight: Mindful Dementia Care

WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING TOUR

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Mindful Dementia Care: Lost and Found in the Alzheimer’s Forest

Tour Begins April 29th 2019

Mindful Dementia Care Cover

About the Book

Mindful Dementia Care is a book of stories and a book of love. It is a book without denial, without any papering over of the challenges that can be involved with being a caregiver, and the sadness, anger, and frustration they may bring. It is also a life-changing source of information that can revolutionize relationships with one of the most vulnerable populations in our midst. In her decades as a caregiver, Ruth Dennis witnessed the tragic results of the medicalized and institutionalized way of caring for people with dementia. And equally clearly, she saw a better way. Mindful Dementia Care illustrates alternative methods for making a difference and achieving results through care that honors the whole person. The key is creating an environment with countless enriching touchstones to the inner person through facilities that are filled with art, animal companions, music, dance, books, laughter, and wholesome food. It is an approach that embraces creative and artistic processes to shape a more loving, spiritual approach for elders and their families.

Print Length: 142 pages

Publisher: Golden Word Books (February 19, 2019)

Publication Date: February 19, 2019

ASIN: B07NXV95TT



About the Authors

Ruth Dennis :

In her decades as a caregiver, Ruth Dennis witnessed the tragic results of the medicalized and institutionalized way of caring for people with dementia. And equally clearly, she saw a better way. Mindful Dementia Care illustrates alternative methods for making a difference and achieving results through care that honors the whole person. The key is creating an environment with countless enriching touchstones to the inner person through facilities that are filled with art, animal companions, music, dance, books, laughter, and wholesome food. It is an approach that embraces creative and artistic processes to shape a more loving, spiritual approach for elders and their families.

Ruth Dennis has worked in mental health, the arts, and community education for over twenty-five years. She is a Certified Dementia Practitioner and, for the past two decades, has worked closely with palliative care, hospice, and grief support. Central to Ruth’s life is her role as caregiver to her brother Morgan, who has Down Syndrome. He is the bravest man she has ever known.

Velma Arellano:

Velma Arellano, MA, CDP, CALA, Director of Operations, has been working in elder care for the past 2 decades, and is the longest standing administrator in Santa Fe. She has overseen $2 million in construction and design to create two state of the art, intentional Alzheimer’s Care homes in New Mexico, and very recently acquired a third, non-Alzheimer’s, 14 bed, cozy, Assisted Living Bungalow in Santa Fe. The latter, Vista Hermosa is drawing on the cutting edge of culture change by incorporating the ideas of permaculture with elder care. Both Memory Care homes are the only two Eden Alternative Registered homes in New Mexico, and Vista Hermosa is well on its way. Eden Alternative is the honor society of long term care, and is an International Movement which truly changes the culture of how we care for our elders. Velma introduced “real” pets to our homes for elders to enjoy, goats, chickens, peacocks, and recently a 10-week-old German Sheppard puppy named Silver.

Ms. Arellano is a certified assisted living administrator (CALA), Certified Dementia Practitioner through the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners (NCCDP), and an Eden Alternative Associate. Velma has served on the board of Directors of the New Mexico Alzheimer’s Association and was only one 7 citizens who started the first Annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Santa Fe, Espanola and Los Alamos. She is a member of the 305th annual Fiesta’s de Santa Fe Council and was instrumental in the legislative passage of Helen’s Law. This law protects endangered elders, which eventually gave attention to the Silver Alert Program, like Amber Alert, but for memory impaired adults. Ms. Arellano is also a member of the National Biodynamic Association (Tierra Viva) and the Earth Citizens Organization (ECO) and is committed to mindful living and a sustainable world. Velma is active with Shim-Sung, Brain Yoga. Shim meaning heart, and Sung meaning open.

Ms. Arellano holds a Masters Degree in Agency Counseling and Psychology from New Mexico Highlands University and Bachelor’s Degree in Television Broadcast Journalism/ Mass Communication and Spanish.

As a volunteer, Velma is a member of the New Mexico Health Care Association and NM Assisted Living Task Force Committee (NMHCAALF)  . She sits at the table making her voice heard in guiding NMHCAALF’s advocacy in the New Mexico long-term care delivery system.  She helps identify and establish policies and provide resources that give people a real opportunity to improve the quality of life and quality of care in New Mexico’s frail elderly and intellectually-disabled populations.

Luke Nachtrab:

Luke Nachtrab, Owner, is a father of 3 children (Joey, Kate and Molly) and married to his lovely wife Kara. They currently live in Sylvania, OH where they were both raised and where Vista Living Home Office is based. He started his career shortly after completing his undergraduate degree at The Ohio State University.  As first employee of Northaven, the Nachtrab Family Business Management Company, Luke created an infrastructure to manage approximately 75 residential properties in the Toledo, OH area.  Assuming operations of Vista Living, the family assisted living facilities in 2004 (www.vistaliving.com) his passion and love for the elderly, particularly those walking with forgetfulness, and their families began to flourish.  He was named President of Vista Living Communities in 2011 where he utilizes his background to maintain the highest standards of care for those with Alzheimer’s. Moving his young family to Santa Fe for 4 months in 2014 he began to set the company up for growth. His passion for this business and making a positive impact on those with Dementia and their families is evident in his approach and philosophies. Using values taught by his parents he brings integrity and compassion to business.   With this as a guide he operates VLC as a business second; always trying to do what is right despite potential impact on the business.

Luke has a wide a diverse business background being intimately involved in executive leadership with global internet businesses, restaurants, real estate and logistics.  He has been on numerous organizational boards in the Toledo area.  He currently serves on the St John’s Jesuit High School Board and Finance Committee.  Engaging with the Industry he is also active on Argentum, panels on their mission to Expand Senior Living.
Continuously improving, Luke has completed many non-degree courses in the last 15 years and in 2011 completed his MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.  He is an instrument rated pilot, loves skiing, golfing, soccer, squash, fishing, culture, traveling, watching The Buckeye’s and being Dad! He looks forward to raising his children to someday be involved with the business.

Find Mindful Dementia Care Online:

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44643108-mindful-dementia-care

Website: https://www.mindfuldementiacare.com/

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/Mindful-Dementia-Care-Alzheimers-Forest-ebook/dp/B07NXV95TT/?tag=wowwomenonwri-20


Blog Tour Dates

Launch Day – April 29th
We launch this book blog tour with a giveaway for this unique book!
http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/

April 30th @ BreakEven Books

Today, the author spotlight at Breakeven Books belongs to a delightfully unique book called “Mindful Dementia Care” by Ruth Dennis with Velma Arellano and Luke Nachtrab. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn more about this informative book and it’s authors.

https://breakevenbooks.com/

May 1st @ Bring on Lemons with Tara Forst

Readers at BringOnLemons will hear from guest blogger and book reviewer Tara Forst as she reviews the unique book “Mindful Dementia Care” by Ruth Dennis with Velma Arellano and Luke Nachtrab. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from a health care professional as she provides honest feedback about this touching book. http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

May 4th @ The Muffin with Crystal Otto

In today’s Muffin post, Crystal reveals her thoughts and feelings about promoting a book that hits a little too close to home. Find out more about “Mindful Dementia Care” by Ruth Dennis with Velma Arellano and Luke Nachtrab while hearing some inspiring thoughts on getting out of your comfort zone by WOW!’s very own Crystal Otto.

http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/

May 7th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples

Madeline Sharples reviews “Mindful Dementia Care” by Ruth Dennis with Velma Arellano and Luke Nachtrab for readers at Choices. Don’t miss Madeline’s insight into this unique book.

http://madelinesharples.com/

May 8th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte

Michelle DelPonte reviews “Mindful Dementia Care” for readers at Bring on Lemons blog. Find out what this Wisconsin Healthcare Provider has to say about this unique book that deals with topics Michelle is submerged in each day as a caregiver for aging patients.

http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

May 16th @ Lisa Haselton

Lisa Haselton interviews Ruth Dennis about her unique book “Mindful Dementia Care; Lost and Found in the Alzheimer’s Forest”. Find out more about Ruth and her beautiful book.

http://lisahaseltonsreviewsandinterviews.blogspot.com/

May 17th @ Coffee with Lacey

Lacey reviews “Mindful Dementia Care; Lost and Found in the Alzheimer’s Forest” for readers at Coffee with Lacey – don’t miss her insight about this touching book.

https://coffeewithlacey.com

May 22nd @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto

Crystal Otto shares her review of Mindful Dementia Care with readers at Bring on Lemons blog.

http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

May 24th @ Linda Appleman Shapiro

Linda Appleman Shapiro, distinguished author and psychotherapist offers her insight in a review of Mindful Dementia Care.

http://applemanshapiro.com/category/book-reviews/

May 28th @ World of My Imagination

Nicole Pyles Reviews Mindful Dementia Care and shares her thoughts about this unique book. Readers at World of My Imagination will benefit greatly from Nicole’s insight and this touching book.

https://theworldofmyimagination.blogspot.com/

May 29th @ Lisa M. Buske

Author Lisa M. Buske reviews “Mindful Dementia Care” for readers at her blog. Don’t miss Lisa’s insight into this unique and beautiful book.

http://www.lisambuske.com/blog


I did some book hauling while I was away on vacation because who doesn’t like UK book covers. Check out the video below to see what book I picked up!

Visitors Coverage

Book Highlight: Kingdom Of Jior

Hey Fantasy lovers! I have your next series right here! Check out the Kingdom of Jior series by Wendy L. Anderson. Below are a few snippets from each book to get you started and a chance to win the whole series in print!

Of Demon Kind34731822

Publication Date: November 14th, 2016

Publisher: Infinity Publishing

Prince Lorn of Jior is what’s left of an evil empire. King Kullorn was the epitome of evil. Together they led demon hordes reaping death and destruction. Kullorn is killed, leaving Lorn alone to wallow in the desolation of defeat. Years later, Lorn is accused of following in his father’s footsteps and kidnapping Princess Lililaira. Risking capture, imprisonment and death Lorn attempts to learn who is using his name to start another war. During a rescue of the Princess, Lorn is badly wounded and they must fight to remain together as he is healed by her, body, heart and soul.

Memories of how life used to be, circled through Lorn’s mind as he contemplated the events of five years ago. His father, King Kullorn of Jior, had raised him with one purpose in mind and that was to lead the Jiorian armies out of the Violent Mountains and conquer the entire island continent of Vedt. Kullorn had been an evil tyrant who had reigned over the once vast empire of Jior that was now only jagged mountains, left to the encroaching forest and wild animals.

Goodreads

Amazon

39898786Redemption of the Fallen

Publication Date: April 17th, 2018

Publisher: Infinity Publishing

Five years have passed since Lorn liberated himself from Lan-Loe, his evil father’s Sorcerer. Legends were born from tales of the great battle between Lorn and a black-winged demon, of Lan-Loe’s death, and the defeat of demon-kind. Ever since that time, people have been flocking to Jior to make their homes there, and the Kingdom of Jior is revived. Lorn is crowned King of Jior, Lililaira is Queen and they rule peacefully side by side.
Now a new war threatens everything they have built and everyone they love. One hundred miles away from the City of Jior, the combined armies of Vedt march toward Jior intent on slaying everyone in the kingdom and taking revenge for Lorn’s past evil deeds. With the forces of the whole country coming against them, Lorn and Lililaira have little hope of defeating their enemies.
In the midst of impending war, strange dreams plague Lorn’s sleep at night. He feels that something is waiting, something he needs very badly, something is calling him!
When he answers the call, he learns that he is a descendant of a race of winged people that profess to be from the Heavens. He also learns more about his past and is given hope for the future, but that hope comes with a high price. Lorn is given a choice: he can save his family or watch them die.
Lililaira and their daughter are taken prisoner by her father, the King of Skoria, Lorn must call on all his resources to rescue them. Forced out of the protective walls of Jior, he must face his many enemies who use his wife and daughter as bait. King Lorn must deal with old enemies and new friends, but will he be able to tell the difference?

Strange dreams plagued his sleep at night. At first, he thought the dreams were caused by apprehension over the news of the army advancing on Jior. Each night the dreams seemed to grow more urgent, and he could not assign blame to that cause anymore. As soon as he closed his eyes, images of a strange place haunted him. Night after night he dreamed of the same mountaintop. On the high peak stood an ancient structure with tall marble columns, circling a huge stone floor. The columns did not support anythin solid but seemed to hold up the deep blue sky that quickly swelled with impending snowfall. The wind swirled ice crystals through the columns and seemed to call his name in the whispery tinkle of ice against stone. Lorn felt compelled to fly west. He strained to resist the compunction, telling himself it was the greatest folly to think that a place from his dreams truly existed and that he could find it.

Goodreads

Amazon

44033265Heirs of Jior

Publication Date: February 27th, 2019

Publisher: Infinity Publishing

This set of adventures starts out with Princess Lyra Song, young and beautiful, stepping into maturity. She and her family attend the funeral of a dear friend. During this sad time, she pursues her hopes and dreams endeavoring to explore a betrothal with the Heir of Krickgold. However, when she is mistaken for a witch by a Lord from a neighboring country, her dreams are dangerously interrupted. Waylaid, taken prisoner and thrown into an iron cage, the delicate Princess of Jior is charged with a crime she didn’t commit and she must do whatever it takes to escape or be wrongfully executed.

Prince Vannier of Jior, known to the Ny-Failen as Little Wing, has been devastated by what happened to his sister Lyra Song, but life must go on and he goes forward with his plan to marry his childhood love. The day of the wedding ceremony he finds his betrothed with another man and now he must face devastating reality and some difficult choices. When his younger brother Dark Star goes missing, Vannier must set aside his own problems to go into the Violent Mountains and find who has taken his little brother. Amidst the turmoil of the hunt, Vannier must face danger, loss, and possible heartbreak.

Dark Star, the youngest Prince of Jior, has been changed forever by the events of his capture and he remains troubled and unable to find peace. A mysterious compelling draws him away from the safety of his home and family. He sets off on his own to investigate and finds a black castle and a beautiful sorceress in dire need of his help. Dark Star must face a demon from the Hells to free them both.

Panic struck like a lightning bolt, and he stood up and whirled around, taking stock of the boundaries of his prison. It was nearly his undoing as pain, nausea and dizziness overtook him. Since his capture by the Troggs a few years back, Dark Star could not stand confined spaces. His wings beat against his back as if telling him to fly and escape. Searching for a door or exit, he could not find one, so he threw himself against the bars on all four sides, testing their strength. He flew up to the barred cage top and heaved. It was no use, he was imprisoned in a strong, heavy, iron prison, and that was all there was to it. He was locked in with no way out, like a bird in a cage. His brain kept screaming over and over, ‘Not again! Not again!’ and he flapped uselessly around the confines of his cage until the pain in his head forced him to stop. Tamping down hard on his terror, concentrating on settling his breathing, he stood in the middle of his cage, wrapped his wings around himself and huddled within their protective embrace. Closing his eyes, he retreated into his mind and waited.

It seemed like hours later when the sound of a door opening and closing reached through his self-imposed trance. The faint glow of a lamp barely drew Dark Star’s attention. He was standing completely still, cocooned within his white wings watching through barely slit eyes. He had withdrawn into his own mind, holding madness at bay.

Goodreads

Amazon

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For your chance to win a paperback set of the whole series, click the link below!

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About the Author

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Wendy L. Anderson is a Colorado native and mother of two boys. She has an English Degree from Regis University and writes books, short stories and poetry. Wendy is a devout reader of the classics, fantasy, sci-fi and historical fiction. She has decided it is time to write down the fantasies from her own mind. Writing about everything from fantastical worlds to the stuff of her dreams she takes her stories along interesting paths while portraying characters and worlds she sees in her mind’s eye. Her goal is to deviate from common themes, write in original directions and transport her reader to the worlds of her creation.

Wendy L. Anderson | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

Book Blitz Organized By:

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I recently uploaded my Booktube Newbie tag video so check it out below if you are interested. I would love it if you subscribed but that is completely up to you!

Foreo International

Book Review: Red, White & Royal Blue

Netgalley!! Thank you, thank you. I got approved to read an ARC of Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston and I crushed it over my vacation to Ireland/Scotland. This one was read on many of the buses during the day tours to cool landmarks.

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Synopsis: A big-hearted romantic comedy in which First Son Alex falls in love with Prince Henry of Wales after an incident of international proportions forces them to pretend to be best friends…

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

This book was freaking adorable. The main character Alex represents a millenial perfectly. He is the poster child for America and everyone knows who he is. He goes on a little bit of a self discovery where he finds out more about himself in ways he didn’t think he would (and they involve a prince).

This book is a great representation of a healthy LGBTQ+ relationship that spurs from a friendship. And by friendship, I mean that they hate each other and then are forced to be friends to appease the media and then actually become friends and then more. It made me so happy to see that they made each other happy. The way that they feel about each other is hard to express but Casey McQuiston made the love feel very real and something that one hopes for in a relationship.

Also, Nora is the epitomy of awesome. She is Alex’s best friend and is bisexual, 100% amazing and very sarcastic but will always get to the point right away. She is that friend that will tell you how it is even if it is difficult for you to see.

His sister June is also such a sweetheart. She is so caring and does everything a protective sister can to make sure that Alex is well looked after and stays out of trouble. She is the sister I would want if I had siblings.

The only thing that I wasn’t a huge fan of was the political aspect of the book. I love that they made the president a female for 2020 but aside from that, I am not really into politics and tend to avoid that subject in conversation. However, it was done in a way that kept it interesting and easy to follow so the book still progressed at a nice pace.

Overall, I would recommend this book. It is a fun LGBTQ+ book with a lot of new ideals that our future could really use and it just made me happy to read it.

Book Rating: 4/5

You can buy this book on Book Depository and Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me as an ARC kindle version by Netgalley to read and give my honest review.


I did some book hauling while I was away on vacation because who doesn’t like UK book covers. Check out the video below to see what book I picked up!

Visitors Coverage