Sunday, December 30, 2018

2018 In Review

2018 was another FABULOUS year for books!
My GoodReads goal was 350, and I'm currently sitting at 365. 
That's an average of a book a day.  
*You can check our my Year in Books if you're interested. : ) 

I discovered new and new-to-me authors.
I fell in love with new stories from already-favorites.
I got to MEET and hang out w/ some fantastic ppl!  
All in all, I'm very grateful for 2018.
Here is a highlight reel of some of my favorites.

: ) 

Scarlett Cole

I started the year off w/ two ARCs in a STUNNING series by a favorite author.
Each book is moving and beautiful and great for re-reading!!

Harloe Rae

This story sucked me in right away and I became an instant fan of the author.
AND in a crazy awesome blessing, I randomly ran into her at a signing & got to MEET her!  
She's not only got fabulous stories in her head, she's a sweetheart!  

ML Pennock

This is part of a series I fell in love w/ from the author, and it's also one of my favorite covers.  
It's bright, simple, and beautiful!  

K Webster

This story was completely unique, heartbreaking, & kept me on my toes.
I fell in love with the writing as well as the characters!

Gillian Jones

Emotional, relevant story about fighting the voices in your head, learning to love yourself, and being able to expand that love to include someone else.  

Scott Hildreth

This is somewhat an autobiography and is simply amazing.
Learning about his life & how he found his passion - and love... Amazing is the only word I could come up with!  

Jessica Florence

This series!!!
It reads like a super hero movie or TV show.
The descriptions & characters leap off the page and make you feel a part of this world Jess has created.  Highly recommend checking out this series!  

And then I have quite a few authors who I binged on.  
Some it was 3 books, some it was 20.  
But EVERY SINGLE BOOK by these authors is so good, they're auto-pre-order authors for me. 
I devour their stories as soon as I get them.
I've been blessed w/ ARCs of quite a few, which just means there are two of them on my Kindle after the book goes live.  *grin*  

Piper & Jack Davenport

This was the first story I read by this author, and I IMMEDIATELY read her other two releases because I fell that in love w/ her writing  & story telling. 

Chasing Clouds by Kathryn Andrews - she was already a favorite author, but this story blew me away & I couldn't put it down!!  : ) 

In the middle there is book 3 in a series by Ellen Wilder.
This series doesn't get enough credit, IMO.  
It's emotional & deep, fun & sweet.
She also co-writes some of the stories, which brings in characters from a different series.
They cover some heavy subjects, and they do it quite well!!

Pieces of Forever by Heather D'Agostino
I've been so fortunate to chat w/ Heather at several signing through the years & she's so nice!!
This story is one of my favorites from her - it's emotional and full of hope.  : ) 
(I also got to meet the model on this cover & he's super nice as well!!)

Anne Eliot & Ginger Scott are two of the SWEETEST ppl on this planet.
And they write highly enjoyable (and emotional and heart tugging) stories!

 Speaking of sweet - Michelle Mankin!
She writes rockers & surfers & her stories will also tug at your heart while you fan yourself silly.
; ) 

 LB Dunbar - she has several series in different genres, but this year has been the year of the Over 40 stories & they are GREAT!  : ) 

Amy Daws!!  She also has different series, but my favorite is the Wait With Me series.

I seriously could go on.
And on.
Because this community of indie (and traditionally published) authors is simply stunningly amazing.
I've been blessed this year.
I got to meet and hug and talk with some of my favorite ppl on the planet.
I got to read some AMAZING stories & share them w/ y'all!
I hope you'll check some of them out - and let me know who you loved this year!

Blessings to you & here's to another fabulous year in 


: ) 

Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Right Mistake by A.M. Guilliams

Hello, my lovelies!  
I don't do a lot of "single book" posts, because I just read so much and do a pretty good job of picking stories that I like.  So that's why I do roundups each month (yes, I know, September & October will be coming out together, sorry about that!).  

But this week I had an ARC opportunity & I loved the story so much that I bought it on release day, too, so I can re-read over & over.  

The Right Mistake 
A.M. Guilliams

This story is swoony goodness, peeps!  
No real drama, characters who are perfect for each other, supporting characters that add to the story... It all just worked together really well & was a huge winner for me!!  : )  

So, since I got to be part of the release blitz & posted links on Facebook, I'm going to post them below as well.  If you're looking for a recovery read or just a great, sweet story, I highly recommend this one!  And, as of this posting, it's 99 cents!  More to celebrate!!  : )  

PURCHASE LINKS – 99c for a limited time


 If you do pick this up, let me know what you think!  
I hope you'll love it as much as I do!!! 


: ) 

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Author Event - Wild & Windy In The City 2018

I LOOOOVE signings - that's no secret!  
And my favorite evolution of the signing is the Author Event.  These aren't just signings.  These are weekend-long meetings of the minds, and truly are EVENTS.  

This is my third year being blessed to attend WWITC & Nicole & Rebecca & their bevy of volunteers do SUCH an amazing job putting this together.  

Friday night there were author panels, meet & greets, vendors, and an all out dance party going on.
Saturday is the actual signing - a room full of authors, readers, bloggers, all coming together to share in the love of reading, and the love of romance and yes, the love of S E X.  Remember that George Michaels song?  "Sex is natural, sex is fun..."  LOL  Well, sometimes it's fun to read & write about, too!  But the thing that gets overlooked, and sometimes gets the romance industry shamed, is that is't not ALL about the sex.  It's about connections, and love, and how sex plays into that.  (I mean, there are absolutely books that ARE all about the sex, but they aren't the ENTIRETY of the industry, and still deserve respect!)  

So, off my little soap box now... LOL  

Due to my anxiety, sometimes these are hard for me, but this one has been blessed from the beginning, and while I've had moments of anxiety, they haven't taken over.  When I arrived, I was greeted by friends at the door, waiting for a book shipment to arrive.  We chatted & hung out for a bit, and they introduced me to two new friends.  Anne & Ginger very kindly let me hang out w/ them most of the afternoon, and Anne even shared her snacks!!  : )  I ALSO finally got to meet Chashiree Mixon in person & give her a hug!  She was on the phone, so we didn't get to chat, but I was so happy to see her in the flesh!!  :D  

The first panels were Authors That Write Together and Rom Coms & Tear Jerkers.  Rochelle & Elle were on the first (along w/ Michelle, Elisabeth, HQ & M) and Anne was on the second (along w/ Penny, Sara, Lesley, TK, & Kandi).  Ginger & I made sure to cheer for Anne the loudest.  *grin*  ALSO, she shares my soap box about romance & respect.  *beam*  

The second panels were Dark, Dirty & Forbidden and then the Wild & Windy anthology authors.  This is another amazing brainchild of this event - the authors are given a theme (in this case, taking place in Chicago) & then they write a short (shoooort) story or preview to a longer story & run w/ it.  Then we get to have them sign it while we're all here.  It's AWESOME!  

There were all kinds of vendors - candles, LuLaRoe (did I spell that correctly?), book sleeves, artwork... SO MUCH talent!  I'd wanted to buy a thing or two, but w/ my upcoming job uncertainty & the fact that I know there are several books I didn't pre-order that I need to pick up, I had to resist this time.  Hopefully in 2020 when they do the next event, I'll be able to buy all the things!  ;)  

The Meet & Greets are another AMAZING thing that I love about this particular event.  Several authors get together in the conference rooms & mingle w/ everyone.  It's informal & there are picture opportunities & just time to HANG OUT.  I saw my friend Amber out of the corner of my eye as I was headed somewhere & discovered she was waiting for the Kristen Ashley room to open, so I hung out w/ her & her hubs for a bit.  Love love!  We got to chat w/ KA & take some pictures & I love that Amber got to meet her Unicorn Author.  :  )  

The amazing Kristen Ashley.  
She is tall!  And she was wearing these cute strappy heels w/ a thiiiin heel that I would immediately fall over wearing, so her balance is awesome.  : ) 

Then I went on to pop in to Rochelle & Elle's room & they had a BlackJack table set up, so I played a few hands (badly) & had some help from a gal who OMH had a split like 5 ways & it was so much fun to watch!!  Oh!!  And the gals that were sitting next to us at the panels earlier were there, too, which was cool.  One had asked if she could take a picture of my shirt (Susan Stoker's SEAL shirt that is one of my favorite shirts!!) because she loved the quote on the back & her son is in the Navy.  Then she & her group looked up Susan's books & I hope they get hooked bc they're soooooo goood!  <3  

Next up I decompressed a bit & then went on to some of the other rooms.  Got to talk w/ my friend Aimee for a bit & then went to see Anne, Ginger, Michelle, Colton, Lisa, Michelle W & Mr Michelle & Olive & SC & Abbi & T... I didn't know all of them, but it was nice to meet them & I ALWAYS make my Michelles & Lisa & Teresa a priority.  It was so cool that Anne & Ginger were in there, too!!!  

After all the partying, it was time to get back to the room & decompress again & drink my Starbucks (did I mention - this hotel has a STARBUCKS!) & sleeeeep.  

Yes, Mr Bear travels with me.

Now Saturday, I got to hang out w/ Aimee again before getting my coffee, picking up my anthology, grabbing my Skip the Line pass (I won it on the event page - blessed!!!), and then I was able to help Lisa, Michelle & Teresa carry some stuff into the signing room so they didn't have to wait for extra hands.  It feels so good to be able to offer help!!!  : )  

The signing was HOPPIN'!  So many ppl!  But, praise Jesus, my anxiety stayed away for the most part.  I took breaks when needed, and got to see & talk to lots of peeps!  AND!  OMH!  My "unicorn author moment" - I was in line for Amy Daws, and somehow I heard the name Harloe Rae & asked the gal in front of me (Lauren), "Is that THE Harloe Rae???"  AND IT WAS!!!  
She is SUCH a sweetheart!  And it was her birthday!  And I got to meet her & hang out w/ her for a few minutes & I tried really hard not to fangirl, but ... well, this is the smile of someone failing at the not-fangirling part:

(I got to chat w/ her & Lauren a bit on Sunday morning, too, which was great again!  And I wish I would've taken a picture w/ Lauren, too, because her hair was GORGEOUS!)

I made some collages so I wouldn't have to post 1500 pictures, because my goal for this signing was to TAKE PICTURES.  Mission Accomplished.  Now, hopefully the collages will upload correctly... 

Meghan Quinn!!!  Her Instagram stories are FABULOUS, too!
(And I love her blouse!!!)
Colton is SUPER tall (like, my brother is 6'5" & he seemed that or maybe a little taller)!  Michelle Mankin = Wonderful Rock Chick!  And her hugs are also wonderful!  AND she & Lisa introduced me to Anne & Ginger.  Yay!!!
KI Lynn put out a call for the Lavender Balm that we had in our hotel rooms & since I wasn't going to use mine, I brought it down for her.  I also gave her another little package I'd gotten from another hotel.  Hope she enjoys!!  
Amber Nation!!!  I was soooo happy to get to see & chat w/ her a couple times this weekend!!  : )  
I wasn't able to get the Wild & Windy anthology signed by everyone, but it's still a neat concept! (The anthology's authors are given a theme - this year, the setting of Chicago - & then they're all at the signing so you can get the book signed.  And you know how I love multi-signed things.  D'oh!!)  

Liv Morris - She was super nice & her hair is so pretty!  (Actually, that goes for LB, Beth & Marni, too - this is the GREAT HAIR collage!  Mr Beth gets a pass bc of his ball cap! LOL)  
LB Dunbar's Midlife Crisis is one of my favorite books in the series.  Hank... Swoonworthy goodness right there!!  
Beth Ehemann is another on my "super nice & sweet person who I want to be friends with" list.  Heh.  And her husband is fun, too - even if the pictures are blurry!  ;)  I'm pretty sure these two could have their own comedy-reality show/routine if they wanted!!  LOVE!!!
Marni is BFF's w/ one of my favorite authors (K Street) & K had put in her reader group that if any of us went to WWITC we should stop by Marni's table & say hello.  So, I did, and she was sweet!  I wasn't sure about her books, but she explained them so well that I wanted to read them, so I'm going to check them out.  : )  

Jana Aston - she took about 6 selfies, and she looked good in ALL of them!  I, however, am usually a goofy blur.  In general, not in the other pictures of us!  LOL 
AMY DAWS!!!!  If you aren't following her on Instagram, you really should be.  
Tireman - A fan made this for Amy based on her writing cave (Tires Tires Tires) while writing Wait With Me.  That fan is 100% creative!!  
Lacey Black - OMH, I get to see her at various signings & she's just so bubbly, I wish I could've chatted w/ her longer.  
Michelle Warren - She & her hubs are some of my favorite ppl to see at WWITC events.  I make him sign my book every year, too (I don't really MAKE him - I ask politely!).  ; )  
Also, idk if you can tell, but Michelle's earrings are so cute!!

Rochelle Paige - I love everything she writes, and I just love her!  She's one of the first ppl I actually traveled to a signing to see (Indiana, birthday weekend 2013, I think...)
Teagan Hunter is a newfound favorite.
Kristen Ashley, Queen of Indie Romance!
Karla Sorensen, one of the SWEETEST ppl I've ever met.  She makes me smile!!
Elle Christensen - the other half of Fiona Davenport (w/ Rochelle), she's always fabulous to chat w/ & I would love to get to chat w/ her longer when I see her, because she's just one of those ppl you want to talk with.  She also makes me smile.  
: ) 

My Rochelle & Fiona haul.
Mr David R, cover model & Survivor contestant, pre-signed Fortuity & Serenity!  
Wooooot!!!  : ) 

Two of my favorite Elle books!!  

Anne & Ginger - new friends for LIFE!  They surprised me w/ a bag full of books!
We went to dinner at this cute bar restaurant called Rams, along w/ Melissa (who is an AMAZING cover designer!) & two gals whose names I did not catch, so I need to ask Anne or Ginger!  They were fun, too, and the food was yummy bar food!  : )  
Melanie Harlow writes really great stories & she's always so nice!!  


I don't even know what else to say!  
It was an AMAZING weekend & I'm so blessed to have gone.  
If you have a chance to go to a signing or author event, GO!  
They're so worth the money you might spend!  ; )  


: ) 

Friday, August 31, 2018

August Roudup - Favorites Discovered

Happy almost Fall!  Fall/Autumn is my favorite season, how about y'all?
I'm going to try a new format for this month's round up.  I created a collection on my Kindle for my August books so you could see the covers.  I felt like putting so many covers in the actual post was taking up a lot of room!  

I'm still going to give you the links & a little snippet of each story, though!  I couldn't help myself as I was writing the post... LOL  

If you read this & like one format over another - or have any suggestions on what you'd like to see or improvement ideas, lay it on me!  I'd love to hear from ya!  

Have you read any of these??  

First of all, one of the Queens of Story Telling, Kristen Ashley!
Her Wild Like the Wind came out & I was SO HAPPY to have Hound & Keely's story!  I was blessed to meet Ms Ashley a couple years ago, and am doubly blessed because I'll be seeing her again next weekend.  I'm going to bring my copy of Law Man for her to sign - this was my very first KA book, and I randomly came across it in a Target.  I was HOOKED right from the start!!  

Fiona Davenport
All NINE books in the series, plus bonus material!
I binge read the whole series.

Katy Regnery writing as Callie Henry 
This one is YA & has some wonderful talking points included to use in a classroom or as a read-along with your kiddo!

- Several Dixie Warden stories
Lani Lynn Vale
Someone anonymously blessed me with an Amazon gift card this month, and I took the opportunity to complete my collection of this series.  
I also read Too Bad So Sad, which is part of a different series, but all her books are interconnected, and that's one of my favorite things about them!  

Susan Stoker
Yet another of my go-to auto-buy love love love authors!  
And she writes super fast & publishes many books a year, in various series that are also inter-connected.  

- Jude 
Kelsie Rae
This is a new author I discovered this year, and fell in love w/ her writing style and stories.  
This is book 3 in the series, and I think I've mentioned Liv & Breezy in previous posts.  
They get a thumbs up!  

LB Dunbar
Book 3 in a series about more mature couples.  I really enjoy this series - although her over 40 crowd is in a very different place than I am as an over 40-er!  They're beautiful stories, full of heart and real-life issues that older, second-chance couples share.  

Piper Davenport
Piper is another awesome story teller with several series whose characters all intersect and connect.  I love seeing characters from other series pop up here & there!  
Also, she writes the kind of MC (motorcycle club) that's my favorite - they can scrap when they need to, but they're about brotherhood & doing right by their communities & families.  They're uber protective alphas, and the women are all smartly written!  

Kaylee Ryan
OMH!  This story is SO smooooth!  
The characters made me fall in love right from the beginning.
And the BANTER!  
Yeah, y'all know I'm a sucker for banter!  

LK Farlow
I wasn't sure I was going to like this one in the beginning, because AJ is very prickly.  Like, I totally would expect someone to prick their finger if they got too close, ya know?!  And normally I'm not a fan of combative stories.  The good thing about this one is that we learn the reasons for the combativeness early on, and it doesn't last too long.  Soon, AJ & Brock are bringing the funny banter & I tumbled into love with the story.  : )  

Kristen Proby
Low drama, great recovery read, this story still brings the FEEEELS!  
Kristen has a way with writing affluent characters that pulls you into their world & shows you their hearts rather than their bank accounts.  But, you're still aware they have quite the amazing bank accounts, because they like to shop & travel & do all the things I'm pretty sure I would do if I were independently wealthy!  

Jennifer Van Wyk
This is one of my favorites of the month!  
There is so much heartbreak, but also healing.
And the characters...!!  I highly recommend every single book by this author.  The way they connect & the way the families are written... swoon-worthy!  

Aurora Rose Reynolds
This was an ARC & the book actually comes out in September.  I've been anticipating it for AGES, tho!  I've actually had the cover saved to my phone for years!  (Or, it feels like it...I'm not actually sure how long!)  And he story... it'll yank at your heart & bring tears but also laughter.  
It's about a first love that wasn't able to get off the ground, and the second chance that first love is given.  Beautiful story!!  

Kaylee Ryan
Oh, this one is FUN!!!!
There's friendship & banter & adventure & lots & lots of love!  

And there you have my August reads!!  
I'm not sure why I couldn't link to some of my reviews, so in those cases I linked to the GoodReads page.  I hope if you enjoy my actual reviews that you read them on there!  Either way, tho, I hope you find something here that makes you want to read read read!!!  

Until next time - tell me what you've discovered this summer!  A new author?  A rediscovery of a favorite read?  


: )

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

July Roundup - GREAT MONTH!

Oh my heck, you guys!
I'm starting this post in early July, because we're only a few days into the month & I've already read some AMAZING tales!  

First of all, let's talk about a book I was fortunate to get to read early.  It came out on July 19th, so you might have seen my earlier post gushing about it.

Kathryn Andrews

This story is funny, unique, swoony & SWEET!  The characters are written so well, you want to know them, you want to be a part of their world.  I loved this story SO MUCH!  : ) 

Brynne Asher

This is one of my favorite books by one of my favorite ppl who happens to write stories!
I did a re-read of this one in July & I loved it just as much as the first time!!

Lani Lynn Vale

I love nearly everything I've read by this author, but ADI is one of my favorites!  
I love the characters & the story & everything just fit together so nicely!

For Finlay
J Nathan

Random find, totally glad I read it!
It's as much a story about family love as romantic, and there were definite tears involved.
It's a deep story, but there are also laughs.  
So, you pretty much get all the boxes marked off on this one!  ; )  
Plus the cover makes me swoony.

Driving Whiskey Wild
Melissa Foster

I love the relationship between Bullet & Finlay (yes, I read two stories w/ Finlay as the heroine this month!  Love it!), the romance, the banter.  But I also love the FAMILY in this series.  We don't lose the connection with our couples & families from other books - we get to experience it strengthening.  We get to experience the bonds growing.  And that makes this one of my favorite reads!  

Lindsay Paige

This was one of my most anticipated stories!  I was intrigued by Jamie & Brent when they were introduced in Steady, and they didn't disappoint!  Their story is full of fun, even when Brent's daughter is being somewhat of a brat (she & Jamie ARE around the same age, so it's hard for her to get over that little hurdle).  ; )  There are some real-life relationship issues that are discussed & worked through very well, and this was a great read!!  

Speaking of great reads... 

KC Lynn

The cover - I mean, those abs!  
Obviously, some of my favorite covers are ab-free (see Chasing Clouds, above), but ... sometimes abs are fabs!  ; )  
This story is intense & starts us off w/ a mystery that will continue in the following book(s) in the series.  

Ranieri Andretti
Parker Huntington

This will be coming out later in August & I highly recommend this series!  
Start w/ Asher Black & just enjoyyyyy!  
Mobby goodness.  ; ) 

What've you been reading lately?
What're your favorites so far this year?
Share share share!  


: )