Monday, June 30, 2014

Book Review: DANCING WITH A DEAD HORSE by Danielle DeVor

Dancing with a Dead Horse, By Danielle DeVor

Published April 2014 by Eirelander Publishing
About the Book (from Goodreads):

Sometimes lullabies aren’t soothing; they’re deadly.

Sixteen-year-old, Jason Miller, wants three things: to become a professional Mixed 
Martial Arts fighter, graduate from high school, and avoid his mother’s ballet classes.

When he finds the body of the most popular girl in school, he has a major freak-out session, and then calls 911. But if finding a body wasn’t bad enough, when a horse doll made of human skin and hair is found in his locker, the entire town accuses Jason of the murder.

As the body count rises, so does the hostility. Jason is left with a choice: To run and hide or to clear his name and find out why the killer is targeting him before it’s too late.

Jason Miller narrates this dark YA tale of a serial killer who preys on the junior class of his high school, and seems to want to frame Jason for the murders. And he thought school was bad before the killing spree started.

His mother is a former Russian ballet dancer who defected to marry an American mechanic. She teaches ballet, and forces Jason to take lessons, although he'd rather learn MMA (mixed martial arts). The mothers brother happens to be a Russian crime lord, so when the bodies start piling up in the morgue, the police implicate Jason with only the slightest of circumstantial evidence. The only good to come of this? His parents finally agree to let him start training in order to be able to defend himself, since the killer is obviously obsessed with him for some reason.

At times you just want to throttle the narrator yourself, as he's full of enough teen angst to sink a battleship, and also tends to sound on the whiny side. But the story moves along and keeps you wondering who will be next on the killer's gruesome craft project list... and why. There's a smidgen of romance tossed in but don't look for any HEA for Jason. 

Not recommended for the faint of heart or those with over active imaginations because Ms. DeVor lets  her characters get pretty bloody - remember, this is the same author who scared me with Sorrow's Point. If you like your YA dark and brooding, give Dancing With a Dead Horse a try.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Summertime on Cape Cod

After a long, cold, hard winter, Summer has officially hit Cape Cod. The dogs are waking me up even earlier than during the school year so they can greet the sun on the beach - before it gets crowded with sunbathers and (oh yeah) the summertime "No Dogs" rules kick in. Similar to the characters in my books, I tend to thumb my nose at that rule, as long as we're off the beach before anyone else shows up. (Unlike my character Shea, I've never had a run-in with a police officer about it!)
Two of my kids celebrated the last day of school at the new Frozen Yogurt place on Main Street - make your own FroYo sundaes for 59 cents per pound. They swirled flavors and added toppings... Yum! My wallet is a little afraid they will want to visit every day all summer long!

My oldest child graduated from high school this year, and if you haven't seen my posts on Facebook, he's already off to college. Not just any college, but the U.S. Air Force Academy, joining the long, blue line as part of the Class of 2018, the 60th class to enter the Academy. A great achievement, a huge milestone, and I'm still adjusting to his absence.

He won't be home again until Christmas, but we will get to visit for Parents Weekend at the end of the summer. Until then, we rely on photos posted to the parent portal the Academy sets up to assuage parental anxiety. 
When we see him next, he will have completed Basic Training and have already started classes. And will be required to wear a uniform at all times. Good luck to all these young men and women who have chosen this much more challenging college experience! Go Air Force!

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Maggie's Mountain, by Mya Barrett
Published 2014 by The Wild Rose Press 
About the Book (from Goodreads): 
Years after an ugly scandal nearly destroyed small town widow and business owner Maggie Brannon, she's carved out a quiet, simple life on her Tennessee mountain. But when Hale Warrick returns to Exum, it isn't just her shaky truce with the town that begins to crumble, but the solid walls she's built around her heart.

Hale's job is to keep the family holdings and name safe. Exum depends on the continued success of the Warrick empire. But one wordless encounter with pretty Maggie Mae Cooper from high school has him considering the unthinkable with the daughter of one of his family's most bitter enemies. The Warricks and the Coopers have been at war for decades, but now someone is targeting Maggie in an escalating campaign of fear.

Caught between old animosities and new danger, can Maggie and Hale find their happily ever after before it's too late?
Maggie Mae Cooper Barrett has lived in Exum, Tennessee her whole life, a small town rife with gossip, speculation and lies. When the local rich-kid playboy, Hale Warrick, moves  back to town to take over his fathers business, Maggie finds that the quiet truce she's developed with the gossip-mongers over the last few years is shattered to pieces. There's bad blood between the Coopers and Warricks that goes back to their childhood, with secrets that have never been exposed.

The electricity between Maggie and Hale is explosive, their need for each other crackles off the page. In this well-written, well paced tale, Mya Barrett does an excellent job of developing the small town characters and dragging out the sexual tension. She throws in added intrigue and layers of innuendo that the characters must strive to overcome before they lose one another.

I love small town romances, and the hint of mystery laced throughout kept me reading and speculating. This is a hard to put down book, and I totally look forward to reading more from this author. 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Darkly Delicious Splash Into Summer #Giveaway!

Splash into summer with great books from your favorite YA authors!

The authors at Darkly Delicious YA have banded together for a huge giveaway. With lots of fun prizes, there's something for everyone.

One lucky winner will receive a $40 gift card.

Plus there are lots of other amazing prizes to be had.

Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 23, 2014


Embraced by Fire, by Louise Delamore
Published January 2014 by The Wild Rose Press

About the Book (from Goodreads):
The last thing Ryu McKay needs on a mission to expose a black market information ring is a simmering attraction to his boss. Not only is he undercover, he needs to keep his shape-shifter identity a secret. Despite his desire, he dare not act on his attraction.

For Kait, excitement and that one special man exist only in her dreams. However, everything changes when Ryu walks into her office looking for a job as a fire-eater. Now she wants nothing more than to turn her dreams into reality.

Kait's attraction to Ryu grows, but can it survive the secrets he's hiding? Like the fire with which he plays, this man is dangerous.

Kait Jones is the event coordinator for Fantasia Alive, an entertainment company that supplies performers for specials events and corporate functions. She feels an instant attraction to the sizzling hot guy seeking employment, even if he looks a bit familiar.

Ryu MacKay works undercover for a secret government agency. His latest assignment makes him apply for a position at Kait's company. When he recognizes her as his crush from high school, he realizes he'll have to use his real name and do less lying than he normally would.

Kait always harbored secret fantasies about Ryu, starting in high school and ever since. Little does she suspect that he's a shape shifter, with a dragon lurking just below the surface.

This was the second paranormal dragon shifter tale I've read recently. This had a lot of action, but what really grabbed me was the sexual undercurrents that pervade every interaction between the main characters.

You expect dragons to sizzle and Ryu doesn't disappoint. Every aspect of him exudes heat, and the chemistry between Kait and Ryu works really well. In short, I enjoyed this book a lot and will definitely look for more from this author.

About the Author - in her own words:

I've held a number of jobs; working in a coffee shop, a men's clothing store, and an air-conditioner manufacturing plant. I have been a librarian, an editor, and a business analyst. However, maybe because my grip on reality is somewhat flexible, nothing I've done beats telling stories. Ever since I was a little girl I've imagined wonderful heroes and happy endings - so what better stories to tell than romances. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them.

Want to know more about me or my books? Visit

Sunday, June 22, 2014

I'm visiting the SMART GIRLS READ ROMANCE blog!

Today I'm over at the SMART GIRLS READ ROMANCE blog, chatting about - you guessed it - MY KIND OF CRAZY. The ladies asked what my inspiration for the book was... so I told them the story of my own Saint Bernard puppy...
Come visit and hear the story of the crazy spring that turned into a crazy, bestselling romance book!

(yes, I hit the best seller list during the last week of May so now it's ALWAYS going to be called my bestseller, from me, the bestselling author! *woohoo*)

If you haven't grabbed your copy of MY KIND OF CRAZY yet, there's a link to the Amazon page at the top left of this blog. And I'm sure the Smart Girls blog will have a link over there as well, so come on over and join the party!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

#New #YA Release: FISSURE by Marilyn Almodovar

There are lies in the fabric of Time only she can unravel...

About the Book:

Baxter Jacobs just survived the worst Sweet Sixteen in history: buried in a coffin, hunted down by assassins, and losing almost everything that mattered to her. She’s ready for some normalcy, but “normal” won’t play any part of this Time Bender’s future.

Now that the immediate threat is over, Baxter learns just how much the English Council expects of the newest Interred. The pressure has her seriously considering her uncle’s offer to take her to New York, especially since she thinks it will keep her Healer, Jack, from overusing his abilities. Knowing the New York Council’s ranks are filled with beings using dark powers, however, makes her hesitate.

Before she can choose, the decision is wrenched from her. Fissures in Time result in a new battle with an old enemy. Someone she thought she’d lost reenters her life, and she’ll discover a web of lies woven into the fabric of Time…lies only she can unravel. Baxter will have to use her growing abilities to try and reveal the truth, even if it forever changes the reality she knows.
 About the Author:
Marilyn Almodóvar is the author of Chronicles of the Interred, a series of Young Adult paranormal novels. Born in Ft. Huachuca, Arizona, Lyn is a lover of words whose reading tastes range from Victorian novels to the books of Stephen King.

After studying Theater and French in the Universidad del Sagrado Corazón in Puerto Rico, Marilyn spent time in England and France, where most of her books are set, before returning to Tampa Bay, Florida.
Contact information:
Twitter @LynAlmodovar