Monday, January 24, 2011

Great Reads Monday - I Know You By Heart by Linda Morrison Spear

Linda Spear is an author and a journalist with over 30 years of communications experience. She is a veteran journalist for The New York Times, where she reported primarily on evolving health and human interest issues that affect our culture.  I'm so pleased to be able to share with you her debut novel I Know You By Heart - this week's Great Read!

A mother's dying request rips her family apart in Linda Spear's debut novel. "Find David!" the mother of Sarah, narrator of I Know You by Heart. Naturally, Sarah, her dad, her husband, her sister Tessa, and her sister's husband are puzzled. In the time they have spent by Andrea's bedside, caring for her as she dies of cancer, the matriarch has never mentioned this person who is now seemingly so important. But Sarah takes the lead, and in investigating her mother's e-mail correspondence with David, she discovers his true meaning to her mother. For Sarah, the week following her mother's death is a tumultuous one. Everyone's personality has changed in theirgrief, and emotions are running high. While Sarah tries to deal with the death of a beloved parent, she also reels from the truth she discovers about David. At the same time, other family secrets bubble to the surface about her sister and her father that will change everyone's relationships forever.

What do readers say?

"A story for sharing. A family drama of immediacy and honest reporting. A book for all of us who have loved and lost and loved again. Linda Spear has that `kitchen table' touch --- we are having coffee with her and she makes us keep asking, "And then what happened?" Tissues are not optional...." - M.B.

Read more on Linda Morrison Spear's website!

Or buy I Know You by Heart today on!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Great Reads Monday: Once A Brat, Always a Brat by Marilyn Celeste Morris

Born a Military Brat, Marilyn Morris attended schools overseas, in Seoul Korea, Linz, Austria and various schools stateside. From this background, she has crafted her autobiographical Once a Brat, Always a Brat, relating her travels with her army officer father from her birth in 1938 to his retirement in 1958.  When not writing or editing emerging writers’ manuscripts, she enjoys her family and friends worldwide and near her home in Fort Worth TX. True to her Brat heritage, she has a suitcase packed under the bed, ready to travel at a moment’s notice.  I know you'll enjoy Once A Brat, Always a Brat - this week's Great Read!

As one of the first dependents to be sent overseas at the end of WWII, eight-year old Marilyn Celeste Morris received her very own orders from The War Department.

From Seoul, Korea to Linz, Austria, she traversed the globe from 1938 to 1958 with her Army Officer father, mother and younger brothers. Between assignments in the primitive world of the Far East, to the sublime luxury of exploring castles in Bavaria, the family shuttled between the various Stateside Forts: Bragg, Bliss, Hood and Sill.

Sometimes hilarious, sometimes gut-wrenchingly sad, her narrative is part travelogue, part therapy session. She still cries at Taps and stands tall when the colors pass; yet she realizes she carries an odd mixture of pride and resentment over her nomadic way of life.

Her conclusion, however, is that she wouldn’t have had it any other way. Once a Brat, Always a Brat.

Dennis Campbell of radio has called Once a Brat, Always a Brat, "a field manual for understanding Military Brats."

To read more, visit Marilyn's website and  her check out her blogs:
Once a Brat
Marilyn's Musings
The Lady with Lupus 
Editing Excellence

Buy Once a Brat, Always a Brat today on!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Great Reads Monday - Defending Glory by Anne K. Albert

Anne K. Albert writes romantic suspense stories that chill the spine, warm the heart and soothe the soul - all with a delightful touch of humor. She is the author of two series: The Piedmont Island Trilogy, and the Muriel Reeves Mysteries series. Frank, Incense and Muriel, the first book of the MRM series is available now in e-book format, and will be released in print mid-2011.  Today I'm pleased to share with you her book Defending Glory - this week's Great Read!

Suffering from survivor’s guilt and unable to resume his career with the FBI, Mac McKeown moves to northern Minnesota to start over as a general contractor and forget that fateful day that changed everything. When he discovers the body of his nemesis on Glory Palmer’s property, along with a warning for her to leave while she still can, Mac realizes his past has come back to haunt him and an innocent woman’s life is in grave danger. He vows to keep her safe... but how will he protect his heart?


“Glory?” Mrs. Cole, the B&B owner, exited the back door.

“I’m here. In the gazebo.”

The older woman sauntered across the lawn, juggling two ceramic mugs.

“Chamomile tea,” she said as she offered one to Glory. “Steeped for five minutes. I thought you could use a cup. Something to settle your nerves.”

“Thank you.” Glory inhaled the delicate aroma before taking a sip. “I take it you heard about the murder at Hanover Point?”

Mrs. Cole sat in the chair opposite the chaise. “I did. It’s shocking. I’m glad the pastor was with you. And that you’re safe and sound.”

“Me too.”

“I hope you were spared from seeing the body.”

“I wasn’t. It was awful.” She relayed a few details, sparing the older woman most of the gruesome facts. Still, Mrs. Cole’s eyes bugged out of her head.

“Please tell me this horrid event hasn’t changed your mind about moving here. Or building the retreat.”

The threatening words printed on the back of Manny Singh’s neck zipped across the front of Glory’s brain. Goosebumps formed on her arms and she had the strangest feeling she was being watched. Her fingers tightened around the mug. She concentrated on its warmth and willed away her fears.

“No,” she said at last. “I’m here to stay.”

A snapping sound, like someone stepping on a twig behind the cedar hedge, made her jump. She turned her head, but saw nothing out of the ordinary. Another twig snapped just beyond the B&B’s backyard.

“Are you all right, dear?” Mrs. Cole asked.

Glory did her best to shake off the eerie feeling. Surely, if someone was spying on them, Mrs. Cole would sense it too. She smiled at her hostess, and stood up. “I’m fine. But it’s getting chilly. Do you mind if we go inside?”

Read more at Anne's website!

Or check out her blog!

Buy Defending Glory today in paperback and on Kindle!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Great Reads Monday: Not One of Us by D.A. Spruzen

D. A. Spruzen grew up near London, England, earned an MFA in Creative Writing from Queens University of Charlotte, and teaches writing when she’s not seeking her own muse. In another life she was Manager of Publications for a defense contractor. Her short stories and poems have appeared in many publications, and she is currently hard at work on the next book in the series, Lily Takes the Field. She and her husband live in Northern Virginia with a Jack Russell terrier who doesn’t know he’s old and doesn’t know he’s small.  I just finished reading her first novel so I know you'll love Not One of Us - this week's Great Read!

Rose, a widow and mother of three adult children, is a founding member of the Salton Symphony and one of a group of seven volunteers who call themselves the “Symphony Slaves.” As the story opens, she is in the hospital recovering from a concussion after being found unconscious outside her friend Judy’s house. Rose cannot remember how she got there, although she remembers finding Judy bludgeoned to death. This is only the first of several murders that rock the normally dull Salton, a Northern Virginia suburb of Washington, D.C.

Alternate chapters comprise segments of the killer’s journal in which she recalls her childhood and reveals the warped logic that enables her to eliminate those who threaten her hard-won lifestyle. She overcame her destitution with the single-minded ruthlessness that drives her to kill again and again when things go wrong. The journal converges with the narrative as the story progresses and shows the terrible fallout that can result from child abuse; but it also suggests that it is not inevitable—her sister is not a killer, after all. This woman’s intelligence and drive have worked for her and against her.

This psychological suspense, the first of a trilogy, focuses on the characters’ inner lives and the social constraints that bind them. Each Symphony Slave changes as her complacency is shaken by dark events she never imagined could touch a community like Salton. And the way it all ends . . . pleases no one.

What do readers say?

“Someone is killing the lady volunteers of the Salton Symphony and the reader wants to know who it is. This novel grabbed me from the very first chapter and just wouldn't let go. Author, DA Spruzen does a fantastic job of building mystery and suspense by letting us into the head of the killer as well as letting us into the lives of the Salton Symphony volunteers. Getting to know each of these characters, their personal problems/secrets/desires was my favorite part of Not One of Us. Spruzen knows how to develop a character and let the reader know her and feel her. In that way, it's very much a piece of women's fiction wrapped up in a mystery. I loved every minute of it. And now, having finished, I'm looking forward to reading the next in this trilogy. Recommended especially for readers of psychological mysteries.” - Karen Cantwell, author.

Check out DA Spruzen's website to read more!

Or buy it today on Kindle for $2.99!