Exclusive Teaser Trailers from SDCC

Sunday, July 24, 2016

You. Guys. SDCC, or San Diego Comic-Con for those of you not as familiar with geek speak, is THE place to be if you love movies, TV, comics, or pop culture of almost any kind. Unfortunately, I have never had the opportunity to attend, but I always follow the goings on pretty closely online. There are always a plethora of teasers, character reveals, and of course exclusive movie trailer releases. This year's SDCC guests have not disappointed. I gotta say I thought superhero films were getting a liiiittle played out, but boy was I wrong. The trailer for Wonder Woman just blew me away and the second official Doctor Strange trailer is trippy as all get out. And the tagline for that one..."The impossibilities are endless". Whoa. Superheroes are clearly here to stay and both films are bound to be blockbusters or I'll eat my hat!

Is there anything from SDCC that you want to discuss? What films are you most excited to see? Any surprising TV news? Please feel free to comment! 

TLC Book Tours: The Daredevil Snared by Stephanie Laurens (Review + Giftcard Giveaway!)

Thursday, July 21, 2016

The Daredevil Snared
by Stephanie Laurens
Copyright 2016
ISBN: 9780778318965
The Story:
Responsibility knocks, and a reckless, hedonistic man responds and opens the door to love—thus is a daredevil snared.
#1 New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens brings you the third installment in THE ADVENTURERS QUARTET, continuing the drama of Regency-era high seas adventure, laced with a mystery shrouded in the heat of tropical jungles, and spiced with the passionate romances of four couples and their unexpected journeys into love.
Captain Caleb Frobisher, hedonistic youngest son of a seafaring dynasty, wants to be taken seriously by his family, and understands he has to prove himself sufficiently reformed. When opportunity strikes, he seizes the next leg of the covert mission his brothers have been pursuing and sails to Freetown. His actions are decisive, and he completes the mission’s next stage—but responsibility, once exercised, has taken root, and he remains in the jungle to guard the captives whose rescue is the mission’s ultimate goal.
Katherine Fortescue has fled the life of poverty her wastrel father had bequeathed her and come to Freetown as a governess, only to be kidnapped and put to work overseeing a child workforce at a mine. She and the other captured adults understand that their lives are limited by the life of the mine. Guarded by well-armed and well-trained mercenaries, the captives have been searching for some means of escape, but in vain. Then Katherine meets a handsome man—a captain—in the jungle, and he and his crew bring the sweet promise of rescue.
The sadistic mercenary captain who runs the mine has other ideas, but Caleb’s true strength lies in extracting advantage from adversity, and through the clashes that follow, he matures into the leader of men he was always destined to be. The sort of man Katherine can trust—with her body, with her life. With her love.
The first voyage is one of exploration, the second one of discovery. The third journey brings maturity, while the fourth is a voyage of second chances. Continue the journey and follow the adventure, the mystery, and the romances to the dramatic end.
Purchase Links

Connect with Stephanie

My Thoughts:
I read the first book in the series and thought it was just okay -- too slow getting started for me. This book started out similarly, BUT the setting was so interesting that I didn't mind that there wasn't a whole bunch of action. I can't say I've ever read a romance novel where the heroine was kidnapped to work a diamond mine. Yeeeah, it's a little off the wall, but it kind of works. Sometimes in a historical novel, it's nice to leave the ballroom for some suspense and danger.

Radiant Lit Blog Tour: Jilted by Varina Denman

Friday, July 1, 2016

Title: Jilted
Author: Varina Denman
Genre: Drama
Publisher: David C. Cook
Date: June 1, 2016
Book Three in the Mended Hearts series
Lynda Turner has struggled with depression since her husband abandoned her and their young daughter fifteen years ago. Yet unexpected hope awakens when a local ex-convict shows interest. As long-hidden secrets resurface, Lynda must fight for her emotional stability and for a life where the shadow of shame is replaced by the light of love.
Jilted tells of a woman who has lost the joy of living, a man determined to draw her back toward happiness, and a town that must—once and for all—leave the past where it belongs. It is a gentle reminder that all things can work together for good.
Author Bio – Varina Denman is author of the Mended Hearts series and a native Texan. She spent her high school years in a rural town and now writes stories about the struggles women face in similar small town settings. She and her husband live near Fort Worth, where they enjoy spending time with their five mostly-grown children.

My Thoughts:
Sometimes it's good to switch things up a bit in your reading routine. I've been on a romance bender for most of the year, and I needed to take a detour. Thankfully, this book by Varina Denman was just what the doctor ordered. 

Continuing the Avery Family WWII Saga with Anchor in the Storm by Sarah Sundin

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Anchor in the Storm
Waves of Freedom, Book 2

by Sarah Sundin
Copyright 2016
Revell Books
ISBN: 9780800723439

The Story:
One Plucky Female Pharmacist + One High-Society Naval Officer = Romance--and Danger

For plucky Lillian Avery, America's entry into World War Ii means a chance to prove herself as a pharmacist in Boston. The challenges of her new job energize her. But society boy Ensign Archer Vandenberg's attentions only annoy--even if he is her brother's best friend.

During the darkest days of the war, Arch's destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves--and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions for sedatives Lillian has filled? The two work together to answer that question, but can Arch ever earn Lillian's trust and affection?

Sarah Sundin brings World War Ii to life, offering readers an intense experience they won't soon forget.

Read more about the book and get a copy today!

My Thoughts:
I'm enjoying this series which features the Avery siblings and their loves during the first years of US involvement in WWI. Anchor in the Storm follows Lillian Avery as she leaves her home to live in Boston to work in a pharmacy ran by miserly old druggist, Mr. Dixon. She encounters adversity at work and in her personal life due to a disability she's lived with since she was a child. Lillian believes a normal person could never love her because of her appearance and her "cold" heart. Enter ensign Archer Vandenberg, her brother Jim's close friend. He's out to prove he's not like any other man and even though he's wealthy, that he's no snob. Their story is one of intrigue and danger, not so much by the hands of a known enemy, but rather the unknown leaders of a drug ring that threatens their lives and the lives of those keeping the American coast safe from German U-Boats.

Cover Love: Spring 2017 Edition!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Ughhhh...you guys. 2017 you say? Why are we talking about 2017 already when 2016 is only half through?! Well, one word -- books!!!!! There's nothing I look forward to more than a good book from my favorite author, and two of my very favorite writers (as in most of their books are on my keeper shelf) are releasing new books right around the same time. Party time for Renee!!

Laura Frantz's A Moonbow Night is publishing from Revell in January 2017...

From Amazon:
On the vast, uncharted Kentucky frontier of the 1770s, Temperance Tucker has learned to be fleet of foot, accurate with her rifle, and silent about the past. But her family secrets complicate her growing attraction to a handsome Virginia land surveyor with a harsh history of his own. Will the hurts and hardships of the past prevent them from a fulfilling future?

Read more about the book on Laura's website.

Pre-order a copy.

...and the final installment in Sandra Byrd's Daughters of Hampshire series, A Lady in Disguise, will be available in March 2017 from Howard Books! 

From Amazon:
In this intriguing novel of romance, mystery, and clever disguise set in Victorian England, a young woman investigates the murder of her own father. 

After the mysterious death of her father, Miss Gillian Young takes a new job as the principal costume designer at the renowned Drury Lane Theatre Royal. But while she remembers her father as a kind, well-respected man of the Police Force, clues she uncovers indicate he’d been living a double life: a haunting photograph of a young woman; train stubs for secret trips just before his death; and a receipt for a large sum of money. Are these items evidence of her father’s guilty secrets? His longtime police partner thinks so. 

Then Gillian meets the dashing Viscount Thomas Lockwood. Their attraction is instant and inescapable. As their romantic involvement grows, Gillian begins to suspect even Lockwood’s motives. Does Lord Lockwood truly love her? Or is his interest a front for the desire to own her newly inherited property? And what should she make of her friend’s suggestion that Lockwood or men like him were involved in the murder of her father? 

Soon Gillian is convinced that her father has left evidence somewhere that can prove his innocence and reveal the guilty party. But someone wants to stop her from discovering it. The closer she comes to uncovering it, the more menacing her opposition grows. With her life on the line, Gillian takes on an ingenious disguise and takes on the role of a lifetime to reveal the true killer—before it’s too late both for her and for those that she loves.

Litfuse Blog Tour: The Ringmaster's Wife by Kristy Cambron

The Ringmaster's Wife
by Kristy Cambron
Copyright 2016
Thomas Nelson Publishers
ISBN: 9780718041540
The Story:
An ounce of courage. 

A leap of faith. 

Together, they propel two young women to chase a new life—one that’s reimagined from what they might have become. 

In turn-of-the-century America, a young girl dreams of a world that stretches beyond the confines of a quiet life on the family farm. With little more than her wit and a cigar box of treasures, Mable steps away from all she knows, seeking the limitless marvels of the Chicago World’s Fair. There, a chance encounter triggers her destiny—a life with a famed showman by the name of John Ringling.

A quarter of a century later, Lady Rosamund Easling boards a ship to America as a last adventure before her arranged marriage. There, the twenties are roaring, and the rich and famous gather at opulent, Gatsby-esque parties. The Jazz Age has arrived, and with it, the golden era of the American circus, whose queen is none other than the enigmatic Mable Ringling.

When Rosamund’s path crosses with Mable’s and the Ringlings’ glittering world, she makes the life-altering decision to leave behind a comfortable future of estates and propriety, choosing instead the nomadic life of a trick rider in the Ringling Brothers’ circus.

A novel that is at once captivating, deeply poignant, and swirling with exquisite historical details of a bygone world, The Ringmaster’s Wife will escort readers into the center ring, with its bright lights, exotic animals, and a dazzling performance that can only be described as the Greatest Show on Earth!

Read what others are saying about this wonderful book!

Get your own copy!

My Thoughts:
It's been a while since I've read a book through so quickly. Even when I put it down, I was still thinking about what was going to happen next in The Ringmaster's Wife. Even though a romance, it's not like there was a ton of action or super hot chemistry, it was just that the story was so interesting!

Black 'n Gold Beauty Bit: Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish RemoverPads

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Usually, I'm here posting reviews for books I love or a snapshot of my furry family, but sometimes I just have to share products I think everyone will enjoy.

As you may know, I'm a member of the Influenster review community and I get to test some of the newest health and beauty products first. You may not know that I love bright, colorful things and love to change up the look of my toes and fingernails with some nail polish. I do however hate the process of removing chipped lacquer -- especially glitter. It. Is. A. Struggle. And the odor of the traditional dollar store polish remover is enough to give anyone a headache. Thankfully, there's a new option from Cutex.

Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish Remover felt pads are a great beauty "hack". One little individually wrapped pad is pre-soaked in remover and oils that nourish your nails. The packaging notes that it will do ten nails, but each time I've used a pad, I've been able to do all ten fingers and all ten toes! The best part is, I don't have to open a window or go outside. There is a bit of an odor, but it's not nearly as awful as the fumes associated with the cheap acetone nail polish remover setup.

Available now at your favorite beauty supply store or Amazon.

Visit the Cutex website to learn more!

A Short Novella That's Big on Suspense: Scent of Danger by Alex Verde

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Scent of Danger
Part of the Smoke and Mirrors anthology
by Alexa Verde
Order the ebook today!

The Story:
To find her missing sister, small-town cop Maya Hutchinson risks her life by posing as her glamorous twin. Under escalating attacks, Maya has to accept protection from dashing senator's son Connor McNamara. Cop turned PI, Connor McNamara has his own secret mission and is forced to choose between family loyalty and love. When the scent of danger draws near, will Connor and Maya survive long enough to forgive and accept each other?

Get a copy of Smoke and Mirrors featuring Scent of Danger today!

My Thoughts:
I'm not the world's biggest novella fan. I like my books to be thick and juicy, but occasionally I do break from my norm and pick up a short story or novella to read when I'm pressed for time or just want to unwind before bed. The Smoke and Mirrors collection is a volume of 8 novellas to satisfy those who crave romantic suspense. I've only had the chance to read "Scent of Danger", but let me tell you, if this story is any indication of what the others are like, it's a must-have for your e-reader. This story jumps right into the action -- Alexa Verde doesn't waste time!

Litfuse Blog Tour: A Daughter's Dream by Shelley Shepard Gray

Monday, June 6, 2016

A Daughter's Dream
by Shelley Shepard Gray
Avon Inspire
ISBN: 9780062337818
The Story:
A young teacher and farmer discover they have much in common, especially when it comes to healing old wounds from the past . . . and finding love in one another.

Rebecca Kinsinger has always dreamed of being a teacher. But when she’s given the opportunity she’s been waiting for at Charm Amish School, she’s dismayed to discover that teaching is hard work—work she’s afraid she’s not very good at.

That is, until Lilly Yoder joins the class. A thirteen-year old who’s just lost her parents, Lilly is in need of someone like Rebecca. For the first time since starting her new job, Rebecca feels a sense of purpose. But when she meets Lilly’s uncle, Jacob, his good looks and sweet, easy-going temperament are hard to ignore. How can she even entertain romantic thoughts of Jacob when his niece is her student?

Suddenly becoming Lily’s sole caregiver, Jacob Yoder never thought he’d be a single parent—or a farmer. Having been living in Florida as a carpenter, Jacob feels more at home wielding a hammer than a backhoe. The only bright spot in his life is Rebecca Kinsinger. As Lily and Rebecca develop a bond, Jacob’s fondness for the pretty teacher grows, too.

But when a fateful accident brings them together, Rebecca and Jacob must choose between duty and desire. Will they follow the path before them? Or set out to find true happiness . . . and true love?

Read what other reviewers are saying about the book!

Learn more about the author!

My Thoughts:
Continuing with characters we first met in A Son's Vow, A Daughter's Dream once again brings together the families of Charm, Ohio. This time we're following Rebecca on her quest to find her purpose in life. What she thinks is her calling and dream, turns out to be a stepping stone to the realization that she's where she was meant to be all along.

Breathtaking Suspense from Patricia Bradley: Silence in the Dark (LoganPoint, Book 4)

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Silence in the Dark
Logan's Point, Book 4
Patricia Bradley
Revell Books
ISBN: 9780800724184

The Story:
Two years ago, Bailey Adams broke off her engagement to Danny Maxwell and fled Logan Point for the mission field in Chihuahua, Mexico. Now she's about to return home to the States, but there's just one problem. After Bailey meets with the uncle of one of the mission children in the city, she barely escapes a sudden danger. Now she's on the run--she just doesn't know from whom. To make matters worse, people who help her along the way find themselves in danger too--including Danny. Who is after her? Will they ever let up? And in the midst of the chaos, can Bailey keep herself from falling in love with her rescuer all over again?

My Thoughts:
I knew this book was going to be a winner from the get go. Drug cartels, kidnappings, murder, - what more can a suspense fan wish for in a novel? From the first page I was swept up in a wave of intrigue that didn't ebb until the last page. Suspense stories have kind of gone by the wayside for me, but this is the second one in as many weeks that has really captured my interest and reignited my love of an adventure. Even though it's a little preachy, Bailey's story is definitely one to grab if you like a clean, fast-paced read. I love the idea of lost loves reunited, so this story has that going for all you romantics, too. ;) Silence in the Dark is the perfect summer suspense!

Litfuse Book Tour + Giveaway: The Beautiful Pretender by Melanie Dickerson

Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Beautiful Pretender
Melanie Dickerson
Copyright 2016
Thomas Nelson Publishers
ISBN: 9780718026284
The Story:
After inheriting his title from his brother, the margrave has two weeks to find a noble bride. What will happen when he learns he has fallen for a lovely servant girl in disguise?
The Margrave of Thornbeck has to find a bride, fast. He invites ten noble born ladies who meet the king’s approval to be his guests at Thornbeck Castle for two weeks, a time to test these ladies and reveal their true character.
Avelina has only two instructions: keep her true identity a secret and make sure the margrave doesn’t select her as his bride. Since the latter seems unlikely, she concentrates on not getting caught. No one must know she is merely a maidservant, sent by the Earl of Plimmwald to stand in for his daughter, Dorothea.
Despite Avelina’s best attempts at diverting attention from herself, the margrave has taken notice. And try as she might, she can’t deny her own growing feelings. But something else is afoot in the castle. Something sinister that could have far worse—far deadlier—consequences

Read what others on the tour are saying about the book!

Learn more about the author! 

My Thoughts:
I frickin' love fairytales. Honestly, every single one I've ever read starting with the Disney storybooks my mum bought me when I was a kid, I've pretty much loved. Plop me down on the couch and I'll binge for days on films like Ever After and Beauty and the Beast. These days finding new and exciting stories that rival those old classics we're all familiar with is a bit of a task. Thankfully, author Melanie Dickerson has come to the rescue of desperate romance readers with her latest novel, The Beautiful Pretender. I'm a little disappointed at having missed the first book in the series since this one is SO entertaining, but to be sure, I'll get my hands on a copy of that little tome soon! 

Go West with His Prairie Sweetheart by Erica Vetsch

Saturday, May 28, 2016

His Prairie Sweetheart
Erica Vetsch
Copyright 2016
Harlequin Books
ISBN: 9780373283613

The Story:
A Home for Her Heart   

After being jilted at the altar, Southern belle Savannah Cox seeks a fresh start out West and accepts a teaching position in Minnesota. But between her students' lack of English, the rough surroundings and sheriff Elias Parker's doubts and distrust, Savannah's unprepared for both the job and the climate. However, she's determined to prove she can handle anything her new town throws her way.

Elias gives it a week—or less—before the pretty schoolteacher packs her dainty dresses and hightails it back home. But no matter how many mishaps he has to rescue her from, Savannah doesn't give up. Yet the real test is to come—a brutal blizzard that could finally drive her away, taking his heart with her…

Visit Erica's website to read more about this book and others!

My Thoughts:
As much as I complain about hating winter and the cold weather, as soon as the temps hit the 80+ degree mark, I'm looking for any way to cool off. What better way to beat the heat than with a book about a blizzard! Harlequin had the right idea publishing this book in May for hotties like me to read. ;-)

His Prairie Sweetheart by Erica Vetsch is one of the finest examples of romantic storytelling from the Love Inspired line. I've read more of these books in my youth than I can count and have continued to do as an adult reader on a budget. Trust me when I say I'm an experienced mass market paperback romance reader.