Forever a Hero, A Western Romance Novel by Linda Lael Miller – Review

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My Life. One Story at a Time. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. In the state of Louisiana, we are no longer allowed to be Amazon affiliates, therefore the Amazon link is provided for your benefit only. My Life. One Story at a Time. does not collect any affiliate fees.

 

 

Incoherant ramblings…of the Holiday Blues

khadfield_cookiesforsanta_gingerbreadtree

It’s the Christmas season again. You know the time of year when you are jolly and laugh a lot and wish everyone you come in contact with “Happy Holidays!” For me, it’s the season where I want to crawl under a blanket along with my heated mattress pad and sleep until January or February, maybe even March. Holidays are difficult for me; partly because of decisions I made for self-preservation, but mostly because of lies and manipulation by others.

When my depression hit a really low low, the point where I didn’t even want to put up a tree, I decided to have a Cookie Swap party. For my husband’s sake (bless him, he’s the angel who keeps me going) I made the effort to do this one thing, one normal everyday thing in my un-normal world, to feel some sort of normalcy. This one party began a yearly tradition for about ten years. My dad passed away two years ago the week before my party at which time I stopped the tradition. I wasn’t up to having the party last year and really didn’t have plans to host the cookie party again. As much as my friends looked forward to gathering for fun every year, I just wasn’t feeling up to hosting. I found it easier to hibernate.

Then, to my surprise, I began planning my party without even realizing it. Somewhere between here and there, I decided to take a stab at living again, at being “normal.”  So, my cookie swap tradition carries on this weekend. I actually sat down to plan my tasks for today, tomorrow, and Sunday, not to write a blog post but yet here I am. I haven’t been writing many personal stories as of late. I hesitate at times because there are two people I try not to make angry although at times I feel that my very existence makes them angry. They do not wish to hear about my life or my stories or what I am feeling; they are my daughters.

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you will have read stories about alienation. Perhaps it is something you understand or have experienced, perhaps not. The trouble with alienation is that those who are victims almost never realize it and anytime someone talks about it, it will make them even angrier and then they don’t want anything to do with you and you walk on eggshells, censoring every word you speak or write but nothing changes and the cycle just keeps going on and on, and sadly never-ending. That is my “normal.”  I wrote a story about an incident that happened about five years ago (not the incident, the story) and (pardon the language) it pissed them off and that has resulted in five years of silence and walking on eggshells. In fact, I am pretty sure that when they get wind of this post, it will give them the excuse they are looking for to spend another five years in silence.

That isn’t why I’m writing. I’m writing because I have a right to express what I am feeling and thinking. I have that right, it’s mine as a living, breathing person. It’s the season, the holidays, and sometimes it brings out the best in us, sometimes the truth, sometimes depression, sometimes hate and anger. Right now, this minute, when I should be busy getting ready for my party, I am feeling anger. I am angry that my daughters do not want to be in my life. I am angry at the person(s) who have caused this. I am angry that I didn’t have the knowledge back then that I do now, maybe things would be different. I am angry that my two children whom I love more than life itself, can’t see past the lies and manipulation and remember the love. I am writing this because it’s the only communication I have with them.

It’s times like this when I’m angry that I want to tell the ugly story no one knows. All of the fighting to be able to give my daughters what they enjoyed growing up, the sleepovers, the music lessons, the parties, the gifts, Catholic schooling. I protected them from all the ugliness. I’m not sorry I did, but perhaps if they had witnessed the good, the bad, and the ugly (as a counselor once put it) they would be more understanding. But, I guess that’s neither here nor there, it is what it is. I’m all out of clichés’. Life goes on and normal takes on a new meaning each day.

I’m not looking for sympathy. Sometimes you just have to get real and that’s what I’m doing. This is my life and I plan on writing about it. I truly believe that some of us have experienced the things we have because we are supposed to help others with what we’ve learned. So, with that, I guess it’s time to take a look at my plan of action and begin the preparations for my party…and look for that new normal, at least for today.

The Stages of Grace: Life and Love in the Face of Alzheimer's by Connie Ruben – Spotlight, Guest Post and Giveaway!

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Book Details:

Book Title:  The Stages of Grace: Life and Love in the Face of Alzheimer’s by Connie Ruben
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction,   149 pages
Genre: Memoir, drama
Publisher:   Xlibres
Release date:  July 2015
Format available for review:  Print and ebook (PDF)
Will send print books to: USA & Canada
Tour dates: Nov 21 to Dec 9, 2016
Content Rating: PG (There are a couple of swear words such as “asshole” but no F words)

Book Description:

This book was written out of a desire to share with others who have loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease what I have experience as Grace’ caregiver and friend. I wanted to capture the emotions, the expected and the unexpected issues, the painful times as well as the humorous and loving moments that Grace and I have shared as a result of this disease. This is not mean to be a handbook for dealing with Alzheimer’s disease, but I hope that by sharing my feelings and experiences, readers may recognize they are not alone on this particular journey.

Buy the Book:  Amazon  ~  Amazon.ca
Meet the Author:

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Connie Ruben is an entrepreneur with well-developed management skills. She has run several large companies, and prides herself on empowering others to work to their full potential. Connie also has an intimate knowledge of the challenges and joys of caring for a family member with Alzheimer’s disease, as her mother-in-law Grace was diagnosed with advanced Alzheimer’s disease in 2003. While Connie still struggles to balance her work life and home life, her understanding of this disease has made it easier for her to negotiate the demands of being a caregiver, as well as a wife, mother, and employer. She has written this book in order to share the insights she has gained as Grace’s primary caregiver and friend. Most importantly, Connie wants this book to assure others that caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease can be enjoyable, life-affirming, and emotionally significant.

Connect with the author: Website 

I’m Not Stubborn, She Is! by Connie Ruben (A caregiver’s anecdote)

Gosh, this woman is stubborn… I would set out her clothes each day as I knew Grace so well , thus was totally aware of her tastes, and what outfits were her favorites. I had created a set of cream colored slacks and a blue top. She, would put away the blue top and pull out a god-awful yellow one. I, would tell her calmly that the “yellow one did not go with her cream colored slacks and we should save that top for another day”. She would smile and inform me that she was wearing the yellow top. Of course, as “I was the boss” I would take charge and start the process of putting the yellow top on her. She would sit there with her arms by her side and simply not allow me to dress here. I would try to manipulate the top onto her body but she would keep moving so I could not. After a bit of this, and some words to go along with it, I would toss the yellow top on the bed and stomp out of the room. A few minutes later, Grace came out of the room with the yellow top on. It was on backwards, but it was on.. We just laughed.. yep, I was the stubborn one…

AND HERE’S THE GIVEAWAY!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR SCHEDULE:

Nov 21 – #redhead.with.book – review / giveaway
Nov 22 – Working Mommy Journal – review / giveaway
Nov 23 – Library of Clean Reads – review / author interview / giveaway
Nov 23 – Books, Dreams, Life – book spotlight
Nov 24 – The Autistic Gamer – review
Nov 25 – Books for Books – book spotlight
Nov 28 – Olio by Marilyn – review / author interview / giveaway
Nov 29 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review / giveaway
Nov 30 – T’s Stuff – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Dec 1 –    Bound 4 Escape – review / giveaway
Dec 2 –    Collecting Moments – book spotlight / guest post
Dec 5 –    Bookaholic Banter – review / guest post
Dec 6 –    Jessica Cassidy – review / author interview / giveaway
Dec 7 –    Corinne Rodrigues – review
Dec 8 –    My Life. One Story at a Time.– book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Dec 9 –    Over the hills and far away – review / giveaway
Dec 9 –    Svetlana’s Reads and Views – review

A Perfect Plan by Alyssa Drake – Review

A Perfect Plan (Wiltshire Chronicles Book 1) by [Drake, Alyssa]

Samantha Hastings lived a quiet, peaceful life on her family’s country estate. With no man to order her around and no stifling society rules to follow, she considered herself blessed. However, when her brother’s ship sinks during a short trip to France, Samantha receives a request from her sister-in-law to return to town and manage the late Earl’s finances. Suddenly thrust into society, Samantha faces an unfamiliar world and a pair of very familiar green eyes.

Lord Benjamin Westwood never intended on following through with his rash promise to his best friend. Now, with Edward’s death, Benjamin becomes the unwilling guardian to Edward’s bratty little sister, who has grown up considerably since the last time they met. His intention to marry her off to the first available suitor is thwarted when he finds himself falling for Samantha’s unique demeanor. He lights upon the perfect plan; a marriage of convenience, giving him the opportunity to romance Samantha without distraction.

However, when they discover Edward’s disappearance was due to foul play, Benjamin’s perfect plan begins to quickly unravel. Now, Samantha is in more danger than either of them realized and Benjamin is running out of time.

Alyssa Drake has been creating stories since she could read, preferring to construct her own bedtime tales instead of reading the titles in her bookshelves. Enraptured with all types of writing, Alyssa has tried her hand at short stories, collaborations, and poetry.  However, her first love has always been books.  She thoroughly enjoys strong heroines and often laughs aloud when visualizing conversations between her characters.

Alyssa graduated from the University of the Pacific, with aB.S. in business and a concentration in French literature.  Currently, she resides in Northern California with her blended family, where she works full-time at a chocolate factory.

She believes everyone is motivated by love of someone or something.  One of her favorite diversions is fabricating stories about strangers surrounding her on public transportation.  Alyssa can often be found madly scribbling notes on a train or daydreaming out the window as the scenery whips past.

A Perfect Plan is Alyssa’s first full-length novel.  Her sophomore novel, An Imperfect Engagement,is awaiting its release date.

My Review –

A Perfect Plan is the first book in the Wiltshire Chronicles as well as debut book by Alyssa Drake. It is a historical romance set in one of my favorite time periods. There are feisty women who refuse to be docile creatures settled into country estates, but instead insist on being in the thick of danger; in this case, a murder plot. There is also love and unexpected romance and loads of twists and turns.

Although this is Alyssa Drake’s debut book, she writes like a seasoned veteran. I loved the book and thought the storyline and writing were wonderful.

I enjoyed A Perfect Plan and cannot wait for more from this author.

A Perfect Plan is available on Amazon here – http://amzn.to/2fu668Z

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. In the state of Louisiana, we are no longer allowed to be Amazon affiliates, therefore the Amazon link is provided for your benefit only. My Life. One Story at a Time. does not collect any affiliate fees.

 

Love's Prayer by Melissa Storm – New Release

Love’s Prayer by Melissa Storm
The First Street Church Romance, Book One
Genre: Inspirational Romance
BUY THE BOOK:
ABOUT THE BOOK:
From acclaimed author Melissa Storm comes the first in a brand-new series of sweet and wholesome small-town love stories with the community church at its center…
Summer Smith is at a crossroads in life. Fresh out of college with no idea what comes next, she agrees to take over her aunt’s flower shop for the season. She arrives in the small, close-knit community of Sweet Grove, Texas, hoping to find some answers.
Ben Davis has lived in the shadow of his family’s mistakes for years. Forced to give up everything he ever wanted for himself, he begins to consider taking his own life in a final effort to end all the pain. A desperate plea sent to the God he isn’t even sure he believes in is soon answered by a series of miracles that bring Summer and Ben crashing into each other.
Love’s Prayer offers a dramatic story about two people who must find a way to believe in each other and in themselves in order to finally find the place where they belong. This novel of finding faith, hope, and—ultimately—love in the darkest of times is sure to tug at your heartstrings and leave you craving more from the First Street Church Romances!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 
Melissa Storm is a mother first, and everything else second.
She used to write under a pseudonym, but finally had the confidence to come out
as herself to the world. Her fiction is highly personal and often based on true
stories. Writing is Melissa’s way of showing her daughter just how beautiful
life can be, when you pay attention to the everyday wonders that surround us.
Melissa loves books so much, she married fellow author
Falcon Storm. Between the two of them, there are always plenty of imaginative,
awe-inspiring stories to share. Melissa and Falcon also run the business Novel
Publicity together, where she works as publisher, marketer, editor, and
all-around business mogul. When she’s not reading, writing, or child-rearing,
Melissa spends time relaxing at home in the company of her two dogs, five
parrots, and rescue cat. She never misses an episode of The Bachelor or
her nightly lavender-infused soak in the tub.
Presented by:

Always a Cowboy by Linda Lael Miller – Review

In this follow-up to her incredibly popular ONCE A RANCHER, Linda returns to Mustang Creek, Wyoming, and the Carson family ranch for a story of country boy meets California girl.

He’s the middle of the three Carson brothers and is as stubborn as they come—and he won’t thank a beautiful stranger for getting in his way! 

Drake Carson is the quintessential cowboy. In charge of the family ranch, he knows the realities of this life, its pleasures, and heartbreaks. Lately, managing the wild stallions on his property is wearing him down. When an interfering so-called expert arrives and starts offering her opinion, Drake is wary, but he can’t deny the longing—and the challenge—she stirs in him.

Luce Hale is researching how wild horses interact with ranch animals—and with ranchers. The Carson matriarch invites her to stay with the family, which guarantees frequent encounters with Drake, her ruggedly handsome and decidedly unwelcoming son. Luce and Drake are at odds from the very beginning, especially when it comes to the rogue stallion who’s stealing the ranch mares. But when Drake believes Luce is in danger, that changes everything—for both of them.

Purchase on Amazon – http://amzn.to/2cPPuIs

The daughter of a town marshal, Linda Lael Miller is the author of more than 100 historical and contemporary novels. Now living in Spokane, Washington, the “First Lady of the West” hit a career high when all three of her 2011 Creed Cowboy books debuted at #1 on the New York Times list. In 2007, the Romance Writers of America presented her their Lifetime Achievement Award. She personally funds her Linda Lael Miller Scholarships for Women. Visit her at www.lindalaelmiller.com.

Linda Lael Miller has written more than 100 contemporary and historical novels. She was awarded the prestigious Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award from the Romance Writers of America in 2007 and will receive the RT Book Reviews Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. There’s a reason she’s known as the First Lady of the West—no one writes about rugged heroes and love under the vast Western skies better than Linda, and she doesn’t disappoint with this latest installment in The Carsons of Mustang Creek trilogy.

My Review –

I have been a fan of Linda Lael Miller for as long as I can remember. Her books grab ahold of you and you cannot put them down. This trilogy has been quite enjoyable.

Linda Lael Miller writes characters that the reader can’t help but fall in love with and I love how their relationships seem to start off with fireworks rather than meander along. Her books also contain strong women and I enjoy that aspect of her writing.

I love the Carsons of Mustang Creek and each book in the series is just as good as the one before it. I love the attention to detail in each of her books. Through Linda’s books, I have been to Mustang Creek and watched the wild horses. Nature and wildlife come to life through her writing, as well love and romance.

I am giving Linda’s book, Always a Cowboy about a million thumbs up!

 

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. In the state of Louisiana, we are no longer allowed to be Amazon affiliates, therefore the Amazon link is provided for your benefit only. My Life. One Story at a Time. does not collect any affiliate fees.