I am so
excited that SLOW DANCING ON MAIN STREET by Courtney Giardina is available now and
that I get to share the news!
haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Courtney Giardina, be sure to
check out all the details below.
also includes a giveaway for a $25 Starbucks Gift Card and signed finished copies of SLOW DANCING ON MAIN STREET AND BEHIND THE STRINGS, courtesy of Courtney and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in
the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.
Title: SLOW DANCING ON MAIN STREET (Behind the Strings Book 2)
When Celia Westbrooke was forced to face her past in the heart of Music City, she didn’t expect to find Jesse Rockford tangled up in the middle of it. Jesse’s blue eyes swept her into a whirlwind romance that not only cost her the trust of her best friend, but led her to the last place she thought she’d end up – alone. With Christmas around the corner, it’s the perfect excuse for Celia to escape the bright lights of Nashville for her hometown of Hamden. Deep in the Tennessee mountains Celia can’t help but wish Jesse was there with her, but she knows there is someone else she must fix things with first if she’ll ever have a chance at getting Jesse back. Logan Kent returns home to Hamden for the first Christmas in years where he’ll soon learn that even when you run, you can’t always hide. Celia is determined to show Logan that there is still hope for their friendship even in the midst of a broken heart. She brings Logan for a walk down memory lane, hoping to rekindle what has been lost, but too much damage may already have been done.How will it end for Celia and Logan? Will Celia find her way back into Jesse’s heart? Or will one final secret mean the end of it all?
Throughout the years Courtney has wanted to be many things. Her aspirations have ranged from Olympics gymnast and actress to a pirate. Yes, a pirate. Growing up she vacationed in the Thousand Islands where every year the town of Alexandria Bay holds a Pirate’s Weekend. That is where her love of pirates began. Unfortunately, Courtney’s dream of becoming of being a pirate never came to fruition, but as a writer she still gets to play make believe.
Courtney published her first novel in 2013. Tear Stained Beaches defined the staple of what her self-publishing mantra would become, strong, independent women finding their place in the world. She delivers that message in her following two novels, Holding on to Georgia and Behind the Strings.
She has been asked to speak at local book clubs, on podcasts and empowering websites. Besides working on her 4th novel to release in 2020, Courtney spends time developing content that lays the ground work to inspire others to dream big and believe in themselves because life is too short to wonder, “what if.”
I had the opportunity last weekend to attend a Pop up Event featuring Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt and Jenny Jin. The Montage Deer Valley was beautiful, with spectacular views and delicious appetizers. BookSparks were wonderful hosts.
A fresh, inspiring book on learning how to forgive–with firsthand stories from those who have learned to let go of resentment and find peace
“When we learn to embrace forgiveness, it opens us up to healing, hope, and a new world of possibility.” –Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt
Written with grace and understanding and based on more than twenty in-depth interviews and stories as well as personal reflections from Schwarzenegger Pratt herself, The Gift of Forgiveness is about one of the most difficult challenges in life–learning to forgive. Here, Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt shows us what we can learn from those who have struggled with forgiveness, some still struggling, and others who have been able to forgive what might seem truly unforgivable. The book features experiences from those well-known and unknown, including Elizabeth Smart, who learned to forgive her captors; Sue Klebold, whose son, Dylan, was one of the Columbine shooters, learning empathy and how to forgive herself; Chris Williams, who forgave the drunken teenager who killed his wife and child; and of course Schwarzenegger Pratt’s own challenges and path to forgiveness in her own life. All provide different journeys to forgiveness and the process–sometimes slow and thorny, sometimes almost instantaneous–by which they learned to forgive and let go.
The Gift of Forgiveness is a perfect blend of personal insights, powerful quotations, and hard-won wisdom for those seeking a way to live with greater acceptance, grace, and peace.
Can’t wait to read it!
The influencers who attended were able to shop the shelves of advanced Reading Copies and finished books. Here’s what we had to choose from…
rescues a mysterious stranger from drowning, she fears her rash actions have
earned her a longer sentence on the debtor ship where she’s been held captive
for years. Instead, the man she saved offers her unimaginable riches and a new
identity, setting Amaya on a perilous course through the coastal city-state of
Moray, where old-world opulence and desperate gamblers collide.
Amaya wants one thing: revenge against the man who ruined her family and stole
the life she once had. But the more entangled she becomes in this game of
deception—and as her path intertwines with the son of the man she’s plotting to
bring down—the more she uncovers about the truth of her past. And the more she
realizes she must trust no one…
Packed with high-stakes adventure, romance, and dueling identities, this
gender-swapped retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo is the
first novel in an epic YA fantasy duology, perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas,
Sabaa Tahir, and Leigh Bardugo.
Revenge. It was a simple word when spoken out loud, but it was so much bigger, like the hidden city under the atoll. It was a word of fire and blood, of a knife’s whisper and the priming of a pistol.
It was a word that consumed her, filled her entire being until she knew that she could no longer be Silverfish. Silverfish’s will was to survive, to simply make it to the next day, and hopefully the day after that. But that was no longer her will.
Now it was revenge.
Captain Zharo. Kamon Mercado. Moray.
They would all pay.
Scavenge the Stars has a twisty plot with elements of Oceans 11 casino culture of organized crime as well as pirate elements. I’m not even sure how to process all the turns of events yet. The characters are worlds are multi-faceted. One seaside city, Moray with interest in high society and an undercurrent of mob like crime. A fever is spreading rapidly among the ranks. And another off shore floating prison where debts are paid on the backs of childrens who work at sea. Two opposite lifesyles collide when a stranger at sea is rescued, bringing trouble in his wake.
On land, when the glitter and pomp come off, we see glimpses of the true Amaya. Strong, resiliant and sleek. There is fantasy, mystery and a touch of romance. I found the tone overall to be gritty as characters are dealing with addictions to gambling and alcohol, a plan for the ultimate revenge. I hope to see them ultimately overcome the base workings of their inner demons and society in the future installment. This is certainly a page turner. Be prepared for a wild and unpredictable ride!
Parental Content: drugs, alcohol, child abuse, moderate violence, drugs, same sex couples, kissing, mild swearing and one “F” word.
Tara Sim is the author of SCAVENGE THE STARS
(Disney-Hyperion) and the TIMEKEEPER trilogy (Sky Pony Press) and writer of all
things magic. She can often be found in the wilds of the Bay Area, California.
When she’s not writing about mischievous boys
in clock towers, Tara spends her time drinking tea, wrangling cats, and
occasionally singing opera. Despite her bio-luminescent skin, she is
half-Indian and eats way too many samosas.
Tara is represented by Victoria Marini at
Irene Goodman Literary Agency.
Margaret Brinton keeps her promises, and the one she is most determined to keep is the promise to protect her heart.
Warwickshire, England, 1812
Fooled by love once before, Margaret vows never to be played the fool again. To keep her vow, she attends a notorious matchmaking party intent on securing the perfect marital match: a union of convenience to someone who could never affect her heart. She discovers a man who exceeds all her hopes in the handsome and obliging rake Mr. Northam.
There’s only one problem. His meddling cousin, Lord Williams, won’t leave Margaret alone. Condescending and high-handed, Lord Williams lectures and insults her. When she refuses to give heed to his counsel, he single-handedly ruins Margaret’s chances for making a good match—to his cousin or anyone else. With no reason to remain at the party, Margaret returns home to discover her father has promised her hand in marriage—to Lord Williams.
Under no condition will Margaret consent to marrying such an odious man. Yet as Lord Williams inserts himself into her everyday life, interrupting her family games and following her on morning walks, winning the good opinion of her siblings and proving himself intelligent and even kind, Margaret is forced to realize that Lord Williams is exactly the type of man she’d hoped to marry before she’d learned how much love hurt. When paths diverge and her time with Lord Williams ends, Margaret is faced with her ultimate choice: keep the promises that protect her or break free of them for one more chance at love. Either way, she fears her heart will lose.
So much to adore about Promised. Margaret is strong willed and determined, Lord Williams quite the gentleman once you see past the arrangement and circumstances. Told from one point of view, it is a clean Austenesque Regency with just the right ending. LOVED!
About the Author:
Though she earned degrees in math and statistics, Leah Garriott lives for a good love story. She has resided in Hawaii and Italy, has walked the countryside of England, and owns every mainstream movie version of Pride and Prejudice. She’s currently living her own happily ever after in Utah with her husband and three kids. Leah is represented by Sharon Pelletier at Dystel, Goderich, and Bourret.
“Garriott’s impressive debut distinguishes itself with its expertly evoked Regency setting, a cast of realistically flawed yet eminently relatable characters, and a sweetly satisfying love story. Teen fans of Austen-era love stories will fall hard for this impeccably crafted romance.”
“Promising Regency-set debut. Vivid period details and the hero’s grand romantic efforts will please fans of historical romance.”
I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Almost Just Friends
Piper Manning’s about as tough as they come, she’s had to be. She raised her siblings and they’ve thankfully flown the coop. All she has to do is finish fixing up the lake house her grandparents left her, sell it, and then she’s free.
When a massive storm hits, she runs into a tall, dark and brooding stranger, Camden Reid. There’s a spark there, one that shocks her. Surprising her further, her sister and brother return, each of them holding their own secrets. The smart move would be for Piper to ignore them all but Cam unleashes emotions deep inside of her that she can’t deny, making her yearn for something she doesn’t understand. And her siblings…well, they need each other.
Only when the secrets come out, it changes everything Piper thinks she knows about her family, herself…and Cam. Can she find a way to outrun the demons? The answer is closer than she thinks—just as the new life she craves may have already begun.
ABOUT JILL SHALVIS
New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s bestselling, award-winning
books wherever romances are sold and visit her website,
www.jillshalvis.com, for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.
Andersen’s structured life is ruled by the Three S’s: Swim. Study. Succeed. But
all this routine and order leaves little time for what she really wants to do:
SING. Try telling that to her overbearing father, a former rock legend whose
personal demons keep Marina’s extraordinary musical talents behind closed
chance performance at school drops a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity—and a
gorgeous young rocker—at Marina’s feet, she’ll have to decide what lengths
she’s willing to go to in pursuit of the one thing that reminds her heart to
navigating the rough seas of managing her father’s expectations and finding her
own voice, will Marina summon the courage to show her dad who she really is
inside before their family is dashed like a galleon in a storm?
you by the hugely popular YouTube series, The Girl Without A Phone, from the
Young Actors Project, in collaboration with YA novelist Jennifer Sommersby,
Fish Out of Water is a timeless, heartwarming tale inspired by the beloved
Little Mermaid. Join Marina—alongside friends Lily and Sierra—in this fresh new
adventure meant to inspire the reader to find their own song.
Review: I enjoyed Fish out of Water, reading it one sitting, start to finish. Marina has a great support network of friends, mentors and extended family to help her navigate her father’s perfectionistic and overbearing control. I love that the author addressed grief and unhealthy dynamics of unresolved issues. I wish we would have seen more in depth interactions between the two love interests. We know they love each other, but it seemed to be wrapped up in a short time frame, with little insight as to why. We had a great opportunity to get a look into their dynamic, but we heard too much about Marina’s swimming career. I would love a follow up or added content which explores a differing point of view and added conversation between the MC and the main love interest. I also sometimes had a hard time telling Marina’s two best friends apart, feeling like we didn’t have a good grip of their differences. I finished in four hours. I appreciated the clean content and the changes which were beginning to surface in Marina’s relationship with her father. It’s a great, safe teen read.
Content: sneaking out, child abuse triggers, kissing
I am a
writer, copy/line editor, bibliophile, and mom of four living in the Great
Represented by Victoria Doherty Munro at Writers House.
Harry Stillman cares nothing for his future and spends his time at gaming tables, horse races, and in the company of whatever beautiful woman has caught his eye that week. He has little use for society or his uncle’s approval—until his debts begin exceeding his profits. When Uncle Elliott refuses to pay off the debt, and instead offers him a large, monetary wedding gift if Harry were to marry a woman of his uncle’s approval, Harry is offended, angry, and … scared. His dire straits drives him to seek out the infamous Lord Damion—a moneylender who extolls a heavy price for his assistance.
Lord Damion, however, is not a lord at all, or even a man. When Lady Sabrina’s cheating husband leaves her, then ends up dying in a carriage accident, she creates a plan to ensure her future security through the secret persona of Lord Damion, and she is quickly becoming the richest woman in England.
When Harry presents his case to Lord Damion—hidden behind a partition and communicating through notes, not speech—she finds him ridiculous but somewhat endearing and agrees to consider his situation. However, when she finds Harry unconscious in the gutter later that day, his leg badly broken and his face barely recognizable from the beating that’s left him on the edge of death, she transports him to a house she keeps in Wimbledon.
When Harry wakes, he is surprised to find himself in widow Sabrina’s house. Through the weeks of recovery, Harry is humbled by Sabrina’s selfless care, and reveals details of his character he has not shown to anyone. For her part, Sabrina finds herself more and more drawn to him, impressed by his determination to gain his strength and change his ways. Secretly, Sabrina pays off his debts to preserve him from further harm and tries not to let her heart become entangled. To love a man like this, again, would be her ruin.
Knee-deep in secrets, both Harry and Sabrina must decide what true love means to them, and how to navigate the pitfalls of high English society. In the end, they must both decide which is more important: wealth or true love.
The beginning chapters of Rakes and Roses show a seedy underside of London life including gambling, girls, alcohol and violence. It is a viewpoint we rarely see in clean regency romance and it is heavy. Harry Stillman has squandered away almost his entire inheritance, and is running out of options to pay debtors. In a prodigal son like parable, in steps Lord Damion, an anonymous donor who redeems men with promise who have succumbed to their vice and have no other options.
Sabrina is a widow of substantial financial holdings, with freedom and standing few other women are given in her time and place. Her paths cross with Harry more than once, and she finds herself rehabilitating him from physical injury in her home, on her estate.
Kilpack takes traditional regency roles and challenges them. She shows how one person can make an impact in the world. I found the story and premise unique, but not light and fluffy by any means. It’s good to see the character development and arc, as well as changes in both main players. By the end we have a happily ever after.
Content: drinking, gambling, moderate violence, domestic violence, heavy kissing
About the Author
Josi S. Kilpack is the author of several novels and one cookbook and a participant in several coauthored projects and anthologies. She is a four-time Whitney Award winner —Sheep’s Clothing (2007), Wedding Cake (2014), and Lord Fenton’s Folly (2015) for Best Romance and Best Novel of the Year—and the Utah Best in State winner for fiction in 2012. She and her husband, Lee, are the parents of four children. You can find more information about Josi and her writing at josiskilpack.com.
tapestry of magic, romance, and revolución, drawing inspiration from Bolivian
politics and history.
Ximena is the decoy Condesa, a stand-in for the last remaining Illustrian
royal. Her people lost everything when the usurper, Atoc, used an ancient relic
to summon ghosts and drive the Illustrians from La Ciudad. Now Ximena’s
motivated by her insatiable thirst for revenge, and her rare ability to spin
thread from moonlight.
When Atoc demands the real Condesa’s hand in marriage, it’s Ximena’s duty to go
in her stead. She relishes the chance, as Illustrian spies have reported that
Atoc’s no longer carrying his deadly relic. If Ximena can find it, she can
return the true aristócrata to their rightful place.
She hunts for the relic, using her weaving ability to hide messages in
tapestries for the resistance. But when a masked vigilante, a warm-hearted princess,
and a thoughtful healer challenge Ximena, her mission becomes more complicated.
There could be a way to overthrow the usurper without starting another war, but
only if Ximena turns her back on revenge—and her Condesa.
FOR WOVEN IN MOONLIGHT
Ibanez brings a modern story to an ancient world in her debut novel, WOVEN IN
MOONLIGHT. With immersive prose, original magic, and characters as rich as the
Bolivian culture that constructs the story, Ibanez delivers a wholly unique
book for the YA shelf.”
Young, NYT Bestselling author of Sky in the Deep and The Girl the Sea Gave Back
MOONLIGHT captured me on the first page. Ximena is a fierce and brave
heroine—one I have deeply come to love—and the world of Inkasisa is so
beautifully rendered I never wanted to leave it. Plot twists abound, the magic
is uniquely drawn, and intrigue illuminates the pages. Isabel Ibanez weaves together
a spellbinding, vivid debut.”
Ross, author of The Queen’s Rising and The Queen’s Resistance
that glitters as bright as Ximena’s moondust, set in a wholly immersive world
that’s both whimsical and deadly. With its slow burn romance and simmering
intrigue, Woven In Moonlight kept me reading long into the night. Isabel Ibañez
writes pure magic.”
Mahurin, NYT Bestselling author of Serpent & Dove
Starlight is a lush, vibrant feast of a book, set in a world as colorful and
inventive as the fierce heroine’s magical tapestries. I could have remained
lost in its pages forever.”
Rogerson, NYT Bestselling author of An Enchantment of Ravens and Sorcery of
page-turning tale of revolution and love, helmed by a brave heroine with a big
heart and set against a vibrant tapestry of Bolivian culture. Isabel Ibañez
weaves magic in her debut novel.”
warmth, wit, intimate friendships, and heart-melting romance she brings to all
her books, Emma Mills crafts a story about believing in yourself, owning your
mistakes, and trusting in human connection in Lucky Caller.
When Nina decides to take a radio broadcasting class her senior year, she
expects it to be a walk in the park. Instead, it’s a complete disaster.
The members of Nina’s haphazardly formed radio team have approximately nothing
in common. And to maximize the awkwardness her group includes Jamie, a
childhood friend she’d hoped to basically avoid for the rest of her life.
The show is a mess, internet rumors threaten to bring the wrath of two fandoms
down on their heads, and to top it all off Nina’s family is on the brink of
some major upheaval.
Everything feels like it’s spiraling out of control―but maybe control is
FOR LUCKY CALLER
well-crafted, bittersweet comedy of errors filled with realistically flawed
characters and taut, witty dialogue. – Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Lucky Caller is a fun look inside a school radio program. Having worked radio myself, I could relate to the problems and learning curve the students go through, as well as the triumphs and successes. I was disappointed in character Joydeep and his language. He was a bit much for me.
The family dynamics were wonderful, to see a kind step-father-to-be and healthy, loyal ties. Overall, Lucky Caller caught and held my interest. I loved Jaime. He is thoughful and selfless. The only distraction was some of the content.
Parental Content: F words, heavy swearing, mentions of sex. Parents may want to pre-read.
is the author of First & Then, This Adventure Ends, Foolish Hearts, Famous
in a Small Town, and Lucky Caller. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri, and has
recently completed a PhD in cell biology.
Welcome to Mayhem, Minnesota, with its
sweater-wearing cats and ultra-competitive trivia nights. Where love really
does conquer all…if you’ll let it.
Walker O’Halloran is finally ready to
shed her “wild child” persona. Bartending at her family’s pub, babysitting her
adorable niece and nephews, and getting her degree during the day. What she
doesn’t do is date–or even think about dating. Ever. Until he walks into her bar,
looking like a former Mr. Quarterback of the Football Team and Student Council
President all rolled into one. No, thank you.
Mason Stevens has a secret—and it
prevents him from knowing if someone is truly interested in him, or just what
he can do for them. Until he meets Walker. She’s the first person in ages who
doesn’t recognize him, and her grouchy attitude feels like the greatest
challenge of his life. And he’s ready for it.
But the more time they spend together,
the more he’s desperate to come clean—it’s just never the right time. Until the
paparazzi do it for him…
When he glances back down
again, he finds me staring. At him.
“Come here,” he says
quietly, opening his arms to me.
For a second, I fell
bashful, and it’s such a foreign feeling for me. I loathe the feeling of
vulnerability. But it’s not just a feeling. It’s what I am. And somehow, that’s
never a problem when I’m with him.
author Lauren Rico also happens to beone of the top classical music broadcasters in the country. Her voice is
heard nationally on SiriusXM’s Symphony Hall channel, as well as on radio
stations in New York City, Charlotte, and Tampa. She’s even been known to
accompany travelers as they fly the skies over Thailand, Oman, and China as
part of the in-flight entertainment on several airlines. Her love and passion
for classical music have allowed her to breathe new life into the stories of
the great composers.
And now Lauren is telling some
stories of her own…
Beginning with her erotic thriller,
Reverie (Harmony House Productions, 2016), she set out to “put the sexy back in
Bach,” creating a riveting tale of passion, deception and redemption set against
the backdrop of an international music competition. She rounded out the trilogy
with Rhapsody (Harmony House Productions, 2016) and Requiem (Harmony House
From there, Lauren partnered with
Entangled Publishing, LLC, to create the first in her Symphony Hall series of
romance novels, Solo (Entangled Publishing 2017). Her most recent release,
Mistletoe in Mayhem, is the third in the five-book Whiskey Sisters series
(Entangled 2018). Upcoming projects include two more Whiskey Sisters romances,
a follow-up to Solo and a super-secret, as-of-yet-unnamed thriller.
Lauren hopes to bring classical
music to a new audience by showcasing it in twisty, steamy stories that grab
the reader and keep them turning pages — and YouTubing the music — into the wee
When she’s not on talking on the
radio or typing on her laptop, Lauren enjoys time with her husband and
spectacularly spoiled mini-schnauzer.