NOT Accepting Requests

As of July 11, 2015, I will NOT be accepting NEW requests to review or for new blog tour stops. I need to reduce the backlog from author and publisher requests, NetGalley and Edelweiss, and Goodreads Giveaway. As much as I would like to read everything, I'm simply not able. I appreciate your generosity in offering review copies to reviewers and bloggers.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

THE FURY by Shane Gericke

Release Sept. 4 2015

The FuryAbout The Fury

Publisher: Tantor

Page count: 379

The Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico washes a cache of doomsday weapons onto a Mexican beach: bombs filled with VX nerve gas mixed with anthrax, invented by the Nazis during World War II and perfected by the United States to use in the Cold War. The bombs soon fall into the wrong hands and create an unstoppable opponent. Only one Chicago Police detective has a chance of preventing those bombs from being used on American soil.

Reeling from the recent murder of her husband as well as allegations of police misconduct, Detective Superstition “Sue” Davis is thrown into an undercover assignment. She must infiltrate the Mexican narcotics cartel responsible for the death of her husband in order to get close to the cartel’s sociopathic enforcer, Jiminez “Jimmy” Garcia.

But when the entire Garcia family is killed in Mexico by a U.S. Special Forces raid gone wrong, Garcia will stop at nothing to get vengeance, including triggering newly acquired bombs on American soil. Superstition’s assignment quickly becomes more dangerous than planned as the threat of a terrorist attack looms closer.

“A fireball of awesome!” —Joshua Corin, award-winning author of Cost of Life

“Tension and turmoil add up to high-stakes suspense as the characters are skillfully played across a global chessboard. Written like a born bard of old, you won’t be disappointed. But be warned, treachery comes from all directions, even those that cannot be seen.”—Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Patriot Threat

61C8LSqgZZL._UX250_About Shane Gericke

Bestselling novelist Shane Gericke is the author of Torn Apart, which was short-listed for the prestigious Thriller Award and named a Book of the Year by Suspense magazine. Shane spent twenty-five years as a newspaper editor, most prominently at the Chicago Sun-Times, before jumping into fiction. He lives in the Chicago suburb of Naperville. Visit him at

Shane Gericke’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Friday, August 21st: BookBub – author guest post, “13 Hair-raising Books on the Global War on Terrorism”

Monday, August 24th: Books that Hook

Wednesday, August 26th: Vic’s Media Room

Thursday, August 27th: Life is Story

Monday, August 31st: Dwell in Possibility

Tuesday, September 1st: Mallory Heart Reviews

Wednesday, September 2nd: From the TBR Pile

Monday, September 7th: SJ2B House of Books

Wednesday, September 9th: It’s a Mad Mad World

Thursday, September 10th: The World As I See It

Monday, September 14th: Patricia’s Wisdom

Wednesday, September 16th: Thoughts on This ‘n That

Thursday, September 17th: Lilac Reviews

Review: THE FURY by Shane Gericke

THE FURY is hard-hitting, hard-charging, thriller action, and from the violent reader's hook right to the end, it never lets up. This is a heart in mouth, hold your breath read. I seldom recommend novels be filmed--but if THE FURY were made a movie, it'd be a blockbuster hit, without a doubt. If you want never-quit-action and an incredibly strong female protagonist, from an author who knows whereof he writes, you'll find it right here.

Caution: strong violence and tragedy [not all fictional]

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Review: Afterlife

Afterlife Afterlife by Ed Morawski
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review: AFTERLIFE by Ed Morawski

AFTERLIFE is a well-written and compelling work of Dystopiana, frightening in its scope and its likelihood. Rather than the prevalent themes and constraints of Dystopian fiction--the coercions and compulsions, the oppressions-- the global dismay in this novel seems to have come about more by laissez faire than by legislation, by apathy and disinterest instead of greed for power. 

Mr. Morawski's approach is literate and philosophical, and well thought out. One doesn't undergo the need for suspension of disbelief, because the societal consequences make sense. In terms of the backdrop, the results are quite logical.  I came away with the impression of the world going out with not a bang, but a whimper, as those in control [here, literally, CTRL] proceed like blind lemmings leading their fellows over the cliff: as if all governments, religions, and private citizens also simply closed their eyes and ears to good sense and leaped.

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Review: Keegan's Point

Keegan's Point Keegan's Point by H.D. Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review: KEEGAN' S POINT by H. D. Smith

I literally read through this book in one sitting, in a couple of hours, I was so enrapt. This first entry in the Good Bad Guys series perfectly demonstrates that the division between good and evil is often blurred. Just as frequently, we can't rely on appearances, because those are often disguises. An eight-grader in a tiny town in Southern Florida, Charlie Parker has had a lifelong fascination with the reclusive billionaire who owned an island and died the year of Charlie's birth. When an unexpected "opportunity" drags Charlie to Keegan' s Point, he demonstrates courage, bravery, and intellect.

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Tour: DOWNSTREAM by Betty Jean Craige

Tour: DOWNSTREAM by Betty Jean Craige

Betty Jean Craige


          Betty Jean Craige is University Professor Emerita of Comparative Literature and Director Emerita of the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts at the University of Georgia. 

          She received her B.A. in Spanish Literature from Pomona College (1968) and her M.A. (1970) and Ph.D. (1974) in Comparative Literature from the University of Washington.  She taught at the University of Georgia from 1973 to 2011.

          Dr. Craige has published books in the fields of Spanish poetry, modern literature, history of ideas, politics, ecology, and art.  She is a scholar, a translator, a teacher, and a novelist.

          In 2010, Dr. Craige published in both hardback and audiobook Conversations with Cosmo: At Home with an African Grey Parrot. In 2011 and 2012 she published a weekly Sunday column in the Athens Banner-Heraldtitled “Cosmo Talks.”

          Dr. Craige’s essays have appeared inPMLAThe Chronicle of Higher EducationThe Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and The Athens Banner Herald.

          Dr. Craige has received the University of Georgia Alumni Society Faculty Service Award (1994), the Albert Christ-Janer Award for Creativity in Research (2003), the Blue Key Service Award (2010), and the Women's Studies Faculty Award (2011).  She has also received awards for teaching, including the Honoratus Medal from the Honors Program.  The title “University Professor” was granted to her in 1995 as “highest recognition for significant impact on The University of Georgia.” On May 13, 2004, she received the Governor’s Award in the Humanities.

          On December 20, 2003, Dr. Craige delivered the graduate and professional schools’ commencement address at the University of Georgia. On January 27, 2012, she gave the University’s Founders Day Lecture. On September 17, 2013, she accepted the Jeannette Rankin Fund Founders' Award. In March of 2014, UGA's Comparative Literature Department honored her by establishing an annual lecture in her name.

          Dr. Craige was Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Delta Prize for Global Understanding.       Most recently she has written a murder mystery titled Downstream, published by Black Opal Books on November 26, 2014.




By Betty Jean Craige




ISBN: 9781626942011

Black Opal Publishing

Paperback: 318 pages

November 26, 2014, $11.75




At the celebration of his hundredth birthday, local billionaire Francis Hearty Withers announces to the people gathered on the front lawn of Witherston Baptist Church that he has finalized his will. In it he bequeaths $1 billion to his north Georgia hometown of Witherston and another $1 billion to be divided up equally among the town's 4,000 residents—in recognition of their support of a Senextra pharmaceutical factory. Senextra is a drug that enables individuals to lead healthy lives well into their second century, but it has some unanticipated consequences.

          The group assembled to hear Withers's announcement do not all applaud. One person carries a sign that says SENEXTRA VIOLATES MOTHER NATURE. Another, KEEP SENEXTRA OUT OF OUR SYSTEM. A third, WE DON'T NEED MORE OLD MEN.

          Withers flies into a rage. He vows to change his will and disinherit the community. Two days later he is found dead.

          In Betty Jean Craige's first murder mystery a few humans die in unusual circumstances. (A few others live in unusual circumstances.) Who dunnit?


Guest Post:

Betty Jean Craige, author of Downstream (Black Opal Books, 2014)
"Garbage in, garbage out." We hear that phrase often among computer geeks, who use it to explain the limitations of computer programs. Poor data input produces poor data output.
​"Garbage out, garbage in." We don't hear that phrase, but we should—among all of us who are concerned with human health. Pollution into our rivers and lakes produces pollution of our bodies. When we pollute our environment, we pollute ourselves. We get sick, and so do the other living components of our ecosystem. Everything undergoes change when we humans deposit our medications into our water supply.
​The medication of our water supply is the theme of my novel Downstream. The drug that elderly men are taking to prolong their lives leaves their bodies in their urine and enters the water supply of the fictive north Georgia town of Witherston. The drug affects the reproductive organs of Witherston's residents—men and women, dogs and frogs. Men grow breasts. Women get pregnant after menopause. Puppies are born with undescended testicles. Frogs are born with five legs. All of this happens because the longevity drug Senextra has polluted the town's water supply.
​Downstream is fiction, but it is not science fiction. We are learning every day that what we create—be it pharmaceutical drugs, industrial toxins, or pesticides—never goes away. We live with what we create. We drink it, we breathe it, we eat it. We all live downstream.
​Downstream is a murder mystery. A billionaire centenarian who credits Senextra for his long life is murdered. Who dunnit? Who would gain from the billionaire's death?
​And who gains from the pollution of our environment? If you think about that you may solve the mystery before you reach the last pages.
Dr. Betty Jean Craige has published books in the fields of Spanish poetry, modern literature, history of ideas, politics, ecology, and art.  She is a scholar, a translator, a teacher, and a novelist.

Review: DOWNSTREAM~A Witherston Murder Mystery by Betty Jean Craige

DOWNSTREAM is a delightfully involving cosy mystery, set in the luscious forested hills of North Georgia. Once home, for millennia, to Native tribes who lived as one with the land and forests, the area's extensive forests and streams now beckon to industrialists, such as centenarian Francis Henry Withers, last scion of the Founding Fathers of Witherston. Withers plans to use his multi-billions in a stranglehold on the town, either by bribery or threat. A pharmaceutical corporation needs his property to manufacture a life extension medication. Withers himself is villainous, but nor is he the only one. Small towns conceal a multitude of secrets.

DOWNSTREAM demonstrates all the best aspects of the cozy mystery category.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Review: The Dark

The Dark The Dark by David C. Cassidy
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

REVIEW: THE DARK by David C. Cassidy

How scary IS this book? Well, I had to stop reading and come back to it again at least four times, because I was just too frightened to go on. Second, I tried reading at night, alone, and quickly found out that was way too scary. [ Next time, I'll try reading in the midst of a bustling community library!] This is high praise indeed from a reader who has fed on horror in many stripes for upwards of 5.5 decades. THE DARK is terrifying! Implacable, inescapable, the kind of terror that paralyses the muscles and stops the breath. Welcome to The Dark: you've never encountered anything like it.

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Review: Tear Drop

Tear Drop Tear Drop by Joanne Clancy
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

[Detective Elizabeth Ireland Crime Thriller Series Book 1]

I've been reading Joanne Clancy' s engrossing stories for quite some time, but I believe she has achieved an entirely new level with the introduction if this new series. Private detective Elizabeth Ireland has made a home for herself and a niche for her talents in Cork City, Ireland, in the decade since her disastrous resignation from London's Metropolitan Police. Yet her memories and her guilt remain always present. She is a perfect flawed heroine: strong and resolute, intuitive and talented, yet at times deceptive and manipulative. She stood innocent of the crimes for which she was framed, yet for other crimes she is guilty but never revealed.

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Review: We Install and Other Stories

We Install and Other Stories We Install and Other Stories by Harry Turtledove
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


WE INSTALL AND OTHER STORIES is an enlightening showcase of glimpses into the vast range of genius exemplified by acclaimed master author Harry Turtledove. Nine stories, one brand new, will delight readers and inspire a rush to read Mr. Turtledove' s longer works. Three essays cover Chanukah, Tolkien--and from a master of the genre, alternate history.

Turtledove fans will rejoice, and new readers will discover reasons why this long-time award-winning author is so widely acclaimed.

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Review: The History of Things to Come

The History of Things to Come The History of Things to Come by Duncan Simpson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review: THE HISTORY OF THINGS TO COME by Duncan Simpson
[The Dark Horizon Trilogy Book One]

A riveting, rigorously-paced thriller which bangs into being with a breathtaking reader's hook, this novel rockets across continents and eras, melding the religious, alchemical, and scientific studies of the acclaimed Sir Isaac Newton with a contemporary mystery claiming all too many lives. An intrepid artifact consultant and his police liaison pit themselves against a demonic mastermind whose intricate planning may just trigger world's end.

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Review: Quarter to Midnight: A Collection of Nine Horror Short Stories

Quarter to Midnight: A Collection of Nine Horror Short Stories Quarter to Midnight: A Collection of Nine Horror Short Stories by Darcy Coates
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review: QUARTER TO MIDNIGHT by Darcy Coates

Not long ago, Darcy Coates became my "go-to" horror writer. An author who delivers finely skilled writing in addition to scary horror [even the science fiction story in this collection is shuddery horror], Ms. Coates delivers in every single short story, novella, and novel. I don't know if the stories flow from her fingers intact, or if she rewrites until finely tuned, but the result always is the same:awesome terror. Here is a range, in 15 stories. I was so thankful I read these in daylight! [especially "Lucy" and that inexpressibly nerve-rending "Sub-Basement" (shudder!!)] 

Ideally, writing talent and the ability to deliver true horror would be entertwined. Darcy Coates gives readers exactly that perfect blend.

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Review: Dead Eyed

Dead Eyed Dead Eyed by Matt Brolly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review: DEAD EYED by Matt Brolly

I LOVED this book!!! I was riveted on every page, by tuned writing and by the convoluted, twisting, plot, which kept me guessing-guessing-guessing right on to the end, much of the time with my breath caught and my heart in my throat. If I hadn't read that this is a debut novel, I would never have guessed that. DEAD EYED deserves a wide audience, and a place on the bookshelves of every aficionado of British police procedurals and of finely-honed mysteries. 

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Friday, August 28, 2015

Cover Reveal. CURSED by Christina Bauer


Cursed by Christina Bauer 
(Beholder, #1) 
Published by: Ink Monster LLC
Publication date: March 29th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult


Although Elea’s the most powerful necromancer in history, she’s spent most of her nineteen years imprisoned in the Midnight Cloisters. Enchanted manacles keep her unique brand of soul magick in check. While the guards and initiates seem contented to torment her, the Cloister’s Mother Superior is obsessed with finding a safe way to destroy Elea, both body and soul.

Escape seems impossible until a handsome hunter named Asher offers to help. Elea takes a chance and soon develops feelings for the mysterious stranger. However, Asher may not be who he claims. Then again, Elea may not be, either…

Pre-orders are now live at AmazonBarnes & NobleiBooks, and Kobo.

Christina graduated from Syracuse University's Newhouse School with BA's in English as well as Television, Radio, and Film Production. Her day job is in marketing for companies like Microsoft, Cisco, and Brainshark. Back in the go-go 90′s, she founded her own software start-up, Mindful Technologies. Christina believes that, upon close examination of Tolkien's text, it's entirely possible that the Balrog was wearing fuzzy bunny slippers.

Author links: