Paranormal Encounters by Deborah J. Hughes
Series: Tess Schafer-Medium #8
Also in this series: Be Still, My Love
on July 27, 2018
Genres: Fiction, Ghosts, Paranormal
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Newlyweds Tess and Kade Sinclair are on a dual mission. One, end a curse that threatens the happiness of their future children and two, find family they’ve just learned exists!
So away they go to a mysterious island off the coast of Maine. Known as “Witch Island” to the locals, they believe its unique inhabitants are the answer to those missions.
But a negative force is disturbing the peaceful balance of the private island community. Spirit activity is on the rise and Tess is having disturbing visions of souls trapped on the “other side”. Can she help them, and accomplish her mission to resolve the curse, before she is banished from the one place and the one person capable of helping her?
This is book 8 in the series and all are stand alone stories...though it's better to read them in order! All of the previous books have made it on Amazon's top ten lists for their category and onto their "Hot New Sellers" list. Be Still, My Love (book 1) made it to number one OVERALL when it first came out.
About the Author Deborah J Hughes
Since living several of her childhood years in a haunted house, Deborah has been interested in the paranormal. After all, she wanted to understand just what the heck went on there! Her imagination didn’t always make things better but it sure made life interesting! Eventually Deborah started writing stories and since it became something of an obsession with her, she believes it’s her life calling.
It seemed a perfect pairing to write about what interests her and so her paranormal mysteries have resulted. She draws from her experiences, her vivid imagination and even from channeling (since she doesn’t plan her stories but lets them develop as they will, surprising even her when things are revealed!).
Although twenty years of her life was devoted to her country by means of her service in the United States Air Force, Deborah now spends all of her time writing, traveling (when she can!) and enjoying her extensive family.
She hopes her readers enjoy her stories as much as she enjoys writing them, and along with that, she LOVES hearing from them!
Tess Schafer-Medium Series
Be Still my Love (Book 1)
Hidden Voices (Book 2)
Vanquishing Ghosts (Book 3)
Rosemary’s Ghosts (Book 4)
Ghost Trouble (Book 5)
Haunting Ground (Book 6)
Distracting Ghosts (Book 7)
by Erin Bedford
Published by Embrace the Fantasy Publishing on October 24, 2017
Genres: Fiction, Fantasy, Dystopian
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They call them the Crimson Fold. High up in their castle they look down on my little world and wield a silent control. That is, until the invitations are sent out.
I never dreamed I’d be selected. They tell me it’s a privilege. I should be honored. But the fear in their eyes doesn’t lie.
If I refuse to go, my family will be shunned. If I go, my life and my body will no longer be mine. It’ll be theirs.
At midnight it will be over. At Midnight I’ll be his.
The Hunger Games meets Cinderella. This fairy tale has no happy endings only dark beginnings.
Until Midnight is the first novel in The Crimson Fold series by USA Today bestselling author Erin Bedford. This novel is a whimsical, dark retelling of a dystopian Cinderella. The story follows Clarabelle, a seventeen-year old girl whose father has recently married a widow with two daughters. This marriage uproots Clara and her father from the outer skirts of the kingdom known as The Glade- a place that grows and harvests food for the rest of the kingdom, leaving very little for those in the Glade- and brings them into the more lavish and gluttonous lifestyle of the Inner Circle. Clara is still trying to adjust to her new life when an invitation is left at her new home…with her name on it. Clara learns about an annual tradition in the Inner Circle where the eldest child of a household is invited to the palace- or the Core- to meet the Crimson Fold- an elite circle of people that never wander from the palace- and their ruler, Patrick Blordril.
Armed with very little knowledge of what occurs at the ball within the Core, and a great deal of resentment towards those who rule over their kingdom, Clara is thrust into a competition that could either 1. See that she serves out the rest of her life as a servant or companion, or 2. Send her home with her memory of her time at the Core erased and a permanent alteration of her mental state. Luckily, Clara’s “fairy godmother” arrives in the form of a rakish and charming Asher and his three sanguine and beautiful female companions. With Asher and his companions guiding Clara through the challenges of the Core festivities and tests, Clara finds herself dodging lethal, nefarious attacks from threatened competitors, uncovering secrets of the Crimson Fold, and realizing that the world she thought she knew may just be an illusion.
Clara’s character was well-developed, and she remained consistent with her feelings throughout the novel. I enjoyed her quirkiness and found myself chuckling at some of her mannerisms and responses to the tests within the story (she’s as terrible in heels as I am!). I would have liked, however, to learn more about Clara’s relationship with her father, especially with him having raised her after her mother’s death, and her earlier need to discuss the invitation with him. The story provided enough villainous characters, potential friends, and a love-interest to keep me satisfied.
Speaking of love-interests…Now, I am a HUGE fan of romance. As such, it always makes my heart sigh in contentment when a burgeoning love is introduced. I can definitely detect a bit of something brewing between Patrick and Clara- which makes me exceedingly pleased. However, their interactions were quite limited in the story, so I am not entirely convinced that they will have a happily ever after. I remain optimistic! And I look forward to delving more into their relationship in the next novel.
Until Midnight was a fantastical and whimsical story that overflowed with intriguing characters, a heart-pounding plot, and enough surprises to leave me desperate to get my hands on the second novel.
Four stars for Until Midnight! Racer
by Katy Evans
Published by KT PUBLISHING on November 24, 2017
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Coming of Age
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A bad boy with something to prove.A woman with a mission.The race of their lives.The love of a lifetime.
I don't think his parents expected him to live up to his name?Racer Tate?but once he felt the adrenaline rush behind the wheel, he was addicted.
He's the fastest, fiercest driver around.
�Scouting new talent brings me to his doorstep... but his smile sends me to my knees.�
The sexy, mysterious Racer Tate is not the kind of man a girl like me falls for. He's secretive, reckless, elusive. But his proximity pushes me beyond reason, and his kiss....
This is our last chance to win, and he is our only hope. I'm supposed to watch him?make sure he doesn't get into trouble. But it's an impossible task. And now the one in heart wrenching, toe-curling, soul-crushing trouble is me. Because when your heart belongs to someone, their truths become your own, and their secrets become your salvation...or your curse.
He says he wants me. He says I'm the One. But he also thinks he'll break my heart, one piece at a time until it's gone.
Racer is a contemporary standalone novel by New York Times bestselling author Katy Evans. The story follows Lana, a twenty-two-year-old woman who is trying to keep the family business of racing professionally afloat. Unfortunately, without finding a driver for their team, the HW Racing Team may not see another season. This quandary sends Lana back to the States in search of someone to race for their team- a trip that sends her crashing- literally- into Racer Tate. Racer lives for the adrenaline rush fast cars provide and has earned a reputation among the illegal racing circuit as being one of the best drivers. So, when Lana approaches him about racing professionally with her team, he jumps on the opportunity. Of course, it isn’t just the promise of being able to drive at harrowing speeds that has Racer practically pumped with anticipation- it’s having the chance to grow closer to Lana and win her heart.
Racer Tate was a force of nature in this novel. His energy and intensity were consistent throughout the story. He was the first male protagonist in a romance novel that I have read about that has bipolar disorder. It was interesting to see how this disorder would play out in his professional life, as well as his romantic life. Lana has grown up the youngest of four children- with three older brothers, an ill father, and a mother who was no longer around. This has sort of forced Lana into a position of having to be strong, patient, and steady. Luckily, both Racer’s intensity and Lana’s steadiness help to balance each other. The chemistry was palpable between both characters and remained overwhelmingly present- there’s just no hiding something as raw and beautiful as the charged emotions between these two. While I usually don’t like male characters to be overly confident (as it often comes across as arrogant), Racer pulled it off nicely! In fact, Racer’s confidence and assurance in his ability to win Lana’s heart managed to snag mine in the process (hello new book boyfriend!).
What I also enjoyed about Racer was his consistency in the story. Racer kept me constantly engaged and sleep-deprived for a good couple of days. In fact, I’m quote confident that I strode into work a couple of days with blood-shot eyes and haphazard pony tails with a serious case of “book hangover”. Not surprisingly, I finished the novel faster than I would have liked because I enjoyed the characters so much. It was also refreshing to see two dominant and strong men (Racer and his father) being able to express their love for each other. Racer’s father is inspiring and admirable in his support of his son and the mental health issue he is facing. Also, Lana’s relationship with her father is equally warm and supportive. In this, both Racer and Lana have something in common.
In all, Racer was a fast-paced, humorous, and sizzling read that completely absorbed my world for a good couple of days. It also holds the current position in my life as the giver of a pretty solid book hangover. I’m going to need to cure this feeling pronto.
FIVE stars for Racer!! Wrong by Jana Aston
Published by Lulu.com on October 7th 2015
Genres: Fiction, Romance
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I have a history of picking the wrong guy. Gay? Player? Momma’s boy? Check, check and check. Now I can’t stop fantasizing about one of the customers at the coffee shop I work at between classes. It’s just a harmless crush, right? It’s not like I ever see this guy outside of the coffee shop. It’s not like I’m going to see him while attempting to get birth control at the student clinic. While wearing a paper gown. While sitting on an exam table. Because he’s the doctor. Shoot. Me. But what if, for once, the man I’ve had the dirtiest, most scandalous fantasies about turned out to be everything but wrong? Wrong is a full-length, standalone novel by Jana Aston
Review of Wrong
Wrong is a standalone contemporary romance novel by New York Times bestselling author Jana Aston. The story follows Sophie, a college senior who works at a coffee shop named Grind Me. For weeks she has been crushing on an older, attractive, and distinguished man by the name Luke who stops there occasionally for coffee. However, he barely seems to notice her. This lack of notice ends abruptly when Sophie visits with the campus volunteer gynecologist in order get birth control- only to discover that Luke is Dr. Miller when he strolls into the room to give her a pelvic exam. What ensues is a merry and hilarious chase as this awkward encounter turns into a string of interesting, albeit spicy, encounters.
Luke is the head of obstetrics at the hospital near the college and, though cold, calculated, and sometimes serious, allows Sophie to bring out the playful side of his personality. While Luke is conflicted about his age, his desire for Sophie, and his strained relationship with his family, Sophie struggles with her confidence, determining her place in Luke’s life, and how they can have a future together when they come from two very different worlds. Amid all these internal struggles, Sophie encourages Luke to experience many of the things he lacked from his own childhood. It was entertaining to see a man who is usually so calm, collected, and reasonable figure out how to use an Elf on the Shelf.
Wrong was an unexpected pleasure! I found myself laughing out loud, having to toss the book down and cover my face in mortification for the heroine, and fanning myself from all the extra hotness blasting from the pages. Some of the situations in the book were so comical I found it difficult to finish reading the pages due to all the tears clouding my vision. Just thinking about some of the situations Sophie found herself in makes me bust out into gales of laughter!
I read Wrong during a two-day trip to Boston. It was the perfect story to distract me from the 2-hour long train ride to and from Boston and Maine. So, if you’re looking for an entertaining contemporary romantic comedy, I suggest you give Wrong a try! Hooking Up: A Novel
by Helena Hunting
Published by St. Martin's Press on November 7th 2017
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Romantic Comedy
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Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.
Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.
Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.
Review of Hooking Up
Hooking Up is a hilarious contemporary romance novel written by New York Times bestselling author Helena Hunting. The story follows Amalie Whitfield, a young woman with a long history of making questionable choices in her love life. These choices come to a predictable, though shocking, climax when her husband of a mere few hours is overheard on speakers engaging in an explicit act with another woman. What ensues is a scene of chaos and hilarity when Amalie, reeling from shock, hacks off her wedding dress and tackles the groom’s cousin Lexington, or “Lex”, to the ground. Lexington and Amalie have always shared a bit of chemistry, however, Lex’s cousin Armstrong managed to hijack Amalie’s interest in Lexington and convince her that he was nothing but a manipulative playboy. It was Armstrong with the questionable morals and inability to remain monogamous, that was the true manipulator and deceiver.
Amalie, needing to escape the gossip and the shredded remnants of her marriage, embarks on her honeymoon to Bora Bora alone- well, not completely alone, as Lex decides to escape the gossip and speculation to the same small island as Amalie. From the plane ride to the island, to the time spent in Bora Bora and New York City, Lex and Amalie fall helplessly into a secret affair where they learn what they want from life and each other, while trying to deal with the fall-out from the failed- albeit brief- marriage.
The story was fast-paced and riddled with humor, steamy scenes, and exciting dialogue. Amalie was likable and conflicted. She grows from an unsure and resigned young woman, to someone who takes charge of her future and makes decisions that, at one time, may have frightened her. Lex, with help from his experiences with Amalie, learns to let go of an age-old conflict with his cousin Armstrong and learns to navigate new feelings. From beginning to end, Hooking Up was a thrilling and amusing story that left an impression with me. In fact, I can confidently say that Lexington has joined the ranks of my current “book boyfriends” list.
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