Monday, December 23, 2013

Review of Behind the Scattered Glass by Tasha Alexander

I received a terrific audio book from Macmillan Audio. It is Tasha Alexander’s #8 book in the Lady Emily series.

Lady Emily and her husband Colin Hargreaves are in the drawing room of their estate in Anglemore Park when their neighbor, Lord Archibald Scolfield, the Marquess of Montague staggers in, collapses and dies. Colin is an intelligence agent for the British Crown so he and Emily are no strangers to murder investigations.

It is not long before Colin and Emily begin to suspect four people. The first of those is Lady Matilda, Archibald’s cousin who shared his estate with him and who feared his upcoming marriage would leave her homeless.  The second possible suspect is a former friend from college who Archibald accused of cheating and as a result was kicked out of school.  The third suspect is the vicar’s daughter who was supposedly secretly engaged to the former Marquess of Montague. The last suspect is Rodney Scolfield, a distant cousin whom no one knew existed and has laid claim to the title of Marquess of Montague.

Each suspect appears to have a motive and an alibi. But what is interesting is that the murderer happens to be the last person you would suspect or that even Lady Emily could suspect. 

I really loved this audio book because it takes you through the glamour of the upper-class as well as through the servant quarters of a fine English estate. Being a murder mystery fan, it kept me at the edge of my seat until the very end.  At some point, I realized who the murderer was and I kept praying I was wrong since I really liked that character. 

Behind the Scattered Glass by Tasha Alexander is the 8th book in the Lady Emily series.  It was a fun read with Emily being a tongue in cheek character.  I also enjoyed reading about the investigation and the light flirtation between Colin and Emily. I particularly loved the love/hate constant bickering between Lady Matilda and Rodney Scotfield.  Despite being set in in Victorian times, it was an enjoyable novel.

Title:  Behind the Shattered Glass
Author:  Tasha Alexander
Series:  Lady Emily Ashton Mystery #8
Publisher:  Minotaur Books
Publication Date:  October 15, 2013
Pages:  304
Genre:  Historical Mystery

Get It:  Amazon; Barnes & Noble

I did not receive compensation for this review.  I did, however, receive a free audiobook for my review. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Review of The Russian Endgame by Allan Topol

The Russian Endgame is the third and last book in the Craig Page trilogy. Craig Paige is the Director of EU Counterterrorism who is out to get revenge on Chinese General Zhou. He is also trying to stop a former KGB agent by the name of Dmitri Orlov who is trying to assassinate the President of the United States.  

Orlov is a man with connections and good fortunate and among his connections are General Zhou and Russian President Kuznov.  He wants Kuznov and Zhou to assist his efforts in an alliance against America between Russian and China.

At the beginning of the novel, Craig Page is trying to extradite General Zhou to Spain to stand trial. In the second book of the Craig Paige trilogy, Zhou tried to overthrow Spain’s government.   Unfortunately, there is no extradition treaty to back up Paige so he gets a team together and they work to kidnap Zhou and bring him back to Spain.    General Zhou is able to elude Paige and Paige decides that now is the time to get revenge on Zhou for murdering Paige’s daughter, Francesca.  In the process of trying to do so, he finds himself dealing with a threat on the U.S. President’s life and trying to prevent Orlov from gaining advanced military technology.

The Russian Endgame concludes the Craig Paige trilogy.  Allan Topol has pulled together a roller coaster of a thriller just for the occasion which I swear will keep you at the edge of your seat.  The story takes place in several parts of the world: Washington, Paris, Moscow, Beijing, Bali and Indonesia.

If you love political thrillers filled with espionage, The Russian Endgame is the perfect book for you.  You can enjoy it even if you have not read the first two Craig Paige novels: The China Gambit and The Spanish Revenge.


Allan Topol is a national bestselling author whose novels have been translated into Chinese, Japanese, Portuguese, and Hebrew.  He is a graduate of the Carnegie Institute of Technology and has a degree in law from Yale.  He also works as an attorney for a Washington law firm.  For more about Allan Topol, please visit is website at 

I did not receive any compensation for this review. I did, however, receive a free copy for my review from Tracy at Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Review of Saving Paradise by Mike Bond

Special Forces veteran, Pono Hawkins, now known surfer and writer for surfing magazines, finds a mysteriously drowned journalist on the beach of Waikiki, Hawaii. Sylvia Gordon’s murder intrigues him and he is head strong on finding out how she died.   Pono is also haunted by his memories in Afghanistan and is determined to keep dirty politics out of the place he now calls home.

What Pono finds out is very disturbing. The reporter was on her way to exposing a billion dollar taxpayer funded scam that includes powerful corporations, corrupt politicians, and foreign killers.  Pono feels like he is in Afghanistan all over again but instead of drug lords, he is fighting dirty politics and crooked corporations.

Saving Paradise paints a beautiful picture of what Pono calls the seamy side of paradise with an exciting page turner of lies, murder and corrupt politics.  

Mike Bond is a bestselling author and an adviser to the US and foreign governments.  He is also a human rights and war correspondence, an award winning poet and internal energy expert. His books are often based on his own experiences in dangerous regions of the world. You can find more about Mike Bond at his website.

Saving Paradise is available at your local bookstore and online at:

I did not receive any compensation for this review. I did, however, receive a free copy for my review from Alissa at Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Review of Accused (Rosato & Associates #12) by Lisa Scottoline

Accused: A Rosato & Associates Novel 

Publication Date: October 29, 2013
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
ISBN-10: 1250027659
ISBN-13: 9781250027658

I received this superb audiobook from Macmillan Audio. It is Lisa Scottline’s newest Rosato & Associates mystery.

The Novel

Accused is about Attorney Mary DiNunzio, who is now a partner at Rosato and Associates, a law firm with a cast of other pleasant ladies who are not only her colleagues but her also her friends.  Mary is hired by 13 year old Allegra Gardner to find out who really killed her sister, Fiona. Allegra believes the wrong man is in prison for her sister’s murder.

I absolutely loved Mary’s character.  She is quiet, down to earth, and wears her heart on her sleeve. She also carries guilt like she does her brief case or purse. She has the stereotypical Italian parents – a loud father and a mother who thinks the world can be cured with food and prayer. Mary also has three surrogate uncles who are her family’s closest friends. The three Tonys are delightful group of old men. Pigeon Tony, Tony from down the block and Tony Two Feet are constantly getting into all kinds of good natured trouble but Mary couldn’t imagine her life without them.

The story starts with a congratulatory party being held for Mary for her promotion by Bennie Rosato, the firm’s lead partner.   At her party are her co-workers, including her best friend, Judy, her parents, the Tonys and her boyfriend, Anthony. The party is cut short when they receive a phone call that a member of the Gardner family, a wealthy and prestigious Philadelphia family, wants to hire them.

Thirteen year old Allegra may be young but she is a genius who is dead set on solving her sister’s murder and is adamant that the man in prison is innocent. Her parents, Jane and John, will try to stand in her way.  Their intentions are pure as they do not want to open up any old wounds. They want their daughter to move on but don’t yet realize they, too, have not moved on.

Mary believes Allegra despite overwhelming evidence that Allegra may have mental health issues.  The case and her personal concern for her client create a wedge between Judy and her. The case also brings back some bad memories for Mary and when Anthony asks her to marry him, she finds herself even more overwhelmed. Like the Gardeners, Mary has not moved on from the murder of her first husband.

Mary fights zealously for her client but she soon finds this may cost her life.  Mary thinks she may know who actually killed Fiona but that miscalculation nearly sways her away from the real killer.  Figuring out the killer is will leave the reader at the edge of their seat until the very end.  And the killer is right under Mary’s nose and that discovery will shake the entire Gardner family.  

The Author

Lisa Scottoline is a New york Times bestselling author of 21 novels, including Accused.  She has 30 million copies of her books in print and they have been published in over 35 countries.  She lives in Philadelphia and was once a practicing lawyer, and a single mother.  You can read more about Lisa at her website.  

Purchasing Accused

You can purchase Accused through Amazon and other online retailers and book stores.

I did not receive compensation for this review.  I did, however, receive a free audiobook for my review. 

Monday, October 28, 2013

BookTrib Blog Tour: Review of Death Never Sleeps By E.J. Simon

You have reached the October 28 Book Trib Blog Tour stop for E.J. Simon's Death Never Sleeps.

Can the Dead Communicate?

One Halloween night in Queens, New York, Alex Nicholas, a bookie and a loan shark, is shot at his favorite restaurant as he is on the phone with his younger brother, Michael. As he is dying, Alex tells himself that Michael with figure it out.

While Alex and Michael grew up in the same home, they are nothing alike. Alex has been married three times, has had mistresses, runs illegal businesses, and has friends that carry weapons and scare people.  His brother, Michael, on the other hand, is squeaky clean and living the American Dream. He is CEO of a financial management company and has a beautiful wife, a daughter in college, and million dollar home in Connecticut. 

At Alex’s funeral, Michael receives a text. It is a picture of his brother behind his desk with the words “Life is a dream and death is waking up.” Michael later finds out his family is in danger due to Alex owing money to mobsters who would stop at nothing to collect what is owed to them.  Michael soon finds himself with a gun aimed at him and within hours, he starts searching for the millions of dollars that Alex has hidden.

Michael receives other messages including one while he is at his brother’s graving asking, “What are you doing here?” And another, with GPS coordinates to the cemetery where his brother is buried. While this seems strange, it gets stranger when Skinny Lester, one of Alex’s employees, tells Michael about an artificial intelligence program that Alex had installed on a hidden laptop.  The program is supposed to allow Alex to live forever. And so, in a way, Alex does.

About the Author: 

E.J. SIMON was CEO of GMAC Global Relocation Services and the Managing Director of Douglas Elliman, the largest real estate company in New York.  He is a consultant to many leading private equity firms and has held senior level positions at prominent financial services companies. He is a world traveler, food enthusiast and lives in Connecticut. DEATH NEVER SLEEPS is his first novel.

You can purchase Death Never Sleeps on

I did not receive any compensation for this review. I did, however, receive a free copy for my review from Veronica Grossman at Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Blog Tour: Review of RASPUTIN’S SHADOW By Raymond Khoury

Welcome to the October 22 Book Trib Blog Tour stop for Raymond Khoury’s Rasputin’s Shadow.

I am a new reader to Raymond Khoury and the main character of Rasputin’s Shadow, FBI agent Sean Reilly.  Rasputin’s Shadow is a thriller that takes place in two different places and timelines – present day New York City and Russia in the early 20th century. 

One winter day in 1916, a mining pit in Sibera becomes a bloodbath after miners are attacked.  To hide what has happened, Gregory Rasputin and a scientist blow up the mine to get rid of the bodies.

In present day New York, Sean Reilly is trying to figure out why Russian diplomat falls out of an apartment window to his death.  Reilly is also searching for the residents of that apartment, husband and wife, Leo and Daphne Sokolov. Moreover, the bodies are piling up in New York City and a killer is on the loose.

Sokolov is a former Russian scientist who defected and Russia is looking for him as well.  And there is also an assassin who has his own plans. The New York murders and the old Russian tragedy soon start to connect.   It also soon becomes clear that Sokolov has been living a double life and he has ties to what happened in 1916.

Raymond Khoury has an edgy but tasteful writing style. It is very interesting how the two stories in Rasputin’s Shadow connect.  Khoury is a very talented writer that keeps you on the edge of your seat with the many suspenseful twists in Rasputin’s Shadow.

About the Author: 

Raymond Khoury was born in Beirut, Lebanon and is the youngest of three children. When he was 14, civil war broke out in his birth country and his family moved the United States.  He currently resides in London with his wife and his two daughters.  His books have been translated into over 40 languages and one, The Last Templar, was made into a TV movie.  For more information on Raymond Khoury, visit the author’s website at Rasputin’s Shadow is currently available for purchase in your local bookstore and at several online retail websites. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Review of Dr. Phil’s Life Code: The New Rules for Winning in the Real World

I recently had the pleasure of listening to Dr. Phil’s audiobook Life Code: The New Rules for Winning in the Real World.

Excerpt from the book: The rules for living in the real world have changed, because the world we live in has changed. Much of the conventional wisdom the last generation has passed on just doesn’t apply like it once did. If you want to win, and win big, and, more importantly, keep what you work so hard for, you need a crystal-clear view of how the real world works — not how you wish it worked, but how it actually works.

In this book, Dr. Phil tells us to change our thinking about the world and shares the truth about users, abusers and bad guys in all of our lives. He tells us that we need to be aware that the world isn’t as it should be.  He reveals the secrets of the bad guys including how they think and how they get to you and your loved ones to exploit you.

Dr, Phil shares that we all have BAITERs (Backstabbers, Abusers, Imposters, Takers, Exploiters, Reckless) who we need to protect ourselves from.  In doing so, we need the right tools and Dr. Phil shares these.  He gives you the identifiers so you can see them coming as well as their secret playbook, containing their tactics to exploit and take what is yours. Last, he shares with you the life code that you need to win in the real world.

I loved Dr. Phil’s advice but it was probably controversial.  Dr. Phil did what he does best by going away from the norm to show you how you can get what you deserve.  These are his lessons in winning at the game. 

Hardcover, First, 244 pages
Published February 12th 2013 by Bird Street Books (first published January 1st 2012)
ISBN 0985462736 (ISBN13: 9780985462734)


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Review of Love Gone Mad by Mark Rubinstein

ABOUT THE NOVEL: I have nothing but good things to say about Love Gone Mad. Mark Rubinstein constantly left me on the edge of my seat as he dived into the mind a criminally insane man.  Please excuse the all caps but YOU HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK!  It is one of the best I have read in a very long time.

Conrad Wilson is the ex-husband of Nurse Megan Haggarty.  Megan leaves Colorado to escape her abusive ex and starts a new life in Connecticut. Adrian Douglas is a heart surgeon at the same hospital that Megan works in Connecticut.

Days before Megan and Adrian even met, Conrad starts to stalk both of them and Conrad is an insanely brilliant and crafty stalker. He will more than complicate their lives and they find themselves fighting for their lives.  He thinks that his and Megan’s six year old daughter is actually Adrian’s even though Megan and Adrian just met.  He believed his ex-wife cheated with Adrian while they were married even though she couldn’t have.  The fact is, things are never as black and white as they seem.

Once Conrad is put way, Megan and Adrian believe their nightmare is over.  However, Conrad is not one to go away and he spends nearly two years pulling a plan together on how to kill Megan and Adrian.  Conrad will be back but this time Megan and Adrian have an ally in their corner.

Love Gone Mad is a spine-tingling thriller that will leave you at the edge of your seat until the very end. Mark Rubinstein is a gifted writer and Love Gone Mad is about love and madness.  Because he is a psychiatrist, Rubinstein is able to take his novel to a believable level on insane love.  

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Mark Rubinstein grew up in Brooklyn, New York.  After earning a business degree from NYU, he served in the U.S. Army. After his discharge, he went to medical school and became a doctor and then a psychiatrist. Being a forensic psychiatrist, he was often called an expert witness for many trials.   His first thriller was Mad Dog House, and before writing fiction, he co-authored several books on psychological and medical topics.  He is a contributing blogger for Psychology Today and the Huffington Post. He resides in Connecticut with his wife and is currently working on his next novel. 

Don't forget to check out Mark Rubenstein's blog



About The Book

The problem with Alex Nicholas is that he won't stay dead.
Alex Nicholas was the consummate Queens bookie: fast cars and even faster women, and friends in all the wrong places. As an illegal sports betting and loan shark king in New York City, Alex was fearless-until the night his luck ran out and someone leveled the silver barrel of an automatic on him and pulled the trigger.
Michael Nicholas was everything his brother Alex was not: a powerful, married straight-arrow corporate CEO living the American Dream. Their two worlds collide when Michael discovers his brother's secret laptop.
As Michael crosses the globe to find his brother's murder, can he avoid his brother's fate? And can the information contained in the laptop help Alex reach out to help Michael-from beyond the grave.

About The Author

E.J. SIMON was the CEO of GMAC Global Relocation Services (a division of GM) and the managing director of Douglas Elliman, the largest real estate company in New York. He is a consultant to many leading private equity firms and has held senior-level positions at prominent financial services companies. He is a world traveler, food enthusiast and lives in Connecticut. DEATH NEVER SLEEPS is his first novel.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Book Review of World on a String by Larry Phifer

World on a String written by Larry Phifer and beautifully illustrated by Danny Popovici. It is about a boy named Charlie who finds a balloon and it soon becomes his best friend. He absolutely loves his red balloon and sees it as the most amazing thing in the world. 

Charlie takes his balloon everywhere and he has a whole lot of fun with his balloon. But one day, the wind blows the balloon away. Charles tries to grab it but he is unable to. At first, he is shocked, then he fears for his balloon’s safety, and then, he is grief stricken.  But then he thinks back to all the good times they shared and then he starts to think about the great place that his balloon has gone.  He images it shinning like the moon and he dreams of it holding the sky up with other balloons.

This is a great children’s book! The artwork is beautiful and the story itself is uplifting. It is a great way to teach children about love and loss. It is also beautifully written in rhyme and flows nicely making it easy to read. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Blog Tour & Giveaway – Three Little Words by Susan Mallery

Welcome to the August 29, 2013 Three Little Words BookTrib blog tour stop.

By Susan Mallery 
Harlequin HQN; August 2013 
$7.99 U.S./$9.99 CAN.; 384 pages 
ISBN-13: 978-0-373-77778-5 

I am not a first time reader of Susan Mallery’s books.  I am a big fan of the Blackberry Island series so I jumped at the chance to read her new novel from The Fools’ Gold series.  Thank you to Alissa from Meryl L. Moss Media sending me a free copy for my review.


Isabel Carlisle’s older sister was once engaged to Ford Hendrix. When Maeve broke Ford’s heart, he joined the Navy to get away from Fool’s Gold.  At age 14, shortly after her sister broke off the engagement, Isabel sent her first letter to Ford, professing her love and she vowed she would love Ford forever.  Isabel continued to write Ford until she married.  Although Ford never wrote back, he enjoyed receiving her letters because they kept him sane.

Now divorced, Isabel has returned home and so has Ford.  They both insist they are not looking for love but start to “pretend” date to fool Ford’s mother who is trying to marry him off.  It does not take long for Isabel and Ford to realize that the only people they are fooling are themselves. The chemistry between them is undeniable.


The Susan Mallery Foolproof Bridal Kit is $40 value and includes:

·         A wedding-themed bottle of OPI nail polish
·         Not Your Mother’s® Rise & Shine™ Silky Smooth Shine Mist
·         Manicure set (includes emery board, small and large nail clippers, tweezers, cuticle stick and nail polish remover pad)
·         Heart-shaped compact mirror
·         12-piece E.L.F. eye shadow kit
·         Travel makeup brush set
·         Makeup remover wipes
·         Lip gloss
·         Travel sewing kit
·         Kleenex®
·         Secret® deodorant
·         Razor and Gillette® Shave Gel
·         Nivea Creme
·         Wisps toothbrushes
·         TRESemm√©® hairspray

Leave a comment and let me know you are interested in winning the bridal kit. I will need your email address so I can let you know if you have won.  Contest closes Thursday, September 5. U.S. Addresses only.

Also, you do not have to be getting married or know anyone getting married to enter or win. It is just a cool way to promote the book.


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author SUSAN MALLERY is known for emotionally complex stories told with charm and wit. With a keen eye for human nature, she breathes life into characters on the page and was recently honored with a prestigious National Readers’ Choice Award. Susan has lived all over the United States, including a childhood in the suburbs of Los Angeles, graduate school in the hills of Pennsylvania and several years in Texas. These days, she makes her home in Seattle, Washington. She’s there for the coffee, not the weather.

Find Susan online at 

You can visit Susan around the web: WebsiteTwitter | Facebook

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Book Review of Life is a Bowl Full of Cherries by Vanita Oelschlager

This is a great book to share with children of all ages.  It is a wonderful way to show children magic of idioms. If you don’t know, idioms are words that separately have one meaning but put together they mean something different.  Life is a Bowl Full of Cherries by Vanita Oelschlager uses food idioms to explain this concept.

Examples of food idioms include phases such as “couch potato,” “the whole enchilada,” and crying over spilt milk. Illustrated by Robin Hegan, Life is a Bowl Full of Cherries uses unusual illustrations to describe what the words literally mean.

The bizarre photos force the reader to guess the actual meanings of what the words literally mean.  The meanings are found upside in the corner of each page. 

By the books end, there a section discussing how figures of speech work in everyday language. This makes it a remarkable educational tool because children are always curious about language and when you make it fun, kids want to learn even more.

You can purchase Life is a Bowl Full of Cherries from any fine book retailer, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. You also find at Wal-Mart’s online site.

About the Author:  Vanita Oelschlager is a former teacher and author of several children’s books.   

About the Illustrator:  Robin Hegan is a published illustrator of several children’s books. 

I was not paid for this review.  I received an E-book from the publisher for my review.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Book Review: Evidence of Life by Barbara Taylor Sissel


Abby tells herself she is the luckiest woman in the world but that does not last long.  Her life and her luck change in an instant…

Abby’s son, Jake, is away at college and her husband, Nick, and her daughter, Lindsey, set out for a camping trip.   Abby looks forward to the quiet time she will have while the two of them are away.  That morning, she gets to braid her daughter’s hair and kiss her husband goodbye.  For one brief moment, Abby reminds herself that she is a lucky woman to have a good marriage and good life.  But then after a storm and flood happen, her perfect life crumbles when her husband and daughter vanish without a trace.

Abby is convinced that Nick and Lindsey are still alive especially since no remains were recovered. She finds herself going through various theories, including one that has to do with her husband’s involvement in high profile legal case where he was later accused of embezzlement.   She also wonders if they were kidnapped or perhaps, if her husband decided to run away with her daughter.

As she seeks closure, Abby realizes that her life was not as perfect as she perceived it to be. She discovers she did not know her husband as well as she thought she did and her marriage wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.  Further, she finds herself on path she never she would take. The truth is a lot of more difficult than Abby could have ever realized.  Can she handle truth?  You will have to read Evidence of Life to find out. 

Evidence of Life is well written and offers a captivating storyline.  The characters appear realistic due to their shortcomings. In the end, everything comes into place for Abby but the ending isn’t what anyone anticipates. 

Excerpt from Evidence of Life
 “On the last ordinary day of her life before her family went off for the weekend, Abby made a real breakfast—French toast with maple syrup and bacon. It was penance, the least she could do, given how utterly delighted she was at the prospect of being left on her own for two whole days to do as she pleased. It would sicken her later, in the aftermath of what happened, that she could so covet the prospect of solitude, but in that last handful of ordinary hours, she was full of herself, her silly plans. She set a small mixing bowl on the counter, found the wire whisk, and when Nick came in the backdoor, she brandished it, smiling at him.
He frowned. “What are you doing?”
“Cooking breakfast, French Toast.”
“We don’t have time. We’re going to hit rush hour traffic as it is.”
“It’ll be fine,” Abby soothed.

He came to the sink still wearing the wisp of bloodstained tissue he’d stuck below his ear where he’d cut himself shaving and the rumpled cargo shorts he’d pulled out of the hamper as if he didn’t have a drawer full of clean ones. As is the unwashed pair were the only ones that suited him.

Abby got out a frying pan, aware of his mood, regretful of it. She wished he hadn’t bothered with shaving. She wished she’d done the laundry yesterday. Leaving the breakfast makings, she went to him, circled his waist from behind, laid her cheek against his back. “I’m sorry about your shorts.” The words were right there but they caught in her throat when she felt him go still.”
Buy: Amazon | BD | Goodreads | Barnes and Noble
Harlequin MIRA
, Paperback, April 2013, ISBN: 978-0778315162

Follow: Website | Twitter 

I was not paid for this review.  Thank you to Meryl L. Moss Media for sending me a free copy for my review.