Friday, October 31, 2014

READ Pink!

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month,
Supports the Next Chapter in Innovative Research

Please join Love Romances and Penguin Berkley in our support of finding a cure.

Read Pink® in Honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Support the Next Chapter in Innovative Research

Penguin Random House Marks Five-Year Partnership Milestone and $125,000
in Donations to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation®

What’s black and white and pink all over?  The initiative by Penguin Random House called Read Pink® in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October)!

Today the scientific community has left behind the “one-size-fits-all” breast cancer treatment to emerge with targeted, more effective therapies. As a result, after remaining stagnant for more than 50 years, the death rate from breast cancer has decreased by 30 percent. The Read Pink® initiative by Penguin Random House is proud to be part of this exciting new chapter in the fight against breast cancer, supporting the bold research of The Breast Cancer Foundation® (BCRF), while leveraging its passionate readers to help increase awareness and education about the disease. This literary embrace of a life-saving cause has resulted in nearly 1.5 million best-selling novels shipped with Read Pink seals and information about BCRF across all five years of the promotion.

Penguin Random House is thrilled to partner once again this year with BCRF, as 91 cents of every dollar spent by BCRF is directed towards breast cancer research and awareness programs.

The $25,000 donation that Penguin Random House contributes, regardless of sales, provides vital funds to support the mission of BCRF.

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Penguin Random House’s Read Pink® editions, we are featuring a few participating authors and what Read Pink® means to them…

Beatriz Williams (2014 Read Pink® Spokesperson), A Hundred Summers
“Every life lost to breast cancer leaves behind a hole that can never be filled again: a wife, a mother, a sister, a friend, an aunt, a grandmother. I’m so grateful for organizations like The Breast Cancer Research Foundation for their efforts to find a cure for this devastating disease, and honored to support breast cancer awareness, detection, and research through Penguin’s READ PINK program in 2014. With your help, we can move closer to the day when breast cancer leaves behind only survivors.”

Karen White, The Time Between
“Since 1989, death rates from breast cancer have been decreasing due to earlier detection and improved treatment because of the efforts of organizations like The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Books have always been an important part of my life, and I am honored that my book will be part of Penguin’s Read Pink program that supports breast cancer awareness and research through reading. It is my greatest hope that through efforts like this we might find a cure within my lifetime.”

Nora Roberts, Sea Swept and The Witness
“To all the moms and daughters, wives and sisters, lovers and friends, Read Pink is here for you and yours. Help support breast cancer awareness and the strong, brave women who fight or will fight this disease and Read Pink in October.”

Catherine Anderson, Perfect Timing
“I am so delighted to be included in the Read Pink campaign again this year with Perfect Timing being featured, along with so many other great books, to raise funds for breast cancer research. I can remember when a diagnosis of breast cancer was often equivalent to a death sentence. Nowadays, the survival rates have increased greatly, and I personally know women who have prevailed over this terrible disease. Sadly, I’ve also known a few women who lost the battle. So I call upon all of you to join ranks with me and countless other women in a war to defeat breast cancer. ‘Read Pink! Buy books bearing the Read Pink logo as gifts for the women you love.’ By standing together as sisters, we have it within our power to make a huge difference!”

Jayne Ann Krentz, Dream Eyes
“This is the time of year when we celebrate the progress that has been made in the battle against breast cancer and acknowledge the work that lies ahead. No, we aren't there yet. There's a long way to go. The greatest weapon we have to fight this disease is research and research costs money. That is why this breast cancer awareness campaign is so important and why I am proud to participate.”

Marie Force, I Want to Hold Your Hand
“I’m so thrilled to be part of the Read Pink effort to help raise awareness and funding for breast cancer research. I hear frequently from romance readers who tell me my books and those of other romance authors have helped them get through breast cancer treatment. I want to hear from fewer of them in the future. I want to hear they took our books on fabulous vacations rather than treatments. Please Read Pink in October to support all the courageous women fighting this disease and to fund critical research. Thank you for Reading Pink!”

Full List of 2014 Participating Authors:

Jojo Moyes, The Last Letter from your Lover
Karen White, The Time Between
Nora Roberts, Sea Swept and The Witness
Jennifer Chiaverini, Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker
Beatriz Williams, A Hundred Summers
Wendy Wax, While We Were Watching Downton Abbey
Catherine Anderson, Perfect Timing
Marie Force, I Want to Hold Your Hand
Janet Chapman, The Heart of a Hero
Lisa Gardner, MacNamara’s Woman
Jayne Ann Krentz, Dream Eyes

Mark your calendars and remember to join in the conversation with @BerkleyRomance and @PenguinGroupUSA on Twitter in October.  Make sure to use the hashtag #ReadPink!

For more information about the Read Pink initiative and to view a complete list of the participating retail outlets, please visit

Thursday, October 30, 2014

SWAN POINT by Sherryl Woods

A Sweet Magnolias Novel
Harlequin Mira
August 1st, 2014
Contemporary Romance
Reviewed by Dawn (
Obtained by Publisher via Netgalley
3 Hearts

Adelia Hernandez is determined to make sure her children are settled and healing after the nasty divorce from their father. A new home, a promotion at her job has left Adelia determined to be a mother first and not worry about romance. Well that goes out the window when she crosses paths with Gabe Franklin. There is something about this man that draws Adelia and each time she is in his presence, she finds herself drawn to the man even as he works his charm on her kids as well. Soon Adelia is bolstered by the Sweet Magnolias, a group of close women friends who cheer Adelia on as she takes a chance with Gabe. But can her ex-husband throw a monkey wrench in their potential romance?

I love Sherryl Woods stories and the Sweet Magnolias is a series that crosses the boundaries of romance, friendship and more all within the small town of Serenity. I love how this author kept the focus on Adelia and Gabe, especially as both find they are dealing with a past that causes them to question themselves repeatedly. What got to me was how much Adelia needed the Sweet Magnolias. Those close friends drew her in and showed her support that she didn’t seem to get from her sisters. Ms. Woods does a marvelous job in capturing the essence of the characters. The way the characters round themselves around Gabe and Adelia as they fight off her ex in court, to showing her children the caring of a good man. With each page I was glued to the pages of SWAN POINT and just loved some of the scenes, especially those wonderful margarita nights.

Meet Adelia and Gabe. Both are dealing with pasts that left their mark on them. Adelia with her cheating ex-husband and Gabe with trying to protect his mom in a small town that caused him to leave as soon as he was able to. Both are incredibly strong and though they fight against everyone telling them that, both in the end find they can face anything, even their feelings for one another. The characters are well written, totally entertaining and quite intriguing. There is a few moments in the book towards the end that left me wishing the next book in this wonderful series is coming soon. Those little hints just left me eager for more. This is also a more of a sweet romance than a hot and heavy one which made it all much more unique and just as enjoyable in my opinion.

SWAN POINT is a story of new beginnings, forgiving oneself and moving forward. Ms. Woods outdoes herself in her latest novel in the Sweet Magnolias series and I, for one, am eager to see where she will take us next. If you enjoy a character rich series with friendship, romance and more all bundled up within its pages, then I highly recommend the Sweet Magnolias series. I do suggest reading from the beginning just to get the full effect of the Sweet Magnolias, though you can read this as a stand alone title. Now all I can say to the author is More Please!

This is an objective review and not an endorsement


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cover Up with R.E. Mullins

Back to school favorite:  pens or notebooks?


I could give you my children’s preferences. Personally? If I can remember that far back, it seems I do recall being entranced with a pen that had several

colors built in. I remember writing out assignments, changing colors on a whim, until my instructor told me to knock it off.



Hiking or jumping in a pile of leaves?


Nowadays for me to throw my body into a pile of leaves, it would have to be pretty dog-gone deep. As a child, though, I did love hurtling into a pile of crunchy leaves. I liked lying there, almost buried in them, and inhaling their uniquely musty and slightly acrid scent.


These days I’d better stick to hiking. I loved the trails in Red Rock Canyon and Cheyenne Mountain when I lived in Colorado. My sons and I frequently hiked them. Now that I’m back in Missouri I’ll head down to Shoal Creek and walk along the river or scramble the rocks around the falls.


Love those fall colors. 



Halloween or Thanksgiving?


That is a tough one. I’d usually go with Thanksgiving. Hands down. I love the holiday as it is a time for family and food (two of my favorite things).

However, this year is going to be different. My children are grown and now scattered in different states. With work, time, and money constraints, I don’t believe we’ll be able to get together this year. 


This year, however, Halloween holds a special significances for me. My second book, Vampire in the Scrying Glass, releases that day. I consider this to be quite apt and fun. The storyline is set during the Halloween season, and it even has a masquerade party!



Hot buttered rum or hot chocolate?


Chocolate of any kind for me…come to think, I don’t believe I’ve ever tried hot buttered rum. Am I missing something here?



Who's book (besides one of yours) are you most looking forward to reading?


Wow, that’s another tough question. I just finished reading The Chase by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg. I believe the next in the Fox & O’Hare series releases in November. When I’m looking to walk on the naughty side—yet read something well written—I head toward Cherise Sinclair.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Publisher:  Berkley
Published:   November 4, 2014
ISBN:  978-0425275047
Genre:   Memoir
Format:  Paperback
Obtained via:  Publisher  (Netgalley)
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina


One day a stray kitty, one that many would have passed over or sent on his way, wandered into Paul Magrs’s yard.  He was skinny, covered in flea bites, and missing all but one and a half teeth.  Paul reached out to the black and white kitty and gave him a name—Fester—and a home.  But what Fester gave Paul and his partner was much deeper and far more than a home.  Taken to the vet to get him cleaned up and checked out they learned Fester was an older kitty and ultimately they only had him for several years.  But in those seven all too short years Fester showed his humans how to enjoy life’s simple pleasures and most important, the gift of unconditional love.

As a cat person and one who has been adopted by two strays I couldn’t resist this book.  Fester is the epitome of the grace and unconditional love that cats can bring to a person’s life.  I don’t think anyone could read his story and not be affected. 

THE STORY OF FESTER CAT, as related by Paul Magrs is told in the first person.  While it does show life through Fester’s eyes, it does bog down at times into the I, I, I, I, I, I writing that many first person writers fall into.  There is little reflection on the other characters and little emotion shown by the characters.   It is Fester’s story told through Fester’s eyes—too often told and now shown.

That said, I don’t think there is a cat person out there who will not relate to Fester’s story nor is there someone who has never taken in a stray or rescue that won’t feel a tug in their heart. 

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Cover Up with Andrea Downing

Andrea Downing

Back to school favorite:  pens or notebooks? 


This has to be notebooks!  When I was about eight or nine years old, I wrote my first novel in one of those speckled black and white school notebooks and, ever since, I’ve had a great attachment to them.  I always keep a Moleskine Notebook in my handbag and have some kind of pad by my bedside.  I’ve been known to get up in the middle of the night several times with thoughts for books that need jotting down.  The trouble is, by morning those thoughts are not always readable. 


Hiking or jumping in a pile of leaves? 


Definitely jumping in a pile of leaves.  I’m not the most enthusiastic of hikers; I think my desire to hike was first killed off by my ex-husband, who saw hiking as some sort of endurance test.  Then, of course, out west you need to take along bear spray so that also dulled the enthusiasm.  Now, jumping in a pile of leaves, you can listen to the crackle and crunch of the leaves underneath, watch the leaves float off like rare birds and enjoy the colors, all without much effort or danger.


Halloween or Thanksgiving? 


Difficult one since I love both.  At Halloween I’m really pleased to answer my door to all the children and see what costumes are popular this year, chat with the kids a bit and listen to their comments about the candies I’m offering.  On the other hand, really nothing beats Thanksgiving and sitting around a fabulous meal with all those you love.


 Hot buttered rum or hot chocolate? 


Hot chocolate, hands down.  I’m a chocoholic so it has to be.  If I’m allowed to mention a brand, let me tell you Valhrona is heaven on earth, heavy and like drinking a melted chocolate bar.



Who's book (besides one of yours) are you most looking forward to reading?


It would have to be The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, which just won the Pulitzer Prize.  I’ve read her other books and they are always lessons in what a book should be.  One can only aspire…

Sunday, October 26, 2014


The Hurley Boys Series, Book One
August 26th, 2014
Erotic Romance, Contemporary
Reviewed by Dawn (
Obtained by Publisher via Netgalley
4 Hearts


Natalie Clayton has gotten her life straightened out and she is determined to not lose that control again. Until Paddy Hurley enters her life again and she finds herself drawn to the sexy man even if he shakes up her control with each kiss, stroke and more. Can Paddy find a way to get Natalie to let him inside her heart and loosen her iron grip on her life to see that Paddy is just what she needs?

Ms. Dane has another winner in THE BEST KIND OF TROUBLE. Her introduction to the new series, The Hurley Boys, we find the author delivering another hit with the sexy Hurley brothers and the women who tame them. With the right amount of sexy scenes, heartfelt moments and a romance that will surely steal your heart, Ms. Dane delivers s teller introduction into the new series that will leave the reader breathless. I can honestly admit that I needed a new family to fall in love with after reading this author’s Brown Family series. The writing is tight, story moves quickly and the characters fairly leap off the pages.

Meet Natalie Clayton. Small town librarian, former wild child and determined to never be that person again. Until Paddy Hurley re-enters her life and she finds life is just about o get interesting. I loved Natalie from the moment I started reading. She was independent, determined and fiercely loyal. The sparks fly right off the bat for Natalie and Paddy and I got to admit, watching these two fall in love was a sight to behold. Paddy is sinfully determined and winning Natalie’s heart is just the beginning. These two are just perfect for one another. They complement one another perfectly and I loved how Paddy was able to bring Natalie’s bad girl side out. The author does an amazing job in capturing the characters vulnerabilities and desires all with a stroke of her keys. The connection between Natalie and Paddy is electric and so enjoyable. Who hasn’t wanted someone to love them so completely-warts and all? The secondary characters are a delight with giving the story a bit of light heartedness and keeping the story moving smoothly.

is a story of second chances, of hearts falling in love and of losing control in a good way. Fall in love with the Hurley family and be entertained from start to finish. With a fast moving story, sinfully sexy brothers that make you melt and more, Ms. Dane delivers a pulse pounding ride from start to finish. I highly recommend you have your honey nearby or a bucket of ice handy as this book will surely get energized in m ore ways than one. I can’t wait to see what happens for the next Hurley brother and who tames that bad boy.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement