Rosepoint Reviews – November Recap

Happy Holidays! Christmas tree decorations

We are now on a frantic race to the end of the year! SOO much to do on top of regular blogging, reading and reviewing activities. Gifts, wrapping, cards, dinners, and events, one of which I’m participating in tomorrow at the Lake County Public Library! I will be presenting the new edition of Sole Survivor, new cover, as well as the story of how the painting came into my possession almost 90+ years after it was painted.  If you just happen to be in the area….

Author Event - Lake County Public Library

Gearing up on holidays, and down on books, I read and reviewed seven books including many ARC’s, as well as #ThrowbackThursdays highlighting two of my favorites (Dr. Jan Pol and M. D. Grayson). Spent some heavy time doing #AmReading posts, as well as #TBR pics, which is a great way to introduce what I’ll be reading and reviewing next. These are concentrated on #Bookstagram and shared with this blog. Bookstagram gives me the opportunity to use that artistic inclination my grandfather bestowed on me, and it’s been a lot of fun.

My November reads, all ARC’s through NetGalley:

  1. November 06 – Outside the Wire by Patricia Smiley
  2. November 07 – Stay Calm and Collie On by Lane Stone
  3. November 11 – The Tell All by Libby Howard
  4. November 19 – The Whispering Room by Dean Koontz
  5. November 21 – The Compass Island Incident by Wade Fowler
  6. November 26 – The Plot is Murder by V. M. Burns
  7. November 28 – Mayhem & Mass by Olivia Mathews

Here’s hoping all of you who celebrated Thanksgiving had a good day of food and family, but many of you not in the U.S. will also have a chance to do that on Christmas. There is something magical this time off year; in our part of the world, snowfall and the beautiful sights and smells of leaves, fireplaces, and winter-time activities. In my younger years, that included skiing. Now I’m looking wistfully at snowmobiles. Definitely on my bucket list!

Not all of my December reads are ARC’s from NetGalley, but the month has filled in very quickly. Hope all of you are avoiding the puddles and finding just the perfect gifts! Winter is a great time to read. Do you have one you are excited about? I’m always open to recommendations! ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

#Author Spotlight – Dean Koontz

author spotlight

Rumored to be worth over $145 million, Dean Ray Koontz is most definitely a successful author. Born in Everett, PA in 1945 (72 years of age), his novels are generally described as suspense thrillers, although he frequently infuses his stories with horror, fantasy, and sci-fi aspects as well.

His official website notes he has sold over 450 million copies of his works, sixteen (paperback) of which were included on the NY Times bestseller list as number one. He used numerous pen names early in his career including Brian Coffey.

His childhood less than standard 50’s Cleavers, Koontz was the product of an abusive alcoholic father and his defiant “physically diminutive mother.” Koontz discovered the Catholic faith and converted while in college. Father Brown by G. K. Chesterton(And btw, he gives a shout out to English writer and Catholic convert G.K. Chesterton who wrote about the fictional Roman Catholic priest and amateur detective Father Brown. Father Brown is a featured English series on NetFlix.) I find this connection fascinating since I innocently wandered into Mayhem & Mass recently and the review brought a comment from fellow blogger, Angela of Books and Opinions, LLC who also noted G. K. Chesterton as being a favorite ol’ English author. (Freaky, huh?)

Graduating in 1967, Koontz went on variously teaching English in high school and working for a federally funded poverty program. It was during this time that he began writing in earnest and in ten years his major breakthrough novel, Whispers, was published in 1980. Of course, since I’m usually late to the party, was just introduced to Koontz through NetGalley with a book I recently read and reviewed called The Whispering Room. It was just released on November 21, 2017 and I still think the newest of his books.

When I mentioned to my son that I was reading a Dean Koontz book, his eyebrows shot up. “I’m surprised you’re reading Koontz, mom, he’s a horror writer.” (Not considered my usual genre. True.) And, perhaps this might be considered that, but more so psychological thriller and suspense. (Also, gripping, thoughtful, and perhaps sci-fi coming true.) After I posted my review, one of our old Navy friends, Kitra, saw the review on Facebook and noted, Just an FYI he grew up in Ted’s little town, donated a lot to the library in honor of his English teacher. Was happy to see that.”

Dean Koontz - author - Happy Holidays photoDean Koontz is currently living in Southern California with his wife, Gerda, and their golden, Ms. Elsa. You’ll have to read her story, which is related in typical humorous Koontz style here.

Mr. Koontz has joined my favorite authors list and I’m looking forward to his next well-crafted novel. Have you looked into his books lately? Which was your favorite? (Info gleaned from Wikipedia and the Dean Koontz website.) ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

Mayhem & Mass – a Book Review

Mayhem & Mass by Olivia MatthewsTitle: Mayhem & Mass (A Sister Lou Mystery) by Olivia Matthews

Genre: Currently #623 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Cozy, Crafts & Hobbies (and Animals) (huh?)

Publisher: Kensington Books

Publication Date: To be released November 28, 2017 – Happy Release Day!

Source: Kensington Books and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Mayhem & Mass Simple cover includes a church in the background; not representative of the novel location setting, nor is there a cat in the book that I remember. “For a plain clothes nun, sleuthing is a habit…”

Yes, I must admit to being Protestant. My husband is the Catholic. After more than 50 years with him, I still scratch my head over some of the rituals, beads, saints (some that have been desainted), but must also admit to many practices and ceremonies that I’ve enjoyed as well. My hubby and I were extremely privileged to sing in a choir for (Saint) Pope John Paul II in 1989 at Castle Gondolfo. (You can’t deny that holy aura.) So it was when I saw the title and read the blurb that I had to request and read this book. Continue reading “Mayhem & Mass – a Book Review”

The Plot Is Murder (Mystery Bookshop) – a Book Review

The Plot is Murder by V M BurnsTitle: The Plot Is Murder (Mystery Bookshop) by V. M. Burns

Genre: Currently #1139 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Cozy, Crafts & Hobbies

Publisher: Kensington Books

Publication Date: To be released November 28, 2017

Source: Kensington and NetGalley

Title and Cover: The Plot is Murder – Great cover includes the protagonist’s poodles

Here is a 1930’s British Cozy Mystery within a contemporary American cozy mystery. The protagonist, Samantha (Sam) Washington has lost her husband with whom she shared a dream to open a mystery bookshop in North Harbor, Michigan. She sells the home they owned, collected the insurance money, and buys an older building downtown where she will convert the upper story into living quarters and the main level into her mystery book retail space with hopes of providing a limited assortment of teas and scones. She has a support group that includes her grandmother, Nana Jo, and her grandmother’s friends from the retirement community. Unfortunately, closing the sale was difficult, had to involve an attorney, and left her with major animosity toward the real estate agent–the weasel. Unfortunately, before she can open the store, Clayton Parker, the agent, is found murdered in her back yard. Continue reading “The Plot Is Murder (Mystery Bookshop) – a Book Review”

#AmReading – The Plot Is Murder (Mystery Bookshop) by V. M. Burns

#AmReading - The Plot is Murder by V M Burns

Welcome to my #AmReading feature! I am highlighting an author and their book currently visible in the “Fair Weather” widget celebrating blue skies, following seas, and my Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting V. M. Burns and her book The Plot is Murder (Mystery Bookshop). I received an ARC from the publisher Kensington and NetGalley. The book will be released on November 28, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as a mystery, thriller & suspense, crafts and hobbies, culinary, and animals (really!) and is the debut novel in a new series at 256 pages. It’s a shortie, y’all! (We can DO this!)

I will be presenting my review on Sunday, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb: (Blurb from Amazon)

The small town of North Harbor on the shores of Lake Michigan is about to have a new mystery bookstore. But before the first customer can browse its shelves, the store’s owner is suspected of her own murder plot . . .  

Samantha Washington has dreamed of owning her own mystery bookstore for as long as she can remember. And as she prepares for the store’s grand opening, she’s also realizing another dream—penning a cozy mystery set in England between the wars. While Samantha hires employees and fills the shelves with the latest mysteries, quick-witted Lady Penelope Marsh, long-overshadowed by her beautiful sister Daphne, refuses to lose the besotted Victor Carlston to her sibling’s charms. When one of Daphne’s suitors is murdered in a maze, Penelope steps in to solve the labyrinthine puzzle and win Victor.  

But as Samantha indulges her imagination, the unimaginable happens in real life. A shady realtor turns up dead in her backyard, and the police suspect her—after all, the owner of a mystery bookstore might know a thing or two about murder. Aided by her feisty grandmother and an enthusiastic ensemble of colorful retirees, Samantha is determined to close the case before she opens her store. But will she live to conclude her own story when the killer has a revised ending in mind for her?

Author: (From Goodreads author page)

V M Burns, authorV.M. Burns was born and raised in northwestern Indiana, but is now thawing out in eastern Tennessee with her two poodles. She has a BA from Northwestern University, a Masters from the University of Notre Dame and an MFA from Seton Hill University in Writing Popular Fiction. She spent many years working as a trainer and now works as a training manager for an appliance manufacturer. Ms. Burns is represented by Dawn Dowdle at Blue Ridge Literary Agency. Contact her at author@vmburns.com ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

#ThrowbackThursday – Dr. Jan Pol – a Book Review

#ThrowbackThursday

Renee began the Throwback Thursday meme on her blog, “It’s Book Talk” to share some of her old favorites as well as sharing books published over a year ago. Sounded like a good reason to join! My TT posts will not come from current ARCs or new releases. Means I’ll be going back over some of my oldies but goodies, my favorite authors, and some of my favorite stories from authors you might not have previously experienced. Hopefully, you’ll find either a story or author that interests you and you’ll check them out.

The Incredible Dr. Pol - vet - authorThis week I am highlighting Never Turn Your Back on an Angus Cow: My Life as a Country Vet by Dr. Jan Pol. Taking advantage of his popular Nat Geo Wild’s hit show, The Incredible Dr. Pol, “America’s favorite veterinarian” (according to Scratch magazine), he wrote this informative, often amusing, veterinarian eBook gleaned from his four decades of practice in rural Michigan. The result ranked #4 in Amazon’s Medical eBook category.

Originally posted June 12, 2014 Continue reading “#ThrowbackThursday – Dr. Jan Pol – a Book Review”

The Compass Island Incident – a Book Review

The Compass Island IncidentTitle: The Compass Island Incident: November 1963 by Wade Fowler

Genre: Currently #1551 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Thrillers, Assassinations

Publisher: Sunbury Press – Milford House Press

Publication Date: November 22, 2017

Source: Sunbury Press – Milford House Press and NetGalley

Title and Cover: The Compass Island Incident – Compelling cover

I was excited to read this book for several reasons; one being yet another theory about the assassination of JFK, (2) it’s about one of our Navy ships, and (3) we certainly have history back then and can well remember the day. (Who can’t)

I’m sure we’ve never been satisfied with the findings of the Warren Commission that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. It was too monstrous, too heinous, too difficult to imagine that one disgruntled ex-Marine could have pulled off that act alone. No one believed it and wasn’t particularly surprised when the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) concluded in 1979 that Kennedy was “probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy.” It’s not like the barn door has ever closed on that discussion.

Therefore, another conspiracy theory may be laid out as a compelling fictional story and I enjoy those ship details and vernacular, the stories at sea of the roiling mountains of salt water and survival. “The Compass Island was no scat back. Evasion wasn’t her running style.” Continue reading “The Compass Island Incident – a Book Review”

The Whispering Room: A Jane Hawk Novel – a Book Review

The Whispering Room: A Jane Hawk Novel by Dean KoontzTitle: The Whispering Room: A Jane Hawk Novel by Dean Koontz

Genre: Currently #76 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Books, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine

Publication Date: To be released November 21, 2017

Source: Random House Publishing Group and NetGalley

Title: The Whispering Room: A Jane Hawk Novel 

See what I mean? Obviously, I have been living under a rock, as if I’ve read a book by Dean Koontz before, you know I’d have remembered it. The Whispering Room is, yes, the second in the Jane Hawk series, having best-seller The Silent Corner directly preceding it, and apparently preceding it by only a few months(?! Is that even possible?). Apparently so, as here it is continuing exactly where the first left off (so I’ve been told). And–old story–I haven’t read the first one. Holy Moses! Mr. Koontz really puts the prose out prominently, doesn’t he? Continue reading “The Whispering Room: A Jane Hawk Novel – a Book Review”

#AmReading – The Compass Island Incident: November 1963 by Wade Fowler

#AmReading - Compass Island Incident by Wade Fowler

Welcome to my #AmReading feature! I am highlighting an author and their book currently visible in the “Fair Weather” widget celebrating blue skies, following seas, and my Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting Wade Fowler and his book The Compass Island Incident: November 1963. I received an ARC from the publisher Milford House Press and NetGalley. The book will be released on November 22, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as a mystery, thriller & suspense, and assassinations at 317 pages will be a quick one for most of you bibliophiles looking for an interesting Kennedy theory thriller by the anniversary date (54 years)!

I will be presenting my review in the next few days, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb: (Blurb from Amazon)

John Franklin Kincaid clocks out at 4 PM on Thursday, August 27, 1953, after his shift at New York Shipbuilding Corporation’s sprawling shipyard in Camden, New Jersey, never to be seen or heard from again.

A little more than a decade later, a little girl is assailed by a terrible recurring nightmare. She dreams she is a man, buried alive in a dark compartment in the bowels of a ship under construction.

On November 16, 1963, President Kennedy helicopters to that ship, now a US Naval vessel called the USS Compass Island, as it steams off the coast of Florida to witness the firing of a Polaris missile clandestinely targeting Cuba’s Fidel Castro. And so topple the first dominoes in a chain of events leading inexorably to the president’s assassination one week later in Dallas, Texas.

Who killed JFK — the president and shipyard worker? The answers abide on the Compass Island as the old ship casts off on its final voyage to the scrap yard in October of 2003 with descendants of John Franklin Kincaid on board and determined to solve not one, but two murder mysteries.

Author:

Wade Fowler (No info found on either Amazon or Goodreads)

©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

Series or Standalone? What Are You Reading?

After I released my grandfather’s books on the world, I started reading and then reviewing in earnest. It wasn’t long before I discovered BookBub, and I absolutely loved it, gleaned free books that for the most part turned out to be exceptional, fun, and compelling books. Shortly after came series–lots of them–and I proceeded to read books from one series or another, sometimes exhausting them and looking for more, which might be considered a “con.” The wait for the next in the series–sometimes up to a year–then will you have to get reacquainted?

When you pick up a new book, do you prefer to start a new series or a standalone?

And, if you are starting a series, do you absolutely have to start with #1?

(Yes, sometimes!)

How can you read this? There's no pictures!

Continue reading “Series or Standalone? What Are You Reading?”

#AmReading – The Whispering Room by Dean Koontz

#AmReading - The Whispering Room by Dean Koontz

Welcome to my #AmReading feature! I am highlighting an author and their book currently visible in the “Fair Weather” widget celebrating blue skies, following seas, and my Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting Dean Koontz and his book The Whispering Room. I received an ARC from the publisher, Bantam, and NetGalley. The book will be released on November 21, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as literary fiction and a mystery, thriller & suspense, and is 528 pages. Even so, I see where some advanced readers flew through it in one sitting. (I’m not one of those.)

I will be presenting my review shortly, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb:

“No time to delay. Do what you were born to do. Fame will be yours when you do this.” These are the words that ring in the mind of mild-mannered, beloved schoolteacher Cora Gundersun—just before she takes her own life, and many others’, in a shocking act of carnage. When the disturbing contents of her secret journal are discovered, it seems certain that she must have been insane. But Jane Hawk knows better. In the wake of her husband’s inexplicable suicide—and the equally mysterious deaths of scores of other exemplary individuals—Jane picks up the trail of a secret cabal of powerful players who think themselves above the law and beyond punishment. But the ruthless people bent on hijacking America’s future for their own monstrous ends never banked on a highly trained FBI agent willing to go rogue—and become the nation’s most wanted fugitive—in order to derail their insidious plans to gain absolute power with a terrifying technological breakthrough. Driven by love for her lost husband and by fear for the five-year-old son she has sent into hiding, Jane Hawk has become an unstoppable predator. Those she is hunting will have nowhere to run when her shadow falls across them.

Author:

(Amazon) Dean Koontz, the author of many #1 New York Times bestsellers, lives in Southern California with his wife, Gerda, their golden retriever, Elsa, and the enduring spirits of their goldens, Trixie and Anna.

I might also note that Goodreads has his average rating pegged at 3.91. Remember Goodreads ratings generally run slightly lower because of their own interpretation of star ratings, which is not the same as those of Amazon. Out of 2,054,464 ratings, he’s garnered 77,801 reviews and his books have been shelved over three million times. I figure that at around 3.8%. It’s difficult even for him to get reviews, huh?!)

©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

The Tell-All – a Book Review

The Tell-All by Libby HowardTitle: The Tell All (Locust Point Mystery Book #1) by Libby Howard

Genre: Currently #281 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Supernatural, Ghosts, and #968 in Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Cozy

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services LLC

Publication Date: July 24, 2017

Source: Direct request from Erin Zarro, Assistant for Libby Howard

Title and Cover: The Tell All – Cute, obvious cozy mystery

Kay Carrera is sixty and a recent widow with no support network of children or grand-children. Facing a silent home, she stops at a local shelter and picks out what appears to be an independent adult cat (aren’t they all) that shouldn’t require a lot of exercise or attention, but will be a warm body. A journalist prior to being a caregiver for her husband, she has managed to wrangle a position with a local PI as a skip-tracer. It still won’t be enough to forestall foreclosure on her beloved Victorian, so she accepts a suggestion from the realtor/friend to take on a boarder (a judge in the midst of a contentious divorce with two children). Also, she recently had cataract surgery and decides it’s time to learn to knit.

But the eye surgery leaves her with a small, but interesting side effect. Continue reading “The Tell-All – a Book Review”

Stay Calm and Collie On – a Book Review

Stay Calm and Collie On by Lane StoneTitle: Stay Calm and Collie On (a Pet Palace Mystery #1) by Lane Stone

Genre: Currently #11374 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Cozy

Publisher: Lyrical Underground

Publication Date: To be released November 7, 2017 – Happy Release Day!

Source: Lyrical Underground and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Stay Calm and Collie On – Absolutely compelling cover-definitely generates interest

Just look at that cover! It gets you, huh, pulls you in. And actually, it also conveys the plot of the book very well. The Buckingham Pet Palace has a British co-owner who comes over to inspect her investment. The Lewes, Delaware US side of the upscale doggy daycare and spa co-owner Sue Patrick, knows her business, and generally has a good crew who caters to their furry clientele. That is, until one of them goes off the puppy pad just about the time Lady Anthea Fitzwalter arrives from across the pond to investigate her asset. Henry is found deceased in a van with several dogs he was supposed to be taking home. So much for first impressions! Continue reading “Stay Calm and Collie On – a Book Review”

#AmReading – Stay Calm and Collie On by Lane Stone

#AmReading - Stay Calm and Collie On by Lane StoneWelcome to my #AmReading feature! I am highlighting an author and their book currently visible in the “Fair Weather” widget promoting blue skies, following seas, and the Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting Lane Stone and her book Stay Calm and Collie On (A Pet Palace Mystery). I received an ARC from the publisher Lyrical Underground and NetGalley. The book will be released on November 7, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as a mystery, thriller & suspense, cozy mystery, and women sleuths at 164 pages will be a coffee break read for most of you bibliophiles!

I will be presenting my review shortly, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb: Buckingham Pet Palace is known for treating dogs like royalty-until murder dethrones its good reputation! As owner of an upscale doggy daycare and spa, animal-lover Sue Patrick pampers pooches for the most elite clients in Lewes, Delaware. Surely she can survive a weeklong visit from Lady Anthea Fitzwalter, her well-to-do business partner from England. But before Sue can serve her guest a spot of tea, she discovers more-than-a-spot of blood inside the company van-and all over the driver’s dead body . . .

Someone abandoned the van full of dogs at the Lewes ferry terminal and got away with murder, leaving Sue and Lady Anthea pawing for clues. With a fundraising gala approaching and Buckingham Pet Palace facing scandal, can two very different women work together to fetch the culprit from a list of dodgy suspects-or are they heading toward a proper disaster?

Author: (Goodreads) Lane Stone is a native Atlantan. She, her husband, Larry Korb, and their dog, Abby, live in Alexandria, VA during the week and in Lewes, DE on the weekend. Lewes is the setting of her new cozy mystery series, Buckingham Pet Palace mysteries. Her volunteer work is extensive and includes media & communications for the Delaware River & Bay Lighthouse Foundation… She’s a graduate of Georgia State University, with a degree in Political Science, and is currently pursuing a post-graduate certificate in Antiquities Theft and Art Crime. She tweets as Abby, The Menopause Dog (@TheMenopauseDog) and her Facebook page is LaneStoneBooks (https://www.facebook.com/Lane-Stone-B…); go follow! Check out her book here www.LaneStoneBooks.com. ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

#CoverLove – Color Themes

#CoverLove – we do love our colorful, eye-catching book covers!

It’s the first, all-important impression of any book. It’s an instant yea or nay. Pick up and investigate further or lay down and look for something else. Unfortunately, we are a “judge the book by the cover” sort of animal. As with any artistic endeavor–we know what we like or don’t like.

We love beautiful covers, those that catch the eye, and as always, “beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.” Pick your favorite!#Cover Love - orange

Continue reading “#CoverLove – Color Themes”

#ThrowbackThursday – Author M. D. Grayson – Book Review

ThrowbackThursday4Renee began the Throwback Thursday meme on her blog, “It’s Book Talk” to share some of her old favorites as well as sharing books published over a year ago. Sounded like a good reason to join! My TT posts will not come from current ARCs or new releases. Means I’ll be going back over some of my oldies but goodies, my favorite authors, and some of my favorite stories from authors you might not have previously experienced. Hopefully, you’ll find either a story or author that interests you and you’ll check them out.

Mona Lisa EyesThis week I am highlighting M. D. Grayson, another terrific, prolific author who has produced Mona Lisa Eyes, which was reviewed on Goodreads as part of his Danny Logan Mystery Series. He has actually written five in the series (I’ve read three). His books garner hundreds of reviews on Amazon and he consistently runs approximately 4.5 stars for any of his books sold on Amazon.

My Review originally posted July 15, 2015 Continue reading “#ThrowbackThursday – Author M. D. Grayson – Book Review”

Rosepoint Reviews – October Recap

Happy Halloween

October bouquetSo many people love October! Month of wildly changing seasons from warm to cool or cold and green to red or orange and gold. Once again, I’ve been reading and writing furiously, totaling nine books including many ARC’s, as well as #ThrowbackThursdays highlighting some of my old favorites. Also, last month I started posting to #Bookstagram as part of an #Instagram feature using autumn flowers, squash, and the wild grasses of fall to create some fun and colorful pictures.   Continue reading “Rosepoint Reviews – October Recap”

Many Thanks for the Support!

Many Thanks!

This blog has now achieved 10,000 hits! The blog has been a labor of love, lots of work, and I’ve learned a LOT. I’ve appreciated each and every one who has tuned in, liked, and followed! Thank You, TY!

Okay, if I were honest with myself, I’d have to admit not all are human views (some perhaps attributable to bots?), however, maybe that’s not a bad thing. (I’m getting more referrals.) Still I’m pretty excited that this means two things:

  1. I’ve achieved my first goal
  2. I’ve stuck with it (and it’s taken awhile!)

I must admit that I began the blog as a way to connect via social media after I’d published my grandfather’s manuscripts. (Yes, I know that was actually backwards. I should have started the blog first–then published!) Like I said–I’ve learned–a lot.

As my “About Us” page notes, I discovered after a couple years of posting reviews for fellow authors (shout out to Idaho Authors Community and Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion that I was beginning to receive requests for read and reviews. Finally–a niche of my own!

The continued push on social media now has me posting on Instagram (and Bookstagram). I’ve gone back and linked my social media, so most posts will now hit Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn when I publish on this platform. (I’m not sure if that is a good idea or not, but I’m all linked up anyway. And I always need more followers there as well!)

Now confronting SEO and hash tags. Heaven only knows if I’m doing any of those right, but something must be happening. I have 10,000 hits.

Next goal–1,000 true subscribers, (or in my case, followers) since I’ve agreed with fellow blogger and author Joynell Schultz  all along. 1,000 true subscribers (followers) is a good goal. ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

#AmReading – Outside the Wire by Patricia Smiley

#AmReading - Outside the Wire by Patricia SmileyWelcome to my #AmReading feature! I am highlighting an author and their book currently visible in the “Fair Weather” widget promoting blue skies, following seas, and the Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting Patricia Smiley and her sophomore A Pacific Homicide Series novel Outside the Wire . I received an ARC from the publisher Midnight Ink and Net Galley. The book will be released on November 8, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as a mystery, thriller, suspense, and police procedural and at 288 pages will be a snap for most of you bibliophiles!

I will be presenting my review shortly, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb: Homicide detective Davie Richards is called to an airport parking garage to investigate the shooting of a retired U.S. Army Ranger. Missing personal items point to a robbery, but Davie suspects a more sinister motive when she notices only one military dog tag around the Ranger’s neck. Could the murderer have taken the other as a memento of the kill? As Davie unravels baffling clues, one murder becomes two and a pattern begins to emerge. Racing to save the killer’s next victim, Davie is led to a shocking twist that challenges her physical and emotional endurance and tests the bonds of brotherhood and friendship.

Author Patricia SmileyAuthor: (Goodreads) Patricia Smiley is the author of four novels, featuring amateur sleuth Tucker Sinclair. PACIFIC HOMICIDE is the first in a new series about Los Angeles Police Department homicide detective Davie Richards and is based on her 15-year stint as a volunteer for the LAPD. The second book in the series OUTSIDE THE WIRE will debut on November 8, 2017. Patty’s short fiction has appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and Two of the Deadliest, an anthology edited by Elizabeth George. She has taught writing classes at various conferences in the U.S. and Canada and served as the vice president of the Southern California chapter of Mystery Writers of America and as president of Sisters in Crime/Los Angeles. Patty lives in Los Angeles where she is working on the third book in the Pacific Homicide series. Check out her book here. ©2017 Virginia Williams I Love Likes and Comments--Please Share!

#ThrowbackThursday – Author Ann Charles – Book Review

#ThrowbackThursdayRenee began the Throwback Thursday meme on her blog, “It’s Book Talk” to share some of her old favorites as well as sharing books published over a year ago. Sounded like a good reason to join! Means I’ll be going back over some of my oldies but goodies, my favorite authors, and some of my favorite stories from authors you might not have previously experienced. Hopefully, you’ll find either a story or author that interests you and you’ll check them out.

Dance of the Winnebagos by Ann CharlesThis week I am highlighting Ann Charles, another terrific, prolific author who has produced numerous series, this from Jackrabbit Junction Mystery Series (Book 1), Dance of the Winnebagos, which was reviewed on Goodreads. She penned the Dead Wood (and Deadwood Shorts) series, as well as a Dig Site Mystery (two books) and novellas. The Jackrabbit Junction Mystery series debuted in October, 2011. She consistently runs approximately 4.5 stars for any of her books sold on Amazon. She has more coming in 2018.

My review originally posted on Goodreads December 20, 2013.

Book Blurb: (From Goodreads) If Claire Morgan had known she’d be chaperoning a senior citizen sock hop, she wouldn’t have given up smoking. Yet here she was stuck in Jackrabbit Junction, Arizona, with an ornery old man, his smartass dog, and a parade of blue-haired babes. When Claire’s grandfather and his army buddies converge in the Arizona desert, it’s her thankless job to keep them out of trouble with the opposite sex. But when she finds a human leg bone and partners with a reluctant geotechnician to dig up secrets from the past, trouble finds her. She’s losing her heart. Worse, if she doesn’t stop digging, she could lose her life. (From Amazon) DANCE OF THE WINNEBAGOS, a Kindle Bestseller in Women Sleuth and Western Romance genres from the national award-winning author of the Deadwood Mystery series. Continue reading “#ThrowbackThursday – Author Ann Charles – Book Review”

Her Last Day – a Book Review

Her Last Day by T R RaganTitle: Her Last Day by T. R. Ragan

Genre: Currently #608 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Private Investigators

Amazon Author Rank #7 in Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Publication Date: October 24, 2017

Source: Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Her Last Day – Interesting cover, but I’m not sure how it conveys either the title or genre

Happy release day to Theresa Ragan! I love it when I am introduced to a new-to-me author and her first book in a new series! T. R. Ragan is an accomplished author with successful series publications already behind her. In Her Last Day Jessie Cole #1 we are introduced to capable, independent and responsible Jessie Cole. Yes, she’s a woman with issues. Who doesn’t have baggage? But her history does not define her. Continue reading “Her Last Day – a Book Review”

Bonfire – a Book Review

Bonfire by Krysten RitterTitle: Bonfire by Krysten Ritter

Genre: Currently #448 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Thrillers & Suspense, Psychological Thrillers

Publisher: Crown Publisher

Publication Date: To be released November 7, 2017

Source: Crown Publishing and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Bonfire – stock cover

Once again, I requested and was granted a book without knowing that the author, Krysten Ritter, had already made quite a name for herself, this time as an actress and producer. Of her screen credits, the one with which I was familiar was Breaking Bad, although I didn’t connect her name with the part. Continue reading “Bonfire – a Book Review”

#AmReading – Shark Eater by K D McNiven

#AmReading - Shark Eater by K D McNivenWelcome to the first of a feature I hope to present on Fridays, as a way to promote authors and their books currently languishing in my “Fair Weather” blue skies, following seas, and Goodreads (currently reading) list.

This week I am presenting K. D. McNiven and her sophomore novel Shark Eater. It is a Decker and Callie Adventure published on September 24, 2017. Amazon classifies the novel as action and adventure and at 337 pages should be a quick read for most of you bibliophiles! Ms. McNiven contacted me recently about her book and described it as a treasure hunt, which, as most of you must know, I can hardly resist! Are there black-hearted pirates afloat? C’mon–it’s a treasure hunt!

I will be presenting my review shortly, but in the meantime (from Amazon), here is the

Book Blurb: Archaeologists, Decker and Callie Hayden, pair up with salvager, Dax Drake, to investigate what appears to be one of the Galleons from the Spanish fleet that was shipwrecked after the 1539 hurricane off the Bahama shores. In their search, they discover more than what they had bargained for and ultimately puts the entire crew of the Shark Eater’s lives in jeopardy.  Filled with action-packed adventure on the high seas, the Shark Eater will keep you turning pages.

K D McNiven  K.D. McNiven is a Goodreads author. Check out her book here.

©2017 Virginia Williams

#ThrowbackThursday – Author Jonas Saul – Book Review

#Throwback ThursdayRenee began the Throwback Thursday meme on her blog, “It’s Book Talk” to share some of her old favorites as well as sharing books published over a year ago. Sounded like a good reason to join! My TT posts will not come from current ARCs or new releases. Means I’ll be going back over some of my oldies but goodies, my favorite authors, and some of my favorite stories from authors you might not have previously experienced. Hopefully, you’ll find either a story or author that interests you and you’ll check them out.

The Warning by Jonas SaulThis week I am highlighting Jonas Saul, another terrific, prolific author who has produced nineteen (The Chase published April 30, 2017) in the Sarah Roberts Thriller series, two of which I reviewed on Goodreads (The Warning, Sarah Roberts Series #2 and #3, The Crypt). He has actually written numerous thrillers along with a trilogy. The Crypt was published by Imagine Press. He consistently runs approximately 4.5 to 5 stars for his books sold on Amazon. Continue reading “#ThrowbackThursday – Author Jonas Saul – Book Review”

Vigilante Assassin – a Book Review

Vigilante Assassin by Mark NolanTitle: Vigilante Assassin: An Action Thriller (Jake Wolfe Book 2)

Genre: Currently #36 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Thrillers, Financial

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services LLC

Publication Date: To be released October 27, 2017

Source: Submitted for review by author

Title and Cover: Vigilante Assassin – Silhouette style cover repeated from first book

Lauren Stephens’ husband is not who she thought he was. After she wakes and discovers Gene Stephens has gone missing, Jake Wolfe and his dog Cody are recommended to help find Gene by their security firm.

Continue reading “Vigilante Assassin – a Book Review”

#CoverLove – In With the New – Or Maybe Not

#Cover Love – we do love our colorful, eye-catching book covers! It’s the first, all-important impression of any book. A yea or nay. Pick up and investigate further or lay down and look for something else. Unfortunately, we are a “judge the book by the cover” sort of people. As with any artistic endeavor–we know what we like or don’t like.

And if you’ve been reading and reviewing for any length of time, you’ve seen the evolution of covers as they have progressed, usually denoting a new edition of the book. What sparked the change in cover? Colors? Fonts? That sense of “branding?” Continue reading “#CoverLove – In With the New – Or Maybe Not”

#ThrowbackThursday – Author June Collins – Book Review

#ThrowbackThursday on It's Book Life blogRenee began the Throwback Thursday meme on her blog, “It’s Book Talk” to share some of her old favorites as well as sharing books published over a year ago. Sounded like a good reason to join! My TT posts will not come from current ARCs or new releases. Means I’ll be going back over some of my oldies but goodies, my favorite authors, and some of my favorite stories from authors you might not have previously experienced. Many of these short reviews were made for Goodreads. Hopefully, you’ll find either a story or author that interests you and you’ll check them out. Goodbye Junie Moon by June Collins

This week I am highlighting June Collins, another terrific author who produced this Vietnam memoir, Goodbye Junie Moon, which was reviewed on Goodreads. She has actually written two others, the first The Khaki Mafia with Robin Moore published by Avon Books in 1972. Ms. Moon consistently runs approximately 4.5 stars for books sold on Amazon with Junie Moon Rising at five stars. Continue reading “#ThrowbackThursday – Author June Collins – Book Review”

Her Last Secret – a Book Review

Her Last Secret by Barbara CopperthwaiteTitle: Her Last Secret (a gripping psychological thriller) by Barbara Copperthwaite

Genre: Currently #586 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Suspense, Psychological

Publisher: Bookouture

Publication Date: To be released October 13, 2017

Source: Bookouture and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Her Last Secret I don’t think the cover reflects one of the characters, so…(?)

I loved little Mouse and held my breath. My favorite character, Mouse, so young, sweet, innocent of the drama going on around her and started holding my breath almost immediately, waiting to find out what happens to Amber. And the drama? Continue reading “Her Last Secret – a Book Review”

Rosepoint Reviews-September Recap and #Bookstagram Fun

September was busy! Reading and writing furiously, nine new books including many ARC’s, #ThrowbackThursdays highlighting some of my old favorites, and a new #Bookstagram feature I created called “Wharf Reads.” (I love that tree!)

Wharf Reads - Hello Again by Brenda Novak

Well, I didn’t really name it, but looking to ramp up Instagrams, got myself into yet another project consuming WAY too much time! Continue reading “Rosepoint Reviews-September Recap and #Bookstagram Fun”

Hello Again – a Book Review

Hello Again by Brenda NovakTitle: Hello Again (Dr. Evelyn Talbot Novels)

Genre: Currently #639 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank for Books, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Women Sleuths

Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Publication Date: To be released October 3, 2017

Source: St Martin’s Paperbacks and NetGalley

Title and Cover: Hello Again Nice cover, not sure it conveys the location or the genre

Apparently there is nowhere you can hide if someone really wants to find you. This book is textbook serial killer, psychological profiling at it’s best. Continue reading “Hello Again – a Book Review”

The Mystery of Her – a Book Review

The Mystery of Her by Patricia CatacalosTitle: The Mystery of Her by Patricia Catacalos

Genre: Currently #2164 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Historical

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, LLC

Publication Date: May 2016

Source: Submitted by author for review

Title and Cover: The Mystery of Her – Cover hints at era

Lady Kiera Everett is pretty darned sure her father was murdered and how it could have been viewed as anything else, even in London in 1888, is beyond me given the nature of the manner in the first of the Zane Brothers Detective Series, “The Mystery of Her” by Patricia Catacalos. I’m a fan of historical fiction, particularly mysteries, and this was not my first rodeo, so perhaps my expectations were a bit high. Continue reading “The Mystery of Her – a Book Review”

Tackle These Five Items of Maintenance to Clean Up Your WordPress Site

Yes, it’s summer, spring just flew by. Perhaps you’ve bumped up against your media allowance and need some room, or your archives run longer than Interstate 80 and is always under construction–somewhere. So isn’t it time to clean house?

A clean house is a sign of a broken computer!As I’ve mentioned before, I have the free version of WordPress (that’s a dot com, not dot org) and while it presents some limitations (for instance, most plug-ins), my free blog is still a whale of a program for the money. Don’t get me wrong: I’ve been having a lot of fun with it. I’m not terribly technical, but I keep reading advice posts that say it’s time to clean up the ole website. Is it? Is this something you’ve tackled lately?

Here are five easy site maintenance procedures you can do on your own–just a bit of clean up: Continue reading “Tackle These Five Items of Maintenance to Clean Up Your WordPress Site”