Monday, 24 July 2017

Author Post and Giveaway: Anna Schmidt

Today's post is by Anna Schmidt and at the end you can win a copy of her previous book :)

Welcome!

What are three interesting details about the setting of Last Chance Cowboys: The Outlaw?

  1. The story takes place toward the end of the 19th century when the West was becoming more civilized and settled. By this time people could travel by train as well as stagecoach, some houses had indoor plumbing and towns were more than just a wide place in the road with streets and shops and even city squares.
  2. While most structures in Arizona at this time were adobe with tiled roofs, I wanted Miss Dooley’s boardinghouse to be a structure completely at odds with its neighbors so I made it a back-East Queen Ann Victorian partially because Amanda is out of place when the story begins.
  3. Because both THE DRIFTER and THE LAWMAN took place on the Porterfield ranch or in the small town of Whitman Falls, I wanted to move this story away from those relatively safe places and put it in Tucson where the characters were taken out of their more natural element and tested by a new environment.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Award-winning author ANNA SCHMIDT delights in creating stories where her characters must wrestle with the challenges of their times. Critics have consistently praised Schmidt for her ability to seamlessly integrate actual events with her fictional characters to produce strong tales of hope and love in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. She resides in Wisconsin.

Find her online:


ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: Last Chance Cowboys: The Outlaw
Author: Anna Schmidt
Series: Where the Trail Ends, #3
ISBN: 9781492613022
Pub Date: July 4, 2017
Genre: Historical Western Romance

“‘Someone like me?’ Is that how you see me, Amanda? As someone people should fear?”


I don’t know what to think,” she said. “One minute you seem so dangerous, and the next you’re sweet and caring and…”


He took a step closer, his eyes sweeping her face. “And which do you want me to be?” His voice was low; it sent shivers down her spine.


Both,” she whispered, and lifted her face for a kiss.

Amanda Porterfield longs to experience real adventure. So when she’s offered a position in bustling Tucson, she leaps at the chance despite unknown dangers—dangers like the mysterious Seth Grover.

As an undercover detective working to stop a gang of outlaws, Seth can’t afford the distractions a woman like Amanda inspires. Yet when the fiercely intelligent beauty is thrust into the middle of a heist gone wrong, Seth will fight for a future that may never be theirs…even if it means risking everything he holds dear.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Seems raffle has done a few changes, not happy- Anyway US only


Sunday, 23 July 2017

Carole's Sunday Review: Mask of Innocence - Marion Shepherd

Oooops. two Carole post up by mistake! My bad


Author: Marion Shepherd
Title: Mask of Innocence 
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pages: ebook
Published: Feb. 2017
Where I Got It: Netgalley

The Marchant family live in Cedar Grove, a majestic Tudor manor house nestled within the rolling Cotswolds hills. 


Upon the untimely death of their tyrannical father, Richard and Francesca Marchant are caught up in a web of dark family secrets, manipulation, murder, abduction and obsessive desires. 



Francesca is a rebellious and spirited young girl, despised by her stepmother Catherine, and relentlessly pursued by the obsessive Rufus Donaldson. She becomes the subject of a dangerous conspiracy to force her into an unwanted marriage, jeopardising her future with the man to whom she has given her heart. Can her brother, Richard, rise above his own lustful desires and save his beloved sister? 



I instantly fell in love with the cover and it seemed to be very interesting, so I decided I had to read this. 


The Marchant family seems to be perfect on the outside, but it is all a lie. When the mean dad dies, they hope it will get better, but it doesn't. There are so many family secrets and manipulation going on. Poor Francesca is being harassed and stalked by the nasty Rufus. Evil man. Stinks to be her. 



There were a lot of twists and turns and I found that refreshing. I had a hard time staying hooked though. Along with the twists and turns, there were a lot of slow parts that I skimmed over. I honestly felt like I was on a roller coaster. I was drinking in every word one moment and then the next moment I was yawning and waiting for the next exciting thing. 



The only character I could stand was Francesca at times. Isobel and Sanjay weren't bad either. However, I had a hard time connecting with anyone really, so it made it hard to stay hooked and curious what was going to happen next. 



The ending was really good! It was a nice way to tie everything together. So yes, this ended on a good note. 



In the end, this was okay. I had a hard time connecting with the characters and staying hooked with the story. There were a lot of good twists and the ending was done well. I do recommend it if you like historical fiction. I'll give this three stars. 









Carole's Sunday Review: Betrayal at Iga - Susan Spann

Author: Susan Spann
Title: Betrayal at Iga (Shinobi Mystery #5) 
Genre: Historical Fiction and Mystery
Pages: 248
Published: July 2017
Where I Got It: My shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher)

Autumn, 1565: After fleeing Kyoto, master ninja Hiro Hattori and Portuguese Jesuit Father Mateo take refuge with Hiro s ninja clan in the mountains of Iga province. But when an ambassador from the rival Koga clan is murdered during peace negotiations, Hiro and Father Mateo must find the killer in time to prevent a war between the ninja clans. 

With every suspect a trained assassin, and the evidence incriminating not only Hiro s commander, the infamous ninja Hattori Hanz, but also Hiro s mother and his former lover, the detectives must struggle to find the truth in a village where deceit is a cultivated art. As tensions rise, the killer strikes again, and Hiro finds himself forced to choose between his family and his honor.



This is the fifth book in the series. I read the 4th one (I still need to back track and read the others) and I think you should at least read that one before this one. 

The mystery duo Hiro and Mateo continue. We get to learn more about Hiro and that made me happy. It was nice to see where he came from and how he became who he is. It was nice to get to know more about one of our heroes. I do admit I have a wee crush on Hiro. ;D

I liked the mystery too. It took a long time for me to guess who the murder is, but I did figure it out. Lots of subtle, under-the-table hints and clues. Looking back I am mad at myself for not figuring it out a few pages sooner. Kuddos for the author. 

I love the writing style of the author. She really knows how to weave characters, mysteries, and the world. Beautiful and I want to read more. 

My only issue with the story was how dragged out it felt. There was a lot of repeating information that we, the readers, already knew. But that is my only complaint. 

I can't wait to read more. I need to back up and read the other ones. I encourage reading book 1. Out of five stars, I'll give this 4 stars. 









Saturday, 22 July 2017

Saturday Night Movie: A Promise

A romantic drama set in Germany just before WWI and centered on a married woman who falls in love with her husband's protégé. Separated first by duties and then by the war, they pledge their devotion to one another.

Director: Patrice Leconte
Writers: Patrice Leconte (screenplay), Jérôme Tonnerre (screenplay) | Stefan Sweig (novel)
Stars: Rebecca Hall, Alan Rickman, Richard Madden |
Drama/Romance

Lenght: 1h 38 min


Musings:
Now this to be honest was a rather dull movie. A young man meets his boss' young wife. But nothing happens. They steal glances at each other. They talk. But nothing is said about love. They just are, they wonder, they go on with their lives.

So it's more emotional cheating, and well it does fit. They restrain from expressing what they feel, and it is not like I can blame him, or her for that matter. You can not help who you fall in love with.

But omg it was soooooo slow. I kept hoping the war would start and he would be sent away and I would finally see some action, but alas, that was not to be. But I am not saying it was truly boring. Now in its utter slowness I could watch it. It had its moments, but yes be warned. It is sloooooooooow.

As for the acting, yeah, they did well. And it's always nice to see Rickman.



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