Wednesday, September 20, 2017


The Specter of the Indian

Inside the Book

Author: Kathryn A. Troy
Publisher: SUNY Press
Pages: 200
Genre: Historical Nonfiction
The Specter of the Indian unveils the centrality of Native American spirit guides during the emergent years of American Spiritualism. By pulling together cultural and political history; the studies of religion, race, and gender; and the ghostly, Kathryn Troy offers a new layer of understanding to the prevalence of mystically styled Indians in American visual and popular culture. The connections between Spiritualist print and contemporary Indian policy provide fresh insight into the racial dimensions of social reform among nineteenth-century Spiritualists. Troy draws fascinating parallels between the contested belief of Indians as fading from the world, claims of returned apparitions, and the social impetus to provide American Indians with a means of existence in white America. Rather than vanishing from national sight and memory, Indians and their ghosts are shown to be ever present. This book transports the readers into dimly lit parlor rooms and darkened cabinets and lavishes them with detailed séance accounts in the words of those who witnessed them. Scrutinizing the otherworldly whisperings heard therein highlights the voices of mediums and those they sought to channel, allowing the author to dig deep into Spiritualist belief and practice. The influential presence of Indian ghosts is made clear and undeniable.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Suny Press


Meet the Author

  Kathryn Troy
Kathryn Troy has two Master’s Degrees in History from Stony Brook University. She contributed to the anthology The Spiritualist Movement published by Prager in August 2013, and teaches at Farmingdale State College and Suffolk County Community College. In her spare time she pours all she knows about the ghostly and supernatural into her fiction writing.



My Review
The Specter of the Indian was a well-written book that I personally enjoyed reading. I found the book's approach to sharing elements of native american culture and spirituality interesting. This was a new type of book for me, but I was so glad that I took the time to read it as I feel that I have learned quite a bit from it. I would love it if the author wrote a sequel!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel by Erin Bomboy

Bright, emotive, and told through dual narrators, The Winner examines the costs associated with winning, the internalization of parental ambition, and the effect of gendered roles on and off the dance floor.

The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel by Erin Bomboy
Book Details:

Book Title:  The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel by Erin Bomboy
Category:  Adult Fiction,  326 pages
Genre:  Women's Literature, Literary Romance
Publisher:   Curtain Call Press
Release date:  Dec 20, 2016
Format available for review:  ebook (PDF, ePub, mobi & gifted Kindle book)
Tour dates: Sept 18 to 29, 2017
​Content Rating: PG-13: (four brief sex scenes with no named body parts and written in metaphor, five minor instances of profanity (no f bombs), no violence)

Book Description:

The most prestigious ballroom dance competition in the United States.

​Two dancers need to win.

Only one can.

Nina Fortunova wasn’t supposed to end up almost thirty, divorced, with her dreams of winning shattered. She teams up with Jorge Gonzalez, a Latin dancer, to reinvent the flashy Smooth style. When the Chairman of the Judges offers to throw the competition in their favor, Nina must decide how far she will go to win, even if it means losing Jorge.

Carly Martindale is doing everything she’s been taught not to do—placing her happiness first by dancing with Trey Devereux, the former three-time champion who’s returned to competition for mysterious reasons. Carly becomes obsessed with Trey and allows him to control her every move at great risk to her physical and emotional health. How far will she sacrifice herself, so Trey and she can win? Co-workers, then friends, and now arch competitors, Nina and Carly face off to determine who will be the winner.

Bright, emotive, and told through dual narrators, The Winner examines the costs associated with winning, the internalization of parental ambition, and the effect of gendered roles on and off the dance floor. A literary romance, The Winner is perfect for readers who love Dancing with the Stars, Strictly Come Dancing, So You Think You Can Dance, and the old-school elegance of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

The Winner contains a fact-versus-fiction section at the end.

Praise for The Winner:

“ . . . educational, enjoyable, and engrossing.
- Midwest Book Review

The Winner is a winner.
- Goodreads Review

Rousing, bittersweet, and heartbreakingly beautiful.
- Amazon Review
Buy the Book:
Add to Goodreads

Meet the author:

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Erin Bomboy trained as a classical ballet dancer before spending a decade as a professional competitive ballroom dancer. She holds an MFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from New York University Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter where she works as a writer, editor, and teacher in the dance field. In her free time, Erin enjoys bacon, books, cats, and wine.

She is the author of The Piece: A Contemporary Ballet Novel and The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel. Her next novel, tentatively titled The Pas de Deux: A Classical Ballet Novel, will explore the relationship between a ballerina at the end of her career and the much-younger dancer with whom she falls in love. Taking the shape of a traditional pas de deux, it will premiere in 2018. 

Connect with the author:  Website  ~ Twitter  

My Review
The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel by Erin Bomboy was a well written book about following your happiness and knowing what really makes a person happy. I loved the morale dilemmas that were in this book because they really made me stop and think about what I would do if I had to decide if I would rather be guaranteed a win unfairly or do my best fairly and win or lose on my own skill. Nina Fortunova and Carly Martindale were my two favorite characters because I loved their dynamic with each other and with their dance partners. Overall, I enjoyed this novel quite a bit!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Life Long

Life Long by Ronald L. Ruiz
Book Details:

Book Title:  Life Long by Ronald L. Ruiz
Category:  Adult Fiction,   268 pages
Genre:  Literary Fiction
Publisher:  Amika Press
Release date:  June 9, 2017
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, ePub, PDF)
Will ship print books to:  International
Tour dates: Sept 18 to Oct 6, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (For foul language and questions about the existence of God)

Book Description:

Ray Lopez is on the run with a duffel bag full of cash. Both drug dealers and the police are after him. But Ray is not a criminal. His last brush with the law was over traffic tickets. Recently released from the hospital with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, he is haunted by voices, auditory hallucinations, that frighten him and cause him to question his every move. 

Ray’s journey from California to Laredo is perilous. Like so many Americans before him, he travels through unfamiliar territory with no clear way of knowing who will help and who will harm him. And he may well find himself on the wrong side of the border with a mind that has no borders.

Praise for Life Long:

"Ruiz proves to be a very sharp social critic, and no detail gets past him in this richly imagined book. A highly recommended novel that appeals to both the heart and the head."
Kirkus Reviews

Ronald L. Ruiz
Meet the Author:

Born and raised in Fresno California - Educated at St. Mary´s College California, University of California Berkeley, University of San Francisco - Practiced law from !966 to 2003 as a Deputy District Attorney, a criminal defense attorney, and a Deputy Public Defender - Appointed to the California Agriculture Labor Relations Board by Governor Jerry Brown in 1974 and later served as the District Attorney of Santa Cruz County California.

Ronald L. Ruiz has published 5 novels and a memoir. Happy Birthday Jesus (1994), Giuseppe Rocco (1998), The Big Bear (2003), A Lawyer (2012), Jesusita(2015). and Life Long (2017).

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Facebook 
My Review
As a psychology student I found Life Long by Ronald L. Ruiz to be particularly interesting with Ray Lopez's schizophrenia. I liked the way that it seemed very realistic and the role it played in the story. So often main characters are free of any and all mental problems even minor ones, which makes them all seem too perfect. I found Ray to be a very realistic character as he had very real flaws that played into his character and his decisions. Besides the well written psychological elements this book had a nice thrill of adventure mixed in with how Ray how he is on the run with a bag of cash. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book!


Sept 18 - Bound 4 Escape - review / giveaway
Sept 18 - Books for Books - review
Sept 19 - Working Mommy Journal - review / giveaway
Sept 20 - Library of Clean Reads - review / author interview / giveaway
Sept 21 - The Reading Life - book spotlight / giveaway
Sept 22 - Olio By Marilyn - review / giveaway
Sept 25 - Writers and Authors - book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Sept 26 - A Mama's Corner of the World - review / guest post / giveaway
Sept 27 - Cheryl's Book Nook - review / giveaway
Sept 28 - Leels Loves Books - review
Sept 29 - The All Night Library - review / author interview
Oct 2 -     Svetlana's Reads and Views - review
Oct 3 -     The Book Drealms - book spotlight / giveaway
Oct 4 -     Ali - The Dragon Slayer - review / guest post / giveaway
Oct 5 -     Travelling Through Words - book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Oct 6 -     Nighttime Reading Center - review / giveaway

Friday, September 15, 2017

Carbon - Book Two in the Watcher Series by AJ Eversley

Carbon (Book 2 Watcher series) by AJ EversleyBook Details:

Book Title:  Carbon - Book Two in the Watcher Series
Authors: AJ Eversley
Category:  YA Fiction,  300 pages
Genre: Sci-fi Dystopian 
Publisher:   Self-published
Release date:  Sept 26, 2017
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, PDF and ePub)
Will send print books to: USA & Canada
Tour dates: Sept 4 to 29, 2017
Content Rating: PG (No swearing and PG kissing scenes)

Book Description:

Sawyer has lost everything. Her family, the man she loves...her humanity. No longer a Watcher, Sawyer must now begin a journey to understand her new identity. Carbon.

With no where left to call home, and no one left to guide her, Sawyer must rely on the help of a stranger to learn who she really is now, and how to use it to her advantage. In a world where nothing is as it seems, and who to trust is a thin line between friend and foe, Sawyer will turn to the stars that have shaped her destiny long before she even knew she had one. And the man who fate has sent her.

Book two in this epic series, Carbon will answer questions you didn't even know you had. And strangers will become the only ones who can help her. Join Sawyer as the journey to save humanity continues.
Buy the Book:
Amazon & Barnes & Noble
Add to Goodreads
AJ Eversley
Meet the Author:

AJ Eversley is the author of the WATCHER series. A true north Canadian girl, AJ currently lives in Central Alberta with her husband and dog. When she’s not writing, she can be found binge watching Harry Potter, quoting various movies in every day conversation, and eating copious amounts of candy.

Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Instagram

My Review
So first off I would advise reading Watcher before reading Carbon (Book Two in the Watcher Series) by AJ Eversley as the second book will be very confusing without the background information, character development, and plot line understanding gained from reading Watcher. I liked the fact that Sawyer Russo was still the main character even if she was no longer a Watcher, but instead a Carbon. I understand why she had to become a Carbon for the story line to progress onward, but I really liked her as a Watcher and I was sad to see her lose that. Sawyer may have changed, but unlike Katniss in the Hunger Games she never lost what made her Sawyer instead she maintained her personality and goals in the face of all the changes the she faced. Overall, I really enjoyed reading Carbon, but between the two Watcher was my favorite!

Thursday, September 14, 2017

The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook

Authorized by Instant Pot and filled with beautiful photographs and more than 75 simple, well-tested comfort food recipes, this indispensable book is the ultimate collection of delicious weekday meals.
The best-selling Instant Pot has been a runaway hit, with an almost cultlike following and users who swear by it. But finding delicious, well-tested, weekday-friendly recipes that are both inspiring and trustworthy has proven difficult, until now. The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook covers each meal of the day, offering plenty of tried-and-true classic recipes, such as spicy beef and bean chili, a whole roasted chicken with mushroom sauce, and decadent New York cheesecake, alongside a hearty array of contemporary meals, such as Greek-style Gigantes beans with fresh feta, braised pork loin with balsamic vinegar and caramelized onions, buttery cauliflower mashed potatoes, pork adobo, and more! Whether you're looking to expand your pressure cooker recipe repertoire or seeking the ultimate gift for the Instant Pot aficionado, this is the book to have.

My Review
The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook is a well organized cookbook that is perfect for people looking to make easy meals for their family. The recipes are easy to understand and they are laid out beautifully. I found the images to be very appealing and I enjoyed the recipes that I made!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Overwhelmed Writer Rescue: Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within by Colleen M. Story

Overwhelmed Writer Rescue by Colleen M. StoryBook Details:

Book Title:  Overwhelmed Writer Rescue: Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within
Author: Colleen M. Story
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction,  280 pages
Genre:  Self-help
Publisher:   Midchannel Press
Release date:  Sept 3, 2017
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, ePub, PDF)
Will ship print books to:  USA only
Tour dates: Sept 4 to 15, 2017
Content Rating: G

Book Description:


Do you feel like you’re always behind? Do less important tasks frequently flood your schedule and sink your creative motivation? Are you frustrated and out of touch with your inner artist?

After 20 years experience in the writing industry, author Colleen M. Story extends a lifeline to pull you out of the sinking swamp of “busyness” and back into the flourishing creative life you deserve.

Today’s demands on writers and other creative artists are overwhelming. Not only must you produce the work you love, but build and maintain a platform and market your finished products to the world—all while holding down a day job and/or caring for a family.

You teeter on the edge. What waits on the other side are burnout, exhaustion, and a complete loss of creative motivation.

"Overwhelmed Writer Rescue" provides practical, personalized solutions to help beginning and experienced writers and other creative artists escape the tyranny of the to-do list to nurture the genius within. You’ll find ways to boost productivity, improve time management, and restore your sanity while gaining insight into your unique creative nature and what it needs to thrive.

Ultimately, you’ll discover what may be holding you back from experiencing the true joy that a creative life can bring.
Colleen M. Story

About the Author:

Colleen M. Story has worked in the creative writing industry for over twenty years. Her novels include "Loreena’s Gift," an Idaho Author Awards first place winner, New Apple Solo Medalist winner, Foreword Reviews INDIES Book of the Year Awards winner, Reader Views award finalist, and Best Book Awards finalist; and "Rise of the Sidenah," a North American Book Awards winner and New Apple Book Awards Official Selection.

As a health writer, she’s authored thousands of articles for publications like "Healthline" and "Women’s Health;" worked with high-profile clients like Gerber Baby Products and Kellogg’s; and ghostwritten books on back pain, nutrition, and cancer recovery. She finds most rewarding her work as a motivational speaker and workshop leader, where she helps writers remove mental and emotional blocks and tap into their unique creative powers.

Colleen is the founder of Writing and Wellness (, a motivational site helping writers and other creative artists maintain their physical, mental, and emotional health and well-being throughout their careers. Sign up for your free weekly email containing tips for living your best creative life at: www.writingandwellness/newsletter.

To find more information on Colleen and her work, please see her website or follow her on Twitter. She loves to hear from readers—feel free to use the “contact” form on either her website or Writing and Wellness to get in touch with her.
Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  

My Review
I am not an author, however I am a freelance writer and as such I was very interested in reading Overwhelmed Writer Rescue: Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within by Colleen M. Story. This book might be intended for authors, but in reality it is a great guide to any writer as it has great tips for managing work and time. I often feel like I am overworked and that I don't have enough time in each day to get everything done, due to this I am super excited to try out some of the strategies that I read about. I was relieved that I was not the only one who had these problems. Overall, this book was an easy to understand book that will help me to improve my life and my writing.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Journey's End: Death, Dying and the End of Life

Journey's End: Death, Dying and the End of Life by Victoria Brewster &  Julie Saeger NierenbergBook Details:

Book Title:  Journey's End: Death, Dying and the End of Life
Authors:  Victoria Brewster & Julie Saeger Nierenberg
Category:   Adult Non-Fiction; 558 pages
Genre:  Resource/Educational
Publisher:  Xlibris
Release date:  July 20, 2017
Tour dates:  Sept 4 to 22, 2017
Content Rating:  PG-13 + M

Book Description:

In Journey's End, we write about death, dying, and end of life issues. We attempt to define and describe these real-life circumstances, and we discuss ways to proactively deal with them. Multiple personal and professional perspectives provide valuable insights.

What is dying like for dying persons, for loved ones, and for those who lend support in the process? Each experience will have unique qualities. Everyone dies in his own way, on his own schedule. While we explore the dying process, we make no assumptions about how any particular death will unfold.

Grief and bereavement support, training tools, and educational resources are included.
Victoria Brewster
Julie Saeger Nierenberg

​Meet the Authors:

Victoria has a master of social work degree. She has worked as a case manager with older adults for the past seventeen years and as a group facilitator. Her past work experience was as a therapist with children and families, and as a case manager for adults with mental health issues. She just launched a consulting business, NorthernMSW to focus on end of life issues, planning, training, and advocacy, along with memoir writing and life legacy writing.

Julie was inspired equally by her professional backgrounds as a biomedical researcher and long time educator. Julie values open and lively discussions based on interview and research findings, trends in health and wellness, and exciting new modalities of treatment and professional education. She believes it will be through such discussions that we will create new and more satisfying cultural paradigms within which we may live all the days of our lives with dignity and quality of care.

Connect with the authors: Website ~ Facebook