Saturday, January 27, 2018

The Sky is Yours

A sprawling, genre-defying epic set in a dystopian metropolis plagued by dragons, this debut about what it’s like to be young in a very old world is pure storytelling pleasure
In the burned-out, futuristic city of Empire Island, three young people navigate a crumbling metropolis constantly under threat from a pair of dragons that circle the skies. When violence strikes, reality star Duncan Humphrey Ripple V, the spoiled scion of the metropolis’ last dynasty; Baroness Swan Lenore Dahlberg, his tempestuous, death-obsessed betrothed; and Abby, a feral beauty he discovered tossed out with the trash; are forced to flee everything they've ever known. As they wander toward the scalded heart of the city, they face fire, conspiracy, mayhem, unholy drugs, dragon-worshippers, and the monsters lurking inside themselves. In this bombshell of a novel, Chandler Klang Smith has imagined an unimaginable world: scathingly clever and gorgeously strange, The Sky Is Yours is at once faraway and disturbingly familiar, its singular chaos grounded in the universal realities of love, family, and the deeply human desire to survive at all costs.
The Sky Is Yours is incredibly cinematic, bawdy, rollicking, hilarious, and utterly unforgettable, a debut that readers who loved Cloud AtlasSuper Sad True Love Story, and Blade Runner will adore.

The Sky is Yours was a very entertaining book that kept me on the edge of my seat. It was such as interesting mix of genres that I never knew what was coming next. However that also made it just a bit on the overwhelming side as there was just so much going on.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Cathadeus (Book One of the Walking Gates)

Cathadeus by Jeff J. Peters

Book Details:

Book Title:  Cathadeus (Book One of the Walking Gates)
Author:  Jeff J. Peters
Category:  YA Fiction,  344 pages
Genre:  Fantasy
Publisher:  Wise Ink Creative Publishing
Release date:  Dec 8, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 (fighting scenes)

Book Description:

It has been six hundred years since the Alchemists fused together men and beasts to form strong, mindless slaves. Now, their most vicious creations have attacked the mystical Walking Gates, slaughtering their Keepers and isolating their cities. Wounded in the brutal attack, Braxton Prinn’s mother is on the verge of death and he makes a desperate journey to find the reclusive elven master who can save her. But when he discovers an ancient magic, Brax is caught up in an even greater struggle and soon finds himself hunted for his power. Drawn into the chaos of an impending war and pursued by enemies on all sides, Brax must fight to save his mother and her race from slipping into darkness. Though his untamed magic may be the greatest threat of all . . . ​

​What Readers are Saying about Cathadeus:

 “Jeff J. Peters’ strong cinematic writing style allowed me to easily visualize the story and feel that I was right there alongside the characters.”
- Alison W.

“Jeff J. Peters’ writing is so smooth and easy to read – I can’t tell you how much of a pleasure it was…and how quickly you end up being drawn into the story because of it.”
- Amanda R.

Cathadeus is the best kind of fantasy story - you get to learn along with a flawed main character while you get lost in a richly designed world. You can’t help but keep reading. A cleanly written pairing of characters you wish you could spend more time with and an enthralling world built around them. Cathadeus is the kind of story that plays perfectly off of your imagination, with characters grounded in reality to make it feel like you could really be there.”
- Ryan N.

“Jeff J. Peters definitely has storytelling skills...The story stayed on my mind when I wasn’t reading it. Young readers will be drawn in this imaginative story, while they relate to Braxton’s struggles with temper, insecurity, and young love. Cathadeus is dramatic, with an anxious tone—at times bleak, as the story keeps you wondering until the final battle if good will prevail.”
- Elizabeth C.​
Jeff J. Peters
Meet the Author:

JEFF J. PETERS was born in South Africa and immigrated to the United States as a teenager, where he fell in love with all things fantasy. He obtained degrees in digital electronics and computer science and worked as an IT professional for more than twenty years. In 2014, he left his corporate position to focus full-time on writing. Cathadeus is his debut novel. He is currently working on the sequel.

​Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook

My Review
Cathadeus (Book One of the Walking Gates) was a ver well written book that reminded me a lot of Robin Hobb's books with how it fused fantasy, adventure, action, and mystery genre elements together so seamlessly.  Brax was a great character that was clearly in over his head and got pulled into the quite the adventure when all he wanted to do was save his mother. I liked the way the book kept everything unpredictable. Overall, I really enjoyed the book and I hope the next one comes out soon!

Thursday, January 25, 2018

The Antelope Play

The Antelope Play (Book #2 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series) by Boyd TaylorThe Antelope Play (Book #2 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series)

Book Details:

Category:  Adult Fiction,  260 pages
Genre:   Political Suspense
Publisher:  Katherine Brown Press
Release date:  July 25, 2015
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Some minor cursing.)

Book Description:

When Austin native Donnie Cuinn accepts a job as an associate in a Texas Panhandle law firm, his boredom and disdain for Velda, a sleepy Texas town, is forgotten when he gets caught up in a struggle over water rights, possible radioactive contamination of the nation's largest underground fresh water supply, and the violence of an invading Mexican drug cartel. Along the way, Donnie learns to respect the local rancher, whose brother is at the center of the troubles, and to come to terms with the violent death of his young Mexican wife.

Boyd Taylor
Meet the Author:

BOYD TAYLOR lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and their Havanese dog Toby. Necessities is the fourth novel in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series. In a former life, Boyd was a lawyer and a corporate officer. A native of Temple, Texas, he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in government and an LL.B. from the law school.

​Boyd's first novel "Hero" was prescient in its story about fake news. His second novel, "The Antelope Play," dealt with drug trafficking in the Texas Panhandle, an unfortunately accurate forecast. The third, "The Monkey House", involved commercial development of a large green space in the center of Austin, all too familiar to Austin residents. Whether his upcoming novel "Necessities" predicts future events with the accuracy of the earlier books remains to be seen.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Facebook
My Review
First off I want to let everyone know that I am reviewing this entire series so feel free to check out my other/upcoming reviews on the other books in this series.
After having greatly enjoyed Hero I was very much looking forward to The Antelope Play, which is the second book in the series. Donnie is back in the middle of trouble as his new job as an associate in a Texas Panhandle law firm, leads to him being caught up in a struggle over water rights and possible radioactive contamination of fresh water. As if the water rights were not enough of a problem there are also problems coming from the Mexican drug cartel violence. I admired the way that Donnie did not let himself drown in the problems that kept piling up, but instead managed to swim through them. While I did greatly enjoy this book I found that I prefered Donnie as the historian that he was in the first book.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018


Inside the Book

Author: Gabriella Bradley & Taryn Jameson
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Pages: 24
Genre: Fantasy/Scifi/Paranormal/Shifter
Bound by a curse, Brenn must find a way to save his pride.
Brenn returns from a war far from his home to find that his village is destroyed and his pride missing. With the help of his guardian dragon, Ciara, he sets out to find his missing family and pride.
After Ciara saves Brenn’s life twice, he begins to realize that he isn’t as invincible as he once thought. He must accept his limitations and the help of his lifemate to keep him safe.

My Review
I personally liked that IN SEARCH OF PRIDE also included the prequel CARNAL TWILIGHT (Prequel). As it allowed me to get a better understanding of Brenn and how he became the man that he was in: In Search of Pride. Ciara really added a nice magical element to the book that drew me right in!  I personally found this book to be a bit on the short side, but the other books in the series made up for the short length of the first one. I was just glad that I had the next books already available as it allowed me to go from this book directly to book two.


Inside the Book

Author: Gabriella Bradley & Taryn Jameson
Publisher: eXtasy
Pages: 172
Genre: Fantasy/Scifi/Paranormal/Shifter
Danger, lies, and betrayal forge the path to unlocking the secrets Brenn seeks.
The rescue of Brenn’s pride sets off an angry tirade from Cewrick that results in curses that almost cripple the Crimson Realm and all of Ierilia.
With the help of Ciara, Brenn leads his crew through the bowels of the planet and the forbidden forest to unlock the secret of defeating Cewrick. But will his defeat end the reign of terror on their world?

My Review

The Dragon's Lion was even better than In Search of Pride and I was much happier with the length of the book. I really like how the author expanded upon the world that was created in the first book in the series and I felt like I gained a better picture of the Crimson Realm and all of Ierilia. While I enjoyed Brenn's character it was really Ciara that made me interested enough to keep reading. Overall, this was a well written book that I enjoyed reading!

Inside the Book

Author: Gabriella Bradley & Taryn Jameson
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Pages: TBA
Genre: Fantasy/Scifi/Paranormal/Shifter
The blade of betrayal cuts deep.
When Erica is granted a commission in the king’s army and a magical sword for her bravery, she begins to look forward to a future for both herself and her crew. But not everyone is happy with their circumstances.
Erica joins Brenn’s team in the fight to save his planet from the angry god, Zolmes and she finds herself charmed by more than just the planet. The sexy lion shifter Laro, claims she is his lifemate, setting her passions ablaze. Stung by the sharp tongues and dissension of some of her crew, Erica pushes him away to focus on the lives of her crewmembers.
Can Erica accept a future with Laro or will she let hate and betrayal decide her fate?
My Review
The Sword of Betrayal ended up being my favorite book in the series. I really loved how Erica became a main character in this book and I like Laro as well though not quite as much as Erica! This was a wonderful end to the series that left me hoping for the author to add more books to the series in the future!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Halley's Casino by Mark JG Fahey

Starting out on a quiet evening of star gazing, Nebula Yorker finds himself caught up in the most extraordinary time travel
​and planet saving adventure of a lifetime.

​And that’s only the beginning of what is to come.
Halley's Casino by Mark JG Fahey
Book Details:

Book Title:  Halley's Casino by Mark JG Fahey
Category:  Adult Fiction, pages
Genre:   Science Fiction / Time Travel
Publisher:  Mark JG Fahey
Release date:  Jan 25, 2016
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (No profanity,  readable for all ages 12 and up, pure fun and witty story)

Book Description:

Halley’s Casino is set in 1986. 26-year old Nebula Yorker (Neb to his friends), is patiently awaiting the return of Halley’s Comet. He is about to discover that the world is not what it seems.

Upon the arrival of Halley’s Comet, Neb is confronted by a mysterious stranger who literally swoops out of the night sky. What happens next will change the course of Neb’s life and that of all he befriends.

This stranger (Mr. Tict) reveals to Neb that Halley’s is not a comet at all, but an Intergalactic Casino that has been posing as a comet for countless years. Mr. Tict is the Concierge of the Casino and he has come back to Earth to recruit Neb as his assistant.

What happens next is an eye-opening experience for young Neb that no one on Earth can imagine. It can only be explained by watching old Star Trek reruns, while eating cheese sandwiches and drinking hot chocolate. From androids with attitude to a vast assortment of alien beings and historic individuals, with a touch of time travel from ancient Babylon to 1757 London and back to Rome of 12 BCE, Neb soon learns that his past, present and future have always lain in the stars above.

It’s a rock and roll ride chock full of chaos, a formidable nemesis, drama, satire, humour, death and new beginnings, with revelations that Neb never saw coming.

Even John Lennon is amused!

Starting out on a quiet evening of star gazing, Nebula Yorker finds himself caught up in the most extraordinary time travel and planet saving adventure of a lifetime.

​And that’s only the beginning of what is to come.
Mark JG Fahey
Meet the Author:

Mark JG Fahey is not an alien, contrary to what you may have heard, though he swears he has been to space. Mark has dabbled in various undertakings throughout his illustrious career, from on-air hosting/reporter/stand-up comic to messenger for the Prime Minister of Canada. Mark also holds a degree in Restaurant Services. His family and friends can attest to his excellent cooking skills. Born in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Mark was raised and still resides in Aylmer, Quebec, Canada. Halley's Casino is the first book in the Halley's Casino trilogy.

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

Thursday, January 18, 2018

HERO (Book #1 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series)

HERO (Book #1 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series)
Hero (Book #1 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series) by Boyd TaylorBook Details:

Category:  Adult Fiction,  180 pages
Genre:   Political Suspense
Publisher:  Katherine Brown Press
Release date:  November 9, 2015
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Some slight cursing.)

Book Description:

When budding historian Donnie Ray Cuinn stumbles upon an old letter in the musty bowels of the Texas State Archives, he believes he has uncovered the true story of Sam Payne's valiant, or perhaps not so valiant, capture of Mexican leader Santa Anna during the Battle of San Jacinto. Cuinn's findings are published in a local magazine. But the article eventually becomes fodder in the gubernatorial race between Democratic upstart Bob Braeswood and Republican favorite Sam Eben Payne V, the great-great-grandson of the Texas hero. Braeswood is intent on exploiting the past, while Payne will do anything to suppress it. In the ensuing battle, Donnie finds his beliefs, not to mention his relationships, stretched to the limit in the first novel of the Donnie Ray Cuinn series.

Boyd Taylor
Meet the Author:

BOYD TAYLOR lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and their Havanese dog Toby. Necessities is the fourth novel in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series. In a former life, Boyd was a lawyer and a corporate officer. A native of Temple, Texas, he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in government and an LL.B. from the law school.

​Boyd's first novel "Hero" was prescient in its story about fake news. His second novel, "The Antelope Play," dealt with drug trafficking in the Texas Panhandle, an unfortunately accurate forecast. The third, "The Monkey House", involved commercial development of a large green space in the center of Austin, all too familiar to Austin residents. Whether his upcoming novel "Necessities" predicts future events with the accuracy of the earlier books remains to be seen.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Facebook

My Review
First off I want to let everyone know that I am reviewing this entire series so feel free to check out my other/upcoming reviews on the other books in this series. HERO (Book #1 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series) was the book that I began my foray into the Donnie Ray Cuinn series. 

Donnie Ray Cuinn is a historian who located an old letter in the Texas State Archives, which sheds some light on Sam Payne's capture of Mexican leader Santa Anna during the Battle of San Jacinto. What should have been a simple magazine publication about some new information about history instead becomes so much more due to politics. The Democratic candidate Bob Braeswood wants to use this bit of past to win. However, the Republican candidate Sam Eben Payne V, is in fact the great-great-grandson of the Texas hero; this causes him to want the history suppressed.  While the two try to battle it out Donnie Ray Cuinn ends up caught in the middle. Even with the events that were caused by his discover I liked that Donnie Ray Cuinn did not lose himself in the politics, but remained true to himself as he tried to figure out his own feelings, beliefs, and past.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Degrees of Love: A Novel by Lisa Slabach

Degrees of Love by Lisa Slabach

Book Details:

Book Title:  Degrees of Love: A Novel by Lisa Slabach
Category:  Adult Fiction, 344 pages
Genre:   Women's Fiction
Publisher:  Bookbaby
Release date:  Dec 1, 2017
Format available for review:  print & ebook (mobi, PDF, ePub & gifted Kindle copy)
Will send print books to: Internationally
Tour dates: Jan 3 to 31, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Adult themes including infidelity, occasional F-word, non-explicit sex scenes)

Book Description:

At thirty-six, Susan Sinclair has it all. She's just been promoted to Senior Vice President of Mobile Banking at her firm, a prestigious position bringing fresh creative challenges and a hefty salary increase. Like the shiny new BMW in the driveway of the Silicon Valley home she shares with her husband, Matt, and their two beautiful boys, Susan exudes confidence and style.

Yet despite her success in juggling the roles of wife, mother, and businesswoman, Susan struggles with a secret dissatisfaction. Matt's work in cutting-edge computer research pays less than her job, and with each advance in her career, he has grown more distant. But Matt refuses to admit there is a problem, and Susan forces herself to play along, determined to give her boys the close-knit family life she never had.

Then she meets her new boss, Reese Kirkpatrick. Working and traveling together, she and Reese become a crackerjack team, but little by little, pleasure mixes with business. For the first time in a long time—maybe ever—Susan feels seen and appreciated for who she is. Certain she would never allow their friendship to cross the line, Susan lets herself stray dangerously close to the edge.

​A moment of weakness changes everything. Now, unable to stomach the fa├žade her marriage has become yet unwilling to decimate her family by moving forward with Reese, Susan faces a choice that could cost her everything—including her children . . . but possibly bring her more than she can dream.

Praise for Degrees of Love:

"Slabach crafts a relatable, heartbreakingly real story that will no doubt resonate with those at a similar station in life: women who love their families yet yearn for just a little more—to feel wanted rather than needed, to feel passion rather than complacency. In engaging prose and through skillful storytelling, Slabach captivates with an all-too-familiar story that raises questions with no easy answers."
- Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

"This does not read like a debut author’s book. Slabach shows herself to be adept at portraying the complex emotions of the human condition. Her characters live and breathe on the page in a way that every author strives for, but few actually manage. Susan’s struggles ring true, and the way she handles everything makes her a very likable and relatable character."
- Sarah Perry, San Francisco Book Review, 5 Stars

"Profound, heart wrenching and very emotional, it is hard to believe that Degrees of Love is a debut novel by Lisa Slabach. This is one of the best novels I have read this year."
Rabia Tanveer, Readers' Favorite

Lisa Slabach
Meet the Author:

Degrees of Love is Lisa Slabach’s debut novel. She is currently working on her third full-length manuscript and a collection of short stories inspired by her experiences growing up in a small farm community in Washington’s Yakima Valley. In addition to writing, Lisa works for a Fortune 500 Company, leading a sales team in the financial industry. She currently resides in Northern California with her husband and has two daughters, who are both pursuing careers in film. In her free time, she enjoys drinking wine with friends and cooking in her pink kitchen.

Connect with the Author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~ Facebook

My Review
Degrees of Love: A Novel by Lisa Slabach was a well written women's fiction novel that had an interesting story. I really felt for Susan as she was in an impossible situation with a husband that seemed jealous of her success and a boss that truly appreciated her. I felt like the situation would have been easier to handle if not for the children as that left Susan having to decide not only what she wanted, but what would be best for her children as well.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018


Bestselling author and world-renowned chef David Lebovitz continues to mine the rich subject of his evolving ex-Pat life in Paris, using his perplexing experiences in apartment renovation as a launching point for stories about French culture, food, and what it means to revamp one's life. Includes dozens of new recipes.
When David Lebovitz began the project of updating his apartment in his adopted home city, he never imagined he would encounter so much inexplicable red tape while contending with the inconsistent European work ethic and hours. Lebovitz maintains his distinctive sense of humor with the help of his partner Romain, peppering this renovation story with recipes from his Paris kitchen. In the midst of it all, he reveals the adventure that accompanies carving out a place for yourself in a foreign country—under baffling conditions—while never losing sight of the magic that inspired him to move to the City of Light many years ago, and to truly make his home there.

My Review
L'Appart was a well written and interesting book that taught me a lot about Paris from multiple perspectives. My sister has always wanted to live there as a dream and this book proved very useful to her as well in educating her about the realities of actually living in Paris. I liked how it included both the good and the bad.

With Love, From Me to You By Dr. Mary Manz Simon

Book Description

With Love, From Me to You is a board book for little ones that will remind them how important it is to love and be loved. With adorable illustrations and sweet, rhyming text by bestselling author Dr. Mary Manz Simon, this book shows children how important their actions and words are in expressing God’s great love with one another. Parents will enjoy reading this book on Valentine’s Day or any day of the year to encourage their children to remember that love is more than gifts and candy; it’s about doing for others and sending love to everyone who’s near.

My Review
With Love, From Me to You By Dr. Mary Manz Simon was an very very cute book for kids about love. I loved how it was perfectly geared towards young children and it focused on different types of love. Like the love from God, Love from friends, and Love from parents. It really teaches about what love is and that love is not just gifts, but true feelings from the heart. The pictures were all very cute, the words were age appropriate, and the book would make a good practice reading book for young children!

A Journey to Yonder by Nidhi Kaur

Friday, January 12, 2018

Survivors' Dawn

Inside the Book

Author: Ashley Warren
Publisher: Chaparral Press LLC
Pages: 316
Genre: Contemporary Fiction / Women’s Fiction / New Adult Fiction
A heroic story of three college women’s fight for justice
At first glance, Brooke Flanagan, Lauren Le, and Nikki Towers have little in common: a churchgoing virgin, a party girl, and a resident advisor. But they all have their own dreams, dreams that can be shattered in a single night.
When freshman Brooke Flanagan first arrives at the university, she’s excited to escape her sheltered life in a Southern town. Lauren Le, a scholarship student, likes to have a good time, but she never disappoints her hardworking, single mom. Nikki Towers always goes her own way. Confident, poised, and wealthy, Nikki’s biggest problem is what to do with her future.
Into these girls’ lives walks Colin Jordan. Colin is the son of a private equity titan, captain of his club basketball team, and a brilliant pre-law student. He is also a sexual predator.
Survivors’ Dawn relates a journey of heroes: the strength, courage, and determination of the victims as they fight to survive; the obstacles they face in their pursuit of justice; and finally, with its conclusion, hope for a future where students can pursue their dreams without fear of being attacked.
A contemporary novel, Survivor’s Dawn wrestles with issues of privilege, sexual assault, and the responsibility of academic institutions to protect their students.



Meet the Author

The unending accounts of sexual assault on college campuses compelled me to write Survivors’ Dawn.
My goal in writing the novel was NOT to focus on the act itself, but instead, to write of the victim’s journey, to tell a story about the strength, courage, and determination of survivors, to describe the difficulties they face in their pursuit of justice, and finally, to offer hope for a future where students can pursue their dreams without fear of being attacked.
As Lady Gaga’s “Til It Happens to You” implies, non-victims can never truly know how it feels to be assaulted, but we can try to empathize, and we can try to help. Awareness is key to reducing the incidence of sexual assault on campus. Please do your part by taking the It’s On Us pledge and contributing to organizations that are fighting on the front lines.
Thank you to readers who give me encouragement. It means so much to me. Word of mouth is an incredible thing, so thank you also for telling your friends about Survivors’ Dawn.



My Review
Brooke Flanagan, Lauren Le, and Nikki Towers were easily my favorite characters and I loved how they all had different personalities. Yet, each girl also shared some similarities that made them interesting. I liked the way the author brought the lives of these young women together through a time of difficulty and how the young women grew into individuals throughout the novel. Overall, I greatly enjoyed the book even if I found some parts a bit disturbing. 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Double Take

Set in Chicago, 1975, Double-take is the story of artsy Rachel Cochrane, who returns from college with no job and confronts the recent death of Bando, one of her best friends. When she runs into Joey, a mutual friend, their conversations take them back into their shared past and to the revelation that Bando may have been murdered.

To find out who murdered him, Rachel is forced to revisit her stormy 1960s adolescence, a journey that brings her into contact with her old friends, her old self, and danger.

Surprising and haunting, this is an insightful reminiscence of a time of naivety, danger and renewal.

My Review

Rachel Cochrane and Joey's interactions felt very real and natural especially as they began to consider that their friend's death may have actually been a murder. The element of murder is what really made this book a great read as the author took two characters that would not normally be involved in a murder mystery and got them involved after their friend died and they began to think it was a murder not a normal death. Overall, it was a book that I ended up finishing in one day without taking any breaks!

Monday, January 8, 2018

The Knot Yours Truly

Your wedding day is a unique opportunity to show the world just who you are as a couple. The Knot Yours Truly helps you envision your celebration—from the big decisions like venue to the small stuff like escort cards—and show off your particular style. Chock-full of fresh ideas for your ceremony, centerpieces, wedding cake, The Knot’s Yours Truly also includes 20 craft projects for personalizing your day. From invitation embellishments to a macrame leash for your four-legged ring bearer, this book has everything you need for the most extraordinary day.

The Knot Yours Truly was a really neat book on wedding ideas. My wedding is likely years off, but I still found some ideas that I would love to incorporate when ever I do get married. I loved the idea of even having the dog involved in the wedding as it was a great idea that I had never thought of before! 

Friday, January 5, 2018

Good Girl's Guide to County Jail

Inside the Book

Author: Ellen Marie Francisco
Publisher: Scribbles and Ink Publishing / Friesen Press
Pages: 176
Genre: Nonfiction
Millions of viewers have made the television series “Orange is the New Black” a pop culture sensation, but Ellen Marie Francisco ( has no interest in watching it or reading the memoir, by Piper Kerman, which spawned the hit show.
Francisco has lived her own version of “Orange is the New Black,” an experience she refers to as “innocent in oranges.” “Oranges” is prison jargon for the orange jump suits worn by prisoners who have been charged but who have not yet been to trial, Francisco explains.
Francisco, an author and entrepreneur, describes her experience behind bars in her latest book, GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO COUNTY JAIL (FOR THE BAD GIRL IN US ALL). A gripping and candid tale of her journey through three California jails for women, GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO COUNTY JAIL ( also serves as a resource guide for navigating the legal thickets necessary to surviving what Francisco dubs the “Incarcer Nation”.
GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO COUNTY JAIL “is a call to action to remedy the lack of support for pre-sentenced women sitting in jails across America who are not educated enough to understand what they’re negotiating in the courtroom,” Francisco explains, “and for the women who don’t realize how close they already are to the courthouse steps.”
Francisco was arrested in 2013 in Lake Arrowhead, California and charged with carjacking, assault with a deadly weapon and robbery after an incident involving her impounded car. The charges were ultimately dropped, but not before Francisco had served nearly two months in three county jails. While locked up, she talked to hundreds of women “each on a different path without a definitive end, each living with the certain fear that they were not in control of their own lives.”
Those conversations became the nucleus of GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO COUNTY JAIL.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Friesen Press


Meet the Author

Canadian born Ellen Marie Francisco worked in feature film development and production in Toronto on Canadian Content film projects partially funded through Telefilm Canada in the ‘80s. She was transferred to Los Angeles in the early ‘90s to help expand the production company into Los Angeles. Her work in the entertainment industry continued for decades under a NAFTA Investor Visa in Los Angeles, and environs with her catering company Amazing Graze. Her resort community Real Estate business Cabin Ready operated to the point of her untimely arrest.
Francisco has also worked in the publishing industry. Along the way, she landed a job with writer Sidney Sheldon as a proofreader and fan mail response writer. That experience and her tenure in publishing helped shape her own voice.
Her work as a photographer in Toronto and California in the early ‘90s landed her backstage access to Cirque du Soleil and one of her first print credits. She has sold and/or shown photographic works in galleries on the Big Island of Hawaii, in Los Angeles and Toronto. The book is filled with her raw and captivating vector artwork, a visual storyboard to her harrowing journey through the “Incarcer Nation.”
Francisco is the adoptive mother of two children and a Chihuahua named Piglet. They currently reside in Ottawa, Ontario.
Her latest book is Good Girl’s Guide to County Jail.



My Review
GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO COUNTY JAIL (FOR THE BAD GIRL IN US ALL) was an interesting book for me to read as I never before thought about people who were in prison waiting for their day in court and had not been convicted yet. I kinda had this image of them just waiting in the jail cells at the police department for a day or so before their day in court. I had no idea that they were being thrown into prison without a conviction. There really should be a separate wing in prisons reserved for those who have not been convicted yet where they could have access to the resources they need prior to their day in court.