Monday, January 14, 2019

Blog Tour Review: In Dog We Trust by Beth Kendrick

Title: In Dog We Trust
Author: Beth Kendrick
Series: Book Five in the Black Dog Bay Series
Genre: Contemporary
Published By: Berkely Books (January 8, 2019)
Source: ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Book Description:
From the author of Once Upon a Wine, a new novel set in the charming seashore town of Black Dog Bay, Delaware.

When everything has gone to the dogs . . .

When Jocelyn Hillier is named legal guardian for the late Mr. Allardyce's pack of pedigreed Labrador retrievers, her world is flipped upside down. She's spent her entire life toiling in the tourism industry in Black Dog Bay and never expected to be living the pampered life of a seasonal resident in an ocean side mansion, complete with a generous stipend. But her new role isn't without its challenges: The dogs (although lovable) are more high-maintenance than any Hollywood diva, the man she wants to marry breaks her heart, and she's confronted at every turn by her late benefactor's estranged son, Liam, who thinks he's entitled to the inheritance left to the dogs.

Jocelyn has worked too hard to back down without a fight, and she's determined to keep her new fur family together. As she strives to uphold the "Best in Show" standards her pack requires, Jocelyn finds love, family, and forgiveness in the most unexpected places.

About the Author:

This is the part where I’m supposed to brag about all my illustrious accomplishments, but honestly, I’d rather talk about my dogs and brag about some of the things I haven’t done:

I’ve never been to prison*, court-ordered rehab*, or splashed across the cover of a salacious weekly gossip tabloid with my ladybits on display**.

I’m a Leo, a middle child, and a formidable Trivial Pursuit opponent. I read everything I can get my hands on, from the classics to comic books. I don’t drink coffee because, frankly, I’m high strung enough without adding caffeine into the mix. Here is the true story of how I became a novelist:

So I had just started seeing this guy, and on our second or third date, he invited me to be his guest at a family wedding. Being young and free and a bit commitment-shy, I was about to decline until he casually mentioned that the bride was a successful romance novelist. Well, the second I heard that, I had to go. Being a writer had always been my dream job, and I’d never met anyone who’d actually beaten the odds and made the leap into big-time publishing. So I RSVP-ed, sidled up to the bar at the reception, waited until the bride and all her author friends uncorked the good champagne, and then peppered them with endless questions about writing, editing, and landing an agent. They were so funny and encouraging and generous with their time and advice. (And drunk!) Next thing you know, I had joined a critique group and was knee-deep in the manuscript that would eventually become MY FAVORITE MISTAKE. The open bar at that wedding changed my life forever.

Oh, and the guy who invited me to the wedding? I ended up marrying him. All together: awww…

I live in Arizona in a very cute fixer-upper that my husband and I bought in a burst of can-do, pioneering confidence. We thought it would be fun to embark on a series of do-it-yourself renovations. Yeah. I know. Turns out, replacing baseboard that’s been painted over 15 times since 1958 is not as easy as those Home Depot commercials would lead you to believe. Also, freshly-installed lawn drip systems and “helpful” dogs are a bad mix.

Friday and RoxieSpeaking of dogs, here we have the indefatigable canine lawn maintenance crew: Roxie and Friday. Both were rescued from the pound when they were puppies. I think they’re Rhodesian Ridgeback mixes. (Probably. Maybe? Anything’s possible.) Roxie is the brains of the operation and Friday is…well, he’s very sweet. And so indolent he could be mistaken for a piece of furniture, which I consider a very desirable trait in a family dog.

I absolutely love hearing from readers, so please feel free to email me, with the caveat that I am often on deadline/on the road/on the ragged edge of sanity, so it may be awhile before you get a reply. Just know that it’s not you; it’s me!

Have fun exploring the site, and if you have any questions about my new book, my backlist, or finding an agent…I’ll be right over there at the bar.


**That I know of.

This was my first Kendrick read and it certainly won't be my last.

From the quirky lovable town right down to the likable and fun characters, this story was just so much fun.

With a town every bit as lovable as the characters, it is definitely a place you wish you could visit if not live there too. 

A sweet lighthearted story that will grab your attention and leave you with a smile on your face, In Dog We Trust was just what I needed for a quick weekend read in front of the fireplace to warm me both in body and spirit.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Blog Tour Review: The Au Pair by Emma Rous

I'm so excited to be sharing this book with you today. It totally took me by surprise and I honestly loved every minute of it! 

If you are looking for a good mystery with a touch of that thrilling element that will make your heart pound and your blood pulse in your ears, this is a must. 

Title: The Au Pair
Author: Emma Rous
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Published By: Berkley Books (January 8, 2019)
Source: ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Book Description:
A grand estate, terrible secrets, and a young woman who bears witness to it all. If V. C. Andrews and Kate Morton had a literary love child, Emma Rous’ The Au Pair would be it.

Seraphine Mayes and her twin brother Danny were born in the middle of summer at their family’s estate on the Norfolk coast. Within hours of their birth, their mother threw herself from the cliffs, the au pair fled, and the village thrilled with whispers of dark cloaks, changelings, and the aloof couple who drew a young nanny into their inner circle.

Now an adult, Seraphine mourns the recent death of her father. While going through his belongings, she uncovers a family photograph that raises dangerous questions. It was taken on the day the twins were born, and in the photo, their mother, surrounded by her husband and her young son, is beautifully dressed, smiling serenely, and holding just one baby.

Who is the child and what really happened that day?

One person knows the truth, if only Seraphine can find her.

About the Author:

Emma Rous grew up in England, Indonesia, Kuwait, Portugal and Fiji, and from a young age she had two ambitions: to write stories, and to look after animals. She studied veterinary medicine and zoology at the University of Cambridge, and worked as a veterinary surgeon for eighteen years before starting to write fiction. Emma lives in Cambridgeshire, England, with her husband and three sons.

The Au Pair is her first novel. It will be published in ten countries, in nine languages. She is currently writing her second book.

I'm not ashamed to admit it's been awhile since I've been this excited to try not only a new author, but to start a mystery that sounded so compelling.

I was right to be excited about both. 

I. Could. Not. Put. This. Down. 

Every bit the page turner that the synopsis promised to be, it was tantalizing, intriguing, thought provoking and irresistible. I needed to know all the details of both the past and the present. In Short, I just needed it all.

The Au Pair was well written and flowed seamlessly through both the past and the present and each was just as entertaining and intriguing as the last. 
As the chapters went on and more and more of the mystery unfolded, I found that I was constantly guessing what was about to happen next and wondering if I was right about who exactly the twins were and in some instances, hoping I was wrong. 

With twists and turns that kept me on my toes and on constantly on edge, this truly has been one of my favorite mystery reads of 2019 and one I won't be forgetting soon.