Girl Out of Water by Laura Silverman

Are you ready? On a scale of one to twenty cups of coffee in about five minutes, how ready are you for this review? Because I’m, like, forty cups of coffee ready. I’ve been waiting for this review for months, and now that the release date for Girl Out of Water is next week {!!!!!!!}, I can finally put this review up.

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Title: Girl Out of Water {320 pgs}

Genre: Young Adult

Publication Date: May 2, 2017

Summary:

Anise Sawyer plans to spend every minute of summer with her friends: surfing, chowing down on fish tacos drizzled with wasabi balsamic vinegar, and throwing bonfires that blaze until dawn. But when a serious car wreck leaves her aunt, a single mother of three, with two broken legs, it forces Anise to say goodbye for the first time to Santa Cruz, the waves, her friends, and even a kindling romance, and fly with her dad to Nebraska for the entire summer. Living in Nebraska isn’t easy. Anise spends her days caring for her three younger cousins in the childhood home of her runaway mom, a wild figure who’s been flickering in and out of her life since birth, appearing for weeks at a time and then disappearing again for months, or even years, without a word.

Complicating matters is Lincoln, a one-armed, charismatic skater who pushes Anise to trade her surfboard for a skateboard. As Anise draws closer to Lincoln and takes on the full burden and joy of her cousins, she loses touch with her friends back home – leading her to one terrifying question: will she turn out just like her mom and spend her life leaving behind the ones she loves?

Quick background: last autumn {gosh, a lot of terrible things happened around October and November of last year; hm, I wonder why?}, the author, Laura Silverman, was getting harassed on Twitter and Goodreads because she has the audacity to be a woman and Jewish {????? like, really, I don’t understand humans sometimes}. So a bunch of people went on Goodreads and gave her book five stars because the trolls were giving it one star and being, you know, generally trolly.

I’m thrilled to say that I didn’t have to change my five star review after I read it.

Let’s start with Anise. Anise. Anise. Can a fictional teenage girl be my role model? Not only is she a super awesome surfer who can probably catch thirty foot waves better than I can walk, but she’s also super family-oriented. After she has her entire summer planned out {including hooking up with her very cute best friend Eric}, her dad announces that they’ll be spending those three months in Nebraska, helping her aunt recover from a bad car accident. Instead of throwing a tantrum and sitting sullenly next to her dad on the airplane {for reals, I’ve had enough of those characters for the rest of my life}, Anise grieves for her lost summer, but, with a mother that pops in and out of her life, she understands that family comes first.

Look, as a former teenager who spent a lot of her time telling her friends that she couldn’t go out because she had to spend time with her baby cousin and nephew, it’s nice to connect so hard with a character.

Besides, it’s not like Nebraska is a total waste, of course. Where would the fun be in that? Anise’s Aunt Jackie lives in her parents’ old house, filled with memories of Anise’s mostly absent mother, even if those memories seem to be infused in the walls and air instead of out in the open. Anise’s cousins, Parker, Nash, and Emery, are totally awesome. The nine-year-old twins are a handful, obviously, and Emery, at twelve {“almost thirteen”}, is a typical preteen, complete with mood swings and causing people to walk on eggshells around her. But in their own ways, they help Anise settle into Nebraska. Emery gives her a friend when Anise is missing hers, and the twins introduce her to skateboarding, which also comes with the delicious side of Lincoln.

Not the capital of Nebraska. Lincoln, he of the gorgeous abs and sweet dimple. Oh, and one arm. But mostly abs and dimple.

Lincoln pushes Anise in skateboarding, because he knows she misses surfing and her friends and her home and the entire western seaboard. Also, he quickly understands how competitive she is, and he makes her happy with his constant games and contests. He makes her laugh when she thinks she can’t, and he brings a bit more light into her world whenever she’s messing up. But then she realizes that she’s kind of forgetting her friends in the process of making new ones, and it’s the same refrain we use for everything we forget: oh, I’ll do it tomorrow. But can Anise really put off texting Tess, her best friend since before they could walk, until tomorrow? What about Cassie and Marie, one off to boot camp and the other off to college at the end of the summer? Or Spinner, the sweetest nerd you’ll ever meet? And what about Eric?

Look, I could tell you the entire plot of this book right now, but I’m sure you wouldn’t appreciate my writing as well as Laura Silverman’s. The characters are brought to life in a few lines, and you find yourself wanting to reach into the pages and helping Anise, because that’s how real she feels. Even though Laura Silverman says she’s never surfed and only tried skateboarding once, she writes about these sports with such fluidity and warmth that I wouldn’t be surprised if she came out and said, just kidding! I’m the surfing/skateboarding champion of the world!

I mean, it could be a thing.

This book comes at the best time, because the weather is beginning to warm up {in Southern California, at least, I’m not entire sure about where everyone else is} and reading this had me itching to pull on a bathing suit or sit outside at night to read. So when you finally get your hot little hands on this book, pull out your favorite drink, grab a chair {preferably outside}, put on some summer music {honestly, I listened to a lot of The Ataris while reading this, so now you all know that I’m ancient}, and settle in. This is going to be your new favorite book of the summer, and I hope that you fall as head over heels in love with all the characters as I did.

The Witchfinder’s Sister by Beth Underdown

Ahhhh Tuesday. There’s really only one good thing about Tuesday: it’s book day! I can walk into any bookstore right now and there will be shiny, new books staring back at me. I always like reviewing books on their birthday, and today is no exception!

 

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Title: The Witchfinder’s Sister {304 pgs}

Genre: Historical Fiction

Publication Date: April 25, 2017

Summary:

The number of women my brother Matthew killed, so far as I can reckon it, is one hundred and six…

1645. When Alice Hopkins’ husband dies in a tragic accident, she returns to the small Essex town of Manningtree, where her brother Matthew still lives.

But home is no longer a place of safety. Matthew has changed, and there are rumours spreading through the town: whispers of witchcraft, and of a great book, in which he is gathering women’s names.

To what lengths will Matthew’s obsession drive him?
And what choice will Alice make, when she finds herself at the very heart of his plan?

While scrolling through NetGalley, I landed on this title and, well. I don’t need to tell you that a book about the witch hunts in England in the 1600s is right up my alley {do I need to remind everyone about my weird obsession with witches?}. Then I saw the last name Hopkins and I jumped on it, keeping my fingers and toes crossed that I would be lucky enough to receive a galley.

Now you’re the lucky ones, right?

In case you’re sitting there wondering who the heck Matthew Hopkins is, let me give you a tiny history lesson. Back in the 1640s, witch hunting became super cool, apparently. I like to think it was a bunch of men who had been rejected by certain women and then something bad happened in these men’s lives and, bam! Witch hunting. Matthew Hopkins began his witch hunting around March 1644, and he was relentless for about three years, when he retired {!!!!} in 1647. It’s reported that he was responsible for about 300 women being sent to their deaths, more “witches” than anyone else in the hundred years prior. My favorite part of Matthew Hopkins is that he claimed the title “Witchfinder General,” but Parliament never gave it to him. So this guy was just wandering around telling everyone that he was the Witchfinder General and Parliament was probably rolling their eyes at him. That’s what I like to think.

In The Witchfinder’s Sister, we’re introduced to Alice, Matthew’s older half-sister. After her husband’s death, Alice returns home from London, only to find her brother, once shy and quiet, at the center of attention with his witch hunting expeditions. Many women in their town have been accused, but there’s only one that Alice truly cares about, one that hasn’t had Matthew’s accusation flung at her, yet: Bridget, Alice’s husband’s mother and their old servant. After Matthew as burned as a child, Bridget had been dismissed, but even that remains a mystery, because what if it wasn’t Bridget that burned the child?

But this is only one problem that Alice walks into. Now she has to deal with her brother’s frigid attitude, his secrets that he guards fanatically, and a servant who seems more attached to Matthew than humanly possible. Then, as if losing her husband and a possible baby in one fell swoop isn’t enough, Matthew forces Alice to come with him to question the accused witches. Alice is subjected to watching these women say whatever they can to get out of the torture that is soon to follow. But what happens when Matthew steps out of his supportive bubble and tries to reach further than he should?

I thought this was a really ingenious way to show witch hunting without the main character being the hunter or the hunted. Alice is not biased, but she does have a hard time trying to reconcile her brother’s new work with the boy that she used to know. But the reader is able to see the interviews and the trials that these women went through without being influenced by either of the main parties. We know this is terrible, we understand that Matthew is a big fat jerk, but we get a more in depth look at the way men “found out” witches.

If you want an even more in depth look {maybe you’re weird like me}, then maybe pick up The Discovery of Witches by none other than Matthew Hopkins himself. I read it in college and was horrified by the questions he asks and the trials he sets forth for these women. I kept it next to me while reading this book, and the sheer research Beth Underdown did must have been exhausting. She really captured the frenzy of that time and the way the men – and some women – cut their eyes at the women who had slighted them. But what I loved most of all was how Alice, stuck in this situation, never gave up hope. At some points, she knew that getting away from Matthew would prove to be impossible, but she had such hope for Bridget and Rebecca West, a young woman accused. Until the bitter end, Alice had hope that this frenzy would die out and all of the accused would be able to go back to their lives, and that was more inspiring than anything, even if you were shaking your head sadly at her the entire time.

I guess I could have summed this all up by saying this was one of my favorite books of the year so far, and I’m so excited for everyone to read it because it’s really good and it’ll make you super angry. I also think the last line of the book is one of the best I’ve read in a long time. It made me gasp out loud and then laugh, because there’s nothing else you can do. Buuuut…I wouldn’t mind a sequel to this, after that last line. Just throwing it out there.

The Shadow Land by Elizabeth Kostova

Welcome back everyone! Last week got kind of crazy in the mornings, so this review had to wait until today. But I’ll have one more {maybe two, if I finish the book in time} this week, so no worries. Book loving is coming back in full force this week.

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Title: The Shadow Land {496 pgs}

Genre: Mystery

Publication Date: April 11, 2017

Summary:

A young American woman, Alexandra Boyd, has traveled to Sofia, Bulgaria, hoping that life abroad will salve the wounds left by the loss of her beloved brother. Soon after arriving in this elegant East European city, however, she helps an elderly couple into a taxi and realizes too late that she has accidentally kept one of their bags. Inside she finds an ornately carved wooden box engraved with a name: Stoyan Lazarov. Raising the hinged lid, she discovers that she is holding an urn filled with human ashes.

As Alexandra sets out to locate the family and return this precious item, she will first have to uncover the secrets of a talented musician who was shattered by oppression and she will find out all too quickly that this knowledge is fraught with its own danger.

Elizabeth Kostova’s first book, The Historian, fell into my hands more than a decade ago, and since then, I’ve been in love with everything she does. She deftly combines history and the present in a way that makes me want to learn everything I can about what she’s writing about. The Shadow Land was no exception.

Alexandra arrives in Bulgaria a month before her teaching post, so she can acclimate herself to the new land and distance herself from the untimely death of her brother, a death that has hung about her neck like an albatross. Her first day in Sofia, however, she ends up with a small suitcase that does not belong to her, a case which holds the ashes of one Stoyan Lazarov. She meets Bobby, a taxi driver with his own private past and a penchant for protesting, especially against Kurilkov, the front-runner for prime minister of Bulgaria based on his “no corruption” campaign. Together, Alexandra and Bobby travel through Bulgaria in order to find the Lazarovi family so they can return the ashes. But finding them is an adventure all its own.

If you’ve ever read any Elizabeth Kostova books, then you know the plot unfolds slowly, with plenty of history and backstory to give the reader the proper sense of weight for this adventure. This story may have revolved around Alexandra, but it was also Stoyan’s story, his life and the hardships he had to endure because of one chance encounter. Stoyan reveals his life at work camps after World War II, how he learned to survive by dreaming of a son he never had and practicing his violin in his head. His journal tells stories about the other workers, the men who kept Stoyan alive, about the soldiers who worked them to death and their lack of compassion for the skeletons, as Stoyan calls themselves.

One of the aspects of this novel that made me cheer out loud was that Alexandra and Bobby were just friends. That’s right, a man and a woman on an adventure in beautiful Bulgaria…were just friends. Of course, there’s a reason for that, but I loved their friendship so much. They had only known each other for a few days before you could tell that they cared deeply for one another. Theirs was a kind of adventure that could cement a friendship for life.

Bobby was fun, always keeping the mood upbeat and trying to help Alexandra even when their lives were in danger. Alexandra was kind of fanciful, a young woman stuck slightly in a moment of adolescence that she desperately wanted out of. The people they met on the way – Baba Yano, Milen Radev, Neven – were full of life of their own, quirks either covered or exacerbated by age and the lives they had led.

Oh, and Bulgaria. I’ve never been interested in Bulgaria, but after reading the descriptions of Elizabeth Kostova, it’s on my list now. And she didn’t confine herself to the beauty of the country, but made sure to include every kind of nook and cranny. Bobby was a great history teacher, too, giving us tidbits of information about his country as they drove around searching for the Lazarovi’s.

If I had a complaint, it would be the end, but that’s because I’m insane and require an immense amount of revenge. It was a fantastic ending, pretty satisfying, but after reading Stoyan’s story, I wanted more. I can’t go into it because of spoilers, but let’s just say that if there had been some kind of medieval torture device brought out, I would have been happy.

Still, if you love a good mystery and lush writing, then you should definitely pick up The Shadow Land. A warning, though: once you pick this up, then you’re going to have to go get The Historian and The Swan Thieves.

You’re welcome.

The Takedown by Corrie Wang

It’s my birthday week, and instead of figuring out what I want, I’ve been reading some really great books that have all but distracted me. Yesterday was If We Were Villains {one of my new favorites}, and today is The Takedown.

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Title: The Takedown {384 pgs}

Genre: Young Adult

Publication Date: April 11, 2017

Summary:

Kyla Cheng doesn’t expect you to like her. For the record, she doesn’t need you to. On track to be valedictorian, she’s president of her community club, a debate team champ, plus the yummy Mackenzie Rodriguez has firmly attached himself to her hip. She and her three high-powered best friends don’t just own their senior year at their exclusive Park Slope, Brooklyn high school, they practically define the hated species Popular. Kyla’s even managed to make it through high school completely unscathed.

Until someone takes issue with this arrangement.

A week before college applications are due, a video of Kyla “doing it” with her crush-worthy English teacher is uploaded to her school’s website. It instantly goes viral, but here’s the thing: it’s not Kyla in the video. With time running out, Kyla delves into a world of hackers, haters and creepy stalkers in an attempt to do the impossible-take something off the internet-all while dealing with the fallout from her own karmic footprint. Set in near-future Brooklyn, where privacy is a bygone luxury and every perfect profile masks damning secrets, The Takedown is a stylish, propulsive, and provocative whodunit, asking who would you rely on if your tech turned against you?

So, I reread that summary and I must have missed the near-future part because I was thrown into a world where tech is the new god and everyone is connected, whether they like it or not.

Kyla – or Kyle, as her friends call her – is practically perfect in every way, and maybe that’s why – she believes – a person uploaded a fake video of her having sex with the hot, young teacher at her school. Suddenly, her entire life falls apart: her best friend doesn’t believe Kyle when she says it’s not her on the video; the boy she’s not hooking up with but wishes she was turns his back on her; her mother’s long held {and long repressed} dislike of her daughter comes flying out. But Kyla refuses to take this sitting down. Instead, she dives into a new world and struggles to find her hater, and she plans on bringing him or her down.

Right up front, there’s only one or two truly likeable characters in this book, and Kyla is not one of them. You feel terrible for her, sure, but you find yourself agreeing with her when she says there are lots of people out there who don’t like her, because you get it. She ditched her long-time best friend Ailey for three new popular ones, and never looked back. She’s kind of a bitch, even though, at points, she deserves to be. But I guess it’s her friendship with Audra that really seals the deal on not liking her. Audra is self-absorbed and rude, and even though she fights with Kyla while crying or hurting, she still fights for some completely insane reasons. She keeps Kyla in the dark about her biggest secret and then blames in on Kyla, saying that she wouldn’t understand, even though Audra didn’t give her a chance.

This is all to say, Corrie Wang wrote teenage girls pretty effectively.

Yes, these girls can be considered shallow and mean, but guess what? Not all girls are sweet and kind, the type that can be found in most YA novels. I’m not saying that those girls are boring, but it’s nice sometimes to read about a girl who is completely aware of how rude and mean she is. Kyla knows that someone put this video out there because they hate her, and she understands. She knows that she’s been pretty terrible to some people, but she always knows that she’s a good person, and that no one deserves this.

The most realistic part of this book was the ending. I’m not going to give everything away, but when Kyla finally meets her hater face to face, the hater is not exactly repentant. By the way, not only did this hater post the video on everything, but this person also messed with Kyla’s college applications and tried to ruin her friendships with everyone around her. Like, no. I was expecting some kind of apology or satisfying slap or something, but Kyla just kind of…walks away. And I get it. This person had issues, and Kyla couldn’t solve them. Kyla got what she wanted, and she also knew the point where she should just walk away.

Still. One little slap couldn’t have hurt.

This was a super fun, pretty quick read that got me thinking about how much I’m on social media. Kyla lives in a world where the internet knows everything about you, and you don’t even have to be friends with someone for them to know who you are. For example, someone could take a picture and I’d be in the background, and the wonderful service that everyone uses would tag me, because it would recognize my face. That’s terrifying. I take social media for granted sometimes, because all I post about are books and my animals, but is that enough? Is that enough for something, sometime, somewhere, to bite me in the butt? Just how private is my life, really? Or any of our lives? God, I hope this book stays firmly in the fiction lane.

If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

Have I mentioned what a pain in the butt reading with a cold can be? I have? Well, then this is just here to remind you that it is, indeed, a HUGE pain in the butt. Especially when you’re unsure if it’s allergies or a cold, and your body isn’t a big help. But that’s okay, because I had this fantastic book to keep me company.

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Title: If We Were Villains {352 pgs}

Genre: Mystery

Publication Date: April 11, 2017

Summary: {from Goodreads}

Enter the players. There were seven of us then, seven bright young things with wide precious futures ahead of us. Until that year, we saw no further than the books in front of our faces.

On the day Oliver Marks is released from jail, the man who put him there is waiting at the door. Detective Colborne wants to know the truth, and after ten years, Oliver is finally ready to tell it.

Ten years ago: Oliver is one of seven young Shakespearean actors at Dellecher Classical Conservatory, a place of keen ambition and fierce competition. In this secluded world of firelight and leather-bound books, Oliver and his friends play the same roles onstage and off: hero, villain, tyrant, temptress, ingénue, extra. But in their fourth and final year, the balance of power begins to shift, good-natured rivalries turn ugly, and on opening night real violence invades the students’ world of make believe. In the morning, the fourth-years find themselves facing their very own tragedy, and their greatest acting challenge yet: convincing the police, each other, and themselves that they are innocent.

Part coming-of-age story, part confession, If We Were Villains explores the magical and dangerous boundary between art and life. In this tale of loyalty and betrayal, madness and ecstasy, the players must choose what roles to play before the curtain falls.

First off, that cover. I’ve been seeing it everywhere for the last couple of months {I follow the author on Tumblr, and everyone is pretty excited about this book} and I’m salivating just looking at it. Second of all, this is a story that English and drama majors both dream about, and M.L. Rio gives voice to all those dreams. Third of all, any book that has an atmosphere that reminds me of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History is sure to be one of my favorites for the rest of my life.

Let’s go back to 1997 and head to Dellecher Classical Conservatory, an alternative college where actors, philosophers, dancers, musicians, and a horde of other artists can grow to be their best selves. Oliver, James, Alexander, Richard, Wren, Filippa, and Meredith are in their final year, best of friends who speak in their own special language {mostly Shakespeare quotes}, yet they’ve grown accustomed to playing the same kinds of characters. When their worlds are shaken up a bit, these seven are thrown into chaos and must either learn to live with their lot or change the story.

So, we know from the very beginning that it’s 2007 and Oliver is being released from prison. For what, that’s not entirely clear. But he takes us back to his time at Dellecher, explaining his story to retired detective Joseph Colborne, the man who has been trying to figure out the true story of one night that changed the seven forever.

M.L. Rio gives us hints and teases about what happened that night, and the reader is usually left with this overwhelming sense of knowing what happened, but without actually knowing. I think I guessed the ending somewhere in the back middle, but I couldn’t believe it because I didn’t want to think that this character could be so…Not stupid, but so…good. The twists and turns are subtle, and you could miss them if you’re looking elsewhere.

Without spoiling too much, let’s say that this ending made me realize why some authors prefer not to write sequels. I guess that’s my way of saying I hope there isn’t a sequel to this, because the author gave us a good idea of where Oliver is going, but I like imagining him sitting somewhere sandy, happy and content, maybe with someone. But this ending {compared to the other ending; weird, but you’ll get it when you read it} was beautiful and hopeful, and it made mucking through the dark and dirty parts feel worth it. It was a smack in the face because I had not been expecting it, not after certain other things were revealed to Oliver {oh, how my heart broke for this poor man}.

I’d tell you to go out tomorrow and get yourself a copy, but I’m most likely going to be at the bookstore procuring my own copy, so I can just tell you there. Because you better be there, getting yourself a copy of this. It’s beautiful and dark and luscious and the characters are people you actually know, and it’s the book that made me fall back in love with Shakespeare, a man I’ve pretended to only be indifferent over for the last twenty-odd years. Maybe you should pick up a few of his plays, too, just to be safe.

Bookstores are dangerous.

Abandoned by Lyz Kelley

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Hey everyone! This was supposed to be up yesterday, but I messed up the publishing time because that’s just who I am this week. But it’s here today, and thank goodness it is, because I want to continue with the awesomeness of this series!

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Title: Abandoned by Lyz Kelley (An Elkridge Series Novel)

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: 4th April 2017

Synopsis


LIFE DOESN’T EVER GO AS PLANNED, BUT CAN BE BETTER THAN IMAGINED.

Her mother’s death. His PTSD. A combustible relationship. 


A CAREGIVER WHO NEEDS TO MAKE A PLAN, AND FAST…

Ashley Bryant has less than five weeks to organize, sell, and pack away her old life before she’s uprooted and forced into a completely new one. She needs to make several critical decisions, and with her life upended and spiraling out of control, the last thing Ashley needs is a sexy U.S. Marine complicating matters.
A MARINE WHO HAD A PLAN BUT HAS LOST HIS WAY…

Gunnery Sergeant Chase Daniels has just buried his best friend, and his commanding officer has given him a month to commit to either retiring or returning to active duty. Struggling with PTSD, fatigue, and grief, he stumbles into Elkridge, a quiet Colorado mountain town, to figure out his future.
With their lives in upheaval, Ashley and Chase have a lot in common, but the last thing each needs are more complications—like their instant attraction to each other.
The ELKRIDGE SERIES is a set of steamy contemporary romance novels about wounded women and the men who heal them.  If you like heartfelt characters, deep topics with powerful emotional cores, and happy endings, then you’ll love Lyz Kelley’s incredible tales of strength, love, and survival. 
The third, full-length novel in the series, ABANDONED continues to give you a peek into the day-to-day lives of the town characters, and drops clues about Sheriff Sam’s murder.

Buy The Bookhttps://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/15b1bc01d5fcadc9

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I might tell people that I’m not one for romance books, but I’m a big, fat liar. I love romance books, mainly because I know that things will {most likely} end up happy between the two main characters. After reading so many stories where characters struggle and suffer and still end up unhappy, the Elkridge Series books are a breath of fresh air.

Ashley and Chase are hot. Like, there is no other word for them. From the moment they meet, there is chemistry and a spark and an entire inferno, to be honest. They’re both damaged – both by the Marines, really – and they’re trying to find a semblance of normalcy in their lives. But with Ashley finally learning how to become the adult her mother never prepared her for and Chase deciding what to do with the rest of his life, can these two really make a life for themselves?

What I love most about this book was the short burst of love followed by the sobering realization at what they did {or almost did}. Ashley and Chase are trying to make each other happy while making themselves happy, and sometimes those two things don’t quite match up, or so they believe. So the hot times are quick and fiery, and then one of them turns cold awfully quick. But they’ve only known each other for a little while, so this kind of real interaction was so lovely to see in a romance.

Basically, I love this book and I love this series and I can’t wait to devour more.

 

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Meet the Author

Award-winning, contemporary romance author Lyz Kelley lives in a small community in Colorado with her husband and several four-legged family members. Lyz writes about brave women who have faced extraordinary challenges, and the honorable men who have an enormous capacity to love, even if they may not know it.

A healing love is at the heart of her book series. Creating wounded yet amazing characters—discovering what drives them, frightens them, heals them, makes them laugh—is what gives her joy. Lyz is pleased to share that joy through her masterfully written stories.

To keep tabs on her award-winning novels, connect with Lyz by signing up for her newsletter at LyzKelley.com. Also visit LyzKelleysHeroes.com to join Kelley’s Heroes, Lyz’s VIP club. Members receive an exclusive copy of A Soldier’s Wife, learn about thoughtful giveaways, and get a sneak peek at upcoming releases. Members may even get the opportunity to receive advanced reader copies. Check out LyzKelley.com for more information.


Website: www.LyzKelley.com

Newsletter Sign Up: www.LyzKelley.com

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Why would I want to read the Elkridge Series?  Each book in the Elkridge series is a piece to a puzzle—a suspenseful mystery involving the murder of a small-town sheriff. You get six contemporary romance books to figure out the mystery and a bunch of happy ever after (HEA) endings. Two novels in this fiction series—Blinded and Orphaned—are award-winning romance books.

 

Where is Elkridge, Colorado?  Elkridge exists only in my mind. On any given day, I can stop at River Creek Café for Jenna’s fresh baked cinnamon rolls, or shop for a birthday present at Mara’s Blooms, or get my nails done at Kym’s nail salon. Sitting in the park eating lunch, I can watch the kids play and hear the latest gossip from neighbors. Later, if I want, I can stop at Mad Jack’s to hear a local band play and get some dinner. Elkridge is a great small town where the sun shines 360 days a year and people do their best to make ends meet.

 

Would you tell us about your writing process?  It takes me awhile to write each stand-alone story because I am passionate about creating the very best stories for my readers. These contemporary romance books have complex plots and sub-plots and include suspense romance threads, with deep emotional women’s fiction elements, humor and even a bit of quirkiness. I’m so excited to see the 5-star ratings because it means I’ve created the ideal mix to provide readers with a few hours of enjoyment.
Giveaway
http://geni.us/LyzKelleyElkridgePage

 

ABANDONED: Frequently Asked Questions: (FAQ)

 

Sheriff Joe shows up in ABANDONED several times. Does this mean there are more clues as to who (OR WHOM?) murdered Sheriff Sam?

Absolutely. Joe is still trying to catch a killer, but he’s not the only character presenting clues in this book.  Don’t forget, I’ve slipped in a few red herrings to keep you guessing.

 

I was surprised to see a poem in this book. What inspired you to add it?

I’ve been writing poetry for years. The challenge was to create a poem that Chase’s character would write—something corny, simple, and amateurish. I didn’t want the poem to look like it could be a Pulitzer winner—thus you have Chase’s love poem to Ashley.

 

Where did the inspiration for Ashley’s father come from?

My father was a Marine. My brother was in the Navy. My husband was in the Air Bourne.  I have friends that have served in both the Army and Air Force. Basically, I respect those in the military for their sacrifices and challenges. While I know many military families move  as their assignments change, I’ve had two friends in my life where a military parent has chosen to create a stable base for their spouse and kids, and return home whenever possible. This type of arrangement is unusual, but it does happen. I wanted to explore the family structure and how each person must live with the sacrifice.

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Other Books in The Series

book-cover

Blinded – Buy Herehttps://www.amazon.co.uk/BLINDED-Elkridge-Lyz-Kelley-ebook/dp/B01N4AP1US/ref=sr_1_1?tag=geo01-21&ie=UTF8&qid=1481054497&sr=8-1&keywords=Lyz+Kelley

 

Spurned Cover

Spurned – Buy Herehttps://www.amazon.co.uk/SPURNED-Elkridge-Book-2-novella-ebook/dp/B01N4QXGV6/ref=la_B01N4AYJUL_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1490796541&sr=1-2