Saturday, June 25, 2016

Aloha to Diane Kelly and AGAINST THE PAW (Paw Enforcement) - Book Review

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Reminder: I have a special giveaway to celebrate June at this link.

Police officer Megan Luz and her K-9 partner are on the lookout for a convict who has been unleashed. . .

PAW PATROL IS ON THE CASE
Megan has her sights set on finding a convicted burglar who’s broken his parole, and she has the perfect partner to help sniff him out. Unfortunately, her shepherd-mix Brigit’s dog bowl is already full. A Peeping Tom has been spotted in an affluent Fort Worth neighborhood―and concerned citizens are looking for a few good watchdogs…

TO COLLAR A CRIMINAL
To catch the creep, residents start enlisting volunteers to beef up their Neighborhood Watch group. Which is fine with Megan. She needs to focus on catching a burglar who’s still at large. But when the Peeping Tom patrol grows into a virtual vigilante mob, Megan and Brigit have to jump in paws first―before some very angry people take the law into their own hands…

Against the Paw is the fourth installment in Diane Kelly's Paw Enforcement series.




Dogs are miracles with paws. ~Attributed to Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy

AGAINST THE PAW falls somewhere in between with cozy mystery and romantic suspense by following Megan on patrol with Brigit by her side, smelling for the liver treats in her pocket.  Megan is a capable officer looking to advance herself to detective. Brigit is just looking for her next meal although she relishes the opportunity to sniff out the suspects. The action unfolds from three perspectives - Megan's, Brigit's, and the unknown suspect referred to as Peeping Tom.  Megan wants to protect women from the Peeping Tom who is growing more aggressive with each incident in an affluent suburb of Fort Worth.  It is clear that Megan is the brains and Brigit the brawn as they defuse a vigilante neighborhood watch, combat sexism with the police force, and search for a parolee on the run.  

The beauty of AGAINST THE PAW is Megan's "can do" attitude - she's overcome a childhood stutter; she transitions from a twirling baton to police baton with ease; and she sees through an Army veteran's PTSD to help him realize his own self worth.  The mystery of the Peeping Tom kept my attention ... I almost didn't want Megan to catch him so the book would not end. AGAINST THE PAW was heart warming, heart wrenching, and heart felt as Megan strengthens her relationship with Seth, fine tunes her skills as a police officer, and survives putting Brigit on a diet. 

AGAINST THE PAW is Book Four in the Paw Enforcement series.  Kelly provides enough back story for readers to jump into the series with any book - I enjoyed them all! 

Recommended read for fans of a heroine with flaws, a hero with baggage, and a dog with an endless appetite.

I purchased a copy of AGAINST THE PAW.



I am giving a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway,

1. Leave a comment about your favorite four legged friend - canine, feline, feather, or gills.  We are home to four rescued cats, three which adopted us in Hawaii.

2. Comments are open through Saturday, July 2, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3. I'll post the winner on Sunday, July 3.

Mahalo,

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Learn more Diane and her books at dianekelly.com.

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RWA in San Diego - SEALS storm the beach


Reminder: I have a special giveaway to celebrate June at this link.

In two weeks, I'll be in San Diego for the RWA Annual Conference (link). I will soak up the sights of "America's Finest City" until Wednesday, when I am cohosting the bus tour of the Navy Base Coronado (link).

I've shared the history of NBC ...

- The Army Comes Flying Along (link)
- A Future Duchess Lands (link)
- Aircraft Carriers Pull Into Port (link)


U.S. Navy SEALs conducting training with SCAR rifles.
Public Domain (link)

But it is San Diego's connection to Navy SEALs which interest the authors on our tour.  From Navy.mil (link),

During the 1960s, each branch of the armed forces formed its own counterinsurgency force. The Navy utilized UDT personnel to form separate units called SEAL teams. January 1962 marked the commissioning of SEAL Team ONE in the Pacific Fleet and SEAL Team TWO in the Atlantic Fleet. These teams were developed to conduct unconventional warfare, counter-guerilla warfare and clandestine operations in both blue and brown water environments.

Concurrently, Naval Operations Support Groups were formed to aid UDTs, SEALs, and two other unique units — Boat Support and Beach Jumpers — in administration, planning, research, and development. During the Vietnam War, UDTs performed reconnaissance missions and SEALs carried out numerous offensive operations. In 1967, the Naval Operations Support Groups were renamed Naval Special Warfare Groups (NSWGs) as involvement increased in limited conflicts and special operations.



Two members of SEAL Delivery Team 2 conduct lockout 
training with USS Hawaii in 2007.
Public Domain (link)

In 1983, existing UDTs were redesignated as SEAL teams and/or SEAL Delivery Vehicle Teams and the requirement for hydrographic reconnaissance and underwater demolition became SEAL missions.

The Naval Special Warfare Command was commissioned April 16, 1987, at the Naval Amphibious Base, Coronado, Calif. Its mission is to prepare Naval Special Warfare forces to carry out their assigned missions and to develop special operations strategy, doctrine, and tactics.

SEALs (Sea, Air, Land) teams go through what is considered by some to be the toughest military training in the world. Basic Underwater Demolition/ SEAL (BUD/S) training is conducted at the Naval Special Warfare Center in Coronado. Students encounter obstacles that develop and test their stamina, leadership and ability to work as a team.



UDT members using the casting technique from a speeding boat
Public Domain (link)

Will I see any SEALs?  I'll let you know when I return from San Diego! I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway,

1. Do you have a favorite book or movie featuring Navy SEALs? This is a tough answer for me ... so I share the first book I read with a (former) Navy SEAL as the hero - Pamela Clare's BREAKING POINT.  Check out my review at this link.

2. Comments are open through Saturday, July 2, 10 pm in Baltimore. 

3. I'll post the winner on Sunday, July 3.

Mahalo,

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City


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Friday, June 24, 2016

Aloha to Debbie Mason and HAPPY EVER AFTER IN CHRISTMAS


It's beginning to look a lot like love . . .

As her thirtieth birthday approaches, Deputy Jill Flaherty decides it's time to live a little. When she walks into Sawyer Anderson's bar in her sexiest dress, she's not thinking that he's her brother's best friend or about the many women he dated during his years as a pro hockey player. All she's thinking is that it's finally time to confess to her longtime crush how she truly feels.

Sawyer is done being a player on and off the ice. Yet no one in the small town of Christmas seems to believe he's ready to settle down, not Jill, and certainly not Jack, who is determined to keep Sawyer from breaking his little sister's heart. But as Sawyer and Jill's relationship heats up, can he prove that he's her happy ever after?

Amazon | B & N | Google Play | iTunes | Kobo




Debbie Mason is USA Today bestselling author of the Christmas, Colorado series. Her books have been praised for their "likable characters, clever dialogue and juicy plots" (RT Book Reviews). She also writes historical paranormals as Debbie Mazzuca. Her MacLeod series has received several nominations for best paranormal as well as a Holt Medallion Award of Merit. When she isn't writing or reading, Debbie enjoys spending time with her very own real-life hero, their four wonderful children, an adorable grandbaby, and a yappy Yorkie named Bella.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Debby offers an excerpt from HAPPY EVER AFTER IN CHRISTMAS ...

"I didn't write, prove to Sawyer I'm perfect for him on my get-a-life list, Suze. I wrote, ask him out." Saying it out loud caused Jill's stomach to heave. But the more time she'd spent on the list, the more obvious it became that she really had put her life on hold.

"Maybe you should have, because you are. He just doesn't know it yet. And you know why he doesn't, Jill?" the fortysomething dispatcher asked.

"No, but I'm sure you're going to tell me."
"He doesn't because you're so busy working, the only time he sees you is in uniform or at Grace and Jack's. You need to show him another side of you. Not the cop or his best friend's baby sister.”

An hour later, Jill was showing Sawyer her backside. Her heavily padded backside. It was the second half of the third period, and she'd taken a hit from one of the opposing players that sent her flying into the air and onto her knees.

"I give her a four. What about you, buddy?" her brother said from where he leaned over the boards with Sawyer looking down at her.

"She did a perfect one-eighty and got great height, but she blew the landing. So yeah, I'd have to give her a four. You know what, we're winning, and I'm feeling generous. I'll give her a four-point-two," Sawyer said.

"Bite me," Jill said as she pushed off the ice and got to her feet without looking at them.

"What's that, Shortstop?" Sawyer asked, not bothering to hide his amusement.

She turned and lifted her stick at the electronic scoreboard, ignoring his use of her childhood nickname. She was already mad enough. They'd been teasing her relentlessly throughout the entire game. "You might want to take a picture of the score. You won't be winning for much longer," she said, then skated to where the ref waited for her to get into position.

Some people considered the Flaherty temper a character flaw. At times, so did Jill, but right now she took advantage of that rush of adrenalin and temper. As soon as the ref dropped the puck, she was on it. What she lacked in finesse, she made up with grit and determination as she skated up the ice toward the goalie. She faked out the right defenseman--it wasn't that hard. The third line on Sawyer's team wasn't that good, and the reason Jill's team was two goals away from tying the game.

"Jill," Brad called out, tapping his stick on the ice. The auburn-haired and blue-eyed cutie was wide open. But he'd already scored twice. As both defensemen skated toward her, Jill eyed the net the same way she eyed the target at the shooting range. At the top of the hash mark, she wound up, took her shot and . . . scored.

She glanced at her brother and Sawyer. As if all their athletic coaching over the years had paid off, the two of them wore proud grins. She wouldn't be surprised if they'd patted each other on the back when she scored. But they weren't looking so proud or happy when she scored three minutes later. 


Wedding Bells in Christmas (Christmas, Colorado, #4)25711909



Thursday, June 23, 2016

Aloha to Sherry Harris and ALL MURDERS FINAL! (Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery) - Book Review

All Murders Final!

Her Next Sale

When Sarah Winston started the virtual garage sale, it seemed like a keystroke of genius and the next logical step in her business. No more collapsing card tables and rainy-day washouts. But what began as a fun way to run garage sales during the long New England winter has become a nightmare of managing people and putting out fires. Online, she can avoid the crowds--but not the crazies.

May Be Her Last

She certainly never bargained on dealing with frightening threats. And when a client is murdered, it's time for Sarah to swallow her pride and seek the help of her ex--C.J. Hooker, chief of police. Forging a tense alliance, they search--online and off--for the killer. But solving this crime before someone else gets tagged seems virtually impossible…



Savin' my money and I'm hella happy that's a bargain
- Thrift Shop by Macklemore


Sherry Harris, an Air Force spouse, set the Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery series in the fictional town of Ellington, Massachusetts, near the fictional Finch Air Force Base. These locales are based on Bedford, Massachusetts, and Hanscom AFB. Sherry's spouse was assigned to this small base in the cradle of the American Revolution ... and Hanscom AFB was my first assignment.  

Sarah Winston is a capable military spouse herself.  Actually, she's divorced from her husband, CJ Hooker, the former commander of the Security Forces (military police).  Their divorce, his retirement, and her move off base played out in TAGGED FOR DEATH, Book 1 in the series.  Once a military spouse, always a military spouse.  Military spouses learn to be thrifty, flexible, and diplomatic.  In ALL MURDERS FINAL!, Book 3 in the series, Sarah draws upon those attributes she gained as a military spouse to kick start her new career - garage sale adviser.  Alas, garage sales are not feasible during a Massachusetts winter ... so Sarah creates a virtual garage sale site for the local denizens to buy and sell according to their New England thriftiness.

Sarah's success is met with complaints from buyers (who are outbid), sellers (when buyers pick up without payment), and a consignment store owner (who is loosing business to the site). These issues are nothing compared to Sarah finding the reigning matron dead after arguing online with her over the sale of a vintage tablecloth.  Sarah sets out to clear her name and her business ... with a fluffernutter sandwich in hand! 

ALL MURDERS FINAL explores life in a historic New England town where the residents struggle to keep up with the high cost of living.  I appreciated Harris incorporating local traditions - wine from the packy! - along with the pursuit of a bargain in the digital age.  Harris adds depth with Sarah's struggle to reconcile her feelings for her ex husband (based on sweet memories) and the very single district attorney (based on rebound fun).  The creme de la creme was Mike the Big Cheese, a secondary character who hints at another mystery altogether. I hope to see Mike (and his cheese) in future books. I stayed up too late to finish ALL MURDERS FINAL! - I could not put this book down. I felt as though I was back at Hanscom Air Force Base, soaking up the history along the Freedom Trail.  

I read the series in the following order: Book 2, Book 1, and Book 3.  Harris takes the time to provide just enough backstory for readers to jump into the series with any book.  And what a fun jump it would be!

I recommend this book to fans of cozy mysteries, New England, and bargain hunting.


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Image by Jot Powers (link)

I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway,

1. Leave a comment about an unusual food from your area.  As mentioned above, Sarah enjoys the fluffernutter sandwich - a New England classic made of white bread, marshmallow fluff, and peanut butter.

2. Comments are open through Saturday, June 25, 10 pm in Baltimore.  

3. I'll post the winner on Sunday, June 26.

Mahalo,

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Learn more about Sherry and her books, including her Friday Finds, at sherryharrisauthor.com.

Tagged for Death (A Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery, 1)22891484



Aloha to Terry Spear and BILLIONAIRE IN WOLF'S CLOTHING

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First in a BRAND NEW SERIES from USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear, queen of shapeshifter romance.

Real estate mogul werewolf Rafe Denali didn’t get where he is in life by being a pushover. When sexy she-wolf Jade Ashton nearly drowns in the surf outside his beach house, he knows better than to bring her into his home and his heart. But there’s something about her that brings out his strongest instincts…

Rafe has good reason to be suspicious. Jade Ashton and her baby son are pawns in an evil wolf’s fatal plan. How can Jade betray the gorgeous man who rescued her? But if she doesn’t, her baby will die, and her own life hangs in the balance…

To get to the truth, Rafe is going to have to gain Jade’s trust. If he can do that, he just might be her last—and best—hope…


Terry Spear

USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over fifty paranormal and medieval Highland historical romances. In 2008 Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world and is raising two Havanese puppies. She lives in Crawford, Texas.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Washington Loves Readers Luncheon - Spotlight on Lisa Dyson


Reminder: I have a special giveaway to celebrate June at this link.


The Washington Romance Writers (WRW) are hosting their annual Reader Luncheon (link) on Saturday, October 8, 2016. I look forward to meeting Lisa Dyson:

Before she stayed home to raise her three sons and volunteer for every sport and activity her children participated in, Lisa worked as a medical assistant and a secretary/administrative assistant. She grew up in a small eastern Pennsylvania town and now lives a short distance from Washington, DC, with her husband and rescue dog with a blue tongue, appropriately named Blue. She has three grown sons and a daughter-in-law, as well as four adorable grandchildren. When she's not writing, reading, or spending time with family, she enjoys travel, volunteer work, and rooting for her favorite sports teams.

Learn more about Lisa and her books at lisadyson.com.

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Lisa's latest book is RESORTING TO THE TRUTH:

In love we trust…

She may have found the twin sister she never knew she had…but Charlotte Harrington also lost her mother. And now she’s lost her artistic inspiration, too. Escaping to a lush tropical resort is her best shot at getting something of her own back again. She just needs to focus and somehow not let Sam Briton's guarded smile distract her.

Managing a hotel and single fatherhood puts plenty on Sam’s plate, Charlotte gets that. And the suspicion in his deep blue eyes can only lead to big-time trouble for a woman who struggles with the truth. So why is she driven by the need to convince him that love is worth opening his heart?


I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash. To enter the giveaway,

1. What "lush tropical island" would you like to escape to? As much as I love Hawaii, I'd like to explore more islands in the Caribbean.

2. Comments are open through Saturday, June 25, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3. I'll post the winner on Sunday, June 26.

Mahalo,

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

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Aloha to Jennifer Bernard and DRIVE YOU WILD (Love Between the Bases Book 3)


Reminder: I have a special giveaway to celebrate June at this link.


It’s game on for love in the third novel of USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Bernard’s sexy, baseball-themed series.

Kilby Catfish left-fielder Trevor Stark is a ballpark legend. With his good looks, hitting records, and played-for-the-fans arrogance, Trevor makes women lose their minds and men lose their cool. But every time the major league team comes calling, Trevor purposely keeps himself in the tiny Texas town. Why is heart-tuggingly top secret. Until the team owner’s daughter comes to Kilby . . . trying everything up her sexy sleeve to make Trevor talk.

Divorced and disillusioned at twenty-four, Paige Mattingly Austin Taylor is suddenly starting fresh as an intern at Catfish Stadium. She should want nothing to do with the sinfully hot ballplayer her dad warned her to stay away from. But when she discovers what Trevor is hiding from everyone, she realizes there’s much more to him than his face and multi-million-dollar arm. There’s a heart she seriously hopes to win.


Buy Links: Amazon | B & N | GoogleiTunes | Kobo




Jennifer Bernard is a graduate of Harvard and a former news promo producer. The child of academics, she confounded her family by preferring romance novels to … well, any other books. She left big city life for true love in Alaska, where she now lives with her husband and stepdaughters. She’s no stranger to book success, as she also writes erotic novellas under a naughty secret name not to be mentioned at family gatherings.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Jennifer offers an excerpt from DRIVE YOU WILD ...

“Are you afraid of the mighty Crush Taylor?” She took another step closer. “He’s not as bad as he seems, you know.”

“I’m not afraid of him.” He placed his hands on her shoulders to keep her from coming any closer. Her warmth carried into his skin, into his being, as if it was igniting him from within.

“And I’m not afraid of you.” She ducked underneath his hands in a quick move right out of the NBA. He took a step back and his calves hit the bench situated next to the lockers. She reached out in apology and suddenly they were right smack against each other, chest-to-chest.

Fire flashed down his spine, hot and urgent. He hauled her against him—oh, sweet Lord, she felt good. Soft and firm and shapely and alive and fresh and . . . then her mouth was under his, her lips parting, her breath warm, her flesh lush and sweet. It wasn’t a kiss so much as a head rush.

~~

Paige posted the first series of “Baseball’s Hottest Outfield” photos on the team’s Facebook page the next day. A few hours later a thousand people had clicked Like. Not only that, but the viewership of the page soared. It was shared all over the Internet, on Pinterest, on Twitter, on Instagram. It wasn’t just that the three men were criminally gorgeous. A big part of the appeal came from their racial mix and the blend of personalities. Trevor the stone-cold badass, Dwight the dynamic charmer, and Shizuko, the soulful rock star.

Paige knew it was all a crock, of course. Trevor wasn’t stone cold, Dwight wasn’t playful all the time, and Shizuko could outcrude most of the clubhouse, and that was saying something. But once those identities became set, people loved them. They were like cartoon characters instead of real people.

At the next game, the crowd roared when the outfielders took their positions on the field. Fans held up even more signs than they normally did. From the owner’s box, Paige scanned the crowd with her binoculars and read the signs out loud to Crush.

“ ‘Kilby Hearts Baseball’s Hottest Outfield.’ Thank you very much, we heart you too! ‘We make ’em hot in Kilby, Texas.’ That might be taking a little too much credit. None of them are from here.”

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