From the Keeper Shelf – 3

It’s a little bit sad to write about this book, which I love, because the author very recently passed away.

Daughter of Prophecy by Anne Kelleher BushDaughter of Prophecy was written by Anne Kelleher Bush. I have the original Warner Aspect edition from 1995, with that gorgeous cover by Thomas Canty.

Oh, I loved this book! It’s a magical, marvelous blend of science fiction and fantasy with a dash of romance. It’s set in a dystopian future in which America has reverted to a kind of feudalism – and a king allies with a sorceress in an attempt to build an empire. The worldbuilding is fabulous. There’s a lot of conflict in this book and it’s a compelling read, faintly medieval in tone – and yes, there’s even a map. (You know how much I love maps.)

It was first in a series, but – as is so often the case when I love book one – I didn’t continue to read the series. I am the only person in the world who prefers standalone books over series – except when I read mysteries. C’est la vie.

It appears that this book is out of print, so you’d only be able to buy the edition I have as a used book. There is an ebook edition available in Kindle Unlimited, which links to an author page with her subsequent books published as Anne Kelleher, but doesn’t link to the original book. (Possibly because the author name is different.) I’m not sure why the cover artist – whose work isn’t on this new edition – is listed as a co-author on the new edition, but there you go.

Here’s the book on Goodreads.

Here’s the Warner mass market paperback listing on Amazon.com.

Here’s the new ebook edition at Amazon.com

It doesn’t appear that Anne Kelleher has a website right now, but that might be in transition. What happens with her work going forward will depend upon the choices made by her literary estate. You might want to follow her at Amazon or Bookbub to receive updates.

From the Keeper Shelf – 2

I warned you that my keeper shelf is very jumbled and here’s the proof of it. The second book in the front row of the top shelf is a completely different genre than yesterday’s book.

The Other Bolyn Girl by Philippa GregoryToday, I’ll talk about The Other Bolyn Girl by Philippa Gregory. I have the Harper edition from 2011, which has the actresses from the movie version on the cover.

This is historical fiction and a big chewy read. It’s written in first person, which gives an immediacy to the story, and is about Anne Bolyn’s sister, Mary. What I love about Philippa Gregory’s books is that she obviously does a lot of research but she has a gift for leavening it with action and dialogue. Her books take me a while to read because there are always many characters and points of view, but I feel as if I’m right there with the characters. There’s a lot of fiction and non-fiction about Anne, so I enjoyed the fictionalization of her sister’s story. It’s always intriguing to see how a writer picks through the documentation that exists about an historical person and puts together a compelling story.

This work was also made into a movie but I haven’t seen it. I do tend to watch Michael Hirst’s mini-series The Tudors whenever I re-read this book. The pageantry is glorious in that production and it echoes what is described in the book.

Here’s the book on Goodreads and here it is on Amazon.com

Here’s Philippa Gregory’s website.

From the Keeper Shelf – 1

There’s a little game going around on Facebook – it’s been there for a while, actually – in which people post images of ten of their favorite movies or books, one each day, without explanation. I haven’t played because I can’t choose just ten favorites, whether we’re talking books or movies. I’ve often thought about starting a thread here, on my blog, but hadn’t gotten around to it until today. Why now? Well, I’ve been re-reading a lot of my favorites from my keeper shelf, and maybe you’re doing the same thing. Maybe my favorites will end up becoming some of yours.

These won’t be reviews. I’ll tell you one thing that I like about the book, pretty much why it’s on my keeper shelf, then give you a Goodreads link, an Amazon link and a link to the author’s website so you can find out more.

Be warned that my keeper shelf isn’t in any reasonable kind of order. It’s a bookcase with each shelf having two rows of books, one in front of the other, and then more stacked sideways on top. The only order is by format – the mass market paperbacks are at the top because they’re lighter; trade paperbacks in the middle; hard covers at the bottom. Lots of books, so they’re packed in really tightly. 🙂

This week’s choices are from the mass market shelf. I literally pulled the first five books out of the front row on the top shelf.

Practical Magic by Alice HoffmanFirst up is Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman. I have the Berkley paperback from 1995, which looks like this=====>

This is one of those rare stories that I loved both as a movie and as a book. It’s a tale of two sisters raised by their odd aunts. They’re estranged from each other and one and no longer as close to the aunts, but they have to work together for one to escape an abusive situation. I love this book for the story – which is one of reunion and redemption – and for the characters, but mostly I love Alice Hoffman books because of her voice. She has a marvelous way with words that draws me right in – and often I keep reading right to the end of the book. Here’s an excerpt from just before the big finish, to give you a taste:

“The aunts stand in Sally’s driveway, between the Honda and Jimmy’s Oldsmobile, their black suitcases set down beside them. They close their eyes, to get a sense of this place. In the poplar trees, the sparrows watch with interest. The spiders stop spinning their webs. The rain will begin after midnight, on this the aunts agree. It will fall in sheets, like rivers of glass. It will fall until the whole world seems silver and turned upside down. You can feel such things when you have rheumatism, or when you’ve lived as long as the aunts have.”

It’s melodic and as seductive as a siren’s song.

This is mainstream fiction or maybe women’s fiction, although there are romantic elements and fantasy elements, too. (The aunts are, after all, witches of a most sensible kind.)

Here’s the book on Goodreads and here it is on Amazon.com

Here’s Alice Hoffman’s website. What excellent timing! There’s a prequel to Practical Magic being published this fall. Something else to add to the TBR pile and an excellent reason to re-read this book now.

 

 

The Bride Quest Sale

The Bride Quest series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix on sale May 30 2020

This weekend, my Bride Quest series of medieval romances is on sale. This six-book series is actually two trilogies which are loosely linked to each other. You can start reading at book #1, The Princess, which is the beginning of the original trilogy, or you can start reading with #4, The Countess, which is the beginning of the Scottish Bride Quest trilogy.

As well as the six books, there are two digital boxed sets, each containing one trilogy.

the Bride Quest I Boxed set, a digital bundle including the first three medieval romances in the Bride Quest series by Claire Delacroix  The Bride Quest II Boxed set, a digital bundle including books #4 to 6 in the Bride Quest series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix

Right now, The Princess is on sale for 99cents. Tomorrow, The Countess will be free through June 3.

There are also free downloads of family trees available for both trilogies right here.

See the entire series at Amazon.com.

Review for Just One Fake Date at Rendezvous with a Romance

Just One Fake Date, book one of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah CookeHere’s a wonderful way to start the day – with a glowing new review for Tyler’s new book, Just One Fake Date, thanks to Heather at Rendezvous with a Romance:

Deborah Cooke decided to re-write the first book of the Flatiron Five Fitness with a new female lead for Tyler, Shannyn Hawke, with a whole new plot. Shannyn is a freelance photogapher who went to college with Tyler and she has a job to cover the alumni who own Flatiron Five Fitness. From the moment she walks into his office, sparks fly and the story vibe was a lot different from the original book.  I liked it a lot. I liked the chemistry between Shannyn and Tyler, I enjoyed watching Tyler fight for a real relationship with her, and the passion was great between the two.  The original book had Tyler playing two characters, him and a BDSM character with Amy and I just didn’t like how Amy had difficulty seeing how Tyler is the man for her.  In this one, Shannyn had commitment issues, and I liked that conflict better. Tyler had to fight to prove to her that a relationship could work and that he wasn’t going anywhere. There was no need for any subterfuge in this one and I loved how the story flowed and concluded. Overall, so much better start to a series that was awesome! I just want to know what his new billboard looks like with Shannyn 🙂

The billboard is described in book two, Just One More Time.

You can see the review on the Rendezvous with a Romance site, right here.

Thank you, Heather!

Dragonfire Quest Boxed Set is 99¢!

From today through May 24, the Dragonfire Quest boxed set – including the first three full-length Dragonfire novels – is discounted from $9.99US to just 99¢!

Dragonfire Quest, the first Dragonfire digital bundle including Kiss of Fire, Kiss of Fury and Kiss of Fate of the Dragonfire Novels series of paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke Dragonfire Quest is the first digital bundle in The Dragonfire Novels: The Complete Series and includes the three books that launch the Dragon’s Tail Wars between the Pyr, dragon shifters pledged to defend the treasures of the earth, and the evil Slayers, dragon shifters bent on destroying both the Pyr and the humans they protect.

In Kiss of Fire, dragon shifter Quinn Tyrrell is caught between the firestorm with his destined mate, Sara Keenan, and his hereditary responsibilities as the Smith of the Pyr. But Quinn has learned to be skeptical of his fellow dragon shifters and it’s only when the evil Slayers target Sara that he realizes he needs the help of his own kind. Can pragmatic Sara be persuaded to believe that she’s his destined mate and the foretold Seer of the Pyr? Can Quinn win Sara’s heart before it’s too late for them, their firestorm, and the Pyr?

In Kiss of Fury, Donovan Shea, the dragon shifter assigned to defend scientist Alex Madison from the Slayers who have killed her partner, is surprised by the spark of his own firestorm. Donovan has no interest in commitment, especially one who has nightmares about dragons. All the same, there’s something special about Alex, something that feeds a heat in Donovan beyond that of the firestorm. Can they work together to save her invention, the Green Machine, without surrendering to the firestorm’s demand? If they embrace the promise of a future together, will the Slayers attack Alex again?

Dragonfire Quest, the first Dragonfire digital bundle including Kiss of Fire, Kiss of Fury and Kiss of Fate of the Dragonfire Novels series of paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke

In Kiss of Fate, Erik Sorensson, leader of the Pyr, has to confront past failures when he has a second chance at true love. Outspoken and independent Eileen Grosvenor isn’t what Erik expects in a mate, but he admires her creativity and her resilience. Eileen has her doubts about trusting a dragon shifter, but when she’s targeted by Slayers for the treasure she’s claimed, having a good dragon on her side sounds like a plan. Can Erik and Eileen learn to work together to triumph in time—over Slayers, the wounds of the past, and even their own assumptions?

Dragonfire Quest is enrolled in KDP Select and available exclusively at Amazon
Amazon.com
Books2Read Universal Link (for other Amazon stores)

Just One Second Chance

Theo’s book is now available in its new edition, Just One Second Chance. If you bought Bad Case of Loving You, you’ll be able to download the new edition as an update at your portal of choice.

Just One Second Chance, book six of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

Theo knows what’s possible…
Because he’s learned the hard way what’s not. The internationally successful supermodel known as Angel stole his heart forever when she was just Lyssa Monroe. There’s never been another woman who could compete—he even loved Lyssa enough to let her walk away when she said it was over. When they meet again, he’s determined to make one glimpse of her sustain him for another decade. When Lyssa offers him one night together, Theo can’t say no—even though he knows a taste will only tempt him to hope for more all over again.

Lyssa has tasted forbidden fruit…
And she can’t forget it, no matter how hard she tries. Theo’s love is a touchstone for all that is pure and good in the chaos her life has become. When she sees him again, everything is simple for once and only one choice is possible. The secret she keeps from Theo could destroy any chance of a future together, but surely she can keep it hidden for just one more night. Or maybe two. How much will she sacrifice to defend her son—and how far will Theo go to convince her give them a second chance?

“So good. I always enjoy returning to Flatiron Five and Theo is the last partner not attached to someone and we find out why in this installment. He is already in love with a woman and has been for the past 11 years. The rest I will leave up to you to find out. Their story was great, shocking, and beautiful. Deborah Cooke handled their second chance romance beautifully. Lyssa has kept quite a few secrets during the past decade since she saw Theo last and she also has some deep scars that Theo doesn’t know about. When they reconnect near New Years, she sets out to right some wrongs and hopefully rekindle a friendship, if nothing else, though she does hope for more. Start to finish the story was enjoyable and engrossing. Passionate and beautiful. Overall, a great read. This series just gets better and better.”
Rendezvous with a Romance

Buy ebook at:
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
KOBO
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link

Goodreads

Just One Fake Date – Today!

Today’s the day!

Just One Fake Date, book one of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

Tyler McKay has a plan…
And it doesn’t include a serious relationship anytime soon. Between his day job and being a partner at Flatiron 5 Fitness, he’s busy investing in the future. But Ty knows that going stag to his sister’s wedding will encourage the family matchmakers: he needs a fake date, fast, in self-defense. When the one woman who hates him walks into F5F, Ty knows he’s found the perfect candidate—that Shannyn doesn’t play by anyone’s rules just leaves Ty wanting more…

Shannyn Hawke is done with plans and dreams…
She had her whole life mapped out, but it all went wrong. Now, she’s taking care of number one and living in the moment, with no concern for the future. If her college crush wants to trade a fake wedding date for physical satisfaction, Shannyn is in. But just one night proves that Tyler is everything she believes a guy should be, plus he takes it as a challenge to change her mind about him. Shannyn never wants to have her heart broken again, but she’s falling hard and fast. Can she remember that it’s just for show? Or will Tyler convince Shannyn to take a chance on forever again?

Available today!

Buy Just One Fake Date in ebook:
Amazon.com
Apple
KOBO
Nook
• GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link

Goodreads

 

Two Weddings and a Baby

The new version of the Flatiron Five Fitness novella is available. If you bought Going to the Chapel as an ebook, you’ll be able to download Two Weddings and a Baby as an update. The big change in this one is the name of Tyler’s partner.

Two Weddings and a Baby, book five of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah CookeIt’s September in Manhattan and the weather is perfect for a wedding – if not two! Cassie and Reid tie the knot with style in this short story, while Haley and Damon take their vows surrounded by friends and family. Will Shannyn and Tyler’s son arrive in time for the festivities? Join the F5F crew as they celebrate two weddings, welcome the first child of the partners, and make changes to build the future of their fitness club.

Two Weddings and a Baby takes place after Just One Hometown Hero and before Just One Second Chance.

There’s a Pinterest board for this story right here.

“This was a fun and fast glimpse of what happened after the last page of all of the prior books in the series. I loved watching the weddings of Cassie and Damon, and the birth of Ty’s son. It was very enjoyable and sweet. Loved it.” —Rendezvous with a Romance

Buy Two Weddings and a Baby at:
Amazon.com
Apple
KOBO
Nook
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link (Find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Just One Hometown Hero

Just One Hometown Hero, the new edition of Cassie and Reid’s story, is now available. If you bought Some Guys Have All the Luck as an ebook, you’ll be able to download the new edition as an update. There are very few changes in this new edition, just a few tweaks and updates.

Just One Hometown Hero, book four of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah CookeCassie has everything she wants…
Cassie Wilson’s life is pretty much perfect, with a dream job, great partners—and the freedom to do as she pleases. The last thing she wants is to go back to Montrose River, the town she couldn’t wait to leave, and revisit the past. But when her oldest friend asks her to be a godmother, Cassie sees an opportunity to make a difference in Emily’s life. Maybe teaching Emily to dream big will be her legacy. Besides, one weekend in the Midwest won’t kill her. She’ll be back in Manhattan so quickly that they won’t have time to miss her at Flatiron Five Fitness.

Reid knows what he wants…
Reid Jackson is convinced that luck has to be made. Keeping his eyes open has been the secret to his triumph over his past, along with a lot of hard work. He might have come from the wrong side of the tracks, and he might have the reputation of being bad to the bone, but he’s built his own brand of success. When Cassie Wilson comes breezing back into town, Reid is ready to find out if she really is different from everyone else. Cassie turns his expectations inside out, fulfilling his dreams and shaking up his routine. But when Cassie decides she wants more than a fling, Reid knows he’s not the man she wants him to be—can Cassie convince him to hope for more?

“I truly love this series. If you have read any of Deborah’s other series or genres, it is amazing how different they are and how different her style of writing is with F5 versus her historical, for example. Such a diverse author. Out of all the series I have read of her’s, this is definitely my absolute favorite series….Loved every second. Loved that they took their time. Loved that the book had plenty of passion and romance and emotional tension and just great plot elements that came together to create a great story. Loved also getting to witness Kyle and Lauren’s wedding, which was so beautiful. Just. Plain. Loved. It.”—Rendezvous with a Romance

“The premise is heart breaking, emotional and entertaining; the characters are broken, animated and embittered; the romance is sensual, spicy and hot… A raw, gritty and sensitive story.” —The Reading Cafe

5 stars! Loved this new story, it has the usual smooth flow and the organic unfolding of the story I love in Ms. Cooke’s books…Loved the chemistry between [Reid and Cassie], hot and sweet and real without the angst and drama so prevalent these days. It is true in real life too, we only get to know somebody as far as they allow us to see or sometimes as far as we are willing despite having all the clues in front of us. I can’t recommend this series enough.” —SEELK Fire & Ice

Buy ebook at:
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
GooglePlay
KOBO
Books2Read Universal Link
(Find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Buy trade paperback at:
• Amazon.com
• Barnes & Noble
• Indigo