Friday, September 25, 2015

And yet another wonderful EAuthor

Mia Sheridan

You will find a couple of pictures of her books down the side bar.  Archer's Voice as SO good that I knew I had to read more of her books.  And every one I've read since then has been equally amazing.  I have three more besides the following books yet to read.  I started reading Kyland, but I didn't have any tissues with me.  I was barely into when I knew it was going to be a tear jerker of the highest degree.  I'm just waiting for a time when I'm ready to read something that emotional.  I also have Becoming Calder and Finding Eden and I honestly don't know why I haven't inhaled them yet.  That will happen very soon.  I'm looking at my grades of the ones I have read and each one is 5 out of 5.  You can't get a whole lot better than that can you?

LeoLeo by Mia Sheridan

I’ve read a few books by Mia Sheridan and I’ve LOOOVVVVED them. I read Leo last year but failed to do a review. Well, I simply have to fix that as I want everyone to give at least one of her books a chance. And since I didn’t want to do a review on Leo from memory, well I had to read it again didn’t I?
Boy oh boy does Ms. Sheridan excel at writing emotional books. She makes the characters so real, you feel what they feel, you hurt when they hurt and you feel joy when they feel joy.

Evelyn or Evie has had a real rotten life. She was taken away from her drug addicted mother when she was young and put into foster care. She lived in a number of foster homes and they were negligent at best, none a good loving home. She wore hand-me-downs and was bullied at school. Her one bright spot was Leo. He was her best friend, her protector and light in a dark world. At first they are both in the same home, but then they each go to a different home though they keep in close touch and go to school together. Then Leo is adopted and his new family is moving to another state. They are just at the threshold of experiencing deep romantic feelings for each other and vow to stay in touch until they are both 18 and can be together.

Told entirely in the present tense, first person from Evie, we can feel her love for ‘her’ Leo told in flashbacks throughout the book. We feel her pain and confusion and loss when she never hears back from his after he leaves.

The book opens years later. Evie has made a good life for herself. While she doesn’t have a sterling type career, she is content to work as a maid at a hotel and working part time in a catering business. Considering where she came from, she is living a good life with good friends. When the book starts, she is noticing she has a follower, some guy is following her around and when she finally tricks and confronts him, she sees he’s an extremely good looking guy named Jake. He tells her he was a friend of Leo’s who asked that Jake check up on her. Evie quickly picks up on the past tense and calls him on it. He tells her Leo died in a car accident and Evie is devastated. But there is a connection between her and Jake and it develops into a deep love. I’m not going to say anything more on the story itself to avoid spoilers. But what I will say is Evie is SUCH a wonderful heroine. She has retained an innocence despite her childhood and look for the best in everyone. People are naturally drawn to her from the gruff neighbor in the apartment across the hall to an old neighbor where she lived for a while during her childhood. She is kind but in no way annoyingly so. She is a special kind of person but doesn’t see herself that way.

Jake is a great hero – for the most part. He gets a bit pushy with Evie in a couple of places, but there is no doubt he is completely and utterly hers for the asking. He’s rich and successful and he just wants to help Evie, though Evie doesn’t want it. This isn’t a long book but oh, it is mighty. For me, it richly deserves the five stars I’m giving it. It’s the first of two closely connected books – but I will let you figure out what the other book is.

Archer's Voice by Mia Sheridan

I have found some real gems written by lesser known, epublished authors and my, oh my is Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan one of those real high quality gems. This book just hit all my treasured book buttons. Wounded hero – check, interesting and different story – check, good heroine, check, interesting secondary characters, and check!
Bree Prescott is running away from some bad stuff in her life and lands in the small town of Pelion Maine. Her father was murdered in front of her and his murderer then attempted to sexually assault Bree. She suffers from PTSD with bad flashbacks. She settles into Pelion, gets a job as the morning waitress at a local diner and begins making friends. She meets our hero Archer Hale when she drops her purse in front of him, loses all the contents and he helps her pick them up. She is fascinated with this silent, scruffy young man and begins asking around town about him. His story is devastatingly sad. He came from an abused household and when his mother and uncle try to run away together, they are killed along with his father in a car accident in which he is a passenger. As a result of the accident, his vocal chords are damaged and he is unable to speak. He was raised after by his loony, paranoid uncle and after his uncle dies is alone. He lives in a house out in the woods and has very little contact with the people of the town. Most of them think he is simple but Bree, after visiting his home in the woods, discovers that he is, in fact, a very intelligent man and because her father was deaf, she can communicate very well with him through sign language which Archer taught himself through books. Because he has been so isolated all his life, he is very na├»ve and innocent and wary of others. He reminds me in some ways of one of my favourite heroes’, Michael MacNeil from Patricia Gaffney’s Wild at Heart, a book I’ve read numerous times.

Bree and Archer slowly fall deeply in love, though there are complications, one of them being Travis Hale, Archer’s cousin and a local police officer. He wants Bree for himself and is willing to play nasty tricks on Archer to achieve this.

I love, love, love this book and I know I’ll be reading and rereading it. Archer is a simply breathtaking hero and I adore him. He breaks my heart and I had to put the book down a couple of times just because I felt his pain so deeply and had to take a couple minutes break. When I put a book down for that reason – well – it’s a goooodddd thing.

As much as I adore and love Archer, I also love Bree. She has her own demons to deal with and she and Archer help each other through some of them. Other than one instance, instigated by Travis to cause trouble, when she isn’t sure about something, she talks to Archer about it so other than the one understandable one, there are no big misunderstandings that can so frustrate a reader. And like Michael MacNeil, Archer is a virgin hero and Bree is the one with more experience. After things are straightened out though, things progress along very well.

I know not every reader goes along with this kind of idea, but to me, Archer and Bree are soul mates, destined to meet and complete and heal each other. And again I know this one may not work as well for every reader as it’s a sweet book – not in a sickly way – not at all; I can’t stand those at all myself, but more as a tender way. This book hit all my requirements for a keeper book and when I finished it, I knew I would be revisiting Archer and Bree. Soon.

This book is written in first person with alternating POV, though more of them are from Bree's. I've quite gotten used to this style now after skipping it for years and you CAN teach an old dog new tricks. I like this style

I think this may be categorized as Young Adult as the lead characters are both quite young. I have read a number of this genre now and can quite honestly and happily say that even though I am far, far, far from a young adult - not even my children would be called that now, I am really enjoying most of what I've read so far. Keep them coming! I first read about this book on All About Romance

StingerStinger by Mia Sheridan

Hmmm - I didn't do a review on this one - what an oversight.  I shall have to try and do one from memory.

Grace Hamilton was the girl with a plan. She knew exactly where her life was going and prided herself on always achieving her goals. It was who she was, and how she lived her life. She never stepped outside the lines, and never considered what she might desire and whom she was actually trying so hard to please. Until him . . .

Carson Stinger was a man who didn't play by any rules except his own. Working in the adult entertainment industry, he didn't care what others thought, and took each day as it came, no direction, no plan. He knew what women wanted from him and believed it was all he had to offer. Until her . . .

When circumstances forced them to spend several hours together, they walked away changed. But for two people who never should have meshed, overcoming the reality of their vastly different lives wasn't possible. At least not yet . . .

I found this book unique.  For one thing the hero was a porn star.  Well, he wasn't exactly a star, he'd only done one or two movies, but he did intend to make a career of doing this.  But a chance encounter with Grace had him reconsidering his whole life.  They met a conference in Vegas; she was at a lawyer conference and he was at an adult entertainment conference.  They were drawn to each other right off the bat and ended up spending the weekend in a conference of two.  This was NOT how Grace rolled and at the end of the weekend, they walked away from each other.  But neither forgot the other over the years and as I said earlier, this was a catalyst for Stinger to do a 180 in his life.  He joined the Marines very shortly after and went on to become a SEAL.

He does drop in to see Grace but sees her with another man and figures it just wasn't meant to be.  They run into each other a few years later.  Stinger is out of the armed forces and working kind of under the law helping young women.  When he and Grace meet again, it's almost as if the years hadn't happened.  The feelings were still there and while there were still obstacles, they slowly overcame these while working together.

Now that I've just written this it reminds me it's been a while since I read this book and now I know what I'm going to read when I get home!!

Leo's ChanceLeo's Chance by Mia Sheridan

I tried very hard not to give any spoilers in Leo, but if you are reading this, then the cat is out of the bag. Yes, Jake from Leo is indeed Leo and this is his side of the love story between Evie and himself told entirely from his POV in first person.

Many of the scenes are exactly the same as in Leo, even down to the same conversations and one might think this a waste of time. Such a one would be mistaken. Instead I find it adds richness to their love story, seeing the same scene from both sides. And Leo doesn’t seem to be quite so bossy with Evie as he does in the first book. I think it’s because they are in such different places in the relationship. In Leo, which is Evie’s book, it’s a new connection with Jake, so some of his requests/demands seem kind of dictatorial, while in Leo’s Chance, Leo is completely aware of the relationship and it’s a long one. He’s always been very protective of her.
In Leo, we get to ‘hear’ what happened and why he didn’t keep in touch with Evie when he tells her near the end of the book, but in Leo’s Chance, we get to feel what he felt, how it damaged and warped his sense of self-worth and while we may not agree with why he kept his identity a secret, we at least understand him better. We feel the impact sexual abuse can have on an already damaged soul because the story is told in first person.

Having this story told in two books with two different points of view gives it an even deeper quality to a very well written emotional read. I’m in awe of how Ms. Sheridan grabs the reader and seems to take us right along on the journey with the characters. I get more emotionally involved with her books, certainly this one then many another book and that’s a very good thing. Another well written five star book by this author.



I don't know why I never got around to actually posting this one.  I did write it quite some time ago.  I think what happened is I started it, realized I put it to bed for a while so I could reread Stinger and then a review of it and then post.

In the meantime I have 4 more books by Ms. Sheridan.  I started one of them Kyland, but had to put it aside for a bit - in a completely wonderful way.  It was SO well written that I was feeling the despair of the hero and heroine and as this was when I was in my depression, I couldn't take it at the time - feeling it too much.  Now that I'm doing better, I plan on going back to it.

I also have Finding Eden and Becoming Calder to read.  I think depression and feeling an amazingly realistic emotional read was too much at the time.  So I also have them coming up.

And I've just written a review of her newest book, Grayson's Heart.  I was about to post it and I was looking for the link to the Archer's Voice I had done, only to discover I still had in draft!!

So here you go - One of my VERY FAVOURITE NEW TO ME AUTHORS

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Random Ramblings

I follow Sarah of Smart Bitches on Twitter.  She tweets about books that are on sale and if it’s a book, I’m a masochist and I will check it out.  ‘Masochist?” you are thinking.  “What gives there?”

You see, inevitably when I check, the Most Excellent Price is only for the US romance readers and there is no break if one is buying from or any other Amazon apart from  I usually get annoyed, sometimes more than annoyed and sometime VERY annoyed depending on how bad I want the book.  But last night it was to the point of painful.  Years and years ago I read Keeper of the Dream by Penelope Williamson and LOVED it. 
I’ve read it a few times since that first read and it’s one of those books I check every few months to see if I can get it as an ebook.  It’s one of my top keeper books.  Last night Sarah tweeted it was on for $1.99 at Kobo.  So holding my breath and crossing my fingers, I clicked over.



Not only was it NOT $1.99, it was $14.99.  I’ve been giving in a bit more and paying higher than I want for some of my very favourites but there’s not a chance in hell I can justify to my inner “I’ll get anything I want to get” goddess.  Knowing that less than an hour away I could have got it for the promised $1.99 hurts like a sonofabitch!  I have the paperback........somewhere amongst my 36 boxes of books.  But now the urge to read it is coming over me so I might have to start digging through them.
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I think it’s time I either gave up or start digging deeper!  When I went to RWA I was determined to get a minimum number of print books.  Well, best laid plans and all that, I ended up getting considerably more than I planned so I ended up shipping a box home.  It wasn’t a large box and I packed the ones I had wanted the most into my suitcase and carry on bags.  But the box never came.  For weeks after I’d eagerly come home hoping to see the box on the porch or at least a notice stuck on my door that the box was waiting at the nearest Fed-Ex depot.

But alas, no box and no notice have arrived.  And I’ve no idea where I would have put the shipping slip.  It’s time I either start looking all over for it and do everything I can to locate the box of books or just accept the fact it’s gone.

And in a very related kind of experience, I gave kudos’ at the time to Avon for giving out cards where we could download ebooks of all their print books.  I picked up a bunch and kind of sat around with them for a few weeks.  Then I decided to start downloading before they expired.  But another alas.  Some of them, not any of the Avon books, had expired before I got ‘round to it.  The Avon books are a different kettle of fish.  I have to download a special app to get the books and as I have the original Ipad, it’s not ‘strong’ enough to support the app and not updated.  I do have an Acer tablet that should do the trick – BUT (there always seems to be a but when it comes to me and technology) the power is almost all gone – the red line is showing.  And I seem to have misplaced the correct charger. 

I do have some other charges that fit and I’ve tried charging the Acer table with them, but the charge doesn’t take.  This is something else I’m going to have to go ‘on the hunt’ for.  I don’t like going on hunting expeditions.  I like things to be nice and close and for life to be nice and simple.  It seldom is though.
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I’ve been ordering a lot of books lately from Amazon.  Unfortunately it came up with the dreaded “action required”  I took this to mean I hadn’t paid my Visa bill in time so I stopped at the bank machine last week and paid quite a sum but I was still coming up with the same “action required” notice.  I thought perhaps it needed 3 business days to go through but even after the 3 days it still didn’t seem to work.  So last night I stopped at the bank machine again last night.  This time there was no fancy way of asking what I wanted and I clued in – all the money I thought I was putting on my VISA credit card was actually going to my VISA line of credit. 

Now that is down considerably now but alas it wasn’t doing a whole lot of good for my credit card.  Never fear though.  Things were all good this morning but man I bought a lot of books over the past 7 days or so.  BookBub and Amazon have been having some great sales!  It was kind of like an odd birthday present.

I almost made up for the box of books I didn’t get and the ONE EBOOK I REALLY WANTED.  Almost.


‘til later

Friday, September 11, 2015

I really debated on doing this post today.  I know what September 11 means to the world.  I will never forget the deep boned chill we all felt on that morning.  But in a way it’s almost timely as I don’t want past mistakes coming back and I can see that happening in the world today.

I’m normally very light hearted in blogging but today I am not.  This is going to be long and probably rambling but I only hope I can get my point across.  I am very worried about Canada’s neighbours to the south.

We here in Canada are also facing an election soon.  I don’t imagine it’s even on the radar of the average American but our day to vote for a leader is Oct 19/2015.  We have 3 major parties; the Conservatives led by Stephen Harper have been in power since 2005.  The closest they can be compared to in American parties would be the Republican Party, though there are many differences.  The Liberals are led by Justin Trudeau, the son of a popular previous Liberal party leader Pierre Trudeau.  The third main party is the New Democratic Party which is known more as a labour or union party.  While they have held power in various provinces, they have never led the country.

There are a few fringe parties to, the most well-known being the Green party which sprang from environmental issues.
I'm sure this brief synopsis would horrify many but I've tried to make it simple and up to even my limited understanding.

In the past I’ve voted for all three at one time or another and I’ve been trying to decide which one to vote for this time round but the one I know I absolutely will not vote for is the Conservative Party.  They have been in long enough and the longer a party has power, I truly believe the more corrupt they become and there are a number of things not adding up with Stephen Harper and his team.

But the big issue lately and the biggest reason I refuse to vote for him, and the issue that saddens me so much about the United States is the refugee crisis going on right now in Europe with the refugees from Arab countries, mostly Syria, but also other Arab nations.

These people are fleeing the leaders of the country; they are fleeing the terrorists that have risen up because of the civil war that has gone on for five years now.  This is a nation whose leaders have turned on its people to the extent of using poisonous gas on them.

So many are fleeing for their lives now, headed towards Europe by the hundreds of thousands.  This has become the biggestrefugee crisis situations since World War 11 and some European countries are lining up tohelp them.

The vast majority of Canadians want to help, we want to take them in but Stephen Harper up until the last day or so has been dragging his feet and it has now become the biggest political issue of the lead up the elections.  I refuse to vote for a person who is so hard hearted as to ignore what’s going on.  He cites the need for scrutinizing for terrorists but that is bogus.  What is seems to have become is an anti-Islam stance and I’m embarrassed at such a thing happening in the country I live in.  Before all else these are people.  People who are suffering.  People who are leaving everything behind them to seek a safe place to live.  People who risk their lives to escape horrors we can’t even imagine.

The other potential leaders have promised to do more.  Even if Stephen Harper changes his stance now, it’s too late.  The change would only be to try and stay in power and that has the opposite effect on me.

So now I’m starting to get to the crux of what I find so disturbing.  I watch a lot of news both Canadian and America.  I don’t get Fox News but I do get CNN and I am so very discouraged that this world crisis is barely even mentioned.  Instead the vast majority of the news seems to focus on the upcoming American elections which don’t even happen until 20016.  A lot can happen.

I’m discouraged that Donald Trump seems to be doing so well.  This frightens me.  I get that he is different from you average politician and many voters in both the US and Canada are sick of the average politician.  I get that - I am too.  But he is a buffoon, a dangerous buffoon.  He is an egomaniac and a narcissist.  I listened to a telephone interview on CNN last night and it was scary.

While it pains me no end that the refugee situation is barely mentioned in main stream news in the US, what I am certain of is that he would be opposed to offering shelter to these people.

Canada is offering to take in 10,000 refugees in the next four years.  There are 10,000 people A DAY looking for safety.  We need to take in so many, many more.  This is a humanitarian crisis.  There is a ground swell of regular Canadians looking do what they can to increase the numbers; sponsoring people, welcoming relatives of Syrians and other troubles Arabic peoples already living in Canada.  We don’t care if they are of a different religion and culture; they need help desperately and they need it now.

How many is the American government willing to take?  It’s hard to find out since this isn’t even on the radar of mainstreamAmerican news, but what I could find out, it’s 10,000.  That is the same number as Canada where the United States is 10 times larger in population.

Think of what both Canada and United States were born from.  They were born from people running from persecution.  Well there are people today running from the same thing.  I wish with all my heart that the US media/government would get their heads out of their own navels and look around.

Many of the catastrophes going on are the end result of the American governments meddling in years past.  Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya – are any of these countries better off now?

Is the world a safer place?  Or has it become cold and fractured with hate filled groups rising up all around?

There were many of Arab descent also killed in the Twin Towers in 9-11.  We can’t let fear mongering that has been propagated for personal gain – and that is what a lot of it is – rule us and rob of us of our humanity and compassion.

Anyone reading this, I urge you to look into what is going on outside of your own borders.  Be the compassionate people I know you are.  Start living in the world, not your own nation governed and ruled by media.

I’m sure I may stir some people up with anger, but I hurt when I see what is going on and I simple can’t stay silent.

Friday, September 04, 2015

Although - on the Plus Side

when I get home from the long, long days of hell at work, I've been watching the Blue Jays and my goodness they've been ever so much fun to watch

Still here

But I've been on the late shift and it's been a crazy, nutty, bad but mostly long, long, long week.  All I can say about it is.......

Hopefully I'll be back with more pizazz soon!