Great Escapes Blog Tour – GOBBLEDY – REVIEW

Welcome! Today, I’m hosting a review for the Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour for Gobbledy by Lis Anna-Langston. It was a charming middle grade fiction book and a good holiday story.

About the Book

Gobbledy

Holiday Middle Grade
Reading Age: 8-11 years
Grade Level: 3-6
Publisher: Spark Press (October 20, 2020)
Paperback: 232 pages
ISBN-10: 1684630673
ISBN-13: 978-1684630677
Digital ASIN: B084JRC21K
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Synopsis

Ever since eleven-year-old Dexter Duckworth and his brother, Dougal, lost their mom, everything has been different. But “different” takes on a whole new meaning when, one day just before Christmas (or Kissmas, as they call it), Dexter finds a golden rock in the forest that hatches into an adorable alien. Gobbledy is smarter than he seems and is lost on planet Earth. Before long, Gobbledy takes Dexter, Dougal, and their best friend Fi on an adventure of friendship, family, and loss—one that requires them all to stay out of trouble, protect Gobbledy from a shadowy group called the Planetary Society, and prepare for their school’s Winter Extravaganza Play, where Dexter has to be a dreaded Gingerbread Man.

Gobbledy is a fun-filled holiday story that adds up to two brothers, three friends, unlimited jars of peanut butter, a ketchup factory, and one little alien far, far from home.

 

Review – 3.5 out of 5 stars

This was a charming story about a young boy who finds a glowing rock in the woods and it hatches to produce a small alien who grows bigger as he eats – and he is one voracious eater!

The hijinks and trouble the three friends and their alien get up to are pretty funny! They have one heck of a time keeping the alien hidden from parents and nosy big sisters. Not to mention the “Planetary Society”. 

I gave this 3.5 stars because there are times when the story bogs down and moves a little too slowly. I read a lot of middle grade fiction so I know this is not always the case. Young readers may not notice the slowness, but it stuck out to me. It’s a cute story and without the bogginess and slowness, I would’ve given it 4 or 4.5 stars. 

It’s still a fun book and I think any young reader would enjoy this for Christmas!

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About the Author

AuthorPhoto

Lis Anna-Langston was raised alongside the winding current of the Mississippi River on a steady diet of dog-eared books. She attended a creative and performing arts school from middle school until graduation and went on to study literature at Webster University. She is a Parents’ Choice Gold and a Moonbeam Children’s Book Award Winner. She draws badly and sings loudly, and loves ketchup, starry skies, and stories with happy endings aliens. Lis Anna-Langston lives in Columbia, South Carolina. You can learn more about her at https://www.lisannalangston.com/

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Thanks for joining me today! If you want to find more links on where to find the author and/or see a list of participants on the tour, please click on the image below which will take you to the main tour page!

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Blog Tour – Beyond a Reasonable Donut – Review

BEYOND A REASONABLE DONUT BANNER 640

Welcome! Today, I’m hosting a spot on the Great Escapes Virtual Tour for Beyond a Reasonable Donut by Ginger Bolton. I really enjoy this series and this newest installment didn’t disappoint!

About the Book

Beyond a reasonable Donut
Beyond a Reasonable Donut (A Deputy Donut Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher: Kensington (May 25, 2021)
Paperback: 256 pages
ISBN-10: 1496725581
ISBN-13: 978-1496725585
Digital ASIN: B08GY9Z1PD
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Synopsis

Selling her corn fritters at a carnival, Deputy Donut Café owner Emily Westhill faces off against a murderer who doesn’t play fair . . .

Emily and her assistant, Nina, are looking forward to manning the Deputy Donut tent at the Faker’s Dozen Carnival in Fallingbrook, Wisconsin—a festival held on Friday the thirteenth to celebrate good and bad luck. But Emily has barely dropped the corn fritters in oil when bad luck boils up. First, their bucket of confectioner’s sugar disappears—and then while a mime creates a distraction, a magician robs their cash register.

After the carnival, their misfortune continues. Emily discovers that someone has broken into artist Nina’s loft and vandalized a large painting in progress with the bucket of stolen sugar, which is now on the head of the mime, who seems to have been suffocated. Emily would bet Nina was the intended victim, but the cops think Nina silenced the mime. Now Emily must catch the killer white-handed—before someone else kicks the bucket . . .

Review – 5 out of 5 stars

I really like this series and this installment didn’t disappoint at all! From the disappearance of the confectioner’s sugar at the beginning to the revealing of the villain at the end, the action and fun were non-stop!

I love the characters in this series, which for me is the most important part. I can put up with a mediocre plot (which this was not!) if I love the characters, but even the best mystery cannot keep my interest if I don’t love the characters. These characters are well-rounded, deep characters. They have ups and downs, they make mistakes and they’re just so REAL. I always look forward to what Emily and Dep and the rest of the group are up to!

As I said above, this was NOT a mediocre plot. This book rocked it out! Plenty of secrets and red herrings and clues. I did not figure out the villain before hand, which made me happy. I like when I’m stumped. 

All in all a great book! If you’re going to start the series, I highly recommend starting with the first book, Survival of the Frittersbut you CAN read this one first and not be too confused with the continuing back stories. I cannot wait for the next book!!

 

About the Author

Ginger Bolton 2020 01 31

Ginger Bolton writes the Deputy Donut mystery series—coffee, donuts, cops, danger, and one curious cat. The first four books in the series are SURVIVAL OF THE FRITTERS, GOODBYE CRULLER WORLD, JEALOUSY FILLED DONUTS, and the latest, BOSTON SCREAM MURDER. JEALOUSY FILLED DONUTS was chosen as the Woman’s World Best New Cozy Mystery of the week and was named as one of Dollycas’s Best Reads of 2019. BEYOND A REASONABLE DONUT will be on store shelves May 25, 2021. When Ginger isn’t writing or reading, she’s crocheting, knitting, sewing, or generally causing trouble. She’s also fond of donuts and coffee. As Janet Bolin, Ginger wrote the Threadville Mysteries—murder and mayhem in a village of crafty shops.

Author Links

Website – https://gingerbolton.com

Facebook –  https://www.facebook.com/AuthorGingerBolton

Twitter – https://twitter.com/ginger_bolton

BookBub –  https://www.bookbub.com/authors/ginger-bolton

GoodReads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16834862.Ginger_Bolton/

 

Thanks for joining me today! If you wish to visit other stops on this tour, please click the banner below to go to the main tour page!

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Blog Tour – Legally Blind Luck – REVIEW

Welcome!!! Today, I’m pleased to be hosting a stop on the Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour for James J. Cudney’s Legally Blind Luck, the 7th book in the Braxton Campus Mysteries. James is one of my favorite authors and this book just helped solidify that!

About the Book

Legally Blind Luck (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
by James J. Cudney

Cozy Mystery

7th in Series

Independently published (April 15, 2021)

Gumshoe – A Next Chapter Imprint

Paperback: 295 pages

ISBN-13: 979-8707757341

Digital ASIN: B08R347N84

Purchase Links:  Amazon KindleAmazon Physical Book 

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Synopsis

Surprising new family members. A hidden talisman. Deadly curses. Murder. Months after tragically losing a loved one, Kellan learns his relative’s death wasn’t an accident.

Someone has discovered a cursed talisman, and a rogue government agent will stop at nothing to retrieve the heirloom. Unfortunately, it has already changed hands and found its way on campus. Moments before Braxton’s controversial art exhibition opens, Kellan stumbles upon another murder victim, and it appears he might be next on the avenger’s list.

Can Kellan protect the talisman’s true heir and prevent the killer’s nefarious plan? Given all the suspects have ties to prominent Braxton citizens, he’s uncertain whom to trust. Together, Kellan and Sheriff April are determined to solve the mystery – via legal means or blind luck.

Review – 5 out of 5 stars

As I said above, James is one of my favorite authors and this book does not disappoint!

We start out with all our favorite characters – Kellan, Nana D, Ulan, Emma, April, and all the others in Kellan’s family, his friends, and his colleagues as well as some new people. The great thing about James’s books, is that even when new characters are added, they are fleshed out, they are well-defined and are not just flat.

The mystery in this book doesn’t disappoint either! There are a lot of side plots and red herrings and I had NO idea who the villain was before the end. I enjoyed the fact that we learned more about Miriam’s background and why she is the way she is. In fact, that was one of my favorite parts of the story. The African legend is great too!

All in all, this is a great book and I recommend it! It helps to read the previous six books, but it’s not mandatory as James provides enough backstory that you understand what is going on.

About James J. Cudney

Selfie

Background

James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College, an historic but small liberal arts school in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with a degree in English literature and minors in Education, Business and Spanish. After college, I accepted a technical writing position for a telecommunications company during Y2K and spent the last ~20 years building a career in technology & business operations in the retail, sports, media, hospitality, and entertainment industries. Throughout those years, I wrote short stories, poems, and various beginnings to the “Great American Novel,” but I was so focused on my career that writing became a hobby. In 2016, I committed to focusing my energies toward reinvigorating a second career in reading, writing, and publishing.

Author

Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, mind, and body. At some points, it was just a few poems or short stories; at others, it was full length novels and stories. My current focus is family drama fiction, cozy mystery novels, and suspense thrillers. I conjure characters and plots that I feel must be unwound. I think of situations people find themselves in and feel compelled to tell the story. It’s usually a convoluted plot with many surprise twists and turns. I feel it necessary to take that ride all over the course. My character is easily pictured in my head. I know what he is going to encounter or what she will feel. But I need to use the right words to make it clear.

Reader & Reviewer

Reading has also never left my side. Whether it was children’s books, young adult novels, college textbooks, biographies, or my ultimate love, fiction, it’s ever present in my day. I read two books per week and I’m on a quest to update every book I’ve ever read on Goodreads, write up a review, and post it on all my sites and platforms.

Blogger & Thinker

I have combined my passions into a single platform where I share reviews, write a blog and publish tons of content: TRUTH. I started my 365 Daily Challenge, where I post about a word that has some meaning to me and converse with everyone about life. There is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice, and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the

time. Even my dogs have had weekly segments called “Ryder’s Rants” or “Baxter’s Barks,” where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real. And that’s why they are me.

Genealogist & Researcher

I love history and research, finding myself often reaching back into the past to understand why someone made the choice he or she did and what were the subsequent consequences. I enjoy studying the activities and culture from hundreds of years ago to trace the roots and find the puzzle of my own history. I wish I could watch my ancestors from a secret place to learn how they interacted with others, and maybe I’ll comprehend why I do things the way I do.

Websites & Blog

Website: https://jamesjcudney.com/

Blog: https://thisismytruthnow.com

Amazon: http://bit.ly/JJCIVBooks

Next Chapter: https://www.nextchapter.pub/authors/james-j-cudney

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/james-j-cudney

 

Social Media

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jamescudney4

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamesJCudneyIVAuthor/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BraxtonCampusMysteries/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThisIsMyTruthNow/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jamescudney4/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jamescudney4/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jamescudney4

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamescudney4

That’s it for today!! If you want to visit other sites on the tour, please click on the button below to go to the main tour page and check out other reviews and some author interviews!!!

 

BLOG TOUR – Hiding Cracked Glass – REVIEW

Hello and welcome!! Today, I’m behind the eight-ball as I was supposed to post this yesterday (Wednesday, October 7th), but I’m at least still getting it up!! Today I am THRILLED to be presenting a review on Hiding Cracked Glass by James J. Cudney, one of my favorite authors! This is the 2nd in the Perceptions of Glass series and an absolute joy to read! To completely understand what’s happening, it’s best to read book 1, Watching Glass Shatter first. You don’t have to, but it will make more things make sense.

About the Book

Hiding Cracked Glass
Family Drama
2nd in series (Perceptions of Glass Series)
https://www.amazon.com/Hiding-Cracked-Glass-Perceptions-Book-ebook/dp/B08F3YWTYX
286 pages

Synopsis

A blackmail letter arrives at an inopportune moment, and the recipient’s name is blurred out. Who is the ruthless missive meant for?

In the powerful sequel to Watching Glass Shatter, Olivia is the first to read the nasty threat. When the mysterious letter falls into the wrong hands, her sons try to figure out who’s seeking revenge on them.

Across the span of eight hours, members of the Glass family contemplate whether to confess their hidden secrets, or find a way to bury them forever. Some didn’t learn an important lesson last time, and as each hour ticks by, the family has to come to terms with what happened in the previous months.

Their lives are about to shatter into pieces once again, and this time the stakes are even higher.

Review5 out of 5 stars

I personally think this is the best book Jay’s written to date. I absolutely adored it. I’ve been bugging him to write more about the Glass family for a while now and was thrilled when this book was written!

It was wonderful to revisit the Glass family, Olivia, Diane, Teddy, Matthew, Caleb, Zach, and Ethan and all their families. Even though Ethan is no longer with us, he and his family play a pivotal role in our story.

The characters are wonderful. They have depth and are well-written. There’s great character development through out the book. The plot is well thought out and flows from one thing to another in a fluid manner.

This book is just so great! I loved every minute of reading it! It made me laugh, it made me cry, it was hard to put down! I just can’t give an impartial review on this one. I love it. Every word, every paragraph, every page!

Read it, it’ll be one of the best things you read this year!

About the Author

Background

James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College, an historic but small liberal arts school in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with a degree in English literature and minors in Education, Business and Spanish. After college, I accepted a technical writing position for a telecommunications company during Y2K and spent the last ~20 years building a career in technology & business operations in the retail, sports, media and entertainment industries. Throughout those years, I wrote some short stories, poems and various beginnings to the “Great American Novel,” but I was so focused on my career in technology and business that writing became a hobby. In 2016, I refocused some of my energies toward reinvigorating a second career in reading, writing and publishing.

Author

Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, my mind and my body. At some points, it was just a few poems or short stories; at others, it was full length novels and stories. My current focus is family drama fiction, cozy mystery novels and suspense thrillers. I think of characters and plots that I feel must be unwound. I think of situations people find themselves in and feel compelled to tell the story. It’s usually a convoluted plot with many surprise twists and turns. I feel it necessary to take that ride all over the course. My character is easily pictured in my head. I know what he is going to encounter or what she will feel. But I need to use the right words to make it clear.

Reader & Reviewer

Reading has also never left my side. Whether it was children’s books, young adult novels, college textbooks, biographies or my ultimate love, fiction, it’s ever present in my day. I read 2 books per week and I’m on a quest to update every book I’ve ever read on Goodreads, write up a review and post it on all my sites and platforms.

Blogger & Thinker

I have combined my passions into a single platform where I share reviews, write a blog and publish tons of content: TRUTH. I started my 365 Daily Challenge, where I post about a word that has some meaning to me and converse with everyone about life. There is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dogs have had weekly segments called “Ryder’s Rants” or “Baxter’s Barks” where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real. And that’s why they are me.

Genealogist & Researcher

I love history and research, finding myself often reaching back into the past to understand why someone made the choice he or she did and what were the subsequent consequences. I enjoy studying the activities and culture from hundreds of years ago to trace the roots and find the puzzle of my own history. I wish I could watch my ancestors from a secret place to learn how they interacted with others; and maybe I’ll comprehend why I do things the way I do.

Cover Reveal – Hiding Cracked Glass

Welcome! Today I’m participating in a cover reveal for James J Cudney’s newest book, Hiding Cracked Glass, which will be out in October!

Hiding Cracked Glass is the sequel to James’s first book, Watching Glass Shatter and I’ve been excitedly awaiting it! Every time James has written a new book I’ve asked about this book and when it was coming! I just love the Glass family!!

Without further ado… Hiding Cracked Glass

Hiding-Cracked-Glass-Main-File

Goodreads

Synopsis

An ominous blackmail letter appears at an inopportune moment. The recipient’s name is accidentally blurred out upon arrival. Which member of the Glass family is the ruthless missive meant for?

In the powerful sequel to Watching Glass Shatter, Olivia is the first to read the nasty threat and assumes it’s meant for her. When the mysterious letter falls into the wrong hands and is read aloud, it throws the entire Glass family into an inescapable trajectory of self-question. Across the span of eight hours, Olivia and her sons contemplate whether to confess their hidden secrets or find a way to bury them forever. Some failed to learn an important lesson last time. Will they determine how to save themselves before it’s too late?

Each chapter’s focus alternates between the various family members and introduces several new and familiar faces with a vested interest in the outcome. As each hour ticks by, the remaining siblings and their mother gradually reveal what’s happened to them in the preceding months, and when the blackmailer makes an appearance at Olivia’s birthday party, the truth brilliantly comes to light.

Although everyone seemed to embrace the healing process at the end of Watching Glass Shatter, there were hidden cracks in the Glass family that couldn’t be mended. Their lives are about to shatter into pieces once again, but this time, the stakes are even higher. Someone wants to teach them a permanent lesson and refuses to stop until success is achieved.  

About the Author

Background

James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College, an historic but small liberal arts school in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with a degree in English literature and minors in Education, Business and Spanish. After college, I accepted a technical writing position for a telecommunications company during Y2K and spent the last ~20 years building a career in technology & business operations in the retail, sports, media and entertainment industries. Throughout those years, I wrote some short stories, poems and various beginnings to the “Great American Novel,” but I was so focused on my career in technology and business that writing became a hobby. In 2016, I refocused some of my energies toward reinvigorating a second career in reading, writing and publishing.

Author

Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, my mind and my body. At some points, it was just a few poems or short stories; at others, it was full length novels and stories. My current focus is family drama fiction, cozy mystery novels and suspense thrillers. I think of characters and plots that I feel must be unwound. I think of situations people find themselves in and feel compelled to tell the story. It’s usually a convoluted plot with many surprise twists and turns. I feel it necessary to take that ride all over the course. My character is easily pictured in my head. I know what he is going to encounter or what she will feel. But I need to use the right words to make it clear.

Reader & Reviewer

Reading has also never left my side. Whether it was children’s books, young adult novels, college textbooks, biographies or my ultimate love, fiction, it’s ever present in my day. I read 2 books per week and I’m on a quest to update every book I’ve ever read on Goodreads, write up a review and post it on all my sites and platforms.

Blogger & Thinker

I have combined my passions into a single platform where I share reviews, write a blog and publish tons of content: TRUTH. I started my 365 Daily Challenge, where I post about a word that has some meaning to me and converse with everyone about life. There is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dogs have had weekly segments called “Ryder’s Rants” or “Baxter’s Barks” where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real. And that’s why they are me.

Genealogist & Researcher

I love history and research, finding myself often reaching back into the past to understand why someone made the choice he or she did and what were the subsequent consequences. I enjoy studying the activities and culture from hundreds of years ago to trace the roots and find the puzzle of my own history. I wish I could watch my ancestors from a secret place to learn how they interacted with others; and maybe I’ll comprehend why I do things the way I do.

Websites & Blog

Website: https://jamesjcudney.com/

Blog: https://thisismytruthnow.com

Amazon: http://bit.ly/JJCIVBooks

Next Chapter Pub: https://www.nextchapter.pub/authors/james-j-cudney

BookBub:https://www.bookbub.com/profile/james-j-cudney

Social Media

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jamescudney4

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamesJCudneyIVAuthor/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BraxtonCampusMysteries/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThisIsMyTruthNow/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jamescudney4/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jamescudney4/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jamescudney4

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamescudney4