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Friday, January 30, 2015

Review: I Do! by Rachel Gibson

I Do! (Lovett, Texas, #5)Publisher: Avon Impulse
ISBN: 0062247514
Pages: 150 pages
Genre: Romance/Contemporary
Buy this Book: Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | Kobo

Summary:

In New York Times bestselling author Rachel Gibson's newest novella, Vince Haven and Sadie Hollowell are headed to the altar, and all their friends are headed to Lovett, Texas, to join them for the party of the year.

But Becca Ramsey doesn't have time for all that. Fresh out of beauty school, Becca's all business … and the last thing she needs is bad boy Nate Parrish anywhere in her life.

In the past, Nate was trouble. He's been trying to repair his reputation—heck, he's even got just one girlfriend. The problem is, she isn't Becca. Now Nate's in a whole lot of hot water. He needs to get Becca from "I won't" to "I do" … but how can he do that when she won't even say "I might"?

My Review:

Intro: I think this review is going to be a bit shorter than my normal. The novella is pretty short and full of updates about past couples in a series so I don’t think I can go really in-depth until I’ve read the series which I definitely plan to. Once I finish reading through Mary Balogh’s books. So I will update this review then.

Characters:

Heroine: Becca-I liked Becca. She seemed like a nice girl with a good head on her shoulders. She also had plenty of moxie which I really loved. I’ve been reading so many of Balogh’s early regencies so it’s nice to find a heroine with some zest.

Hero: Nate-I had trouble with him. For a good portion of the book, he has a girlfriend that he has not yet broken up with. I don’t quite know how I feel about that. On one hand, I am a fan of books with infidelity as a theme but on the other, I find that I have trouble with the theme when it is in a contemporary romance. I did like him otherwise. I have a weakness for mechanics.

Chemistry: One thing I definitely can say about Nate and Becca was they had amazing chemistry. I did not like that Nate had a girlfriend but the chemistry he had with Becca was intense. I almost wish they had gotten a full-length book because they were awesome.

Chemistry Rating:
Conclusion: I need to go back a read this series because I was kind of lost with all of the updates of previous couples from the other books in the series. I loved Nate and Becca’s story though but I am curious to see if my opinion changes if I read the previous books. 

Overall Rating

Author Info
Rachel Gibson lives in Idaho with her husband, three kids, two cats and a dog of mysterious origin. She began her fiction career at age 16, when she ran her car into the side of a hill, retrieved the bumper, and drove to a parking lot, where she strategically scattered the car’s broken glass all about. She told her parents she’d been the victim of a hit and run and they believed her. She’s been making up stories ever since, although she gets paid better for them nowadays.

Author Links:  Website Facebook | Goodreads

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Review: Dreaming of Love by Melissa Foster

Dreaming of Love (Love in Bloom, #19; The Bradens, #11)Publisher: World Literary Press
Pages: 385 pages
Genre: Romance/Contemporary
Buy this Book: Amazon | B&NiTunes | 
Kobo | Google

Summary:

Emily Braden is a leader in architectural preservation, a pillar in her small hometown, and successful in everything she does—with the exception of finding true love. She’s watched several of her brothers fall in love, and she needs this trip to Tuscany to get away from it all and to stop focusing on what she doesn’t have.

Dae Bray doesn’t do flings, and he never stays in one place for very long. As a demolitionist, he goes where jobs take him, and the more often he travels, the better. His trip to Tuscany is all work—until he meets smart and sexy Emily, who makes him reconsider his fear of settling down, his no-fling rule—and just about everything else he’s ever believed about himself.

Passion sizzles as Dae and Emily explore the history and beauty of Tuscany. Their romance moves beyond tourist attractions to the bedroom, blossoming into a deep connection neither can deny. But their worlds collide when Emily wants to preserve the property that Dae is there to demolish. Can a woman who sees the beauty in preservation and a man whose life is spent tearing things down find a solid foundation for their love?

My Review:

Intro: It’s gotten to the point where I feel a sense of joy when I pick up a Melissa Foster book because I know it’s going to be good. And I wasn’t wrong because this one was excellent.

Characters:

Heroine: Emily-I really identified with Emily. Her curiosity and passion about Italy and its buildings and architecture is something that I love about her. I also loved how pragmatic she was even about planning her vacation to Italy. That is something I would do.

Hero: Dae-At first glance, I did not like him. Not even a little bit. Not because of anything he did really but who demolishes historical buildings? Who? It’s not nice. But I quickly got over that because he is quite dreamy. And no, I don’t use that word often but it applies here.

Chemistry: I love everything about Emily and Dae. Their jobs are so in conflict with each other. Emily is into conservation and Dae likes to tear stuff down. But I loved seeing how they worked around that and the conflicts that it caused.

Chemistry Rating:
 

Conclusion: Melissa Foster can do no wrong. I love her books and this one was no different. I loved Emily and Dae. I really loved Emily’s passion about Italy and Dae’s sweetness. I thought they had amazing chemistry in spite of their differences. I definitely will be following along with the rest of this series.
Overall Rating


Author Info
Melissa Foster is an award-winning, International bestselling author. Her books have been recommended by USA Today's book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, theWorld Literary CafĂ©. When she's not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa is also a community builder for the Alliance for Independent Authors. She has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter |Goodreads | TSU
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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Review: Too Hot To Handle by Katie Rose

Too Hot to Handle (The Boys of Summer, #2)Publisher: Loveswept
ISBN: 0553390481
Pages: 240 pages
Genre: Romance/Contemporary/Sports
Buy this Book: Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo

Summary:

Katie Rose’s Boys of Summer series returns for a delicious double-header—with the story of total opposites who are drawn to each other like moths to a flame.

Nikki Case is no fan of baseball. Her ex gambled away a fortune on the sport, and now her PR firm has tasked her with cleaning up the league’s most notorious bad boys. The New Jersey Sonics are known for wild womanizing and booze-fueled brawls, so Nikki expects the worst. Her first stop in the battle to win hearts and minds is star hitter Jake Baldwin—a legendary ladies man so smokin’ he threatens to melt her tough-girl armor.

Although his teammates prank her without mercy, Jake admires the way Nikki gives as good as she gets. She may be the queen of frost, but there’s kindling beneath those sultry curves—and he’s just the man to ignite it. But when a PR nightmare lands the Sonics in headlines across the country, Nikki is ready to walk. Only then does Jake realize how important she is to the Sonics’ success—and that winning the love of a good woman is no game.



My Review:

Intro: I am drafting out this review while I should be shoveling. Terribly neglectful on my part but it’s really cold out there and I am wearing comfy fuzzy slippers in the warmth of my home. I need to prepare myself emotionally before going out there.

I loved this book. I am a weakling for sports romances. Especially ones with a particularly bad boy type hero. This one was one of them.

Characters:

Heroine: Nikki-I absolutely loved Nikki. She waltzed into her PR job with Jake’s team and just gave them all the good old what for. She didn’t take any crap from anyone and I love that. She was strong and capable and pretty frickin awesome.

Hero: Jake-I love bad boy sports heroes. The nice ones tend to be boring. Jake was definitely not one of the boring ones. He’s one of those sports heroes with that oily type of swagger but he also was kind and sweet as well. I love that there was some depth to him.

Chemistry: I have seen the bet plot done so many times but it never fails for me. I love it. It’s the teenager in me that loved She’s All That. The bet plot always works. It’s so angsty and perfect and it was done so well here. It didn’t exactly hurt that Jake and Nikki had this opposites attract thing going.

Chemistry Rating:


Conclusion: I am loving this series so far. I love it when I can fangirl a series from the beginning. That so rarely happens. I loved this book. The angsty bits were just so well done. And the bet plot. If that’s ever been done badly, I haven’t seen it yet. 
Overall Rating


Author Info
Award-winning historical author Katie Rose makes her contemporary debut with the Boys of Summer novels, Bring on the Heat and Too Hot to Handle, which combine Katie’s true loves: baseball and romance! When not watching baseball, Katie is at her lake house in New Jersey, hard at work on her next book.

Author Links:   Website | Facebook | Twitter |Goodreads
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Review: Just a Taste by Shannyn Schroeder

Just a Taste (O'Learys #5)Publisher: Kensington
ISBN: 160183330X
Pages: 270 pages
 Genre: Romance/Contemporary
Buy this Book: Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | 
Kobo

Summary:

Grief has brought them together again—will love open the door to their future? When it’s an O’Leary in the picture, finding out is just part of the adventure…

Carmen Delgado is left reeling when her father dies. Taking care of him has been her sole purpose for so long, she’s forgotten what it’s like to have dreams of her own. And with steady, sexy Liam O’Leary inheriting a share in her dad’s successful food truck, Carmen is suddenly free to explore her life’s possibilities. She never expected Liam to provide the kind of temptation she’s not sure she can resist…

A talented chef, Liam O’Leary has been itching to open his own restaurant for years—and the death of his mentor is a reminder that time passes too quickly. Gus’s Taco Taxi isn’t exactly what he dreamed of, but he can’t desert Gus’s daughter. Working side by side is an unexpected pleasure—and grownup Carmen is alluring in all new ways. Is love on the menu—or will old fears and insecurities drive them apart?

My Review:

Intro: I am typing this review up while watching the news predicting huge amounts of snowfall slow torture. I don’t mind the snow but I mind blizzards. A whole lot. Being stuck in the house is no fun. It does give me plenty of time to read before I go stir crazy.
I read Just a Taste with little to no expectations but I found myself really loving it. It’s especially surprising because I usually don’t like jumping in at the fifth book in a series.

Characters:

Heroine: Carmen-I loved Carmen. I did. I really identified with her. She came across as so real and kind of like someone I could meet and have a conversation with. I never really feel that way about most heroines.

Hero: Liam: Liam is the type of hero that I love to find. He was super sweet and kind to Carmen. But he also had these moments of complete not so niceness. He was a great balance. I did like him quite a bit but I did want to smack him at times.

Chemistry: I loved Carmen and Liam together. They were just so real. I know this is going to sound bad but I mean it in a very very good way. Carmen and Liam are not the romance novel fireworks type of couple. They are like a couple you can meet every day. I think that is what makes them so perfect.

Chemistry Rating:


Conclusion: I absolutely loved this book. I found both Carmen and Liam to be so charmingly real and I loved that about them. I also loved the foodie aspect of the book. I need to catch up with this series very badly. I could see myself mainlining this series over a weekend. 

Overall Rating


Author Info
Shannyn Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series, contemporary romances centered around a large Irish-American family in Chicago and the new Hot & Nerdy series about 3 nerdy friends and their last spring break. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to bake cookies.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads 


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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Book Blast: Sweet Surprise by Candis Terry


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(See Details Below)





Playing naughty or nice . . .


Fiona Wilder knows all about falling in lust. Love? That's another story. Determined not to repeat past mistakes, the single mom and cupcake shop owner is focused on walking the straight and narrow. But trouble has a way of finding her. And this time it comes in the form of a smoking hot firefighter who knows all the delicious ways to ignite her bad-girl fuse. Can lead to heartbreak . . .

Firefighter Mike Halsey learned long ago that playing with fire just gets you burned. He's put his demons behind him, and if there's one line he won't cross, it's getting involved with his best friend's ex. But when fate throws him in the path of the beautiful, strong, and off-limits Fiona, will he be able to fight their attraction? Or will he willingly go down in flames? Or a sweet surprise!




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*SCAVENGER HUNT*

Each host will have a
different letter placed within their post during the SWEET SURPRISE Release Blast! 

Readers, you will
have to visit EACH tour stop to find the letters, and then enter the "Secret Word" into the Rafflecopter for more chances to win!   

You can enter ONE WORD per day, five words to find!




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Candis Terry was born and raised near the sunny beaches of
Southern California and now makes her home on an Idaho farm. She’s experienced
life in such diverse ways as working in a Hollywood recording studio to chasing
down wayward steers. Only one thing has remained the same: her passion for
writing stories about relationships, the push and pull in the search for love,
and the security one finds in their own happily ever after.
Find Candis Here


SOMETHING SWEETER by Candis Terry is the 
Harlequin Junkie Book Club Read for January!

Mark your calendars for Jan 29th!
(6pm PST/9pm EST)


Thursday, January 22, 2015

Review: The Duke of Dark Desires by Miranda Neville

The Duke of Dark Desires (The Wild Quartet, #4)Publisher: Avon
 ISBN: 0062243349
 Pages: 384 pages
 Genre: Romance/Historical
Buy this Book: Amazon Barnes | iBooks | Kobo

Summary:

Wanted: Governess able to keep all hours…

Rebellious Julian Fortescue never expected to inherit a dukedom, nor to find himself guardian to three young half-sisters. Now in the market for a governess, he lays eyes on Jane Grey and knows immediately she is qualified-to become his mistress. Yet the alluring woman appears impervious to him. Somehow Julian must find a way to make her succumb to temptation … without losing his heart and revealing the haunting mistakes of his past.

Desired: Duke skilled in the seductive art of conversation…

Lady Jeanne de Falleron didn’t seek a position as a governess simply to fall into bed with the Duke of Denford. Under the alias of Jane Grey, she must learn which of the duke’s relatives is responsible for the death of her family-and take her revenge. She certainly can’t afford the distraction of her darkly irresistible employer, or the smoldering desire he ignites within her.

But as Jane discovers more clues about the villain she seeks, she’s faced with a possibility more disturbing than her growing feelings for Julian: What will she do if the man she loves is also the man she’s sworn to kill?


My Review:

Intro: Today was bad. My computer crashed while I was drafting out another review. Not fun. I thought I was going to have to buy another laptop because no matter how many times people say you can replace a laptop with a phone—you cannot. I am happy to say, however, that in the midst of the treachery that was today, I can fondly remember the beauty that was The Duke of Dark Desires. It was a reading highlight of the year---young as this year may be.

Characters:

Heroine: Jane-She was just plain old awesome. She was the epitome of what I think every heroine should be. She was so smart and strong but had a vulnerability about her. She also never let Julian take advantage of her.

Hero: Julian-Julian is a hero that I think I would have disliked if this book had been written by just about any other author. He could have turned out to be a caricature of himself…too cartoonish but he didn’t. He did have all those qualities that made him a bad boyish rake but he also was quite sweet and kind.  It does take him a while to show his kind side but it was there.

Chemistry: I loved these two together. There is a definite give and take between them. They each have something to offer each other aside from the obvious. Jane brought out Julian’s kindness and Julian brought out Jane’s moxie. They were perfect.

Chemistry Rating:

Conclusion: I’m such a big fan of Miranda Neville. She never disappoints and I love her books so much. I loved this one as well. Julian and Jane had this amazing chemistry that just read so real and I don’t encounter that very often. I also found myself liking Julian’s sisters. I don’t often like children in books but they were so well-developed as characters. I cannot wait for Miranda Neville’s next book.


Overall Rating


Author Info
MIRANDA NEVILLE grew up in England before moving to New York City to work in Sotheby’s rare books department. After many years as a journalist and editor, she decided writing fiction was more fun. She lives in Vermont. She loves hearing from readers and may be reached through her website.

Author Links: Website Facebook Twitter | Goodreads
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Review: Dangerous by Patricia Rosemoor

DangerousPublisher: Loveswept
ISBN: 0553392549
Pages: 240 pages
Genre: Romance/Suspense
Buy this Book: Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | Kobo

Summary:

Fans of Linda Howard will love Dangerous, the story of a driven female cop who teams up with an irresistible ex-con to bring a killer to justice—and discovers that breaking the rules is hotter on the wrong side of the law.

Chicago homicide detective Camille Martell will stop at nothing to track down “Angel,” a sexual predator who has already butchered two young victims—even after her off-the-books investigation leads to her suspension. But when her relentless attempts to contact Angel online puts her teenage neighbor in mortal danger, Camille’s worst fears are realized. Panicked and overwhelmed with guilt, Camille needs help—even if it comes from the one man she swore she’d do anything to forget.

After serving time for a trumped-up charge, private investigator Drago Nance doesn’t trust cops. Nothing will change that, not even the steamy weekend with Camille that burned itself into his memory. But with an innocent girl’s life at stake, Drago can’t ignore the need in Camille’s eyes, or the heated promise in her touch. He agrees to help—if she’s willing to play by his rules. He just never suspected that seducing his partner could be just as thrilling as chasing a madman.



My Review:

Intro: Pardon me if this review comes off a little wonky. I have a cold and have been Nyquiling it up. Not exactly the smartest thing ever but it was necessary. I am a giant baby when I am sick.
I have been wanting to read a good romantic suspense for a while. I have been on a steady diet of historical romance and Anne of Green Gables for the past month so this is a nice break.

Characters:

Heroine: Camille-This is one of those rare instances where I had trouble with both the hero and the heroine. I liked Camille. I did. She was incredibly strong and capable. I did love the pragmatic way she looked at life. But I had a few moments in the book where I wanted to plonk her on the head for being too impulsive and taking unneccessary risks.

Hero: Drago-I had a bit more difficulty with Drago. First of all, his name. I kept imagining Draco Malfoy for some reason and it kind of took me out of the book. Also, it took me a while to make any sort of connection with him. I eventually did but it took me longer than usual. But I eventually came around. I love how he was a voice of reason for Camille. It’s usually the other way around.

Chemistry: This is what really got me into the book. They had such intense chemistry. I absolutely loved the flashbacks of their weekend together. I don’t think I would have had a complete understanding of their relationship without it. It added a heat where it would have otherwise been sort of tepid.

Chemistry Rating:


Conclusion: I’ve never read a Patricia Rosemoor book before but I think I will have to. I enjoyed this one a great deal. I also think I will buy a copy for my mother. She loves romantic suspense of this sort and will adore this one. 
Overall Rating


Author Info
With 90 novels and more than seven million books in print, Patricia Rosemoor is fascinated with "dangerous love" – combining romance with danger. She has written various forms of romantic and paranormal romantic thrillers, even romantic horror, bringing a different mix of thrills and chills to her stories.
Patricia has won a Golden Heart from Romance Writers of America and two Reviewers Choice and two Career Achievement Awards from RT BOOKreviews, and in her other life, she teaches Popular Fiction and Suspense-Thriller Writing, credit courses at Columbia College Chicago. Three of her Columbia grad students and two students from other venues are now published in novel-length fiction

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Review: How to Plan a Wedding for a Royal Spy by Vanessa Kelly

How to Plan a Wedding for a Royal Spy (The Renegade Royals, #3)Publisher: Zebra
ISBN: 1420131265
Pages: 400 pages
Genre:  Romance/Historical
Buy this Book: Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | Kobo

Summary:

Whether as spies or lovers, the Renegade Royals—illegitimate sons of England’s Royal Princes—are bold, skillful, and a force to be reckoned with… 
A war hero returned from Waterloo should be able to indulge in a bit of bad behavior. Instead, Captain William Endicott is summoned by his father, the Duke of York, to investigate an assassination plot. The unlikely suspect: William’s former sweetheart. Will can’t believe that innocent Evie Whitney could be mixed up in anything so nefarious. Then again, almost everything about Evie has changed—except for his body’s instinctive response to hers…

Just as Evie’s life is finally coming together, Will saunters back into it. Should she slap him—or seduce him? Even as she tries to decide, scandal pushes her toward marriage with a man she can neither trust nor resist—and into the heart of a deadly conspiracy…

My Review:

Intro: I have started this year out with a Mary Balogh reading marathon. Not her newer stuff but her older regency romances. The ones with the heroes who test my patience. So, it was nice to take a break from that and read a new book and this one was the perfect choice.

Characters:

Heroine: Evie-I completely fell in love with Evie from the beginning of the book. She was a quiet and shy girl but she definitely had some spunk. I loved watching her come into her own.

Hero: William-I liked him quite a bit. I felt a bit angry at him in solidarity with Evie but I did end up really enjoying his character. He was very kind and honorable and I was very happy that I was able to separate Evie’s feelings about him from my own because that would have made this read a bit difficult.

Chemistry: William and Evie have a bit of a difficult history together. Especially on Evie’s part. But that history only added to their chemistry. There was a bit of angst and a lot of banter—which I love. I did love watching William and Evie’s rediscovery of each other.

Chemistry Rating:


Conclusion: This series has not had one miss for me. I loved this one. Evie and William were the perfect mix of angst and sweetness.  I did find myself wavering in interest a bit with the spy subplot. I was just so interested in Evie and Will’s story that I didn’t have much attention to spare. 

Overall Rating


Author Info
Vanessa Kelly is an award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.”  Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated for awards in a number of contests, and her second book, Sex and The Single Earl, won the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance.  Her current series, The Renegade Royals is a national bestseller.  Vanessa also writes USA Today bestselling contemporary romance with her husband, under the pen name of VK Sykes.

Author Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads



Friday, January 9, 2015

Review: Return to Clan Sinclair by Karen Ranney

Return to Clan Sinclair (Clan Sinclair, #3.5)Publisher: Avon Impulse
ISBN: 0062337459
Pages: 150 pages
Genre: Romance/Historical/Highlander
Buy this Book: Amazon | B&N | iTunes

Summary:

The stunning follow-up novella in New York Times bestselling author Karen Ranney’s beloved Clan Sinclair series.

It’s true love in the Scottish highlands. When Ceana Sinclair Mead married the youngest son of an Irish duke, she never dreamed that seven years later her beloved Peter would die. Her three brothers-in-law thought she should be grateful to remain a proper widow. After three years of this, she’s ready to scream. She escapes to Scotland, only to discover she’s so much more than just the Widow Mead.

In Scotland, Ceana crosses paths with Bruce Preston, an American tasked with a dangerous mission by her brother, Macrath. Bruce is too attractive for her peace of mind, but she still finds him fascinating. Their one night together is more wonderful than Ceana could have imagined and she has never felt more alive.

But when the past reaches out in the form of an old foe, Ceana’s life is in danger. Now Bruce fights to become her savior-and more-if she’ll let him.

My Review:

Intro: I took a bit of a break from blogging during the holiday. My family tends to be pretty crazy busy during the holiday with all of the cooking and family flooding the house and such so I figured that would be a perfect time to take a bit of a breather. And then I got an Xbox for Christmas and got majorly distracted by Assassin’s Creed because I am a nerd. I did manage to read Return to Clan Sinclair though and I liked it quite a bit.

Characters:
Heroine: Ceana-I am not opposed to novellas but sometimes when I read a novella I encounter a character that I wish had gotten the full book treatment. This is true about both Ceana and Bruce. But still, I loved Ceana. She was a compelling heroine with a strong voice.

Hero: Bruce-I loved him so much. He initially comes across as so shallow. I wondered if I was going to be able to find any depth to his character at all. But his backstory is tragic and heartbreaking and…I just loved him.

Chemistry: These two were so utterly perfect for each other in a completely mismatched kind of way. In no universe, would I think that Bruce and Ceana would be good together but they were so perfect. They were the complete opposites but it worked.

Chemistry Rating:

Conclusion: I really enjoyed this one. It was a great book to end my self-imposed hiatus on and I really need to catch up with this series. I’m a bit behind. I am hoping and praying for a book about Carlton though.

Overall Rating


Author Info
Karen Ranney began writing when she was five. Her first published work was The Maple Leaf, read over the school intercom when she was in the first grade. In addition to wanting to be a violinist (her parents had a special violin crafted for her when she was seven), she wanted to be a lawyer, a teacher, and, most of all, a writer. Though the violin was discarded early, she still admits to a fascination with the law, and she volunteers as a teacher whenever needed. Writing, however, has remained the overwhelming love of her life.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

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