Are you an avid reader looking for your next "fix"? Can't bear to be without some form of reading material in your spare time? Welcome to my world! Whether you are seeking a new book to "feed your need", or you are an author seeking an unbiased point of view on your own recent masterpiece, this is the place to be. With life as with books, you never know where the next step might take you...

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

REVIEW starring... LIGHTLARK by Alex Aster

 The last book review of 2022?

Maybe, but if it is, we're ending on a high note!

LIGHTLARK by Alex Aster (Amulet Books)

OMG. I know, that's a very astute start to a review, but quite literally that's what I was left with by book's end. This story twists and turns, then twists some more, and just when you think you have a handle on who's duping who, what secrets are being kept, who's lying, scheming, or being real, things get spun on their head!

Lightlark is a place they all once called home. The Wildlings, Starlings, Skylings, Sunlings, Moonlings, and Nightshade... then, a curse was cast that turned their abilities into their enemies, and fractioned their peace, spreading most of them far and wide, while creating newlands for their people. Every 100 years, the rulers meet for the Centennial to try and unravel the project to break the curse... the winner takes all, and saves most, but one must fall, and so will their kingdom. It's a deadly game, revealing much without a certain end... but this year's is most important of all for it just might be the last, in more ways than one. 

Caught your attention? Good because that's just setting the scene. You haven't met the players, the rulers... you haven't uncovered their secrets and desires... you haven't witnessed their heartbreak and destruction... you haven't bonded with them over the little things and seen through the big things. Isla, our Wildling leader, is a complex ball of nerves, anger, contemplation, and secrets. Sometimes she trusts too easily, and yet one can hardly blame her with the truths she is presented... other times she takes her sweet time, letting her mind run a million courses towards a misty decision. 

As much as her constant self doubt frustrated me, I get where it came from, even more so as the book progresses, but I still really liked her character. She wasn't the strongest, fastest, most powerful in the bunch, but she was unequivocally herself. She made mistakes, wallowed in the aftereffects a bit, but made moves forward time and time again. It never stopped her. Never made her sit down and say, enough. She knew what was at stake, was prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice, and still served people their butts when their true colors were less than true.

 Enjoyed the first in what looks like a planned series, and while some of the twists weren't what I was expecting, nor hoping for, I can't wait to see what the second installment may bring us. I'll be ready and waiting to walk through that door...


Special thanks to Mary at Abrams Children's Books for the copy for review! This title is available now, so put those holiday gift cards to use and snag your copy today!

Saturday, December 24, 2022

BOOK SPOTLIGHT + GIVEAWAY starring... Regency Christmas Kisses by Larissa Lyons


Merry Christmas Eve, everyone!
There's only ONE MORE SLEEP until Christmas, and it's time to do what we do best...focus in on your next potential must read!  Here today, we welcome Silver Dagger Book Tours as we help shine the BOOK SPOTLIGHT on some Historical Romance titles perfect for your holiday reading...

A Snowlit Christmas Kiss

Regency Christmas Kisses Book 1

by Larissa Lyons

Genre: Holiday Regency Romance 

Santa claws? A roguish feline plays matchmaker for two lonely souls.

A mischievous feline and a case of mistaken identity land two lonely souls together during a wretched, snowy night. Arguing over the business end of a shovel, they take refuge from the storm and find that sparks and kisses warm their frigid selves as much as unexpected laughter. But he’s engaged, and she’s decided to never marry, so in the morning they go their separate ways, leaving pieces of their hearts behind…

Battle scarred and bone-weary, the prodigal Lord Redford finally returns home—intent on pushing everyone away. Only he’s greeted not with the small welcome party he expected, but with a house full of people ready to celebrate his engagement. Which is going to prove rather a challenge, given how he’s never met his betrothed… Or has he?

When Anne rushes to the door, ready to give her tardy intended a sound dressing down and inform the lout who’s ignored her since their betrothal began that she has no use for marriage—or him—she’s greeted with a host of surprises.

Merry mistress or marriage? Or mayhap, nothing at all?

A Snowlit Christmas Kiss is a sweet and spicy Regency Christmas extended novella of 40,000 words (with hot kisses and just a bit more).

All Regency Christmas Kisses books are HEA standalones and can be read independently. A Snowlit Christmas Kiss takes place chronologically first, and is followed by A Frosty Christmas Kiss and A Moonlit Christmas Kiss, which occur at the same time but in different locations.

Amazon * Apple * B&N * Google * Kobo * Smashwords * Other Links * Bookbub * Goodreads


A Frosty Christmas Kiss

Regency Christmas Kisses Book 2

A Frosty Christmas Kiss is an expanded version of the previously published Miss Isabella Thaws a Frosty Lord; this updated version contains additional chapters and characters.

Blind from a young age, a Regency heroine risks her overbearing father’s displeasure by attending a holiday house party, never dreaming she’ll meet a formidable lord who will discover all her secrets and still want her for his own.

A pair of ghostly matchmakers warm two chilly hearts.

Dominated by her father’s rigid ways since a twist of fate stole her sight, Isabella uses the magic of Christmas to steal away for an adventure of her own when invited to join friends for the holidays. Oh, how she adores Christmastime!

How he abhors Christmastime! Hiding his war wounds beneath a frosty exterior, Lord Frostwood lives up to his name, freezing out everyone who tries to get close. Everyone, that is, until a spirited wench falls at his feet and proceeds to warm his cold existence, thanks to some strategically placed mistletoe and their resulting Christmas kisses.

A Frosty Christmas Kiss is a sweet and spicy Regency Christmas novel of 45,000 words (with hot kisses and one sex scene after marriage).

HEA ~ Standalone ~ Book 2 - Regency Christmas Kisses

**On Sale for Only .99 cents!**

Amazon * Apple * B&N * Google * Kobo * Smashwords * Other Links * Bookbub * Goodreads


A lifelong Texan, Larissa writes steamy regencies and sexy contemporaries, blending heartfelt emotion with doses of laugh-out-loud humor. Her heroes are strong men with a weakness for the right woman.

Avoiding housework one word at a time ;-), Larissa adores brownies, James Bond, and all things feline. She’s been a clown, a tax analyst, and a pig castrator (!) but nothing satisfies quite like seeing the entertaining voices in her head come to life on the page.

Writing around some health challenges and computer limitations, it’s a while between releases, but stick with her…she’s working on the next one.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Bookbub * Amazon * Goodreads


Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!

$10 Gift Card of Choice from 

Amazon, Apple, B&N, Google, Kobo or Smashwords! 

(1 winner)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, December 19, 2022

REVIEW starring... The Sweetheart Fix by Miranda Liasson

Tis the season to read...whatever captures our heart, and though today's TLC Book Tours guest may have a decidedly Autumn themed cover, the story is perfect for any season!  Like small town romance?  Think characters with room to grow should grow together?  Can you manage small missteps and almost kisses like nobody's business?  Then this might just be the book for you...

The Sweetheart Fix
Miranda Liasson
Entangled AMARA

About the book...
Juliet Montgomery absolutely loves her small town of Blossom Glen, Indiana, and everyone loves her. Except for the fact that she’s a couples counselor who suffered a very public breakup that no one can forget. And now her boss asks her to take a step back…which is exactly when the town’s good-lookin’ and unusually gruff mayor offers her an unexpected job.

Jack Monroe absolutely loves being the mayor of his small town. Except when he actually has to talk to people. Can’t he just fix the community problems in peace? Like right now, he’s mediating the silliest dispute two neighbors could possibly have. When the town sweetheart steps up and solves everyone’s problems in five minutes flat, Jack realizes what this town really needs…is a therapist.

Juliet is able to soothe anyone–other than the surly mayor, it seems. But there’s a reason they say opposites attract, because all of their verbal sparring leads to some serious attraction. Only, just like with fireworks, the view might appear beautiful–but she’s already had one public explosion that’s nearly ruined everything…how can she risk her heart again?

Each book in the Blossom Glen series is STANDALONE:
* The Sweetheart Deal
* The Sweetheart Fix


Oh my goodness.  I seriously loved this one.  Juliet has a world of history that all boils down to a lack of luck in love, but it doesn't mean she's unlovable, too picky, or playing hard to get.  It simply means she hasn't found the right one...yet.  Sucks that her dream was to come back to her hometown to start practicing her people skills (therapy wise) because small towns have long memories, and some things you'd rather live down, live on and on and on and on.  Jack has a backstory that is kept under wraps, but it's not truly something scandalous, just something that makes him more open, more vulnerable, more human.  He likes to take care of people, but he lacks the words to share those thoughts and feelings without awkwardness.  He's a "man of action" which definitely gets a raised eyebrow in the scene it's uttered...yes, he actually SAYS this to another person.  He means well, but he's got a lot on his plate, and issues from his past holding him hostage from his future.  Two people with issues that can either grow from them, or crumple from the pressure of them.  Then again, a problem shared is suppose to be a lot easier to handle....

Watching these two battle their own demons and their growing feelings was smile worthy, both from the pride in their accomplishments, and the romance magic that seemed to be working its way through their defenses.  The meet cutes and almost moments tally up until...well, until something happens, and while that's magical and important, it's equally important that the life and times of Blossom Glen are viable, living, breathing, tangible things that keep you turning pages.  Yes, you want to get to the HEA, but you also want to make sure the townsfolk are okay.  I guess a little bit of the longhorn mayor rubs off on you eventually...

A great read for Contemporary Romance fans that love small towns with big hearts.


About the author...

Miranda Liasson is a RWA Golden Heart winner and an Amazon bestselling author whose heartwarming and humorous small-town romances have won accolades such as the National Readers’ Choice Award and the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence and have been Harlequin Junkie and Night Owl Reviews Top Picks. She lives in the Midwest with her husband and three kids in a charming old neighborhood which is the inspiration for many of the homes in her books.


Special thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours and the Entangled Publishing team for the copy for review. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now via Entangled Amara, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today! Be sure to CHECK OUT THE REST OF THE TOUR making its way through the blogosphere for more bookish fun!

IG features:
Monday, November 28th: @nerdy_book_lover_1987
Tuesday, November 29th: @nsiabblog
Tuesday, November 29th: @randi_reads
Tuesday, November 29th: @booksandcoffeemx
Wednesday, November 30th: @nurse_bookie
Wednesday, November 30th: @whatkarinareads
Thursday, December 1st: @gallaghergirlreads
Friday, December 2nd: @subakka.bookstuff
Friday, December 2nd: @mary.mary_library
Saturday, December 3rd: @shook_sbooks
Saturday, December 3rd: @bookedwithheather
Sunday, December 4th:
Sunday, December 4th: @purrfectpages
Tuesday, December 6th: @travelerswife4life
Wednesday, December 14th: @everlasting.bookworm

Thursday, December 1st: SusanLovesBooks
Monday, December 5th: Books and Bindings
Monday, December 5th: @onemused
Tuesday, December 6th : Jathan & Heather
Wednesday, December 7th: @kingarthurof_cat_onsville
Wednesday, December 7th: THE ROMANCE DISH
Thursday, December 8th: @readaholicdeb
Friday, December 9th: View from the Birdhouse
Tuesday, December 13th : Stranded in Chaos
Wednesday, December 14th: @readingwithremy
Wednesday, December 14th: Books Cooks Looks
Thursday, December 15th:
Friday, December 16th: @kristens.reading.nook
Monday, December 19th: @amysbooketlist
Monday, December 19th : Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
Monday, December 19th: FROM THE TBR PILE

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

Thursday, December 15, 2022

REVIEW featuring... A Child For The Reich by Andie Newton

The days are ticking down, ever closer to the holiday, but we've no shortage of suggestions for the readers on your shopping list! Take today's Rachel's Random Resources guest and ebook of choice for example...

A Child for the Reich
Andie Newton

From the USA Today bestselling author comes a gripping new emotional WW2 historical novel. Inspired by a true story!

'A moving story of a mother's love battling against the determination of the Reich to create a pure Aryan race…A recommended read' Glynis Peters

'An intensely moving, brilliantly researched novel about love, loss, and the lengths a mother will go to for her child…utterly compelling' Deborah Carr

Rumours of the Nazis coming for Czech children swept through the villages like a breeze through the trees, and the story was always the same…

They wanted our children to raise as their own

Since her husband, Josef, joined the Czech resistance three years ago, Anna Dankova has done everything possible to keep her daughter, Ema, safe. But when blonde haired, blue-eyed Ema is ripped from her mother’s arms in the local marketplace by the dreaded Brown Sisters, nurses who were dedicated to Hitler’s cause, Anna is forced to go to new extremes to take back what the Nazis have stolen from her.

Going undercover as a devoted German subject eager to prove her worth to the Reich, the former actress takes on a role of a lifetime to find and save her daughter. But getting close to Ema is one thing. Convincing her that the Germans are lying when they claim Anna stole her from her true parents is another…


Historical Fiction fan?
Women's Fiction fan?
Either way you slice it, today's book is for you!

I've read quite a few books set in and around WWII, but this is the first time I'm reading one from the Czech perspective, and encountering a new branch of the evil that existed... the Brown Sisters. Don't be filled by the term "Sisters" because they are neither religious nor related. No, these women were some of the most feared by mother's left behind with young children...or rather blue eyed, blond haired children. That's right. They weren't content with destroying the world at large. They had to take the most precious thing anyone can ever be granted... children. They justified it because those they took looked like they belonged with those in the Reich's favor, and how could they leave them with those they viewed as unworthy?

The lengths to which a people will go to take what they feel is theirs. The inner strength some will find when all has been spent in order to save those they love. Both are on display between the epages, riddled with moments of heartbreak, despair, and the most tender of emotions...HOPE. You can't help but get caught up in all the feels on display as you fear for your life after a dark secret is inadvertently created by a sibling. You can't help but feel the weight of the world on your shoulders when those you know and love keep disappearing.  You don't know the incredible strength you'll find when all seems lost, yet you're their last hope. This moving story brings to life a chapter from our shared history, paints it in truth, and leaves it out to dry like nobody's business. It'll keep you turning pages as everything seems utterly lost, only to gain potential ground as you hold your breath, and await for final sentence. 


About the author...

Andie Newton is the USA Today bestselling author of The Girls from the Beach, The Girl from Vichy, and The Girl I Left Behind.

She writes gritty and emotional war stories about strong women. Andie holds a bachelor's degree in history and a master's in teaching. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, her two boys, and one very lazy cat.

You can find book club discussion questions on



Special thanks to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you as well as the ebook for review. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today and be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more bookish fun!

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

REVIEW + GIVEAWAY starring... A Wilderness of Stars by Shea Ernshaw

Our second feature of the day finds me playing host to a spot on the Rockstar Book Tours promotion featuring a title that released last month via Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers!  It's a story that will have you looking to the stars as we venture forth with our brave female lead on a journey planned for, but never quite expected.  Check out my review, stop by the other sites on the tour, and make sure to enter the giveaway!


Author: Shea Ernshaw

Pub. Date: November 29, 2022

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, Audiobook

Pages: 400

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, Audible, B&NiBooks, KoboTBD,

Deluxe edition with special embellishments on first printing only!

In this magical romance from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Long Live the Pumpkin Queen, an illness cursing the land forces a teen girl astronomer to venture across the wilderness in search of the stars’ message that will, hopefully, save them all.

When all is lost, look to the stars.

Vega has lived in the valley her whole life—forbidden by her mother to leave the safety of its borders because of the unknown threats waiting for her in the wilds beyond. But when Vega sees an omen in the sky—one she cannot ignore—she is forced to leave the protective boundaries of the valley. Yet the outside world is much more terrifying than Vega could have ever imagined. People are gravely sick—they lose their eyesight and their hearing, just before they lose their lives.

But Vega has a secret: she is the Last Astronomer—a title carried from generation to generation—and she is the only one who understands the knowledge of the stars. Knowledge that could hold the key to a cure. So when locals spot the tattoo on Vega’s neck in the shape of a constellation—the mark of an astronomer—chaos erupts. Fearing for her life, Vega is rescued by a girl named Cricket who leads her to Noah, a boy marked by his own mysterious tattoos.

On the run from the men hunting her, Vega sets out across the plains with Cricket and Noah, in search of a fabled cure kept secret by the astronomers. But as the line between friends and protectors begins to blur, Vega must decide whether to safeguard the sacred knowledge of the astronomers…or if she will risk everything to try to save them all.



She's on the run with nowhere to go, no one to count on, and nothing to her name...except her memories of her mother, the lessons she was taught, and the knowledge that she may very well hold the key to unlocking the mystery of what's happening in the outer world, solving the riddle and saving mankind.

Have I caught your attention yet?
I thought I might.

It really was an epic read.  I was pulled in from the start as we get to know Vega in her rawest form.  She's losing someone she loves, trying to find strength in body and spirit to follow through on what she knows she must do, and still holding it all together...a feat most would wilt at, let alone a 17 year old girl.  She's been groomed, mentally, by her mother for the journey unfolding before her, and yet that doesn't make it any less hard to believe when it comes to pass, any easier to trust in the legends as she moves forward, and any less dangerous to her and those she encounters.  It's curious because there are threads that tie it to our reality, and yet confounding because it can be hard to imagine a time when knowledge, or at least this type of knowledge, would be worth taking a life, literally or figuratively, for.

A great read for Young Adult Fiction fans, teen years and up, for the originality, adventure, and unforgettable moments along the way.  If this one isn't on your wish list, or GIFT LIST, I'd correct it post haste!


About Shea Ernshaw:

Shea Ernshaw is a NYT bestselling author and winner of the Oregon Book Award. Her books have been published in over nineteen countries, and her novels A History of Wild Places, The Wicked Deep, and Winterwood were Indie Next Picks. She lives in a small mountain town in Oregon, and is happiest when lost in a good book, lost in the woods, or writing her next novel.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | TikTok | Pinterest | Goodreads | Amazon | BookBub




1 winner will receive a finished copy of A WILDERNESS OF STARS, US Only.

Ends December 20th, midnight EST.


Special thanks to the Rockstar Book Tours team for the chance to bring this tour to you and to the publisher for the copy for review. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer or visit your local brick and mortar to grab your copy today! Catch the rest of the tour for more!

Tour Schedule

Week One:
Excerpt/IG Post

Excerpt/IG Post

Review/IG Post

Review/IG Post


IG Review

Week Two
Review/IG Post

Review/TikTok Post

IG Review

Review/IG Post

Review/IG Post


IG Review/TikTok Post

Week Three
Review/IG Post

IG Spotlight

IG Review

Review/IG Post

Review/IG Post

IG Review

IG Review/LFL Drop Pic

Week Four
IG Review/FB Post

Review/IG Post

Review/IG Post

IG Review/TikTok Post

Review/IG Post

Review/IG Post

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

GUEST POST + GIVEAWAY starring... Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree by Richard Wagner

Tis the season for a myriad of books to surprise, delight, and enchant.  Today's Picture Book, currently on tour with The Children's Book Review, is one that will touch your heart more than you could imagine.  I can see it being a holiday tradition for families big and small, and a great reminder of the spirit of the season that we can carry with us throughout the year.  But I digress, my stop isn't a review this day (though I couldn't resist reading and sharing a smidge!), but a GUEST POST, and quite honestly, it's one of my favorites!  The author indulged us with a TOP FIVE post, but, in keeping with the heart of the story, I asked for their TOP FIVE Christmas Memories.  Ready or not, sit back for a holiday treat as we discover more about today's title and author in the spotlight...

Richard Wagner
Illustrated by
Sydni Kruger
Ages 3+ | 38 Pages
Mascot Kids

About the book...

The world is not always a perfect place. Needles, a scraggly little tree, must endure criticism, laughter, and setbacks to realize his goal of becoming a beautiful Christmas tree.

This is a story of dreams, desires, hope, determination, and never giving up. It also offers the observation that what others think is beautiful may not really matter. Beauty is truly in the eyes of the beholder and paired with the spirit of Christmas, maybe we can make the world just a little more perfect!


~~~ GUEST POST ~~~

Top Five Christmas Memories
with Author Richard Wagner

1. My number one Christmas memory dates from when I was five years old.  It was the first time I got to meet Santa at our local Sears.  I was scared to death.  My mom chased me around the store as I was crying and trying to run away.  I finally calmed down and sat on Santa’s lap to tell him what I wanted……a bike!

I was at home with my parents and three-year old sister on Christmas Eve when there was a knock on the door.  My dad opened it and there was Santa.  I was pretty shy.  Santa came in and said he was just checking in before getting back to the North Pole.  He asked me again what I wanted for Christmas, and I told him again I wanted a bike.  Then he said Ho-Ho-Ho, and was off out the front door.  After a minute, my dad said we should run outside and see if we could see him flying with his sleigh and reindeer.  We ran outside.  I looked up all around but didn’t see Santa.  I ran to the curb and told my dad I saw the red rear lights of a car way down the street, but my dad told me that Santa would never be in a car!

The next morning, I got up and we all walked together out into the living room.  There, to my delight, was a new Schwinn bicycle, training wheels and all, sitting next to a brand-new Radio Flyer red wagon.  It was awesome!  Not only was Santa really cool, but I was now the coolest kid in Kindergarten.  

2. Going to my grandmother’s house in Arizona for Christmas was always something we looked forward to.  She had a big house which we shared with a visiting aunt and uncle and four cousins.  Across the street lived another aunt and uncle and seven cousins.  My most memorable year going there was when I was eight.

Christmas day was pure bedlam.  After opening presents, we broke out the eggnog – one for kids, one for adults.  Unfortunately, the huge bowls of eggnog weren’t labeled.  My favorite cousin had a lot of eggnog, but from the wrong bowl.  Curiously, she disappeared until the following day.  For dinner, there was an adult table and a kid table.  The kid table was boisterous, and we had a blast. 

The following day I was taken on my first quail hunt at the family cattle ranch.  We drove all over the ranch with another cousin and I holding on in the back of a pickup truck.  For a city kid like me it was as good as any ride at Disneyland.

3. My third top Christmas was the year I flew home from college during my freshmen year.  I was a plebe at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and that year was hardcore.  I couldn’t wait to get back to sunny Southern California.  The day came to leave and it was snowing and sleeting, and the wind chill was ferocious.  I made it to Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C. by shuttle.  I boarded a huge DC-10 along with other midshipmen from the academy.  

We had to wait for the plane to be de-iced twice before we began to taxi to the runway.  I was at the window.  When we reached the runway, I looked down along it and could only see three lights before the runway disappeared into the fog and sleet.  We turned and rolled down the runway and took off.  As soon as the plane lifted off, there were huge cheers from the passengers, and especially from the midshipmen from California.  A few minutes into the flight, the captain came on to the speaker and said, “I just thought you might want to know that Dulles International closed down five minutes after we took off”.  That was cause for another round of cheering and great relief that we had been able to take off.  Five hours later we landed at LAX.  It was warm, clear, and my parents were waiting for me.  It was the start of a great Christmas.

4. The first Christmas after my wife and I were married was very memorable.  We had been married seven months, and we had just bought and moved into our first home barely a month before.  With great excitement we decorated the house with lights and a tree.  On Christmas morning we came down into the living room where my wife had set up a tent with various camping accoutrements.  After opening presents, we had our extended family and some friends over for Christmas dinner – almost 20 people.  It was a great start to our traditions.  Thirty years later, we still have the tent.  It has been through many camping trips not only with my wife and I, but with our children as well, including Boy Scouts and other group outings.

5. We built a second home at 7,000 feet next to a ski resort in the mountains above LA.  When our twin children were four, we decided to spend the Christmas holiday up there along with my wife’s mother.  It had not snowed yet, but it was cold.  Since this was the first Christmas where our children were becoming aware of Christmas and Santa, we let them put milk and cookies out for Santa and carrots for the reindeer.  After putting them to bed, my wife and I sat in the great room looking out the window, and miraculously it started to snow.  It snowed heavily all night, and in the morning, everything was white with over two feet of snow.  It was beautiful.  

The kids came up and were in awe of the snow, not to mention the presents, and the fact that the milk, cookies and carrots were gone.  It was very special.  Later that day, I dug a trench in the snow that ran 50 yards, and the kids, with the dog, careened down the hill behind our home in saucers for hours.  I will never forget that Christmas.


About the author...

Richard Wagner grew up in Southern California. When he was fourteen years old, a business friend of his father’s had a small Christmas tree delivered as a thank-you. Their family already had a large tree decorated in the house. Not being able to find anyone who needed a tree, that small Christmas tree stood outside by itself for the remainder of the Christmas holiday. Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree is a tribute to that little tree and what might have been, but more importantly, to all the beauty, goodness, and hope that Christmas brings to us all. Mr. Wagner continues to reside in Southern California with his wife and two children.

For more information, visit



Enter for a chance to win a copy of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree, autographed by Richard Wagner!

One (1) winner receives:
- An autographed copy of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree


Special thanks to Bianca at The Children's Book Review for the chance to bring this tour to you and to the author for the guest post. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on the tour for more bookish fun!


Monday, December 5, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Tuesday, December 6, 2022
A book activity to pair with Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Wednesday, December 7, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Thursday, December 8, 2022
A book giveaway of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Friday, December 9, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Monday, December 12, 2022
Author Interview with Richard Wagner

Tuesday, December 13, 2022
A guest article by Richard Wagner

Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Author Interview with Richard Wagner

Thursday, December 15, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Friday, December 16, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Monday, December 19, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Tuesday, December 20, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Wednesday, December 21, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Thursday, December 22, 2022
A book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

Sunday, December 11, 2022

BOOK REVIEW featuring... The Golden Oldies' Book Club by Judy Leigh

Sometimes a book is just a book.  Other times, you discover a writer that creates stories you step into, get cozy with, and feel invested in the outcomes of the lives lived for each character you come to know.  The author and novel we feature today certainly falls into the latter category, and I have a feeling that those of you that haven't indulged in her stories yet will be very soon.  Ladies and gents, let's welcome our latest Rachel's Random Resources blog tour guest and ebook of choice...

The Golden Oldies' Book Club
Judy Leigh
Boldwood Books

About the book...
Deep in the Somerset countryside, the Combe Pomeroy village library hosts a monthly book club.

Ruth the librarian fears she’s too old to find love, but a discussion about Lady Chatterley’s Lover makes her think again.

Aurora doesn’t feel seventy-two and longs to relive the excitement of her youth, while Verity is getting increasingly tired of her husband Mark’s grumpiness and wonders if their son’s imminent flight from the nest might be just the moment for her to fly too. And Danielle is fed up with her cheating husband. Surely life has more in store for her than to settle for second best?

The glue that holds Combe Pomeroy together is Jeannie. Doyenne of the local cider farm and heartbeat of her family and community, no one has noticed that Jeannie needs some looking after too. Has the moment for her to retire finally arrived, and if so, what does her future hold?

From a book club French exchange trip, to many celebrations at the farm, this is the year that everything changes, that lifelong friendships are tested, and for some of the women, they finally get the love they deserve.


This isn't just a story about a book club, although that certainly would have been enough of a draw for many of us because HELLO, a book about book loving people?  Yes please!  No, this is a story about how much of a difference a year can make in the life of anyone, let alone this lovely group of people.  Some are friends, some will be before long.  Some are estranged without even realizing it, yet will work towards coming together before things unravel for good.  Some are surprised by events they could never have foreseen...for better, or worse.  Some friends become family, and some family take flight to chart the next chapter of their lives in the great big world.  There are highs and lows, heartbreak and heart song, secrets uncovered and realizations made, all with a background filled with utter loveliness from the township to the people, and everything in between.

I think I felt most for Jeannie.  She was the rock, the anchor, the one to be counted on to be there in the end, and yet she had so much left to give.  It's not that she wasn't living her life, but it certainly wasn't in full color, and while that lesson doesn't come easy, it does come and very much so before it's too late.  Though a grandmother herself, her mother was still a force to be reckoned with.  Nary found without her sharp whit, Violet has a joke for every situation, but a steeliness beneath that could weather the toughest storm.  Aurora, the most free spirited among this circle of friends, was allowing things to happen naturally, accepting time as it proceeded, but even the freest bird can be caged inadvertently, and the results are never quite what we expect.  I was surprised by her story's turn, and yet not.  It fit perfectly.   On the other hand, we've got Ruth, who is steadfast and sure, but not without her own secrets, and surprises, which eventually turns into a relationship who don't quite see coming, yet couldn't be happier for her when it does.  The twins cause their own ruckus, but growing up was never easy.  Mark and Verity certainly made a case for singledom...and yet, an even better case for working together, listening to one another, and not letting things stew.  I could go on and on, but I won't because this cast of characters deserves their time in the sun, and will make a different impact on every reader.

When all is said and done, it wasn't a book about an epic change, the world ending, or some other headline grabbing occurrence, but about life, and making sure our own days are well lived.  It doesn't matter what we set out to do at the start, it matters how we finish.  If we reach that set destination, fine and dandy, but if we veered off, took an offshoot path, or set a new course, those are just as amazing, if not more so, moments too.  Our lives are our to chart, and we are the ones that get to say whether we lived our days to their fullest.  As one of may favorite songs so aptly phrased..."If you have a dream, go chase it....If you find love, embrace it.." ...lessons we all could use a reminder of at any age.  A great read for Women's Fiction fans that love to get lost in the story, but also in the lives of the characters living it.


About the author...

Judy Leigh is the bestselling author of Five French Hens, A Grand Old Time and The Age of Misadventure and the doyenne of the ‘it’s never too late’ genre of women’s fiction. She has lived all over the UK from Liverpool to Cornwall, but currently resides in Somerset.


Special thanks to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today and be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more bookish fun!

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

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