Sometimes Half The Fun Is Justn In The Counting Of "Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault"

Title:  Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault
Author:  Cathy Guisewite
Length:  336 pages
Publisher:  G.P. ,Putnam & Sons
Rating:  5 Stars

from the creator of the iconic "Cathy" comic strip comes her first collection of funny, wise, poignant, and incredibly honest essays about being a woman in what she lovingly calls "the panini generation."

As the creator of "Cathy," Cathy Guisewite found her way into the hearts of readers more than forty years ago, and has been there ever since. Her hilarious and deeply relatable look at the challenges of womanhood in a changing world became a cultural touchstone for women everywhere. Now Guisewite returns with her signature wit and warmth in this debut essay collection about another time of big transition, when everything starts changing and disappearing without permission: aging parents, aging children, aging self stuck in the middle.

With her uniquely wry and funny admissions and insights, Guisewite unearths the humor and horror of everything from the mundane (trying to introduce her parents to TiVo and facing four decades' worth of unorganized photos) to the profound (finding a purpose post-retirement, helping parents downsize their lives, and declaring freedrom from all those things that hold us back). No longer confined to the limits of four comic panels, Guisewite holds out her hand in prose form and becomes a reassuring companion for those on the threshold of "what happens next." Heartfelt and humane and always cathartic, Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault is ideal reading for mothers, daughters, and anyone who is caught somewhere in between.

Praise For
  Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault

“Absolutely brilliant!”
— Cathy’s Mother

“She’s ba-AACK! ‘Cathy’ creator returns to humor writing with her first book of essays.”
The Washington Post, read more

“Laughter is the best proof of freedom, and Cathy has written a book that will help keep us free to the very end.”
— Gloria Steinem

“There is humor; there is comedy, there is Cathy, who gives us laughter but reaches way beyond the funny bone to touch us with her humane, entertaining, and satisfying collection.”
— George Hodgman, author of Bettyville

My Thoughts
They say that after a certain age, the many molehills that seemed Everest sized mountains in one's youth.  Once again become the simple molehills they where.  Or, cease to draw even the slightest blip of awareness on one's importance radar altogether.

Cartoonist and essayist, Cathy Lee Guisewite.  Once again employees her trademark depricating wit, and unabashed frankness. As she takes readers on a tour of the issues that she and many others of adult age are now facing.  As they navigate such issues as: aging parents, adult children, and whether or not pasta is or is not the next super food.

Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault allows readers to stop, look, and smell the proverbial bullshit.  Meaning all of the baggage that we as people, and more often than not, as woman carry in the form of guilt.
Heaped upon us by the truck load via society, religion, our families, and ourselves.
This book offers a chance to takes a collective breath, wiggle your toes, and have a much needed chuckle about the complete absurdity of just about everything that we can't possibly control.  But we freely allow to control us.

about Cathy
Cathy GuisewiteCathy Lee Guisewite is the cartoonist who created the comic strip Cathy in 1976. Her main cartoon character (Cathy) is a career woman faced with the issues and challenges of work, relationships, her mother and food, or as Guisewite herself put it in one of her strips, "The four basic guilt groups."

Guisewite was born in Dayton, Ohio and grew up in Midland, Michigan. She attended the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor where she was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority. Guisewite received her bachelor's degree in English in 1972. She also holds seven honorary degrees.

In 1993, Guisewite received the Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year from the National Cartoonists Society. In 1987, she received an Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program for the TV special Cathy, which aired on CBS. Guisewite was a frequent guest in the latter years of the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.

Guisewite and her husband Chris Wilkinson reside in Los Angeles. She has a daughter and a stepson.

See Her Socially:  Web  / Facebook / Goodreads

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Nothing Makes A Bigger Romantic Bump Than "A Duke In The Night"

Title:  A Duke In The Night
Series:  (Devils Of Dover #1)
Author:  Kelly Bowen
Length:  368 pages
Publisher:  Forever
Rating:  5 Stars

Duke. Scoundrel. Titan of business. August Faulkner is a man of many talents, not the least of which is enticing women into his bedchamber. He's known-and reviled-for buying and selling companies, accumulating scads of money, and breaking hearts. It's a reputation he wears like a badge of honor, and one he intends to keep. 

Clara Hayward, the headmistress of the Haverhall School for Young Ladies, on the other hand, is above reproach. Yet when she's reunited with August all she can think of is the way she felt in his arms as they danced a scandalous waltz ten long years ago. Even though her head knows that he is only back in her life to take over her family's business, her heart can't help but open to the very duke who could destroy it for good.

Enjoy this exclusive audio excerpt of A Duke In The Night here:

My Thoughts
A Duke In The Night is the first offering in romance maven Kelly Bowen's The Devils Of Dover series.
And a veritable dream for those looking for an absolutely brilliant leading lady.  Capable in every way.
Yet, not beyond allowing herself to be vulnerable for love.

Yes folks...
Clara Hayward is everything that a lady of the ton ought not be.  Opinionated, forthright, learned, and a career woman.
She is headmistress of the Haverhall School For Young Ladies.
A school that the cream of the crop the world over are clambering to send their girls to.
A school that teaches girls to use the talents and brains with which they are blessed to make a lasting mark upon the world.
A school that values its young charges not for the size of their doweries, or the beauty of their form.  But for the passion of their hearts.
A school that it now seems has become the latest acquisition of one August Faulkner.  The twelfth Duke of Holloway.
A man hell-bent on acquisition, power, and wealth building.
A man very much changed from the one that had danced Clara across a crowded ballroom some ten years earlier.
The only man bold enough to dare try claiming the one thing that Clara Hayward holds most dear.
Her heart.

This book boasts more turns of fortune than the New York Stock Exchange on a bad week.
With Clare's family so desperate to save the last vestiges of their once great import empire.  That they sell of the school that Clare founded.
To none other than the one man that Clare has had a crush on for ten years.
The one man that she never thought that she would see again.
And the one man, strangely enough, that she can't seem to be rid of.

Watching the very progressively minded Clare befuddle, bemuse, excite, and incite August at every turn.  Just might be the most fun that one can have while reading.
The fact that he starts out believing that he and his money are the answers to everyone 's problems.
Seeing him further schooled by both the students and the situations that he is presented with.

This book is so much more than a romance. Spotlighting issues such as socially imposed gender roles versus proficiency and love for a job or task.  Specifically as applied to women of the time.
There is also the secret that haunts August's past. Driving him in his pursuit of wealth.
And his almost obsessive need to protect those around him.

But the star of this show by far.
The romance!
The sparks that fly from the pages when Clara and August are together.  So much so that you never want their trysts to end.

In short...
If you are looking for an intelligently written, female positive, captivatingly romantic read.  That you won't won't to put down.  Look no further than A Duke In The Night.
You'll be glad you did.

Kelly BowenAbout Kelly
Kelly Bowen grew up in Manitoba, Canada. She worked her way through her teenage years as a back country trail guide and ranch hand. She attended the University of Manitoba and earned a Master of Science degree in veterinary physiology and endocrinology.

But it was Kelly's infatuation with history and a weakness for a good love story that led her down the path of historical romance. When she is not writing, she seizes every opportunity to explore ruins and battlefields.

Currently, Kelly lives in Winnipeg with her husband and two boys, all of whom are wonderfully patient with the writing process. Except, that is, when they need a goalie for street hockey.

Find Her:  Web / Goodreads / Twitter / Facebook

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"Drakon's Knight" Could Use A Lot More Dragon

45141639Title:  Drakon's Knight
Series: ( Blood Of The Drakon #7)
Author:  N.J. Walters
Length:  400 pages
Expected Publication Date:  June 24th, 2019
Publisher:  Entangled Publishing
Rating:  3 Stars

Drakon Jericho Drake, the child of a pure-blood dragon and human, has a simple plan: Kill the leader of the Knights of the Dragon and start a war. Except, when he meets his target, Karina Azarov, she can’t remember who she is. Worst of all––he can’t kill her. His dragon side has just claimed the dangerous woman as his mate.

 Karina has no idea why these Drakon’s have taken her to their home. And she most certainly does not understand why she’s so drawn to her captor. Maybe because he’s strong, intelligent, and caring, in his enigmatic sort of way. One thing she knows, he’s not going to hurt her. If only she could remember something from her past that would explain why these Drakon’s hate her so much. But if her memory returns, mated or not, he may get his war.. And one of them will die.

My Thoughts

Drakon's Knight, book number 7 in the Blood Of The Drakonseries. Is one that while beguiling on the romantic sense. Falls rather short when it comes to action, world building, and character development.
Ringing in on opposite sides of an already untenable situation. We have Drakon Huntress extraordinaire, Karina Azarov.
Leader of the Knights Of The Dragon, and first in line to kill any and all Drakons.
Pitted against her seriously hunky adversary turned love interest. One Jericho Drake.
Who, as fate and the dragon powers- that- be would have it. Have made it his mission to kill.

Surprise of all surprises. When the time comes to do the dastardly deed. He can't. 
Because his dragon recognizes her as his mate.
She, on the other hand. Is not recognizing anything. Not even herself.
Anybody want to hazard a guess as to why?
Those of you who guessed amnesia, get the cookie.
Complicating matters further is the mystery of the strange tatoo on her shoulder. Which is believed to be a ward of some sort. 
A ward that is now broken or diminished. Due to Jericho's earlier attempt on her life.
Great little oberos we have going there, huh?

Strangely enough however. With the mysteries of her identity, the whereabouts of the people who may or not be searching for her, and the secret of her tattoo looming large.
The one thing that Karina does seem to rely on as her North Star in this convolution of uncertainty is her undeniable attraction to Jericho.
Which sends the plot into the pit of romantic quicksand.
Excluding action scenes, exploration of Jericho's dragon form, and all manner of plot enriching elements which could have been employed here. 
Thereby changing what could have been a very rich and fully expressed story into something...
Much less.
In short.
Acquire love interest.
Ensure that insta-love is true on both sides.
Have sex.
Have more sex.
Tie up all loose story elements by book's end. 
Cue HEA.
The IKEA version of romance. 
The story is good.
With just a little more work. It could be better.
But as it stands, is a far cry from it's best. 

Thank you to Entangled Publishing and Netgalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

About N. J. Walters
Once upon a time N.J. had the idea that she would like to quit her job at the bookstore, sell everything she owned, leave her hometown, and write romance novels in a place where no one knew her. And she did. Two years later, she went back to the bookstore and her hometown and settled in for another seven years.

One day she gave notice at her job on a Friday morning. On Sunday afternoon, she received a tentative acceptance for her first erotic romance novel and life would never be the same.

N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.

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"Cowboy Rebel" Without A Cause?

Title:  Cowboy Rebel
Series:  Longhorn Canyon #4
Author:  Carolyn Brown
Release Date:  May 28, 2019
Publisher: Forever
Length:  400 pages
Rating 3-Stars

The next heartwarming romance in this USA Today bestselling series proves it's tough to resist a sexy cowboy with a Texas drawl and heart of gold! Includes a bonus novella by Annie Rains! 

Ever since losing his best friend in a motorcycle accident, Taggart Baker wants to make every moment count. No dare is too dangerous, no adventure too crazy for this cowboy. But after one bad brush with the law, he realizes it's time to ditch his hooligan friends and grow up. Now he's running his own ranch next to the Longhorn Canyon spread in Texas. Still, no one would ever call him tame.

Nikki Grady has worked too hard for her RN license just to throw it away for some reckless cowboy who shows up in her emergency room after a barroom brawl. But she can't help being drawn to Tag's sense of humor and those crystal blue eyes. The more time they spend together, the more she sees his good heart. But just as Tag seems ready to settle down for good, his troubled past comes calling-and this time he won't be able to walk away so easily.

Includes the bonus novella A Wedding on Lavender Hill by Annie Rains: When an event planner is asked to create the perfect wedding in just three days, she must turn to the last person she wants to ask for help -- the infuriating owner of the house on the hilltop.

Please enjoy this excerpt from Cowboy Bold


Cade passed out straw hats to everyone as they filed out to get on the hay wagon, and Retta was more than glad to settle her new straw hat on her head. It didn’t feel as good as the one she’d left behind at the farm but with sweat and time it would shape up and fit right well.
“I like my hat. It’s like Cade’s. ” Benjy plopped the one with his name on the inside down on his head.
“Me too.” Alice crammed hers down on her braids. “Do we get to come back next year?”
“I need to draw the wagon. Some hay wagons have wood wheels.” Benjy walked away and chose a seat at the back of the wagon.
“Once you turn thirteen, you don’t get to come back,” Retta explained in a low voice.
“I’m only ten so that means I might get to do this again.” She beamed as she skipped down the porch steps.
The tires on the old wooden wagon made the ride a little less bumpy. But the wagon itself was the same as she’d been in dozens of times as a kid. Open air, benches on two sides, and hay strewn on the floor. She spotted a cooler at the back and figured that it was full of either water bottles or cold drinks.
She sat down beside Alice, and Sasha quickly sat on the other side of her, which meant again that Gabby and Faith had no choice but to sit together. Maybe Cade was right about making them learn teamwork.
Skip pointed toward the pasture where Levi was baling hay. “This is a self-supporting ranch as much as possible. We grow our own hay for the cattle in the winter.”
Retta listened with one ear but if she leaned far enough to one side, she could see Cade’s face reflected in the side mirror on the tractor pulling the wagon.
“Those are some whompin’ big hunks of hay to be picking up,” Faith said.
Retta quickly jerked her head back. “Those will stay in the field. They’ll line them up against the far fence line and then bring them to the cattle as they are needed.”
Skip nodded. “Look over in that field at those small bales. Those are the ones that we take into the barn. We don’t make a lot of the little ones, but sometimes they’re needed in the stalls if we’ve got a cow or a bull that has to be kept up for a while.”
“I could get them bales to the barn,” Nelson said.
“Yeah, right?” Kirk smarted off.
“I can and if I do, then I make money to take home, right, Skip?” Nelson asked.
“That’s right, and we can always use all the help we can get.”
Retta could see dollar signs dancing in all of their little eyes as they thought about helping haul that hay to the barn the next day. When she looked at the mirror again, she caught Cade’s eye and he winked at her, causing a blush so deep that she removed her hat and fanned with it

My Thoughts
Carolyn Brown's Cowboy Rebel is a very sweet but slow moving romance.  Staring one Taggart Baker as the afore mentioned Cowboy Rebel and nurse, Nikki Grady, as his very wary love interest.
It is quite clear from the start, that the author really wants the point of Taggart's irrepressible nature driven surely and squarely home in the reader's mind.
Due in large part to the the fact that something to the effect of "What did you do this time?" is always being said by someone  that he knows.
Which would be fine except for the fact that this latest altercation is in no way started by Tag.
Furthermore, his participation in said altercation is only brought about by his need to protect a woman that he deems to be in danger.
So readers are trapped in a mire of such manutia for pages. For what is in reality an act of chivalry!

As for Taggart's leading Lady.  Nikki Grady is a nurse.  Who in addition to wanting to save the world.  Wants nothing more than to mold Taggart in to her interpretation of the perfect man.
A.k.a. His brother Hud.
And who, in spite of many very endearing attempts by Taggart.  Refuses to even consider his suit.  Although she fulls acknowledges her attraction to him.
This is another foray into pointless repetition that turns what would have been the start to a wonderful reading experience into a labor of Sisyphus.

Things do get better.  Or at least a little more interesting at about midway through the book.  When we are treated to the who's why's and wherefores of Taggart's bad boy past.
And the beginning of Nikki's change of heart regarding her relationship with the formerly unrelatable Taggart.
There is also the Taggart's quest to name and brand the ranch.  And Nikki's rather strange and slightly dictatorial relationship with her mother
Coupled with the general low level hum of a small time gossip hive.  Filled to the brim with busybodies dying to share two cents worth of wisdom on a ten dollar day.

This is a great "passing the time" read.  Something to read on the bus or a the the beach etc.
This is also the fourth book in an interrelated series.
You may read it as a standalone or as part of its intended series.

About Carolyn
Hi! I'm twenty five years old and movie star gorgeous. The camera added thirty plus years and a few wrinkles. Can't trust those cameras or mirrors either. Along with bathroom scales they are notorious liars! Honestly, I am the mother of three fantastic grown children who've made me laugh and given me more story ideas than I could ever write. My husband, Charles, is my strongest supporter and my best friend. He's even willing to eat fast food and help with the laundry while I finish one more chapter! Life is good and I am blessed!

Reading has been a passion since I was five years old and figured out those were words on book pages. As soon as my chubby little fingers found they could put words on a Big Chief tablet with a fat pencil, I was on my way. Writing joined reading in my list of passions. I will read anything from the back of the Cheerio's box to Faulkner and love every bit of it. In addition to reading I enjoy cooking, my family and the ocean. I love the Florida beaches. Listening to the ocean waves puts my writing brain into high gear.

I love writing romance because it's about emotions and relationships. Human nature hasn't changed a bit since Eve coveted the fruit in the Garden of Eden. Settings change. Plots change. Names change. Times change. But love is love and men and women have been falling in and out of it forever. Romance is about emotions: love, hate, anger, laughter... all of it. If I can make you laugh until your sides ache or grab a tissue then I've touched your emotions and accomplished what every writer sets out to do.

I got serious about writing when my third child was born and had her days and nights mixed up. I had to stay up all night anyway and it was very quiet so I invested in a spiral back notebook and sharpened a few pencils. The story that emerged has never sold but it's brought in enough rejection slips to put the Redwood Forest on the endangered list. In 1997 Kensington bought two books for their Precious Gems line. Two years and six books later the line died with only four of those books seeing publication. But by then Avalon had bought a book and another, and another. Ten years later the list has grown to thirty nine. Last year Sourcebooks bought the Lucky Series which is in the bookstores now. They've also bought The Honky Tonk Series which will debut with I LOVE THIS BAR in June and will be followed by HELL, YEAH, MY GIVE A DAMN'S BUSTED, and HONKY TONK CHRISTMAS.

Folks ask me where I get my ideas. Three kids, fifteen grandchildren, two great grandchildren. Note: I was a very young grandmother! Life is a zoo around here when they all come home. In one Sunday afternoon there's enough ideas to keep me writing for years and years. Seriously, ideas pop up at the craziest times. When one sinks its roots into my mind, I have no choice but to write the story. And while I'm writing the characters peek over my shoulder and make sure I'm telling it right and not exaggerating too much. Pesky little devils, they are!

I have a wonderful agent, Erin Niumata, who continues to work magic and sell my work. I'm very lucky to have her and my editors who continue to believe in me.

Happy reading!

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St. Martin's Press Presents: The Highland Crown

Scottish pride, persuasion, and passion—this is Highland romance at its
breathtaking best.
Inverness, 1820
Perched on the North Sea, this port town—by turns legendary and mythological—is a place
where Highland rebels and English authorities clash in a mortal struggle for survival and
dominance. Among the fray is a lovely young widow who possesses rare and special gifts.
WANTED: Isabella Drummond
A true beauty and trained physician, Isabella has inspired longing and mystery—and
fury—in a great many men. Hunted by both the British government and Scottish rebels, she
came to the Highlands in search of survival. But a dying ship’s captain will steer her fate
into even stormier waters. . .and her heart into flames.
FOUND: Cinaed Mackintosh
Cast from his home as a child, Cinaed is a fierce soul whose allegiance is only to himself …
until Isabella saved his life—and added more risk to her own. Now, the only way Cinaed can
keep her safe to seek refuge at Dalmigavie Castle, the Mackintosh family seat. But when the
scandalous truth of his past comes out, any chance of Cinaed having a bright future with
Isabella is thrown into complete darkness. What will these two ill-fated lovers have to
sacrifice to be together…for eternity?

Highland Crown
May McGoldrick
Cinaed looked up into a woman’s face. Fine black eye-
brows arched over brown eyes that were focused on his
chest. Thick dark hair was pulled back in a braid and
pinned up at the back of her head. Intent on what she
was doing, she was unaware that he was awake.
Her brow was furrowed, and lines of concentration
framed the corners of her mouth. The grey travel dress
she wore was plain and practical. She was not old, but
not young either. Not fat, not thin. From where he lay, he
guessed she was neither tall nor short. She was beautiful,
but not in the flashy way of the women who generally
greeted sailors in the port towns. Nor was she like the
eyelash-fluttering lasses in Halifax who never stopped
trying to get his attention after a Sunday service. He
didn’t bother to assess the pleasant symmetry of her face,
however. The “brook no nonsense” expression warned

36 May McGoldrick
that she wasn’t one to care what others thought of her
looks, anyway.
But who was she?
The last clear memory he had was seeing a flash from
the shore. The next moment his chest had been punched
with what felt like a fiery poker. Everything after that
floated in a jumbled haze. He recalled being in the water,
trying to swim toward some distant shore. Or was he
struggling to reach the longboat again?
Cinaed didn’t know what part of his body hurt more,
the fearsome pounding in his head or the burning piece
of that poker still lodged in his chest.
“Where am I?” he demanded. “Who the deuce are
Startled, she sat up straight, pulling away and scowl-
ing down at him. In one blood-covered hand, she held a
needle and thread. In the other, a surgeon’s knife that she
now pointed directly at his throat.
“Try to choke me again and I’ll kill you.”
“Choke you? For the love of God, woman!”
His ship. The reef. The explosion. He closed his
eyes for a moment and tried to clear away the fog.
Everything he’d been through struck him like a broad-
The Highland Crown was gone. He’d detonated the
powder himself. Where were his men? He’d climbed into
the last longboat. They’d been fired at from the beach.
He’d been shot.
Cinaed grabbed the knife-wielding wrist before she
could pull it away. “Where are my men?”
An ancient woman in Highland garb slid into his line


of sight behind the younger one. She was making sure he
saw the cudgel she had over one shoulder.
“This one is worth less than auld fish bait, mistress,”
she taunted. The crone was ready and obviously eager to
use that club. “And thankless, too, I’m bound. I was right
when I said ye should never have saved him.”
Should never have saved him. He released the wrist,
and the hand retreated. But the dark-haired woman didn’t
move away. As if nothing had happened, she dropped
the knife on the cot, out of his reach. The brown eyes
again focused on his chest, and she put her needle back to
He winced but kept his hands off the woman.
By all rights, he should be dead. A musket ball had cut
him down and knocked him into the water. He should in-
deed be finished. Someone on shore had tried to kill him.
But he was alive, and apparently he owed his life to
this one. Gratitude flowed through him.
“Want me to give him another knock in the head?” the
old witch asked.
“Last stitch. Let me finish,” she said in a voice lacking
the heavier burr of the northern accent. “You can kill him
when I’m done.”
A sense of humor, Cinaed thought. At least, he hoped
she was joking. She tied off the knot, cut the thread, and
straightened her back, inspecting her handiwork. He
lifted his head to see what kind of quilt pattern she’d
made of him. A puckered line of flesh, topped by a row
of neat stitches, now adorned the area just below his
collarbone. He’d been sewn up by surgeons before, and
they’d never done such a fine job of it. He started to sit
up to thank her.

36 May McGoldrick
That was a grave mistake. For an instant, he thought
the old woman had used her cudgel, after all. When he
pushed himself up, his brain exploded, and he had no
doubt it was now oozing out of his ears and eye sockets.
The taste of bilge water bubbled up in his throat.
“A bucket,” he groaned desperately.
The woman was surprisingly strong. She rolled him
and held a bucket as his stomach emptied. She’d been ex-
pecting this, it appeared. However horrible he was feeling
before, it was worse now as the room twisted and rocked
and spun. Long stretches of dry heaves wracked his body.
“Blood I can deal with,” the old woman grouched from
somewhere in the grey haze filling the room. He heaved
again. “By all the saints!”
“I’ll clean up later. Don’t worry about any of this. Go
sit by the fire, Jean. You’ve had a long night.”
Cinaed felt a wet cloth swab the back of his neck and
his face.
Jean mumbled something unintelligible about “weak-
bellied” and “not to be trusted” and “a misery.” When he
hazarded a glance at her, she was glaring at him like
some demon guarding the gates of hell.
“Does my nephew know that yer a doctor?” she asked,
not taking her eyes off of him as she snatched up the knife
and handed it to the younger woman.
A doctor! He lifted his head to look at her again. She
was definitely a woman. And a fine-looking one, at that.
He was still breathing, and she’d done an excellent job
on whatever damage had been done to his chest by the
bullet. But the possibility of any trained physician, or even
a surgeon, being here in this remote corner of the High-
lands was so implausible. Male or female.



“John knows.”
“But ye say yer not a midwife,” Jean persisted, a note
of disbelief evident in her tone. “And not just a surgeon,
in spite of all them fine, shiny instruments in that bag of
“I trained as a physician at a university. But I’m find-
ing that my abilities as a surgeon have more practical uses
wherever I go.”
University trained. Cinaed stole another look at her.
She had an air of confidence in the way she spoke and
acted that convinced him that she was telling the truth.
And for the first time since the Highland Crown struck
that reef, he wondered if his good fortune was still hold-
ing, if only by thread. Lady Luck, apparently, had sent
him Airmid, his own goddess of healing.
Long-forgotten words, chanted over some injury, came
back to him from childhood. Bone to bone. Vein to vein.
Skin to skin. Blood to blood. Sinew to sinew. Marrow to
marrow. Flesh to flesh . . .
From the floor, she retrieved a bowl containing bloody
cloths. A musket ball lay nestled like a robin’s egg on
the soaked rags. By the devil, he thought, his admiration
nearly overflowing. She’d not only stitched him together,
she’d dug the bullet out of him.
The deuce! He’d never seen anyone like her. Frankly,
he didn’t care if she came from the moon to practice
medicine here. He owed his life to her.

My Thoughts
May McGoldrick's first novel in the Highland Royal series is the stuff that true romance readers dreams are made of.  Offering the perfect blend of political intrigue, adventure, heroic characters, and heart-stopping romance.
With the best aspect by far being the turmoil-plagued relationship between the beleaguered Cinaed Mackintosh and his wanted woman, Dr. Isabella Drummond.

While the parts of the novel which deal with the politics at play both in the English and Scottish courts, slowed the pacing of the novel quite a bit.  Also proving considerably less compelling reading than the swashbuckling whirlwind that is the Cinaed / Isabella whirlwind.  It does add quite a bit of substance to the novel as a whole.

This is a very well written and exciting look into the romance and history of Scotland.  And this reviewer can't wait for the next leg of what promises to be a wonderful romantic adventure.

Authors Nikoo and Jim McGoldrick (writing as May McGoldrick) weave emotionally satisfying
tales of love and danger. Under the names of May McGoldrick and Jan Coffey, these authors
have written more than thirty novels and works of nonfiction. Nikoo, an engineer, also
conducts frequent workshops on writing and publishing and serves as a Resident Author.
Jim holds a Ph.D. in Medieval and Renaissance literature and teaches English in
northwestern Connecticut. They are the authors of Much ado about Highlanders, Taming the
Highlander, and Tempest in the Highlands.

Author Twitter: @MayMcGoldrick
SMP Romance Twitter: @SMPRomance or @heroesnhearts

Springing A Leak Takes On a Whole New Connotation In "The Plumber"

Title:  The Plumber
Series:  The Handyman #2
Author:  Jamila Jasper
Format:  Kindle
Length:  60 pages
Rating:  4.5 Stars
The Handyman Series

5 burly bossy bad boys find hot romance where they least expect.

5 unsuspecting, successful black women become the object of their desires.

Each strapping handyman meets his match with a strong black woman who needs a filthy, pleasure-bringing hottie in her life to fulfill her every need...

Brock Carlton is a PLUMBER helping 45-year-old Tasha Summers fix a leak...
Her burst pipe isn’t the only thing dripping wet!
A quick job turns into a mid-afternoon quickie that leaves them both SOAKED.
It’s the most alive Tasha’s felt since the divorce. This successful businesswoman has no regrets about the blue collar stud she let waltz into her life... 

Take A Peek...

My Thoughts

The Plumber is the second offering in Jamila Jaspers collection of erotic novellas entitled The Handyman series.
And just as the synopsis implies.  Hunky handyman, Brock Carlton seems to know his way around household leaks.  Whether it be stopping them.  As he does with the one under the kitchen sink.  Or, starting them.  As he does with the one between her thighs.  One thing is for certain.  This most dominate of plumbers knows just what he wants, and from whom.

When Tasha Summers finds herself face to face with a kitchen floor full of water and decides to call her favorite plumber. The last person that she expects to come to her aid is the self-assured and very masculine, Brock.
Neither did she expect that his stellar service would leave him so hot and sweaty that the offer of a shower would be in order.
Then there was the question about some missing shampoo.  A dropped towel.  Some up close and personal...But not too personal, time with Brock's rather formidable manhood.
And the stage is set for surprisingly well done Dom play.

Though this book is just as short as its predecessor, The Poolboy.  The much slower pace caused by Brock's making Tasha wait to fully consummate things.  Really serves to make the novella seem longer.  While providing the reader with the perfect amount of sexual tension to boot.

Just as in my review of Ms. Jasper's first offering in the series.  This reviewer is of the opinion that the novella though well done, is far too short.
But barring that.  A very sexy read to be sure.

About Jamila
Jamila Jasper 
Jamila Jasper is a 31-year-old romance author who just moved to a small corner of New England. She's always been in love with black romantic comedies and writing interracial romance fan fiction. This love of writing has morphed into a passion for publishing BWWM novels. Jamila concocts, sweet full-length romance novels with guaranteed happily ever after endings, each one with a creative, strong female lead and an attractive, caring white man.

See Her Socially:  Goodreads / Twitter /Facebook

Buy The Book Here

Berkley Presents: The Charmer In Chaps

Title:  The Charmer In Chaps
Series:  The Princes Of Texas #1
Author:  Julia London
Date Of Publication:  May 7, 2019
Publisher: Jove 
Rating:  4.5 Stars

The first in a sexy new contemporary western romance series from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Julia London where cowboys and true love brings you home...

Cimarron County knows the youngest son of the fabled Prince family as a womanizing hell-raiser, but Luca has another side to him. He intends to turn the overworked pasture land his father left him back to its natural beauty. There's just one problem--a woman with sparkling eyes and more fight than a barnyard cat is grandfathered into some acreage on his portion of Three Rivers Ranch.

After years of living in foster homes, Ella has exactly three things to her name: A dog, a pig, and the rundown house she just inherited. Luca may not remember her from high school, but she definitely remembers him. He is as seductive as he was then, but Ella isn't about to fall for his flirting--if only she could stop melting at his touch.

What begins as a game of seduction for Luca quickly turns into something more, but Ella has learned the hard way to trust no one but herself--especially when it comes to her deepest secret. Yet the closer Luca gets to Ella, the more he wants to be the one she leans on. For once, Luca is determined to do something right and give the woman he loves the home she deserves.

Everyone knows how intense a high-school crush can be. When every waking moment is consumed
with the awareness of the crush, when a smile, or a brush of the fingers from the crushee could carry the
crusher for a day. Maybe even a week if you re-examined it ad nauseum with your best friend and
roommate, Stacy, while your foster parents yelled at each other in the living room.
That’s how Ella Kendall had felt about Luca Prince in high school. He’d transferred into Edna
Colley High School in the middle of their junior year, coming from wherever insanely rich kids came
from. He was tall and muscular, dark hair streaked with gold, and hazel eyes that changed from blue to
green to brown. He was so handsome and so exotically perfect that Ella’s hormones had stacked up like
discarded tires and had burned for the next eighteen months. It was a fire that could not be doused.
Not that Luca Prince ever noticed.
Everyone in the town of Three Rivers knew about the Prince family and the famed Three Rivers
Ranch for which the town was named. They’d filmed Hollywood movies there. They’d hosted a summit
between the president of the United States and the president of Mexico about some trade thing. The ranch
was massive in size and supposedly, if you wanted to see it all in one day, you needed a plane.
Ella and Stacy had never seen the ranch except in pictures, because they sure didn’t run in the
popular kids’ circle. But they’d heard about the fabled fortress. It was tucked away behind a big fancy
gate, nestled on the bank of the river at the foot of the hills. Mariah Frame, nee Baker, their only friend in
high school, had seen the ranch, and she’d said it was a like a castle. A Spanish castle. “It’s so big,” she’d
said. “And it has so many horses.” Apparently it also had a pool, tennis courts, cars, and Ella could no
longer remember what all. But she used to imagine that it was just like the castles in all the princess
movies she’d watched as a kid.
Ella, Stacy, and Mariah had called him Prince Luca. He was so dreamy, with those mesmerizing eyes
and wavy hair that brushed his shoulders. He and his twin sister, Princess Hallie, had ruled Colley High.
They were the homecoming queen and king, a stratosphere of popularity so high above Ella that she must

have looked like a speck to them.
Once, Luca had asked Ella for her notes from algebra, and Ella had gotten so tongue-tied that she’d
just shoved them at him. And of course she’d completely lost her mind on the night of the senior dance
when he’d grabbed her hand—without asking, now that she thought about it, but that was a minor
detail—and pulled her onto the dance floor. And then, just like in the movies, after a bit of swaying
around, he’d kissed her.
Out of the blue, with no warning, Prince Luca had kissed her, right in the middle of the dance floor,
beneath the piƱatas. Ella had been kissed many times since, but she remembered everything about that
one. His hand had cupped her face; his other had rested on the small of her back. His lips had lingered on
hers for what seemed like forever, soft and tender, like he’d landed there and liked it. He had not kissed
her in the urgent, demanding way that Clint Adams had kissed her their sophomore year. Prince Luca’s
kiss was a proper knee-melting, heart-exploding kiss.
And then, just as suddenly, he’d lifted his head, touched her cheek, and walked off.

My Thoughts
Julia London's first offering in The Princes Of Texas series.  Entitled The Charmer In Chaps is a very sweet second chance romance with a Contemporary Western flare. The comedic timing, snark, and with laced interactions between both leading lady, Ella, and her hunky but often Luca.  Spot on and guaranteed to keep the pages turning.

Couple this with a very likable and colorful supporting cast.  And the secret that Luca has carried since childhood.  
There you have it, folks, all the ingredients would need for the perfect heart-melting romantic explosion.

The romance found here is a slow kindle.  Filled to the brim with both angst and comedic fits and starts.
But once things get going between these two star-crossed souls.  The fire of their love is one that can be seen from space.

The only things that kept this stellar series out of the 5 Star spot?
The many rabbit trails that several plot elements seemed to take.
Though this may have been a nod to coming books.  It proved very distracting to the story at hand.

All in all.  The story of the poor little rich boy meeting his working-class match is a keeper.  And this reviewer can't wait to read more in the series.

About Julia
Julia London Julia London is the New York Times and USA Today best selling author of more than a two dozen romantic fiction novels. She is the author of the popular Secrets of Hadley Green historical romance series, as well as the new Cabot Sisters historical series, including The Trouble with Honor, The Fall of Grace, and The Perils of Prudence. She is also the author of several contemporary romances, including Homecoming Ranch and Return to Homecoming Ranch.

Julia is the recipient of the RT Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and a six time finalist for the prestigious RITA award for excellence in romantic fiction. To keep up with all the Julia London news, please visit Follow her on Facebook at

Getting the Job Done Has Never Been So Sexy...Meet "The Pool Boy

40951429 Title:  The Pool Boy
Series:  The Handyman #1
Author:  Jamila Jasper
Length:  61 pages
Format:  Kindle
Rating:  4 Stars

The Handyman Series
5 burly bossy bad boys find hot romance where they least expect.
5 unsuspecting, successful black women become the object of their desires.
Each strapping handyman meets his match with a strong black woman who needs a filthy, pleasure-bringing hottie in her life to fulfill her every need...

With her kids off at college, Kishawn Morris is left to tending her beautiful Los Angeles mansion alone.
Her husband left her for a younger woman and she’s been so lonely… that is until Tom Jackson starts caring for her pool.
He’s 30 years old and wears nothing but a speedo as he works in the hot sun with his perfectly chiseled bod.
What starts as an invite inside for some lemonade turns into an unforgettable tryst that Kishawn will never regret.
Jam-packed with panty-dropping and page-turning action. This interracial romance short is 5,000+ words of pure enchantment with a guaranteed satisfying ending and a quick bonus preview of Book 2. Take a peek inside to get hooked.

Take A Peek!

My Thoughts
Jamila Jasper's sexy novella entitled The Pool Boy.  Is just what the doctor ordered for those wanting to add a little spice, a little color, and a few laughs to their reading lists.
Kishawn Morris may be successful in business.  A fact to which both her beautiful mansion and the hefty palimony settlement that she pays her ex-husband, Quincy, can attest.

There comes a time however, when even the most affluent of us needs a little help.
And given the sorry state of Kishawn's pool.  It looks to her like that time is now.  So when her well meaning assistant, Grace suggests a hard working friend of her's' who specializes in lawn and pool maintenance.
Kishawn is more than willing to give Tom Jackson a try.

But there is no way that Kishawn can prepare herself for the blonde haired, blue eyed, Adonis that she finds skulking around her back yard.  Bright and early the following morning.
Or, the lust fueled attraction that kindles between the two.  As he works and she looks on.
What Kishawn does know however, that that the 30-something who dares kiss her like his life depends on it.  When she invites him to sample her lemonade after a hard day's work.  Is much more "man" than his "pool boy" moniker implies.
And this man has jusst the right tools to insure that more than just her pool gets the TLC that its deserves.

This is a powerhouse of a little read.  If for nothing other than the shear number of boxes that it checks on any picky adult reader list.
We have:
Snark and / or humor. Check.
Older woman / younger man. Check.
Interracial couple. Check.
Strong male and female leads. Check.
Hot sex. Check...check and CHECK!
Story and characters that leave the reader wanting more! Check.

In fact, the only detraction that this reviewer has for this story is that it is too short.  There is not enough backstory, story, or epilogue to quench the thirst for more that this story leaves on with.
But thankfully this is the first of a series of shorts.  The Handyman series. to be exact, and Kishawn and Tom's story segue's into Brock and Tasha's in The Plumber.  Book #2 in this 5 volume collection.

Reviewer's Notes:  All titles in this loosely related series can be read for free on Kindle Unlimited.
This book contains adult themes and situations.  It  is therefore not recommended to those readers under 18.

About Jamila
Jamila Jasper 
Jamila Jasper is a 31-year-old romance author who just moved to a small corner of New England. She's always been in love with black romantic comedies and writing interracial romance fan fiction. This love of writing has morphed into a passion for publishing BWWM novels. Jamila concocts, sweet full-length romance novels with guaranteed happily ever after endings, each one with a creative, strong female lead and an attractive, caring white man.

See Her Socially:  Goodreads / Twitter /Facebook

  Buy The Book Here!