Monday 31 December 2018

Book Blitz: Winter Fire by Richard Amos

Out of the frying pan, into the damn inferno!

Who is the white eye guy? How can Jake Winter save the city of Coldharbour from its curse? So many questions, yet still no answers. And then there is the whole complication with Dean…

Evil is rising…

Lilisian, the beast Supreme, is free. Worst luck! Jake Winter and his friends are desperate to stop her, but she hasn’t been seen since her last brief appearance. All over the city ritual sacrifices are taking place, praising her name, her followers waiting for her to fully rise to her true power.

The clock is ticking…

Jake has to kill Lilisian. There’s no two ways about it. If she is restored to her deadly glory, she’ll be a threat like no other beast he has faced yet. But life is always far from easy. Lilisian has a pet that she has just let off the leash…

When a dragon takes to the skies of Coldharbour, Jake will need to summon all his strength before everything he is trying to protect goes down in flames…

A dark urban fantasy tale with kick-ass action and slow-burn m/m romance.

About the Book

Winter Fireby Richard Amos
Coldharbour Chronicles Book Three
Urban Fantasy
M/M Romance
Publication Date
December 7, 2018
Purchase Your Copy Today!Amazon  |  The Coldharbour Chronicles on Amazon
+Add To Your TBR Pile!


“What the hell was that?” I yelped.
“My fucking car!” Greg boomed.
Yeah, maybe he should start using old bangers for patrols.
A deep keening came from the dark road, my sparks spitting in reaction to the horrible, mournful sound. Through the messed-up windscreen, I could see something pale moving in the dark.
I opened my door, my friends doing the same.
“Okay,” Nay drawled. “This is a new one.”
The first thing I noticed about the white creature was the pear shape of its body—small head and upper region, a swollen lower region. Its arms were tiny, like a T-Rex, and the paleness of its skin was as white as freshly fallen snow.
The creature howled in despair.
The second thing I noticed, which I couldn’t quite believe, were the coal eyes, the carrot nose, and the black blobs down its front in a straight line that looked like buttons.
“I’m asleep, right?” I said.
“That can’t be a carrot,” Greg added.
What differentiated this beast from being a cute snowman on the front lawn was the wide mouth that almost split its small head in half. There were no lips, just lines of black and rows of black shards ready to rip flesh from bone.
And it had legs—two kangaroo-looking pins.
I sighed. “I’m so not in the bloody mood for this.”
Nay had her phone up, quickly scanning the beast into the app she’d created regarding beast knowledge.
The beast whined, taking some steps back.
I approached.
“Careful,” Greg said, jutting a muscular arm out to halt me. “Don’t ever get sucked into the scaredy-cat crap, mate.”
There were no amber ribbons of light to see around the snowman—an indication of beast fear to my eyes.
Another howl of sorrow.
“That’s not snow,” Dean said. “Can you smell that?”
“What?” I wondered.
I sniffed deep. There, on the cold air, I could smell the sweet scent of funeral homes. “I hate lilies.”
“Me too.”
The snowman howled once more and pounced. Bloody hell! It went high on those bouncy legs. It came crashing down on the Mercedes, caving in the roof.
Greg roared and threw himself at the snowman. His fist met solidity, the side of the beast cracking ever so slightly under the power of his punch. With swiftness I wasn’t expecting, the beast kicked Greg in the chest and sent him sprawling on the asphalt.
It leapt into the air, aiming its body right for me. Crap. I rolled in time to avoid the crushing of my bones.
Nay threw a potion vial. It exploded into a green fire, spiraling around the freaky creature, but failing to do anything. The snowman jumped into a dropkick. Nay was quick to avoid a hit … just.
Greg was fuming, thankfully unhurt for now. He’d feel it when the rage cooled down.
“Get on Dean’s shoulders!” Nay called.
Dean’s head was between my legs, and I was lifted into the air. He held me by the thighs, and my dick throbbed inappropriately at the firmness of his grip.
The snowman was bouncing after Greg, who was calling it every name under the sun as he swung punches and avoided getting kicked again.
Nay ran to me and Dean. “Ready?”
I swallowed. “For what?”
“Dean’s gonna throw you.”
“I am?” Dean said.
“I thought we were on the same page seeing you’re between his legs.”
I blushed.
“Didn’t want to debate it,” Dean replied. “I just did it.”
God! Could he feel my boner on the back of his head? I wanted to get down.
You mean go down!
Stupid inner voice! This was not the time for this bollocks.
“Throw him, and I’ll aim him for the head,” Nay said.
“Oh, my God!”
Dean squeezed my thighs a little tighter.
“I’ve got a spell that should work.”
Greg got in a nice smack to the beast’s solid belly, a fracture line appearing across the white. The snowman howled and bounced away some feet, hopping from foot to foot once it was back on the ground.
“Should?” Dean said.
“We have one shot at this,” Nay answered. “While Greg’s pissing it off.”
Oh, shit.
“You ready, Jake?” Dean asked.
No. “Y-yes.”
“Get those hands ready,” Nay said. “You’re gonna have to work fast.”
“If I miss?”
Dean straightened and started to walk toward the beast.
“You fuck with my car, I fuck you up!” Greg roared. “Come on! Let’s be having ya!”
“In three,” Nay said, “charge and throw.”
Bloody hell! My lips were dry, my stomach doing loops. I could barely hear her counting or feel the speed of Dean’s charge.
Before I could blink, I was flying through the air at the snowman beast made of marble, magic tickling at my belly from Nay’s spell. If I missed, I’d smash my teeth out, break my nose and basically be a mess on the floor and then be kicked away or stomped on, a mushy mess of—
My hands were on the snowman’s head. Another part of me, the non-neurotic quarter—a.k.a. wannabe bad-arse—had taken over.
The terrible keening rang in my ears before the silence engulfed me in the place of beast essence.
Killing touch delivered, I enjoyed the sensation of feeding and did my best to hide the raging boner in my jeans. What with Dean having been in close proximity, and the fact that killing beasts made me inexplicably horny, it was straining to escape the confines of denim.
You can stay where you bloody well are! I told it.
Once my composure was restored to a degree of normality, I took in the scene. Greg’s car was completely written off. No way were we going home in the comfy, new Mercedes.
Greg was raging. He ripped off a wing mirror and smashed it on the road, proceeding to do the same to the other one.
“Thanks, Karla,” Nay said into her phone and hung up. “Mr. Douglas is coming to pick us up.”
“Motherfuckingbullshithellbollocks!” Greg boomed.
“Nice work, you two,” Nay said.
I didn’t realize Dean was standing next to me. I turned to look at him to find he was staring right at me.
I offered him a smile, and he averted his gaze.
My shoulders sagged. A good old curl-up under the duvet, with the world being shut away, was just what I needed.
And a cold shower.

Purchase Your Copy Today!Amazon  |  The Coldharbour Chronicles on Amazon

About Richard Amos

RICHARD AMOS is an author from England who is constantly lost in the worlds he writes about, and the ones in the queue yet to be written. He also has more books in his house than anything else, and is never without a book (and chocolate) in his hands when he’s not writing. He’s a proud nerd who loves to dance. Hard. Richard writes kick-ass Urban Fantasy with gay male protagonists, all with good doses of action, adventure and m/m romance. He also writes High Fantasy.
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Thursday 20 December 2018

Review: Sleepover by Serena Bell

Elle and Sawyer just look so happy. Which is, of course, exactly how they end up.

But it's not an easy trip.

It was just supposed to be once.

It was just supposed to be sex.

But now they're next-door neighbors. And before they can put up their fences—or defenses—their eight-year-old sons have forged an unstoppable friendship.

They're still reeling—Elle, from a Facebook message she was never supposed to see, Sawyer, from the kind of death it's hard to live through. A relationship seems like a terrible idea. So they make a deal. One more blazing hot night, at Elle's ex-husband's wedding.

You know, because the "just once" thing has worked out so well for them ... 

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: November 13th 2018 by Loveswept
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from Loveswept via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

This book was everything that I have come to expect from Serena Bell. It was an interesting contemporary romance with likeable characters and enough steam to iron my shirts.

In Sleepover we were introduced to a widowed father and a recently divorced mother who have boys the same age. It just so happens that they had a one night stand when they were both hurting and then months later find themselves as next door neighbours with boys who become instant BFF's.

My favourite aspect of any contemporary romance isn't the sexy time but the chemistry and the anticipation. Bell does a great job in this book as Elle and Sawyer resist their attraction and then eagerly anticipate the wedding date and their little agreement. I was in their corner and hoping that they could heal enough to allow themselves to be happy together.

I have read numerous books by Serena Bell and plan to read many more. She always seems to satisfy my contemporary romance itch.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author and RT Reviewers’ Choice Award nominee Serena Bell writes richly emotional stories about big-hearted characters with real troubles and the people who are strong and generous enough to love them.

A former journalist, Serena has always believed that everyone has an amazing story to tell if you listen carefully, and she adores hiding in her tiny garret office, mainlining chocolate and bringing to life the tales in her head.

When not writing, Serena loves to spend time with her college-sweetheart husband and two hilarious kiddos—all of whom are incredibly tolerant not just of Serena’s imaginary friends but also her enormous collection of constantly changing and passionately embraced hobbies, ranging from needlepoint to paddle boarding to meditation.

Connect with Serena

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Review: All the Promises We Break by Brenda Benny

How do you move forward from a night that changes everything if you can’t even remember it?

With high school finally over, and her long-awaited South American adventure just around the corner, Savannah expects to wind up in the arms of her first real love Chase at the end of tonight’s party.

Instead, she wakes up on the bathroom floor.
She knows she wasn’t alone.
Except she can’t remember any of it.

Chase is nowhere to be found. And the only one picking up the pieces is her outrageous and unpredictable best friend, Pete. Amidst the devastating emotional wreckage of sexual assault, Savannah struggles to fit together the jigsaw puzzle of before and after, while shielding the truth from everyone around her.

Will the worst night of her life keep Savannah from her dreams of first love and finding the road less travelled?

All the Promises We Break is the first of a two book series that follows Savannah through a tragic 1990’s night that tears her apart from her first young love, only to set in motion a chain of events that will lead them back to one another, years later in the sequel, to reveal if the healing process can truly offer a second chance at first love.

Kindle Edition, 271 pages
Published October 13th 2018 by Liddle Book Press 
Genre: Young Adult/Contemporary
Kristine's Thoughts:
** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

Right off the top I will tell you that this book will rub some people the wrong way. I caution those who like things to wrap up nice and neat and tidy to take a pass. On the other hand, I encourage people who like a story that is (unfortunately) pretty realistic when it comes to such a serious topic and how people deal with it to pick it up.

All the Promises We Break basically told two separate stories about Savannah that collided at one time. The first was the story of first love and the second was of a sexual assault. Weaving back and forth the reader gets light and sweet mixed with dark and messy. Personally I thought the author pulled this off quite well. I was glued to the pages and finished the book quickly. Young readers will really like the first love side of the story and will route for a happy ending.

What readers will not like is the way Savannah dealt with her assault and how the book ended. However, from reading the synopsis it is very clear that there is a second book that will hopefully resolve all of the issues and questions the reader is left with. This is what allowed me to enjoy the book. If I didn't know that there was to be a second book I probably would have been very unsatisfied but knowing that Savannah's story wasn't finished helped me to truly enjoy all that I was reading.

Did I wish Savannah would have dealt with things differently? Absolutely. Did I want her to speak up? Most definitely. However, statistically she did what a lot of people in her situation did and I feel like it made the story less fanciful and more real.

I cannot wait to get my hands on the second book and to find out what becomes of Savannah. Like all believers in true love, I hope she gets hers.

About the Author
After a couple university degrees and some world travel, Brenda Benny settled down to a life of helping others communicate their stories. One day she decided to start writing her own.

When she’s not shining in the glow of a computer screen, she can be found warming up in the sun after a freezing cold lake swim, chilling with friends at an outdoor music festival, skate skiing on a sunny day, or hiking to the summit because it’s there. She believes that dark chocolate and tortilla chips are two overlooked food groups.

Brenda is lucky enough to live amongst the awesome lakes and forests of Muskoka Ontario Canada with her husband, two sons, and their guinea pig named Chocolate.

Connect with Brenda

Wednesday 5 December 2018

Review: Home Again (The Bradshaws #2) by Shirlee McCoy

For the Bradshaw brothers, coming back to their hometown is the last thing they wanted. But to cope with family tragedy, they're reuniting in Benevolence, Washington—a place of hope, caring, and ever-surprising love . . .  
It’s ex-Navy SEAL Porter Bradshaw’s toughest challenge ever—six grieving nieces and nephews. With his brother, Matthias, killed in a car crash, and his sister-in-law, Sunday, hospitalized, Porter must take his turn looking after their children and the ancestral farm. He doesn't know much about parenting.  Still, Porter is used to going it alone professionally—and personally. But warm-hearted teacher Clementine Warren is a complication he can’t resist . . .
For Clementine, Benevolence is where her hopes for a real home and family crashed and burned. But as Sunday's friend and former neighbor, she promised to always be there for the children. And as she and Porter work to comfort the young Bradshaws, his sense of duty and passionate commitment are rekindling more than Clementine’s dreams. Now with trouble coming, she'll face down her fears to prove to Porter, and herself, that together they can make a future full of love . . .

Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Published October 30th 2018 by Zebra

Terri's Thoughts

** I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!**

I had hoped to get this review out before the publication date however sadly life got in the way and I am only getting around to it now.  This is no reflection on my opinion of the book, simply that things have gotten really busy and my real job had to take priority.

This is the second in the Bradshaw series and if you have not read the first one, you may lose some of the impact of this one as there is a backstory that runs through them both that essentially is the basis of the whole series.  I would recommend starting from the beginning to get the story of Matthias' death and the impact on the children.

Speaking of the children, this is what the story is really about.  Children from various backgrounds, all with a tragic story, coming in to a loving home just to have it all snatched away due to a tragic event and trying to come to terms with uncertainty and chaos.  Then we have virtual strangers, in this case Porter, trying to step up and give them stability.  It was the stronger story than the one between Porter and Clementine.  I could be wrong but this may be intentional.

While I felt the story went at a little bit of a slower pace, I was invested to see how things would unfold, and will unfold in future stories.  I enjoyed this and look forward to the next installment in the series.

About the Author


Monday 3 December 2018

Review: Be with Me (Return to Haven #2) by Jules Bennett

Three best friends are starting over in the cozy town of Haven, Georgia, where revamping the local airport brings dreams of love and family within reach . . . 
Since moving to Haven to help out her closest friends, Melanie Ramsey has begun to reclaim her strength after a difficult divorce. Through Mel’s Motivational Blog, she’s inspiring other women too. Then a wild, one-night fling with Haven’s gorgeous deputy leaves her shaken, stirred—and pregnant.  But Melanie’s not giving up her newfound independence for another powerful man. Not even one as upstanding and intriguing as 
Tanner Roark . . .
What matters most to Tanner: defending the weak, seeking justice, and protecting his heart after a tragic loss. Random hookups have been working out just fine until he and Melanie collide. Despite her domineering ex’s best efforts to rattle her, she’s still kind and resilient. Not to mention witty, straight-talking, and sexy as hell. Chemistry is easy. Trust, not so much. But when you find the one who sends your heart soaring, what can you do except buckle up and hold on tight? . . 

Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Published October 30th 2018 by Zebra 

Terri's Thoughts

** I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!**

I am late writing this review as I read the book about two months ago.  I therefore apologize if my review is high level and I do not go in to detail about the finer points of the plotline.

I have to admit that I am not a big fan of storylines where the pregnancy comes first and then the romance.  I am fine if there is already a child in the picture but for some reason I always find the pregnancy version a little awkward.  I gave this book a chance in my quest to constantly be expanding away from my comfort zone.  I am glad I did for the most part.

Both Melanie and Tanner were easy to like.  Melanie, a former victim who was pursuing a new healthy life after getting away, and Tanner who is the stereotypical alpha male with the kind of looks and heart every woman swoons over.  Their chemistry was obvious..ahem... she is pregnant with his baby after all.

As everyone knows how this one will end, I will avoid any spoilers for you all.  At the end of the day this was a nice and quick read.  It didn't blow my mind however it was entertaining for someone who went in knowing this isn't her cup of tea.  

About the Author

USA Today Bestselling Author Jules Bennett has written for multiple publishing houses and currently has books with Harlequin and Kensington.

Saturday 1 December 2018

Review: Badly Done, Emma Lee (Riches to Romance #3) by Leah Marie Brown

All seemed lost—until this Southern belle embraced a new beginning in the unlikeliest of places . . .  
Spoiled, stylish, socially connected Emma Lee Maxwell has spent her life in the idlest of pursuits—attending debutante balls, organizing sorority mixers, and acting as Charleston’s unofficial Gossip Queen.  But when her family’s fortune suddenly dwindles, Emma Lee realizes her days as a Lowcountry Princess are numbered.
When she discovers that she’s inherited her aunt’s cottage in Surrey, she hightails it to England, nurturing fantasies of polo matches and jaunts to London. . . . Instead Emma Lee is surrounded by spinsters and sheep farmers, and spends her nights reading her aunt’s old Jane Austen novels. So when she’s invited to join the local chapter of the Austen society, she reluctantly agrees. But the novel Emma inspires an epiphany: She will put her people-pleasing ways to good use by becoming the village’s very own matchmaker! And she’ll start with three local brothers . . .
 There’s just one skeptical, handsome, charming challenge: the oldest brother, Knightley, is stubbornly insisting Emma Lee abandon her well-meaning ways and focus on making a match of her own—with
him . . .

Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Expected publication: October 30th 2018 by Lyrical Press

Terri's Thoughts

** I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you**

I feel so bad because I read this book ages ago and I am only getting around to writing my review now.  I always like to review books prior to their release and missed my target on this one.

Anyone who is familiar with the work of Leah Marie Brown will enjoy this book.  It offers up the same quirky main character, reference to pop culture and lets not take life to seriously theme that her other books and series.  This is what I seek from her books and it was delivered.  

This is part of her Riches to Romance series.  I read the first and somehow missed the second, not sure how that happened.  I can say I liked this one better than the first.  I cant seem to pinpoint it, there was no particular reason as I enjoyed both.

What I liked the best was the character of Emma.  She was overwhelmingly positive to a fault.  It did not seem that anything could phase her.  The funny thing about that is the fact that she is the complete opposite of me.  I can sometimes be a "negative Nelly" and overly positive people are usually annoying to me, but I loved Emma!

I wont divulge more but if you have read any of Brown's work, take the time to pick this up.  Actually, it would be better to start at the beginning of the series so you can spend a little more time with some quirky characters.

About the Author

(From her Goodreads profile)

I am an American writer with a penchant for Paris and all things pink!

Before writing novels, I worked as a print journalist for a Pulitzer prize winning newspaper and served in the United States Air Force as a Radio and Television Broadcaster.

An avid traveler, I have had adventures and mishaps from London to Tokyo, which I write about on my blog, On Life, Love & Accidental Adventures, and in my contemporary romantic series, The It Girls.

I was once a collector of truly useless bric-a-brac and cheesy tee-shirts. My cheesiest? A tee with a cartoon Jesus riding a surf board and the words, "And on the eighth day, Jesus went surfing in Greece."

Today, I prefer to gather friendships and memories as travel souvenirs.

I live in the shadow of Pike's Peak Mountain, near Colorado Springs, with my family and shamefully pampered poodles.

In my free time, I like to watch movies, read, and snap photographs. You can view my photography by clicking on the Adventures tab above or by following me on Instagram.

Wednesday 21 November 2018

Message from Terri

As life has become busy lately, we have taken a short hiatus.  Not to worry, we will be back soon with lots of new book reviews!  Stay tuned for new reviews coming starting December 1st.

Tuesday 6 November 2018

Sale Blitz & Giveaway: His Christmas Wish by Melissa McClone

Carly Bishop loved Christmas…until tragedy struck.
Distraught and grief-stricken over the deaths of her fiancé and brother, she left Hood Hamlet and her Christmas spirit behind, to start over somewhere new. But now, six years later, her family needs her. Carly returns home to face her past and give her niece and nephew the best Christmas ever.
Burdened with guilt, Jake Porter believes he could have saved his two friends on that fateful day and kept Carly from experiencing such a heart-wrenching loss. When she arrives in town, Jake wants to make amends so they can both finally move forward with their lives.
As Jake helps Carly experience the magic of Christmas so she’ll embrace the holiday again, will he also be able to open her heart to something else she’d given up on…love?
Previously published as Rescued by the Magic of Christmas.

About the Book

His Christmas Wish
by Melissa McClone
Mountain Rescue Book One
Contemporary Romance
Sweet / Clean Romance
Cardinal Press LLC
Publication Date
November 1, 2018
+Add to Your TBR Pile!
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New Release Giveaway!

To celebrate the release of HIS CHRISTMAS WISH, author Melissa McClone is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card & a signed paperback copy of the book!


About Melissa McClone

USA Today bestselling author, MELISSA MCCLONE has published over forty novels with Harlequin and Tule Publishing Group and been nominated for Romance Writers of America’s RITA® award. With a degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, Melissa worked for a major airline where she traveled the globe and met her husband. But analyzing jet engine performance couldn’t compete with her love of writing happily ever afters. Her first full-time writing endeavor was her first sale when she was pregnant with her first child! When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her driving her minivan to/from her children’s swim practices and other activities. Melissa lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children, two spoiled Norwegian Elkhounds, and cats who think they rule the house. They do!
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Thursday 25 October 2018

Review: Lights on the Sea by Miquel Reina

In this riveting debut, prize-winning artist and filmmaker Miquel Reina maps out ambitious and fantastical new territory in a novel about a couple holding on for dear life as their world takes an extraordinary fall…

On the highest point of an island, in a house clinging to the edge of a cliff, live Mary Rose and Harold Grapes, a retired couple still mourning the death of their son thirty-five years before. Weighed down by decades of grief and memories, the Grapeses have never moved past the tragedy. Then, on the eve of eviction from the most beautiful and dangerously unstable perch in the area, they’re uprooted by a violent storm. The disbelieving Grapeses and their home take a free-fall slide into the whitecapped sea and float away.

As the past that once moored them recedes and disappears, Mary Rose and Harold are delivered from decades of sorrow by the ebb and flow of the waves. Ahead of them, a light shimmers on the horizon, guiding them toward a revelatory and cathartic new engagement with life, and all its wonder.

Wildly imaginative, deeply poignant, and entirely unexpected, Lights on the Sea sweeps readers away on a journey of fate, acceptance, redemption, and survival against the most rewarding of odds.

Kindle Edition, 272 pages
Published September 25th 2018 by AmazonCrossing
Genre: Fiction

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received a copy of this book directly from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

I have been left slightly speechless by this book. It surprised me in so many ways that I don't know how to put it into words.

You absolutely need to have an imagination to enjoy Lights on the Sea. There was an almost fairy tale/ fantasy feel to it that was best enjoyed with an open mind and a hunger for creative liberties. This is something I struggle with but not this time.

Lights on the Sea was the story of Mary Rose and Harold Grapes and the home they built from their sorrow and crushed dreams. On the eve of the day they were being forced to leave their home because of safety reasons, a storm blew in and swept the house off the cliff and into the sea. Surprisingly, the Grapes family and the house survived the plummet into the ocean and an adventure unlike anything they had ever imagined began to unfold.

It was a truly captivating story that had so many messages of hope, survival and how to overcome grief and sorrow. I could not tear myself away from it. Anyone struggling with forgiveness and letting go would benefit from reading this story. Through all of the adventures that these two characters encountered, I was with them. I adored Mary Rose and Harold and I felt like I was right beside them the entire voyage.

It was truly an enjoyable read from beginning to end!

About the Author

Barcelona-born Miquel Reina defines himself as a dreamer and a fighter; from a young age, he was drawn to the creative life, studying design and cinema before building his reputation as a filmmaker and graphic artist. His work in advertising won him several awards, including the prestigious Bronze Sun at Spain’s Festival de San Sebastián in 2011, and in 2014, his music video “Dead in the Water” was screened at the Tribeca Film Festival. Reina has lived in Vancouver, Canada, since 2016, working for a video production studio and dedicating his free time to his most gratifying passion: writing. Lights On The Sea is his first novel.

Connect with Miquel


Tuesday 23 October 2018

Review: Stuck In Manistique by Dennis Cuesta

Near the midpoint of the Upper Peninsula, along a Lake Michigan bend of shore, is the town of Manistique, Michigan. Mark had never heard of Manistique before the death of his estranged aunt, but as sole beneficiary of Vivian’s estate, he travels there to settle her affairs. As Mark tours his aunt’s house for the first time, the doorbell rings.

Days after graduating medical school, Dr. Emily Davis drives north, struggling with her illicit rendezvous on Mackinac Island. She never makes it—on the highway near Manistique, her car collides with a deer, shattering the car’s windshield. Stranded for the night, Emily is directed to a nearby bed and breakfast.

Maybe it’s a heady reaction, the revelation that his aunt, an international aid doctor, ran a bed and breakfast in retirement. Or perhaps he plainly feels pity for the young, helpless doctor. Regardless, Mark decides to play host for one night, telling Emily that he’s merely stepping in temporarily while his aunt is away.

As a one-night stay turns into another and more guests arrive, the ersatz innkeeper steadily loses control of his story. And though Emily opens up to Mark, she has trouble explaining the middle-aged man who unexpectedly arrives at the doorstep looking for her.

Will these two strangers, holding on to unraveling secrets, remain in town long enough to discover the connection between them?

Expected publication: October 29th 2018 by Celestial Eyes Press  
Genre: Fiction

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

I think I might be in the minority with my opinion of this book based on other early reviews I've glanced at. The synopsis sounded so good and like a story that I would really enjoy. I really did want to enjoy it.


It all fell a little flat to me. The plot, the setting and the characters. I really struggled to connect to any one part of it but I couldn't. It was all very average and sometimes very dull. The time I spend trying to get through this book was way more than I spend on most books. It just never seemed to grab my interest long enough for me to want to keep picking it up. Mark was hard to connect to. He seemed somewhat bitter and angry for no apparent or logical reason. He wasn't likeable at all which made it hard for me to care much about his outcome in the story.

I really feel like this story needed more development with the characters and the setting. I never quite got the feel for Manistique or any of the people that found themselves there. It just wasn't for me.

About the Author

Dennis Cuesta is the author of STUCK IN MANISTIQUE, his debut novel. The book is scheduled to be released on October 29, 2018.

A native of California, Dennis attended the University of Michigan and remained in the Upper Midwest during his early career.

He and his wife did get stuck in Manistique once, long ago. The interrupted trip served as inspiration for the novel. Dennis now lives in San Jose, California with his wife and son.

Connect with Dennis