10 Statements – Mandy Jackson-Beverly @MJacksonBeverly

 

Mandy Jackson-Beverly was born in the bustling town of Pyramid Hill, Victoria, Australia … Population: 419. This remote childhood kick-started Mandy’s imagination, as did the rugged coastline and rolling hills of Tasmania, where her family relocated when she was four years old.

In 1982, Mandy moved to London, where she discovered the importance of the creative collective: The 1980s fashion scene. A year later, in Los Angeles, she found her own creative freedom among the thriving, no-holds-barred visionaries of the music video world. As a costume designer and stylist Mandy worked for photographer Herb Ritts, and directors Joel and Ethan Coen, David Fincher, and Julien Temple, and music icons David Bowie, Madonna, and Tina Turner, to name a few.

Mandy has taught Advanced Placement Art, written and directed high school theater productions, is a contributor to The Huffington Post, a book reviewer for The New York Journal of Books, and the author of A Secret Muse, and The Devil And The Muse. She resides in Ojai, California, with her husband, Brian Beverly, a crossed-eyed cat, Luna, a dog named Cash and, sometimes, her sons, Angus and Jack.

Find me…

Website:  https://mandyjacksonbeverly.com/
Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14424944.Mandy_Jackson_Beverly

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MJacksonBeverly

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

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

 

My personal mottos:

“Without courage, all is lost.”
“Make chocolate, not war.”

10 statements
  1. A typical (work) day begins with… Cash, my dog, taking me for a walk.
  2. I lose track of time constantly.
  3. I have always… loved chocolate.
  4. I have never… danced naked on the Ponte Vecchio.
  5. Home means to me… family, pets, and nature, and dark chocolate, and coffee…
  6. I am inspired by… everything around me.
  7. I would like to meet… Lorenzo de Medici.
  8. My worst character trait… never letting go.
  9. My best character trait… never giving up.
  10. The best advice I was given… “Follow your heart.”

A Secret Muse (The Creatives Series Book 1)

UCLA art professor Coco Rhodes knows little about her family’s association with the ancient clandestine organization The Allegiance and wants to keep it that way. She dislikes secrets–they’re a painful reminder of her childhood experiences that were erased as a result of her parents’ tragic deaths when she was four years old.

After a brutal attempt on her life, and the arrival of a birthday letter from her dead mother, Coco demands explanations from her brother, Christopher, a high-powered D.C. lawyer and member of the Allegiance.

Christopher guides Coco to her birthplace, Italy, insisting she’ll find her answers there. Enter the enigmatic Gabriel, a powerful warlock with a vampire father, and the ethereal Prudence, keeper of the Allegiance.

When a close friend is murdered, Coco’s life takes a dark turn. With only a faded portrait torn from a lost sketchbook, and one of her mother’s unfinished paintings, Coco unravels clues from her past, in the hope of saving those she loves.

Murder, mystery and the occult come together in this exciting supernatural thriller that will grab you from the very first page!

Print length:  300 pages
Published:  2016-02-01
Buy linksbooks2read.com/u/4XolBg


The Devil And The Muse (The Creatives Series Book 2)

An ancient curse.
A forgotten love.
A painting with secrets only one woman can reveal.

In this fast-paced second installment of The Creatives Series, Creative (mystic artist) Coco Rhodes is surprised by a horrific vision beneath her most recent painting: the violent attack upon a fragile young girl. When a link is discovered between an education-finance fraud and several girls disappearing from Washington, D.C. schools, Coco’s lover and leader of the Allegiance, the vampire-warlock Gabriel, vows to rescue the girls, and topple a corrupt congressman. Concurrently, the dark and twisted past of Kenan, the Allegiance’s sworn enemy, is revealed. With Kenan’s whereabouts unknown, members of the Allegiance begin to unravel his sadistic plan.

From New York and D.C., to Tuscany and the Dolomite Mountains of Northern Italy, the supernatural guardians of the Allegiance are guided by both the lessons of history and the shocks of present-day life. Through magical twists and otherworldly subplots, this supernatural thriller weaves a web of intrigue, love, and conflict. In The Devil and the Muse, Coco’s sense of duty to the Allegiance is tested. But will protecting her loved ones cause her to sacrifice her humanity?

Print length:  284 pages
Published:  2017-06-12
Buy links:  books2read.com/u/4NRlrG

 

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Nothing Bad Happens Here by Nikki Crutchley #RBRT #BookReview @NikkiCAuthor

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

‘She looked away from his face and took in the clear spring night, full of stars. Her last thoughts were of her mother. Would she finally care, when one day they found her body, and a policeman came knocking at her door?’

The body of missing tourist Bethany Haliwell is found in the small Coromandel town of Castle Bay, where nothing bad ever happens. News crews and journalists from all over the country descend on the small seaside town as old secrets are dragged up and gossip is taken as gospel.
Among them is Miller Hatcher, a journalist battling her own demons, who arrives intent on gaining a promotion by covering the grisly murder.
Following an anonymous tip, Miller begins to unravel the mystery of the small town. And when another woman goes missing, Miller finds herself getting closer to the truth. But at what cost?

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Thrillers > Crime
> Literature & Fiction > Women’s Fiction > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Women Sleuths
Books
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Thrillers & Suspense > Crime > Murder
Series: n.a.
File size: 206 pages
Release date: 2017-08-27

 

Teaser


Did Bethany put up a fight? Had she had a chance? Miller wondered how she’d react in the same circumstances. She was sure she would fight till the end.

The loud crack of a snapping twig pierced the silence around her. She whirled round, straining her ears, listening for footsteps or voices. Nothing. Her arms erupted in goose bumps and she shivered. The surroundings were dark, even thought the day was sunny, the canopy of trees blocking out most of the light. She squinted through the trees, half-expecting to see someone watching her.

She admonished herself for her overactive imagination. But then she heard a scatter of leaves behind her, and as she turned, she collided with someone’s chest.


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Miller Hatcher, a young journalist with alcohol issues. Her intent is to gain a promotion by covering the murder of Bethany Haliwell.

With Nothing Bad Happens Here, Nikki Crutchley has created a gripping as well as chilling story with a plot that keeps its promises. It is a plot that kept me glued to my eReader, drawing me very close to Miller, and to Kahu. Nikki Crutchley created a well elaborated suspense story with a complex and likable heroine – as well as a colourful variety of further important characters. Miller and the others are believable, complemented by the aptly written plot. There is a lot more to the story than simply good versus bad; there are some insights in the human behaviour that will make you wonder. It is a highly enjoyable read with authentic characters, interesting turns, and a great flow. A memorable book to read again, written by a new author to watch out for!

This is a book for you if you like intriguing suspense, feisty heroines, believable characters, and if you appreciate cleverly elaborated stories.

Recommended!

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Fast
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen: – 😳
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳

 

About the author

After seven years of working as a librarian in New Zealand and overseas, Nikki now works as a freelance proofreader and copy editor. She lives in the small Waikato town of Cambridge in New Zealand with her husband and two girls.

Nikki has been writing on and off her whole life and recently has had success in flash fiction. She has been published in Flash Frontier, Flash Fiction Magazine and Mayhem Literary Journal. Crime/thriller/mystery novels are her passion. Nothing Bad Happens Here is her fist novel (but hopefully not her last), set on the Coromanadel Coast of New Zealand.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Nothing Bad Happens Here?  Or – if you did not yet read Nothing Bad Happens Here – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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The Angel Killer by April Taylor #RBRT #BookReview @authAprilTaylor

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

Deryn Steele has an unwanted psychic gift leftover from a near-death experience. He can read people just by touching them. His friend, DCI Harry Curzon pulls him into the hunt for the killer of blonde, blue-eyed 12-year-old girls in the Lincolnshire seaside town of Thorpe St David, the Angel Killer.

Deryn meets Terri Fordham, aunt of the latest victim, who has survived an attack. It is a shock when he cannot read Terri, but this feeds his growing feelings for her making him determined to catch the predator. It soon becomes clear, however, that this killer won’t stop and is not only still targeting Terri’s niece, but also Terri. Can Deryn keep the girl and her aunt safe and unmask the murderer?

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Thrillers > Crime
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Crime Fiction
Books
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Thrillers & Suspense > Crime
Series: n.a.
File size: 1,952 KB
Release date: 2017-05-09

 

Teaser


‘I’m sorry,’ he said. ‘This must be enormously difficult for you both.’ He paused. I’m a behavioural psychologist.’ He held out his hand and Rose automatically took hold of it.

Deryn hated doing this. Tuning in to somebody’s grief and despair, but this was why Harry had summoned him. He could feel the fear in Rose. The fear and the love and, he thought, a touch of guilt, but just at this moment, fear reigned.


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Deryn Steele; after being revived he is cursed with the gift of ‘reading’ people by a mere touch.

With The Angel Killer, April Taylor has created a memorable and gripping story with a supernatural touch. It is a plot that kept me glued to my Kindle, drawing me very close to Deryn. April Taylor created a well elaborated suspense story with complex, and interesting Deryn – as well as further important and likable characters. Deryn and the others are believable, complemented by the aptly written plot. It is an enjoyable read with authentic characters, interesting turns, and a great flow.

This is a book for you if you like British suspense, supernatural abilities, a guy who cares for his dog, a hint of romance, believable characters, and if you appreciate cleverly elaborated stories.

Recommended!

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳

 

About the author

I was born in Lincolnshire – (the county Henry VIII called the most brute and beestelie of the hole realme.). What a nice chap: he really liked us!

I’ve always been interested in writing stories from the moment I could hold a pen and make meaningful squiggles on the page. Everything I wrote had adventure or crime at its heart. When I was 14, I discovered Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Anne, particularly has been a constant companion in my mind ever since.

A love of books made my career choice as a librarian easy.

After several years, my need to write prompted early retirement from paid employment.

When not chained to my desk, I enjoy watercolour painting, cross-stitch or walking the dog around the rural lanes.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Angel Killer?  Or – if you did not yet read The Angel Killer – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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Pink Slips by Beth Aldrich #BookReview @BethAld16

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

Betsy Ryan is pregnant with her third child, and receiving threatening notes from an anonymous person. During what should be a joyful time in her life, she’s forced to face a decade old memory, and relive one of the most devastating nights of her life

In order to uncover the mystery behind the threats, she enlists the help of an unlikely, but oddly reliable source, her dog Barney. As the menacing notes continue to arrive, her husband is called out of town for work, and she struggles to keep her composure while shielding her two young sons from danger. She trusts no one except her parents, best friend Misty, and her extraordinary dog—who has proven to literally understand everything she says. Is this person out to harm her? And how do they have so much personal information about Betsy? She can’t help but think it’s the same person who attacked her at the train station almost a decade ago, and changed the course of her life forever. To save herself and her unborn child—Betsy must face her fears and find her strength, to reveal who is after her and most importantly…why.

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense >
> Suspense > Paranormal > Psychics
Books > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense >
> Thrillers & Suspense > Supernatural > Psychics
> Thrillers & Suspense > Suspense
Series: n.a.
Length: 267 pages
Release date: 2017-06-09

 

Teaser


He doesn’t look up as he writes down each and every word.

“… and you say you received a second note today at your doctor’s office?”

“Yes. It was left on the counter, so they didn’t see who left it.”

“Do you know anyone who would want to threaten you like this?” he asks.


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Betsy Ryan, pregnant, and – irritated by the receipt of pink slips.

With Pink Slips, Beth Aldrich has created a nicely elaborated story focussed on Betsy Ryan and her dealing with her family, pregnancy, and the mysterious pink slips. It was easy to get into the story; I got close to Betsy and how she tried to cope with everything. Betsy is of sufficient depth, stubborn, likeable – even if I not always shared her take on things. Especially for readers who give rein to their imagination and like the combination of suspense and supernatural, Beth Aldrich has created a story that presents an unusual and feisty heroine. The story proceeds at a steady pace, it comprises some interesting turns, and has a good flow.

This is a book for you if you like suspense stories with a light psychological thrill and a supernatural touch, as well as nicely crafted plots with non-standard main characters.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV First person – present tense
Language :mrgreen: – 😳
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen:  (some hints)

 

About the author

Beth Aldrich’s non-fiction book, Real Moms Love to Eat (Penguin/NAL, 2012), won a Nautilus Book Award, and four Beverly Hills Book Awards. She published For Her Information, a Chicago magazine for women, and produced/hosted the PBS-TV series, For Her Information, in sixty markets across the United States, in addition to distribution in Israel and Turkey. She’s a proud member of Women’s Fiction Writers Association, Chicago Writer’s Association, and Chicago Off Campus Writer’s Workshop. Like her début fiction protagonist, she studied culinary arts at Le Cordon Bleu in Chicago and her dogs are always at her side. Her author website is BethAldrich.com.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Pink Slips?  Or – if you did not yet read Pink Slips – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂


10 Statements – Beth Aldrich

 

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Love Returned (Life and Loves of Elizabeth Simmons, #2) by Margaret Lynette Sharp #BookReview @MargaretLynett1

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

Four years have passed since Elizabeth left Australia’s shores, to live on a Scottish sheep farm run by her husband, Tom. As newlyweds, they faced a period of adjustment, but their love for each other kept them close. When Elizabeth’s father sustains life-threatening injuries, her sense of care and duty compels her to return to the land of her birth, leaving Tom behind to hold the fort. What unexpected complications will fate thrust into her life? How skilfully will she play her hand? Will Edward, her wealthy, former admirer, succeed as he tries to woo her away from her husband, to be with him and his daughter in their magnificent home?

Genre(s): Books
> Romance > Historical > 20th Century
> Romance > Clean & Wholesome
Kindle Store
> Kindle Short Reads > 90 minutes (44-64 pages) > Romance
Series: Life and Loves of Elizabeth Simmons, #2
Length: 52 pages
Release date: 2017-03-07

 

Teaser


“That’s a shame. I thought with your being married and living away, the situation might have altered – especially given your father’s hospitalisation.”

“I had hoped for a change, too, but her attitude seems inflexible. At least, I won’t be under her roof for long: well, I hope not, anyway. It depends on how Dad is faring, and how well Tom is coping without me.”


My Opinion

This book brings Elizabeth back to Australia to check on her father who is in a serious condition.

With Love Returned, Margaret Lynette Sharp provides us with a romantic novella about Elizabeth, whose sense of duty lets her temporarily leave her husband back in Scotland to check in on her father. Four years back she married Tom and moved to Scotland, glad to flee her mother’s negativity. It is obvious that her mother has not changed – not only because her former admirer, Edward, wants to spend time with Elizabeth. Once again, the readers find themselves in Australia of the 1950s, including the mindsets of that era. Romance is not my typical genre, therefore I really like that this novella is not a hard-core romance. This book has a story to tell and gives a good insight in Elizabeth’s feelings; she has matured. The story is touching, has ups and downs; I felt reminded of expertly applied watercolours. I hoped the best for Elizabeth; she is a very likeable character. The characters are real enough to be family members, friends or acquaintances. I had a good time reading Love Returned; it would be nice to see it on television, one day.

This is for you if you like romance with a background story and some surprises, and shorter reads.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Light-hearted
Pace Steady
POV First person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:
Violence :mrgreen:
Sexual content :mrgreen:

 

About the author

Margaret Lynette Sharp is an award-winning writer, and the author of #1 Amazon Best Seller, ‘Longbourn Revisited’. Her work was highly commended during the 2014 Hurstville Discovery Festival of Community Arts, and published by Hurstville Council in an anthology entitled ‘Write Out Loud’. In November 2015 she won a Second Prize, again in the short story section of this same competition, and her title, ‘More Than a Mere Bagatelle’, has been selected for inclusion in another anthology, ‘The Art of Writing’.

She spent her early years in an inner city suburb of Sydney, moving with her family to a leafy, outer suburb at the age of ten.

A self-motivated student who loved to seek out information, she matriculated just before her eighteenth birthday. Her enthusiasm for literature led to further studies, with a particular focus on Short Story Writing.

Shortly after the death of her elderly mother whom she cared for, Margaret met and later married Ronald Sharp B.E.M., the creator of the Sydney Opera House Grand Organ. She believes that, without doubt, he is her greatest fan and motivator.

Excelling in English himself, Ron has edited much of her work.

Connect with the author:


Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Love Returned?  Or – if you did not yet read Love Returned – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂


Review – Love Denied

10 Statements – Margaret Lynette Sharp

 

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