The Literary Melting Pot
An avid reader of all genres! I love to share news, reviews, and all that ensues in the literary world around me!
Black Lyon Publishing, LLC
Released: November 1, 2015
A week before Christmas, Jeseca Reed sets off for Blue River, Oregon—her childhood home and a vault of tender memories. However, fate takes an unexpected turn when she’s left stranded in the mountains’ vast, untamed wilderness. Desperate and alone, she seeks shelter at a cottage and finds herself in the arms of a mysterious stranger.
Dr. David Drake was once a renowned cardiovascular surgeon. But a devastating tragedy has left him scarred both inside and out, unable to use his hands to operate again. For the past five years, his Blue River cottage has been his sole escape—a safe haven where he can shut out the world, bury himself in his grief, and reunite with his son’s memory.
Together they are summer and winter. Fire and ice. And yet a poignant connection forms between them. Jeseca awakens David and thaws his heart with a romance hot enough to melt snow. But before David and Jeseca can fully embrace each other, they must wade through darkness and confront the ghosts of their pasts…
Equal parts steamy and heartfelt, A Kindled Winter brings the spirit of the holidays to life with a passionate story of second chances and healing love.
I’d like to apologize to Rachel Demeter for the delay in reviewing this wonderful novel.
I was a lucky enough to receive a copy of this beautiful novel in exchange for an honest review.
Simply, a wonderful story that’s hard to put down! The focus stays on the couple, with no interruption, and flows quite smoothly. Sensual scenes are naughty and divinely descriptive, but tasteful. There was a point in the story in which I wanted to put this down because it tore me apart, but I just couldn’t stop reading. Jeseca and David were well written, and easily acceptable as every-day people. Their struggle resonated with me, and the emotional impact was powerful.
Demeter has the unique gift of making the emotion stand out, and has delivered another sweet romance born from the ashes of tragedy. I’ve yet to walk away unaffected by her writing.
**Mature readers due to adult situations, death, and sex.**
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Rachel L. Demeter lives in the beautiful hills of Anaheim, California with Teddy, her goofy lowland sheepdog, and her high school sweetheart of eleven years. She enjoys writing poignant romances that challenge the reader’s emotions and explore the redeeming power of love.
Imagining dynamic worlds and characters has been Rachel’s passion for longer than she can remember. Before learning how to read or write, she would dictate stories while her mother would record them for her. She holds a special affinity for the tortured hero and unconventional romances. Whether crafting the protagonist or antagonist, she ensures every character is given a soul.
Rachel endeavors to defy conventions by blending elements of romance, suspense, and horror. Some themes her stories never stray too far from: forbidden romance, soul mates, the power of love to redeem, mend all wounds, and triumph over darkness.
Her dream is to move readers and leave an emotional impact through her words.
Find Out More
Posted in Reviews on October 27, 2015
LIFE IS A NIGHTMARE for Miranda Murphy. Without knowing when or why, blood oozes from her palms—an anomaly that makes her feel like a freak. But her abnormality is now the least of her worries. She’s just enrolled at “Suicide High.” Three deaths in three months—one occurring just days before her arrival.
When she bumps into a cute boy named Jake, things don’t appear so glum. Especially since Jake’s a psychic who can predict the immediate future. But his gift of sight can’t prepare her for the horrors that await.
Through Jake, Miranda meets three other extraordinary students:
Topher – who can heal by touch.
Sam – who eats the sins of the dead.
And Xyan – who speaks and understands all languages.
It’s then that Miranda learns the secret behind why she bleeds.
When it becomes evident that supernatural forces are at play, the five determined friends team up. Now it’s up to them to destroy the evil that’s infecting their school.
A great YA Horror!
This is not your usual good vs. evil novel, as Dax Varley is an exceptional YA novelist! I’m always amazed with the skillful manner in which she connects with all ages!
Immediately, the story packs a punch! We’re given narration from several view points, including that of a very nasty culprit, with remarkable precision. The writing is so good, there is no lull, no confusion, and definitely no lack of imagination. The rag tag team representing the good is an authentic version of kids today, and the evil is concealed brilliantly.
I enjoyed this immensely, as I’m a fan of horror. There was comedic relief to balance the terror, the gory scenes were perfectly gross, and there’s even a sweet little romance involved. Highly recommend.
**I recommend for High School aged YA & above due to violence, subject matter, and language.**
ABOUT THIS LITERARY CHEF
Dax Varley writes the kind of young adult novels she wishes were around when she was a teen. She’s a lover of humor, horror and all things paranormal.
When Dax isn’t writing, she’s collecting odd photos online, reading
recaps of her favorite shows or kicked back with a good book.
She lives in Richmond, Texas with her husband, a shelf full of action figures and about a dozen imaginary friends
Posted in Book News on October 14, 2015
Liam O’Brien’s life is simple and easygoing, just the way he likes it-until he shows up for school following the holiday break…
Not only is his new boss the rude woman who stole his parking spot, she’s highly motivated to switch things up in his very traditional school, and Liam is not a fan of change. His inexplicable attraction to the petite blonde complicates matters, as Rachel is adamant that she didn’t move all the way to Birch Valley to get involved in any kind of romance.
But as conflicts are resolved, family ties might draw Liam and Rachel together…
Rachel discovers Liam’s family is loving and supportive, particularly his mother Mary-unlike Rachel’s own mother. She bonds with his brothers and his sister Maggie, and it almost seems too good to be true.
Can they work through their differences and compromise enough to build a lasting relationship?
Or will Rachel be unable to let her guard down long enough to take a chance on…
As a reader, I can’t even begin to thank all of the writers that have created so many emotions for me, falling in love with characters, mourning their loss, sighing as I close the final chapter or smiling when everyone lives happily ever after. As a writer, I just want to do the same.
Posted in Reviews on September 23, 2015
My roots run South in this country; therefore, I was instantly intrigued by this novel.
I’m very familiar with The Daughters of the Confederacy, and the prodigal daughter that started it all, but this author has taken an extraordinary approach by reintroducing Winnie Davis to the world in a most intimate manner. Starting from her birth, we get a detailed background on how Winnie’s future was forged by the chaotic world to which she was born. This young woman was thrust into situations that exceeded her limitations both physically, and mentally. The relationship she had with her mother is one in which many in the South can relate, and her timid behavior was that of a true lady.
Although Winnie is the main subject, she is by no means the only person of which whom we become familiar. The whole family is introduced, as well as the love of her life, which later gives reference to Winnie’s somber and emotional state.
I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, but I must warn that some may feel as if the entire southern gentry are portrayed as one group of like-minded idiots. Readers must keep in mind, the anger and frustration after the war towards “The Yankees” was so intense, it still resonates today. There are also a couple of “hmm” moments in which the lost Confederate Money conspiracies do not seem so far-fetched. The historical details are extraordinary; however, and the research involved is evident.
My heart ached for Winnie Davis, as the writer has depicted her life with great care. A tragic tale from a tragic time.
About This Literary Chef
Heath Hardage Lee
Heath comes from a museum education, historic preservation, and writing background. She holds a B.A. in History with Honors from Davidson College, and an M.A. in French Language and Literature from the University of Virginia.
She started her museum career at the Levine Museum of the New South in Charlotte, North Carolina, as the Director of Education and Programs. Heath has since worked as a consultant for southern house museums such as Stratford Hall, Robert E. Lee’s birthplace, and Menokin Plantation, once home to Francis Lightfoot Lee. She is currently working as the Coordinator of the History Series for Salisbury House & Gardens, a 1920’s house museum in Des Moines, Iowa.
Potomac Books, a division of the University of Nebraska Press, published Heath’s first book, Winnie Davis: Daughter of the Lost Cause, in 2014. This biography about the fascinating youngest daughter of Confederate President Jefferson Davis was one of Potomac Press’s bestselling books for 2014. Winnie won the 2015 Colonial Dames of America Annual Book Award as well as a Gold Medal for Nonfiction writing from the Independent Publisher 2015 Book Awards.
Heath is currently working on her second book, a group biography entitled Vietnam War Wives about the courageous Wives of men who were Prisoners of War or Missing in Action during the Vietnam War. Stay tuned for more news on that book this fall.
Posted in Book News on August 17, 2015
Book Title: Sweet Bea
Author: Sarah Hegger
Genre: Historical Romance (Medieval)
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions
In a family of remarkable people, ordinary Beatrice strives to prove herself worthy. When her family is threatened with losing everything, she rushes to London to save them. Unfortunately, she chooses as her savior the very man who will see her family brought low.
Garrett has sworn vengeance on Sir Arthur of Anglesea for destroying his life when he was a boy and forcing his mother into prostitution for them to survive. He has chosen as his instrument Sir Arthur’s youngest daughter, Beatrice.
Can Beatrice’s goodness teach Garrett that love, not vengeance, is the greatest reward of all?
Time to be wooed. Wooed with honeyed words and sweeter touches. Delightful tingles spread to Beatrice’s fingertips, rushed back again, and pooled in her stomach.
Spring filled the air with scents of new grass and wildflowers. The sun beamed from a cloudless arc of blue above her. Birdsong serenaded her, as cornflowers merrily bobbed beside the path. Even the insects buzzed encouragement. Only one thing was missing.
She dare not tarry much longer. Someone from the keep would soon come looking for her. Beatrice shifted her basket to the other arm and investigated a patch of what might be vervain. From the keep, anyone would see her picking wildflowers. Just as she intended.
A footpath disappeared between the dense green beech thickets. It crossed a small stream before meandering through the trees and down to the village below. Was he still down in the village? She tried to picture what he’d be doing. Working at the forge, perhaps?
She gave up on the plant and straightened. She wouldn’t know vervain from, well, anything. Opposite the village, a path shot straight as an arrow through the meadow toward the castle. For certain, Garrett wouldn’t come from that direction. Perhaps he wasn’t coming at all. He’d made her no promises. There was no understanding between them. But, she dearly hoped all the same.
Hoping, however, didn’t make him appear.
The sun blazed down harsh on her face and she’d freckle.
“Wish, wish, planted a feather and wished a bird would grow.” Nurse’s voice
sang in her head. It was nonsense, pure and simple. Nonsense, like lingering alone on a path, pretending to pick wildflowers, whilst waiting for a man she barely knew to appear. A man with dark and mysterious eyes that whispered of secret places and forbidden pleasures. She was a goose. When she pictured the scene in her mind, it went thus. A beautiful maiden, garbed in her finest blue samite, engrossed in the gentle occupation of picking flowers by the roadside. The sun gleamed off her flaxen hair and brought roses to her alabaster cheek. Her slender form, bent like a reed to her feminine labors…
Roses be damned, she was sweating beneath her silk. It would leave stains on the fabric. She’d never hear the end of it from Nurse.
A soft whistle jolted her.
Her heart leapt.
There he stood, by the thicket.
Born British and raised in South Africa, Sarah Hegger suffers from an incurable case of wanderlust. Her match? A hot Canadian engineer, whose marriage proposal she accepted six short weeks after they first met. Together they’ve made homes in seven different cities across three different continents (and back again once or twice). If only it made her multilingual, but the best she can manage is idiosyncratic English, fluent Afrikaans, conversant Russian, pigeon Portuguese, even worse Zulu and enough French to get herself into trouble.
Mimicking her globe trotting adventures, Sarah’s career path began as a gainfully employed actress, drifted into public relations, settled a moment in advertising, and eventually took root in the fertile soil of her first love, writing. She also moonlights as a wife and mother.
She currently lives in Salt Lake City with her teenage daughters, two Golden Retrievers and aforementioned husband. Part footloose buccaneer, part quixotic observer of life, Sarah’s restless heart is most content when reading or writing books.
Sarah is the recipient of the 2015 EPIC Award for Historical Romance.
Posted in Uncategorized on July 31, 2015