Excerpt, Giveaways, Reviews

#Review of Miracles are Golden by Catherine Lanigan w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @Cathlanigan


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Miracles are Golden
By Catherine Lanigan
Women’s Fiction, Christmas
ebook, 100 Pages
February 2, 2016

This heartwarming story is about eight-year-old Jimmy Longwood, who has fallen in love with a Golden Retriever puppy. When his parents explain that their condo does not allow pets, Jimmy is heartbroken. While skiing in Aspen the entire family is killed in an avalanche. Jimmy goes to heaven and meets an angel who decides to send Jimmy back to earth as the very Golden Retriever he’d wanted for his own and to learn the one lesson all human beings must learn…unconditional love.

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EXCERPT

The day after Christmas Jimmy was roused early, taken out the front door to potty in the bushes and then given breakfast, all before daylight.

What’s up with these people? Don’t they sleep in? What’s the rush?

“Here you go, Beau. Yum. Doesn’t this smell good?” Robin asked placing a dish of canned dog food in front of him.

Jimmy sniffed the food and jumped back.

They don’t expect me to eat this stuff do they? How about a rasher of that bacon? Or maybe a smidgeon of that hot cinnamon bun?

Jimmy quickly skitted over to the kitchen table where the family was sitting down to breakfast. He licked his mouth.

“Look, Mommy! I think Beau wants some bacon.”

“Oh, Robin, the breeder said not to give a puppy table scraps. It’s bad for them. It could make him throw up.”

Throw up? Throw up? Is she kidding? That barf material in the bowl will make me throw up!

Robin sat down at the table holding his puppy in his lap. “But I can tell he doesn’t like that food. He wouldn’t even sniff it and he should be hungry by now. After all he didn’t eat a bite yesterday.”

Daphne came down the stairs with her rolling suitcase and entered the kitchen. It was obvious to Jimmy that she was going back to New York and very soon. Just thinking about New York Reminded Jimmy of his parents. As his mother’s face flashed across his puppy mind, he felt a pang in his heart. I miss you, Mom.

“He was just getting used to his surroundings, Robin,” Daphne said pouring a cup of coffee and sitting at the table.

Hal nodded. “I agree with you though, Robin. Beau should be hungry by now. You can give him a half a piece of bacon. If he vomits, you clean it up.”

“Hal! I just told Robin not to feed him.”

“Becky, this way they’ll both learn a valuable lesson.”

Robin broke a piece of bacon in half. As hungry as he was, Jimmy remembered his mother, Melanie, telling him that table manners were a most important asset for a child. I need to play this cool. Jimmy sniffed the bacon first.

“What’s he doing? Seeing if it’s poisoned?” Hal laughed.

Jimmy gently took the bacon and chewed it.

“Manners?” Robin’s mother gasped. “Why, I can’t believe I’m seeing what I’m seeing.”

Daphne put her coffee cup down. “He’s a real New Yorker. Through and through,” she smiled smugly.

“Now put him down on the floor, Robin and see if he keeps it down,” Robin’s father said.

“Okay.” Robin gently placed Jimmy on the floor.

Wow! That was great. I bet I can con them out of some sweet roll, too.

Jimmy sat on his back paws quietly huffing, never taking his eyes from the food on the table. Yet never backing away either.

As they ate, all eyes were on Beau.

“See, Mom, he’s not sick at all.”

“I understand, Robin, but you need your nourishment, too. We have a big day today.”

Suddenly, Robin’s shoulders slumped. He lost interest in eating and in watching Beau’s performance.

“I don’t want any more chemotherapy,” Robin said lowly.

“But, Robin. It will save your life. You have to go,” Hal said.

Chemotherapy? Oh, so that’s why he’s bald. Oh, Robin, I was afraid you were that sick. I thought…well, I don’t know what I thought.

Instantly, Jimmy scooted over to Robin’s chair and put his paws on the top of the chair. He whined until Robin picked him up and put him in his lap. Jimmy licked Robin’s hand, hoping the gesture would give him comfort.

“Did you see that, Mommy? It was as if Beau understood what we were saying.”

“It’s not the words he understands, Robin. It’s our voices. All our voices become concerned and sad when we talk about the cancer.”

Robin petted Beau.

Jimmy shook his head. I understood the words, Robin! I’m not like other dogs. I’m a kid caught in a puppy’s suit, that’s all. I’m here because they wouldn’t let me die yet.

“Look, he’s saying ‘no’,” Robin said excitedly. “I really think he understands me.”

Jimmy leapt up and licked Robin’s face.

“You see that! He does understand words.”

“Robin, there’s no such thing as a dog understanding human language other than a few command words.”

Daphne held up her finger. “That’s not exactly true, Becky. Mr. Lenza, the man who sold me Beau, said that Goldens understand 750 words nearly as much as a German Shepherd who only know twenty more.”

“Yes,” Hal sighed, “ well, that may be true. But that doesn’t mean they understand them all strung together in sentences and paragraphs.”

“Well, Beau does. He’s just smarter than the average Golden is all.” Robin picked him up and held him close so that he could peer into the puppy’s eyes.

“Hal, I saw on the Pet Psychic program on the Animal Channel

that…” Daphne began.

Hal held up his hand. “Please, Daphne, I don’t need any of your metaphysical mumbo jumbo. Not today.”

“Sorry. It’s Christmas. I promised Becky I’d spare you.”

“Thanks.”

Robin looked at Beau. “I can see it in his soul, Daddy. Beau is special.” He hugged his pet. “You’ll see.”

We all have that go-to author that no matter what they write it will be good.  Ms. Lanigan is that writer for me.  I choose this book because it had no romance in it and I was intrigued.  Plus, it featured a dog and child.  I’m a sucker for both.  What really caught me by surprise was how much I needed this book right now.

I read this book over the Thanksgiving holiday and it gave me a perspective that I needed and shared with my son.  She reminded me that unconditional love is given, not earned.  And not just from our pets either.  We tend to just think we can not have unconditional love with our family or friends; that it is just reserved for our pets.  Ms. Lanigan proves that you can.  Can we not like something that they have done?  Sure.  But to unlove someone?  I don’t think that’s possible.

Beau/Jimmy is a trip.  He provides us with the humor, insight and perspective throughout the book.  His parents are the typical overworked and don’t have a lot of time to spare for Jimmy and it showed.  Jimmy/Beau’s angel is good, too.  He provides Jimmy the guiding hand that is needed.

Overall, I loved this book.  I think everyone should read it and discuss it with their family, friends, church group, etc.  Ms. Lanigan could re-write the phone book and I would read it.  Seriously.  She is that good.

 

About the Author

Catherine Lanigan is the international bestselling and award-winning author of over forty-five published titles in both fiction and non-fiction, including the novelizations of Romancing the Stone and The Jewel of the Nile. Ms. Lanigan’s novels have been translated into over twenty-four languages. Lanigan was tasked by the NotMYkid foundation to pen a collection of compelling and informative true stories of teen addicts. Ms. Lanigan’s SHORES OF INDIAN LAKE series for HARLEQUIN HEARTWARMING includes LOVE SHADOWS, HEART’S DESIRE , A FINE YEAR FOR LOVE, KATIA’S PROMISE, FEAR OF FALLING, SOPHIE’S PATH, PROTECTING THE SINGLE MOM, FAMILY OF HIS OWN, HIS BABY DILEMMA, RESCUED BY THE FIREFIGHTER and MY RACING HEART (2019).

Ms. Lanigan is a frequent speaker at literary functions and book conventions as well as inspiring audiences with her real stories of angelic intervention from her Angel Tales series of books. She is an outspoken advocate for domestic violence and abuse and was honored by The National Domestic Violence Hotline in Washington, D.C. She has been a guest on numerous radio programs including “Coast to Coast” and on television interview and talk show programs as well as blogs, podcasts and online radio interview programs. She writes a monthly blog for Heartwarmingauthors.blogspot.com.

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Tour Schedule

November 26th:
Launch
It’s All About the Romance
Andi’s Book Reviews
November 27th:
Among the Reads
Wishful Endings
Book Lover in Florida
November 28th:
E-Romance News
Rockin’ Book Reviews
Hearts & Scribbles
November 29th:
Uplifting Reads
Harlie’s Books
Colorimetry
November 30th:
Heidi Reads…
underneath the covers
December 1st:
Grand Finale

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Excerpt, Giveaways

Excerpt from Nothing is Predictable by Adalina Mae w/a rafflecopter giveaway! #womensfiction @AdalinaMaeAuthorTwitter

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Adalina Mae will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Zara is eight years old, her father, in a drunken rampage, accidentally shoots himself dead.

Her childhood memories leave her struggling with romantic attachments and hinder her from developing healthy relationships.

Seeking answers, She meets a monk for wisdom, and a gypsy for insight.

The journeys Adalina Mae takes us on are interspersed with heartbreaking moments as well as hilarious escapades.

This is life and nothing is predictable. The story keeps you on your toes and offers mysteries to solve.

Why does Zara have recurrent nightmares of her last night with her father?

Why does she struggle with love?

Read an Excerpt:

Have you ever flown Alitalia? My God, how hot are the pilots?

Roma! Here I come again and this time, I planned on spending a whole week exploring.

Bella Roma! Ciao bella! Bella! Bella! Bella! I heard constantly throughout the week I was in Rome. As I walked through the Colosseum, I felt the presence and energy of the roaring crowd from thousands of years ago haunting the place. I walked through the ruins, touched the stones that possibly Caesar had once passed. I felt connected with my inner spirituality and with everything around me. I felt free of the burdens of the past. My inner demons had lost their battle. I was victorious, with the awareness of a life to look forward to. All those months learning how to meditate had finally paid off. I had found peace of mind.

About the Author:

Adalina Mae is the author of the published novel Nothing Is Predictable and soon to be released Nothing Can Last Forever.

After leaving the corporate world of management, she decided to pursue her lifelong passion to write.

She’s also a lover of movies and hopes that her novels become a motion picture.

Adalina wrote Nothing Is Predictable to inspire optimism and positive thoughts, reminding us we are strong and can overcome life’s challenges. Particularly those who suffered childhood trauma like she has.

She is determined to spread the inspirational message of her story.

Her life’s incidents have taught her that Nothing Is Predictable and Nothing Can Last Forever.

Website: http://www.adalinamae.com
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Excerpt, Giveaways, Interviews, Teaser Excerpts

Interview of Kristie Booker, author of Blooming into Life w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @kristiebooker #womensfiction

Blooming into Life

by Kristie Booker

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GENRE: Women’s Fiction

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BLURB:

Growing up on a farm in Brockville, Illinois, did not prepare Colleen O’Brien Adler to be the wife of a wealthy entertainment lawyer living in Chicago. It certainly didn’t prepare her to be Dinah Adler’s daughter-in-law. The stay-at-home mother of two has more than she’s ever wanted—a personal stylist, a prestigious country club membership, a multimillion-dollar home—but she finds herself not only struggling with depression and body image but also failing as a parent and fearing for her marriage. Her life is about to change when an invitation to a wellness meeting arrives in her inbox. With some coaxing from personal coach Kory Stone, she commits to a new beginning. But will she be able to overcome the things that are holding her back?

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Excerpt Two:

“After several weeks on the medication, some weight loss is expected,” Dr. Bradley had assured her. She had weighed herself that morning. After she removed all of her clothing, emptied her bladder, removed her ponytail holder, blew her nose, emptied her bladder again, spit until she had nothing left to spit, she finally stepped on her brand-new Weight Gurus smart body fat scale. The digital number was as hateful as it had been a week earlier. Dr. Bradley told her to be patient. Colleen felt she was running out of time.

She unzipped the beige garment bag that held her social future. The hand-stitched embroidered silver stars exploded against the dark silk fabric. The two-toned navy silk gave the illusion of wide stripes draping down the skirt of the dress.

“The A-line cut and the tonal stripes create a wonderful slimming effect,” the sales associate had told her. If Colleen could jam herself into the reserve Raina Rose, she was going to stand out. For once, she would be better dressed than Ashley Barr and Victoria Heller. That night, Fourth of July would be the day of reckoning. She would let Jay and Dinah and the entire club see how beautiful she looked. She would finally be socially accepted within the country club circle, and then she would confront Jay about the woman in Los Angeles. Dinah would think twice about sending Colleen’s invitation late next year.

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Welcome, Kristie Booker! Please start off by telling us a little about yourself.

 

I’m a wellness coach that also loves to write fun women’s fiction. I love coaching and inspiring women through my writing as well as through my coaching practice. I live in Chicago with my husband and two teenage sons. When I’m not writing or coaching, I spend a lot my time driving my boys to their various sporting activities. I enjoy quiet dinners at home or at one of our neighborhood restaurants. I begin every day with a great cup of coffee and let the day unfold the way it needs to. 

Is Blooming Into Life a single title, or part of a series?

 

Blooming Into Life is a single title. I have considered using the wellness coach in another story but haven’t made up my mind. 

What were your inspirations for the story?

 

My work as a wellness coach inspired my story. I began noticing how many women (myself included) measure their self-worth by the number on the scales, the price tag of their clothing, and the status of the social group they belong to. I realized this was all in the name of acceptance. So, I decided to write a story about a woman searching for acceptance.



Please share your setting for Blooming Into Life. Have you ever lived or visited there? If so, what did you like most?

 

The two places that the story takes place are both places I have lived. I currently live in Chicago. Brockville is a fictional town that is similar to my hometown of Chrisman, IL. The thing I like most about Chicago is exploring the various neighborhoods. Each one has something different to offer. If Brockville was real, I would really enjoy sitting on front porch of Farm Five Thirty Five.

When did the writing bug first bite?

 

After I graduated college, I began reading a lot of women’s fiction and slowly developed an interest in writing. Once I quit working to be a stay-at-home mom, my interest in writing lead me to take a writing workshop. I loved it and was thrilled when my instructor liked my writing. 

Who are your favorite authors, book/series?

 

Some of my favorite authors include Sue Monk Kidd, Ann Patchett, Barbara Kingsolver, Elizabeth Berg, Elizabeth Gilbert, Barbara Delinsky, Judy Bloom, Jennifer Weiner, Liane Moriarty, Fannie Flagg, Kristin Hannah, John Grisham, John Irving, and Stephen King. I have so many favorite books. Most recent favorites are The Nest, Commonwealth, State of Wonder and Nightingale.

If you could have an author roundtable discussion with any authors, who would you invite?

 

Stephen King, Barbara Kingsolver, Sue Monk Kidd and Elizabeth Gilbert. I understand that Stephen and Barbara are friends and used to play in a band together. I would like to hear more about that and their friendship. Sue Monk Kidd would bring a lot of depth to the conversation and Liz Gilbert would keep things entertaining.

Do you have any hobbies or special things you like to do in your spare time?

 

I love to be outdoors. I walk outside every day (as long as it is above 20 and not raining). I enjoy planting flowers and growing vegetables in containers on my patio. I also enjoy listening to music while cooking and sipping on a nice glass of wine. And, of course, reading. I love reading great stories.



What is the one thing that you would tell an inspiring writer to do?

Put money aside for good editors. Whether they decide to traditionally publish or self-publish, they will need to pay for their own editing before submitting. Writing a book isn’t cheap, but writing a book takes a while so put money away to prepare for when you’re finished.  


 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

Kristie Booker is the author of Blooming Into Life, a blogger and a Wellness Coach. She enjoys coaching and inspiring women through her writing as well as in person. Kristie is a wife and mother of two sons. She grew up in rural Illinois, but now lives in Chicago.  

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B079T5LMYV?ref_=pe_2427780_160035660

https://www.instagram.com/kristiebooker/

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https://www.facebook.com/Kristie-Booker-151006384978340/

 

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

 

Kristie will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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