THE FIRESIDE INN                                   LILY EVERETT
Posted:  Jan. 9, 2014

The Fireside Inn by Lily Everett  They’re single, they’re rich, and now these billionaire bachelors are heading to Sanctuary Island in a new e-original novella series from Lily Everett! Fall in love with the island’s latest catch.

Leo, Zane, and Cooper made a pact to stay bachelors and enjoy the single life forever, and when they receive an invitation to their friend Miles’ wedding, they head down to Sanctuary Island determined to talk some sense into the errant groom before he makes a life-changing mistake. But Miles knows his own mind, and he makes a vow of his own: before he walks down the aisle, he’ll have Leo, Zane, and Cooper changing their tune about matrimony. Because Miles knows, better than anyone, that all it takes is a little Sanctuary Island magic to turn romantic cynics into true believers.

The Honorable Lord Leo Strathairn inherited his family’s money, his title, and his position in London society. When he meets Sanctuary Island’s funky young librarian, Serena Lightfoot, he’s determined to get a lot closer. Despite the simmering attraction between them, Serena isn’t at all interested in putting up with a pampered playboy. But as Leo ramps up his seduction attempts, Serena sees that he’s nothing like the empty-headed aristocrat she’d assumed.

     Love, Hurt, Secrets, Family, Fear, Beginnings, Friendships.  If these are some of the things you enjoy reading about then I believe you’ve picked the right book.  What’s better then young, rich, spoiled, sexy men with a heart?  A woman who can rock their world before they know their bell has been chimed.  Meet Serena Lightfoot the chime that is about to ring Leo Strathairn’s bell.

     Leo Strathairn is a young British Lord Billionaire of old money who now lives in New York away from his royal family.  He happens to be one of the lucky three chosen by Miles Harrinton to be mentored along with Zane Bishop and Cooper Haynes.  All three along with Miles were confirmed bachelors.  That was until Miles returned from Sanctuary Island that his family owns half of.  Now he breaks the news he is getting married.

     If that’s not scary enough, he has asked the guys to help with the wedding.  Knowing that is the only way he would get these spoiled billionaires to this simple island.  Mostly out of fear that the fate that has now met him and that had already take his own two brother not too long ago, marriage.  Mostly, he had come to know these three as brothers when he was not talking to his own two brothers he had taken on these three to fill the void.  It was his future bride Greta that got him to face his feelings and bridge the void and start working things out with his brothers.

     To step it up a notch he offer a one-time deal to the three of them, that if they would come that day and stay all 4 weeks before the wedding and his life is not changed and he has not found love the one left standing at the end of that day, He would sign over his lifetime Heliport pass for the Biltmore Hotel (The Billionaire’s Club) and give them his helicopter which they all took him up on.

     This story however is centered on Leo.  Like the others he is a playboy.  Always in the tabloids with a beautiful woman on his are but a different one each picture.  Never to get married as per the others, never.  So he was very sure the helicopter was his prize for sure.  By the next day I know he is not so sure.  Since on that day he stopped first thing in the morning and met, angered, kissed, and got a date for a little loving (oops bad choice of words) but you get my point, with the head Liberian, Serena.  It all started by him wanting her to pick out the poem he was to read at Miles wedding, since Miles and Greta said he had a way with words. 

     You see he needs her to read it out loud to him for all the words on the page start to run all over the place and then together.  That’s when he starts to sweat and things start to become tense and his anger raises.  So, he just gives up.

     This was such a touching story.  As a mother who raised children I adopted that were learning disabled, I also worked as an aide in the classroom for reading and math.  I know what a struggle children face with not meeting reading goals.  To not have family and teachers (not all) support in learning, as well as trying every way possible to help you can see how it can dim a soul.  You add peer pressure to that and wow, how overwhelming is that?  This author captured so many emotions that I am sure anyone would feel if they were in fear of people finding out.

     The thing was it was that it was made more emotional for him because for once in his life he was feeling something for a woman other than just purely sexual.  This was very new to him but it was that she was showing interest in him and really seeing him, in fact she was the first person in his whole life that ever really saw him.  Being that his brother was to take the throne his own family never ever really saw or cared about him.  So, he tells her his deepest secret after she reveals hers but days after she reveals hers.

     Serena helps him with the poems at first because she is into love poems plus he tells her up front he basically doesn’t want to have a relationship but that he does find her sexually attractive and he sexually attracted to her.  She was happy he was up front on both fronts not using her for her mind like past boyfriends.  He just really desired her sexually was a come on to her.

     .  Is it that simple or does he have something he left out at the beginning that will bite him in the ass?  What comes of the poem project does it stall, the date, and see how these to relate as a non-couple.  You can see if he has what it takes to “read” a poem at the wedding.  Serena’s reaction to his truth was expected but not for the reason you would think.  You have to read in order to find out why you will not be sorry.  This short is worth it.  I can’t wait until the next book.   Provided Netgalley

Joe Dempsie As Leo is my pick.

Emily VanCamp As Serena is my pick.

Great Expectations: The Lost Toronto Blue Jays Season

Posted:  Jan. 9, 2014

Great Expectations by Shi Davidi  In a one of a kind look at the Toronto Blue Jays 2013 season, two seasoned sports journalists take readers behind the scenes as the team stocks up on stars, revitalizes its fans and embarks on a campaign of shocking disillusionment. Great Expectations begins with a detailed look at how general manager Alex Anthopoulos pulled off the blockbuster trade that acquired flashy shortstop Jose Reyes, potential pitching ace Josh Johnson and steady left-hander Mark Buehrle. Then came the delicate, frenzied negotiations with the Mets that landed erudite .knuckleballer R.A. Dickey, the National League’s Cy Young Award winner in 2012. The book examines the challenges that Reyes, Buehrle and Dickey faced in their formative years and during the rocky 2013 season. It is also replete with details about Brett Lawrie, the team's lone Canadian, whose kinetic style of play is a double-edged sword; José Bautista, the two-time home-run champion whose crown began to slip during a difficult 2013 season; Munenori Kawasaki, the genial, quirky infielder who became an overnight fan favorite; and Anthopoulos himself, who, by season’s end, was inciting the fury of the same fans who had praised him as a genius a few months earlier. Featuring insightful analysis and a colorful collection of candid photos, Great Expectations is a fascinating tale of a season gone wrong.

This is a story about a lost baseball season that a lot of people thought would at least put them in the playoffs. That did not happen. What did happen was injuries and players not performing even to a standard that they had in the previous years before becoming a Toronto Blue Jay. Then the fan base watching the manager that got fired get hired by a rival Boston and they are the ones who go from last the year before to World Series champion. The book itself is good it is broken down by chapters from the winter meetings and how the first big trade happen. To the free agents that were signed. Then you get a personal look at some of the top players and how they got into baseball and how they got to where they are today. You also get see the frustration of a team who towards the end of the season trades a player and for the last month he hits for a higher average and steels more bases for that club than he did for you for most of the year. A good look into the front office of a team and how they look at what players and manager they need for the season. How before they can do something they have to figure out how much it is going to cost in the future and do we want to make a trade if it means giving up young talent. Thought that this was a good book. I got this book from net galley.


ON THESE COURTS                                    WAYNE B. DRASH
Posted:  Jan. 9, 2014

On These Courts by Wayne B Drash  NBA All-Star Anfernee & Penny& Hardaway had fame, fortune, and a Nike shoe line. Yet for all his basketball accomplishments, the one thing he lacked was a championship season.

Penny Hardaway, like so many pro athletes, struggled with the question of What now?  When his whirlwind career came to an end in 2007. The answer came from one of his oldest friends, Desmond Merriweather, who was sick with colon cancer and could no longer commit to full-time coaching the Lester Middle School boys basketball team.

On These Courts is the moving story of a superstar who takes over coaching duties in the crime-ridden streets of Memphis he once called home. Coach Penny selflessly helped his young players navigate their way through impossible circumstances: failing grades, incarcerated fathers, gang pressures.

But this is not just a story about Penny; the true stars are the kids on the Lester Lions team who rewarded Penny with his first championship season, winning the state title by one point. A penny.

This story about Penney Hardaway, is more than just a basketball book. This is first a story of one friend who is needing help of another friend. You see Penney always gives money for basketball programs and uniforms but this year his friend who has colon cancer needs someone to coach the high school basketball team in one of the roughest inner cities, Memphis TN. Penney says he will do it himself, for this is where he grew up on and in the streets, courts of Memphis. Without a mother or father but a grandmother who made sure that he went to school every day and was inside every night. Who when he got older she went to the courts and dragged him home to the point where even the local gang would tell him to leave if they knew something was about to happen. Because they knew someone was going to make it out of the hood, not by prison or by dying. When he made it to college she made him promise to get his degree she did not care about money or home. She said get your degree it is something that no one take away from you. Because of her and him finishing his degree he was able to coach that year. Then the hard part started trying to get through to a bunch of young kids who had no fathers or mothers or anyone who would stand up for them and make them accountable. He made them not just go to classes but get the grades to play, to act different not to bully other students and if they did not sign a contract with certain set of rules they could not be part of the team. A parent needed to sign also. For the ones that were having problems in school he helped with tutors. His biggest problem was fighting the thing he was around when he was younger. The gangs they had a bigger control on the area and he had to come up with ways to overcome those. This is a book about a man that I only knew a little about, basketball. He does so much more for the game and for Memphis that I wish his story was told more often. For Memphis is a great city and I am not even from there. This is a book that everyone can relate to you don’t have to be a basketball fan. Just a fan of overcoming. I got this book from net galley.


AT THE RIVER'S EDGE                            MARIAH STEWART
Posted:  Jan. 9, 2014

At the River's Edge by Mariah Stewart  After taking stock of her life, Sophie Enright has decided it’s time for a break. Between a law career that’s become criminally dull and a two-timing boyfriend she’s done with once and for all, Sophie desperately needs some time to think and some space to breathe. The perfect place to do both is easygoing St. Dennis, Maryland, where Sophie can visit with her brother while she figures out her options. Once in St. Dennis, she discovers a shuttered restaurant and makes a bold move that is also a leap of faith. Sophie buys the fixer-upper in order to finally pursue her dream career.

But Sophie’s labor of love becomes a bone of contention for her new neighbor Jason Bowers. The local landscaper has big plans for growing his business—until Sophie scoops up the property he’s got his eye on. And no amount of buyout offers or badgering from him will get her to budge. It’s hardly the start of a beautiful friendship. But when they’re paired up to work on a community project, they agree to put their differences aside, and sparks begin to fly. Then Sophie’s cheating ex suddenly shows up, looking for a second chance—and threatening to make Jason a third wheel just when his hotheaded feelings about Sophie were turning decidedly warmhearted. All Sophie wants is a new life and a true love. But what are the odds of having both?

In this story Sophie, is at a cross roads in her career and her personal life. She catches her boyfriend with the office s..t while she really needed help. That pushed her to the town her brother lived in and was going to be getting married in a few weeks. She makes many changes in her life and she decides to work with her brother as well. She also wants to open a restaurant. All of this takes place with her still trying to figure out if she wants to start a new relationship with the man who owns the property next to her restaurant. This makes for an entertaining story and were the town folk get involved as well since it is a small town. A good story and the characters are well thought out and it is easy to get caught up the storyline if you have not read any of the previous books.

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