Monday, May 16, 2022

Shadow of Murder ~ Book Blog Tour Audio Book Sample & Giveaway!

SHADOW OF MURDER
A Mac Faraday Mystery (Volume 14)
by Lauren Carr

Genre: Adult fiction
Categories: Murder Mystery / Police Procedural / Crime Fiction
Publisher: Acorn Book Services
Release date: March 30, 2022
496 pages

Content Rating: PG-13. Lauren Carr's mysteries are murder mysteries. Sometimes, the murder does happen on-stage. There is no graphic violence or explicit sex. There is some very mild language; No F-Bombs!

Book Description:

You can't move to the next chapter of your life, without tying up loose ends in the previous.
 
True crime blogger, Erica Hart starts a new chapter in her life with a bang when a dark shadow darts into the mountain road to send her SUV off a cliff and to the bottom of Deep Creek Lake. Spencer’s newest addition to the police force, Dusty O’Meara assumes it was a bear. Erica is not so sure.
 
Soon afterwards, contractors discover Konnor Langston’s body at the bottom of an abandoned swimming pool at the new summer home of Mac Faraday’s son.
 
With Police Chief David O’Callaghan away on paternity leave, Deputy Chief Dusty O’Meara must lead the investigation in his first murder case since moving to Spencer. Not only does Dusty have to work under the shadow of the legendary Mac Faraday, but he also has to match wits with Erica, who is determined to find justice for Konnor, her childhood friend.
 
Mac isn’t so difficult. Even Gnarly, the town’s canine mayor, is manageable if his authority is well-respected and he is kept entertained.
 
Erica Hart, Dusty finds, is more of a challenge. It wouldn’t be so difficult if she wasn’t so irresistible.


"Five Stars for Lauren Carr's 14th book of the Mac Faraday Murder Mysteries, Shadow of Murder! In this new release, she has recaptured the fun of cute "creatures" with the fast-moving, suspenseful, and captivating mystery, along with her usual touch of romance." - review by Lu Ann Worley, Rockin' Book Reviews
 
"This newest title in the author's Mac Faraday cozy murder mystery series offers Lauren Carr's most intricate plot to date - full of twists and turns guaranteed to keep readers up until the wee hours. While still full of the humor, fun critters and touch of romance that are her trademark, the author has also woven in a dark supernatural element that whispers through to the startling ending." - review by Marilyn R. Wilson, bestselling author, freelance writer, editor, and speaker at Olio by Marilyn.

BUY THE BOOK:
Amazon



NOW AVAILABLE ON AUDIO!

Listen to an Audio Sample:

BUY THE AUDIO BOOK:

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Washed in the Blood ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours Playlist, Mini-Review, & Giveaway!

WASHED IN THE BLOOD
by
SHELTON L. WILLIAMS

Memoir / Biography / True Crime
Newly updated!
Date of Publication: February 17, 2022
Number of Pages: 175 pages
 
Scroll down for Giveaway!

 
The true story behind the Kiss and Kill murder in Texas in 1961. Author Larry King says: Washed in the Blood is a page-turning read about the time--early 1960s--and place--Odessa, Texas--during its rowdy oil boom days when violence often rode the range. It is at once an examination of local mores and foibles, piety and hypocrisy and an inside-look at the famed 'Kiss and Kill' murder of a 17-year-old would-be actress, Betty Jean Williams, whose ghost is said to haunt the Odessa High School campus to this very day.
 
CLICK TO PURCHASE!
Music of the Times


Number 1 song the night Betty died

Elvis Presley, "Surrender"


When we kiss my heart's on fire

Burning with a strange desire
And I know, each time I kiss you
That your heart's on fire too

So, my darling, please surrender
All your love so warm and tender
Let me hold you in my arms, dear
While the moon shines bright above

All the stars will tell the story
Of our love and all its glory
Let us take this night of magic
And make it a night of love

Won't you please surrender to me
Your lips, your arms, your heart, dear
Be mine forever

Be mine tonight

 

Betty's favorite song

Gogi Grant, "The Wayward Wind" 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cQUVtbztEs

 

Betty's favorite Roy Orbison song, "Crying"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNdBLBleO90

 

Betty's favorite upbeat song song: 

Thursday Harris, "Little Bitty Pretty One"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8j4mn4eF-c

 

Betty's wish for teen girls today

Roy Orbison,"Bridge Over Troubled Waters"

https://youtu.be/XUY3hB9tfoA



HALL WAYS MINI-REVIEW: Washed in the Blood is a very quick story, coming in at just under 200 pages, but readers will be invested -- particularly if they know West Texas. WASHED IN THE BLOOD vacillates between being a coming-of-age, 1960s memoir, glory-days-of-football story and an exploration of, social commentary about, and reflection upon the murder of the author's cousin, Betty -- with a splash of courtroom drama and eye-witness testimony thrown in for good measure.

“No one noticed that I was a completely different person.”

More than anything, this book feels personal. Writing and telling Betty's story is clearly cathartic for the author, but also clear is that closure eludes him, even years after the murder. He sometimes speaks straight to Betty, and we even hear Betty speak (via her letters). Her words are painful to hear, and Williams doesn't shy away from sharing the impact of those words on him and all the questions that linger.

Overall, Washed in the Blood is an engaging book that covers a lot of ground and leaves the reader thinking. And I think the book would translate very well to the screen -- and maybe, just maybe that will happen.

*Be sure to get the version featured on this tour as it's newly edited and updated with extra content.*


 
Shelton L. Williams (Shelly) is founder and president of the Osgood Center for International Studies in Washington, DC. He holds a PhD from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and he taught for nearly 40 years at Austin College in Sherman, Texas. He has served in the US Government on 4 occasions, and he has written books and articles on nuclear proliferation. In 2004 he began a new career of writing books on crime and society. Those books are Washed in the Blood, Summer of 66, and now the three books in the Covey Jencks Mysteries series. All firmly prove that he is still a Texan at heart.
 
WEBSITE ◆  FACEBOOKTWITTER 

--------------------------------------
GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!
THREE WINNERS!
Receive autographed copies of Washed in the Blood!
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 5/21/2022)

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Fatal Code ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours BONUS Series Spotlight & Giveaway!

FATAL CODE
The SNAP Agency Series, Book 2
by
NATALIE WALTERS

Fiction / Christian / Suspense / Romance
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: May 1, 2022
Number of Pages: 320 pages
 
Scroll down for Giveaway!

 
In 1964, a group of scientists called the Los Alamos Five came close to finishing a nuclear energy project for the United States government when they were abruptly disbanded. Now the granddaughter of one of those five scientists, aerospace engineer Elinor Mitchell, discovers that she has highly sensitive information on the project in her possession--and a target on her back.

SNAP agent and former Navy cryptologist Kekoa Young is tasked with monitoring Elinor. This is both convenient since she's his neighbor in Washington, DC, and decidedly inconvenient because . . . well, he kind of likes her.

As Elinor follows the clues her grandfather left behind to a top-secret nuclear project, Kekoa has no choice but to step in. When Elinor learns he has been spying on her, she's crushed. But with danger closing in on all sides, she'll have to trust him to ensure her discoveries stay out of enemy hands.

Natalie Walters sucks you into the global race for space domination in this perfectly paced second installment of her SNAP Agency romantic suspense series.

PRAISE FOR FATAL CODE:
"Fatal Code is reminiscent of cold war spy thrillers and riveted me to the page as I rooted for Kekoa and Elinor to expose secrets, survive danger, and fall in love." -- Elizabeth Goddard, bestselling author of the Rocky Mountain Courage series

"Warning: once you pick it up, you won't be able to put it down!" -- Andrew Huff, author of the Shepherd Suspense series

"Enough suspense to make you need warm milk and a cozy blanket to calm you down." -- Jaime Jo Wright, author of The Souls of Lost Lake and the Christy award-winning novel The House on Foster Hill
 
CLICK TO PURCHASE!


   

LIGHTS OUT (book 1) – published November, 2021!

To fight the global war on terrorism, CIA Analyst Brynn Taylor invited foreign spies into America. Now one of them is missing. To track him down and stop a cyber blackout, she must work with an elite security team—and the ex-boyfriend she betrayed.

FATAL CODE (book 2) - New Release, May 2022!

BLIND TRUST (book 3) – coming April 2023!

When Lyla Fox receives a threatening letter from a man she put in prison, she uncovers clues that lead to a deadly government conspiracy—making her a target that fellow SNAP Agent Nicol├ís Garcia will protect at all costs. But working with Lyla proves to be more dangerous than he expects—for the mission and for his heart.


 
Natalie Walters is the author of Lights Out, as well as the Harbored Secrets series. A military wife, she currently resides in Texas with her soldier husband and is the proud mom of three. She loves traveling, spending time with her family, and connecting with readers. 


◆ WEBSITE ◆  FACEBOOK ◆ TWITTER  
◆ AMAZON ◆ GOODREADS 
◆ BOOKBUB◆ INSTAGRAM PINTEREST 



 



--------------------------------------
GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!
TWO WINNERS!
Each receive copies of Lights Out and Fatal Code!
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 5/20/2022)

Friday, May 6, 2022

Turn to Me ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours Book Blitz & Giveaway!


TURN TO ME
A Misty River Romance
by
BECKY WADE

Contemporary Romance / Christian Fiction / Clean & Wholesome
Date of Publication: May 3, 2022
Number of Pages: 416 pages 
 
Scroll down for Giveaway!

 
His promise will cost him far more than he imagined.

Guilt has defined Luke Dempsey's life, but it was self-destructiveness that landed him in prison. When his friend and fellow inmate lay dying shortly before Luke's release, the older man revealed he left a string of clues for his daughter, Finley, that will lead her to the treasure he's hidden. Worried that she won't be the only one pursuing the treasure, he gains Luke's promise to protect her until the end of her search.

Spunky and idealistic, Finley Sutherland is the owner of an animal rescue center and a defender of lost causes. She accepts Luke's help on the treasure hunt while secretly planning to help him in return--by coaxing him to embrace the forgiveness he's long denied himself.

As they draw closer to the final clue, their reasons for resisting each other begin to crumble, and Luke realizes his promise will push him to the limit in more ways than one. He'll do his best to shield Finley from unseen threats, but who's going to shield him from losing his heart?

 CLICK TO PURCHASE!
 
Becky Wade is the 2018 Christy Award Book of the Year winner for True to You. She is a native of California who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and moved to Dallas. She published historical romances for the general market, then put her career on hold for several years to care for her children. When God called her back to writing, Becky knew He meant for her to turn her attention to Christian fiction. Her humorous, heart-pounding contemporary romance novels have won three Christy Awards, the Carol Award, the INSPY Award, and the Inspirational Reader's Choice Award for Romance. Becky lives in Dallas, Texas with her husband and three children.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR:

  WEBSITE  FACEBOOK BECKY'S CHEER SQUAD

TWITTER AMAZONGOODREADS

BOOKBUB INSTAGRAM PINTEREST


CONNECT WITH BETHANY HOUSE PUBLISHERS
--------------------------------------
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
 TWO WINNERS! 
AUTOGRAPHED COPIES OF TURN TO ME!
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 5/12/2022.)

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Charleston Conundrum ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours BONUS Book Club Toolkit & Giveaway!

   CHARLESTON CONUNDRUM
A Liz Adams Mystery
by
STACY WILDER

Cozy Mystery / Female Sleuth / Cozy Animal
Publisher: Wild Hawk Press
Series: A Liz Adams Mystery
Date of Publication: January 15, 2022
Number of Pages: 235 pages 
 
Scroll down for Giveaway!
 
A Cozy Mystery with a Twist…
Liz Adams never imagined when she moved to Charleston with her truth sniffing Labrador retriever, Duke, that she would use her skills as a private investigator to avoid winding up on Death Row.  

Liz’s life is upended when her best friend, Peg, is murdered and she becomes a suspect.  Liz’s gun was the murder weapon. Tensions flare between Liz and the cops as she rises to the top of their suspect list.

At the request of Peg’s father, Liz agrees to take on the investigation. Riding a roller coaster of emotions, Liz uncovers many secrets Peg kept from her despite being best friends. The suspects include a cast of characters: the ex-husband, the boyfriend, a coworker, several neighbors and family members. 

Charleston Conundrum takes the reader from Charleston, South Carolina to Paris and back in the emotional unraveling of Peg’s life and death to a killer ending. It is the first book in the Conundrum series.
 
Charleston Conundrum would make a perfect book club
selection; here's all you need to be the perfect host!

1. The Music: Set the mood with Stacy Wilder's playlist -- and set it on repeat! Click to visit All the Ups & Downs blog to play and/or download it from Spotify.

 (LSBBT Blogger Maida Malby's
bookstagram w/Liz's Oops Salad
)
2. The Food: 
Feed your fellow book enthusiasts with recipes from Charleston Conundrum, including Liz's King Ranch Chicken, Liz's Oops Salad, and Charleston Conundrum Cookies. Click to visit The Page Unbound blog to get those recipes, and here's one more:

Lou’s Favorite Egg Salad 

Ingredients:
eight hard-boiled eggs
¼ cup mayonnaise
2 Tsp. dijon mustard
4 Tsp. chopped celery
4 Tsp. chopped red onion
2 Tsp. dill
garlic salt to taste
pepper to taste
¼ tsp. smoked paprika
fresh dill as garnish

Finely chop the eggs, celery, and red onion and place them in a bowl. Stir in mayo, mustard, dill, garlic salt pepper, and paprika. Garnish with fresh dill. Serve on your favorite bread. Enjoy!

So, all I had was peach vodka
and lemon juice in a hotel
bar tumbler, but CHEERS!
3. The Signature Drink: What's book club without a beverage? For those who like to indulge in adult beverages, consider serving The Conundrum Cocktail. From the author: This recipe is compliments of the team at Hugh O’Connor’s Irish Pub, Houston, TX. Hugh O’Connor’s served the cocktail during the book launch party for Charleston Conundrum. Thank you Hugh O’Connor’s team for creating the cocktail and allowing me to share this recipe.

The Conundrum Cocktail

Ingredients:
1 ounce orange vodka
.75 ounces vodka
.75 ounces St. Germaine
.25 ounces Malibu rum
.25 ounces lemon juice
.25 ounces lavender syrup (add more to taste)
Splash of grenadine

Pour ingredients into a martini shaker. Mix, add ice. Shake multiple times. Strain and pour in a martini glass. Garnish with a lemon wedge. Enjoy!

4. Discuss: Assuming you have read the book by the time the Charleston Conundrum Book Club meeting rolls around, here are some fabulous conversation-starting questions.
The Charleston Conundrum Book Club Questions:

1. What was your favorite scene in the book?
2. What was your least favorite scene?
3. How did the setting impact the story? 
4. Which characters did you empathize with the most? 
5. Which character traits did you like least?
6. What did you think about the community that Liz lives in and the broader community in Charleston?
7. Did you agree with the way Liz handled the investigation? If you disagreed, why?
8. Why do you think Peg kept secrets from her best friend, Liz? 
9. Did you guess the ending? If so, at what point? What clue led you there?
10. Mysteries have red herrings, clues that are misleading. Were there any red herrings that threw you off track?
11. What do you think happens to the main characters after the book's ending? 
12. Liz says, “It’s sad and true that the homeless can be invisible.” What do you think about that statement? What’s been your experience with people who are homeless?
13. Liz also says, “Someone once told me that all dogs have super powers. Duke’s was communication.” What do you think about that statement? Was Duke’s super power believable? Have you had any pets with super powers?
14. Are there any lingering questions from the book that you're still wondering about?
15. If you could ask the author anything, what would it be?



Stacy writes mysteries, children’s stories, short stories, and poetry. Her debut novel, Charleston Conundrum, is the first in the Conundrum mystery series. 

Stacy’s mission is to deliver a delightful story to readers of all ages while benefiting a larger community. She donates a portion of the proceeds from the sales of her books to causes that support wildlife conservation, and the homeless, both people and pets. A portion of the proceeds from Charleston Conundrum are donated to National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

As well as writing, Stacy is passionate about her faith, family, Labradors, the causes that she supports, the beach, art, and reading books.

She and her husband live in Houston, Texas, with a totally spoiled Labrador retriever, Eve.

◆  WEBSITE  ◆  FACEBOOK  ◆ AMAZON  ◆  INSTAGRAM  ◆
 

Link to the YouTube Video


-----------------------
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
 TWO WINNERS! 
Autographed copies of Charleston Conundrum
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 5/06/2022)

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Outlaw West of the Pecos ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours BONUS Spotlight & Giveaway!

OUTLAW WEST OF THE PECOS
An H.H. Lomax Western, Book 7
by
PRESTON LEWIS

Western / Humor / Historical Fiction
Publisher: Wolfpack Publishing

Date of Publication: January 4, 2022
Number of Pages: 228 pages 
 
Scroll down for Giveaway!

 
Accused of cheating at cards on a Southern Pacific passenger train in far West Texas, H.H. Lomax is kicked off the train and finds himself at the mercy of the unpredictable justice of Judge Roy Bean, who calls himself “Law West of the Pecos.” After being fined of all his money, married, and divorced by the judge in a matter of minutes, Lomax discovers an unlikely connection to him.

Against a backdrop of a pending world heavyweight championship bout, Lomax heads to El Paso to interest someone in writing and publishing Bean’s biography. He winds up in an El Paso boarding house across the hall from Texas killer John Wesley Hardin. They despise each other, but Hardin fears Lomax’s straight-arrow Texas Ranger brother and treads lightly around Lomax. Because of Hardin’s crooked connections in El Paso, Lomax gets caught between him and corrupt constable John Selman.

El Paso is becoming the focal point of efforts to host a championship prizefight that everyone from the Presidents of the United States and Mexico to the governors of Texas, New Mexico Territory and Chihuahua have vowed to stop. Calling on his connections to his Ranger brother, El Paso officials and the promoter of the boxing match, Lomax uses his Judge Roy Bean friendship to pull off the oddest prizefight in heavyweight history.

Outlaw West of the Pecos stands as an entertaining mix of historical and hysterical fiction.

CLICK TO PURCHASE!
Amazon


Preston Lewis is the Spur Award-winning author of 40 westerns, historical novels, juvenile books and memoirs.  He has received national awards for his novels, articles, short stories, and humor.  

In 2021 he was inducted into the Texas Institute of Letters for his literary accomplishments.  Lewis is past president of Western Writers of America and the West Texas Historical Association.  

His historical novel Blood of Texas on the Texas Revolution earned a Spur Award as did his True West article on the Battle of Yellow House Canyon.  He developed the Memoirs of H.H. Lomax series, which includes two Spur finalists and a Will Rogers Gold Medallion Award for western humor for his novel Bluster’s Last Stand on the battle of Little Big Horn.  His comic western The Fleecing of Fort Griffin and two of his YA novels have won Elmer Kelton Awards for best creative work on West Texas from the West Texas Historical Association.

He began his writing career working for Texas daily newspapers in Abilene, Waco, Orange and Lubbock before going into university administration. During his 35-year career in higher education, he directed communications and marketing offices at Texas Tech University, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, and Angelo State University. 

Lewis holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Baylor University and master’s degrees from Ohio State in journalism and Angelo State in history.  He lives in San Angelo with his wife, Harriet.
◆  WEBSITE  ◆  FACEBOOK  ◆ AMAZON  ◆ GOODREADS




--------------------------------------------
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
THREE WINNERS
receive autographed copies of
Outlaw West of the Pecos!
(U.S. only; ends midnight, CDT, 5/13/22.)