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Saturday, April 1, 2023


About the Book

Book: Enhanced

Author: Candace Kade

Genre: YA Science Fiction

Release date: March 14, 2023

Lee Urban is living a lie. 

In a society where everyone’s DNA determines their destiny, being a Natural means automatic relegation to the gritty and dangerous Outskirts. With the harnessed power of gene-editing, the ability to create a super-human race has transformed the world and offered the opportunity of a genetically enhanced life. But only to those who can afford it.

Born a Natural, Lee Urban was adopted into the Enhanced high society of the Asian Federation and forced to conceal her genetic roots. When her dream of attending Peking University becomes a reality, she is determined to go despite a warning from a mysterious source.


Targeted by a hacker bent on exposing her true DNA, Urban faces off with an Artificial Intelligence Game that puts her—and her lies—to the test. What was supposed to be a dream come true turns into a lethal gamble of hide-and-seek with her genetics. Can Urban continue the act, or will the cracks in her story expose her and endanger her family?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Candace Kade grew up in China and currently lives in Austin, Texas. When she’s not missing Chinese food, she’s busy writing, exploring new countries, volunteering, hiking in national parks, teaching her husband Mandarin, and keeping a baby human alive.


More from Candace

Have you ever felt like you don’t belong?

It could be something as small as showing up at a party alone to something bigger like moving to a new city.

In ENHANCED, Urban also feels like she doesn’t belong. In New Beijing in the year 2124, everyone has amazing genetic enhancements given to them through CRISPR gene-editing technology.

Everyone, except Urban.

New Beijing is full of humans with breath-taking DNA. Inceptors with brain enhancements allowing them to read micro facial expressions, Supers who can withstand hard hits and extreme temperatures, Aquas able to breathe underwater, and more. There are eight main gene pools, and Urban doesn’t belong in any of them.

Instead, Urban’s born a Natural, without genetic enhancements, and secretly adopted into New Beijing. She’s forced to hide her genetic roots to protect her family, and pretends to be something she’s not—enhanced.

Urban’s story is personal to me.

As a Third Culture Kid, I’ve spent most of my life straddling two worlds and, trying to fit into places I felt I didn’t belong. At the age of four, my family moved from Ohio to China. I spent my childhood as the only foreign kid at my Chinese schools, neighborhood, and sports teams.

Since then, I’ve often returned to China. I was actually living and working there while writing ENHANCED.

Despite the frequent trips, I didn’t feel “American enough” or “Chinese enough” growing up. Maybe it’s because I botched most American sayings. Maybe it’s because no matter how good my Mandarin was, people looked at my white skin and assumed I didn’t belong in China.

It’s taken me years to come to peace with this.

Urban struggles with something similar. She must balance the Enhanced and Natural worlds all while trying to keep her web of lies from tangling and tripping her up. Which, of course, gets harder when she’s selected as the next AI Games contestant.

When I wrote this book, I was living in Beijing and going through one of the hardest seasons in my life. I had never felt so lonely. There was a song that brought me great comfort during this time. The chorus goes:

“God only knows what you’ve been through,

God only knows what they say about you,

God only knows the real you,

There’s a kind of love that God only knows.”

-For King and Country.

I played that song on repeat while writing Enhanced. It reminded me that God sees us and knows us intimately. With him, we are never truly alone.

I wrote this book for anyone who feels like they slip between the cracks of society—like they don’t belong. My hope is that you feel seen and understood.

You’re not alone.

MY REVIEW

This is one of the  best dystopia books  I have read. The author’s  imagination is incredible and I loved going on a journey to the future.  The story is set in China and I loved how realistic it felt as the  author uses familiar places n the book.  Have you ever felt like you didn’t fit in? Everyone seems to be smarter than you and make  friends easily. Get ready for an adventure where genetics, power and danger collide. 

Urban is our main character and I absolutely loved her. Being adopted she knew she was different from her family but she senses there is more going on that she is not being told. In her world there are those who are genetically enhanced with incredible abilities. Urban is what is called a Natural.  She wants to be a part of the group that has powers and is welcomed everywhere they go. The story  shows that Urban has trouble at school and tests are not  her friend. How is she going to be important, fit in or even be accepted if she can’t get her grades up? There is also that little secret she is hiding that can be dangerous if she is found out.

One thing I noticed in the  book was how Urban was desperate to be someone she wasn’t. She was never happy because she didn’t have skills like  her friends. What she needs to realize is that she is perfect just the way she is. With help from her sister Lillian, Urban is surrounded by security everywhere she  goes. Her sister is very protective and proves to be an asset when Urban finds herself in imminent danger. Can Lillian keep Urban safe? 

The story is one  where the reader will not able  to put the book down as it is increasingly more intense as each page is turned. The arena where fighting happens is one big epic  adventure. The technology is beyond my imagination and I was glued to the pages.  The genetic aspect of the story is met with much detail and I could easily see it happening. The  story is filled with several other characters that play a huge part but I want readers to discover for  themselves. The ending is a heart pounding surprise filled cliff hanger. I will be watching very closely to see when the next book is released because I need to continue my adventure with Urban. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 31

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, March 31

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 1

Texas Book-aholic, April 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 3

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, April 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 5

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 6

Inklings and Notions, April 7

Blogging With Carol, April 8

Book Butterfly in Dreamland, April 8

Tell Tale Book Reviews, April 9

Simple Harvest Reads, April 10 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, April 11

Mary Hake, April 11

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, April 12

Through the Fire Blogs, April 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Candace is giving away the grand prize package of a hardback of ENHANCED, $50 Amazon gift card, $10 Starbucks gift card, and a signed bookplate!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/25259/enhanced-celebration-tour-giveaway



Friday, March 31, 2023


About the Book

Book: Targeted in the Desert

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release date: March 28, 2023

Family secrets have Felicia Tennison, and the sister she never knew existed, on the run. Someone is after them, and Felicia will have to turn to someone she never wanted to see again for help—her ex. Sheriff Jude Duke vows to protect them as they race to uncover why the little girl is a target. But the search to find the answers could cost them their futures.


Click here to get your copy!

 

 

 

About the Author

Dana Mentink is a USA TODAY and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author. She’s written more than forty mystery and suspense novels for Love Inspired Suspense, Harvest House, and Poisoned Pen Press. She is honored to have received two ACFW Carol Awards, a Holt Medallion Award, and a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. Please visit her on the web at www.danamentink.com to sign up for her newsletter, or find her on Twitter, Facebook and Bookbub.


More from Dana

At last! We’ve arrived at the final book in the Desert Justice series! It seems like just yesterday I was finishing book one, about cousin Beckett Duke who was falsely imprisoned. Then we met cowboy Levi and his twin Willow, dog lover Austin, donkey rescuer Nora and FINALLY sheriff Jude Duke gets his story! I am a fan of a hero with some miles under his belt, aren’t you? Could it be because I’ve got more than a few under mine? Ending this series is bittersweet because I am thrilled that the Dukes all received their happy endings, but I’ll miss writing about their adventures in Death Valley. Hope you’ll come along on my next series. (Could be there are bloodhounds in our fictional future!)

God bless!

MY REVIEW

This has been such an enjoyable series and I’m sad that this is the last book.  The author delivers a powerful ending to a series where intrigue and action keep readers glued to the  book. I love how she includes faith in the story and gives us flawed characters that are realistic. The Duke family closes their chapter in this electrifying adventure that had twists and surprises where I was caught off guard at every turn. 

I loved Felicia and  how she has stepped up when a family matter thrusts her into unknown territory. She never imagined the secret she would find out would place  her in danger. I liked how she embraced this newfound information and became very protective of a young girl who would change. I know it must be a surprise for her to find  out more secrets from her past but  this one will be a blessing in the end. 

Jude comes on the  scene when  Felicia and the  young girl in her care are in grave danger. Someone is out to stop Felicia from becoming the guardian and will stop at nothing to see her disappear. Jude and Felicia have a past that does once again surfaces to the top with both of them  not sure if they can work together. Jude has some baggage of his own that he needs to deal with. His insecurity and doubt play a big role in trying to  be the hero and prove to Felicia that he is a good guy. 

I loved Gracie and her faithful dog Stretch. Her faith is very evident and I loved how she was an example to the adults. Her dog was a hero to me because Stretch protected Gracie  and never once ran away from fear. He is a big dog that can be intimidating but with Gracie he is nothing but a loyal friend to her. I don’t know why but I cried reading about the bond Gracie and her dog had. 

The author does not disappoint with a story that delivers surprises and suspense in a way that  kept me guessing . I love a story where we witness a character that realizes the  fears they have had are now gone and they feel free from their past. Jude and his family will be missed but I will remember them forever. Thank you Dana for a wonderful ending to a series that  has captured hope, forgiveness and faith. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 29

Lily’s Book Reviews, March 29

An Author’s Take, March 30

Vicky Sluiter, March 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 31

Blogging With Carol, March 31

Texas Book-aholic, April 1

Paula’s Pad of Inspiration, April 1

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 2

For Him and My Family, April 2

Betti Mace, April 3

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 3

Simple Harvest Reads, April 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Holly’s Book Corner, April 4

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 5

Daysong Reflections, April 5

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 5

Bigreadersite, April 6

Splashes of Joy, April 6

Blossoms and Blessings, April 7

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 7

Pause for Tales, April 8

EmpowerMoms, April 8

Labor Not in Vain, April 9

Book Looks by Lisa, April 9

For the Love of Literature, April 10

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, April 10

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 11

Through the Fire Blogs, April 11

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

(If the winner is outside the U.S., then he or she will receive an eBook.)

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/25254/targeted-in-the-desert-celebration-tour-giveaway



 



About the Book

Book: The Escape Game

Author: Marilyn Turk

Genre: Historical Christian Fiction

Release date: March, 2023

A Board Game Holds Keys to Prisoners’ Escape

Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.

After the Nazis started the bombing blitz of England, Beryl Clarke puts her college on hold to return to Leeds, care for her mother, and work as a secretary at the Waddington game company. While she endures the war at home, her brother James fights the enemy in the air. When he is shot down, injured, and captured, James meets American POW Kenneth Anderson, and they plan to escape the Nazi prison camp. Beryl knows there is a board game with escape plans being delivered to POWs by the Red Cross. But how will the men discover the game’s secret?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Award-winning author Marilyn Turk writes historical fiction flavored with suspense and romance. Marilyn also writes devotions for Daily Guideposts. She and her husband are lighthouse enthusiasts, have visited over one hundred lighthouses, and also served as volunteer lighthouse caretakers at Little River Light off the coast of Maine.

When not writing or visiting lighthouses, Marilyn enjoys boating, fishing, gardening, tennis, playing with grandkids, and her golden retriever Dolly.

When not writing or visiting lighthouses, Marilyn enjoys boating, fishing, gardening, tennis, playing with grandkids, and her golden retriever Dolly. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers; Faith, Hope and Love; Advanced Writers and Speakers Association; and Word Weavers International.

 

More from Marilyn

The Story behind The Escape Game

In the process of writing my books, I’ve become fascinated by the real stories that happened during World War II. I’ve discovered information I didn’t know before and am finding out that many people I know, even those older than myself, didn’t know either. Every time I come across an interesting tidbit, I want to write about it. Since my husband knows I look for such things, when he came across a story about how the Monopoly game was used during the war, he shared it with me.

The true story was kept top-secret for over fifty years after the war, so few had heard about it, especially outside the United Kingdom. Of course, my writer’s mind set off asking “What If?” So the story developed about a woman who works for the company that makes the game and what happened after she found out about the secret. What if she had a close relative who had been captured before the British informed their soldiers about the game and he needed to know the information? How could she convey that to him?

I wish I could have gone to the UK for research, but that was not a possibility. Maybe someday. However, the people I contacted there were very helpful, and I was thrilled to make contact with the great granddaughter of the president of Waddintons, the company which manufactured the game. She was able to fill in a few details about the company, although when she was a child, her grandfather ran the company.

One thing many people find hard to believe, based on the horrible treatment the Nazi army inflicted on people they thought inferior, is that the treatment of POW’s was somewhat better, especially for pilots. Thanks to the rules of the Geneva Convention after WWI, the Germans abided by them for the most part. That involved treatment of prisoners who escaped. Most of them were caught and returned to the camp from which they escaped. And normally, the punishment was solitary confinement. The biggest hardship of the POWs besides lack of freedom was the meager food they were given, especially as the war continued, since the Germans themselves were facing food shortages.

The challenge for me as a writer was to accurately describe life in both England and the POW camp. The other big challenge was writing a love story when the two characters were apart for so long. But it’s true that many soldiers fell in love with women they corresponded with back home. That fact is verified in the many letters on record, including the ones my father-in-law wrote to a fellow soldier’s fiancĂ© after the soldier was killed in action. Their relationship grew into love, and after the war, the two met in person at the train station for the first time and married the same day.

MY REVIEW 

The book takes us to WWII and the devastation people endured. It is hard to read about the bombs going off in neighborhoods and the horrific loss that happened everyday. Can yo imagine hearing sirens going  off  where you need to go to a bomb shelter for safety? The women who are left behind must find ways to support the  family. They were given rations that were barely enough for a family. The author paints a realistic look by her vivid details. I could hear the  sirens, bombs and screams as families ran for safety. 

Beryl is a very good character and tries to do her part to help out. She left college to take care of her mum and I loved how compassionate she was. Her heart is full with wanting to help others and takes in an elderly lady after her home was destroyed. 

James and Kenneth find themselves at the same POW camp. I’m sure is was a comfort for them to be together since they are friends. They seem to be treated better than  other POW’s because they are airmen . It was nice that they were able to receive packages from home as well as from the Red Cross. Their determination to escape was intriguing. There were many attempts and I wondered if they would succeed. Their bravery is one that I hope we all recognize. They represent those who fought for our freedom. 

The most fascinating thing  for me was how the game Monopoly was used  as an escape plan. Hidden within the game were useful tools and information which could help the men escape. I had never heard of this and was very interested in learning more about a very clever way  to help POW’s escape by the use of a game. 

I loved how James never gave up telling Kenneth about God. At one point Kenneth realizes that God is watching over him. He now knows that without God he would not be safe. The relationship between Beryl and Kenneth were nice but it seemed to develop very fast. I liked how the past and present are brought together in this beautiful illustration of hope. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, March 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 30

Texas Book-aholic, March 31

Pause for Tales, March 31

Sylvan Musings, April 1

deb’s Book Review, April 1

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 2

Labor Not in Vain, April 2

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 3

Cover Lover Book Review, April 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 4

Connie’s History Classroom, April 4

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 5

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 5

Stories By Gina, April 6 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, April 6

Betti Mace, April 7

For Him and My Family, April 7

She Lives To Read, April 8

Remembrancy, April 8

SodbusterLiving, April 9

Holly’s Book Corner, April 9

Lily’s Book Reviews, April 10

Paula’s Pad of Inspiration, April 10

lakesidelivingsite, April 11

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, April 11

Lights in a Dark World, April 12

Blossoms and Blessings, April 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Marilyn is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon eGift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/25256/the-escape-game-celebration-tour-giveaway



Monday, March 27, 2023


About the Book

Book: The Smell of Spring

Author: Mary Hake

Illustrator: Marina

Genre: Picture Book

Release date: December 15, 2022

In The Smell of Spring, April, a blind girl, enjoys the world around her and discovers spring scents. Join April and her menagerie of pets in their springtime adventures. The Smell of Spring shows children how we experience the world around us through the sense of smell. Kids will enjoy her many interesting pets and can have fun with the activities at the end using the the sense of smell.

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Mary Ann Hake has loved learning and writing for as long as she can remember. She has been scribbling stories and poems since she first learned to write and has published hundreds of stories, articles, poems, puzzles, devotions, and more for both children and adults plus written hundreds of book reviews. She loved working in a bookstore and as a librarian and enjoyed reading to children at story times and conducting summer reading programs. She has also taught writing to children and at writers’ conferences. In addition to writing, she continues to work as a freelance editor. Visit her website, www.maryannhake.com, and subscribe to her newsletter for activities for children and updates on future books. Also find her on Facebook at Mary A. Hake author, https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100057370041720.

 

More from Mary Ann

I have always loved books and reading, and even as an adult I still enjoy picture books. I had tried writing my own in the past, but The Smell of Spring is the first picture book I have published. The online classes I took during the pandemic and all the years of writers’ conferences, particularly Oregon Christian Writers conferences, have helped me learn and polish my craft. I have published hundreds of pieces, for both children and adults, in a variety of periodicals and a dozen compilation books plus some curricula.

 

I chose to present this concept book in rhyme because it came out more appealing and fun for kids than straight prose. The Smell of Spring shows how a blind girl uses her sense of smell to experience life around her. Along with her menagerie of pets, April explores her world. The story includes elements that would make it a handy companion text for connection to science: senses, the weather, nature, animals—domestic and wild, flowers and trees, and food. It also models responsibility as April cares for the animals. The Smell of Spring is the first book in the four-book series of Smells of the Seasons.

 

Readers of all ages are enjoying this fresh look at springtime.

Comments from early readers:

“In sweet, simple prose, with lovely illustrations, this book shows a child how they can appreciate their sense of smell.”

“A delightfully whimsical book that invites children to become mindfully aware of the many smells, both pleasant and unpleasant, that accompany the spring season.”

“A charming way to encounter the season for all children.”
“This was a very delightful book! I loved all the places she found smells in. I also loved how you made the book rhyme. It flowed very smoothly.”
“So well done, from the rhyme to the message.”

“Mary Hake gives the reader insights into what the world is like to a blind girl, who perceives the world through other senses besides sight. The focus on smell may encourage young listeners/readers to pay closer attention to the smells they like or dislike and to be more aware of different aspects of their world. It may also make them more understanding of children with disabilities.”

“Teachers, parents, and children will appreciate the activities at the end of this book.”

“The whole book is full of delightful images and easy-to-read phrases that describe all the many smells. Including some fun relatable parts. I think children will get a kick out of a few of the smells.”

 

Sign up for updates on my website, https://maryannhake.com/, and received a PDF of activities for children using the sense of smell. Further fun things will be coming in the future.

MY REVIEW

What a beautiful book that brings the smells of spring to children to enjoy. I loved the way the author describes the flowers, rain and other things that remind us of spring. I love springtime and this book made me smile throughout the book. I liked following the young girl as she uses her nose to smell the rain as it gently dropped on her. With excitement she experiences all that the world around  her has to welcome spring. 

I thought the illustrations were beautiful and will it  definitely catch children’s attention. The young girl has so much fun exploring  the flowers and even giving her dog a bath. I loved the ending of celebrating her special day of spring. My birthday is in spring as well. I loved the  activities  at the  end of the book for children and parents to do together. I look forward to more books from this author as we explore the world together. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit.The review is my own opinion.


Blog Stops

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, March 24

Artistic Nobody, March 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 27

Texas Book-aholic, March 28

Lots of Helpers, March 29

Walking Fruitfully, March 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, March 30

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 31

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 1

Simple Harvest Reads, April 2

For Him and My Family, April 3

Blossoms and Blessings, April 4 (Author Interview)

The Life We Build, April 4

Guild Master, April 5

Vicky Sluiter, April 6 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize package of a signed hardcover copy of The Smell of Spring and a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/25253/the-smell-of-spring-celebration-tour-giveaway