Showing posts with label SparksPress. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SparksPress. Show all posts

Sunday, August 13, 2023

#BookReview: Ride or Die: A Husband's Memoir by @thedailymba @GoSparkPress






Synopsis: Modern society has a warped sense of the partner-caregiver role, especially for men. Too often, men are ill equipped to handle switching from provider to caregiver, and the “just suck it up” advice so many offer up falls as flat as the Kansas prairie in the face of the reality of life and death.

Ride or Die takes its audience through the intimate conversations and thoughts of a Gen-X latchkey-generation husband—a man who has always had to fend for himself and believed that it’s up to him to solve his own problems—as and after his wife, Jane, succumbs to a terminal disease.

Jarie Bolander wrote this raw, heartfelt tribute to Jane and her handling of her illness to help men and the people who love them through the experience of loss and grief. A frank chronicle of how an intimate relationship can change and grow—even when the people involved feel there is nothing left to give— Ride or Die offers a detailed exploration of the male experience of grief, in the hopes that others suffering through it will not feel so alone.


Monday, July 24, 2023

#BookReview: Ride or Die: A Husband's Memoir by @thedailymba @GoSparkPress






Synopsis: Modern society has a warped sense of the partner-caregiver role, especially for men. Too often, men are ill equipped to handle switching from provider to caregiver, and the “just suck it up” advice so many offer up falls as flat as the Kansas prairie in the face of the reality of life and death.

Ride or Die takes its audience through the intimate conversations and thoughts of a Gen-X latchkey-generation husband—a man who has always had to fend for himself and believed that it’s up to him to solve his own problems—as and after his wife, Jane, succumbs to a terminal disease.

Jarie Bolander wrote this raw, heartfelt tribute to Jane and her handling of her illness to help men and the people who love them through the experience of loss and grief. A frank chronicle of how an intimate relationship can change and grow—even when the people involved feel there is nothing left to give— Ride or Die offers a detailed exploration of the male experience of grief, in the hopes that others suffering through it will not feel so alone.

This title will be released on September 5, 2023.

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

#BookReview: The Belonger by Mary Kathleen Mehuron @GoSparkPress






Synopsis: Caribbean-island innkeeper Holly Walker is hunkering down against a monster hurricane. Unfortunately, so is player Lord Anthony Bascombe, a man who excuses his bad behavior by saying he is descended from pirates. Then her grown son, Byron, and his father, Montez—the man she’s never stopped wanting—go missing. Will she ever see them again? What about the many others hurt and dying? And will help ever arrive? With each passing day, Holly’s tumultuous past and the epic storm send her hurtling toward a shattering climax that will change the island—and Holly’s life—forever.


Sunday, July 16, 2023

#BookReview: The Belonger by Mary Kathleen Mehuron @GoSparkPress






Synopsis: Caribbean-island innkeeper Holly Walker is hunkering down against a monster hurricane. Unfortunately, so is player Lord Anthony Bascombe, a man who excuses his bad behavior by saying he is descended from pirates. Then her grown son, Byron, and his father, Montez—the man she’s never stopped wanting—go missing. Will she ever see them again? What about the many others hurt and dying? And will help ever arrive? With each passing day, Holly’s tumultuous past and the epic storm send her hurtling toward a shattering climax that will change the island—and Holly’s life—forever.


Wednesday, June 07, 2023

#BookReview: The Byways by @theweirdgirl @GoSparkPress






Synopsis: High school student CeeCee Harper has special needs, a temper, and a reputation for trouble. Angry at the rumors and afraid she’ll never fit in, she makes a wrong move—and lands in the Byways, a world of alleys, magic, and forgotten people . . . some that aren’t even human. And if she doesn’t escape quickly, CeeCee learns, she’ll be trapped for good.

Searching for a way out, she gets lost among monsters, drug pushers, the homeless, and political upheaval, and soon finds there are those who will stop at nothing to keep her from leaving. But the Byways pull people in for a reason. CeeCee must figure out why she got stuck in the first place—before her loved ones are put in danger and she loses them forever.

A dark retelling of Alice in Wonderland meets Neverwhere, this contemporary fantasy will enchant Neil Gaiman and Christina Henry fans.


Monday, January 09, 2023

#BookReview: The Last Huntress (Mirror Realm #1) by @LenoreBorja






Synopsis: Alice Daniels has a problem. Her reflection keeps misbehaving when she looks in the mirror--and the longer she ignores it, the harder it tries to get her attention. On her eighteenth birthday, she learns why: she is a huntress, someone gifted with the power to enter mirrors and the magical world that exists beyond. But with this power comes immense responsibility, for in the Mirror Realm lurks an evil that has infected the human race for centuries: demons. It is up to her and her three huntress sisters--with the help of one handsome and overbearing protector--to hunt and banish this evil one demon at a time, thereby keeping the chaos in check. But when an ancient god pays Alice a visit that turns deadly, it is clear the Mirror Realm is more than it seems, and she soon finds herself in a race against time to save the life--and soul--of the one man the gods are determined to never let her have.

The Last Huntress is a story of redemption and sacrifice, the bonds of true sisterhood, and the impossible, sometimes frightening, things we'll do for love.


Wednesday, January 04, 2023

#BookReview: Shadows We Carry by @drmerylain






Synopsis: In this eagerly anticipated sequel to Meryl Ain’s award-winning post-Holocaust novel The Takeaway Men, we follow Bronka and JoJo Lubinski as they find themselves on the cusp of momentous change for women in the late 1960s. With the United States in the grip of political and social upheaval, the twins and a number of their peers, including a Catholic priest and the son of a Nazi, struggle with their family’s ancestry and how much influence it has on their lives. Meanwhile, both young women seek to define their roles as women, and as individuals.


Enlightening and evocative, 
Shadows We Carry explores the experience of navigating deeply held family secrets and bloodlines, confusing religious identities, and the scars of World War II in the wake of revolutionary societal changes.

This title will be released on April 25, 2023.

Friday, November 25, 2022

#BookReview: Shadows We Carry by @drmerylain






Synopsis: In this eagerly anticipated sequel to Meryl Ain’s award-winning post-Holocaust novel The Takeaway Men, we follow Bronka and JoJo Lubinski as they find themselves on the cusp of momentous change for women in the late 1960s. With the United States in the grip of political and social upheaval, the twins and a number of their peers, including a Catholic priest and the son of a Nazi, struggle with their family’s ancestry and how much influence it has on their lives. Meanwhile, both young women seek to define their roles as women, and as individuals.


Enlightening and evocative, 
Shadows We Carry explores the experience of navigating deeply held family secrets and bloodlines, confusing religious identities, and the scars of World War II in the wake of revolutionary societal changes.

This title will be released on April 25, 2023.

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

#BookReview: Evangeline's Heaven by Jen Braaksma






Synopsis: War is ravaging the Seven Heavens. Lucifer and his Commoner supporters, the lowest class of angels, are rebelling against God's plan to exile them to the new Earth. When Lucifer departs on a desperate war mission, he leaves his daughter, Evangeline, to defend their home in First Heaven. Fiercely loyal and trained to fight, Evangeline stands ready to do her father's bidding.

But things change when Evangeline overhears the archangel Gabriel forming a plan to destroy Lucifer--because, as he tells his son, Michael, he believes Lucifer's plan is to find the Key to the Kingdom and claim the power of God to control all the Heavens for eternity. Refusing to believe her father capable of such treachery, Evangeline sets off to alert her father.

As she battles through the Heavens, however, Evangeline is shocked to discover that what she believed she knew about her father might not be true after all. For the first time in her life, she begins to question whether or not her father's motives are pure. With the fate of the Heavens hanging in the balance, she must decide who she's going to be: her father's daughter, or her own person.


Sunday, August 14, 2022

#BookReview @GoSparkPress: The Year Without a Summer by Arlene Mark






Synopsis: Explosive volcanic eruptions are cool, really, cool. They inject ash into the stratosphere and deflect the sun's rays. When eighth grader Jamie Fulton learns that snow fell in June in his hometown because of an eruption on the other side of the world, he's psyched! He could have snowboarded if he'd lived back in 1815 during the year without a summer.

Clara Montalvo, who recently arrived at Jamie's school after surviving Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, has a different take all this. She is astounded--and disturbed--by Jamie's frenzied enthusiasm for what she considers an obvious disaster. The teens' battling arguments cause science class disruption and create academic trouble: Jamie's headed for a failing grade in science, and may not even graduate from eighth grade; Clara's scholarship hopes are dashed. And school isn't the only place where Jamie and Clara are facing hardship: as they quarrel whether natural disasters can be beneficial, their home lives are also unraveling. Uncertainty about Jamie's wounded brother returning from Afghanistan and Clara's unreachable father back in Puerto Rico forces the two vulnerable teens to share their worries and sadness. As their focus shifts from natural disasters to personal calamities to man-made climate changes, the teens take surprising steps that astonish them. Ultimately, through hard work and growing empathy for each other, as well as for their classmates' distress over the climate change affecting their lives, Jamie and Clara empower themselves and the people they touch.

This title will be released on August 16, 2022.

Thursday, June 09, 2022

#BookReview: Bit Flip by Mike Trigg






Synopsis: Fortysomething tech executive Sam Hughes came to Silicon Valley to "make the world a better place." He's just not sure he's doing that anymore--and when an onstage meltdown sends him into a professional tailspin, he suddenly sees the culture of the Bay Area's tech bubble in a new, far more cynical light.

Just as he's wondering if his start-up career and marriage might both be over at fortysomething, an inadvertent discovery pulls Sam back into his former company, where he begins to unravel the insidious schemes of the founder and venture investors that led to his ouster. Driven by his desire for redemption, he discovers a conspiracy of fraud, blackmail, and manipulation that leads to tragic outcomes--threatening to destroy not only the company but Sam's moral compass as well. Entangled in a web of complicity, how far will he go to achieve his dreams of entrepreneurial success and personal wealth?

Bit Flip is a corporate thriller that delivers an authentic insider's view of the corrupting influences of greed, entitlement, and vanity in technology start-ups.

This title will be released on August 16, 2022.

Monday, May 30, 2022

#BookReview: Sunday Afternoons and Other Times Remembered (A Memoir) by Ben Ewell






Synopsis: On the afternoon of Easter Sunday, 1992, Ben Ewell’s brother, sister-in-law, and niece were all murdered. While trying to make sense of this staggering tragedy, Ben can’t help but think back through his life: the hard work and the many peaceful Sunday afternoons growing up on his family farm in Ohio in a house without a bathroom or running water; his high school antics in the 1950s; his time in Haight-Ashbury while attending law school in 1960s San Francisco; and the highs and lows, both personal and professional, of life after school. Threaded throughout these reminiscences, Ben reveals the details of the investigation of his family members’ murders—and the arrest and trial of the parties involved. 


In this decades-long saga, there is marriage and divorce, love and loss, family and friendship; there are political campaigns and business ventures, some failed and some fruitful. Ultimately, this is a story of perseverance in the face of tragedy, of creating opportunities out of problems, and of appreciating the gift of life and the world around us—with some humor along the way. 

This title will be released on June 14, 2022.

Thursday, November 04, 2021

#BookReview: Ski Weekend by @rektokross






Synopsis: Six teens, one dog, a ski trip gone wrong . . .

Sam is dreading senior ski weekend and having to watch after her brother and his best friend, Gavin, to make sure they don’t do anything stupid. Again. Gavin may be gorgeous, but he and Sam have never gotten along. Now they’re crammed into an SUV with three other classmates and Gavin’s dog, heading on a road trip that can’t go by fast enough.

Then their SUV crashes into a snowbank, and Sam and her friends find themselves stranded in the mountains with cell phone coverage long gone and temperatures dropping. When the group gets sick of waiting for rescue, they venture outside to find help—only to have a wilderness accident leave Sam’s brother with a smashed leg and, soon, a raging fever. While the hours turn to days, Sam’s brother gets sicker and sicker, and their food and supplies dwindle until there isn’t enough for everyone. As the winter elements begin to claim members of the group one by one, Sam vows to keep her brother alive.

No matter what.

Filled with twists, secrets, and life-changing moments, Ski Weekend is a snow-packed survival thriller featuring a diverse cast of teens that will appeal to fans of One of Us is Lying and I Am Still Alive.


Tuesday, September 21, 2021

#BookReview: Cold Snap: A Viking Cat Mystery by @CodiMSchneider






Synopsis: Tucked in the cold Colorado mountains lies the remote village of Gray Birch, a place where outsiders are frowned upon. In this village lives a cat named Bijou. But she’s no ordinary house cat; her ancestors were mousers on Viking longships, and their blood runs through her veins. Since her battle skills are hardly needed in this modern age, however, she spends her energies running the Fox Burrow Pet Inn with her human, Spencer, and her assistant, Skunk, a mentally negligible Pomeranian. Together, the happy trio has created a safe haven for their four-legged guests.

But when Eddy Line, a handsome baker from California, comes to the inn―along with his piglet and pit bull puppy―everything changes. Spencer falls for Eddy, Bijou is unhappy with the sudden changes to her clan, and the townspeople are anything but welcoming; in fact, threats are made against Eddy when he buys the town’s historic firehouse in order to open a bakery.

Then a shocking murder/dognapping occurs on the night of the bakery’s grand opening, and Bijou finds herself thrust into a tangled mystery. To solve it, she will have to summon her inner Viking―and fight tooth and claw for her new clan.


#BookReview: Final Table by Dan Schorr






Synopsis: A political thriller about sexual misconduct in the #MeToo era, one victim's battle to survive and overcome trauma, and the cable news machine that feeds off titillating scandal coverage and inflammatory confrontation, Final Table draws upon Dan Schorr's firsthand experience as a New York City sex crimes prosecutor and sexual misconduct investigator to tackle the worlds of political and media dysfunction.

Former White House staffer Maggie Raster is struggling to build her own consulting firm and overcome a recent sexual assault by an ex-boss. Kyler Dawson, a broke former poker champion, desperately needs to gain entry into a controversial but potentially very lucrative international poker tournament. The host nation faces widespread condemnation for the recent murder of a prominent female US journalist, and a pending presidential executive order threatens to prohibit him and others from participating.

Maggie's chaotic first attempt to promote her new business as a television political analyst brings her to Kyler's attention, and convinces him that her political smarts and connections can provide the help he needs. When he approaches her for assistance, she must decide whether to agree - in return for a portion of the potential $20 million prize. To succeed, she will have to confront numerous challenges - personal and political, foreign and domestic - including mounting pressure to publicly address the misconduct of her former boss. Kyler also has his own obstacles and upsetting past to overcome, but if they each can outmaneuver their daunting challenges, he might win the tournament - and earn them both a fortune.
 

This title will be released on October 5, 2021.

Monday, September 20, 2021

#BookReview: 21 Questions by Alexandria Rizik






Synopsis: In Laguna Beach, California, sixteen-year-old Kendra Dimes is preparing for the 2010 USA Surfing Prime West. She’ll be competing this year in honor of her brother, who was a surfer too, but who died from a drug overdose. Kendra has suffered anxiety attacks ever since her brother’s death, and surfing is what’s been helping her heal.

Brock Parker is the new bad boy at school; he deals drugs to the high school clientele for his parents, who work for a Mexican drug lord. Though Brock and Kendra come from two different worlds, sparks fly when they meet at the homecoming dance—their attraction is magnetic. When they start a game of 21 Questions one night, they begin to learn more about each other—and, surprisingly, about themselves too. But some questions aren’t answered with the whole truth; after all, Brock can’t tell Kendra what his parents do for a living.

As Kendra and Brock experience all of life’s most exciting firsts, they prove that even when life throws you the perfect storm, you can make it through and come out stronger than before. 21 Questions is a coming-of-age journey packed with passion and heartbreak, risk and romance.


Wednesday, August 25, 2021

#BookReview: He Gets That From Me by Jacqueline Friedland






Synopsis: As a young mother with a toddler and a live-in boyfriend, Maggie Fisher’s job at a checkout counter in downtown Phoenix doesn’t afford her much financial flexibility. She dreams of going to college and becoming a teacher, options she squandered when she fled her family home as a teenager. When Maggie stumbles onto an ad offering thousands of dollars to women who are willing to gestate other people’s babies, she at first finds the concept laughable. Before long, however, she’s been seduced by all the ways the extra money could improve her life. Once she decides to go for it, it’s only a matter of months before she’s chosen as a gestational carrier by Chip and Donovan Rigsdale, a married couple from New York.

After delivering twin babies and proudly handing them off to the Rigsdales, Maggie finally gets her life on a positive trajectory: she earns her degree, lands a great job, and builds a family of her own. She can’t fathom why, ten years after the fact, the fertility clinic is calling to ask for a follow-up DNA test.
 

This title will be released on September 14, 2021. 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

#BookReview: When We Were All Still Alive by Keith McWalter






Synopsis: For Conrad Burrell―husband, father, and successful attorney in the autumn of his life―the world has come apart. Having long ago lost his first wife, the mother of his grown daughter and a widow herself, to youth and pride, he’s now lost his second to a violent accident,. “You think you’re finished, that you have no more stories in you,” his ex-wife warns, and he fears she’s right. Within hailing distance of the end of his days, after a lifetime of meeting the expectations of others, none are left but Conrad’s own, and he must discover whether love survives death as well as divorce―whether family memory can redeem individual mortality.

What do we do, then, we widows and widowers for whom there’s nothing left but the world’s permission to stop what we’ve done all our lives? In the cities of his youth, in the deserts of New Mexico, but most of all in a small Pennsylvania town, Conrad finds he has one more lesson in love to learn from the women of his past, and the one woman he's certain he can't live without.

When We Were All Still Alive is a novel of grief and healing, a portrait of a marriage, and a love song to ordinary lives.


Tuesday, November 10, 2020

#BookReview: Malcolm and Me by Robin Farmer






Synopsis: Philly native Roberta Forest is a precocious rebel with the soul of a poet. The thirteen-year-old is young, gifted, black, and Catholic—although she’s uncertain about the Catholic part after she calls Thomas Jefferson a hypocrite for enslaving people and her nun responds with a racist insult. Their ensuing fight makes Roberta question God and the important adults in her life, all of whom seem to see truth as gray when Roberta believes it’s black or white.

An upcoming essay contest, writing poetry, and reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X all help Roberta cope with the various difficulties she’s experiencing in her life, including her parent’s troubled marriage. But when she’s told she’s ineligible to compete in the school’s essay contest, her explosive reaction to the news leads to a confrontation with her mother, who shares some family truths Roberta isn’t ready for.

Set against the backdrop of Watergate and the post-civil rights movement era, Angel Dressed in Black is a gritty yet graceful examination of the anguish teens experience when their growing awareness of themselves and the world around them unravels their sense of security—a coming-of-age tale of truth-telling, faith, family, forgiveness, and social activism.


Tuesday, September 29, 2020

#BookReview: Charming Falls Apart: A Novel by @AngelaTerryLit @BookSparks






Synopsis: Allison James is a people pleaser and rule follower, but the day before her thirty-fifth birthday, that all backfires: she is unexpectedly fired from the public relations firm she’s worked at for twelve years, only to come home and find out that her fianc√© has been sleeping with her maid of honor.

Feeling lost, Allison takes her friend Jordan’s advice and uses the time off for some self-reflection. Over the next few months, she devours countless self-help books (albeit skeptically), schedules a soul reading with an astrologer/psychic/magician, and goes on a meditation retreat in Costa Rica, where she finally starts to feel like she’s getting her groove back.

Back at home, her desire to escape the condo she once shared with her fianc√© makes her a regular at the new coffeehouse in her neighborhood, where she finds some guidance from (and eye candy in) the attractive owner, Eric. Between Jordan’s support, the Barnes & Noble self-help aisle, and the Tao of Eric, Allison gradually discovers that her old life wasn’t as perfect as she thought—and that if she truly wants to find her happily-ever-after, she’s going to have to start writing her own rules.

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