Review: Moving On By: Trisha Grace


Buy on Amazon Kindle: $2.99

Disclaimer:  I received this book in exchange for an honest review.  The thoughts and opinions                 expressed here are my own.

Last week, I had just finished writing my post for Findo's Mousetrap, when I received an email request asking if I might would be interested in reading this book.  Once I read that blurb, and saw it was an inheritance book plus combined with being a Christian book, I was thrilled and honored to accept the invitation to read Moving On.

I am no stranger to Christian Fiction.  Some of my favorite books have been written by Christian authors, Frank Peretti, T. Davis Bunn and Max Lucado.  However, one genre that I haven't ever much been able to get into is Christian romance.  It's nothing that I can exactly put my finger on, it's just I haven't really been able to find many books in that genre that appeal to me.  Being a Christian myself, and an avid reader, it's somewhat of an embarrassing admission.

So, while I was excited for the opportunity to read Moving On, I had no expectations going in.  The premise was one that I enjoy reading about in my normal reading, Rom Com.  

William Hayes is a man with regrets.  As a part of his dying wish, he hopes to make some past mistakes right.  Five years ago Kate Mitchell met William Hayes at the nursing home where her grandmother was a resident.  Mr. Hayes had been a volunteer and soon they formed a lasting friendship and strong bond.  Kate, unbeknownst to her, becomes a central figure in William Hayes' plan to right a wrong.

The main story revolves around the will of Mr. Hayes and the conditions set forth before the true wishes can be put into effect.  Tyler, is  William Hayes estranged grandson.  Years ago, a tragic accident occurred, resulting in the untimely death of Tyler's parents.  It also marked the end to Tyler's relationship with his grandfather.  Tyler, a man who has allowed bitterness to set in, must now face the past that he has worked hard to forget.

Kate plays a pivotal role in helping Tyler face the past.  Strangers when they meet, they quickly form a strong bond and a deep emotional connection.  There are of course some supporting roles, supplying us with some extra fun and at times rather bizarre scenes, but the story clearly is about Kate and Tyler. 

I have just read some other reviews about this book, there was talk about how there were too many characters, some typing errors...  I honestly, didn't pick up on any errors, but I was entranced by the story.  If there are errors (which I have read Best Seller's that had their share of typos and grammatical error and Lord knows that high-priced editors had to work on those books), human's are subject to error.  It's in our nature to make mistakes.

There were a few parts that seemed a little "high-strung" and perhaps some parts that weren't played out quite enough.  I feel as if the one thing that perhaps the author maybe missed out on was seeing a little more of Kate's sister.  It seemed a little unusual the gaps in their interactions and their storyline maybe could have been a tad more focused on.  However, it didn't play a big part in the big picture of the story.

If you enjoy lighthearted romance books, without all of the un-needed parts, then this would be a great story. The flow was so natural and really made sense.  It never felt forced.  I think when an author can have a lot of dialogue between characters and it feels like a natural conversation, instead of choppy, it's a true sign of whether or not an author has talent.  I will definitely be reading more books in this series.  

While, it's not a book I would have seeked out, it's a book that I definitely am glad to have been able to read. I promise, there are many times, even by my favorite authors that I cannot get past the first few pages.  I simply cannot make myself read a book if it holds no interest to me.  This book so easily grabbed my attention and was able to keep it.  That's a feat in itself.  I'm notoriously ADD and very bad about not finishing things I start...  

One of the things that I loved is that it was a perfect balance of regular book and faith based.  Christians are just normal people.  We have normal lives, with normal reactions.  I think that it's important as Christians to be able to reach non-believer's and not seem confrontational.  To show faith by our actions, not by our words.  This to me, was a perfect example of the way that we should incorporate faith into our lives.  Lead by example, let our lives be a testament and give glory to God, but not make people feel as if we are drowning them or being judgmental.  

This was a great story about letting go.  We all have had things that have wounded us deeply.  It's how we choose to live our lives and deal with the pain that shapes who we are and who we become.  When you hold on to the pain or anger, you allow bitterness to seep in and it soon engulfs your whole life.  Tyler was clearly a man who had been consumed with bitterness.  

Yet, you had Kate, who had herself gone through her own pain.  Yet, she chose to let go and let God and she was able to move on with her life.  Kate lead by example, she didn't judge Tyler for his pain and bitterness.  She showed him it's ok to be hurt.  She helped to show that he didn't need to hold on to it anymore.

I would rate this a 5 star.  I could careless if a book has some typos or grammatical errors, the fault can lie in the editing (ALTHOUGH, I never noticed any mistakes).  What matters to me, is does it make sense?  Does it capture my attention, does it feel forced?  Did the characters move the story forward?  To me, this book ticked all my boxes.  I look forward to reading more from Trisha Grace.

Thanks so much for taking time to read my lil' ol' blog!  

To contact me by email:  Email Sassy Gal



Book Review: Findo's Mousetrap by:Graham Paskett

Book Review:  Findo's Mousetrap

Buy on Kindle for $3.99: 
Findo's Mousetrap

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  These are my honest opinions and thoughts, and were no way swayed by anyone.

A little about the author:  Graham Paskett

There wasn't a mountain of information at my disposal at time of this review, but wanted to share a little about this author.  This is the information I found on Amazon. This is Mr. Paskett's debut novel.  Mr. Paskett began his career as a cub reporter on a weekly newspaper in Coventry (England?).  Once he finished his training, he continued working on several newspapers in the UK until eventually he changed careers and began PR in the oil industry.  Currently he runs his own successful PR consultancy business, specializing in gardening and retail.

The work of Findo's Mousetrap was started way back in 2000 on a trip to Australia, but it wasn't until 2011 that Mr. Paskett truly began his focus on his book.  He finally released his book on Amazon in 2012.

Findo's Mousetrap:

Ok.  So, I'm supposed to be completely honest.  Had I not received a copy of this, this wouldn't be a book I would even look twice at.  I know that it may sound "pedestrian" of me, but covers really are a huge part in grabbing someone's attention.  Now, after having read the book, I can see why the cover is the way it is. However, if the majority of the public shares my same views on the importance of covers, I'm afraid that it may find difficulty in the book market.  And, that's just honest.

What in the world is Findo's Mousetrap??  Ok, so I have to admit, when I was first approached about giving a review I was a little bit skeptical.  It just didn't sound like a book that I normally read.  So for the sake of would - be buyer's, I think it's essential to understand what exactly Findo's Mousetrap is.

Findo's Mousetrap is an invention that is kinda like a DVD of the real life past.  You of course have to know exact dates and the location of what historical event you are searching for, but if you have that info the machine can give a spotlight into the past.  I hope this might help you into understanding the title.

Now, the Book...

I know this book review is a little different from most of my reviews, but I have to assume that my audience might think the way I do.  The previously mentioned topics are truly some obstacles that I would find when coming across this book and looking to purchase.  I would need to understand what exactly it is I'm looking at reading.

So, I didn't have a high amount of expectation quite honestly.  I was just so thrilled to have been asked to read something, but I was afraid "What If I can't read it, or it's dreadfully boring??".  Having never been approached before it was a real worry I had. However, it was short lived once I opened the actual book. While, it isn't something I would have picked up on my own (because of the lack of understanding at what the book was), it was definitely a very interesting read.

The time period is present day.  Findo is our main character, and the mousetrap is a co-creation between him and his childhood friend, Mac.  We first meet Findo as he is about to be interviewed for the BBC on a radio station.  We also meet Dymphna Doyle, who will become a central figure as well.  

While the time period is present day, it's told in an almost old school tone.  There were some parts as I read, I felt I was reading a contemporary book. However, most of the time it felt like reading a Sherlock Holmes, because of some of the language and word choices.  I found myself drawn into the story.  I wanted to know more about the character's and their motivations.  I have to admit, it ended like nothing I imagined it would.

I have to admit that Dymphna Doyle wasn't a character that I found myself rooting for.  I had a strong dislike for her almost immediately. However, through the story those feelings did change.  

This story carries us from England, to Scotland and then to the US.  It is a story about familial obligations and how the past can somewhat stunt our growth from the pain and the fear of the unknown.  It also begs the question, should we peek into the past?  Sometimes, looking backwards can only cause more pain.  For myself, I was at a struggle with myself over the ethical merits of a machine that can so clearly peer into the past.  While, yes, there may be some great points to having such a machine, it could also peer into the very parts of us that we have worked so hard at overcoming.

However, it is a fictional machine. let's hope that there isn't a Findo's Mousetrap anywhere in our future.  I know for myself, I wouldn't want my children or grandchildren trying retrace my "big historical moments".  Sometimes the past is best left in the past.  However, Findo's Mousetrap is a marvel.  It's one of those things that can be a paradox.  While wonderful in many ways, one must think of the serious implications such a machine would bring to the lives of whomever it encountered.  Would you want to be responsible for the unknown effects a machine of that magnitude would have in the lives of those it touched?

Perhaps, I'm reading more into it, but those were questions that plagued me while reading this.  While I was in awe of how fantastic a contraption like the mousetrap would be, how daunting for the creator because it truly would be like opening up Pandora's Box.

This story was part invention, part love story, part historical.  Yet, for the most part it all worked.  There were a few parts that had me scratching my head wondering what the purpose of the scene was, as there was never anything else made mention of afterwards.  However, for the most part, it was a deeply enjoyable story.

I would hate for readers to miss out on the story of Findo, because of lack of understanding of what the story is about.  It truly was a great read and one I might have missed out on had it not been for this blog.  So, I am glad that I expanded my reading horizons.  For those who enjoy historical fiction, this will definitely be up your alley.  If historical fiction isn't your cup of tea and your prefer more of a contemporary romance, this also could work for you as well.  Although the writing is more in an old world tone (in my opinion), it's very much a story in present day and can appeal to a wide variety of people.  It isn't just a primarily romantic novel, nor just a scientific, it's a meld of a lot of things.  But it works.

If I were to rate it, I think it'd have to be a four star.  Only because there were a couple of spots to me that seemed to lack clear motivation and it confused me how this was supposed to move the story forward.  However, there were only maybe one or two scenes like that.  There were a couple of characters I wanted to know more of and felt that the story would have been more rounded had their plots been more focused on.  Sometimes it felt as if a character had been just dropped off the scene altogether and forgotten about.  But, as debut novels go, this was a really fantastic book.  One, I hope others can and will embrace and truly give it a try!

I always fear that I'm going to give too much away and in the process I end up being afraid that I haven't shared enough.  I hope that this helps you to get a good idea on what to expect from this book.  I hope that I have done it justice.

To find out more about Findo and Findo's Mousetrap:

To Purchase on Kindle:

REVIEW: A Place to Call Home by Carole Matthews

Book Review:  A Place to Call Home by Carole Matthews

Buy on Amazon: $3.99 Kindle

I have had the good fortune to read quite a few of Ms. Matthews books.  Her writing, unlike some authors, tends to have a wide variety of subject matters.  They all feel a little different.  Yet, they all have one thing in common:  They all manage to work.  She definitely know how to make her characters come to life for her readers.  You find yourself drawn to the lives of the characters she creates, wanting to live in the backdrop of her books.  She has become on of my favorite all-time authors.

This book, was a tad bit more complex than or serious, than most chick-lit books.  It had an all too common and too real subject matter.  However, Carole Matthews was able to write with such finesse that it wasn't too overly dramatic, not downplayed in anyway.

The story begins and we meet Ayesha and Sabina.  Ayesha, originally from Sri Lanka, had an arranged marriage.  A man her parents deemed to be worthy of her daughter, and someone who would provide her with a life she wouldn't be able to find in Sri Lanka.  They wanted a lot more for their daughter.  The life Ayesha got, was far from the wander filled life her family had hoped and intended to give to her.  She has been married now to Suresh for ten years.  

The highlight of the loveless, abusive marriage is her daughter Sabina.  Trauma from the abuse she has witnessed, has caused her to become mute.  She has lost her voice.  It is because of Sabina that Ayesha knows she cannot stay.  She must find her daughter a refuge.  So, in the wee hours of the morning, while everyone in the home is fast asleep, Ayesha takes her chance.

She flees Milton Keynes for the big lights in London.  It is in London that Ayesha and Sabina find refuge. The refuge is in the form of a house filled with broken people.  We meet Crystal, an almost thirty year old woman who has a secret in her past that keeps her from the best person she can be.  Crystal is one of the lighter sides of the story, but even Crystal has some pain.  

We meet Joy, a grandmother, whom hasn't seen her children or her grandchildren in quite sometime. When we first meet Joy, she's what seems to be a bitter and somewhat gruff woman.  Yet, she has some hidden depths and fears that have kept her from finding her happy ending.

Then we meet Hayden.  Hayden is a retired pop star with a tragic past.  Hayden has holed himself up in his sanctuary of a home for years, wounded by his past and paralyzed to move forward.

These five people who all have their own pain, find comfort in each other.  They form a magical bond and the time they spend in the "house of wounded souls" will be a truly magical time, that could never be duplicated.
They will learn from one another, and encourage each other to be their best selves.  

This was a beautiful and gripping story.  It had me mesmerized by the characters and what was going to happen next.  We should all have friends like people inside this story.  While this story shows pain, it also shows how hope can move mountains.  It's a story of overcoming yourself to be the best person you can possibly be.  It's a story about friendship, true friendship, that stands the test of time.

The bonds formed by the people in this story, are bonds every human should be able to have in their own lives.  I loved the way that Ms. Matthews was able to take such heartbreaking real life traumas and turn them into stories of hope and restoration.  Kudos to Ms. Matthews for such a beautiful story.  Thank you for sharing your gift with us all.  (And don't ever stop writing :)

This was definitely a five star book.  I definitely recommend if you haven't yet, to read this fabulous story.  You won't be sorry.  I love my happy endings.  Always.


$3.99 Kindle or read it FREE on Kindle Unlimted: 30 Day Free Trial

Miss Brenda & The Loveladies: The Review.

Miss Brenda & The Loveladies: Written by: Brenda Spahn & Irene Zutell

Brenda Lovelady-Spahn tells how she came to start what is now the biggest faith based program of it's kind. 


 
Lovelady Center is currently housed in Birmingham, Alabama. It houses at any one time up to 450 women and children. It is the largest facility of it's kind. There is no program like it. It's kind of unheard of to have a rehabilitation center that also houses children. Through the program, women are able to get the tools needed to once again become independent women. As a former graduate of Lovelady center, and one who has been to a few rehab centers, I can say it's focusing on God and the positives rather than drug use that is the key to it's success. Most programs you sit around in classes all day talking about nothing but drugs. Those programs don't fix you from the inside out. 

Most women who are in addiction or the drug lifestyle, have been severely abused and wounded. It was escaping those pains that lead them where they are. If you don't focus on the root of the problems, then they rear their ugly head time and again. Lovelady offers counseling, programs to help get your license back (most have had numerous traffic violations, causing them to lose their driving privileges).  They also have a legal department that aides in helping women get their legal issues taken care of.  As well as assistance in getting out of a universe relationships. They have a support group: Mother Without Custody, which is the only support group of it's kind, focused on helping mothers find solace with the support of others, to help navigate the hole created when you no longer have custody. The center is so respected in the community. I was amazed at the miracles I watched in the women's lives who were submitting themselves fully to the program. Many women have been there for years. It's a family. It's not just a program, once a Lovelady always a Lovelady. 

I received my copy as a giveaway on Goodreads months ago.  Despite having graduated the program and being a success story, I think I was scared to feel the emotions once again.  It's so not an easy thing to take a look at how you've hurt people. I knew that reading this book was sure to open some old wounds, and it kinda did.  That's ok though, sometimes we need to remember how far we've come. 

Having gone through the program, I was familiar with a lot of the stories told in the book. During my time there, there were always whispers about how Brenda and Melinda (the founder and her daughter) were convicts themselves.  You would hear the ladies bash them and say how those women were no better than they are. True, they aren't perfect. However, did you ever play that gossip game when you were growing up?  You know, the one where you form a circle and someone whispers something in someone's ear and each person continues the secret until you get to the end.  The last person says out loud what has just been told to them, 9/10 times the ending secret is no way close to what was said originally. That's what it was like at Lovelady with Miss Brenda, there were a whole bunch of stories, but they had been twisted so much, that the truth was so far from what was being told. 

I admit, after reading he first chapter, I was disappointed.  I felt that a huge chunk of the aLovelady story was being overlooked. However,meh disappointment was short lived as Inread the very next chapter. It was a brush with the law, that lead to the events that would lead to what is now Lovelady Center. 

This was a heartwarming story of hope and grace. It's not a pretty picture though. There are some dark, dark things within the pages of this book. But, to leave those painful parts out, you would miss out on the essence of Loveladies. When you see a prostitute or a girl who is clearly a drug addict, you most times don't see the real person behind the facade. You see what life has made her into. You don't see the one-time innocent little girl that began at a very early age being abused by the people who were supposed to be her protectors. 

Most addicts you meet, if you were to sit down and listen to their stories, you would find such similarities.  The details and the events may differ, but the subject matter is usually a common thread. Sexual abuse. Most times, indescribable abuse. The kind of abuse that causes women to separate themselves and sometimes even from multiple personality disorder. We are all built with inside defense mechanisms. And like all of our body chemistry, each persons mechanisms are different. Some people can look around at the life laid before them and rise above, making themselves better despite what life has thrown them. However, a good majority wind up turnin to ways to numb the pain.

In this story, we get to hear from a few of the beginning Loveladies. One is Miss Shay. Anyone whom has ever crossed the threshold of Lovelady Center, knows Miss Shay. She is now in charge of Intake. She is the face of aLovelady Center in so many ways. She was an original Lovelady. She is one of the original six who got off of that first van and into Miss Brenda's personal home. She was the toughest case. The image of her scared Miss Brenda silly, and made her wonder what in the world she had signed up for. 

We all have our own Miss Shay stories. I'm not different. It was Miss Shay on October 15, 2011, that tried getting me a bed. She was going to bypass the huge group room you first go into and actually give me a room with just two other ladies. However, she looked at me. She asked me what drugs I was on. I broke down and sobbed. I admitted that the night before I had taken a suboxone. I had been in jail (I was court ordered to Lovelady) for two months and upon leaving I was a ball of nerves. Even going to McDonalds was a stress. I couldn't imagine these women who some of them had been locked up for ten plus years,having stepped into a whole new world. Just two months caused me to be a nervous wreck. 

Miss Shay told me I had already broken my promise to the court and she didn't know if they would let me stay or not. She made me sleep on he couch that night amid a 24 hour prayer furnace going on and loud music being played at the highest of decibals. It was a scary time. I spent the first four days scared to death that I was going to go to prison because I had messed up. This was probably the major factor in the rest of my journey at Lovelady and kept me from relapsing, I had relapsed already upon entering and it was enough to put the fear of God and AL D.O.C. In me (Alabama department of corrections- prison). 

In the book, Miss Shay lays her darkest moments on the line. She tells of her own painful upbringing and the pain behind the bad choices she would make. These stories made me cry. I could feel Miss Shays pain as an innocent young girl, being exposed to things no child should ever have to experience. I have a deep love for Miss Shay. We all do. She definitely can look through your bull shit  and see the truth. She knew while I was working under her in housekeeping, despite being busy in front of her,that Inwas nothing but a slacker. It was true. I worked hard at not working. I hated cleaning. Still do. Please don't ever drop by unannounced. I need a good week to prepare, before company enters. 

This was such an awesome book. It literally kept me up. I went to bed after reading the first 88 pages, only to keep waking up to read more. Finally, I submitted to God waking me up and at 5 after only a few hours of sleep, opened the book until I had devoured every word. While this was a heartwarming story. It isn't a story for the weak. If you can't look at the pain of others, at the darker side of reality, then you might not want to read this.  The stories within the pages captivated me. It was like an invisible pull,metaphor kept me glued to one spot. 

This is a story that tells how one crazy white woman was able to break through the boundaries and create a place of refuge, a place where loves are rebuilt and hope is restored.  What began as seven women in Miss Brenda's own personal home, quickly grew to a center that houses now, 450 women. Brenda Lovelady-Spahn has been approached by several individuals and organizations to help to replicate the magic being done in this facility. There should be a Lovelady Center in every big metropolis area. If you have addicts,wounded people you need a place of refuge, a place where lives can be restored. 

This is a story that needs to be told. It is my hope that I can get some of my fellow bloggers to buy this book and give it a spotlight. I know my blog doesn't reach near enough people. 
I do also know, that I have made friends with some bloggers who do have a wide audience. This isn't our normal light,fun chick lit. This is a book that made me get out of my comfort zone and feel true human pain. 

I am so thankful that Miss Brenda submitted to God's will for her life. I wouldn't be sitting in my own home,with my Chikdren in the other room had it not been for her submission. I will always be a Lovelady. I am proud, not of the mistakes I have made, but of that I am an overcomer. 

I have lasting consequences for some of my mistakes. I have accepted that. I have also made positive changes. I no longer associate with family who don't have our best interests at heart. I choose to only surround myself with people who believe in me and want to see me succeed.  I've had to cut out really close family members and it was hard. But long overdue. tips it weren't for aLovelady center, and the confidence they helped me find, I doubt I would have found the strength to make the hard choices needed to succeed. 

To kinda summarize:  This is a story of how one woman managed to buck the system and build a place where lives are restored on a daily basis. It's the story if how it all began. The struggles that they faced, the opposition they managed to overcome to become the largest center of it's kind. It tells the story of seven original Loveladies that came straight from Tutwiler prison (the roughest women's prison in all of the US) to a mansion in Birmingham, Al. The women who showed up, were the toughest cases. They were the rejects. The hopeless cases, that the system had given up on. It tells their stories, of how they became the women that ended up in a women's prison.  It tells how they were sure, this was all a trick. It shows us where these women are today and how the Lovelady program helped turn them from hopeless cases, to integral parts of the Lovelady program. It's a story of hope and restoration. It isn't just about the shiny surface, it digs into the depths of darkness that these ladies were faced with. The heartache that caused me to be the rough, tough women that landed on Miss Brenda's doorstep, how through Gods grace they were able to transform from ugly ducklings into beautiful swans. 

Ms. Zutell beautifully captured the essence that is a Lovelady. She was also able to really capture the spirit of Miss Brenda. She was able to transform this story into a beautiful work of art.  The way in which she spoke, kept me wanting to devour every single word. She definitely did the Loveladies proud. She took this story of how one woman took on the government and brought hope to thousands of women and children and made it an easy, interesting read. Biographies are so not the normal reading for me.  I have a hard time keeping interest with a lot of books, but this kept me glued to one spot until every last word was read. 

Thank you Ms. Zutell for telling this incredible story and hopefully bringing to light the work behind one by the people at Lovelady Center. I truly hope that people will be able to walk away reading this and discovering the wounds that are deeply ingrained into those social misfits, that most people wouldn't give a second chance and seeing the people that they can be, instead of the things they have done. 

I'm telling you, you won't be disappointed if you buy this book. You will become lost in the lives of these women.  You will cry, you will be shocked and maybe even disgusted by some of the home truths shared by here women.  They laid it all on the line, in the hope of helping others find hope. 

Thank you Miss Brenda and Lovelady Center for helping a messed up chick like me find hope. Through Gods grace and mercy and through the Lovelady program and my Aunt, I was able to have my life restored. My children were out of my care for eight years. It is unheard of to get custody after such a long separation, yet here I sit today with custody. I am a Lovelady miracle. Thank you!!!  God has been so good to us. 

Thank you for loving a heart like mine!

To find out how you can help Lovelady Center, please visit: http://www.loveladycenter.org


To purchase Miss Brenda and the Loveladies:  
Miss Brenda and the Loveladies: A Heartwarming True Story of Grace, God, and Gumption
 (Kindle: $7.99). 

Find Irene Zutell: on Twitter @irenezutell

Another way you can help Lovelady center is to go to smile.amazon.com and every purchase you make on Amazon will go towards the non-profit of your choice (I chose Lovelady Center)

I beg you to consider helping either by purchasing their book or making a tiny donation. His is a program that truly is helping real women and Children. It costs a lot to run this center, $50,000 average just to keep the lights on every month!  

Thank you for taking time to read my review. I know this was a bit scattered. I have no computer to work on and as such, I can spend an hour working on a post only for all my work to disappear while using the app. This was the third attempt. My first was much better. It's taken me two and half hours to finish. 

Book Preview: Miss Brenda & The Loveladies

Miss Brenda & the Loveladies: A Story of Grace, God & Gumption

I have a gazillion books lying around that need to still be read.  I won this book on Goodreads months ago and it has, like many books I have bought, lain around while I picked up my usual comfort books "Chick-Lit". It was only just now, going through my bedroom and checking out my "unread" books that I picked this up and was convicted.  How could I have started a blog, won this book and this NOT been the first book I reviewed?

A Little Background on Me: The Ugly Side
Most of the people whom actually read this blog are folks I've never encountered personally. They are other book reviewers/ bloggers I have had he privilege to meet through Twitter and the blogging community. It's not always comfortable laying all our dirty laundry out for the world to take a gander at and be publicly criticized. But, sometimes it takes someone else's pain and misgivings to help others on their own journeys. 

To understand my journey, you need a little peek of my history.  I was born to a mom who had been abandoned by her husband during her pregnancy.  She would go on to marry three more men after I was born.  I was raised being told that my "Real dad" had abandoned me for his addiction. When I was around 11 my mom divorced my "adopted dad" and we moved very briefly to Florida. These were her wild times. Which, was a bit of a shock to my young system, because whilst married to my adopted dad we had lead a very stable life.  He was an eye doctor and we had a very normal and faith filled life. I was raised with a super strong foundation in church and God. Thank goodness for those early years, no telling where I would be now.

Me in 8th grade, perhaps?  Maybe 9th??

 
When we moved back to Alabama, she met and married my step-dad.  This was a huge change in my life.  Where I once had been raised in a very happy and uplifting family,mew now had a family in which the norm was cutting remarks and ways in which to bring each other down, not build you up.  It was also during these years and because if bad choices on my moms part that I was sexually abused by two separate family members. 

My Senior Pic

 
I truly believe that it was those things happening to me that caused a switch to be flipped inside my mom, because she lived in denial.  Even trying to blame me for the events. It was, needless to say, not an easy time. But, I was raised learning we should forgive, and so I did.  It wouldn't be until much later the effects of he trauma would start to seep through.

I hadn't really been raised with super right boundaries, it was my own morale code that prevented me from going out and partying with all the other kids.  I honestly preferred to spend my weekends at home watching movies with my family. I wasn't a nerd, just didn't feel the need to be out and getting plastered.  Pretty much judged the ones who did. 

Fast Forward a Few Years
I had made some not so great choices along the way.  However, it was after having my son (I was an unwed mother at 20), that I started "clubbing". I met my daughters father in a club shortly after a break-up.  I had seen a ton of documentaries of the drug "ecstasy" or "Rolling". It was during one of my nights out that Infirst tried "ecstasy". It then became an every weekend thing. I loved how it made me feel EVERYTHING. I had tried weed or marijuana in e past and was maybe a social drug user.
Me Pregnant the first time...


 
Then,I found myself pregnant once again, unlike the first time, I was terrified.  During my eighth month of pregnancy, my daughters father decided maybe he didn't want to be a dad after all.  So me and my son were left alone. I had no job, and no way of supporting myself. I had my daughter and shortly after have her, me and her father decided to give it another go.  We didn't move back in together, but he would come most weekends. 

During this time, I was introduced to lortabs as a recreational drug (had been prescribed them during my children's births or afterwards - I even requested a lower dosage after My son had been born that was how ignorant I was to the pain pill drug). I had no clue I as even using a drug. After all, cocaine was a drug. Lortab was a medicine since the doctor prescribed it. I guess looking back, I had been pretty sheltered to hose sorts of things. 

It still didn't get out of control until later.  When my daughter was about 18 months old I began dating Shaun (the man I am still with today).  My mother,many time I have ever started having a relationship always kicked me out, telling me if I was going to be with them, let them take care of me. A month after we started dating DHR (kinda like Child Protective Services) showed up at the house. They said they had received a report that Inwas stealing my moms meds and that my boyfriend was spending weekends with us at our home. 

Long story short, DHR left and was satisfied and weren't going to pursue it further. However, my mom had other plans. She kicked me out, along with my children. When I had nowhere to go, buy a friends shed, I decided I needed them to have a stable environment. I called my mom begging to come home (which let me tell you was not in anyway easy). She refused, I asked for her to at least let the kids come back. It was one thing for me to be living like that, but it was no way for a kid to manage.   She called DHR two days later and reported that I had abandoned them. 

I won't go all into every detail, I honestly didn't intend for this to get this long.  So, instead of waking me up.  It threw me into a depression and I relied on pain pills to get me through.  I got my children back within 7 months of losing them, despite not having a stable income (they had received a report against my mother- she ALSO had custody of my step-sisters child). I wasn't anywhere near ready for them, but we managed. I had custody for a year and a half. 

During this time, I still continued to use pain pills. But, it had gotten worse. Where I had once taken a few lortabs it became OxyContin. For those unfamiliar, OxyContin is a pain pail drug used to help those with cancer with their major pain.  It became an addiction I "managed" to a full blown out of control problem. Within two weeks I was pawning everything I owned to buy a $70 pill!  I was out of control. I went to my mom, who was giving me my lortabs, and told her never to give me another that I was done. I was tired or relying on a pain pill or anything to be able to make it through the day.  I asked for help. 

Instead of helping me through it, like with a rehab program, etc. she insisted that I could call DHR and they would assist me find an outpatient program.  That didn't happen, within two weeks I lost custody of my children once again. Despite the fact that I had already gone through the withdrawals and begun my clean time. I remained clean for three months,until entering a short term rehab program in which I met new addicts with more connections. So, my clean time was scrapped. 

The depression and guilt made me withdraw further into myself and my addiction. A year later, a psychiatrist (my sons dr) told me about a new program, suboxone,me hitch helped people like me who struggled I staying clean. I got on he program and started being able to manage my life. However, the damage had been done and I was still spinning majorly out of control. Although my drug problems were managed, my life problems were not.  During my addiction, I stole some checks from my father on law and managed to get a felony under my belt. I had to spend months in and out of jail because of it.
Me at a low point before entering Lovelady

I had once again managed to not go to probation and was looking at prison. I was scared. Rehab had been on my mind a lot. One day I woke up and realized my son was 12, my daughter was 9 and I was running out of time. I knew hat I needed somewhere to go to help me get my life back.  I was tired of basically being homeless, my husband and I couldn't afford to have our own place, so we lived in a car.  We slept outside a truck stop where we would shower,meat,watch tv etc. it was bad. I had definitely hit rock bottom. 

I had heard of Lovelady, a rehabilitation center where people actually had their children with them. It gave me hope that I could one day get custody back.  I turned myself in, after contacting the director (Melinda McGehee) and submitted myself to Gods will. I knew the power was out of my hands and could only hope I would be given a third chance. I was given that chance. 

In October of 2011 (I think it was 2011), I entered Lovelady center.  I had been consumed with "Getting my kids back". However, once I was there, I let go. I didn't know if that was my journey. I just wanted whatever it was God wanted for my life. I knew that I hadn't gone through all of this pain for nothing. I wanted my testimony and journey to be able to help others, even if it was just one person.
Me at church at Lovelady

 
The love and acceptance the program had, helped to rebuild my confidence. In my own social circles, I was the enigma. I was he weird one who was a drug addict and a felon.  No one could relate to not havig their children.  At Lovelady, I had an automatic sisterhood with these other hurting women. Most addicts you meet,mid you get to know them are some of the kindest hearted individuals. We feel deeply and most times have been terribly abused by those who were supposed to be our protectors. We escaped through drugs,MIT was the only way we could deal with the pain, by numbing ourselves.
Me at my graduation...  And a friend...

 
Upon graduating the program,quite honestly I wasn't in any hurry to leave.  I had a job making decent money, and was settled and in a comfort zone. However, God had other plans. The job I had, caused me to spend most of my time away from the comfort of the center. We had two mobile homes in a whole other city. We helped worked with adults and teens who couldn't take care of themselves. I loved that job. I was really good too. 

I had a friend who was having a sexual relationship with a supervisor.  I knew of this relationship and even assisted in covering it up, and warning her,when I  knew they were headed to check her messages. Well, she managed to erase all her messages, except my warning message. I was pretty much fired on the spot. While, I wasn't kicked out, I had lost my only source of income and the program cost $150 a week. I was angry and bitter.

In stepped my estranged aunt, with whom we had no contact for many years.  Within two weeks of moving in with my aunt, my daughter (whom was NOT under DHR care, nor was there an open case) was in my aunts custody and I was allowed to live there as well.  It was a miracle. It would have cost a ton of money and been extremely hard to have my child removed from her stable environment after so many years.  That was in July. In Septemeber, I received unsupervised visits with both of my children. Cody was staying a boys home and had his own program he had to complete before we could be reunified. 
Me & My kids shortly after receiving custody. 

 
December that years was the first Christmas we ever spent alone, as a family. January 2013, I received a phone call from my attorney, without stepping inside a court room, I had received full custody of both of my children.  It was a scary, but exciting time.  

Things definitely haven't been all sunshine and roses.  I struggled for months with a depression, that pretty much isolated me from my family and made me unable to get out of bed.  I also have struggled with an illness that has ravished my body as well as my mind.  It helped, I believe to exacerbate the depression.  I still struggle with this illness and as such have been unable to regain my weight or my energy.  I still have really bad days. It isn't easy getting custody back when your kids are so grown. It's hard to rebuild trust and to establish boundaries,as well as morales. It's almost like adopting kids at 14 and 12. It's not easy.  We take it one day at a time. 

The blogs I write, as well as my little online business have helped to give me a purpose, as well as a sense of identity. We still face major financial struggles, my husband recently discovered that he will lose his job come September and that's a scary thing. But, we have faith that God will prepare a place for him. I know God will provide our needs. It's another reason, that I try really hard to find ways in which to provide for our family. Because of my past, an outside job, isn't an easy thing to find. I also have a child that has extreme behavioral issues that makes it necessary to be available at any time, I never know when a phone call might come. 
Me today.

 
There are long term consequences to my addiction, that will be hard to overcome, but I am ok with that. It makes it a little more difficult for me, but I'm a survivor. I accept the consequences for my actions. Besides a job. It has affected my physical appearance. You won't ever see a big open mouth smile. But those are just little things. God truly restored this chick and my family. I've had to make some major changes, and cut some unhealthy people out of my life, but it was all worth it to get myself back. 

None of this could have happened without the work of Brenda Lovelady Spahn and the work being done by her at Lovelady Center.  I am forever in their debt and will always look to the Lovelady Center as a home away from home.  Amazing things have come from this place. What began as just a handful of women out of her own home (the hardest of cases on release straight from Prison) has grown into a program that houses at any one time over 400 women and children.

It's an incredible story and the only program I believe in the US of it's kind. It's for certain, the largest. I hope that you will take the time to read the story of Miss Brenda & The Loveladies. It's definitely a heart warming story. 

This was a post, that was more about my background.  But, I am a testament to this program. A true life example of the miracles at have transpired through the work behind one by Miss Brenda. The book is available in Kindle format as well as hardcover. I will soon be doing a book review as well.

It isn't easy to put all the not so lovely things about yourself out there for the world to judge.  I am quite aware of the mistakes I have made, and I still make mistakes everyday. For some reason, I haven't managed to attain perfection. While, I definitely have regrets, I also realize that I had to go through this for a reason. God sees the big picture. I hope that my story can go in some small way, to helping others with similar struggles. 
 
Miss Brenda and the Loveladies: A Heartwarming True Story of Grace, God, and Gumption

Win a Pre-Loved Copy of Jill Mansell: Solo


Recently I purchased a used copy of Jill Mansell's book, "Solo". I unknowingly purchased two.  So, I decided to give someone  a chance at winning the extra copy, instead of returning it.  After all,the main reason I began this blog was to share my love of authors like Jill Mansell with others.  I hope that I am able to attract some readers who have yet to read a Jill Mansell book!  She truly is one of the great Chick-Lit writers.

The giveaway will end on 7/19. The winner will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter!  Thanks for all who participates!


Winner will receive (1) Copy of Solo by: Jill Mansell
 


 

Review: The Runaway Actress by Victoria Connelly

The Runaway Actress
Buy on Amazon: The Runaway Actress $6.64

The Runaway Actress

This was my first Victoria Connelly novel, I believe, although her book Molly's Millions is either one I've  been wanting to read, or have read a few years ago.  Regardless, I have seen her come up quite often in my Amazon recommendations and so a couple of months ago when on my book buying frenzy, this was one of the books purchased.  I also had purchased "A Weekend with Mr. Darcy" as ell as " Mr. Darcy Forever". Sadly, I haven't had a chance to read either, as in the midst if all that buying, one day I received an empty envelope.  No clue what it was supposed to be, it wasn't until contacts the company on the envelope and through a little digging, discovered it had been the "Weekend with Mr. Darcy", it had been the only copy I could find  in the states and haven't gotten around quite yet to reordering it.  Oh well, I didn't know if reading "Mr. Darcy Forever" would mess me up in anyway, so please fellow bloggers, readers if you have advice regarding this, Pls let me know!

Ok....  I guess I should talk about the book.....  Tangents... Enough said!

I wonder if I'm the only blogger in the world who goes off script...  Probably just me. I guess I won't be cashing in my millions anytime soon...  Shucks. 

I'm not quite sure what I was envisioning "The Runaway Actress" to be.  Maybe a little more Danielle Steele type drama with sex and drama, which is probably why it took me a little bit of time to get around to reading it.  I was pleasantly surprised when it was more along the Katie Fforde / Jill Mansell style of reading. Those are more my cup of tea, so to speak.  

Hollywood

The Runaway Actress in question is Connie Gordon, a superbly huge Hollywood actress.  When we meet her, she seems to be completely dissatisfied with her life.  She finds herself looking around her and questioning everything about her life.  She's starting to feel a bit suffocated by it all...  

Meanwhile on the other side of the world: Lochenbrae: Scotland

The Connie Gordon fan Club Headquarters resides in a little "one horse" type town in the middle of nowhere; Lochenbrae, Scotland.  Lochenbrae's only claim to fame is the connection to Connie Gordon through Connie's own mother! Who has Londonderry moved on.  Maggie Hamill, who has been running the Connie Gordon Fan Club for the past five years, writes to Connie once more as she has often over the years, inviting her to visit the head quarters of her fan club.  But Maggie isn't holding her breath. She can only imagine the glamorous life that Connie Gordon has and knows it's highly unlikely that Lochenbrae would be anything of interest to someone with such a fabulous life.  
The whole of Lochenbrae seem to be involved in some way or another so the Connie Gordon fan Club.  Although, the Connie Gordon fan club isn't the only thing they have going on.  The next most exciting part of Lochenbrae would possibly be the LADS group, the local Amateur theatre group.  Every year the group performs a play around Christmas time.

Hollywood Meets Lochenbrae

Back in Hollywood, after a run in with a former boyfriend, Connie is more desperate than ever.  She's tired of all the fakeness and lies that Hollywood life has to offer.  In the midst of her crisis, she finds the Connie Gordon fan clubs letter in which Maggie has once again invited Connie.  Connie vaguely recalls receiving other invites, and now the invitation is starting to seem an answer to her prayers. Next thing she knows, she's arrived to Lochenbrae, home of the Connie Gordon fan club.

Connie, who has made the long journey looking for peace and a place to escape, soon begins to wonder if perhaps escaping to her "Fan Club Headquarters" might not have been the best way to escape all the adulation she was so longing to avoid. 

It doesn't take long for Connie's life to become entwined with those of the people of Lochenbrae, but who can she really trust?  She forms an almost immediate bond and friendship with Maggie, but some of the things Maggie has been doing catches Connie off guard and makes her question Maggies motivations and whether she can truly trust her or not.

This is one of those books that can be a bit difficult to describe, because you don't want to give too much away. I loved all of the characters inside the pages of this fun story.  You have a stereotypical type innkeeper, who makes you feel all warm and cozy.  A volatile, one-time famous London director who has some secrets and a past he's been running from.  A local whose obsessed with Westerns, a resident heartthrob, a fun-loving brother (of Maggie), a nosey busy-body whose anything but pleasant, and a sleazy local reporter whose would be chomping at the bit to sink his teeth into a good story.  This book definitely wasn't short of some strong, fun characters.

It was an easy read.  It was a story, that I wasn't forcing myself to read, but was enjoying and savoy ring each moment. It was a heartwarming story with characters I fell on love with.  It definitely leaves me wanting to read more of Ms. Connelly's books. She definitely has a gift of capturing characters that you can relate to, as well as emotionally connect with.  She managed to throw a couple of curve balls along the way.  Bits that were totally unexpected. 
If you love the small town, village type settings and the stories that go along with those backdrops, then you will fall in love with e characters housed in this book.  Her writing style reminds me of a cross between a lighter Danielle Steele mixed with Jill Mansell with a tad Katie Fforde thrown in for good measure!

I would definitely rate this in the 5 Star category. I could very well see this being acted I on the big screen. 

Have you read Victoria Connelly's Darcy series?  If so, will it totally mess me up of I skip ahead to "Mr. Darcy Forever"?  

That's all folks!

Sassy Gal
 (To purchase The Runaway Actress on Kindle, please see the link at top of page (Below pic). 

Thanks!!  Have a blessed day!

Social Media & Books


With the increasing use and popularity of social mediums such as: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. the world of buying is changing.  Gone are the days when an author could happily live in seclusion and enjoy the wealth of their success.  With self-publishing becoming an increasing popular venue for new authors to get their books out there, the competition is fierce.  You could view it as a great thing, or a not so great thing.  However, I believe that it will be increasingly important for authors and other companies that's success relies upon readership or customer sales to integrate themselves into the fabric of social communities.  This social aspect is a great thing for those less known authors to find a voice amongst the already well known authors.  It will, in my opinion, be those newbies who take the time to interact with fans, engage the blogging community, that will find success.  In a sense, writers definitely have more control than they probably did prior to the explosion of the www.

I, myself, have begun to make purchasing decisions based on social interaction.  Just recently, I picked up a book I probably wouldn't have given a second glance, had it not been for the author having a very active social presence.  It was through her self promotion on Twitter, that I found myself purchasing her book.  Once, I actually read it, I found myself wanting more.  So, with just a little bit of effort put forth to making herself known to the social readers community, it helped to at least add one new customer.  

There are many authors out there who are extremely active on a Twitter, as well as other social media.  It's the authors who take a few minutes of their day to acknowledge their fans, that I find myself rallying and wanting to spend $15 on a new book.  Having a limited amount of income, it prohibits me from being frivolous with my money.  So, for someone like me, who has to watch her pennies; a strong social presence makes a difference.

I'm not going to generalize and say that Anerican authors in general don't seem to take their fans seriously, or seem to appreciate them.  However, sadly, it does seem a majority of them don't value the whole social experience.  I don't know if it's that they are so uber successful that they don't feel
that they need the extra sales that could possibly come from a little social interaction, or if they are
just truly blind to the social aspect of sales.  

Just recently I have started blogging.  I have done most of my reviews on UK authors, and each and every UK author that I have reviewed as well as tagged in a post with the review attached, responded and most times retweeted the review and thanked me.  I recently did a list of the top kindle books under $5 and most retweeted that as well.  Most even thanked me for including them on the list.

I, also included a couple of not so well known American authors and they responded and thanked me as well (As well as RT the post). However, I have done two reviews on two bigger American authors and tagged them both in the tweets for the review.  Neither author so much as acknowledged the tweets.  I had tweeted one author several times praising her work as I read her book.  But all I could hear was a whole bunch of nothing.

 Now, these are two pretty successful authors, they have a very strong fan base that will probably always be there.  One of the authors is among my top five favs, and will likely remain there.  So, they may not ever see a change in their bottom line.  Although, I have purchased two full priced new books from two of the authors that ARE hugely involved in the social community.  While the other two, that are not highly visible, while they both have new books that have recently come out, I haven't had a desire to shell out the big bucks yet on their books.  I honestly didn't make a connection until I was going back over this post after having already posting and finding, of course a TON of clerical errors.  So, it wasn't even a conscious choice on my part, but it may well have been a subconscious decision.

Most authors I have encountered, truly seem to appreciate the world of bloggers. They see how bloggers, in general are beneficial to their business.  However, it seems only those (Americns) who are hungry for success, seem to really appreciate the whole blogging world.  Now, I am super new to the blogger community, only being active now for three weeks.  So, perhaps if I had more than the 1500 hits on my page, maybe it might have been a different story.

No, I don't hold myself to be super important.  I know that I'm just a pion in the world of blogging. I may be the only person who currently feels that social interactions are the future for businesses.  However, it's my opinion that the need to be active with your fans is only going to increase, as the world is becoming more and more socially active on the WWW.  

I, for one, hope that the American authors will soon take notice of this trend and hop on board.  After all, I may not be the most important person, but I still have a voice and it can be quite time consuming when preparing a review.  Not only am I taking the time to read the books, I am researching the authors, linking their social connections and helping to promote them in general.  It can take me all day to prepare a review (amid distractions).  

Am I the only one who makes purchases based on social interaction?  It doesn't even have to be me with whom the author has socialized with.  When I see that an author is very present on the feeds, it makes their presence stick out more and make them more in my thoughts. So, when I go to make purchases on Amazon or Book Depository and am trying to decide which book I should purchase, it's those who are active that are in the forefront of my mind.

Now, I possibly am the only person who feels this way.  Others may think I'm quite insane.  But there are lots of people clamoring for the mighty dollar (or pound), and there are only so many to be spent.  So a lot of different factors go into making buying decisions, but I personally believe social interactions are going to begin playing a bigger role in our decision making. At least for those of is with whom are big into the whole social world.

Ok. That's it. Hope I haven't offended anyone..... 

Much love!!

Sassy Gal 💋



Under $5 Kindle Deals

Best of Under $5 Kindle Deals

So, if you are like me, you read incredibly too fast to constantly afford to be paying $12 plus for new books. I seriously could not afford my reading addiction, if it weren't for Amazon 99 cent specials and the amazing under $5 deals I find.  Thanks to the publishers and Amazon or whomever is responsible for setting the prices, that they sometimes lower the prices on some truly fabulous reads.

I have tirelessly scoured Amazon to bring you books that are truly worthy of being the best, in the hope that you can find some new to you authors as well as some great deals.  This list only contains books that I have personally read and found to be 4 star minimum quality books.  Of course I am a tad biased, because I think almost all UK books are five stars...  

Here we go....  Are you ready???  This is by NO means a complete list of all the fab books under $5, just a highlight of great deals currently going on.  So, please know it's not meant to be a complete list, or the list would go for miles.  There are, after all, an amazing amount of great books under $5.

And the WINNERS are......
All books are full length books.  

To purchase these books, simply click the pics.  It will take you directly to it's corresponding Amazon page.  At least, I hope it does.

Two Fab Reads by: Milly Johnson
Ok, I feel as if I sound like a broke record when I continue to go on and on about the fabulousness that is Milly Johnson.  I fear a restraining order is imminent.  Regardless, she is absolutely a master of her craft.  She always delivers fantabulous characters in quirky settings and wonderfully imperfect mishaps along the way.  I ALWAYS manage to get NOTHING done while reading one of her tales, as I can't manage to tear myself aways from the characters she creates.  Just trust me, you so need to try her if you haven't yet.

              Both of these fab books are just $1.99

Summer Day Dreams & A Cottage by the Sea by: Carole Matthews
These are just two of the fab under $5 deals by Carole Matthews.  Carole Matthews is one of the best top notch UK authors.  I know I haven't spoke much about her, I need to reRead her books, so I can give a fresh perspective on this fab author.
 
           Both are just $3.99

By Trisha Ashley:
One of my favorite UK authors, Trisha Ashley has a unique way of transporting you to the little villages nestled inside her fabulous imagination.  I've read most all of her books, and they always manage to hit the spot.  Most of Ms. Ashley's books can be purchased for less than $8, making it quite affordable to purchase up all her fab books.

.99            $1.99

Katie Oliver:
All of Katie Oliver's books are currently under $5.  She's a fairly new American author (I thought she was from the UK- which is kinda  compliment from me).  This definitely is a good place to start.


  Just .99 for this fab books.  ALL OF HER BOOKS are under $4!!!

Ali McNamara
A very fun, interesting romp on a deserted island...  What could be more fun??

$2.99

WENDY HOLDEN A fab author, with whom after reading one book, I quickly devoured them all.

 $3.03 (a kinda odd number, but still it's under $5!!)

MARY KAY ANDREWS
Mary Kay Andrews is my favorite US author, by far.  All of her books are loaded with southern slang and tons of humorous scenes.  If you haven't yet experienced this fab author, I urge you to do so.  One of the books on this list is Savannah Breeze,it can be read as a stand alone, but it is a follow up to Savannah Blues.  Two of Ms. Andrews' funniest novels.  You will LOVE Wheezie

 $1.99         $3.79

Kathryn Player
A debut novel, Moody not Broody is a hilarious, non-stop comedic ride, that will have you doubled over in pain from laughing so hard.  I am so ready for Kathryn Player to write another delicious novel.  


 $2.99

Lucy Robinson
ok.  So, I'm somewhat cheating with these recommendations.  I haven't actually been able to sit down and read these yet, although I have purchased and they are patiently waiting on my Kindle app for me to devour them.  So, I can't actually rave about them YET....  However, I'm thinking that they are going to be winners.


              $2.99 (each are $2.99) (or Free for Prime Readers)

Jenny Oliver
A new to me author.  Super cute and fun books.  These were " I'm broke but need a good book" purchases.  Yet, I'm super glad that I was able to discover this fabulous author.  These books are longer than a short story, yet a little smaller than a full length novel.  Making them a great choice for a quick read when you don't have a huge lot of time to spare.

   $ .99           $2.51


Jenny Hale
Ok, so this is another cheat...  I haven't yet read this author as of today.  However, she is on my long list of NEED TO READ.....  I wanted to include her because she is extremely active on social networks and is another American author.  All of my lists are seriously lacking in the American author department.  It isn't that there aren't fab American authors, because there really are.  It's just I have found that I seem to be drawn to village type settings.  I look forward to reading her books because she is compared with some of the above fab authors, that I already know I love.  SO, maybe give her a shot and we can gab together on the discovery of this newish American Author.

              Both are just: $2.99


Elle Lothlorien

SO, this was another add-on I felt needed to be included.  I own most of her books and I absolutely ADORE them all.  These are some other books I need to reRead so I can do a fresh review.  They are such fun books!  I know you will absolutely adore these modern day spins on our favorite fairytales.

  $2.99         $4.99

OK OK OK  I am going to stop adding books now....  Goodness I love books.  I have read way too many I think.  Oh well....  

This List Could Go for Miles...

So, I could definitely keep going and going.  The above list is sooooo not a complete list of all the fabulous books that you can find under $5.  I know that if you haven't yet read the above Milly Johnson titles, I would definitely be snapping those up before the prices go back up.  I am one of those neurotic people who just for fun or maybe out of boredom will just go through Amazon looking up books.  I like finding low priced books for when I am in need of a book fix, but don't want to wait for the post to deliver a hard copy.

I have been fortunate to find some lovely authors by seeking low priced items.  Authors, I may not have ever tried if it weren't for the low price.  Please know that just because an item is low priced, doesn't mean it's lacking in quality.  A lot of publisher's will set a lower price, hoping to attract new readers, therefore finding a new customer for the other books.  It works for me.  I started out reading low priced Milly Johnson and now think nothing about spending $10 or more for one of her books, because I know it's worth it and I definitely want my money to help her continue to be able to do what she's so lovely at. 

Notable Mentions
Some books that just missed that $5 price tag....  These books are above the $5 mark, but definitely wanted to mention them, because while a bit more expensive they are definitely worth the extra prices.  Please note:  I am only mentioning authors with whom didn't have books in the above mentioned.  The authors noted above most probably had books also that just missed the price mark.

Jill Mansell- (Most all of her Kindle books can be purchased for less than $10)

My Kindle Library- Am I obsessed????



$6.15           $6.15

Katie Fforde- Ok, Katie Fforde is definitely in my TOP 5 of favorite ALL TIME authors.  Along with Jill Mansell, Milly Johnson, and Mary Kay Andrews.  I have all of her books, minus The Perfect Match (which I am hoping will come down a tad in price before I purchase).  Her books are like a warm, cozy blanket on a snowy night.  Most of her Kindle Books sell for: $7.59 




                        ALL $7.59

I am certain that a good many of you have already read these fab books, but I truly hope that this somehow makes it to some US readers, who have yet to discover the joys of UK chick lit.  I KNOW that there are a gazillion others that I probably should have included.  Please know that this was a price based list and in no way a list of all of the fab books.  I tried to highlight a few of the awesome American authors as well as UK.  I tend to get so obsessed with my UK authors that I am very bad at neglecting that fabulous American ones as well.

One of the great things about all of the authors on this list is their accessibility to fans.  Each and every author on this list are very active on social networks and truly appreciate their fans.  That speaks volumes to me as an avid reader.  I like knowing that we as readers are appreciated.  These ladies will take time out aof their days to say thank you when you rave over their work.  That deserves a huge kudos.

I eventually want to have easy to get to links to each of their individual networks, but like everything with my blog, it is a work in progress.  As this blog is just a few weeks old, it's still in a growing pains stage as well as seeking it's identity.

I love feedback from the community, so always feel free to comment!

Thanks so much!

Until we meet again!

XOXO

Sassy Gal

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