Saturday, February 25, 2017

With Love For Romantic Books Cold - The Winter People by Rebekah L. Purdy - Book Review, Interview & Giveaway

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Review by Suze

Salome is afraid of winter. This is the result of falling in her grandparents' pond when she was a little girl. Because she heard voices before she fell in and when she was brought to the surface she's had many years of psychiatric treatment. Is she really imagining things though? The voices told her to stay away and that is exactly what she's done. When her grandparents have to travel to Arizona for the cold season because of health reasons, they ask Salome to keep an eye on their property. This means she has to overcome her fears. Every day she has to fulfill a certain amount of tasks and her grandmother stresses she shouldn't forget.

Salome isn't completely alone. One of her grandmother's friends, Nevin, helps her with the gifts she's supposed to leave on a daily basis and she considers him a friend. At school Colton, her secret crush, wants to go out with her. Salome's best friend Kadie regularly takes her to a coffee shop where they meet Gareth. The guys have all promised to protect Salome, but are they speaking the truth and why does she need protection? There are secrets she has to uncover for her own safety. Who can she trust and why does she keep seeing strange and dangerous beings others can't see, is she going crazy again or is something more sinister going on?

The Winter People is a great winter story. Salome is a bit na├»ve. She's always been protected and she does what people order her to do, because she's been told she can't trust her own ears and eyes, but is that really the case? I couldn't wait to find out who or what was behind the awful things that keep happening to her. Slowly she starts to believe in herself and during that process she also becomes more confident and eventually she can be certain of her own judgment, that was amazing to see. Salome has a lot to overcome and she transforms from a scared little girl into a strong woman who can make her own choices.

Rebekah L. Purdy writes about an intriguing magical world. I loved the way she uses the seasons. When the weather changes, Salome's life changes as well. Because of Salome's fears the story instantly gets a cold and creepy atmosphere when she's outside, which is something I liked very much. She needs protection, but who can give it to her? I enjoyed reading about the guys, who are all interesting and I loved finding out more about their characters. Salome has a lot to learn and she doesn't have a long time to figure things out. I was fascinated by her story and the lovely fitting ending made me smile. The Winter People is a wonderful romantic first book in a series and I look forward to reading the rest of the stories.
About Rebekah L. Purdy

I was born and raised in Michigan (just look for the mitten-shaped state on the map). I’ve lived here most of my life other than the few years I spent in the U.S. Army. At which time I got a chance to experience MO, KS, SC, and CA.

I work full time for the court system and in my free time I write YA stories. Pretty much any genre within the YA realm is game for me, but my favorites are fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, thrillers, light sci-fi, and some time travel.

I also have a big family–I like to consider us the modern day Brady Bunch. When my hubby and I met and got married, he had 3 children from a previous marriage, I had 2 and we have 1 together. It’s a lot of fun though.

And I can’t forget my other family members–yep, we’ve got some pets: 4 dogs, 3 cats, and 1 turtle. Everyone in the family has one…I won’t bore you all with their names (unless you really want to know). Okay, you talked me into it! Jack, Pearl, Grr…(yes that’s my dog’s name), Leia, Callie, Mooshoo, Grouchy, and Sorbert. Other than writing some of my other hobbies include: reading (mostly YA of course), singing, swimming, football, soccer, running, camping, sledding, church, hanging with my kids, and traveling.

I belong to a fabulous writing group called YA Fiction Fantatics (YAFF) and you guessed it we all write YA!

Repped by Frances Black of Literary Counsel

And that’s me in a big ‘ol nutshell.


The Winter People Series

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1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Rebekah Purdy, I live in Michigan and have for most of my life. By day I do enforcement for the court system here, and by night I write YA books  I have 6 kids and LOTS of pets…
2. What makes your heart beat faster?
Sunsets on Lake Michigan. Seriously one of the most beautiful things you’ll EVER see!!
3. If you could create the perfect romantic day what would it look like?
Taking a hike up along the shores of Lake Michigan in the Upper Peninsula and having a picnic, while listening to the waves crash in.
4. Who is your favorite romantic couple?
Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy (LOL)
5. Could you describe what romance means to you?
Romance to me is like an “extension” of loving someone. Like you want to do kind, sweet, loving gestures to remind them of that love.
6. Do you find it difficult to write about romance?
Sometimes. It really depends on the characters I’m writing about/the storyline. Other times, it’s like you know these characters are just meant to be.
7. Can you tell us about your most romantic experience?
Hmmm…I’d have to say the time my hubby surprised me with a weekend away. He’d contacted family to come stay with our kids, then told me to pack a bag and he took me out of town. It was a spur of the moment “date” weekend.
8. What kind of music do you like to listen to when you're in a romantic mood?
Pretty much any kind of music, but I LOVE a lot of the soft rock songs or the pop love songs (Taylor Swift, Adele, 50s music, boy band music).
9. Which country personafies romance for you and why?
To me, I think Ireland. Just because it’s such a beautiful country and there are SO many places to just lose yourself…and I kind of love the accents and music over there (LOL).
10. What can we expect from you in the future?
More contemporary stories. I have a couple new contemporaries coming out here in the next 1-2 years. YA Romance FTW. LOL. So I’m plugging away with edits/copyedits.


One very lucky reader of With Love For Books will win a signed hardcover of The Winter People by Rebekah L. Purdy.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. Please add to your list of approved email addresses. All of our giveaways are international.


Friday, February 24, 2017

Once Upon A Time Tote Bag, Mug & Pillow Giveaway

Enter this giveaway for a chance to win a Once Upon A Time tote bag, mug and pillow set designd by Nyxsullivan. Good luck!

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. Please add to your list of approved email addresses. All of our giveaways are international.

Book Review - Because I Was Lonely by Hayley Mitchell

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Review by Suze
Rachel and David used to have a lot of fun together and they were very close. After starting a family and having two kids things changed. Rachel is no longer the confident woman she used to be. She's depressed, doesn't care about her looks any longer and is struggling with the care of two small children. She's on her own as David has withdrawn himself from their family. He works long hours and doesn't support his wife at all. He comes home every night, but isn't really there in spirit.

Adam used to be a jovial man who got along with everyone. He's married to the ambitious and critical Julia and they have a family. After a terrible accident their life changed. He was too traumatized to be the person he once was and he's now obsessively compulsive and has nothing to look forward to. Julia escaped this life of doom and gloom and is working and living somewhere else during the week. Adam can do nothing right and this doesn't help him heal.

Adam and Rachel used to be best friends when they were students. When Adam sends Rachel a friendship request on Facebook she accepts. They discover that talking to each other is easy. It makes the loneliness and boredom disappear. Because they live far away from each other they keep themselves happy with texts, but for how long can it continue without consequences, what effect does their renewed connection have on their daily life?

Because I Was Lonely is a raw emotional story. Adam and Rachel are both depressed and Hayley Mitchell writes about their problems in an open and honest way. I was surprised by the amount of detail she gives and sometimes it shocked me, but I also admired the way the information is being presented. Adam and Rachel's text message are versatile, sometimes they are sad and sometimes flirtatious, but from time to time they're mean and jealous too. They have many different emotional layers and that makes the story interesting to read.

Adam is a good guy who has lost himself and Rachel is lost inside herself, which makes them have a lot in common. There was already a connection a long time ago, but now it's even deeper because of everything they've been through. Hayley Mitchell's story is realistic, it's something that could easily have happened to two people who are alone and desperate. I loved that she's chosen such a serious and difficult topic for her book and think she's turned it into an excellent story. I learned about a side of Facebook I'd never given any consideration and I loved the originality of it.

Hayley Mitchell's writing flows easily. I liked that there are four points of view, which makes it possible to get to know all the main characters through and through. Most of the story focuses on Adam and Rachel, but their spouses, Julia and David, have a voice as well. This gives an objective insight in the situation. Hayley Mitchell doesn't judge, she just tells their story, which is something I applaud. She writes about the black and the white and the many shades of grey in between in an equally fascinating way and there's never any blame and there aren't imposed opinions. To me that felt like being enabled to look through someone's window while being able to hear and see their conversations. I think that's fantastic. Because I Was Lonely is very special and I absolutely loved this unusual, complex story.


If you like to read about real people with realistic problems and are looking for a complex and impressive story to read, Because I Was Lonely is a great choice.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Bookmarks & Book of Choice Giveaway

Enter this giveaway for a chance to win two lovely bookmarks made by Kawaii Craft Cottage and a book of choice worth $10. Good luck!

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. Please add to your list of approved email addresses. All of our giveaways are international.