Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Mailbox Monday (April 25, 2011)

 Mailbox Monday's host for April is Amy at Passages to the Past. In My Mailbox is hosted Sundays at The Story Siren. Please visit these posts and take a look at what packages everybody else got this week! 

Darkness Follows
by Mike Dellosso

Sam Travis is a man on the brink of despair.

Out of a job and feeling worthless, Sam Travis is awakened one night to the sounds of a Civil War battle raging outside his Gettysburg home.  But it's the middle of the night, and the summer's reenactments are long over.  A search for the source brings him to an old journal by a Union soldier. . . written in his own handwriting.

When more of the mysterious writings appear and begin to mimic Sam's own life, his search for the truth puts him on a downward spiral that eventually drives him from his wife, his daughter, and his home -- and into an evil plot that could cost many lives, including his own.

The Final Note
by Kevin Alan Milne

Ethan met and fell in love with Anna during a two-year graduate music program in Vienna, Austria.  On their wedding day, along with "love, honor, and cherish," he  promised to write a song especially for her.

Neither of them are quite prepared for the music to cease and the nails on the chalkboard to begin when life suddenly intrudes on their idyllic world.  As heartache, tragedy, and increased pressure at work begin to erode the feelings that used to come so easily, Ethan questions everything that once seemed unshakable -- his faith, his priorities, and his marriage.

Then, without warning, an accident lands him at Anna's hospital bedside, where he is forced to wait helplessly, with memories and regrets for company.  Is it too late to finish the love song he began for Anna on their wedding day?  In this tale of loss and heartbreak, love and forgiveness, Ethan is about to discover that the final notes have yet to be written.

The Butterfly's Daughter
by Mary Alice Monroe

"Life is more about the journey than the destination."

With a touch as gentle and as beautiful as the butterlies she celebrates, New York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe delivers a new powerful and compelling novel of self-discovery that mirrors an awe-inspiring event in nature, as four very different women embark on a transformational journey across the United States to Mexico.

The legend of las mariposas -- the beautiful monarch butterflies that every year fly more than two thousand miles on fragile wings to return to their winter home in Mexico -- is Luz Avila's birthright.  She learned of their ways and their mystical powers from the grandmother who was the only family she ever knew.  Now it is her turn, like the butterflies, to make that long, perilous journey.  In order to honor a promise to her beloved abuela, Luz must return her grandmother's ashes to her ancestral village in the mountains of Mexico.  But while this ofrenda, a tradition so old its origins are lost in the mists of time, will mean leaving behind a man who loves Luz deeply, the journey promises to bring deep spiritual meaning to the life of a woman who cannot find her way into the future until she comes to terms with the past.

As Luz slowly makes her way south from blustery Milwaukee in a VW Bug so ancient it has no business on the highway, a series of seemingly random encounters touches her life:  a desperate mother-to-be, even younger than her, fleeing an abusive lover.  An anywhere-the-wind-blows free spirit.  A lonely career woman who is determined to live, really live, for the first time.  It is in San Antonio, however, that a truly startling revelation awaits Luz:  a reunion with a shadowy figure from her childhood.

Together, they cross the border into Mexico, but they also must somehow cross the border that separates past from present, bitterness from love, and truth from lies.  They will honor the memory of another beloved woman by standing in the Sacred Circle to witness the spectacular, glittering river of orange monarchs descend from the sky to return home.  If they can share in this age-old ritual, perhaps they will be able to find their way back to love, and take their place in the enduring cycle of life.

When the Brook Dries Up
by Blondina Howes Jeffrey

Is your relationship with God enough to sustain you when. . .
you lose your job,
your health fails,
a meaningful relationship ends,
or when everything you have worked so hard for slips from your grasp?

When the doors close, prayers seem unanswered, and you are holding on to broken dreams, one has to wonder. . . Does God give His children more than they can bear?  When the Brook Dries Up examines the very foundation of your faith, trust and confidence in God.  In it you will explore the secret to experiencing God at work in your life at all times, and in all circumstances, even when he does not appear to be.

The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives
by Lola Shoneyin

When Baba Segi awoke with a bellyache for the sixth day in a row, he knew it was time to do something drastic about his fourth wife's childlessness.

Meet Baba Segi. . .
A plump, vain, and prosperous middle-aged man of robust appetites, Baba Segi is the patriarch of a large household that includes a quartet of wives and seven children.  But his desire to possess more just might be his undoing.

And his wives. . .
Iya Segi - the bride of Baba Segi's youth, a powerful, vindictive woman who will stop at nothing to protect her favored position as ruler of her husband's home.

Iya Tope - Baba Segi's second wife, a shy, timid woman whose decency and lust for life are overshadowed by fear.

Iya Femi - the third wife, a scheming woman with crimson lips and expensive tastes who is determined to attain all that she desires, no matter what the cost.

Bolanle - Baba Segi's fourth and youngest wife, an educated woman wise to life's misfortunes who inspires jealousy in her fellow wives. . . and who harbors a secret that will expose shocking truths about them all.

by Travis Thrasher

Nine months shy of his fortieth birthday, music producer Tyler has started to experience horrific hallucinations.  At first, he thinks it's the stress of his job, but the hallucinations continue until they culminate at a concert in Chicago.  There he is approached by an older man who tells him he's going to die on his fortieth birthday.

The man claims to be an angel named Matthew, and he gives Tyler enough evidence to convince him he's telling the truth.  The problem is that Tyler doesn't know what to do with the information.

Tyler's doubt and confusion about Matthew's prediction turn to anger, both at God and those around him.  As he begins to exhibit destructive behavior patterns, he befriends Ellis, an internationally known DJ.  Tyler is scared that he really is about to die.  He's scared for his sanity.  He's scared that if he does die, he's not going to Heaven.  He also soon becomes scared of Ellis, who is wild and opens up a door of temptation to Tyler.

As Tyler begins falling into a downward spiral of fear and confusion, he reaches out to a pastor named Will, and tries to right his wrongs with some of the important people in his life in a desperate attempt to find peace before his fortieth birthday.

America Pacifica
by Anna North

In the not too distant future, eighteen-year-old Darcy lives on the island of America Pacifica -- one of the last places on earth that is still habitable after North America has succumbed to a second ice age.  Education, food, and basic means of survival are the province of a chosen few, while the majority of the island's residents struggle under the thumb of a mysterious dictator whose regime is plagued by charges of corruption and conspiracy.

To Darcy, America Pacifica is simply home -- the only one she's ever known, made bearable by her loving though enigmatic mother.  But when her mother doesn't come home one night, Darcy is forced to go on a quest through the dark underbelly of the island to find her, learning along the way the disturbing truth of her mother's role in Pacifica's early history, the far-reaching influence of its egomaniacal leader, and the possible plot to murder some of the island's first inhabitants -- including her mother.

White Sleeper
by David R. Fett and Stephen Langford

When Arkansas experiences a wave of rare fatal diseases, the CDC sends disgraced doctor Dave Richards to investigate, and he knows this is the case that could save his career.  When he teams up with FBI agent Paula Mushari, Richards thinks he may have found the person who can help him find the answers.  But as they dig deeper, they begin to get a sinister glimpse into what they are dealing with -- a vengeful sect, led by the son of a late white supremacist, intent on  destroying a nation.  As Richards fights to save his job, he and Mushari must race against the clock to prevent a plague of catastrophic proportions.

The Hidden Gifts of Helping
by Stephen G. Post

"Everyone stumbles on hard times.  After all, no one gets out of life alive.  Today, even those who had considered themselves protected from hardship are being touched and their lives changed by volatile economic markets, job uncertainty, and the increasing isolation and loneliness of modern life." --From the introduction

Research has revealed that when we show concern for others -- empathizing with a friend who has lost a loved one, mowing the lawn for an elderly neighbor, or volunteering to mentor a school-aged child -- we improve our own health and well-being and embrace and give voice to our deeper identity and dignity as human beings.

In this moving book, Stephen G. Post helps us discover how we can make "helping" a lifetime activity.  The Hidden Gifts of Helping explores the very personal story of Post and his family's difficult move and their experience with the healing power of helping others, as well as his passion about how this simple activity -- expressed in an infinite number of small or large ways -- can help you survive and thrive despite the expected and unexpected challenges life presents.

Post's story is intertwined with supporting scientific research and spiritual understanding.  This book can become your companion and guide to the power of giving, forgiving, and compassion in hard times.

The Hidden Gifts of Helping will leave you with the unshakable feeling that the world can be a good place, if we act to make it so.

In the Heat of the Bite
by Lydia Dare

Chivalry is far from undead. . .

Matthew Halkett, Earl of Blodswell, is one of the few men in the ton who can claim to be a knight in shining armor -- because that's precisely what he was before being turned into a vampyre.  When he spies a damsel in distress in the midst of a storm in Hyde Park, his natural instinct is to rush to her aid. . .

But not every woman needs to be rescued. . .

Weather-controlling witch Rhiannon Sinclair isn't caught in a storm -- she's the cause of it.  She's mortified to have been caught making trouble by the imposing earl, but she doesn't need any man -- never has, and is sure she never will. . .

But when Rhiannon encounters Matthew again, her powers go awry and his supernatural abilities run amok.  Between the two of them, the ton is thrown into an uproar.  There's never been a more tempestuous scandal. . .

Going Cowboy Crazy
by Katie Lane

Faith Aldridge wants answers.  Bramble, Texas, is the only place she can find them. . . as well as Hope, the identical twin sister she never knew she had.  But the townsfolk reckon that shy city-girl Faith is really her long-lost sister Hope, back in Bramble at last.  And they're fixin' to do whatever it takes to heat things up between her and Hope's long-time flame, Slate Calhoun.

But Slate's no fool.  The woman in his truck may look like Hope, yet the way she feels in his arms is altogether new.  He's determined to keep this twin in his bed -- and out of his heart.  Trouble is, the real Hope is headed home, and she's got her own designs on Slate.  If Faith wants to avoid heartbreak, she'll have to show a certain ruggedly handsome cowboy that this crazy-impossible love is worth fighting for.

Ripe for Pleasure
by Isobel Carr

The League of Second Sons

A secret society of younger sons, sworn to aid and abet each other, no matter the scandal or cost. . . Their fathers and brothers may rule the world, but they run it, and when it comes to passion they refuse to accept second best.

London's most sensual former courtesan, Viola Whedon, is incapable of being seduced -- she does the seducing.  Until she meets Leonidas Vaughn.  Her salacious memoirs have made her the target of half the lords in England, and Vaughn is the only man she can turn to.  When he promises to protect her -- and to make her beg for his touch -- the alluring beauty finds both offers impossible to refuse.

Leonidas Vaughn secretly believes Viola possesses a fortune given to his family by the King of France.  So the strong and sexy Vaughn charms his way into Viola's life. . . and her bed.  But when their arrangement is consummated, he'll experience pleasure far beyond his wildest fantasies -- and realize his heart may need the most protection of all.

The Guardian
by Margaret Mallory

The Return of the Highlanders:  Book 1

Four fearless warriors return to the Highlands to claim their lands and legacies.  But all their trials on the battlefield can't prepare them for the greatest challenge yet:  winning the hearts of four willful Scottish beauties.

Passion Ignited

After years of fighting abroad, Ian MacDonald comes home to find his clan in peril.  To save his kin, he must right the wrongs from his past. . . and claim the bride he's long resisted.

As a young lass, Sileas depended on Ian to play her knight in shining armor.  But when his rescue attempt compromised her virtue, Ian was forced to marry against his wishes.  Five years later, Sileas has grown from an awkward girl into an independent beauty who knows she deserves better than the reluctant husband who preferred war to his wife.  Now this devilishly handsome Highlander is finally falling in love.  He wants a second chance with Sileas -- and he won't take no for an answer.

Face of Danger
by Roxanne St. Claire

She's a risk taker playing a deadly role. . .
He's a rule-follower fighting to keep her safe. . .
Together they're facing a killer who could be anyone, anywhere, anytime. . .

Private investigator Vivi Angelino loves living life on the edge.  But stepping into the shoes of a movie starlet to bait a serial killer isn't just a thrill, it's a ticket to the big time for her fledgling security firm.  As long as a certain risk-averse FBI agent stays out of her way -- and out of her fantasies.

Assistant Special Agent in Charge Colton Lang isn't above using his well-worn rulebook to stop Vivi's latest walk on the wild side.  Yet when they learn her client is involved in something far more insidious than bad acting, Vivi and Colt must work together despite the electrifying attraction arcing between them.  For each new clue is bringing them closer to a high-profile crime with a dark and deadly truth at its core. . . and a cold calculating murderer with nothing left to lose.

What books came home to you last week?


bermudaonion said...

I'm reading The Butterfly's Daughter right now and it is so good! I hope you love all of your books.

Unknown said...

I just read my first Mary Alice Monroe book recently (The Four Seasons). I'd definitely read another one.

Jules said...

A great selection! You managed to get quite a few books this week, I hope you enjoy.

Happy reading,


Mystica said...

What a beautiful mix of books!

Anne said...

Wow! That is a great list of books you got this week, happy reading!

Anonymous said...

Wow, what a wonderful bunch of books. Such variety. I've read Mary Alice Monroe's books in the past and am looking forward to THE BUTTERFLY'S DAUGHTER. Enjoy!

Tribute Books Mama said...

Wow! what a great selection of books, enjoy all your reads.

come by and see mine and my giveaways.

Beth(bookaholicmom) said...

I'm looking forward to reading The Butterfly's Daughter. It looks like a good one. Enjoy all your new reads.


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