TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “DON’T WAKE UP”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  Don’t Wake Up, by Liz Lawler: A harrowing psychological thriller debut about a woman who awakens after an assault with no physical proof of the attack and who must try to convince everyone of what really happened.

 

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Intro:  It was the familiar sounds that awakened her.  They were strangely comforting, even though her first instinct was to leap up in panic to see what her colleagues were doing.  She heard instruments being placed on a steel tray.  Monitors emitted regular beeps, sterile packages were torn open, and in the background there was the ever-present hiss of oxygen.

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Teaser:  Home no longer felt like home.  Laura Best’s presence was a thorn in his side and, come the New Year, he would have to make some decisions.  Either she left or he did. (p.62).

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Synopsis:  When Dr. Alex Taylor opens her eyes, she is hooked up to an IV, is bound to an operating table, and her legs are raised in stirrups. Disoriented and alarmed, she assumes she’s been anesthetized and brought to surgery after being in an accident. But the man standing over her, with his face hidden behind a surgical mask and wielding instruments, is no doctor she recognizes at the hospital where she works as a successful and respected doctor. He’s a stranger—and he’s calmly and methodically telling her how he’s about to attack her. Before Alex can even scream for help, she succumbs to another dose of anesthesia, rendering her unable to defend herself….

When she comes to on a gurney, she finds herself surrounded by her colleagues and immediately reports the attack and rape. The police are skeptical of her bizarre story. And after a physical exam reveals no proof of any attack, even her boyfriend has doubts. Despite Alex’s adamant claims, no one believes her, leaving her to wonder if she has, in fact, lost her mind.

Until she meets the next victim…

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I’ve been eagerly awaiting this book, and can’t wait to start reading it.  What do you think?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “NOT HERE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is an reviewARC from an author:  Not Here:  A Dina Ostica Novel, by Genevieve Noscovo: Would you surrender your free will to save your life?
A city in turmoil. A neighbor disappears. When her concerns are written off, Dina investigates on her own — and becomes a target, at the mercy of those in control…

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Intro:  Dina Ostica tried to scream, but her voice was trapped in her throat.  Her shoulder blades pressed against the fence.

He grabbed her upper arm, pushing her back, as he lifted the knife to her neck.

“Drop. Your. Bag.”  He shook her with each word, six-foot frame looming.

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Teaser:  Dina willed the image of Tom to fill her opponent’s frame.  This was her opportunity for vengeance. (56%).

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Synopsis:  In San Francisco, where the poor are systematically displaced by well-off yuppies, Dina Ostica is part of the problem. The damaged, determined twenty-three-year-old scrambles to make a name for herself in the burgeoning world of podcasting, with the city as her muse. She is hell-bent on professional success, thinking it will mend her broken spirit.

But when her go-to source on local history disappears without warning, she begins to uncover an uncanny pattern that hits too close to home, getting her tied up in the city’s underbelly.

What follows is a gritty tale of exploitation, betrayal, and the strength one needs to survive the whims of those in power.

Will Dina escape or fall victim to the injustice chewing up the city?

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Would you keep reading?

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THURSDAY SPARKS: IGNITING OUR CONNECTIONS…AND MEMORIES

Our connections in life ignite us and help us get through our days.  The symbol of my connections (above) has been my One Word for the past two years.

And the people in my life…cement the connections.

Today I’m sharing a few of those people.  My No. 2 Son, below, loves connecting with his three kids over favorite sports.

Or he loved spending time in Europe with his daughter, when she enjoyed a semester in Prague.

Here is my No. 1 Son with Aubrey, in Prague…wrapped in a snow globe.

Back home…here is a photo of my daughter…and youngest grandson (in his ROTC uniform).

 

A holiday party:  Heather, far left, and her coworkers…

Here is Noah, several years ago.  I love this one!

 

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Two years ago, my granddaughter Fiona and I went far north to the beach, and spent time with my youngest son.  Here she is, walking the beach with him.

And (below), here is a blast from the past:  Me, Christmas in 1970, in Sacramento, CA.

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Life’s moments, past and present, are best enjoyed with our special connections.

What ignites you?  What moments are memorable?

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Linking to A Web of Stories.

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “SHE LIES IN WAIT”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s featured book is a recent download:  She Lies in Wait, by Gytha Lodge: Six friends. One killer. Who do you trust? A teen girl is missing after a night of partying; thirty years later, the discovery of her body reopens a cold case in an absorbing novel featuring a small-town cop determined to finally get to the truth—for fans of Tana French and Kate Atkinson.

 

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Intro:  (Prologue)

She made her skittering, sliding way down the riverbank.  Her trainers hit the flat ground at the lip of the water, and she wobbled but recovered.

“Jessie!”

She heard her name, and felt an answering buzz of adrenaline.  She paused, then kicked her way on again.  Just her brother, not Dad.  Away up the slope. Her brother wasn’t going to yell at her for wandering off.

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Teaser:  Jonah had been watching Benham, and there was a void where there should have been a reaction.  He was absolutely still, and for a good few seconds afterward he moved nothing but his eyes. (p. 60).

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Synopsis:  On a scorching July night in 1983, a group of teenagers goes camping in the forest. Bright and brilliant, they are destined for great things, and the youngest of the group—Aurora Jackson—is delighted to be allowed to tag along. The evening starts like any other—they drink, they dance, they fight, they kiss. Some of them slip off into the woods in pairs, others are left jealous and heartbroken. But by morning, Aurora has disappeared. Her friends claim that she was safe the last time they saw her, right before she went to sleep. An exhaustive investigation is launched, but no trace of the teenager is ever found.

Thirty years later, Aurora’s body is unearthed in a hideaway that only the six friends knew about, and Jonah Sheens is put in charge of solving the long-cold case. Back in 1983, as a young cop in their small town, he had known the teenagers—including Aurora—personally, even before taking part in the search. Now he’s determined to finally get to the truth of what happened that night. Sheens’s investigation brings the members of the camping party back to the forest, where they will be confronted once again with the events that left one of them dead, and all of them profoundly changed forever.

This searing, psychologically captivating novel marks the arrival of a dazzling new talent, and the start of a new series featuring Detective Chief Inspector Jonah Sheens.

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What do you think?  Do the excerpts grab you?  Would you keep reading?

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SUNDAY SPARKS: WEEKEND CONNECTIONS…

Welcome to a new Sunday feature.  I usually share my Sunday thoughts on Potpourri, but now that I’ve changed up this blog, I decided to spotlight it occasionally.

Last week brought a nice mix of books, movies, and outings.  And a hairstyling on Saturday, after which my daughter and I enjoyed lunch at La Kebrada, next door to her salon.  She is making a face in the photo, because she didn’t want to be photographed while she ate.  Can’t blame her, but she wouldn’t pose for me.  So this is what happened.  LOL.

I went home afterwards and curled up with books and movies.  I had some on my DVR to watch…and I am reading Untouchable, by Jayne Ann Krentz.

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Today I plan to enjoy lunch at California Pizza Kitchen…with my book.  I finished most of the weekly laundry.  Later today, I will go on Netflix and Prime…and will not be watching the Super Bowl.

Is anyone out there affected by the closing down of Google+ in April?  I hope they don’t shut down the regular Google.  I didn’t actually use Google+, but I had linked to it on my blogs from my social media icons.  It was annoying to delete that part of my text box.

What does the rest of your weekend look like?

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SPARKING SOME MEMORIES…

 

When I was changing up the look of this blog today, I had some thoughts about the perfect array of photos to display in my post today.  Yes, you guessed it!  The once-upon-a-time hippie life I had in the 1970s. 

 

Not just VW bugs, but yellow bell bottom pants.  And curly hair. (See above). Sometimes straight hair.  And rainbow hued ponchos.  (Below).

We did have a VW bus for a while:

For a couple of years, we lived in an English stucco house with lots of windows and plants…and wicker furniture.

Later on in the 70s, I had flowy dresses with my curly/bushy hair:

By the end of the 70s, while I was attending graduate school and my youngest child was almost three, she celebrated the “flower child” years.

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I’m linking to A Web of Stories for Saturday Snapshots.

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “THE WOMAN INSIDE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is The Woman Inside, by E. G. Scott, an impossible-to-put-down domestic thriller about secrets and revenge, told from the perspectives of a husband and wife who are the most perfect, and the most dangerous, match for each other…

 

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Intro:  (Prologue) He flashes a million-dollar smile before getting into his bloodred BMW.  It purrs to life and the sound of pebbles crunching under tires reminds me of the first time I was brought here.  The circumstances were very different.  I was never meant to leave.

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Teaser:  I softened my approach.  I didn’t want to provoke a fight before I said what I needed to.  “I’m sorry, honey.  I just feel so close to you, but sometimes I feel like we could be closer.  And I want you to know everything about me.” (p. 59).

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Synopsis:  Rebecca didn’t know love was possible until she met Paul, a successful, charismatic, married man with a past as dark as her own. Their pain drew them together with an irresistible magnetism; they sensed that they were each other’s ideal (and perhaps only) match.

But twenty years later, Paul and Rebecca are drowning as the damage and secrets that ignited their love begin to consume their marriage. Paul is cheating on Rebecca, and his affair gets messy fast. His mistress is stalking them with growing audacity when Rebecca discovers Paul’s elaborate plan to build a new life without her. And though Rebecca is spiraling into an opiate addiction, it doesn’t stop her from coming up with a devious plot of her own, and this one could end absolutely everything.

What follows is an unpredictable and stylish game of cat and mouse—a shocking tale of unfaithfulness and unreliability that will keep you racing until the final twist and make you wonder how well you really know your spouse.

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What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “UNTOUCHABLE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s featured book is Untouchable, by Jayne Ann Krentz: A man’s quest to find answers for those who are haunted by the past leads him deeper into the shadows in this electrifying New York Times bestseller from the author of Promise Not to Tell.

 

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Intro:  Fifteen years earlier…

She was fourteen years old and sleeping in yet another bed.  The little house on Marigold Lane looked cozy and welcoming from the street—lots of curb appeal, as the real estate agents liked to say—but she had decided that she would not be there for long.

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Teaser Tuesday:  Winter awakened from the chase dream gasping for breath.  Her pulse skittered wildly. (p. 56).

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Synopsis:  Quinton Zane is back.

Jack Lancaster, consultant to the FBI, has always been drawn to the coldest of cold cases, the kind that law enforcement either considers unsolvable or else has chalked up to accidents or suicides. As a survivor of a fire, he finds himself uniquely compelled by arson cases. His almost preternatural ability to get inside the killer’s head has garnered him a reputation in some circles–and complicated his personal life. The more cases Jack solves, the closer he slips into the darkness. His only solace is Winter Meadows, a meditation therapist. After particularly grisly cases, Winter can lead Jack back to peace.

But as long as Quinton Zane is alive, Jack will not be at peace for long. Having solidified his position as the power behind the throne of his biological family’s hedge fund, Zane sets out to get rid of Anson Salinas’s foster sons, starting with Jack.

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I enjoy this author’s romantic suspense books, so I’m eager to start reading this one.  Would you keep reading?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “THE RED ADDRESS BOOK”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new download I’m eager to read:  The Red Address Book, by Sofia Lundberg,follows 96-year-old Doris, who writes down the memories of her eventful life as she pages through her decades-old address book. But the most profound moment of her life is still to come…

 

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Intro:  The saltshaker.  The pillbox.  The bowl of lozenges.  The blood-pressure monitor in its oval plastic case.  The magnifying glass and its red bobbin-lace strap, taken from a Christmas curtain, tied in three fat knots.  The phone with the extra-large numbers.  The old red-leather address book, its bent corners revealing the yellowed paper within.  She arranges everything carefully, in the middle of the kitchen table.  They have to be lined up just so.  No creases on the neatly ironed baby-blue linen tablecloth.

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Teaser: The doctor’s eyes are fixed on the stack of papers in the dark-blue plastic document holder.

“Your stats look better.” He leafs through the first three sheets, reading chart notes and test results. (59%).

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Synopsis:  Meet Doris, a 96-year-old woman living alone in her Stockholm apartment. She has few visitors, but her weekly Skype calls with Jenny—her American grandniece, and her only relative—give her great joy and remind her of her own youth.

When Doris was a girl, she was given an address book by her father, and ever since she has carefully documented everyone she met and loved throughout the years. Looking through the little book now, Doris sees the many crossed-out names of people long gone and is struck by the urge to put pen to paper. In writing down the stories of her colorful past—working as a maid in Sweden, modelling in Paris during the 30s, fleeing to Manhattan at the dawn of the Second World War—can she help Jenny, haunted by a difficult childhood, unlock the secrets of their family and finally look to the future? And whatever became of Allan, the love of Doris’s life?

A charming novel that prompts reflection on the stories we all should carry to the next generation, and the surprises in life that can await even the oldest among us, The Red Address Book introduces Sofia Lundberg as a wise—and irresistible—storyteller.

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The aging woman living alone in Stockholm captured my interest.  I am eager to start reading.  What do you think?

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CAPTURING THE MOMENTS….

I love traveling vicariously, so when my No. 2 son and his fiancee went to Hawaii (above), I could almost feel the surroundings.

Here they are, enjoying tropical drinks:

Meanwhile, back at home, my youngest grandson was celebrating his 16th birthday.

 

I captured a photo of him enjoying his relaxing moments:

 

And when it was time for the candles, he played his role well:

 

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What are you celebrating via photos this weekend?

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