The Goodbye Cafe Blog Tour with Mariah Stewart

Strong women. Supportive men. And a bevy of mysteries and intrigue along the way. This is the story of love, redemption, and self worth, all wrapped up nicely in the third installment of Mariah Stewart’s, The Hudson Sisters trilogy.

The Goodbye Cafe is the third installment in The Hudson Sisters. The Hudson Sisters – Allie, Des, and Cara are three estranged sisters, thrown together by a strange will left by their endearing but elusive father. Each of the three books in the series are told by the various sisters, with The Goodbye Cafe written from the POV of Allie, the eldest sibling. Allie is perhaps my most favorite sister out of the three because she is so relatable and heartbreaking and so very interesting. Her character is one of strength and innocence but she doesn’t realize her self worth until the ending of the story. Allie’s story is one of struggle and redemption and finding out that a family’s love is the one true love she never thought she had.

In the Goodbye Cafe, the old town’s theater, The Sugarhouse Theater is finally fully renovated and ready to be opened. The sisters all agreed at the start of the project that they would do their parts, take the inheritance, and then go back to their old lives. As with each book in the series, each sister starts to realize that their stay in the Pocono Mountains and working on The Sugarhouse Theater brought them more joy and meaning than their previous lives ever did. And as with each sister’s POV in the different titles, Allie starts to realize that she too, can have a choice. A choice that makes her happy for once, and to not live through her daughter or her personal transgressions.

I really enjoyed reading The Goodbye Cafe because it wraps everything up nicely. I’m also bittersweet because I don’t want this wonderful series to end! I adored the characters, the setting, the supporting characters, and the little nuances that speaks to the readers along the way. As I noted before, Allie was my favorite character because she resonated so much to my heart.

If you’re ever stuck wondering what new book series to pick up, then don’t hesitate for one second in getting The Hudson Sisters Series. The entire series is filled with laughter, intrigue, mystery, and love that you never quite thought you needed or wanted.

I was honored to have been able to interview Ms. Mariah Stewart for The Goodbye Cafe. Please read on for her interview:

The Goodbye Cafe (A Hudson Sisters Series)

Q- The Hudson Sisters series is a wonderful installment of finding love and self-worth. What inspired you to write about these three lovely ladies?

A- The inspiration for the story came from my mother’s discovering she had half-siblings when she was in her forties or fifties. My grandfather had a family in MA when he changed his name and moved to PA where he met and married my grandmother. The idea was too good not to use! Once it wormed its way into that portion of my brain where stories grow, I had to write it. The sisters just sort of presented themselves the way you read them.

Q- Do you incorporate real life experiences into your novels?

A- Other than thinking about my grandfather’s checkered life and his numerous offspring, not so much! Though the setting was personal, since my mother’s brother (the legitimate one!) lived in Clarks Summit, and I lived visiting my cousins. They lived half-way up the West Mountain, and there was always something fun to do there. I guess those memories were really stuck in my brain, waiting for the right time to show themselves!

Q- When did you find out you had a passion for writing?

A- I was very ill when I was seven and had to spend the entire summer in my room, most of the time in my bed. My brother brought me library books several times every week, but after awhile, I’d read all the books our small-town library had. So I started writing my own. It was just something I always wanted to do.

Q- How long do you envision writing novels?

A- Until I keel over and pass on into the next dimension – and I’ll probably be at my computer!

Q- Any plans on making your novels into movies or TV series?

A- That’s not something I have control over. I wish! But that’s something someone else would decide. Though I could totally see any of my series as a TV series – especially Mercy Street, the Chesapeake Diaries, and the Hudson Sisters.

Q- I have to ask: Who is your favorite character in The Hudson Sisters stories?

A- Barney, for sure, and Nikki, definitely! I love all three sisters, but if I had to choose, I’d say Allie, because she was the most complex and the most sharp edges.

Q- The ending of The Goodbye Cafe seems to elude to a possible sequel? Or perhaps a spin-off series?

A- I haven’t planned on doing that. I thought the ending worked either way, whether I did or didn’t write another book. But I admit it’s tough not to think about!

Q- How did you determine the various characteristics of the three sisters?

A- Because they are all quite different from each other, personality wise. Characters more or less announce themselves. They are who they are. My job is just to translate them into the story I’m telling. When I started thinking about writing this story, Cara, Des, and Allie were just there and I knew who they were and how they were going to interact with each other.

Q- Do you have any sisters of your own?

A- No, but I have two daughters, so I’m quite familiar with the interactions and the occasional drama, especially when they are younger.

Q- What are you working on right now?

A- Right now, I’m working on a book that’s very different from the ones I’ve done before, so I don’t want to say much about it! It’s a standalone – probably – so it’s not a new series. We’ll see how and where it goes!

THE GOODBYE CAFÉ
The Hudson Sisters series, Book 3
On sale March 26, 2019
Trade Paperback • Price: $16.00 • ISBN: 9781501145124
eBook • Price: $7.99 • ISBN: 9781501145162

California girl Allie Hudson Monroe can’t wait for the day when the renovations on the Sugarhouse Theater are complete so she can finally collect the inheritance from her father and leave Pennsylvania.
After all, her life and her fourteen-year-old daughter are in Los Angeles.
But Allie’s divorce left her tottering on the edge of bankruptcy, so to keep up on payments for her house and her daughter’s private school tuition, Allie packed up and flew out east. But fate has a curve-ball or two to toss in Allie’s direction—she just doesn’t know it yet.
She hadn’t anticipated how her life would change after reuniting with her estranged sister, Des, or meeting her previously unknown half-sister, Cara. And she’d certainly never expected to find small-town living charming. But the biggest surprise was that her long-forgotten artistry would save the day when the theater’s renovation fund dried up.
With opening day upon the sisters, Allie’s free to go. But for the first time in her life, she feels like the woman she was always meant to be. Will she return to the West Coast and resume her previous life, or will the love of “this amazing, endearing family of women” (Robyn Carr, #1 New York Times bestselling author) be enough to draw her back to the place where the Hudson roots grow so deep?

You can purchase The Goodbye Cafe and all of Mariah’s Stewart’s titles on Amazon: The Goodbye Cafe

***Thank you to Mariah and Simon & Schuster Gallery Books for the paperback preview and the book tour!

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

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The Fear of Falling Book Tour and Giveaway – Updated

 

 

*So sorry about the faux pas post! This is the REAL one! 🙂

Can a boy and a girl be best friends and nothing more? In Amanda Cowen’s latest contemporary romance, The Fear of Falling, Ella and Ryan face that exact question years later after becoming fast friends in college. To the outside world they are nothing but the best of buddies – siblings almost – in the way they argue and make fun of each other, but something deeper runs in their friendship that neither one of them wants to acknowledge.

In a series of events that puts these two friends together at every turn, Ella and Ryan soon realizes that their friendship is put to the test when they accidentally spend the night together. Ella is working hard towards a future career with Disney while Ryan is destined to become a lawyer and work in the family business. As these two friends struggle with finishing up college and making hard choices, will their friendship end when college is over or will something more come out of it?

What I really liked about this story is the honesty portrayed by Ella and her drive to become a successful Graphic Designer. She’s humble and kind and tries to do the right thing by studying hard in hopes of making a good life for herself in the future. Ryan on the other hand, struggles with becoming a lawyer as his parents force him to follow in the footsteps of his family. While Ella tries her best to not cross that line of friendship with Ryan, it is Ryan who drops very non-subtle hints that he wants something more.

What I didn’t particularly enjoy is how Ryan portrays his growing romantic feelings for Ella. He’s jealous all the time, picks on Ella in a not so good way, and prevents her from having a caring boyfriend. Part of me wished he would just tell Ella how he feels but towards the end of the story, Ryan reveals why he kept it a secret all this time.

The Fear of Falling is a delightful read. The dialogue is catchy and upbeat even though a few instances I wonder why these young twenty-year-olds talk like they’re WAY older. I could easily look past these discrepancies enough to enjoy reading the book in one sitting. Amanda Cowen is a talented author and has an innate way of helping you connect with her main characters and feel their plight and anguish.

You can purchase The Fear of Falling on Amazon and Xpresso Book Tours and the author is hosting a giveaway for a $25 Amazon gift card here: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232672/

Synopsis:

When Ella Jones’ twenty-first birthday ends with a bang – literally – she never imagined it would be with her best friend since freshman year, Ryan Owen.

A year later, after their so called “mistake”, they’re still best friends and about to rock their Senior year at the University of San Francisco. But when Ryan returns from spending a summer in Australia and brings back a friend, Liam George, who takes an immediate liking to Ella, Ryan starts to question the Aussie’s intentions with his best friend. The trouble is, Ryan has a girlfriend of his own, and Ella and Ryan swore they would never cross that line again – until they do.

They try not to let their second slip up affect their friendship, but when Spring Break forces them to vacation under the same roof; and Ryan’s ex walks back into his life, Ella is shocked by a fierce stab of possessiveness. And when Ella continues to see Liam, Ryan finds himself plagued by unfamiliar jealousy. With their friendship strained for the first time, Ella and Ryan face an alarming truth: Maybe they can’t be just friends. Maybe they are falling faster than expected. And maybe, deep down, they want to.

AUTHOR BIO:
Amanda Cowen can be found eating cupcakes, singing off-key, or watching a good RomCom when she isn’t trapped on her computer writing stories. She is an “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” fanatic, a hater of roller-coasters and a country music junkie. She lives in Thunder Bay, ON where the summers are short and the winters are long.

Amanda would love to hear from her readers. Become a fan on Facebook, follow her on Instagram @authoramandacowen, or follow her on Goodreads.

*Thank you Xpresso Booktours and Amanda Cowen for the book tour opportunity.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

 

 

It Started With a Lie – Book Release Blitz

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It Started With a Lie, so how will it end?

There are always two sides of a story. Sometimes, if you’re lucky or you work really hard, you win. In the case of Brian Fox, in It Started With a Lie, he traded his good looks and fast talking with high expense extravagance to keep his company ahead of the competition. But his luck soon runs out when his exuberant spending puts his business at risk of bankruptcy. With his famous and rich brother as his only option, Brian seeks financial rescue. But his brother is tired of bailing him out and sets to teach Brian a “lesson”.

In comes Vivian Davenport, a woman his brother hires to straighten out Brian’s finances – both professionally and personally. Vivian is mysterious and stoic and doesn’t take Brian’s nonchalant attitude too kindly. She hates his playboy-ish ways and his constant flirting and flaunting. All she wants to do is get Brian’s company back on track so she can leave.

But of course, things don’t always go as planned when you’re working in the same office of a chauvinistic player. Brian and Vivian both get under each other’s skins, but is it really just a way of hiding their attractions with each other? Vivian doesn’t want to get involved romantically with Brian, and Brian – while attracted to Vivian – can’t stand her standoffish ways and her uptight business attitude. If only Brian can get serious about his financial problems as well as his attitude, then Vivian can just finish what she was hired to do and go back to her own life.

So, I’m just going to flat out say that I couldn’t really stand Brian at first. He was brilliantly written as a chauvinistic pig, picking up on women left to right just to hide his own insecurities. He has a caring brother and two business partners who are also his best friends and yet he treats them like they’re nobodies. Brian would rather solve his problems on his own and sort of wave his middle finger to those around him than realize he has some serious issues – both professionally and personally. But as we start to see why he has such insecurities and has to hide behind his careless manner, it became easier to sympathize with him and cheer him on. Vivian on the other hand is a completely different story…

I didn’t care much for Vivian either. I wish she had more of a backbone instead of hedging between the Will I or Won’t I scenarios. There’s something mysterious about her as the author doesn’t really let on about her personal life and it’s towards the end of the story that we see why – and you’ll have to read the book to find out. While she finds Brian handsome and hot and all that, I just don’t like female heroines who fall for the playboy only to end up being hurt in the end.

However, that’s not to say that It Started With a Lie isn’t a good book. It’s very well-written and the pacing is quite steady. The interactions between Brian and Vivian are comical at times and you can see Brian changing to a better person right before your eyes. There is a cliffhanger which throws a wrench into Brian’s plans once his finances cleared up and of course, we’re left wondering what’s going to happen with Brian and Vivian after that bomb drop! Author Lisa Suzanne promises book two will answer some questions but bring up some new ones as well!

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Synopsis:

Brian Fox is desperate for cash. When his business falls into debt, he turns yet again to his rock star brother. Only this time, his brother refuses to throw money at the problem…he intends to solve it. Enter Vivian Davenport, business fixer extraordinaire, supreme professional, and Brian’s new boss.
 
Brian has always called the shots, but now he’s the one taking orders. When the tiny lie that Vivian is his new girlfriend slips out, he’s forced to play the role of doting boyfriend to a woman he can’t stand.
 
It started as a lie, but what happens if it turns into the truth?

It Started With a Lie is written by author Lisa Suzanne and it’s book one of the Truth and Lies series. It’s contemporary romance but definitely for adults only as there are some explicit scenes and language.

You can purchase It Started With a Lie on Amazon: https://amzn.to/2xlkYQy and follow Lisa Suzanne on her website: http://authorlisasuzanne.blogspot.com/p/home-page.html

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AUTHOR BIO

Lisa Suzanne is a romance author who resides in Arizona with her husband and baby boy. She’s a former high school English teacher and college composition instructor. When she’s not cuddling baby Mason, she can be found working on her latest book or watching reruns of Friends.

*Thank you to Lisa Suzanne and Give Me Books Promotions for the ARC and Blitz Tour!

 

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

When Time Stands Still Author Book Tour, Review, and Giveaway

Love comes in many forms. Through the love of a parent, a good friend, or a sibling. It even comes in the form of unrequited love. But the love between two partners can be quite unique and magical and thus is the story of Elle and Luke, two young innocents in When Time Stands Still.

The path to true love and friendship can be a hard one even for those falling in love for the first time. For Elle, growing up in a desolate home with an alcoholic mom and absent father should have set her up to doom and fall. But because of her circumstances, she chose to arise above it all and desired to be something better than her mom will ever be or want her to be. Along the way comes Luke, a guy so sweet and kind that Elle couldn’t help but fall for. Although she had a daunting past, Luke’s kindness and gentleness made it easy for Elle to open her heart up for him.

In Sara Furlong Burr’s contemporary romance, When Time Stands Still is a story of acceptance and forgiveness and fighting for who you really are. Obstacles can get in the way to the path of true and everlasting love and it’s how you overcome those obstacles to come out on top that really matters. For Elle, she never imagined she could be truly loved by anyone. For Luke, love at first sight really was a thing. When they’re both together, it seems that their insurmountable obstacles are nothing compared to how they love each other and support each other. Luke was the impeccable boyfriend that every girl wish they had – smart, handsome, and pure of heart.

My personal review of When Time Stands Still:

In When Time Stands Still, you get the immediate sense that Elle has self doubt and loss of self worth. In a marriage that isn’t quite perfect nor ideal, Elle receives a call about a past boyfriend who desperately needs her help. Does she leave her husband and job for a few days to help out this old boyfriend? She does indeed, and we sort of wonder why she would if she is supposedly happily married and has a good life.

But everything on the surface isn’t always reflected beneath. Elle doesn’t have a husband who is madly in love with her and we get insights of their imperfect marriage. In fact, her husband seems to be quite a jerk. As Elle confronts the ghosts of her past, so does she reflect on her current life with her husband. Not that Elle does anything to jeopardize her marriage or anything, but as the chapters go back and forth between the past and the present, we see how wonderful Luke is and how truly great he is to her and with her. For me, Elle and Luke seemed like the sweet, young couple that every relationship should feel. A love so clean and pure that you can’t help but fall in love with the main characters as well.

Elle’s reflection of her past is truly sad. She had some traumatic events happen upon her – one whom Luke was able to save her from, the other she still had scars hidden deep within her soul and psyche. But the greatest defeat of Elle was her mom. Her mom, who should have helped her rise from the ashes instead constantly pushed her down, belittled her, and made fun of her choice of major in college. It was in college where Elle met Luke, and that saying about love at first sight was described so sweetly between the two. Luke’s steadfast friendship and support helped Elle believe in herself but as with any tragic love story goes, there is always someone or something getting in the way.

In the story, both Elle and Luke have two great best friends. Snarky, funny, but loyal to a fault, Mena and Monroe are their backbones and “devil on the shoulder” if you may. They are big supporters of Elle and Luke’s relationship and only a most dire situation pulls Elle out of all of their lives for good. Thus began the mystery between Elle and Luke’s breakup.

As Elle helps Luke return to his normal life after the near death accident, she realizes that her heart had never let Luke go. She was still unequivocally in love with him and had only lived a half life after their breakup. We find out that Luke never moved on either and the details about Luke’s amnesiac love for Elle and Elle’s struggle to help him without guilt was beautiful to read. While at parts I would have liked to shake Elle awake to make her see that she was truly deserving of Luke and his love, Elle alas, had to discover it on her own. Was it too late for her and Luke? Or will Elle return to the mediocre life she was currently living in? You’ll have to read the story to find out.

Synopsis of When Time Stands Still:

It’s been nearly a decade since Elle Sloan last saw Luke Hutchins. Close to ten years since she broke up with him over a single phone call, providing him with little explanation. Since the end of their relationship, Elle has done everything she could do to move on, marrying, proceeding forward with her life, almost allowing herself to completely forget about Luke.

Almost.

Out of nowhere, Elle receives a phone call from Luke’s mother. Luke has been in a horrific car accident and, a month later, has just awoken from a coma. However, instead of celebrating, his family is stunned to learn that Luke is suffering from amnesia and only remembers his life as it was before his breakup with Elle. Not wanting to tell Luke that he and Elle aren’t together anymore for fear it may compromise his recovery, Elle is asked by Luke’s family to come to the hospital to see him. Their hope is that she will slowly be able to jog his memory and cushion the blow.

Guilt-ridden over how their relationship ended, Elle readily agrees, finding herself transported back in time with Luke to the life they once shared and the future they could have had together.

Author’s Bio:

Sara Furlong Burr was born and raised in Michigan and currently still lives there with her husband, two daughters, a high-strung Lab, and three judgmental cats. When she’s not writing, Sara enjoys reading, camping, spending time with her family, and attempting to paint while consuming more amaretto sours than she cares to admit.

When Time Stands Still is a contemporary romance novel by author Sara Furlong Burr and can be purchased on Amazon. Blog tour dates run from August 13-17 with further info found on the Xpresso Book Tours website: http://xpressobooktours.com/2018/05/24/tour-sign-up-when-time-stands-still-by-sara-furlong-burr/

Author links:

https://www.facebook.com/EnigmaBlackKindle

https://twitter.com/sarafurlong

http://sarafurlongburr.blogspot.com/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6590097.Sara_Furlong_Burr

Be sure to also enter in the giveaway for a signed copy of When Time Stands Still and a $20 Amazon Gift Card here:

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232581/

You can also purchase When Time Stands Still on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/When-Time-Stands-Still-Furlong-Burr-ebook/dp/B07CW9RF3T/

*Thank you to Xpresso Book Tours and Sara Furlong Burr for the ARC and tour opportunity.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm