Brand NEW from the bestselling author of The Village Shop For Lonely Hearts.
After escaping her parents’ unhappy marriage to sleepy Cranbridge a long time ago, Belle Clarke dreams of staying at The Black Swan Inn forever.
But with the rundown Inn threatened with closure, Belle may be forced to leave, unless a buyer can be found … quickly.
So, when her oldest friend Pete Kennedy returns from working abroad with a plan to save the Inn, Belle should be overjoyed. The trouble is, Pete has some rather radical ideas for the renovation which Belle disagrees with.
But when a snow storm hits, Belle and Pete are forced to put aside their differences and work together to help the village.
Can Belle realise her dreams to stay in Cranbridge and can Pete ever stop running from his past?
As they try to save The Black Swan Inn, secrets are revealed and just maybe they’ll finally find out how they really feel about each other.
Alison Sherlock is the author of the bestselling Willow Tree Hall books. Alison enjoyed reading and writing stories from an early age and gave up office life to follow her dream. Her new series for Boldwood is set in a fictional Cotswold village and the first title was published in July 2020.
Warm and welcoming read. It comes with a beautiful cover, which takes you to winter wonderland. I absolutely loved the cover. The book is centered on community spirit and friendships. It will leave you with a feeling similar to drinking a warm cup of cocoa!
Book Details: Book Title: Lost and Found by Ronald L. Ruiz Category: Adult Fiction (18+), 292 pages Genre: Literary Publisher: Embajadoras Press Release date: June 2021 Formats available for review: ebook (mobi for kindle, PDF) Tour dates: September 20 to October 8 Content Rating: R – Includes f-words and profanities throughout, one sex scene
Book Description: When community leaders began to doubt Abel Mendoza, the law practice he had spent years building began to crumble. It was the 1960s and there was but a handful of Mexican lawyers in California. Abel had worked tirelessly to earn respect in the courts, avoiding any semblance of a personal life to achieve his goals. Now, his personal and professional lives had collided and he found himself being rejected by the community that had previously supported and admired him. His fears of inadequacy kindled, Abel began to question who he really was, what he did, and where he belonged. A desire to avoid these questions and the people who had provoked them sent this small-town lawyer on a trip to escape not only his community but his own self-doubts, and into a relationship that changed his life completely.
Do you have another profession besides writing?
I am now retired but for 36 years I was a lawyer in California. For 31 of those years I was a defense attorney and prosecutor in the criminal courts. The exposure I had with people from all walks of life, and with the court system itself, in my work as a lawyer was a blessing and a gift for my writing. I have published seven novels and a memoir and each of those is ladened with what I saw and experienced in my practice of criminal law. All of my books would be very different books if I had not been a lawyer. 120 Days could not have been written except for my work in the criminal courts. In 120 Days an accomplished trial lawyer falls in love with her court appointed in custody client who was then charged with a death penalty murder. Almost everything in that book takes place in the courts or in the jail. How the criminal court system works is a big part of that book
Lost and Found is about a lawyer seeking his identity. Much of Happy Birthday Jesus deals with a prison system. My memoir, A Lawyer, is about the California criminal justice system. I wonder what I would have, or could have written if I had not been a lawyer involved in a criminal justice system.
Meet the Author
Ronald L. Ruiz is the author of a memoir and six previous novels. His novel Giuseppe Rocco (1998) received the national literary prize, 1998 Premio Aztlán Award, and his novel Life Long (2017) was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2017. His work has been compared to Richard Wright’s Native Son (Publisher’s Weekly, featured review) and his writing described as “frighteningly real” (New York Newsday). Ron was born and raised in Fresno, California, and educated at St. Mary’s College, University of California, Berkeley Law, and University of San Francisco School of Law. Ron practiced law for over 30 years in California, as a Deputy District Attorney, criminal defense attorney, and Deputy Public Defender. He was appointed to the California Agriculture Labor Relations Board by Governor Jerry Brown in 1974, and later served as the District Attorney of Santa Cruz County, California. Ron retired from criminal law and continues to write every day.
The book is well-written, albeit has a slow pace. It is under 300 pages, and makes for a quick read. The book follows Abel Mendoza on his journey of self-discovery. Abel builds his career and reputation, only to find it shattered. Abel however, picks up the pieces and works on rebuilding himself. We can all relate to having come across pivotal moments or events that have caused us to rebuild our lives. Its short, quick and an entertaining read.
Author of Reese’s Book Club YA Pick The Light in Hidden Places, Sharon Cameron, delivers an emotionally gripping and utterly immersive thriller, perfect for fans of Ruta Sepetys’s Salt to the Sea.
A historical novel, set in postwar New York City.
In 1946, Eva leaves behind the rubble of Berlin for the streets of New York City, stepping from the fiery aftermath of one war into another, far colder one, where power is more important than principles, and lies are more plentiful than the truth. Eva holds the key to a deadly secret: Project Bluebird — a horrific experiment of the concentration camps, capable of tipping the balance of world power. Both the Americans and the Soviets want Bluebird, and it is something that neither should ever be allowed to possess.
But Eva hasn’t come to America for secrets or power. She hasn’t even come for a new life. She has come to America for one thing: justice. And the Nazi that has escaped its net.
About Sharon: SHARON CAMERON’s debut novel The Dark Unwinding was awarded the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators’ Sue Alexander Award for Most Promising New Work and the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award, and was named a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults selection. Sharon is also the author of its sequel, A Spark Unseen; Rook, which was selected as an Indiebound Indie Next List Top Ten selection, a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults selection, and a Parents’ Choice gold medalist; and The Forgetting, a #1 New York Times bestseller and an Indie Next Pick of the List selection, and its companion novel, The Knowing. The Light in Hidden Places received two starred reviews, was a Reese’s YA Book Club pick, and received fantastic media coverage for Sharon’s strong research and affecting prose. It has sold in 14 languages. Sharon lives with her family in Nashville, Tennessee and can be found at sharoncameronbooks.com.
When her dreams of young love were cruelly shattered, Nerissa Morgan found it hard to move on. Now, at forty-three, everyone around her is enjoying life while she’s just going through the motions. With her boss retiring and rumours of a new doctor coming in to take over the practice she manages, change is coming, whether she’s ready for it or not.
Following the death of his beloved wife, Tom Nelson buried himself in work at his busy inner-London GP practice. When his teenage children find themselves in trouble at school, he realises he’s completely lost touch with them. Desperate to reconnect before it’s too late, he whisks his family away to the pretty seaside village of Mermaids Point determined to make a fresh start.
But all is not as idyllic as it seems. With his predecessor reluctant to let go of the reins and the children as distant as ever, the last thing Tom needs is an undeniable attraction to the woman he unexpectedly finds himself sharing a roof with…
Warm, escapist, feel-good and altogether brilliant story-telling from bestselling author Sarah Bennett. Perfect for all fans of Trisha Ashley and Milly Johnson.
Sarah Bennett is the bestselling author of several romantic fiction trilogies including those set in Butterfly Cove and Lavender Bay. Born and raised in a military family she is happily married to her own Officer and when not reading or writing enjoys sailing the high seas.
Grace Penner’s safe haven crumbles when a body is found outside of town.
Gifted the memory bell, a family heirloom, from her grandfather’s will, Grace’s excitement is soon squashed when the bell gets broken right after she receives it. While gluing the pieces back in place, she discovers three are still missing.
Determined to find them, she is halted when the new detective, Bennet James, investigates her family. Grace is intent on showing the detective her family isn’t capable of murder, but as the investigation deepens, and pieces of the bell show up with ominous notes, Grace soon realizes the Penners are not what they seem. Amidst the tightly knit family; dark secrets, deception, and possibly even murder unfold.
Will Grace be able to save the family she loves more than anything without losing herself forever?
Praise for The Memory Bell: “A naïve small-town girl and a disillusioned big-city cop, drawn together by an unsolved crime that is itself only the tip of the iceberg, The Memory Bell serves up the perfect steamy summer read.” –Jenny Jaeckel, author of House of Rougeaux
“The story moves beyond a small town whodunit to probe the underlying bonds of history that connect a family.” -Midwest Book Review
“Wonderful, engaging, and fast-paced! Flannery knows what she’s doing!” -Jonas Saul, author of the Sarah Roberts series
Book Details: Genre: Mystery, Suspense Published by: Black Rose Writing Publication Date: July 1, 2021 Number of Pages: 288 ISBN: 1684337089 (ISBN-13:978-1684337088) Purchase Links:Amazon| Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Author Bio: Kat Flannery’s love of history shows in her novels. She is an avid reader of historical, suspense, paranormal, and romance. A member of many writing Kat enjoys promoting other authors on her blog. When she’s not busy writing, or marketing Kat volunteers her time to other aspiring authors. She has been a keynote speaker, lecturer and guest author inspiring readers and writers at every event she attends. Kat’s been published in numerous periodicals throughout her career, and continues to write for blogs and online magazines. A bestselling author, Kat’s books are available all over the world. The BRANDED TRILOGY is Kat’s award-winning series. With seven books published, Kat continues to plot what story will be next. Creativity is in all aspects of Kat’s career. She does Social Media and Marketing for her own career and businesses, writing ads, and other content.
Family is supposed to be our safe haven. Very often, it’s the place where we find the deepest heartache.
Detective Bennet James stood over the remains of a hand dug grave. The morning air was brisk for July, and a foggy cloud permeated the air as he exhaled. He’d woken as the first rays of dawn crept through his hotel window casting sundogs along the planked floor.
Bones were found by the grain elevators at the mill in Oakville. The sleepy town was an hour’s drive from Chicago and where he’d been stationed for the last two weeks. It was hell, but anything was better than sitting at home waiting to hear his fate. He flexed his shoulders. The muscles ached from the mounting pressure.
He took a sip of the coffee he’d bought at the local gas station. The bitter blend was cold and old. Probably made the night before and just waiting for some poor soul to drain the last of the dregs from the decanter.
With no details other than the presence of human remains to work with, Ben made quick work of taping off the area and closing all access in and out of the mill. The trains were halted and all productivity near the tracks was at a standstill. He surveyed the grounds. Three metal silos stood in a row to his left with tracks laid in front of them. Directly behind were wooden buildings with peaked roofs, and a single track led to a dead end.
He gathered the mill was over fifty years old by the way the boards heaved and sagged. Out of commission for some time, he wondered why no one had torn the dilapidated buildings down. Being that the place was pretty much deserted it’d make things difficult in the investigation. He snorted. It wasn’t his investigation, and if things didn’t work out for him with the state, he’d never see another one again.
He rubbed his hand across his face. His heart quickened with the familiar feeling of piecing together a puzzle. It was the same feeling he got every time he was dealt a new case. Except this one was different. It wasn’t his, and even though the thought of having something to occupy his mind was appealing, he doubted Sheriff Rhoads would let him take the lead on it, much less be a part of it.
Ben glanced down at the body. Nothing left but bones and a few fragments of hair which signified the death happened years before. The grave was not shallow, but not deep either. Ben guessed it was four feet into the ground. A blue blanket caught his eye. He fingered the soft cotton with a gloved hand, a crocheted throw that was now pulled from the knots someone delicately placed there. Whoever had wrapped the victim in it did so with pristine care.
“Where is the witness?” he asked the young deputy standing to his left. He couldn’t remember the boy’s name, or was it he didn’t care? It didn’t really matter. He’d stopped caring about those around him a long time ago.
The deputy looked a bit flushed, and Ben figured the kid living in the small town had never seen anything like this before. Regret settled in his stomach at making the boy stay with him while he looked over the body and its surroundings. Ben remembered seeing his first body, a young girl, no more than six. Her image still haunted him on nights when sleep wouldn’t come.
He blinked, collected his thoughts, and faced the young man.
“You’re no longer needed here,” he said.
“The men who found the body are over there,” the kid stammered. His hand shook as he pointed to the two silhouettes standing twenty yards away.
“Thanks.” Ben dismissed him and walked toward the two men sipping coffee from their mugs. A part of him wanted to turn back to his car and leave now that Rhoads was here, but his pride and his duty wouldn’t allow it. He pulled out the small note pad and pen he kept in his pocket.
“Morning. I need to ask you a few questions.”
“Ain’t you the new fella?” one of the men asked.
“You’re that swanky detective from the city.”
Ben didn’t answer.
“Why in hell would you want to come out here?”
He remained silent. It was none of the old man’s business why he’d been placed in this shithole town.
“Talk is you got into hot water up there.”
“I need to ask you some questions,” Ben repeated, an edge creeping into his voice. He wasn’t about to discuss his shit with these guys. He shifted from one foot to the other, took a deep calming breath, cleared his throat, and waited.
“Not much to tell,” the man said. His thick white moustache spanned the whole of his upper lip and the bottoms of his cheeks.
“Your name?” he asked.
“Walter Smythe.” The man leaned in to read what Ben wrote and tapped his index finger onto the paper. “That’s Smythe with a Y not an I.”
“Can you tell me how you came upon the body?”
“Ol’ Russ was the one who found it.”
He turned to the other man.
“I ain’t Russ,” the farmer said.
“That’s my dog.” Walter whistled. A large St. Bernard came loping up from the field behind the buildings.
“The dog found the body?”
“What were you doing out here?”
“I come out from time to time.”
“Why if the place is closed down?”
The man shrugged.
“Have you brought Russ out here before?” Ben asked, still trying to piece together how the remains were found.
“Sure. I bring him everywhere.”
“Why was he in the elevators?”
Walter’s wide shoulders lifted underneath the plaid jacket.
“Did the dog take anything from the grave, or disturb it in anyway?”
“Once I seen him diggin’, I called him over.” Walter guffawed. “But the damn mutt just kept on going back. So, I went over to see what the hell he was after.”
“At what point did you figure out it was a body?”
“Right away when I saw the bones.”
“Russ dug up most of the grave?”
“Nah, maybe a foot of it.” Walter nudged the farmer beside him. “I called Bill and we determined it was best to call the sheriff.”
“Why didn’t you call the sheriff first?”
Walter didn’t answer.
“Did you remove or touch anything?” Ben asked.
As much as the farmer was rough around the edges, he could tell Walter Smythe spoke the truth.
“One more question. Has anyone gone missing in the last ten years?”
“Not around these parts. Most people who go missing leave for the city.”
“Why is that?”
“Small towns ain’t for everybody.” Walter’s eyes narrowed. “Stuff like this don’t happen around here.”
Ben nodded before he walked away and headed back to his car. He opened the door but didn’t get in. Tall silos, train cars and tracks were surrounded by a field. Waist-high stalks of yellow waved in the breeze and from what he knew of farming, it looked to be canola. Why wasn’t the body buried in the field? There must be over a hundred acres of land. Until he received the coroner’s report, he couldn’t begin to guess at anything yet. Before he left, he’d need to talk to Sheriff Rhoads and see about any missing persons reports in the area.
“Well, that is odd.” Rhoads sauntered toward him, brows furrowed.
“What is?” Ben asked.
“A body, here, at the elevators, in Oakville.” His forehead wrinkled, and a perplexed look crossed his face. “Nobody has been here in years.”
“These things can happen anywhere. There are no rules for death.”
Rhoads focused on him, but remained quiet for some time before he said, “Not here.”
“I’d like to take the lead on this,” Ben said. The words surprised him, but he couldn’t take them back now. Besides, he needed something to keep him busy. The minor misdemeanors at the old folk’s home, break-ins, and an occasional kid in trouble wasn’t enough to keep him from going crazy with boredom.
“Not sure that’s wise, with your probation and all.”
Ben nodded, figuring that would be the answer.
“But I don’t see it as more than an unfortunate accident, so go ahead.”
Ben wasn’t so sure.
Why Should You Read This?
A gripping mystery thriller. Deeply emotional with a complex family drama. The book slowly unravels, and the author has kept the reader engaged. While the characters are likeable, I found Grace to be immensely naïve. However, she is charming, and guessing how she would react to events keeps the reader engaged. It has a fascinating plotline, and Flannery has captured the atmosphere of a small town well.