Category: Fly in the Ointment

#RRSciFiMonth Book Review | “The Last Day of Captain Lincoln” (a novella debut) by EXO Books

Posted Wednesday, 29 November, 2017 by jorielov , 0 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using Unsplash.com photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book by: Last year for #RRSciFiMonth, I had intended to review this story and host the illustrator in an interview, however, due to certain circumstances and a family health crisis, I had to postpone my readings of the story. Although, I attempted to read this story during [2017] the timing never felt right to broach the subject matter within it’s scope, thereby, I pushed forward my plans until this year’s #RRSciFiMonth event in November, 2017.

I received a complimentary copy of “The Last Day of Captain Lincoln” direct from the author/publisher EXO Books in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I’ve been dearly keen on reading this lovely Sci-Fi Novella:

I was originally approached by Mr EXO to read this novella for the [2016] #RRSciFiMonth event, however, I was unable to complete what I had planned – as I wanted to not only read the story but to interview the illustrator of who had inspired me whilst browsing through the hardback copy prior to reading the narrative. These illustrations were so captivatingly honest and real – they illustrated the depth of emotional conviction whilst giving you a clear insight into what the character being illustrated could have been thinking at the time their portrait was taken. I felt these illustrations were an apt component to the story-line, of digging in even a bit deeper than where the context might take me as they visually were quite stunning to lay thought over on their own!

The main reason I knew in my heart I couldn’t read this story last [November] or even during the #SciFiExperience (which has served as a bookended event to my wanderings during Sci Fi November) – is due to the experiences I had with my Dad during his stroke, surgery and hospitalisation. I wasn’t entirely sure when I could alight inside another person’s ‘last day’ as I had come too close to realising the last ‘day’ of my father’s. Looking back on the past year has been an incredible year of healing and growth – of how the mind heals after the eruptions of stroke and how the man re-emerges back into his life whilst looking ahead to the future. It has been a difficult year for the most part but it has been a blessed year at the same time – it’s the year my Dad recovered from his stroke and I, took on the role of his caregiver.

What first caught my attention though – is how the story seemed to be told – from an introspective angle of insight into Captain Lincoln. I also liked the innovative approach and non-conventional publishing career of the author, of whom, goes simply by ‘EXO Books’ which is in of itself a clever moniker to have as an author/publisher due to the duality of it’s purpose.

As the [2017] #RRSciFiMonth event approached – I knew I wanted to do something quite special connected to reading the story, which is why I co-hosted a chat with Mr EXO on Twitter. You can read the recapture of the conversation as well as find links to to the Storified transcript and the books of rec’s via Riffle on this post. Perhaps, next year – I can converse with the illustrator and bring everything full circle!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

#RRSciFiMonth Book Review | “The Last Day of Captain Lincoln” (a novella debut) by EXO BooksThe Last Day of Captain Lincoln
by EXO Books
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Kimberly Hazen
Source: Direct from Author, Direct from Publisher

Captain Lincoln's last day is the hardest day of his life.

An old, onetime Captain of the interstellar spaceship USNAS Hope Eternal, Lincoln always knew that this day would come. For just as birthdays are carefully planned, so are deaths. And although he must reckon with his fate, this is not a somber story. It is a tale of love and sacrifice, told in the context of the most advanced civilization ever to exist—a society that has taken to the stars in an effort to save all that is best in humanity.

Follow Lincoln through his internal struggles, his joy in having lived, and his journey to peace.

The End is just the beginning.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to Riffle

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9780997590258

Genres: Science Fiction, Short Story or Novella, Space Opera


Published by EXO Books, LLC

on 20th August, 2016

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 133

Published By:  EXO Books

Available Formats: Hardback, Ebook

Genre(s): Speculative | Science Fiction | Futuristic Fiction

Space Opera | Introspective Fiction | Death & Mortality

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • #FuellYourSciFi
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Posted Wednesday, 29 November, 2017 by jorielov in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Author, Fly in the Ointment, Hard Science Fiction, Indie Author, Science Fiction, Soft Science Fiction, Space Opera, Speculative Fiction, Vulgarity in Literature

#SpooktasticReads | Book Review “The Secret Kiss of Darkness” (Book No. 2 of the Shadows of the Past series) by Christina Courtenay #ChocLitSaturdays

Posted Saturday, 25 November, 2017 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

ChocLitSaturdays Banner Created by Jorie in Canva.

Why I feature #ChocLitSaturdays (book reviews & guest author features)
and created #ChocLitSaturday (the chat via @ChocLitSaturday):

I wanted to create a bit of a niche on Jorie Loves A Story to showcase romance fiction steeped in relationships, courtships, and the breadth of marriage enveloped by characters written honestly whose lives not only endear you to them but they nestle into your heart as their story is being read!

I am always seeking relationship-based romance which strikes a chord within my mind’s eye as well as my heart! I’m a romantic optimist, and I love curling into a romance where I can be swept inside the past, as history becomes lit alive in the fullness of the narrative and I can wander amongst the supporting cast observing the principal characters fall in love and sort out if they are a proper match for each other!

I love how an Indie Publisher like ChocLitUK is such a positive alternative for those of us who do not identify ourselves as girls and women who read ‘chick-lit’. I appreciate the stories which alight in my hands from ChocLit as much as I appreciate the inspirational romances I gravitate towards because there is a certain level of depth to both outlets in romance which encourage my spirits and gives me a beautiful story to absorb! Whilst sorting out how promote my book reviews on behalf of ChocLit, I coined the phrase “ChocLitSaturdays”, which is a nod to the fact my ChocLit reviews & features debut on ‘a Saturday’ but further to the point that on the ‘weekend’ we want to dip into a world wholly ideal and romantic during our hours off from the work week!

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular reviewer for ChocLitUK, where I hand select which books in either their backlist and/or current releases I would like to read next for my #ChocLitSaturdays blog feature. As of June 2016, I became a member of the ChocLit Stars Team in tandem with being on the Cover Reveal Team which I joined in May 2016. I reference the Stars as this is a lovely new reader contribution team of sending feedback to the publisher ahead of new book releases. As always, even if I’m involved with a publisher in this sort of fashion, each review is never influenced by that participation and will always be my honest impression as I read the story. Whether the author is one I have previously read or never had the pleasure to read until the book greets my shelf.

However, a few years ago, I won a bookaway for one of Ms Courtenay’s novels – happily surprised to have found a few extra titles tucked into the parcel, this was one of the stories I received. I believe this is the title I ‘won’, although I am forgetting which title I received was the bookaway book! I received a complimentary copy of “The Secret Kiss of Darkness” from the author Christina Courtenay without obligation to post a review. I have loved reading her stories in the past and this review is being shared for my own edification as much as I wanted to share my joys of reading it with my readers. Therefore, it’s an ‘addition’ to my regular reviews during #ChocLitSaturdays. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Why I am enjoying reading this series:

I can assure you dear hearts, you get so attached to the 15th Century, between walking the vast estate and being caught up in the particulars of that century’s sociopolitical drama that by the time you ‘pull yourself’ forward back into the Manor to see how the research Melissa is doing into the ancestral records for her family & Jake’s family lineage, you nearly do not know which era you’d prefer to stay in a bit longer! I especially loved one scene where Melissa is being given the access to an ancient copy of the original will penned on behalf of Sibell; as she starts to read the words in Latin, her mind takes her physically back to Sibell’s time. She can sense and feel everything happening to Sibell at the time the will is being written. The visceral imagery and sensory connectedness was conveyed in such a convincing way that you could ascertain exactly what was happening in that ‘one single second’ of Sibell’s young life.

The heart of the story is etched inside the beguiling truths which separated lost loves through such a violent ending of their lives. In some ways, parts of Sibell & Roger’s story reminded me of Romeo & Juliet, fated in such a way as to not find happiness within their own lifetime; at least not one that would be forever lasting. An element of the backdrop is quite close to my own heart, is the pursuit of genealogical research! I loved watching Melissa find the tethering ties out of the records of the archivists and how the pursuit of research truly started to reveal much more than she could ever have hoped to find! The manner in which Sibell and Roger insert themselves into her reality is a bittersweet haunting any reader of psychological suspense will enjoy! Especially considering the way in which things end and resolve!

-quoted from my review of The Silent Touch of Shadows

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

On my Connection to Ms. Courtenay:

Three years ago, on the 26th of April, 2014, I created #ChocLitSaturday a weekly Rom chat to celebrate the novelists of ChocLitUK but also, to expand to include book bloggers, readers and writers of Romance who have a penchant for the genre as a whole. Ms. Courtenay started to become a regular fixture, and her encouraging conversations & ability to inspire others to converse freely throughout the chats put me at ease in my new role as a ‘Hostess’. She always seemed to know how to either start a topic or how to best suggest something to break the ice! I was always so very grateful to her and I am thinking I might have forgotten to tell her directly how much gratitude I had for her in those earlier chats! Over the weeks that have followed, I have found myself attached to each of my ‘regular’ chatters during the hour, and I consider Ms. Courtenay a bookish like-minded soul, as we tend to appreciate the same types of stories!

During [2017] #ChocLitSaturday started to meet bi-monthly (if possible) rather than the usual weekly meet-ups which the chat had engaged in originally. During the course of the year, Ms Courtenay was not oft able to attend and her presence was dearly missed.

I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with Courtenay through our respective love & passion of reading inside the twitterverse whilst I host #ChocLitSaturday the chat and having previously read her time slip novels and series set in Japan (Kumashiro). I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time or continuing to read their releases as they are available.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

 #SpooktasticReads | Book Review “The Secret Kiss of Darkness” (Book No. 2 of the Shadows of the Past series) by Christina Courtenay #ChocLitSaturdaysThe Secret Kiss of Darkness
by Christina Courtenay
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Berni Stevens
Source: Direct from Publisher

Must forbidden love end in heartbreak?

Kayla Sinclair knows she’s in big trouble when she almost bankrupts herself to buy a life-size portrait of a mysterious eighteenth century man at an auction.

Jago Kerswell, innkeeper and smuggler, knows there is danger in those stolen moments with Lady Eliza Marcombe, but he’ll take any risk to be with her.

Over two centuries separate Kayla and Jago, but, when Kayla’s jealous fiancé presents her with an ultimatum, and Jago and Eliza’s affair is tragically discovered, their lives become inextricably linked thanks to a gypsy’s spell.

Kayla finds herself on a quest that could heal the past, but what she cannot foresee is the danger in her own future.

Will Kayla find heartache or happiness?

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to Riffle

Add to LibraryThing

Book Page on ChocLitUK

ISBN: 9781781890677

Also by this author: Guest Post about Time Slips, The Silent Touch of Shadows, The Scarlet Kimono, The Velvet Cloak of Moonlight Cover Reveal, The Velvet Cloak of Moonlight Cover Reveal, Marry for Love, The Gilded Fan, The Jade Lioness

Also in this series: The Silent Touch of Shadows


Genres: Genre-bender, Ghost Story, Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense, Reincarnation Fiction, Romance Fiction, Romantic Suspense, Time Slip and/or Time Shift


Published by ChocLitUK

on 15th March, 2014

Format: UK Edition Paperback

Pages: 299

Published by: ChocLitUK (@ChocLituk)

Available Formats: Paperback, Audiobook, Large Print & E-Book

Celebrating the Paranormal Romances of Christina Courtenay
& her “Shadows of the Past” series

Read the author’s thoughts on writing Time Slips via her Guest Post
(which focuses on this series)

The Silent Touch of Shadows began the series

The Soft Whisper of Dreams is the sequel to The Secret Kiss of Darkness

& The Velvet Cloak of Moonlight is the fourth in the series to release!

Converse via: #HistRom + #TimeSlip + #GhostStory + #PNR + #ChocLit

About Christina Courtenay

Christina Courtenay

Christina lives near Hereford and is married with two children. Although born in England she has a Swedish mother and was brought up in Sweden. In her teens, the family moved to Japan where she had the opportunity to travel extensively in the Far East.

Christina’s debut Trade Winds was short listed for the 2011 Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Pure Passion Award for Best Historical Fiction. The Scarlet Kimono won the 2011 Big Red Reads Best Historical Fiction Award. Highland Storms (in 2012) and The Gilded Fan (in 2014) won the Historical Romantic Novel of the Year Award and The Silent Touch of Shadows won the 2012 Best Historical Read Award from the Festival of Romance. Christina is Chairman of the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

Novels: Trade Winds, Highland Storms, Monsoon Mists, The Scarlet Kimono, The Gilded Fan, The Silent Touch of Shadows, The Secret Kiss of Darkness, The Soft Whisper of Dreams, The Jade Lioness, Marry in Haste, Once Bitten Twice Shy, Desperate Remedies and Never Too Late.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo. Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2017 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
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Posted Saturday, 25 November, 2017 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 18th Century, 21st Century, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bootleggers & Smugglers, Britian, British Literature, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, England, Green-Minded Publishers, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Indie Author, Life Shift, Modern British Author, Modern British Literature, Modern Day, Paranormal Romance, Rebels and Rogues, Romance Fiction, Romantic Suspense, Siblings, Suspense, Taboo Relationships & Romance, Vulgarity in Literature

Audiobook Spotlight | “Someone to Love” (Book 2 of the Heavenly Christmas series) by Patrice Wilton (narrated by Rita Page)

Posted Tuesday, 14 November, 2017 by jorielov , , , 2 Comments

Audiobook Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Digital Audiobook by: I am a blog tour hostess with Audiobookworm Promotions wherein I have the opportunity to receive audiobooks for review or adoption (reviews outside of organised blog tours) and host guest features on behalf of authors and narrators alike. I have been hosting for nearly a year now and I appreciate the diversity of genre selections and styles of stories to choose from whilst I navigate the audiobook realms!

I received a complimentary audiobook copy of “Someone to Love” via Audiobookworm Promotions in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

I especially enjoy reading series in order:

When I first signed on for this particular blog tour, I was thankful I could listen to two of the novels in the series – which at this time has three novels. I am unsure if this series will continue or if it will remain a trilogy – the joy for me was being able to start at the beginning. Even in series which are not necessarily inter-connected by characters, there is a lot to be said for going back to the beginning to better understand how the author began the series – you have a better foundation for what is yet to come in next installments. This is why I don’t agree about series having ‘stand-alone’ titles as through my readings of series, each installment builds on the last – even if it is to see the transitions and nuanced changes the writer is making in their style as the series moves forward.

Thereby, this is what my main takeaway was by listening to A Heavenly Christmas:

Despite the few things which wrinkled my brow as I listened to the story, one thing I liked about how Ms Wilton writes her Contemporaries is how she writes gentle stories of where her characters need to come to a personal awakening or fork in the road where they can sort through the things they are allowing to prevent themselves from moving ‘forward’ in their lives. She has a particular style I generally enjoy reading – even if there were a few things which I felt took my joy away here or there, I found myself rooted into the story-line. She’s taken a small towne atmosphere (which I love!) and populated it with a small cast of characters who make this towne called: Heaven come to life! It’s similar to how those tv movies set in small townes give you the impression you’ve spent time there yourself by the time the story ends. In this, the best part is getting caught up in how Jennie and her daughters (along with her parents) find that sometimes the things your thinking your seeking out of life might not be exactly what you need – sometimes, life has a way of switching up your plans in order to give you something to consider you hadn’t thought was necessary.

This is a light-hearted story despite the dramatic obstacles facing Nick and Jennie – even though I had my brow wrinkling here or there, one thing that was lovely was seeing how layered the story had been written – how there were realistic reasons why Jennie and Nick were having trouble sorting out their futures. The story ambled through their transitions – of allowing the reader time and space to understand why they couldn’t see the future they wanted as readily as you might have hoped they could have realised sooner – there was a lot of growth stitched into this novel and the author gives you plenty of insight into why Nick and Jennie needed the ‘extra time’ to resolve what conflicted them.

-quoted from my review of A Heavenly Christmas

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Audiobook Spotlight | “Someone to Love” (Book 2 of the Heavenly Christmas series) by Patrice Wilton (narrated by Rita Page)A Heavenly Christmas
Subtitle: Book Two in the Heavenly Christmas series
by Patrice Wilton
Source: Audiobook via Audiobookworm Promotions
Narrator: Rita Page

First came A Heavenly Christmas and now we have the riveting sequel, Someone to Love. This book is light on suspense and heavy on romance, and a perfect listen any time of the year!

Allison Cornwall was forced to leave her hometown in Connecticut and live life on the run from an ex-boyfriend turned stalker. She changed her name and hunkered down in Heaven, PA.

The small, idyllic town was a safe haven where no one could find her. And yet, after a year and a half of peace, he did. Police Chief Ian Brown is determined to keep crime out of Heaven. When Ally fears for her life, he's there to protect. Recently divorced, he's not looking for love, but this innocent young woman touches his heart. Can they put their pasts behind them and open themselves to the miracle of Christmas, learning once again to trust and to love?

Places to find the book:

Add to Riffle

ASIN: B01M5FBGFC

Also by this author: A Heavenly Christmas

Also in this series: A Heavenly Christmas


Genres: Christmas Story &/or Christmas Romance, Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance


Published by Self Published Author

on 26th October, 2016

Format: Audiobook | Digital

Length: 6 hours, 41 minutes (Unabridged)

Self Published Audiobook

A Heavenly Christmas series:

A Heavenly Christmas (Book One)

Someone to Love (Book Two) (Synopsis)

Christmas Wish (Book Three) (Synopsis)

Formats Available: Paperback and Audiobook

About Patrice Wilton

Patrice Wilton

Patrice Wilton knew from the age of twelve that she wanted to write books that would take the reader to faraway places. She was born in Vancouver, Canada, and had a great need to see the world that she had read about.

Patrice became a flight attendant for seventeen years and traveled the world. At the age of forty she sat down to write her first book—in longhand! Her interests include tennis, golf, and writing stories for women of all ages.

She is a mother of two, has four lovely grand-daughters and one grandson, and a wonderful man at her side. They live in West Palm Beach, Florida, where he teaches her golf, and she teaches him patience.

She has twenty-five books published on Amazon, and is a NY Times and USA Today best selling author.

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Posted Tuesday, 14 November, 2017 by jorielov in 21st Century, Audiobook, Audiobookworm Promotions, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Content Note, Fly in the Ointment, Indie Author, Modern Day, Self-Published Author, Small Towne Fiction

Blog Book Tour | “Kin Types” (#Poetry collection) by Luanne Castle

Posted Thursday, 9 November, 2017 by jorielov , , 6 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using Unsplash.com photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I have been hosting for Poetic Book Tours for a few years now, where I am finding myself encouraged to seek out collections of poetry or incredible fiction being published through Small Trade publishers and presses. I have an Indie spirit and mentality as a writer and I appreciate finding authors who are writing creative works through Indie resources as I find Indies have a special spirit about them. It is a joy to work with Poetic Book Tours for their resilience in seeking out voices in Literature which others might overlook and thereby, increasing my own awareness of these beautiful lyrical voices in the craft.

I received a complimentary copy of “Kin Types” direct from the author Luanne Castle in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Blog Book Tour | “Kin Types” (#Poetry collection) by Luanne CastleKin Types
by Luanne Castle
Source: Author via Poetic Book Tours

Kin Types is based largely upon genealogy and a fascination with what comes to all of us from the past. A mix of poetry in the traditional sense and highly poetic prose pieces, the collection takes the reader on a journey into the lives of women and somewhat into the lives of men who must carry on alone once the women are gone. The journey of this collection is not a ramble into the past, but a slingshot into the here and now by way of these portrait tales.

Places to find the book:

Add to Riffle

ISBN: 9781635342543

Also by this author: Kin Types

Genres: Anthology Collection of Short Stories and/or Essays, Poetry & Drama


Published by Finishing Line Press

on 14th July, 2017

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 44

Published By: Finishing Line Press (@FLPress)

Available Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Read how the author was inspired to create this collection

Converse via: #Ancestry + #Poetry

About Luanne Castle

Luanne Castle Photo Credit headshot by renee

Winner of the 2015 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award, Doll God, Luanne Castle‘s first collection of poetry, was published by Aldrich Press. Luanne’s poetry and prose have appeared in Grist, Copper Nickel, River Teeth, Glass Poetry Press, Barnstorm Journal, Six Hens, Lunch Ticket, The Review Review, and many other journals. Published by Finishing Line Press, Kin Types was a semi-finalist in the Concrete Wolf chapbook contest.

Luanne has been a Fellow at the Center for Ideas and Society at the University of California, Riverside. She studied English and creative writing at the University of California, Riverside (Ph.D.); Western Michigan University (MFA); and the Stanford University writing certificate program. Her scholarly work has been published in academic journals, and she contributed to Twice-Told Children’s Tales: The Influence of Childhood Reading on Writers for Adults, edited by Betty Greenway. For fifteen years, she taught college English. She divides her time between California and Arizona, where she shares land with a herd of javelina.

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Posted Thursday, 9 November, 2017 by jorielov in Biographical Fiction & Non-Fiction, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Content Note, Excessive Violence in Literature, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Indie Author, Poetic Book Tours, Poetry