Monday, September 30, 2013

Book Blogger Hop #2


What weekly memes do you follow on a regular basis?

I try my best to participate and follow Sunday Post, but it is neglected like a pair of mom jeans at the moment

Top Ten Tuesday

W…W… W…

None at the moment

Feature & Follow
Book Blogger Hop

None at the moment

Friday, September 27, 2013

CBL Book Reviews: Remembering Joy by Jenni Morgan

Remembering Joy

by Jenni Moen

Book Info
Title:  Remembering Joy (The Debut Novel of Jenni Moen)
Published Date / Expected Publishing Date:  June 7, 2013
Genre:  Contemporary Romance (17+)

Alexis doesn't believe in fairy tales  She knows firsthand that life can turn on a dime – that one stupid mistake can shatter dreams and irrevocably shape the future. Even though her memory of that day is hazy, she has spent the last ten years trying to put it behind her and focus on the future. 

Armed with the knowledge that her career will be her only legacy, Alexis works night and day to prove that she is more than just her last name. It’s not only that she doesn’t have time for love – she doesn’t have the heart for it. After all, there’s no point in starting something that you can’t finish. 

However, when she meets Adam, she’s drawn to him in a way even she can’t deny. He is dark and brooding and strangely charming. He’s the perfect distraction from the mundane life she’s created for herself. And, as if fate is pushing them together, he seems to be around every corner. It’s enough to almost make her entirely forget about her past and take a chance.
Unfortunately; Adam’s memory isn’t hazy . . . not in the least. And, what she doesn't remember, he can’t forget. 

Goodreads Link:
Amazon Link:

Additional Buy Links

Author Bio
Jenni Moen lives in her hometown in Oklahoma with her husband and three crazy, exuberant kids that have the potential to burn the house down at any moment.
When she’s not chauffeuring kids around town, performing her mom duties as a short order cook and maid, or vacuuming for her fastidious husband, she hammers away at her keyboard at her big girl job as a patent attorney. While vodka and exercise have provided some relief from the daily grind, it is reading … and now writing … that are her true escapes.


Remembering Joy Tour Schedule

September 23rd  - Review
September 24th
September 25th  – Promo
September 26th
September 27th
September 28th
September 29th
September 30th
October 1st
October 2nd
October 3rd
October 4th
October 5th
October 6th
October 9th
October 10th
October 11th
October 12th
October 13th

Historical Fiction Blog Hop! Giveaway #1: Wolf Wood (Part One) by Mike Dixon

Giveaway #1

Wolf Wood (Part One)
by Mike Dixon

Read The Most Happy Reader's earlier review

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Historical Fiction Giveaway Hop

The Historical Fiction Giveaway Hop

I'm not really big on rules so let's not have very many!  To participate you must offer a historical fiction book (all formats are fine as long as they are clearly described) or a Amazon or Book Depository gift card so that your winner can choose the historical fiction book of their choice.  If you are an author, offer your own novels, if you are an avid reader offer something from your bookshelf...   You get the idea - as long as the giveaway is clearly described anything goes (other than it MUST be historical fiction).  If you would like to use my badge above please feel free to copy and paste it.  If you are feeling creative feel free to make one of your own.

The hop runs from 9/27/13 to 10/11/13, please feel free to participate at any time within that time frame.

So, since it's a blog hop let's get that linky going!  Make sure to link to your giveaway and not to your blog's home page. Also grab the code below and add it to your blog so that readers can hop from one to another!

Wow! A Liebster!

I am so surprised and thrilled to be nominated for a Liebster Award for The Most Happy Reader.

So what is a Liebster?

Thanks, to Lorriane Reguly's super informative blog post... now I know!  Thank you Lorriane for all the work that went into that post!  Please visit her lovely poetry blog Poetry Perfected and so your thanks as well.

So, here we go:

The Official Rules of “The Liebster Award”

If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:

1.  Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
2.  Display the award on your blog.
3.  Answer 10 questions about yourself.  These should be provided to you by the person who nominated you, but hey maybe they didn't know!
4.  Provide 10 random facts about yourself.
5.  Nominate 5+ blogs that you feel deserve the award, which have a less than 1000 followers.
6.  List these rules in your post.

Once you have written your post, and published it, you then have to:

7.  Inform the people/blogs that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link to them to your post so that they can learn about the award (they might not have ever heard of it)!  Also, make sure to send them some random questions and request 10 personal facts.

The idea behind The Liebster is to recognize your favorite new bloggers and help promote them.  At its root it is a compliment you pay forward!!

So first and foremost let me thank Jazmen @thisgirlreadsalot for the nomination.  I was totally and completely shocked and so honored you made my month!!

Now the questions, Jazmen didn't send me these, and I think she either wanted to spare me or just didn't know "the rules" or better yet... doesn't play by them.  Anyway, here are my 10 random 10 questions to myself...

1. How many days could you last in solitary confinement? How would you do it?  Forever, I'm an only child so it seems much of life was solitary confinement. I would need books, TV and Internet access.

2. Do you save old greeting cards and letters? Throw them away?  I keep them.  After my darling granddaddy passed away in 1982, when I was 11, I realized I didn't have any possession to cherish simply because of the sentiment we shared together that a simple piece of paper represented.  I never wanted to yearn to see a signature again and have never made that same mistake.    

3. What’s something that amazes you?  The natural world around me and the historical architecture mankind has left behind.

4. Who performs the most random acts of kindness out of everyone you know?  Luckily for me it is Kevin, my oldest friend and the love of my life.

5. Which animals scare you most? Why?  Birds, they hate me.

6. If you could eliminate one weakness or limitation in your life, what would it be?  Lack of confidence and that inner yearning for a love that will never be.

7.  If you could restore one broken relationship, which would it be?  My relationship with my mother.

8. If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? Olivia, Star-lily, Grace, Eleanor... I'm sure I could go on forever.

9. How difficult is it for you to forgive someone who refuses to apologize?  Impossible.  I feel you must own your mistakes and truly own them. Without that where can two people find any common ground to move forward?

10. When do you find yourself singing?  CONSTANTLY!!

TEN Random Facts about moi:
1.  I went to five high schools and not because my parents moved.
2.  Both my parents are alive but none of us speak - I am their only child.
3.  I NEVER pass on a dare.
4.  I adore black - why wear anything else.
5.  My current boyfriend was the boy who gave me my first kiss - at summer camp - circa 1979.
6.  I love Duran Duran, still.  I have traveled the world to see them in concert... probably over 100 times.
7.  I was the first person in my family to graduate from college.
8.  I love to be alone which is often misconstrued by others.
9.  I know the lyrics to every song on the radio.  I've won lots of money from folks who didn't believe I could sing every word to the next ten that came on... even if they changed the station.
10. I have dark eyes, almost black.  Perhaps that is what first attracted me to Anne Boleyn.

And my nominee's are:

Melissa J @ Confessions of an Avid Reader

Josie Ikeda  @ All Booked Up

Sarah Docherty @ A Geek's Bookshelf

Remember to pay the Liebster forward and make another bloggers day!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

VBT: Review of The Study of Murder by Susan McDuffie

The Study of Murder

by Susan McDuffie

Publication Date: September 18, 2013
Five Star Publishing
Hardcover; 264p
ISBN-10: 1432827200

The Study of Murder pits Scottish sleuth Muirteach MacPhee against a mysterious adversary in the medieval town of Oxford in 1374.At the command of the Lord of the Isles, Muirteach and his wife Mariota accompany Donald, the lord's surly thirteen-year-old son, to Oxford where Donald is to enroll in university. Shortly after their arrival a winsome tavern maid disappears. At his charge's insistence, Muirteach attempts to help Undersheriff Grymbaud with the investigation, as well as keep Donald at his studies and out of the taverns. He has little success with either venture, although the discovery of some bizarre and suggestive drawings on old parchments piques the curiosity of Donald and his peers. Meanwhile, Mariota thirsts to attend medical lectures at the schools, which are closed to women, and seeks a way to gain admittance to them. When an Oxford master is found brutally bludgeoned to death, Grymbaud asks Muirteach to investigate the slaying. The eventual arrest of an aged servant at the college stirs the ever-simmering discord between townsfolk and university students. The unrest culminates in riots and another senseless killing occurs, endangering Mariota. Gleaning clues from a cryptic manuscript and desperate to save his wife, a determined Muirteach tracks a wily killer through a dark and twisted labyrinth of deceit.

Praise for The Study of Murder

"THE STUDY OF MURDER is a worthy addition to Susan McDuffie's 14th century Hebridean mystery series. Muirteach and Mariota may be in an alien world, when they accompany the son of the Lord of the Isles to Oxford, but neither town nor gown can match their clever wits in solving crime. This book is a treat for those of us eager for a fresh era, well-integrated history, and a host of interesting characters." - Priscilla Royal, author of the Prioress Eleanor/Brother Thomas Mysteries

About the Author

Susan McDuffie has been a fan of historical fiction since childhood. As a child, Susan spent such vast amounts of time reading historical fiction that she wondered if she was mistakenly born in the wrong century. As an adult her discovery that Clorox was not marketed prior to 1922 reconciled her to life in this era. Susan’s first published works were two Regency short stories in Regency Press anthologies.

Susan’s childhood interest in Scotland was fueled by stories of the McDuffie clan’s ancestral lands on Colonsay and their traditional role as “Keeper of the Records” for the Lord of the Isles. On her first visit to Scotland she hitchhiked her way through the Hebrides and the seeds for the medieval Muirteach MacPhee mysteries were planted.

The Muirteach mysteries include A MASS FOR THE DEAD (2006), THE FAERIE HILLS (2011), and THE STUDY OF MURDER (September 2013). The New Mexico Book Awards named THE FAERIE HILLS  “Best Historical Novel” of 2011. Currently plotting Muirteach’s next adventure, Susan shares her life with a Native American artist and four unruly cats, and enjoys taking flamenco dance classes in her spare time. She loves to hear from readers and her website is

My thoughts:

The Study of Murder is set in medieval Oxford and Susan McDuffie brings this city and this period to life in such a way that the reader is transported.  Her characters are rich and multi faceted which further pulls the reader into her mystery.  The novel revolves around Scottish scribe, Keeper of the Records for the Lord of the Isles, Muirteach MacPhee, along with his wife have travelled to Oxford to keep the Lord’s thirteen year old son, Donald, in line as he begins his studies at Oxford; which, in itself is proves no small task.   

No sooner than the MacPhee and Donald’s arrival the Oxford a local woman goes missing followed by a murder at the university.  The Oxford Undersheriff, Grymbaud, requests the help of MacPhee following the bludgeoning of the Oxford master.  The murder is eventually solved with the arrest of an aged servant causing the barely contained social strife between townsfolk and university students to boil over.  The resulting unrest culminates in riots and another senseless killing occurs.  MacPhee begins to gather clues from a cryptic manuscript and tracks a crafty murderer through a dark and twisted labyrinth of deceit.

The story is furthered enriched with the character of MacPhee’s wife, Mariota, an woman who has trained in medicine but is not admitted to set foot in the school building; the very idea of educated women considered absurd.  Mariota cleverly finds a way around this unwittingly endangering herself in her efforts.  The relationship between husband and wife is endearing, and from my understanding very uncommon for the age, but their relationship adds to the novel’s appeal.

Muirteach MacPhee reminded me of one of my favorite fictional detectives Matthew Shardlake, which is true praise from this reader, and even the flow of the story was similar to the Shardlake series, with clues and motives slow to evolve and written in a way that keeps the reader guessing.  Another comparison to the Shardlake series is that MacPhee also serves as the novel’s narrator and does so with that same patience meticulous intelligence of a true investigator.

The Study of Murder is the perfect blend of history, rich in historical detail, and a mysterious investigation leading the reader on many twists and turns.  And while,The Study of Murder is not McDuffie’s first novel to feature Muirteach MacPhee, the story stands on its own.

The Study of Murder was a wonderful quick and enjoyable read and I would recommend it without hesitation.

Twitter Hashtag: #StudyOfMurderTour

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Historical Fiction Giveaway Hop... Mark your calendars!

Historical Fiction Giveaway Hop

So what is a giveaway hop?
Each participating blog hosts a giveaway.  In this case a Historical Fiction novel (print or ebook) or an Amazon or Book Depository gift card for the Historical Fiction title of their choice.  All the participating blogs then link together (using a linky tool that is displayed on every participating blog) which allows the participants to hop easily from one giveaway to another.
Why should I participate?
For blog readers a giveaway hop offers many chances to win free books.

For the host bloggers the hop will generate lots of new visitors and followers. Plus many giveaway tools (i.e. Rafflecopter) will let you customize your entries so that in order to receive multiple chances participants must follow you on Twitter, FB, Goodreads, etc…
Mark your calendars for The Most Happy Reader's Giveaway Hop
September 27 - October 11

Please contact me with any questions, comments or concerns! 

Thanks so much!!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fall 2013 Bloggiesta Wrap Up

Bloggiesta Fall 2013

It's a Wrap!!

Bloggiesta Master To Do List - revised and updated...

❏ write two reviews
❏ update Amazon/Goodreads reviews
❏ update link lists and archive lists"
❏ clean up labels/tags
❏ do two mini challenges
❏ change or fix one thing on your sidebar
❏ add a disclosure statement
❏ add a review policy page
❏ change one thing on your layout and/or look
❏ comment on other Bloggiesta participants’ blogs
❏ update challenges on challenge blogs
❏ add challenge page
add a contact me page (near completion)
❏ add a ratings system explanation page
❏ update all current blog posts with new rating per policy 

10 out of 15 To Do's Done!  Not too shabby!

Truly, though I did not finish the entire list, especially that I didn't even attempt to tackle my huge list of novels to be reviewed, I accomplished so much more than I expected to and truly think I have a better blog because of Bloggiesta.

I cannot wait to participate again!!

Mark your calendars for Bloggiesta 2014:

 Mini Winter Bloggiesta: January 25-26
Spring Bloggiesta: March 28-30
Mini Summer Bloggiesta: July 19-20
Fall Bloggiesta: September 19-21

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