✆ THE POCKET WIFE by Susan Crawford ✆ Cove Podcast: Episode 60

Hi Listeners!

This month's podcast discussion is live! Cove members Cheryl, Millenia and Roberta are discussing the November 2015 pick, THE POCKET WIFE by Susan Crawford—Pick #180!

Have you read this book? Comment below and let us know your thoughts!

*Spoilers abound. Podcast for those who've read the book.






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★ Book Review ★ THE RAVEN ROOM by Ana Madeiros!

The Raven Room COVER

• Paperback: 250 pages 
Publisher: Diversion Publishing (November 3, 2015)

Synopsis:

A searing erotic thriller perfect for those tantalized by A.R. Torre's Deanna Madden series... 

Anything you can imagine. Everything you crave. For the members of The Raven Room, it’s every fantasy fulfilled. But for some, that desire is a matter of life and death. 

Drawn by needs he cannot control, Julian ventures to The Raven Room, a secret and exclusive sex club in the underbelly of Chicago. It goes beyond sex. It goes beyond kink. The Raven Room is the only place where Julian finds release from the dangerous urges that threaten to destroy the successful life he’s worked so hard to build. 

When the police link the Raven Room to the death of a young woman, it threatens to expose a number of powerful people—people who would kill to stay anonymous... Meredith’s body can’t get enough of Julian. He has opened her sexual horizons to tempting new possibilities. But out of bed she’s an aspiring journalist, and The Raven Room is the story she’s been looking for. By writing an exposé on the club and its elite clientele, she plans to launch her career. 

As Meredith embarks on a sexual journey into the forbidden world that Julian inhabits, questions emerge, and dark appetites threaten to swallow her whole.  How much can she trust the man who has laid bare her erotic nature and how much will she sacrifice in order to protect him?

Praise:

"If you’re looking for an exciting novel that can balance erotic sections with a thrilling who-done-it, look no further; The Raven Room will have everything you could possibly want and more." —San Francisco Book Review

"Readers who enjoy complex stories with strong characterization and psychological depth will find The Raven Room a satisfyingly story of emotional turbulence…” —D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

Cove Member Nicole Reviews—

THE RAVEN ROOM!

Julian is a child psychologist with secrets and a past that he keeps very close to the vest. He's closed off and doesn't open himself up to anyone. 
Meredith is a student and aspiring journalist who is having a casual yet exciting sexual relationship with Julian. 
Julian has a membership to an exclusive and extremely private underground sex club called The Raven Room. It's a place that Meredith has been dying to get an invitation to and she secretly wants to write an exposé on the meeting place to skyrocket herself to fame...at Julian's expense. 
Julian takes Meredith to the club where they meet a seductive young woman. Julian begins a relationship with her and she has many secrets herself. 
The book is filled with twists and turns and layered with secrets. Julian is a very likable character and you just want to hug him and make everything okay from his past and into his future. 
The writing held my interest, but at times I felt it was a bit redundant. However, the action kept me on the edge of my seat and I'm anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. I'll definitely be reading!


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About Ana Medeiros

Photo by: Garfield L. Miller
Photo by: Garfield L. Miller
Born in the Azores islands, Portugal, Ana Medeiros has a background in Photography, Sociology and Psychology. For the last seven years she has worked in the magazine industry. She currently lives in Toronto, Canada, with her boyfriend and two cats. The Raven Room, book one of a trilogy, is Ana’s first novel and is published by Diversion Books.

Visit Ana at her website and connect with her on Facebook.



★ Blog Tour ★ ALL THE WAY TO HEAVEN by Becky Doughty — Guest Post + Giveaway!


We're so excited to welcome author Becky Doughty to our blog—she's sharing her dream cast for her brand new novel, ALL THE WAY TO HEAVEN!
Check it out below—and don't miss her awesome "Mystery Box" giveaway below!

All the Way to Heaven by Becky Doughty 
(The Fallout Series, #1) 
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication Date: November 2, 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Synopsis:
Anica Tomlin, business major, has just learned that the man she’s been planning her future around, her Global Finance professor, already has a beautiful wife and family. Ani cashes in her graduation gift to herself a little early—a trip to Tuscany—but from the moment she boards the wrong train in Pisa, her plans for solitude and self-indulgence begin to unravel around her.

When a bicycle accident thrusts Ani into the skilled hands of the dashing Dr. Cosimo Lazzaro, she reluctantly accepts his invitation to recover in his family’s country villa, perched on a hilltop surrounded by the Lazzaro olive groves. But it’s been a black year for olive growers all over Italy, and generations of tradition are being put to the test like never before.

Ani is swept up in the drama of life in Tuscany, the convergence of old and new, and the passions that drive people to pursue the desires of their hearts. Just as Ani begins to get her feet under her again, an unexpected turn of events leaves her doubting the very existence of happily-ever-after, unless she can learn to trust the desires of her own heart.

Although All the Way to Heaven is a stand-alone novel, it is the first book in The Fallout Series, a collection of sweet contemporary romances that follow characters featured in the first book.



GUEST POST—

Casting ALL THE WAY TO HEAVEN! 

by Becky Doughty

This was fun! I have Pinterest boards for all my books, but I tend to just look for images that match my ideas rather than look for specific actors and actresses who might be able to play the part of each of my main characters. Let me tell you, though, it’s tough to find Italian actors, so most of these aren’t, and that’s really a bit of a disservice on my part, in my opinion. So here are some of my thoughts. 
 Ani (said like “Annie” – named after her Swedish grandmother, Anika) Tomlin: For some reason, Ani feels the most elusive to me. I know what I want her to look and act like in my head, but I’m having a hard time casting her. That said, I think Nora Arnezeder might be a strong possibility. She’s got that “girl next door” vibe even though she’s a bit of a wild child on and off screen. But give Nora a little darker hair and a bit of self-deprecation and I think she’s got the part!
Paulo Durante: I wanted someone who could pull off manly and dreamy and frumpy and brooding and approachable all at the same time. Someone like Alexander Koch, if you can get it out of your mind that he’s not so nice on Under the Dome. I mean, that hint smile? He’s one of those actors folks are saying we should keep an eye on. Well, what better way to keep an eye on him than to cast him in my book movie? And if the image I sent doesn’t convince you, check out this Buzzfeed. You’ll get it.
Cosimo Lazzaro: When I first started writing this story, I kind of fashioned Cosi after a young(er) David Gandy, the iconic Dolce & Gabanna model. But since he’s a model and not exactly an actor, I thought I’d better come up with an alternative. Ironically, I found another Dolce & Gabbana model who also happens to actually be an actor, too, and he fits the bill almost as well as David…Noah. I know, I know – neither of these guys are Italian, but they could certainly pull it off!  (And no, this was not just me taking advantage of an opportunity to share not just one, but two beautiful people with you…)
Madalina Poptelecon: When I wrote this, I kind of had this image in my mind of opera star Anna Netrebko, but she’s too old to play this part now. However, have you seen 2 Broke Girls? Kat Dennings in that show just kills me. I could totally see her pulling off the combination of snark and vulnerability Madalina puts off. And something else I love about Kat? She embraces her REAL LIFE curves in the same way Madalina does. I don’t know whether she sings or not, but who cares? If she wants the part, she’s got it. We’ll just overdub the singing parts with Anna’s voice, yes?

Isabella Adimari: I picture someone like petite and fine-boned, elegant and poised, but without being aloof. Although I haven’t seen her act, I think Nazanin Boniadi certainly has the look and could be a perfect fit for Isa.





Gerardo Adimari: Gerardo is not your stereo-typical leading man but he’s the perfect counterpart to his wife, Isa. I think Halit Ergenç would be a good fit for him?



Claudia and Franco Batista: So I pictured Franco Nero and Vanessa Redgrave when I wrote these two characters in, mainly because I loved their “art imitating real life” story in Letters to Juliet. But the Batistas in All the Way to Heaven are about 20 years younger than Vanessa and Franco are! 
So to cast them today, I’d probably put Mandy Patinkin (Saul Berenson on Homeland) and Sela Ward (Sharon Shrieber, reporter in Gone Girl) in these roles, both actors who are in their 60s instead of in their 80s.






Tish Ransome (Ani’s best friend back home): When I wrote Tish into All the Way to Heaven, I kind of based her off a combination of Hayley Williams from the band Paramore and Ashley Greene. But when I wrote Tish’s story, Book 2 in The Fallout Series, A Light in the Dark (releasing Dec 23), I had just discovered the show Skins, and I fell in love with Effy – Kaya Scodelario. She became the image of Tish to me, and although Tish is much more like Hayley Williams in personality (Tish is also front man of her own band, The Marauders), Kaya has the fountain-of-youth-waif-pixie-changeling-tougher-than-you-think-rebel look about her that I really wanted for Tish.
 Thanks for having me today – this was fun! Becky





About the Author:

Becky Doughty is the author of the best-selling Elderberry Croft series, The Gustafson Girls series, Waters Fall, and more. She’s also the voice behind BraveHeart Audiobooks. She writes Women’s Fiction with strong elements of romance, as well as Young Adult and New Adult Fiction. 

Becky’s favorite people are edge-dwellers, those who live on that fine line where hope and despair meet, where love is the only answer and grace becomes truly amazing. Becky is married to her champion of more than 25 years. They have three children, two of whom are grown and starting families of their own, and they all live within a few miles of each other in Southern California. They share their lives with too many animals, a large vegetable garden, and a strange underground concrete room they’re certain was built for dark and sinister purposes…

Author Links:




★ Book Blitz ★ THE SECRETS WE KEPT by Lily Velez—Sneak Peek + $100 Amazon Giveaway!





by Lily Velez
Publication Date: November 8, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult

Synopsis:
One year. That’s how long it’s been since childhood sweethearts Sully Graham and Cadence Gilbertson broke up, since one adoption and one out-of-state move turned their worlds upside down.
Suddenly, Cadence is back in New York City, but something’s different about her. The light in her eyes, the music in her laughter, the warmth in her smile—all of those things have entirely vanished. In their place stand the makings of a girl Sully can’t even begin to recognize, much less understand. 
Still, despite the collective history of heartbreak between them, he’s convinced he can win her trust again, and he’s committed to proving the invincibility of their love no matter what it takes.
But Cadence is quietly harboring secrets of her own. Dark secrets. Ugly secrets. Secrets that could break a person. And though broken herself and unbearably lonely, she’s determined to protect Sully from her terrible, biting truths. Even if it means locking him out of her life forever. 
The only problem is it seems her heart hasn’t quite received the memo. One glimpse of him is all it takes for her to trip into familiar (and, she’ll admit, addictive) feelings that threaten to all but consume her. Now her biggest fear is that her secrets will begin to slowly unravel one by one…long before Sully’s resolve ever does. 
The Secrets We Kept is a moving story about first love, friendship, and forgiveness, and the enduring bonds that forever connect us and give us our strength.
Exclusive Excerpt of—
THE SECRETS WE KEPT!
Sully still remembered the first time that he saw Cadence. It was a sweltering summer that year. Push-cart ice cream vendors roamed the neighborhood blocks like soldiers on patrol, circling playgrounds and community swimming pools. It was common to see people pop open fire hydrants like champagne bottles, children dancing in the shoots of water as miniature rainbows reflected off the asphalt. 
Sully and his brother, twelve and ten years old at the time, were living with the Petersons back then along with a tribe of foster siblings. Ol’ Man Peterson was a Vietnam vet with PTSD and a short-fuse temper that exploded so quickly, it was like his personality had a gas leak. 
Usually, maintaining a thirty-foot distance from the man at all times was insurance against his drunken rampages. His military pedigree had bred in him a no-nonsense adherence to hard work and, where appropriate, hard discipline—both of which were far less easy to escape. 
The hard work in particular manifested in the Peterson prison as an endless checklist of chores (otherwise known as “slave labor” in the Spencer Graham lexicon), the completion or lack thereof of which determined whether or not you ate dinner that night. Additionally, each child had to fulfill their assigned task in accordance with certain standards, and as Ol’ Man Peterson was an uncompromising perfectionist, one chore could go through three to five rounds before the man extended a grunt of approval. 
The afternoon Cadence arrived, Sully and Spencer were attached to yard work. While the Peterson walk-up sat only a few yards from the curb, which meant there barely existed a lawn between the chain-link fence and the front door, Ol’ Man Peterson preferred his grass cut to an exact height. It was taking painstaking precision to perfect his science.
Spencer lay on his stomach with a see-through ruler to measure the blades of grass. “I think you cut this side of the walkway too short.” 
Sully rested a broom atop his shoulders, arms draping over it like a scarecrow. “It’s way too hot to even care, dude.” 
“I care because I want to see the new Adam Sandler, movie and I’m not about to get grounded for another weekend.” 
“How many times have I been grounded because of you?” 
Spencer stood. “Whatever. I’m taking over sweeping duty.” He stretched out a hand to receive the broom, but Sully’s gaze had already shifted to a royal blue SUV parking alongside the curb. A woman emerged from the driver’s side. She came around to open the backseat door closest to the Peterson home. Two ballet flats appeared from under the door, reaching for the street. When the woman closed the door, a girl who looked to be Sully’s age or slightly younger stood with her, hands bracketed to the straps of her backpack and her bottom lip caught softly under her front teeth. 
Spencer snapped in Sully’s face. “Hellooo? Earth to Sully.” 
Sully nodded toward the two, and when Spencer turned and saw them, he said, “Uh oh. Another casualty.” 
The woman, clearly the girl’s caseworker, greeted the boys with a cheery “working hard?” before continuing up the walkway with her charge. Sully waited for the girl to look his way, and when she finally did, he offered her a soft, barely-there smile by way of hello. Part greeting, part commiseration. She instantly looked away. 
They discovered her name only because she was sharing a bunk-bed with their friend Novah. “Cadence Livingston,” she told them. “She’s been in the system for a few years. She doesn’t talk much. Or at all. Those are the only things I was able to get from her. She’s probably halfway to being a mute.” 
“I wish Spencer was a mute,” Sully muttered. 
“Ha ha,” Spencer said. “You’re so funny. Absolutely hilarious. How did I get so lucky to have a brother like you?” Then he excused himself to see about fixing the eyesore Sully had made of the front lawn and left Sully fixated on the enigma of the quiet and elusive Cadence Livingston.


About the Author: 
Lily Velez has been writing stories since she was six years old. Not much has changed since then. She still prefers the written word and her overactive imagination over the ‘real world’ (though to be fair, her stories no longer feature talking dinosaurs). 
A graduate of Rollins College and a Florida native, when she’s not reading or writing, she spends most of her days wrangling up her pit bulls Noah and Luna, planning exciting travel adventures, and nursing her addiction to cheese. All this when she isn’t participating in the extreme sport known as napping. 
You can learn more about Lily and her books at www.lilyvelezbooks.com.
Lily’s debut novel, The Secrets We Kept, comes out November 8, 2015.

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✆ THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS by M.R. Carey ✆ Cove Podcast: Episode 59

Hi Listeners!

Here's our podcast discussion of the October 2015 pick, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS by M.R. Carey! Cove members Millenia and Roberta share their thoughts along with the group's overall reaction.

Have you read the book? Comment below and let us know your thoughts!

*Spoilers abound. Podcast for those who've read the book.




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