Thursday, April 25, 2024

Amazon Decoded

I read this book over quite a span of time. I find marketing books are more digestible this way, and I don't get overwhelmed. And when it come to Amazon, there's plenty that can be overwhelming. 

Mr. G. does an excellent job as your guide explaining the ins and outs and the whys as much as can be deciphered of the Amazon algorithms. And he does it with humor and gem for a non-fiction book. 

His advice is sound and applicable. 

Note: since this latest edition, Amazon has changed a few things. This isn't Mr. G's fault and certainly doesn't make the majority of his information outdated. I'd say it's 95% accurate and worth your time. 

Want to sell more books on the world's biggest retailer? Fancy Amazon doing the selling for you instead? Amazon Decoded: A Marketing Guide to the Kindle Store will show you how.

* Learn about Visibility Marketing and how understanding Amazon can boost your sales.
* Discover the algorithms that go into Sales Rank and dispel some common myths.
* Understand the critical differences between the Best Seller list and the Popularity list.
* Decode the ways Amazon recommends millions of books to readers every single day.
* Implement proven marketing plans, optimized for maximum Amazon visibility.

Whether you are exclusive to Amazon and chasing those page reads, or a wide author trying to survive the onslaught of Kindle Unlimited titles, 
Amazon Decoded will share the secrets of the Kindle Store and how you can sell more books.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Miss Devon's Choice

Ms. Britton brings us on another adventure of this family. This time it's Rebecca's turn, with a bit of a Beauty and the Beast theme. 

A delightful read of how an arranged marriage can end up with two people falling in love, which I rather thought was quite a rub against the arrangers. Well done Rebecca and Devon! 

Naturally, it isn't all smooth sailing. Though there are boats. And a dog. And Italy. And music. 

There are loveable characters and others you'd like to seen thrown in the nearest dung heap. 

And a few choice kisses, that maybe are against the times, but as a romance reader, I'll allow it. ;) 

Sweet and clean historical you'll enjoy from beginning to end. 


A scarred and lonely viscount and an independent young woman are forced into an arranged marriage. What hope do they have for a happily ever after?

Rebecca Devon lives under the severe eye of her aunt and the iron will of her father. Though she wears what she is told and befriends the people they choose for her, she spends every moment longing to do as she wishes. Knowing freedom will only come through marriage, her hopes for a happy union are stolen away when her father arranges her marriage to a complete stranger.

Christian Hundley, Lord Easton, has learned the hard way that English society won't accept a person who looks or behaves differently than their ideal. He has hidden himself away from scornful eyes for years, until his aging grandfather takes matters in hand and finds Christian a bride. Knowing he must agree to the marriage, Christian shields his heart. If the whole of society cannot accept him, why should his bride?

Rebecca knows she must have love in her life, but Christian is convinced there is nothing so fraught with danger and pain as entrusting one’s heart to another. Rebecca does everything she can to change his mind, but Christian is determined to remain aloof. Can an arranged marriage ever be anything other than a business partnership?

While this is the fifth book in the Regency romance series, Branches of Love, it can be read as a stand-alone romance.

Thursday, April 11, 2024

It Was Always You

Ms. Corry has a wonderful way of presenting teens. 

She isn't afraid to give them hard circumstances or expressive feelings that match the represented demographic. There is great internal and external conflict for the characters to work through, not to mention the use of the fake relationship trope. 

She's great at putting the reader inside their heads and hearts. 

You don't need to read the other books in this series to enjoy this one, but it is better to read them as the other characters show up from book to book. 

What’s the first rule when pretending to date your brother’s best friend? Don’t let feelings get involved.

Sixteen-year-old Lexi Stevens has never been kissed—never even been asked on a date. So when she humiliates herself in front of her crush and her brother’s best friend offers to be her fake boyfriend for the week to make him jealous, she doesn’t know if it’s the stupidest idea ever, or a dream come true.

When Noah Taylor gets kicked out of his house by his abusive stepdad, the last thing he needs is for anyone at school to find out—not even his best friend. But when his new “girlfriend” discovers him sleeping in his car and offers to let him sleep in her closet, he starts to wonder if he’s found someone he can confide in after all.

Pretty soon Noah and Lexi are putting on a big show in front of the whole school while sneaking around behind her overprotective father’s back. It isn’t long before feelings develop and it becomes harder and harder to discern between what’s fake and what’s real.

IT WAS ALWAYS YOU is a standalone novel in The Ridgewater High series. Perfect for readers who enjoy sweet YA romance with ballad-worthy chemistry, passionate kisses and endearing characters.

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Finding Freedom: A Cook's Story; Remaking a Life from Scratch

Do not read this book if you're hungry. It's all about food and the woman who cooks it. 

This is a memoir of from childhood to adulthood and everything in between. 

And yet it felt like fiction. 

There were moments when I mentally told the heroine, "Don't do it." or "Go for it!" or "I hope she gets a happy ending or this will be very depressing." 

And then had to remember that people's lives don't always end happily. That's real life. I won't spoil how this woman's life turned out. You'll have to read that for yourself. 

And now, I need to send in my postcard and get lucky enough to win a table at The Lost Kitchen this summer. 

A good thing my book club picked this or I would've missed it. 

*contains swearing*

Long before The Lost Kitchen became a world dining destination with every seating filled the day the reservation book opens each spring, Erin French was a girl roaming barefoot on a 25-acre farm, a teenager falling in love with food while working the line at her dad’s diner and a young woman finding her calling as a professional chef at her tiny restaurant tucked into a 19th century mill. This singular memoir—a classic American story—invites readers to Erin's corner of her beloved Maine to share the real person behind the “girl from Freedom” fairytale, and the not-so-picture-perfect struggles that have taken every ounce of her strength to overcome, and that make Erin’s life triumphant.

Finding Freedom, Erin opens up to the challenges, stumbles, and victories that have led her to the exact place she was ever meant to be, telling stories of multiple rock-bottoms, of darkness and anxiety, of survival as a jobless single mother, of pills that promised release but delivered addiction, of a man who seemed to offer salvation but in the end ripped away her very sense of self. And of the beautiful son who was her guiding light as she slowly rebuilt her personal and culinary life around the solace she found in food—as a source of comfort, a sense of place, as a way of bringing goodness into the world. Erin’s experiences with deep loss and abiding hope, told with both honesty and humor, will resonate with women everywhere who are determined to find their voices, create community, grow stronger and discover their best-selves despite seemingly impossible odds. Set against the backdrop of rural Maine and its lushly intense, bountiful seasons, Erin reveals the passion and courage needed to invent oneself anew, and the poignant, timeless connections between food and generosity, renewal and freedom.