Monday, April 30, 2018

Dark Queen by Faith Hunter (Spotlight, excerpt, review, and GIVEAWAY) LTP

There’s a tour-wide giveaway for 2 complete sets of the Jane Yellowrock series (all 12 books)!!
Open to US residents only; visit the blogs listed below to enter.

Faith Hunter

About the book:
Jane Yellowrock used to hunt vampires, but now she must fight--and win--beside them.

As Enforcer to the vampire Master of the City of New Orleans, Jane Yellowrock stakes her reputation and her life on keeping her territory safe. But Leo has been issued a blood challenge by the emperor of the European vampires, who seeks to usurp all of his power and possessions. If Leo loses the match to the death, the city will be forfeit, and the people of New Orleans will suffer the consequences. Jane can't let that happen.

Preparing for the duel requires all of Jane's focus, but with so much supernatural power in play, nothing goes according to plan. She has to rely on herself and the very few people she knows she can trust to stand and fight. Only two things are guaranteed: nothing is sacred, and no one is safe.

Excerpt #4:

I Killed the Only U’tlun’ta in NOLA

I gripped Eli’s right arm, pulling him into the time bubble. He stumbled and I caught him, shoving his weapon up and away. “Jane?” he said, almost startled at the time change. Almost but not quite. It was hard to startle one of Uncle Sam’s best, especially as he had been in the Gray Between with me before. He looked at the unwelcome visitor. “Who?”
“Don’t know. Wearing a PsyLED badge.” I held up the badge as proof. “Using the new Glock issued to PsyLED. He speaks some of the language of The People. He called me by my Cherokee name. And then called me u’tlun’ta.”
“He smell like you?”
“No. Floral.” My own scent was a challenge to most vampires, until the team leader accepted me. Then that one’s underlings fell into line and accepted me too. But oral history, things people had told me about a skinwalker who had lived in New Orleans a century and more ago, hinted that at least one other skinwalker had smelled like flowers. At some point soon, I had to track down the vamp who had owned her and ask questions. In my copious free time. Right.
Eli frowned. He checked the altered trajectory of his round, patted my hand, telling me to not let go, which would drop him into normal time. He lifted a thigh rig from the floor and strapped it on to his shower-damp body and seated his weapon in its Kydex holster. He looked me over, seeing too much. “Your head?”
Eli grunted. With one free hand, he gripped my arm, making sure we didn’t separate. Together, we pattered down the steps, back to the killer. “We still don’t know if all skinwalkers can bubble time or if it’s unique,” he said, “part of you and Beast. We need to make sure he doesn’t learn that you have that skill.”
“It’s on video footage at HQ,” I said.
“Yeah. But that’s in a time and place where witch magic could be playing tricks. Discussing that with cops is a battle for tomorrow. We play it by ear, wronged, in danger, and innocent.” Eli looked the visitor over as if he was a piece of terrain to be taken from the enemy, staring into the yellow eyes, as if looking for contacts. Eli frowned. “Too bad I can’t get his weapon away without pulling him into time with us. Let me get to the left side of the doorframe, weapon drawn, ready to fire. You get into your previous position, and let me go. Then you take the guy out. I’ll take care that the weapon doesn’t fire again.”
“Okay. Modified kata guruma?” Kata guruma was a dramatic, vicious martial takedown.
“Okay by me. Use his hair. Grab his dumplings and give ’em a twist as you slam him down, but toss him inside. We got gawkers.” He meant the tourists on the sidewalk across the street. “I’ll have his weapon long before he hits.”
I shrugged and put the vamp-killer and the PsyLED badge on the floor, out of the way, then stepped into position, my foot touching Eli’s to keep him in my time bubble, my body and hands almost touching the stranger. Eli positioned his hands just above and beneath the killer’s gun hand. “Now,” I said to my partner.

Purchase at:


About the author:

Faith Hunter is a New York Times and USAToday bestselling author. She writes dark urban fantasy and
 paranormal urban thrillers.

Her long-running, bestselling, Skinwalker series features Jane Yellowrock, a hunter of rogue-vampires.
The Soulwood series features Nell Nicholson Ingram in paranormal crime solving novels. 
Her Rogue Mage novels, a dark, urban fantasy series, features Thorn St. Croix, a stone mage in a
 post-apocalyptic, alternate reality. Two of her fantasy series have been nominated for Audie Awards.
Under the pen name Gwen Hunter, she has written action adventure, mysteries, thrillers, 
women’s fiction, a medical thriller series, and even historical religious fiction. 
As Gwen, she is a winner of the WH Smith Literary Award for Fresh Talent in 1995 in the UK, 
and won a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award in 2008. 

Under all her pen names, she has over 40 books in print in 30 countries.

In real life, Faith once broke a stove by refusing to turn it on for so long that its parts froze and 
the unused stove had to be replaced. Her recent hankering for homemade bread and soup resulted in 
fresh loaves each week and she claims that the newish stove feels loved and well used—because 
Faith talks to her appliances as well as to her plants and dog. 

She collects orchids and animal skulls, loves to sit on the back porch in lightning storms, and is a 
workaholic with a passion for jewelry making, white-water kayaking, and RV travel. 

She likes the shooting range, prefers Class III whitewater rivers with no gorge to climb out of, edits the 
occasional anthology, and drinks a lot of tea. Some days she’s a lady. Some days she ain't. 
Occasionally, she remembers to sleep. 

The jewelry she makes and wears is often given as promo items and is used as prizes in contests.

For more, including a list of her books, see ,  

Visit Faith online at, or follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.



a Rafflecopter giveaway


My review:

5 out of 5 stars

“Dark Queen” by Faith Hunter is the twelfth book in the ‘Jane Yellowrock’ series and continues to explore Jane’s ever-changing position in the hierarchy of power in New Orleans. Juggling her responsibilities as Enforcer, as partner, and as lover, plus the unexpected additions of new titles and therefore new burdens and obligations, Jane tries to help prepare for the world-shaking duel that will determine who rules the American vampire faction. Bloodshed and death are inevitable, but the goal is to make sure most, if not all, is conferred upon the enemies rather than the allies and beloved members of her growing clan.

This urban fantasy tale is part of a series that never fails to enthrall and entertain, even when I don’t like what is taking place, given the complicated personalities and allegiances involved in these stories. What is most amazing to me is how vividly the characters are depicted, so I have no trouble becoming immersed in the complex and well-built world that houses these intriguing folks. The blend of political and personal maneuverings and power plays keep the action moving constantly and the unexpected family drama in this particular book deepens the reader’s emotional investment in one particular character, even as it adds yet another dimension to the struggles going on. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to keep up with the series, so I was a little slow to figure out some of the relationships between various folks, but I still cheered and mourned as various conflicts played out.

I think that what I enjoy most about these books is their ability to take me away from my own problems while making the machinations of these amazing folks so mesmerizing that I am held captive for hours—chuckling at Beast’s pithy observations, hissing at the villains, and cheering for the “good” guys (yes, that term is used advisedly sometimes, especially with bloodsuckers, lol).

Those who are not familiar with the series are advised to start at the beginning for maximum enjoyment, but I think you probably could get sucked into Jane’s orbit even if you didn’t have much of the back story. As usual, the story ends on somewhat of a cliffhanger, but amazingly (for me) it wasn’t as painful as it could be, despite the fact that I still am VERY curious about how certain things are going to turn out. Like Beast, there are some things that have played out to my satisfaction, so I am temporarily content, although I do confess that there are some very emotional sequences in addition to the heart-pounding and violent fight scenes and other dramatic encounters. The creativity, complex world-building, and imagination that are hallmarks of this author continue to keep each story fresh and make her one of my go-to urban fantasy authors. I hope that there are many, many more stories still to come about Jane Yellowrock and her friends.

A copy of this title was provided to me for review


Tour stops:

4/23: Tome Tender (review, giveaway), Gizmo’s Reviews (review, giveaway), Romance Junkies (review)

4/24: Bad Bird Reads (review), Diane’s Book Blog (review), Love Read Listen (giveaway only*)
4/25: BTH Reviews (review, excerpt, giveaway), Welcome to My Dungeon (review, giveaway), Angel’s Guilty Pleasures (giveaway only*)
4/26: Books of My Heart (review, excerpt), Words I Write Crazy (giveaway only*)
4/27: Untamed Bibliophiles (review, excerpt, giveaway), The Book Crumb Trail (review, giveaway)
4/28: Lisa’s World of Books (review)
4/29: Quirky Cats Fat Stacks (review, giveaway)
4/30: Urban Fantasy Investigations (giveaway only*)
5/1: Scorching Book Reviews (review, excerpt), The Irresponsible Reader (review)
5/2: Book Junkiez (review, excerpt), Bambi Unbridled (review)
5/3: Smexy Books (review)
5/4: The Genre Minx Book Reviews (review)

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Lies and Solace by Jana Richards (FREE book tour) RBC ADULT title

Lies and Solace  
Love at Solace Lake Series (Book 1) 
By Jana Richards
This is an ADULT title

Lies and Solace is FREE April 27, 2018 - April 29, 2018 ONLY 


 She can’t live with one more lie. He can’t tell the truth. Harper Lindquist is convinced she’s found the answer to her financial prayers. Unless she pours cash into crumbling Solace Lake Lodge, she’ll lose her family’s legacy. Her would-be savior arrives in the middle of a Minnesota blizzard and she’s determined to prove to her reluctant, and trapped, financier the lodge is a sound investment. But Harper isn’t completely honest with him. And she has no idea the lake is hiding secrets of its own.  

Ethan James is a liar, but his money is very real. He isn’t convinced a broken-down inn is a smart investment opportunity. But the more he understands Harper’s dreams and desires, the more he wants to be the man to make them come true. The trauma in both their pasts means neither can fully trust the other. They must find the courage to love, to trust, and to accept, or yesterday’s sorrows will keep them apart.

Genre: Contemporary Romance, small town romance  
Keywords: contemporary romance, small town romance, mystery, touch of paranormal, murder  

ISBN: Ebook ISBN 978-0-9952791-0-0  
Length: Novel  
Heat Level: Spicy, fully described love scenes Release Date: March 14, 2018 Cover Artist: Angela Waters


As she stared into his dark eyes she realized how much she trusted him, and relied on him. That was something rare for her. The only people she trusted as much were her sisters. 

I’m in love with him.  

The thought blasted through her brain with the force of a tsunami. The tension of the last few weeks, the insecurity, the mistrust, the fear, slipped easily from her shoulders. 

For the first time, her mind was clear. She was in love with Ethan and she didn’t want to wait anymore. She wanted him. She wanted him to be her first, her last.  

Finding courage she didn’t know she possessed, Harper slid off the stool and walked around the island. She plucked the wine glass from his hand and set it on the counter, then placed his hand on her breast. “Make love with me, Ethan.”  

A fire lit in his eyes, telling her he wanted her, too. But there was a question there, a hesitation. “Are you sure?” 

She’d never been more sure of anything in her life. “Yes.” 


“Shhh. Let’s not talk anymore.” She placed one finger over his lips, then stood on her tiptoes and kissed him.  

Ethan’s reaction was lightning swift. He wrapped his arms around her and brought her close, his mouth descending on hers in a wild, warm kiss. Their tongues tangled, slid over each other. 

She’d missed his touch, his taste. She moaned, and in the sound she heard thirty-two years of longing. For this. For him.

Amazon Buy Link

Other Books in the Series: 

Book 2 

Book 3 
About Jana Richards: 

When Jana Richards read her first romance novel, she immediately knew two things: she had to commit the stories running through her head to paper, and they had to end with a happily ever after. She also knew she’d found what she was meant to do. Since then she’s never met a romance genre she didn’t like. She writes contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and historical romance set in World War Two, in lengths ranging from short story to full length novel. 

Just for fun, she throws in generous helpings of humor, and the occasional dash of the paranormal. Her paranormal romantic suspense “Seeing Things” was a 2008 EPPIE finalist.

In her life away from writing, Jana is an accountant/admin assistant, a mother to two grown daughters, and a wife to her husband Warren. She enjoys golf, yoga, movies, concerts, travel and reading, not necessarily in that order. She and her husband live in Winnipeg, Canada with their Pug/Terrier cross Lou and several unnamed goldfish. 

She loves to hear from readers and can be reached through her website.

Social Media Links:

Friday, April 27, 2018

Saturday Seven...Hints for cutting large quantities of food down to size...

For those who are unfamiliar with this Southern staple, this is a picture of one of the tree collards in the MIL's backyard. It's a pretty hardy plant, and determined to send off secondary plants, so it's a constant struggle to keep it down to a dull roar, especially since I rarely cook them. I have developed a masochistic desire to try growing kale as well, so I will keep you posted.

The year has gotten to a pretty somber start for us, as is evidenced by the fact that I'm helping my best friend put on a memorial for her guy tomorrow, so my Seven this week is not book related and relatively quick. I will try to do better next week!

Okay, the hubby and I are fairly small folks (ELF, remember?) so that kind of conflicts with our tendency to shop at Costco and buy massive quantities of things we can't consume within a short amount of time. Therefore I have found ways to divvy things up in an effort to avoid negating any savings by throwing unused portions away due to spoilage.

1.  Blocks of cheese. I tried freezing the blocks, but discovered that it was very crumbly when I tried to grate it, so...GRATE CHEESE BEFORE FREEZING. I divide the grated cheese into sandwich bags and freeze them. If we're having tacos or chili or something else requiring grated cheese, I grab the bag and leave it in the fridge the night before we're going to have that meal or leave it out for about 30 minutes (depending on the ambient temperature) before it's needed.

2. Containers of hummus. I admit that this isn't an issue so much anymore because both the hummus and the guacamole are being sold in individual packs lately (which concerns me a bit because of the increase in packaging and containers) but I used to divide the container into small portions (the tiny Rubbermaid ones work great) before freezing.

3. Ravioli. I tend to be the pasta aficionado in the family, so for the days I'm alone I have portions that have been divided out and frozen. For me, that means about 5 ravioli in the bag, I boil water, throw the ravioli in, cook until tender (time depends on whether the ravioli were frozen to begin with), drizzle a little olive oil and a dash of salt. Yum.

I tend to be a bit lackadaisical and stick things into this is a misc. mixture that has basil, asparagus, tomato and a mystery plant that I'm still waiting to discover what it is!

4.  Rice (or quinoa). Raw, I just throw the bag in the freezer (ever since bugs hatched in our brown rice package--yech). Cooked, I divide into individual portions and put in...yep, sandwich bags. When it's time to use them, I throw the baggie in the microwave for a minute...and voila! When packaging up, I sometimes bag up a larger portion to use for fried rice.

5. Croissants. I slice the croissants in half (longwise, to make a top and bottom for sandwiches) before freezing. I usually wrap them in foil and pop them in a cold oven and turn it on. By the time it reaches 350 degrees (Fahrenheit) they are just right.

6. Rotisserie chicken. We usually start out by making sandwiches from the breast meat about an hour or so after getting home. We then carve up the dark meat into meal portions and freeze them. The remaining breast meat is often chopped up to make chicken salad. One of these days I will be good and start making stock with the carcass...but not in the near future, lol.

7. Pot roast. We don't necessarily get this from Costco, but it is another item that is divided up into meal-sized portions, with some put aside in chunks for more substantial meals (yum, gravy and potatoes and carrots and...) and the rest shredded (pull apart with two forks) and made into portions for tacos. We tend to heat the meat in a little broth (and yes, being lazy, I often just use the chicken bouillon powder to make that) while we are prepping all of the other ingredients. It's one of our favorite summer meals!

Okay, now I'm hungry!  Thanks for visiting, and don't forget to visit Long and Short Reviews to enter their giveaway this week AND to discover the posts from others participating in this fun hop!

Witchbane by Morgan Brice (spotlight, guest post, excerpt and giveaway) LTP

It is my pleasure to share a post by author Morgan Brice who shares musings on...

Paths to Publishing


 Morgan Brice

Authors today are very fortunate because there are so many ways to bring a book out to reach readers!

While Witchbane is my first book under my romance pen name of Morgan Brice, I’ve been publishing for more than a decade as Gail Z. Martin. As Morgan Brice, I write urban fantasy MM paranormal romance. As Gail Z. Martin, I write epic fantasy, urban fantasy, steampunk, comedic horror and more. Over the years, I’ve worked with very large publishers and small presses, and also done self-publishing. All paths can work—you just need to know what you want.

Working with a big publisher gets your book into bookstores, and means that there is a staff handling your cover, editing, and some (but not all) of your marketing. You still have to do most of the marketing, regardless. But once you turn the book in, and the edits are complete, the process is out of your hands until the book comes out and you need to promote it. On the other hand, you don’t get much—if any—input into the cover, and if the editor wants you to make changes to the story, you mostly have to make them, whether you agree or not. That’s how the game is played. You also don’t control pricing or distribution, so there are some promotional opportunities that have to be handled through your publisher if you’re going to participate. And to land a deal with a big publisher, you usually have to get an agent to shop your manuscript, so while you gain a valuable ally, you also will pay a portion of your earnings to that agent for managing your contracts and doing the deals.

Working with a small publisher gives you some of the best parts of the big publisher scenario, without some problems (and with other new ones). A legitimate small press will still take care of doing your cover and editing without you having to pay for it or arrange for it. You’ll probably have more input into the cover, and you may be able to have more dialog with the editor if you disagree. But small presses generally don’t get bookstore placement, and some only publish ebooks, not print versions. Many small presses can do just as nice a book as a big publisher, so quality isn’t necessarily a problem. But small publishers are more vulnerable to financial troubles, and there are horror stories of presses that suddenly disappeared, locking up author’s rights to their books for years. You probably won’t need an agent to query a small press, but be sure to do your homework on sites like Writer Beware and Predators and Editors to make sure the press you choose is a good one.

Self-publishing gives you a lot of freedom to bring your books out on a schedule that works for you, however fast or slow. You can write whatever you want, without getting hung up in the pitch process. You’re in charge—and that means you get to hire the cover artist and editor, maybe even a publicist. You also get to pay for them, because you are the publisher as well as the author. Don’t try to go cheap by doing things yourself that you aren’t good at. Self publishing only works if your book looks professional. Self-publishing is more work, because you have to manage every step in the process, but you have more control and may also be more satisfied with the results.

I always recommend the Writers’ Digest Books resources on publishing to authors who are just getting started. They are very useful, and provide a good foundation. Get to know published authors at book conventions, and attend the writing track of panels for great free advice. Look for Facebook groups on self-publishing, and check into Meetup groups in your local area.

Most of all, have fun! Write the stories you want to read, and enjoy the process!

Watch for the sequel to Witchbane, Dark Rivers, later this spring! 

And a second, all-new series, Badlands, will also be out soon!

I’ll be a Supporting Author at Gay Romantic Lit Retreat in October, so please look me up and say hello!

Witchbane is available in ebook on Kindle, Kobo and Nook and in print. We’re working on audiobook. 


Morgan Brice

  • Print Length: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Darkwind Press (February 19, 2018)
  • Publication Date: February 19, 2018
  • ISBN-10: 1939704685
  • ISBN-13: 978-1939704689

Seth Tanner and his brother Jesse’s fun evening debunking local urban legends ends with Jesse’s gruesome murder. Seth vows revenge on Jesse’s killer–too bad the murderer has been dead for a hundred years. Seth uncovers a cycle of ritual killings that feed the power of a dark warlock’s immortal witch-disciples, and he’s hell bent on stopping Jackson Malone from becoming the next victim. He’s used to risking his neck. He never intended to risk his heart.


Read a free excerpt here

Buy links:

About the author:

Morgan Brice is the romance pen name of bestselling author Gail Z. Martin. Morgan writes urban fantasy male/male paranormal romance, with plenty of action, adventure and supernatural thrills to go with the happily ever after. Gail writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy, and together with co-author hubby Larry N. Martin, steampunk and comedic horror, all of which have less romance, more explosions.

On the rare occasions Morgan isn’t writing, she’s either reading, cooking, or spoiling two very pampered dogs.

Watch for additional new series from Morgan Brice, and more books in the Witchbane universe coming soon!

Follow Morgan on:

Twitter @MorganBriceBook
Check out the Morgan Brice Books and Stuff board on Gail’s Pinterest page

You can find more about Morgan at the Morgan Brice website
Blog site



a Rafflecopter giveaway


My review:

4 out of 5 stars

Witchbane by Morgan Brice is the first book in the ‘Darkwind’ series. Seth Tanner has a traumatic and tragic introduction to the paranormal world, prompting him to use his military skills to pursue ending a monstrous reign that has targeted a slew of unwitting victims. His fortuitous connection with Jackson Malone complicates his mission to protect the man who is oblivious of the danger and his significance in the struggle against evil, but they must become a team if either is going to survive long enough to make a difference.

This adult m/m urban fantasy story is a dark action-packed and erotic tale featuring two main characters who each has had to overcome a troubled past to reach this point in life. Those who are squeamish should be advised that this is a gritty story with a fair amount of violence, although much of it is off-stage. The descriptions are vivid and breath-stealing, so my advice would be to read this in the daylight if you tend to be a little jumpy, lol. There are a fair number of strings still dangling, as this is the beginning of the series, and I look forward to learning more about these charismatic guys, who are still a little two-dimensional to me but entertaining to read about. I have enjoyed this author’s alter-ego’s stories and I am delighted to have another series to read that is penned with her characteristic flair for exciting and captivating stories.

A copy of this story was provided to me for review


Please visit other stops on the tour:

I Smell Sheep  4/23: Excerpt, spotlight and giveaway
Bayou Book Junkie 4/24: Guest Blog, giveaway
The Million Words  4/25: Q and A, giveaway

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Accidental Jesus Freak by Amber Lea Starfire (VNBtM, guest post, excerpt, and GIVEAWAY) GFT

It is my pleasure to share a guest post by author Amber Lea Starfire who ponders...

Why We Read Memoir

Amber Lea Starfire

Memoir is one of the fastest growing genres in the publishing industry. What is it about memoir that fascinates and draws us to it in a way that fiction, while entertaining and enlightening, does not? Why do we love reading such intimate stories of challenge, struggle, and triumph? Is it, as some would claim, a tabloid-style voyeuristic curiosity? Is it that we want to live others’ lives vicariously? There’s some truth to those ideas — we humans are terribly curious creatures, after all, endlessly fascinated by tragedy and death. This is the stuff that sells newspapers. But I think the power of Memoir’s attraction is more than that. 

Memoir is intimate. The more time we spend online and away from face-to-face interactions, the more we also crave deep human relationships that are meaningful and authentic. And because Memoir is based on real-life experiences, real challenges and faults and triumphs, this genre gives us the sense of intimacy we crave. 

Memoir inspires us through others’ stories of loss and recovery. When we read stories of grief and survival through illness and the loss of those who meant the most to others, we gain comfort and the courage to survive our own life journeys of loss and grief. We turn to memoir to understand what the main character — the author — has learned about life through his or her experiences.

Memoir give us insight into cultures and lifestyles we wouldn’t otherwise encounter. The huge success of Noah Trevor’s, Born a Crime, and Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance attest to our fascination with cultures and subcultures. If you identify as white, a memoir like Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates help you understand what it’s like to be black in America. And if you identify as black, you may feel that Coates’s portrayal sheds some light on your own life experiences.

Or maybe we're interested in the lives of the rich and famous — actors or politicians. So we gravitate toward memoirs by Carrie Fisher, Lauren Graham, Barack Obama, or Al Franken. 

Memoir helps us remember we are not alone. We weren’t the only ones who grew up with dark family secrets. We gain courage through the authors’ courage to confront secrets and overcome shame in order to find healing and break destructive generational cycles. For this, we read memoirs such as The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, about living in a uniquely dysfunctional family; Coming Clean by Kimberly Rae Miller about the shame of growing up in a family of hoarders, and Etched in Sand, Regina Calcaterra’s story of rising above a life of abuse and homelessness.

Through memoir, we recognize ourselves  — no matter how different their lives are from ours — when we read memoirs like This Boy’s Life by Tobias Wolff, Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt, The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston, The Liar’s Club by Mary Karr, or Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs.

And we love quests — any kinds of quests: for freedom, for love, even for eating right. I’m thinking of Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life by Barbara Kingsolver, or Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Or quests for a new kind of spirituality, such as Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd.

And then there are the quirky quests we read for pure fun and entertainment, such as The Know-it-All: One Man’s Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World by A.J. Jacobs, or Dishwasher: One Man’s Quest to Wash Dishes in All Fifty States.

To sum it up, memoir is a unique form — endlessly surprising, tragic, inspiring, funny, insightful, and courageous. True stories that help us understand ourselves, our cultures, and humanity in general. We reach inside each of these stories for a little bit of ourselves and, when we find what we’re looking for, come out more open, educated, curious, comforted, compassionate, motivated, and perhaps a little braver.


Amber Lea Starfire


GENRE: Memoir



In 1973, Linda was a flute player and music major at a California community college, until she met and fell madly in love with a charismatic piano player, plunging into his world of music-making and drug-fueled parties. When, just three weeks after their wedding, he reveals that he's been "born again," Linda makes the spontaneous decision to follow him into his new religion and, unwittingly, into a life of communal living, male domination, and magical thinking.

With unflinching candor, Amber Starfire chronicles her journey as Linda Carr into the evangelical church culture, where she gives up everything for her husband and their music ministry. But in the process, she loses her most valuable assets: her identity and sense of self-worth. It is only when Linda returns to live with her birth family and faces her complicated relationship with her mother that she finds new purpose and the courage to begin to extricating herself from the limiting beliefs of her past.

Accidental Jesus Freak is the story of one woman, one marriage, and one kind of fundamentalism, but it is also the story of the healing that is possible when we are true to ourselves. Both a cautionary tale and celebration of personal empowerment, Accidental Jesus Freak is a powerful reminder for anyone who seeks to live a life authentic to who they truly are.



I exited the doors of Youth With a Mission’s city headquarters for the last time and crossed the street to wait for the tram that would take me to Amsterdam’s Central Station. From there, I would catch the ferry to return to our apartment in North Amsterdam. As I waited, I gazed across the street at the mission and the row of tall brick buildings it sat next to. Cars and trucks and bicyclists jockeyed for space in a chaotic rush-hour dance accompanied by the beeping of horns, the dinging of bicycle bells, and friendly people shouting to one another. Women carried home bags stuffed with bread and bright bouquets of flowers for their dinner tables. I inhaled the smells of steel and diesel, familiar and comforting after nearly a year of living and working in the city. Whiffs of cigarette smoke from passersby mixed with the moist, slightly salty air of the nearby canal. I never thought I could love a city this much.

It was the last time I would hear the chaotic city sounds, the bicycle bells, the clanging of the trams. It was the last time I would see these people in this place on earth. The thought made my head swim.

I looked again at the buildings across the street. It was hard for me to comprehend how Youth With a Mission had been the center of my hopes and dreams less than a year ago.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Amber Lea Starfire MA, MFA, is an author, editor, and creative writing coach whose passion is helping others tell their stories. She has published two memoirs: Accidental JesusFreak: One Woman’s Journey from Fundamentalism to Freedom (2017) and Not the MotherI Remember: A Memoir — finalist for both the 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Awards and the 2013-2014 Sarton Women’s Literary Awards. She has also published several books of non-fiction, including Journaling the Chakras: Eight Weeks toSelf-Discovery, and Week by Week: A Year’s Worth of Journaling Prompts &Meditations. Amber is co-editor of the award-winning anthology, Times They WereA-Changing: Women Remember the '60s & '70s. Her creative nonfiction and poetry have appeared in numerous anthologies and literary journals.

Website and Social Media Links:



a Rafflecopter giveaway

The tour dates can be found here