Archives for June 2017

Broken Little Melodies by Jennifer Ann

About The Book

Title: Broken Little Melodies
Author: Jennifer Ann
Genre: Contemporary Rockstar Romance
Release Date: June 26, 2017

Star-crossed lovers…

Deep among the Jeffrey Pines of Lake Tahoe, Isabelle Martin and Roman Stone find comfort in each other at a summer camp for musically gifted teens where their love grows stronger every year. But they couldn’t be more different. She’s an orphan from the West Coast running with the wild crowd, and he’s a rich kid from New York hiding the scars of an abusive home. When their worlds finally collide, the future they planned comes crashing down around them and Belle is forced to cut Roman from her life without any explanation.

Five years later…

Roman’s on top of the world. His successful rock band is preparing for their first headlining tour, but when he unexpectedly runs into Belle, old feelings for her come rushing back, and his new found bravado fails him.

Belle has learned that some things in life have the power to break your spirit, and trying to forget Roman has made her bitter—she’s merely a waitress headlining a bar-band, and he’s had everything handed to him on a silver platter. Seeing him again makes her question whether time can mend a broken heart.

Their struggles brought them together, and their differences tore them apart, but now that they’re together again, can they repair the broken pieces and get a second chance at love?

 

About The Author

Jennifer Ann is the author of ten contemporary romance novels with complex love stories. Like her characters, she’s in love with the city of New York, trips on airplanes or the back of her husband’s Harley, and everything rock and roll. Sometimes you can catch her driving a tractor alongside her husband in southern Minnesota while trying to keep up with the madness of their four active children.

You can connect with her online at: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon | BookBub | Goodreads

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Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2017 Margaret Margaret

First Look: The Way It Hurts by Patty Blount

About The Way It Hurts

Title: The Way It Hurts

Author: Patty Blount

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Release Date: August 1, 2017

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

Pages: 352 pages

Format: Paperback and Digital

Print ISBN: 978-1-492632-788

Digital ASIN: B06XR172ZD

 

There may be two sides to every story, but sometimes there’s only one way to set things right…

Music is Elijah’s life. His band plays loud and hard, and he’ll do anything to get them a big break. He needs that success to help take care of his sister, who has special needs. So he’d rather be practicing when his friends drag him to a musical in the next town…until the lead starts to sing.

Kristen dreams of a career on stage like her grandmother’s. She knows she needs an edge to get into a competitive theater program–and being the star in her high school musical isn’t going to cut it. The applause and the attention only encourage her to work harder.

Elijah can’t take his eyes off of Kristen’s performance, and snaps a photo of her in costume that he posts online with a comment that everybody misunderstands. It goes viral. Suddenly, Elijah and Kristen are in a new spotlight as the online backlash spins out of control. And the consequences are bigger than they both could have ever imagined because these threats don’t stay online…they follow them into real life.

 

Add to your “Want to Read” shelf:  Goodreads

Available at:  Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble  |  Kobo  |  iTunes

 

Advanced Praise for The Way It Hurts:

 

“Blount writes authentically; both protagonists’ voices are distinct. The author explores the rapidly consuming world of social media and how it affects relationships online and in real life. A relevant read and must-have for all YA collections.” – School Library Journal

 

“THE WAY IT HURTS draws our attention to the joy, heartache and confusing contradictions that arise as we try to find our place in the real world and the virtual one.” – Kimberly Sabatini

 

Elijah and Kristen’s personal evolutions through the novel, along with their chemistry, feel as authentic as the conflicts they face. A genuine plot filled with steady tension that will keep readers hooked.” RT Book Reviews

 

“This book sensitively covers topics such as sexism, handicapping conditions, communication, and ageism. Agency is also shown when Kristen says she wants to pursue studying in a conservatory rather than continue in the band and the three young men acknowledge her wish. Talking about what bothers us rather than trying to guess another person’s feelings is demonstrated through the actions of the characters. The characters’ issues are eventually resolved through hard work and understanding, making this an interesting and informative read. School Library Connection

 

About Patty Blount

 

Native New Yorker Patty Blount is the award-winning author of several critically acclaimed internet issues novels for teens as well as a few adult contemporary romances. She is inspired to write by such greats as Judy Blume, JK Rowling, and Gayle Forman. In fact, Judy Blume is the reason Patty elected to write under her real name…so she’d appear on shelves next to her idol. Patty adores writing; she’s written everything from technical manuals to song lyrics (see THE WAY IT HURTS, coming August 2017). Patty wants you to know she loves chocolate…really, really loves chocolate.

When not crushing on actors Gilles Marini or Sam Heughan, Patty can be found sitting in traffic somewhere on the Long Island Expressway, listening to audio books or talking wildly to herself about plots and characters. Prone to falling madly in love with fictional characters, Patty suffers frequent broken hearts when they all invariably prefer the heroine to her… go figure. When she’s not writing, Patty loves to watch bad sci-fi movies and live tweet the hilarity, and scour Pinterest for ideas on awesome bookcases. Patty lives on Long Island with her family in a house that, sadly, lacks bookcases.

Connect with Patty:  Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads  |  Amazon

Excerpt

I shifted in my broken seat, wondering how many more minutes of the hell that was Bear River High School North’s production of Cats I’d have to endure. My fingers itched for my guitar and notepad. Melodies played in my head, begging to be put down on paper, and there were a dozen other things we should have been doing to promote Ride Out so we could get the band some notice.

The music rose. Beside me, Nick sucked in a breath. I didn’t know Leah. Nick met her at a concert a few months back, and they’d been hanging out whenever they could because, Nick claimed, Leah was the One.

I hid half a laugh and shook my head. I didn’t get the whole concept of the One, but I’d help Nick get what he wanted.

Leah raised her face. When she opened her mouth, I sat up a little straighter. Her voice… Jesus, it was astounding. Clear. Strong. Powerful but sweet. I watched and listened, the audience around me fading away. Her voice swelled, and she attacked the high notes without hesitating, making goose bumps jump out of my skin. What was the top note of her range? She glided across the stage; she never struggled or stumbled. The audience waited for the crescendo, and when she reached it, holy God, it was like a…a promise kept. She blew me away. The notes faded out, and the rest of the production was a blur. I had no idea Leah could sing like that and couldn’t take my eyes off—

My best friend’s girl. Shit.

The lights came up, and everybody got to their feet, applauding like mad. Nick held up this lame poster board sign he’d made. I used that time to get my hormones under control and put Leah and her amazing voice out of my head. The rest of the cast assembled on the stage for their curtain call, and I locked eyes with one of the actors— the White Cat. She was incredibly hot—a solid body with an impressive rack. Her solo dance was the best part of the show up until Leah’s song. She looked amazing in that white cat suit. So freakin’ hot.

“Ladies and gentlemen, a moment please.” A teacher walked to the right of the stage and waved her hands. “Thank you all for attending our opening night performance! I am so proud of these kids. They made all their own costumes and designed the set themselves. And tonight, I want to share with you an amazing last-minute change-up to our program. Grizabella, played by Leah Russo, is ill and was unable to sing this evening. Her songs were actually sung by our White Cat, played by Kristen Cartwright.”

The teacher’s hand swung to my favorite cat, and my jaw dropped. That awesome voice was hers? Whoa. I stuck two fingers in my mouth and let loose with a shrill whistle while the audience roared their approval. The white cat’s eyes met mine, and I started to picture her in different clothes…maybe some black leather, studded bands on her wrists, hair long and wild down her back, strutting across a stage while I shredded the hell out of the guitar. If she could sing Broadway songs without breaking a sweat, what could she do with a hard metal rock track? I wondered—again—what her range was. Could she get low with some Halestorm or full-on mean with a Slipknot metal scream? I should put her in Ride Out right now. I grinned like a maniac because I knew that would really twist BroadwayBaby17 into a knot.

A brilliant idea struck. I pulled out my phone, snapped a photo of the white cat, and from the band’s Twitter account, posted this:

Ride_Out: This cat’s HAWT! And damn, can she sing.

It needed a hashtag. I tapped out “#CatCall.” Oh, this was awesome. My phone buzzed a minute later with a reply from a fan calling himself JJStix88.

Sweet! Get her to meow. #CatCall

I tapped out another post.

JJStix88: Make her arch that back! #CatCall

Ride_Out: Wanna hear her scream! #CatCall

 

Copyright © The Way It Hurts 2017 by Patty Blount

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Practicing Normal by Cara Sue Achterberg

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Providence Book Promotions in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Practicing Normal by Cara Sue Achterberg was a great book at first, but after I was about halfway through the book, I was super annoyed with most of the characters in the book.  I say that because I have very little patience for people when they act like Kate does.  I also couldn’t stand her husband Everett because he is just a straight up jerk and I also don’t like people or characters like him either.  I felt awful for JT & Jenna because going up in a situation like they did isn’t a good thing.  As you can tell the author did a great job of making you think that the characters are real people and I was able to get so wrapped up in the story that even though I was annoyed I didn’t want to stop reading it because I had to know how it all worked out.  I would love to read more books by this author in the future, and I think pretty much everyone would enjoy this book.

About The Book

Book Details
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Published by: The Story Plant
Publication Date: June 6th, 2017
Number of Pages: 336
ISBN: 1611882443 (ISBN13: 9781611882445)

The houses in Pine Estates are beautiful McMansions filled with high-achieving parents, children on the fast track to top colleges, all of the comforts of modern living, and the best security systems money can buy. Welcome to normal upper-middle-class suburbia.

The Turners know in their hearts that they’re anything but normal. Jenna is a high-schooler dressed in black who is fascinated with breaking into her neighbors’ homes, security systems be damned. Everett genuinely believes he loves his wife . . . he just loves having a continuing stream of mistresses more. JT is a genius kid with Asperger’s who moves from one obsession to the next. And Kate tries to manage her family, manage her mother (who lives down the street), and avoid wondering why her life is passing her by.

And now everything is changing for them. Jenna suddenly finds herself in a boy-next-door romance she never could have predicted. Everett’s secrets are beginning to unravel on him. JT is getting his first taste of success at navigating the world. And Kate is facing truths about her husband, her mother, and her father that she might have preferred not to face.

Life on Pine Road has never been more challenging for the Turners. That’s what happens when you’re practicing normal.

Combining her trademark combination of wit, insight, and tremendous empathy for her characters, Cara Sue Achterberg has written a novel that is at once familiar and startlingly fresh.

About The Author

Cara Sue Achterberg is a writer and blogger who lives in New Freedom, PA with her family and an embarrassing number of animals. Her first novel, I’m Not Her, was a national bestseller, as was her second, Girls’ Weekend. Cara’s nonfiction book, Live Intentionally, is a guide to the organic life filled with ideas, recipes, and inspiration for liv- ing a more intentional life. Cara is a prolific blogger, occasional cowgirl, and busy mom whose essays and articles have been published in numerous anthologies, magazines, and websites. Links to her blogs, news about upcoming publications, and pictures of her foster dogs can be found at CaraWrites.com.

CaraWrites.com | Cara Sue Achterberg on Twitter | Cara Sue Achterberg on Facebook

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Never Forget by Richard Davis

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Never Forget by Richard Davis was a good book.  This is the second book in the series, but in my opinion, you don’t need to read the books to know what is happening.  I did understand the backstory of the main character which I always like but you don’t need the information while reading this book.  I was as drawn into this story as I was when I read False Prophet but I still did enjoy this book.  I also loved that I got to see Saul again because I love following along with characters because that makes them feel even more like real people.  Parts of this book remind me of the Jack Reacher books which I love, but I also am tired of the series because he should be dead by now.

Anyway, let’s get back to my thoughts on this book.  I really do enjoy this author writing, and I love that he includes some British slang in his books.  When that happened, it always made me smile because I am so used to hearing the words on YouTube and they always make me happy.  If you love mystery books, I would for sure recommend this book to you.

About The Book

Saul Marshall is on the run.

As a wave of seemingly random assassinations engulfs California, Marshall finds himself drawn into a situation spiraling out of control.

He soon discovers some of the webs’ most secure protocols have been compromised by a rogue team of former Chinese agents. When Marshall realizes what they plan, the stakes are raised…

And that’s before the Secretary of State gets involved. Can Marshall unravel the deceit and tricks before it’s too late? Can he stop the carnage, or will he become part of it? One thing is for certain: either way his enemies will never forget.

Perfect for fans of Lee Child, Michael Connelly or J.B. Turner, this is a compulsive and page-turning thriller that won’t let you go.

About The Author

Richard Davis was born in 1990 and grew up in north London. In 2011 he graduated from UCL and Cambridge University. His fascination with America stems from a series of childhood holidays there, which saw him tour both the east and west coasts. After returning to the States a number of times since, and, developing an intense interest in American-style thrillers, he made the decision to write one himself.

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Call To Engane by Tawny Weber

The Poseidon team are hard-bodied, fiercely competitive Navy SEALs. But when a sensitive mission goes disastrously wrong, three of the team’s finest will have to trust their hearts and instincts to uncover the truth…CALL TO ENGAGE will delight fans of UNDER PRESSURE by Lori Foster and A SEAL’S PLEDGE by Cora Seton!

About The Book

Title: Call To Engage

Author: Tawny Weber

Publisher: Harlequin

Release Date: June 27, 2017

Series: Team Poseidon

Genres: Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense/Military Romance

ISBN: (Digital) 9781460397886
ISBN: (Print) 9780373801961

 

Lieutenant Elijah Prescott should be spending his precious leave somewhere with sun, surf and scantily clad women. Instead, he’s heading home with two goals in mind. Figure out exactly how his last assignment went to hell and almost killed him—and reconnect with the woman who might offer salvation.

Ava Monroe has streamlined her life, eliminating every source of pain—including a marriage touched by tragedy. One glimpse of her ex and those good intentions turn to bad-girl desires. Her strategy: get over Elijah by getting under him again, sating herself until she can finally let go. But as betrayal within the rank of the SEALs turns deadly, there’s no denying that her heart and her life are on the line. Elijah is the only man who can protect both…

About The Author

New York Times and USA TODAY Bestselling author of more than forty books, Tawny Weber loves writing about sexy heroes, most notably her popular Navy SEALs series.  Her sassy, emotional romances are filled with men dedicated to being the best—and women determined to have the best.  Tawny credits her ex-military alpha husband for inspiration in her writing, and in her life.   The recipient of numerous writing accolades, including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice and in addition to the NY Times and USA Today bestseller lists, Tawny has also hit the number one spot on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

A homeschooling mom, Tawny enjoys scrapbooking, gardening and spending time with her family and dogs in her Northern California home.

Connect with Tawny: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads  

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Aristotle Onassis – Quote Of The Week

The quote I chose this week is by Aristotle Onassis.

I chose this quote because this year has been super hard for me and I am constantly having to remind myself to focus on the good things that are happening.  There are days when I do a great job of looking at all the good things that are going in my life.  Then there are other days when I have a really hard time seeing any of the good things in my life.  I have been struggling lately with not feeling well and has made me sad and depressed but I am working through it and I know things will calm down and I will be okay in a month or so.

What do you think of this week’s quote by Aristotle Onassis?

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2017 Margaret Margaret

Three On A Match: Eleven Stories by Gino B. Bardi

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Three On A Match: Eleven Stories by Gino B. Bardi was an okay book.  I enjoyed that this book was filled with short stories because it makes reading them easy.  I was able to read one or two stories and then take a break or do other things without forgetting what was going on in the story.  There were quite a few of the stories that left me scratching my head and wondering what the entire story was about but it was never in a bad way.  For example the first story the little boy wants a bird and long story short he ends up buying the bird, but I didn’t get the point of the story.  It was well written, and I loved that they are short stories so I could get through them quickly and move on to another story.  If you love short stories than I would recommend this book to you and it would also be a fun read for the summertime.

About The Book

Three on a Match is a collection of tales ranging from funny to touching, from thought provoking to outrageous, and heart-warming to heart-wrenching. They share one common trait: each examine relationships from a unique, sometimes quirky, angle. Some are laugh-out-loud hilarious, some twist and turn and then end up just the way you thought they would. Others deliver an “I didn’t see THAT coming!” conclusion. Nothing is exempt from scrutiny. Some highlights:
In A Very Special Bird, a young child obtains a coveted pet parakeet in a daring ethically-challenged maneuver—then must face his mother, eye-to-eye.
In Twins, two unrelated strangers meet in an airport and discover they have identical birthdays. One is an unemployed newlywed, the other is a radiantly beautiful actress. They have nothing in common but time to kill before their flight. What starts out as an innocent hookup gets serious with the speed of a jetliner taking off.
In Blue Belle, we meet a hardworking rural man of limited means, who can’t resist a bargain on a used luxury car. Soon, it becomes more than just transportation…but cars don’t last forever…
The protagonist of No Good Deed finds a large, injured seabird on a Florida roadway, and makes choices that he immediately regrets, and can’t undo. He quickly plunges into a one-sided relationship he must ride out until the end, for good or bad.
Three on a Match tells the story of a middle-aged man, with a predictable marriage and a life-sapping everyday existence, who forms an unlikely alliance with two homeless men, who sleep in a tent, hunt, fish, drink beer and fire automatic weapons for kicks. An evening of beer and camaraderie produces some life-changing decisions.
This is a quick, easy read which will leave you smiling, thinking, and hungry for more. Gino Bardi is the author of three-time award-winning The Cow in the Doorway and he claims that all of this actually happened, but no one believes him.

About The Author

Gino B. Bardi was born in New York City in 1950 and lived on the South Shore of Long Island until he attended Cornell University in 1968, during the tumultuous era of Vietnam War protests. Armed with a degree in English/Creative Writing, he diligently sought work in his field and soon wound up doing everything but. For the next forty-four years, he cranked out advertising copy, magazine articles, loan pitches and short stories while running a commercial printing company in Upstate New York. Along the way, he married his college girlfriend, became a father to three lovely daughters and decided that winter was an unnecessary evil. In 2008 he sold the printing business, retired, and now writes humorous fiction in his home on the Gulf Coast of Florida. Two signs hang above his desk: “Bad decisions make good stories,” and Mel Brooks’ advice that “You only need to exaggerate a LITTLE BIT.”

The Cow in the Doorway is his first full-length novel and won the statewide Royal Palm Literary Award for best unpublished New Adult novel for 2015.

Three on a Match is part one of a short story anthology. All the stories have some basis in fact…but only ‘some,’ and range from laugh-out-loud funny to moving and thought provoking. Eleven stories in part one explore relationships- with people, people, and animals, appliances, nothing is safe.

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Operation Scorpion by John Beyer

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Operation Scorpion by John Beyer was an okay book.  It wasn’t one of my favorites that I have read lately, but it still was a book I think most people would enjoy it.  I say this because since this book is in my favorite genre to read and I am pretty picky when I read books like this one.  I did enjoy this author writing and his characters.  I was able to look at the characters like they are real people which I always enjoy because it gets me emotionally invested in the characters and what happens to them.  I wouldn’t mind reading more books by this author, and I would also love to read more books that involve these characters as well.  I was also able to read this book in a few days as well.  If you love mystery books, I would for sure recommend this author to you.

About The Book

PI Frank Sanders is “blown away” by the woman who strolls into his office one morning. Not only is she drop-dead-gorgeous, she’s also rich and willing to pay whatever it takes for him to find her missing father, world-famous geologist Dr. Stephen Jaspers who went rock hunting in the desert and hasn’t been heard from since. A retired Riverside California Police Department detective, Frank is used to searching for people. He takes the case, assuming it’s a simple missing person. But what he uncovers is more than he bargained for, leading him to suspect that he’s about to be blown away—literally, this time—along with everyone else in Southern California.

About The Author

John R. Beyer spent years in law enforcement in Southern California as a street cop, a training officer and a member of the elite SWAT team. After leaving the force, he continued in public service entering the field of education. During his tenure, he served as classroom teacher, school administrator and district administrator. While in both worlds he earned a Doctorate in School Administration and a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology.

During all those years, he never gave up the passion for writing – both fiction and nonfiction. He has been published in numerous magazines, newspapers and the like for decades on a variety of topics.
He is the author of three highly praised internationally known novels – Hunted (2013), Soft Target (2014) and Operation Scorpion (2017). All deal with law enforcement (both local and federal level) intrigues – murder, mayhem, terrorism, and humor can be found in all three novels.

His latest short stories for the past year can be found in Foliate Oak Literary Magazine (2016) and GNU Journal (2017).

He has had countless interviews on radio and blog spots – Marilyn’s Musings, CJEvolution, Twisted Webb Radio, Webbweaver Books, Book Readers Heaven, and WOCA – The Source, to name but a few.
John is on the constant move of stretching fiction to the limits in his writing and to strive to tell the tales which need to be told.

For further information concerning Black Opal Books please visit: www.blackopalbooks.com

You can also follow my non-fiction pieces by visiting: www.jandlresearchandexploration.blogspot.com

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Tony Gaskins – Quote Of The Week

The quote I chose for this week is by Tony Gaskins.

I chose this quote because I feel like people get too wrapped up in what other people think and say about them.  I used to care about what other people thought of me, but over the past few years, I have gotten to the point where I like to know what people think of me, but I no longer allow any of it to affect me.  I don’t let myself stress or worry about things that I can’t change because I have enough of my own problems that I need to worry about and focus on.  Those are just a few of my thoughts on this quote.

What do you think of this week’s quote by Tony Gaskins?

What quotes are you currently loving right now?

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2017 Margaret Margaret

More Than A Soldier by D.M. Annechino

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Italy Book Reviews in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

More Than A Soldier by D.M. Annechino was a fantastic book.  Anyone who has followed my reviews for just about any length of time knows that I love any book that has to do with WWII and this book was no different.  This book is based on a true story, and I loved it because I love knowing that a real person had lived through the things that happened in this book.  I have read other books by this author, and I really do enjoy his writing.  I can’t say enough good things about this book because I am such a love of books like this one.  I loved that as I was reading this book, I felt like I was there with Angelo and I felt like I was there with him.  I was able to understand how he was feeling because the author did such a great job making you feel like you are with the character.  If you are looking for a new WWII book to read this summer, I think that you will love this book just as much as I do.

About The Book

Feeling a patriotic duty to defend his country after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, seventeen-year-old, Angelo J. DiMarco, enlists in the U.S. Army. Severely short of frontline fighters, the Army rushes Angelo through Ranger training and sends him to Italy as part of the 1st Ranger Battalion. Their objective: stop the German invasion.

Fighting on the front lines in Italy, the German’s teach Angelo a sobering lesson on life when they capture him during the bloody Battle of Cisterna. Against insurmountable odds, Angelo miraculously escapes in a way that stretches the imagination. He survives behind enemy lines for over five months, hiding from the Germans and trying to outmaneuver them. He begs for food, sleeps in barns and suffers from many ailments, including dehydration, malnutrition, malaria, and exposure to the elements.

More Than a Soldier is Angelo DiMarco’s powerful story of survival, resilience, and courage.

About The Author

Daniel M. Annechino, a former book editor, wrote his first book, How to Buy the Most Car for the Least Money, while working as a General Manager in the automobile business. But his passion had always been fiction, particularly thrillers. He spent two years researching serial killers before finally penning his gripping and memorable debut novel They Never Die Quietly. He has written and published five novels—all thrillers. But his latest work, More Than a Soldier, is a Historical Biography set in Italy during WWII.

A native of New York, Annechino now lives in San Diego with his wife, Jennifer. He loves to cook, enjoys a glass of vintage wine, and spends lots of leisure time on the warm beaches of Southern California.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

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