Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Our New Home

Well, it's official! We have moved. Our new review site is called Collected Works and you can visit us here:

It still needs a few pages added and some tweaking done, but we hope you'll follow us, read our reviews, leave comments, etc. We've loved our time here with you all!!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016


I bet you're wondering where the hell we've been. We haven't fallen off the edge of the earth or into some dark abyss. We've been working behind the scenes.

There are times in a blogger's life when you have to stop and say, "This needs to change." Literary R&R has been sporadic and, let's face it, Blogger is getting old. The ladies of this blog wanted a new, better site as well as a book review site that was created by the opinions of all the main Literary R&R reviewers, not just one. Trying to get 4 ladies to agree on a new site name can be a little difficult but we believe we've come up with one.

We're not going to tell you what it is yet because the new site is still under construction. As soon as we get everything up and running, we'll post one last time here to let you know our new site's name.

Thank you so much to everyone who has followed us. We would LOVE to have you follow us at our new location. Keep checking back because we promise we'll return soon to let you know where we've moved.

Love to all!!!!

Monday, December 7, 2015

{Review} LOVING LOVELY by Diane Paley

ISBN #: 978-1910530900
Page Count: 198
Copyright: August 3, 2015
Publisher: Mirador Publishing

Book Summary:
(Taken from Amazon)

LOVING LOVELY is a powerful story of deep love that most people only dream about but few rarely achieve. A man who has recurring dreams of a woman falls deeply in love. In his dreams the woman never speaks nor does she have a name-so he names her LOVELY. His personal love life suffers in comparison to his deep attraction and love for a woman who doesn't exist. But in the most unlikely circumstances the man does find LOVELY-and then loses her. She's a news reporter and war correspondent. While on what was supposed to be a short assignment in the Middle East covering the widespread global barbarism, she and her cameraman disappear. Will he find LOVELY again? Will he find love? Or is fate just not that kind?

Shelley's Review:

Loving Lovely is a book that appeals to people in all walks of life.  The family relationships and ethnic diversity represented makes this a book you cannot put down.

Two families are operating delis.  One is Jewish and the other Italian, and they are across from each other.  It is a friendly competition, and the families are friends.  They are a part of each other's lives

Vince is the son of the owner of the Italian Deli and he keeps having a dream.  It is of a woman who doesn't exist but he is completely obsessed with.  It is so vivid that it interferes with his ability to form a relationship with any flesh and blood woman.  After a few tries at a relationship, one of his conquests takes it to a  level and stalks Vince. A violent showdown ensues, during which Rita, a spurned lover of Vince enters the deli waving a gun and endangering the lives of his family. In his quest to find true love, he finally meets the guise of Emily Struthers, a local reporter, who is everything he wants.  They find in each other true love and become engaged.   But before the wedding can be planned, Emily is give the assignment of her life.  She infiltrates an Isis camp, and becomes a hostage.  The horrific crimes committed against her have changed her and left her a broken, different woman. Vince has  a heartfelt chat with Emily,  during which she explains that she has been forever changed and no long the Emily he fell in love with and releases him from his commitment.   At last, Vince turns to the beautiful Veronica who has been in love with him the whole time, and he has his happy ending.

Diane Paley is a clever and refreshing writer.  She uses the current climate of the day to relate to her readers. She offers several scenarios to appeal to many readers, and I look forward to her next book.

*A physical copy of the book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

{Review} A SMALL INDISCRETION by Jan Ellison

ISBN #: 978-0812995442
Page Count: 336
Copyright: January 20, 2015
Publisher: Random House

Book Summary:
(Taken from Amazon)

At nineteen, Annie Black trades a bleak future in a washed-out California town for a London winter of drinking and abandon. Twenty years later, she is a San Francisco lighting designer and happily married mother of three who has put her reckless youth behind her. Then a photo from that distant winter in Europe arrives inexplicably in her mailbox, and an old obsession is awakened.

Past and present collide, Annie’s marriage falters, and her son takes a car ride that ends with his life hanging in the balance. Now Annie must confront her own transgressions and fight for her family by untangling the mysteries of the turbulent winter that drew an invisible map of her future. Gripping, insightful, and lyrical, A Small Indiscretion announces the arrival of a major new voice in literary suspense as it unfolds a story of denial, passion, forgiveness—and the redemptive power of love.

Mandy's Review:

There are decisions made in our past that come back to haunt us in the future. When the decisions are made, we don't consider the consequences. We just live. Like a drop in a body of water, though, our decisions also form concentric circles of consequence that continue to expand the farther out it goes. This is what happens to Annie. A not-so-smart decision in her past is causing horrible consequences for her future. The worst part is that those consequences are affecting her family as well. Is this a situation that can be corrected and put back on track?

From the moment I began reading this novel, I was intrigued. The novel does flip flop between past and present so you'll need to be able to adjust your thinking while you're reading. The best thing about this story is that it does not reveal all its secrets at once. It'll keep you guessing until almost the very end. I really appreciate that in a story. I love to keep guessing as long as all the loose ends are tied up at the end.

If this is Ms. Ellison's first novel then it shows she has a promising start to her career.

*A physical copy of this novel was provided by the publicist in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

{Review} FROM THE ASHES by Shelby K. Morrison

File Size: 733 KB
Page Count: 305
Copyright: April 24, 2015

Book Summary:
(Taken from Goodreads)

For eighteen years Aia Wynnald has lived a lie. Raised as a highborn in the Kingdom of Tharien, she’s filled her days with tutors and archery lessons. But simmering beneath her polite surface is a dangerous gift, one which she must keep a secret. Aia is a Bender. And in Tharien, Benders are feared and hunted.

When her unruly power breaks free with dire repercussions, Aia’s lifelong goal of independence shatters. As she scrambles to piece her life back together while evading capture, she disturbs a vengeful force intent on destroying the kingdom.

Now, with the help of an unlikely ally, Aia will decide the fate of Tharien. To rescue those she cares about will require accepting what she is. But can she risk becoming the monster she’s dreaded to save the very citizens baying for her blood?

Kathy's Review:

This is the second book I’ve read by this author (Shattered was the other one), and I think I liked Shattered better. This book held my interest, but I felt like I showed up late to the party and missed some major gossip that everyone else was privy to. A key piece of the plot felt like it was missing from the get-go. The story begins with Aia on the run. Why is she on the run? Slowly we find out it is because she is a “Bender.” But I have no idea what a Bender is, nor do I understand what a “Breaker” is. I don’t know why she is sometimes called Maia. It’s never explained, so I guess people just get her name wrong? Kind of like how my music teacher called me “Kristen” from first through seventh grade, and at some point I just stopped correcting her.

Ilcina is the bad gal of this story, and she is a powerful, legendary Bender who everyone thinks is dead. In person, though, when she is with Aia, she doesn’t seem like such a horrible person. Maybe I missed that nuance, too.

There’s definitely some good to the story. I’m intrigued by the whole concept of the Benders. What kinds of powers do they have? Do they all have different powers? What is Cole’s power? Will Maia find any other relatives? What is her destiny?

Of course, those will be answered in future installments of the book. Suggestion to the author: let’s get some backstory on Benders, some backstory on Cole, etc.

*An ecopy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
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