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review 2016-10-02 01:14
Elvis Takes A Backseat by Leanna Ellis
Elvis Takes a Back Seat - Leanna Ellis

Elvis Takes a Back Seat by award-winning novelist Leanna Ellis is the endearing story of Claudia, a young widow determined to fulfill her husband’s last request by hauling a three-foot bust of Elvis Presley in the backseat of a vintage Cadillac from Dallas to Memphis to return it to its rightful owner. The road trip—taken with an eccentric aunt who actually knew the “King of Rock ’n’ Roll,” and a temperamental teen with a suspicious mind of her own—hits some royal roadblocks and detours as these women uncover pieces of their past along with the bust’s mysterious history. What they find along the way changes their lives forever, inspiring readers to also step out in faith.






Recently widowed Claudia McIntosh, after some internal debating, decides to fulfill her husband's last request to return his 3 ft tall ceramic Elvis bust back to its original owner. She's confused as to what he means by "original owner" because she thought it had always been his. To make things even more fun, he doesn't tell her who this original owner was or is!  Still, she sets out to drive from Dallas, TX to Memphis, TN, hoping that a trip to Graceland will give her some answers. Joining her on this road trip are her aunt Rae (who claims to have hung with the real Elvis) and Ivy, the moody teen daughter of Claudia's longtime friend and boss, Ben.


Ivy has been emotionally closed off since her mother walked out on the family years ago. It is Ben's hope that Ivy going on this trip with fun-loving Claudia and Rhea will give Ivy the comfort and confidence to start opening up again. Little does he know that Ivy's interest in this trip has to do with her learning that her birth mother may be living in Tennessee.


Readers can expect to find your standard road trip novel where each character involved moves along happy-go-lucky until being thrust into various situations that have them having some sort of A-HA moment. Claudia, feeling bereft of the mothering aspect of her life, finds another way to get her mothering on through watching over Ivy. Watching Ivy work through her conflicted emotions regarding her mother, Claudia finally faces her own emotions surrounding HER mother's abandonment. Rae uses her life stories as lessons on how not to run from pain but through the course of the story has to learn how to actually live by her own message.


Some lessons come hard. I watch her face change, petulant one minute, angry, shamed, and sad the next. Why did it seem a rite of passage for young women to be treated poorly by men?


Probably no surprise, but each chapter features a title that references an Elvis song that also gives hints to what's ahead in that chapter. Sometimes the Elvis references throughout the story itself feel a bit unnatural, forced into the story just to get the Elvis theme in there enough, but at other times it's as entertaining as EP fans might hope for. The dialogue, at times, seemed like it relied too much on platitude-heavy conversations that just didn't sound like how the average person would converse and the humor, though it had its good moments, also had parts where the joke didn't quite land. The ending was largely predictable but there was one small surprising twist in the story's closing. The ending did turn more preachy than I was expecting. Having religion mentioned is not necessarily out of place in this kind of story, as Elvis Presley himself was a deeply religious man, but even so it got a bit heavy-handed there near the end, I have to say... to the point of making the closing scenes somewhat cringey and laughable. It felt as if Ellis was really reaching to tie in the godly aspect.. but it ended up coming off clunky and unnatural. 


All in all, it wasn't a bad little trip to take with these ladies but something about it in general felt a wee bit flat for me. And maybe part of my minor dissatisfaction comes from how tiresome I sometimes found Claudia and Ivy (for different reasons). I appreciated that some tougher topics were addressed along with the light-hearted, comical moments but in the end felt the more serious bits were still played a bit too safe for me.

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review 2016-03-23 04:14
The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, by Leanna Renee Hieber
the Strangely beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker - Leanna Renee Hieber

The thing about tropes is…sometimes they work for us. The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, by Leanna Renee Hieber, is full of them—prophecies, unexplained magical forces, fated love match, etc.—but I was entertained. After reading Hiding in Plain Sight, I needed something fluffy to read. I can’t give a full review of this book as I only received a preview copy, however, and I know that the trope-y nature of this book will drive some readers up the wall...


Read the rest of my review at A Bookish Type. I received a preview of this book from NetGalley for review consideration.

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text 2015-10-01 17:30
October TBR
Mr. Shivers - Robert Jackson Bennett
Dr. Mutter's Marvels( A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine) - ristinO'KeefeAptowicz
The Eterna Files - Leanna Renee Hieber
The Buried Life - Carrie Patel
Ghostopolis - Doug Tennapel
The Dead House - Dawn Kurtagich

It's the month when all the Classic Horror movies pop-up all over the place.  When people want to be scared out of their minds and it's cool to east a whole bowel of candy in one sitting.  Personally, I like a good scary movie any time of the years, especially a creepy book right before bed. But, hey, I'm weird like that.  Still, it's the season for ominous fog, ghosts, and creatures of the night. So I saved some of my creepy, spooky, and just plain weird reads just for the month of October.  My hope is to get through them all now that life seems to be settling down, but I always seem to say that right before something explodes.  My first stop is the ever creepy, and probably slightly disturbing, Dr. Mutter's Marvels, because the author is doing an event toward the end of the month, and I am planning on attending.  It's also a BINGO book! So double bonus!!


October Goals:

YASH - compete & finish

Blog Clean up (totally put this off)

1 BINGO book

3 Graphic Novels


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review 2015-09-29 18:13
The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker
the Strangely beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker - Leanna Renee Hieber

This book had a very slow and confusing start. I almost put in down and picked a different one. It's a bit too descriptive in places. Percy annoyed me at first. She was very meek and apologized too much. She does grow and gain in spine and confidence (and stops apologizing all the freaking time). I finally got more invested and interested more about halfway through the book. On the fence about continuing with the next 2 since this was such a slow start and I'm not sure if I care enough to continue.

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text 2015-09-04 16:13
Pin Up of the Week! FairyTale Romance
Golden Stair - Jennifer Blackstream
Forever Found (Beyond Neverland Series Book 2) - Nazarea Andrews
Ruby's Slippers - Leanna Ellis
Tiger Lily - Jodi Lynn Anderson
Pumpkin: a Cindermama Story - Ines Johnson
A Pirate's Dream, Kingdom Book 11 - Marie Hall
Tam Lin (06) - Pamela Dean
Reserved for the Cat - Mercedes Lackey
Book of a Thousand Days - Shannon Hale
When Beauty Tamed the Beast - James Griffin,Eloisa James

Fairytales and Fables from from every culture and every century. Some well known, some little know, some light, some dark but all with human nature and often love at the center.



Check out my Pinterest Board Storytime for some amazing images and Romance Books based on every fairytale and folktale you can imagine! 


Please tell me which Fairytale Romance Novel you love hte most!


Here are some Fairytales sorted by origin with pretty pictures from the Board. 



The Story of Zoulvisia









The Emperor's New Clothes



Esben and the Witch

The Green Knight

The Little Match Girl

The Little Mermaid


The Princess and the Pea

The Snow Queen

The Steadfast Tin Soldier


The Ugly Duckling



Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Jack and Jill 

Jack and the Beanstalk

Peter and Wendy

Robin Hood


The Story of the Three Bears

Tom Thumb



The Forest Bride




Beauty and the Beast




Puss in Boots

Sleeping Beauty

Little Red Riding Hood




The Frog Prince

The Glass Coffin

The Goose Girl

Hansel and Gretel

King Thrushbeard

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King


The Robber Bridegroom


Snow White

The Twelve Dancing Princesses



The Boy Who Cried Wolf

The Goat Girl



The Snake Prince




The Adventures of Pinocchio

The Canary Prince


The Three Enchanted Princes






The Fox Sister



Eglė the Queen of Serpents




Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves

Sinbad the Sailor




The Enchanted Maiden

The False Prince and the True



The Firebird and Princess Vasilisa

The Frog Princess

Peter and the Wolf

Vasilisa the Fair





The Bear

The Daughter Of King Under-Waves

Tam Lin




The Dragon and the Prince



The Silent Princess



The Story of Tam and Cam





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