Blog Tour · Book Reviews · Fiction · psychologicalsuspense · Thriller

Happy (paperback) Pub Day to Samantha Downing and her amazing book ‘He Started It’

Welcome to Mom Loves Reading stop in the Berkley Blog Tour for the paperback release of Samantha Downing’s 2020 bestselling novel ‘He Started It’, a diabolically twisted road trip you will never forget!

AN INSTANT INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

“Wholly original. Scarily clever. Completely mesmerizing. You will never look at family road trips the same way again.”—Lisa Gardner, #1 New York Times bestselling author

A most anticipated book by Hello Sunshine ∙ Cosmo ∙ Entertainment Weekly ∙ Betches ∙ Hollywood Reporter ∙ Parade ∙ PopSugar ∙ OK! Magazine ∙ Hello Giggles ∙ Bustle ∙ Yahoo! ∙ She Reads ∙ Book Page ∙ CrimeReads ∙ New York Post Best Book of the Week ∙ Goodreads

From the twisted mind behind mega hit My Lovely Wife comes the story of a family—not unlike your own—just with a few more violent tendencies thrown in….

Beth, Portia, and Eddie Morgan haven’t all been together in years. And for very good reasons—we’ll get to those later. But when their wealthy grandfather dies and leaves a cryptic final message in his wake, the siblings and their respective partners must come together for a cross-country road trip to fulfill his final wish and—more importantly—secure their inheritance.

But time with your family can be tough. It isn’t for everyone.

It’s even harder when you’re all keeping secrets and trying to forget a memory, a missing person, an act of revenge, the man in the black truck who won’t stop following your car—and especially when at least one of you is a killer and there’s a body in the trunk. Just to name a few reasons.

But money is a powerful motivator. It is for everyone.

He Started It‘ was personally my most anticipated new release in 2020 & I was beyond thrilled when Berkley asked me to be on the blog tour! I LOVED Samantha Downing’s first novel, the wickedly dark & original 2019 domestic thriller, ‘My Lovely Wife’ so much! In 2020 Amazon Studios & Nicole Kidman bought the film rights for ‘My Lovely Wife’, so YAY! That incredible book will be a movie someday (soon, I hope!).

He Started It‘ is a twisted, darkly addictive, propulsive family drama/thriller that will have you wanting to read it in one sitting (or standing…in case you get the nervous urge to pace back & forth like I did!). The ending will leave you speechless! I don’t know how Samantha Downing comes up with such original, clever & diabolical stories, but I’m not sure I would ever want to be on her bad side…just sayin’. The paperback & hardback versions of the book is available now wherever books are sold.

***Click on each title below to add them to your Goodreads.***

MY LOVELY WIFE

HE STARTED IT

FOR YOUR OWN GOOD (coming July, ’21)

Click HERE to visit my post about ‘He Started It’ on Instagram, & show Samantha your support & LIKE (maybe even SHARE) it.

Click HERE to find ‘He Started It’ or ‘My Lovely Wife’ at a local or online independent bookseller using BookStoreLink.com

**Visit Samanta Downing: **

Instagram Facebook Website Twitter

Photo Credit: Jaqueline Dallimore

Samantha Downing is the author of the bestselling My Lovely Wife, nominated for Edgar, ITW, Macavity, and CWA awards. Amazon Studios and Nicole Kidman’s Blossom Films have partnered to produce a feature film based on the novel.Her second book, He Started It, was released in 2020 and became an instant international bestseller.

Sign up for her newsletter: https://www.samanthadowning.com/contact

BeachReads · Book Reviews · Fiction · Giveaway

GIVEAWAY TIME! ‘A Little Bit of Grace’ by Phoebe Fox (pub 8/11)

Click HERE to enter giveaway & LIKE/SHARE on IG.

GIVEAWAY TIME!! (please note that the giveaway info in this post is just for FYI sakes. All entries for the actual giveaway must be made on the post on Instagram. Click HERE to go to MomLovesReading on IG.)

Thank you @berkleypub for my gifted copy of ‘A Little Bit of Grace‘ by Phoebe Fox & for sponsoring this giveaway!

A heartfelt story about family, forgiveness, & starting over when the happy ending ends, & handling it all with a little bit of grace.

Family is everything–Grace Adams McHale’s mom must have said it to her a thousand times before she died. Before Grace’s dad ran off with an aspiring actress half his age. Before only-child Grace found out she was unable to have children of her own. Before Brian–her childhood best friend, business partner, & finally her husband–dropped a “bombshell” on her in the form of her stunning new replacement.

Which means Grace now has…nothing.

Until she receives a letter from a woman claiming to be a relative Grace never knew she had, sending her on a journey from the childhood home she had to move back into, to a Florida island to meet a total stranger who embraces her as family. There, Grace starts to uncover answers about the eccentric woman her family never mentioned: an octogenarian who is the keeper of a secret held for more than 50 years.

Such a beautiful, well-written, poignant & witty story about loss, heartache, family & self-discovery that gave me all the feels! And I LOVED Aunt Millie so much! Truly a delightful, captivating story you will not soon forget! And I have (1) copy to giveaway. (Sorry, US residents only).

To enter, do the following: (***Entry on Instagram post ONLY)

*LIKE this post. (Like some others, too, while you’re here.)

*Must be following @mom_loves_reading & @berkleypub

*Tag a couple bookish buds. (unlimited entries, up to 5 tags per comment).

BONUS entries: (5 ea)

*Share this post in your stories & tag me (You can do this daily, 5 entries ea time.)

*RE-post this post on your IG wall & tag me.

Giveaway begins 8/13 & ends 8/17/20 11:59pm EST. No follow-to-UNfollow or you will be excluded from all future MomLovesReading giveaways, & there are a LOT. Entry on Instagram post only. Giveaway is not affiliated w/ Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Click HERE to add ‘A Little Bit of Grace’ to your Goodreads TBR.
Click HERE to visit Phoebe Fox’s blog/website.
Click HERE to find ‘A Little Bit of Grace’ (& other books) at an independent bookstore near you using BookStoreLink. (Please try to support indie bookstores first, before turning to the big A. Indie bookstores need our sales now more than ever! The big A is doing just fine, I promise.)

What others are saying about ‘A Little Bit of Grace’:

“Secrets, rejection, and betrayal are no match for the powers of forgiveness in this charming novel.”—Kirkus Reviews

“A Little Bit of Grace reads just like the setting it so wonderfully invokes — sunny, warm, and bright, with healthy doses of adventure and wisdom thrown in for good measure. Phoebe Fox conjures delightful characters in intricate, unusual relationships who populate a story that feels like sifting sand between your toes and is the perfect book to read while doing so.”Laurie Frankel, New York Times bestselling author of Goodbye for Now and This Is How It Always Is

A Little Bit of Grace is a deeply poignant emotional journey punctuated with humor, warmth and an irresistible irreverence. A rare, feel-good novel that you’ll urgently want to press into the hands of friends and family.  I adored it.”—Karin Gillespie, author of Love Literary Style

Phoebe Fox is the author of the Breakup Doctor series (The Breakup Doctor, Bedside Manners, Heart Conditions, Out of Practice), & has been a contributor & regular columnist for a number of national, regional, & local publications, including the Huffington Post, Elite Daily, & She Knows. A former actor on stage & screen, Phoebe has been dangled from wires as a mall fairy; was accidentally concussed by a blank gun; & hosted a short-lived game show. She has been a relationship columnist; a movie, theater, & book reviewer; & a radio personality, & currently lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband & two excellent dogs.

Book Reviews

Book Review: “The Return” by Rachel Harrison

Click HERE for Instagram post

[Due to accidentally NOT hitting the publish button yesterday on the previous review post (“The New Girl Code”), subscribers will get TWO emails today. Hope you don’t mind! Live & learn!😉]

Thank you so much @Berkleypub (partner) for my gifted copy of “The Return” by Rachel Harrison (pub date 3/24)!

A group of friends reunite after one of them has returned from a mysterious two-year disappearance in this edgy & haunting debut.

Julie is missing, & no one believes she will ever return—except Elise. Elise knows Julie better than anyone, & feels it in her bones that her best friend is out there & that one day Julie will come back. She’s right. Two years to the day that Julie went missing, she reappears with no memory of where she’s been or what happened to her.

Along with Molly & Mae, their two close friends from college, the women decide to reunite at a remote inn. But the second Elise sees Julie, she knows something is wrong—she’s emaciated, with sallow skin & odd appetites. And as the weekend unfurls, it becomes impossible to deny that the Julie who vanished two years ago is not the same Julie who came back. But then who—or what—is she?

Click HERE to add to your Goodreads list

Well, where to begin, since I don’t want to inadvertently give away any spoilers. This book is best to go into without reading too many reviews since it’s one of those that some people love & some people…not so much.

The book starts out pretty slow, but does pick up eventually, but the chapters were a bit too long for me. The characters often felt contrived & I didn’t really care about any of them, except I did like Mae for the most part. I loved that the majority of the setting was in a hotel, which gave that unsettling vibe like “The Shining”.

“The Return” is creepy, edgy, unexpected & disturbing, with a fair amount of violence & paranormal aspects. (Think “Mean Girls” meets “Jennifer’s Body”) It’s a thriller/horror novel, that’s scary & funny like any teen-scream movie these days, & it will have you on the edge of your seat, biting your nails, & peaking over your shoulders while reading it. An overall fast read!

For a debut novel I thought it was well-written & it entertained the bajeebies out of me! I will definitely read more from Harrison in the future! Look for this book tomorrow, 3/24 & don’t forget to support your local, indie bookstores…they need our support now more than ever! Click HERE to go to BookStoreLink.com to find one near you! Many will ship or deliver to you!

Reminder: Today is the last day to enter my current Instagram 3-Winner GIVEAWAY sponsored by Flatiron Publishing! Click HERE to go to that post! Another fresh giveaway coming SOON!

And as always, Wash your hands, stay safe, stay home, and [try to] stay sane! 😊