Cover Reveal: My Unexpected Forever

28th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Cover Reveals, Features/Memes

My Unexpected Forever (Beaumont #2)by Heidi McLaughlin
Expected publication: September 2, 2013

I expected a life of music.
I expected to raise my son.
It took one look to make everything change.
I never expected happiness.

I never expected to find her.

I never expected to feel desire.
I never expected I’d be a family man.
I never expected to be loved.

I never expected to fall in love.

They say you should expect the unexpected.
I didn’t realize my unexpected would be
the forever kind.

Get the countdown widget below

Heidi McLaughling is offering My Unexpected Forever up for pre-buy for those attending the Naughty Mafia Rocks Vegas 2013. Pre-buy:

Pre-buy My Unexpected Forever for August delivery:

Heidi is the author of USA Today, Digital Book World, Amazon and Barnes & Noble Bestselling novel, Forever My Girl.

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in picturesque Vermont, with her husband and two daughters. Also renting space in their home is an over-hyper Beagle/Jack Russell and two Parakeets.

During the day Heidi is behind a desk talking about Land Use. At night, she’s writing one of the many stories planned for release or sitting court-side during either daughter’s basketball games.

Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest | Tumblr | Facebook | Blog

Reveal hosted by…


Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’ve Read So Far In 2013

24th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Features/Memes, Top Ten Tuesday

Well it turns out I haven’t read many 5 star books so far this year, but the ones that did get that honor are totally AMAAAAZING to me. I even have favorite 4 star books!

The Five Stars Club

justoneday1. Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices #3) by Cassandra Clare – I couldn’t even write up my feelings on the amazingness of this book, y’all.

2. The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen – SIGH! Such a good Summer book! (My Review)

3. Just One Day (Just One Day #1) by Gayle Forman – The first book I read this year and it still one of my favorites of the year! :D (My Review)

4. Things I Can’t Forget (Hundred Oaks #3) by Miranda Kenneally – I loved so much of this book! (My Review)

5. The Best Man (Blue Heron #1) by Kristan Higgins – Such a FUN contemporary romance! (My Review)

6. Gameboard of the Gods (Age of X #1) by Richelle Mead – It’s Richelle Mead! Of course I loved it! Though I know a lot of people have not. :( (My Review)

The Four Stars Club


7. Lover At Last (Black Dagger Brotherhood #11) by J.R. Ward – I just. I love this series SO MUCH! It was one of my most anticipated books this year and it totally delivered! I can never write reviews for these either.

8. Three Sisters (Blackberry Island #2) by Susan Mallery – This book was such a great story of friendship and relationships! (My Review)

9. Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) by Sarah J. Maas – OH MY GOD! Where had I been?! SO AMAZING! (My Review)

10. For Darkness Shows the Stars (For Darkness Shows the Stars #1) by Diana Peterfreund – SO GOOD!! REALLY BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN! (Review coming soon. Hopefully.)

Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Review: Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead

24th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle MeadGameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead
Series: Age of X #1
Published by Dutton Adult
Pub Date: June 4th 2013
Pages: 448
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Adult, Dystopian
Buy the book! | Goodreads
5 Stars

In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.

When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.

Gameboard of the Gods, the first installment of Richelle Mead’s Age of X series, will have all the elements that have made her YA Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series such megasuccesses: sexy, irresistible characters; romantic and mythological intrigue; and relentless action and suspense.


Aside from the fact that this book was an insta-buy for me, I mean, it is Richelle Mead after all, I did not have any expectations going in. I knew Gameboard of the Gods would be different than both her adult and young adult books just from the synopsis, and I was totally game for that. One thing I did find similar to her other works were the characters. Richelle Mead has this way of writing them where they are not your typical cookie-cutter personalities. They are flawed and complicated and always find a way to my heart. Even the secondary characters, being so well fleshed out, leave lasting impressions on me.

Justin March is soooo not your typical hero. If we hadn’t been able to know what was going through his head half the time, I’m pretty positive I would’ve disliked him. He is self-serving, he drinks, he smokes, he loves his drugs…but he’s a genius! And he’s charming and really good looking and so very interesting and complicated, which is why I was all about him. Mae isn’t your perfect heroine either. She’s kick-ass! But she has her own set of issues. She has a real problem with control. Also, she comes off really frigid, but really she has a really big heart.

As for the romance in this book, it’s not the typical guy and gal fall in love scenario. There’s romantic aspects, there’s DEFINITELY steamy moments, lots of sexual tension, and some sex. But sex between Justin and Mae? Not after their first encounter! They have reasons though! Especially Justin. These reasons made for all that sexual tension and also made a great setup for the future books.

The world-building in Gameboard of the Gods felt like a bigger undertaking that Richelle Mead’s other books. Everything in the RUNA sounded really interesting because a lot of things are futuristic, but I loved that not too much was changed. It was really interesting to see a world where religion and worshiping Gods is kept on a leash. That is where the supernatural aspects come in. These Gods NEED people to worship them to exist, so they find just the right people to “appear” to and they start movements for them. Justin’s job is actually to make sure these groups are following the rules and don’t get too big or too crazy. The RUNA doesn’t want a religious uprise of course! There’s definitely a lot to this world Richelle Mead has created, and it’s not really fast-paced. I found it a steady and absorbing read.

Gameboard of the Gods is definitely a great beginning to what I’m sure is to be an epic series. Richelle Mead knows her stuff, y’all!


About Richelle Mead

Scorpio Richelle Mead is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy books for both adults and teens. Originally from Michigan, Richelle now lives in Seattle, Washington where she works on her three series full-time. Before becoming a writer, she considered a few different career paths. She received a liberal arts degree from the University of Michigan, an MA in Comparative Religion from Western Michigan University, and a Master in Teaching (Middle & High School English) degree from the University of Washington. In the end, she decided writing was the way for her but believes all of her education prepared her for it.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Blog Tour: Deviant by Helen FitzGerald – Excerpt & Giveaway!

21st Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Blog Tours, Giveaways

Deviant by Helen Fitzgerald
Publication Date: June 11th 2013 by Soho Teen

When 16-year-old Abigail’s mother dies in Scotland–leaving a faded photo, a weirdly cryptic letter, and a one-way ticket to America–she feels nothing. Why should she? Her mother gave her away when she was a baby, leaving her to grow up on an anti-nuclear commune and then in ugly foster homes. But the letter is a surprise in more ways than one: Her father is living in California. What’s more, Abigail discovers she has an eighteen-year-old sister, Becky. And the two are expecting Abigail to move in with them.

After struggling to overcome her natural suspicions of a note from beyond the grave (not to mention anything positive) Abigail grows close to her newfound sister. But then Becky is found dead, the accidental victim of an apparent drug overdose. As Abigail wrestles with her feelings and compiles a “Book of Remembrance” of her sister’s short life, she uncovers a horrifying global plot aimed at controlling teen behavior: one that took her sister’s and mother’s lives, with vast implications.

Read the first two chapters here!!


“My name is Abigail Thom. My mother, Sophie Thom, died here last night. Apparently she left something for me.”

The receptionist tapped away at the computer before directing her up the stairs to the second floor and then to the nurses’ station in Ward B. There, Abigail repeated the above sentence, word for word. “Can you spell that?” asked the pinched-faced nurse. “Of course I can.” The nurse didn’t find this funny. She was Scottish, after all. Scots didn’t find funny things funny. Scots liked to be miserable. Why else did they play the bagpipes? Why else did they drink and smoke themselves into early graves? Why else did they pledge undying love to crap soccer teams that failed at everything but religious bigotry?

“A-B-I-G . . .”

“Not you, your mother.”

“Oh. D-E-A-D.”

The nurse had typed three of the four letters into her computer before raising her eyebrows and looking up from above her cheap glasses. “I’m very busy.”

“It’s Sophie. S-O-P-H-I-E.”

“Last name?

“Thom. T-H-O-M.”

“Just a moment.”

The nurse tapped into the computer. Abigail looked around her. Ten beds lined each side of the room, curtains in between, some drawn, some not. The beds were all occupied. All the women looked the same: withered, yellow, and 173 years old. Her mother had probably been in one of those beds. Which one?

“Follow me.”

The smell of antiseptic was even stronger in the private room than in the ward. Perhaps they doused the rooms of the dead with an extra bottle. There was a window at one end overlooking the murky River Clyde and its ominous ship-building cranes. There, below it, was a single bed under a buzzing fluorescent light and a sheet-covered body.

As if in a dream, Abigail walked to the head of the bed, lifted the sheet, and looked down at the face. She felt a flicker of the faintest recognition from the photo. But this woman was old, a stranger. Her eyes were closed. Her lashes were thick and black, no mascara. Her eyebrows were full, nice shape. Abigail stared. Her mother had plucked a little, yes, but not much. No need.

Hmm, so that’s where my tiny pinned-back ears come from.

Had she tattooed lip liner onto her lips? They were full, and defined at the edges. Not thin Scottish lips at all. Exactly like Abigail’s, in fact. She could see from the shape of the sheet that her mother’s once-slim build was now emaciated, dead-thin.

She’d imagined meeting her mother many times. Never like this. Was she beautiful? Can a dead face be beautiful? Her hair was still a lovely, raven black. But mostly, she was dead, and, no, dead cannot be beautiful.

After gazing at the face for another ten seconds or so, Abigail turned and walked toward the door.

“Wait!” the nurse called, replacing the sheet. “She left you something, remember?”

Abigail stopped but didn’t turn around. The nurse retrieved a plastic bag from the bedside cabinet and handed it to her.

“Thank you,” Abigail choked out. And then she was hurtling through the corridor and down the stairs so fast that she had to lean against the brick wall of the hospital when she finally made it outside. Her breath came in heavy gasps. She realized she was clutching an old, thinning Tesco supermarket bag. There was something square and heavy inside.

Calming herself, she walked down the hill and across the road into the park. The rain had stopped, but she didn’t notice. Climbing over a fence into the woodland by the river, she found a spot under a tree and emptied the Tesco bag of its contents: a thick padded package about twenty centimeters square. Abigail laid the plastic bag on the wet grass, sat down on it, and examined the package. It was inscribed with a thick, black marker.

For my daughter Abigail Thom: URGENT!!!

She picked at the sticky brown tape and tore it off. Money. Jesus. Abigail’s eyes widened. Her heart fluttered. British Pounds, lots of them, bundle after bundle after bundle of twenties.

One of the bundles fell to the ground. She glanced around the shadowy park, afraid that someone may have seen her— then scooped it up with trembling fingers and shoved it all back in the supermarket bag. She scrambled closer to the river and knelt in the mud, no longer worried about getting wet or dirty. The park was deserted. She unfolded the typed letter that had come with the package. Inside the letter was an American Airlines e-ticket. She gripped it as she read.

Dear Abigail, I don’t know where to start, so I won’t tell you the beginning. I’ll just tell you the end. There are five things I want you to know:

Your father is alive. His name is Grahame Johnstone. He lives in Los Angeles. I was going to wait until you turned eighteen to tell you about him but I will be dead. Very soon, I think. I only told your father about you yesterday, the 18th July. For everyone’s sakes, you need to know him.

You have an older sister called Becky. Please show her this letter. Please tell her I love her, as I love you, that I still remember her beautiful face, and that I have thought about you both every day. She was an inquisitive and determined baby. Ask for her help.

The ticket in this envelope is a one-way ticket to Los Angeles. Your father is expecting you. He will collect you from the airport.

He is a clever man, Abigail. I saved £25,000 each, for you and Becky. Please don’t tell your father about the money. It is your and your sister’s inheritance, from me. Please accept your father’s kindness. He will be kind to you. Use this money to be happy, use it to be free.

No matter what you and Becky think of me now, I know with all my heart that you will feel differently one day. I do love you, Abigail. I have always loved you.

Her mother signed a squiggle at the bottom of the letter. A signature, in black pen. No wonder she typed the letter, Abigail thought. Her handwriting! It was terrible, almost illegible, with little flecks of ink everywhere. She must have been very sick. With all the shaky markings, it almost looked more like Stophie Them than Sophie Thom.


For a very long while, Abigail sat alone by the river. She read the letter once, twice—over and over. Each time she had a different reaction.

Her mother had loved her.

Her mother was a junkie, or a drunk.

Her mother made no sense.

Her mother was dead.

Her mother was crazy.

Her mother was a liar.

Her mother had obviously NEVER loved her.

The e-ticket was American Airlines flight number 3846, leaving Glasgow Airport at 10 p.m.


Abigail looked at her watch. Nine thirty p.m. She grabbed the bag of money with her free hand, gently clutching the ticket and the letter to her chest. She scurried up the riverbank, through the woods, jumped the fence, and ran all the way back to the hostel.

The care-worker was talking to a friend on the phone. “Oh hi, Abi,” he said, returning to his conversation. His concern over her bereavement had obviously run its course, or else he’d forgotten. She didn’t have time to argue with him about her name. She ran into her room, slammed the door shut, and sat on the bed to get her head together. Could she trust her mother? This letter? Did she really have a father and a sister in Los Angeles? She glanced around. The window was painted shut and so filthy she could hardly see through it. There were no pictures or posters on the walls, only the marks where previous residents had placed theirs. Camelia’s narrow bed was unmade, the cheap nylon sheets stained from years of God-knows-what. Staff didn’t bother nagging residents to launder their sheets or make their beds. But Abigail didn’t need to be nagged; she washed her linen once a week and made her bed first thing every morning.

Routine was all she had. This grotty hellhole was all she had.

Right. Even if the letter was total shite, she had to get out. A crap situation in America was better than a crap situation here. And, the money was real.

What would she need? Her thick jacket? No, not for LA. Her books? Since arriving at No Life, she’d borrowed three books every week from the local library to keep her brain from rotting: two serious, one lighthearted. This week they were The Principles of Biochemistry, The Silence of the Lambs, and Funny Physics Problems. She stuffed them inside her backpack. (She loathed stealing on principle, but the library could replace them; besides, the staff always gave her dirty looks whenever she hung around the stacks too long.) What else? The Shining DVD, of course. Her black Fly boots? They were full-on winter wear. But she loved them! She’d wear them on the flight, even though it was midsummer. She’d wear her dark grey combats, her STUFF THE MONARCHY T-shirt, and her cropped black leather jacket. Her favorite outfit.

She threw some underwear, spare T-shirts, and socks in the back, then tucked the money, letter, and e-ticket into the side pocket beside Nieve’s photo. She checked the chest of drawers and the tiny sagging rail in the wardrobe she shared with Camelia. Nothing important there. No personal effects. Nothing sentimental. What was the point in gathering things when she knew she wouldn’t be staying anywhere for any length of time? Abigail’s essentials, her whole world, couldn’t even f ill a backpack. Last, she went to the bathroom and added her toothbrush, toothpaste, and Fibre Putty hair product.

Stick to the routine. Invent a new one. Abigail could see herself as if looking into a mirror. She snapped into a kind of robot mode under stress. She became methodical, neat, diligent. Most people found it creepy, which also suited her just fine. They left her alone. Now, she made a mental list to make sure everything was in order. She retrieved the e-ticket from the backpack pocket.

Ten p.m. tomorrow.

Yep, plenty of time. The length of the flight would be eleven hours. The books would keep her busy.

Was her luggage the right size and weight? No way could this flimsy backpack weigh more than thirty-five pounds, even with the books. But when her eyes reached the bottom of the e-ticket, her heart froze: VALID PASSPORT REQUIRED.

Why had her mother not thought about this? Why on earth would Abigail have a passport? As if kids who are abandoned by their mothers get to go on skiing holidays in Switzerland and summer camps in France! As if she’d ever had the opportunity to get out of this godforsaken country! Sunnier, wealthier, happier Edinburgh was only fifty miles away, and she’d never even made it there. (Once, the care workers at Netherall House organized a trip to Loch Lomond. Abigail was excited. It turned out to be a twenty-minute drive. In a minivan. Normal schoolchildren in full-sized buses laughed at them en route. The minivan full of “special” children eventually parked in a deserted lot. The ten children got out and threw stones into the lake. It rained. They drove home.)

She had been nowhere, done nothing. She’d be stuck nowhere if she didn’t find a passport. Shite. She couldn’t snap out of robot mode. Now she had to focus.

Hooked? Get the rest!

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | iBooks | IndieBound | Goodreads

About the Author

Helen FitzGerald is the second youngest of thirteen children. She grew up in the small town of Kilmore, Victoria, Australia, and studied English and History at the University of Melbourne. Via India and London, Helen came to Glasgow University where she completed a Diploma and Masters in Social Work. She worked as a probation and parole officer for ten years. She’s married to screenwriter Sergio Casci, and they have two children.

Author Links
Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads

Blog Tour Stops

Hafsah at Icey Books–Guest Post
Ruby at Ruby’s Reads–Guest Post
Jess @ Jessabella Reads–Author Interview
Stephanie @ Bookworm 1858–Review
Lisa @ Dizneeee’s World of Books–Guest Post
Mary @ The Book Swarm–Review
Jenny @ Supernatural Snark–Character Profile
Jessie @ Jessie’s Book Place–Review
Ash @ Smash Attack Reads–Guest Post


Click to Enter Rafflecopter giveaway


Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Cleaning Out My Shelves Giveaway Series #3

18th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Giveaways

Hi, guys!!

So in the last month or so, I’ve been going through my bookshelves and pulling out books I’ve either already read or sadly will not get to. I’m hoping to find homes for these wonderful books, and so that’s where you guys come in.

I have made 4 separate sets for you guys: Adult Fiction/Nonfiction, YA Paranormal/Sci-fi/Fantasy/Dystopia, YA Contemporary, and Adult Romance Novels.

Each giveaway will start every 2 or 3 weeks and will run for about 4, making sure everyone has enough time to enter and spread the word around. I’m trying to mail out each box the weekend after the giveaway ends, so you’ll get them soon.

This giveaway is for the YA Contemporary. Here’s a picture of what you’ll get if you win:


Here’s how to enter:

Yeah, since I’m on now, the form cannot be embedded, so just follow the link. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cleaning Out My Shelves Giveaway Series #4 Coming Soon!

Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Review: The Look of Love by Bella Andre – Blog Tour

17th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Blog Tours, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: The Look of Love by Bella Andre – Blog TourThe Look of Love by Bella Andre
Series: The Sullivans #1
Published by Harlequin, Mira
Pub Date: May 28th 2013
Pages: 379
Format: ARC | Source: Publisher
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4 Stars

Sometimes one look is all it takes

Chloe Peterson has vowed never to make the mistake of trusting a man again. Her reasons are as vivid as the bruises on her cheek. So when her car skids off a wet country road straight into a ditch, she's convinced the gorgeous guy who rescues her must be too good to be true.

As a successful international photographer, Chase Sullivan has his pick of beautiful women. He's satisfied with his life—until he finds Chloe and her totaled car on the side of the road in Napa Valley.

With every loving look—and every sinfully sweet caress—the attraction between them sizzles, and Chloe can't help but wonder if she's met the man who may be the exception to her rule…

Expanded Edition! More Story! More Sullivans!

Fans of Bella Andre's Sullivan Series will love this long-awaited print edition of THE LOOK OF LOVE. It features a longer, more-detailed story with all the emotion and sensuality that readers love. Not to be missed!

The Look of Love was one fast ride! Chase and Chloe’s book takes place in the span of week. There’s definite chemistry from the moment these two meet, and they meet under not so ideal circumstances. It’s kind of hard to say this book wasn’t insta-love, because it was a week, but you kind of forget how quickly it all happens. I got wrapped up in the passion between Chase and Chloe, and the connection they shared was incredibly sweet. Chase is the epitome of a nice guy who knows how to take charge in bed. Such a great combination! It’s really hard to fault him for falling so quickly when he’s so incredibly perfect.

Chloe did try to fight it what was happening with Chase at every turn. She’s gone through a bad situation recently and doesn’t feel ready for anything beyond a fling, but Chase, who has never had a serious relationship before, knows Chloe is it for him. He seriously never waivers in this, which is really crazy but romantic at the same time. Also, I thought the second half of this book was STEAMY!! Yes, the whole second half!

Chase’s family, the Sullivans, consist of six brothers and 2 twin sisters…that’s EIGHT siblings all together, y’all! We have a lot of great books ahead of us and I cannot wait! We meet all them momentarily and I can already tell each one will be incredibly interesting because while they’re all insanely attractive, they’re also all really different. I do wish I could tell you guys about the difference between this edition and the original though. I’m kind of curious to know which parts were expanded and/or added. Fans of Contemporary Romance don’t want to pass this one up, that’s for sure!

Check out more stops on this awesome blog tour by going to Booktrib!

About Bella Andre

Bella Andre is the New York Times, USA Today and Publishers Weekly bestselling author of “The Sullivans” series.

If not behind her computer, you can find her reading her favorite authors, hiking, swimming or laughing. Married with two children, Bella splits her time between the Northern California wine country and a 100 year old log cabin in the Adirondacks.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Review: The Wisdom of Hair by Kim Boykin – Blog Tour

13th Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Blog Tours, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: The Wisdom of Hair by Kim Boykin – Blog Tour

Review: The Wisdom of Hair by Kim Boykin – Blog TourThe Wisdom of Hair by Kim Boykin
Published by Berkley Trade
Pub Date: March 5th 2013
Pages: 304
Format: Paperback | Source: Blog Tour
Genres: Adult, Contemporary
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4.5 Stars

From Book Nerd Tours for Review.

“The problem with cutting your own hair is that once you start, you just keep cutting, trying to fix it, and the truth is, some things can never be fixed. The day of my daddy’s funeral, I cut my bangs until they were the length of those little paintbrushes that come with dime-store watercolor sets. I was nine years old. People asked me why I did it, but I was too young then to know I was changing my hair because I wanted to change my life.”

In 1983, on her nineteenth birthday, Zora Adams finally says goodbye to her alcoholic mother and their tiny town in the mountains of South Carolina. Living with a woman who dresses like Judy Garland and brings home a different man each night is not a pretty existence, and Zora is ready for life to be beautiful.

With the help of a beloved teacher, she moves to a coastal town and enrolls in the Davenport School of Beauty. Under the tutelage of Mrs. Cathcart, she learns the art of fixing hair, and becomes fast friends with the lively Sara Jane Farquhar, a natural hair stylist. She also falls hard for handsome young widower Winston Sawyer, who is drowning his grief in bourbon. She couldn’t save Mama, but maybe she can save him.

As Zora practices finger waves, updos, and spit curls, she also comes to learn that few things are permanent in this life—except real love, lasting friendship, and, ultimately… forgiveness.

I didn’t know much about this book before it found its way to me, but something in its synopsis said to me, “READ ME! You’ll love me!” I’m so happy I listened.

The Wisdom of Hair, for me, was a book about finding and knowing true love. Not just romantic love, but true love in family and friendship as well. I think when someone doesn’t grow up with true love they don’t know what it looks like sometimes, and they make a lot of mistakes trying to find it. But the important thing is that we learn from those mistakes and learn to recognize the difference. I think Zora makes a believable journey to finding the love she needs in the end.

The writing in this book was really lovely. I loved the feel of it and how genuine it was. It was melancholy at times, but there are also fun and witty moments that rounded it out so well. All the characters left a lasting impression on me. They were just so well fleshed out.

The Wisdom of Hair is considered Women’s Fiction, but I think it has great New Adult crossover appeal. No, it doesn’t have sexy half-naked models on the cover, but the issues our 20 year old Zora is dealing with certainly are New Adult as well as Women issues.  If you want a  break from the norm, pick up this wonderful book.

About the Author…

I was born in Augusta, Georgia, but raised in South Carolina in a home with two girly sisters and great parents. So when you read my stuff if there is ever some deranged mama or daddy terrorizing the protagonist, I want to make it clear, it’s not them.

I had a happy, boring childhood, which sucks if you’re a writer because you have to create your own crazy. PLUS after you’re published and you’re being interviewed, for some reason, it’s very appealing that the author actually lived in Crazy Town or somewhere in the general vicinity.

What I did have going for me was two things. One, my grandfather, Bryan Standridge, was an amazing storyteller. He held court under an old mimosa tree on the side of his yard, and people used to come by in droves just to hear him tell stories. He told tales about growing up in rural Georgia and shared his unique take on the world. As a child, I was enthralled, but when I started to write, really write, I realized what a master teacher of pacing and sensory detail he was.

The other major influence on my writing is my ADHDness. Of course when I was a kid, nobody knew what that was. Compared to my older sisters, I knew something was “wrong” with me, so I learned to multitask like crazy and excel at things I did well to make up for things I couldn’t do like math and sitting still.

Today, I’m an empty nester of two kids with a husband, three dogs, and 126 rose bushes. I write stories about strong southern women because that’s what I know. I’m an accomplished public speaker, which basically means I’m good at talking.

If this doesn’t tell you what you want to know, check out my blog for a few laughs and some good stuff on writing, gardening, food, and, of course, hair.


You can purchase The Wisdom of Hair  on Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository


Follow this link to enter!

Check out the Tour Page to Follow the Blog Tour!


Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post

Cleaning Out My Shelves Giveaway Series #2

3rd Jun 2013 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2013, Giveaways

Hi, guys!!

So in the last month or so, I’ve been going through my bookshelves and pulling out books I’ve either already read or sadly will not get to. I’m hoping to find homes for these wonderful books, and so that’s where you guys come in.

I have made 4 separate sets for you guys: Adult Fiction/Nonfiction, YA Paranormal/Sci-fi/Fantasy/Dystopia, YA Contemporary, and Adult Romance Novels.

Each giveaway will start every 2 or 3 weeks and will run for about 4, making sure everyone has enough time to enter and spread the word around. I’m trying to mail out each box the weekend after the giveaway ends, so you’ll get them soon.

This giveaway is for the YA Paranormal/Sci-fi/Fantasy/Dystopia. Here’s a picture of what you’ll get if you win:


Here’s how to enter:

Yeah, since I’m on now, the form cannot be embedded, so just follow the link. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out and Enter the Cleaning Out My Shelves Giveaway Series #3!

Jess @ Gone with the Words

View Post