Pages & Paws

Writing, Reading, and Rural Life With a Border Collie


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Teaser Tuesday: ‘Here, There Be Dragons’

Kimber’s Kommentary:

Hello and welcome to another Teaser Tuesday! As always I hope you’re well this Tuesday and loving on your four-legged friends (even if some of them are felines. Nobody’s perfect again.) We’re enjoying sunshine and some warmer weather. Finally. 


Here are the rules:

1: Grab your current read 2: Open to a random page 3: Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page that are SPOILER FREE.

Today’s Teaser Tuesday features The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica, Here, There Be Dragons. Written and illustrated by James A. Owen.

Ready? Great! Here we go!
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TEASER TUESDAY: Beyond the Stars

Hello and welcome to another Teaser Tuesday! As always, we hope you’re well this Tuesday and loving on your four-legged friends (even if some of them are felines. Nobody’s perfect.)

We’re enjoying sunshine and some warmer weather. Finally. 

Anyway, here’s how Teaser Tuesday works:

1) Grab your current read. 2) Open to a random page or two. 3) Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on those pages that are SPOILER FREE.

Today’s Teaser Tuesday features Beyond the Stars, by Doreen D. Berger.

Ready? Great! Here we go!

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Action Abounds in ‘Revenge on a Cruel World’

Revenge on a Cruel World by [Rick Clements]Revenge on a Cruel World

By Rick Clements

Via: Reedsy Discovery

Genre: Thriller

Summary:

If you thought the Great Depression was bad, think again. How about a computer theft by a mathematical genius that mangles the worldwide banking system, causes a financial tsunami, and threatens to topple governments around the globe?

That’s the main storyline in this fast-moving, action-packed novel.

Note: We received a complimentary digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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20 Awesome Outdoor Classics for Kids!

Grays skies are clearing. Temperatures are inching upwards. Summer’s waiting in the wings. Even if you’re stuck inside, you can still roam the outdoors through books! Especially when celebrating Great Outdoors Month!

Today we’re highlighting 20 top outdoor titles for kiddos. These books are geared for children ages third through ninth grade, roughly.

All include strong characters, engaging plots, and superlative story-telling. All have stood the test of time. (You may detect a big canine bias here. Because as Kimber knows, everything is better with dogs. Yes sirree, Lassie! That goes double for the Great Outdoors!)

Besides. If you can’t go to the outside, we’ll bring the outside to you, inside with:

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‘Stirring Up Love’ Serves Up Heaping Helping of Fun, Romance

Stirring Up Love

By Chandra Blumberg

Montlake Publishing, 2022

Via: Author Request

Release Date: July 26, 2022

Genre: Fiction – Romance/Humor

Pages: 372

Note: We received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Summary:

A sassy, saucy story about a feud-fueled romance where two rivals with a passion for food and community come together in ways they never expected.

Simone Blake and Finn Rimes are as different as it gets. Simone has just returned from a corporate stint in Chicago where everything went sideways. She’s inherited her grandfather’s barbecue restaurant, Honey and Hickory. Determined to make a go of it and prove that she’s a competent professional who knows what’s what, Simone plans to put her restaurant and her hometown on the map.

So does Finn Rimes. Only from a different angle. A chef thinking big, Finn dreams of opening his own culinary school.

Sparks soon fly like fireworks on the Fourth of July when Finn shows up on Sim’s turf – the local farmer’s market – to market his own brand of barbecue sauce and hopefully raise some cash for his would-be culinary school.

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‘Waterbury Winter’ Warms Hearts

Waterbury Winter

By Linda Stewart Henley

She Writes Press, 2022

Genre: Fiction

Note: We received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Summary: Two lost souls reach for love and second chances during a freezing New England Winter.

“The transformative value of art is in making the ordinary extraordinary.”

Basic Plot

It’s Christmas Eve. Barnaby Brown thinks back eighteen years when he lost his teaching job. His twin passions, painting and his wife Anna, also died that year. Now forty-five years old, a widower and an alcoholic, Barnaby’s working a dead-end job at the local hardware store.

Once a promising young artist, Barnaby has been on a downward spiral since loss and alcohol dragged him down. He’s lived a reclusive life after the deaths of his parents and his wife. He now prefers the company of his wise-cracking parrot, Popsicle, to companionship with other humans. Yearning to start over, Barnaby dreams of going to California and resurrecting his dreams of a painting career.

“It’s like painting. You have to reach beyond the vanishing point on the horizon for something important you can’t quite see, but know is there.”

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Celebrate “Great Outdoors Month” With These Awesome Outdoor Reads!

Frozen Lake Trail out of Sunrise, Mount Rainier National Park.

June is Great Outdoors Month. I love this month because… well… um… I love June because Mom loves June. And I love everything Mom loves. (Except broccoli. Gag me with roughage!)

Hurray for Great Outdoors Month!

Back to June. Check it out: Hiking! Frisbee tossing! Swimming! Canoeing! Frisbee chasing! Kayaking! Fishing! Frisbee-ing! Picnicking! Biking! Frisbees! The beach, the mountains, the desert, the plains!

Did I mention Frisbees?

Anyway, when it comes to books about The Great Outdoors, Gary Paulsen titles top our list. Every time.

Mom says Paulsen’s a three-time Newberry Award-wining author. I have no idea what that means. Can you eat it?

More importantly, Paulsen is a super duper dog lover. Told he’s brilliant.

Paulsen’s writing style is spare and lean to the point of terse. No excess fat. Brisk as an autumn breeze. Quick as a greyhound. Or me.

Reading any of the Paulsen books below would be a great way to celebrate Great Outdoors Month. How many have you read?

Some of our favorites:

  1. Hatchet –Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson’s small plane goes down in the Canadian wilderness. He’s alone, except for a tattered windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present. It will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive. Newberry winner.
  2. Dogsong (pretty obvious, huh?).  Oogruk the shaman owns the last team of dogs in the village. He alone understands Russel’s longing for the old ways and the songs that celebrated them. Driven by a strange and powerful dream and by a burning desire to find his own song, Russel takes Oogruk’s dogs on an epic journey of self-discovery that will change his life forever.
  3. The River – Book two of the Brian saga. The government sends Brian back to the Canadian wilderness.
  4. Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod –  Paulsen writes about his experience running his team of dogs in this famous race. Snowstorms, frostbite, dogfights, moose attacks, sleeplessness, and hallucinations in the relentless push to go on.
  5. Wood Song – Paulsen has survived a dogsled crash and a fall down a frozen waterfall, a bear attack, and running the grueling Iditarod. In this vivid, vibrant book, the author recounts the experiences that shaped his life and inspired his award-winning writing.
  6. My Life in Dog Years – Don’t make me explain this.

Oh yeah. Nothing a word about broccoli. I like this Gary guy more and more.

Honorable mentions:

 

What are your favorite outdoor books and authors?

Kimber the Amazing Frisbee Chasing, Book-Loving Dog!

 


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Which Reader Are You?

I’m gonna be six years old next month. I’m telling you this now to give you last-minute gift-getters a heads up.

Anyway, Mom insists I’m still a “puppy.” So embarrassing. I keep telling her I’m a lap dog. I mean, really. What’s a measly 55 pounds?

So. I may not be six yet. But I’ve been around long enough to make some observations. Like postal carriers aren’t always friendly. Neither are fences. There’s no such thing as a “ten second rule” when Yours Truly is on kitchen patrol.

Squirrel!

Wait. Where was I?

Oh yeah. I’ve made some observations in six years-ish. One of them is there are lots of different kinds of readers. You may not think us canines notice stuff like this. But we do. Here are a few of the readers I’ve seen. Any of these sound familiar?

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Gripping Suspense in ‘The Second Wife’

See the source imageThe Second Wife

By: Miranda Rijks

Via: Book Blog Tour

Publisher: Inkubator Books, 2022

Genre: Fiction: Psychological Thriller/Murder Mystery/Suspense

Note: We received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Summary:

When a down-on-her-luck violinist takes a menial job for a famous composer, she gets more than she bargained for in this intense and compelling murder mystery/suspense story.

Mia Benton is a former student at the Royal College of Music in London. Desperate for a job in the aftermath of a dark secret from her recent past, Mia takes a cleaning job at the residence of composer Robin Featherstone. Recently divorced, Robin’s new wife Tamsin is 25 years his junior. Tamsin’s not exactly thrilled with the new hire, to put it mildly.

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Holmes & Watson at Top of Their Game in ‘Murder in Keswick’

Murder in Keswick

A Sherlock Homes Mystery

By William Todd

SpellBound Books, 2022

Genre: Fiction/Mystery/Suspense

Via: Book Blog Tour

Note: We received a complimentary digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

“The game is afoot.” It’s the catch phrase for literature’s most famous detective. And there are plenty of twists, turns and “gaming” going on in William Todd’s delightful page-turner, Murder in Keswick.

Told in the third person by Dr. Watson, the story opens aboard a train bound for Keswick, England in 1898. Disembarking, the duo soon learns that a well-respected resident of the area has turned up dead. And while Watson is looking forward to a relaxing holiday in the bucolic countryside, Holmes quips that nothing is more relaxing than solving a murder, even if he’s informed that “this sort of thing never happens here.”

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