Book Spotlight and Giveaway: Last Stop on the 6 by Patricia Dunn

Hello everyone. Today I am spotlighting a book called Last Stop on the 6 by author Patricia Dunn which is being released on November 9th. I’m also hosting a book giveaway!
Read on for more about the book, a book excerpt and the giveaway details.



ADVANCE PRAISE FOR LAST STOP ON THE 6

“Bravo to Patricia Dunn for creating this uniquely powerful journey from which it is nearly impossible to turn away.” -Mary Calvi, author of Dear George, Dear Mary: A Novel of George Washington’s First Love, Emmy® award winning journalist, anchor for CBS 2 News and Inside Edition

“If you like quick-witted, fast-talking, and street-smart characters who have big dilemmas and even bigger hearts, look no further than Patricia Dunn’s Last Stop on the 6.” -Kathy Curto, author of Not for Nothing: Glimpses into a Jersey Girlhood

“Last Stop on the 6 is a rip-roaring love song to the Bronx, a coming-of-age story about the places that make us, that we try so hard to leave, and that so often pull us home.”- Melissa Faliveno, author of Tomboyland

“Dunn writes with verve and eloquence in this deftly told, gorgeously crafted story that crackles with wry humor and remarkable observations about love, departure, and its aftermath.” – Jimin Han, author of A Small Revolution

“Last Stop on the 6 is one of the funniest books I’ve read—laugh out loud funny—and one of the wisest. A miracle.” -Kathleen Hill, author of Still Waters in Niger, Who Occupies This House, and She Read to Us in the Late Afternoons

“These are characters you will want to know and live with through her novel. Get on that 6 train now and take it until the last stop.” – David Masello, executive editor of Milieu, author of Architecture Without Rules, Art in Public Places, and a forthcoming book from Rizzoli

“A superb book that I couldn’t stop reading.” – Joan Silber, author of Secrets of Happiness, Ideas of Heaven, and Improvement, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction and the PEN/Faulkner Award

“Dunn has introduced me to characters all possessing questions for which there are no easy answers-only the slow and steady reawakenings of familial bonds and moral responsibility. A heartfelt work of art.”- Carolyn Ferrell, author of Dear Miss Metropolitan and Don’t Erase Me



About the book:

LAST STOP ON THE 6 By Patricia Dunn

Can you ever really go home again? Theresa Angela Campanosi is about to find out in LAST STOP ON THE 6 by Patricia Dunn (November 9, 2021; Bordighera Press; $20). This hilarious, hard-hitting and big-hearted novel brings to mind the movie A Bronx Tale as it follows Angela back home to her Italian-American family in the Bronx to prepare for her brother’s wedding.

After a decade as a political activist in Venice, California, Angela is back in her childhood home about to topple her family’s tower of secrets—the truth about her brother’s accident, impending marriage and subsequent disappearance, her alcoholic father’s fall off the wagon, and her former boyfriend’s recovery from heroin addiction. And most of all, why Fat Freddie is tormenting her family.

As Angela navigates love, guilt, and red gravy, she learns the price of living in the past, allowing her parents to squeeze her back into her childhood bedroom, and the cost of redemption. LAST STOP ON THE 6 is the express train back to those feelings we thought we left behind and the heartfelt promise of something better when we face them at last.

PATRICIA DUNN is an Italian rebel raised in the Bronx. She is the author of the young adult novel, Rebels by Accident (Sourcebooks Fire). Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Salon, The Village Voice, The Nation, LA Weekly, and The Christian Science Monitor. Dunn has served as the senior director of the Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College, where she holds an MFA in creative writing. She is the co-founder of The Joe Papaleo Writers Workshop in Cetera, Italy.

LAST STOP ON THE 6 by Patricia Dunn
Bordighera Press; November 9, 2021
$20; 286 Pages
ISBN-13: 978-1-59954-173-0


Excerpt from Last Stop on the 6 by Patricia Dunn

Size 9 was printed on the front of the shoebox. Since my mother was barely a size 6, I knew whatever was in that box was for me. The only thing that made her happier than buying shoes for herself was buying shoes for someone else.

“Open it.” She smiled widely, somewhat resembling The Joker from Batman.

Inside the box was exactly what I didn’t want – six-inch sling- back stiletto heels. Mommy thought my five-foot, eight-inch model height was my best feature, and accentuating it was, she claimed, the main reason she focused on my achieving model weight. The only feature these shoes were meant to accentuate was a latent desire to join the ranks of prostitution. But the height of the heels wasn’t the most disturbing part of the shoes. They were dyed to match a color – mauve. Dyed-to-match mauve shoes meant there was a mauve dress I was expected to wear – a bridesmaid’s dress? Was this the big secret Mommy didn’t want me to know yet? She expected me to be a bridesmaid? I don’t know if I was more relieved or repulsed, but I was certain my brother and the bride-to-be had no intention of my being part of their wedding party.

I dropped the shoes back into their box and reached up over the closet to touch the hanging crucifix, which had instilled fear in me since my First Holy Communion. With the exception of a tiny black mole on his cheek, which Jimmy had put there with an indelible Magic Marker, this Jesus’s features were erased. His head leaned to one side, and he was missing the fake-blood color in all those places where he had been nailed to the cross.

After I made my First Communion, everything was Jesus to me. Every day, I’d climb up on a chair so I could kiss Jesus on each wound – the palm of his right hand, the palm of his left hand, and the place where his ankles crossed. Then, one day, Jesus slid down and fell off the cross. Convinced I’d broken Jesus, I started to cry, until Jimmy came into the room, stepped up onto the chair, and standing at my side, demonstrated how Jesus slid up and down.
“See, his body is a panel, hiding a secret compartment.”
The inside of Jesus was empty.

Mommy later told me the secret compartment once held a vial of holy water and two candles, which a priest would need to perform last rites. “Priests don’t need to break glass in case of an emergency, they need to break Jesus open.” It was rare for her to make a joke, and I wanted to encourage her, so I laughed extra loud before I asked, “Who died?”

“No one died.” She stopped smiling. “The candles and holy water vanished.”

When I asked her if Jesus was a magician and could make things disappear, she bent down and whispered in my ear, “Only children who misbehave.”


Giveaway Details: U.S. residents only please.
To enter to win a print copy of Last Stop on the 6 by Patricia Dunn:

1. Comment on this post.
2. For an extra entry share this post on your social media and let me know in the comments section.

Thanks everyone. This contest is now closed. Congrats to C. Lee!” Thank you for entering and sharing. Happy reading!

Special thanks to Meryl Moss Media for making this possible.

Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan





source: free ARC via Meryl Moss Media
title: Her Three Lives
author: Cate Holahan
genre: thriller/suspense
pages: 338
published: April 20, 2021
first line: She would make them late.
rated: 4 out of 5 stars


blurb:
Gaslight goes high-tech in USA Today bestselling author Cate Holahan’s new standalone thriller in which a family must determine who the real enemy is after a brutal home invasion breaks their trust in each other.

My thoughts:
Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan was a thrilling read that had me hooked from page one. Having read and enjoyed One Little Secret a few years ago by this same author I was curious about this one.

As the book starts off Jade Thompson and her fiancé Greg are getting ready to go out one evening. Greg opens his front door thinking there is a package delivery and he ends up the victim of a brutal attack that leaves him nearly dead with a brain injury. Two attackers enter the house and also steal Jade’s expensive engagement ring but nothing else. Jade is also injured in the attack.

As Greg begins the healing process with the support of his ex-wife, his two children and Jade, the question of who tried to kill him is at the forefront. Greg installs security cameras in his home but they only make him increasingly obsessed and paranoid. He is also suffering from PTSD after the attack.

The detectives assigned to the case are leaving no stone unturned. They start looking into Jade’s line of work as a social influencer and a blogger hoping to find any clues in some of the comments on her blog posts.

I sat down one Saturday afternoon with Her Three Lives and finished it up the next morning. After being in a book slump for months it was refreshing being able to find myself so immersed in a thrilling read like this one.

I had no idea who attacked Greg and Jade. As the story unfolded I started to dislike Greg more and more. A successful architect in his late fifties he is in the process of getting a divorce when he meets Jade. He is smitten with her and I think by six months into the relationship they are engaged. Jade is thirty something and close to her mother but estranged from her father.
I found this quote in regards to how Jade feels about her father particularly insightful:
“She hadn’t known her father long enough to truly love him as an individual. If anything, she loved him as an idea”.-p141, Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan

Jade is the opposite of Greg, her family is from Jamaica, she is a social media influencer/blogger and it seems that she’s his mid-life crisis relationship in some regards. Jade can take of herself financially but Greg is wealthy and makes millions on commission on certain accounts so Jade definitely has motive to have him murdered. These two are both hiding some secrets.

Greg’s family dynamics seemed realistic and he is still amicable with his ex-wife Leah. His daughter Violet openly dislikes and suspects Jade and she hopes her parents will get back together. Their son seems to be more accepting of the relationship. Speaking of the ex-wife Leah, that lady is ride or die when it comes to her kids.

Author Cate Holahan continues to pen thrilling reads with twists and turns that have you guessing until the very end. As the book went on I had no idea who attacked Greg until the author revealed it. It made sense and the story was wrapped up nicely and even culminated in a bittersweet ending.
I recommend Her Three Lives if you enjoy suspenseful thrillers centered around families.

“Sadness had replaced her anger. Sadness and shame.-p.303, Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan”

Special thanks to Meryl Moss Media for my review copy.


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About the Author:
Cate Holahan is the USA Today bestselling author of domestic suspense novels The Widower’s Wife, One Little Secret, Lies She Told, and Dark Turns. In a former life, she was an award-winning journalist, writing for The Record, The Boston Globe, and BusinessWeek, among others. She was also the lead singer of Leaving Kinzley, an original rock band in NYC.
She lives in NJ with her husband, two daughters, and food-obsessed dog, and spends a disturbing amount of time highly-caffeinated, mining her own anxieties for material.-quoted from Amazon

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Disclaimer: This review is my honest opinion. I did not receive any kind of compensation for reading and reviewing this book. I received a copy of Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan from Meryl Moss Media in exchange for my honest thoughts. I am under no obligation to write a positive review. If you click on the link and purchase the book I will receive a small affiliate commission.
The book photo is my own and is not to be removed from this post.

Final Flight by Eric Anderson

flight
source: copy for review via MerylMoss Media and Dunn Books
title: Final Flight
author: Eric Anderson
published: June 9, 2020
genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Political thriller
pages: 284
rated: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars

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blurb:
On a clear, cold night high above Asia, a China Air passenger jet disappears from radar. An anomaly, a fluke, an unsolvable puzzle-and then a couple of hours later, it happens again.

A former member of the U.S. intelligence community, author Eric Anderson takes us to 2023 in his new book FINAL FLIGHT (Dunn Books: June 9, 2020), and picks up where real-life Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 left off. What happened to that airplane and all the people aboard?

Former Air Force maintenance officer Jason Montgomery and his erstwhile wrench-twister, Rob “Ski” Kalawski, have just landed the gig of their lives. China Air’s aging fleet of Boeing 777s now desperately needs navigation hardware and software upgrades. It’s a multimillion-dollar contract, and they’re just the guys to do it. Too easy, right?

Wrong.

The Japanese firm supplying the gear knows the Chinese will reverse-engineer and steal it, so they’ve planted a deadly navigation bug to trigger at the first sign of theft. Jason’s just the middleman, but he finds himself trapped between yakuza gangsters, a tattooed dragon-lady sales exec, and murderous Russian mobsters looking to make a profit on the missing airplanes and passengers. If these crazies don’t start behaving like moral adults, people are going to die by the hundreds . . . and they do.

FINAL FLIGHT, the latest prescient tale from the man who brought us the “New Caliphate” trilogy Osiris, Anubis and Horas as well Byte, might make you think twice before boarding the next plane.

my thoughts:

Final Flight is different from my usual reading fare. This is a story revolving around two China Air Passenger planes that went missing from radar. The book is based on real life  Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 which went missing over the ocean in China in 2014. Jason Mongomery and Ski Kawalski have been hired by China Air to install the software and hardware on their Boeing’s. However, Jason soon realizes that the Japanese company that supplies the software planted bugs on it. He just wants to get the job done and get home back to the U.S. Jason and Ski find themselves in the midst of an all out mess and are even blamed for sabotaging the software themselves. As the book goes on you are introduced to a set of several characters like Yamakita, Bao, computer programmer Yatso, the gangster tattoo artist Kanto and his love interest an executive named Sako. Side note, the dragon tattoos Kato does for Sako sound pretty intricate and bad-ass.

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Author Interview and Spotlight: Mary Keliikoa

derailed
Good morning everyone. Today I have an author interview with Mary Keliikoa to share.  First a bit about her latest book, Derailed. How cool is the cover? I have not read this one yet but it sounds like a great start to a new series.

By Mary Keliikoa
Camel Press; May 12, 2020
Trade paperback: $15.95
Pages: 236
You haven’t heard of private detective Kelly Pruett yet, but she’s about to join ranks of
mystery’s most clever and crafty female sleuths, such as Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Milhone, Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum or Alexander McCall Smith’s Precious Ramotswe.
Pruett reflects the real dilemmas of modern women in DERAILED: A P.I. Kelly Pruett
Mystery (Camel Press; May 12, 2020). Pruett must balance between being a single mother to her deaf daughter and following in her father’s footsteps as a private investigator.
After years of being her father’s apprentice, Pruett has inherited the family private detective agency. Dad never trained her for a major murder investigation; serving divorce papers and long stakeouts with her basset hound are more her speed. Her ex-husband—and his mother—think her work is too risky. But detective work is in her blood; puzzles are her passion. When a grieving mother begs her to investigate her daughter’s death, how can she refuse?
As Kelly sets out to prove herself, and find something to call her own outside of marriage and motherhood, she realizes she’s being stalked. Taking a frying pan to the face jars her into the realization that she’s stronger than anyone believes—even herself. Dad wasn’t the only Pruett with pit bull tendencies when it comes to solving a case, including one with ties to Portland’s BDSM subculture. As sordid secrets emerge, she must decide: is justice worth it?

Here’s what readers are saying:

“It’s that perfect blend of personal and professional that makes Derailed a welcome addition to the genre. I can’t wait to follow both Kelly and Keliikoa’s careers.”—Kellye Garrett, Anthony, Agatha, and Lefty Award-winning author, Hollywood Homicide

“Derailed has it all: an engaging heroine, a twisty, twisted crime, and plenty of food for thought about families and their secrets. I loved this debut and can’t wait to read about Kelly Pruett’s next case.”— Kristen Lepionka, Shamus Award-winning author, the Roxane Weary mystery series

“Mary Keliikoa’s debut novel is an important addition to the PI genre – strong with voice, a compelling protagonist in KellyPruett, and unforgettable family secrets. Derailed was hard to put down – and I can’t wait to read the next book in this crackling new series.” — Alex Segura, author, Blackout and Miami Midnight

Onto the author interview….(these questions were provided by the publisher for this post, I have not read the book yet myself) 

Q. You have owned several businesses in the past. Do you keep a finger in business or is writing now your full-time occupation?
A. I am the VP of a distribution company my husband and I have owned for 19 years, and I continue to work a few hours most week days. I enjoy the connection with our staff, we employ nearly 40 people. But I’m also very blessed to set my own schedule and writing is a big part of every day.
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The Tower of Songs (A Duck Darley Novel) by Casey Barrett

tower

source: free review copy courtesy of BookTrip / Meryl Moss Media
title: The Tower of Songs (A Duck Darley Novel)
author: Casey Barrett
published: 2019
genre: crime thriller
pages: 326
first line: Danny Soto opened the door to find Mr. Sun flanked by a pair of female bodyguards.
rated: 4 out of 5 stars
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blurb:
Embracing an improbable stretch of sobriety, unlicensed P.I. Duck Darley has proven himself stronger than the temptations that loom in the shadows of New York City. But the familiar pull of self-destruction lingers like garbage in July when Layla Soto, a sharp-tongued Park Avenue teenager with a family as screwed up as his own, presents a twisted missing-persons case he can’t refuse . . .

Layla saw video evidence of her billionaire father being abducted from their home—at the top of the tallest residential tower on earth. She suspects her grandmother, a Chinese social climber on husband number three, orchestrated the act to silence her only son. Duck agrees to investigate the hedge funder’s disappearance, if only for the rush of a new thrill—and an excuse to reconcile with Cass Kimball, his leather-clad sometime partner who nearly got him killed . . .

As the unlikely duo become immersed in a high-stakes ransom linked to the international drug trade and the delicate relations between the two most powerful nations on earth, survival means trusting no one. Because when confronting absolute power, certain forces will stop at nothing to bury the truth.

my thoughts:
The Tower of Songs is book 3 in author Casey Barrett’s Duck Darley series but this thrilling book reads fine as a stand alone.

As the story starts off we witness billionaire Danny Soto being abducted. Fast forward to his teenage daughter Layla and her mom hiring private detective Duck Darley to find her missing father. They have video of Danny Soto being abducted from their penthouse in Manhattan. Layla tells Duck she suspects her grandmother Nai Nai is involved. Nai Nai is the mysterious matriarch of the family and she is well connected.

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