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COVER REVEAL: Flower Power Trip (Braxton Campus Mystery #3)

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I’m super excited to share today’s cover reveal of Flower Power Trip, the third book in the Braxton Campus Mysteries. It is currently available for pre-sale and will be available for full download on March 30th, 2019. Physical copies will be available in April 2019. A blog tour is planned for the end of March and beginning of April with Great Escapes Virtual Book Blog Tours.

The first big step was revealing the cover… and I’m lucky enough to have the support of Shalini @ Digital Reads Blog Tours and over 25 bloggers doing today’s big reveal of Flower Power Trip. See the full list below and please visit their sites. Tell us what you think of the series, characters, description, and cover design. We’re all excited to hear your opinions and share the posts with our followers and friends. Many thanks for your support and feedback!

 

Overview of ‘Flower Power Trip’

Braxton College is throwing the Heroes & Villains Costume Extravaganza to raise money for renovations to the antiquated Memorial Library. While attending, Kellan stumbles upon a close family friend standing over a dead body that’s dressed as Dr. Evil. Did one of Maggie’s sisters kill an annoying guest at the Roarke and Daughters Inn or does the victim have a more intimate connection to someone else on campus?

As Kellan helps the school’s president, Ursula, bury a scandalous secret from her past and unearth the identity of her stalker, he unexpectedly encounters a missing member of his own family who’s reappeared after a lengthy absence. When all of the peculiar events around town trace back to the Stoddards, a new family who recently moved to Wharton County, the explosive discovery only offers more confusion.

Between the special flower exhibit that’s made an unplanned stop on campus and strange postcards arriving each week from all around the world, Kellan can’t decide which mystery in his life should take priority. Unfortunately, the biggest one of all has yet to arrive at his doorstep. When it does, Kellan won’t know what hit him.

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List Of Participants To Check Out!

Lili www.lilisblissfulpages.wordpress.com

Amy www.zanybibliophile.wordpress.com

Amanda  www.writewhereiread.wordpress.com

Yesha www.booksteacupnreviews.wordpress.com

Zuz  www.shufflebookbox.com

Rekha https://thebookdecoder.com/

RoseMarie https://booksandstuff.blog

Sophie www.bewareofthereader.com

Nina www.thecozypages.wordpress.com

Jessica  www.jessicarachow.wordpress.com

Nicole  www.thebookwormdrinketh.com 

Deepa   https://deepakadavakat.com/

Kurian  www.obsessed2015.com

Sarah www.babbageandsweetcorn.wordpress.com

Toya www.thereadingchemist.com

Susan  www.susanlovesbooks.wordpress.com

Jen www.bookwormjenblog.wordpress.com

Colline www.collinesblog.com

Lelia www.cncbooksblog.wordpress.com

Cris www.thebiblioblonde.com

Misty www.mistysbookspace.wordpress.com

Chris Mac www.macsbookreview.wordpress.com

Shannon  www.readsandreels.com

Carla www.carlalovestoread.wordpress.com

Didi www.didioviatt.wordpress.com

Rae www.blogging807.wordpress.com

Shalini www.bookreviewsbyshalini.com

Mary www.sophrilreads.com

Erica https://livingahundredlives.wordpress.com/

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Book Review: The Skeleton Paints a Picture by Leigh Perry

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When there are thousands of cozy mystery series available, it’s often difficult to figure out which one to choose. A little over two years ago, I stumbled across a a brilliant series called the Family Skeleton Mysteries written by Leigh Perry. I’d read the first few and loved them, but had to wait until she wrote her fourth one. I got a bit behind but when I saw she was releasing her fifth one this fall, I ordered a copy of The Skeleton Paints a Picture and read it this week. I think it’s probably my favorite one to date. I’m still reveling its hilarity — 5 stars all the way!
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To start with, the main character is an English professor in New England– two things I adore! the other main character is a ‘dead’ skeleton that can move and talk. Yes, you heard me correctly. The guy who inhabited the body/skeleton in the past was murdered and searched for his killer in an earlier book, but… the gist of the series is that he doesn’t really know much about his former life, and since a majority of the population would not accept him living in society as a skeleton, he hides out with Georgia and her family. As her lovable, witty, and sarcastic sidekick, Sid helps Georgia solve crimes whenever they fall into her lap… which is usually because Sid has stumbled into them.

Think of the humor and imagination in this series. Leaving a skeleton in a room to listen to people and find out clues without anyone knowing you’re doing it. Then again, what if someone catches the skeleton walking around since he CAN move? Creativity without any bounds in Perry’s awesome series. I truly look forward to reading each successive book. In this caper, Georgia’s working out of town and she has no one with her (parents, daughter, friends)… so Sid ships himself in a box to her rental house where he inadvertently finds a dead body in a car during a snowstorm. He was restless and had to go walking in the middle of the night. Who can blame the poor guy?

Georgia interviews colleagues while trying to do whatever she can to win the coveted tenured position that’s up for grabs. Will she do it? Will an ex who still has feelings for her cause a final downfall with Sid’s discovery… or discovery of the talking skeleton himself? So many laughs… great character development and constant page-turning brilliance. A must read for anyone who likes their books a little more unusual than the norm!

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My stand-alone novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. The debut book, Academic Curveball, in my new mystery series, Braxton Campus Mysteries will fit those who love cozy mysteries and crime investigations. I read, write, and blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge –and multiple Readathons. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Book 3: Academic Curve Ball: A Braxton Campus Mystery Series Debut – Beta Readers

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Academic Curve Ball is off to beta readers this week for a final read before I submit to the editor. I’m very excited to share this news. If you’re interested in beta reading from 8/22 thru 8/28, let me know. I have a few spots open before I close up and email the latest draft. I will have one more edit with hopefully nothing too major, then turn it over to the publishers to launch in October. More news to come with the cover reveal and pre-order opportunities coming up soon!

***

In last week’s post, Top Secret Hints About My Next Book, I revealed a few fun facts about my upcoming third book. Today, I am going to reveal the book’s tentative title and description. It was emailed last weekend to a few friendly readers who have expressed interest in taking an early look at my foray into a new genre. I’m hopeful to release the official publication timeline in the next two weeks, but for now, it’s time to share a few things…

Academic Curve Ball*

(Debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series)

 

Overview*

Kellan Ayrwick, a thirty-two-year-old single father, moved to LA to escape his complicated but lovable family. When Kellan requests time off to attend a party for his father’s retirement from Braxton College, his boss assigns him to meet with Abby Monroe, a source for their upcoming tv series who happens to live nearby. Unfortunately, while Kellan’s socializing at the campus event, he stumbles upon Abby’s dead body in a stairwell at Diamond Hall.

Although Kellan’s family and friends are on the suspect list, he’s compelled to investigate once he learns about a mysterious donation to the college, a nasty blog denouncing his father, and fluctuating grades to allow the star baseball pitcher to play in the season opener. As Kellan settles back into his hometown and finds a second body on campus, his eccentric and trouble-making nana helps him weed through the clues. Is it the shady director of the athletic teams? A victim’s soon-to-be ex-husband? A player desperate to be noticed by an MLB scout? Kellan’s intent on solving the case just a smidge before the county sheriff, but that dangerous win might place him in even hotter water.

In this debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series, readers discover a cozy, secluded Pennsylvania village full of quirky, charming, and nosy residents. Among the daily workings of Braxton College and the memorable Ayrwick family, Kellan weighs his investigative talents against an opportunity to achieve a much sought-after dream. Is he ready to move back home, take a job as a professor at the college, and re-unite with a former girlfriend? Or will he return to LA to raise his young daughter away from all the chaos?

*Both are subject to change, but for now… this is where it stands!

***

Stay tuned for updates via my author website at https://jamesjcudney.com or join the quarterly mailing list to get exclusive content about future books and releases. Next newsletter to be sent next week!

Book 3

 

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Father Figure: My Novel is a FREE Download 8/18 thru 8/22

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Last week, my first novel, Watching Glass Shatter, was available for FREE download. This week, you can now download my second novel FATHER FIGURE for FREE via Amazon as a Kindle e-read from Saturday August 18th through Wednesday August 22nd.

FREE DOWNLOAD

Key Facts

  • Published on April 2nd, 2018
  • Genres: Contemporary Fiction / Family Drama / Mystery
    • ‘New Adult’ with focus on two 18-year-old women in college
    • Suspenseful cliffhangers in each chapter
    • Two timelines / story lines
    • Some romance elements in both story lines

Description

Between the fast-paced New York City, a rural Mississippi town and a charming Pennsylvania college campus filled with secrets, two young girls learn the consequences of growing up too quickly.

Amalia Graeme, abused by her mother for most of her life, longs to escape her desolate hometown and fall in love. Contemplating her loss of innocence and conflicting feelings between her boyfriend and the dangerous attraction she’s developed for an older man, Amalia faces life-altering tragedies.

Brianna Porter, a sassy, angst-ridden teenager raised in New York City, yearns to find her life’s true purpose, conquer her fear of abandonment, and interpret an intimidating desire for her best friend, Shanelle. Desperate to find the father whom her mother refuses to reveal, Brianna accidentally finds out a shocking truth about her missing parent.

Set in alternating chapters two decades apart, the parallels between their lives and the subsequent collision that is bound to happen is revealed. FATHER FIGURE is an emotional story filled with mystery, romance, and suspense.

Recent Review Highlights

  • “A book I stayed up all night to finish. Practical as I am, I’ve never done that before. This is Cudney’s second book and I have read both. He has the ability to create human emotion as specifically required by the characters he creates. He tells this story from the point of view of the two female characters. Surely, he has a deep understanding of and human nature… All the character threads are intrinsically entwined, the twists and turns unexpected. It makes me wonder how this young author understands so much that he is able to turn his knowledge of life into a story such as this. Surely, he has a phenomenal imagination.”
  • “Secrets are unearthed, revelations come to light and you realize that Cudney truly IS a mastermind. A genius scheming writer. He places seemingly innocent facts here and there, fortuitous encounters, little crumbs and we don’t realize all the intricate connections between these threads before a big reveal!”
  • “Father Figure took me down a new emotional highway revisiting places I’d been before and felt uncomfortable visiting again but knew I needed to see to understand these characters, along with some new places that made me feel bonded to these characters in an unusually intimate way. This is a cracking novel that you don’t want to miss.”
  • “The angst I had reading this book, stays with me long after. My heart aches for the characters, yet I see a story that was beautifully written. I never got lost in the course of this book, and in the end I was blown away! Seriously folks, I am letting the emotions I am free falling from write this review.”
  • “Father Figure is powerful, emotional, and breath taking! With a hard-hitting story line, and amazingly dynamic characters, this one is sure to impress! For those who love stories of struggle, heartache, and overcoming obstacles, you need to pick this one up!”

Key Book Marketing Links

 

Book 3: Tentative Title & Description REVEAL

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In last week’s post, Top Secret Hints About My Next Book, I revealed a few fun facts about my upcoming third book. Today, I am going to reveal the book’s tentative title and description. It was emailed last weekend to a few friendly readers who have expressed interest in taking an early look at my foray into a new genre. I’m hopeful to release the official publication timeline in the next two weeks, but for now, it’s time to share a few things…

Academic Curve Ball*

(Debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series)

 

Overview*

Kellan Ayrwick, a thirty-two-year-old single father, moved to LA eight years ago to escape his complicated but lovable family. When Kellan requests time off to attend a party for his father’s retirement from Braxton College, his boss assigns him to meet with Abby Monroe, a source for their upcoming tv series who happens to live nearby. Unfortunately, while Kellan’s socializing at the campus event, he stumbles upon Abby’s dead body in a stairwell at Diamond Hall.

Although Kellan’s family and friends are on the suspect list, he’s compelled to investigate once he learns about a mysterious donation to the college, a nasty blog denouncing his father, and fluctuating grades to allow the star baseball pitcher to play in the season opener. As Kellan settles back into his hometown and finds a second body on campus, his eccentric and trouble-making nana helps him weed through the clues. Is it the shady director of the athletic teams? A victim’s soon-to-be ex-husband? A player desperate to be noticed by an MLB scout? Kellan’s intent on solving the case just a smidge before the county sheriff, but that dangerous win might place him in even hotter water.

In this debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series, readers discover a cozy, secluded Pennsylvania village full of quirky, charming, and nosy residents. Among the daily workings of Braxton College and the memorable Ayrwick family, Kellan weighs his investigative talents against an opportunity to achieve a much sought-after dream. Is he ready to move back home, take a job as a professor at the college, and re-unite with a former girlfriend? Or will he return to LA to raise his young daughter away from all the chaos?

*Both are subject to change, but for now… this is where it stands!

***

Stay tuned for updates via my author website at https://jamesjcudney.com or join the quarterly mailing list to get exclusive content about future books and releases. Next newsletter to be sent next week!

Book 3

 

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Book 3 – Top Secret Hints About My Next Project

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A few weeks ago, I mentioned in my post, The Writing Race is On, that I’d started drafting two new books because I couldn’t decide which plot to focus on. After a few weeks of back and forth scribblings, I’ve finally made a decision… and I am super excited to start sharing a bunch of hints with everyone. Today I’m dropping a ton of news about the book, including the genre, setting, main character, publication schedule, and key themes the novel will cover. While you’ll learn a lot today, I promise there are tons of surprises in store over the next few weeks, including a title reveal, a cover reveal, details about the characters and setting, giveaways, pre-orders and a whole lot more. I’d love to hear all your feedback and I might even answer a few questions if you’re brave or curious enough to ask. I’ll also be on the lookout for a few beta readers in this sub-genre and some early ARC recipients this fall. Let’s take our first preview together…

Book 3

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Book Review: Kalorama Road by E. Denise Billups

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After reading a few articles written by E. Denise Billups in Conscious Talk Magazine, I found myself intrigued with her writing style and voice. After some research, I noticed she’d written a few books, so I selected the one that appealed to me the most, Kalorama Road. If you’re a fan of mysterious character connections, someone with memory loss trying to unearth what happened during a missing 24-hour period, or a subtle tense feeling of “uh oh” while reading, you will definitely enjoy this one!

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The story takes place in modern day NYC (blocks from where I live) and the Washington DC / Virginia area. Allie, an editor at a big publishing company, can’t remember what happened one night at a party during her college years. She remembers being invited by a strange girl, showing up and seeing some peculiar behavior, but then all she knows is that her roommate saw a handsome guy drop her off the next morning. What happened overnight? Well… Allie’s been getting monthly text messages and emails asking her what happened at Kalorama Road that night. They scare her but also intrigue her. Is it someone else who doesn’t recall? Is it someone who wants her to remember? Is it the person who took her there who has since disappeared? It all begins coming back together when she’s let go from her publishing job and begins writing a blog. Someone submits a book for her review but it seems like a real life mystery, then it begins to resemble her own experience at Emsworth University. Allie never told anyone but she’s compelled to reveal all the details to her former colleague and the former roommate. At the same time, Allie’s sister has a secret she wants to keep hidden and a new man enters Allie’s life that seems very familiar. How does everything come together?

The book jumps back and forth between a few main characters, sharing their stories and actions over the course of a few weeks. We see a few memories from the past and learn who is really connected to who. As each chapter unfolds, a piece of the puzzle gets more clear but also opens up more confusion to leaf through. Throw in a powerful senator and his family, a suicide, a newspaper reporter trying to find out what happened in the past, a murder, and a family with a large endowment given to the university yet some secrets worth protecting, there’s bound to be a few explosive moments. What a wild ride, both in terms of how all the connections are revealed and in the build-up of tension between all the new people suddenly just appearing in Allie’s life as she’s trying to solve the puzzle of her missing memories.

Billups drew me in from the first few chapters. I’m a sucker for a lost memory story, but when it straddles that line of “oh, this seems obvious” but then throws you a curve where you’re like “wait, WHAT?” it’s even more appealing. It takes a lot to plan a story where you reveal things bit by bit. It’s also difficult to cover a story from multiple points of view without confusing readers. Billups handles both with great aplomb and talent, as it came together solidly without any concern.

Her character sketches of different women and men in their 20s, living in NY, were on point and realistic — there were moments were they annoyed me because of typical behavior, but that’s a good thing as it means Billups has evoked intense emotion and a strong connection to the story. I enjoyed the slow-build romance and potential eerie connections with her new friends, but I also could tell she had some blinders on when it came to all the ‘coincidences’ going on in her life. And there’s an explanation for it… as the tidbits of history we learn about Allie and her sister’s lives growing up clearly show why they act the way they do now. A great way to make things seem quite reasonable in a story that has you guessing who to trust.

I’m quite intrigued by what else might come from the author’s clever mind. I’ll be taking another look at her previous books and seeing if I can find out what’s coming up next… as I’ll definitely be reading another one this year. And I don’t want to wait a year for another book! 🙂

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.