“Deadly Proof” by Rachel Dylan

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In the biggest case of her career, attorney Kate Sullivan is tapped as lead counsel to take on Mason Pharmaceutical because of a corporate cover-up related to its newest drug. After a whistleblower dies, Kate knows the stakes are much higher than her other lawsuits.

Former Army Ranger turned private investigator Landon James is still haunted by mistakes made while serving overseas. Trying to forget the past, he is hired by Kate to look into the whistleblower’s allegation and soon suspects that the company may be engaging in a dangerous game for profit. He also soon finds himself falling for this passionate and earnest young lawyer.

Determined not to make the same mistakes, he’s intent on keeping Kate safe, but as the case deepens, it appears someone is willing to risk everything–even murder–to keep the case from going to trial.

 
Rachel Dylan
The proof is in the pudding in Deadly Proof  – you won’t be able to put it down!  Dylan’s newest book is a fast-paced, suspense story full of drama and action.
 
I loved the way that Kate was super smart and willing to do the right thing, no matter the time or consequence.  She knew where her priorities lie, and she stuck with them.
 
Landon was just as fascinating – kind of like Gibbs on NCIS.  He’s dealing with lots of emotional traumaand not always very well, but his goals are good and true.  His backstory is hidden, at first, and Dylan lets it pour out slowly through the story, giving you just enough to whet your appetite for more.
 
Deadly Proof has a big, surprising twist at the end.  I thought it was all sounding a little too clean, and I enjoyed the way that Dylan wrote the climax and resolution.
 
I had a bit of trouble in the beginning keeping track of characters.  This was in part because there were a lot of lawyers in the large cast of characters, and partly because it wasn’t clear in the beginning which ones were the good guys and which ones were the bad guys.  Somehow my confusion suddenly cleared up, and I was good from that point on.
 
Deadly Proof is a very smart book.  It may be to a reader’s advantage to have some passing knowledge of law going in, in the same way that knowing something about tactical maneuvers might benefit a Ronie Kendig reader, but I trusted that Kate knew her legal stuff, and I didn’t worry about legal details.  Using that strategy, I was good to go throughout the story, and seemed to follow the action just fine.
 
I really enjoyed my time with Deadly Proof.  This was my first Dylan book, but I’m eagerly looking for more.
 
I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.
 

What if You Lost Your Sight?

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It was one of the scariest school days ever.

It was the first day of third grade, and I’d heard that the teacher was very strict.  Scarily strict.  So when she wanted us to copy what she had written on the board, and I couldn’t see the writing, I was afraid to tell her, but I had no choice.

Twice I had to raise my hand and explain that I couldn’t see the board, and finally she got tired of moving my seat.  She sighed loudly and told me to move my desk wherever it needed to be so that I could see.  I began to push my desk forward and stopped when I could see – when my desk touched the board.

That was the first time that I realized how scary it was not to be able to see, and as I became more and more nearsighted, similar situations occurred.  I began to wonder what it would be like actually to be blind, and I didn’t like the idea.

My nearsightedness is a common occurrence, and I can see just fine – but if that should change?  What if there were something I could do about it?

AMD

Every year nearly 10 million Americans go blind due to AMD or age-related Macular Degeneration.  The exciting news is that a cure is in sight!  The Foundation Fighting Blindness, a non-profit organization, has provided funding for research for curing blindness, particularly AMD, since 1971.  In fact, with the research FFB has already made possible, treatments to stop and in some cases even reverse retinal disease is a reality.  This is great news for people over 55 and their families. With AMD it is nearly impossible for grandparents to enjoy the little things in life such as playing games, watching movies, and reading to their grandchildren.  However, due to innovative research, those things are once again possible for many people, but we need to continue this outreach to fund research and find cures.

With your help, we can continue our important work of helping the blind to see.  Please click on this link for a FREE informational packet about AMD and how you can help.

‘My Daughter’s Legacy’ Blog Tour, Author Chat Party, and Giveaway

Meet two women in different eras but both with unfailing conviction in Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould’s new book, My Daughter’s Legacy. Therese Jennings cannot abide the thought of owning slaves. But when trouble befalls her family, can she reconcile her obligations with her beliefs? Nicole Talbot’s life is back on track after years of substance abuse. But when facts she uncovers cast doubt on her family’s legacy, she must risk all that she’s gained-her fresh start, her family’s trust, and her growing relationship with a new man-to unlock the secrets of the past. 

Celebrate the release of Mindy and Leslie’s new book by entering to win the $75 Visa Cash Card Giveaway (details below) and by attending their author chat party on August 1!

 

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • One copy of My Daughter’s Legacy
  • One $75 Visa Cash Card

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on August 1. The winner will be announced at the My Daughter’s Legacy Facebook party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Mindy, Leslie, and other readers, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

RSVP today and spread the word-tell your friends about the giveaway via social media and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 1st!

Tanika Fitzgerald’s ‘Miscarried Joy’ Prize Pack Giveaway

Are you in a season of waiting—waiting for an answer from God, waiting for a change? Be encouraged by Tanika Fitzgerald’s new book, Miscarried Joy. Tanika transparently shares her deeply personal and disappointing experiences of losing her babies due to miscarriage. There were times when she felt God was the cause of her pain. Miscarried Joy has something for anyone who needs help pushing through incredible pain to conquer discouragement, walk in faith and birth their purpose. God’s delay in your life could be a set up for your greatest calling to be fulfilled.

Conquer discouragement with the help of Miscarried Joy and enter to win Tanika’s Hope Fulfilled Prize Pack.

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One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 18. The winner will be announced December 19 on the Miscarried Joy blog.

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LogicRoots Games Reviews: Ocean Raiders & Say Cheese

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Math has never been my favorite subject to teach.  It’s okay, but numbers and hard facts just aren’t my favorite things.  That’s why I was excited to be given the chance to review two math games from LogicRoots.

 The first is called Say Cheese.  It’s a multiplication game that stems from a short story you read from the direction booklet.  After that, you distribute cloth bags and the game chips. 

LogicRoots Review: Math Games @ A Nest in the Rocks

Following the rules, you take turns spinning the spinner and following the directions with your chips until someone has none left.  With each turn, your task is to determine whether the number on your chip is a multiple of the number on the spinner.  With some large numbers on the chips, this can be a bit of a challenge.

My Big Helper was totally up for that.  She enjoyed seeing how fast she could determine whether the chips had multiples and usually knew super fast.  She liked using big numbers from the spinners and was in it to win it.  My Little Man, on the other hand, while he played doesn’t love multiplication.  He enjoyed the game but it wasn’t his favorite.

The directions were a bit complicated to figure out.  Several times we’d continue play and then have to refer back to the directions to clear something up.  Several times we still weren’t sure what we were supposed to do and so just made up our own rules.  Part of this, I think, is because English was apparently not the native language of the people who wrote the directions.  Also, they often gave examples of the rules instead of just explaining them.  Since it is a simple kids’ game, however, this wasn’t a major problem. 

All in all, the game was fun.  The pieces were colorful and kid-friendly, and it definitely challenged the players to know their math facts.  The storyline was cute and the rules are simple.  This is definitely a fun, educational game – and best of all, it would be easy to create variations that could extend the usefulness of the game.

Pros:

  • Colorful pieces
  • Strong math ties
  • Simple rules
  • Variations would be easy to create
  • Not your traditional math game – asks students to work backwards for find answers
  • Costs under $20

Cons:

  • Instructions are somewhat unclear and include a few grammatical errors
  • It may take some time for students to get accustomed to identifying factors instead of solving mathematical equations

The second game we played is called Ocean Raiders.  This game is about addition and includes a variation for subtraction.  This game has a board and strongly resembles Chutes and Ladders.  The board contains 49 spaces in a non-linear order and has tornadoes that move a player randomly around the board.  Essentially, you roll the die and then add that number to the number of the space on which your token stands.  Because the board spaces are scattered randomly around the board, the student can’t simply count the proper number of spaces but must add the two numbers together in order to move ahead.

LogicRoots Review

My Little Man loved this game.  He had fun zooming his token around the board and especially loved rolling the die, which isn’t a cube.  It’s unusual shape makes it even more fun to roll.  I appreciate the variations that are included in the rule book.  My son knows his addition facts well, and so we completed the game in far faster time than the directions estimated, but it was still fun.

Pros:

  • Educational
  • Colorful, fun materials
  • Sturdy construction
  • Easy to understand
  • Simple rules
  • Several people can play at once
  • Costs less than $20

Cons:

  • Could be fun for a limited time only
  • This same basic game could be played using other game boards, like Uncle Wiggly or Chutes and Ladders

These games would make great gifts!  If you have kids learning their addition or multiplication facts, these games would make great additions to their educational tools.

I received a free copy of these games by LogicRoots.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Death in the Shadows by Paul McCusker | Book-Set Giveaway

Can Father Gilbert, who traded in his detective’s badge for an Anglican priest’s collar, champion the truth in time to stop more people from dying? Find out in Death in the Shadows, Paul McCusker’s new book releasing November 27. Pre-order a copy of Death in the Shadows and check the mystery-lover off of your Christmas list.

Join Paul in anticipation of Death in the Shadows by entering to win two books in the A Father Gilbert Mystery series (The Body Under the Bridge and Death in the Shadows)! Five winners will be chosen to receive the two-book sets. Click the image below to enter to win.

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About the Book

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When Father Gilbert became Anglican priest, he never expected he would be pulled into a different kind of mystery—the mystery of the spiritual world.

Attending a conference in a seaside town, he has yet another supernatural encounter, this time with a murdered girl who worked at a local massage parlor. Details of the murder lead Father Gilbert to approach the police with clues in common with other cases, bringing him into contact with a detective from his days with Scotland Yard.

Meanwhile, a local monastery has been vandalized, with grotesque images and profane graffiti defacing the altar and walls. The head of the monastery accuses the local sex-trade industry of retaliating against his outspoken stand against it. Then, one of the brothers at the monastery is found dead in the local red-light district. All evidence points to his having been a regular at a massage parlor—the same one where the murdered girl had worked. (Kregel, November 2016)

Learn more and purchase a copy here.

About the Author

Paul McCusker is creative director at Focus on the Family. He has sold more than a million books and twenty million audio dramas. His name is also heard daily on radio stations all over the world, and by at least two million listeners every weekend through the Adventures in Odyssey series. Learn more about him on his website and connect with him via Facebook.

Remembering Mrs. Aumiller

In the fall of 1986 I entered Mrs. Aumiller’s class.

I started a new school that fall, and I was worried about it – a new school, a much longer bus ride with a change of buses midway, and few people that I knew in my class. 

It didn’t take long to know that it was going to be a great school year, though.

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Mrs. Aumiller had short white hair and talked kindly, even through she often threatened to hang us up by our big toes and give us 40 lashes with a wet noodle.  The gleam in her eye always let us know she was kidding, but we never wanted to find out what she would do if we did misbehave.  We gathered for reading groups in a semi-circle of chairs at the front of the room and got new crayons each semester.  We did our work with fat blue pencils that didn’t have an eraser and recited poems from our English book in unison.  Six-year-old me loved When Daddy Fell Into the Pond.

If we finished our work early, she would take a black marker and draw a maze of wide lines on a piece of white construction paper, then instruct us to color it without letting two spaces of the same color touch.

At Christmas she wrapped her desk in that wide paper that looked like bricks and taught us how to make Christmas ornaments out of construction paper and glitter.  At Easter time we made big eggs and decorated them with lots of colors.

She started each day with a moment of silence, a throwback to the days when teachers began the day with prayer, and then the Pledge of Allegiance.

It was in her class that I met the people who became my best friends.

It was from her that I decided there was more to the teaching profession than dominating the giant chalkboards and controlling the box of chalk.

It was from Mrs. Aumiller that I first saw that school could be fun and teachers kind.

Mrs. Aumiller’s ideas were the first that I secretly hid away to use for that future day when I would have a classroom of my own.

A few years later I changed schools again, but Mrs. Aumiller kept track of me.  I’m not sure how it all happened, but we stayed in touch, and she – along with my also-amazing second-grade teacher – came to my wedding.  They both have faithfully sent Christmas cards to my family each winter for years now. 

My Christmas card list got a little shorter this week, though, when Mrs. Aumiller passed away.  She’s been sick for years now, and while I’m happy to know that she’s not suffering any more, it’s hard to know that she’s gone. 

She was an incredible teacher, and she taught more than 37 years’ worth of kids.

I’m so blessed for having been one of them.

 

Hearts for Home Blog Hop – May 26, 2016

We’ve had a big week full of outdoor plans – and been attacked by allergies, too!  When not actively enjoying our outside time, we’re hiding from pollen and trying to keep symptoms under control.  That’s why I’m super happy to have all of the wonderfully creative ideas from the Hearts at Home Blog Hop so close at hand!

Blog Hop

A Nest in the Rocks is now one of the co-hosts for the weekly Hearts for Home Blog link-up, which means that every Thursday you’ll find lots of great tips, recipes, and other family-friendly ideas listed throughout this post. If you’re a blogger, we’d love to have you link up your posts and join us. You can find information about the other co-hosts of this hop here.

The most clicked post from last week was Homeschooling Multiple Ages? Simplicity Is the Key to Success.

Some of my favorite posts from last week were:

A Simple Way to Track Grades and Create Transcript 

My Favorite Homemade Lemonade Recipe 

Simple Nacho Potato Casserole | Fluster Buster 

If your post is listed above, please grab one of our ‘Featured Blogger’ buttons! Congratulations, and thanks for writing such inspiring posts.


Celebrate Becky Wade’s Newest Release!

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A female bodyguard plus her star NFL client plus danger equals a great recipe for romance! Her One and Only, book four in Becky Wade’s Porter Family novels, releases May 3. To celebrate, Becky is hosting an author chat party on her Facebook page on May 5 at 5 PM PDT/8 PM EDT. Join Becky for an evening of book chat with other bookworms and prizes.

Plus a portion of all pre-sales and sales the release week of Her One and Only will be donated to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. For more details on how to purchase a copy, click here.

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About the Book

After ten years in the NFL, super star Gray Fowler is accustomed to obsessive fans. But when Gray starts receiving death threats from a stalker, his team hires an executive protection agency to guard him until the culprit is caught. Dealing with bodyguards 24/7 is a headache, especially when one of them is a young, beautiful woman. How can a female half his size possibly protect him better than he can protect himself?

Dru Porter is a former Marine, an expert markswoman, and a black belt–none of which saved her from disaster on her last assignment. In order to rebuild her tarnished reputation, she’s determined to find Gray’s stalker and, since relationships between agents and clients are forbidden, avoid a romantic attachment between herself and the rugged football player with the mysterious past.

Yet every secret that leads Dru closer to the stalker also draws her closer to Gray. As the danger escalates, they’ll survive only if they can learn to trust their lives — and their hearts — to one another.

Learn more and purchase a copy.

Hearts for Home Blog Hop – April 27, 2016

The weather’s getting hotter, strawberries are ready, and summer’s nearly here!  Our focus is changing – we’re nearing the end of our regular school year and are looking forward to our summer schedule.  How about you?

A Nest in the Rocks is now one of the co-hosts for the weekly Hearts for Home Blog link-up, which means that every Thursday you’ll find lots of great tips, recipes, and other family-friendly ideas listed throughout this post. If you’re a blogger, we’d love to have you link up your posts and join us. You can find information about the other co-hosts of this hop here.

The most clicked post from last week was When Art & Nature Journals Collide – A Nest in the Rocks.

Some of my favorite posts from last week were:

25 DIY Lavender Essential Oil Projects

Oreo Cookie Desserts

DIY Essential Oil Detangler

If your post is listed above, please grab one of our ‘Featured Blogger’ buttons! Congratulations, and thanks for writing such inspiring posts.