Thursday, September 20, 2018

Review & Giveaway: Lies We Tell Ourselves by Amy Matayo #LWTO

Heidi Reads... Lies We Tell Ourselves by Amy Matayo

My rating: 5 stars / It was amazing


Presley Waterman is a rescuer: of animals, of businesses, of people. Like the stray cat she's allergic to, but continues to care for. Like her small-town newspaper, a business that’s been dying a slow death for the better part of a decade. And like Micah. Her best friend and the man she has loved since they were kids, back when no one else cared.  

As for him…

Micah Leven loves Presley. She’s the girl who’s always been there to help, the one who knows all the ugly things about him and makes him believe he can be a better man, the one who will never leave because she’s promised over and over. 
But he also loves Mara. 

Mara is his ideal. She’s the dream he conjured up as a boy and never wavered from. She’s beautiful, ambitious, driven, a fellow newscaster at his Atlanta station, and the perfect asset for the life he’s always wanted. Together, they could conquer the world and their respective careers. Even better, with Mara he could prove that he did—in fact—finally amount to something. Maybe then his father would be proud.  

There are just a few things Presley and Micah have both forgotten. One, just because you rescue someone doesn’t mean they’ll love you for it. Two, some dreams disappear when reality wakes you up. Three, the only way to silence lies is to face the truth head-on.

This is the story of the man torn between two existences, the woman who finally took the choice away from him, and what happens when you stop listening to lies once and for all.

Even if the biggest liar is you.

My Review

I was not sure what to expect with this book since the other books I've read from the author have ranged from humorous to raw and gritty, always with a bit of an edge. I'm happy to say that I was sucked in from page one, and a lovely balance was struck between subtle humor, flawed characters with loveable quirks, and a raw vulnerability that brought emotion to the surface, with that trademark edge, of course ;) The manner in which the story is told is creative and unique- the way viewpoints switch, the choice of childhood flashbacks, how the plot twists are revealed, and the longest and best epilogue ever. Seriously, all epilogues may just be ruined for me. (I almost had a heart attack when I swiped to the next page on my Kindle Paperwhite and it said EPILOGUE. Then I glanced down and saw that I was 86% of the way through so there was time for lots more good stuff... unless I was being tricked because there was a crapload of promo stuff at the end... All those thoughts ran through my head in a split second, but I just dove right in and prayed for things to work out! And it was executed excellently; I was filled with anticipation and suspense).

Even though I didn't like the way Micah often treated Presley, it was hard to be mad at him because the author skillfully allows the reader to witness the emotional abuse from his childhood and teenage years, which makes it easier to understand his fears about his relationship with her and why his priorities are so screwed up. Woven in is the foundation of their friendship and the admirable qualities about him that made me not question why Presley loves him or puts up with him. It was also hard to want Presley to do what she needed to do for her own emotional health and sanity, because you don't want anyone to ever leave him again- you know what that would do to him. The dynamics of their friendship were slowly revealed by showing the spectrum of conflict, loyalty, desperation, humor, attraction, angst, and hope. (As a side note, I have to say it was gratifying for therapy and counseling to be portrayed in such a positive and helpful light. Eliminating the stigma will go a long way in more people reaching out for the help that they need and is available). This book is unforgettable with its deep and profound thoughts as Presley and Micah sort through their past, present, and futures to discover what the lies are and how to empower themselves to take hold of the truth. As I finished the book and experienced a satisfying book hangover, thinking about what I just read prompted self-reflection of some of the lies I tell myself and by recognizing them as such, I felt encouraged to take action and not let them hold me back from accomplishing my goals anymore. It actually felt therapeutic and pretty great to have that mental breakthrough with something I've been struggling with.

Highly recommend!!!

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)


I loved this book so much I want *everyone* to read it! I'm going to personally buy and give away a Kindle e-book of Lies We Tell Ourselves, just enter in the widget below.

Check out some more amazing books from author Amy Matayo . . . the ones below I have read but she has several more that I'm itching to get to! #mustreadallthebooks

Heidi Reads... The Thirteenth Chance by Amy Matayo


Baseball star Will Vandergriff knows any number of women who would happily pretend to be his girlfriend. In a last-ditch effort to restore his good standing with his team’s higher-ups, he enlists the help of his neurotic, goody-goody neighbor. Schoolteacher Olivia Pratt might be a bit quirky and a bit of a loner, but she’s a lot more inviting than she knows. Will hopes that bringing her to his next game might revamp his reckless reputation and help get his career back on track. The only problem? The plan works a little too well. Not only do the higher-ups love Olivia, but Will plays his best game yet. Suddenly his losing streak is a thing of the past, and Olivia is his new good-luck charm. Will feels anything but lucky.

After years of keeping the world at bay, Olivia Pratt is pulling off the ultimate performance—not only reluctantly posing as Will’s girlfriend but also insisting that she’s oblivious to his major-league appeal. But she can only lie to herself for so long. Being by Will’s side feels good. Really good. Maybe it’s finally time to make a pitch for everything she really wants—and to find out just how exhilarating love can be.

Heidi Reads... In Tune With Love by Amy Matayo


April is willing to do anything for her sister’s wedding—until she comes face to face with a guy from her past.

April Quinn is thrilled to be her sister’s maid of honor, until the wedding coordinator quits and the responsibilities get dumped on her. It’s April’s worst nightmare—especially since her sister has more objections and opinions than a lawyer presenting a high-profile court case. When the wedding singer walks out at the last-minute, her sister hires a replacement. When April finds out who the replacement is, she’s ready to call it quits as well.
Because there’s only one person in April’s past that she never wanted to see again, and her sister just handed him a front row seat to the wedding.

Jack Vaughn finally has the career he’s always wanted. After playing in bars and singing in weddings as a struggling musician for half a decade, he’s just released his second album and sales are skyrocketing. But while visiting his parent’s Nashville home the weekend before his first headline tour, he runs into an old friend. When she asks him for a last-minute favor, he can’t bring himself to say no. Even though saying yes means he has to come face to face with April Quinn—the girl who hasn’t spoken to him in years.

And rightly so, since he stole something from her that he’ll never be able to repay.

Heidi Reads... The Whys Have It by Amy Matayo


His music holds the heart of America... but his soul holds a terrible secret.

Chart topping pop musician Cory Minor has it all—fame, money, more women at his disposal than time to spend on them. He’s living the life most American men only dream of. Until an ordinary concert in Springfield threatens to destroy everything he’s worked for. 

As he and his band leave the arena for his next show, Cory’s tour bus crashes into two teenage girls, killing one girl instantly and leaving the other barely clinging to life. Lawsuits are threatened, tabloids are talking, and Cory’s idyllic world falls apart. But what no one knows is that this scene is all too familiar. Because this isn’t the first accident Cory has caused. This isn’t the first time he’s destroyed someone else’s life to save his own. 

It’s just the first time he’s had to face it head on. 

Small town girl Samantha Dalton has no one—no mother, no father, and now no sister. She’s lost everything in a world that celebrates excess. So when Cory Minor shows up at her doorstep offering money and apologies, she turns him away too. You can’t lose what you don’t have, and she can’t take another letdown, especially not from someone who has managed to rip away all she had left. Samantha has been fine on her own for years, she’ll be fine now too. 

At least that’s what she tells herself. 

But Cory won’t leave. He’s persistent in the worst possible way. 

Will Cory’s determination to make things right pay off in the end, or will Sam keep pushing him away until there’s nothing left to fight for? How can two people learn to rely on each other when life keeps hurting them both?

#TackleYourTBR Update: Day Three

Day Three: September 19th

Books Read: Lies We Tell Ourselves by Amy Matayo
Pages Read: 313
Total Pages Read: 1314
Finished Books: 2

Participated in the Two-Color Challenge at Tressa's Wishful Endings with a post on Instagram

Wrote the review for Lies We Tell Ourselves and posted for its release day today!!! Woo-hoo! I loved it so much I'm hosting a GIVEAWAY for a Kindle e-book, ENTER HERE!

After some major essential oil therapy, ibuprofen, and soothing lotion Kleenex, my sinus headache went away and turned into the sniffles, which means I got way more reading done today! Hooray! 

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: Love and Secrets at Cassfield Manor by Sarah L. McConkie

 Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: Love and Secrets at Cassfield Manor by Sarah L. McConkie


Wealthy socialite Christine Harrison’s life seems perfect until the man she planned tomarry, Mr. Davenport, proposes to someone else. Heartbroken, Miss Harrison vowsnever to love again, and to distract herself, she sets out to rescue a fallen youngwoman. Little does she know that her journey will reveal more than she expected about her friends, her seemingly perfect life, and her own heart.


Christine breathed deeply, circling her arms around herself. As she stood among those high, stalwart cliffs, she formed a resolution. Their presence spoke to Christine once more, reminding her that she could change. She could be more steadfast in her desires. She determined then to look outward, toward others, and stop caring about herself and her status in life. She affirmed that day that she did not need high connections to validate her existence. She did not need a man to establish or promote her social standing. And perhaps most importantly, Christine resolved to never again let these base motives stand in her way of real and lasting relationships with the people around her.

About the Author

From writing an award-wining tale of a dragon falling from the stars in the 3rd grade to regency romance written at thirty, Sarah McConkie has always had a passion for creating intriguing stories. After years of singledom looking for romance (and teaching Junior High Choir to fill up real life), Sarah began a Master’s degree in Literacy. When love finally found her, she married and became a wife and eventually a mother. After tucking in her own little princess one January evening she determined to attempt her life-long dream to write and publish a novel. Using her many years of experience in the single realm, a robust knowledge of regency classics, and a love of all things old fashioned and proper, Sarah wrote Love and Secrets at Cassfield Manor. She now lives with her own Mr. Right and her two daughters, and believes providing stimulating and moral stories promotes literacy in a world which needs more readers. This is her first novel.


Giveaway is subject to policies HERE.

Tour Schedule

Book Blitz & Giveaway: Fate and Fortune: Part One by Robin Daniels (Day 2 of 3)

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Book Blitz for
Fate and Fortune: Part One
By Robin Daniels

We're celebrating the release of Fate and Fortune: Part One, the first part in a Young Adult contemporary romance duology. Read the author's message from day one HERE, read an excerpt below, and come back on Saturday, September 22nd, HERE to read a second excerpt. Don't forget to enter the book/Amazon gift card giveaway below as well... & Fortune: Part One
By Robin Daniels
YA Contemporary Romance, Duology
ebook, 279 Pages
September 20th 2018

Bryce has liked Paige since they were little but has never had the guts to act on his feelings. Paige is devastated over being dumped by her long-time boyfriend and can’t seem to move on. They’re stuck in a rut, until fate decides to pull them out.

Both Paige and Bryce are talked into seeing a fortune teller at the annual Summer’s End Carnival. Neither of them buys into the mysticism, until the psychic’s predictions start coming true. Now, the most bizarre things are happening and there isn’t a clear explanation. Each of them must figure out if they’re the subject of an elaborate hoax or a bigger plan forged by destiny.

*This book is part one of two. Books should be read sequentially.



THE PLAYERS: Paige-The Heartbroken Heroine, Eric-Paige’s Older Brother, Amy-Paige’s Best Friend, Jason-Paige’s Ex-boyfriend
Eric studied me before throwing his hands in the air. “You’ve wasted your entire break, Paige. Books, work, and the occasional TV show are not a vacation. I’ve been patient because I know how hard the breakup was, but it’s time for reality. And reality means getting dressed and coming to the carnival with us.”
I shrieked. “I can’t go to the carnival. What if I run into Jason? I’ve spent the whole summer avoiding him. I won’t blow it on the very last night.”
“What happens when you see him at school?” Eric asked. I narrowed my eyes, frustrated because he was right.
We lived in a small northern Texas town—less than four thousand people—and we only had two schools. The elementary school housed kindergarten through sixth grade, and the secondary school had seventh through twelfth. The middle and high school were in separate parts of the building, but for the most part everyone knew everyone and there was no way to avoid anybody. This meant there was a 100 percent chance I’d have at least one class with Jason.
“He’s got a point,” Amy said. “Wouldn’t you rather rip the Band-Aid off tonight, so you can avoid a meltdown tomorrow?”
“Maybe I could homeschool?” I suggested half-heartedly.
“If you don’t come with us, he wins,” Eric chided.
Amy nodded in agreement, then added, “You don’t even know if he’ll be there.”
“Yeah, right,” I grumbled.
There wasn’t a lot to do around here. We had a two-screen movie theater and a ten-lane bowling alley, both of which were older than dirt and smelled funky. If you wanted good entertainment, you had to drive over an hour to Amarillo or Lubbock. The annual Summer’s End Carnival was lame, but it was something to do. Jason would certainly be there.
I chewed on my lip in panic. “What if he has a new girlfriend?”
“He doesn’t,” Eric assured me.
“Who cares if he does?” Amy snipped, growing tired of my excuses. “There’s plenty of cute, available fish in our tiny pond. You can’t settle on catfish before you’ve tried trout.”
She thought she was being clever, but her analogy sucked. “Jason is not a catfish. Catfish are ugly,” I argued.
Eric rolled his eyes. “All fish are ugly. But trout tastes better. Think of what you’d be missing if you only ever ate catfish.”
“If I only ate catfish I wouldn’t know what I’d be missing, so I wouldn’t care.”
Amy rifled through my closet. “If you want Jason back so bad, then you need to try trout. Lots of trout—preferably in front of him. Nothing makes a catfish more jealous than a good-looking trout.” She tossed some clothes at me along with my towel. “Get out there, look hot, talk to a bunch of guys, and flirt a little.”
“Who am I supposed to flirt with?”
“It doesn’t matter,” Eric answered with a smirk. He leaned against my Taylor Swift poster, because he knew it bugged me. “As long as it’s not yours truly.”
I finally cracked, unable to suppress my laughter. “Um, I think that goes without saying.”

About the Author

The most important thing to know about me is that I'm basically a sixteen-year-old trapped in an adult's body. It's why I feel such a great connection to all of my characters and why I love to write romantic comedy. The kid in me just wants to be goofy. Besides being a writer; I'm a wife, mother of five, volleyball enthusiast and home decorating guru. My list of favorites includes: reading, Christmas, pedicures, dessert, steak, Arizona winters and most importantly, Diet Coke.

Blitz Giveaway

1 winner will receive all 4 books in the Perfect Series along with a $20 Amazon Card
Print books are available to US winners only. International winners will receive ebook copies in lieu of print copies.
Ends September 24th

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Wednesday, September 19, 2018

#FallIntoBooks #HappyEndings

I love the Dating by Design series by Jennifer Peel and the happy endings that come after plenty of angst, humor, and steamy-clean romance! The premise of finding love through "relationship managers" brings interesting and complicated dynamics to the stories, and I'm always entertained and feel a strong connection to the characters and their emotions. Highly recommend!


Kenadie Marshall suffered the most public of humiliations, being left at the altar. Instead of wallowing in her misery, she makes it her mission to help others find true and lasting love, all while swearing off relationships for good. Between the software application she developed and a team of relationship managers, her brainchild, Binary Search, has an uncanny knack for choosing the perfect match almost every time.

Attractive and loveable Jason Hadley is taken with Kenadie Marshall from their first meeting. Determined to win her over, he does anything and everything he can think of, even if it means using her firm’s service and dating other women to stay close to her.

Will Kenadie realize she’s met her match before it’s too late? Or will Jason’s ploy go too far? Find out in His Personal Relationship Manager, a romantic comedy with an epic battle of wills.


Two professional matchmakers. One fake relationship. He's a playboy. She's a good girl. What could possibly go wrong?

According to Binary Search's matchmaking service, Meg and Zander's odds of ever having a successful relationship are statistically improbable. Meg has run the numbers and knows the probability, but for some reason she can't quit thinking about her coworker, Zander--the self-proclaimed eternal bachelor.

To make matters more interesting, Zander approaches her with an unusual proposition. He's in need of a pretend girlfriend. Meg thinks this could be the answer to get him out of her system, and maybe knock the arrogant man down a few notches in the process. But what she doesn't realize is there is more to this man, something he carefully hides behind his arrogant exterior. And when her feelings begin to be anything but pretend, she knows the odds of getting hurt are more than probable.

Will they let the odds over come them, or will they find that all the reasons they are wrong for each other are exactly what make them a perfect fit?

Heidi Reads... Narcissistic Tendencies by Jennifer Peel


Psychologist Kate Morgan loves her job evaluating clients for the matchmaking service Binary Search. That is, until the one and only Nicholas Wells becomes a client and the new face of the company. Now Kate must take on a new role as his relationship manager to "fix" the actor-turned-writer-and-producer--not to mention egotistical, possibly narcissistic celebrity--and save Binary Search's reputation.

Once upon a time this would have been a dream come true, but older, wiser, and live-within-her-rules Kate knows more than she would like to about narcissists. Annulment is an ugly word and one she can't or won't forget. But is Nick the man he says he is on paper or is he the man she sees before her eyes? An adoring father with a generous heart who's willing to smooth out some of his rough edges for the right woman, making her think who's fixing who?

Can this Hollywood playboy and reluctant matchmaker make the ultimate connection?

Join the challenge here!