Category Archives: About

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Hello World! Pumpkin Pie anyone?

There are some big changes coming! OK, OK … ANYthing is better than what I have given you over the last year! I have hopefully figured out and mapped out what I need to do in order to keep up with this and not get overwhelmed….I have been creating posts and scheduling them out so you will hopefully see a consistent stream of posts. Nothing crazy, just 2 a week. I am leaving plenty of room to throw out a publicity post if/when asked and I really hope you all enjoy some of the new content!

  
Keep reading to view the pumpkin pie recipe that is made EXACTLY how I LOVE it….thankfully lots of other people love it too!

  
I really do know, and hopefully people are still with me! So what do you have to look forward to? (BTW I so love Bitstrips and Bitmoji! They are so fun! Sorry I don’t have links but we have Apple products so I know they are available 😄)

  • Special Recipes
  • Crafts
  • Random Thoughts – think Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy….lol
  • Book Reviews
  • Audiobook Reviews
  • Product Reviews
  • Game Reviews
  • Advice (both solicited and unsolicited)…seriously! I have a 13 and 5 year olds…. #justsayin
  • Maybe, possibly some of my personal writing….that’s a bit scary to consider putting out there though!

Really I don’t want to leave anything off, but I still want this blog to reflect me. SO Instead of taking on WAAAAAAAAY too many authors that I love and trying to keep them all straight and get the links perfect and get everything out on time….I’m just gonna be me. Which is random, imperfect and biting off way more than I can chew. If we all understand that up front, hopefully you’ll still respect me in the morning. 😳😘😂

  
Now what you’ve all been waiting on pins and needles for: 

PUMPKIN PIE

So, my recipe starts like any other and was actually adapted from the one on the Libby’s Pumpkin Pie Filling can. This recipe makes 2 of the 9 1/2 in deep dish pies. Here we go:

Crust: You are welcome to make your own crust if you prefer, but I have found I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Pillsbury 

Filling

  • 2 regular cans of pumpkin pie filling – NOT spiced
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 can evaporated milk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Combine sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs lightly in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk. Gradually stir in sweetened condensed milk. Pour into pie shell.

Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees F.; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. (Do not freeze as this will cause the crust to separate from the filling.)

THANK YOU ALL! I love you!!   

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Question and Temporary Takeover!! Or New Help!

Hello all!! We apologize again for the drop off in communication, but Joe Cool Review is officially a “we”! My name is Kat and I am super excited to be here helping! Fair warning you will find my sense of humor a little more warped than Lisa’s…..;-)

Lisa has been struggling with some medical issues that have kept her away, but she is definitely on the up and up! We are so thankful! She will hopefully be popping into social media and such to help share and retweet posts, but I am going to take over the majority of the reviews for a short time.

Contact will remain the same as we sort through all the emails and new requests so rest assured we are definitely up and ready to hit it again!

I have a question is like to ask, though. Does anyone know of a decent voice to text software that’s not outrageously priced? Lisa’s biggest issue right now is energy and strength so if she could voice her posts we can help her feel more productive! Typing takes a lot more than speaking and then I can fix any funny stuff….unless it’s supposed to be funny LOL!!

Please don’t worry, but we will take prayers for a speedy recovery! She’s doing waaay better than expected and is ridiculously stubborn when it comes to these things. That’s why we love her!

An Apology?!? Oh yes a big one my friends…

First, I want to give a HUGE apology and thank you to those of you that did not give up on me in my absence!
Secondly, for those that have sent in requests (and heard NOTHING) and attempted to contact me (and heard NOTHING) I WILL be getting back to you very soon.

When I started this blog it was my intention for it to be a place that my friend and I could escape and daydream and brag and boast about our favorite authors and books.  I absolutely LOVE discovering a new (or just new to me) author and the amazing things that they are able to put down in writing.  Joe Cool Review has been up and running for a little over a year now and I am so thankful to have a way to share with so many of you!

I have learned a ridiculous amount about how hard it is for them and the unbelievable hurdles they have to jump through to get their books seen by the public.  I have also discovered some authors that are truly just beginning and hope that my feedback has helped them grow as writers.

If I am offered a book that I agree to review, I will review that book honestly.  You may have noticed that pretty much everything you see on my site gets 5 stars from me, yeah? Well, there are actually a good number that you don’t see.  The reason for that is I prefer to send a note to the author and give my honest review privately if I can’t get behind it 100%.  I will absolutely still post reviews on the book’s sites (Amazon, BN, etc.) but I do try to reserve the blog for my absolute favorites.

The hardest part? Catching up!!  I had a library on my NOOK of nearly 1000 books when I began the blog and it was my full intention to go back and really rave about my absolute favorite authors.  The sad thing is, I haven’t really had time (not many of us do these days I don’t think).

So now for the biggest reason behind my lackluster performance as a blogger so far….  I have a wonderful family,  a lot of really great friends, and a REALLY hard time saying no.  So, I have been swept up in a close friend’s complicated life for nearly a year and we have been unable to use the blog as we had hoped.  I finally have had to take a step back and let her know that I can’t continue to be a crutch for her.  I fear I have only been making things worse by giving her an out whenever and wherever.  I am still her friend and I can still be there for her, but my life was getting lost in the process.  She has come so far and has such a good grip on it now that she is ready to stand on her own, I just have to let her. :-)

Ever been there?  Let me tell you how much it makes you appreciate the life you have and the people in it.  I am truly blessed and busy and yet I realized I need this blog.  I need to take the time to dive into my books and share them with all of you!!

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” ~Paul Boese

I hope that saying is true and those of you that are still with me will believe that I am truly sorry and will do my best not to let it happen again.  I am officially the only one reading the books and posting reviews; so it may take some time, but if I promised it to you, it will be done.

I appreciate each of you that read and respond to my posts in any way and I am making it my goal to return the favor more than I have been doing.  I have read so many awesome books, by really outstanding writers, and I will continue to give you reviews, but on a MUCH more consistent basis!!

Lastly, if for some reason I need to go dark again for any length of time I will send out a message to let you know and I will make sure my previous promises are fulfilled.  However, I think that I need this blog and the outlet it provides me to keep myself grounded.  Grounded in fiction is kind of an oxymoron, I think….but hopefully you know what I mean!

So please feel free to contact me using the contact page on this blog and I will get back to you.  I’m not signing up for any blog tours or anything else like that right now (SORRY AGAIN), but feel free to submit your book info to me and I will get back to you.  I warn you I have a pretty big backlog at the moment, so I’m afraid I won’t get to anything new for a while yet.  I will respond to any requests with a rough estimate of when I think I can have my review posted and you can decide if you would like me to add you to the list.

FUTURE NOTES

I am also working on a page on this blog that will list my favorite authors and quick links to their books and/or websites.  I realize this may be a somewhat large undertaking, because I have a HUGE imagination and can get into almost any book I pick up…LOL

GIVEAWAY!! PLEASE HELP ME CHOOSE — AppleTV or Amazon FIRE??

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*Taken from http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2455874,00.asp

I know this is very different from my usual posts, but I could really use some help….

We have been trying to get away from cable (TV but we will keep Internet) for quite some time. Now, I am most familiar with Apple and Amazon and I am an Amazon Prime member so I am definitely intrigued with the new FIRE. Deep down I am an Apple lover though….

Quite frankly I’m not worried about storage or processors; mainly because I know Apple doesn’t take much of a processor to be fast, so I consider them pretty equal.

What I really want is to be able to:

1. Watch any and ALL DISNEY
2. NETFLIX
3. Kiddo friendly
4. Would LIKE Amazon Instant Video (I can get this on my iPhone, maybe TV?)
5. Games would be fun
6. Multiple rooms – here’s the rub (I think), are these mostly just 1 room systems?

What I desperately need is for people who have/had one or both to tell me what they are like in real life.

We are finally out of contract and I keep thinking I will be able to get my iPad A LOT faster if we get out from under the $200 cable/internet/phone bill every month!

So if you have an opinion (surely you do, right?) PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE weigh in on my dilemma. I don’t care if it is via Facebook, Blog, or Twitter; all i know is that I would greatly appreciate any and all information.

How about a $5 gift card as a prize?? Use the Rafflecopter below to gain an entry. You can gain extra entries each day for sharing this post!! I am going to give this a month and see how many helpful answers I can get, and I will give one more hard push before I choose a winner.

THANK YOU EVERYONE!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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REVIEW – Fiancee by Fate by Jennifer Shirk

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Their fake relationship is a twist of fate.

Sabrina Cassidy believes in fate. So when her fiancé breaks off their engagement, she’s convinced they’ll get back together eventually. But fate was not on her side when it brought Jack Brenner into her life—and work. Frustrating, gorgeous, and cocky, Jack has an offer that Sabrina can’t refuse. Not if it means getting the life she’s always imagined.

Despite being one of the town’s most eligible bachelors, Jack has a reputation that’s working against him. He has to convince his father—and his company’s board—that he’s ready to settle down if he wants a promotion. But convincing Sabrina to be his fake girlfriend turns out to be the easiest part. What he didn’t count on was their intense attraction and how easily their lie would escalate. Sabrina’s still hung up on her ex, and Jack will never settle down. But fate has other ideas…

My Thoughts

This was such a sweet story that is definitely based on fate.  Sabrina is superstitious and definitely thinks fate dropped her fiancée into her life.  When he “temporarily” calls off the engagement she believes whole heartedly that he will come back to her.  After 3 years together and all the coincidences there is no other alternative, is there?

Enter Jack…

Jack is too good looking for his own good and Sabrina is definitely NOT looking.  In fact her and Jack can’t stop sniping at each other.  However, Jack’s father believes he needs to settle down and realize there is more to life than work.  Jack can’t see too far past eventually running the company and is willing to do just about anything to gain the board’s approval.

It is so fun to watch Jack and Sabrina come together.  I especially love that Jack does learn that there is more to life than work…..but is it too late?  Don’t miss this story!!  You will fall in love with all the characters!!

BUY LINKS

Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Kobo / Google / AllRomance / Amazon CA / Amazon UK

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REVIEW – Wild About Her Wingman by Robin Bielman

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Playing it safe never felt so risky.

Erin Watters is her small town’s resident wild child—she doesn’t do boring, and after having her heart annihilated, she definitely doesn’t do relationships. Her friends have other ideas, though, and when they throw down a matchmaking challenge, impulsive Erin can’t ignore it. Even when the annoyingly hot Troy Strieber accepts the matchmaker role…

As a rescue paramedic, Troy’s used to watching out for people. Never mind the bet he made with his buddy to play Erin’s wingman. But the more time he spends with the sexy, charismatic woman, the more he discovers a side of her she doesn’t let many see. Soon what started as an innocent game of matchmaking has them both thinking about the person right under their nose. But Troy’s a play-it-safe guy, and he won’t let a woman who lives for risk ever steal his heart.

My Thoughts

The bet spun out of control so quickly.  Erin is sitting around having beers with friends and before she knows it, she has her very own wingman!  No problem, right?  Maybe she will get lucky and Troy will find her a great guy?  And thankfully, her and Troy would never work so she doesn’t have to worry about that.  After all, what would Mr. Safety want with a daredevil?

The problem?  The chemistry between the two is off the charts!  Each is determined to keep a distance from the other, but some things are undeniable… and unavoidable! 

Do not miss the awesome connection between Erin and Troy.  It was a truly wonderful story to fall into! 

Buy Links

Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Kobo / Google / AllRomance / Amazon CA / Amazon UK

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REVIEW – Resisting the Rancher by Roxanne Snopek

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She’s his best friend’s sister, but he’s ready to break all the rules…

Country veterinarian Celia Gamble is in trouble. A misunderstanding from her past is rearing its ugly head and the only person she can turn to is Jonah Clarke—her family’s lawyer and, as it turns out, her brother Zach’s best friend and her childhood crush. She always wanted Jonah to see her as a bona fide woman, but as a woman who’s being wrongfully blackmailed for seducing a married man? Not on her life.

Jonah is happy to help little CeeCee Gamble, if only she’d come clean about why she’s being blackmailed. But with Zach’s wedding on the horizon and Zach’s fashionista fiancée Desiree giving CeeCee a makeover, the little duckling Jonah remembers is turning into a definite swan.

And the unwritten law on sisters is clear—hands off. 

Jonah must resist Celia or lose the only true family he’s ever known. 

My Thoughts

I really enjoyed this story!  It had that big-brothers-best-friend-crush, a mystery, a whacko, and a woman with the best intentions that just can’t seem to come out on top.  That doesn’t even cover the all-grown-up version of her crush!

CeeCee is a girl that just wanted to fit in with the big boys and prove herself.  Now that she has grown up and made a HUGE mistake she just want to start over in her hometown.  Jonah has always seen CeeCee, but never considered anything like a relationship since he is Zach’s best friend. He swore to help watch out for her growing up. 

However, as Des makes CeeCee over piece by piece, he can no longer deny that she is all woman! The back and forth between the two is real, and hard, and different.  They both have very valid reasons that makes them think they can’t be together.

This story was very sweet and had so many characters that just came alive. This was not the first book in the series, but it is a stand alone story. You can bet that I will be after the rest of the books now!

BUY LINKS

Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Kobo / Google / AllRomance / Amazon CA / Amazon UK

 

REVIEW – HEiRESS, P.i. by Amanda Mahan

heiresspiIf you read the blurb for this book, I can guarantee you will get all that and MORE!  Lucy is happier playing in the dirt than glamming it up, but she will do anything to help Holden.  Yes, some of the issues stars deal with Lucy falls face first into, but the way they come about will have you rolling on the floor. 

Blurb:

Meet Lucy Hansen. She’s the richest teenager in the world – and possibly the shyest. She doesn’t flash her business to the paparazzi as she’s getting out of limos or send selfies while smoking salvia. No, Lucy hides behind her frizzy bangs, environmental causes and organic hemp-blend sweats. Her one true friend (and secret crush) Holden is the poorest kid in Beverly Hills – and probably the scrappiest. He interns for a famous private investigator, and when he asks Lucy to help him crack a case, her life turns from tame to tabloid, from glum to glam, from private to private eye. And when the trail leads directly to her hotel magnate father, it’s up to Lucy to solve the case by infiltrating Hollywood’s most elite and unwelcoming club: Celebutantes. Teens who are famous for, well… being famous.

Along the way, “LuHan” endures wardrobe malfunctions, fake romances, compromising videos-turned-YouTube hits, unflattering mug shots and – worst of all – a makeover. Now Lucy has to save her father, dodge the paparazzi, and keep her IRL ID on the DL – all while maybe, almost, possibly having her first real kiss.

If you’ve ever read the tabloids and wondered, “What was she thinking?” then HEIRESS, P.I. offers one possible answer.

Lucy is bold and fearless once she puts her mind to something.  When she makes a name for herself she goes ALL OUT!  The wardrobe malfunction that happens to Lucy had tears running down my face….from laughter!  Everything that Lucy does she does with gusto. 

I absolutely loved this story and would love to read more about Lucy!  You cannot help but love her and what she stands for.  You’ll love how Holden bribes her to do some investigating for him! This book is sweet, funny, and intense.  Some of the situations Lucy gets herself into get pretty hairy. 

Don’t miss this book!

Buy this book!

Amazon / Goodreads

About Amanda Mahan

Amanda Mahan is the author of Heiress, P.I. — think “Veronica Mars meets Gossip Girl” — which tells the story of the richest girl in the world getting made over and going undercover to solve a mystery.

Amanda is the People’s Choice Award winning Green Mommy blogger and worked on two NBC sitcoms. Both of these influences can be seen in Heiress, P.I. which features an environmentally-friendly protagonist and humorous dialogue.

Known for her love of trashy tabloids, her hopelessness with her own hair, and her addictive red velvet cupcakes, Amanda lives in the Bay Area with her husband and two small (but surprisingly loud) children.

Goodreads / Facebook

PLEASE VOTE!!! Spellbound in His Arms was nominated for a RONE award!!!

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Booktrope has re-launched Spellbound in His Arms by Angel Sefer, the first book in a romantic mystery series. The stunning novel was just nominated for a RONE award! Please vote for it until the Mystery category here anytime between March 24th and 30th. Also, book 2 in The Greek Isles Series, Deadly Secrets, will be out this Spring.

You can also vote by email!!!!
Send an email to anasmith@indtale.com
Subject line: 2014 RONE Awards vote
In the email put: Mystery – “Spellbound in His Arms” by Angel Sefer

This book was really one of my all time favorites and will keep you on the edge of your seat!!!

 
Blurb
#1 Barnes & Noble Bestseller, a #2 Amazon Bestseller, Recipient of InD’tale Magazine’s Crowned Heart Award for Excellence, and 2014 Rone Award Nominee
 
A mansion full of secrets…
From the moment investigative reporter Jackie Alexander steps foot inside the mansion dominating the Demiris estate on the beautiful Greek island of Corfu, her suspicions are on high alert. This is no ordinary assignment… the life of her beloved cousin, Aphrodite, is in grave danger, as the heirs to the incredible fortune of Greek tycoon Andreas Demiris are dying one after the other, under mysterious circumstances.

A man with secrets of his own…
The only person who can help Jackie is Michael Apostolou, former Special Forces Officer and one of the finest detectives on the Athens police force. Jackie realizes soon enough that despite her simmering desire for him, she can’t really trust him, as the seductive detective seems to be investigating those mysterious deaths for reasons of his own.

Trusting the wrong person can be deadly…
Jackie and Michael are forced to work together, but the suspicions and unanswered questions are devouring them, just like their rising passion for each other. In games like this, the stakes are high and the players are ruthless. When Jackie is kidnapped by the most dangerous player of all, time is running out as Michael is forced to choose between jeopardizing his mission and personal quest for justice, or the life of the gorgeous intruder of his heart…

 
Buy Links
 
 
iTunes Bookstore

REVIEW – Fighting for You by January Valentine

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This book is told from Jewelia’s point of view and at first my brain was spinning with the way her mind works! You quickly realize that this is just Jewelia….she’s crazy and erratic and so REAL! You can’t help but fall face first into this story as you get into her mind.

Jewelia and Indigo’s relationship is powerful and turbulent from the moment they first lock eyes in the coffee shop. Jewelia is so out there for you to see (granted it is told from her POV), and Indigo is locked down so tight.

Throughout the story Indigo flashes hot and cold and we can’t begin to decipher what is going on in his big brain. We want so badly for him to open up and show us his pain, but he feels he has to keep that part of himself separate from Jewelia. It is such a struggle to the very end…..

I absolutely loved this book and I am quite sure I will be reading it again, just before the next one comes out! The next book will be told from Indigo’s POV and normally I wouldn’t care to read the same story again……but Indigo is so very damaged and I am dying to see his side of this story. I’m so happy that I will essentially get twice the book as there were many scenes I would have loved to get more of!

Blurb:

Fighting For You is a revised edition of original title: Head Over Wheels New Adult Romance

Jewelia Delarosa isn’t too eager to fight her way through another dead-end relationship. Then her eyes find his. By chance. He’s like wine, rich and intoxicating. One sip rocks her world, and suddenly, she’s drowning in a guy called Indigo. She doesn’t know how to handle her overwhelming emotions. His mood swings. The two women who refuse to let him go. The battle is all uphill. Giving up seems the most sensible thing to do, but once she’s tasted his love, given herself to him body and soul, living without him is not an option. Until she realizes, leaving him seems the only protection from heartbreak.

About to begin his residency at NYU Medical center, Indigo’s plan is to rescue every child who needs him, even if it sucks the life out of him. He doesn’t remember what happiness feels like. His mother haunts him. A wannabe girlfriend stalks him. He doesn’t need another woman in his life. Then a stunning gaze captures his, and while fighting to resist, he sinks deeper into something he never thought could be his. Love has never been in the cards for Indigo. But a girl named Jewelia is as necessary as the blood coursing through his veins.

Don’t wait! Grab this book NOW!!!!


Or find it on BARNES & NOBLE and/or SMASHWORDS!!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
January Valentine is the pen name of Victoria Valentine, New York writer and indie book publisher.

Victoria uses January, her birth month, when writing romance and thrillers. Children’s books and poetry are written under the name Victoria Valentine.

Victoria hosts her radio show, Away With Words every Wednesday @ 7pm EST on blogtalkradio.com, where she interviews writers and poets.

Follow the Author!!

http://www.januaryvalentine.com
http://www.victoriavalentine.net
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/aww1
Keep updated. Join her Mailing List
http://waterforestpressbooks.com/WaterForestPressMailingList.htm

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