What was your last read?

The other day, I was watching late night TV (which is rare) and the host had a segment about what was your last you read? Or can you name at least one book? He prefaced it with only one in five Americans read regularly. Not many could come up with an answer to either one. Or even name an author. My guess is some of their hesitation had to do with a camera being shoved in their face and being put on the spot. I know if one was pushed in my face, I’d likely run the other way.

But, God help the person who ever asks me those question, my response would be something like, “How much time do you have?” Yes, I have been known to spontaneously talk about books, their characters and the authors themselves. I have to say I appreciate my non-reading friends who let me go off on them and allow me to tell them all about the latest book I just read. You know who you are, and thank you for loving me anyway.

Something most of you probably don’t know about me is before I started writing, I was an avid reader. Over the last couple of years I averaged around two hundred reads a year. Last year I cut it down to 150 and my goal for this year is 125 (because I intend to write this year instead). Up until recent months, if I read a book, I reviewed it.

Cough… cough… (hangs head in shame) I have to admit I’m behind on my reviews and have about seven to catch up on, but I  will get them done; not only because I use my reviews as a way of keeping track with my reading, but to help the authors as well. I had no idea the importance of reviews, until recent years. It doesn’t take much. Just by mentioning the author’s name, the book you’re reviewing and what you thought of the book is simple enough. It doesn’t have to be a novel and you certainly don’t want to give the book away.

I am always looking for more books to read. I love hearing about people’s favorite reads or up and coming releases that blow you away. My question to you is, what was the last book you read?  

Bonus points if you can say yes to this

Did you leave a review?

Until next time,


Happy Readinglast book -pineapple

Who’s Ready for Sam and Enzo?

This fall, my Resilience Duet will release. My plan is to release both books within three weeks of one another, so your wait won’t be long. I have to say, I love these characters. I love their interactions with one another and I can’t wait to share them all with you.

Today, I’m working on Resolution (book two) of the duet. There is a clear path with to the end in sight. I am beyond excited to see how this ends. If your wondering, “She doesn’t know how this will end?” let me explain.

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a hybrid when it comes to plotting/pantsing. (A plotter meticulously plans out each scene as well as the entire story.  A pantser is someone who ‘flies by the seat of their pants’ to complete a story. ) I create a loose outline of what I want to happen in the book, but how I get there, comes to me as I write it.

I thought I’d drop a few lines from book one, to get you better acquainted with Sam and Enzo.

Enzo smiles at some unknown thought and I find myself blurting out, “What are you thinking about over there?”

He shakes his head to clear his thought but gives me a sideways glance with a lopsided smile. “I was just thinking about one of the last times I was out this way. My brother Zane bet me I couldn’t beat him to the top of the trail. So of course, we had to race. Even as adults, we’re still competitive. Zane thought I might be getting soft in my old age.” He chuckles aloud as he shakes his head once more. “I still managed to smoke him.” His voice now mischievous.

I look down at the sandals I’m wearing. “Uh, I might not be wearing the right shoes to race to the top.” I give him a questioning look and he immediately brings my mind to ease.

“Oh, I’m not planning on hiking to the top, or a race, Short-Stuff.” There is a wicked gleam in his eye as he continues, “Just maybe getting out and looking around a little.”

Short-Stuff? “I’m five-foot-seven. Since when is that considered short?” I’m never referred to as being vertically challenged. “Not all of us are six-foot-four gargantuan beasts,” I tease in return. “Besides, if I had my running shoes, you just might be on.”

He clears his throat, suddenly looking slightly humbled. “Um, actually I’m six-foot-six, not that it matters. But relax. I’m not here to race you, sweetheart. I just want to relax and enjoy the view.”

He grins once again, and his smile has me losing my thoughts completely. Wait! Six-foot-six?!?!? He’s almost a foot taller than I am. No wonder I feel like a bit of a dwarf around him. But still, I’m by no means considered tiny or short for that matter. I shake my head, trying to regain my thoughts.

“I thought we could kill some time there for a while before dinner at one of my favorite places. You couldn’t believe how much you miss the Pacific Northwest when you’re gone.

© Amanda Shelley 2018daylight-dirt-road-ecology-172510


Summer’s Eve

Tonight is the last night for a while I will have to set an alarm. Summer break starts tomorrow for my family and I am looking forward to getting some words written for you.

Currently, I’m working on writing the Resolution, the conclusion to my Resilience Duet. I absolutely love Samantha and Enzo and I’m dying to share them with you.  Here is a sneak peek from book one in my duet.

He keeps his hand linked with mine as we walk towards the tunnel. I can’t help but feel my heartbeat quicken as he rubs my thumb with his. It’s as if we’ve been holding hands naturally for years, rather than just knowing each other a couple of days. As we walk, I notice a tattoo peeking out from his dark-blue sleeve between us. I can’t quite make it out, but I’m now more than curious as to what it might be. Thankfully, I have some social grace and realize it might be awkward if I point it out, so I do my best to ignore it. But with each flex and movement of his arm, I’m more and more intrigued. At least when we get through the tunnel, I’m distracted from my ogling, by the beautiful view of the tree-filled hill ahead of us.

“Magnificent, isn’t it?” Enzo’s husky voice breaks the silence and my reverie.

© Amanda Shelley 2018 – Resilience

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Do you review?

This evening, I spent some time writing reviews. I have a strong philosophy when it comes to reading books. If I read the book, it’s reviewed. Unfortunately, I’ve been busy editing/proof reading Resilience to get it ready for you, but I do make a point to read every day. So I spent a bit of time tonight catching up.

I know many of you might not think reviewing is important, but your reviews and opinions make a huge difference to authors. Your words about the book influence other readers and might encourage them to pick up a book you enjoyed.  Your words will brighten an author’s day.  It makes their work visible to others and lets them know how much you’ve enjoy the world they have spend countless hours creating.

Reviews don’t need to be lengthy.  They just need to be honest.  A few lines is all it takes. State the author’s name, the title of the book and what you thought about it. Be sure to review the book that was read, not the book you wish the author had written.  You can be excited about a book, but try not to leave spoilers. Everyone deserves to experience that amazing book the way you did.

What was the last book you reviewed?

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Cover Designs

You know the phrase, the best things come to those who wait?  Well being the keeper of secrets is hard to maintain, when you want to scream from the rooftops just how amazing something turns out. I’m sure you know the feeling, when things are so far beyond your expectations, you want to share with every person you meet on the street.  They’re just that spectacular. This was my experience with making the covers and teaser designs for my Resilience Duet.

I told myself I will not release either Resilience or Resolution until both books are complete, so readers won’t have much wait time between release dates. As a reader myself, I know how hard it is to wait  to find out what happens next in a story you love. After seeing the amazing covers Amy Queau at QDesign has created, it is now even harder for me to not want to get these books in your hands as soon as possible.

The good news is that Resilience, book one in this duet is at my proof reader this week.  Book two, Resolution is currently sitting at 42K. After seeing what the end product will look like, I have more motivation now than ever to finish Resolution in the coming weeks.

So  I’m not leaving you hanging completely hanging, here is the blurb for book one in my Resilience Duet. I hope you soon fall in love with Sam and Enzo as much as I have.

As an elite rescue pilot, Enzo is convinced his adventurous life is all he needs, until he walks into Samantha’s home. He is there to surprise his father—her contractor—but what he finds is a beautiful woman with a sexy smile, wicked sass, and the mouth-watering ability to keep him on his toes. He was a man on a mission, but Samantha soon forces his world off course, leaving him to question if he wants to recover.

As the dust settles from her divorce, Samantha doesn’t have time for new relationships or distractions. Her life consists of running her own company and checking numerous activities off her kids’ demanding schedules. But when a breath-taking, green eyed stranger walks into her kitchen one afternoon with a mischievous grin, she knew he was up to something. She just never expected he would decimate her defenses, leaving the surprise to be on her.