Category Archives: Coming of Age

#New Release – #Review – Gen One by Amy Bartelloni

Gen One

 

Generations after robots conquered Earth, the remaining population survives in the ash of their defeat. Within their walls in Authority City, bots test and develop super soldiers. Rumors of horrible experiments are enough to keep humans in line. At least, most humans.

Eighteen-year-old Delilah O’Connor scavenges the ruins with her friend Zane, and Gen, a generation one bot they repaired off the grid. Gen’s curiosity gives Delilah hope for the future, but not enough hope to go against the Authority. She finds Zane’s dreams of a human resistance pointless, and it’s enough to keep their on-and-off relationship mostly off.

When they discover two dead guards in a shady trading stop known as the Banks, everything changes. Framed for the murders and pursued by Authority bots, Zane takes Delilah to the only safe space he knows—the headquarters for the Human Coalition. Even there Zane isn’t safe. When he’s captured, Delilah and Gen must join an unlikely alliance of bot and human to go in to Authority City and save him before he becomes another casualty. Things in Authority City aren’t as they seem, they’re worse. And Delilah might lose more than her friend within its walls.

 

Goodreads

 

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

 

“Sometimes you had to get dirty to survive. It was a trick she’d learned in the Banks.” This is a post apoc thriller full of the human spirit along with super bots that may have souls. Delilah’s life goes from a life of plain grimness scavenging in the outer lying areas with her best friends Zane and Gen (a generation one bot) to being an outlaw with everyone trying to kill her. Her life just went from one extreme to the next. After she and Zane find a couple of bodies that were murdered she is abruptly brought into the life of the human coalition and once she is in and understands what they are fighting for she has no other desire but to join them after Zane has been taken. Zane has been trying to protect her and not have her get in the middle of the fighting between the humans and the bots but now that she is in she comes to the realization that this is bigger than her and she must fight to help save humanity for the humans and bots alike. She has come to realize that some of the bots may have souls as she sees this with Gen everyday with her curious nature and human feelings. Not all bots are bad. Delilah has a dormant strength that comes out in full force as she is forced to decide what the right thing to do is. She goes from being fragile and needing protection to being a brave and fearless protector. The transformation was amazing! There is tons of action as they have to infiltrate Authority City where the bots reside and maintain the rule over humans. As they are basically planning a suicide mission they have to get as much intel as possible. As more of the plan comes forth she finds that more people are involved than she ever thought they would. It is so full of twists and turns that you absolutely have to keep reading just to get to the next part and find out what else is going to happen. I can’t tell you any more about the actual story because I don’t want to give anything away but the plot twist is INSANE!

 

The author does an amazing job with the world building and character building as well. This is one of those stories that you can’t help but being able to feel like you are there right in the middle of the action. You start to feel like you really know the characters and that they are real.  The emotions run strong and are heartfelt. The story is rather mind-boggling and a little scary (in a good way) because it makes you think about all of the what-ifs as our technology advances….just something to think about, haha! The end of the story is set up perfectly for a second book. Amy Bartelloni is a new author for me and she has me hooked! I can’t wait to see what happens next. Bravo!

 

Amazon

 

Amy Bartelloni


Amy Bartelloni is a reader, writer, & coffee addict who lives with her husband, 3 children, and various animals in the northeast US. When she’s not playing mom-taxi, you can find her with her nose in a book or her head in the clouds. A people watcher and science fiction junkie, she still believes dreams can come true. Some of her favorite authors include Neil Gaiman, Jasper Fforde, Paulo Coelho, and Stephen King.

#Review – Ashenland (Love Through the Sands of Time, #1) by Gianna Scannell

Ashenland (Love Through the Sands of Time, #1)

It is the year 1197 BC in Troy of the Dardanelles.
Calypso is seventeen, mistrusting and mischievous. She should be; she’s a princess. She hates her town and everything in it, and dreams to one day fly away from there. She hates royal chores and responsibilities and wants nothing to do with it, but on her death bed her mother makes Calypso promise that the rebellious princess will care for her dad and her people. Uncapable to fulfill her pledge, Calypso plunges into deep depression. She’s on the verge of suicide when, one night, a fiery snake flies over her city and burns it to the ground. Alone, confused and scared, tears streaking her soot-plastered face, Calypso invokes her dead mother now understanding how much she really loved everyone she has lost.

Mother Earth hears her, and standing on the ashes of the burnt city the two forge a pact. Calypso and her father will live, but she must not fall in love, marry or have children. She must find and bring back from the future a special person, a boy who loves ancient Earth. With his help, the princess will have a chance to change the destiny of the people she once despised.

Daniel Hiempsal is also seventeen, and has a passion. He studies ancient climates with the guide of his father, a famous archaeologist. A vision comes to him, in the shape of a girl, and she asks that he follow her to her past. Temptation is great; he could see with his own eyes the world he loves so much. But when Calypso returns to Troy with Daniel, time travel has turned him into a ghost.

Daniel is not a common ghost, like, say, a ghost from the past who has gone through some horrific ordeal and finds himself undead. No, Daniel is a ghost from the future, who carries in his brain information unheard of in the Bronze Age, and he sure needs all of his wits if he wants to make it through this neck-breaking, dizzying adventure and return to his normal times.

Started on a bad note and with a lot of mistrust and insecurities, the relationship between Daniel and Calypso slowly blossoms. In the end, they forge a friendship that overcomes the barriers of space and time.

 

Goodreads

 

I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway.

 

This is a story where the past and the future collide, literally. Calypso is the princess of Troy and she is a spoiled princess at that. Extreme tragedy starts when her mother, lying on her death bed, makes Calypso promise to take care of her father and her people. Next thing you know her whole world is being destroyed by a huge fiery snake. Her village is burned and destroyed. With very little life left, she calls on the gods, Mother Earth specifically, to help her. She is sent on a quest to go to the future to find Hiempsal and bring him back to help free Mother Earth. She is unhappy as no one believes in her anymore. The journey takes Calypso to the future to Daniel and then back to her time and on the quest to save the world. The journey leads them into lands with extreme prejudices and some full of love. The relationship between Daniel and Calypso is fun and eye opening. They have a connection that at the end will bring a tear to your eye. This story is full of history and gods of the past with an amazing tale of friendship. A fun story!

 

 

 

Gianna Scannell

Years have passed since Gianna Scannell became an adult. Though she went on to a very serious and at times heartbreaking profession, she never lost the sense of wonder that is typical of adolescents. She sees herself as an eternal teen and enjoys writings by teens or for teens. She was born in Italy, the country of poets, opera composers and singers. She is an eternal optimist and still believes in the future.

She wrote Ashenland after years of education about the Bronze Age, particularly about the people who inhabited Asia Minor during the Bronze Age. It is fortunate that recently many landmark discoveries were made about that age. This added a sense of place to her novel, the first of a series of four.

She is a retired US-trained trauma surgeon and a former professor of Basic Sciences at the St James School of Medicine-Anguilla. She lives in St John US Virgin Islands with her husband Denis and her german shepherd dog Kiki.

Beside the many technical publications in medical journals, Dr. Scannell is one of the authors of the Memoir ‘Being a Woman Surgeon’ published by Gordian Knot Books. Her story carries the title of ‘Dissecting the Soul of a Woman Surgeon’.

#Review #NewRelease – Firebloods by Casey Hays

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Jude Gallagher thought she was crazy.

It all started when the boy next door made her hear music—inside her head. All the time.

It was torture.

She didn’t think things could get worse. But then one hot summer, her best friend Kane O’Reilly decides to tell her how he really feels about her. Music inside her head? That’s nothing compared what happens next.

Things only turn stranger when she and her lab partner Frankie Melmack begin a project to prove the existence of the Vatra u Krvi—a race of people tied to the mythical Phoenix. Add in a neglectful mother and a magic ring, and the insanity that defines Jude’s life is pretty well complete.

Heat surges across the Nevada desert, and the best and worst parts of Jude Gallagher’s life collide as myth meets reality. In the middle of the chaos, she begins to hear more than just music. And she has to wonder…

Maybe… just maybe… she really is crazy after all.

 

Goodreads

 

Absolutely love Firebloods!!!!! Such and intense story! It’s so captivating. I never got bored and was constantly trying to find the angle.

Jude has always felt a little off. A little crazy, but she has dealt with it. She is living and doing it the best she knows how. She has four best friends, two of which are guys. She has been best friends with the guys since they were very small. She has an undeniable attraction to Kane, and he with her, but she is adamant about it not going any further than friends as she does not want to ruin her friendship. Jude is working on a science project with her other friend, Frankie. The girls are looking into the existence of Firebloods. This is a race of people that have been injected with the blood of the mythical Phoenix. As the project continues and more secrets are uncovered she finds that a lot of things aren’t always as they seem. One secret is uncovered but more questions keep arising.

These characters are awesome! They are normal, everyday teenagers who are always into shenanigans. They are super easy to relate to and I see a little of myself in all of them. Firebloods is a completely different story than anything I have read before. I love this spin on the mythical story of the Phoenix. This is the “keep you on the edge of your seat” type of story. The story is full of twists and turns, trust and secrets, love and lies. I CANNOT WAIT FOR THE SEQUEL!

 

Amazon

 

Casey Hays

Casey Hays is a long time resident of Clovis, New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment, where she continues to reside with her husband of 25 years and her two children. A former high school English teacher, she took up writing in 2008, due to her love of the young adult genre.

Her debut novel,The Cadence, a YA supernatural romance, made its appearance in November 2012. Breeder, her first Dystopian Science Fiction novel with underlying Christian elements, and the first in the Arrow’s Flight Series, released January 15, 2014. She has since released the entire Arrow’s Flight series and has begun work on a set of Arrow’s Flight novellas. Look for The Scent of Lilac September 2016.

Her favorite authors include Sarah Dessen, Suzanne Collins, Lauren Oliver, historical fiction author Anya Seton and Christian author Francine Rivers.

#Review – The Scent of Lilac (Arrow’s Flight Novella #1) by Casey Hays

The Scent of Lilac (Arrow's Flight Novella #1)

Mia has always taken pride in her submission to the Council. Compliant to a fault, she diligently follows the rules without considering whether they are fair or just. But when her best friend Kate kills the Council leader and banishes herself from the Village, Mia suddenly becomes a target for harassment. And for the first time in her life, she finds herself in opposition to the Council.

In her despair, she is drawn to the one person she has fervently resisted: her mate. Soon, her feelings for him shift into something real and powerful—powerful enough to make him human. Powerful enough to make loving him dangerous.

The Village stands on the brink of chaos, and an ever-growing mood of dissension threatens. In the midst of it all, Mia’s heart begins to change. But when a group of young rebels drags her into its fold, her courage is quickly pitted against her fear. Will she join the fight and allow bravery to transform her spirit? Or will she drown in her own cowardice once again?

The Scent of Lilac is the first novella in The Arrow’s Flight Series. Find the complete series at www.whisperingpages.com

Goodreads

A beautiful story of finding yourself and standing up for what you believe in…or what you are not sure you believe in yet. 🙂 The companion novella picks up right where Breeder leaves off. In Breeder, Kate has been chosen as the new leader but ends up leaving with the boys from Eden. Mia decides not to leave with Kate but the longer Kate has been gone, Mia realizes that she is truly alone. She starts to think about some of the things that Kate said as she left and Mia starts to pay attention to her surroundings more. Her village is falling apart and she finds solace with here mate in the pit. She starts to question more of her life and what is truly right and wrong. She changes in this story as she stands up for what she believes in and brings new meaning to her life and the village. She becomes stronger because of the hand she has been dealt. There is an array of bad that happens but those are the things that can make people stronger. The ending of this story takes place after the end of Master. It is a very intimate, heart wrenching, and lovely story that will stay with you long after you finish it.

Amazon

Casey Hays

Casey Hays is a long time resident of Clovis, New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment, where she continues to reside with her husband of 25 years and her two children. A former high school English teacher, she took up writing in 2008, due to her love of the young adult genre.

Her debut novel,The Cadence, a YA supernatural romance, made its appearance in November 2012. Breeder, her first Dystopian Science Fiction novel with underlying Christian elements, and the first in the Arrow’s Flight Series, released January 15, 2014. She has since released the entire Arrow’s Flight series and has begun work on a set of Arrow’s Flight novellas. Look for The Scent of Lilac September 2016.

Her favorite authors include Sarah Dessen, Suzanne Collins, Lauren Oliver, historical fiction author Anya Seton and Christian author Francine Rivers.

#Review – Princess of the Damned (Skeleton Key) by Wendy Knight

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Skeleton Key Book Series
One Skeleton Key. Endless Adventures.
https://skeletonkeybookseries.com

Landon has never seen his own reflection. He saw hers instead. He grew up watching this girl in the mirror grow with him. Grew up memorizing every feature, every movement, every horror she endured. He can see into her palace, into the darkness she’s trapped in.
When he was little, he told his parents about her. They thought she was an imaginary friend, and they humored him.
But she didn’t go away.
And when Landon was seventeen, he fell in love with her.
She is a captive of the Queen of the Damned.
Now he’ll risk everything to try to save her—his life, his home, his entire world.
Bloody Mary
The queen in the mirror.
Bloody Mary
Waiting to steal your soul.
Bloody Mary…

 

Goodreads

 

What a unique spin on the Bloody Mary stories. This is a YA novel that can be read as a standalone but is part of a series. Landon is 17 and grew up watching this mesmerizing girl in the mirror…that no one else can see. Elizabeth is said girl in the mirror. She held captive in the Isle of the Damned by Bloody Mary. She can feel Landon and his strength. She has been held captive for so long everything tends to run together. Things start to go awry and the Isle of the Damned and Earth are in trouble. Landon is called on for an important mission and Elizabeth finds her true strength and calling. This is truly a twisted tale that is the emotional rollercoaster you come to expect with teenagers. However, there are twists to this ghost story that you won’t see coming and these will keep you on the edge of your seat to the very end. This story touches on depression and how they overcome these obstacles. The characters and world building are great. You won’t go wrong with this story. I was not aware at the beginning that this is a novella for the Skeleton Key series but am looking forward to reading more!
Bloody Mary…Bloody Mary…Bloody Mary

 

Amazon

B&N

 

Wendy  Knight

Wendy Knight was born and raised in Utah by a wonderful family who spoiled her rotten because she was the baby. Now she spends her time driving her husband crazy with her many eccentricities (no water after five, terror when faced with a live phone call, etcetera, etcetera). She also enjoys chasing her three adorable kids, playing tennis, watching football, reading, and hiking. Camping is also big: her family is slowly working toward a goal of seeing all the National Parks in the U.S.

You can usually find her with at least one Pepsi nearby, wearing ridiculously high heel for whatever the occasion may be. And if everything works out just right, she will also be writing.

 

 

 

#Review – The Experiment of Professor Polgas by Sarah Brownlee

The Experiment of Professor Polgas

 

If you were an animal, what would you be? This is the question Blaise, Ash and Dinah unexpectedly stumble upon during the summer holidays when they enter a strange internet café and a mysterious woman asks them to take an online test to discover their inner beast. They are happy to oblige. Online tests are always fun and this one comes with its own special perks.

But what they don’t realise is that not far away, in the heart of London, a mad professor is watching them. Professor Polgas is preparing something; something that will change them forever; something that will have them on the run for their very lives …

This fantasy novel from Sarah Brownlee is a thrill ride of twists and turns, ready to surprise at every corner and sure to delight both children and adults alike.

 

Goodreads

 

Great storytelling of how the Morphers came to be! You don’t have to read the other two novels in order to enjoy this one. Although this is aimed to a younger teenage audience it is nice to see how the Morphers came to be. This shows how the trio came upon the experiment with Professor Polgas. This is to find out what your inner beast is. The teens are then given an opportunity to participate in the experiment. When they make this decision to be a part of this they have no idea how this will impact not only their lives but everyone else as well. After the experiment there was no direction as the hall was sabotaged. They then find out that there are others that were part of the experiment that need help too. They go on this coming of age journey. They find themselves and their animal within. There is a balance for all things. The good and the bad. They have to choose where they stand and how they will protect that. This is a fun story that will get the other books a re-read so that I can enjoy the past with the present. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and look forward to many more.

 

Amazon

B&N

 

Sarah Brownlee

Sarah Brownlee is a Young Adult and Children’s author based in London, England. Her debut novel ‘How the Wolf Lost Her Heart‘ is a YA Paranormal Romance set in a grim, futuristic London where thugs and criminals run the city. Its sequel, YA Fantasy Dystopian ‘How the Tiger Faced His Challenge‘ was released in October 2015 and centres around a city at the brink of civil war.

Sarah is a prolific freelance writer who has worked for a number of establishments internationally and at home. She has been featured on Konami UK, the Good Web Guide and in the ‘Phenomena’ magazine which is distributed in the UK, Canada and Russia among others. Her personal blog reaches an international audience, with hundreds of daily readers.

When Sarah is not writing, she can usually be found walking dogs or eating copious amounts of sashimi.

 

#Review – Watch Me Rise *SEQUEL TO NOVELLA “FEEL ME BREAK” * By Tara R.

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synopsis

After the loss of her brother, Chloe Reed left Fairville for a fresh start. Now she is back to get answers to the questions surrounding her brother’s death. But coming back home isn’t easy, especially when it’s a home filled with painful memories, a home where her life was ripped apart. However, there is someone who has been stuck in her head for a long time who makes it all easy. Her knight in shining armor who saved her life two years ago. Nick Grayson. Except this time maybe he needs saving.

Nick Grayson is back in the town of Fairville where it all started. The town that left him with nothing but guilt and regret, the town where he destroyed a family. He met Chloe on the worst night of his life. He knows he doesn’t deserve her but he can’t stay away – and neither can she.

*NO CLIFFHANGER.*

 

TBR

Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Amazon

 

kellys review

Before you start, grab your tissues and get ready for a rollercoaster of all the feels! First, you must read the novella, Feel Me Break. Unexpectedly, Nick saves Chloe by being in the right place at the right time. Neither of them could stop thinking about each other and out of nowhere they see each other again. Fate? Maybe. But a lot happens to each of them since that one meeting that changed their lives forever. “Disappointments, crushed hopes, regrets, guilt, loneliness…” Two years is a long time…Chloe has to go back to the one place she has been trying to stay away from…Home. Then they meet each other again! This is where things get messy. Both have lots of secrets. Many things that they don’t think they can get any help with. Both are punishing themselves for events that were out of their control. Slowly their lives unravel and the undeniable attraction cannot keep them apart.

 

“Everything I wanted was within my reach but instead of reaching for the stars, I got burnt by the sun and came crashing down.”

 

“It’s like the brightness of a kaleidoscope surging, the lightness in the bones when soaring high in the sky, the warmth of the first ray of sun that kisses your skin, a swelling symphony that can mend broken hearts. A feeling that’s giddy, complete , baffling and aware, thrilling and comforting ; a kind of love that soaks deep inside your bones, and lights fire to your soul and you feel it inside and outside you all the time.”

 

I have to be honest, I don’t usually go for this type of story but it is one of my favorites of all time. There are so many different things going on in the story. A lot of it hit home for me and made it all the more real and touching. These two are a definate must read. But take my advice and be ready for the feels because you are going to experience it all!

 

about the author

Tara lives in the lovely city of Toronto. An engineer during the day, she moonlights as a writer. Her favourite genres are romance, mystery and fantasy. She has been writing since she was 7 and her first story was about a spaceship (BIG Star Trek fan here).

 

When not working or writing, she catches up on her favourite shows on Netflix and spends time with family and friends.

#WOTR #Review Girl Departs Three, Part One (Spoken For) by Suzie T Roos

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synopsis

 

Zach and his family made it impossible for Tatum to be his girlfriend. Nigel made it oh-so-easy for Tate to move on. But the shock of seeing Zach again, of finally meeting his mobster family, and even coming face to face with his fiancé, convinced Tatum more than ever that Nigel was the one for her.

 

Tatum knows Zach still dreams of one day sharing his life with her, but Nigel offers her his life now – no dreaming necessary. And while Zach spends a month entertaining the fiancé that has been forced upon him by his family, why shouldn’t Tatum take her relationship with Nigel to the next level?

 

When Nigel betrays Tatum, her heart is broken. What once was clear becomes dark. She finds herself by Zach’s side yet again, needing him in a way she never imagined.

 

Zach or Nigel?

 

The decision isn’t easy because Tatum has learned the hard way—

 

Choices last a moment. Consequences last forever.

 

TBR

Goodreads

Buy Links

Amazon

B&N

 

kellys review

OMG! I don’t have words right now! Sooooo….In Girl Divided the author leaves us with a huge cliffhanger and this picks up exactly where the other ended. Perfect! So I pick up the book and am immediately engrossed by the story and BOOM! Chaos! Tatum is confronted by Zach and is more or less forced to go to a family dinner with his “fiance” who is a real… you know what. Tatum is trying to keep Zach at bay and convince herself that Nigel is the safe and best choice. Well, that is until we find out what Nigel has been hiding. Our perfect Nigel is not so perfect. Naturally, Zach is there to help Tatum when one thing leads to another and she and Zach are back together. Officially unofficial. Soon enough everything seems to be going the way it should and another curveball is thrown. Whew! Then things just keep hopping at this point. I have no way to tell you about this story other than to tell you to go read this, and now! If I tell you anything more about it then I will give it all away. Again, Tatum is playing with FIRE! HOT FIRE! Then the end happens and smacks you in the face! Suzie T Roos has absolutely captivated me. You have my attention and yes, I am on pins and needles waiting for part two. I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS!!!!

 

about the author

Suzie T. Roos is from, and has settled in, St. Louis with her husband, two children and a number of foster pets at any given time.

 

She and her husband have lived everywhere from Philadelphia, PA to out West in Santa Monica, Ca. They’re thankful they could expose their children to different American lifestyles and cultures.

 

Besides writing, Suzie’s hobbies include movies, traveling, and especially concert going with her husband and friends.

 

She’s always been an animal lover and animal rights advocate. She is certified by FEMA in IS-00011.a Animal in Disasters: Community Planning. She’s also an active volunteer at the Humane Society of Missouri.

#WOTR #Review – Girl Spoken For by Suzie T. Roos

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synopsis

What’s the point of making a New Year’s resolution when weeks later your life goes to the toilet anyway?

 

Sixteen-year-old Tatum Duncan’s life has turned upside down. Her best friend and grandmother has died, her mother is threatening to send her to an all-girls school for defending herself against a bully, and her abusive boyfriend nearly kills hers. 1989 isn’t turning out to be her year.

 

But just when it seems like all is lost, Tatum is saved by Zach Bertano, her longtime friend and secret crush. Her dormant attraction to him surfaces with his persistent attention. As her love for Zach grows, she comes to learn that he too has skeletons, and his issues could affect Tatum’s life in ways she never imagined.

 

Zach’s overlooked her baggage—can she overlook his?

 

TBR

Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Amazon

B&N

 

kellys review

I have Spoken For this story! This is a mixture between YA with some scenes that could move it into the NA category. I absolutely love that this is set in 1989. So refreshing! Tatum is a sophomore in high school and has just lost her best friend, her grandmother. She has always embraced being different and being her own person. She ends up with Kyle, the super hot jock. She then thinks that everything is great and how she is so lucky that he wants her. Tatum is extremely naive and keeps trying to give Kyle the benefit of the doubt when he gets extremely possessive and abusive. She is put in a situation that is life altering. This is where things get really emotionally unstable. She feels that she cannot go to anyone. Zach (the other super hot, dark and mysterious guy) knows something is going on but cannot resist being Tatum’s knight in shining armor….or mobster in black. So many conflicting emotions and crazy secrets start surfacing. Gauntlets are thrown. And Tatum always ends up in the middle. The characters in the story are well written, extremely relateable, and easy to fall in love with. In the end Tatum does get what she wants but it may be at an incredible price. I have to say that I picked this book up because of the cover. It’s absolutely gorgeous! The perk is that the story is even better. I could not put this down. I am looking forward to the rest of the series.

 

about the author

Suzie T. Roos is from, and has settled in, St. Louis with her husband, two children and a number of foster pets at any given time.

 

She and her husband have lived everywhere from Philadelphia, PA to out West in Santa Monica, Ca. They’re thankful they could expose their children to different American lifestyles and cultures.

 

Besides writing, Suzie’s hobbies include movies, traveling, and especially concert going with her husband and friends.

 

She’s always been an animal lover and animal rights advocate. She is certified by FEMA in IS-00011.a Animal in Disasters: Community Planning. She’s also an active volunteer at the Humane Society of Missouri.