Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Questionable Friendship by Samantha March (Author Guest Post / Book Review / Contest Giveaway)

In association with Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours, Jersey Girl Book Reviews is pleased to host the virtual book tour event for A Questionable Friendship by Author Samantha March!

Author Guest Post

Born To Travel

When I was younger, one of my favorite places to be was at my Grandma’s house. There was so much history there, and I never knew what I would find. From the old car in the basement that I would pretend to drive, to the boxes filled with love letters from my Grandpa when he was serving his country, going to Grandma’s was always an adventure. One day I stumbled upon a box of Encyclopedias. I know, right – what the heck are those? I thought they were the bee’s knees though, and loved reading them. Yes, I was an odd child even back then. But the parts that fascinated me the most was learning about the states. There was all kinds of knowledge – how they got to be states, the current population, the state bird, the state flower, the attractions. I soaked in the knowledge and when I was about twelve I made a handwritten list of each state in the order that I wanted to visit them. First – Hawaii. Last – Alaska. I am clearly a warm weather girl. It was my goal right then and there to visit each state.

Fast forward fifteen years later, and I’m not quite there yet. I’ve been to 20 states, probably more around 25 if you count simply driving through parts of states, but I don’t want to count them. I want to really get to be able to look around somewhere, talk to the people that live there and see what the locals see. I still think it would be crazy cool to do a road trip across the USA or to at least half of the country and see different stops along the way. I feel like that’s pretty old-school these days, but I’m holding on hope to it. But I have 30 states to go, and my trusty list will remain in my lock-box, just ready to have more states ticked off as I go.

Happy Travels!

About The Author

Samantha March is an author, editor, publisher, blogger, and all around book lover. She runs the popular book/women’s lifestyle blog ChickLitPlus, which keeps her bookshelf stocked with the latest reads and up to date on all things health, fitness, fashion, and celebrity related. In 2011 she launched her independent publishing company Marching Ink and has three published novels – Destined to Fail, The Green Ticket and A Questionable Friendship. When she isn’t reading, writing, or blogging, you can find her cheering for the Green Bay Packers. Samantha lives in Iowa with her husband and Vizsla puppy.


Book Review

A Questionable Friendship by Samantha March
Publisher: Marching Ink LLC
Publication Date: February 12, 2014
Format: Paperback - 214 pages / Kindle - 647 KB / Nook - 628 KB
ISBN: 0991162021
BNID: 2940148175407
Genre: Chick Lit / Women's Fiction

BUY THE BOOK: A Questionable Friendship

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours.

Book Description:

Brynne Ropert and Portland Dolish have been best friends since being paired as roommates in college. Seven years later they are now twenty-five, married, and living in Maine–– but the two women couldn’t be more different. Brynne finds fulfillment in her life as a wife, mother and owner of a small cafĂ© and bookshop, but is struggling to expand her family. Portland is still coping with her mother’s death during her childhood, and her marriage is unraveling before her eyes. Portland envies her friend’s seemingly stable and easy life while Brynne doesn’t understand the growing distance between them and cannot begin to guess what secret Portland is hiding about her husband and crumbling marriage. While one woman feels shut out, the other enters into a web of lies to protect herself.

A Questionable Friendship explores what really makes someone a true friend, a support system, a sister. How much trust goes into a friendship and when is being a friend not enough? Brynne and Portland’s story will attempt to answer those questions, and show that happily ever after isn’t in the cards for everyone.

Book Excerpt:

I lay in bed by myself that night, as Trent said he still had some reports to look at. I flipped onto my stomach, my favorite sleeping position, and tried to will myself to sleep. But my mind wouldn’t shut off. I flashed to the papers I found in Trent’s desk last night, purely on accident. I had never thought to snoop on my husband of two years. I was trying to find our tax returns from last year to give to the accountant, as we were severely behind and the April deadline was just around the corner. I had tried calling Trent to see where they were, but his phone was going to straight to voicemail. I knew he was driving home and sometimes his service cut in and out, so I didn’t think anything of it. I decided to find the papers myself, mostly out of boredom and the need to do something.

Trent’s office in our 2200 square foot ranch home was on the first floor, all the way to the east. I rarely ventured in there as I had no reason too, only popping in when Trent was working. It felt a little foreign being there, but I sat at his desk chair and looked around me. His desk wasn’t just some shoddy little thing tucked into the corner, no, the desk ran almost the full length of the wall, big enough for three people to easily fit at. He had one desktop computer set up and a laptop as well, and he carried yet another laptop with him on business trips. A printer that doubled as a scanner sat on one corner, and a fax machine on another. He had multiple calendars hung up with agendas scribbled on the majority of the dates, and another smaller calendar that sat to the right of the desktop. It was opened to that date, March 14, and scribbled on there was “Petosi.” He had been in that town for the past two nights, and was due home late in the night.

After some searching, I finally found the drawer that seemed to hold important records. Our passports were in there, our wedding license, birth certificates, and deed to the house. I found the titles to both our vehicles, but no tax information. I frowned, trying to think of another spot he would have them. I slipped all the papers back in the appropriate files and shut the drawer, and when I did, a single piece of paper had floated down to me, from somewhere at the top of the desk. I grabbed the sheet and read over the words, my eyes growing wide, then squinting as I read and re-read. My body turned cold as I sat in shock, trying to process what I had read. When I realized I’d been sitting there for probably thirty minutes doing absolutely nothing I jumped, understanding that Trent could walk through the door at any minute and find me. Then what would I say?

Carefully, I pushed myself up and climbed onto the office chair, putting the piece of paper back where I thought it had come from. From my new vantage point, I saw the top of his desk was riddled with other papers and...a calendar. I swallowed hard as I peered closer and saw what was written in under March 13. My stomach heaving, I quickly left the office after righting the chair to its original spot, and fled to the bathroom.

I blinked back tears in bed as I forced myself to calm my mind. Trent had some explaining to do sure, but how did I tell him what I had found? Did that really even matter in the grand scheme of things? But knowing the Trent as of lately, he would try to turn this around on me and make me look like the bad person. I squeezed my eyes shut and prayed for sleep. I just wanted to sleep, to forget about what I had found. The day had been torturous enough, trying to make everything seem like it was hunky dory and nothing out of place. And what would tomorrow bring? More questions. And next week – Trent would be gone for two weeks. Would he be going where he said he was? What was he actually doing on his trips away?

The bedroom door opened and I saw Trent enter the room, already in just his boxers. I let my breathing become even so he would think I was asleep.

He plugged his cell phone in and set it on the nightstand, then pulled the covers back and crawled in. I felt his cold feet touch mine and jerked involuntarily. “Are you awake?” he whispered. I could feel his erection pressing into my back, and knew what he wanted. He probably touched me on purchase.

“Mmmph,” I mumbled, not opening my eyes.

“Port. You awake?” he asked again, clearly not getting the hint as his hand wandered to my breast.

I rolled away and made more sleeping noises, begging in my mind for him to leave me alone. He stayed quiet for another moment, then finally rolled the other way.

I was off the hook – at least for one night.

My Book Review:

Do you ever really know your best friend? Outward appearances mask personal issues and secrets ... and what really goes on behind closed doors ...

Two best friends since college ... both with the outward appearance of perfect marriages and shared lives ... but when it comes to personal issues, they hold each other at a distance with their deeply held secrets ... it makes a person question if they really do have true friendships ...

In A Questionable Friendship, author Samantha March departs from the usual Chick Lit genre with an emotional tale that takes a look behind the closed doors of a longtime friendship between two women, and their personal trials and tribulations that will test the bonds and strength of their friendship.

Set in Delaney, Maine and written in the alternating first person narrative, the reader follows the friendship and personal lives of Brynne Ropert and Portland Dolish. Both are married to successful men and have the outward appearance of a perfect marriage, but behind closed doors these best friends struggle with personal issues (health, marital, family, and illegal activity) that they keep to themselves, secrets that will test the strength of their friendship.

A Questionable Friendship is an intriguing and real life exploration into friendships, from outward appearances to inner struggles and triumphs, that questions the bond and truth of a friendship when everything is not as it seems. I couldn't help but get drawn into Brynne and Portland's story, I found it easy to relate and sympathize with them as they struggled with personal issues that life threw their way. This is a story that stress the point that no one ever really knows what happens behind closed doors, or what a person is really dealing with in their life.

Author Samantha March weaves a realistic and dramatic tale of friendship and intimate relationships that made me ponder about how well I know my own friendships, and how well I deal with my own intimate relationships. I applaud the author for addressing serious life issues that the women dealt with in a thoughtful and realistic manner, she makes it easy for the reader to relate to and connect with the characters and the trials and tribulations that they faced.

A Questionable Friendship is a compelling and powerful story that will tug at the heartstrings and leave an imprint on your soul.


Contest Giveaway

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Virtual Book Tour Schedule

Tour Schedule:

April 7 – Every Free Chance Book Reviews – Excerpt 
April 8 –Confessions of the Unfaithful Widow – Guest Post & Excerpt
April 8 –Arline’s Cozy Corner – Review
April 9 – Chick Lit Plus – Review
April 10 – Chick Lit Goddess – Excerpt
April 11- Storm Goddess Book Reviews – Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
April 11 – The Book Bag – Review & Excerpt
April 14 – Cat Lavoie – Excerpt
April 14 – Change the Word – Q&A & Excerpt
April 15 – Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews – Review & Guest Post
April 16 – Book Mama Blog – Q&A
April 16 – Crooks on Books – Review, Guest Post & Q&A
April 17 – eBook Addict – Q&A
April 21 – eBook Addict – Review 
April 21 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
April 21 – Sara Palacios – Review


  1. Thank you so much for reviewing my book Kathleen! xx

    1. Loved the book Samantha, you out did yourself girl! Thank you for the opportunity to host your virtual book tour event. :)