Posted in Free Friday

FREEBIE FRIDAY – Get Free Audiobooks

Happy Friday Everyone! Welcome to “Freebie Friday” here at Combing Through the Pages.

In case you don’t already know, I started narrating audiobooks last year. I get promo codes from Amazon for the books I narrate. I tried to set up a page on here where anyone could request these codes but, sadly, my blogging skills just weren’t quite expert enough to pull that off. And, I’m lazy. As a book blogger, I know a lot of book lovers who might be interested, but I don’t have the time or energy to send out requests… So here we are at my solution – Freebie Fridays.

Every Friday, I’ll share the audiobooks I still have promo codes available for, along with a short blurb about the book. You can request a promo code by using my Contact Form or sending me an email to jessica@jesscombs.com. Just be sure to include your name, the title of the book or books you’d like a code for, and whether you use Audible-US or Audible UK. (Sorry, but I’m only given promo codes for Audible US and UK.)

Just to be clear… these are commitment-free promo codes! I’m not asking for reviews or anything in exchange (although if you enjoy the book, a review would obviously be nice).  My little space on the internet isn’t all that large and I’m pretty much just saying “Thank you for being here and supporting me. Here’s a free book.”

Available Audiobooks:

A young girl dies mysteriously from what can only be explained as a rare illness. Her younger sister finds a diary in her room that has never been written in. Day by day the book reveals a new writing that urges the young girl to investigate the death. From encounters to the writings, there is a story to be heard, a mystery to be solved.


The first book, The Rose Diary, is a roller-coaster of suspense, and this one will take you on an even wilder ride.

In book one, we learn that Jacky’s sister, Sandra, has been murdered by poison. A series of paranormal experiences lead to the arrest of someone Jacky has never really been fond of. But is that the real murderer?

This exciting second book takes you through twist after twist and keeps you guessing. A ghost story, murder mystery, and courtroom drama, this audiobook is fantastically fun.


Searching for answers is the main thing on Tabitha’s mind. But when an exchange of black market magic goes wrong, she finds herself entangled with a member of the High Council.

With her mate by her side, Tabitha finally finds what she’s looking for, only to discover it could change the balance of power in necromancer society…and not for the better.

Blood and Deceit is a standalone story set in the Paranormal Council Universe.


Push, Tumble, & Fall is the Paris Book Festival First Place, Winner.

New Orlean’s Myla Blackbird has a gift some would consider a curse. She can heal the broken and the dammed, and all for the small price of their sanity. But when her boyfriend leaves her abruptly, she herself begins to fall apart. Everybody tells her she’s crazy, to forget him, that it was all nothing but a dream. But Myla can’t forget. She can fix everyone else, but will she be able to fix herself?

Push, Tumble, & Fall is a stand-alone novel part of The Lunatics series.


Peter (2 Peter 3:11) asks us to consider what kind of people we ought to be in light of the fact that the Lord will return for His people at any time, that this world as we know it will then disappear, and that we need to be prepared every day for this anticipated event. This book delves into those things the Lord expects us to be doing and ways we are to prepare. There are four emphases: loving, readied, holy, and growing. Each chapter ends with prayer and includes a “Reflect” section with probing questions.


Again, just fill out the contact me form or email me and include your name, title of the book or books you’d like to listen to, and whether you need an Audible-US or an Audible-UK code. Thanks for your support!!

Posted in Wrap-up

January 2020 Wrap-Up


Some of my favorite posts to read on other blogs are the monthly wrap ups so I’m excited to actually do one here! (Any feedback or suggestions on how I can improve these over the next few months would definitely be appreciated!)

One of my goals for 2020 is to post more consistently…I didn’t really manage to do that, although I did post more often than I had been so I guess that’s something!

I posted only four reviews the entire month! Click the links to read my thoughts on the following books:

Another goal I have is to post more about the audiobooks available I’ve narrated and/or the books I’ll be or I’m currently working on. I failed miserably since these are the only two audiobook posts I managed in January:

And the remaining few January posts were as follows:


So there you go.A summary of my January journey combing through the pages here on my little space of the internet. How was your January?

Posted in Audiobooks

CURRENTLY RECORDING: The American Dream by Russell A. Baker

The American Dream

Last week, I talked about one of the first books I narrated, The Rose Diary. This week, I thought it’d be fun to talk about what I’m currently recording.

The American Dream is Book 1 in The O’Connor Chronicles series written by Russell A. Baker. It’s a middle-grade time travel novel about faith, family, friendship and American history. Here’s the Goodreads blurb:

My name is Kaitlyn O’Connor and the story I’m about to tell you is unbelievable, but I know it’s true, because it’s my story.

I’m just a kid who goes to school, and lives in a small town called Ottersprings, Minnesota. I also love history. Maybe you do too, but most people think history is boring! Well this story shows exactly how not boring it is!

It all started on a rainy weekend. The kind where bored kids look for something exciting to do. My dad always says, if you look hard enough you can always find an adventure; well we found adventure and much more.

My friend Sam and I, along with my younger sister Kirsten discovered our next door neighbor, Mr. Bacon, was a lot more than just a 7th grade history teacher, when we stumbled into his secret workshop where he had invented a time traveling device. That’s right, I said TIME TRAVEL!

Mr. Bacon was happy to have us join him on his time jumping field trips and it was all fun and games until the past caught up to him like a violent tsunami that swept us all up in its wake.

Our teacher had a ruthless enemy from another era who would do anything to get his hands on the time device. When this nemesis broke into the secret workshop and stole the golden prototype time device, he also kidnapped my sister and used it to jump back in time!

Together, Mr. Bacon, Sam, and I were determined to follow them in order to rescue Kirsten in another century, and save the future of our beloved America.

Recording The American Dream is the most fun I’ve had narrating audiobooks so far! Don’t get me wrong, I love this job but not every book has me excited to step into my studio and get inside its world, the character’s heads, etc. As a book blogger, I probably know more than most about how every book has its niche and that even when you read the jacket and think “this is going to be awesome!”… there are lots of times when it’s just not. With blogging, I can DNF a book if it’s not something I love. Not so easy when a book becomes your job and you’re stuck inside it day in and day out. (Just realized I’m starting to ramble and this topic would be better suited to a whole other post… Moving on!)

So, back to talking about my time in the studio narrating The American Dream. Some of my favorite books to work on are told from the first-person point of view. American Dream does this, but different chapters are told by different characters. So I get to be the courageous yet reserved Kaitlyn (who’s the main character), but I also get to be her bouncy, adventurous younger sister, Kirsten.

There are some great characters throughout the story, like Kaitlyn’s best friend, Sam, and their teacher, Mr. Bacon, and I’m enjoying performing all their parts but………. I’m not sure if he counts as a “person” but probably my favorite voice to act during production on The American Dream has been Mr. Bacon’s robot, Buster.

I’m a HUGE R.A. Salvatore fan. SO much so, that my husband and I are naming our daughter after one of his characters. Kaitlyn and Sam’s history teacher is also a Salvatore junkie. And, in the words of Mr. Bacon, when he created Buster, he “tried to pull from a couple of my favorite characters and embed those characteristics into the AI. Clearly, I may have gone a bit too far.”

The result? I get to channel my inner Bruenor Battlehammer to voice Buster the robot!! I cannot tell you how much fun (and at times funny) that is!! Seriously, it’ll be worth getting and giving this book a listen just for my dwarven accent people!

The story itself is written for middle-grade, but I’m still enjoying it even though I’ve already read through it multiple times (and am basically living it any time my kids will let me work right now). I really can’t wait to share this story with more people. Stay tuned to find out when it’ll be available on audio, narrated by yours truly!

Follow me on Twitter and Goodreads.

Posted in Audiobooks

AUDIOBOOK AVAILABLE: The Rose Diary by Curtis Maynard

AUDIOBOOK AVAILABLE: The Rose Diary by Curtis MaynardThe Rose Diary by Curtis Maynard
on March 26, 2019
Pages: 201
Goodreads
Synopsis

A young girl dies mysteriously from what can only be explained as a rare illness. Her younger sister finds a diary in her room that has never been written in. Day by day the book reveals a new writing that urges the young girl to investigate the death. From encounters to the writings, there is a story to be heard, a mystery to be solved.


The Rose Diary was one of the first novels I narrated. This may be why it’s near and dear to my heart…or, more likely, it’s because I got so attached to the characters that it was hard to end production on this story.

It’s a young adult paranormal mystery that begins with Jacky telling the story of the death of a boy who’s slightly older than herself, and her reaction to it. The event causes her to wonder about death in a way she never had or ever needed to before.

But then her sister, Sandra, dies from what turns out to be something more than just a childhood illness. And Jacky’s life is turned upside down as messages from the other side begin coming to her through her sisters diary.

Jacky must interrupt the vague messages in order to find out who is responsible for her sister’s death. But her only help is from her two best friends – one of which has abandoned her to hang out with the sister of a suspect!

Sound interesting? Listen to The Rose Diary now!!

The Rose Diary at Audible – US

The Rose Diary at Audible – UK

The Rose Diary at Audible – FR

The Rose Diary at Audible – DE

Posted in blogging

My Top 5 Blogging and Reading Goals for 2020

Not gonna lie, I’m a little afraid to write this post. Last year was the first time I’ve ever put a clear list of goals “on paper” and I achieved exactly… ZERO!!

In my defense, last year was a year of the unexpected. How’s that joke go…? If you wanna make God laugh, tell Him your plans? Well, God was doing some serious belly laughing at me in 2019!

When 2019 started, we were something similar to empty-nesters. My oldest daughter was away at college, my youngest was living with her father in another county, and it was just my husband and me in an eerily silent home, figuring out life without any kids begging for our attention 20+ hours of the day.

By the end of 2019 we had six kids – Four of which were under four years of age and I honestly can’t remember the last time it was quiet here for more than 5 minutes except for nap and bedtime!!

In the “calm” before our home became something resembling a 24-hour daycare, I set up my recording studio in a closet under our stairs and began earnestly working on my audiobook career. After the youngest four of our tribe moved in, I found myself with more work than I could handle and keeping up with my blog was impossible! Plus, I just didn’t feel like it.

Even thinking about writing a blog post began causing anxiety attacks. So, for the sake of my mental health and the general well-being of everyone around me, my online life became close to non-existent while we were all adjusting to a new “normal.”

It took quite some time, but I’ve figured out how to continue narrating and producing audiobooks amidst the chaos. Every day brings at least three unexpected twists, but I don’t think I’ve ever been happier…which, now that I’m thinking about it, is pretty freaking odd. I mean, I’m probably more stressed/worried on a regular basis, but in some ways I’m more calm and laidback and…well… Happy.

And that happiness has finally extended to a desire for my website as well. I’m feeling excited about connecting with other book lovers and sharing my life and thoughts with my online peeps again. Which is something I haven’t felt since I first started blogging a couple years ago.

But that’s not really the point of this post. The whole topic is supposed to be what I want to accomplish on my blog and combing through the pages of my TBR in 2020. Instead, I once again managed to create a whole other post within a post.

Moving on…

Here are my goals for 2020:

1. Read and review at least 52 books! I wasn’t able to get much reading accomplished last year. Even when I did, I didn’t have it in me to jump online and review them. But I pretty much transformed into a reading and knitting machine in the last month or so and I’m looking forward to continuing that throughout the year!

2. Post at least 5 times a week. I’ve managed to put together a blogging planner for January that includes a post every day except Sundays! Not sure if I’ll be able to keep up that level of planning and writing the entire year, but I feel like I’m off to a great start.

3. Reestablish links with other book bloggers. One of the best parts of talking about books online is that there are so many incredibly supportive people in the community. I’ve really missed that as my “real” life took me farther and farther away from my life online. I’m looking forward to connecting with everyone again!

4. Promote my audiobooks. So I’m pretty much the worst when it comes to self-promo and marketing. I don’t know if it’s because I hate talking about myself or that I worry too much about coming across as pushy or what, but everytime I think about mentioning I’ve narrated a new book, I literally get itchy! Like right now…my left arm feels like I’ve managed to get chicken pocks! Ugh.

Anyway, I plan on dedicating one post a week to talking about what I’m working on in my studio, what’s already out, and what I’m planning on doing next.

5. Giveaways!!! I only got to do one giveaway last year. It was so exciting and much more fun than I’d expected. I really want to do at least three in 2020, and more if possible!

So there you have it. My top 5 blogging/reading goals for the year 2020. What are your goals? If you’ve posted a 2020 goals post, leave me a link below so I can check them out!

Thanks for visiting and Happy New Year!

Posted in Weekly Update

Studio Under the Stairs – Update #2

Well, my plan to write a weekly audiobook update already failed. I totally forgot to post one last week! So I guess this will be just like everything else on this site – I’ll post seemingly random, yet with some sort of vague sense of an organizational schedule…

Currently Recording:

I finished recording What Kind of People Ought We to Be: Preparation for the day of the Lord by Patsy Scott last week. This week, I’ll be finishing up The Rose Diary by Curtis Maynard.

I’m really loving this story and I’m really hoping everyone enjoys the final product as much as I’m enjoying recording it!! Here’s the deets from Goodreads:

Studio Under the Stairs – Update #2The Rose Diary by Curtis Maynard
on March 26, 2019
Pages: 201
Goodreads
Synopsis

A young girl dies mysteriously from what can only be explained as a rare illness. Her younger sister finds a diary in her room that has never been written in. Day by day the book reveals a new writing that urges the young girl to investigate the death. From encounters to the writings, there is a story to be heard, a mystery to be solved.


I’ll have some Audible-US and Audible-UK promo copies available once The Rose Diary goes on sale, so if you’re a book blogger interested in a review copy, let me know! (Please specify whether you’ll be needing a US or UK code in your message.)

Currently Available:

The following titles are currently available on Audible, Amazon, and iTunes:

Blood and Deceit by Laura Greenwood (I still have some promo codes available for this title. Contact Me if interested in obtaining a review copy.)

Bible Made Easy by Sarah O. Annie

Ghost Stalker by Isabella Bailey

Pearl Port Singer by Natashiah Jansen