Wednesday, March 30, 2016

THE FABULOUS FIFTIES

Just a little note before Friday. A quote from Anthony DiFlorio III in an article in "Sheet Music Magazine" the September/October 2000 issue.

"It is quite appropriate that the decade of the fifties should neatly split the 20th Century in two, for it was a time of great change in American life and culture. Popular music was a harbinger of things to come and a prime example of the ever-changing face of society."

He goes on to describe these changes, from pop music with Bing Crosby and others, to Rock 'n' roll with Elvis, to Television and other changes. We'll be looking at music, along with many other topics.

See you.

Monday, March 28, 2016

BOOK REVIEWS AND LITPICK

Quote for the week:  You're going to come across people in your life who will say all the right words at all the right times. But in the end, it's always their actions you should judge them by. It's actions, not words, that matter. Nicholas Sparks

Lately, I've been trying to catch up on reading and reviewing. My TBR stack is growing shorter, but I still have a ways to go. Here are a couple of my latest reads. Enjoy.

ANNA AND THE SWALLOW MAN Review

By Gavriel Savit



In a perfect world, a seven-year-old child would have a mother, a father, and a home. He or she would have plenty to eat and friends to play with in the magical land of childhood. Unfortunately, we live in a less than perfect world, where men fight one another, where children sometimes are left to struggle for survival on their own. This is the world of seven-year-old Anna Lania in Author Gavriel Savit’s novel ANNA AND THE SWALLOW MAN.

The year is 1939. Anna and her father live in Krakow. Poland is occupied by the Germans. The day her world changes, her seventh birthday, Anna’s father, a professor at the university, has to attend a lecture. She never sees him again.

Anna’s story is a story of survival. It’s a story of friendship and trust. When she meets Swallow Man, they become a family, of sorts. Hunger, fear, and doubts travel with them as they wander from place to place, trying to keep out of sight of those who would kill them. When they meet Hirschl, new problems arise because he’s different.

ANNA AND THE SWALLOW MAN is a beautiful yet sad novel that will bring tears to your eyes, at least it did to mine. I so wanted good things for them, but the times they lived in were difficult for all. Anna is a precious child. The author makes her so real you care what happens to her. The Swallow Man is strange in some ways, but truly cares for Anna, though he has his own way of showing it. And Hirschl is a character I’ll always remember. They made the best of their lives. I wonder if I could do the same.

This would make a good addition to high school libraries and classrooms, as well as public libraries, to remind us of the good times we live in. Maybe we should be more thankful and complain less about our lives.

The publisher sent me an ARC for my honest review.

###


OPEN MINDS Review

By Susan Kaye Quinn


Have you ever thought it might be fun to read another person’s mind, to know their every thought? How about being able to control a person’s mind? Do you believe this might someday be possible? Who knows? Strange things happen in our world.

OPEN MINDS, a YA fantasy novel by Author Susan Kaye Quinn, is the story of Kira Moore, a zero, which means she cannot read the minds of others, making her different than most of her classmates. Being a zero is bad enough, but then she makes a discovery that leads her down a path of danger and lies, heartbreak and betrayal. Kira has to stop the horrors going on and save those she loves. But what can one girl do against the clan, a powerful organization and the men that prey on others?

The author has created a fascinating world of what can happen when a person, or persons, are different to others. Kira is a likable character who just wants to be like the other kids her age. She wants friends. But who can she trust? Simon? Raf? Her parents? Raf is my favorite character. He cares so much for Kira, and I thought he was just right for her.

OPEN MINDS is a touching story about wanting to belong. It’s a story of making choices and the result of sometimes making the wrong choices. For fantasy lovers and those who enjoy adventure too. Pick up a copy; I think you’ll enjoy it.

###

And UNDER THE PURPLE MOON has some lovely reviews and more are coming in. You can see them at Good Reads and Amazon

For those of you that write for children and teens, here's a site you might want to check for your work:  Litpick Teens and children review the books, which is neat.

That's it for today.

Happy Reading.

###
 
 

Friday, March 25, 2016

HAPPY EASTER!


 
Have a Happy Easter and a wonderful weekend.
 
 
Enjoy egg hunts and family.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

ATOZCHALLENGE THEME REVEAL

Well, my brain took a holiday this week and forgot that Monday was the A to Z Theme Reveal Day.
I hope you don't mind if I post mine today. I'm late with a lot of things, so one more shouldn't make a lot of difference. Anyway, here is my theme for 2016.

 
THE FABULOUS FIFTIES
 
This theme will be history for lots of you. For me, it was my life, at least part of it. We'll meet interesting men and women of the era, entertainment (we didn't have iPads, iPhones, computers, and other things we take for granted these days), and I'm still working on ideas. I know, time's running out. One day at a time is my motto. Stop by and travel back to the past.
 
Happy Reading
 
 

Monday, March 21, 2016

Quote for the week:  Changing the world is good for those who want their names in books. But being happy, that is for those who write their names in the lives of others, and hold the hearts of others as the treasure most dear. Orson Scott Card

Sunday, March 20, was the first full day of spring, the earliest arrival of spring since 1896.

Hope you're having spring weather. It's chilly and windy here, but warmer days are ahead.

These are some pictures I took of spring at our place.



 
 
 
This is how Patches celebrated the first day of spring. Good idea.
 
I just noticed. There's a lot of purple at my house.
 
Now, back to edits. Do they ever end?
 
And I need to catch up on reading blogs and updating mine.
 
Have a great week.
 
Happy Reading and Writing or just lazing around the house.
 


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY

I know this is a day early, but since I usually don't post on Thursday, I'm wishing you the luck of the Irish today.

My book launch at Face Book yesterday was fun. We had a lot of great visitors with super answers to my questions. Some even won prizes. My guest authors were Kai Strand and Melanie Robertson-King, both talented writers and dear friends.

UNDER A PURPLE MOON is now available at most bookstores.

AMAZON            BARNES AND NOBLE         I TUNES          KOBO

Now, back to edits for my middle grade story.

Happy Reading.



Monday, March 14, 2016

ONE MORE DAY! Book Birthday! PARTY

Quote for the week:  Resolution to succeed is more important than any other. Abraham Lincoln

Tomorrow's the day. Yes, Book Birthday for UNDER A PURPLE MOON.

 
Excerpt:
 
A sign hung above the door of the otherwise normal appearing house, its glowing black letters stating WARNING ENTER ONLY IF YOU'RE AN EARTHING. On one end of the porch, a swing creaked as it swung in the light breeze. A cat, yellow eyes glowing, glided off the swing and vanished into the darkness, where a few stars sparkled through patchy clouds.
 
Toby scratched his chin. "Sierra lives here?"
 
I patted him on the arm. "It's not as bad as it looks. Her brothers made the sign. They're a little unusual."
 
"Are they Earthlings?"
 
"They claim the are. That's debatable."  I pressed the door chimes. Howls, like coyotes yapping at the moo, rang out on the other side.
 
Toby clutched my hand. "You sure you want to stay here?"
 
I sighed. "The night won't be dull, exactly what I need."
 
The porch light flared on, and the door flew open. Sierra behind it. "Eden! Toby! How ironic. I've been thinking about you guys, and here you are." She dragged me by the arm through the door.
 
Toby hung back. "No, thanks. I have to get home." He nodded at me. "It's not too late to change
your mind."
 
"I'm okay. Promise."
 
"I'll take good care of her." Sierra grinned at Toby.
 
"I know you will." He handed me his cell. "Call me if the coyotes get too wild."
 
I rolled my eyes. "Funny." I shoved the cell back at him. "I don't want this. You keep it."
 
"Nope. I'd like to get rid of the thing. Just think. No calls from my father." He grinned or grimaced; I couldn't decide which.
 
###
 
We're having a party on Face Book tomorrow, March 15, from Noon to 6 PM. (I don't know what time that will be for some of you.) You're all invited. Prizes, a couple of guest authors: Kai Strand and Melanie Robertson-King, legends, Elvis, and also a lovely grand prize.
 
Here's the link:
 
Hope to see you there.
 
UNDER A PURPLE MOON can be found at most online bookstores.
 
 
 
 
 
 
It's also available in print.
 
Happy Reading.
 
 
 
 
 
 


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

FINDING THOR 1ST ANNIVERSARY TOUR

Today, I'm excited about sharing with you the 1st anniversary of Award Winning Author Kai Strand's YA novel FINDING THOR. While I love all of Kai's books, this is my absolute favorite. If you've read it, you'll understand why. And now, Happy 1st Anniversary to Finding Thor.

 
This cover is gorgeous, the colors just perfect.  And the heart, yes.
 


Have you found your Thor? Kai Strand wants to help with
that. Be sure to check out the giveaway below.

International intrigue hits small-town America.

Tragedy has left Cara Cassidy broken and the only thing
keeping her from giving in completely is her guilt. Until Nik Rock.

Nik stirs up feelings in degrees she has never experienced,
and causes her to do things that most assuredly give him the wrong impression –
like kiss him before their first date. Somehow, he breaks down the walls
around her emotions until she has no choice but to forgive herself and feel
again.

But a mysterious, troubled past follows Nik, and Cara may
prove to be his weakest link.

When a royal princess shows up looking for Nik, and an
international gang arrives looking for missing jewels, Cara lands in mortal
danger. Will she be able to save herself? What will happen to her newly
repaired psyche if she loses Nik?

Romance, mystery, and high stakes – just another day in high
school.

Excerpt:

Devon slid onto the bench next to Cara, bumping her
over with his hip. “So, babe, you coming tonight?”
Cara gaped at him. “You are so delusional, Devon. Is
there some alternate universe you visit in which we actually date? Are you
confusing your delusional state with the real world?”
Devon grinned and leaned toward her.
“Are you coming tonight? I’ve loaded a special playlist onto my iPod. We could
hang in my room and listen to it.”
“I’ll throw up if Cara doesn’t!”
Kelly said, throwing her half-eaten sandwich onto the table.
Cara blinked and shook her head. “Do
you even listen to me, Devon?”
“I’ve got some good soul-stirring
music picked especially for us,” Devon said. “We can wrap our limbs together
and stare into each other’s eyes. And then, well, I think you know what comes
next.”
Cara ran a hand through her hair.
“Cheesus, Devon.”
With a smarmy grin he said, “I knew
you’d convert one day, Carabiner.”
“You know, I got a job as a pole
dancer down at Starz,” Cara said.
“See ya tonight, lover.” Devon ran his knuckle gently
down Cara’s cheek and then strode off.
“He doesn’t hear a thing I say!” Cara watched him
enter the lunch line, while she scrubbed the prickle of his touch away.

Finding Thor is available in print or electronic format from the following:

Amazon| Barnes & Noble| Whiskey Creek Press| All Romance| BookStrand|

Add Finding Thor to your to-read shelf on Goodreads



When her children
were young and the electricity winked out, Kai Strand gathered her family
around the fireplace and they told stories, one sentence at a time. Her boys
were rather fond of the ending, “And then everybody died. The end.” Now an
award winning children’s author, Kai crafts fiction for kids and teens to
provide an escape hatch from their reality. With a selection of novels for
young adult and middle grade readers Kai entertains children of all ages, and
their adults. Learn more about Kai and her books on her website, www.kaistrand.com.


Swag alert! Looking for your Thor? Look no further, Kai’s
got you covered. Enter to win a custom tote bag for all of those books you like
to carry with you, and a Thor baseball cap. Easy entry for those in a hurry, or
many other ways to earn more entries for contest junkies. The Finding Thor swag pack can only
be shipped in the United States. If winner is International, an Amazon
gift card will be substituted and another winner will be chosen.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 7, 2016

READ AN EBOOK WEEK

Quote for the week:  Always desire to learn something useful. Sophocles

March 6th through 12th is Read An EBook Week.

 
Artwork by Brad Fraunfelter
 
My publisher at Twilight Times Books is offering several eBooks for free during the week. You can see them at http://twilighttimesbooks.com/freebies.html.
 
100 + critically acclaimed books are on sale at Amazon and other Online stores.  My Caves, Cannons, and Crinolines is there.
 
"The Huffington Post" has a neat article THE STORY BEHIND "READ AN EBOOK WEEK."
Read it here.
 
Happy Reading.
 
I'm counting. Nine days until the birthday of UNDER A PURPLE MOON, from Freedom Fox Press. 
 
Teaser:
 
He asked so softly, so sweetly, how could I refuse? "I guess it's okay."
The hint of a smile tugged at the corner of his mouth. Slowly, his  eyes lifted and met mine. "Thank you."
 
Happy Reading!
 
 



Wednesday, March 2, 2016

INSECURE WRITERS SUPPORT GROUP


Today is the first Wednesday in March, and you know what that means.

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group

 
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time. Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post.

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Our Twitter hashtag is #IWSG


Awesome Ninja Alex J. Cavanaugh is the founder of IWSG.

His awesome co-hosts for the March 2 posting of the IWSG are Lauren Hennessy, Lisa Buie-Collard, Lidy, Christine Rains, and Mary Aalgaard!  


So, how is life treating you? Do you have any insecurities? What are insecurities anyhow? They likely are different for each of us. I was sailing along, fairly secure, working on ideas to promote my forthcoming book. Fun stuff.

Then, edits came for another book. Lots of edits. Like rearranging scenes, and other changes. Great advice about what's not working. I can see the problems now. They do need correcting.

Well, I am a slow writer. I can spend hours on one page. So now I'm promoting and editing, along with wanting to write another short story for a Christmas Chicken Soup book and a memoir for Writer's Digest contest.

How is it writers can sometimes go for weeks and months with little to do, except maybe a WIP, and then all of a sudden everything happens at once?

I'm not complaining. I'm happy about my stories. Everything will work out. I know. The promo, the editing, the short stories. Who needs to sleep anyhow?

Thanks for listening. Any tips appreciated.

Happy Reading and Writing.