Wednesday, July 23, 2014

W...W...W...Wednesdays - July 23


This meme was created by MizB at Should Be Reading. To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?





Nestled on the rocky coast of Massachusetts, Salem is a city steeped in history and legend. Famous for its witch trials, the storied North Shore seaport also has a dark history of smugglers and deadly fires. It is considered one of New England's most haunted destinations. Inside Howard Street Cemetery, the ghost of accused witch Giles Corey wanders among the gravestones. Outside the Ropes Mansion, the ghost of Abigail Ropes can be seen peeking out of the windows. The Gardner-Pingree House on Essex Street is host to the spirit of sea captain Joseph White, a man whose murder in 1830 inspired literary giants like Edgar Allan Poe and Nathaniel Hawthorne. Join author and paranormal journalist Sam Baltrusis on a chilling journey through the streets of Salem as he chronicles the historic haunts of the Witch City.

What did you recently finish reading?





Have you ever been through a hard time in life? Ever wondered why bad things happen? Amber Neben has you covered. The 2x Olympic cyclist for Team USA knows a thing or two about shmack- her word for describing adversity that comes our way in life. Follow Amber's journey as she overcomes major obstacles both on and off the bike-and encourages you to join her in developing the perseverance, patience, perspective, and power than only Christ can give us. Very few people may know or understand what road cycling is, but everyone knows what it means to be an Olympian. The champion road cyclist chronicles her disappointments and failures, as well as amazing comebacks and victories-while thrilling audiences along the way with gripping stories of faith and hope. After reading When Shmack Happens, you'll feel equipped and encouraged to face life's tough moments, and find yourself cheering for Amber to get back on the bike...one more time. Learn what it means to be a spiritual champion in God's eyes.


Lose weight, energize, and glow with over 50 recipes and complete 10 day detox plan. This whole foods cleanse includes detailed menu plan, shopping list, and bonus recipes to make after your cleanse. Renewal “Anytime” also includes pre-detox plan, daily instructions, FAQ’s, and post-detox next steps.

What do you think you’ll read next?

These are the next two books I'm scheduled to review, so I'm guessing it will be these.


When Alyssa Denham, a single career woman, wins a fun getaway for two on Mackinac Island where her grandmother lives, she gives her carefree best friend a call. Together, they tour the old shops and hidden treasures of the quaint island while helping Alyssa’s grandmother piece together an heirloom quilt. Their quest gains them entrance into the homes of many longtime residents of the island, parts of the city that are otherwise off limits to tourists.

As the quilt’s story takes shape, Alyssa gains amazing insight into her grandmother’s life . . . and attracts the attention of the handsome Scott Whitman, an island resident in charge of hotel transportation. Will memories of her past keep Alyssa from letting go? Or will the quest to piece together the heirloom quilt restore Alyssa’s fractured heart—and bring healing to her entire family?



In a Drought, It's the Darkest Cloud
That Brings Hope

It's 1954 and Perla Long's arrival in the sleepy town of Wise, West Virginia, was supposed to go unnoticed. She just wants a quiet, safe place for her and her daughter, Sadie, where the mistakes of her past can stay hidden. But then drought comes to Wise, and Perla is pulled into the turmoil of a town desperately in need of a miracle.

Casewell Phillips has resigned himself to life as a bachelor. . .until he meets Perla. She's everything he's sought in a woman, but he can't get past the sense that she's hiding something. As the drought worsens, Perla's unique gift divides the town in two, bringing both gratitude and condemnation, and placing the pair in the middle of a storm of anger and forgiveness, fear and faith.



Please note, I'm on vacation this week, so I won't respond to comments right away. If you want to see where I am, check out http://lauralittlehouseontheprairie.blogspot.com/2014/07/40-anniversary-little-house-cast-reunion.html


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters I Would Want With Me On A Deserted Island


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they will post a new Top Ten list that one of the bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All they ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


Top Ten Characters I Would Want With Me On A Deserted Island
(pick based on however you want...skills they would bring, their company...or pure hotness factor)

1

The first thing you should know about me is if I were stranded on a deserted island, I would starve to death, be eaten by something, or die from exposure to the elements. I simply am not an outdoorsman. Give me a house with air conditioning, heat, plenty of food from the grocery store, clothes, and indoor plumbing. So, for survival's sake, I would need Katniss Everdeen with me.

2

For similar reasons, I would want Tris with me. She knows enough about what she wants from life to leave her faction and join the Dauntless. She's also unsure of herself in many ways and uncomfortable opening up to people, so I think we would get along well.

3

Buffy the Vampire Slayer stakes vampires, fights demons, has died and been brought back to life at least twice, and barely breaks a sweat while doing it. Not only would Buffy keep me safe from harm, she could probably give me some fashion tips.

4

Early Auden is not your typical boy. He lives in the basement of a private boys' school; he only attends classes when he wants to; and he plays old time records he picks depending upon the day and the weather. He and his friend Jack take off on an adventure that leads them to be kidnapped by smugglers, solve a mystery, and uncover a murderer. I'm pretty sure he could find a way off a deserted island.

5

At first, Reed Jackson might seem like an odd choice. The war left him wheelchair bound and he's in a very dark place: having lost the rights to the family plantation and moving to a location where he is ridiculed more than respected. He's an angry and bitter man. But he's also a man who will protect those he loves. He's open to changing his mind about people and beliefs he's held for a long time. He's also a lawyer, so if the island weren't really deserted and we had to defend ourselves against some dangerous inhabitants, he could help me plead my self-defense case once we got back home.

6

Greg Heffley isn't really anyone's friend. Just ask his "best friend" Rowley. Greg's a self-centered, unfeeling guy. Why the heck would I want to put up with that? He has an excuse for everything. Nothing is ever his fault. I might be able to use that when I get back to the real world and he could teach me how to make it work while we waited to be rescued.


7

Caroline Ingalls is amazing. She makes all her family's clothes. She's a great cook. She can even make a lamp out of axle grease, a piece of calico, and a button. With her innovative mind, I'm sure we would survive a lot longer on the island.

8

Joe Sullivan was the first member of the Sullivan Boys that I met. He's smart, sexy, and broody. He's also a cop, so  he would definitely help with survival on the island. He would be fun to look at too. For an idea of what Joe looks like, check out this trailer I created when the book came out.

9

Alex Roy can build a mansion fit for a king and look breathtaking while doing it. He's had his heart broken, so he's edgy, but humble. Maybe he can build me a house while on the island. He's so handy he might even be able to figure out the indoor plumbing thing. 

10

Ben Hooley from the Seasons of the Heart series is a wonderful, God-fearing man. He loves deeply and he isn't afraid to speak his mind. He sticks up for friends and family and is sure to do the right thing. Having a good role model and prayer partner on the island would be a good idea too. 

I look forward to reading your choices. Please note, I'm on vacation this week, so I won't respond to comments right away. If you want to see where I am, check out http://lauralittlehouseontheprairie.blogspot.com/2014/07/40-anniversary-little-house-cast-reunion.html




Monday, July 21, 2014

Musing Mondays - July 21



Musing Mondays is a weekly meme from MizB at Should Be Reading. It asks you to muse about one of the following each week…

• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

My Musing:

Let's talk bookstores for a second. I tend to stay away from the big chain stores in favor of smaller independent ones. Either way I'm sure to plunk cash down when I go, but I would rather support one of the little guys who seem to come and go faster than I can blink.


The above picture is from Duck's Cottage Downtown Books in Downton Manteo. When Hurricane Irene swept up the coast in 2011, Manteo's only bookstore was devastated. Duck's Cottage Downtown Books opened in the spring of 2012 in the old bookstore's location. Actually, several days before we visited Downtown Books, Hurricane Arthur paid Manteo a visit and the downtown area of Manteo was flooded. In the photo, you can see a sign that reads "Happy INDEPENDENTS Day." I'm betting that was up for July 4th. The storm delayed the fireworks by two days. By the time we stopped in, it was almost like it had never happened. The people's ability to clean up after such weather events is amazing.


photo credit: www.breakingnews.com 

The Lil' Diva (our oldest girl) picked up a copy of Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and the Lil' Princess picked up the latest Dork Diaries novel. We sat outside in front of the store for a bit while Dad got a coffee from the shop across the street. It was a neat place to visit with a nice selection of books, unique greeting cards, boxed notes, journals, calendars, pens and souvenirs. They also have a Toy Room that sells Melissa and Doug toys, in addition to offering coffee, tea, and biscotti.



What is your favorite independent bookstore? What is unique about them?

Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Finds - July 18

FRIDAY FINDS is a weekly meme by MizB of Should Be Reading that showcases the books you ‘found’ and added to your To Be Read (TBR) list… whether you found them online, or in a bookstore, or in the library — wherever! (they aren’t necessarily books you purchased).

So, come on — share with us your FRIDAY FINDS!

My Finds:


The Book Thief by Markus Zusak


I work at a Public Library by Gina Sheridan


The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl by Timothy Egan 







The Devil's Foothold by Marilyn Meredith

How to be Twittertastic by Jo Linsdell

Are you ready to be Twittertastic?


Twitter is the most immediate of all social media and allows you to connect with readers and others from the literary industry from all over the world. The fastest growing network with a 44% growth from 2012-2013 Twitter now boosts 255 million monthly active users.


How to be Twittertastic teaches you what Twitter is and how to use it to build your author brand, connect with readers, and sell more books.


Learn strategies and tips that will help you leverage your Twitter presence and get the most out of your tweets.


What's covered:
* How to set up your profile and personalise it 
* Creating your network
* Ideas for making the most out of the new features
* Tweets- Types of content you can share
* Retweets, hashtags, and other Twitter terminology made simple
* Twitter etiquette- Dos and Don'ts of the Twitterverse
* Time savers

and more...


How to be Twittertastic is the first book in the Writers and Authors Guide to Social Media series.


Release date: 1st July 2014

Product Details: Kindle
File Size: 2191 KB
Print Length: 94 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English
ASIN: B00LFFRYEE


Purchasing links:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LFFRYEE 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00LFFRYEE
http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00LFFRYEE
http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00LFFRYEE


Jo Linsdell is  a best selling author and illustrator and internationally recognized marketing expert. She is also the founder and organizer of the annual online event "Promo Day" (www.PromoDay.info) and the Writers and Authors blog (http://WritersAndAuthors.blogspot.com). To find out more about Jo and her projects visit her website www.JoLinsdell.com.


Facebook event page: 
https://www.facebook.com/events/657184934375734/


Social Media Links:
Facebook
Twitter
Google+
LinkedIn 
YouTube
Goodreads
Amazon 


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

W...W...W...Wednesdays - July 16


This meme was created by MizB at Should Be Reading. To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?



I'll easily finish this one tonight.

Have you ever been through a hard time in life? Ever wondered why bad things happen? Amber Neben has you covered. The 2x Olympic cyclist for Team USA knows a thing or two about shmack- her word for describing adversity that comes our way in life. Follow Amber's journey as she overcomes major obstacles both on and off the bike-and encourages you to join her in developing the perseverance, patience, perspective, and power than only Christ can give us. Very few people may know or understand what road cycling is, but everyone knows what it means to be an Olympian. The champion road cyclist chronicles her disappointments and failures, as well as amazing comebacks and victories-while thrilling audiences along the way with gripping stories of faith and hope. After reading When Shmack Happens, you'll feel equipped and encouraged to face life's tough moments, and find yourself cheering for Amber to get back on the bike...one more time. Learn what it means to be a spiritual champion in God's eyes.

What did you recently finish reading?




The worlds of Percy Jackson, Harry Potter, and other modern epics feature the Chosen One--an adolescent boy who defeats the Dark Lord and battles the sorrows of the world. Television's Buffy the Vampire Slayer represents a different kind of epic--the heroine's journey, not the hero's. This provocative study explores how Buffy blends 1990s girl power and the path of the warrior woman with the oldest of mythic traditions. It chronicles her descent into death and subsequent return like the great goddesses of antiquity. As she sacrifices her life for the helpless, Buffy experiences the classic heroine's quest, ascending to protector and queen in this timeless metaphor for growing into adulthood.

Loved this book. You can find my review at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13555516-buffy-and-the-heroine-s-journey

What do you think you’ll read next?





Lose weight, energize, and glow with over 50 recipes and complete 10 day detox plan. This whole foods cleanse includes detailed menu plan, shopping list, and bonus recipes to make after your cleanse. Renewal “Anytime” also includes pre-detox plan, daily instructions, FAQ’s, and post-detox next steps.

I'm scheduled to review this one at the end of the month.

What have you been reading?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Interview with Kaira Rouda, Author of In the Mirror

Kaira Rouda is an award-winning and bestselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. Her books include: Real You Incorporated: 8 Essentials for Women Entrepreneurs; Here, Home, Hope; All the Difference; In the Mirror; and the short story, A Mother's Day.  She lives in Southern California with her husband and four children and is at work on her next novel.

For More Information:



Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m a mom of four almost grown kids – three boys and one girl – who I adore. My husband and I have been married for 24 years and we are incredibly lucky to have all of our kids close by, and to live at the beach! We also have three dogs – one girl, two boys – and a fish named Phil.

Where did you grow up?

All over the place. I was born in Evanston, Illinois. Lived in Los Angeles, Austin, Boston and then, Columbus, Ohio. My dad was a professor – Northwestern, USC, UT Austin, Harvard and finally, Ohio State. So, I guess I grew up in a lot of places.

When did you begin writing?

Very early. I wrote a letter to Robert McCloskey (Make Room for Ducklings, Blueberries for Sal) in third grade telling him I wanted to be an author just like him. He wrote back and told me he was an illustrator, not a writer, but to keep writing.

Do you write during the day, at night or whenever you can sneak a few moments?




I’m a full-time writer now, but when I had a full-time career (up until four years ago) I snuck writing in whenever I could!

What is this book about?

IN THE MIRROR asks the question: What choices would you make if you knew you may die soon?

In the Mirror is the story of Jennifer Benson, a woman who seems to have it all. Diagnosed with cancer, she enters an experimental treatment facility to tackle her disease the same way she tackled her life - head on. But while she's busy fighting for a cure, running her business, planning a party, staying connected with her kids, and trying to keep her sanity, she ignores her own intuition and warnings from others and reignites an old relationship best left behind.

If you knew you might die, what choices would you make? How would it affect your marriage? How would you live each day? And how would you say no to the one who got away?

Here are some reviews:

"Kaira Rouda has created relatable characters you'll care deeply about. Emotionally gripping and heart-achingly beautiful, In the Mirror will make you think about what's truly important." 
~ Tracey Garvis Graves, New York Times bestselling author

“Balancing sadness and humor, the retrospective tone of this novel is both therapeutic and affecting. In the Mirror is an emotion-packed novel about a mother facing terminal cancer. It is a nostalgic tribute to the things that really matter: family and friends.” 
~ Foreword

"Rouda writes with a fluent, psychologically subtle realism that cuts Jennifer’s pathos (and occasional self-pity) with humor and irony, and she surrounds her with characters—doting dad; vain, shallow mom; mensch of a gay business partner; sarcastic gal pals—who are sharply etched and entertaining. Jennifer is a winning heroine, and readers will undoubtedly root for her as she reaches for a more mature, if achingly uncertain, future. An absorbing story of a woman grasping at life in the midst of death. 
~ Kirkus Reviews

What inspired you to write it?

Too many friends, too many young mothers, who have had to face the Emperor of All Maladies.

Do you have an agent or are you looking for one?

My agent is Amanda Luedeke of MacGregor Literary

Where can readers purchase a copy of your book?

At their favorite bookstore, or online everywhere, including:
Amazon: http://ow.ly/vZHPb
Barnes & Noble: http://ow.ly/vZHsC
Kobo: http://ow.ly/vZIGK
iTunes: http://ow.ly/vZKji

Do you have a video trailer to promote your book? If yes, where can readers find it?

You can find it at: http://youtu.be/LSfhk48fKVU

What is one piece of advice you would like to share with aspiring authors everywhere?

Don’t give up. And keep writing.

What is up next for you?

My next novel, LINES IN THE SAND, will be out in August!

Is there anything you would like to add?

Thank you for having me here!!