Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter!

I hope everyone is having a beautiful Easter holiday.  I encourage you to take a few moments to think of the Savior, Jesus Christ, and his beautiful gift to each one of us.

Have a blessed day and a lovely Easter!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #9

Welcome to Stacking the Shelves, hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  This is where I share the new books I've gotten recently.

These are books I've won or received from publishers and NetGalley.

Picture Books and Apps:

Thank you to Tressa from Tressa's Wishful Endings and Deseret Book Company for One Little Match!  And thank you to TribalNova for Caillou: My First Play!

One Little Match is such a good book!  It's beautifully illustrated, too.  I'll share my review of it soon.  My kids love the Caillou apps. This one is especially fun for my daughter who is about to make her own play debut next week. 

Middle Grade Books:

A big thanks to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers for Loki's Wolves and thank you to Zonderkidz for Riley Mae and the Rock Shocker Treck

I've heard excellent things about Loki's Wolves so far, so I'm looking forward to reading it. I haven't heard much about the Riley Mae book, but it sounds like a cute story. 

What new books did you get this week?

Friday, April 18, 2014

Cover Reveal and Giveaway for The Night House by Rachel Tafoya

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

The Night House by Rachel Tafoya

presented by Month9Books!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

Bianca St. Germain works at a Night House, a place where vampires like the aristocratic Jeremiah Archer, pay to feed on humans, and she doesn’t much care what others think of her. The money is good, and at least there, she’s safe. Bianca also doesn’t care that the Night House is killing her. All she cares about is: nauth, the highly addictive poison in vampire bites that brings a euphoria like no drug ever could.
But when Bianca meets James, a reclusive empath who feels everything she does, for the first time, she considers a life outside of the Night House and a someone worth living for. But Jeremiah has decided to keep Bianca for himself; he won’t allow her to walk away.
As she allows her feelings for James to grow, she struggles to contain nauth's strong hold on her life. If they are to have a future, James must make her see what she's worth, what she means to him, before Jeremiah and nauth claim her for good.

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Publication date: December 9, 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Rachel Tafoya

Rachel TafoyaRachel Tafoya studied creative writing while at Solebury School and was published in their student run literary magazine, SLAM. She attended a writing program for teens at both Susquehanna University and Denison University, and the Experimental Writing for Teens class and Novels for Young Writers program, both run by NY Times bestselling author, Jonathan Maberry. Rachel is the daughter crime author Dennis Tafoya.
Connect with the Author: Tumbler | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


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Giveaway, Blog Tour, and Interview with JC Herz, Author of A Dark and Dismal Flower

Hi everyone!  I'm really excited to introduce you to A Dark and Dismal Flower.  This is a book app written by JC Herz and Eve Scott, Illustrated by Shamona Stokes, and animated by Alex Scott.  Make sure you read the interview and watch the trailer.  Once you've been stunned by the gorgeous trailer, enter the giveaway to win a piece of art from the book!

About the Book App:

A Dark and Dismal Flower by JC Herz and Eve Scott

Release Date: May 1, 2014 from Coliloquy LLC

"Mind the seeds you plant, and the flowers that you tend," advises Aunt Maeve as she hands a packet of magical seeds to her little niece.

From that mix of seeds sprouts a mesmerizing, magical journey for one little girl.

Each day, the girl plants a different seed, only to see flowers bloom into botanical allegories of her own behavior: The bright seed of Cheerfulness grows towards the light. The seed of Patience grows slowly and blooms after many moons. In the garden are virtues: Kindness, Hope, Generosity, Humor and Gratitude. But also failings: Fibs, Misery, Tattle Tale, Vanity and Argument. Each flower represents a quality that the little girl cultivates (or battles) within herself.

Mother and daughter authors J.C. Herz and Eve Scott take readers on a vivid, interactive adventure whose literary language and exquisite animated illustrations are deeply evocative. The narrative and imagery opens the door for even young children to reflect on their own behavior and moral choices.

A Dark and Dismal Flower's Twitter and Facebook

Author Bios:

JC Herz is the author of three books, including Learning to Breathe Fire: The Rise of CrossFit and the Primal Future of Fitness. She was the New York Times’ first game design critic (her “Game Theory” essays are archivedhere), and has written for Wired and Rolling Stone. She is an avid gardener, and likes to plant the purple versions of regular vegetables.

Eve Scott is in second grade. She likes to build fairy houses and create jewelry out of natural materials. She has written two songs for ukulele, and an illustrated exposition of the parallels between Tolkien’s world of middle earth and Seamus Heaney’s translation of Beowulf.

Shamona Stokes is a designer and illustrator, currently freelancing in New York City (her website: Her work has been showcased in publications like Graphis and galleries nationwide, including the Society of Illustrators. Her designs and artwork can be found on the bottom of skateboards and onstage for top-billing musicians. Shamona holds a BFA in Communication Design/Illustration from Pratt Institute. In her downtime, she enjoys adventuring in NYC and traveling to places off-the-beaten-path.

Alex Scott is a motion graphics designer and animator, freelancing in the NYC area (his website: His work on broadcast TV has contributed to several Gold PromaxBDA and Telly awards. His animations have also been seen on digital billboards overlooking Times Square and at film festivals around the world. Alex received a BFA in Computer Graphics from Pratt Institute in 2001 where he met his wife, Shamona. He draws inspiration from the intersection of science and art and has an ear for music.

Interview with JC Herz:

What inspired you to write a book about flowers?
I'm a big gardener - we grow a lot of flowers and vegetables in the back yard and around our house. So flowers have been a big part of my daughter's experience since she can remember. She actually came up with the idea for the book!
She was in kindergarten, and told me (in the car on the way to school) that the morning tends to go the way it starts: if she wakes up cheerful and hops right into her chores (get dressed, make bed, brush teeth), then the morning unfolds cheerfully. If she gets up grumpy and dilly-dallies, it tends to go badly. "It's like planting a seed," she explained. "If you plant the seed of happiness, it grows into a happy morning. If you plant the seed of crankiness, it grows into a bad morning."

It had been a beautiful morning for her, but a terrible morning for her little brother Jack, who was getting over a cold. He got up on the wrong side of the crib and was moaning and protesting from the time he woke up until Eve and I left for school. When I picked her up that afternoon, she asked, "Hasn't it been a wonderful day. I planted the seed of happiness and it grew into a good morning." She paused, wondering what kind of Jack she would find when we got home.

"Jack planted the seed of misery," she deadpanned. "I hope it hasn't grown into a dark and dismal flower." This is a reminder of what can happen when small children super-dose on gothic fairy tales. That phrase, “a dark and dismal flower,” stuck with me - it was so evocative. That comment was the seed that grew into the story of DDF. Eve came up with all the flowers, and we had a really fascinating series of conversations about what those flowers would look like, feel like, smell like. When I asked her what the flower of Regret would smell like, she said, "You know a house that hasn't been lived in for a long long time? One that's been abandoned? That's what regret smells like."

Why did you decide to write for children?
The book emerged and evolved as a set of parent-child conversations - I think it was a little like Alice in Wonderland that way, a tale devised for a specific child, in this case in collaboration with that child. It was me discovering what Eve's imagination would come up with, then applying some literary skill to massage all those images and phrases into a rhythm and sequence.

What are the best books you've read so far this year?
About once a year, I reread C.S. Lewis' The Great Divorce, and it always stops me in my tracks. On a more contemporary note, I've enjoyed Lenore Skenazy's Free Range Kids. As a flower fan, I sort of gasped at the beauty of Studio Choo's The Flower Recipe Book: 100 Magical, Sculptural, Seasonal Arrangements. It's definitely boosted the visual appeal of what Eve and I throw into a vase, when we have flowers to pick.

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
I don't indulge often, but I love coffee ice cream. That little bite of coffee flavor balances the sweetness and creaminess.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
The ability to heal.

What is your favorite season?
Late spring - so many flowers! Also, the garden beds are planted and sprouts are up. It's all fresh beginnings and potential, before the heat and weeds set in :-)

Book Trailer:

DDF Teaser/Trailer from Alex Scott / Movement Society on Vimeo.

Wasn't that trailer amazing?  Make sure you enter the giveaway to win a piece of art from the book to hang on your child's wall. 

Giveaway Information:

As the seeds in DDF sprout alongside our protagonist, we would love for YOU to share your own stories--of crankiness, cheerfulness, laughter. Anyone can invent a seed they/their child experienced, and share their story on twitter using the hashtag #sprout. Then, enter HERE to potentially win our giveaway: a print from the beautiful illustrations in the book.

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Book Blast + Giveaway for Big Fat Disaster by Beth Fehlbaum

Welcome to the Official Book Blast for the new Young Adult Novel BIG  FAT DISASTER by Beth Fehlbaum


Insecure, shy, and way overweight, Colby hates the limelight as much as her pageant-pretty mom and sisters love it. It's her life: Dad's a superstar, running for office on a family values platform. Then suddenly, he ditches his marriage for a younger woman and gets caught stealing money from the campaign. Everyone hates Colby for finding out and blowing the whistle on him. From a mansion, they end up in a poor relative's trailer, where her mom's contempt swells right along with Colby's supersized jeans. Then, a cruel video of Colby half-dressed, made by her cousin Ryan, finds its way onto the internet. Colby plans her own death. A tragic family accident intervenes, and Colby's role in it seems to paint her as a hero, but she's only a fraud. Finally, threatened with exposure, Colby must face facts about her selfish mother and her own shame. Harrowing and hopeful, proof that the truth that saves us can come with a fierce and terrible price, Big Fat Disaster is that rare thing, a story that is authentically new.
Pre-Order this Novel From These Fine Retailers: 

Book Trailer:

About the Author:

In addition to writing Young Adult Contemporary Fiction, Beth Fehlbaum is an experienced English teacher who frequently draws on her experience as an educator to write her books. She has a B.A. in English, Minor in Secondary Education, and an M.Ed. in Reading. She is currently a Library Science student at Sam Houston State University. Beth is the author of Big Fat Disaster (Merit Press/F+W Media, March 2014); Courage in Patience (Kunati Books, 2008); and Hope in Patience(WestSide Books, 2010). Hope in Patience was named a 2011 YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers. Truth in Patience, which rounds outThe Patience Trilogy, is as yet unpublished. The Patience Trilogy has been revised and is available for acquisition!

Beth has a following in the young adult literature world and also among survivors of sexual abuse because of her work with victims’ advocacy groups. She has been the keynote speaker at the National Crime Victims’ Week Commemoration Ceremony at the Hall of State in Dallas, Texas and a presenter for Greater Texas Community Partners, where she addressed a group of social workers and foster children on the subject of “Hope”.

Beth is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, like Ashley in The Patience Trilogy, and the day-to-day manager of an eating disorder much like Colby’s in Big Fat Disaster. These life experiences give her a unique perspective, and she writes her characters’ stories in a way meant to inspire hope.

Beth lives with her family in the woods of East Texas.
You can find Beth online at
on Facebook, and on

Blast Giveaway:

1 Signed Hardcover of BIG FAT DISASTER + a surprise pack of other Merit Books titles.

Must be 13+ To Enter 

Open to US Only

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Book Blast + Cash Giveaway for Shadow Fire by Kimber Leigh Wheaton

Shadow Fire Tour

Shadow fireShadow Fire

Ashlyn – a free-spirited teenager whose peaceful life is shattered when the village elders honor her with a perilous quest to recover a stolen relic.

Zane – a jaded mercenary, torn by his undeniable desire for Ashlyn and the dark secret that could make her hate him forever.

Delistaire – a malevolent sorcerer driven by an insatiable lust for power.
All three are bound together by an ancient relic supposedly infused with the power of a Goddess.

Shadow Fire – adventure, passion, secrets, and betrayal

As Ashlyn and Zane race to stay one step ahead of the evil lurking in the shadows, their passions are ignited and their bond strengthens. But will they find the relic before Delistaire? Or has their entire quest been orchestrated from the very beginning by a madman in pursuit of ultimate power?
Each installment of The Light Chronicles is a standalone story.

Praise for Shadow Fire

"This book contains monsters, magic, majestic creatures, and a evil guy that wants to destroy the world. If you love hot guys.....Zane is all that plus a few tricks up his sleeve. Just read it!" Venture ~Amazon Reviewer

"Adventure, magical creatures, fun characters, and romance make this book a perfect read for all ages." James ~Amazon Reviewer

"I thought the writing was strong; it had me turning the pages quickly to see what would happen next. The characters were engaging and the dialogue well-written." Lisa Temple ~ Goodreads

"Oh, I truly loved this one! Shadow Fire, by Kimber Leigh Wheaton, is a snappy, sassy, sweet, all-that-kind-of-awesome-and-then-some YA read. I couldn't put it down." ~Sasha Hibbs ~ Amazon Reviewer

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When we reach the deck, everyone stops to stare at me. Trying to ignore the blatant curiosity, I follow Hanna down the aft stairs to the brig. Zane and Taranis occupy cells across from each other. They're both sitting on the floor glaring daggers at each other. Hanna hands the key to me and slips away. Inching closer, I'm careful to remain out of reach of the two prisoners. As soon as they see me, both men jump up and start talking over each other.

"Ashlyn! How are you feeling, Love?" Zane asks.

"Ashlyn, my fiery angel, you are a ray of sunshine in this dank prison!" Taranis says.

"I'm gonna let you both out, if, and only if, you promise to behave," I threaten. Both men nod their agreement. "That means no fighting. It also means we never, and I mean never, speak of what happened last night." When I get no argument, I free Zane first and then Taranis.

"Do you even know what happened last night?" Zane asks, taking me into his arms. I stand rigid in his embrace, not sure if I'm ready to forgive him quite yet.

"Only what Hanna told me," I snap at him.

"I saved your virtue from this raving lunatic," Taranis says, pointing at Zane.

"Then you decided to take it for yourself!" Zane yells back at him.

"Did you not hear me?" I shout. Pulling myself from Zane's embrace, I back up and glare at both men. "No speaking of last night. Period. End of discussion."

"Yes, Love," Zane replies.

"Yes, virtuous virgin," Taranis replies.

"Taranis!" I release a menacing growl, and wince when my right eye starts to tic. "Yes?" he asks, eyes full of mock innocence.

"Run," Zane says.

Taranis listens to Zane's advice and takes off up the stairs to the deck with me hot on his heels.

Author Kimber Leigh Wheaton


Kimber Leigh Wheaton is a YA/NA author with a soft spot for sweet romance and is a member of Romance Writers of America.

She is married to her soul mate, has a teenage son, and shares her home with three dogs and four cats. No, she doesn’t live on a farm, she just loves animals. Her house is filled with dragons, though she does lament that they are the porcelain, non-flying variety.

Kimber Leigh is addicted to romance, videogames, superheroes, villains, and chocolate—not necessarily in that order. (If she has to choose, she’ll take a chocolate covered superhero!)

Her debut novel, Shadow Fire, is the first book in The Light Chronicles series. Watch for book two, Stolen Moon, a standalone sequel, coming soon.

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Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 5/15/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Happy Easter Eggstravaganza Giveaway Hop! Win 2 Books!

Welcome to the Happy Easter Eggstravaganza Giveaway Hop!  This hop is hosted by I Am A Reader and Read Now Sleep Later.  This giveaway is sponsored by me. :)

Win these books:

Andi Unexpected by Amanda Flower (Middle Grade mystery)
Glitter Girl by Toni Runkle and Stephen Webb (Middle Grade contemporary)

Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive two MG novels

Open to the US only

Ends April 24

Entrants must be 13 years old to enter or have their parent/guardian enter for them. Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen. Void where prohibited.

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There is lots more giveaway fun to be had! Hop on over to the next blog on the list for more chances to win.

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