Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Book Giveaway

Congrats to Melanie for winning the last book. :)
This week I'm giving away Dark Pursuit by Brandilyn Collins. To enter to win, leave a comment with something you would like to pursue. To get a second entry, leave a comment letting me know you follow the blog.

Something I would like to pursue: enjoying each day. A childhood friend of mine passed away Saturday at the age of 32. I am still in shock. He was our church's worship leader, and we miss him so. I want to enjoy each day because I truly don't know if it's my last.

I can only ship to the US. I'll draw a name next week.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Book Giveaway--Deeper Water by Robert Whitlow

Congrats to Lollipops for winning A Wedding Invitation. :) I loved everyone's wedding experiences. I pray to one day have my own wedding.

Just so you know, I'm behind on mailing the winning books. I've been busy at work (my aide had surgery and is out for six weeks) with 50 kids at a time by myself. Plus, I've been working more at my second jobs (some writing, babysitting, and mystery shopping). But, I promise to mail them by this weekend...I'm leaving Saturday as an option. I really have no excuse since a post office is less than half a mile from work...but it's always so busy. In addition, I'm sick. So, the packages will get there...I promise.

This week, I'm giving away Deeper Water by one of my favorite authors, Robert Whitlow.
To enter to win, leave a comment with what's going on with you. Anything new or fun?

Be sure to leave your email address.

I can only ship to the US.

Have a great week....only 86 more school days until the summer....not that I'm counting or anything.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Book Giveaway--A Wedding Invitation

Today I'm giving away A Wedding Invitation. I loved the idea of this book....showing up at the wrong wedding!

To enter to win, leave a comment with an interesting aspect of a wedding you went to. A friend of mine has a lot of friends, so as she walked down the aisle, each friend stood at the end of the row and handed her a rose. By the end of the aisle, her bouquet was complete. I thought it was a wonderful way to include those friends who are special but without having 20 bridesmaids!

Leave your email address and get a second entry by following the blog. I can only ship to the US, and I'll have my mom or sister pick a random number next week for the winner. :)

Have a great week!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Looking for help on your book?

When my dad was battling cancer and we felt he needed someone with him at all times, my sister and I would rotate staying with him on Sunday mornings so that my mom could go to church,teach Sunday school, and have a little break. During that time, I started working on a story. I wanted a happy ending story since we knew we weren't going to get one with my dad's cancer (although going home to Jesus is the BEST ending). So, I started writing a book with the Love Inspired series in mind.

After my dad's death, I put the story on back burner. Around the holidays, I picked it up again and am more than halfway finished! (It's so hard to find the time to write when I work so much, but I'm learning that 200 words a day is better than nothing!)

I have read Betsy's books for a while and stop by her blog regularly. She mentioned that she does editing, so I decided to try it out. She has been the BIGGEST help. She does line-by-line edits, and she caught so many things I didn't see. She also gives encouragement and praises what is done well. Because she has experience with Love Inspired, she is able to give me pointers for that specific publisher as well as overall tips for preparing a proposal to submit to an agent or publisher.

So, if you are writing your first novel, I would recommend hiring Betsy to look at your work. She has a quick return (within a day or two it seemed), and her price is fair. My mom, who taught high school English for over 30 years, read Betsy's critique and said, "You got your money's worth. She knows what she's talking about."

Here's a link to more information: http://www.betsystamant.com/speaking/ and if you haven't checked out her books, give them a try.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Nightshade: A Review

Several friends had recommended this series to me, and book one did not disappoint. Max Jacobs is a retired Seal who can't seem to find an outlet for his anger. When his wife files for divorce, Max is devastated and accepts a position on Nightshade, a black ops team. When Sydney, a reporter and also Max's soon-to-be ex-wife, starts reporting on this mysterious group rescuing people around the world, will Max be able to save his wife from those threatening her and his marriage?

Most action/suspense books focus more on the adventure and less on character development, but this book has both, making a great novel. The action is from page one to the last page. But what was even more intriguing was the character development of Max, and the delicate storyline of soldiers suffering from PTSD. The author switches point of view several times, rotating between Max, Sydney, and Jon, the missionary Max and his team has to rescue. Having the third point of view, Jon, adds another layer to this intricately woven book. 

Fans of Christian suspense will love this book!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Book Giveaway: Three Titles

Congrats to Britt T. for winning Attracted to Fire. I'm emailing you now to get your info.

Today, I'm giving away three books! :)

To enter to win, tell me about your favorite flower, a beach, chocolate. (I can't think of anything to go with vicious cycle!)
To get a second entry, leave a comment telling me you follow the blog.
I will pick three winners next Tuesday, and it will be  like when I gave away ten books: first to respond to my winning notification will pick what book they want. It worked out perfectly the last two times I gave away multiple copies, so I hope it does again!
I can only ship to the US.

Have a great reading week!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Vicious Cycle: A Review

When fifteen-year old Lance finds out his friend Jordan has left drug rehab, he goes to her house to check on her. After being threatened, he leaves, only to find a newborn baby in his back sea. Jordan's baby. Thinking he will have his mom help figure out what to do, he takes the baby home. When he's arrested, the family finds themselves involved in a baby smuggling ring in addition to drug abuse. Can the family work together to prove Lance's innocence as well as protect a helpless baby?

As always, Blackstock tells a thrilling tale of adventure, but what stood out to me most in this book was the honest, realistic look at drug abuse and human trafficking. Lance's sister is finding it hard to cope after graduating from a year-long rehab facility. The storyline of baby traffickers getting drug abusers pregnant in hopes of selling their babies is a real issue, and Blackstock handled it with grace while still sharing a intriguing story.

Fans of Christian fiction will enjoy this book. I know I look forward to more books in this series.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Waking Hours: A Review

When a teen is brutally murdered in a small town, forensic psychologist Dani Harris is called in on the case. Working with an old friend and old love interest Tommy Gunderson, former NFL star, Dani finds herself working on more than just a murder mystery. Each morning, she is awakened at 2:13 a.m. by weird dreams and strange events. Is more going on than just a murder...something supernatural?

The murder investigation is a good storyline, but when you add a supernatural occurrences and a budding romance, you have a suspenseful thriller. The characters are intriguing, and as a football fan, I enjoyed the back story of Tommy's football career and why he walked away from it. The pace of the book is a little slow at first with several loose ends, which are finally tied together about halfway through.

My favorite part of the book was the angle of the forensic psychologist. Many times a murder mystery is told from the detective's point of view, but bringing in the psychology of a murderer as a part of the storyline made the novel more interesting and even thought-provoking at times.

Fans of mystery, especially ones without graphic details, will enjoy this book.

I look forward to reading the second book in the series.

I was given this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

If I have a Wicked Stepmother, Where's My Prince?: A Review

When Lucy moves from San Fransisco to New York because of her dad's marriage to her step-monster Mara, Lucy's dad still commutes back and forth for work, Lucy is left alone with Mara and her twin daughters and relegated to sleep in the basement without furniture. When Lucy catches the attention of a popular basketball star, it seems like her life is truly a fairy tale come true. As Lucy gets to know Sam, a fellow artist, she must decide if she wants a fairy tale or real love.

This book is a light, fun read, but I felt the end was rushed. The storyline is interesting although predictable, but the characters never really grabbed my attention. I liked Lucy but didn't really care about the other characters, including the "prince" who captures her heart.

I received this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I love Fresh Starts!

I love fresh starts: Mondays, the first of the month, the first day of a new school year, and of course, January 1st.
2011 was probably the first year I ever accomplished a new year's resolutions. It may be because they were clear and achievable. My goals were to owe less money and to weigh less. :) I paid off 8,000 in debt and lost 20 pounds. I consider that pretty good, especially in a year that found me grieving the death of my dad in March.

This year, I have the same goals. I would like to owe less and weigh less. In my head, I would like to see 15,000 paid off in debt (I know that's double how much I paid off in 2011, but I have a plan) and 40 pounds lost. We'll see. Anything is better than nothing.

For my reading, I would like to stretch myself some. I've found my brain needs more stimulation outside of work now that I work with elementary kids. I love them, but they don't make me "think" much. I don't toss around ideas about life, relationships, money, politics, the world with them like I did when I taught middle school. So, I want to read more nonfiction and more of the classics. My goal is to read one nonfiction and one classic each month.

My problem is I am not sure what books to start out with. I guess I need to hurry up and decide.

I'm looking forward to this new year.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Book Giveaway: Attracted to Fire

I'm back to giving away books. I hope you all had a great Christmas and a festive New Year's celebration. :) I'm all settled in my new place and eager to clean out some more books.

This week, I'm giving away Attracted to Fire by DiAnn Mills. I loved this book!

To enter to win, leave a comment with what you are attracted to. Right now, I am attracted to ice cream. It's bad. It's not as bad as my attraction to cupcakes, but it's hindering my weight loss goals. So I need to cut it off...right after this last bowl. I promise.

To get a second entry, leave a comment letting me know you follow the blog.

I'll pull a name next Tuesday. I can only ship to the US.

I think that's it.

Oh, wait, make sure you leave your email address.