Wednesday, June 4, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: Circle of Five

Circle of Five by Jan Raymond

SYNOPSIS
Circle of Five is the first book in the Pha Yul trilogy.

After a sudden lightning storm, Sam, Cassie, Ryan, Maya and Seb find that they’ve acquired strange and amazing powers. Confused and scared, they turn to Mr. Harris, a teacher in their school, who offers to help them control their powers.

But is there more to Mr. Harris than meets the eye? His cryptic explanations about their powers, how and why they manifested, leaves the five kids with more questions than answers. Can they trust Mr. Harris? Is he telling them the truth, or does he have his own reasons for helping them? What is the truth behind the secret society that he belongs to? The children try to figure out the answers as they work towards gaining control over their powers.

Unknown to them, danger lingers near. They have to face the threat and put their lives at risk. They must learn to trust one another and combine their powers to survive…will they make it? Are their powers strong enough? And will they finally find the answers they seek?



MY REVIEW
Circle of Five begins a little choppy as it's bouncing you from character to character while only giving you a sliver of who they are, but don't worry. The perspectives of Sam, Sabastian, Ryan, Cassy and Maya, are expertly woven together as the story unfolds to give you an adventure that all starts with a Breakfast Club-like detention. Only, the new perceptions the students in Circle of Five gain also come along with special powers that first start appearing after a strange electrical storm. Their teacher Mr. Harris, also one with special powers, mentors them and helps them learn to control and harness their powers. Supernatural elements and mixed perfectly with the ordinary, everyday, teen experience to ground readers with the truth that these are just kids, who now bear a huge responsibility and must be forced to see the world differently. This was a fantastic and fun read.


MY RATING




Sunday, March 30, 2014

Win Kiss My Math by Danica McKellar

This wonderful giveaway for Kiss My Math by Danika McKellar is hosted by Angela Fristoe, author of Songbird and A Touched Trilogy.

A note from Angela: So with Danica McKellar starring on Dancing With The Stars, I began feeling a bit nostalgic. I loved watching The Wonder Years when I was growing up and the romance between Kevin Arnold and Winnie Cooper had me wishing for my own childhood romance :) That Danica went on to become an author and math guru made her a even cooler in my dorky opinion. In celebrating the re-emergence of Danica McKellar, I've joined together with a few other YA authors to host a giveaway! Two lucky winners will receive a paperback copy of Kiss My Math by Danica McKellar! The giveaway begins today and continues until Danica wins or is eliminated from Dancing With the Stars.

 From the author of the runaway bestseller Math Doesn?t Suck, the next step in the math curriculum-- pre-Algebra. Last year, actress and math genius Danica McKellar made waves nationwide, challenging the "math nerd" stereotype and giving girls the tools to ace tests and homework in her unique just-us-girls style. Now, in Kiss My Math, McKellar empowers a new crop of girls, 7th to 9th graders, taking on the next level of mathematics: pre-Algebra. Stepping up not only the math, but also the sass and style, Kiss My Math will help math-phobic teenagers everywhere chill out about math, and finally "get" negative numbers, variables, absolute values, exponents, and more. Each chapter features:   - Step-by-step instruction - Time-saving tips and tricks - Illuminating practice problems with detailed solutions - Real-world examples - True stories from Danica's own life as a student and actress Kiss My Math also includes more fun extras--including personality quizzes, reader polls, and real-life testimonials-- ultimately revealing why pre-Algebra is easier, more relevant, and more glamorous than girls think. There are multiple ways to enter including the option to tweet daily. The listed end date is subject to change and winner will be announced within 48 hours of Danica's win or elimination from DWTS. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Cover Reveal: Waken by Angela Fristoe

I read this Young Adult novel online, and it is totally awesome and unique. I'm so excited it's finally coming out into the world with a gorgeous cover to boot. I'm excited to share it!



Waken (The Woods of Everod, #1)
by Angela Fristoe
Expected Release: January 2014

Moving to her parents’ hometown of Everod is the last thing Janie Lyndon wants. After years of abuse and eventual abandonment, she’d rather forget they ever existed. Haunted by nightmares of her mother killing her, Janie just wants to be normal.

The gorgeous Davin Andersen is out of her league, but for some reason he seems to actually like her. The emotions he draws from her are almost enough to make her ignore all of the weird things he says. Almost enough to ignore the way the entire town seems ready to pounce on her as if she were fresh meat.

Almost, though, isn’t enough when Janie finally discovers what the town is hiding. The town of Everod has been waiting for Janie and if she hopes to survive, she’ll need to confront the truth of who and what she really is.

About the Author
Born in Northern Canada, Angela grew up on the Canadian prairies amid dreams of becoming the next Dian Fossey or a world famous flight attendant. Those, however, were never meant to be. Instead she moved to the United States where she divides her time between her family, writing, and her day job as an instruction coach.

Angela was the winner and double finalist in the Romance category of The Strongest Start Contest 2010 hosted by TheNextBigWriter.com. She currently has three young adult novels published through Little Prince Publishing and her fourth novel, Waken, has an anticipated release of January 2014.

Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter

Other Books by Angela Fristoe

 


 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Ghost Files Blog Tour: Excerpt

  The Ghost Files, Volume I
by Apryl Baker

Published: August 13, 2013
Publisher: Limitless Publishing
 
Cherry blossom lipstick: check
Smokey eyes: check
Skinny jeans: check
Dead kid in the mirror: check

For sixteen year old Mattie Hathaway, this is her normal everyday routine. She’s been able to see ghosts since her mother tried to murder her when she was five years old. No way does she want anyone to know she can talk to spooks. Being a foster kid is hard enough without being labeled a freak too.

Normally, she just ignores the ghosts and they go away. That is until she see’s the ghost of her foster sister… Sally.

Everyone thinks Sally’s just another runaway, but Mattie knows the truth—she’s dead. Murdered. Mattie feels like she has to help Sally, but she can’t do it alone. Against her better judgment, she teams up with a young policeman, Officer Dan, and together they set out to discover the real truth behind Sally’s disappearance.

Only to find out she’s dealing with a much bigger problem, a serial killer, and she may be the next victim…

Will Mattie be able to find out the truth before the killer finds her?

EXCERPT

The party is in full swing by the time we get there. Everyone is milling around, laughing, talking and drinking. Jake lays an arm around my shoulders and I snuggle close. It’s freezing! Why Meg decided to have a party outside in the dead of winter is beyond me. We make a beeline for the bonfire raging out back. Jake grabs a beer, but I decline.

I never, ever drink at parties. The only thing I’ll drink is water I run from the tap myself. I’m not stupid enough to set myself up to get drugged and raped. Jake is a pretty decent guy, but I’ve only known him a couple of weeks, and have no idea what he’s like when drunk. I’m a smart cookie. I never take chances like that.

“Mattie!” Meg waves her beer bottle at me. She’s already buzzed; her eyes are a bit glassy. See? Not a smart cookie. She’d be an SVU nightmare. Don’t get me wrong. I really, really like Meg. She’s one of the first people who accepted me when I got here last month. That girl’s got a closet full of clothes I’d sell an organ for, but her personal choices are not always the best ones. She’s the town’s sweetheart, the golden girl expected to do great things. I guess she doesn’t think anything bad could ever happen to her.

“Hey.” I smile and shake my head when Tommy offers me a beer.

“Aw, come on Mattie, have a drink, loosen up a bit,” Tommy wheedles. His eyes are on my chest. Such a jerk. Meg hasn’t noticed and I’m grateful. I’d hate for her to get mad at me because of her idiot boyfriend.

“Leave off, Tommy,” Jake glares. He has noticed where Tommy’s eyes are. “You know Mattie doesn’t drink.”

“Chill, man. I’m only trying…”

I roll my eyes at the rising testosterone. Change the subject. “Meg, didn’t I see Ava over there wearing knock-offs?”

“I know! Can’t believe she thought she could pass those boots off as designer. I mean, really.” Meg nods. “And that handbag… O-M-G!” Nothing upsets her more than a knock-off. She is a fashionista in the worst sense of the word. She plans on going to a New York design school after graduation.

“The stitching is all wrong on the bag, too.” I am not a fashionista, but I’ve heard that stitching can prove if something is original or not.

“It’s atrocious!” Meg laughs. “I can’t believe she thinks anybody will buy that nonsense.”

“Maybe her folks aren’t rich and it’s all she can afford?” Jake asks, voice dripping with sarcasm. Jake’s parents are pretty close to poor. His dad is often out of work and his mom’s a housekeeper for the local hotel. Jake will work part time this summer to pay the bills. It’s one of the reasons I liked him to begin with. He’s not like the usual high school boy. He understands that life is hard, and you do what you have to do.

Meg’s catty remark did sound a little snarky, I must admit. Not everyone’s father is the mayor and can afford to dress in high fashion. Look at me. I wear Wal-Mart clothes. I don’t pretend to be anything I’m not. That’s probably why Meg and I get along so well.

Meg sighs. “That sounded really bitchy, huh?” She’s one of the nicest people I’ve ever known, but when she’s drunk, the girl can get a little mean.

“Just a little,” I tell her, “but I started it.” I’d tried to stop a potential fight between Tommy and Jake, but ended up dissing someone else. I felt bad. It’s a new feeling for me. I typically don’t let myself get attached enough to people to feel anything for them, but being around Jake and his family made me start rethinking my whole me-myself-and-I mentality. Not that I don’t have reason to keep people at arm’s length, but Jake is thawing me just a bit. I don’t know if I like it or not.

“Know what you’re gonna do for your public speech on Friday, Mattie?” someone asks behind me. I turn around. Oh, joy. Sam Jenson. She and I are competing for the only junior spot on the debate team. I need it for scholarship purposes; she wants it only because I do.

Since day one, Sam and I disliked each other. She’s a snob and I’m a smartass. Put us in a ring and I’d knock her on her snotty arse in 2.5 seconds. Does she honestly think I’m gonna tell her what I’m doing? But… considering that I’m standing with people who are nearly drunk or well past that state, she probably assumes I am, too.

“Sure I do,” I tell her, “but you’ll have to wait until Friday to hear it.” I smile sweetly at her and snuggle under Jake’s arm. Sam has a huge crush on Jake. This I discovered from her friend Mimi. The snuggling only makes her mad and she stomps off. Good riddance. I so don’t want to get into a cat fight tonight.

“You know that spot is yours,” Jake whispers in my ear. “I’ve heard you practicing. Don’t worry about it.”

“Do I look worried?” I breathe in Jake’s rich scent. He smells clean and woodsy. I’m not sure what kind of cologne he uses, but it’s addictive. I could stand here forever basking in the warmth of the fire, enjoying Jake’s arms around me. This is as close as I’ve ever come to being well, maybe not so much happy, but I guess maybe content is the right word. It’s another new feeling for me, but it’s one I sorta like.

“No,” Jake grins down at me, “but you do look very, very kissable.”

I smile as he lowers his head and kisses me until my toes curl. Jake kisses better than any boy I’ve ever met. Not that I’m a slut, mind you; I don’t sleep around. I’m still a virgin, but do enjoy the whole kissing aspect of dating. Jake’s kisses make me want to rethink the whole not-sleeping-around thing, which worries me. Not that he’s even said anything, but if he did, I’d have to think really, really hard and I don’t know what my answer would be. It’s always been ‘no’ before, but I’ve never met a guy I liked this much, either.

“Get a room,” Tommy grouches, breaking up our little interlude.

Jake and I both laugh at Tommy’s obvious disgust. He’d hit on me not more than an hour after I’d arrived at school my first day. Tommy has never understood why I didn’t jump at the chance to let him in my pants. Why does Meg put up with his crap? Again, not my business.

The joke rattling on my tongue dies as a girl steps into the firelight. She’s turned away from me, dressed in a bummy-looking gray nightshirt, hands bound behind her back. Long, stringy brown hair is matted with a dark sticky substance.

Not here. Oh, please, oh please, oh please, not here.

I want to avert my eyes, but can’t. She’s turned to face me; her eyes are so lost and scared. There’s a small bullet hole in her head, almost exactly where it was on the other dead kid I saw earlier. Her mouth is covered in duct tape, so she can’t speak, but I don’t need her to. I know her.

It’s Sally.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
So who am I? Well, I'm the crazy girl with an imagination that never shuts up. I LOVE scary movies. My friends laugh at me when I scare myself watching them and tell me to stop watching them, but who doesn't love to get scared? I grew up in a small town nestled in the southern mountains of West Virginia where I spent days roaming around in the woods, climbing trees, and causing general mayhem. Nights I would stay up reading Nancy Drew by flashlight under the covers until my parents yelled at me to go to sleep.

Growing up in a small town, I learned a lot of values and morals, I also learned parents have spies everywhere and there's always someone to tell your mama on you. So when you get grounded, what is there left to do? Read! My Aunt Jo gave me my first real romance novel. It was a romance titled "Lord Margrave's Deception." I remember it fondly. But I also learned I had a deep and abiding love of mysteries and anything paranormal. As I grew up, I started to write just that and would entertain my friends with stories featuring them as main characters.

Now, I live Huntersville, NC where I entertain my family and watch the cats get teased by the birds and laugh myself silly when they swoop down and then dive back up just out of reach. The cats start yelling something fierce...lol.

I love books, I love writing books, and I love entertaining people with my silly stories.

PS: DO NOT GET IN MY WAY IF THERE IS A SALE ON AT TARGET - my home away from
home!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Book Review: In the Winds of Danger



In the Winds of Danger by Linda Ulleseit

MY REVIEW

In this second book in the flying horses series, Ms. Ulleseit does an excellent job of pulling readers into the Welsh countryside and soaring skies. While readers still touch base with familiar characters, the focus is on new faces and minds, like Nia, who comes to us in an exhilarating joist. She is strong-willed, skilled, determined and playful.

The First and Second Barns are separate and operational factions, and, despite her limited experience, Nia is invited to be leader of Third Barn, that, up until this point, has just been a rumor. Nia has full confidence she could do the job for real, though everyone wants to use her as a pawn for another’s demise.

And Owain, who ran away from home eight years prior to the story’s opening, is on a mission to find out what happened to his parents. Although it leads to initial bad news, it opens up to an unexpected surprise for the young man, but also a potential murder and a pending marriage he becomes aware of and despises. The threads for Nia and Owain took a little while to get going, but the interesting characters and descriptive details pull you along. Once tensions and mysteries kick in, the reader is left flying through pages. Definitely a unique and lushly written book. BUY IT NOW.

MY RATING


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

In the Winds of Danger Blog Tour. Interview: Linda Ulleseit


Hi. I'm so glad to have Linda stop by at my blog for her tour with Turning the Pages for her sequel to On a Wing and a Dare, In the Winds of Danger, a lovely flying horses YA series set in medieval Wales. She took time out for a little chat, and today, I will share all the goodies.


SYNOPSIS
Nineteen year old Nia is shocked when she is secretly offered the leadership of Third  Barn. This new barn full of flying horses will need someone confident, experienced, and innovative, so why are both warring factions pursuing an untried girl? Suspicious that both sides want a puppet instead of a leader, Nia races to discover their secrets before making the biggest decision of her life.

Some of those secrets are unknowingly buried in the disconnected memories of a young groom named Owain. Terror and guilt haunt Owain’s dreams – and then a face from his nightmare arrives in High Meadow. Owain looks for answers in his past and uncovers a dangerous plot that could doom High Meadow's future. How can he foil the plot and save his people as well as the winged horses?



INTERVIEW

What inspired you to write your series, where did the idea come from?
I wanted to write about that time in a young person's life when they realize they need to grow up and take charge of their future. I've always loved the idea of flying horses, so I combined them.

What was your favorite thing about writing In the Winds of Danger, the sequel to On a Wing and a Dare?

I enjoyed exploring the world through different characters' eyes. We still see Emma, Davyd and Evan, from the first book, but the focus is on different characters.

Tell me about your main character(s)? What is/are he/she/they like at the core?
Owain is a good young man. He loves his work, and he works hard. He is troubled, though, by a lack of self-confidence. Nia, on the other hand, is super confident, almost condescending. She makes judgments about people's motivations and becomes flustered when she doesn't understand them.

What is/are the best and worst thing(s) about him/her/them?

Owain is loyal and sweet. He is a terrific friend. On the down side, he doesn't believe he is as important to his friends as they are to him. Nia is a very skilled rider of the winged horses. She is exactly what any barn leader needs to make his barn successful at the Aerial Games. Unfortunately, she knows it.

What’s your creative process like? Outliner or pantser?  How and why does it work for you?

I've done both. I find that when I just sit down and write without a plan I often go pretty far off track. Sometimes, though, there are wonderful bits I can use. When I outline, I tend to move too quickly through the plot and end up having to go back and slow it down with description, backstory, and explanation.

Do you have any go-to releases when you’re suffering from writer’s block or a sticky plot?

I play a lot of Candy Crush Saga. Oh, you mean to help me write? If I go back a few chapters and read what I've written, it usually gets me back into the story and I can pick it up and continue. Sometimes I force myself to continue the story even when I know I'm writing junk because eventually the muse wakes up and I'm in the flow again.

Where do you prefer to write?

At home I have a wonderful space. It's a desk that faces a window. I can see my beautiful yard and pool, and my dogs curl up on my feet. I can type away on my laptop for hours there.

What has worked in your marketing plan and what has flopped?

Using my free days to push the ebooks worked well. Being consistent about marketing is my epic fail. I have not had time to make a sustained effort to keep sales momentum going. I am a teacher, so days are hectic. I get caught up in marketing, and I have no time to write. If I am in the midst of a great writing streak, I have no time for marketing. I don't think I'm unusual in this.

What genres do you enjoy reading?

I love historical fiction, fantasy, and young adult, but I will read almost anything. I categorize my own novels as historical fantasy.

What totally kills a story in your mind while you’re reading?

With the abundance of self-published books available now, there is a lot of poorly edited books. I cannot get through a book that has grammar, spelling, punctuation, and formatting mistakes.

What do you like to do for fun or during your spare time?

I write! Oh, you mean besides that? I love to read, walk my dogs, swim, and spend time with my family.

Do you have any idiosyncrasies, super powers or other talents?

I am sure I have magnificent super powers lying dormant within me. I am so busy, though, I have not had the opportunity to discover them.

What is your biggest pet peeve?

As a teacher and as a writer I am very particular about grammar. I get very upset when I see poor grammar or spelling in public places. On my classroom website, I collect pictures of public signs that are incorrectly punctuated or spelled. Probably the most famous is an old tire billboard that said, "Something special is riding on your Michelin's." It should be plural, of course, not possessive.

What is your best quality?

I'm a good friend, willing to help however I can. I've been known to supply meals during a crisis, lend an ear when needed, and share moments of joy. I also have a good sense of humor.

Got any other books in the pipeline? If so, what?

I have just finished a historical fiction book for adults called Under the Almond Trees. It is set in California, beginning during the Gold Rush, and follows three of my female ancestors who were very independent women. I am also working on a novella, tentatively titled Tremeirchson, that will be a prequel to my flying horse trilogy. It will be a free ebook. And, of course, I am outlining my third flying horse book, Under a Wild and Darkening Sky. I have plenty to keep my busy for awhile!

AUTHOR BIO
Linda Ulleseit was born and raised in Saratoga, California, and has taught elementary school in San Jose since 1996. She enjoys cooking, cross-stitching, reading, and spending time with her family. Her favorite subject is writing, and her students get a lot of practice scribbling stories and essays. Someday Linda hopes to see books written by former students alongside hers in bookstores. Her first novel, ON A WING AND A DARE, was published in spring, 2012. It is a Young Adult fantasy set in medieval Wales, complete with flying horses, a love triangle, and treachery. The followup novel, IN THE WINDS OF DANGER, was published in February, 2013.

BUY IT NOW 
 
Website  |  Facebook  | Goodreads  | Twitter


Monday, April 22, 2013

Authors in Bloom Blog Hop Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the Authors in Bloom Blog Hop!

The grand prize winner for the eReader and $25 giftcard was:

Chris B. 

The winners of the Kings & Queens eBook were:

 Darlena 
Jennifer HJ 
Sue B 
Sue F 
Cyn209 


Thanks for visiting my blog and hopping around!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Authors in Bloom Blog Hop


Hi. It's that time of year again for the Authors in Bloom Blog Hop. It's been sunning and gorgeous in my area. I love spring. It's time for yummy treats. One of my favorite is super simple. Choose your favorite fruits, I like to do strawberry, blueberries and raspberries, prepare strawberry jello according to package directions. Place a layer of fruit at the bottom of a pyrex dish, pour jello on top and when it's done, cover the whole thing with Cool Whip.

Now, back to the blog hop.

There are multiple prizes.
Grand prize:
Ereader (Kindle or Nook) and $25 gift card (Amazon or Barnes & Noble).
Keep them both or share them to the delight of your friends!  To enter my giveaway, leave a comment, follow me on twitter, facebook or subscribe to receive email notifications from my website, ensuring you stay up to date on the next release, Ladd Fortune….coming June 2013.  Once you leave a comment, you’ll be eligible to win our grand prize!  The more sites on the hop you visit and leave a comment, the better your chances to win–so don’t miss a single one!

1) Follow my blog.

2) To enter to win the Authors In Bloom prizes – a Kindle Fire or Nook (winner’s choice) along with a $25 gift card, plus there will be 2nd and 3rd place prizes drawn — LEAVE A COMMENT in the comments below.


a Rafflecopter giveaway
So tell me, if you’re a flower gardener, veggie gardener, both flower and veggie, or if and what you love to cook. Then use the handy linky link below to visit the other sites taking part in the hop. The more sites you leave a comment on, the better your chance to win.

The Authors In Bloom tour ends April 19th at 11:59pm EST. All winners will be announced at http://www.diannevenetta.com by April 22, 2013.

Thanks so much for joining us! And have FUN!

Check out the Author Blogs.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Authors Around the World Winners


Hi. Thanks to everyone who stopped by at our blogs during our hop around the world. I hope you enjoyed reading about some new books and the locations of various authors. As you know, we gave away a Kindle Fire and a couple of book packs.

Kerry Ann won the Kindle Fire and the first book pack.

And Holly won the additional book pack.



For my personal giveaway,

Sue B won the $10 giftcard and a copy of Kings & Queens with my brand new cover.

And Jenn H and Geidre also won copies of my book.


Thanks, everyone, for making this giveaway so much fun!

~ Signing off and sending out cyber hugs.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Authors Around the World K!ndle F!re Bl0g H0p


Hi. I am happy to be hosting the Authors Around the World Kindle Fire Blog Hop with J.L. Campbell. There are so many great authors, books and locations to discover, as well as prizes to be won, so hop around. If you collect all the various locations featured, you can enter them into the rafflecopter for an extra 25 entry points to win your very own Kindle Fire. And there are only 16 blogs, so it shouldn't be too overwhelming. I am also giving away 3 Kings & Queens eBooks and one $10 giftcard to the store of your choice. Enter to win!

For this Hop, I am happy to be highlighting, young adult author, Linda Ullesit. I've been eying her book for a while now because I love horses, and what's not to love about flying horses? That's even better! And I'm not sure what happened to Suzanne. She hasn't been on her blog, FB page or Twitter since the 25th or responded to my emails, so I'm going to post J.L. Campbell's interview too. I hope she's okay and just on vacation or something.

Anyway, without further ado, here's Linda.

What title are you highlighting in this blog hop?

On a Wing and a Dare

Synopsis:

When tradition and parental disapproval threaten the very existence of the flying horses of medieval Wales, three teenage friends must fight to discover a way to save the mystical creatures and break free of their parents’ reins. Sixteen-year-old Emma longs to become the rider of a winged colt born in the barn of her father’s biggest rival. She also dreams of the rival’s sons, not sure which she loves: Evan, the exciting but insensitive one, or Davyd, the dependable one. Risking public humiliation and his family’s disappointment, Davyd must accept his fear of heights and plan an alternate future that does not include becoming a rider. When the horses begin to die, Evan discovers a way to save them, but his position as a junior rider hinders acceptance of his idea. The teenagers must put aside their self-doubts and work together to execute Evan’s plan before all the winged horses in the world are gone forever.

Who are your main characters?
Emma, 16, and brothers Davyd, 16, and Evan, 18

Who is your favorite character and why?
I actually like all three characters for different reasons. My favorite, though, is Davyd. He goes through the most inner turmoil before learning who he is and finding the courage to act on it.

Share one quirky trait in one of your characters.

Davyd has a habit of running his hand through his curly hair when he's worried or stressed out.

What was your biggest challenge writing this book?
The hardest part was keeping track of all the themes and threads I was weaving and making sure that everything came together at the end.

Spill a secret, mystery or hidden thing in your book:
One theme of the book is that you need to balance your dreams, your responsibilities, your outside influences. Flowers symbolize the earth, or the practical. In the beginning of the book, Emma doesn't even notice as she walks over the flowers. Emma is all about the air, her dreams. In the middle, Davyd the practical one teaches Emma the names of some of the flowers. At the end, during a special event, Emma wears a wreath of flowers and can name all of them and appreciate their beauty.

Where do you live?

I live in San Jose, California

What's a cool, unknown spot?

Near my house is a neighborhood shopping center with an independent coffe shop called Evergreen Coffee Company. I can sit on its patio year round and see the center's fountain and palm trees. Behind that are the rolling hills that border San Jose to the east. They are grassy, green in the spring and brown in the summer, and dotted with oak trees. A beautiful spot to visit with friends, read, or write.

Tell us a little about an interesting landmark in your country.
You'll probably have a lot of people from the United States, so I'll focus on the west coast. I live about an hour south of San Francisco, and the Golden Gate Bridge is one of its most amazing landmarks. It's a beautiful suspension bridge, quite an engineering marvel when it opened in 1937. Workers are continually painting the bridge bright orange, officially called International Orange.

What's a little known fact about where you live?

The original location of Evergreen Elementary School, where both my sons went to school and where I taught for ten years, opened in 1860. Walt Whitman taught there for a year while he attended San Jose State University.

Name two famous people who’ve been sighted in your corner of the world.

My son was a lifeguard at Raging Waters a few years ago when actor David Spade visited the park. His bodyguard climbed the steps with him, but only David went down the water slides. We have a country club nearby where some of the players for the Forty Niners live. Ex-Niner Bubba Paris has been active coming to schools for assemblies to raise money for programs.

What is the one thing tourists must do?

Tourists to San Jose should see the Winchester Mystery House, built by Sara Winchester, heir to the rifle fortune. They should also visit Raging Waters.

What's your favorite restaurant and what type of food do they serve?

There's a Pasta Pomodoro located near my house where my husband and I eat almost every Friday night. They serve tasty Italian food.

What are you giving away on your blog?

I'm giving away a button with my flying horse logo.

Who is the author you are highlighting on your blog?
Patricia Lynne

Where can readers connect with you?

I'm on Facebook as Flying Horse Books.

I'm on Twitter and Goodreads and Shelfari.

My book review blog is: http://ulleseit.wordpress.com

My novel site is: http://flyinghorsebooks.wordpress.com

Thanks, Linda.


And here are some words from J.L. Campbell, author of Distraction.

Author:
J.L. Campbell

What title are you highlighting in this blog hop?
Distraction

Synopsis:
Three Jamaican women walk a tightrope of decisions when their lives are derailed by blackmail, deceit and infidelity. JUSTINE CHARLES, sensible and self-contained, battles an addiction which could destroy her marriage, reputation, and relationship with her daughter. DIONNE JONES, an aggressive go-getter, takes risks that cut a trail of devastation through her family and business. KYRA MILLS, struggling single mother, is crippled by debt, bad judgment and destructive choices. Can two of the long-time friends survive startling revelations involving their partners? And will the other push her obsession to the point of danger?

Who is your favorite character and why?
That would be Justine, because she is the most conflicted. She keeps doing the wrong thing, but like many of us, can’t help the road she’s travelling.

What was your biggest challenge writing this book?
At the outset, I didn’t realize how tricky it would be to write a book from the perspective of three women. Personalities, hobbies, likes and dislikes had to be distinct, however, the most demanding part was getting the timelines absolutely correct. I also had to ensure that the story flowed properly since Justine’s plotline goes back and forth in time.

Where do you live? Jamaica

Tell us a little about an interesting landmark in your country.
Redemption Song is located in the Emancipation Park in Kingston. It’s an 11 foot high bronze statue that attracts a lot of attention. It comprises two nude statues (male and female) gazing skyward and is supposed to represent freedom from slavery. There’s a fountain at the base of the statues.

What’s amazing is the magnitude of work that went into creating the statues. A model was created in a month and then five months were spent carving the models from styofoam—69 pieces in all. The pieces were then cast in bronze and rejoined. Though hollow, male and female weigh 2,000 and 1,300 pounds respectively. The artist, Laura Facey, has said she was inspired by words from both Marcus Garvey and Bob Marley.

What’s the most well known city in your country and why?
Montego Bay, because it’s the tourism capital of the island.

What's a little known fact about where you live?
Jamaica has been through many name changes since the time Christopher Columbus ‘discovered’ the Tainos (Indians). The island was referred to as Jamaica as early as 1511, as well as being called Jamica, Jamaiqua, Jamaiaua, Jamaqua, Jamaicha, Xamaica. The name has also been written as Gemecoe and Gemego, Jamico, Jammaca, Jamajaco and Jamecah.

What are you giving away on your blog?
A ten dollar Amazon gift card for anyone who stops by and comments while the hop is on.

Who is the author you are highlighting on your blog?

Jordyn Meryl

Where can readers connect with you?
J.L. Campbell is a proud Jamaican and the author of Contraband, Distraction, Dissolution, Don’t Get Mad…Get Even, and Hardware (pen name Jayda McTyson). Campbell is always on the lookout for story making material, loves company and can usually be found lollygagging on her blog at http://thecharacterdepot. blogspot.com


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