Friday, September 30, 2011


  Today's Mini Challenge is all about Collections!

You know what I'm talking about, right? It's those important items that mean a lot to us that we can't help collecting. 

Me and my husband collect books, board/card games, especially munchkin. Otherwise, I try not to. For awhile I bought everything Twilight and as a kid I loved to buy stuff for my Playmobile. When my daughter is big enough for it, I will probably start that again. 

Thursday, September 29, 2011

What are your favorite type of posts from authors?

Which author posts do you like better

  • Other (please list in comments)
  • Interview with author
  • Author book picks
  • Character tweets
  • About their writing style

View Results

More polls: Sugar Momma Dating

Review: Unveiled by Trisha Wolfe

Unveiled by Trisha Wolfe
Amongst the wasteland lies the gleaming city of Karm. A Camelot-esque utopia built from the ashes of a dying world.
Seventeen-year-old Fallon is no daughter of Karm.
She's its assassin.
Raised by a secret society of rebels, she's bent on bringing down the king's sham of an existence. But her first mark, one of the king's top knights of the Force, makes her question everything. Even her heart.
Novelette published in US: Sept 18th 2011
Source: author for review

My review:
   For such a short story I totally fell in love with the characters. Fallon and Xander are dynamic, and they are thinkers in a world where it's discouraged. I love the difference they made in their journey together.
    It started with her aiming to kill him, but she starts thinking for herself when she makes a few mistakes and gets into a conversation with him. It turns out that he has a sharp mind, and that he explores outside the boundaries that the king of their dystopian universe sets out.
    They are from two different parts and functions in this world and I love how their stories tie together and begin to change the future.
    It really takes talent to make me smile, fan myself from steam, and care for characters in a short amount of pages, but Trish did it and I am looking forward to and crossing my fingers that there are more pages in their future.
I'd love to hear what you think of Unveiled and/or my review.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Review: Thank you, God for blessing me by Max Lucado, Illustrated by Frank Endersby

Thank you, God for blessing me by Max Lucado, Illustrated by Frank Endersby
Source: Booksneeze for honest review

"Meet Little Hermie—the cutest baby caterpillar in the garden! Little Hermie’s thankful heart shows toddlers how to be thankful for God’s blessings.
Little Hermie is thankful for everything God has given him. He goes through his day thanking God for his many blessings in this adorable board book with flocking on the cover!"

My Review:

This is an adorable christian book for toddlers (my guess is one to four, but I only have a three year old), with an important message--thanking God should be part of everything we do.

I liked how it gave examples of what we can and should thank Him for: food, eyes to see, friends and family, and even things that are hard for children like being kind and obeying. The story is a great introduction to Hermie, who I have seen books and movies for. The rhymes make it easier for me to read, and I think more pleasurable for my little girl to hear.

The illustrations are cute and detailed, with carry over from one picture to another. There are ladybugs and grapes in the first, and then they are on each consecutive page. I like the calm coloring for the majority of the page, and then how it’s contrasted with nice bright colors for the flowers or grapes.

My daughter asked to hear it again, and it’s a book that I wouldn’t mind reading two or three times in a day, which I can’t say for all of the books in the house or that we get from the library.

I think the length is about perfect, although I wouldn’t mind another couple of pages.

I received this book for free from BookSneeze, but it did not affect my opinion or review.  

I review for BookSneeze®

Review: Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready

Shift (Shade, #2)
Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready
Aura’s life is anything but easy. Her boyfriend, Logan, died, and his slides between ghost and shade have left her reeling. Aura knows he needs her now more than ever. She loves Logan, but she can’t deny her connection with the totally supportive, totally gorgeous Zachary. And she’s not sure that she wants to.
Logan and Zachary will fight to be the one by her side, but Aura needs them both to uncover the mystery of her past—the mystery of the Shift.
As Aura’s search uncovers new truths, she must decide whom to trust with her secrets…and her heart.
Published in US: May 2011
2nd in Shade trilogy, 3rd Shine out in 2012
Source: Won from YABooksCentral
My review:
  I really enjoyed Shift and can't wait for Shine. This trilogy has thus far blown me out of the water. I'm so glad I won it and read it!!
  All the characters I fell in love with are back, and they are still amazing. I do have to say that both Zachary and Logan pulled some things that made me angry and want to hit them, but I think that it worked out okay enough in the end.
  Some of my questions (and Aura's) were answered, but there is still a lot that I want to know and can't wait to find out how the answers come to her.
   I'd love to hear what you think of my review and/or the book.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Alternate Ending

You have to pick one of your favorite books and write an alternate ending to it, must be at least two paragraphs long (can be longer) and post it to your blog, then leave a comment with the link. (Be as creative as you can!)

Prize: a $10 Amazon gift card

ForbiddenMy alternate ending to Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma
Even though I totally appreciate what she did, I am a sucker for happy and well wrapped up. 
  I looked at Lochan and could hardly believe we'd made it. The day when Kit busted in on us naked and ran to get mom, I thought that we'd never be able to keep everything together. It turns out he was just embarrassed because Lochan had interfered and his coach outed his fear of heights to the team. I don't know what he thought he'd accomplish by getting mom but after an hour of yelling, she passed out. She left the next morning and never came back. 
  We got checks once a month until we graduated, and Lochan got a scholarship to the local university. He wrote on the side for the newspaper and made enough to support us. It's been a long fifteen years, but Willa is in college now, and they've all come to accept our relationship, and why we left town. 
   I looked into Lochan's eyes and still felt the same passion, longing and I was glad that we'd started over, and our new friends all thought we were the sweetest couple. I could do something about my love.


So--readers and writers, what do you think of NaNo? Are you doing it this year? Why or why not? Have you participated in the past?
I've done it before, and can't decide if I am this year. So far I haven't written anything since I've been pregnant, and I don't know if I can manage moving, a toddler, and being 8 months preggo trying to write a book, or at least 50k...
 But that said, I REALLY want to, and I have a few ideas and *rough* outlines. 

Who should be a couple?

Today's Mini Challenge is hosted by Princess Bookie

Challenge: Write up a blog post telling us who should be a couple but are NOT a couple. This can include tv, movie, music videos, or book couples.  In a separate paragraph, tell us why you think they should get together.  They can be characters from different shows or the same show.  Be creative. Who would go well together? These are fictional characters, not the real actors. 

Make sure you tell us which show you are going off of (if it's a show and your behind a season, tell us). If its two different shows, and two different characters, tell us. Details please! If it's a book, make sure you tell us what book it is from in your blog post.  This is so people know not to ruin it by telling you spoilers from the next book or season! LOL

Prize: Mystery Prize Pack of books
-Winner Picked using

Don't forget to link your blog post ON Cindi's blog but feel free to let me know in comments if you have any ideas.

My pick: 
Aura and Zachary from Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready. I've only read the first one, but I wish circumstances were different so they could just get together already. 

Hottest Summer Releases Giveaway

Click on banner for your chance to win choice:


Blindsided by Priscilla Cummings (July 8th 2010 by Dutton Juvenile) 
Luminous by Dawn Metcalf ( July 7th 2011 by Dutton Childrens Books)
My Life As A White Trash Zombie  by Diana Rowland (July 5th 2011 by DAW)
The Beginners by Rebecca Wolff (June 30th 2011 by Riverhead Hardcover)
The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller(July 12th 2011 by Razorbill)
Forever by Maggie Stiefvater (July 12th 2011 by Scholastic Press)
Sirensong by Jenna Black (July 5th 2011 by St. Martin's Griffin)
Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer (July 26th 2011 by Philomel)
Ripple by Mandy Hubbard (July 21st 2011 by Razorbill/Penguin)
Supernaturally by Kiersten White (July 26th 2011 by HarperTeen)
 Paradise by Jill S.Alexander ( July 5th 2011 by Feiwel & Friends)
The Siren's Cry by Jennifer Anne Kogler ( July 1st 2011 by HarperTeen)
7 Souls by Barnabas Miller, Jordan Orlando ( July 13th 2010 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers)
Love Story by Jennifer Echols (July 19th 2011 by MTV Books)
Sometimes It Happens by Lauren Barnholdt ( July 12th 2011 by Simon Pulse)
 Clean by Amy Reed ( July 19th 2011 by Simon Pulse)
Fins Are Forever by Tera Lynn Childs ( July 1st 2011 by Katherine Tegen Books)
Shadows on The Moon by Zoe Marriott ( July 7th 2011 by Walker Books)
Siren's Storm by Lisa Papademetriou (July 12th 2011 by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers)
Wildefire by Karsten Knight ( July 26th 2011 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
 Starstruck by Cyn Balog (July 12th 2011 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers)
The Jewel and the Key by Louise Spiegler ( July 11th 2011 by Clarion Books)
And Then Things Fall Apart by Arlaina Tibensky (July 26th 2011 by Simon Pulse)
Bad Taste in Boys by Carrie Harris (July 12th 2011 by Delacorte Press) 
 Lost Voices by Sarah Porter ( July 4th 2011 by Harcourt Children's Books)
Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker (July 19th 2011 by Bloomsbury)
Falling for Hamlet by Michelle Ray (July 5th 2011 by Poppy)
Touch of Frost by Jennifer Estep (July 26th 2011 by Kensington Publishing Corporation) 
Pearl by Jo Knowles (July 19th 2011)
Stolen Girl by Yxta Maya Murray ( July 7th 2011 by Razorbill)
Sleepless by Cyn Balog ( July 13th 2010 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers)
Xisle by Steve Augarde (July 13th 2010 by David Fickling Books)
The Cupid War by Timothy Carter (August 8th 2011 by Flux ) 
Tunnel Vision by Susan Shaw (August 16th 2011 by Margaret K. McElderry )
Hooked  by Catherine Greenman (August 9th 2011 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers )
A Long Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan (August 9th 2011 by Candlewick)
 The Blackhope Enigma by Teresa Flavin (August 9th 2011 by Candlewick Press)
Sweetly by Jackson Pearce (August 23rd 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
The Julian Game by Adele Griffin ( August 26th 2010 by Putnam Juvenile)
Cleopatra's Moon by Vicky Alvear Shecter (August 1st 2011 by Arthur A. Levine Books)
 Always a Witch by (August 1st 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Populazzi by Elise Allen ( August 1st 2011 by Harcourt Children's Books)
 Want to go Private? by  (August 1st 2011 by Scholastic Press)
Epic Fail by   (August 2nd 2011 by HarperTeen)
The Marked by  (August 2nd 2011 by Hyperion Book CH)
The Death Catchers by  (August 16th 2011 by Walker Books for Young Readers)
The Fox Inheritance by  (August 30th 2011 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR))
 Bloodlines by Richelle Mead (August 23rd 2011 by Razorbill)
Witchlanders by Lena Coakley (August 30th 2011 by Atheneum)
Possess by Gretchen McNeil (August 23rd 2011 by Balzer + Bray)
Misfit by Jon Skovron ( August 1st 2011 by Amulet Books )
The Edinburgh Dead by Brian Ruckley (August 17th 2011 by Orbit)
 Fury by Elizabeth Miles (August 30th 2011 by Simon Pulse)
The Blight of Mages by Karen Miller (August 4th 2011 by Orbit)
Cold Magic by Kate Elliott (August 1st 2011 by Orbit)
Eternal by Gillian Shields ( August 2nd 2011 by Katherine Tegen Books)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Review: Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Love ties them together. Death can't tear them apart.
Best. Birthday. Ever. At least, it was supposed to be. With Logan's band playing a critical gig and Aura's plans for an intimate after-party, Aura knows it will be the most memorable night of her boyfriend's life. She never thought it would be his last.
Logan's sudden death leaves Aura devastated. He's gone.
Well, sort of.
Like everyone born after the Shift, Aura can see and hear ghosts. This mysterious ability has always been annoying, and Aura had wanted nothing more than to figure out why the Shift happened so she can undo it. But not with Logan's violet-hued spirit still hanging around. Because dead Logan is almost as real as ever. Almost.
It doesn't help that Aura's new friend Zachary is so understanding—and so very alive. His support means more to Aura than she cares to admit.
As Aura's relationships with the dead and the living grow ever complicated, so do her feelings for Logan and Zachary. Each holds a piece of Aura's heart...and clues to the secret of the Shift.
Published in US: May 2010
First in series
Source: Won from YABooksCentral

My review:
   Shade is beautifully written and it is so emotional. Ms. Smith-Ready really managed to write her characters in such a way that I feel for them and with them, and want the best for them, even if what two characters want conflict. That takes some real talent.
   I didn't really know what to expect going in, but one of my writer and reader friends really loves this book (and Shift) and I respect her opinion so it's been high on my TBR since then. But let me tell you, I was blown away at what I found.
   Even though music and partying are big elements in this book, and they are not so much my thing, Aura and Logan, Megan and the rest of the Keeleys made it work, and made me care about what matters to them. That being said, there is sex, rock and roll, partying, death and grief all in this book, and teens should know that going in and be able to handle it. I don't think that any of it is gratuitous or in poor taste, just to be clear.
    I would be remiss if I didn't mention the love triangle and which side I'm on. I totally am a sucker for the accent, so Zachary had me at hello. As for Aura... I really admire the depth of her love for Logan, and even though she can see and talk to ghosts... being dead put him out of the running for me. It was hard to reconcile my want for her to be in a different place in life and just be able to be with Zachary to the fact that Logan, and her love for him is very central to this book. His life, death, ghostly status, along with the mystery of her mother, and her puzzling connection to Zachary (the non-romantic one that is) all makes up the story, and it's hard to stay firmly planted on my Zachary side.
    For me, I am so glad that I have Shift ready to start, because that ending... yeah. It's one of the special cliffhangers that leaves your jaw dropped, and lusting for more.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Follow Friday 9/23

Hey, hey! I haven't done it in a while, and I miss the questions and meeting new bloggers, so, here I am!

Q. Do you have a favorite series that you read over and over again? Tell us a bit about it and why you keep on revisiting it?
A. I've read Twilight many times because to me, it is the perfect capture of first love and of true love, and who doesn't want to experience that over and over? I also love to re-read Harry Potter because it's just pure awesome. I also like to go back and read Lurlene McDaniel's books, the characters and the stories are just so moving and emotional.  I've also read through Vampire Academy several times because Rose is just amazing.

Make sure to say hi, and let me know if I'm not following you! Also, I have a contest for A Long, Long Sleep by Sheehan, hop over and enter if you want. 

As a YA reader, what do you want to read?

Especially in the contemporary field... what would you like to see more (or any) books written about? 

Great giveaway!

Mimi Valentine

What you can win:

Vanish by Sophie Jordan
As I Wake by Elizabeth Scott
If I Die by Rachel Vincent
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa
Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Crossed by Ally Condie
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare
Good luck!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Guest Post and GIVEAWAY (A Long, Long Sleep) by Anna Sheehan

Where do stories come from?
"Where do you get your ideas from?" is a question most authors are asked at some point or another in their careers. It usually stumps them. No one asks a carpenter where they get their ideas from, or a teacher, or a house painter. The idea to trim a house with steel blue instead of forest green isn’t an idea people poke at. But the idea to marry the story of Sleeping Beauty to the story of the Terminator is something people feel a need to try and dissect.
The truth is, all ideas come from the same place: our experience. An experienced house painter will know that steel blue looks better with the echo of the mountain behind the house, while the green would be drowned in the trees. When it came to A Long, Long Sleep, my experience told me that the story of Sleeping Beauty was inherently flawed – the interesting story wasn’t how she was put to sleep. It was simply an act of evil. Possibly it was the lesser of two evils – sleep vs. death – but evil by itself is dull.
When it comes to a person, the interesting thing is not how you have suffered, but what you do to overcome it. Everyone has a sob story. I have several myself. My friends have had worse. But what they do with their lives, how they climb out of the darkness, what help they needed and what skills they had; that is what makes a life, and that is what makes a life interesting.
Life is story. The act of telling a story is to invoke a tiny life. You draw the story from your life, and the lives of others who have touched you, and other story lives, research to make it as true as possible, add in a few spices (like undead killing machines to personify the true evil) to make it taste better, mix all these elements into a stew, and let it simmer. Eventually, hopefully, you come up with something palatable; something people can swallow; something that will warm them from the inside out and touch them and become part of their own story.
For myself, I started writing as an attempt to explain how I saw the world. Something made me angry, and the only way I could express that adequately was through the written word. Ironically, I began speaking the same way – I’m one of those (un)fortunate enough to have some very lucid memories of my early childhood, and I distinctly recall deciding to learn how to talk, so that I would be able to say what was wrong with my world. At the time I had been frightened by a spider, and I couldn’t say what had scared me. After that I studied language, and the first word(s) I ever said were, "Look! Look!" followed by long sentences pointing out the world as I understood it. I started writing because I was annoyed by a teacher’s inability to understand my intellect, and I couldn’t say how I felt to her face. "Look, look!" I basically wrote. This isn’t right!
When I started writing fiction, I was doing much the same. There was something wrong, something that I needed to direct people’s attention to. Whether it was with my life, their own lives, society as a whole, or just the general unjustness of existence. There are problems. They need fixing. But the wonderful thing about fiction is, you can also direct people’s attention to how things are fixed. "Look, look!" I say. Wake up. Open your eyes. Reach out, and most of your problems can be sorted; most of your wounds can be bandaged, if not healed.
That’s basically what all my ideas are, and what all my books are about, and why I write. "Look, look!" I’m saying. See that? This is the world as I understand it. Maybe, just maybe, it’ll interest or entertain you. And if I’m lucky, it might even direct your attention.
Anna Sheehan is the author of A Long, Long Sleep, published in America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, France and Russia. A Long, Long Sleep is Anna’s first book. Find her at

And now for the giveaway:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Review: A Mom After God's Own Heart: 10 Ways to Love Your Children by Elizabeth George

A Mom After God's Own Heart: 10 Ways to Love Your Children (George, Elizabeth (Insp))
A Mom After God's Own Heart: 10 Ways to Love Your Children by Elizabeth George

Elizabeth George’s A Mother After God’s Own Heart offers 10 principles to help moms make God an everyday part of their children’s lives. Readers will explore how to...
teach their children God’s Word, train them in God’s ways, talk to children about Jesus, pray with and for them
Elizabeth, who has two grown children and six grandchildren, gives practical advice and real–life suggestions for helping children—no matter what their ages—incorporate God into daily life. Elizabeth’s husband, Jim, also provides biblical advice from a dad’s perspective.
Source: bought
My Review:
   This book is heartfelt and Ms. George gives great tips on how to raise and cultivate your child's heart for God. There are practical tips on how to actually carry out her suggestions, and it is organized well. There is even sections from her husband speaking to moms from a man's perspective, whether you have support from your husband or if he is most supportive.
    I was very challenged but also inspired by this one, and if you're a christian mom, I def recommend it!

Scariest Word

Scariest word at Non_reluctant button by Parajunkee

  • Grab a book you're currently reading (and hopefully loving)
  • Go to the 13th Chapter (if the book doesn't have 13 chapters, go to the closest to it)
  • Scan the chapter for the scariest word
  • Using Google/Yahoo images randomly pick on picture that comes up when you search the word
  • Write a blog post that has the book's cover, title, your word and your image
Shade (Shade, #1) Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Poisonous Snakes