Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Practical Prepper by Kylene and Jonathan Jones

It's a Two For Tuesday!

That's right, I've got two things to share today. The first is a review of The Practical Prepper and the second, for those following along with my Summer Dreamin' Book Giveaways, is a sneak peek at Torn Canvas by Donna Weaver.

Okay, something a little different. My readers know that I love dystopian and apocalyptic books, well, going hand and hand with that is being ready for the end of the world. So, when this book came across my desk I jumped on it. The Practical Prepper by Kylene and Jonathan Jones is "a Common-Sense Guide to preparing for Emergencies."

So what does it include? I was thrilled to find really basic ideas that fit into every walk of life. There are chapters on communication, water storage, water purification, sanitation, emergency kits and food storage. There are also bits on natural disaster and nuclear war survival.

I was impressed by the amount of research that went into the book. I found it fun to look up some of  the links and learn more. Really interesting to me were the links that allowed you to see the radius of nuclear fallout from different locations or to find where the closest nuclear reactor was.

Each chapter really goes into detail about its subject, but not so much that you become confused. For instance, there is info about HAM radio, but if you want to go in depth you can do more individual research. The point is that they list all the choices and you can look into whatever you'd like.

I even found out some things I'd never thought about before, which is rare because I love survival stuff- flannel squares for reusable toilet paper and Fritos for fire starers!

I loved the book and it is a great place to start. Don't be the one in the neighborhood that has to depend on everyone else for food and water. 5 stars!

Torn Canvas by Donna Weaver

It's added bonus time! As part of my Summer Dreamin' Giveaway this week Donna Weaver is offering up her romance novel, A Change Of Plans. But, she is also offering my readers a peak at her next book, Torn Canvas!

Modern-day pirates took more than Jori Virtanen’s friends; they stole his face. Not only does the twenty-four-year-old former model have to confront months of reconstructive surgery, he discovers his previous life was as superficial as his looks. Jori struggles to make a new life for himself as an artist while evading the press. They expect a hero, but he knows the truth. His beauty masks a beast.

Olivia Howard’s given up a normal life for her job, and the sacrifices are finally paying off. The twenty-six-year-old talk-show host’s ratings are heading to the top of the charts. Her dream is to make a difference in people’s lives, but the studio wants mind fluff—like interviewing hot model Jori Virtanen. When Olivia learns the guy helped rescue passengers on a cruise excursion from kidnappers, she knows this is the story she needs to make her case. The only problem is the hero was injured, and now he’s disappeared.

The more Olivia learns about the man behind the scar, the more intrigued she becomes. But Jori is no girl’s happily ever after. Once she finds him, Olivia has to free his heart and help heal the beast.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Christmas in July Hop

* Don't forget to enter the Summer Dreamin' Book Giveaways! A new one every Saturday.

Up for grabs- $10 Amazon Gift Code

To enter fill out the rafflecopter form below. Don't forget to hop over to the other blogs too.

The Avatar Battle by Chad Morris

*Don't forget to enter the Summer Dreamin' Book Giveaways. A new one every Saturday!

Once again it is Monday, and that means Middle Grade! Today I'm am reviewing the second book in the Cragbridge Hall series, The Avatar Battle, by Chad Morris. To read the review of the first book, The Inventor's Secret, click here.

The Story-
Abby and Derick are starting their second year at Cragbridge Hall. Derick is excited and knows that this year he gets to work with robot avatars. Abby is wary. Her grades are low, and she doesn't feel as if she belongs at the prestigious school.

As the year gets underway, Grandpa Cragbridge brings the twins deeper into his secret world, and makes them members of the Council of the Keys. They are among the few that have access to time travel and vow to keep it secret and the time line unaltered. Then the worst happens, someone or something gains entrance to the school and one by one, members of the Council are found unconscious and their keys missing.

Abby and Derick have to figure out who is behind the attacks and why, and how to stop them.

My Thoughts-
A great second story. The side plot of Abby struggling to keep up in school keeps the story more real. Her feelings of insecurity and doubt show through in her actions and her ability to work on the Council of the Keys. Derick is the opposite, full of confidence. He is able to handle the robot avatars better than anyone in his class, and is invited into an elite group of users. His biggest battle is one left over from book one. Can he stay in the hologram chamber long enough to receive his own key?

I think the funnest part about the story is that I didn't know who the bad guy was or how they were sneaking into the most secure places of the school to attack teachers. The author does a great job leaving some red herrings, and I fell for them. The truth lies in following one of the sub-plots, but that's my only hint :)

Kids will enjoy this series and I'm excited for the next book. 4 Stars!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

And the winner is...

The results for the Romance Week Giveaway #1 are in! Congrats to Juana E :)

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Summer Dreamin' Book Giveaways- Week 8

Romance Week Part 2
Welcome to a summer of book giveaways! Every Saturday I will be posting a new giveaway. The books range from children's to adult, from romance to cookbook, from fiction to non-fiction- so something for everyone! This week is being sponsored by romance writers  Joyce DiPatsena, Donna Weaver and Heather Tullis. To enter fill out the raffleocpter form. Open to the US and Canada. Please read terms and conditions.

Joyce DiPastena-
Loyalty's Web-

Heléne de Laurant has not forgotten how the Earl of Gunthar destroyed her father’s castle during Henry II’s war with his sons. Apparently neither have her family and friends, for when someone tries to murder Gunthar, every sign points in their direction. Heléne realizes the only way to prove her loved ones’ innocence is by exposing the true assassin.

As Heléne and Gunthar spar over the identity of the traitor, fierce determination gives way to mutual attraction. Heléne must race against time, and dark secrets of the past, to unmask the would-be killer before the kingdom plunges back into war and takes the life of the man she has unexpectedly learned to love.

Illuminations of the Heart - 

Siri de Calendri was trained in the art of illumination in her brother’s workshop in 12th century Venice, but when her brother dies his will sends her far from home. Siri travels to the faraway county of Poitou in France, where she enters the guardianship of her brother’s friend, Triston de Brielle. Once settled, she hopes to find employment in an illuminator’s shop— until Triston unexpectedly snatches her heart away with a kiss.

Triston is a man of quiet honor and courage, but the guilt he carries for the death of his wife, Clothilde, has left him numb and hesitant to love again. Worse yet, Siri bears an uncanny resemblance to his lost love. Or does she? Her merry laughter and twinkling eyes are very different from his late wife's shy smiles and quiet ways. Yet when he gazes into Siri's face, all he sees is Clothilde.

Then Triston's past returns to threaten them both. Trapped between the rivalry of the king's sons on the one hand and a neighbor out for vengeance on the other, Triston realizes it would be safer to send Siri away. Siri is determined not to be cast off and not to live in another woman’s shadow. She has illuminated many a priceless book with pen and paint, but can her own vibrant spirit illuminate the darkness in Triston’s soul and make his heart beat for her alone?

Donna Weaver
A Change of Plans

When Lyn sets off on her supposedly uncomplicated and unromantic cruise, she never dreams it will include pirates. All the 25-year-old Colorado high school teacher wants is to forget that her dead fiancé was a cheating scumbag. What she plans is a vacation diversion; what fate provides is Braedon, an intriguing surgeon. She finds herself drawn to him: his gentle humor, his love of music, and even his willingness to let her take him down during morning karate practices. Against the backdrop of the ship’s make-believe world and its temporary friendships, her emotions come alive.

However, fear is an emotion, too. Unaware of the sensitive waters he navigates, Braedon moves to take their relationship beyond friendship—on the very anniversary Lyn came on the cruise to forget. But Lyn’s painful memories are too powerful, and she runs off in a panic.

Things are bad enough when the pair finds themselves on one of the cruise’s snorkeling excursions in American Samoa. However, paradise turns to piracy when their party is kidnapped. Lyn’s fear of a fairytale turns grim. Now she must fight alongside the man she rejected, first for their freedom and then against storms, sharks, and shipwreck.


Heather Tullis
The Last Bride
When Gage learned that George DiCarlo thought he would make a great match for his youngest daughter, Gage was not interested. Not even if she was beautiful, talented, kicked butt on hiking trails and could challenge even his love of skiing.

 When Jonquil’s learns about it a year later, her reaction is exactly the opposite. After watching the rest of her sisters fall in love with the men her father hoped they would connect with, she is curious about the one he had planned for her. But Gage is not making it easy and plenty of problems stand between them—her half-sister, Angela, from her family back in Philadelphia seems determined to keep her on her toes and threats against Gage’s family keep them guessing all the way.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Acquisitions Editor Opening

*This just game across my desk-

Cedar Fort, Inc., a publishing company in Springville, UT, is looking for an experienced acquisitions editor to join our team. We are looking for a highly organized, efficient go-getter who will take initiative. This individual will need to have good leadership skills and able to lead a team. They should also have good editing skills. We are also looking for someone with a positive attitude and upbeat personality to fit well within our organization.

Responsibilities will include project managing several books per month. This includes finding good authors, negotiating contracts, reviewing manuscripts for publication, working directly with the authors, and managing a team of people. The acquisitions editor will need to be able to work well with authors and maintain a strong relationship with them. This person also represents Cedar Fort to the public, to authors, at book conferences, etc. and therefore needs to have a positive and friendly attitude.

Qualifications: Must have bachelor’s degree. Internships and other experience are highly preferred.
This is a full time salaried position from 8AM-5PM Monday-Friday. Starting wage is $11.38/hour.
Please e-mail your resume to Katreina Eden at kat@cedarfort.com with “Acquisitions Editor Position” in the subject, and we will consider scheduling an interview. Position open until filled.
If you would like more information about our company, please check out our website at www.cedarfort.com.