Sheila's Books Read

Sheila's bookshelf: read

What Would the Founding Fathers Think: A Young American's guide to understanding the mess our country is in and how we get out
Isabelle Webb: Legend of the Jewel
Captive Heart
Cobble Cavern
Caller ID
Promises
Protected,
Summer of Secrets
On Little Wings
We Lived in Heaven: Spiritual Accounts of Souls Coming to Earth
Christ's gifts to women
A Woman's power: threads that bind us to god
Scary School
Hope's journey
Blue
Targets in Ties
Crater Lake: Battle for Wizard Island
Venom
With a Name like Love
Sean Griswold's head


Sheila's favorite books »

2014 Reading Challenges

2014 Reading Challenge

2014 Reading Challenge
Sheila has read 4 books toward her goal of 100 books.
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Friday, March 30, 2012

Blog Tour Review of, Protected (Watched Series Book 2), By Cindy Hogan

Product Details:

  • Title: Protected (Watched Series Book 2)
  • Author: Cindy M. Hogan
  • Paperback: 341 pages
  • Publisher: Brigham Distributing (March 24, 2012)
  • Genre:YA, mystery/suspense, romance,
  • ISBN-10: 0985131802
  • ISBN-13: 978-0985131807


Book Description:

She has the guy. The terrorists have been taken care of and she is on the brink of being popular. Life is GREAT! Until they find her. Now she must run and leave behind everything she knows, including herself. 



My Review: 

Protected is the second book in the Watched series. (Read my review for the first book, Watched, here.) I think this was an excellent second book in a series! It picked up right where the first book left off. I have to say that Christy is one of my favorite YA female characters. The reason why, is that she is smart, cute, and most of all is she portrayed as a "real" teen. Even though she is in this horrendous situation, she still is a 16 year old girl and she thinks like one. Sometimes YA female protagonists sound and act like the women who write them; not so in this case. Cindy Hogan writes a realistic character and how a 16 year old would talk and think. 

Another thing I loved about Protected is how Christy is in the Witness Protection Program. There is so much that happens to her as she is "trained" in how to live her new life. I was fascinated by how many things she had to learn in able to protect herself from the terrorists. Many of these things/techniques come in handle throughout the book. There are many exciting things that occur, but there is also much character development happening at the same time. In Protected, Christy also learns about relationships and is able to look back at how she has treated others. This whole series is one that I would feel very good about letting my teen read. Christy has high moral standards, and they are tested in this book, but she always stays true to herself. What better message can we send our teens than this?

I also want to applaud Cindy on such great writing. When I read her books I don't want to quit reading until I am done with the book. The suspense is high in Protected throughout the book. If you haven't read this series yet you need to. This series is a great combination of YA romance, mystery/suspense and action. 

To get your own copies of Watched and Protected go to Amazon.com. The e-book copies are only $2.99. 



To visit other blogs on the Protected tour go to Cindy's blog to check out the list. 




About the Author:
Cindy Hogan enjoys spending time with and writing about unpredictable teenagers. If she's not reading or writing, you'll find her with her own teen daughters or her fun husband. She graduated with a BA in secondary education.



***I received a review e-copy of Protected. In no
way did this influence the honest review that was
given.***

Monday, March 26, 2012

Blog Tour Review of, Cobble Cavern, by Erik Olsen

Product Details:

  • Title: Cobble Cavern (Book One of the Flin's Destiny, 5 Book Series)
  • Author: Erik Olsen
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Cedar Fort, Inc. (April 10, 2012)
  • Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
  • ISBN-10: 1462110096
  • ISBN-13: 978-1462110094


Book Description:

What starts out to be a fun field trip to Ireland for Flin and his school debate team turns into a life changing adventure. Flin and his teammates get swallowed by an earthquake and become trapped under the ocean inside a clear dome where they discover an unknown civilization. Join Flin and his classmates on a journey of a lifetime in this thrilling adventure story.
 
 
My Review:
Cobble Cavern is another great book that middle grade readers will love. With main character, Flin, having just turned thirteen, he is ready to go off on an adventure. The adventure is a trip to Ireland for a debate tournament. This average school trip turns into a journey of excitement, and sometimes great peril. As their tour bus is devoured by the Earth, and they are plunged deep underground, Flin finds out how brave he really is. I liked this character, as he showed common sense and courage trying to help his fellow classmates, along with his sidekick, Pilt. They battle strange creatures, mean and nasty classmates, unusually elements, and the big bad guy, Blade. The message is always there to not give up, and that you can accomplish things you never thought were within your reach.

Other fun characters in the book were Fezzy, Inger, and Heppel. They are the dwarfs they find in an ancient castle. With their help, this lost group are able to turn their bad luck around.

Young boys between the ages of 8-14 will really like this book. The front cover will be the first thing to pull them into reading the book. The average boy will be able to relate with many of the male characters. They are boys with normal insecurities, some bullying, that accompany these ages. It is always good for them to read about other boys that rise above the ordinary to become who they really want and can be. There is some mild violence in the book that some younger kids may not like, when a creature is on a rampage. Most of the story will keep any reader excited and glued to their book.

You can pre-order Cobble Cavern at Amazon.com.

About the Author:



Jon Erik Olsen lives in Sandy, Utah, where he enjoys the mountains and is surrounded by a great family and friends that have continued to support him throughout his writing quest. After having one of the world's craziest dreams, he has written a series of five books detailing it called Flin’s Destiny, which is full of continuous action and adventure deep in the earth and keeps you wanting more.
You can find out more on the Flin's Destiny Facebook page and the Book Poster page. 











This blog tour is presented by Cedar Fort Publishing.
You can see the tour schedule and more information by clicking HERE .

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Review of Smokescreen by Traci Hunter Abramson


Product Details:

  • Title: Smokescreen
  • Author: Traci Hunter Abramson
  • Paperback: 249 pages
  • Publisher: Covenant Communications Inc; 1st edition (January 3, 2011)
  • Genre: Mystery/Suspense
  • ISBN-10: 1608611833
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608611836

 Product Description:
Taylor Palmetta has spent the past year in Europe building her art career and hiding from Navy SEAL Quinn Lambert, the man who broke her heart. But Taylor can’t seem to hide from trouble. When Taylor seeks safety with her family in Virginia Beach, a series of threats puts her on high alert—and puts Quinn into protective mode. Despite the private loss that continues to haunt him, Quinn can’t deny his renewed attraction to Taylor. But just as the romance heats up, a plot against the very foundation of the American way of life surfaces, and Taylor’s paintings may hold the key. The Saint Squad is back in action as the team frantically tries to protect their nation’s security—and Taylor and Quinn search for courage to unlock the troubled past. 

 My Review:
This Saint Squad book(#5) is now one of my favorites! It had plenty of romance, action, and suspense. I love these characters! The Navy Seals are good men, with a job to do, but they also love and care for each other. I also really like the women that love these Navy Seals. Traci has a way of keeping you so enthralled in the story, you don't ever want to put the book down. Though these characters are LDS, these books are not based on religion, nor are they preachy. If you have never read these books, you should! Everyone who starts reading them gets hooked.I would suggest that you start reading this series by first reading  Freefall. Here is the order of the books.


-Freefall:


Lockdown:






Crossfire:

Backlash:


To learn more about Traci and her books, please go to her website.
View all my reviews

Friday, March 23, 2012

"Protected" Launch Party!! Help Author Cindy Hogan Celebrate!

 
Author, Cindy Hogan's new book, Protected, is now out. The official launch will be, Saturday, March 24th. I will be one of the participating blog hosts reviewing Protected in the next few months. I will be reviewing the book next Friday, March 30th. Here are the details about the launch party that I found on Cindy's blog. It sounds like there will be a lot of great things being given away.
 Protected's Launch Parties
Sat. March 24th 3-5 pm
**If you live in the Salt Lake Valley, I'll be doing a special sneak peek signing at 
Barnes and Noble in Murray that same day from 12-1:45


The next launch party will span 3 days at Bountiful Costco
March 29-31st from 11-6 each day
**All prizes, except door prizes, will be available to win at each launch party

Here's the flyer for the B&N event:













What are the giveaways and door prizes? 
3 day 2 night vacation
Portable puppet stage and puppets
$25 dollar iTunes gift cards
Target gift cards
Books
1 month gym memberships
CD's
Cutler's cookies
Ny pizza cards
Subway gift cards
Rubios meal
Gift basket
Crockpot
Some trendy rose colored glasses  
promo packs with pens, bookmarks, notepads
                                                    Ultra Flip Video Camcorder 

The trip*- 
3 day/2 nights to one of 19 different resort destinations
*from spirit incentives
The gift cards-
I'm sure you don't need me to put pictures up for these. 
iTunes, Subway, Baskin Robbins, Hot Dog on a Stick, Target, and Wal-Mart 

 The portable puppet stage  Retail value $220
This stage sets up in 5 minutes and includes an awesome duffle bag for easy storage.




Here's a pic of the puppets retail value $28 -So cute!

The books (they are not all pictured)
 James Allen's "As a Man Thinketh"

7 Habits for Happy Kids $19.99               
The 7 Habits of Happy Kids 

Are you sick of your boring hair?  Me too!  Lets get out of our ponytail rut.  The Ultimate Hairstyle Handbook comes fully loaded with over forty fashionable hairstyles that each have their own set of step by step picture tutorials.  No more scouring the internet looking for new hairstyles or wasting time trying to figure them out!  All the secrets are right here in this book.  It can be kept in your bathroom for referencing on those no inspiration days- you'll wonder how you ever lived without it! 1 print book and 15 amazing eBooks of this up for grabs. 

Ebooks from these amazing authors-Stacey Wallace Benefiel (Glimpse), Grand prize-the (Glimpse Trilogy), Ali Cross (Become), Jessie Harrel (Destined), Susan Kaye Quinn (Open Minds), Angela Carlie (Land of Corn Chips, Loramendi's Story, Dream Smashers), Heather McCorkle (The Secret of Spruce Knoll, Channeler's Choice), Cory Oakes (The Veil), Magan Vernon (How to Date an Alien), Karen Hooper (Tangled Tides), Megg Jensen (Sleepers), Karly Kirkpatrick (The Green, Bloody Little Secrets, Into the Shadows), Sarra Cannon (Beautiful Demons, Inner Demons), Elle Strauss (Clockwise)  A lot of the covers to these books are on the sidebar of my "home" tab. Go check them out.
The camcorder   (4GB memory, Records 120 minutes Value $149.99)
 
Who are the awesome authors that will be there?
Me, of course, author Cindy M. Hogan. I write young adult/teen books-but women love them, too 
Rachelle Christensen  She writes adult fiction
Carolyn Frank  She writes middle grade fiction
Miriam Barton She writes cookbooks
Valerie Ackley   She writes pictures books 

There will be an author and a book for everyone.
All the authors will do a reading from their books, too. Yahoo!

Ambrosia Wedding Cakes is providing red velvet cupcakes for the first 100 people
And Miriam Barton is bringing a treat from her book, too.

The game
We will be playing the book stacking game once again. Try your hand at creating the tallest stack and win!



The Winner of the Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway!

Jennifer H. is the winner of the Lucky Leprechaun giveaway! She has been contacted with the details. Congrats to her!! Thank you everyone for entering the giveaway! There will be more giveaways very soon!

Review of Summer of Secrets by Charlotte Hubbard


Product Details:

  •  Title: Summer of Secrets
  • Author: Charlotte Hubbard
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Zebra; Original edition (February 1, 2012)
  • Genre:Christian Romance/Amish
  • Seasons of the Heart
  • ISBN-10: 1420121693
  • ISBN-13: 978-1420121698







Book Description:

Welcome to Willow Ridge, Missouri! In this cosy Amish town along the banks of the river, the Old Ways are celebrated at the Sweet Seasons Bakery Cafe, and love is a gift God gives with grace. As summer arrives, Rachel Lantz is looking forward to a whole new season in her life - marriage to strapping carpenter Micah Brenneman, her childhood sweetheart. When a strange Englisher arrives in the cafe claiming to be the long-lost sister of Rachel and her twin Rhoda, Rachel feels the sturdy foundation of her future crumbling - including Micah's steadfast love. As the days heat up and tempers flare, Rachel and Micah will learn that even when God's plan isn't clear, it will always lead them back to each other.
My Review: 
I was very excited to read Summer of Secrets. I have always been a huge fan of Beverly Lewis who has written many Amish Romances. I wondered if there was someone who could write one of these stories just as well. I am happy to report, that yes, Charlotte Hubbard does a fantastic job! I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to get into the story. The characters are so likable and you want things to work out for all of them. 
Though the book description talks a lot of about Rachel and Micah's romance, the story also focuses a lot on Rachel's Mother, Miriam. This character became my favorite one. You are pulled into her story as you read about how she lost one of her children in a rushing river, and then her beloved husband passed away leaving her to fend for her family on her own. Miriam is a strong character, and this brings the Amish Bishop down on her and him saying she needs to be humbled. Bishop Hiram Knepp is a powerful man in the Amish community, but he is also not one of my favorite characters. There is a lot of drama as Miriam's long lost, "English" daughter comes back into her life. 

Summer of Secrets is a story of hope and miracles. It is a lesson in forgiveness and letting go of the past. This story warms the heart and gives you something/someone to cheer for. This well written book, is a fast read, that you will not want to put down. If you enjoy reading about the Amish people, you will love Summer of Secrets. I will definitely read the second book in the "Seasons of the Heart" series called, Autumn Winds. It will continue on with Miriam's story and possibly finding love in her life. I can't wait!!





About the Author:(In her own words)

Many moons ago—like 1983 while I was still a school librarian—I sold my first story to True Story. This launched me into writing about seventy of those “true confessions” stories over the years, and I’ve been a slave to my overactive imagination ever since.
The next big step was selling my first historical romance in 1990, a Zebra Heartfire called COLORADO CAPTIVE. Then came GAMBLER’S TEMPTING KISSES, COLORADO MOONFIRE, MISSOURI MAGIC, SAHARA SPLENDOR, and OUTLAW MOON. They’re all out of print now, but available from used book stores or on Amazon.com.
After a long dry spell that entailed major changes in the publishing industry and an agent who fritzed out on cocaine, I resurfaced in a new genre, with a new publisher, editor, and agent who were so excited about my Angels of Mercy books! And now, with the first book of my series, The Love Secret, I move into new territory once again—and once again the setting is a place I love to spend time: the Oregon Coast.

Me, I’m really pleased to know where my next stories are coming from! Being an author is great fun when you’re selling, but it’s best to have a hide like a rhinoceros and a spouse who gets a regular paycheck!

Patience, persistence and just flat-out luck have given me this opportunity to reinvent myself yet again. Those angels I write about keep pulling me through, and are often my friends and family—but I owe a lot to the heavenly beings who bear me up on their wings, as well!

My stories invariably take on a life of their own, different from the way I’ve proposed them: I love it when unforeseen characters and plot twists come along, because they keep me guessing right along with my readers!

I often speak to my RWA chapter in St. Louis, and at conferences. I also belong to Novelists, Inc..

I love touring historic homes, trying new recipes, crocheting, and playing with Ramona—although it’s humbling, having a dog smarter than I am! I’m an ordained Presbyterian deacon, and I devote a lot of time to singing and chiming in my church choirs, as well as hostessing a monthly potluck group and cooking our Adult Fellowship lunches. I’m celebrating thirty-five years with my husband, who—bless him—has never once suggested I get a real job!
~Charlotte

To read more about Charlotte, go to her website at http://www.charlottehubbard.com/


***I received a review copy of Summer of Secrets. In no way did this influence the honest review that was given.***

Monday, March 19, 2012

Teen Said, Mom Said: Double Review of, Scary School, by Derek the Ghost and Scott M. Fischer

Product Details:

  • Title: Scary School
  • Author: Derek The Ghost, Illustrator: Scott Fischer
  • Reading level: Ages 8 and up
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (June 21, 2011)
  • Genre: Middle Grade
  • ISBN-10: 0061960926
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061960925


Book Description:

June 21, 2011 8 and up3 and upScary School
You think your school's scary?

Get a load of these teachers:
Ms. Fang, an 850-year-old vampire Dr. Dragonbreath, who just might eat you before recess Mr. Snakeskin—human anatomy class is so much more fun when it's taught by someone who's half zombie Mrs. T—break the rules and spend your detention with a hungry Tyrannosaurus Rex!
Plus Gargoyles, goblins, and Frankenstein's monster on the loose
The world's most frighteningly delicious school lunch
And The narrator's an eleven-year-old ghost!
Join Charles "New Kid" Nukid as he makes some very Scary friends—including Petunia, Johnny, and Peter the Wolf—and figures out that Scary School can be just as funny as it is spooky!


 


Whenever my 14 year old daughter and I do a review together, it will be under the title of: "Teen Said, Mom Said". She is an avid reader like her Mom, and we often fight over who gets to read new books first. I hope that you will enjoy reading our combined reviews.

Teen Said:

  Have you ever heard a bump in the middle of the night?  Or see a shadow but no one is there to cast it? Well this book tells you why you don't need to be afraid of them. Scary School is one of the cutest books I have ever read, not to mention one of the funniest. I mean seriously, have you ever heard of a paragraph made of quotation marks? Derek the ghost is writing about what goes on this year at Scary School, (the school he used to go to before a fatal science project) because this year, Scary School is hosting The Ghoul Games. The Ghoul Games are an annual competition between scary schools around the world, and this year, the comity chose Scary School to host it. But this year there's a fateful twist that will finally bring humans and monsters together. And along the way, you will meet the most memorable teachers. Ms. Fang, the one fanged vampire. Dr. Dragonbreath, the child eating dragon. Mrs. T, the detention dinosaur. And Principal Headcrusher, the huge handed human. All of these,and a whole lot more,are waiting for you in this awesome book, Scary School.


Mom Said:

The Middle Grade Genre is one that is constantly growing, and getting better and better, book after book. Scary School delivers, as one of the funniest middle grade books I have read in a long time. Scary School, though full of "scary" students and teachers, is more funny than scary. I was LOL through the whole book. I know that the humor in this book will truly appeal to it's target audience. The story is narrated by "Derek the Ghost" who also happens to attend Scary School. As my teen said, the cast of characters is delightful and creative. My favorites happened to be:

-Mrs.T(Rex) the detention monitor, "who was born in a laboratory on a far-away island where scientists were growing dinosaurs for an insane billionaire who wanted them roaming around his backyard to impress his billionaire friends." Yes, this brought an insane laugh out of me. (Jurassic Park reference)  

AND

-DR. Dragonbreath, who ends up eating most of his students before the day is over. (I can't say I blame him. I have had days like that before while teaching.Not actually eating my students, but feeling tempted. Just kidding!)This occurrence is referred to as..."Dr. Dragonbreath's unusually teaching methods." 

Scary School would make a great read-aloud with your family or in a classroom. I can assure you, any child after reading this book will be inspired to create new and wild creatures of their own. This will be a book I will read out loud, to my class, come next October. This wild and crazy read will keep them laughing, from the beginning until the very last page.


About the Author:Derek The Ghost:

Image of Derek The Ghost
Derek is an eleven-year-old ghost who haunts the classrooms and hallways of Scary School, writing down all the spine-tingling often hilarious things that go on there. Despite his ghostly state, Derek still enjoys reading comic books and hopes to one day become a master ninjas. If that doesn't work out, he will continue to share the fun of this very special, very secret school, so all kids can experience the scariest school on earth. Derek the Ghost communicates through the first-time ghost whisperer Derek Taylor Kent, who is a writer and performer in Los Angeles, California.

Learn more about this fun series at
www.ScarySchool.com






*****I was given a review copy by Harper Collins Children's Books. In no way did this influence the honest reviews that were given.***

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Dark Divine & The Lost Saint by Bree Despain...Great Deal on the E-books!


I have been wanting to read this series for a long time. A friend told me that The Dark Divine series was available on e-book for a killer deal. You can get the first two books of the series for $1.31 each!! So now I have the first two books downloaded from Amazon.com Kindle store.
I am so glad that I finally did this. I hear that you can also get this same deal at Barnes and Noble for your Nook.  The third and last book of the trilogy, The Savage Grace, just recently came out. I just wanted to let all of you know about this. The deal is going on until Monday. At first people were saying the books were $1.99, but when I went there, they were listed for only $1.31. Here are the book descriptions in case you haven't heard about them. I will be reviewing them as soon as I can get them read. So don't delay and take advantage of this super opportunity. 

   Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared--the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in his own blood--but she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night held.

The memories her family has tried to bury resurface when Daniel returns, three years later, and enrolls in Grace and Jude's high school. Despite promising Jude she'll stay away, Grace cannot deny her attraction to Daniel's shocking artistic abilities, his way of getting her to look at the world from new angles, and the strange, hungry glint in his eyes.

The closer Grace gets to Daniel, the more she jeopardizes her life, as her actions stir resentment in Jude and drive him to embrace the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind the boy's dark secret...and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it--her soul.

 

A family destroyed. A love threatened. An enemy returns.

Grace Divine made the ultimate sacrifice to cure Daniel Kalbi. She was infected with the werewolf curse while trying to save him, and lost her beloved brother in the process.

Desperate to find Jude, Grace befriends Talbot, a newcomer to town. But as the two grow closer, Grace's relationship with Daniel is put in danger - in more ways than one.

Unaware of the dark path she is walking, Grace begins to give into the wolf inside of her - not realizing that an enemy has returned and a deadly trap is about to be sprung.

Bree Despain delivers sizzling romance and thrilling action in the heart-pounding sequel to the The Dark Divine.

Friday, March 16, 2012

2nd Annual Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop!

Welcome to the
2nd Annual Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop
March 17th to 22nd
You will have a chance to win either a copy of Venom by K.C. Grant (US only)

Book Description

January 3, 2012

Samantha Evans is determined to make a name for herself in the cutthroat world of advertising. Newly hired by a prestigious ad agency, she volunteers to work on location in Mexico City as a personal assistant to the beautiful and driven creative director Katrina Edwards. At first the association seems promising. But Ms. Edwards seems preoccupied in a way that makes Samantha increasingly uneasy. In fact, many in the group seem like they are not being completely open about the project, including David Ayala, the mysterious and moody photographer for whose attention the two women find themselves competing. After several strange accidents and numerous appearances by an unknown man, Samantha discovers the truth: not everyone on the team is in Mexico to create a stellar advertising pitch. When her sleuthing leads to her abduction, she is brought to the pyramids of Teotihuacán and comes face-to-face with the venomous evil of the South American crime boss known as The Serpent. Now Samantha must not only fight for her life, but she must also discover if she can trust the man she's come to love.
Here is a link to my review:
 My Review of Venom
 or
you can choose a $5.00 gift certificate to Amazon.com (US and International) 

Enter on the Rafflecopter Form Below, and then check out the other blogs hosting a giveaway! I hope that you will be one of the lucky winners at one of the 250 blogs participating.


Blog Tour Review of, On Little Wings, by Regina Sirois








Product Details:

  •  Title: On Little Wings
  • Author: Regina Sirois
  • Paperback: 362 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (December 16, 2011)
  • Genre: Young Adult General
  • ISBN-10: 1468096478
  • ISBN-13: 978-1468096477


Book Description:

Jennifer must do the impossible – bring her mother home. When a family is torn apart by death, two sisters take violently divergent paths and the story of their family appears to end terribly and abruptly. Two decades later Jennifer never dreams that the photo she finds stuck between the pages of a neglected book will tear open a gaping wound to her mother’s secret past. Abandoning her comfortable life with her parents and best friend in the wheat fields of Nebraska, Jennifer’s quest for a hidden aunt leads her to the untamed coast of Maine where she struggles to understand why her mother lied to her for sixteen years. Across the grey, rocky cove she meets Nathan Moore, the young, reluctant genius surrounded by women who need him to be brother, father, friend, provider, protector and now, first love. The stories, varied, hilarious, and heartbreaking, unfold to paint a striking mural of the shattered past. As Jennifer seeks to piece together her mother’s story, she inadvertently writes one for herself.
My Review:
 I grew up in a small town in Idaho. Small towns are charming, but secrets don't stay secret for long.They have such a unique flavor that they draw you back, many years after you have left. The setting of On Little Wings, is a small town in Maine. Main character, Jennifer, stumbles upon an explosive, family secret that threatens to tear her world apart. Jennifer finds out that her parents haven't told her the truth about not having any extended family members. She has an Aunt Sarah, whom she eerily resembles, more than her own mother. Jennifer sets out, on her own, to contact her Aunt and go visit her in the town of Smithport, Maine. While there, Jennifer learns about life and love.

This story is beautifully written. The town is brought to life with amazing descriptive writing. You could almost feel the wind blowing the ocean water on your face, and smell the salty fragrance of the sea. It is so captivating as you fully experience this journey! I also loved how all of the characters are so well developed. You meet a neighbor boy, Nathan, who Jennifer starts to fall for soon after arriving there. He is a complicated character for being only an 18 year old young man. I loved Aunt Sarah, and her willingness to love so many people unconditionally, even her long, lost niece. The old woman, Little, a former actress, who carries many hidden stories within her own soul, but willing to help Jennifer heal wounds in her family. You also can't help but be amused by the old men, The Jacks, who spend all of their time in a fishing boat. They made me laugh many times. You can understand why Jennifer is pulled into the drama of this quaint town, and doesn't want to leave. 

The best part of the story is when you see the healing that takes place in her family. There are so many broken hearts from life happenings and misunderstandings. You will also be surprised at who's the catalyst behind this coming together of family.
I really loved, On Little Wings! Teens and adults, will find this book to hold many messages, as you reflect on your own life and family relationships. This is a clean book, funny characters, and also a few tears shed as Jennifer grows and changes. You won't want to miss reading this YA literary fiction.
  "On Little Wings" is available at Amazon, both in Kindle and paperback.


***UPDATE: The author, Regina Sirois, just commented down below and told me something exciting!! Here is what she said...

"I want your readers to know that in celebration of over 160 reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, I am holding a gratitude promotion. Because I've been blessed by my readers I am giving back today (March 16, 2012)and offering my amazon ebook completely free! Not a penny. Just click and own forever. It's the least I could do. Thank you!"
 

http://www.amazon.com/On-Little-Wings-ebook/dp/B006MITQRC/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

About the Author:

Image of Regina Sirois
Regina Sirois is 90% reader and 10% writer, and as such, her loyalty lies with readers. She believes a book should do more than mildly entertain- it should change us. She graduated summa cum laude from Missouri State's Department of History and English and settled in the golden wheat fields of Kansas with her High School love. She is currently doing laundry (probably) and raising her two daughters. She fell in love the day she learned to read and cried the first time she did a word problem in math ("But it's not a problem..." sob, sob. "It's a story!"). In her debut novel, "On Little Wings," Regina Sirois holds nothing back as she dares to make us believe.

You can learn more about the author here
 



Friday, March 9, 2012

BLog Tour Review of, We Lived in Heaven by Sarah Hinze

Product Details:

  • Title: We Lived In Heaven
  •  Author: Sarah Hinze
  • Paperback: 137 pages
  • Publisher: Spring Creek Book Company (November 2006)
  • ISBN-10: 1932898603
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932898606

Book Description:

This book is a remarkable collection of accounts of families who have had the opportunity to meet the souls of their sons and daughters before they were born. Read about the vivid memories of life in heaven by young children, and dramatic stories of prayers answered by guardian angels who watch over us. Discover: * A letter from a mother to her son, whom she gave up for adoption, telling him of the dream that guided her through that painful decision.
* A kidnapped child who survived her ordeal by the guiding hand of the baby sister who would be born years later.
* A little boy's memory of being brought to earth by his grandfather--a man he never knew.
* A woman's vision of a child in a garden, and the powerful certainty that he was her son, waiting his turn to come into this world.

Sarah Hinze's own personal pre-birth experiences complete this inspiring collection, which radiates a universal sense of peace, joy, and hope that touches us all.

My Review:


I have always been a firm believer in how thin the veil is between this Earthly world and Heaven. My experiences have mainly been because of things that happened after my infant son, Matthew, died. Most of the experiences that are shared in the book, We Lived in Heaven,occur before children are born. It shows how spirits have visited their families before their births. My church believes that we existed before this life. We also believe that we will live again after death.

I read this book on a Sunday and could feel the spirit of this book. I felt chills, so many times, as the power of these stories unfolded before me. There are 33 stories told that have such different and unique writing styles and viewpoints. The author also shares her own beautiful story about her children.This is a book that you can pick up, read a few stories, and then pick up again a day later. I ended up reading the book in one sitting; that is how compelling the stories are. It would be so hard to pick just one story that will stay with me for a long time, but the story called,A Letter To My Son, about adoption, really hit home for me. I am adopted and there was divine intervention that allowed me to come to my family. So this story truly spoke to my heart. I also loved the story called Eternal Memories. My daughter also had an experience along these lines remembering my Grandmother, who has passed away the year before her birth.

I recommend this book to those who need to feel close to Heaven or a loved one that has passed. This book will also give you a much needed spiritual lift. It will make you cry and also make you laugh in a few spots. Sarah Hinze has written a wonderful book,whose stories will linger in your mind, long after your finish reading.


About the Author:


Sarah HinzeIt was my own prebirth experience and my interest in what may have happened to the child I miscarried that prompted me to embark on what has become a pioneering journey and an in-depth study of the human soul.
Now, nearly two decades later, it seems that prebirth experiences bring to light a unique, full-spectrum picture of human existence. Through my research, teaching and counseling I am seeking to help my sisters and brothers on this earth expand our understanding of the spiritual origin of man.
What I teach is not a new concept. In fact, hundreds of ancient texts from many cultures provide insight into man’s true nature and origin as a child of God.
Against this historical foundation, I am presenting the anecdotal evidence I have gathered from hundreds of interviews and from extensive research. The combination of the wisdom of the ages with the personal experiences of ordinary men and women (and even children) today, speaks to our very souls, often stirring within us a remembrance of who we are. Participants in my workshops and seminars often report experiencing a very joyful personal awakening concerning where they came from, why they are on earth, and where they are going.
Participants tell me they are literally transformed, their hearts changed as powerful evidence of their eternal nature reveals to them a new paradigm regarding the sanctity of each human life. My message is healing and uplifting, bringing peace and imparting hope.
My own healing prebirth experiences prompted me, with my husband, Brent Hinze, Ph.D., to embark on our search nearly 20 years ago. For two decades we have interviewed individuals and chronicled what I call “prebirth experiences,” or communication from children before they are born.
My work provides exciting evidence that unborn children can warn, protect and enlighten us from another plane of existence. Most often they appear to announce it is their time to be born.

To learn more about the author, please go visit her at her website.
   http://sarahhinze.com/
 **I was given a review copy of this book. In no way did this influence the honest review that was given.**

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Review of, Christ's Gifts To Women by Heather B. Moore and Angela Eschler

Product Details:

  • Title: Christ's Gifts to Women
  • Authors: Heather B. Moore and Angela Eschler
  •  Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Covenant Communications, Inc. ( March, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 1608618617
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608618613
  • Genre: Inspirational Gift Book for LDS/Christian Women

Book Description:
At times, we struggle to understand exactly who Christ is in our lives. We fail to comprehend the gifts He offers us as we strive to overcome the challenges we face. But Christ’s great message to us is that He has overcome this world—He has given us great gifts that empower and help us realize we are not alone.

With touching artwork from renowned artists, this beautifully written book weaves trials faced in our day with trials faced in Biblical days—and expounds on the timeless power Christ has given women to overcome them. As we strive to draw closer to Christ, He will draw closer to us, magnify our efforts, and fill us with joy and peace. From the gift of mercy to the gifts of experience, wholeness, nurturing, and seeing, authors Heather B. Moore and Angela Eschler help women recognize the incredible rewards Christ has given each of God’s precious daughters, no matter the hardships we face. 



My Review:
 
 Women love getting presents, anything from perfume to chocolates and jewelry. My favorite, of course, are books! In the Inspirational book, Christ's Gifts to Women, we learn how the greatest gifts we can receive are free, and they given to us by The Savior, Jesus Christ. The messages found in this book are needed for today's LDS/Christian women. Life is hard as we all try to take care of our families, our jobs, church involvement, and taking care of ourselves. The message of the world is that we should be perfect. Most of us feel less than perfect. In chapter 2, "The Gift of Mercy", we are reminded how we are in the process of perfection, and it does not happen in one single event. Many of us suffer through depression or discouragement because of our imperfections. This is where the authors tell us "We must rally to the gift of mercy... this is the gift that allows us the process of perfection; messing up, learning, and becoming better."

The five gifts discussed, in this beautifully written book,are:

-The Gift of Mercy
-The Gift of Experience
-The Gift of Wholeness
-The Gift of Nurturing
-The Gift of Seeing

Christ's Gifts to Women is full of magnificent illustrations, that harmonize with the messages of hope, faith, being of good cheer, and Christ's never ending love for us.Even though I loved the entire book, the chapter that meant the most to me is, The Gift of Nurturing. The words found there brought a sense of peace to my heart. We are admonished to nurture others in our lives, just as the Savior does..."We draw closer to Him because we come to understand His motives and His love for us and for those around us. We learn to see others as he see them, and we long to bestow on them the same love He bestows." I also loved reading about the comforting words written about trials we may be going through. "When a burden is too large to bear ourselves and we feel 'heavy laden,' we must remember that there is Someone who is waiting to share it and, if necessary, take the burden from us.The Lord has invited us: 'Come Unto Me' (Matthew 11:28). With these simple words, come unto me, the Lord is offering to nurture us."

There was one overall thought that stayed with me, after I finished reading the book. It summed up all of the sacred things that are presented in this book. "We can pray and ponder about these wonderful gifts, and by so doing, we allow Him into our hearts, and are able to embrace the nurturing He offers us. Let's put faith in these words spoken about His daughter Elisabeth:'For with God nothing shall be impossible.' (Luke 1:37)."


This book will be a wonderful gift for any woman in your life; Mother, sister, wife, aunt, cousin and friend. Christ's Gifts to Women will strengthen, uplift, and help heal the hearts of those who have the privilege of reading this book. It will also bring the readers closer to the Savior, to more fully feel his love in their lives.



About the Authors:  
 Heather B. Moore is the award-winning author of several historical novels based on prophets and other inspired individuals from the Book of Mormon, including the Out of Jerusalem series, which are written under H. B. Moore. Her upcoming novel is, Daughters of Jared,which will be released in May 2012. She is also the author of the nonfiction book Women of the Book of Mormon. Heather has found researching the faithful women of ancient Israel and Mesoamerica fascinating and enjoys discussing and sharing insights.Her books have been set in Ancient Arabia and Mesoamerica. She is not old and doesn’t remember the time period, so google.com has become a great friend. Although she has spent several years living in the Middle East, she prefers to forget the smells. Heather writes under the pen name H.B. Moore so that men will buy her books. She is also the author of one non-fiction book, which took her much too long to research and write, so she is back to novel writing.

Heather graduated from Brigham Young University with a major in Fashion Merchandising and minor in Business Management—which has absolutely nothing to do with writing novels. But at least she can balance a mean checkbook and color-coordinate her kids’ school clothes.

Visit Heather’s website here: www.hbmoore.com



Angela Eschler is a freelance editor and writer with ten years experience in the field. Most recently retired as senior in-house editor with book publisher Covenant Communications, she has also worked for many other publishers, businesses, individuals, and universities in a freelance capacity. Her greatest expertise lies in editing fiction and nonfiction of various genres. She especially enjoys speculative fiction, women’s fiction, and informational and inspirational nonfiction. Angela is the founder and projects manager of Eschler Editing, a large team of skilled freelance writers and editors specializing in diverse fields. Angela is also the author of the recent best-seller Love Letters of Joseph and Emma. For questions about her books or about Eschler Editing’s services, or to have Angela speak to your organization, contact her at AngelaEschler at gmail . com


***I was kindly sent a review copy from the authors, of Christ's Gifts to Women. In no way did this influence the honest review that was given.***


To Purchase Christ's Gifts to Women, go to Deseretbook.com  or Amazon.com

Friday, March 2, 2012

Review of Northanger Alibi,by Jenni James, and A Look At Her New Book Trailer Video!





Product Details:
Title: Northanger Alibi (Jane Austen Diaries)
Author:  Jenni James
Publisher: Walnut Springs
Release Date: February 3, 2012
ISBN: 978-0983829317
Paperback: 243 pages
Genre: Young Adult Romance








Book Description:

The Jane Austen Diaries
Pride & Popularity
Northanger Alibi
Persuaded
Emmalee
Mansfield Ranch
Sensible & Sensational
Sometimes a guy is even better than you imagined...

The Russo family and Seattle, Washington, are no match for Claire Hart and her savvy knowledge of all things vampire-related. Thanks to her obsession with the Twilight series, if there is anyone who would know a vampire when she saw one, it's Claire. And she's positive totally hot Tony Russo is a vampire - she just has to prove it!

In this modern retelling of Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey, follow Claire's hilarious journey on her first summer adventure away from home, where she learns everything isn't what is seems, and that in some instances, reality is way better than anything she'd ever find in a book.


My Review:
 
Northanger Alibi (A retelling of Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey,) is such a fun book! Following in the same footsteps of it's predecessor, Pride and Popularity(Book 1), this book will be loved by tweens and teens. I loved it because of the many references to the Twilight series, written by Stephenie Meyer.  Having read the Twilight series, this helped me in understanding a lot of the humor found in this book. Main character, Claire Hart, is obsessed with The Twilight Series. She loves hot vampires and is excited to visit Washington state during the Summer. Claire is hoping to find her own vampire while she is there. This premise is what brings about the funniest happenings in the book. Right off she meets Tony Russo, who she thinks for sure is a real vampire. Then she meets Jaden, who she is sure is a werewolf. 

There is a lot of romance, with eye-batting, flirting and kissing...all mild of course. The slight love triangle does not wear on your nerves, like some do. Claire is cute and likable. Tony is a handsome hunk, that I wanted more of in the book. 

I can't wait for my daughter to read this book. I know that she will like it as much as me. I am happy to recommend this book to my daughter, her friends, and my blog reader's daughters. Northanger Alibi is a clean romance, with many  "giggle" moments, and the wittiness and appeal of Jane Austen's novels, but with a fun modern twist.
 Here is a new video book trailer of the first two books in The Jane Austen Diaries. Very cute!!
 


 About the Author: 
I love the way that Jenni describes how she fell in love with the writing of Jane Austen, and I wanted to share that with you. I hope that you will enjoy reading this and getting to know Jenni James.
"I never knew what I was missing when my mom first gave me a collection of Jane Austen's works for Christmas. I believe I was fourteen at the time. One glance at the title Pride and Prejudice and I vowed I would never read the book. But, to be nice I placed it on my 'favorites' shelf; and there it sat for approximately two and a half years. Every month or so Mom would ask me if I had read it yet, and guiltily I would reply, "No. One day I will."

Then low and behold, the summer I was sixteen I had completely exhausted EVERY book I owned and almost all of my siblings' books, as well. (There were 5 siblings--not an easy feat I tell you!) With a desperate case of boredom and hair-pulling-cabin-fever anxiety, I finally, grudgingly brought down the book. I went ahead and started with Pride and Prejudice, just to prove to myself it wasn't worth the time.

One and a half days later, I finished. Sleep deprived, hungry and exhausted, but I finished! It was officially the first book I couldn't put down! It was SO amazing! Afterwards, I devoured every one of Jane Austen's novels, and I haven't stopped since.
Now, as my own daughter gets closer to this wonderfully draining attempt at teenhood, I wanted to share the same stories with her, but in a way she can relate to. I began to rewrite (More like channel) Pride & Popularity in the middle of March and was finished in just 6 weeks! All 25 chapters. It was such an amazing experience. Before I had even begun the long editing process new characters started to talk to me and hound me into writing their stories too.

I'm married to a totally hot, redheaded Air Force Recruiter. Together we have 7 kiddos. We have just moved back to the States after living 9 awesome years in the Azores Islands of Portugal and England! Our kids are really experiencing America for the first time, and I think they're sold."
 

To contact Jenni or learn more about her books and her free online writing classes, go to these sites...

To purchase Northanger Alibi go to Amazon, or Barnes and Noble.

***I want to thank Walnut Springs Press for the review copy of Northanger Alibi. In no way did this influence the honest review that was given.***

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