Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Review of Micah McKinney and the Boys of Summer by Nina Chapman


With equal parts humor and heart, Micah McKinney and the Boys of Summer tells the story of twelve-year-old Micah as she embarks on the summer before middle school. More than anything, Micah hopes to undergo a miracle transformation. One that will bring with it new friends, a fresh start, and boobs . . . preferably the round kind. If that happens, then maybe she can finally forget about what happened in the past. About losing her mom, about losing her best friend, and about the disaster she became in sixth grade, when everything fell apart. She and her dad have just moved away from their old neighborhood, and Micah's childhood home, to put some space between themselves and the secret burden they both bear, one that's already changed their lives and has the power to do even more damage. Soon after moving into her new neighborhood, Micah is greeted by the Water twins, Luke and Megan. Micah is surprised to find herself caught between their two worlds. In one world, there's Luke and his band of neighborhood boys, who challenge Micah in feats of strength, crowning her the kahuna at the local pool and vying for her attention, even though she doesn't quite understand why. And then there's Megan, whose world is full of lip gloss and padded bras, and the fine art of being a girl. As Micah awkwardly navigates her way through crushes, friendship, and the challenges of becoming a teenager, she discovers that the real transformation that needs to take place is in how she sees herself.



Book Links
(affiliate link)

**My Thoughts**
I loved this book so much. Micah recently lost her mother and had some kind of a crisis with her old friends. She and her father have moved to the other side of town so that they can start over again. We eventually find out what happened and then you really feel sorry for her.

Micah is also at that awkward stage where she is 12 turning 13, so she wants to grow boobs and is trying to find out who she really is. Anyone who went through puberty is going to understand that.

But underneath her questioning and awkwardness is an amazing young woman who has a lot more confidence than she ever realized she had. She also is not into the typical girly-girl stuff that the new girls in her life seem to be. That and her feisty competitive nature help to win her over to the boys in her new neighborhood. They appreciate her for being real, for sharing in their joking, and for keeping up with them in the athletic world. And yes, there are some crushes going on in both directions.

This book reminded me a little bit of Mean Girls with a lot of Judy Blume undertones written for the modern girl. I thought back to my own awkward years and was reminded of a lot of amazing young women I know today. Micah is a young lady worth looking up to and is easily relatable. And again, I just loved this book. I recommend it for all coming of age girls.

I hope the author continues to write more, because I think she is a great voice in this YA world

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for honoring my request for a review copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Paragon by Shauna Alderson


Are you a fan of YA fantasy books? Then be sure to check out this excerpt from Paragon, a new offering from author Shauna Alderson. You can follow the tour to read even more. Be sure to let her know what you think! And of course, there's a great giveaway at the end!


Now that high school is over, Randi just wants to live her quiet life in her little town, but it doesn’t feel right without her friends there. Ever the daredevils, they’ve gone to seek adventure in the capital city of Grandin, and Randi can’t help but feel left behind. Not to mention she definitely can’t stop thinking about that kiss she and Eddy shared before he left.

When Randi discovers a mysterious mark on her skin that matches an illustration in “A Handbook on Paragonhood”, she’s thrown into a world of powerful gods and ancient magic that she thought only existed in the myths. She’ll have to step out of her comfort zone—and into the dangerous streets of Grandin—to find a way to protect herself and the people she loves.

Randi’s not the only one with a secret, though, and she finds herself questioning who she can trust. Randi will have to wrestle with what it means to be a Paragon and how far she’s willing to go to do what’s right.

With the fate of the world on the line, can she live up to being one of the chosen?


Read an excerpt:
A rumble downstairs tells me my folks are pulling into the garage. I gently set Barnaby back on the pillow and pick up the lotion I bought earlier. In the bathroom across the hall, I strip off my dress, cringing at the sight of the spider bite, now haloed in red. It looks infected and feels hot when I touch it. What if the spider that bit me was venomous?

I peer closer, stretching the skin on my left ribs. The center’s a bit swollen, although it’s not white, which is a good sign. But there’s something strange about the red ring surrounding it. Wait ... no. Not a ring. The red is scratched into my skin in a bunch of tiny lines.

Not a spider bite.

I crane my neck even more, heart hammering as I count seven lines. Seven lines making seven sides.

“Heptagram-shaped ... approximately half the size of one’s pinky fingernail, red-brown in color, hot to the touch.”

My knees give and I barely catch myself on the counter. It can’t be. Those are myths. The marks aren’t real. But what if—

Stop. Calm down. Giselle and Howard both mentioned hunters—that’s why I’m jumping to conclusions. And I wouldn’t even be considering it if it weren’t for that book.

I hurry across the hall to my room. I pull a dozen or so hairstyling magazines off my bookshelf, revealing the worn, leather-bound book tucked behind them. A Handbook on Paragonhood. Eddy lent it to me because I’ve always loved the myths. But that’s all they are. No one takes the stories seriously except hunters.


Buy Links




About Shauna Alderson

Shauna Alderson began writing teen fantasy even before she was a teen. After she “grew up", she completed creative writing courses (and a BA in Development Studies) at the University of Calgary. When not reading or writing, she can usually be found teaching ESL, composing on the piano, creating art, or volunteering abroad. She also enjoys dessert, Studio Ghibli films, and being the silliest person she knows.

Website: https://shaunaalderson.com

Twitter: @AldersonShauna

Shauna Alderson will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Rain by Christopher LP Free 3/29-4/2


For fifteen year old, Tyler Grey, the line between myth and reality is quickly blurred, when he inadvertently becomes the host to an ancient power. A power that puts him on the radar of not only a deadly black ops organization but also very old and malevolent beings, that are eager to see both it and him destroyed.

He has but two choices:
RISE up and FIGHT!
Or DIE!


Available on Amazon
Free 3/29-4/2
(affiliate link)

Also available on Audible


Christopher L.P. is a native of Memphis, TN. He is a YA fantasy writer. He first began writing at the age of nine and self published his first book “The Mysterious Life of Switch McGee” at the age of twenty one. His goal is to continue putting thrilling and action packed stories out into the world for readers of all ages to enjoy, while introducing diverse main characters, to the literary world.








I was compensated via Fiverr for sharing this book. I only share those books that I feel will be of interest to my readers.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Review of Apollo 13: A Successful Failure by Laura B. Edge


"Houston, we've had a problem."

On April 13, 1970, the three astronauts aboard the Apollo 13 spacecraft were headed to the moon when a sudden explosion rocked the ship. Oxygen levels began depleting rapidly. Electrical power began to fail. Astronauts James Lovell, Jack Swigert, and Fred Haise were about to be stranded in the inky void of outer space.

The mission to the moon was scrapped. Now, Apollo 13's only goal was to bring the crew home. With the damaged spacecraft hurtling towards the moon at roughly six thousand miles per hour, there was little hope of success. But the astronauts and mission control were fully prepared to do whatever it took to return the crew to Earth.

This space disaster occurred at the peak of the United States' Space Race against the Soviet Union. But for four days in 1970, the two nations put aside their differences, and the entire world watched the skies, hoping and praying the astronauts would return safely. As missions to Mars and commercial space flight become a reality, the time is now to be reminded of our common humanity, of how rivals can work together and support each other towards a shared goal. Because no matter what happens or where we travel, we all call Earth home.


Book Links


**My thoughts**
My formative years were in the 1980s, so the space shuttles were a big deal. It was a like a party every time one took off, up until that fateful Challenger explosion that marred our childhood memories. But even then, we ate up all of the information we could about the history of the space program. And then in the 1990s, the movie Apollo 13 came out, once again lighting a desire to know more.

This book is great. It opens with that fateful moment leading to the famous words, "Houston, we have a problem." And then it goes into the history and the importance of the space program leading up to this mission. Following that is an account of the rest of the Apollo 13 ordeal, reading almost like a novel. You can almost feel the action and are glued to the pages to find out what is going to happen next. I love that in a nonfiction book.

And then it gets into the aftermath of the trip, including the investigation into what had happened and the last missions to the moon. It's hard to believe it has been almost 50 years since we last touched down there.

So many photographs illustrate the stories, which are one of my favorite things to see. Give me the real photos and not just illustrations. They really make the history come alive. 

And then for those who want more, you can refer to the resources, bibliography, and suggested further reading sections with both books and websites.

I loved reading more about this famous story and learning more than I had known before. I think space afficionados from upper elementary and older will also enjoy it.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for my requested review copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Read an exclusive excerpt from Shakespeare Burning by Charisse Moritz


Reviewers are raving about Shakespeare Burning by Charisse Moritz. Get an idea of why with this exclusive excerpt. And then follow the tour to read even more before you download your own copy. There's also a great giveaway at the end!


He’s the boy who wants to disappear.

One mistake and seventeen-year-old Shake LeCasse lost everything. Now there’s no going back and no way to move forward. The once-popular Varsity hockey captain is living in the basement of a grandmother he barely knows, ditching school, avoiding friends and working hard on self-destruction.

She’s the girl nobody sees.

Cleo Lee survives however she can. Lie, cheat, steal, whatever it takes, and saving Mr. Popular isn’t part of the plan. Telling him the truth about the night that destroyed his life is downright dangerous. She needs to keep quiet, be smart and let the guy she’s been half in love with since middle school throw away a future she’d do anything to have. Too bad she sucks at playing it safe.


Read an exclusive excerpt:
Who is this chick?

When I push through the jingle of the door, Cleo is waiting, leaning against the building, smoking a little stub of a cigarette. Why is she suddenly everywhere? I wonder if she followed me.

“I need toothpaste,” she tells me.

“Great to know.”

“Travel size.”

I just look at her.

“You owe me, Sasquatch. I got you home last night.”

I don’t want to think about last night. Not the least little bit. I don't know what the hell happened, but I'm treating it like Vegas.

“Go away,” I tell her.

She steps in front of me and says, “Is it a lot of work being such a giant dick? Like, do you take special classes? Practice in the mirror? Wear a rubber on your head? Cuz as a giant dick, you’re downright impressive. Maybe even one of the biggest dicks I’ve ever met. Can I get your autograph?”

I tower over her, give her my meanest scowl and lower my voice, “Get lost.”

"Is this when I wet myself because I'm so scared?" She even makes her eyes all big and shivers with her hands up. All ninety pounds of her and I consider just trampling her, but she’s like one of those little ankle-biting dogs and won’t quit. I settle for an eye roll and head back inside.

To the guy behind the counter, I mumble, “Forgot something.” Within three minutes, I’m back on the sidewalk.

I hold out the bag, wait for Cleo to reach, then jerk it upward. She jumps, but I’m a head taller than the rest of the population and she’s not allowed on the big girl rides at the amusement park. I enjoy watching her jump. I’m acting like a dick BECAUSE she accused me of being one. I don’t know what that says about me.

When she tries to kick me, I shield my junk and toss her the bag. “You owe me a dollar and fifty seven cents.”

She snags the toothpaste and drops the plastic bag on the ground. “I said travel size. I can’t hide this. Rex’ll steal it in five fucking seconds.”

“You’re welcome.” I scoop up the bag. “You owe me a buck and change. Pay me and go away.”

“Dude, I’m tapped.” She wiggles her fingers. “There’s a reason that assbag doesn’t want me in his store.”

Who is this chick? What have I done to snag her attention? How do I get rid of her?

I walk away. She trots after me. She carries a brown lunch bag. It would almost be worth making nice if she’s got food in it. My stomach growls just thinking about it.

I finally say, “I want my shirt back.”

It’s the only shirt I’ve had longer than eight months. It’s the shirt I had on the night IT happened, and I can’t bring myself to wear it or throw it away. She must have dug to the bottom of my everything to find it. Seeing her in it kills me a little bit.




About Charisse Mortiz

Emily Award Finalist and Melody Of Love Award Finalist, Charisse M Moritz divides her life between upstate NY and northern Florida. When not barricaded inside her writing cave or enjoying every possible minute with her husband and three kids, you’ll find her listening to 60’s music, singing offkey and looking for new reads.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19420257.Charisse_Moritz
Charisse Moritz will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 16, 2020

The Adventures of Sarah Ann Lewis and the Memory Thieves by Joshua C. Carroll FREE for a limited time!



An exciting read for kids and adults alike, Sarah Ann is the perfect adventure for the voracious reader in your family.

  • Clean - no adult language or situations
  • Captivating - keeps kids turning pages and wondering what will happen next
  • Fun - full of fun and unique characters, ideas, and situations

What Sarah doesn’t know…

…could doom us all.


It’s 1988 in the middle of nowhere, Texas, and 13-year-old Sarah is about to be swept out of her boring life and into a world of danger.

Spies are coming for her. The people next door are not what they seem. And Sarah’s family has been hiding something. Something BIG. Something not even Sarah knows.

The fate of the world hangs in the balance. But for Sarah, all that matters is rescuing her family. What’s left of it, anyway.

If she fails, the Memory Thieves will learn their secrets, and as a result, millions around the world will die. But to save the people she loves, Sarah will have to team up with strangers she isn’t sure she can trust. Strangers who aren’t even human.

This story is not what you think.

You'll love this rural sci-fi thriller full of spies, mad scientists, 1980s nostalgia, alternate dimensions, strange new friends, suspense, and mystery.

Get it now - free March 16-20!




Available on Amazon


Joshua C. Carroll is a writer, a dad/foster dad, and the founder of Dads Who Read. He lives in Fort Worth, Texas with his wife and kids. Learn more at JoshuaCCarroll.com.







I was compensated via Fiverr for sharing this post. I only share those books that I feel will be of interest to my readers.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

All About Erin Pemberton and her book The Prophecy


Welcome to the book tour for The Prophecy by Erin Pemberton! Today she's giving us a lot of background about herself and her new book. Plus there's an excerpt for you to enjoy. Be sure to let her know what you think in the comments as you follow the tour! And best of luck in the giveaway!

******************************

Your journey to becoming a writer.
 I actually started writing when I was in high school. I tried writing a horror story. It was horrific, but not very good when I look back at it now. I have it hidden in my house currently. It was after I had kids that I decided to write a different kind of story, very similar to the Tree House series involving four brothers who can imagine themselves into different worlds with different creatures. I actually gave a halfhearted attempt at trying to publish that. But once again, it lacked a lot. Then, I started The Sword of Lumina series. With that one, I found out just how hard it was to break into the publishing world. However, I was successful. Mira’s View was published in June 2014. From there, I had two others in that series, Mira’s Hope and Mira’s Last published under the name Erin Elliott with the same publishing company. I also had several others, all romance based published under Elena Kane, including Witch and A Land Without Snow. I chose a pen name for my romance book because even though I’m a grown woman with a husband and kids, I’m still a little afraid of my mother and she is not a fan of kissing scenes in books. But what she doesn’t know, can’t hurt her. After those books, I went back to writing books under Elliott because that was my name at the time and I found another publisher. Nothing against my current publisher, I still work as an editor with them, I just didn’t want to put all my eggs in one basket. So then came along my book Heartsong.

Skip along a couple of years, one divorce and marriage later and you come to my newest work, The Prophecy. This book was inspired by the fairy tale Rapunzel. I actually had a lot of trouble finding a publisher, who didn’t want me to put up half of the funds first because of my lack of promoting my other books. You see, for a writer, I actually don’t like asking people to read my stories and I really don’t like reading reviews on my stories. Even though they may be good, I feel like they influence the way I write. I start focusing on what other people think I should put in my stories instead of writing what makes me happy. And let’s face it, this isn’t my chosen career, this is my hobby. Something that I enjoy doing in my free time. When I focus on trying to make everyone else happy, I lose what brings me enjoyment and then it just becomes another job I have to do.

Your writing routine. 
I actually don’t have a writing routine. I write when I can, which is mainly during the summer when I actually have free time. Even then, it’s not a lot. With a husband, five kids, and my hatred of being stuck indoors, I don’t have a lot of spare time. When I do write, I don’t have an outline that I follow, I just go with the flow or where the story seems to be carrying me. I have a general idea of where I want my story to go, but I usually don’t know what will happen in between until I start writing.

Character creation. 
Most of my characters are based on people around me or people that I’ve seen. Ella has my sense of humor and sarcasm. How I would respond in a situation, is how she would. General Tia is also based off of me. I see something that needs to be done, and I do it. Much like she does. Erek and Jack are both based off of my husband both in looks and mannerism. I would watch him and have my characters respond much like he does. As far as names go, I actually pick a letter in the alphabet and then make up a name. It’s not a fancy process, but it works for me.

If your book was made into a movie… 
I don’t think I could or would watch it. It drives me nuts when they make books into movies because they have to change it so much. Which I understand makes it a great movie, but I compare the two too much. So I can either watch the movie or read the book but I won’t do both. My dad won’t watch the Harry Potter movies with me because I complain the whole time and make comparisons while getting really upset. I’ve read the books too many times, one would say.

If you could live in one of your books, which one and why? 
None of them! There is a lot of fighting going on in them, and sword play is not my actual thing. Plus, I would want to live on a beach somewhere, which only one of my books end up on a beach. Still, harsh environment there too.

Top 10 favorite things:
  1. My husband, Jason
  2. My kids
  3. The beach
  4. Christmas
  5. Cinnamon rolls
  6. Candy-different types for different seasons, but always willing to go to Albanese gummy bears
  7. Long walks anywhere its warm out
  8. Painting
  9. Golden retrievers
  10. writing

Top 10 ... about one of your characters

About Ella
  1. She is based on Rapunzel
  2. She is the prophecy the good fairies talked about
  3. She grows up in a tower with Tia
  4. She has magic
  5. She falls in love with two men that look and act exactly alike
  6. She kicks butt with an bow and arrow and the sword
  7. She can control lightning
  8. She’s extremely sarcastic
  9. She’s tough
  10. And she is the princess

Pros and cons of being a writer/author
The pros are definitely being able to create your own world, your own characters, and your own rules. There is something awesome about getting to decide the fate of everyone within your little world. The cons are, it’s a lot harder than you would think possible. It’s more work than I ever thought it would be and it takes a toll on your self-esteem, which is another reason why I quit reading reviews. It’s hard enough to receive all the rejections that you do without taking it personally. Reading reviews is like taking a hit in the gut every time, good or bad. In order to stay true to myself, I stay away from all of them.

Preview of an upcoming book/series 
I have one book that I’ve started, I just haven’t had a lot of time to work on it, so it hasn’t gotten very far. And like I mentioned above, I don’t always know where my books are going until after I’ve written them. This one is about a dragon named Anya,who has run away from her family and other dragons because of how different she is. She is considered strange, weak, and too small to be considered a proper dragon. So in order to avoid being killed by her brother, she seeks a new life in the world of Agia. There she meets a furry friend and an elf named, Blain who is trying to escape a group of monster called Zergs. They destroy everything in their path and no one has been able to successfully kill them, until Anya appears. Not only does she kill one, but two while saving Blain. From there, they strike up a deal and make their way across Agia to meet up with Blain’s friend. That’s all the further I’ve made it with that story. I do know that eventually, I want Anya to go back to the dragons and convince them to help win the war against the Zergs, but I have a lot of work to do on that one.

Anything about you fans may not know or you want to share 
I have mentioned it several times, but I don’t like to ask people to read my stories. It’s nothing against them, and I’m thrilled when they do, but I will never ask them what they thought of my book or read their review. Please don’t take it personally, it’s just a decision I made when my dad gave me a poor review of my first book. I spent a lot of time figuring out how to change my second book and being so upset, that I hated writing. It was then that I decided to avoid all reviews in general. As a result, I can write what I love and the world does not influence my writing.

You find yourself on a deserted island. What 10 things do you most wish to have.
  1. My husband
  2. Sun tan lotion
  3. A hatchet
  4. And endless supply of drinks, the adult kind and water
  5. My kids
  6. A fishing pole
  7. a small canoe
  8. snorkeling gear
  9. clothes
  10. sunglasses

Have one of your characters describe you as a writer.
She is sporadic. You never know when she’s going to write, how many times she is going to change your scene or when she’s going to change your look. You could sit in the same scene for months and boom, she sweeps in changes a few things, writes a few thousand words and then you don’t see her again for another few months.




In a land plagued by war, King Dorvin and Queen Shiara are expecting their first child. They are excited until the good fairies tell of a prophecy; that their daughter is the key to winning the war against the Shadow tribes. To protect her, mages of the kingdom create a tower to keep her and her guardian hidden until her eighteenth birthday. When Ella turns 18 she leaves the tower, only to find that her parents are dead and the Shadow tribes now control the kingdom. Trained as a warrior, and aided by the good fairies, Ella must now bring her subjects together and prepare for the final war.


Read an excerpt:


“You love her, don’t you?” Jack asked quietly, his eyes never leaving Erek’s.

“Does it matter? She and I can never be together.” The sadness of this truth rang through Erek, nearly making him fall to the floor and weep. He’d waited his whole life for her. “You love her as well.”

Jack nodded his head. “Where does that leave us? What are we going to do?”

Erek feeling more tired and older than his twenty-five years replied, “It leaves us fighting for the same thing. Once this is all over, we’ll figure out the rest. For right now, we need to be content that when one of us isn’t around watching over her, the other is.”

Jack ran a hand over his newly shaved head, his eyes turned to the floor and nodded.

Erek looked at him, seeing so much of himself in this man of light. The same eyes, the same stature, the same look. Even their movements and choice of haircuts were the same. Right down to the chin strap they both wore. Erek never thought of it before, but it were almost if they were the same man. “Do you think, if we lived in another world, that we might be the same person? Me being the darker side and you the lighter?”

Jack looked up at this, his eyes wide and his mouth set in a straight line. “I’ve thought it several times actually. There are times when I’m convinced I passed by a mirror when I see you.”

Erek nodded before turning back to look at the storm brewing. He heard Jack quietly head down the stairs, leaving him to his thoughts. Ella would be safe in Jack’s hands when Erek was no longer there to protect her. He was sure of it. If Jack felt anywhere close to the way he felt, Erek knew she would be loved the way she deserved.


Book Links



I’m just a small town girl, living in Ohio and making up worlds for my characters to live in. A preschool teacher by day, I live with my amazing husband while dreaming of walking hand in hand with him on the beach just searching for seashells. Together, we have five incredible kids, who are starting to make their way in this world as they take on college, high school, and elementary school. I love Christmas, the beach, seashells, painting, reading anything fantasy related, and in my very little spare time, creating new worlds for others to enjoy.



https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19797307.Erin_Pemberton

Author's website: https://july2219812.wixsite.com/epemberton


Erin Pemberton will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway