Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Heart in a Box by Catherine Stine & the Holiday Season



Today I'm helping to spread the word about the latest from Catherine Stine, the YA contemporary romance Heart in a Box.

Here is the scoop on the book:

Heart in a Box
YA contemporary romance
Inkspell Teen
Catherine Stine

Each heartbeat leads Joss closer a shocking truth that will change everything.


Joss Olstad wins the fight to switch from her private school to a public high to “find her pieces” she lost when the Indian artist father she never knew died. There, Joss struggles with a slutty friend, who flirts with her new love; Indian Culture Club girls who press her on her past, as well as her stoner mother’s lies back at home. Armed only with her handmade heart boxes that hold private messages, Joss’s search for identity leads her to a scary industrial section of Queens, and a shocking family secret that changes everything.

BUY LINKS: 


Congratulations and best of luck to Catherine!! 


This is my last post for the year so I want to say Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy New Year! I am in the Christmas spirit this year and anxious for the holidays. It seems impossible that another year is coming to a close but I'm excited to see what 2016 will bring. 

This quote is probably most appropriate for Thanksgiving but I wanted to share it here. Thanks to all of you for being such "charming gardeners." Happy holidays!





Wednesday, December 2, 2015

IWSG & The Reader by M. Pax



It's hard to believe it's the December meeting of the IWSG, hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh, and yet here we are at the end of another year. If you'd like to join our monthly meetings, click here and add your name to the list. New members are always welcome! Also, be sure to check out the IWSG website, as it is a gold mine of helpful information.

Now that it's almost time to say so long to 2015 I've been reflecting a bit on the year and realize I've became stagnant professionally over the last several months. I haven't met most of the goals I set and I've also felt stuck and uninspired for a good part of this year. So I know I need to make some changes in order to shake things up and get myself back in a good writing groove.

I don't know exactly what those changes will be but I have some ideas I'm going to try. It's all a bit nerve-wracking but I also exciting because I want and need to get out of this rut I've been in for far too long now.

When I began this blog five years ago I had achieved some personal goals and wondered "What Else is Possible?" Now it seems I'm back to the question that started this whole blogging adventure.

It's been an amazing five years but I know it's time for me to make some changes and set some new goals. In other words, it's time for me to ask what else is possible again.



Today I'm also helping to spread the word about the latest release from M. Pax, The Reader. The Reader is the third book in The Rifters series, and this is a series you don't want to miss. If you haven't already delved into the Pax universe you are missing out!



The Reader info:

Links: 
 Amazon
AmazonUK / AUS / CA / DE / FR ES / IT / NL / JP / BR / MX IN
iBook / Nook / GooglePlay / Kobo / Smashwords / inktera / Scribd

Blurb: 

With the rift closed for the season and no more monsters to fight, Daelin Long gets bored as librarian in the podunk town of Settler, Oregon. A job interview and her brother’s arrival present a tempting opportunity to escape, until her brother and her best friend, a ghost, disappear.

While Daelin searches for them, more mysteries pile up: dead people coming back to life, portraits of the town founders replaced with strange white trees, and people on the other side of the rift returning. It’s impossible. The portal that allows monsters from other universes to come to Earth is sealed until next summer.

The Rifters, a secret group protecting our world, believe the troubles are nothing more than the tantrums of an offended ghost. Daelin disagrees. If she’s right, the evil hell-bent on destroying Earth has new technology making the rift more deadly.

Before the monster summons the next apocalypse, Daelin must find it and destroy it.

Book 3 in the Rifter series.

Need to catch up? You can read books 1 & 2 in the Rifter series for free by becoming an M. Pax Reader. ENTER MY DIMENSION

Reviews

“The world Pax creates here is like the Wild West meets Ghostbusters with some Stargate and a bit of Steampunk thrown in. Even though everything seems a bit familiar, it’s not, which is what makes it compelling.”CHOOSE YOUR OWN END


“This book catapults the reader right in mid-events and, like Daelin, one is forever trying to figure out the ins and outs of the situation. Though readers have one advantage in that we are prepared to believe. However, what in some books can be annoying, becomes an enjoyable ride, where you are constantly excited to see where the plot will take you next. I really enjoyed the slightly wacky and off center world of Settler.” AMAZON


Monday, November 16, 2015

A Guest Post from Guilie Castillo and the "Who Roams Here?" Grand Prize Winner

I'm thrilled to welcome Guilie Castillo to the blog today and honored to be part of her tour for The Miracle of Small Things.

Before I get to her post, I also want to congratulate Guilie for winning the Grand Prize in my "Who Roams Here?" game for the Realms Faire. Congratulations, Guilie! And thanks again to everyone who came by here and visited my ghosts and me throughout the week. We all had a great time.

And now I will turn this over to Guilie, who is sharing a post about a subject dear to my heart, dogs and animal rescue.



Can I have a round of applause, please, for hostess extraordinaire Julie Flanders? Julie, what an honor to be hosted here at your space. Today is the (sort of) halfway point of the MIRACLE tour, and this deserves an extra-special post.

The subject of Al, the 100-lb dog that gets rescued by main character Luis Villalobos, has come up often on the tour, but as a sideline. I thought it was time to give Al the spotlight. What better place to do that than here, at a fellow animal-rescue advocate’s blog?

Al and his eleven siblings were born behind a shed in the yard of the family his mother belonged to. The children discovered the puppies a week later. They weren’t cruel, the children, but they were rough, and their little hands sometimes grasped too tightly. They laughed when the puppies cried, and the bigger humans kicked at the mother dog when she tried to protect her babies.

The puppies went fast. The mother had passed on her regal size and bearing, and her blue-black coloring, to all twelve; people thought they’d make good breeders. Here in Curaçao black dogs inspire a special kind of fear (bonus points for size). Which translates to a tidy side income.

Al was the last to go. He became very close to his mother. She taught him to hunt lizards, to cross streets, and to dodge the big male human’s kicks.

Eventually, another big male human came and took him away in a crate. He felt the scent of his mother fading along with the sound of her desperate yapping, and knew helplessness for the first time.

For days he refused to leave the crate. Different people peered in at him, offered things that smelled incredibly good, pleaded with him. But there was no violence, even when he growled. He couldn’t help himself. It was fear, but also despair. Where is my mother?

But she, too, faded. And so he forgave, and forgot, and came out of the crate to discover a dreamland of lawns and soft beds, of endless, delicious food, and a child that played with him not as a toy but as a friend. And never hurt him.

The family, in the military, was reposted to Holland. And the dog had to stay behind.

At first the neighbors fed him, but then he was forgotten. Hunger drove him to the streets; he was eight months old, huge but still growing. He hunted lizards, and remembered his mother. He would go back to her.

He was big, but not savvy. Gangs of dogs bit and tore and chased him away. He grew thin, then skinny, then mangy. Ticks infested his ears. Humans threw rocks and firecrackers, tried to run him over with their cars.

He lost all sense of direction, and of purpose.

And so it was that, a year later, he chased an iguana over a wall and into a chalkstone patio. He almost had her, could almost taste her, when someone shouted and threw something and he had to escape. He waited, just outside the wall, and when it was quiet he jumped over again. That iguana would be his first meal in days. But she was gone. And he had no energy left.

That’s how Luis found him. Sitting on his patio. A monster of an animal, so rangy his head looked huge, malformed. But a dog, nonetheless. And Luis, who’s never had pets (never wanted any, really), will take him in and give him a name: Al, after Alfred Prufrock. (That’s another story.)

Al’s story, for all its wretchedness, isn’t unique. In a place like Curaçao, with so many temporary residents and little culture of animal welfare, abandonment is our daily bread. It’s such a disconnect for me that so much suffering should exist in places we tend to think of as “paradise”… How can our paradise be a hell for others?

Several organizations are at work to make Curaçao a paradise for humans and animals. These are some of them, in case you want to check them out (and a follow on Facebook goes a long way):


Are you involved with animal advocacy in your area? What challenges do you face that you feel are specific to your community? Do you have a rescued animal at home?

Julie, thank you so much for your warm hospitality! Al sends his love. (He actually sent liverwurst treats, which I tried to explain probably wouldn’t mean to you what they mean to him, but… His heart is in the right place.)


ABOUT THE MIRACLE OF SMALL THINGS: Mexican tax lawyer Luis Villalobos is lured to the tiny island of Curaçao anticipating a fast track to the cusp of an already stellar career. But the paradise we expect is so rarely the paradise we find.


Available as paperback, and in Kindle, epub, iBook, and Kobo formats. Find it on Goodreads and Facebook.



ABOUT GUILIE: A Mexican export who transferred to Curaçao “for six months”—and, twelve years later, has yet to find a reason to leave. Her work has been published online and in print anthologies. THE MIRACLE OF SMALL THINGS is her first book. Find Guilie on Facebook and Twitter, at Quiet Laughter where she blogs about life and writing, or at Life in Dogs where she blogs about… well, dogs.


ABOUT THE TOUR: To celebrate the e-book release, THE MIRACLE OF SMALL THINGS is going on virtual tour. Several blogs are hosting Guilie throughout November to talk about writing, the book, its island setting and its characters — including a 100-lb. monster dog rescued from the streets — and some of the issues MIRACLE touches on, such as the role of large and small things in the realignment of our values, and the power of place in our definition of self.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Day 5: Who Roams Here?


It's the last day of the 2015 Realms Faire, hosted by M. Pax. This year there are twelve games going on, and there is still time to have fun and win prizes. Be sure to check out all of these great games! 

Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Phasers ~ Unicorn Hunt ~ Beware the Vortex ~ VelociRaffle ~ The Hero’s Dilemma ~Stockade Brigade ~ Hall of Doors ~ The Joust ~ Drench-a-Wench/Soak-a-Bloke


Here at the House of The Spirits, I am welcoming a different ghost each day to take over the blog. I will leave clues throughout the day and the first person to guess the ghost's identity in the comments wins a prize. You don't need a google or blogger profile to participate - anonymous users are welcome to guess but please just make sure I can contact you in case you are a winner.

In addition, everyone who leaves a comment before midnight on Saturday, November 14th will be entered in the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the Faire. The Grand Prize will be a $30 Amazon gift card, an ebook bundle of my books Polar Night, The Turnagain Arm, & The Ghosts of Aquinnah, and the Once Upon a Nightmare Collection ebook set by Cherie Reich.

Want to know about today's prize? Today my ghostly guest and I are giving away a $5 Amazon gift card, an ebook copy of Of Blood and Sorrow by Christine Rains, and an ebook copy of my story Polar Night.


Thanks to Christine for the donation!

And now for our last guest of the week. You're up, ghost!

**ETA: Today's ghost has already been correctly identified. He is Jacob Marley, guessed first by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Congrats, Alex!! If you would still like to be entered into the Grand Prize giveaway just leave a comment before midnight tonight. I will post the winner on Monday, 11/16. Thanks to everyone who has come by and played my game this week! 

I'll add the rest of Marley's clues and his picture so he doesn't feel left out of the ghost party. 

Who am I? 

1.       When I was alive I was a partner in a London financial institution

2. I was quite greedy

3. I died on Christmas Eve

4. Now I spend eternity carrying a heavy chain made of padlocks, steel purses, ledgers, and cash boxes

5. My partner was Ebenezer Scrooge

My picture:



Thursday, November 12, 2015

Day 4: Who Roams Here?


Welcome to day 4 of the 2015 Realms Faire, hosted by M. Pax. This year there are twelve games going on, so there are lots of chances to have fun and win prizes. Be sure to check out all of these great games! 

Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Phasers ~ Unicorn Hunt ~ Beware the Vortex ~ VelociRaffle ~ The Hero’s Dilemma ~Stockade Brigade ~ Hall of Doors ~ The Joust ~ Drench-a-Wench/Soak-a-Bloke


Here at the House of The Spirits, I am welcoming a different ghost each day to take over the blog. I will leave clues throughout the day and the first person to guess the ghost's identity in the comments wins a prize. You don't need a google or blogger profile to participate - anonymous users are welcome to guess but please just make sure I can contact you in case you are a winner.

In addition, everyone who leaves a comment before midnight on Saturday, 11/14 will be entered in the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the Faire. The Grand Prize will be a $30 Amazon gift card, an ebook bundle of my books Polar Night, The Turnagain Arm, & The Ghosts of Aquinnah, and the Once Upon a Nightmare Collection ebook set by Cherie Reich.

Want to know about today's prize? Today my ghostly guest and I are giving away a $5 Amazon gift card, an audio book of The Backworlds by M. Pax, and an ebook of my story The Ghosts of Aquinnah.


Thanks to Mary for the donation!

Today's ghost is already irritated about not being invited until day 4 of this event, so I will turn things over quickly. Take it away, ghost!

*ETA: Cathrina Constantine correctly identified today's ghost after just one clue. He is the Headless Horseman. Congratulations, Cathrina! I will add the remaining clues and his picture so he doesn't feel short-changed. Feel free to still leave a comment if you would like to be entered into the Grand Prize giveaway. Otherwise, my last ghost and I will be back tomorrow for the last day of the Faire. 

Who Am I? 

1.       I was killed in 1776 during the American Revolution

2. I was decapitated by a cannonball

3. I'm sometimes called The Galloping Hessian

4. I enjoy roaming Sleepy Hollow on my horse

My picture: 







Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Day 3: Who Roams Here?


Welcome to day 3 of the 2015 Realms Faire, hosted by M. Pax. This year there are twelve games going on, so there are lots of chances to have fun and win prizes. Be sure to check out all of these great games! 

Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Phasers ~ Unicorn Hunt ~ Beware the Vortex ~ VelociRaffle ~ The Hero’s Dilemma ~Stockade Brigade ~ Hall of Doors ~ The Joust ~ Drench-a-Wench/Soak-a-Bloke

Here at the House of The Spirits, I am welcoming a different ghost each day to take over the blog. I will leave clues throughout the day and the first person to guess the ghost's identity in the comments wins a prize. You don't need a google or blogger profile to participate - anonymous users are welcome to guess but please just make sure I can contact you in case you are a winner.

In addition, everyone who leaves a comment before midnight on Saturday 11/14 will be entered in the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the Faire. The Grand Prize will be a $30 Amazon gift card, an ebook bundle of my books Polar Night, The Turnagain Arm, & The Ghosts of Aquinnah, and the Once Upon a Nightmare Collection ebook set by Cherie Reich.

Want to know about today's prize? Today my ghostly guest and I are giving away a $5 Amazon gift card, an ebook of Guardians of Telesma by River Fairchild, and an ebook of my story Polar Night.


Thanks to River for the prize donation!

*ETA: Cherie Reich guessed the ghost - Grady from The Shining. Congratulations, Cherie! And thanks to all for your comments and guesses. I have to say, of all the ghosts who are visiting me this week, Grady is the one who scares me the most. The Shining absolutely terrified me when I saw it! I will add the remaining clue and Grady's picture. 

Now, please welcome today's ghost. It's safe to say this ghost isn't a friendly one.

Who am I? 

1.       When I was alive I was an alcoholic

2.      I went mad and hacked my wife and daughters to death

3. After I killed my wife and daughters I shot myself in the head

4. I've always been at The Overlook

5. I encouraged Jack Torrance to correct his wife and son, like I corrected my family

My picture:


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Day 2: Who Roams Here?


Welcome to day 2 of the 2015 Realms Faire, hosted by M. Pax. This year there are twelve games going on, so there are lots of chances to have fun and win prizes. Be sure to check out all of these great games! 

Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Phasers ~ Unicorn Hunt ~ Beware the Vortex ~ VelociRaffle ~ The Hero’s Dilemma ~Stockade Brigade ~ Hall of Doors ~ The Joust ~ Drench-a-Wench/Soak-a-Bloke

Here at the House of The Spirits, I am welcoming a different ghost each day to take over the blog. I will leave clues throughout the day and the first person to guess the ghost's identity in the comments wins a prize. You don't need a google or blogger profile to participate - anonymous users are welcome to make a guess but please just make sure I can contact you in case you are a winner.

In addition, everyone who leaves a comment before midnight on Saturday, 11/14 will be entered in the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the Faire. The Grand Prize will be a $30 Amazon gift card, an ebook bundle of my books Polar Night, The Turnagain Arm, & The Ghosts of Aquinnah, and the Once Upon a Nightmare Collection ebook set by Cherie Reich.

Want to know about today's prize? Today my ghostly guest and I are giving away a $5 Amazon gift card, an audio book of The Mystery Prince by Mary Waibel, and an ebook of my story The Ghosts of Aquinnah.


Thanks to Mary for the donation!

And now I'll turn things over to today's ghost!

*ETA: Misha Gerricke won today's game right out of the gate! Nearly Headless Nick from Harry Potter was today's ghost. Congratulations, Misha! I will add the rest of Nick's clues so he doesn't feel short-changed LOL. Thanks to everyone who commented and please feel free to still leave a comment if you would like to be entered in the Grand Prize giveaway.

Who Am I? 

   1.       I was sentenced to death by beheading but the executioner wasn't very efficient

2. Before my unfortunate death I was a wizard of the Royal Court

3. I tried to fix crooked teeth and gave a woman a tusk instead

4. I am the House Ghost of Gryffindor

5. John Cleese played me in the movies

My picture:




Monday, November 9, 2015

The Realms Faire Begins! Who Roams Here?


Welcome to the 2015 Realms Faire, hosted by M. Pax. This year there are twelve games going on, so there are lots of chances to have fun and win prizes. Be sure to check out all of these great games! 



Here at the House of The Spirits, I am welcoming a different ghost each day to take over the blog. I will leave clues throughout the day and the first person to guess the ghost's identity in the comments wins a prize. You don't need a google or blogger profile to participate - anonymous users are welcome to guess but please just make sure to leave an email address so I can contact you in case you are a winner.

In addition, everyone who leaves a comment before midnight on Saturday, 11/14 will be entered in the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the Faire. The Grand Prize will be a $30 Amazon gift card, an ebook bundle of my books Polar Night, The Turnagain Arm, & The Ghosts of Aquinnah, and the Once Upon a Nightmare Collection ebook set by Cherie Reich.

Want to know about today's prize? Today my ghostly guest and I are giving away a $5 Amazon gift card plus The Vanished Knight and The Heir's Choice ebook set by M. Gerrick




Thanks to Misha for the prize donation!! 

My guest is getting impatient and wants me to let him/her start giving clues to his/her identity, so I better turn things over to the ghost. This is one guest I don't want to anger. 

*ETA: Just wanted to add in the final clues along with Jennet's picture. She wanted everyone to see what she looks like in the hopes that she could creep a few people out. Thanks again, all for playing!

Congratulations to Susan of I Think; Therefore, I Yam for guessing Jennet's identity!

Who am I?  

1. I am the title character in a book, play, and movie

2. My son died in a carriage accident 

3. I hung myself after my son's death

4.      I wear a lot of black

5. Harry Potter starred in the movie version of my story

6. My name is Jennet Humfrye

My picture: