Thursday, July 30, 2015

1 Audio Book Review: Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy

Title: Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy (Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy Book 1)Author: Cassandra Clare
Narrator: Devon Bostick
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Audio
Published: February 17, 2015
Length: 1 hour, 40 minutes
ISBN: 9781442383937
Genre: Fantasy
Source: Bought







Summary:


After living as a Mundane and a Vampire, Simon never thought he would become a Shadowhunter, but today he begins his training at Shadowhunter Academy.



My Thoughts:

I'm a huge fan of The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. Last year, with the help of Sara Rees Brennan, she came out with a novella series called The Bane Chronicles which featured none other than Magnus Bane. If you get a chance, you should check them out! I enjoyed them so much, that I was thrilled to hear that Clare was also coming out with a new novella series called Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy. 

If you've not read The Mortal Instruments yet, you should probably read that series first. Because Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy features Simon, who's had quite a life up to this point, and you might find this book spoilery otherwise. And you might find this review spoilery, so you should stop reading now. 

Okay, for the rest of you, as I said before this book features Simon. He's struggling with a memory problem. Some things he remembers and some memories are like a dream he's trying to remember, all he knows is, he's not the Simon his friends want him to be. So he signs up for the Shadowhunter Academy accompanied by Katrina. When they get there, the academy is not in the best of shape. There are food problems, plumbing problems, and a possum that lives in Simon's dorm room. 

Upon arriving, Simon is treated very well because of saving the world--which he doesn't remember. Which, you know, is a big deal. However, Simon is intimidated by hanging with the other shadowhunters, especially now that he's a mundane. The mundane's are looked down upon by the other shadowhunters. So basically this book is about Simon finding his place at the Shadowhunter academy, finding out who he is, and who he wants to become.

To me, this is the perfect book to listen to on audio because it's relatively short as well as entertaining. It's narrator, Devon Bostick, did a great job. You might know him from the television series The 100. I also think this might have been his first time as a narrator, though you wouldn't know it. I would definitely listen to other books narrated by him.

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy has great characters. My favorite new character in this series is George Lovelace. And you've got to love a book that not only has a Doctor Who reference, but also one from Pride and Prejudice. I really enjoyed this first book, and I can't wait to listen to the next book in this series, The Lost Herondale


My Rating:



Wednesday, July 29, 2015

0 Hilary Rhodes' The Lion and the Rose & The Outlander King Book Blast

03_Book One_William Rising

The Lion and the Rose (Book One: William Rising)

Publication Date: June 18, 2014
eBook; 338 Pages | ASIN: B00L4K5GKE
Genre: Historical Fiction

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The Lion and the Rose, Part One: William Rising is the first book in an epic historical saga from debut author Hilary Rhodes. Extensively researched and compellingly told, it introduces us to the passionate drama and violent upheaval of eleventh-century Europe. The world as we know it, and the English language, would have been vastly different were it not for the driving ambition of one man: William the Conqueror. But conquerors are made, not born, and William was made in fire and blood. How does a boy become a man, surviving a tumultuous and terrifying childhood? And how does that man become a legend?

William Rising plunges us into this world of danger and betrayal, of choosing sides and dying for absolutes. It follows the creation of a conqueror, as he grows up abandoned, learns to fight at an early age for anything he hopes to keep, and is sculpted into a remorseless, far-sighted, ruthlessly efficient soldier and statesman. From his origins as an orphaned, penniless bastard boy, to his personal and political trials by fire, to the climactic battle with his rebellious barons where he finally comes of age, the young duke increasingly establishes himself as a force to be reckoned with. But as the shadowy intrigues of English politics, and the all-consuming question of an heir for a childless king, begin to draw him into their web, it may just be that William of Normandy has a destiny far greater than even he has ever dreamed.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | ITUNES | KOBO

03_Book Two_The Gathering Storm

The Lion and the Rose (Book Two: The Gathering Storm)

Publication Date: September 29, 2014
eBook; 294 Pages | ASIN: B00O2E30GG
Genre: Historical Fiction

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The Lion and the Rose: William Rising introduced us to the young William, Duke of Normandy, and his treacherous and terrible childhood, beset by battles, betrayals, and heartbreak, as he fought his own barons to survive and claim his birthright. The Gathering Storm plunges us even deeper into the violent upheaval and passionate drama of his unfolding story. Now twenty-two, William has won his most pivotal battle and taken control of his inheritance, but impossible struggles loom as he fights to put Normandy back together -- and very few of his enemies are actually defeated. Furthermore, across the Channel, the question of an heir for a childless king begins to loom large, and the ruthless and scheming Godwin, Earl of Wessex, will stop at nothing to claim it for his family.

Written with the same meticulous historical research and flair by debut author Hilary Rhodes, The Gathering Storm raises the stakes to the utmost level, and a crown and a kingdom hang in the balance. In these pages, lords rise and fall, England and Normandy are drawn into a perilous collision course, bishops, barons, dukes, queens, and earls play a dangerous game of power and glory, and those who are not strong enough are trampled underfoot. The crows circle and the banners are raised, and the last Saxon king and the greatest Norman duke are destined to face each other in a battle that will change the course of history.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | ITUNES | KOBO

04_The Outlander King

The Outlander King (The Aetheling's Bride, Book One)

Publication Date: June 1, 2015
eBook; 476 Pages | ASIN: B00XM9QJ1K
Genre: Historical Fiction

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The story of The Lion and the Rose and the Norman Conquest continues in this spellbinding new historical fiction series from author Hilary Rhodes, pulling back the curtain on the lives of two remarkable women connected across centuries: Aislinn, a seventeen-year-old English girl caught up in the advancing army of the “outlander king,” the man who will become known to history as William the Conqueror. Thrust into the center of the new Norman court and a dizzying web of political intrigue and plotting princes, she must choose her alliances carefully in a game of thrones where the stakes are unimaginably high. Embroiled in rebellions and betrayals, Aislinn learns the price of loyalty, struggles to find her home, and save those she loves – and, perhaps, her own soul as well.

Almost nine hundred years later in 1987, Selma Murray, an American graduate student at Oxford University, is researching the mysterious “Aethelinga” manuscript, as Aislinn’s chronicle has come to be known. Trying to work out the riddles of someone else’s past is a way for Selma to dodge her own troubling ghosts – yet the two are becoming inextricably intertwined. She must face her own demons, answer Aislinn’s questions, and find forgiveness – for herself and others – in this epically scaled but intimately examined, extensively researched look at the creation of history, the universality of humanity, and the many faces it has worn no matter the century: loss, grief, guilt, redemption, and love.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | ITUNES | KOBO

02_Author Hilary RhodesABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hilary Rhodes is a scholar, author, blogger, and all-around geek who fell in love with medieval England while spending a year abroad at Oxford University. She holds a B.A. and M.A. in history, and is currently preparing for doctoral studies at the University of Leeds, fulfilling a years-long dream to return to the UK. In what little spare time she has, she enjoys reading, blogging about her favorite TV shows, movies, and books, music, and traveling.

For more information please visit Hilary Rhodes' blog.


BOOK BLAST SCHEDULE

Monday, July 27

Tuesday, July 28

Wednesday, July 29

Thursday, July 30

Friday, July 31

Sunday, August 2

Monday, August 3

Tuesday, August 4

Wednesday, August 5

Thursday, August 6

Friday, August 7

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

0 Review: Workman's Complication by Rich Leder

Publisher: Laugh Riot Press
Published: September 7, 2014
ASIN: B00N1ZAVPK
Ebook
Genre: Mystery
Source: Author

Summary:

WAY-OFF BROADWAY ACTRESS. 
MURDERED PI FATHER. 
NEW DAY JOB. 

Off-off-off-off Broadway actress Kate McCall inherits her father’s New York private investigation business after he’s a whole lot of murdered in a life insurance company elevator. 

A concrete-carrying, ballroom-dancing construction mule says he fell off the scaffolding and can never work—or dance—again, and then sues the contractor for a whole lot of money. 

Kate assembles the eccentric tenants of her brownstone and her histrionic acting troupe to help her crack the cases, and they stir up a whole lot of trouble. 

But not as much trouble as Kate, who sticks her nose in the middle of the multi-million-dollar life-insurance scam her father was investigating and gets a whole lot of arrested for murdering a medical examiner. 

Will Kate bust the insurance scam, prove who really killed the examiner—and her father—and get out of jail in time to pull off the ballroom sting of the decade? She might, but it’s going to be a whole lot of hilarious. 

My thoughts:


I loved this book! Rich Leder has a true gift of storytelling. Workman's Complications has a stunning cast of characters that interweave with murder, sleuthing,  romance, deceit, with a whole lot of acting on the side . This is a refreshingly fast paced book with twists and turns and a few WOE! I didn't see that coming.

I like the fact that I think I know what's going to happen next and then BAM!! another twist. A job well done on this book.  I liked this so much I couldn't wait to read the next book in the series, Swollen Identity.


My Rating:


Monday, July 27, 2015

2 The Great Estate: Excerpt and Giveaway

Title: The Great Estate
Author: Sherri Browning
Series: Thornbrook Park, #3
Pubdate: August 4th, 2015
ISBN: 9781402286858

Pulled apart by past mistakes. Driven by a passion neither could deny.

Sophia Thorne was young and inexperienced when she married the dashing Earl of Averford…and through dark and troubled times, their relationship nearly came to an end. Now she’s determined to transform herself into the fiery, ardent lover she always wanted to be, giving them a second chance at love… before they’re lost to each other forever.

It took nearly losing Sophia for Gabriel to realize he had allowed his love for his great estate to distract him from his beautiful wife. But that time is over. Despite all the obstacles standing in their way, Gabriel vows to teach Sophia what it is to truly love…and to be loved by a husband devoted heart and soul to her every desire.

Sherri Browning writes historical and contemporary romance fiction, sometimes with a paranormal twist. She is the author of critically acclaimed classic mash-ups Jane Slayre and Grave Expectations. A graduate of Mount Holyoke College, Sherri has lived in western Massachusetts and Greater Detroit Michigan, but is now settled with her family in Simsbury, Connecticut. Find her online at www.sherribrowningerwin.com.


A Teaser:

Breathless, she broke the kiss and leaned against him, her head resting on his solid chest where she could feel the rapid beating of his heart. “Gabriel.”


“Sophia.” He stroked her hair. “My beautiful wife.”
“You didn’t go shooting after all. You were waiting to surprise me.” She looked up at him.
“Why would I go shooting when you were on your way back to me? I mean to stay here with you where I belong. If you’ll have me. I understand you’ve become quite possessive of the place.”
She drew back from him. “Where did you hear such a thing?”
“From Kenner. And Mr. Grant. I know all about what you’ve been up to while I’ve been gone.”
“All? They gave me up so easily?” Her most loyal servants, or so she’d thought.
“With their jobs on the line? Of course they did. They told me everything. I’m impressed, really. I never thought you had it in you, Sophia.”
“You threatened them?” No, he didn’t think she had it in her, did he? And that was at the heart of their problems, not so easily solved with his return after all. “Never? You never believed me capable of running your precious estate? Vapid, beautiful Sophia. She looks good on my arm, but I wouldn’t trust her to function without guidance.”
“It’s not a fault of yours, darling. Women aren’t created to deal with business affairs.” His fingers curled on her shoulder. She yanked away, arms crossed. “You should have better things to think about, and now that I’m home...”
“Now that you’re home, I don’t have to worry my pretty head? Typical male misconceptions. What are women made for? Your pleasure? Bearing your young?” She turned away to conceal the tears hovering on the brink, the pain of their loss still too raw. “I’ve found great enjoyment in business affairs. You’ve never believed in me, Gabriel. Have you ever really known me at all?”

Buy Links:
Indiebound: http://bit.ly/1gmvOeQ






Thursday, July 23, 2015

7 Cleaning off my bookshelf #giveaway

Today, I'm giving away two books from my shelf: The Clockwork Dagger and The Clockwork Crown by Beth Cato. They're gently read and are in search of a new home. 



Full of magic, mystery, and romance, an enchanting steampunk fantasy debut in the bestselling vein of Trudi Canavan and Gail Carriger.

Orphaned as a child, Octavia Leander was doomed to grow up on the streets until Miss Percival saved her and taught her to become a medician. Gifted with incredible powers, the young healer is about to embark on her first mission, visiting suffering cities in the far reaches of the war-scarred realm. But the airship on which she is traveling is plagued by a series of strange and disturbing occurrences, including murder, and Octavia herself is threatened.

Suddenly, she is caught up in a flurry of intrigue: the dashingly attractive steward may be one of the infamous Clockwork Daggers—the Queen’s spies and assassins—and her cabin-mate harbors disturbing secrets. But the danger is only beginning, for Octavia discovers that the deadly conspiracy aboard the airship may reach the crown itself.



This giveaway is open to US addresses only. You must be at least 13 years old to enter. Please read my giveaway policy before entering. By entering you are agreeing to the terms stated. 


Tuesday, July 21, 2015

0 Review: Nick and Tesla's High-voltage Danger Lab

Title: Nick and Tesla’s High-voltage Danger Lab
Author: “Science Bob” Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith

Publisher: Quirk Books
Published: November 5, 2013
Hardcover, 240 Pages
ISBN: 9781594746482
Genre: Middle Grade, Science Fiction,
Source: Publisher





Summary:


Nick and Tesla are bright 11-year-old siblings with a knack for science, electronics, and getting into trouble. When their parents mysteriously vanish, they’re sent to live with their Uncle Newt, a brilliant inventor who engineers top-secret gadgets for a classified government agency. It’s not long before Nick and Tesla are embarking on adventures of their own—engineering all kinds of outrageous MacGyverish contraptions to save their skin: 9-volt burglar alarms, electromagnets, mobile tracking devices, and more. Readers are invited to join in the fun as each story contains instructions and blueprints for five different projects.

In Nick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab, we meet the characters and learn how to make everything from rocket launchers to soda-powered vehicles. Learning about science has never been so dangerous—or so much fun!


My Thoughts:

Nick and Tesla are kids that the adult me wishes the kid me could have been more like. They are “science kids.” They are always looking for explanations for how and why things are. They see unbelievable things in everyday items. I love science now but kid me was like meh about anything remotely educational. 

Nick and Tesla are sent to live with their kooky uncle while their scientist parents are on “assignment.” Uncle Newt is a brilliant, although eccentric, scientist who has a full lab in his basement. The kids are told that they are free to use the lab except “for that and that. And don’t touch that” and so on. As they begin to settle in to their new arrangements they realize that there are things going on. They put their heads together to solve the mysteries they encounter by creating gadgets using everyday materials. These gadgets are detailed in experiments that you can do at home while reading the book. I absolutely love this part of the book.

 
The writing is quick and clever, fast-paced and a lot of fun to read.  I really liked the characters, especially Uncle Newt. He is pretty much the comic relief and is just quirky enough to be fun without getting too annoying. Even though they are twins, Nick and Tesla couldn’t be more different. It was great to see them grow and mature in the short time span of this book. This is a great series for the science kid (young and old) in your family.


My Rating:


Monday, July 20, 2015

5 Naked by Eliza Redgold Book Blast and #Giveaway

02_Naked A Novel of Lady Godiva_Cover

NAKED: A NOVEL OF LADY GODIVA
by ELIZA REDGOLD
Publication Date: July 14, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Formats: Ebook, Paperback
Pages: 320
Genre: Historical Fiction

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We know her name. We know of her naked ride. We don't know her true story.

We all know the legend of Lady Godiva, who famously rode naked through the streets of Coventry, covered only by her long, flowing hair. So the story goes, she begged her husband Lord Leofric of Mercia to lift a high tax on her people, who would starve if forced to pay. Lord Leofric demanded a forfeit: that Godiva ride naked on horseback through the town. There are various endings to Godiva's ride, that all the people of Coventry closed their doors and refused to look upon their liege lady (except for 'peeping Tom') and that her husband, in remorse, lifted the tax.

Naked is an original version of Godiva's tale with a twist that may be closer to the truth: by the end of his life Leofric had fallen deeply in love with Lady Godiva. A tale of legendary courage and extraordinary passion, Naked brings an epic story new voice.

ADVANCE PRAISE

"Redgold's variation on this enticing legend is often lyrical and offers a satisfying blend of history, lore, and romance." (Booklist)

"Breathes new life into the story of the woman who would stop at nothing to protect her land and people." (Romantic Times)

"NAKED delivers far more than the famous ride of Lady Godiva. It's a beautifully woven story of love, loyalty, and the determination of a young woman trying to protect her people and their way of life, no matter the price. Godiva is a wonderfully strong woman in an age of dangerous men, and in NAKED, she certainly meets her match!" (Amalia Carosella, author of HELEN OF SPARTA)

"A wonderful, romantic retelling of the Lady Godiva legend. There is the colorful Anglo-Saxon backdrop, warriors, battles, peacemaking, desire, revenge and love - everything a fan of medieval romance could desire - plus a strong-willed heroin. Written with a lyrical lilt to her prose, Redgold adds realism to the myth and love to the lusty tale, allowing readers a glimpse into what might have been." (RT Book Reviews)

03_Eliza Redgold_AuthorABOUT THE AUTHOR

ELIZA REDGOLD is based upon the old, Gaelic meaning of her name, Dr Elizabeth Reid Boyd. English folklore has it that if you help a fairy, you will be rewarded with red gold. She has presented academic papers on women and romance and is a contributor to the forthcoming Encyclopedia of Romance Fiction. As a non-fiction author she is co-author of Body Talk: a Power Guide for Girls and Stay-at-Home Mothers: Dialogues and Debates. She was born in Irvine, Scotland on Marymass Day and currently lives in Australia.

For more information visit Eliza Redgold's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, and Google+.

BOOK BLAST SCHEDULE

Tuesday, July 14

Wednesday, July 15

Thursday, July 16

Friday, July 17

Saturday, July 18

Monday, July 20

Tuesday, July 21

Wednesday, July 22

Thursday, July 23

Friday, July 24

Saturday, July 25

Sunday, July 26

Monday, July 27

Tuesday, July 28

GIVEAWAY

To enter to win a copy of Naked: A Novel of Lady Godiva & a $50 Amazon Gift Card, please enter via the GLEAM form below.

Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on July 28th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open internationally.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.



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Thursday, July 16, 2015

2 Well Done, Dragon!

I recently read A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carson Levine and that got me thinking about all the great books I've read that had dragons featured in them. So I complied a list of noteworthy books. I've probably forgotten about some too. If you have any dragon-related books that you think are a great read, be sure to tell me about them in the comments below. 



This book came out about ten years ago. I absolutely loved it! I think it's one of the best dragon books out there. 

One boy . . .


One dragon . . .

A world of adventure.

When Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon soon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. 

Overnight his simple life is shattered, and he is thrust into a perilous new world of destiny, magic, and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds.

Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands.


Seraphina has been on my wishlist for awhile. I've heard nothing but great things about it.

Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty's anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high.

Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen's Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.

In her exquisitely written fantasy debut, Rachel Hartman creates a rich, complex, and utterly original world. Seraphina's tortuous journey to self-acceptance is one readers will remember long after they've turned the final page.
 



Have you ever called your teacher a dragon? What if he/she was actually a dragon? I read this book with my kids and we loved it! 

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—science 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 hungryTyrannosaurus 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!





I read this book a while ago, and I really liked it. I still have my copy to pass down to my little girl when the time is right.

When an orphan girl named Creel befriends a dragon, she unknowingly inherits a pair of slippers that could be used to save her kingdom, or destroy it. Perfect for fans of Shannon Hale and Cornelia Funke’s Dragon Rider, the light tone and charming characterizations bring this heartwarming fantasy to life. Older middle grade readers and young teens alike will appreciate the adventure, fun, and dragon-drenched action!










This is a series that I really like.  A good vs. evil tale that had me hooked.

The Dragon King Seeks His Princess—
Who Dares to Stop Him?

Princess Una of Parumvir has come of age and will soon marry. She dreams of a charming prince, but when her first suitor arrives, he's not what she'd hoped. Prince Aethelbald of mysterious Farthestshore has travelled a great distance to prove his love--and also to bring hushed warnings of danger. A dragon is rumored to be on the hunt and blazing a path of terror. 

Una, smitten instead with a more dashing prince, refuses Aethelbald's offer--and ignores his cautions with dire consequences. Soon the Dragon King himself is in Parumvir and Una, in giving her heart away unwisely, finds herself in his sights. Only those courageous enough to risk everything have a hope of fighting off this advancing evil.




The Hobbit is always a favorite. I first read this book when I was in the third grade. I didn't like it. I read it again as a teen, and I had a totally different reaction. 

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.Written for J.R.R. Tolkien’s own children, The Hobbit met with instant critical acclaim when it was first published in 1937. Now recognized as a timeless classic, this introduction to the hobbit Bilbo Baggins, the wizard Gandalf, Gollum, and the spectacular world of Middle-earth recounts of the adventures of a reluctant hero, a powerful and dangerous ring, and the cruel dragon Smaug the Magnificent. The text in this 372-page paperback edition is based on that first published in Great Britain by Collins Modern Classics (1998), and includes a note on the text by Douglas A. Anderson (2001). Unforgettable!



Okay, so dragons aren't really a dominate feature in these books, but they do appear in a few on them. That counts! Anyway, Harry Potter is a fabulous series that should probably be on most lists. 

Harry Potter thinks he is an ordinary boy. He lives with his Uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia and cousin Dudley, who are mean to him and make him sleep in a cupboard under the stairs. (Dudley, however, has two bedrooms, one to sleep in and one for all his toys and games.) Then Harry starts receiving mysterious letters and his life is changed forever. He is whisked away by a beetle-eyed giant of a man and enrolled at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The reason: Harry Potter is a wizard! The first book in the "Harry Potter" series makes the perfect introduction to the world of Hogwarts.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

0 The good and bad points of being an author by Carolyn Aspenson and a #giveaway

Every job has good points and bad points. Risks, dangers, concerns, frustrations…they’re all a part of every job, whether we realize it or not. Writing and editing both come with risks, dangers, concerns and frustrations, too.

Who knew? I sure didn’t. I thought writing and editing would be an easy, stress-free gig, but I was wrong. Of course there’s the obvious risks one takes when they decide to write a book.

Will I make money?

Will my family stave?

Will the book sell?

Will the books I edit sell?

Let me tell you, that stuff is nothing compared to the real risks, dangers, et all of being a writer and an editor. I fell into this rabbit hole in 2011, full time, and I’m still trying to crawl my way out.

Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do and I don’t think I’ll ever stop. It’s not about the writing, or the editing. Those two things are great. It’s about what happens because I’m a writer and an editor. Here’s my list of the top five things I’ve had to deal with since taking on this new career.


1. My eyesight tanked. Staring at a computer practically 24/7 is rough on the eyes. I’ve had 20/20 vision since birth and at 44, the words on the screen shrunk and danced around, making it virtually impossible for me to do anything with them. Certain I was going blind, I headed to the eye doc who gave me a prescription for (insert gasp here) TRI-FOCALS. My parents had horrible vision but never got the third level on their coke-bottle-sized glasses, but me? Yup. I’m a triple focal gal now. And for the record, the words are still blurry.

2. My body is bumped and bruised. Writers see everything. Every detail of every person, building, speck on the sidewalk; we see it all. Not because we’ve reached some higher level of consciousness—though that might be true for some—but because we’re nosy and constantly thinking, ‘can I use that in a book?’ Watching everything going on around me makes me clumsy. Since I’m not paying attention to what I’m doing, I’m usually walking into stuff, all of the time. I’d take photos of the rainbow colors dotted along my legs and arms, but I’m embarrassed. No, really, they’re hideous!

3. I can’t read for enjoyment anymore. Every book I pick up becomes and editing job in my head. Every ‘looked’, every ‘started to’, every editors no-no bursts from the pages (or the Kindle app) and assaults my eyes. Thank God for Audible.com. Without audio books, I’d never get to enjoy the stories of my favorite authors again.

4. Everyone wants me to read their manuscript. Let’s face it, if someone says, “I’m a published writer and an editor for several publishers,” those who have always wanted to be published want said person to ‘take a look at what I’ve written and tell me if it’s good.’ It makes me want to bang my head against a wall! It’s not that their writing is bad, or that they can’t write. It’s number three, above. I’m happy to help anyone who wants to move forward with their story, of course, but when someone wants me to read their whole book, that means I have less time to read for enjoyment (or, listen for enjoyment that is,) and less time to edit and write, which is money lost. And honestly, if they want an opinion, they should hire an editor, whether that editor is me or someone else. I read books as a job, and it’s hard to tell someone that when they don’t want to shell out the bucks for the editing. It makes me appear mean and I don’t like being mean, let alone looking mean.

5. I don’t dream about Ryan Reynolds anymore. Darn it. Seriously, have you had a dream about Ryan Reynolds? If not, I’m really sorry. If so, then you might get my issue. Now that I’m reading and writing 24/7, the characters I read about, I dream about. Do I want to dream about the cop that saves boys from the devil? Not so much, actually. Unless that cop comes in the form of Ryan Reynolds, I don’t much want him in my dreams. Ryan hasn’t made an appearance in a long time. In fact, his friends, Daniel Craig and Steve Perry (the younger, long-haired version) haven’t dropped in, either. All I’ve got is an over weight cop and a teenage girl who likes mermaids. Seriously?



Career changes are tough for everyone. All jobs come with risks, some more than others. Is mine harder, more dangerous than a fireman? Of course not—but oh, if you’ve written a story about a fireman, send it my way. I could use a dream with that kind of character. 

Carolyn Ridder Aspenson
Biography

Booktrope Editions and Amazon Encore author Carolyn Ridder Aspenson is the Amazon and Barnes & Noble best selling author of the Angela Panther Mystery Series, Unfinished Business An Angela Panther Novel, Unbreakable Bonds An Angela Panther Mystery, and Uncharted Territory An Angela Panther Mystery, The Inn At Laurel Creek, a contemporary romance novella, Santa's Gift, a Cumming Christmas Novella and 8 To Lose The Weight, a healthy living guide.
When not writing, Carolyn spends her time editing fiction and non-fiction manuscripts for Booktrope Editions as well as on a freelance basis, and providing freelance content to various print and online publications.
Carolyn lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband and children.

For more information, visit

carolynridderaspenson.com

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Giveaway

The first five people who sign up for Carolyn Aspenson's newsletter will receive the an ebook copies of all three of Angela Panther books! Giveaway is open internationally. You must be at least 13 years old to enter.





In UNFINISHED BUSINESS AN ANGELA PANTHER NOVEL, #1 AMAZON bestselling author Carolyn Ridder Aspenson introduces her now trademark blend of witty dialog and hilarious banter in the first book of her hilarious and heartwarming paranormal chick lit, cozy mystery, Angela Panther series.

When Angela Panther's mother Fran Richter wakes her up in the middle of the night ranting about stolen Hershey Bars, Angela thinks her mother's got a screw loose. And then it hits her. Her mother is dead. Just a few hours before, Angela watched as the funeral home staff nearly dropped her mother's body off the gurney while sliding her into the hearse. So maybe she's the one that's nuttier than a fruitcake?

But Fran keeps popping in and with a volcano full of drama already brewing at home—crazy or not—Angela's grateful for her mother's presence.

It's the other ghosts Angela can do without.

Seems Fran's return opened a portal between Angela and the other side and ghosts are hitting up the reluctant psychic medium for help. From the naked British guy juggling balls in the coffee shop parking lot to the woman desperately trying to save her sick child, Angela must find a way to balance her own life with the unfinished business of the dead.
 





Reluctant psychic Angela Panther never wanted to talk to the dead, but the moment she decides it's not so bad, tragedy strikes, and her new gift disappears. When best friend Mel suspects her husband is cheating, she turns to Angela for advice. They concoct the perfect trap, but to make it work, they'll need help from Angela's mother, Fran. There's just one tiny little problem... Fran's dead. With Angela's psychic radar on the fritz, can the dead find a way to help the living?





#1 AMAZON bestselling author Carolyn Ridder Aspenson is back with the third Angela Panther novel, a hilarious and heartwarming paranormal cozy mystery adventure: Uncharted Territory. 

Just when psychic medium Angela Panther thinks she's got her gift figured out, the universe smacks her in the head with a curve ball. 

When an unidentified fourteen-year-old boy takes a dive off an interstate overpass, Atlanta Detective Aaron Banner asks Angela to find out if it was suicide—or murder. But the young boy's spirit has other plans for her: help another lost soul and forget about him. 

Fortunately, Angela's never been good at taking orders. 

With the help of her dead-but-not-gone mother, Fran, and her newly single best friend, Mel, Angela sets out to discover the truth about both the jumper and the girl he wants to help. 

And boy, is she out of her league. 

Armed with little more than their double lattes and a tiny pink bottle of wannabe pepper spray, Angela and Mel must venture into the dark underbelly of Atlanta to solve two mysteries. Will they be able to help the dead finally rest in peace?

 

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