Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Have No Shame BOOK BLAST


Book Synopsis:
The racially-charged prejudice of the deep South forces eighteen-year-old Alison Tillman to confront societal norms—and her own beliefs—when she discovers the body of a hate crime victim, and the specter of forbidden love turns her safe, comfortable world upside down.
Alison has called Forrest Town, Arkansas home for the past eighteen years. Her mother’s Blue Bonnet meetings, her father toiling night and day on the family farm, and the division of life between the whites and the blacks are all Alison knows. The winter of 1967, just a few months before marrying her high school sweetheart, Alison finds the body of a black man floating in the river, and she begins to view her existence with new perspective. The oppression and hate of the south, the ugliness she once was able to avert her eyes from, now demands her attention.
When a secretive friendship with a young black man takes an unexpected romantic turn, Alison is forced to choose between her predetermined future, and the dangerous path that her heart yearns for.
HAVE NO SHAME is an emotionally compelling coming of age novel featuring a young woman who cannot reconcile the life she wants with the one she’s been brought up to live.Have No Shame will resonate with anyone who has ever fallen in love, and those who have been forced to choose between what they know in their hearts to be true, and what others would like them to believe.



1 Winner will receive a gift bag full of goodies, including:
- Signed copy of CHASING AMANDA
- Signed copy of COME BACK TO ME
- Signed Copy of MEGAN’S WAY
- 1 Pink Journal
Shipping in US Only, No PO Boxes. Must be 13+ To Enter

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About Melissa Foster:
Melissa Foster is the award-winning author of four International bestselling novels. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, the World Literary Café. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on  Fostering Success. Melissa is also a community builder for the Alliance for Independent Authors. She has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.
Melissa hosts an annual Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.
Visit Melissa on The Women’s NestFostering Success, or World Lit Cafe. Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.
Find Melissa Foster:
Facebook, Twitter, FB Fanpage

“A gripping and poignant novel dealing with a subject once taboo in American society.” Hagerstown Magazine
“Have No Shame is a powerful testimony to love and the progressive, logical evolution of social consciousness, with an outcome that readers will find engrossing, unexpected, and ultimately eye-opening.” Midwest Book Review
“A historical novel of love and its triumph, told with a unique and compelling voice.” Bestselling Author Kathleen Shoop
“Have No Shame is a delightful eye opener and a rather poignant book that everyone everywhere should put on their must-read list.” Readers’ Favorite
“A dynamic and heartwarming tale of young love, giving testament to those who struggled so we can live in an integrated society.” Author Rachelle Ayala
“…a stunningly impactful read.” Rabid Reader Reviews
“A book that brings the evilness of racial bigotry to light, through the eyes of one awakening to its reality.” Cindy Smith, avid reader
“[HAVE NO SHAME] Perfectly catches the South at the dawning of the Civil Rights Movement. Melissa Foster takes us on an adventure that twists and turns unpredictably to a tense climax that renders this novel a true page-turner. This is undoubtedly the best novel I have read in a long time.”  Roderick Craig Low, Author of ‘Promises of Love and Good Behaviour’
“This book is not just a story; it’s an experience.” Author G.E. Johnson

Play Dead (A Dog and His Girl Mysteries, #1) by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines-Stephens

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Play Dead
(A Dog and His Girl Mysteries, #1)
by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines-Stephens
208 pages
NetGalley- Scholastic Inc.

Book Jacket Summary
A dog and his girl show how six legs are better than two in this brand new mystery series!

When Dodge, a German shepherd police dog, finds himself retired after an accident leaves him deaf in one ear, he's lucky to be adopted by the perfect family. Twelve-year-old Cassie Sullivan, his girl, smells almost as good as a dog, and gets her nose for sleuthing from her police chief mom and coroner dad. Cassie is smart and quick on her feet, and doesn't mind breaking a couple rules to get to the bottom of a mystery. Dodge has forty-two dog years of experience solving crime, as well as a great network of other four-legged colleagues when he needs more intel.

When Verdel Ward, the richest man in town, goes missing, it seems like everyone from the mayor to the housekeeper wants his fortune, which he's left behind with no will. But Cassie and Dodge can smell a mystery from a mile away, and can't help wondering why a miser would go swimming in a dangerous cove, what's up with the suspicious fiancee, who's been sneaking around the mansion, and where a twin brother has come from. 

My Thoughts
Cassie and her dog Dodge are inseparable, especially when they are on a case. This new mystery series is perfect for animal lovers and mystery fanatics because it combines the two! Most animal mystery series seem to go with cats but this one works with a former police dog who has specialized training. Plus every other chapter is told from Dodge's perspective. We learn that he communicates with other dogs, especially Gatsby, a hound dog that lives next door. The other chapters are told from Cassie's perspective and she is a typical tween with mean girl problems but enjoys solving mysteries.
There is plenty of danger and fun with this book and you know that there will be more than mysteries to make this series good. There is a family dynamic to this one and Cassie is the middle child and has to deal with her older brother who is pushing away from the family and a younger sister who already acts like a teenager. Her mom is the local police chief and Cassie is constantly getting in trouble for sneaking around crime scenes and maybe skipping school to hear the reading of a will!
I recommend it to tweens who are looking for an interesting mystery or those who love animals. It works for both groups!      

Book Pairings
Three Times Lucky by Shelia Turnage 


Monday, April 29, 2013

Doctor Who: Summer Falls by Amelia Williams

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Doctor Who: Summer Falls
by Amelia Williams
65 pages
E-Book- Random House
Short Story

Book Jacket Summary
“When summer falls, the Lord of Winter will arise…”

In the seaside village of Watchcombe, young Kate is determined to make the most of her last week of summer holiday. But when she discovers a mysterious painting entitled ‘The Lord of Winter’ in a charity shop, it leads her on an adventure she never could have planned. Kate soon realises the old seacape, painted long ago by an eccentric local artist, is actually a puzzle. And with the help of some bizarre new acquaintances – including a museum curator’s magical cat, a miserable neighbour, and a lonely boy – she plans on solving it.

And then, one morning Kate wakes up to a world changed forever. For the Lord of Winter is coming – and Kate has a very important decision to make

My Thoughts
This is a short story that was shown in the most recent season of Doctor Who and if you are familiar with the show then you know that Amelia Williams is Amy Pond. She was stuck back in time and became an author of children’s books. Love it!
 This story is about a girl named Kate who has moved to a small coastal town and finds a painting in thrift shop that is in the center of an old poem:
When Summer Falls,
The Lord of Winter will arise
When darkness calls
And opens the Cold Lady’s eyes.
The Lord of Winter is awakened and it is up to Kate to send him back again.
This is a fun short story because you know right away that one of the characters is the Doctor and that she is basing it off her adventures with him. I highly recommend it to those who love Doctor Who!

Book Pairings
Devil in the Smoke by Justin Richards


Friday, April 26, 2013

Snorkeling With Sea-bots by Amy J Lemke

Snorkeling With Sea-bots 
by Amy J. Lemke
34 pages
NetGalley- Capstone Young Readers
February 2013

Book Jacket Summary
Kolten discovers a robot named Rip on the ocean floor. Rip shows Kolten how robots control the movement of the ocean from their home, Sea City.

From the Comics Land series. For ages 5-7. Comics Land welcome young readers into a world of funny and quirky adventures told in popular comic style. These stories feature easy-to-read text, likeable characters and awesome art.

My Quick Thoughts
Kolten goes snorekling off the coast in Comics Land. His mother urges him to stay where she can see him and he plan to until a robot brings him to Sea City. This city run the ocean, with robots on post for waves, seaweed, and bubbles. 
This is a very fast read but is entertaining throughout. It is a comic with panels but feels a bit more like a picture book. The pictures are bright and I like the look of the sea-bots, each one is different and has a unique look. There is also a preview for the next book that takes place in Comics Land. There are also puzzles and a how to draw section at the back of the book. Cute and would be diverting on a rainy day or a beach trip!

Book Pairings
Otto's Orange Day by
Stinky by
Dinosaurs for Breakfast by Amy J. Lemke
My Little Bro-Bot by


January Black Blog Tour

January Black

Sixteen-year-old genius Matty Ducayn has never fit in on The Hill, an ordered place seriously lacking a sense of humor. After his school’s headmaster expels him for a small act of mischief, Matty’s future looks grim until King Hadrian comes to his rescue with a challenge: answer a question for a master’s diploma.

More than a second chance, this means freedom. Masters can choose where they work, a rarity among Regents, and the question is simple.

What was January Black?

It’s a ship. Everyone knows that. Hadrian rejects that answer, though, and Matty becomes compelled by curiosity and pride to solve the puzzle. When his search for an answer turns up long-buried state secrets, Matty’s journey becomes a collision course with a deadly royal decree. He's been set up to fail, which forces him to choose. Run for his life with the challenge lost...or call the king’s bluff.


Refreshingly intelligent and loads of fun!

I lost a few hours as I read this book. It's a Young Adult novel that is refreshingly and astonishingly intelligent, and the love story is perfectly played out.

~Christine Ashworth, Amazon Review

The mystery was intriguing - I loved how Wendy Russo weaved in all her secrets throughout the book, how she incorporated just enough to keep you reading, while never actually divulging much of anything. I was guessing for most of it and that's pretty hard to make me do.

~Julie, Clean Teen Reads

Wendy Russo has created a masterpiece.

~Ivan Amberlake, Author

Book Trailer

Author Wendy S. Russo

Wendy S. Russo got her start writing in the sixth grade. That story involved a talisman with crystals that had to be found and assembled before bad things happened, and dialog that read like classroom roll call. Since then, she’s majored in journalism (for one semester), published poetry, taken a course on short novels, and watched most everything ever filmed by Quentin Tarantino. A Wyoming native transplanted in Baton Rouge, Wendy works for Louisiana State University as an IT analyst. She’s a wife, a mom, a Tiger, a Who Dat, and she falls asleep on her couch at 8:30 on weeknights.

 january black

While walking south on Main Street, Matty and Iris traded shopping bags. She cocked her head sideways while looking at the cover of the book he bought her.
“Black Sheep,” she read aloud thoughtfully. “Alice Glass. Why do I know that name?”
“She wrote the novel that ‘Marker’ is based on,” he replied, referring to a SteerNet serial about to be cancelled in its first season.
“Ugh,” she said, dropping her hand. The book slapped her leg. “That show is horrible.”
“Agreed, but never mind that. ‘Black Sheep’ is by far her best work.”
“I’ll give it a try,” Iris said. “Take a look in yours.”
He pulled the small paperback out his. Peter Oldham was his mother’s favorite historical fiction author. Matty recognized “Drops in August” as soon as the corner of the cover cleared the paper sleeve. He bit his tongue to keep from groaning.
“Oh, God,” she said, likely in reaction to the cringe he failed to hold back. “Maybe this was a bad idea.”
Thinking of his mother, and her repeated suggestions that he read the book, Matty’s initial disappointment dissipated. “No, this is good,” he told Iris.
“That’s not what your face says.” She reached for the book.
“Oh, no!” He shook his head and moved his hand out of her reach. “This will do very nicely.”
“Nicely? For what?” She crossed in front of him and walked backward, reaching for the book as he whipped his hand up and behind his head.
“For a joke on my parents.”
She stopped cold in her tracks. He planted his feet so that he wouldn’t run into her, but his momentum carried him forward anyway. She put her hands forward to stop him from falling, but when he hit them, she lost her footing and stumbled backwards. He lunged forward and caught her in his arms.
When he regained his balance and stopped her fall, she was shocked, breathless, and completely supported in his arms at a sharp angle to the ground. People around them on the sidewalk applauded.
One man who passed them said, “Nice catch, kid!”
Matty stepped back and brought her to her feet. She seemed to be searching his eyes for something.
Finally, she asked, “Are you a brat, Matty?”
“Depends.” He felt as if he would shake apart if he let her go. “Do you like brats?”
As her lips pulled into a smile from ear to ear, she touched her forehead to his collarbone. A few moments later, she looked back up at him and squirmed just slightly. He let her shrug him off, and when her arms were free, she slapped his cheek playfully before skipping south on the sidewalk. All of his internal organs melted into his legs. About ten steps later, she turned around.
“Are you coming?” she yelled.
Matty shook off his daze and ran to catch up with her.
More Information:

Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 5/8/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.


Thursday, April 25, 2013

OMG: The Glitter Trap by Barbara Brauner & James Iver Mattson

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OMG: The Glitter Trap
(Oh My Godmother)
by Barbara Brauner & James Iver Mattson
illustrated by
240 pages
NetGalley- Hyperion Books
Tween Fairy Tale
May 2013

Book Jacket Summary
Middle school is far from a fairytale for adorkable misfit Lacey Unger-Ware. When Lacey ends up with popular girl Paige Harrington’s smart-mouthed fairy godmother, Katarina, trapped in her hair, life gets more magical—just not in a ‘prince charming’ kind of way.

Katarina’s wings are too damaged to continue her fairy duties, and Lacey must take over as Paige’s fairy godmother. Distracted by her new responsibilities, Lacey’s in danger of losing her best friend, Sunny. Can Lacey get the hang of magic, make Paige’s dreams come true, and survive middle school?

Barbara Brauner and James Iver Mattson's debut novel is full of heart and charm. Get ready for the Oh My Godmother series to cast a spell on tween girls!

My Thoughts
Lacey Unger-Ware is in a fine mess. She has caught a fairy godmother that is meant for another girl and not just any other but Paige Harrington, the most popular girl in school. If Lacey cannot make Paige's dream come true by midnight of the next full moon then her own dream will be broken. Paige wants to be a veterinarian when she grows up but how can she do that when all the animals suddenly hate her! Paige is on a tight schedule because Katarina, the fairy godmother, is injured and Paige must pick up the slack. 
This is a really great book that I hope becomes a series! I really like Lacey and her unfortunate name! Plus Paige doesn't end up such a mean girl after all, she just likes the attention because she is not getting enough from her father. Sunny is good natured and kind but has a stubborn streak, especially when it comes to her hair! Just the kind of book that tweens will eat right up. There is also a drama scene that made me bust out laughing with the improv that the main characters had to do to save the show! 

Book Pairings
A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz 
Falling In by Frances O'Roark Dowell 


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Showers of Books Giveaway Hop

Showers of Books Giveaway Hop

April 24th to 30th


Co-hosted by Books à la Mode

  $10 GC to Amazon.com

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

eGift Card design preview


Doctor Who: Devil in the Smoke by Justin Richards

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Doctor Who: Devil in the Smoke
by Justin Richards
67 pages
NetGalley- BBC Books
Short Story E-book
December 2012

Book Jacket Summary
Madame Vastra, the fabled Lizard Woman of Paternoster Row, knew death in many shapes and forms. But perhaps one of the most bizarre of these was death by snow...

On a cold day in December, two young boys, tired of sweeping snow from the workhouse yard, decide to build a snowman – and are confronted with a strange and grisly mystery. In horrified fascination, they watch as their snowman begins to bleed...

The search for answers to this impossible event will plunge Harry into the most hazardous – and exhilarating – adventure of his life.  He will encounter a hideous troll. He will dine with a mysterious parlour maid.  And he will help the Great Detective, Madame Vastra, save the world from the terrifying Devil in the Smoke.

My Thoughts
For those of you who love Doctor Who's side characters, Madame Vastra, Jenny, and Strax from the 2012 Christmas special, are in for a treat.  This short story focuses on the adventures of these three against a smoke monster that is threatening the world. Madame Vastra is a lizard woman from the dawn of time that was awoken from slumber and has now settled in Victorian London where she has become a consulting detective to Scotland Yard. She hired Jenny to be her maid but she now shares in Vastra's adventures. Strax is a Sontaran warrior that has been reduced to their butler and look like a troll, at least to Henry who brings them their next case. 
This is a fun adventure that is only 60+ pages but has a face pace and gives a look into the lives of the characters who assist the Doctor from time to time. I highly recommend this on to Doctor Who fans (of course) and for those who loved our Victorian heroes!

Book Pairings
The Angel's Kiss: A Melody Malone Mystery by
Doctor Who: Summer Falls by
Doctor Who: The Resurrection Casket by


Nerd Blast for UNBREAKABLE by Elizabeth Norris.

Welcome to the Nerd Blast for
UNBREAKABLE by Elizabeth Norris.

Four months after Ben disappeared through the portal to his home universe, Janelle believes she’ll never see him again. Her world is still devastated, but life is finally starting to resume some kind of normalcy. Until Interverse Agent Taylor Barclay shows up. Somebody from an alternate universe is running a human trafficking ring, kidnapping people and selling them on different Earths—and Ben is the prime suspect. Now his family has been imprisoned and will be executed if Ben doesn’t turn himself over within five days.
And when Janelle learns that someone she cares about—someone from her own world—has become one of the missing, she knows that she has to help Barclay, regardless of the danger. Now Janelle has five days to track down the real culprit. Five days to locate the missing people before they’re lost forever. Five days to reunite with the boy who stole her heart. But as the clues begin to add up, Janelle realizes that she’s in way over her head—and that she may not have known Ben as well as she thought. Can she uncover the truth before everyone she cares about is killed?
You can purchase Unbreakable at the following Retailers:
Winner will receive a Signed Copy of Unbreakable & Swag
(Bookmark, Sticker, Poster & Magnet) by Elizabeth Norris.

2 Winners will receive a Swag (Bookmark, Sticker, Poster & Magnet) by Elizabeth Norris.

About Elizabeth Norris:


Elizabeth Norris briefly taught high school English and history before trading the southern California beaches and sunshine for Manhattan’s recent snowpocalyptic winter.

She harbors dangerous addictions to guacamole, red velvet cupcakes, sushi, and Argo Tea, fortunately not all together.
Her first novel, UNRAVELING (Balzer+Bray, April 2012), is the story of one girl’s fight to save her family, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Farmyard Knits by Fiona Goble

Farmyard Knits
Farmyard Knits
by Fiona Goble
80 pages
NetGalley- Andrews McMeel Publishing 
Non-Fiction Crafting
April 2013

Book Jacket Summary
Hi-ho, the dairy-o meets knit one, purl one in the latest book of adorable toy knits from best-selling knitting author Fiona Goble.Fiona Goble’s Farmyard Knits takes you through a day in the life of a farm as knitters of all skill levels create a farmer and his wife, their cat and sheep-herding dog, and a whole host of charming farmyard animals, from the rooster that crows to greet the day, to the cows slowly chewing their cud in the meadow, to the horse eating hay in its paddock, the pigs playing in their pen, the sheep who are herded into the barn as night falls, and a sly fox that prowls around the coop after dark while the hens are snug in their roosts. You can even knit an adorable tractor for the farmer to ride on, as well as a playmat with a variety of fields and a pond to set the scene.

The little farmyard knits make perfect gifts or toys for children as you teach them about animals and life on the farm.  Each pattern begins with a list of materials needed and includes step-by-step instructions, along with full-color photographs of the completed dolls. An illustrated overview explains all the stitches and techniques. More than just a knitting book, the gorgeously illustrated pages of Farmyard Knits also tell the story of the farmer and his wife as they go about their daily chores.

My Thoughts
I don't know a lot about knitting but I do know that I would love for someone to make me the horse and sheepdog! There are many ladies at work who collect these kinds of books so they can reference back on how to do certain designs. I wish this was a catalog that I could order from. The technical jargon for the knitters out there was useless to me because I am not that great with my hands, other than turning pages! However, the creations were expertly staged and made me want to make them and see what kind of dioramas I could make out of the creatures. 
This would be a great gift for those who can actually knit and I know that knitting is popular at the college where I work. We also started a crochet club at the library but alas I am not that great at crocheting either.  

Book Pairings 
Paper Artist  by Gail D. Green, Kara L. Laughlin, and Jennifer Phillips
Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett
Fleecie Pets: Easy-To-Make Cuddly Animal Friends by


Monday, April 22, 2013

Scaredy Squirrel Goes Camping by Mélanie Watt

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Scaredy Squirrel Goes Camping
by Mélanie Watt
32 pages
Picture Book- Humor
NetGalley- Kids Can Press
April 2013

Book Jacket Summary
Scaredy Squirrel is not too comfortable with the idea of camping ? unless it's on his couch! There will be no mosquitoes, skunks or zippers to worry about when he watches a show about the joys of camping on his brand-new TV. But first Scaredy must find an electrical outlet, and that means going into the woods! Will the nutty worrywart's plans prepare him for the great outdoors, or will his adventure end up as a scary story told around the campfire?

My Thoughts
Scardey Squirrel seems to be afraid of a lot of things- Christmas, the beach, and birthday parties to name a few. This time he talks about his fear of camping!  There could be skunks, mosquitoes, quicksand, zippers, or penguins out there if Scaredy Squirrel goes camping! Instead he will watch about it from the comfort of his tree with the new TV he bought. However, the plug is not long enough and he must trek through the scarey woods to get to the nearest outlet. Of course he over packs and is hesitant to start out but learns that camping is not so bad after all. That is the fun of this series! It makes new things less scarey and you learn to enjoy the experience.
Scaredy Squirrel learns to love the open air and roasting marshmallows over an open flame. The beautiful sunset makes it all worth while. This is a great book series for any little boy or girl! It is humorous and has quite a few funny callbacks to things SS is scared of at the beginning. I cannot wait for more of these to come out!

Book Pairings
Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed by

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