Sunday, January 20, 2013

Inspirational Freebie: 'The Long, Steep Path: Everyday Inspiration from the Author of Pay It Forward'

Book Blurb from Amazon:

We can find the life we want.
It’s hiding in plain sight…in the life we have now.

If you believe that life is a journey, that we can’t hold still even if we tried, then THE LONG, STEEP PATH: EVERYDAY INSPIRATION FROM THE AUTHOR OF PAY IT FORWARD is the gentle, thoughtful, and fully entertaining roadmap to a happy life of self-knowledge and creative inspiration, from someone who has been through it all.

"What inspired you to write the novel Pay It Forward?"

Years after the publication of Pay It Forward, this is still the most common question asked of Catherine Ryan Hyde, bestselling and critically acclaimed author of more than 18 novels for adults and young adults, including Pay It Forward, the incredible bestselling novel that led to a movie, a foundation, and an entire social movement.

Everything Pay It Forward became, it turns out, is rooted in a small, but extraordinary act of kindness, which Catherine received as a young adult. It was one life moment that caused her to look at life in a different way, changing all other life moments that followed. It was a moment of true inspiration.

A few years before she began to pursue her dream of being a writer, Catherine’s life was spiraling into depression and addiction. And now…it’s not. And it hasn’t been for nearly a quarter of a century. Changing your life isn’t easy, but she started with the most ordinary ingredients. She started with the life she had. And she found her inspiration.

In THE LONG STEEP PATH: EVERYDAY INSPIRATION FROM THE AUTHOR OF PAY IT FORWARD, Catherine shares her journey, as well as what inspires her, in a series of funny and totally engaging stories that manage to be at once intimate and universal. This is that rare inspirational book that even the most cynical reader can love.

Download for free today through 1/22 on Amazon:

Regular price $3.99

Friday, January 18, 2013

'The Lost Son' by Tamra Torero & Preston Norton

Book Blurb:

Sixteen-year-old Jacob has always been able to charm his way out of trouble with the law. But when he’s sentenced to work at a family Christmas tree farm in place of Cody Matthews—a boy killed in Jacob’s last DUI—Jacob is in for a harsh reality check. This emotional story of loss, love, and redemption is impossible to put down. 

Purchase on Amazon: Paperback \ Kindle

Thursday, January 17, 2013

'The Unlikely Gift of Treasure Blume' by Lisa Rumsey Harris

Book Blurb:

With her love of sweaters, goofy hair, and awkward manners—not to mention her family curse—Treasure Blume knows love is not in her future. That is, until she matches wits with Dennis Cameron, a divorced chef with a six-year-old daughter. Full of mischief, mayhem, and laugh-out-loud humor, this is an unlikely love story you’ll want to read over and over again! 

**My thoughts**

I am madly in love with Treasure Blume! Sure, she is awkward and a little weird. Her self-esteem has taken a massive hit due to her family curse. But finally, she has found her niche as a teacher.

What I love the most about Treasure is that she has a strong love for her students. She wants to do whatever it takes to help them succeed, often going above and beyond the call of duty. I tend to feel the same way about my students and hope that I show it as well as she does.

Dennis is a good match for her. He is able to help her realize how wonderful she is as he brings out her best side. His family is also amazing. Sure, their relationship is relatively taboo since Dennis' daughter is in her class. In the end, though, shouldn't true love prevail?

I have to agree with the book blurb in that this is a book that I will revisit and read again. It made me laugh and cry all at once. Definitely one of my favorites from 2012. It was well written and characters are well-developed. I look forward to reading more from this author!

Purchase on Amazon: Paperback \ Kindle 

About the author:

Lisa Rumsey Harris is from Downey, Idaho, where she grew up writing stories and riding horses. She received a bachelor’s and master’s degree in English from BYU, where she now teaches writing classes. 

As a writer, Lisa won the Brookie and D.K. Brown Memorial FictionContest with her short story, “Topless in Elko.”  In 2005, her short story “The Resurrection of the Bobcat” won a Moonstone Award in the same contest. She also writes personal essays. “Honor in the Ordinary” won the Heather Campbell Brown Essay contest in 2006, and was published in Segullah. Segullah has also published her essays “I Look Like My Sister” and “Custodian of My Emotional Suitcase.”  

Lisa lives in Orem, Utah, with her multi-talented husband, her two adorable sunshine daughters, and her ancient Siamese cat.
I received a complimentary ecopy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

'Uneasy Lies the Crown' Blurb Blitz!

Uneasy Lies the Crown, a novel of Owain Glyndwr
by N. Gemini Sasson



For centuries, the bards have sung of King Arthur’s return, but is this reluctant warrior prince the answer to those prophecies?

In the year 1399, Welsh nobleman Owain Glyndwr is living out a peaceful gentleman’s life in the Dee Valley of Wales with his wife Margaret and their eleven children. But when Henry of Bolingbroke, the Duke of Lancaster, usurps the throne of England from his cousin Richard II, that tranquility is forever shattered. What starts as a feud with a neighboring English lord over a strip of land evolves into something greater—a fight for the very independence of Wales.

Leading his crude army of Welshmen against armor-clad columns of English, Owain wins key victories over his enemies. After a harrowing encounter on the misty slopes of Cadair Idris, the English knight Harry Hotspur offers Owain a pact he cannot resist.

Peace, however, comes with a price. As tragedies mount, Owain questions whether he can find the strength within himself not only to challenge the most powerful monarch of his time, but to fulfill the prophecies and lead his people to freedom without destroying those around him.

Read an excerpt:
Owain leaned against the bedpost, gazing at Margaret, who was swept away in a sea of exhaustion. For a long time he studied her, worshipful of her, thankful and yet gripped with a fear that paralyzed him. Lamplight flickered upon her face, pale and sparkling with perspiration like a fine dusting of crystal. He glanced at the physician, who was packing his instruments and washing his hands as if there were nothing more he could do.

His voice tremulous, Owain probed, “Will she... will she be well soon?”

More likely so than not,” the physician said. He was a Jew named Abraham that Owain had brought to Sycharth from London to attend to his large family. He wiped his hands on a cloth and then gathered the bag that contained his mysterious tools. “But there were complications. If she were to deliver another child, she could die. Do you understand?”

The strong cries of his new son and daughter filled his ears with the assurance that they had gained their place in the world and were not letting go.

Owain nodded dully. Then he knelt beside his love and wrapped his large hands around one of hers. He kissed her knuckles, and then pressed them to his whiskered cheek. “Marged, the children need you. I need you.” And he buried his face in the sea of down coverings that surrounded her and wept more tears than he had ever in his life shed.

Buy links: Amazon \ Amazon UK \ B&N \ Smashwords 
AUTHOR Bio and Links:

N. Gemini Sasson is the author of six historical novels set in 14th and 15th century Scotland, England and Wales, including The Bruce Trilogy and Isabeau, A Novel of Queen Isabella and Sir Roger Mortimer (2011 IPPY Silver Medalist in Historical Fiction). Her latest release is Uneasy Lies the Crown, A Novel of Owain Glyndwr. Long after writing about Robert the Bruce and Queen Isabella, Sasson learned she is a descendant of both.


N. Gemini will be awarding a $20 Amazon gift certificate to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Follow the tour for more chances to win!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

'Fire Prophet' Book Tour

Welcome to the Fire Prophet book tour, hosted by YA Bound! This book is the second in the Son of Angels series by Jerel Law. You can follow the entire tour here.

Fire Prophet (Book #2)
Expected publication: December 11th 2012
Thomas Nelson Publishers
Paperback, 256 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
"Jerel Law transports readers to a place where supernatural forces of good and evil collide. Young readers will be entertained and inspired . . . I heartily recommend it." -Robert Whitlow, bestselling author of the Tides of Truth series

What if you could actually see angels and fallen angels engaging in battle-and you were expected to join the fight?

It's been one year since Jonah Stone and his sister, Eliza, discovered that their mother is a nephilim, the product of a union between a human and a fallen angel, which makes them and their little brother, Jeremiah, "quarterlings," or one-quarter angel. After embarking on an epic journey to rescue their mother and the other nephilim, who were kidnapped by fallen angels, the Stone kids have enjoyed a little peace and quiet.

But when Jonah and Eliza are attacked by fallen angels at school, they learn that quarterlings all over the world are being targeted, and separating them from their parents is the only way to keep them safe. The kids undergo special training to help them discover their own unique angelic gifts, which come in handy when they embark on a mission to find a mysterious prophet who they believe holds the key to Abaddon's defeat in a massive battle between good and evil.

Parents today are looking for fiction that makes Christianity and the Bible exciting for their kids. This series is the first Christian answer to Percy Jackson and the Olympians, the Kane Chronicles, the Secret Series, and other middle grade series packed with adventure, action, and supernatural fights. But the message is solidly scriptural in that God alone is always in control.

"Jerel Law has crafted a fantastic story that will leave every reader wanting more. Stop looking for the next great read in fantasy fiction for young readers-you've found it " -Robert Liparulo, bestselling author of Dreamhouse Kings and "The 13th Tribe"

Buy links: Amazon | Kindle | Barnes & Noble

Spirit Fighter (Book #1)
Published April 3rd 2012
Thomas Nelson Publishers
Paperback, 243 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
"In his exciting debut novel, Jerel Law transports readers to a place where supernatural forces of good and evil collide. Young readers will be entertained and inspired by "Spirit Fighter." I heartily recommend it." -Robert Whitlow, bestselling author of the Tides of Truth series

Percy Jackson, move over! Jonah Stone is here!

What if Nephilim-the children of angels and men-still walked the earth? And their very presence put the entire world in danger? In "Spirit Fighter," Jonah and Eliza Stone learn that their mother is a Nephilim and that they have special powers as quarter-angels. When their mom is kidnapped by fallen angels, they must use those powers to save her. Along the way, they discover that there is a very real and dangerous war going on between good and evil and that God has a big part for them to play in that war.

Parents today are looking for fiction that makes Christianity and the Bible exciting for their kids. This series is the Christian answer to "Percy Jackson and the Olympians, The Kane Chronicles, The Secret Series" and other middle-grade series packed with adventure, action, and supernatural fights. "Son of Angels, Jonah Stone" will be the first series in the market to explore this topic from a biblical perspective with content that is appropriate and exciting for middle-grade readers.

"Jerel Law has crafted a fantastic story that will leave every reader wanting more. Stop looking for the next great read in fantasy fiction for young readers-you've found it!" -Robert Liparulo, bestselling author of Dreamhouse Kings and "The 13th Tribe"

 Buy links: Amazon | Kindle | Barnes & Noble

Q & A With Author Jerel Law

Q: How do you write? What’s a normal writing day like for you?
I’m a pastor as well as a writer, so I have to balance both roles. When I’m writing, especially a first draft, I have to have specific word goals, or I will never get anything done. I don’t trust that the “muse” will show up whenever she wants, and that I should just wait for her. That’s futility. I actually believe she only shows up after I’ve started writing. I also believe in the power of writing a bad first draft. So in other words, I place a high value on discipline, trusting that the creativity will come. It’s futile for me to do the opposite – placing the value on creativity, hoping discipline will some how appear on its own. (Does discipline ever do that?)

So, typically I’ll write five days a week, shooting for 1500 words a day. Certain weeks this pushes to 2000 a day. This will usually take 2-3 hours, depending on how much I’m feeling it, and how distraction-free I can be.

Incidentally, I also vary my writing location based on how I’m feeling. If I’m confident in my ability to focus, I’ll write at the “office” (iow Panera Bread). If I find myself getting distracted, I’ll stay home. If I’m desperate, I banish myself to a dusty corner in the basement of the public library.

Q: What was your favorite book as a teen?
I read “This Present Darkness” by Frank Peretti as a teenager, and it blew my mind. Someone had taken the mysterious stories in the Scriptures about demons and angels, and put flesh and blood on those bones. For the first time I remember thinking about the spiritual world, considering that there might be more going on there than I realized. The pictures Peretti drew in that book both haunted and challenged me. In some ways he inspired my writing the Son of Angels series.

About the Author

Jerel Law is a gifted communicator and pastor with seventeen years of full-time ministry experience. He holds his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (go Tarheels!), and a master of divinity degree from Gordon-Conwell

Theological Seminary. Jerel began writing fiction as a way to  encourage his children’s faith to come alive. He lives in North Carolina with his family. Spirit Fighter is his first novel.

Click here to follow the tour on YA Bound!


Thomas Nelson is providing 5 print copies of Fire Prophet (US Only).
a Rafflecopter giveaway