Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mailbox Monday - 2/28/2011

Mailbox Monday is a weekly meme started by Marcia at The Printed Page.  You can read all about it at the Mailbox Monday blog.  Well, the mailbox has gone on tour.  This month's host is Library of Clean Reads. 

I love this meme because it lets me take a peek into other bloggers' mailboxes and find out what they received over the last week.  I will warn you, it does lead to more books as you will find many that you want because of others mailboxes.  If you'd like to join in on the fun, post about your books and link up!

Thanks to my mail lady not wanting to drive to my gate and drop some packages, I have 2 or 3 waiting for me at the post office.  Therefore, I'm posting this late on Sunday because I will probably be updating it on Monday afternoon or posting an addendum to this mailbox.

Puddleby by Leah Wilcox, from author
The Thirteenth Princess by Diane Zahler, from author
A True Princess by Diane Zahler, from author

What You See in the Dark (ARC) by Manuel Munoz, from Algonquin
When Tito Loved Clara  (ARC) by Jon Michaud, from Algonquin
Something for Nothing  (ARC) by David Anthony, from Algonquin

The small square package on the bottom right has 3 little books in it that are excerpts of the three I received from Algonquin.  It's a great marketing tool!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Saturday Snapshot - February 26

My husband took this picture of the elephants at the Houston Zoo this past week.  He is a concrete superintendent and his company does all the concrete work at the zoo.  This past week he worked on a new sidewalk around the elephant's habitat.  In this picture are 3 females (the large ones in the back), 1 young male and 1 young female (the 2 little ones in the middle).  The dark one on the left is 45 years old.

He has come home with some funny stories about the elephants!

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce of At Home With Books.  To participate, just post a picture that you, family, or a friend have taken.  The amount of captioning is up to you.  Pictures must be clean and appropriate for all eyes.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Blog Tour: Kimberly Marcus and Exposed

Yesterday I posted my review of Kimberly Marcus' debut YA novel, Exposed.  I'm not sure I did it much justice in my review though.  This book struck me so profoundly that I can't really put into words what it meant to me, how I felt about it, and how amazing I felt it was.  Today, as part of a blog tour, Ms. Marcus was gracious enough to stop by and share how she has "grown" into an author.

It’s amazing to me that I’m here, in this spot where I can now call myself a published author. I’ve always loved words. I love reading them and writing them and, as my friends and family will tell you, I never seem to be at a loss for speaking them, either.

Looking back on my childhood, I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing. I used to write poetry in my bedroom late at night as a little kid, mostly rhyming poems about my stuffed animals. When my grandmother started copying my poems in a little notebook she carried in her purse, I thought that was the closest I would come to being “published” and that was good enough for me because my grandma loved my words. During my teen years, I filled journals with poems about love, loss, friendship and fitting in. I didn’t share my work much. I was writing for a girl who was trying to understand herself and her world—I was writing for me.

I was also reading, always reading. I loved the connection I felt to the characters as an author took me on a journey. I still do. For me, good books are all about that connection. My reading tastes evolved as I grew older—from Dr. Seuss to Laura Ingalls Wilder and Judy Blume, to psychological thrillers and mysteries and memoirs—though young adult novels are still my favorite books to read. I love how books transport me, how the best ones let me inhabit a character and see the world through that character’s eyes, through that character’s heart.

After graduate school, I worked for years as a child and adolescent therapist. It wasn’t until I had two children of my own that I thought about writing for publication. I entered a graduate certificate program in picture book writing at Emerson College in Boston, joined a local writers’ organization, and attended writing conferences. I built up a stack of rejection letters from publishing houses but kept on writing, kept on revising, kept working hard on developing my skills. I continued to write picture books but, with an editor’s encouragement, I also tried my hand at writing a novel for teens. That novel, years later, became Exposed. That book may have hit the shelves first, but it wasn’t the first book I sold.

In November, 2006, on my son’s birthday, an editor called to give me a present. She wanted to publish one of my picture books. That book, Scritch-Scratch a Perfect Match, is illustrated by Mike Lester and comes out in April from GP Putnam’s Sons. It’s a rhyming romp about how a flea brings a lonely dog and a lonely man together.

I love the balance I’ve found in writing for both young children and young adults. And I love hearing from readers who have connected, in some way, to the stories I write. It’s like coming full circle.

Thank you Kimberly Marcus for stopping by today and for a phenomenal debut novel.  Thanks also for the connection I made with this book and it's characters.  You're right, good books are all about connections!  This one truly moved me and I can't wait to read more of your works.  By the way, I also read and review children's books like Scritch-Scratch a Perfect Match; I'd be honored to read it!  Thanks again!

You can find Kimberly Marcus online at her website and on Twitter.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Review: Exposed

Title:  Exposed
Review Copy Provided by:  publisher, Random House

About the Book:  In the dim light of the darkroom, I'm alone, but not for long.
As white turns to gray, Kate is with me.
The background of the dance studio blurred, so the focus is all on her
legs extended in a perfect soaring split.
The straight line to my squiggle,
my forever-best friend.

Sixteen-year-old Liz Grayson is photogirl—sharp, focused and ready to take the world by storm with her camera. But Liz's entire life is called into question when her brother is accused of a crime—and the accuser is Liz's own best friend. As the aftershocks from that accusation rip through Liz's world, everything she thought she knew about photography, family, friendship and herself, shifts out of focus. And for the first time in her life, Liz finds herself unable to trust her own point of view.

My Thoughts:  I'm not a 5 star giving kind of girl.  That kind of a rating is reserved for books that "knock me off my feet," so to speak.  Well, this one did just that, so I didn't hesitate when I posted my completion on EXPOSED's Goodreads page.

This is the first book I've read that was written in free verse, but I'm ready to read more.  More free verse and more about Liz...what happens to her?  She goes through a lot in just one book, that I'd like to read more of her story.  The use of free verse makes this a quick read, but it doesn't take away from the depth of the story.

I'm so impressed with Kimberly Marcus as an author.  This is her debut YA, and it is going to be a hit!  There haven't been many YA novels written in free verse.  I think it is a great way to write and maybe there will be more like it in the future.  Marcus scores big with this one.

The characters in the story are well written, strong, deep characters.  Liz comes to find out things about her brother and her best friend that she may not have wanted to know, but they also help her to learn more about herself as a person.  What does she want to do with her life?  Is she willing to hang on to her dreams, take the risks that she tries to get others to take, listen to those around her who are trying to help her?  She comes to find out that dreams are what keep you going, and risks are meant to be taken.  Things may not turn out the way you think they should, but they turn out, none the less.

This novel delves into a very heavy subject, but it doesn't tiptoe around it.  Marcus meets the challenge head on and makes her characters face the truth, no matter how painful it is or will be, no matter what it may do to their relationships.  The content dealt with in this novel is not an easy subject to broach, but Marcus does it so well!

I will be recommending this one to teens and adults as it will be enjoyed by both.

Because of A Book with Lisa Lickel

A graduate of the Christian Writer’s Guild’s Apprentice Course, Lisa Lickel was a top ten finisher in the first Operation: First Novel contest. She has written and produced for radio theater and performed live. Her works have been released in national syndication on FreeQuincy.podcast. She freelances for local newspapers and writes short stories, book reviews, devotionals and magazine articles which have appeared in Writer’s Digest, You Can Write for Children, and Harpstring. She holds a bachelors of science in history and RECES.

Lickel’s novels include The Gold Standard, Healing Grace, and Meander Scar.

She enjoys membership in local book clubs and writing groups, as well as American Christian Fiction Writers, and Wisconsin Regional Writers where she is editor-in-chief of Creative Wisconsin Magazine. She lives in a hundred and fifty-year old house and is active in local historical societies. Married to a high school biology teacher, she enjoys travel, books and collecting dragons. Visit her on the web at

Both of my parents taught English at one point; my mother was also a librarian and their house is filled with books. When I was young, we visited my grandparents frequently: a two-hour drive north or a five-hour drive west. My favorite memory of those visits is the book shelf. The Pokey Little Puppy was a staple at Grandma Dhein's. The story was a treat I read at their city house. Another influential book in my life was an early Whitman Publishing book called The Star Fairies. Ethereal, fantastic, frightening, I realized later the wonder of capturing allegory.

My parents enrolled my brother and me in a children's book club. The delight of receiving three books a month, like Dr. Suess stories, and A Visit to the Zoo, and so many others is the fondest of memories. They taught me about creating rhythm and word pictures. We were also given free range when choosing from the Scholastic catalog in elementary school. The Witch of Blackbird Pond fueled my love of history and attention to detail.

When I was older, I reached for the western sagas of Zane Grey on my grandfather Duvel's shelf. He never went to high school, but kept a stock of novels and books and crossword puzzles in their farmhouse to satisfy his love of learning. My favorite, Under The Tonto Rim, is a book I kept and read often. It's a tangible family tie I hope my children will appreciate.

I began to read book reviews when I reached high school. Those reviews influenced my reading and buying choices. I discovered Anne McCaffrey, and my love of dragons, inspired first by the frontpiece of Thomas Costain's books, took shape as I started a dragon collection. Robert Heinlein, CS Lewis, and Mark Twain showed me how to create worlds, remember life, and portray characters.

When I read to my children, I saw the delight on their faces, which books were their favorites and why. My reaction, and theirs, taught me the passion of storytelling.

I didn't realize until adulthood that I'd been laying the foundation of an author's toolbox. When I took a writer's course and began selling my articles and stories, then delving into the world of novels, I paid tribute to the love of books I've been privileged to know since childhood.

My work now, mystery and adventure and romance, reflects those early stories.

Product DetailsAbout The Poky Little Puppy
One of the original 12 Little Golden Books, The Poky Little Puppy has sold nearly 15 million copies since 1942, making it one of the most popular children’s books of all time. Now this curious little puppy is ready to win the hearts and minds of a new generation of kids.

Buy it at Amazon
Buy it at Powells
Buy it at IndieBound

Meander ScarAbout Meander Scar
Love can heal even the deepest scars ... After seven years with no clue as to the whereabouts of Ann Ballard's missing husband, nearly everyone presumes him dead. Now forty-something, Ann is ready for her stagnant life to flow again. Then one day, a dark-haired younger man from her past shows up on her doorstep offering a river of hope in place of tears. Former neighbor Mark Roth has secretly loved Ann for years. A respected attorney, he's returned home to help Ann face down disapproving family members and the legal maneuvering of her likely deceased husband's family-while quietly winning her heart. When the hidden truth of Ann's situation turns their lives on end and another tragedy strikes, the two must come to terms with family, faith and the depths to which true love can run.

Buy it at Amazon
Buy it at Powells
Buy it at IndieBound

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Mailbox Monday - 2/20/2011

Mailbox Monday is a weekly meme started by Marcia at The Printed Page.  You can read all about it at the Mailbox Monday blog.  Well, the mailbox has gone on tour.  This month's host is Library of Clean Reads. 

I love this meme because it lets me take a peek into other bloggers' mailboxes and find out what they received over the last week.  I will warn you, it does lead to more books as you will find many that you want because of others mailboxes.  If you'd like to join in on the fun, post about your books and link up!

I had a pretty big week this week, so there's only one picture of all the books stacked up.  This week I only had to make one trip to the post office because there was a package that wouldn't fit in the mailbox.  Clicking on the book titles will take you to their Goodreads page.

Starting from the bottom of the stack:

Before There Was Mozart by Lesa Cline-Ransome, from Random House
Amelia Lost by Candace Fleming, from Random House
Adventures in Nowhere by John Ames, from Pineapple Press for a Pump Up Your Book Tour
Flesh & Blood so Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy by Al Marrin, from Random House
The Fourth Stall by Chris Rylander, from Walden Media
Throat by R.A. Nelson, from Knopf Books for Young Readers
The Floating Islands by Rachel Neumeier, from Knopf Books for Young Readers
Four Seasons by Jane Breskin Zalben, from Knopf Books for Young Readers
Exposed by Kimberly Marcus, from Random House for a blog tour.  I will be reviewing this one on the 22nd, with a guest post from the author on the 23rd.
The Imagination Station: Attack at the Arena & Voyage with the Vikings by Paul McCusker, from Tyndale House Publishers for a blog tour in April.
Tall Story by Candy Gourley, from David Fickling Books
Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster, from Random House
Twosomes: Love Poems from the Animal Kingdom by Marilyn Singer, from Knopf Books for Young Readers
Animal Colors by Beth Fielding, from EarlyLight Books
Nosh, Schlepp, Schluff by Laurel Snyder, from Random House

What came into your house?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Snapshot Saturday - February 19

Tomorrow is our "Bug's" 5th birthday!

"Bug" is our 3rd grandchild, our youngest daughter's middle child.  I can't believe she's going to be 5!
Happy Birthday Bug!

Snapshot Saturday is hosted by Alyce of At Home With Books.  To participate, just post a picture that you, family, or a friend have taken.  The amount of captioning is up to you.  Pictures must be clean and appropriate for all eyes.

Friday, February 18, 2011

So Silver Bright Cover Reveal

So, on Tuesday I revealed a fragment of Lisa Mantchev's new book, So Silver Bright, which is the third and final installment of the Theatre Illuminata trilogy, that began with Eyes Like Stars.  Well, all week, many blogs have been revealing other fragments of the cover.  All of which, when put together, make up the fabulous cover of So Silver Bright.  Here you go...

Isn't it fabulous?  I just love it!  Lisa's covers have yet to disappoint me...they are awesome!!  Remember, if you have yet to read this trilogy and want to start, I have one signed copy of Eyes Like Stars to give away.  All you have to do is fill out this form by midnight tonight and you will be entered.  US/Canada only please.  The publisher will be mailing the book to one lucky winner chosen by

So Silver Bright will be released in September by Feiwel and Friends.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Friday Fill-Ins - 2/18/11

1. New experiences and possibilities abound every day.

2. Around an unexpected turn on a daily walk I ran into a biker.

3. I'm looking forward to one day being a mom.

4. Kids do some things I never have imagined.

5. Try to find the good.

6. My hair is what's extraordinary about me.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to dinner out, tomorrow my plans include setting up tents to get ready for rodeo and Sunday, I want to rest!

Review: Tell the Truth B.B. Wolf

Title:  Tell the Truth B.B. Wolf
Author/Illustrator:  Judy Sierra/J. Otto Seibold

Review Copy Provided by:  Knopf Books for Young Readers

About the Book:  Big Bad Wolf’s first visit to his local library (as related in Mind Your Manners, B.B. Wolf) was such a success that he returns to tell his version of “The Three Little Pigs.” His outrageous spin on the tale draws skeptical remarks from his audience: “Isn’t that wolf’s nose getting longer?” asks Pinocchio. “It’s a cooked-up, half-baked tale,” snaps the Gingerbread Boy. And “Tell the truth, B.B. Wolf!” squeal the Three Little Pigs. Caught in his own lie, B.B. explains that he is a reformed villain: “Now I’m begging on my knees, Little Pigs, forgive me, please!” How B.B. turns his bad old deed into a good new one provides a happy ending to this fun-to-read fractured fairytale.

My Thoughts:   As a teacher, I read many versions of The Three Little Pigs, even ones from the wolf's point of view.  Well, here is a new one and the wolf is at it again.

I really enjoyed Tell the Truth, B.B. Wolf.  It was a fun story with bold illustrations.  I have not read Mind Your Manners, B.B. Wolf, but that didn't make a difference.  You don't need to have read it first to be able to understand this story.  In the story, B.B. Wolf tries to tell his side of the story, but he keeps getting interrupted by other storybook characters.  I loved how the author tied all of these stories together using the characters.  It is a great way to introduce young kids to many storybook characters that they might not know.  Many of these characters, like the little pigs, the gingerbread man, Pinocchio, etc. have been replaced by Dora and Spongebob.  Today's children may not know who these characters are, but books like this one will allow them to meet them, get to know them, and hopefully grow to love them, like we did as kids.

There are some lessons to be learned from B.B. Wolf as well.  He wants the pigs to forgive him, so he asks the other storybook characters to help him come up with a new name.  What else could B.B. stand for?  I could see this as a great activity for kids, after finishing the book.  They could write their ideas for B.B.'s new name and why they think he should have that name.  B.B. also apologizes to the pigs, so apologies could be discussed as well.  I think there is a lot to be learned from this book even though many will just see it as a fun read.

Tell the Truth B.B Wolf was a great read.  It was laugh out loud funny and I would read it over and over again to children.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday - Through Her Eyes

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

By Jennifer Archer
Publication: April 5th 2011 by HarperTeen

Sixteen-year-old Tansy Piper moves with her grandfather and her mother, a horror writer, to the setting of her mother's next book--a secluded house outside of a tiny, desolate West Texas town. Lonely and upset over the move, Tansy escapes into her photography and the dark, seductive poems she finds hidden in the cellar, both of which lure her into the mind and world of a mysterious, troubled young man who died sixty years earlier.

"Tiny, desolate West Texas town..." was the first thing that drew me to this book.  Being from Texas, I love to read books with a Texas setting, but even more so because it is set in a small town.  I have always felt like I was born in the wrong place.  I'm more of a small town girl than a city girl.  The whole thing sounds a little creepy to me and that's intriguing!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Because of A Book with Dorien Grey

Dorien Grey started out as a pen-name, nothing more, for a lifelong book and magazine editor who wanted to write a mystery novel with a gay detective. However, because he was living in a remote and time-warped area of the upper mid-west where gays still feel it necessary to keep a very low profile, he did not feel comfortable using his own name--a sad commentary on our society, he admits.

But as the first book led to the second and then the third, he found Dorien slowly became much more than a pseudonym, evolving into an alter ego. "It's reached the point," he says, "where all I have to do is sit down at the computer and let Dorien tell the story."

As for the Dorien's "real person," he's had a not uninteresting life. Two years into college, he left to join the Naval Aviation Cadet program: he washed out and spent the rest of his brief military career on an aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean. The journal he kept of his time in the military, in the form of letters home, honed his writing skills and provided him with a wealth of experiences to draw from in his future writing.

Returning to college after service, he graduated with a B.A. in English, and embarked on a series of jobs which worked him into the editing field. While working for a Los Angeles publishing house, he was instrumental in establishing a division exclusively for the publication of gay paperbacks and magazines, of which he became editor. He moved on to edit a leading L.A. based international gay men's magazine.

Tiring of earthquakes, brush fires, mudslides, and riots, he returned to the midwest, where Dorien emerged, full-blown, like Venus from the sea.

He . . . and Dorien . . . of course, moved to Chicago a few years ago, and now devote "their" energies to writing. After having completed thirteen books in the popular Dick Hardesty Mystery series--the fourteenth to come later this year, and a western/romance/adventure novel, Calico--"they" have embarked on a new mystery series with a new protagonist: the Elliott Smith Mysteries, which will alternate with the Dick Hardesty Series; three books in this series have been released: His Name is John, Aaron's Wait, and Caesar's Fall.

You can visit Dorien at his website or blog.

Frank L. Baum & the Oz books

I am eternally grateful to my mother for giving me a fascination with and love for words. It was she, by reading me stories even before I was able to understand many of the words--though I loved the sounds--, who opened the doors of wonder contained in those words.

From the time I learned to read, the library was a very special place. I got some sort of award while in first grade for having signed out more books than anyone in my class. Most of them were pretty elementary stuff, but among the first "real" books I remember were the Oz series, by Frank L. Baum. The most famous of which, of course, is "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz", from which the classic movie was made. I saw it when it was released in 1938 and though I was not yet five years old, it enthralled me then, and it enthralls me now.

Once I discovered that there was an entire series of Oz books--fifteen in all--I'm quite sure I read most of them if not all. I can still close my eyes and see them...outsized, as I recall, with thick cardboard covers with wonderful illustrations. To open them was to open the door to the imagination and all the wonders therein.

The fifteen books, should you be curious, were The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The Marvelous Land of Oz, Ozma of Oz, Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz, The Road to Oz, The Emerald City of Oz, The Patchwork Girl Of Oz, Little Wizard Stories of Oz, Tik-Tok of Oz, The Scarecrow Of Oz, Rinkitink In Oz, The Lost Princess Of Oz, The Tin Woodman Of Oz, The Magic of Oz, and Glinda Of Oz.

The books' concept that there was a special place, somewhere "over the rainbow" with enchanted creatures and wondrous fields and forests and cities where anything was possible, acted like a magnet for my own imagination, and taught me that if I was not happy with the world in which I lived, I was free to create my own.

One of my favorite characters in the Oz series was a little boy named "Button-Bright," about my own age, who appears in several of the books. He got his name from his parents, who thought he was "bright as a button." I'm sure I strongly identified with him. As I recall, he was constantly getting lost, then being found, then getting lost again. Eventually, he moved to Oz permanently. I take particular delight, on looking back, to realize that he was a friend of Dorothy's, because a long-time code between gay men was to ask "Oh, are you a friend of Dorothy?" I certainly was, and am.

The Oz books contain all the ingredients required to nourish and enrich any child's imagination, as it did mine. They teach the child that the mind--the imagination--is not tied to the body; that it can go anywhere, do anything; that it can provide a refuge, a haven, when the real world is harsh and cruel. It teaches that there are other places, other worlds. Every book is an arrow, a path, a guide to where the imagination can take us.

In an inscription to his sister in one of his books, Baum wrote: "I have learned to regard fame as a will-o-the-wisp, which when caught, is not worth the possession; but to please a child is a sweet and lovely thing that warms one's heart and brings its own reward."

I'd take that one step further and point out that an adult with an imagination is still a child, and it is to the adult child that I have dedicated my own books. And so I embarked on a life-long journey to create my own arrows, my own paths, my own guides for others. It's been a wonderful journey, and I hope that when it is over I, like Button-Bright, often lost and often found, may move permanently to Oz.

My thanks to Shelly for giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts with you here.

About The Wizard of Oz
The Complete Wizard of Oz Collection, All 15 Books, including The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Ozma of Oz, The Emerald City of Oz, and MORE plus Active Table Of Contents and Original Cover Illustrations.

We all know that The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a children's novel written by L. Frank Baum, but did you know he published many more and all were beautifully illustrated by W.W. Denslow. It was originally published by the George M. Hill Company in Chicago on May 17, 1900, and has since been reprinted countless times, most often under the name The Wizard of Oz, which is the name of both the 1902 stage play and the extremely popular, highly acclaimed 1939 film version. The story chronicles the adventures of a girl named Dorothy in the Land of Oz. Thanks in part to the 1939 MGM movie, it is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture and has been widely translated. Its initial success, and the success of the popular 1902 Broadway musical Baum adapted from his story, led to Baum writing thirteen more Oz books.

Here now you can read every one of his other stories which few know exist but indeed they do and together with the delightful illustrations and active table of contents this is surely a joy to read. Rare stories that indeed make up a whole world of Oz, are now all here at your fingertips.

Buy it at Amazon
Buy it at Powells
Buy it at IndieBound

About His Name is John
Elliott Smith wakes up in the hospital with a head injury...and an invisible companion. At first, he's convinced "John" is just a figment of a damaged brain, but when he's fully recovered John is still around; and desperate to find out who he is. Reluctantly, Elliott agrees to help, and discovers Chicago PD has a John Doe on their hands with six bullets in him?who died in the ER at the same time Elliott was there.
As Elliott digs deeper into the mystery of John, he stumbles on a body hidden behind a wall for 80 years, meets a sexy artist who could become more than just a one-night stand, and uncovers a deadly secret that has haunted a nun for two decades.

Buy it at Amazon
Buy it at Powells
Buy it at IndieBound

Sweet Venom Cover Reveal

This is the week for awesome cover reveals and I am so happy to be able to share 2 of them with you!  Today's cover is the October release, Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs.

Three teenage descendants of Medusa, the once-beautiful gorgon maligned by myth, must reunite and embrace their fates in a world where monsters lurk in plain sight.
So, what do you think?  Pretty awesome, huh?  I can hardly wait!!  You can learn more about Sweet Venom at Tera's website.  Check out the character collages of the 3 main characters, Grace, Gretchen and Greer over at Books, Boys, Buzz.  Be sure to "like" Sweet Venom on Facebook.

Cover Fragment: So Silver Bright

If you've followed me long enough, you will know that I'm a HUGE fan of Lisa Mantchev and have been since she debuted with Eyes Like Stars.  Well, here we are 2 novels later and Lisa is about to release the final chapter in Bertie's story, So Silver Bright.

Last week Lisa posted on her blog looking for bloggers that would help her reveal the cover for So Silver Bright.  I am so honored to have been chosen, along with some other awesome bloggers, to share fragments of the cover with you all week and then reveal the full cover on Friday.  So, without further adieu, here is a little piece of the cover.

Bertie thinks her quest is almost done. With the help of Ariel and the rest of her friends, she has managed to find her father and rescue the kidnapped pirate, Nate, from Sedna the sea goddess. Now all she has to do is reunite her father, The Scrimshander, with her mother, Ophelia, and she will finally have a true family of her own.  However, things are never easy for Beatrice Shakespeare Smith. Her father has vanished, Sedna is out for revenge, her own actions have trapped the Theatre Illuminata, the only home she’s ever known, into a strange kind of limbo, and the stress of her in-between state is tearing apart the fragile threads of her mother’s sanity. Bertie’s best hope for salvaging the situation may lie in the summons by Her Gracious Majesty, Queen of the Distant Castle and hope of winning the magical boon given to the most pleasing performance. Bertie is caught between her growing responsibilities to home and family and the dream of flying free, just as her heart is torn between her two loves, Ariel and Nate. With so many forces pulling on her, how will Bertie be able to choose which wish to make come true?

It's just full of "awesomesauce!"  Remember, this is only a fragment of the cover...wait until Friday to see it all revealed.  You will love it, I'm sure.  The covers for Lisa's books have gotten more beautiful with each one and this one did not disappoint me.

If you haven't read the beginning of the story, Eyes Like Stars, you can enter for a chance to win a copy by filling out this form.  One lucky reader will receive a copy from Feiwel and Friends.  Comments won't count for entries; you must fill out the form. Enter until Friday, 2/18, at midnight.  There are chances for extra entries, but really all you have to do is leave your name and contact information.

You can see the other "pieces of the puzzle" by visiting the other blogs:

Monday 2/14 Fragment One

Tuesday 2/15 Fragment 2

Wednesday 2/16 Fragment 3

Thursday 2/17 Fragment 4


Monday, February 14, 2011

Mailbox Monday - 2/14/2011

Mailbox Monday is a weekly meme started by Marcia at The Printed Page.  You can read all about it at the Mailbox Monday blog.  Well, the mailbox has gone on tour.  This month's host is Library of Clean Reads. 

I love this meme because it lets me take a peek into other bloggers' mailboxes and find out what they received over the last week.  I will warn you, it does lead to more books as you will find many that you want because of others mailboxes.  If you'd like to join in on the fun, post about your books and link up!

The week started off with a bang as I received an awesome package from Simon and Schuster.  You can read about the excitement of Wither in the blog post, Thank You Simon & Schuster!

Here's what else came in the mail this week:

Lucky's Little Feather  by Peggy van Gurp, from Clavis Publishing
Crinkle Animals: Garden & Crinkle Animals: Jungle by Guido Van Genechten, from Clavis Publishing
The Moonlight Message by Denice Barlow Brown, from Cypress Productions

West of Here by Jonathan Evison, from Algonquin Books
A Mountain of Crumbs by Elena Gorokhova, from Simon & Schuster
The Weird Sisters (audio) by Eleanor Brown, from the author (won at Jenn's Bookshelves)

What books did you get?

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