Sunday, January 29, 2012

On the Bright Side

Available: January 31st, On the Bright Side by S.R. Johannes

Cover: LOVE it! The girl is so cute and I "dig" the outfit.

Synopsis: On the Bright Side is a hilarious road to guardian angeldom paved with so much drama and due-paying that it makes middle school look painless. 

As if the devil’s food cake at her wake and the white fat pants she’s stuck wearing for eternity weren’t bad enough, fourteen year-old Gabby is quick to discover that Cirrus, the main rung of Heaven, is a far cry from the Pearly Gates. Here, Skyphones and InnerNets are all the rage. Until Gabby finds out she has to protect Angela, her school nemesis, in order to move up through the training levels of heaven. Problem is, Angela is now hitting on Gabby's should-have-been boyfriend. (awkward!)

Instead of protecting Angela, Gabby pranks her (like tripping is a sin?) at the hopes of cooling off the new couple. At first, they seem harmless until the school dance sabotage gets completely out of control. Then, her Celestial Sky Agent, who happens to have anger management issues of his own, puts Gabby on probation, threatening her eternal future. 

Determined to right her wrongs, Gabby steals an ancient artifact that allows her to return to Earth for just one day. Without knowing, she kicks off a series of events and learns what can happen when you hate someone to death. 

Praise and Comments: Clever and charming, ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is the story of a reluctant guardian angel, her still-breathing crush, and the frenemy she’s assigned to protect. A great read! -Suzanne Young, author of A Need So Beautiful, A Want So Wicket (6/12), and The Program (2013)"

"With a smart, snappy heroine and a heart-warming crush, ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is a page-turning new take on guardian angels that left me begging for a sequel!" - Gretchen McNeil, author of Possess and Ten (9/12) (Balzar + Bray)
S.R. Johannes delivers a cute paranormal thrill ride for middle graders! Even in death there is a BRIGHT SIDE!- Addison Moore, author of the bestselling Celestra series and soon to be TV show 

ON THE BRIGHT SIDE is both hilarious and heart-warming – a tale that’ll have you hoping that there really *are* spunky and determined angels like Gabby who’ve got our backs.” - Kristin O’Donnell Tubb, author of Selling Hope & The 13th Sign (2013) (Feiwel & Friends)

Author: S.R. Johannes lives in Atlanta Georgia with her dog, British-accented husband, and the huge imaginations of their little prince and princess, which she hopes- someday- will change the world. After earning an MBA and working in corporate america, S.R. Johannes traded in her expensive suits, high heels, and corporate lingo for a family, flip-flops, and her love of writing. You can find her hanging out online and visit her Market My Word.

You can purchase Ms. Johannes Untraceable on Amazon, B&N, iTunes, and other sellers.
Kindle Edition: You have to love this price....99 cents! Purchase it here.

I can't wait to read On the Bright Side.  Look for my review in the future!

The Magic Room

My Rating: A Good Read, I enjoyed it!

Synopsis: You may not have heard of Fowler, Michigan, much less Becker's Bridal. But for the thousands of women who have stepped inside, Becker's is the site of some of the most important moments of their lives-moments that speak to us all. Housed in a former bank, the boutique owners transformed the vault into a "magic room," with soft church lighting, a circular pedestal, and mirrors that make lifelong dreams come true.
Illuminating the poignant aspects of a woman's journey to the altar, The Magic Room tells the stories of memorable women on the brink of commitment. Run by the same family for years, Becker's has witnessed transformations in how America views the institution of marriage; some of the shop's clientele are becoming stepmothers, or starting married life for a second time. In The Girls from Ames, beloved author Jeffrey Zaslow used friendships to explore the emotional lives of women. In The Magic Room, he turns his perceptive eye to weddings and weaves together secrets, memories and family tales to explore the hopes and dreams we have for our daughters.

My Review: I couldn't believe it when I opened The Magic Room to chapter one. This book is about Becker's Fowler, Michigan. Becker's Bridal is about 30 minutes from where I grew up and yes, I too bought my wedding dress from Becker's! I never knew "the room" was called The Magic Room! I can vouch that you do feel "magically" in front of the mirrors on the pedalstal. There is also no doubt that Becker's Bridal has over 2,500 dress in stock. I know it was amazing experience to go and look through them all. I have also been to Becker's Bridal with many friends as they picked out their bridal gown as well. I could relate to so much of the book!

The Magic Room is written in a very interesting way. Shelly Becker, current owner, is written about throughout the book. I really liked how the story focused on her past, present and hopes for the future. The book also has stories about the brides that come into to Becker's Bridal. We get to learn a little bit about the bride, her finance, family and wedding plans. Each bride's story is broken up into different chapters: visiting Becker's, picking up their dress and their wedding. 

I really liked all the stories about the brides, but I think my favorite was about Julie. This was Julie's second trip to Becker's and her second marriage. I had to have the kleenex close by. The love that Julie and her first husband had was just amazing. It was so sad to read about how her husband died and the impact it had on herself and the kids. How she found love again and the reaction of her kids.....more kleenex (won't say more or it would be a spoiler alert). I also could swear that Julie was one of my mom's nurses when she was in the hospital, she just looked so familiar to me.  

I can't wait to send this book to my BFF with a note....remember shopping together - for my dress and yours!  I know she will be excited as soon as she reads chapter one too!  Don't worry though, you don't need to know anything about Fowler, Michigan or Becker's Bridal to enjoy this book. It is a  really good read! 

About the Author: Jeffrey Zaslow is a Wall Street Journal columnist and, with Randy Pausch, coauthor of The Last Lecture, the #1 New York Times bestseller now translated into forty-one languages. Zaslow attended Dr. Pausch’s famous lecture and wrote the story that sparked worldwide interest in it. The Girls from Ames also grew out of one of Zaslow’s columns. He lives in suburban Detroit with his wife, Sherry, and daughters Jordan, Alex, and Eden.

Read it: You can purchase The Magic Room on Amazon for $27.00.

Connect: Connect with Jeffrey Zaslow.

Thanks to Crazy Book Tours for the opportunity to read and review such a great book.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Rock Star's Girl

Rating: Great Read:  This is a book that would be 7.5 starfish out of 10.  I want to read it all night long.

Synopsis: "Emily Watts just wants a weekend break from the workaholic hours she's taken on to keep her business — a popular fashion-snark web site — up and running. What she gets is overnight celebrity and a career-killing media scandal.

While taking time out to attend a concert in support of friend Jesse Cinder, a struggling musician, Emily meets Cory Sampson, the lead singer of a chart-topping rock band. When she agrees to a date with Cory, making entertainment headlines is the last thing she expects. Even so, it's a minor surprise by comparison to her discovery that in the music world, media notoriety trumps all. Tabloid allegations erupt when Cory and fame-hungry Jesse use Emily for personal gain, and her tarnished image spells disaster — personally and professionally. To save the web site and writing career she's made her life and dream, Emily must go from being a pawn in the Hollywood headline game to becoming the media mastermind."

My Review: I really enjoyed Rock Star's Girl. It is a fun, fast moving read. I really wanted Em to end up with Xxxxxxx. You will just have to read the book to figure if Xxxxxxx is Jesse or C-Samp! I can't give the ending away. I was pulled into Em's world in Chapter 1.

As one reviewer put it....Chick-Lit for Smart Chicks!  Rock Star's Girl is just that and I thought it was a perfect way to say it. Em and her best friend are smart young women (bonus). I had to laugh as her best friend is a CPA for a big firm and was in Cleveland on an audit - I too am CPA and worked for a big firm for many, many years. I also spent a lot of time in Cleveland!  Small world, we should talk J.F. Kristin! Maybe you could write a sequel and I could give you all the research material!

I enjoyed that the book takes place in LA/Hollywood as I tend to read a lot of Chick Lit that takes place in NYC or London.  It was very refreshing. Em was really a down-to-earth kind of Chick, which I liked as well.  She was concerned about her career, her reputation, her family and friends. There was not all the drama of designer this and that, oohing and aching over celebrates, etc. As I said, this was a very fast read for me and that means one thing.....a really good read!  

Read it: You can purchase Rock Star's Girl for Kindle for just 99 cents right now at Amazon.  

Blog Update: Check out J.F. Kristin's blog too for the latest on Rock Star's Girl.

Have a great week!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Solider's Wife

Rating: Great Read:  This is a book that would be 7.5 starfish out of 10.  I want to read it all night long.

Synopsis: As World War II draws closer and closer to Guernsey, Vivienne de la Mare knows that there will be sacrifices to be made. Not just for herself, but for her two young daughters and for her mother-in-law, for whom she cares while her husband is away fighting. What she does not expect is that she will fall in love with one of the enigmatic German soldiers who take up residence in the house next door to her home. As their relationship intensifies, so do the pressures on Vivienne. Food and resources grow scant, and the restrictions placed upon the residents of the island grow with each passing week. Though Vivienne knows the perils of her love affair with Gunther, she believes that she can keep their relationship--and her family--safe. But when she becomes aware of the full brutality of the Occupation, she must decide if she is willing to risk her personal happiness for the life of a stranger

My Review: I really enjoyed The Soldier's Wife and Margaret Leroy is a such a beautiful writer. I was immediately taken from my home to the island of Guernsey. I do like a good love story  that is intertwined with family struggles...mother, daughters, mother-in-law. I was taken in by the events and how the story unfolded. I have never been a fan of WW II books but The Soldier's Wife has made me feel different about such an important time in our history. You may need some kleenex by your side (I tend to cry easily), but the ending is worth every tear! I really enjoyed this book and recommend it to all

Cover: I LOVE it. The cover caught my attention right away. I think it just beautiful.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Between Interruptions - TLC Book Tours

Rating: Good to read! (3 out 5)

Synopsis: Between Interruptions is a remarkable collection of original and heartfelt essays about the process of becoming a mother. Written by a wide range of mothers – from a Hollywood celebrity to an immigrant domestic worker, the book explores the transformative experiences in our journey as mothers. Provocative, honest and emotional, the stories focus on the impact motherhood has on our identity, sexuality, ambition and relationships. Laid bare in this collection are the vivd, gut-wrenching and exhilarating true confessions and secret longings of mothers across all ages, cultures and classes. Whether it’s a story about a journalist going to war and missing her baby, or a mother finding perfection in autism, or a mother struggling to breastfeed through post-partum depression, or a mother learning to let go of her dream to stay home with her children because she has to work, there’s a story in this collection for every mother. (Paperback - 328 pages)

My Review: I love short story books (they are quick and easy for me to read). Between Interruptions is just that...a book filled with short stories. I really enjoy reading about how as women we all struggle with something, but how strong we truly are. Between Interruptions is broken down into five different categories: Ambition, Anxiety, Guilt, Devotion, and Redemption. While all the stories have stuck with me, there is one that has really stuck with me. Oddly enough, it is the first story in the Ambition section. I can't tell you about the story (you will have to to buy the book), but it is written by Marina Jamenez, Journalist, that covered war-zone stories. I just can't imagine how I would have handled it, if I was in her shoes. Another story, that I really related to was in the Guilt section (no surprise, I suffer from mother's guilt 95% of my day). I 100% relate to the first sentence - "Before I had children, I was the perfect mother." I have said that some many times in my life. 

About the Author: I really enjoyed the stories and the honesty from all 30 women. Cori Howard is the founder of The Momoir Project, an online writing centre that offers memoir writing classes, workshops and workbooks. She’s also an award-winning journalist whose work in newspapers, magazines, TV and radio has taken her around the world. Her stories – many about motherhood – have appeared in publications including Reader’s Digest, Elle, The Independent, among many others. She lives in Vancouver, B.C. with her family.

Sunday, January 8, 2012


I have two winners to announce.  The first is the Mid-Winter's Eve Blog Giveaway ($10 Amazon GC)
Melissa Hall (avidreader)

The second is the Best of 2011 Giveaway (a book of your choice up to $15). There seemed to be a theme going on as to the comments posted. Lots of you want to read Divergent (where have I been, I haven't read this either), The Night Circus, Delirium, and The Help (my favorite)!
S Rose (1816)

Thank so much for all your support!