Waiting on Wednesday: The Education of Will

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating. This week I am excited to feature a book that I think looks really cute :)

The Education of Will: A Mutual Memoir of a Woman and Her Dog
Author: Pat McConnell
Release Date: Feb. 21st, 2017

Information from Goodreads:
In this powerful, soul-searching memoir, beautifully written in the vein of A Pack of Two and Wild, animal behaviorist Dr. Patricia McConnell recounts for the first time the compelling story of her dark past, memories of which are triggered by a troubled dog named Will.

World-renowned as a source of science and soul, Patricia McConnell combines brilliant insights into canine behavior—gained from her work with aggressive and fearful dogs—with heartwarming stories of her own dogs and their life on the farm. Now, she reveals that it wasn’t just the dogs who had serious problems. For decades Dr. McConnell secretly grappled with her own guilt and fear, which were rooted in the harrowing traumas of her youth.

Patricia is forced to face her past by her love for a young Border Collie named Will, whose frequent, unpredictable outbreaks of fear and fury shake Patricia to her core. In order to save Will from this dangerous behavior, she must find her own will to heal, and along the way learn that will power by itself is not enough.

Interweaving enlightening stories of her clients’ dogs with tales of her deepening bond with Will, Patricia recounts her fight to reclaim her life. Hopeful and inspiring, the redemptive message of her journey is that, while trauma changes our brains and the past casts a long shadow, healing, for both people and dogs, is possible through hard work, compassion, and mutual devotion.

Have you heard about this one?

Happy Reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Holiday Gift Guide

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Hi Everyone! 

Just stopping by with another Top Ten Tuesday!  This week's topic is Top Ten Tuesday is about creating a holiday gift guide.  Here are a few things that I have had my eye on, so I hope that it may inspire you for ideas for others as well!

For those who love Harry Potter:
1) Harry Potter House Collection-I know these are expensive, but look how beautiful they are! (I especially love the Hufflepuff ones!)

2) Harry Potter Pocket Pops-I love these! So far I have Lord Voldermot, Newt, and Niffler. I would love to get the two Harry's and Hermione. 

3) Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Screenplay-The movie was great! I am excited to see what this one entails. 

5) Hiking Through: One Man's Journey to Peace and Freedom on the Appalachian Trail 
What are you looking forward to this year? 

(Photo Credit: Amazon for the images shared here today)

Happy shopping and reading!

Book Review: Radar Road

Monday, November 28, 2016

Author: Nath Jones
Summary from Amazon:
Radar Road: the Best of On Impulse highlights an exploration of twenty-first century narrative. In four collections that move from raw to refined, the On Impulse series invites the reader to contemplate how we use language now: online, in full-length books, and with each other. Morgan Kiger arranged this fifth collection to stand on its own while showcasing the series's original trajectory from catharsis to craft.

Personal Review:Have you ever felt that you had a story inside of you waiting to get out? This book does exactly that, it tells the stories of those who need to let it out. In each scenario, we are presented with a clear view on what it means for the characters to have their voices heard.

Each story is compelling. At times the stories wrap up, leaving you wanting more. It's a bit like life when you want more, but sometimes it doesn't always come.

This book was different from my regular reads, but I enjoyed it. Thank you for the opportunity.

 Disclaimer: I was awarded this book from the author. Though I did not pay for the book, the opinions are strictly my own.

Happy Reading!

Blog Tour: Guest Post with Julie Archer

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Hi Everyone! 

I am excited to be here today with a Guest Post from Author, Julie Archer. She has a new book out Cocktails, Rock Tales and Betrayals that looks great. Be sure to check it out! Thanks Julie for stopping by the blog today!

What have been the biggest learnings of my writing career so far?
I have learned a great deal in the time I’ve been writing Cocktails, Rock Tales & Betrayals and here are a few of them:

Just keep writing – no matter how hard it is sometimes, just write something. You can’t edit a blank page and even if what you have written is utter rubbish, at least you can always work with it. I went through a phase where I really struggled to write anything and ended up doing a sort of detox programme, where you had prompts to write for short periods of time each day, say ten minutes or twenty minutes. It got me back into the habit and I know I’d go back to it again if I found myself in a similar position. I’ve also done word races with myself, just set aside half an hour to just write, no thinking, just words on the page. I find it easier to write first and edit later. If I laboured over every sentence, I’d never get a first draft done!

Get a good support network – sounds clich├ęd, but without my chums in the Writer’s Playground (a sort of forum for writers, borne out of the Six Month Novel Programme) I don’t think I would have got this far without going nuts. There’s also a great author community in Dartmouth, where I live, and we support each other with things like the marketing process that happens after you’ve been published. Other writers I have met either on writing retreats or at literary festival workshops have also been invaluable, sharing tips and advice when you’re a total novice at all this.

You can do it yourself – every writer dreams of the publishing deal, the six figure advance and the big bang launch. But when you start to get rejections (or simply never hear from an agent), it’s hard to see past that. Through my network, I discovered that it’s totally possible to self-publish and get the recognition you deserve. As long as you’re prepared to put in the work. When I decided that I was going to self-publish, I was extremely nervous. Createspace and KDP are things I’d never used before, but I wrestled with them both and won! And when you see your own name and novel on Amazon, it’s an amazing feeling. Not least when you get an Amazon recommendation email and the first thing you see is your book!

Spend money on a cover designer and an editor – if you are planning to self-publish then (apart from time) the two things you should really invest in are a cover designer and editor. When I decided to do this all myself, I knew that I didn’t want my book to look the same as everyone else’s. I didn’t want to do the standard picture from ClipArt or Shutterstock with some Times New Roman text on the front and back. I wanted it to be different. So I did some research through my network and discovered someone who collaborated with me through the whole process. She came up with an amazing design and I cried when I saw it! People have commented how professional it looks and I’m glad I did it. The same goes for an editor. Sure, we all have a friend who can proof read our manuscript, but are they going to pick you up on a gaping plot hole? Or point out medical inconsistencies in your hospital scene? Probably not. But one of your readers might. And then write in their review how you know nothing about A&E nursing.

Use social media wisely – this is when Facebook and Twitter become part of your job! The best piece of advice I was given about this was to choose one platform and do it well. If you’re spreading yourself across every single online application, it’s not going to work. Even if you have one of those fancy scheduling tools. Make sure you’re coming across as a human being and not just a sales robot. Not every post or tweet needs to say ‘buy my book’! Obviously if you’re self-published this is one way of getting your sales up, but even traditionally published authors have to do their own marketing. So follow me if you want to see pictures of my cats…

Happy Reading! 

Blog Tour: The Egg and I

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Author: Betty MacDonald

Narrator: Heather Henderson

Length: 9 hours

Publisher: Post Hypnotic Press⎮2015

Genre: Humor, Memoir

When Betty MacDonald married a marine and moved to a small chicken farm on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State, she was largely unprepared for the rigors of life in the wild. With no running water, no electricity, a house in need of constant repair, and days that ran from four in the morning to nine at night, the MacDonalds had barely a moment to put their feet up and relax. And then came the children. Yet through every trial and pitfall – through chaos and catastrophe – this indomitable family somehow, mercifully, never lost its sense of humor. A beloved literary treasure for more than half a century, Betty MacDonald’s The Egg and I is a heartwarming and uproarious account of adventure and survival on the American frontier.
buy-links        Buy on AudibleAmazon
Betty Bard MacDonald (1907–1958), the best-selling author of The Egg and I and the classic Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle children’s books, burst onto the literary scene shortly after the end of World War II. Readers embraced her memoir of her years as a young bride operating a chicken ranch on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, andThe Egg and I sold its first million copies in less than a year. The public was drawn to MacDonald’s vivacity, her offbeat humor, and her irreverent take on life. In 1947, the book was made into a movie starring Fred MacMurray and Claudette Colbert, and spawned a series of films featuring MacDonald’s Ma and Pa Kettle characters. MacDonald followed up the success of The Egg and I with the creation of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, a magical woman who cures children of their bad habits, and with three additional memoirs: The Plague and I (chronicling her time in a tuberculosis sanitarium just outside Seattle), Anybody Can Do Anything (recounting her madcap attempts to find work during the Great Depression), and Onions in the Stew (about her life raising two teenage daughters on Vashon Island). Author Paula Becker was granted full access to Betty MacDonald’s archives, including materials never before seen by any researcher. Looking for Betty MacDonald, the first official biography of this endearing Northwest storyteller, reveals the story behind the memoirs and the difference between the real Betty MacDonald and her literary persona.

 Heather Henderson is a voice actress and audiobook narrator with a 20-year career in literary and performing arts. Her narrations include the NYT bestseller (now also a feature film) Brain on Fire; and Sharon Creech’s The Boy on the Porch, which won her an Earphones award and was named one of the Best Children’s Audiobooks for 2013 by Audiofile Magazine. She earned her Doctor of Fine Arts degree at the Yale School of Drama, and is co-curator of AudioEloquence.com, a pronunciation research site for the audiobook industry. In 2015, Heather was a finalist for a Voice Arts Award (Outstanding Narration, Audiobook Classics), for her narration of Betty MacDonald’s The Egg and I.  
egg-graphic-1 review
If you enjoy a book about what it is like to be outside of your comfort zone or a book that will give you a good chuckle every now and again, this is the book for you. I especially enjoyed hearing this one in audio format as it has many of those moments.

I grew up in the Midwest on the farm, so for me many of these scenes were familiar. I enjoyed the story very much and I appreciated the candor to which the situations arose. I enjoyed the plot and found the story to be interesting!

This book is one that I think will have a wide appeal for years to come. As we become more interesting in where our food comes from, I think the topics discussed stay relevant. I appreciated that opportunity to review this book.

While I was provided a copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

Nov. 20: From the TBR Pile (Spotlight) Nov. 21: Printcess (Review & Giveaway) Nov. 22: Book Journey (Review, Interview & Giveaway) Nov. 23: The Pursuit of Bookishness (Audio Excerpt, Spotlight & Giveaway) Nov. 24: A Page To Turn (Audio Excerpt & Spotlight) Nov. 25: Nov. 26: He Said Books Or Me (Review) Nov. 27: Field of Bookish Dreams (Audio Excerpt, Spotlight & Giveaway) Nov. 28: Que Sera Sara (Spotlight & Giveaway) Nov. 29: Terri Luvs Books (Review) Nov. 30: Never Anyone Else (Review & Giveaway) Dec. 1: Dab of Darkness (Review, Interview & Giveaway) Dec. 2: Jorie Loves A Story (Review) Dec. 3: Ali The Dragon Slayer (Review & Giveaway) Dec. 4: Never 2 Many 2 Read (Review & Giveaway) Dec. 5: Jorie Loves A Story (Interview) Dec. 6: Terri Luvs Books (Interview & Giveaway) Dec. 7: Chapter Break (Interview) Dec. 8: Celtic Lady's Reviews (Spotlight) Dec. 9: Bound 4 Escape (Review & Giveaway) Dec. 10: Avid Book Collector (Review, Spotlight & Giveaway

ABW Promos3

It's here!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Finally, new Gilmore Girl episodes! I have been waiting for this. So excuse me while I am away binge watching! 

Happy Day! 

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Photo Credit

Hi Everyone!

Just stopping by with a Happy Thanksgiving post for my celebrating friends! I have so much to be thankful for on this holiday and am grateful for all of you. Your support means the world to me. I hope that you have a chance for some downtime, get a chance to watch the parade, and do all things that you enjoy on this day! :) 

Happy Thanksgiving!

#CountdowntilGG Final Checkpoint

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Hi Everyone!

Just stopping by with the FINAL checkin post regarding the Gilmore Girls Readathon! How has the last month of reading been going? Just want to leave a comment below with how you are doing or link me back to your blog post to let me know!

I had big plans to finish my bingo card and it just didn't happen. Between going out of the country for vacation, two work trips, and life I just couldn't make it work. So instead of letting you know what books I finished, I am going to list the books I would have liked to finish:

Lane-Girl Interrupted. 
Dean-Snow White and Red Rose
Mrs. Kim-It Takes a Village
Paul Anka-The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night
Sookie: Kitchen Confidential
Kirk-The Scarecrow of Oz
Paris-Stiff: The Curious Life of Human Cadavers
Jackson: The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test
Lorelai-Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter
Michel-S is for Silence
Logan-The Secret Life of Bees

Maybe someday I will get a chance to go back and finish these? At least I was able to get through 11 books :) In the meanwhile, at least I have new episodes to watch soon!

Let me know your progress. I will be announcing the winner(s) on Twitter very soon!

Happy Reading!