Sunday, December 27, 2009

review: girl on top by nicole williams

Believing that "finding, catching, and building a relationship with a beau simply isn't so different from finding, catching, and building a relationship with a boss," Nicole Williams turns the so-called rules of dating into career advice. Using crass language at times, she proposes that following rules like "don't bash your ex" and "don't give away your milk for free" will make you the Girl on Top. It's an interesting proposal, though it has some flaws. The "Keep the Fire Alive" chapter hardly applies to life in the workforce. Williams focuses her advice here on dating rather than workplace interactions and some parts don't make sense in regard to either situation. (I doubt anyone finds a new love interest for the soon-to-be ex nor would most be involved in the hiring of a replacement at work since HR would need to be involved.) Some of the advice is helpful to those just starting their careers, but it's a bit of stretch to wholly apply the rules of dating to the workforce.
3/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Center Street.

Friday, December 25, 2009

giveaway: two harlequin romances

Merry Christmas! For the last giveaway of the week Harlequin is providing two romance novels: The Italian's Inexperienced Mistress by Lynne Graham and Branded By the Sheriff by Delores Fossen. Four people will win a copy of both books. Please note that these books are marked with "enjoy this free gift."

Here's the back cover copy for The Italian's Inexperienced Mistress:
"Angelo Riccardi didn't do love. Because he'd been denied it a long time ago...

When Angelo sought revenge Gwenna Hamilton added another delicious dimension. Innocent and pretty, she didn't stand a chance when the Italian tycoon offered her the devil's bargain: pay for her father's freedom with her body.

In her naiveté, Gwenna thought that Angelo would tire of her and her innocence very quickly. But he had more in mind than just one night…"

And this is the back cover copy for Branded By the Sheriff:
"Years ago, Sheriff Beck Tanner had believed the worst about Faith Matthews. Now she was back in their small Texas town, forcing him to question everything he thought he knew about her. And when the killer who'd murdered her family set his sights on Faith--and her innocent baby girl--Beck's protective instincts kicked into high gear.

As dangerous pranks turned into deadly games, and with a sadistic killer circling closer, all of Beck's attention had to be on keeping Faith's baby safe...and ignoring his inconvenient attraction to the beautiful mother..."

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 16. Winners will be selected at random. Winners must have mailing addresses in the US; PO Boxes are ok for this one.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

giveaway: the little giant of aberdeen county

The Christmas Eve giveaway is The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker. Hachette is providing three copies.

The review from Publishers Weekly:
"Starred Review. Baker's bangup debut mixes the exuberant eccentricities of John Irving's Garp, Anne Tyler's relationship savvy and the plangent voice of Margaret Atwood. In an upstate New York backwater, Truly, massive from birth, has a bleak existence with her depressed father and her china-doll–like sister, Serena Jane. Truly grows at an astonishing rate—her girth the result of a pituitary gland problem—and after her father dies when Truly is 12, Truly is sloughed off to the Dyersons, a hapless farming family. Her outsize kindness surfaces as she befriends the Dyersons' outcast daughter, Amelia, and later leaves her beloved Dyerson farm to take care of Serena Jane's husband and son after Serena Jane leaves them. Haunting the margins of Truly's story is that of Tabitha Dyerson, a rumored witch whose secrets afford a breathtaking role reversal for Truly. It's got all the earmarks of a hit—infectious and lovable narrator, a dash of magic, an impressive sweep and a heartrending but not treacly family drama. It'll be a shame if this doesn't race up the bestseller lists."

And there's a Reading Group Guide:
1. Truly is the “little giant” of this book, yet her size seems to make her less, rather than more, visible to the town around her. Can you explain this phenomenon? What do you think the author is trying to say about her outsider status?

2. Serena Jane and Truly are as physically different as sisters can be, yet Truly sees that this difference is crucial, explaining “the reason the two of us were as opposite as sewage and spring water, I thought, was that pretty can’t exist without ugly.” (pp. 97-98) How would you describe Truly and Serena’s connection? How is it different from Truly’s relationship with Amelia Dyerson? Which seems the more genuine sisterhood to you?

3. As the successor to a long line of old-fashioned, small-town doctors, Robert Morgan is traditional, strict, and often cruel. I the end, however, the legacy terminates with him and he becomes Aberdeen’s last Dr. Morgan. How do he and Bobbie stray from the family paradigm? What Morgan characteristics stayed with each of them? Is the town “more modern” without a Dr. Morgan, and with Bobbie and Salvatore’s restaurant instead? Is the replacement of nurturing through nourishment rather than doctoring a symbolic replacement?

4. Death haunts Truly and all of Aberdeen, sometimes in unexpected ways. As a gardener, Marcus’s aim is to “make things live,” but, as Truly realizes, “wasn’t it also true that gardeners were always wrestling with death, whether in the form of drought, or blight, or hungry insects? In a garden, Marcus always said, death was the first, last and only fact of life.” What other parallels do you see in the ways Marcus and Truly court life and death?

5. Truly’s size marks her as an outcast, but throughout the novel, other characters have trouble “fitting in” in a more figurative way. Examine how this manifests in Bobbie, Marcus, Amelia, even Serena Jane. What larger point do you this the author might be trying to make about the importance of conforming?

6. What role does Aberdeen County play in the novel? Could the story or these characters exist elsewhere? Do the effects of the 60s and the Vietnam War seem to touch Aberdeen in the same way they touched the rest of the country? What is unique and what is not about Aberdeen as a setting?

7. When Amelia discovers how Priscilla Sparrow and Robert Morgan died, she asks Truly whether it was mercy or murder that killed them. What do you think? How do you feel about Truly’s actions? What in Truly’s character draws her to “collect souls” as she comes to call it?

8. When Marcus and Truly finally come together, Marcus says “We’re not exactly a match made in heaven, you and I, but I figure we’re good enough for here on earth” (p. 334) What does he mean by this? Do you agree?

9. Why doesn’t Robert Morgan “care” that his son runs away? What does it say about what he thinks of himself? How does this connect to Serena Jane’s leaving and his reaction to that event?

10. After Robert Morgan’s death, Truly gradually takes on some of his responsibilities as town doctor by using the knowledge she’s gained from Tabitha’s quilt. How is this a fitting purpose for Truly, and a fitting counterpoint to the legacy of Morgan doctors?

11. What about this story is larger than life or possesses elements of a tall tale or folklore? How are these details woven into the story? How is the book similar to or different from other works in this tradition?

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 16. Winners will be selected at random. Since this is from Hachette the winners must have mailing addresses in the US or Canada; no PO Boxes.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

giveaway: in tongues of the dead

For the fourth giveaway of the week, an ARC of In Tongues of the Dead by Brad Kelln is up for grabs. This ARC was provided by ECW Press.

Here's the review from Publishers Weekly:
"At the start of this flawed thriller from Canadian author Kelln (Method of Madness), an autistic boy appears to be able to read the real-life Voynich manuscript, a 500-year-old book written in a language that linguists, historians, religious scholars and even advanced decryption technology can't decipher. By the time Fr. Benicio Valori, a Vatican investigator, arrives at Yale University's Beinecke Library, where the mysterious manuscript is housed, the book is missing from its display room and what's left of a security guard lies nearby. Disregarding orders from his superiors to suspend the mission, Valori uncovers some bombshell revelations concerning the existence of rogue angels, their forsaken offspring and a coverup of biblical proportions. Da Vinci Code fans will enjoy the seamless blend of fact and fiction, pedal-to-the-metal pacing and provocative religious speculation, but the ending comes as a letdown after the exciting build-up."

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 2. Winners will be selected at random. Winners must have mailing addresses in the US; PO Boxes are ok for this one.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

giveaway: primitive

The third day of giveaways brings two ARC copies of Mark Nykanen's Primitive. Thanks to Bell Bridge books for providing the ARCs.

Here's a brief description; find out more here.
"Kidnapped by neo-primitive survivalists with a radical environmental agenda, an aging model finds herself fighting for her life in the rugged Pacific Northwest mountains."

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 2. Winners will be selected at random. Winners must have mailing addresses in the US; PO Boxes are ok for this one.

Monday, December 21, 2009

giveaway: love you to death

For the second day of giveaways leading up to Christmas, Hachette is allowing me to offer two copies of Love You to Death by Shannon K. Butcher.

Here's what Publishers Weekly has to say:
"Fans of romantic suspense are used to glossing over gruesomeness in a fast-paced story, but this macabre effort from Butcher (No Escape) offers only a tired plot and characters to balance the revolting details of serial killer Gary Maitland's escapades. Reporter Elise McBride, worried because she has not heard from her irresponsible sister, Ashley, breaks into Ashley's house for clues and is inevitably discovered by Trent Brady, the handsome but burnt-out ex-cop from across the. Ashley has been kidnapped by Gary, who slices body parts off his victims while they're still alive, and it's the usual race against time as Elise and Trent team up to find Ashley before Gary dismembers her. Their sizzling passion helps them tame personal demons and confront the killer, but the romance is soon buried under gore and clichés."

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 2. Winners will be selected at random. Since this is from Hachette the winners must have mailing addresses in the US or Canada; no PO Boxes.

review: godmother by carolyn turgeon

The subtitle to Carolyn Turgeon’s excellent Godmother is “The Secret Cinderella Story,” which it definitely is. This book, which is told from the Godmother’s perspective, changes everything you thought you knew about the classic fairy tale. First off, the reason Cinderella is so beautiful is that she’s actually half-fairy. Her mother had an affair with a fairy, who ended up being banished because of it. Similarly, Lil (Cinderella’s Godmother) is also banished because of a love affair with a human—-Cinderella’s Prince Charming. How Lil came to attend the ball in Cinderella’s place is shocking and a bit devastating for anyone who loved Cinderella as a child. Another dark twist comes at the end, but it almost seems appropriate and doesn’t take away from the beautiful story.
5/5
ARC Review
Review copy provided by the publisher, Three Rivers Press.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

giveaway: the magician's book

With Christmas approaching, I'm going to post a few giveaways this week. The first comes courtesy Hachette. It's three copies of the Magician's Book by Laura Miller.

Here's the review from Publishers Weekly:
"Jam-packed with critical insights and historical context, this discussion of C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia from Miller's double perspectives--as the wide-eyed child who first read the books and an agnostic adult who revisits them--is intellectually inspiring but not always cohesive. Finding her distrust of Christianity undermined by her love of Lewis's indisputably Christian-themed world, Salon.com cofounder and staff writer Miller seeks to "recapture [Narnia's] old enchantment." She replaces lost innocence with understanding, visiting Lewis's home in England, reading his letters and books (which she quotes extensively) and interviewing readers and writers. Lengthy musings on Freudian analysis of sadomasochism, J.R.R. Tolkien's Anglo-Saxon nationalism and taxonomies of genre share space with incisive and unapologetic criticism of Lewis's treatment of race, gender and class. The heart of the book is in the first-person passages where Miller recalls longing to both be and befriend Lucy Pevensie and extols Narnia's "shining wonders." Her reluctant reconciliation with Lewis's and Narnia's imperfections never quite manages to be convincing, but anyone who has endured exile from Narnia will recognize and appreciate many aspects of her journey."

And here's the Reading Group Guide:
1. Laura Miller was introduced to the Chronicles of Narnia by her teacher and was immediately swept into their magical world. Describe your own discovery and reaction to them.

2. When Miller writes about her most powerful reading experiences while growing up, she cites Island of the Blue Dolphins, Five Children and It, and the Little House on the Prairie series. Name some of the formative books of your childhood and discuss why they were important to you. What about them has stayed with you into adulthood?

3. In the excerpt that opens The Magician’s Book, Lucy encounters the best story she has ever read. Afterward, she is unable to remember what happened in the story or to reread it. Have you ever lost yourself in a story as Lucy did? What were you reading? How old were you? Discuss why you think you were able to forget yourself so completely. How do our daily lives affect the way we read? What does this say about the role readers play in the creation of a story’s meaning?

4. Neil Gaiman and Jonathan Franzen note the importance of C. S. Lewis’s books in their own lives and work. Discuss the similarities and differences between their books and the Chronicles of Narnia. Have you noticed Lewis’s influence on other writers? If so, which writers? And why does their work remind you of the Pevensie children’s adventures?

5. Does Miller’s description of C. S. Lewis’s life and personality alter your view of his novels? In what ways? Have your opinions of other books changed after discovering personal details about the author? Why does biographical information affect our interpretation?

6. Laura Miller writes that she will not address the religious symbolism in the Chronicles, focusing instead on the stories and their creator. Do you agree with her decision? Are there other aspects of the books you would have liked Miller to address?

7. When Miller discovered Narnia’s Christian messages, her feeling of betrayal drove her away. Eventually, she returned and reexamined the books as an adult. Why was she upset by her new understanding? Discuss the role that the passage from innocence to understanding played in her reaction. Is one experience more valid than another?

8. Part memoir, part biography, and part literary criticism, The Magician’s Book touches on the many factors that shaped the author’s relationship with the novels. Discuss the extent to which each reader’s knowledge informs and shapes his or her interpretations of stories.

9. At its core, The Magician’s Book is the story of Laura Miller’s attempt to regain her childhood enchantment with the Chronicles. Have you reread the Chronicles of Narnia as an adult? If so, how has your enjoyment or understanding of them changed? Do you think it is possible to regain the childhood experience of reading? Why?

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on January 2. Winners will be selected at random. Since this is from Hachette the winners must have mailing addresses in the US or Canada; no PO Boxes.

giveaway winners: 7th heaven

Congratulations to the winners of 7th Heaven: heatherzilla, gahome2mom, mskayz, Jessica, and Wanda.

Friday, December 18, 2009

new releases: december


secret santa gifts

This year I participated in two Secret Santas. Both of my recipients have received their books now; I hope they enjoy them. I've also now received both of my gifts, so I wanted to post a bit of thanks. Both senders elected to remain anonymous, so I hope they'll stop by and read this. Both sent extra goodies with the book part (one sent a gift card for me to buy a book; the other sent two books I really wanted: The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters and by Sydney Salter) which means I'm enjoying some holiday candy and scented candles.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

review: tall, dark & fangsome by michelle rowan

In a word, Tall, Dark & Fangsome is hilarious. Sarah is the best snarky vampire around!

Sarah carries the curse of the nightwalker, which means she the stereotypical vampire who can't enter someone's home without an invitation; oh, and there's that whole bloodlust thing going on too. Fortunately, Sarah has a necklace that allows her to curb the desire to kill, but the slayers after her don't care and want to eradicate all nightwalkers. Furthermore, presumed dead slayer Gideon is blackmailing her. He wants to become a powerful vampire now that he's been scarred by hellfire. This should make Sarah hate Gideon, but her inner nightwalker is attracted by his evilness. Since Sarah's already dating a handsome master vampire (albeit a married one), she's a bit torn between the two sides of herself and the man each one desires. Sarah's life is a mess, but her snark had me giggling the whole way through.
5/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Forever.

review: cheating death by sanjay gupta

In Cheating Death, Dr. Sanjay Gupta gives overviews of instances where people have survived a trauma that usually would result in death. Some of these people reported a "white light" experience; some said they'd talked with dead relatives while doctors worked to save their lives. Most of the stories are intriguing and some are touching.

Gupta includes medical details and delves into some of the reasons behind using a particular treatment, but does so in a way that readers without a medical background can easily understand what he's talking about. The histories of some of the procedures are informative and interesting, particularly regarding the prenatal ones. I was quite impressed at how far medicine has come in the last few decades.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Wellness Central.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

review and tour: the possibility of everything by hope edelman

Initially the imaginary friend of Hope Edelman’s three year old daughter was thought to be harmless. Edelman was concerned, but friends with children and the pediatrician assured her an imaginary friend was normal. Unfortunately, Edelman’s fears were soon proved to be warranted when Maya kept acting out and placing the blame on Dodo, who (horrifyingly) hated Edelman according to Maya. Despite this chaos, Edelman and her husband decided to keep their scheduled vacation to Belize, which included plans to take Maya to a shaman. Although they had some very trying moments and it was clear that the marriage was strained, the Belize trip turned out to be the best thing for the family. Although one cannot say for certain if the shaman visits “cured” Maya, something amazing definitely happened for the family while in Belize. I found Edelman’s story to be touching, remarkable, and incredibly well-written.
5/5
Review copy provided as part of a Pump Up Your Book Promotion tour.

Monday, December 14, 2009

author interview: ingrid king

The author of Buckley's Story, Ingrid King, was kind enough to answer a few questions.

What inspired you to share Buckley’s Story?

I have always believed that animals are amazing teachers, and I’ve been fortunate to have a number of these animals in my life. First and foremost, animals teach us about unconditional love, but they also teach us to stretch and grow, to reach beyond our self-imposed limits, and to expand our consciousness. Buckley taught me all of that, and more. She changed my life in ways I never could have imagined, and I realized that some of the lessons she taught me were really universal lessons about opening the heart and living a joyful life.

I wanted to share her story, but it’s really more than just her story. There are three layers to the book:

It’s the story of how her presence in my life and the lessons she taught me led me to make some major changes in my own life.

It’s also my story of what it’s like living with a pet with a terminal illness - in Buckley’s case, it was heart disease – and all that comes with that: making treatment decisions, maintaining a positive outlook in the face of a poor prognosis, and ultimately, having to make end of life decisions, and coping with the loss of a beloved animal companion.

And finally, it’s a story about the deep connection between animals and humans – a connection that is eternal and transcends the physical dimension.

Your book is subtitled “Lessons From a Feline Master Teacher.” What do you feel was the most important lesson you learned from Buckley?

It's hard to pick just one, but if I had to, I'd say "Follow Your Bliss." Buckley was one of the most freedom loving little cats I ever encountered, and as I spent time with her, her freedom loving spirit started to rub off on me. I've always been an independent spirit, but that side of me wasn't being expressed in my work life yet. When I met Buckley, I was managing a veterinary hospital - a job I took after fifteen years in Corporate America. I loved my position at the animal hospital, and I had far more freedom to make and implement decisions than I did in my corporate jobs. Working in an environment where everything mattered to me - the animals, the clients, the staff - was very rewarding, but it still wasn't the same as working for myself - something I had been thinking about for quite some time. Buckley helped me develop and embrace that side of myself through her example. Eventually, I left my job at the animal hospital to start my own business. Now that I've had a chance to experience for the past few years what it's like to be completely in charge of my life, and to do work that I'm passionate about, I'd have to say that this was the most important lesson.

In Buckley’s Story you explain that you didn’t name her and don’t know how she got the name. Did you ever try to rename her?

Buckley came with her name, and when I first met her, I didn't like it at all. It seemed awfully masculine for such a small, female cat. But after she had been with me for a little while, I couldn't even think about changing her name. She was Buckley, and she would remain Buckley. She acquired a series of nicknames over the years, ranging from Miss B to Baby B to Buggsy to Bugselina.

How have your experiences working in an animal hospital shaped how you interact with your cat, Amber?


I think I may be a little more in tune with even subtle physical changes I notice in her than the average cat parent might be, simply because I have a good understanding of how certain conditions might present themselves in terms of symptoms. Unfortunately, this can be a very mixed blessing. On the one hand, it allows me to stay on top of her good health and determine whether something requires veterinary attention or not, but on the other hand, I can also get a little carried away. Sometimes, too much knowledge is a dangerous thing! Knowing all the things that can go wrong with a condition makes it that much harder to stay positive!

What book (your own or someone else’s) has had the most impact on your life?

At this point, I'd have to say it's Buckley's Story. Writing and publishing it is the culmination of a life long dream of writing a book. It's also the realization of truly expressing my authentic self in the world in all aspects of my life. It has changed me in ways I never could have imagined when I first met my little cat.

You’ve continued to write The Conscious Cat blog. Do you plan to write more books?

Currently, I'm focusing on writing and editing The Conscious Cat. I love providing reliable and well-researched information on pet health and other topics related to conscious living and holistic health to my readers. In addition, The Conscious Cat is also a great site for cat lovers and others interested in animal-themed books, interviews with authors, and the feline lifestyle

That being said, yes, there will be more books. I have several ideas, but nothing that is fully formed yet, so it's a little too soon to talk about them.

review and tour: buckley's story by ingrid king

Buckley’s Story is Ingrid King’s touching and heart-breaking experience with a tortoiseshell cat with a deformed leg who was brought to the veterinary clinic where King worked. Although it is Buckley’s Story, it is also King’s story. King decided to embark upon a new career after meeting Buckley. This new venture, in turn, led to Buckley going from “office cat” to living with King and her other cat, Amber. King discusses the difficulty in getting the two cats to accept the new living situation, which I’m sure anyone who’s ever tried to introduce a new pet to another can appreciate. While her focus is on the cat, King shares personal experiences about her work, friends, and life in general. The ending brings tears, but even Buckley’s illness can’t keep a sweet cat from showing love for others.
3/5
Review copy provided as part of a Pump Up Your Book Promotion tour.

giveaway winners: cheating death

Stacie, graceunderfire, and enyl are the lucky winners of Cheating Death. Congratulations!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

author guest post: barbora knobova

As part of her promotional tour for Tales for Delicious Girls, Barbora Knobova shares her thoughts on writing the book.

A Truly Delicious Book To Write

I believe that good things come to those who wait and also to those who don't plan too much. Tales for Delicious Girls is not my first book but I didn't plan to write it! And when I finally started writing it, I had no idea that I would end up creating a book full of support and encouragement that women would keep getting back to when they faced life and relationship trouble.

The first story that I wrote was Beautiful Maxim. Writing about a man who compares women to desserts and forgets to mention to his girlfriend that he's getting married in a week (to another woman, of course) was hilarious. When I was done with Beautiful Maxim (in real life and on paper) I realized that there were many relationship and dating stories in my head and that they were not just funny but also uplifting and encouraging. I thought: "There are many humorous books but there are few books that would make women laugh and at the same time make them think about themselves and their relationships."


I decided to write a truly Delicious Book that
would become every woman's best friend, regardless of her age, life circumstances and experience. A book that would be supportive, that would express the power of female loyalty and friendship, that would encourage women to love themselves and that would help them deal with toxic relationships and harmful patterns.

At the time I started working as a relationship coach and my first readers, before Tales for Delicious Girls was even published, were the wonderful women I worked with. Seeing how my book changed their lives literally overnight, what a wonderful effe
ct it had on their self-esteem and how it empowered them was so fulfilling and rewarding. At that moment I knew that I had written a unique book about women and for women, a book that women could identify with and use it in everyday life, a book that they could even come back to when they faced new relationship challenges and dilemmas.

The word DELICIOUS in the title of my book is actually an acronym
that stands for: Daring, Enchanting, Loving, Inspiring, Captivating, Intriguing, Outgoing, Unique, Sophisticated. I'm proud to be a women and I'm even prouder to be a Delicious woman. I believe in myself, I believe in every woman in this world and I believe in you. Because we all are Delicious. That's the message of my book and the reason I wrote it.

Barbora Knobova is a writer, love coach and expert in Delicious Life. A world traveler, she is one of those rare world citizens who live everywhere and nowhere. Barbora is a firm believer in female friendship, loyalty and bonding. She writes hilarious, sharp-witted, caustically apt, ironic, moving, true books for strong, independent, smart, fearless women. Barbora has also written several self-improvement books and teaches women about the importance of self-love in relationships and life in general. Barbora speaks eight languages and has found her home away from home in New York, London and Milan. She is always on the move, accompanied by her beagle Brinkley, the nasty dog from her new book Tales for Delicious Girls.

review and tour: tales for delicious girls by barbora knobova

Tales for Delicious Girls is a collection of short stories about Barbora Knobova’s life (especially regarding dating) that are written in a style similar to magazine articles. Just about each one provides an interesting perspective on life. The stories, as a whole, are amusing though some of them struck me as “ouch, but that’s life.” I particularly enjoyed reading Knobova’s thoughts on turning 30 in Why Scarecrows Don’t Scare Me. I found that selection as well as many of the others to be very relatable. Adding to the pleasure of the reading the stories are the illustrations that go along with each one; some of the illustrations tell a story all of their own.
4/5
Review copy provided as part of a Pump Up Your Book Promotion tour.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

giveaway: 7th heaven

Thanks to Hachette, I can offer up five copies of 7th Heaven by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro. 7th Heaven is part of the Women's Murder Club series.

Here's the publisher description:
"The Women's Murder Club faces not one-but two-terrifying cases that may tear it apart. The teenage son of California's ex-governor has mysteriously vanished-and the pressure on Detective Lindsay Boxer to find him is overwhelming. When she finally does get a lead, it's devastating. At the same time, Lindsay and her partner, Rich Conklin, must investigate mysterious fires that are destroying some of San Francisco's most beautiful homes-and leaving their owners dead in the debris. But when Lindsay enlists her friends in the Women's Murder Club to help uncover the arsonist, the blazes suddenly rage much too close to home."

The rules: Enter by leaving a comment to this post with your email (if I can't contact you, you can't win). You can gain additional entries by leaving separate comments letting me know that you're a follower or have posted a link to the giveaway on your site. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm Pacific on December 19. Winners will be selected at random. Since this is from Hachette the winners must have mailing addresses in the US or Canada; no PO Boxes.