Thursday, March 28, 2013

Author Spotlight: Christine Nolfi

Hi - everyone! Even though I'm an author myself, and I'm friends with most of the authors that visit me here for an Author Spotlight, there are times where I'm also a fan... and maybe even a little bit of a stalker. My friend and fellow author Christine Nolfi is one of those writers who definitely brings out the fan/stalker side of me! I enjoyed her novel, Treasure Me (you can read my review here) - the first in the Liberty Series so much, that when I heard book two was out, I just had to read it ... and I may have stalked her blog tour, entering her contests, hoping to win a copy (which I did!!)  Of course I loved it! My review is below AND Christine is giving away a copy of this fabulous book as well! But first... here's a little about Christine:


Describe your book in one sentence.

If you’re partial to movies like Steel Magnolias and books like Fried Green Tomatoes, you’ll enjoy Second Chance Grill.

Well that explains why I love your books! Those are two of my favorite movies! Tell me a little about yourself.

I’m zany, an adoptive mother of four, recently remarried and a happy transplant to Charleston, South Carolina. I can also be frighteningly focused, silly or contemplative. At a party, I’m the woman who loosens everyone up with a few jokes so they’ll spill their darkest secrets, which I file away in my brain for characters in future books. This does not go down well with everyone.

When did you decide to become a writer?

During childhood, around the time I convinced the kids on the block that fairies had hidden magical gems beneath rocks we’d soon locate. I also persuaded them—and myself—that I could fly. It’s a miracle I didn’t break my legs tumbling from Bobby Cooper’s tree house.

What do you love about writing?

Possessing the ability to set emotion on paper. Literature connects people; it’s the closest we come to walking beneath another’s skin. I cherish every facet of the process from the moment the blank page waits for inspiration through the final edit.



About Second Chance Grill:

Dr. Mary Chance needs a sabbatical from medicine to grieve the loss of her closest friend. But when she inherits a struggling restaurant in Liberty, Ohio she isn’t prepared for Blossom Perini. Mary can’t resist falling for the precocious preteen—or the girl’s father. The bond they forge will transform all their lives and set in motion an outpouring of love that spreads across America.

Welcome back to Liberty, where the women surrounding the town’s only restaurant are as charming as they are eccentric.

Second Chance Grill is the prequel to Treasure Me, 2012 Next Generation Indie Awards Finalist, which The Midwest Book Review calls “A riveting read for those who enjoy adventure fiction, highly recommended.”



My Review: 

When I learned that author Christine Nolfi released her newest book, Second Chance Grill, I was so excited! I absolutely loved her first book in this series, Treasure Me, & couldn't wait to dive in. It took me a few pages to realize that this was a prequel, not a sequel (of course, had I read the description, I would have known immediately). No matter, however, I was definitely interested in the back story of the Second Chance Grill and eager to learn more about Mary, Anthony, and Blossom (even if I already knew how they turned out.) In fact, I think knowing the ending made this wonderful story even better, because it wasn't so much the ending that made this book so special (although I did in fact love it), but the bonds and friendships made along the way. Ms. Nolfi does a great job of writing a full range of emotions, - some scenes will make you laugh out loud while others truly tug at your heart. I honestly did not want this book to end, and I'm looking forward to reading even more in this series.

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a Rafflecopter giveaway


Christine Nolfi’s contemporary fiction novels provide readers with heartwarming and inspiring fiction. Her debut Treasure Me is a 2012 Next Generation Indie Awards finalist. Midwest Book Review lists Treasure Me, Second Chance Grill and The Tree of Everlasting Knowledge as “highly recommended.”


@christinenolfi on Twitter
GoodReads Author Page: http://tinyurl.com/7e2xgjq
FaceBook Author Page: http://tinyurl.com/c3sf4yv

Second Chance Grill:

Treasure Me – 2012 Next Generation Indie Awards Finalist

The Tree of Everlasting Knowledge



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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Cover & Trailer Reveal: Chasing Invisible

Available June 2013....









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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Book Blast & Twitter Party: The Unraveling of Avery Snow

Are you an Avery Snow fan?
The highly anticipated sequel to The Many of Lives of Avery Snow is here!

The Unraveling of Avery Snow 
by Christy Sloat

Enter below for your chance to win the ultimate fan prize pack


Chat LIVE with Christy Sloat
Twitter Party, March 26, 10 am EST
#AverySnow


And get your own copy of The Unraveling of Avery Snow
As Avery Snow settles into her life and relationships with those around her, she fights to forget her past lives. All of which she spent with Landon, who still has no recollection of who she really is. It seems better that way. Even though she still feels a draw to his soul, she chooses to ignore it.



For now everything is fine. Her boyfriend, Dallas, has opened a new restaurant. Her friends, Ianni and Kerri, are settling into their lives as well. But when news of a new Dark Guide is revealed, Avery is forced to start thinking about the life she truly leads. One that is very abnormal. One she is desperate to forget. This Dark Guide is determined to make Avery pay for the death of someone she held dear.



Now Averyís life has gone from seemingly perfect to falling apart. What will be at stake next? Her life? Her love? And who will be there in the end to help her up off the ground?



Even the strongest love can unravel.



Will Avery be able to hold it all together, or will she just let go?

a Rafflecopter giveaway




A GWR Publicity promotional event paid for by Anchor Group Publishing. Giveaway is sponsored by the author.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Book Blast & Twitter Party: Pulse

Seeking adventure and magic with a futuristic edge?



Chat LIVE with young adult author HJ Daly
March 21, 10:30 am EST
Twitter: #Pulse
(easiest way to join the chat is with tweetchat.com)



Esa is a street girl living in a post apocalyptic world. A world that left her with nothing except the physical and mental scars that drive her to the person she is becoming.


Whilst searching for shelter, she encounters a creature known as a spinner who pulls her onto a perilous path. Now with a horde of goblins close on their heels, they must work together and enter the magical realm in search of answers. Why can she sense magic and why is a powerful sorcerer determined to end her life? 

An exciting story of power, friendship and secrets - secrets that threaten to rip Esa’s world apart.

Join the Adventure!

Buy the book at Amazon

Here's your chance to win a copy of Pulse plus swag & a $35 Gift Card!


a Rafflecopter giveaway




A GWR Publicity promotional event paid for by Anchor Group Publishing. Giveaway is sponsored by the author.

Author Spotlight: Christy Sloat

Hello everyone! This week, we have a return author! I'd like to welcome back, Christy Sloat to the Author Spotlight. Christy is here to talk about her newest release - The Unraveling of Avery Snow.

Hi Christy, tell us more about this new book.
The Unraveling of Avery Snow is the final installment in the Past Lives Series. This book decides Avery’s fate and who she chooses to spend the rest of her life with. Will it be Landon or Dallas? That is the big question.

Are you working on anything new?
I just finished writing the follow up to The Brown House. What’s next? The third book in the Visitor’s Series. I have a few other stories up my sleeve, but its super-secret and I can’t tell you about it.

Well, we'll just have to have you back when you're ready to talk! So, when did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’m a writer? I still don’t feel like one. Even though I have written now five books, it still feels unreal.


Yes, I feel exactly the same way! Do people judge a book by its cover? Who makes yours?
Yes I think people do. They also judge it by the blurb on the back so I try to make sure it sounds good. I am lucky enough to get help doing this with my author friends. My book covers are all done by K.C. Designs. She is super talented and she and I see eye to eye on covers. She always takes my thoughts into consideration.


I just worked with her for the first time on a cover - she's awesome! Can you see yourself in any of your characters?
Of course I do. I think most of my characters have some piece of me with them. I have also taken part of my own experiences in life and put that in some of my books. Except the past lives part. I can’t remember my past life sadly.

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I’m obsessed with Twilight, like seriously obsessed. Its getting better now that its ended. I will be one of those old ladies that talk my grandchildren’s ear off about it in the future.

I'm one of the few that have never read/seen it, but my daughter loves it & keeps trying to get me to watch the movies with her. Coffee or Tea? Coffee, everyday all day. It’s a love affair.

Yup - I know exactly what you are talking about! What is one thing that you could not live without? My Nook. I love to read. Every night faithfully.

Do you have any hobbies? I crochet. I love it. I like making baby hats the most. They’re so cute.

I just started crocheting a few years ago. I enjoy it also! Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Stay tuned for new projects coming this summer! I know a lot of readers love my Visitor’s Series so if you’re itching for book 2, The Crimson Key is coming!


Awesome! Where can people find you and your books online?
I have a website, Christysloat.com. I am also on FB frequently, www.facebook.com/christysloatauthor
All my books are available, well everywhere ☺

Thanks Christy! 




Bio

Christy Sloat is a SoCal born girl who resides in New Jersey currently with her husband, two daughters and Sophie her Chihuahua. Christy has embraced the love of reading and writing since her youth and was inspired by her grandmother’s loving support. Christy passes that love of reading, writing, and creativity to her daughters, family, and friends. When you do not find Christy within the pages of a book you can find her being mommy, wife, crafter, and dear friend. She loves adventurous journeys with her friends and can be known to get lost inside a bookstore. Be sure to venture into her Past Lives Series, The Visitor’s Series, and watch for many more exciting things to come.

Get in Touch with Christy:

www.christysloat.com

http://christysloat.blogspot.com/

http://Facebook.com/christysloatauthor

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13412018-the-many-lives-of-avery-snow

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/christy-sloat

http://www.amazon.com/Christy-Sloat/e/B0071MMCU6



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See the complete schedule of stops at:
http://www.karentoz.com/interviews-and-events.html



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Monday, March 18, 2013

I Like Pirates and All, But Please...


photo credit: Bas Lammers via photopin cc


Hello Friends & Readers...


It has come to my attention that several of my titles are being sold (digital versions) at lower prices on unauthorized websites. Please know that the ONLY sites authorized to sell my digital titles are Amazon for Kindle & B&N for Nook. If you purchase a digital title from any other site, royalties that are rightfully mine, go into the pockets of thieves who are infringing on my copyrights. I am not the only writer this is happening to. Please help spread the word & let's put an end to these illegal sites who are stealing from hard working writers.

Thank you for your continued support! 

xoxo
Karen


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See the complete schedule of stops at:
http://www.karentoz.com/interviews-and-events.html



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Saturday, March 16, 2013

So My 15 Year Old Says....

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged about my kids – but I thought I should come here and set the record straight. Those of you who follow me on Facebook have already heard this story. (shameless plug ---> follow me here)

It seems that my 15 year old thinks all I do during the day is watch TV. Yup - that's right -  he told me the other night. Apparently, I was able to write five books in two years PLUS maintain two blogs AND do all the marketing and other work that goes along with ALL of that during the commercials! Yes – I am just that talented.


photo credit: rockcreek via photopin cc


The truth is, I think a lot of us stay at home parents and work at home parents just don’t get the recognition we deserve. I can’t speak for all of us – but here’s a list of things I personally do and do not do during the day:


-I DO NOT watch TV!!! I prefer to get all my news from the most reliable source out there (ie – Facebook).
-I DO try to write at least a couple of hours everyday (and hopefully more).
-I DO NOT eat bon-bons – I much prefer chips and ice cream.
-I DO play with the kitties. It’s hard not to when they sit on your head while writing.
-I DO NOT do laundry or clean the house (Oh wait – that’s supposed to be on the DO list isn’t it? Oops.)
-I DO drink mass quantities of coffee (Have I mentioned I love my Keurig?)
-I DO NOT goof off on Facebook and Twitter all day - - IT’S CALLED MARKETING PEOPLE!
-I DO give my 6-year-old lots of cuddles and kisses when he gets home from school.
-I DO NOT take naps (okay – I really do)
-I DO take my writer hat off at 4pm to help with homework, deal with teen drama, drive to activities, and prepare dinner.
-I DO work hard between the hours of 8:30-3:30, doing what I love to do – write, read, and promote my books and blogs.
-I DO work hard in the afternoon/evening hours doing what I love to do even more – take care of my family.


So there you have it and thanks for reading. Ooh, I gotta go. My show’s about to start ;)



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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Author Spotlight & Book Blast: Wendy Nystrom

Hi all - yes I'm a day early on the Author Spotlight - but I couldn't wait one more day to share the news! My friend and fellow children's author, Wendy Nystrom, has a new storybook out  called Helga Returns. It's part of the James and Syvok adventures that I love! To celebrate, Wendy is giving away a great prize pack! Here are the details:





Prize Pack:
1 signed Helga Returns print book
1 signed James Saves the Moon print book
3 book marks
4 silicone bracelets
1 troll
1 $25 dollar amazon gift card

a Rafflecopter giveaway







James’ second adventure begins with a footprint. He once again calls out
to his Icelandic magical friends, Syvok and Matthias, to discover what
it means. He will find Helga, the troll who left the footprint. James
follows Helga to Yamas, the troll village. Separated from Matthias and
Syvok, James and Helga are to be left on a glacier. The earth tremors as
Syvok and Matthias enter the village to save James. James saves the
Guardian Troll from danger. Matthias and his dragonets save James from
being squashed from a boulder dislodged by the earth tremors. All become
friends and fly home on dragons back.




Buy the book at Amazon!




BIO:
Wendy Nystrom is a published author with Anchor Group Publishing, a wife, and a mother of three wonderful children. Wendy grew up in St. Paul, MN, and has lived at different points in her life in Minnesota, Texas, Idaho, Colorado, West Virginia, and Iceland. She currently resides in Michigan (USA). Wendy is an avid reader of many different genres; she love adventures; and devotes some of her time to being active in schools, the local library, and other community projects. She earned a BA in Geography concentration Urban Planning at Texas State University. Wendy began writing children stories in 2005 while living in the wonderful country of Iceland. Her writing style is, imagine yourself sitting around a campfire deep in the mountains with a huge moon above. The mountains all around you while the story teller weaves a tale of adventure with a splash of fun as a pebble skips across the water. You can keep up with Wendy's writing adventures at her blog wendysbookcase.com, facebook https://www.facebook.com/Wendysbookcase and twitter/wbnystrom.

Links For Wendy Nystrom aka Wendysbookcase
Book Links:

Amazon author's page http://www.amazon.com/Wendy-Nystrom/e/B0064V1T0O/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1
Ebook- http://www.amazon.com/James-Saves-the-Moon-ebook/dp/B00A3W9MKY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1354718526&sr=8-1&keywords=james+saves+the+moon
Print- http://www.amazon.com/James-Saves-Moon-Wendy-Nystrom/dp/098827079X/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1354718526&sr=8-3&keywords=james+saves+the+moon
B&N- http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/james-saves-the-moon-wendy-nystrom/1100223253?ean=9780988270794

Blog link:http://wendysbookcase.com/
FB Pages:
https://www.facebook.com/Wendysbookcase
https://www.facebook.com/Kidtales
https://www.facebook.com/LilAnchors
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wbnystrom
Stumbleupon: http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/wendysbookcase
Tumblr.com: http://www.tumblr.com/blog/wendysbookcase


A GWR Publicity promotional event paid for my Anchor Group Publishing. Giveaway is sponsored by Wendy Nystrom.



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See the complete schedule of stops at:
http://www.karentoz.com/interviews-and-events.html




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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Author Spotlight: Coral Russell

Hey everyone - I'm so excited to welcome my friend and fellow author Coral Russell to the Author Spotlight today. Coral just released her new book, Sacrifice, an action-packed thriller about the drug cartel in Mexico. Sounds exciting right? Well, Coral was kind enough to stop by to tell us a little bit about some of the research she did....


When research gets real.

I played the 'what if' game. I saw things in real life and thought about things that I wanted to know and some I didn't.


I needed to know more but didn't want the research to get me killed. Picture a grey haired grandmother walking into a gang house, 'Hi, ya'll doing gang stuff around here?"

Where to go? Netflix! And YouTube! There are professional reporters (Inside MS13) and crazy travel people like Vice Guides that do this sort of dangerous thing for a living. And there are movies. Sin Nombre was a really good foreign film out of El Salvador where MS13 originated. And good old-fashioned journalism. Serendipity always popped up a good article on Yahoo or Google that would add a wonderful tidbit that I needed to flesh out the story.

I took liberties with the research because I'm a fiction writer. That's the cool part about being a fiction writer. You can borrow these mundane things from real life and things you know, then add to it by doing research and finding out more stuff that makes it seem like you really know what you're talking about when you're just making it all up! Gotta love that.

Now I just hope cartels don't read much....


ABOUT SACRIFICE

When Mexican drug cartels fight for control along the border, Juarez becomes the murder capital of the world. In El Paso, Texas it's drug business as usual: a grifter sets out to buy her freedom, a car salesman runs drugs to make his fortune, a gang leader battles to rise among the ranks of the cartel, and a detective and his wife are ripped apart by a family secret. Everyone's fate lies in the hands of an old woman. Will she let the past die with her or take revenge the only way she knows how?





ABOUT CORAL RUSSELL

Coral Russell runs the blog http://alchemyscrawl.com where she reviews Indie books/authors. "By the end of 2013, I will have read close to 300 Indie titles. I can vouch that the quality and diversity of Indie authors is worth investing in." On the blog you can find links to her on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Google+ and email. The Indie Exchange is a group of authors, readers, and book bloggers who post reviews, articles, and giveaways. Listen in Fridays to our radio show at http://blogtalkradio.com/alchemyofscrawl Ms. Russell won the 2003 McCaleb Peace Initiative which produced the non-fiction articles Peace on the Peninsula. All profit from the sale of that eBook goes to rebuilding Joplin, MO. Titles available: Amador Lockdown, Playing with Fire (Devil of a Ghost Tour and Key to a Haunting), Peace on the Peninsula, The DIY Guide to Social Media Marketing and eBook Publishing, and Twelve Worlds.

ENTER THE GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer - All prizes will be distributed by Coral Russell, not Karen Pokras Toz

Pickup your copy of Sacrifice now on Amazon.com










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Monday, March 4, 2013

Look Ma! I'm Vlogging! #NateRocks

I swore I would never do it & yet here I am... and let me tell - there was plenty of swearing (which I did in fact edit out - speaking of editing, that was a nightmare) ... anyway, I hope you enjoy me trying to figure out how exactly a Vlog works.



For the complete tour schedule & giveaway stops, visit: http://www.karentoz.com/interviews-and-events.html






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It's Release Day!! Get Your #NateRocks fix!

Nate Rocks is At It Again...



The highly anticipated third installment of the Nate Rocks series is here! 



According to Nathan Rockledge, fifth grade has plenty of perks. Oh sure, there’s more work and that know-it-all, Lisa Crane, is still around – but, there’s a lot to look forward to as well: a laser tag birthday party, baseball at recess, and even a cool Halloween dance. Of course, all of that means nothing without the biggest perk of all . . . the class trip to New York City in the spring. If Nathan’s class can raise enough money to go, that is.



Give Nathan paper and a pencil and watch as his imagination turns him into Nate Rocks, hero and fifth grade super star. With adventures abound, Nate saves the day time and again. But will Nate be able to save the fifth grade trip?



Join Nathan, his hilarious family, and his friends, as he rocks the school in another fun Nate Rocks adventure.



Pick up your copy at Amazon and B&N!



Chat with me today at 10:30 am  EST and then follow the Nate Rocks the School Tour for appearances by myself and my characters - plus reviews and swag pack giveaways!




Nate Rocks the School Tour 

 

Grand Prize Giveaway




a Rafflecopter giveaway




A GWR Publicity Event. Sponsored by Karen Pokras Toz.

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