Monday, April 29, 2013

Looking For a Great #Cheap or #Free Read?

Hey - I've got a question for you: Who likes SALES? (Raises hand) Who likes finding BARGAIN books? (Raises hand) Who likes FREE stuff? (Raises hand) Come on - I know you do too, and that's why I want to tell you all about this new site on Facebook that both authors and readers NEED to LIKE and check out EVERY DAY!! So I invited my friend Melissa - the genius who started this page here today, to tell you all about it! Here's the scoop .....

   Hello! First off, let me say a big thank you to Karen for hosting me on your blog. Now, you're probably wondering why I'm posting. Well, about two weeks ago, when my book was having a $.99 day, I was looking everywhere for places to post, to get it to a "broader" audience. Of course there were pages, like BookBub, but sadly that wasn't in the budget, nor did I have the time, since the sale was already in effect. On top of that, I was shocked to find that there were no pages on Facebook to promo your book. Of course there were blogger pages, author pages, and bookstore pages, but nothing directly for a FREE or .99 day. So, I created one.

   My goal, with the FB and Twitter pages attached to it, is to reach a very broad audience. Not just authors, but also avid readers and "random" readers. So that is why I'm here. I'm hoping for the assistance of blog readers ... for not only likes and follows, but also for spreading the word!

   Do you realize that right now you could take your $10 book budget and "shop" on the page, and between .99 and FREE books, you could easily get 12 books and be under budget? Awesome, right?! 

So here's what I'm going to do. Every person that goes and "likes" the page, follows on Twitter, and posts "Great idea!" will be entered for one of three ebook copies of the anthology! Here's the links:

Twitter: @Freeto99book

   Thank you!



Friday, April 26, 2013

Book Blast and Twitter Party: Beyond the Iron Gate

Enter below for you chance to win!

$25 Amazon Gift Card, Tote Bag, Rubber bracelets (2), Handmade beaded necklace and earrings set, Keychain, Autographed postcard and bookmark, Magnets, Series trading cards

Chat LIVE with Alicia Michaels
Saturday, April 27 at 2 pm ET
(use for easy access to the party)
Connect with the author: website  *  Twitter  *  Facebook 

In the year 1845, before the mystical land of Fallada was separated from the realm of men forever, the two worlds coexisted in harmony. Man could mingle freely in the world of the Elves and Faeries at will and peace reigned.

In the hills of Shropshire, England, just miles from the gate separating the village of Ludlow from the world of mystical creatures, farmer's daughter Zara Wells longs for answers. It is not only the golden hair that trail feet behind her, or the strange hue of her violet eyes that separates her from the other girls her village. There is something inside of her, something touched by magic that longs to know more about what lies on the other side of the gate.

In Fallada, darkness has begun to spread. As the youngest and most beautiful girls of her village begin to disappear, Zara comes closer to discovering the true circumstances surrounding her birth. Little does she know, that the closer she comes to the answers she so desperately desires, the closer she will come to being ensnared in the dark queen's web of growing treachery.

Buy the book at Amazon!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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



Thursday, April 25, 2013

Author Spotlight: Stacey Rourke

Welcome back! Today I have the pleasure of welcoming fellow author and friend Stacey Rourke! She's also my publisher, which makes her my boss, so I need to be on my best behavior. In case you don't know about this talented lady, she has an AMAZING YA series called the Gryphon Series that I LOVE. She just put out the third book called Sacrifice.

Stacey is not only one of my Author Spotlight repeat offenders - she was actually the very first guest in my Author Spotlight series, where I reviewed Embrace - book two of her fab series and officially dubber her "The Queen of the Cliff-Hangers."  You can read all about it here.

So let's talk about Sacrifice!

Celeste Garrett has finally found a happy balance in her life as the Chosen One, thanks in large part to a certain hunky Irishman. But if there's any lesson she should heed since receiving her calling it's that everything can change in the blink of an eye. Soon a terrible new threat, unlike anything she's ever encountered, causes her to make a gut-wrenching choice that will strip her of someone she holds dear. As much as she'd like to have a pity party for one, there's no time for that now because wedding bells are ringing in Gainesboro! In between dress fittings and rehearsal dinners Celeste will have to fend off attacking demons and leering pirates. As if the Dark Army wasn't scary enough our heroine is faced with the horrifying trauma of attending a bachelorette party with her mom and watching Grams do Jello shots. Is a walk down the aisle even possible for a member of the Garrett family when the Dark Army is out to destroy them? More importantly, will the Dark Army Glee Club sing at the reception? Raise your glass to the happy couple, and get ready for a wedding...Conduit-style.


5 Stars: 

In this story, preparations are on for Alaina & Gabe's big day. There are several sacrifices throughout the story, but the main one involves Celeste's boyfriend Caleb. That's all I'm going to tell you, as any more will give the story away, but I will tell you this: Sacrifice is my favorite book of the series to date. The struggles, both internal and external, between good and evil are what pulls this amazing book. In my review of the second book, Embrace, I had been looking for answers as to what happened to Alec. Sacrifice begins to answer those questions (thank you!) Of course, like all good continuing series, even more questions are posed.

Stacey Rourke once again writes the perfect mixture of humor, action, adventure, sarcasm, & romance. To round it all off, of course, she's got her trademark cliff hanger ending. If you haven't started reading the Gryphon Series yet .. What are you waiting for?


Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012.

Stacey Rourke is the author of the Gryphon Series. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant, drooly dogs. Stacey loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. She is currently hard at work on the continuations of this series as well as other literary projects.

Social Media Links
Facebook at
Twitter @Rourkewrites.

Pick up your copy!



Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Unhappily Ever After: Fairy Tales With A Twist

My publishers have just put out this fabulous anthology and they have a surprise for you:

Hey, guess what? The Anchor Group anthology will be on sale from April 21st to the 27th. What is Unhappily Ever After; Fairy Tales with a Twist you ask? Good question.


Fairy tales have a happy ending ... or do they? In this
anthology of short stories we learn that sometimes happily ever after misses the mark. From Rumpelstiltskin's Ghost, to an unhappily married Snow White, or the little known Eighth Dwarf to Jack's poor decision making skills. Sit back and enjoy these lesser known fairy tales as told by some of today's hottest

Buy Links:


Barnes and Noble

Rafflecopter Giveaway:

What you can win:

This snazzy shoe tape dispenser, since every princess needs a slipper. A two-pack of sleep masks, since every princess needs her beauty sleep. Various bookmarks and donated swag. A paperback copy of Unhappily Ever After; Fairy Tales with a Twist. And a few added suprises!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Book Blast: By My Side

Talk about an intense, in-your-face, emotionally charged read! By My Side by Stephanie Witter is that and more!
~ Dianne, Tome Tender

I absolutely loved this story of love, loss, heartache and so much more.  
~ Melissa Ringsted,

Lily Saunders sees her family falling apart. Her father is deserting her, and her mother is drinking more and more. Even sarcasm can't help Lily. When she thinks her best friend, Andy Green, will help her, she discovers how his blinding jealousy will mess everything up.

And then Gabe Green comes back home. She thinks it'll be like always between them sarcasms and curses thrown at each other but she's mistaken. He's different, and understands right away the problems she's trying to keep for herself. 

But even if he's there for her, making her fall hard, they both know it'll end soon. Because at their age, you can't expect forever. Right?

Buy the book at Amazon!

Enter the Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Author Spotlight: Lauren Clark

Hi everyone - it's that time again! This week we have a fabulous author who I truly admire - Lauren Clark.  I love all of her books and just wish she would write faster! Like many of the authors I spotlight here, Lauren and I met in an author group on Facebook and became friends. We're even cooking up a little cross-promotion surprise later this year (Here's a hint - it involves pie. That's all I'm saying!)

Lauren's newest release Stardust Summer, is fabulous. Here is my review:

5 Stars
When single mom Grace Mason learns of her father's death, she packs up herself and her 8 year old son  for a visit to his home on a lake in upstate NY - despite the fact that she hadn't spoken with her dad or stepmother for years. Her intention was to stay for a short visit and then get on with her life back down south. However, it seems that her plans were not meant to be. 

This is a truly touching story with wonderfully written and endearing characters. Having briefly lived on the finger lakes in upstate NY myself, this book brought back so many memories. I felt I was right there with them at times. 

Stardust Summer is a sweet story about family, regrets, relationships, love, healing, and second chances. A great read!

And since Stardust Summer is about a Grace's trip with her son, Lauren was kind enough to write a guest post for us today about vacations:

Vacation Fun for A Few Dollars

My latest novel, Stardust Summer, takes place in Upstate New York on the shores of Keuka Lake. The area is a fabulous vacation spot, and features a plethora of Inexpensive activities for families and couples alike.

When I was a child visiting Keuka Lake every summer, my parents sent us outside to play all day—with a few water toys and our imaginations. As a result, I have great memories of swimming, skiing, and skipping rocks along the water, then watching the stars and talking during evenings around the campfire.

So, if your family is planning a getaway, but your budget doesn't stretch very far, consider heading outdoors for some quality time together. I’ve put together a list of my boys' favorite activities to help get you started.

1. Plan a picnic. Grab your picnic basket and head to the nearest park for an outdoor lunch. Plan ahead with fresh fruit, homemade cookies, and easy sandwich wraps for a easy family outing. Don't forget to pack the Frisbee and a kick ball.

2. Go to the Library. Pick out five "new to you" books and spend a lazy afternoon reading outside. Consider checking out a book about the history of the region your visiting. Take turns reading chapters aloud and talk about the books over dinner.

3. Have a water balloon fight. Your family will enjoy cooling off together. Many toy companies have created small, inexpensive devices that allow you to easily fill and tie water balloons.

4. Play in the rain. Put on your favorite rain boots and go puddle jumping together. If it's really warm outside (and not thundering!), fill up a kiddie pool and get splashing while the drops come down!

5. Go Camping. Even if you set up camp in your own backyard, it will be an adventure your kids will remember. Don’t forget the marshmallows, chocolate, and graham crackers. Have the entire family search for dry twigs for kindling and long roasting sticks for the s'mores!

6. Bird watch. Check out books from the library on local birdlife. Grab some binoculars and spend some family time learning about our feathered friends. Be sure and smell the flowers along the way. Pick a bouquet to take home.

7. Host an outdoor movie night. Set up a projector screen in your backyard for a family friendly movie night under the stars. Invite the neighbors or just cuddle up under blankets with some homemade popcorn and lemonade.

8. Fly a kite. Make and decorate your own kite out of common household items like fabric, paper, plastic, and ribbon. There are many tutorials online with instructions; here's just one: HomemadeSimple.

9. Start a family rock collection. Collect a few pebbles and keep them in a vase as a reminder of your family time together. Pick up some tempera paint from a craft or dollar store and have your children decorate the rocks. Use them as paperweights or make a display in your home.

10. Visit a national or state park. You'll find the listings online. Google "Parks" or "Recreation" along with your state's name. (i.e.:  New York's website is Some parks are completely free and many offer free days.

Which are your favorite outside activities from childhood or things you do now with your own family? Please share your favorite free or inexpensive outdoor adventures!

Lauren Clark is the author of Stardust Summer, Stay Tuned, and Dancing Naked in Dixie. A former TV news anchor, Lauren adores flavored coffee, local book stores, and anywhere she can stick her toes in the sand. Her big loves are her family, paying it forward, and true-blue friends.

Lauren is a member of the Gulf Coast Writers Association, the Mobile Writers Guild, and a regular contributor to Parents & Kids Magazine's Mississippi Gulf Coast Edition. Check out her website at

Thank you Lauren!! And now - Lauren has graciously agreed to give away two copies of the digital version of Stardust Summer! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Thursday, April 11, 2013

Author Spotlight: Rachel Thompson

Hey all - thanks for hanging out today! Did you all enjoy my story about Frank the other day? (You can catch up here) Well - I was going to make him my assistant - I SO desperately need one, but my six year old decided he wanted to keep him for himself. Kids!

Anyway - it doesn't matter, because even without an assistant, I've got a GREAT author to tell you about today!! She is not only a best-selling author, but she is also a social media guru. I have learned TONS from this woman, and I'm so excited to have her here today in the spotlight.

Hi Rachel! You're newest release, Broken Pieces, is amazing! Tell everyone about it:
This is my most intensive work to date.
Broken Pieces is a work of nonfiction essays, poetry, and prose where I open my soul and invite you in for a visit. It's vulnerable, it's raw honesty, it's no-holds barred. This is the first book I've published where I questioned if readers and reviewers would respond favorably due to the serious nature of the work.
And yet, they have.
Most readers know me as the funny girl, but this work (hinted at in A Walk In The Snark), shows that I can go into those long buried rooms, the ones we lock up deep inside, and share.
These stories were there. I simply had to wait until my brain caught up.

Yes - I think you caught so many of us off-guard who are used to your humorous side. What inspired you to write this book?
After writing two humor books, I just didn’t have it in me to dive into more humor. All these stories were brimming inside and I decided to just let them out. It was time. I’m not a religious person, but I do strongly believe the universe sends us message we either choose to embrace or ignore.

I completely agree. What's next for you?
I’m noodling ideas for Broken Pieces 2 (not the actual title so you may breathe now), along with the third humor book in the Chronicles of Snark ☺, as well as an erotic romance, as well as a social media/author marketing book based on my business articles.

Ha! You sound like me! Hopefully, you're much better at multi-tasking than I am! When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’ve been writing since I was ten years old. But as a professional writer? When I published my first book. The process of writing a book and working with an editor is an amazing, but there’s nothing like hitting PUBLISH the first time.

Yes! I always expect flashing disco lights and confetti to come down from the ceiling or something when I click on that publish button - Is that just me? Okay, let's move on. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk? 
I like the room dark and music on.

On to one of my favorite subjects - covers! Do people judge a book by its cover? Who makes yours?
You bet. I love the covers of all my books, but the cover of Broken Pieces seems to really resonate with people as well as capture the vulnerability of the work. Natasha Brown did that particular cover and I can’t recommend her highly enough.

What is the best advice any one has ever given you?
It wasn’t until I read this writing quote from author Lorrie Moore: ‘Write something you’d never show your mother or father,’ that I finally gave myself permission to write the hard stuff. I’m a grown up. I don’t have to ask my parent’s permission to write naughty words, about sex, or gritty, realism.

Great advice and something I'm actually struggling with myself. So, what is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I took eight years of classical piano. Now I mostly play Beatles songs and plunk out Tori Amos (whose songs are really hard, by the way). I read music but can pick out any melody by ear and play it. It’s a gift lol.

We've got a piano that nobody plays, but it looks nice lol! I've always wanted to play (and love Tori also). My grandmother could play by ear. It is definitely a gift. So now the true test: PC or Mac? MacBook Air, iPad, iPhone. Apple fan here.

Phew - you passed! And even more important: Coffee or Tea? Coffee, though I will suffer through iced tea if threatened.

Awesome - we can still be friends. What is one thing that you could not live without?
I can’t pick! My children. And vodka. Chocolate. Coffee. Okay, my husband. (He won’t see this, right?)

No nutella on the list? I thought for sure that would be there! How about this one: If you could have a superpower what would it be?
Cleaning and cooking without burning.

Ugh - the C words. I avoid both at all costs! Anything additional you want to share with the readers? If you’re looking for some light reading, Broken Pieces isn’t it. If you want a peek into one woman’s journey from childhood sexual abuse to recovery, pick up a copy.

 Indeed. Speaking of Broken Pieces, I had the opportunity to read it. Here is my review:

5 Stars Powerful & Emotional

Author, Rachel Thompson lets her soul loose in this beautifully written collection of essays that show true raw emotion. There are stories of love, sorrow, and healing in this courageous testimony. Kudos to the author for so eloquently expressing such powerful emotions in what was obviously a very difficult time of her life. Guaranteed to touch your heart.

About Rachel Thompson:

Rachel Thompson aka RachelintheOC is a published author and social media consultant. Her three books, A Walk In The Snark, The Mancode: Exposed and Broken Pieces are all #1 Kindle bestsellers! When not writing, she helps authors and other professionals with branding and social media for her company, BadRedheadMedia. She hates walks in the rain, running out of coffee, and coconut. Buy Now : A Walk in the Snark * Mancode: Exposed * Broken Pieces

Connect with Rachel online:

Thanks for stopping by Rachel!



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