Posted in reviews

Alter Ego: The Other Me, Issue 1: A Superhero Detective Mystery (The Alter Ego Series) by David Terruso Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A private eye gets the job he’s been waiting for when he’s hired to find the identity of a hero he bears a grudge against, but soon discovers there’s much more to the story than he could have ever imagined in author David Terruso’s “Alter Ego: The Other Me, Issue 1: A Superhero Detective Mystery (The Alter Ego Series)”. 

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The Synopsis

Would you help kill the world’s only superhero if the price were right?

For a split second, everyone on the planet was plunged into silent darkness. That night, a masked man dressed all in blue first soared across the Centro sky…

Self-centered sleuth Chris Club gets hired to uncover Blue’s secret identity. Club despises Blue because he failed to save a child Club considered his only friend.

Club’s psychopathic boss wants to kill Blue—not for some grand scheme, just to make the whole world sad.

The invulnerable superhero with the decapitating uppercut has no reflection, only comes out at night, and never leaves the Centro city limits.

As Club unravels the mind-bending truth about who and what Blue is, he starts to care about him. And he realizes if he doesn’t turn his back on his boss, Blue’s blood won’t be the only blood on his hands.

Half novel. Half graphic novel. A visual mystery you’ll obsess over, told in a way you’ve never seen before. Issue 1 in an 8-issue series.

The Review

A fantastic concept and execution, the author has created a unique world where reality has come face to face with the world of superheroes, as the world’s first and only superhero mysteriously appears. Club is an interesting figure, who acts as the struggling protagonist with his own mysterious past. 

The writing itself was unique in delivery, in that the traditional graphic novel was abandoned for a mixture of original written word interspersed with singular images on the bottoms of each page, allowing the words and images to tell their own stories separately as well as forming the core storyline overall. 

The only criticism I would share is what would also give this book a viewer discretion advisory. The storyline sees the protagonist forming a bond with a young teen girl involved in the case, and he begins to get sucked into her own personal story and mystery herself. However the story has the air of a romantic interest between the teen girl and the older protagonist, something that the author notes at the beginning of the novel that they don’t condone, and will show not everything is as it seems later on in the series. However there is one scene in particular that I won’t go into detail with, but for a storytelling perspective I might have nixed altogether as the buildup to the scene didn’t appear. Other than that the story itself managed to build past that and delve more into the mystery of both characters nicely. 

The Verdict

Overall a great storyline with fantastic artwork, complex characters and a world full of mystery. Definitely an adult graphic novel series, this book is vast and the author does an amazing job of world and myth building in this first issue of the series. I very much look forward to seeing where the series goes from here, so be sure to grab your copies today. 

Rating: 8/10

https://www.alteregoblue.com/

https://amzn.to/2Tbln4l

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Dave Terruso.

I’m a mystery novelist and professional stand up comedian based in Philadelphia.

My debut novel, Cube Sleuth, was published by Full Fathom Five Digital. It has 4.5 stars on Amazon.

As a stand up, I’ve opened for acts including Richard Lewis, Gilbert Gottfried, Dana Gould, Tim Meadows, Colin Quinn, and Maria Bamford.

I’ve been featured on the RISK! Podcast, episode 350 Out of Bounds.

I’m the co-founder of Philly Sketchfest, an international comedy festival now in its 12th year.

And my social media links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DaveTWriter/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/alteregoblue/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DavidTerruso

Posted in reviews

Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction by Sarah Dickinson

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A couple tells their story of love and addiction through passionate love letters in author Sarah Dickinson’s “Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction”.

The Synopsis

Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction takes an intimate and raw look at the current face of addiction and recovery. Talking about the current opioid epidemic, we follow a young couple while one of them goes through the recovery process. Told through letters, we get an understanding of their relationship as it struggles through his addiction and resulting recovery. From detox, rehab, sober living and the 12 steps of A.A, you get a raw and honest look at the effects of addiction and how they affect relationships.

AUTHOR NOTE: There is explicit and graphic content.

The Review

A wonderfully written book, the author has done a marvelous job of creating a realistic and emotional story of love, addiction and the pain that comes with it.

The story really does a fantastic job of showcasing the painful reality of both sides of addiction, from the addicts struggle to overcome the addiction to the loved ones who must struggle to support their loved ones and the hope they must hold that they will overcome their need.

The Verdict

A powerful story and evenly paced novel, this book is a must read fiction of a very real problem in our world. If you haven’t yet be sure to grab your copies today!

Rating: 10/10

Print Length: 380 Pages

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Publisher: Independently Published

ISBN-13: 978-1717868947

ISBN-10: 1717868940

Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction is now available to purchase at Amazon.com.

About the Author, Sarah Dickinson

Sarah Dickinson is a lifelong resident in beautiful upstate New York. Mother of two amazing daughters and three equally awesome rescue dogs, she is the author of Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. She currently attends college and is in the midst of switching careers. When she isn’t doing it all, she reads comic books, blogs, and takes weekend getaways.

You can find the author online at:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Silver-Spoons-Ones-Journey-Through-Addiction-916257075228829/

Blog: https://wordpress.com/stats/day/sarahvdickinson.art.blog 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sarahdauthor/

Goodreads Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19325669.Sarah_Dickinson

— Blog Tour Dates

January 27th @ The Muffin

What goes better in the morning than a muffin? Visit our blog today and you can read an interview with the author of Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction and also enter to win a copy of the book!

http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com

January 28th @ 12 Books

Stop by Louise’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

www.12books.co.uk

January 29th @ Joyful Antidotes

Make sure you visit Joy’s blog today and read her review of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://www.joyfulantidotes.com

January 30th @ 12 Books

Visit Louise’s blog again where you can review Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about 5 reasons why you should consider a change in lifestyle.

www.12books.co.uk

February 1st @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Make sure you visit Anthony’s blog today where he shares a spotlight of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 2nd @ A Storybook World

Deirdra will be highlighting Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction with a spotlight post.

http://www.astorybookworld.com/

February 3rd @ Jill Sheets’ Blog

Visit Jill’s blog today and read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about 5 reasons to consider a change in your relationships.

http://jillsheets.blogspot.com/

February 4th @ Coffee with Lacey

Join Lacey over at her blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://coffeewithlacey.com/

February 10th @ To Write or Not to Write

Visit Varsha’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://sreevarshasreejith.blogspot.com/

February 10th @ StoreyBook Reviews

Make sure to visit Leslie’s blog today and check out an excerpt of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://storeybookreviews.com/

February 12th @ The Faerie Review

Visit Lily’s blog today and read her review of the powerful book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

http://www.thefaeriereview.com/

February 13th @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Visit Anthony’s blog again where you can read a guest post by author Sarah Dickinson. Make sure you check out her easy self-care tips to add to your daily routine.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 14th @ Jessica Belmont’s Blog

Visit Jessica’s blog today and you can read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

February 16th @ And So She Thinks

Make sure you visit Francesca’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. You can also read an interview with the author!

https://andsoshethinks.wordpress.com/

February 18th @ Choices

Visit Madeline’s blog and you can read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about how to be self-aware in your writing.

http://madelinesharples.com/

February 19th @ It’s Alanna Jean

Make sure you visit Alanna’s blog and read a guest post by Sarah Dickinson called, “5 Reasons to Consider a Change in Career.”

http://ItsAlannaJean.wordpress.com

February 20th @ The Frugalista Mom

Visit Rozelyn’s blog today and you can read her review of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction by Sarah Dickinson. Also, win a copy for yourself too!

https://thefrugalistamom.com/

February 21st @ The  Frugalista Mom

Stop by Rozelyn’s blog today and you can read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about how to raise a confident (but not arrogant) child.

https://thefrugalistamom.com/

February 23rd @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Stop by Anthony’s blog and you can read his review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. 

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 24th @ Armed with a Book

Visit Kriti’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://www.armedwithabook.com/

February 25th @ Armed with a Book

Make sure you visit Kriti’s blog again when she interviews the author Sarah Dickinson.

https://www.armedwithabook.com/

Posted in reviews

The Little Bookshop on the Seine by Rebecca Raisin

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A small-town woman takes a chance and finds adventure and possibly herself in Paris in author Rebecca Raisin’s novel “The Little Bookshop on the Seine”. 

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The Synopsis

Le Vie En Rose

Bookshop owner Sarah Smith has been offered the opportunity to exchange bookshops with her new Parisian friend for 6 months! And saying yes is a no-brainer – after all, what kind of a romantic would turn down a trip to Paris? Even if it does mean leaving the irresistible Ridge Warner behind, Sarah’s sure she’s in for the holiday of a lifetime – complete with all the books she can read!

Picturing days wandering around Shakespeare & Co, munching on croissants, sipping café au laits and people-watching on the Champs-Elysees Sarah boards the plane. But will her dream of a Parisian Happily-Ever-After come true? Or will Sarah realise that the dream isn’t quite as rosy in reality…

The Review

A charming and inviting story for any book lover and reader out there, author Rebecca Raisin has created a beautiful story that immediately brings the reader deeper and deeper into the narrative. The characters are relatable and the author does a marvelous job of showcasing a steady evolution of the protagonist throughout the story as Sarah attempts to find her voice and who she truly is along the way. 

What really stands out however is the imagery used throughout the novel. The city of Paris has never felt more alive, from the iconic landmark of the Eifel Tower to the steps of Notre Dame and beyond. It is a well written and eloquently told story that readers will not be able to put down. 

The Verdict

A must read women’s fiction and holiday romance tale, author Rebecca Raisin’s “The Little Bookshop on the Seine” is a phenomenal read that is evenly paced and engaging throughout the entirety of the narrative. If you haven’t yet, grab your copies today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Rebecca Raisin is the author of several novels, including the beloved Little Paris series and the Gingerbread Café trilogy, and her short stories have been published in various anthologies and fiction magazines. You can follow Rebecca on Facebook, and at www.rebeccaraisin.com

Buy Links: 

Harlequin 

Indiebound

Amazon

Barnes & Noble 

Books-A-Million

Target 

Walmart

Google

iBooks

Kobo

Social Links:

Author Website

Twitter: @JaxandWillsMum

Facebook: @RebeccaRaisinAuthor

Instagram: @RebeccaRaisinWrites

Goodreads

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Q&A with Rebecca Raisin

Q: Have you ever been to Paris?  If so, what are some of your favorite Parisian things?

A: I’ve been lucky enough to go Paris four times and do a bit of exploring for the books. It’s my favourite city in the world and if I could up and move I’d do it! I love the bookshops of Paris, particularly the secondhand shops that are dusty and musty and disorderly. You never know what you’ll find and that makes it magical. If you’re in Paris find the Abbey Bookshop, it’s full to bursting with English books and it’s a treasure trove if you have time to hunt! I also love French food – who doesn’t?! My favourite place to eat is the Christian Constant bistros. He has one for every budget and they’re all glorious. If you splurge once, I highly recommend it’s there. 

The Ritz is also a must-see, from Bar Hemingway to Salon Proust, it’s an experience like no other walking in the footsteps of those literary greats. Buly 1803 is the most beautiful perfume shop in all the world, it’s like stepping back in time. My favourite is the rose oil… ooh la la. And holding a special place in my heart is Point Zero Paris, the exact centre of the city and a place where magic happens – you’ll have to read the book to find out more…

Q: What authors were/are a huge influence on you as you began writing?  Or Now?

A: I have always loved Maeve Binchy and Joanne Harris and the style in which they write. I love Maeve’s ability to write everyday relatable characters, and I love Joanne’s sense of whimsy. I love writing foodie books set in exotic locations and I think I probably fell in love with France through Joanne’s books, they managed to transport me fully and I must’ve reread them a hundred times by now. 

Q: What’s some of your favorite novels? What are you currently reading and what’s on your TBR (to be read) list?

A: I loved Me Before You. I cried ugly, ugly tears at that. I must be a sucker for punishment because my all time favourite is The Fault in Our Stars. And also Rohinton Mistry’s A Fine Balance. Three books that you need to read in the privacy of your own home with some cucumber slices to apply after for puffy eyes! I’m currently reading the Seven Sisters series by Lucinda Riley, so a nice change of pace from sobbing my heart out. I love how different each sister is and how you still find common ground with them. 

Q: What inspired you to write your The Little Bookshop on the Siene?

A: My love of Paris and its bookshops! And truthfully, I wangled the family there so I could do some ‘research’ which included eating my body weight in macarons and walking until I couldn’t feel my feet anymore and feeling that I was a little bit French on the inside if only the locals could see that! 

Q: What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

A: I hope you do something reckless, something that scares you, jump out of that comfort zone and do that thing you’ve always dreamed of! What’s stopping you – fear, money, work, life? You can make it happen if only you take the plunge! Open yourself to new experiences and people and don’t take the taxi, walk until your feet are numb and find those lost laneways and hidden alleys and see what you find! 

Q: What drew you into this particular genre?

A: I love love, but Little Bookshop is also about another kind of love, the love of a place, or a feeling…writing this genre leaves it open to interpretation and anything goes as long you tie it all up at the end in a satisfying way! 

Q: If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?

A: I’d sit down with bookworm Sarah and ask her what she really thought of Luiz… I am still conflicted about that thread and what I could have done but didn’t!

Q: What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

A: They’ve all been good in different ways but I’d say Facebook is my favourite. I have a great group of people who follow me there and really interact. It’s a nice place to stop and chat and they’re all really lovely. Instagram is good too. I love how creative book bloggers are with their photos, they’re very inspiring to me. 

Q: What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

A: I’ve said this before and it’s really this simple. Write every day. I think it was Stephen King who said writing is like a muscle, the more you use it, the stronger it gets and it’s true! Carve out a time and stick to it. 

Q: What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

A: I’m currently editing Aria’s Travelling Bookshop, which is about a Van Lifer who sells her wares as she explores France! (Are you detecting a pattern here!?) It’s the follow up to Rosie’s Travelling Tea Shop, which was released last March. Both books are about a different way of living, about having less but gaining more as you go. I’ve loved writing Rosie and Aria! 

Posted in Book Promotion

Book Spotlight: The Wolf of Ashford Manor by Toni Cox

The Wolf of Ashford Manor by Toni Cox

Blurb:

The animal within him was never far from the surface, but with her, the wolf was untameable.

Patrick Blakesley, born to a bloodline of werewolves, falls in love with the mysteriously shy, yet ravishingly beautiful daughter of his new employer – the Lord of Ashford Manor.

When the town of Ashford is besieged by a sudden spate of murders, suspicions fall on Patrick, for he has been discovered for the beast that he is.

Although forced to go into hiding, it does not stop Patrick from pursuing his love for Angelica. Shacked up in an old boat shed, they discover pleasures such as only forbidden fruits can yield.

As Patrick discovers all that Angelica has to offer, the brutal murders continue.

Are they strong enough together to discover the true beast and tame it, before all of humanity perishes before its wrath?

A steamy paranormal romance that merges romance, thriller, mystery, and the paranormal.

Amazon buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Wolf-Ashford-Manor-Toni-Cox-ebook/dp/B08297961X

GoodReads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49237537-the-wolf-of-ashford-manor

Win:

Rafflecopter

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/8d79443a5/?

Win a $ 10 Amazon gift card + an e-Book copy of Resilient

Excerpt:

Patrick stood at the edge of the precipice of white cliffs, and gazed out over the ocean, staring at the distant continent across the water; the ship he had stepped off earlier was already out of sight. 

Too long had he been away from home. 

He now turned his back on those distant shores, burying deep within the memories of the last three years. He strode out powerfully, his long legs steeled from the years in the war. He had miles to go to Ashford and would not reach it for several days.

There would be inns along the road, and he hoped to find accommodations there for the nights. 

After a good day’s march, Patrick readjusted his weighty satchel and stepped off the rutted road to allow a wagon to pass. The two heavy draught horses snorted uneasily as they went by him. 

He looked up into the sky and realised night would be upon him soon.

“Good sir,” he called out to the driver, “would there be an inn close by?”

“Not for another twenty miles, ‘m ‘fraid.”

The horse nearest to him exhaled nervously, and the driver shifted his attention away from Patrick. 

Stepping back, Patrick cast another heavenward. Wispy clouds sailed across an orange tinged sky as the sun began to set in the west. Soon the moon would rise.

Leaving the driver to calm his horses, Patrick turned away from the road and headed towards the nearby forest. A vein in his neck throbbed at the thought of spending the night within the confines of the dark trees before him.

He walked deep into the woods, well out of sight of the road. At a pebbly creek, he hung his satchel upon a high branch of a tree before slaking his thirst with the cool water.

As the light faded, Patrick gathered firewood and made a fire pit with rocks from the riverbed. He put dry moss and kindling in the centre, and then stacked some logs around it, but he did not light it.

Instead, he removed his clothing, folding it neatly and arranging it next to the fire pit. His

clothes were worn and faded, but clean. Although muscular, his tall body was made of clean lines, long legs and a broad chest. Years of war had made him lean and tough.

Naked, he cast an approving glance over his sparse camp and then walked away from it. Over the years that he had been away, he had learned to control himself. It had not always been easy, and until even a year ago, there were occasions where he could not trust himself. Today, however, he was in control.

Away from his camp, with the moon rising over the forest, his naked body distorted, changing shape with agonising contortions.

Breathing heavily, the werewolf ’s fur bristled in the cool evening air, and he raised his snout to taste the scents on the wind. 

Tonight, he would hunt.

About the author:

Born in Germany in 1976, International Bestselling Author Toni Cox moved to South Africa in 1991. Although she has spent much of her working career in the timber wholesale business, she is also an accomplished horse rider, has a diploma in project management, photography, and nutrition, and has a passion for books and all things fantasy.

From a young age, her dream had always been to put her imagination into words. When she was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in 2013, she decided life is too short not to follow her dream. With the support of her husband and three children, she began writing book 1 of the Elemental Trilogy in January 2015.

Toni Cox writes Epic Fantasy, YA Fantasy, Sci-Fi Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Dystopian Fantasy, Paranormal Fantasy, and Dark Fantasy. She is a firm believer in dragons.

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/ToniCoxAuthor

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/tonicoxelemental

BookBub: http://www.bookbub.com/authors/toni-cox

WordPress: http://www.tonicoxelemental.wordpress.com

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/tonicoxauthor/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/authortonicox

FB Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/toniselementals

Website: http://www.tonicoxauthor.com

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/tonicox

GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/tonicoxauthor

Pinterest: https://za.pinterest.com/tonicoxauthor/

Newsletter: https://www.tonicoxauthor.com/subscribe

Things you might not know: 

I have a cat, named Kitty, who sleeps on my desk whenever I work.

I love dragons and unicorns and collect them in all colours, shapes, and sizes.

I study something new every year – 2020 it is a combination of writing techniques and marketing.

My parents own a Big-5 Safari Lodge in South Africa.

Due to health reasons, I had to become a Vegan and eat only gluten-free meals.

Posted in reviews

Chronomancer and the Time God Book 1: Death of a Paradise by James Meadows III Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A world divided by long fought wars is threatened once more by an ancient evil, and one young sorcerer might be the answer the world needs to stopping this threat in author James Meadows III’s novel “Chronomancer and the Time God Book 1: Death of a Paradise”. 

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The Synopsis

“Evil times haunted Zarethea.” So, the bard’s tale begins…Over a millennium since the God Wars ended, the world of Zarethea remains a battle ground. Though the gods no longer walk the land, their discordant theocracies continue the war the deities once started. 

The Chronomancer, a mysterious sorcerer of unknown origin, threatens to plunge the world into a state of chaos and bloodshed by reviving Rael, the dark god of time. Aleister, a young sorcerer from the magical kingdom of Mystas, finds himself tasked with preventing Rael’s return and saving the war-torn world. To succeed, he must lead three rival priests of warring theocracies on a mission to reach the mythical city of Cockaigne. 

Along the way, he must somehow prevent the kleptomaniac priest of freedom from robbing the party blind, restore the confidence of the fallen paladin of order, and help the peaceful priestess of neutrality discover her inner strength.Yet, it is inside Cockaigne, the mysterious paradise of eternal youth and joy, where Aleister’s true test awaits. For beneath its seemingly peaceful façade dwells a divine evil which even Aleister’s powers may not be enough to stop. 

The Review

This is a strong first entry in a fantastic fantasy series. The author has created a YA fantasy series that immediately captures the reader’s attention by making the story being told the stuff of legends in the world the author has created. 

While the author has done a marvelous job of creating memorable characters and a story that readers will easily be able to devour once they get their hands on this book, the author’s true strength in this novel is in the imagery used to give the reader a sense of the world they are stepping into and the world-building itself. 

The mythology and lore created and established by the author feels natural and inviting for fantasy fans, and the use of political and religious division to highlight how we often divide ourselves from one another when the true threat knows no religion or politics that can get in its way is a brilliant storytelling device that will make the fantasy genre-driven narrative feel fresh and inviting. 

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The Verdict

A brilliant read that captures the mind and keeps readers invested throughout, Chronomancer and the Time God Book 1: Death of a Paradise by James Meadows III is a magnificent novel that fantasy and YA fans will not want to miss. A book that feels almost cinematic in its delivery, readers will not be able to get enough of this book as it promises to deliver the opening chapter to a fantastic new series in the final pages of this novel. Be sure to grab your copies today!

Rating: 10/10

https://amzn.to/2OX8dFw

Posted in Interviews

Interview with Author Joshua Stelling

1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?  

The world needs storytellers.  It’s no exaggeration that we live in strange times, and the direction we take matters, for so many generations after us.  Sci-fi authors are daydreamers, wondering what comes next.  If we take this path, or another, do we choke or thrive, enslaved to the machine or learning to swim?  At Arch & Gravity Publishing we don’t believe in macguffins.  If there’s a doomsday device in our book, it has a function, a purpose and a theory.  And there is a real chance it might go off.  If there’s science, we’re not going to dumb it down for you.  And where there’s a story, there’s a reason why.  I published my first work in the elementary school library in first grade, about a giant frog keeping people as pets, and I’ve been fascinated by character, plot, drama, science and philosophy all my life.  We desperately need storytellers, characters and paradigms that might shine a light for our times.  If I can be a part of that tradition, it would be no less than a dream fulfilled.

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2) What inspired you to write your book?  

Halcyon is a city in Spain, in the future, run by psychic computers.  Basically it’s a utopian vision, fifty years off, in a post-economic world where the laws have been stripped to rights, people don’t need to work and are free to do what they want.  The Genex are genetically extended.  Some have wings.  Exploring the lives of the ensemble cast, we get a city in the throes of climate change, a love triangle stronger than death, competitive laser duels, and a mute who may defy time, among other things.  Genex of Halcyon is the first publication by Arch & Gravity, Denver’s new voice in science fiction.  I suppose, in short, I am inspired by the hole I see in the world, where these ideas could belong.

3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?  

Nothing we do is going to be ordinary, no story we print is going to be safe.  That’s our promise to the reader.  Genex of Halcyon is about the wildly different world that could be right around the corner, as we potentially come of age technologically.  It’s about science fiction that isn’t afraid to push boundaries and expect something of its readers.  Mostly of course it’s a love story, but it’s really all about the characters, the choices they make, and those they choose to forsake.  I hope readers come away from Genex of Halcyon, thoughtful and imaginative, with something new and unique on their minds.

4) What drew you into this particular genre?  

I’ve been a fan of science fiction and poetry for as long as I can remember.  I revere creativity and intelligence, and am very curious about the future.  I’ve been influenced by Wells, Gaiman, Stephenson, LeGuin, Vandermeer, Burgess, Huxley and Bradbury, but there’s no denying some Thoreau in there, even Shakespeare, and definitely Neruda and Coelho.

5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?  

Azad, Harmony’s brother, the mute.  I would just ask him, “What are you thinking?”

6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?  

Arch & Gravity has a following on Facebook that is about 4k strong, as of this writing.  Look us up and join the conversation!  We’re also active on Instagram, and I’m in the process of starting a WordPress blog for reviews and announcements as well.  www.ArchandGravity.com is a great hub for exploring what we’re doing.

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7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?  

Take your time, but keep going.  My spirit animal, depending on the day, is either a wolf or a tortoise.  Self Reliance and Perseverance.  These will get you there.  And don’t be afraid to write the story you really have to tell.  The world needs characters, drama and real imagination far more than we need another successful, formulaic series, imho.  It’s going to be hard, but any story that is not even a little dangerous to the teller, probably isn’t worth the time.

8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?  

I’m currently hard at work on my next novel, about a young Korean girl with a katana and a connection to an ancient force, as well as an epic, years in the making, detailing a far future on a distant planet, where the star’s radiation brings out latent psychic powers in the castaway colonists, where their dreams come to life around them, as with their nightmares.  Beyond this I have two short collaborations in the works with a Denver production company, and a board game soon to hit Kickstarter.  Look for Quin, which you might think of as a hybrid between Chess and Stratego, loosely based on principles of Optics and Quantum Mechanics, to go live on Kickstarter sometime this fall, published by Arch & Gravity.

About the Author

Joshua Stelling is a poet and music lover who has spent a lot of his time running record stores around Denver, building his own art on the side. In time, the stories inside the man have boiled over, becoming worlds, and his pages turned into books. Combining hard sci-fi and adult fiction with a fluent love of metaphor and poetry, his work will challenge you but leave you wanting more.

www.ArchandGravity.com

Posted in Interviews

Interview with Michael J Bowler

Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?

I always loved reading and telling stories to others, even as a young child. For years, as I lay awake at night, I played out in my mind new chapters of an ongoing serialized supernatural story that I wish I’d written down at the time, because I no longer recall any specifics. But I did write short stories in elementary school and continued through high school and beyond, so I guess writing was always in my blood.

What inspired you to write your book?

I kept returning to this idea of a character who somehow knew when others would die. In some of my iterations, the character used the power for evil, but ultimately I decided that readers, especially teens, should see a character who doesn’t want this ability, but who will never abuse it. That old line from Spiderman infused my thinking while crafting the story: “With great power comes great responsibility.” I think my main character learns this truth during the course of the story.

What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

I’d say there are several themes. 1. Nothing’s written in stone – the choices we make guide our destiny. 2. People are not always what they appear to be on the outside, so don’t be so quick to judge or label them. 3. Doing the right thing can often be complicated.

What drew you into this particular genre?

I’ve spent my life working with children and teens as a teacher and volunteer, so it’s only natural I’d gravitate towards stories about and for that demographic. I’ve also always loved mysteries and thriller/horror tales, so melding the two was a no-brainer for me.

If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?

I would ask Leo this question: As you go through life, how often do you think you’ll be tempted to look into the eyes of people you care about to either warn them of the day and time or help them elude death like you did with J.C.?

What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

I don’t have as large a readership as I’d like, but I’d say Instagram and Twitter have gotten me the most attention. I’ve found Facebook mostly useless in marketing books for teens.

What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

I used to say “write what makes you happy,” but based on the nature of publishing today, I’d suggest writing a book that’s in a similar vein to titles that have proven themselves to be popular in the marketplace because you’re going to have to produce “comp” titles anyway when you apply to an agent or publisher.

What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

I have two finished and edited books for the teen/young adult market (one is action adventure and the other mystery/sci-fi), as well as an adventure tale aimed at middle grade readers. I’m not certain what will happen with them, but they will hopefully be released one day.

About the Author

Michael J. Bowler is a former teacher, adoptive parent, lifelong child advocate, author of The Lance Chronicles series—books with multi-racial and LGBT characters that deal with significant issues facing American youth today, and Spinner, a horror thriller featuring teens with disabilities as the heroes.  

www.michaeljbowler.com

FB: michaeljbowlerauthor

Twitter: MichaelJBowler

Blog: www.michaeljbowler.com

tumblr:http://michaeljbowler.tumblr.com/

Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6938109.Michael_J_Bowler

Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Michael-J.-Bowler/e/B0075ML4M4/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1417379614&sr=1-1

Web: www.michaeljbowler.com

I Know When You’re Going To Die 

Pre-Order Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07Z48BHH4?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

Apple: https://books.apple.com/us/book/id1484221699

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/i-know-when-you-re-going-to-die

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/i-know-when-youre-going-to-die-michael-j-bowler/1134221152;jsessionid=ACEF0B8A8DBF47B8C52210F233FF2F1F.prodny_store01-atgap15?ean=2940163679256

Posted in Interviews

Interview with Author Abby Ross

1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?

I have always loved writing. When I was a child, I wrote poems, short stories, songs – pretty much anything. I never thought, however, I would write a book. After graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a degree in broadcast journalism, I moved to Fayetteville, Arkansas to work as a bilingual television news reporter for the CBS affiliate. That job began a six-year-long news reporting career. I lived in Davenport, Iowa, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma City, working for local news affiliates. To be honest, when I began that career, I was most excited about being on television. I quickly learned, however, that writing my story every day was my favorite part of the job. I also enjoyed getting out into the communities and interviewing people who had lives and stories that were so different from my own. 

After a while, I wanted a change. So, I moved to New York City and transitioned into public relations. I started working as the Communications Director for a New York State Senator. I then moved to a public relations firm. Once again, my favorite part about the job was writing blog posts, press releases, bylines and pitches. I also enjoyed digging for story ideas – interviewing my clients to uncover interesting stories that deserved to be shared with the world. In 2013, my husband and I were expecting our first son, so we moved to Chicago to be closer to my family. I also landed a job as the Media Relations Manager for a cyber security company. Ever since, I have not looked back. Cyber security is now my specialty, although I have transitioned into a marketing leadership role. My favorite part about marketing is writing. I write bylines, blog posts, client-decks, value propositions, website content, sales enablement materials, mission statements, client emails – pretty much anything that is public or internal-facing. 

“The Poop Diaries” started as a side project. I had a couple hours to myself every Sunday, and wanted to make the most of them. I always believed in the concept of the book, however I never expected to be where I am today! I am so grateful the ten plumbers in the book, and my publisher – Black Rose Writing – took a chance on a first-time author. I hope they are as proud of the book as I am. 

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2) What inspired you to write your book?

A clogged toilet. I realize it sounds strange, but it is true. My toilet clogged on a Wednesday evening. I could not sleep knowing my toilet wasn’t working so I called a plumber, Jon. He fixed the toilet within an hour, however he did not seem in a hurry to leave. He also had an energetic, tell-it-like-it-is personality, which I always appreciate. I asked Jon to share his “greatest hits” stories. I could not believe what came out of his mouth! The stories were so hilarious and surprising, I knew I had to share them with the world. After interviewing Jon and writing his diaries, I sought out to find more plumbers. Considering I was not a published, known author, it was tough getting people to talk to me. Most of the plumbers I found through word of mouth (you’d be surprised how many people know a plumber. And I do not mean someone who works for them. I mean someone’s uncle is a plumber; a friend is a plumber; a friend’s friend is a plumber). My husband found the two female plumbers, Carissa and Jac, by doing an online search. I was ecstatic that they both agreed to participate! The female perspective adds a lot of flavor to the book.

3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

I hope people will realize that being a plumber involves so much more than unclogging toilets. Plumbers are engineers, artists, therapists and friends. As the book describes, they shoo birds out of houses, build beautiful copper puzzles, listen to insecurities and interact with people who spend every day alone. Plumbers encounter all kinds of people, and find some really personal items. They need to be patient, open-minded, and non-judgmental. The trade is also a lucrative, steady career, one that more people should get involved in. Many of the plumbers in the book have second homes and boats. Whether they went to college or not, they have built comfortable lives for themselves and their families. 

I also hope people will think twice about what’s inside their cabinets before a plumber comes over 🙂 I know I do (that is, after writing this book).

4) What drew you into this particular genre?

The genre found me. After listening to Jon’s stories, I knew I had to write this book. At first I was expecting the book to be pure humor. I just wanted to make people laugh. I realized while interviewing the plumbers, however, that their experiences are so much deeper than poop. Humor is woven in throughout the book, but it also dives into more serious aspects of the trade and the plumbers themselves. I open each diary with an introduction about the plumber, and end the chapter with a “Moment of Reflection.” I wanted the plumbers to have the final word. I wanted them to have the opportunity to share whatever thoughts about themselves and their work they thought were important.

5) Out of all the stories told to you, was there one in particular that stood out to you or possibly represents the book as a whole more so than the others?

No. Every plumber’s stories are so different  (with the exception of a couple dildo stories). That’s what I think makes the book so interesting. And I only interviewed ten plumbers. I cannot imagine the other untold stories out there. I also made sure to include a variety of plumbers – different genders, backgrounds and cultures. Diversity is really important when trying to capture the truth. 

6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

I am very active on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. My largest audience is on LinkedIn (due to my professional career). I have been posting about the book so much, people may be getting sick of me. Although I hope not!

Here are my handles:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/crazyplumberstories/?modal=admin_todo_tour

Twitter: @honestab2

Instagram @honestab2

Linked In:https://www.linkedin.com/in/abby-ross/

7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

Persistence is everything. I always believed in my concept. I knew other people would enjoy this book. I just had to (and still have to) find influential individuals who agreed with me. I pitched more than 100 agents and publishers, hoping to land a contract. Finally, one publisher (Black Rose Writing) said “yes.” To write the book, I worked every evening and Sunday. And I am still working. The persistence does not stop. I am now working every night, pitching reviewers, celebrities, agents, influencers – doing whatever I can to get the word out. Believe in your idea, and keep swinging for the fences. 

8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

I am still very focused on marketing this book. I think the book would make a fantastic scripted television series. I am working with a screenwriter in Los Angeles to pitch the concept to producers and agents. We want to build the series off of one of the female plumbers, and weave in everyone else’s stories into her plumbing life. I am also reaching out to influencers and journalists to see if they are interested in reading and writing about the book. Anything I can do to get the word out I am doing. It is much harder as a first-time author to get the word out. Persistence is everything! As far as another book, I have some ideas. If plumbers start reaching out to me with more stories to share I may write a second book. Otherwise, I have ideas cooking. Just need the time to write about them!

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About the Author

Abby Ross has nearly two decades of experience working in journalism, public relations, and marketing. She has written countless news stories, bylines, and blog posts. Abby began her career as a television news reporter, which fostered her passion for interviewing and writing about interesting people from all walks of life. After six years of reporting, Abby pivoted her career into public relations and marketing, which has been her focus for the past decade. This is her first book.

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-poop-diaries-abby-ross/1135167569?ean=9781684334261

Posted in Blog Tours, Guest Post

Guest Blog Post: Self-Care By Sarah Dickinson

 As we tread through the New Year, we find some, if not all, of our resolutions falling by the wayside. However, one doesn’t have to wait till December 31st and the rush of holiday feels and stress to decide to make changes. Any day is a good day to take care of yourself, and one of the best things you can do is introduce some self-care into your life.

  With self-care becoming a growing topic I want to be clear about what it’s not. It isn’t a license to make unhealthy choices or shirk responsibility. It’s not about spending sprees or throwing around money you don’t have. In a world full of consequences, the last thing it should encourage is a bucket full of regrets when you must face the music from your choices.

  Our world is ever -spinning and growing, and ever rushing us from one moment to the next. Self-care is about the pause where you allow yourself to smell the roses, as it were. Where the must crucial aspect is an honest internal dialogue. Taking a few moments to quietly address and asses your needs whether they are emotional, physical or mental. Once you figure out what you are in need of to achieve balance you then select an activity to improve that.

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 So here are some simple things you can do every day to both provide yourself with care as well as opening up dialogue within yourself, so it becomes second nature.

  1. GET MORE SLEEP. Countless studies show that the majority of us are not getting enough sleep. We probably all know better sleep equals better mood, but did you know it also helps prevent weight gain, improves memory, hand eye coordination as well as strengthen your heart? It truly is one of the best things you can give yourself and will help you in making the most of your day. It will make the good days sweeter and provide the strength to get through the bad ones. Yes, despite what many other articles will tell you bad days are sure to be par for the course. There’s no amount of self-help, positive perspective or vitamins that can guarantee a great day every day.
  2. LEAVE YOUR PHONE OFF FOR 1 HOUR. You may wonder how this even applies to self-care. Well, it does, on two levels. Studies show us time and time again that all this technology, social media, and unbound access to more information than any human could every use has a definite downside. It impacts our self-esteem, self-worth, stress levels, concentration, as well as wear down our ability to read most nonverbal cues. Another benefit is this routine time disconnected allows you to reconnect to yourself. You will hear and grow that inner voice that is telling you what it needs. You can spend an hour when you wake up without your phone, or at least an hour before bed. Use this time to read, journal, or even day dream.
  3. TAKE 10-15 MINUTES OUTSIDE. Remember when you were younger and your best days were spent outside, with friends having adventures? Maybe you were on your bikes till the sun went down, or ended the day sitting on a porch with a cold drink or frozen treat. Whatever the case may be, and probably without you realizing it, your mind and body reaped the rewards of the fresh air and the sun shinning on your face. However, the world of adulting leaves us very little time to kick off our shoes and walk through the grass. Endless errands, appointments and responsibilities keep us in our cars, offices, or other building. before we get up to do it all again tomorrow. So, carve out just 10 minutes each day to find your way outside. To feel the sun on your face, the breeze on your skin and the smells that surround you as you take a deep breath.
  4.  SAY NO. I can’t say this enough, we spread ourselves too thin. We may have the best of intentions, but we do. Women more so then men feel the inner conflict of guilt that leads them to agree to things they don’t have the time, funds, or plain interest in doing. We mostly do this to prevent hurt feelings or guilt. There’s only one way I can say this, and that’s bluntly. No matter who they are, no matter what you may have to offer…. they can make it without you. Your involvement alone is not enough to make or break any person’s event or favor. They will get by without you, you need you for every moment of your life. Say yes when you can, or when you want to, but say no when you can’t. Every single time, no matter the reason. 
  5. DO YOU. This is the part that’s different for everyone, but every single day you need to do one thing solely for your own personal joy. It doesn’t matter how many people depend on you, whether it’s at work or home. From children to coworkers there will always be someone you have to make time for. If you are willing to give it to them then there’s no reason to keep it from yourself. It may be getting yourself your favorite treat on your way to work, taking control of the playlist for your commute and singing out loud, or giving yourself a small upgrade when you’re at the store. It can also be the big things once in a while. Like making up a bucket list, spending a day off going on an adventure, buying that outfit you’ve been eyeing, or having a date night once a week at a new restaurant

  I like to tell people that the end of my 30’s marked major changes for me. I became a mother young, and wife even younger. I lived my life for everyone else. My children, husband, parents, friends and any person in between. Then I got in over my head with a person who meant the world to me. Unfortunately, they also suffered from addiction and I found myself being called upon for favor after. The experience of those years led to two major moments. The moment I changed my perspective about almost everything in my life, and the moment I decided to share my story. I learned how to listen to myself. To figure out who I am, what I want and what I need. I also learned how to take all that love, focus, and support I gave to almost everyone and to finally start giving it to myself as well. When I decided to share my story, I spent almost two years writing my novel. Silver Spoons: One’s Journey through Addiction. Despite how many or few copies I may sell I’ve already reaped the benefits of writing it. I saw a dream come to life in finishing a novel, pride at accomplishing something not everyone can do, and peace. I found peace with hearing people tell me their stories. We sadly live in a world where everyone knows an addict or someone who loves an addict.

   With all of these experiences and while I have your attention. I would love nothing more than everyone reading this to take care of themselves. Love yourself, nurture yourself, and craft your own stories. I promise you, you’ll never regret that choice 

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Book Summary

Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction takes an intimate and raw look at the current face of addiction and recovery. Talking about the current opioid epidemic, we follow a young couple while one of them goes through the recovery process. Told through letters, we get an understanding of their relationship as it struggles through his addiction and resulting recovery. From detox, rehab, sober living and the 12 steps of A.A, you get a raw and honest look at the effects of addiction and how they affect relationships.

AUTHOR NOTE: There is explicit and graphic content.

Print Length: 380 Pages

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Publisher: Independently Published

ISBN-13: 978-1717868947

ISBN-10: 1717868940

Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction is now available to purchase at Amazon.com.

About the Author, Sarah Dickinson

Sarah Dickinson is a lifelong resident in beautiful upstate New York. Mother of two amazing daughters and three equally awesome rescue dogs, she is the author of Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. She currently attends college and is in the midst of switching careers. When she isn’t doing it all, she reads comic books, blogs, and takes weekend getaways.

You can find the author online at:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Silver-Spoons-Ones-Journey-Through-Addiction-916257075228829/

Blog: https://wordpress.com/stats/day/sarahvdickinson.art.blog 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sarahdauthor/

Goodreads Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19325669.Sarah_Dickinson

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— Blog Tour Dates

January 27th @ The Muffin

What goes better in the morning than a muffin? Visit our blog today and you can read an interview with the author of Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction and also enter to win a copy of the book!

http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com

January 28th @ 12 Books

Stop by Louise’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

www.12books.co.uk

January 29th @ Joyful Antidotes

Make sure you visit Joy’s blog today and read her review of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://www.joyfulantidotes.com

January 30th @ 12 Books

Visit Louise’s blog again where you can review Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about 5 reasons why you should consider a change in lifestyle.

www.12books.co.uk

February 1st @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Make sure you visit Anthony’s blog today where he shares a spotlight of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 2nd @ A Storybook World

Deirdra will be highlighting Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction with a spotlight post.

http://www.astorybookworld.com/

February 3rd @ Jill Sheets’ Blog

Visit Jill’s blog today and read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about 5 reasons to consider a change in your relationships.

http://jillsheets.blogspot.com/

February 4th @ Coffee with Lacey

Join Lacey over at her blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://coffeewithlacey.com/

February 10th @ To Write or Not to Write

Visit Varsha’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://sreevarshasreejith.blogspot.com/

February 10th @ StoreyBook Reviews

Make sure to visit Leslie’s blog today and check out an excerpt of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://storeybookreviews.com/

February 12th @ The Faerie Review

Visit Lily’s blog today and read her review of the powerful book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

http://www.thefaeriereview.com/

February 13th @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Visit Anthony’s blog again where you can read a guest post by author Sarah Dickinson. Make sure you check out her easy self-care tips to add to your daily routine.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 14th @ Jessica Belmont’s Blog

Visit Jessica’s blog today and you can read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

February 16th @ And So She Thinks

Make sure you visit Francesca’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. You can also read an interview with the author!

https://andsoshethinks.wordpress.com/

February 18th @ Choices

Visit Madeline’s blog and you can read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about how to be self-aware in your writing.

http://madelinesharples.com/

February 19th @ It’s Alanna Jean

Make sure you visit Alanna’s blog and read a guest post by Sarah Dickinson called, “5 Reasons to Consider a Change in Career.”

http://ItsAlannaJean.wordpress.com

February 20th @ The Frugalista Mom

Visit Rozelyn’s blog today and you can read her review of the book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction by Sarah Dickinson. Also, win a copy for yourself too!

https://thefrugalistamom.com/

February 21st @ The  Frugalista Mom

Stop by Rozelyn’s blog today and you can read Sarah Dickinson’s guest post about how to raise a confident (but not arrogant) child.

https://thefrugalistamom.com/

February 23rd @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Stop by Anthony’s blog and you can read his review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction. 

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

February 24th @ Armed with a Book

Visit Kriti’s blog today and read her review of Sarah Dickinson’s book Silver Spoons: One’s Journey Through Addiction.

February 25th @ Armed with a Book

Make sure you visit Kriti’s blog again when she interviews the author Sarah Dickinson.