Friday, 28 April 2017

Gift Ideas for Mother's Day: #1 MOM Picture Frame



Finding the perfect gift your mom for Mother's Day each year can be a bit challenging, especially if you have absolutely no clue what to buy her; which is normally the case for me every May when I'm trying to come up with a new present for my mom.

Luckily, I got a chance to review a great gift for Mother's Day this year, called the #1 MOM Picture Frame made by Americanflat

The 8" x 3.5" scripture/picture frame is made from bronze metal and features a easel back. The scripture reads "#1 MOM" - with the photo area being inside the O. The frame can hold a photo approximately 3.5 inches tall and 2 inches wide. It comes with a clear glass to protect the photo.

The  #1 MOM Picture Frame retails for $14.95, but it can currently be purchased on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MRHHSSN) for $9.99.


Another view of the frame!


Back view of the picture frame.

Book Blogger Hop: April 28th - May 4th




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Eizabeth @ Silver's Reviews!

How many books have you re-read? If you have re-read books, please tell us the book's title and why you re-read it.

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).


3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.
  

My Answer: 

 Yes, I have re-read several of my favorite books over the years, but I've never kept count of the exact number of re-reads.



Linky List:

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Q&A with A.J. Norris, author of Her Black Soul


Available now from Limitless Publishing, LLC is the paranormal romance Her Black Soul, book three in the Dark Amulet Series, by A.J. Norris.


The author has taken a few minutes out of her busy schedule for a Q&A about her newest novel.


When did you become interested in storytelling?

I became interested in storytelling about 5 years ago. But I have always had an active imagination. As a kid, I’d spend hours in my room making up stories in my head. One day, I decided it was time to start writing them down.

What was your first book/story published?

The first story I had published was a short story called Fetch. It was about a dog and his person playing fetch, but in reality the dog was teaching the person to fetch. LOL It was told from the dog’s point of view. I still love that story.

What inspired you to write Her Black Soul?

This book is the third in the Dark Amulet Series. But I’d say it’s really the characters that inspire and dictate the story to me. I just go along for the ride.


What character in Her Black Soul is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

Book Tour & Giveaway: Within A Captain's Power



WITHIN A CAPTAIN'S POWER 
by Lisa Olech
PUB DATE: 4/4/2017
Genre: Historical Romance

Never underestimate the power of a pirate . . .

Captain James Steele is duty bound to capture the privateer Scarlet Night and bring her rebellious crew to England to hang. Then he will leave his majesty’s service, make an upstanding marriage, and join the landed gentry. But the winds of fate are blowing the straitlaced commander utterly off course.

Once aboard, James comes face to face with a pirate boy who is in reality fierce, desperate—and gorgeous—Samantha Christian, on the run from a sadistic Virginia plantation owner. With her identity unbound, the good captain dutifully takes her under his personal command, whereupon decorum goes out the porthole. But while his heart is lost to Samantha by the time they reach England, her noose still awaits. Now James’s sense of duty will be severely tested. As for Samantha, she has a plan, and a duty, of her own . . .



Monday, 24 April 2017

Product Review: GO! Pro-Shakes



Afternoon snacks have changed a lot since I was a kid in the 90s. My version of a snack back then was buying a can of soda (or two) from a vending machine while I was walking home from school. Yeah, I know now that soda isn't exactly a good choice for a snack. 

Nowadays, kids do have healthier choices for  snacks, such as the Go! Pro-Shakes, developed and distributed by Lean180.com / Skinnyjane.com.

Go! Pro-Shakes was specifically made for kids & teens as a healthy breakfast drink or afternoon snack. It's available in two different flavors - chocolate and cookie 'n' cream. The shake mix contains four high quality proteins with essential amino acids, which is great for growing muscles. It has 3 grams of fiber and energizing carbohydrates which will aid in healthy digestion. Also included in the mix are Omega 3's, healthy fats, vitamins B1, B2, B6, and B12.

Unlike other so-called healthy shakes, there is no caffeine and there are no added  High Fructose Corn Syrup or Aspartame!
1 serving

Popcorn & Coffee: Faces Of Horror: 10 Movie Collection Review


Mill Creek Ent.; Rated R; 915 minutes; $14.98

Now available on DVD from Mill Creek Entertainment is Faces Of Horror: 10 Movie Collection, featuring the cult classics When A Stranger Calls, and Happy Birthday To Me. There are no special features or bonus features on the three disc set.

When A Stranger Calls (1979; 97 minutes) is no stranger to horror fans. Directed by Fred Dalton, the first twenty minutes centers on a babysitter (played by Carol Kane) being harassed by an unknown man who keeps calling her, asking "Have you checked on the children?" The majority of the movie focus on an ex-cop (played by Charles Durning) chasing doing a serial killer, and while it does get a little boring, it's still one of the better "early" slasher films.

Happy Birthday To Me (1981; 110 minutes) this Canadian-American slasher film wasn't exactly a hit back in 1981, but over time the movie has become a cult classic. Directed by J. Lee Thompson, the film starred Melissa Sue Anderson as Virginia "Ginny" Wainwright, a high school student who suffers from horrifying flashbacks after a series of murders occur around the academy she attends. While it borrows heavily from the original Friday the 13th film, the twisted ending makes up for all the cliches.

The other eight films on the three-disc set are low-budget. Many of them are in the public-domain and have appeared in other horror set releases.

These movies are:

  • Double Exposure (1983; 95 minutes)
  • Click: The Calendar Girl Killer (1990; 86 minutes)
  • Don't Answer The Phone! (1980; 95 minutes)
  • Scream Bloody Murder (1975; 85 minutes)
  • Silent Night, Bloody Night (1974; 85 minutes)
  • Savage Weekend (1976; 86 minutes)
  • The Demon (1979; 95 minutes)
  • The Manipulator (1971; 91 minutes)

Popcorn & Coffee: It's Ernest! The Complete Series


Mill Creek Ent.; TV-G; 293 minutes; $9.98


Now available to own on DVD from Mill Creek Entertainment is It's Ernest! The Complete Series, featuring all 13 wacky episodes from the 1988 children series. There are no special features or extras on the disc. However, it come win an "Instant Digital Access" code that can be redeemed at: www.millcreekent.com/redeem

Every kid who grew up in the late 80s and throughout the early 90s knows the name Ernest P. Worrell (played by Jim Varney), a character who appeared in several comedies and later a few direct-to-video movies, but most us probably remember him from the countless The Coca-Cola Company's sodas, Chex, and Taco John's commercials. What you might not remember is that the character also starred in his own Saturday morning children series titled Hey Vern, It's Ernest, which only lasted for one season.

Filmed on a low-budget, the series starred Jim Varney as Ernest and a slew of other characters (Auntie Nelda, Dr. Otto, Sergeant Glory, Baby Ernest, and Astor Clement). Each episode consisted of a series of sketches that were all set around a specific theme, such as movies, sports, hobbies, etc..

The episodes on the single disc DVD are:

Hey Vern, It's Outer Space
Hey Vern, It's Clothing
Hey Vern, It's Scary Things
Hey Vern, It's Movies
Hey Vern, It's Magic
Hey Vern, It's Sports
Hey Vern, It's Pets
Hey Vern, It's Hobbies
Hey Vern, It's Food
Hey Vern, It's Holidays
Hey Vern, It's School
Hey Vern, It's Lost & Found
Hey Vern, It's Lost & Found

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Spring Reads: Sandpiper Cove


Revell; 352 pages; $15.99; Amazon

Now available from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, is the Christian romance novel Sandpiper Cove, book three in the Hope Harper series, by three-time Rita award winner Irene Hannon.

I wasn't really intrigued by the cover art when I first saw it. I have read a few other titles by the author, so that's about the only reason why I signed up to review this one.

The novel is set at the Oregon seaside village called Hope Harbor, and centers on police chief and single mom Lexie Graham. She doesn't have much time for anything else life has to offer, especially romance, which is the last thing on her mind. Of course this a romance, so her mind (and her heart) changes after she meets ex-con Adam Stone, who she later enlists to help a troubled young man.

Friday, 21 April 2017

Popcorn & Coffee: Band Of The Hand Blu-ray


Mill Creek Ent.; Rated R; 110 minutes;


Now available on Blu-ray from Mill Creek Entertainment is the 1986 Michael Mann produced action-drama Band Of The Hand. Directed by Paul Michael Glaser, the film stars Stephen Lang, Michael Carmine, Lauren Holly, John Cameron Mitchell, Danny Quinn, Leon, and Laurence Fishburne. There are no special features or bonus extras on the disc.

Band Of The Hand centers on five young felons, Ruben Pacecho (played by Michael Carmine), Moss Roosevelt (played by Leon Robinson), Carlos Aragon (played by Danny Quinn), James Lee "J.L." MacEwen (played by John Cameron Mitchell), and Dorcey Bridger (played by Al Shannon), who all get a second chance after being accepted into an experimental rehab program led by a Vietnam veteran named "Indian Joe" Tegra (played by Stephen Lang).

Tegra drags the five felons into the dangerous swamps and forces them to learn how to survive. Afterwards, they work together on restoring a vacant house in a bad neighborhood in Miami. This might all sound good at first, but their actions causes a war with the local drug kingpin named Cream (played by Laurence Fishburne).

Book Blogger Hop: April 21st - 27th




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books!

Would you stop reading a book if an element of the plot strongly clashed with your personal beliefs, or would you continue reading until you finished the book?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).


3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.
  

My Answer: 

 If the book is well-written with intriguing characters, I would probably finish reading it.



Linky List:

Friday, 14 April 2017

Book Blogger Hop: April 14th - 20th




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews!

When you feature a book in your posts, do you include a book cover?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).


3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.
  

My Answer: 

 Yes, I always include a book cover in my reviews. 



Linky List:

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Fulton Rectangle (GlassesShop.com) Eyeglasses Review

The one thing you might know about me from reading this blog is the little fact that I wear eyeglasses. I got my first pair of eyeglasses in between 5th and 6th grade, right before the flood of 1993. Since then I've owned several other pairs (with prescriptions) over the years. I've tried wearing contacts, but I've never cared much for them, so I've stuck with wearing eyeglasses.

I've been avoiding buying a new pair of eyeglasses because they're getting too expensive at the optometrist's office or even at the eye center at Walmart. I have two pairs of eyeglasses - one for everyday use and a "good" pair for special occasions. The lenses on my "everyday" pair have scratches on them and the frame has seen better days, so I had been wanting to get a new pair.

One of the good things about having the internet is that you can buy glasses online at a cheaper price at GlassesShop.com. All you need to know is your prescription and your PD (Pupillary Distance), and you can order any pair (or pairs) of eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses, or reading glasses that your heart desires.

Let's just say it took me forever to decide on what pair I wanted to get as there are lots of different kinds to choose from on GlassesShop.com. Eventually, I picked out the Fulton Rectangle (Black) pair which retails for $65.95 for the frame. It's made out of high quality titanium materials. With every frame purchased on GlassesShop.com, you get FREE single vision lenses, anti-scratch coating, a protective case, and a microfiber cleaning cloth ($129 total value).

Popcorn & Coffee: Silicon Valley: The Complete Third Season DVD Review


HBO; TV-MA, Approx. 300 minutes; $24.98; Amazon
Available today on DVD, as well as Blu-ray, from HBO Home Entertainment is Silicon Valley: The Complete Third Season, featuring 10 episodes on a 2-disc set. There are no special features except for deleted scenes. It comes with a free Digital HD code.

Created by Mike Judge, John A ltschuler, and Dave Krinsky, the series stars Thomas Middleditch, T. J. Miller, Josh Brener, Martin Starr, Kumail Nanjiani, Amanda Crew, Zach Woods, Matt Ross, and Suzanne Cryer. Season three of the series received 11 Emmy® nominations including Outstanding Comedy Series and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (Thomas Middleditch).

Season Three picks up shortly after events of season two finale, where the founder of Pied Piper, Richard (played by Middleditch) was removed as CEO of his own company by the now Raviga-run board. Jack Barker (played by Stephen Tobolowsky) is quickly hired as new CEO and his way of running things doesn't go well with Richard and the rest of his team - Erlich (T.J. Miller), Jared (Zach Woods), Dinesh (Kumail Nanjiani) and Gilfoyle (Martin Starr).

Barker wants the company to release a business-platform box, but Richard and the team would rather release a consumer-facing platform. While Pied Piper team act like they will compromise and build the box, they're actually planning on going with the original plan and continue with their platform.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Q&A with author Brian S. Leon, author of Chaos Unbound



Now available from Red Adept Publishing is the urban fantasy Chaos Unbound, book two in the Metis Files series, by Brian S. Leon.




The author has taken a few minutes out of his busy schedule for a Q&A about his novel.


When did you become interested in storytelling?

Writing to tell stories is a relatively new thing for me. I only started doing it about six or seven years ago. I did a lot of expository writing for academic journals and such through grad school and then I wrote and edited articles for fishing magazines for years after that, but storytelling of this kind is new for me.

What was your first book/story published?

Havoc Rising, the first book in the Metis Files series. It was published in June of 2015.

What inspired you to write Chaos Unbound?

Someone described my first book as “Tom Clancy meets the Iliad,” and I wanted to write one that was more like “Jason Bourne meets Harry Potter.” I wanted one to write a story that was more nonstop action, something that moved from place to place in a hurry. Plus, there was the whole blackout thing that happened in San Diego and it seemed to make a perfect segue for a surreptitious chase scene.


What character in Chaos Unbound is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

I suppose the character most like me is Diomedes, but only in some of the ways where I’ve been able to develop his personality a bit more in depth. Obviously I didn’t invent him. There are dozens of myths and legends about him, including whole sections of the Iliad. I got to flesh out his character a bit more and I’d say that’s where you might run into similarities. I also have some similarities with Duma, too. Abraxos, Duma’s brother, is probably the least like me—he’s all action and no planning. As for exactly how I’m like Duma and Diomedes, well, readers will just have to speculate.

What is your favorite part in Chaos Unbound?

Q&A with Dana Ford, author of Case File Phantom






Now available from author Dana Ford is the mystery novel Case File Phantom.


The author has taken a few minutes out of her busy schedule for a Q&A about her novel.



When did you become interested in storytelling?

I have been writing stories since I was in elementary school. My best friend and I would have sleepovers and write short stories through the night. Her reaction to my writing encouraged me to become a writer. 

What is your favorite part in Case File Phantom?

One of my favorite parts in this book is when Constance visits her sister's family for the weekend.

What was the hardest part to write?

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Spring Reads: Princess Prayers

*This is a sponsored review. All opinion are 100% mine.

Zonderkidz; 30 pages; $9.99; Amazon

Now available to own just in time for Easter is the board book Princess Prayers, which is part of the "The Princess Parables" series, written by Crystal Bowman, who was inspired by the series original authors Jeanna Young & Jacqueline Johnson. Illustrations are by Omar Aranda.

Tips For Finding the Perfect Contractor for Your DIY Project!



Even the most DIY homeowner needs to hire a professional for a renovation project sometimes. We just don't have the experience or tools to get some jobs done and sometimes it's just too big for us. Whether you need a contractor to fix an emergency or to increase the value of your home, you want to choose the right one for your job.

Choosing the right pro isn't as cut and dry as it seems. There are a huge number of contractors in your area that all seem to offer different services with different specialties. How do you choose the right one? Here are a few tips that can hopefully help you with that.

  • Know Their Specialty - While a lot contractors are proficient in most aspects of home renovation, they do each have jobs they specialize in. Clearly, you should hire a pro that specializes in the job you require.

  • Learn About the Job - The more you know about the repair job you need, the easier it will be to hire the right person for the job. The right knowledge will help you ask the right questions. This is also a good way to know that you are hiring a trustworthy contractor because they will not be able to put one over on you during your interview.

Monday, 10 April 2017

Spring Reads: Never Never by James Patterson


Little Brown & Company; 400 pages; Amazon

Yes, keeping up with each new James Patterson release can be a little difficult with at least two books, as well as the Bookshots ebooks, being released every month. The author's thriller Never Never, co-written with Candice Fox, was released in January, and it introduced a brand new character, Detective Harriet "Harry" Blue - well sorta, since technically the character was first introduced in the "Black & Blue" Bookshots novella.

In the novel, Harry Blue is a detective for the Sex Crimes Department in Sydney, Australia. She is shell-shocked when she learns that her brother, Sam, has been arrested for the Georgia River Three murders.

Despite wanting to do anything she can to prove her brother's innocence, her boss orders not to get involved with the case and gives her a new assignment out of the city. She's assigned a simple missing-person case, but there is one catch - she has to work with a new partner, Edward Whittaker, who is more or less there to babysit her while the Feds are investigating her bother.

Final Thoughts: Honestly, it took me over a month to read Never Never, which is probably the longest it has ever taken me to read a James Patterson novel. The problem for me is that I couldn't connect with the main character, aka Harry Blue. Her, along with most the other characters, felt very flat and one-dimensional with absolutely no character development; just a wooden by-the-book character similar to the ones on television series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Review - The Berenstain Bears: Friendship Blessings Collection


ZonderKidz; 160 pages; $10.99; Amazon
Now available from ZonderKidz is The Berenstain Bears: Friendship Blessings Collection, featuring five picture books. The Berenstain Bears books were created by Stan and Jan Berenstain. Sadly, both the authors have passed away, but their son, Mike, has taken over the series by writing and illustrating new stories.

The collection includes:

Perfect Fishing Spot (originally published in ?) - Papa Bear wants fish for dinner. Instead of buying fish from Grizzly Fish, he takes Brother and Sister fishing.

Reap The Harvest (originally published in ?) - Brother and Sister Bear are out of school for the summer. They quickly become bored and start looking for a summer job to make some cash. The reply to a help wanted sign on Farmer Ben's farm. They get the job, but they don't get paid right away. Instead of giving the cubs cash, Framer Ben gives them a section of his crops.

Faithful Friends (originally published in 2009) Sister Bear befriends the new cub, Suzy, in school. Suzy doesn't have any other friends because she isn't like other cubs. Instead of playing, Suzy would rather be reading.

Kindness Counts (originally published in 2010) While getting ready to fly his model plane in the park, Brother Bear befriends a young cub named Billy, who also likes model planes.

God Made You Special (originally published in 2014) Sister Bear gets a little confused when she meets her best friend's cousin, Tommy. Tommy is the same age as Brother Bear, but mentally he acts a lot younger. Eventually, she learns that God made Tommy special from others.

Top 5 Best Book Covers: April 2017




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


The meme's rules are simple:

  • Grab the Top 5 Best Book Covers button!
  • Post your 5 favorite books covers that are being released in the current month!
  • You can use a blurb or book synopsis in your post.
  • Put your blog URL in the Linky. 
  • Visit other blogs and comment on their 5 picks 

Yes, I had forgotten to post this a meme for March 2017! Sorry about that!


The Dastardly Miss Lizzie
by Viola Carr
Pub. Date: April 18, 2017


Description: Dr. Eliza Jekyll must turn to her dark side, Miss Lizzie Hyde, to stop a madman who’s targeting London’s most important scientists and sorcerers, terrorizing the city with dark magic, in this third Electric Empire novel—a dazzlingly original steampunk fantasy set in the gritty world of alternate Victorian London, with echoes of H. G. Wells’s classic, The Time Machine.

Being two people in one body isn’t easy. Metropolitan Police crime scene physician Eliza Jekyll is trying to maintain a semblance of control, even as her rebellious second self, Lizzie, grows increasingly wild—threatening the respectable Eliza’s reputation and her marriage to Remy Lafayette, the Royal Society investigator and occasional lycanthrope. With England on the brink of war, Remy’s away in sorcery-riddled Paris on a secretive mission that grows ever more sinister. Has he been an enemy agent all along? Or is coping with her secret divided self finally driving Eliza mad?

Eliza needs her mind clear and sharp if she’s to catch an evil genius who is killing eminent scientists. The chase uncovers a murky world of forbidden books, secret laboratories, and a cabal of fanatical inventors whose work could change the world—or destroy it—and who may hold answers to Eliza’s mysterious past.

As sorcery-wielding terrorists attack London, Eliza discovers her own enemies are closing in, driving her to desperate measures—enlisting the aid of the wily, resourceful, mercurial Lizzie—to thwart the killer. But Lizzie’s got her own life now, and true to her nature, will resort to the devious and diabolical to keep it. Even if it means throwing Eliza to the wolves, and letting the world burn. . . .


Billy's Thoughts: I believe this is book 2 in a new reimagined Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde series. The cover has a Victorian steampunk vibe to it.

 
The Girl Who Was Taken
by Charlie Donlea
Pub. Date: April 25, 2017


Description: Nicole Cutty and Megan McDonald are both high school seniors in the small town of Emerson Bay, North Carolina. When they disappear from a beach party one warm summer night, police launch a massive search. No clues are found, and hope is almost lost until Megan miraculously surfaces after escaping from a bunker deep in the woods.

A year later, the bestselling account of her ordeal has turned Megan from local hero to national celebrity. It’s a triumphant, inspiring story, except for one inconvenient detail: Nicole is still missing. Nicole’s older sister Livia, a fellow in forensic pathology, expects that one day soon Nicole’s body will be found, and it will be up to someone like Livia to analyze the evidence and finally determine her sister’s fate. Instead, the first clue to Nicole’s disappearance comes from another body that shows up in Livia’s morgue—that of a young man connected to Nicole’s past. Livia reaches out to Megan for help, hoping to learn more about the night the two were taken. Other girls have gone missing too, and Livia is increasingly certain the cases are connected.


Billy's Thoughts: While there's not a whole lot going on the cover, it does give off a creepy vibe, which is perfect for a good mystery.


Dream Magic
by Joshua Khan
Pub. Date: April 11, 2017



Friday, 7 April 2017

Book Blogger Hop: April 7th - 13th




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

  This week's question is submitted by Kristin @ Lukten av Trykksverte!

If you could meet one author, dead or alive, who would it be?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).


3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.
  

My Answer: 

 I would love to meet the following authors:

Stephen King

R.L. Stine

James Patterson

Charles Dickens (deceased)

Janice Holt Giles (deceased)

Mark Twain (deceased)


Linky List:

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Popcorn & Coffee: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story



Best Buy; Walmart

Now available to own from Lucasfilm on Blu-ray Combo Pack (Blu-ray +DVD+Digital HD) is Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the first standalone adventure set in the Star Wars franchise. Directed by Gareth Edwards, the film stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Jiang Wen, and Forest Whitaker.

Set just prior to the events that took place in the original movie, Star Wars: A New Hope, Rogue One tells the story of the small group of rebels who stole the plans to the first Death Star, which will eventually finds its way to Princess Leia.

The rebel group consists of Jyn Erso (played by Felicity Jones), Cassian Andor (played by Diego Luna), Chirrut Îmwe (played Donnie Yen), Bodhi Rook (played by Riz Ahmed), Baze Malbus (played by Jiang Wen), and K-2SO (played by Alan Tudyk), all of whom must (Spoiler Alert) sacrifice their lives in the attempt to stop the Empire's greatest weapon - the Death Star.

The special features are a little lacking for this release. There are no deleted scenes, bloopers, or commentaries. However, there are several short behind-the-scenes features.

These bonus features are:

  • A Rogue IdeaHear how ILM’s John Knoll came up with the movie’s concept – and why it’s the right film to launch the Star Wars stand-alone films.
  • Jyn: The RebelGet to know Rogue One’s defiant, resourceful survivor, and hear what it was like for Felicity Jones to bring her to life onscreen.
  • Cassian: The Spy Diego Luna shares insights into his complex, driven character, who becomes a hero through selflessness, perseverance and passion.
  • K-2SO: The Droid Explore the development of this reprogrammed Imperial droid, from initial pitch and character design through Alan Tudyk’s performance.

  • Baze & Chirrut: Guardians of the WhillsGo deeper into the relationship between these two very different characters, with Chinese superstars Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen.

Q&A with LM Preston, author of The Purgatory Reign Series




Now available from author LM Preston is the paranormal romance series The Purgatory Reign.






When did you become interested in storytelling?

I’ve always enjoyed writing. Story telling was something that came easy to me and I used to talk out loud to myself while pretending to be different characters. I started writing poetry, then songs (my father was a song writer) and then fan fiction. After college and being married awhile, my son refused to go to the bookstore since he said none of the books had guys on it that looked like him. At that point, I wanted to write to his enjoyment.

What was your first book/story published?

Explorer X- Alpha was a middle grade science fiction novel. Where, for most kids, a trip to space camp is the trip of a lifetime—for Aadi it was life altering.

What inspired you to write PURGATORY REIGN SERIES?

This story was inspired by a short story written by my husband twenty years ago for a college class. I was cleaning out some old boxes and found it. After reading it, I asked him if I could develop the story and change a few things. He gave me freedom to do so and collaborated with me on it.


What character in PURGATORY REIGN is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Q&A with Collin Piprell, author of MOM



Now available from Common Deer Press is the science fiction novel MOM, book one in the Magic Circles series, by Collin Piprell.


The author has taken a few minutes out of his busy schedule for a Q&A about his novel. 


When did you become interested in storytelling?

I’ve loved reading ever since I learned how. By the time I was a teenager, I found myself favoring novels with anti-heroes for protagonists, many of these fictional characters themselves being writers. In my mid-teens I left my village home in Quebec’s Laurentian Mountains and moved to Montreal, where I encountered ample opportunity to slip into my anti-hero persona, which often had me imagining I was a writer on the road to perdition.

I managed to get a fair way down the road to perdition, but I didn’t write any fiction till many years later. But the idea lurked there in the back of my mind the whole time.

What was your first book/story published?

I moved to Southeast Asia because the whole region stimulated me, and I thought that if I couldn’t write fiction here I couldn’t write it anywhere and I’d have to think about learning a trade. While I girded my literary loins, I taught writing in a Bangkok university, traveled, partied, scuba dived, and whatnot till one day a Thai colleague asked whether I’d ever considered modeling. A friend of hers ran a modeling agency and was looking for a Western male about my age to play a businessman in a series of ads for a hotel chain. Later, as I tried to describe this very interesting adventure in a letter to my parents, it got so long and, I believed, so amusing that I ended it by saying they could read the rest of it in the newspaper story to follow. And sure enough the Bangkok Post Sunday magazine section ran it over a full page or two as “My Career as a Model.”

That gave me a real buzz, and I was inspired to write more, mostly humorous articles and then a few short stories under the penname Ham Fiske. I imagined my readership as Western ex-pats needing diversion from their Sunday morning hangovers. Soon these pieces became regular features, and friends were encouraging me to find someone to publish a collection. But there weren’t enough good ones to fill a book, plus I believed Ham Fiske could do better work than this. So I wrote a number of longer and meatier short stories to punctuate those I’d already had published. The result was Bangkok Knights, a collection of stories described instead as a novel by Asia Books, its last publisher, since the stories are linked by overlapping characters and an implicit plot development involving, surprisingly enough, the nameless narrator who hovers above all the farce and tragedy, the ironic old hand who himself comes to feature more and more in the stories till in the end he’s revealed to be as great a blunderer as any other in the story.

Over the years quite a number of people told me they thought these were merely a collection of anecdotes — that they were all “real” stories that “really” happened to me. Not so. It’s fiction. But I’m flattered that many chose to believe they came so freighted with verisimilitude. (I couldn’t resist that phrase. Sorry.)

Two of the longer stories I wrote to flesh out that book were too different in voice from the others, and I held them back. These gave birth to Kicking Dogs, my first proper novel and in some ways the most successful one, which had three different publishers over the years and is currently available on Amazon in digital and print-on-demand self-published versions. ... covers and https://www.amazon.com/Kicking-Dogs-Collin-Piprell/dp/1452802726 ...

What inspired you to write MOM?

I had read about the “gray goo scenario,” something that might well follow the escape into the wild of just a single self-replicating nanobot. I couldn’t help wondering how anyone could survive a disaster than would turn the surface of the planet into a sea of microscopic robots within a matter of hours. The problem niggled at me till the outlines of a story started to emerge. I’d actually begun to draft the story before I realized I was writing a science fiction novel, something it hadn’t occurred to me I wanted to do.

What character in MOM is the most/least like you? And which is your favorite part?