Today we welcome Nadia L. King, author of Jenna's Truth, to the the blog. She wrote a special blog about teen suicide today. Read on and learn more about her book on bullying.
Teen suicide is a killer. Really. I don’t say this to be cute, I say this to shock you. Did you know suicide is the second largest cause of death for our youth after motor vehicle accidents?
I’ve heard it said that people commit suicide because they can see no other way to make the pain stop. They don’t want to die. They just can’t imagine living with that much pain.
I try to live in a bubble I really do, but sometimes I can’t keep the world out. A tragedy that slew me was the death of Canadian teen, Amanda Todd. I live way across the other side of the planet to British Columbia. On the day Amanda Todd died, I had no idea who she was or the pain she carried, nor did I know of the burden that became too much for her to bear. It was only this year, when I saw her video on Youtube where she shared her story of being bullied with the world, that I found out about Amanda Todd. After her death, the video went viral and 17 million people have viewed her video.
Like I said, her story cut me to the core. I was sad. Really sad and angry too. I wanted to change the world. I wanted to change history and bring Amanda back. I wanted to bring back all the teens who chose to leave us because their pain was too great.
So I sat down and wrote a story. I wrote a story about an ordinary girl called Jenna Wilson. She’s not particularly clever or pretty or talented. She’s completely, utterly normal – she’s almost invisible. Her life starts to go terribly wrong when she becomes visible to the cool kids at school and then she makes one tiny mistake and the next thing we know, her whole life is going down the toilet and it seems she is powerless to stop it.
‘Jenna’s Truth’ takes the ordinary and offers teens a way out of pain. I can’t wave a magic wand and change lives, but I can offer you my words in ‘Jenna’s Truth’. It’s a book to open up dialogue on bullying, cyberbullying, teen drinking, sex and suicide. There is another way. By opening up dialogue and offering teens different truths and realities, we may be able to help make the world a better, kinder, friendlier place.
Inspired by Amanda Todd’s tragic story of bullying, Jenna’s Truth is more than just teen short story. It’s a lesson in empathy, self-awareness, and speaking out about what matters, especially bullying. Jenna’s Truth, written by Nadia L. King is a gripping story, which explores the themes of cyberbullying, teen drinking, sex, and suicide. Life isn’t black and white, and sometimes teens can be the most insensitive people.
What happens when the very group of teens you crave to belong to, end up being responsible for one of the most painful and humiliating events in your life?
Published by Aulexic, a publisher specialising in books for children with language and literacy difficulties, Jenna’s Truth is dyslexia-friendly and contains features that aid in comprehension and developing vocabulary. The story is kept short, at just 6,000 words and includes curriculum connections, discussion questions, and recommended activities, making it an ideal tool for use in the classroom in grades nine and ten (15-16yos). It’s length also makes it an ideal quick-read read at home or during transit.
If you’re against cyberbullying, want to help someone who might be a victim of bullying, or you’re experiencing bullying in your life right now, use the buy link above and read Jenna’s Truth today!
Praise for Jenna’s Truth:
“Compelling and well-written. The storyline is great – this is a very real situation that all teens will be able to relate to. I teared up at the end.” – Dana Kerford, Founder of GirlPower and GoodGuys Inc.
Nadia L King was born in Dublin, Ireland in the 1970s. She reads voraciously and enthusiastically. She is an overexcited person who adores words and writes short stories amongst other things. Her first book “Jenna’s Truth” is published by Aulexic and is a powerful tool to arm teens against bullying. Nadia lives near the Swan River in Western Australia.
One of my favorite October rituals is carving pumpkins for Halloween. As soon as those orange gourds appear on the gardening lots, I experience a visceral need to stroll the fields, weighing the choices. It is not an easy decision. Size, weight, and surface area are integral to the creation of funny, spooky or downright creepy pumpkin faces. Once the selection has occurred, I load the potential jack-o-lanterns on my cart and, Sisyphus-like, push them toward the car. Once home, I spend more time arranging them in suitable groupings. (Did I mention I don’t buy just one?!!) The carving itself waits until October 31st. That way, I have plenty of time to sketch out faces, prepare my special pumpkin knives and anticipate the tactile pleasure of pulling out pumpkin guts. The smell of the fleshy interior is distinctive and so very fall-ish. And those seeds, rinsed and de-gooed, make for tasty roasting. All in all, it’s a feast for the senses, to be sure.
Carving pumpkins is a lot like crafting a story. Anticipation plays a huge role in the preliminary writing stage. I wander through my ideas, searching for the strands that most speak to me in the moment. Once the decision is made, I collect the disparate elements and bring them to the page, contemplating the next step. What will happen as these characters develop? How will they look, act, think, react? Can I trust myself to create just the right tone as I write the story? With the initial decision clarified, placement of plot lines becomes central to the development of the work. Pacing can make or break a piece. My line-by-line synopsis grows as the story does, a useful guide for the more intricate carving to come. Change and re-arrange are essential elements. Once the draft is complete, the real work begins, the increasingly subtle use of the metaphorical knife to shave away the unnecessary bits and reveal the inner life.
October fades, like the light, echoing ancient rites, blending the pagan and the Christian as the calendar turns. Observing the blend of primitive and modern, listening to the excited greetings of miniature ghosts and superheroes, I am transported into fantasy and imagination, two places where the artistic and creative life thrives.Within the glow of candlelight and toothy pumpkin grins, I find inspiration to continue my journey through the fields of story.
Bio: J. E. Irvin is the author of the award-winning novel The Dark End of the Rainbow. Her works have appeared in a variety of print and on-line journals, including Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, SPARK a creative anthology, Nexus Literary Journal and The Zodiac Review. Her second mystery/thriller - The Rules of the Game - is forthcoming in late fall, 2016. An avid hiker and canoeist, she lives in Ohio on the edge of a nature park. You may contact her at janetirvin.wordpress.com or facebook.com/darkendoftherainbow.
Halloween Post By Ariella Moon
October is a busy month for me and other shamans, psychics, and mediums. The veil between realms becomes most transparent between Halloween and November 2nd. Souls from the otherworld cross into the human world seeking ways to deliver messages to their loved ones. I am amazed at how creative they can be. Spirits will use dreams, songs, smells, psychics, and even billboards to deliver their messages.
Halloween can be traced back centuries to Samhain (SOW-in, SAH-win, or SAH-ween), a festival celebrated by the Celtic people in Ireland, northern France, Scotland, and Wales. Samhain marked the end of summer. The veil between realms was thinnest, and the souls of those who had died during the past year departed at Samhain into the otherworld. But the portal worked both ways. Ancestors and other spirits from the otherworld, and fairies from fairy mounds, could cross into the human world.
The Celts disguised themselves in animal skin costumes to a drive back the spirits. They left food offerings to appease the ghosts and fay. Bonfires were lit to deflect unwanted spirits and to light the way for departing souls.
In the 9th century A.D., the Catholic Church tried to subsume Samhain with All Saints Day/All Hallows. All Hallow’s Eve incorporated the belief in high supernatural activity. But the church claimed the Celtic otherworld was the Christian Hell, and demonized spirits, witches, and fairies as well as the Celtic priests, the druids. Mummers, people disguised as the demonized folk, would perform antics and threaten more mischief (tricks). Villagers would appease them with food (treats). All Hallow’s Eve became Halloween.
And spirits continue to traverse the veil.
Around Samhain, beloved pets that have departed enter my thoughts and dreams. Although I live in the desert, I keep thinking I smell the sea near my grandmother’s house, or hear my great Aunt Leona’s cackle when she cheated at board games.
So watch for signs. Who visits you in your dreams? What scents catch the wind? Which song is playing on the radio? Say hello to the person seated next to you on the plane (especially if you had a last-minute seat change), because she may be a psychic. Your loved ones are thinking of you. They want you to know they are doing well.
Maybe they guided you to read this post.
Copyright 2016 Ariella Moon
~Ariella Moon draws upon her experiences as a shaman to create magical Young Adult fiction. Her series include The Two Realms Trilogy, a medieval fantasy adventure, and The Teen Wytche Saga, a series of sweet contemporary paranormal romances.
urban fantasy, suspense, new adult/adult
Back cover blurb
Over a month has gone by since Melina won her internal battle between good and evil. She and the elders have been vigilantly waiting for Maura and Adelia to enact their plan, but there have been no signs of them anywhere. Then one day, Melina sees a Noxin demon lurking behind an old building. As more and more demons start to appear around town, she begins to worry that their plan may have already been put into play.
While Melina tries to figure out what the demons are up to, she starts to notice a sudden increase in her negative emotions, which in turn seem to be amplifying her powers. At first, she likes how strong it makes her feel. But when she realizes that her newly acquired demon powers are the cause of her sense of empowerment, she wants nothing to do with it. Even though she has reversed her demon powers to do good, she still sees them as coming from an evil source and fears that by using them the evil she fought so hard to overcome will rise up in her again.
But as the demon activity increases, and the people in her town, including all the people she cares about the most, start to display strange and violent behavior, Melina finally understands that if she wants to stop the demons and help her friends, she must embrace not only the good in her but also the bad. Because the only way to truly empower herself is by finding a way to use them together.
You have to have the dark to see the light.
She turned to look at the front of her store and saw that the huge front window had been completely busted in, allowing the chilly winter air to blow right through the room. The rest of the store wasn’t in any better shape. Broken glass, splintered wood, and burnt, ripped up books and paper covered the entire floor. She felt like she should be having déjà vu, seeing as how her store had been destroyed by Noxin demons before, but there was a difference this time. She didn’t have her friends to help her pick up the pieces.
Before she was able to get teary-eyed again, she heard footsteps coming from behind her. She turned around and saw that Walter was back, and he had Phinneas, Cecil, and Helene with him. They all nodded at Henry, who nodded back at them, and then they all returned their focus to Melina.
“Hi,” Melina said as she gave them all a slightly confused look. “What are you all doing here?”
“I thought it was necessary to tell them what’s happening with you,” Walter said.
Melina pulled her robe a little tighter around her and turned her gaze down to the floor. She wondered if they were disappointed in her for not telling any of them sooner.
“Melina,” Phinneas said as he took a step toward her. “None of us blame you for feeling the way you do. The fear you have of your anger and of your demon powers is completely valid. But it’s nothing to be afraid of, or ashamed of. I’ve told you before, not everyone is all good or all bad. We all have good and evil in us.”
“Yes,” Melina said as she nodded her head. “I remember you saying that. But then you also said that we just have to choose which one is going to win, and I chose good.”
“And I’m so glad you did,” Phinneas said. “But just because you chose good and were able to reverse the demon powers to use them for good, doesn’t mean that the bad aspects of the demon powers aren’t still a part of you, too.”
“Melina,” Walter said as he took a step toward her. “To truly embrace all of your powers, you must accept not only the good aspects of them but also the bad. I can only imagine how strong it must make you feel when your emotions amplify your powers, but instead of fighting them and trying to stop them, feel all of those emotions and use them in a good way. Use them to empower yourself.” He paused for effect and then continued. “You have become a force to be reckoned with. You just need to learn to accept them and then control them.”
Melina’s eyes were filled with tears again. His words reminded her of what Lee had told her—that she needed to accept all of herself. She knew they were both right, but she still couldn’t let go of her hesitation and fear.
“But what if it makes me susceptible to being taken over by evil again?” She bit down on her lip as she stared over at Walter with eyes full of distress.
He gave her a reassuring smile. “I know you’re scared, but I also think that you know, deep down, that you’re not going to be taken over by evil again. This is just how the demon powers are going to work in you. We all experience negative emotions, Melina. But it's what we do after the emotions arise that matters. We can act upon those negative feelings and let them control us, or we can feel them, acknowledge them, but then choose not to act on them. And instead of letting them control us, use them as motivation for something good.” He was silent for a moment then said, “You have to have the dark to see the light.”
Melina sat quietly as his last words sunk in. She had never thought of it that way, but he was right. She had both light and dark in her, just like everyone else, but she just needed to make sure that her light always shone brighter.
About the author
Ashley Stambaugh grew up in a small town in Illinois where she and her two siblings created some of the best memories playing on their family’s farm. She stayed in the southern region of the state to attend college where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and also met her husband.
Now, she and her husband live in central Illinois and spend their time creating new memories with their two rambunctious boys. She also enjoys reading, taking long walks, and finding great bargains. When her sons are a little bit older, she has a great desire to travel with her family. Oh, and she also has a slight obsession with chocolate.
When she’s not busy chasing after her two young children or losing herself in a good book, you can find her curled up on her couch with her laptop, writing.
Social media links
Facebook author page: www.facebook.com/ashleystambaughauthor
Barnes & Noble:
Book One is on sale for 99 cents!
Love’s Gentle Wish
The Album Book 4 - Andrea’s Story
Contemporary, Fantasy Romance
Carol stashed The Album into Andrea Reave's handbag, much to her dismay. The magic scares her so she promptly ignores the artefact. Andrea is not in a good place. Instead of the promotion she’s been working toward for years, she’s been let off and is now without work. When she’s offered two part-time jobs, she has no option but to take them. Pity the one job means she will have to confront the very thing that makes her fear losing control - magic. Now, she’ll have to work with other people who’ve encountered magic first hand. And it turns out, the woman she will work with has a cute son, just the type of guy she wouldn’t go for, but one she can’t ignore. Enter Trent Dublin, arty-farty, casual as anything, and too jolly chivalrous for his own good.
Just as she comes up for air, her aunt and uncle pass away, making her the legal guardian of her teenage niece, Lucy. When she brings Lucy home, she doesn’t realise how much the girl’s grief affects her and those around her. Trent proves to be more than a friend in a time of need, but Andrea doesn’t do romance. She's never been good at making it work with a man. Why would it be any different with Trent, no matter how attractive and kind he is? Could magic heal Andrea's jaded heart? Or is it too late?
At that moment, his dad appeared with a couple of his canvases, including the one of the squirrel and the woman in the bar. Everyone in the room turned to see his work. A mixture of pride and self-criticism streamed through him, especially as Andrea’s frown deepened.
“Abstract art?” She didn’t sound pleased. At all.
“Pointillism mixed with cubism. And Andy Warhol. My own signature style.”
She shrugged, seeming indifferent to his explanation.
“It’s fascinating, Andrea.” The blonde woman stood up. “Don’t you see it? That’s a squirrel. I can make out a glass in the second one.”
“A woman at a bar, holding her glass up to the light,” Trent said.
“I can’t see it.”
Andrea also stood up to go closer while his dad propped them up against the wall. He took in her figure as she moved forward, and the desperate ache for her increased with the view of her smooth backside sheathed in tailored cream work pants. Why did he have to fall for the hard-hearted, arrogant type?
“It’s growing on me,” she said. “The paintings do give off a good feeling.”
She glanced at him, a small smile on her face. Hope buoyed him like surfing a tidal wave on crack.
“I see now.” She stood farther back, toward the dining room table, one hand on a curvy hip, the other on her firm chin. “It’s brilliant.”
He’d never been so elated by a compliment of his art before. And he’d had many. His work had featured in prominent London art magazines and galleries.
“Trent is talented,” his dad said. “Pity people in South Africa aren’t so much into abstract art. But we’re breaking through.”
“It’s not something one can really make a living on?” Andrea asked, and his heart sank down to the depths again. “I mean, art is always such an elusive thing. I’m of the philosophy you do what you can even if it’s not your dream job. Then maybe one day, you can follow your true passion.”
He could elaborate that he spent most of his time animating video games and probably made more money out of those than she did in a year, but why bother? The woman clearly held prejudice against artists.
Sighing, she found the path to the studio and knocked on the open door.
“Yo,” he yelled in his deep, bellowing voice.
She tiptoed in, her high-heel shoe straps still hanging from her fingers.
Large, bold, colourful canvases filled every wall. The overpowering smell of paint, dust, wood, and mustiness met her nostrils. She coughed.
Trent came up to her, his smile so gentle and beautiful, she had to swallow. How could a man be beautiful? They were supposed to be tough and strong and able to handle everything that came their way. She’d always been attracted to the professional, CEO type, not to a pretty boy.
“Can you let me out?”
“Leaving so soon?”
He seemed amused again. Did everything about her amuse him?
“I’m coming back. I’m moving into the granny flat. At the bottom of the garden.” She sent a clumsy hand in the direction of the miniature house she’d noticed on her way up. He must have seen the deep blush that heated her face because he stared at her.
“Oh.” That sounded odd. “That’s nice,” came out half-hearted.
He didn’t sound so sure that her living here would be a good thing. She supposed she hadn’t been very polite to him in the past.
“Don’t worry. I won’t get in your way,” she muttered.
He pressed her gently on the small of her back to lead her back to the house. His touch sent shivers through her. Gripping her arms around her stomach, she tried to act nonchalant and moved away from him.
“I’m sure you won’t get in my way.” He laughed. “Unless you want to try art and take over my studio.”
“Most definitely not.” She whipped her head around to glare at him. “I can’t even draw a stick figure.”
“That’s what they all say.” He shook his head and sighed.
She continued to glare at him. “Don’t even think of making me get into art. It’s never been my thing.”
“Fine.” He held up his hands in self-defence. “I won’t ever mention it again.”
Had she hurt him? But the amused smile on his face told her otherwise.
The guy was so irritating and relaxed. Did nothing ever faze him? Was she just a joke in his eyes? Had her previous rudeness put him on the defensive with her? It wasn’t right that the thought bothered her so much.
She’d agreed to live here now because of financial desperation, but would it be a good move for her soul to see him all the time and know he didn’t like her? Why did I agree to stay here? Rose gardening aside, it was a stupid idea.
Kathy lives in South Africa, where the summers are hot, the winters cool and bugs thrive. She writes romance in many forms, most of the time with women who feel deeply, men who care strongly and characters who learn lessons along the way. Every so often, she sprinkles a little magic in her stories. When she’s not writing, she makes sure her kids work hard as they do school at home, tries not to get too distracted by dust bunnies and cooks up a storm to keep the tummies full. When she’s not hectically busy, she loves reading romance and fantasy novels, watching movies, and dabbling in different crafty things, depending on her mood.
Kobo Books: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/love-s-gentle-wish
Barnes and Noble:
Online Links for Kathy:
Website and blog: http://www.kathybosman.com/
Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/KathleenBosman
Newsletter Subscription: http://eepurl.com/NokET
***The Album 1 is for free on Amazon and Smashwords.
Teen Wytche Saga by Ariella Moon
Genre: Young Adult Sweet Paranormal Romance
Teen Wytche Saga Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BB3FkcbbPGs
Praise for The Teen Wytche Saga:
“Spell Check is a great story for the young adult or the young at heart. I enjoyed the vicarious experience of falling in love, dealing with secrets, and working out best friend issues.” ~ Long and Short Reviews
"A fantastic YA paranormal read, reminiscent of the film "Practical Magic"! Spell Struck combines quirky but fun teen characters dealing with new schools, romance, and family problems, with magic, and more serious topics like suicide and kidnapping."
~InD’tale Magazine, Crowned Heart review
“Edge of your seat? Check. Magic around every corner? Check. Teen angst? Check. Unputdownable? Definitely. Quick tip-make sure you read the first three books before starting Spell for Sophia. They provide a ton of great backstory and will make everything a lot more understandable, and without a doubt enhance your enjoyment of this book as well as the entire series.”
~Carra at Making It Happen blog
The Teen Wytche Saga Books by Ariella Moon:
Book One: Spell Check
Book Two: Spell Struck
Book Three: Spell Fire
Book Four: Spell For Sophia
Where friendship, first love, and magic collide.
The Teen Wytche Saga by Ariella Moon
Think magic will solve your problems?
Bring you love? Cure you? Protect you? Help you find someone who is lost?
In The Teen Wytche Saga, a shape-shifting spell book upends the life of each girl who possesses it. Passed among a group of disparate teens, the rebellious book morphs into a new system of magic as it aligns or opposes the girl entrusted to safeguard it. The girls soon discover…
Magic tests friendships.
It hisses, chirps, stinks up the room, backfires, and explodes! Magic forces you to make tough decisions. Shatter limitations. Discover your true self.
And you thought navigating high school was tough.
Read how it all began…
Spell Check (The Teen Wytche Saga #1)
Two girls, one guy, and a spell book — what could possibly go wrong?
Bullies. A secret crush. A traitorous friend.
First year of high school isn’t supposed to be an emotional minefield. A photojournalist father isn’t supposed to die in war, and no one should cast a binding love spell on her best friend’s secret crush. And yet…
Halloween looms and so does the anniversary of Evie’s father’s death. She needs to pull herself together or she’ll lose her position as Yearbook Photo Editor. Even worse, Evie will lose Jordan, her secret crush, if she can’t stop her friend Parvani from casting a love spell on him. Despite a falling out, Evie never forgot Jordan. Now they are lab partners and the chemistry between them definitely sparks. Parvani possesses a brimstone-hissing spell book and plans to cast the spell by Halloween. To save Jordan, Evie must join forces with Salem, the school goth.
The clock is ticking. Can Evie get her mojo back in time to check this spell?
About ten minutes into class, while Mr. Esenberg wrote on the board, I heard Jordan slide his feet under my desk. My breath wedged in my throat as the tips of his size nine high-performance sneakers nudged the heels of my shoes. Could the girl in front of me hear my heart thudding? Should I move my feet forward?
My feet tingled and refused to move. A blush blazed across my cheeks. I struggled to pay attention to Mr. Esenberg without making eye contact. Forty minutes passed, the bell blared, and I had no idea what had transpired. Hopefully, my notes will make sense. I think I took notes.
Jordan slid his feet back and thudded his book closed. We both bent down and reached for our backpacks. His leaned against mine. Our hands brushed and our heads were so close I could smell his herbal shampoo.
Students walked past us. I’m sure some of them were talking to each other or flipping open their cell phones. But it all faded away along with the smell of chalk, highlighters, and sweat. Everything receded except the warmth of Jordan’s skin, his cinnamon gum-scented breath, and the heart-stopping rush sprinting up my arm.
We jerked apart. Seeing Parvani in the doorway looking hurt and shocked snapped my senses into hyper focus. Conversations sounded extra loud. Colors seemed too bright. It felt like a movie had started, full blast, in a hushed theater.
For more excerpts, or to purchase books in The Teen Wytche Saga:
About the Author:
Ariella Moon draws upon her experiences as a shaman to create magical Young Adult fiction. The Teen Wytche Saga is a series of sweet contemporary paranormal romances. Her Two Realms Trilogy is a medieval Scotland and Fairy fantasy adventure series.
Ariella spent her childhood searching for a magical wardrobe that would transport her to Narnia. Extreme math anxiety and taller students that mistook her for a leaning post marred her youth. Despite these horrors, she graduated summa cum laude from the University of California at Davis. She lives a nearly normal life doting on her extraordinary daughter, two shamelessly spoiled dogs, and a media-shy dragon.
Ariella loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her at:
Kisses, Kids and Bundles of Joy: 7 Christian Winter Romances
Box Set Blurb
Snuggle up with seven brand new, never before published Christian winter romances from bestselling and award-winning authors. Kisses and kids abound in this collection of novellas that will warm your heart all winter long.
One Winter Kiss - Lindi Peterson - Deena Ross travels to Ohio to try and sway her grandfather from making a big mistake, a mistake his neighbor Andrew has been encouraging. When a winter storm hits, and Deena is forced to stay with Andrew and his young son, Evan, Deena's vision of love is tested and she might lose her heart in one winter kiss.
Childish Ways - Jenn Faulk - Kevin Peterson, a teacher at a small town elementary school, is unexpectedly reunited with Lisa Walker, a girl who spent most of their childhood tormenting and bullying him, when she comes back to town where she helps organize a winter carnival to benefit her niece's school. Lisa has no idea who he is, though, and as they work alongside one another and Kevin sees how much she has changed, he begins to question whether or not he can really trust her and let her into his life.
The Baby & the Bachelor - Cindy K. Green - Playboy bachelor, Alec, discovers a baby on his doorstep only days away from being appointed to a political office, prompting him to appeal his assistant, Jane, for help. Misunderstandings and accusations from the press abound, leading Alec to wonder, even if he were prepared for a ready-made family, could sweet, church-going Jane ever find it in her heart to marry a sinner like him?
For Tracy - Trisha Grace - One phone call led to Sarah Carter becoming the guardian of her favorite student, Tracy, while waiting for Tracy’s Uncle Keith to show up. But Sarah has no idea Uncle Keith was Keith Sutton, Hollywood’s most eligible bachelor, and doesn’t realize how much trouble she is heading for.
Tropical Kiss Or Miss - Liwen Y. Ho - Therapist Olivia Chan can’t wait to escape it all—a failed marriage, a struggling practice, and her son’s recent health scare. The Hawaiian getaway she planned, however, gets rained on—quite literally—by a tropical storm and the unexpected arrival of her estranged husband Matthew, who’s determined to win her back.
To Gain a Mommy - Tanya Eavenson - When Hope Michaels decides to face her past, she unknowingly purchases the house across the street from her former fiancé—the man her twin sister married, then widowed. Fire Captain Carl McGuire can put out any flame, except for the one Hope sparks within him—some things never change.
Foolish Heart - Cindy Flores Martinez - Judy and Graham have feelings for each other, but they won’t admit it. After all, she lives in America and he lives in Scotland with his daughter, Mairi, who he could never leave to be with the woman he loves.
Lindi Peterson, USA Today featured author, lives in north Georgia, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, with her husband and a lively array of cats, dogs and birds. She loves sharing life with her family and friends. Her passion for reading led her to writing, and then God spoke words of love into her heart and changed her life forever. Website |Facebook | Twitter
Jenn Faulk is a native Texan who enjoys reading and writing chick lit. She’s a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom, and a marathon enthusiast who loves talking about Jesus and what a difference He’s made in her life. She has a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Houston and a MA in Missiology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Website | Facebook | Twitter
Cindy K. Green has worked as a middle school history & English teacher, a frozen yogurt server and a golf magazine employee. Today she’s a multi-published, award winning author, a mother, a wife, and a homeschooler too. This native Californian now resides in North Carolina with her husband, two sons, and their two cats Chloe & Kassey. Website | Facebook | Twitter
Trisha Grace graduated from Bradford University with an Accounting and Finance degree. She has always been an avid reader and has a passion for writing. After being a tutor for over six years, she finally sat down and penned her own novels. Website | Facebook | Twitter
Liwen Y. Ho works as a chauffeur and referee by day (AKA being a stay at home mom) and a writer by night. Her work has appeared in various online publications, including LiteraryMama.com and MomLifeToday.com, and she is a contributor at StartMarriageRight.com. In her pre-author life, she received a Masters degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Western Seminary, and she loves makeovers of all kinds, especially those of the heart and mind. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her techie husband and their two children, and blogs about her adventures as a recovering perfectionist at www.2square2behip.com. Website | Facebook | Twitter
Tanya Eavenson is an inspirational romance author of the series Unending Love. She has also written several Bible studies that have been translated and published into different languages with Christ to the World Ministries. Tanya and her husband have been involved in ministry for seventeen years, teaching youth and adults. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children. Tanya is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Word Weavers International. Her favorite pastime is grabbing a cup of coffee, eating chocolate, and reading a good book. Website | Facebook| Twitter
Cindy Flores Martinez is an Amazon bestselling Spanish romance author. She writes sweet romantic comedy and Christian romance. She has an MFA in Creative Writing with an emphasis in Screenwriting. Her debut novel, Mail-Order Groom, started out as a screenplay and movie project, which she shopped around Hollywood, New York, and other parts of the world.
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Today we have a guest post from Cassie from Culture Coverage about some of her favorite YA books. Check it out!
Your teenage years can be a turbulent and difficult time—something to which every living adult today can testify. However, no matter your situation, there’s always solace to be found in a good book. With endless fantastic authors out there who write brilliant and inspiring novels for teenagers to enjoy, so many titles deserve a spot on this list. These are just a few of my favorite YA books, which I highly recommend all young people should indulge in!
1. Nerve by Jeanne Ryan
With a film adaptation currently in theaters worldwide, “Nerve” is a literary masterpiece that deserves to be enjoyed on the page before watching it on screen. It is inspired by the technological revolution and our generation’s overly ready acceptance to engage in online communities they know very little about.
Nerve is a game of dares; competitors record themselves completing challenges, and the most entertaining get to move on to the lightning round. Vee is an average teenager: timid, ordinary and often overshadowed by her extroverted best friend, Sydney. When she suspects Sydney might be secretly dating her long-time crush, Vee decides things need to change. Her first Nerve dare goes exceptionally well, and she gains fans immediately. However, she soon discovers the franchise is a lot less friendly than it appears. How are they getting away with this, and, more importantly, will she decide to throw in the towel?
2. Beautiful Broken Things by Sara Barnard
The brilliance of this enchanting story by Sara Barnard is that every teenage girl can relate to one of the characters. There’s Caddy, the self-proclaimed “boring one” who yearns for more excitement in her life; Rosie, the popular and charismatic best friend; or Suzanne, the troubled newcomer with a rebellious streak and a dark past.
The story is one of female friendship and navigating the complicated world of high school, boys, parties and family life. When Suzanne arrives in the sleepy seaside town of Brighton, both Caddy and Rosie think their dreams have come true. She’s effortlessly cool and way more world-wise than they could ever hope to be. They can't believe it when she chooses their friendship over the more popular groups in school. However, the pair soon comes to realize that Suzanne has a dark secret. After entering her world, their lives will never be the same.
3. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
This book has taken the world by storm recently, and after reading it yourself, you will understand why. It’s not just another cancer story, as it stands as a poignant novel about teenage life, young love and aspirations. Hazel is terminally ill, but this does not define her. It’s her quick wit, kind heart and undeniable bravery that shines through the pages.
When she’s forced to go to a cancer support group after her family worries she’s becoming depressed, Hazel is not particularly enthused. However, it’s here she meets the guy who will change her life forever. Now in remission, Augustus lost his leg to cancer and now takes on the world with unfailing cynicism. However, together the pair starts to look to future for the first time. This is not a book about dying; this is a book about squeezing as much living out of life as you can.
The story was recently released as a smash-hit film and is available on Netflix for U.S. subscribers. If you want to watch from overseas, then there’s a great guide by Secure Thoughts for people outside the USA.
4. The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot
For teenagers growing up in the early 2000s, this book and subsequent film were almost a rite of passage. Now, it more than deserves a place on the bookshelf of any modern-day teenage girl. It follows the life of Mia, a distinctly unglamorous London teenager who lives with her liberal single mother and never dreamed of being a princess. Until, that is, her estranged father arrives and discloses that he’s not actually a European politician as she'd believed. He’s really prince of a small country and, as his only heir, it’s time for her to take up her role as princess.
A self-labeled “freak,” Mia wonders how her flat chest, frizzy hair, large feet and out-of-proportion mouth will ever find be transformed into a beautiful princess. But when she begins training, she is transported into a world she never knew existed. Will she ever be able to fulfill her role as royalty, or will she always be the awkward kid from Greenwich?
This film of this book, starring a young Anne Hathaway, was also a huge success with teenagers. However, it’s not available on Netflix. You can purchase it directly from Amazon if you want to check it out.
5. Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
Everyone knows what it’s like to feel a bit out of the ordinary, like no one really gets you. Lead protagonist of Jerry Spinelli’s novel, Leo Borlock, can relate to this. As a fan of all things unusual, with a particular unexplainable love of porcupines, he finds an immediate comrade in the strange and mysterious new girl at his school. Stargirl is as about as eccentric as you can get, with her extravagant fashion sense and infallibly kind persona.
However, being unique can always be tricky in high school, and Stargirl soon finds herself falling in and out of favor with her peers. Blinded by love, Leo remains her only friend, but it isn’t long before he comes to realize this relationship is toxic. Like real life, this story doesn’t have a happy ending; it’s complex, turbulent and at times confusing. However, the lessons each character learns are invaluable and pay tribute to the power of growing up—that accepting what you learn from the bad times are just as important as enjoying the good.
There are so many fantastic YA novels out there, and they can be enjoyed by adults and teenagers alike. These five titles truly deserve a read, but if you can think of any more that deserve a spot on this list, then be sure to leave a comment below!
About the Author: Cassie is an entertainment blogger for Culture Coverage. She can always be found with a good book. She loved YA fiction when she was younger, and it's still one of her favorite genres today. She'll always have a great recommendation when you need one!
Writing for Children and Young Adults by Marion Crook
Self-Counsel Press Reference series
About the Book:
In addition to the expert advice author Marion Crook shared in earlier editions of Writing for Children and Young Adults, in this vibrant new edition, Crook explains some of the nuances and choices about the writing world online.
As well, she revisits the fundamentals of writing: establishing character, creating lively dialogue and developing plot with updated worksheets and examples. This edition shows the writer how to begin a story, plan plot, develop and hone the work for an agent or publisher, and how to make the crucial submission for a book that agents want to represent and publishers want to buy!
Writing for Children and Young Adults helps you create the manuscript that sells!
Chapters Indigo: https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/writing-for-children-young-adults/9781770402768-item.html/
Telling stories is an ancient skill practiced in public at community festivals,around the campfire, in religious rites, and in private at the cradlesof the young. It involves an innate ability to pick dramatic wordsin a way that paints a mental picture and gives the tale a sense of paceand tension. The story becomes important, even if only for a short time, to the one who hears it or reads it. It is a way of communicatingexcitement and the optimistic belief that the world is a remarkable andknowable place. Many writers have an enthusiastic following of readerswho want to share in their adventures.
Telling stories is also an age-old method of communicating moralitylessons to ensure that a point of view spreads in a palatable manner.Writing can be a way of instructing, advising, and guiding others. Mostchildren don’t want to read stories that are written with such motivation, but many writers believe that teaching justifies their stories. Aa “moral” story isn’t necessarily a good story. The danger in writingmorality tales is that the writer may ignore the needs of children andwrite from behind a screen of righteousness that thinly hides a lecture. As you may remember from your school years, most of us hate lectures.
Stories also offer an illusion of control as if the world can be controlledby the way we interpret it. Most writers offer stories that havebeginnings, middles, and ends describing life as neatly compacted andlogical. Perhaps this illusion of controlled life gives readers a sense of order.
You want to write a book that will delight many years later. Youwant your book to be the best you can produce, written in a style thatis uniquely yours, perhaps using ideas that have never been writtenabout or in a format that has never been tried. Writing is about creating.
Marion Crook has written many books for young adult and middle-grade readers. Here, she offers advice on writing, publishing, and marketing. Crook’s background in child development education as a nurse and her Ph.D. in education give her solid knowledge, but she maintains that a keen observation of people, places, and events can be the author’s most useful tool. An experienced teacher and writer, she gives her readers clear and practical tips, with humor and obvious understanding of what it’s like to write and publish.
Author Photo: Attached
Review: An interesting look at the components that go into writing a book for children. The author includes a focus on storytelling and tells why a moral to the story isn't always the key to an entertaining piece. That's important to note because many adults go into writing as a way to teach children and sometimes they point they are trying to make can be too on the nose and therefore take the child right out of the story. The key is to entertain the child to want to keep reading and not preach to them and turn them off of your plot.
This is an in-depth look at what goes into writing a novel for children, preteens, or young adults and would be a helpful resource for beginners and aspiring writers. This is also a useful resource for teachers.
Abi Sheperd is here today to share with us her thoughts on "How To Read While Doing Just About Anything"
I always think it's such a shame when people say they have no spare time for reading. I get it. Life's busy and there always seems to be something else we should be doing. Honestly, I don't have time to read either. But that's simply not an option for me. The trick is to combine reading with another activity that has to be done. I've spent my whole life doing this. And I'm not just talking about reading in the bath or while eating. If you put your mind to it you can be a lot more committed than that. Here's three ideas that may not spring immediately to mind:
1) Cleaning your teeth.
One of my favourites and easy to master. Prepare your toothbrush with toothpaste and hold in your dominant hand. Start scrubbing. Pick up your book in the other hand. Easy! I've tried this with both a manual and electric toothbrush. Either works fine, though the manual needs a little more concentration. The advantage of this method is that you'll probably spend longer brushing your teeth. The only disadvantage is the frequency with which you will rush out the door in the mornings, only to find a dob of toothpaste, most likely sitting on your bosom if you're a female.
2) Cleaning the bathroom.
This is a bit harder if you want to do a good job, on the other hand there's not much that can go really wrong. Probably the worst that can happen is that you spill bleach on your clothes, for this reason I recommend not wearing a favourite outfit.
Squirt all your fittings with your bathroom cleaner of choice. Pick up your book. Read for ten minutes while everything soaks. Pick up your sponge in your other hand (it helps to hold the book in your left hand if you're right handed and vice versa). Haphazardly scrub surfaces without looking at them. If you need to rinse use the shower head. You may need to put the book down to turn this on and pick it up, but only for a moment. Now you have a lovely clean bathroom and you read almost the whole time!
This is one of the harder ones to master and requires advance planning. Choose something for dinner that involves boiling. Rice or pasta is good. Make the sauce and leave it simmering. Now measure out the boiling ingredients and put the kettle on. At this point you can pick up your book. Turn the hob on just before the kettle finishes. You may need to look away from the page for a split second to do this. It's worth it though. If you don't it's easy to turn on the wrong hob ring, which doesn't end well. Trust me, I know. When the kettle has boiled it's worth paying attention while you pour in the hot water. But that's the hard part over. Cook on a low heat, standing over it and stirring occasionally, spoon in one hand, book in the other. Resist the urge to walk away from the pan to sit down. It will almost certainly boil over if you do. It knows.
Now you have grasped the basic ideas, don't forget to adapt them. For instance, brushing your hair, making a cup of tea and loading the dishwasher can all be done with a book in one hand. I'd love to hear what you come up with!
You can follow Abi here on Instagram: www.instagram.com/abiwriting/
Things are never what they seem... in a foggy Louisiana swamp
Title: The Secret in Mossy Swamp
Series: Nikki Landry Swamp Legends, Book 3
Author Name: Rita Monette
Genre(s): Juvenile/Middle Grade, Adventure, Mystery
Length: Approx. 204 pages
ISBN Paperback: 978-1987976168
Release Date: Septemer 17, 2016
Publisher: Mirror World Publishing
Follow the Blog Tour:
About The Secret in Mossy Swamp:
Living in a tiny houseboat, Nikki is stuck with sharing a room with her little brother, Jesse, who does what little brothers do best…torture their sisters. Fed up, she decides to build a place of her own…a tree house where no boys are allowed. Meanwhile, something strange is happening on Bayou Platte. Things and people are coming up missing…and little stick dolls covered in moss, known locally as “signs” from the legendary Rougarou, are showing up in their place.
Is the Rougarou really to blame? Can Nikki get to the bottom of the mystery before things get worse? Find out in this third instalment of the Nikki Landry Swamp Legends Series!
Add the Book on Goodreads:
Meet the Author:
Goodreads Author Page:
This week the theme on the Author Blog Challenge is 5 Things About Me. So here we go!
#1 I have been a Detroit Lions fan since I was a little kid. My dad and I went to watch their summer camp practices and their draft parties and as a TV news intern I got to go to one of their regular season practices and interview players. Sure they've broken my heart, but I've heard before somewhere you see yourself in a team and through it all, I remain loyal,,,but seriously guys, the playoffs would be awesome!!
#2 I am a TV addict and I watch American Dad every night as my escape. I love that show and pray it never goes off the air. It's my sanity in an otherwise insane world.
#3 I used to live in Portugal and Ronaldo was everywhere and so I got really into watching soccer. The games weren't usually in English, but I could still follow along. I'm actually working on a book that has a soccer player in it.
#4 I get sentimental easily over things. I have bags and clothes that are completely ruined and can't be salvaged, but I still keep if there's a sweet sentimental memory attached to it. This started recently when my dad and my aunt passed away. Now it's like I can't part with anything tied to them. Fortunately I have no issues with tossing anything else out, so I'm not becoming a hoarder.
#5 I used to read my great-aunt's old celebrity tabloids that she'd bring over to my grandma's house and now I love looking through those. Just recently I bought a copy of Closer for my mom because her favorite actor (and she claims my "real" father") Rock Hudson on the cover. I was looking through it and it reminded me of the biographies my grandma had of her favorite movie stars. It was a nice nostalgic moment. I buy the current celebrity tabloids if one of my favorites is on the cover like Jennifer Lopez!
Fall Into Books $250 Giveaway
September 23rd to October 15thAn awesome group of bloggers and authors has joined with me to bring you one fabulous prize!! A $250 Amazon Gift Code or you can choose to receive $250 in Paypal Cash. Sponsor List I Am A Reader Simple Wyrdings MK McClintock Heather Gray Niki Danforth, Author Aubrey Wynne: Vintage Romance for Today Lori's Reading Corner Paperback Parlor Here We Go Again...Ready? BookHounds Glistering: B's Blog Krysten Lindsay Hager author Fat Free Faith Talia Jager Laurie Here - Cont Fiction and More FLYLēF Helen Smith Author Erin Richards CoolCatMysteries Dorine White Confessions of a Frugal Mind B. Kristin McMichael Barefoot by the Sea Inger Iversen Jo Noelle The Page Unbound Charissa Stastny Katie's Clean Book Collection LOVE. WITHOUT YOU Every Free Chance Books Author Crystal Marcos Raquel @ The Babbling Reader Giveaway Details $250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 Amazon.com eGift Card Ends 10/15/16 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal or gift codes via Amazon.com. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the authors, bloggers and publishers on the sponsor list. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. a Rafflecopter giveaway
I'm over at Lifestyle & Literature today talking about writing, my favorite books, my book boyfriend, and my favorite book villain. Check it out here or watch it on YouTube below!
Author, journalist, book blogger, and undying Ronaldo fan, who tries to find the humor in everything. Life's too short to be too serious.
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