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4.23.2014

April CSFF Tour ~ Numb Day 3

NUMB
By John Otte

If you LOVE sci-fi you will LOVE Numb.  This book really has it all - technology that is a conceivable possibility.  Humanity has gone beyond the confines of our own Solar System.

And we've taken our dogmas with us.  We've perverted the Truth to suit our purposes or we've abandoned belief.  Except for a hidden few.

I think I'd sum up Numb as the Middle Ages meets Jason Bourne crossed with Star Wars.  I'd put this up there with my all time favorite book/s Chris Walley's Lamb Among the Stars and would love to read more books following these various characters.

This is a book that you can get caught up in and when you've put it down it makes one think.  How far would we go to have power?  Would we sacrifice the individual for our own climb for power and dominion?  Or on the reverse what would we do to stop the total destruction of individuals.  Would we willingly sacrifice our own humanity and the lives of those around us simply on the promise of the chance to take another breath?

Numb will leave you feeling anything but numb.

I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher Marcher Lord Press in exchange for my honest review and in conjunction with the April CSFF blog tour.



Save the girl...or his soul?

Crusader is numb. He feels neither emotion nor pain, a divine gift that allows him to be the Ministrix's best assassin. Whether it's heretics from within or heathen from without, Crusader is the sword in the True Church's hand. And if he remains obedient to his superiors, he will be able to let go of his guilt.

But then he's ordered to kill Isolda Westin. It shouldn't be a problem. A target is a target. When Crusader sees Isolda's image, though, something strange happens. He experiences a moment of panic, a wave of emotions, the first he's felt in as long as he can remember.

In that moment, he realizes he can't fulfill his mission. He can't kill Isolda Westin, even if it means he'll be condemned as an enemy of the Ministrix.

Soon Crusader and Isolda are on the run. Will they be able to learn why the Ministrix wants Isolda dead? Or will they both face the harsh justice of the "True Church"?


Be sure to visit all the tour participants during April's CSFF tour
April 21 - 23, 2014

The Living Memories Project ~ Review

The Living Memories Project: 
                Legacies That Last
By Meryl Ain, Stewart Ain, 
and Arthur M. Fischman

How do we hold on to those who mean the most to us?  And how do we do this when they have been taken from us?  This is the very question the authors of The Living Memories Project have asked and are answering for you in this book.

How you create a legacy that lasts is up to you, but you may have already started doing this without even realizing it.  But if you haven't there are some great ideas for you to work with.  Eileen Belmont creates Memory Quilts, well my Grandmother created quilted pillows using dresses that had belonged to her mother.

This collection of memories and legacies will inspire you.  And in the process you may learn things about people you've heard about all your life but never knew.  I never knew that Rosemary Clooney had a sister named Betty that was on the Today Show.

The Living Memories Project is a book you'll enjoy reading.  Start a tradition of your own and create a legacy.  Plant a tree to honor a birth.  Decorate for a holiday on a loved ones birthday.  Legacies are easy to create, give it a try.

I was provided a copy of this book by the authors through PUYB in conjunction with this blog tour in exchange for my honest review and tour participation.

About the Authors

Meryl Ain holds a BA from Queens College, a MA from Columbia University Teachers College, and an Ed.D. from Hofstra University. She began her career in education as a social studies teacher before she became an administrator. She is also a freelance writer specializing in issues related to education, families, parenting, and children and has contributed to Huffington Post, Newsday, the New York Jewish Week and The New York Times. She embarked on The Living Memories Project after she lost both her father and mother within a year-and-a-half. She and her husband Stewart live on Long Island and have three sons, three daughters-in-law and three grandchildren.


Arthur M. Fischman holds a BA from Queens College and a JD from Temple Law School.  He is a freelance writer whose video and interactive scripts have won numerous awards, including a Telly, an ITVA Silver Award, and a New York Festivals Bronze World Medal. He co-wrote the award-winning documentary Digital Dharma and has written radio, TV, and print ads for leading consumer product manufacturers.  Arthur is a veteran speechwriter and ghostwriter, and was director of executive communications and internal communications for a Fortune 500 company. He, his wife, and their two daughters live in Philadelphia, where he also writes plays and moonlights as a jazz pianist.

Stewart Ain is a graduate of CW Post College and holds a MA from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He is an award-winning journalist with more than 40 years of experience, and was a Pulitzer Prize nominee three times. He has reported for The New York Times, New York Daily News, New York Jewish Week, Long Island Business News and Lifestyles Magazine. Stewart frequently appears on television and radio, and hosts his own weekly cable TV program, Jewish Life, and has been a regular guest on The Leon Charney Show.   Both his parents died while he was working on The Living Memories Project.

Their latest book is the nonfiction, The Living Memories Project: Legacies That Last.  Visit their website at www.thelivingmemoriesproject.com.

Connect and Socialize!


Three years after the death of her mother, Meryl Ain was still unable to fill the hole that the loss had left in her life.  In talking to friends, Meryl discovered an insight shared by those who had successfully overcome grief; there simply is no closure.  It was a breakthrough for her. She writes, “Our loved ones will always be with us if they are not forgotten. It is up to us to integrate them into our lives in a positive way that reflects their unique personality, values and spirituality. In that way we keep them alive in our hearts and minds always.”

Meryl enlisted the help of her brother, Arthur Fischman, and her husband, Stewart Ain, and began a quest to interview people who had moved beyond mourning through meaningful action. The Living Memories Project: Legacies That Last by Meryl Ain, Ed.D., Arthur M. Fischman, and Stewart Ain (March 2014, Little Miami Publishing Company, Trade Paperback, 196 pages, $18.95, ISBN:978-0-9882553-7-1) is a result of that research.

The Living Memories Project presents more than 30 interviews with both celebrities and others who share their experiences and the projects they undertook to memorialize their loved ones. The authors have sought to demonstrate that any tribute, big or small, can be a meaningful way to preserve memories of loved ones. Establishing a foundation or scholarship, using a recipe on a particular holiday or family occasion, creating artwork, embarking on a project or even an entire career – all could be traced to a specific talent, interest or value of the deceased.  Each chapter offers a rich first-person history that will engage and inspire readers of all faiths.
Among them are:
Linda Ruth Tosetti, who made a documentary film about her grandfather, Babe Ruth, to highlight his humanitarian side – a value she cherished and believed was often overlooked in Babe’s biography. Ruth was a German-American, who publicly denounced the Nazi persecution of the Jews in 1942.

Liz and Steve Alderman, who established the Peter C. Alderman Foundation to honor the memory of their 25-year-old son, who was killed on 9/11 at the World Trade Center. The foundation trains doctors and establishes mental health clinics on four continents to treat PTSD.

Eileen Belmont, a quilt designer who helps others preserve their memories of deceased loved ones through the creation of memory quilts.

Singer/songwriter Jen Chapin (daughter of the late folk rock icon Harry Chapin), who carries on her father’s legacy of music and feeding the hungry.

Dr. Yeou-Cheng Ma (sister of Yo-Yo Ma), who keeps the memory of her father and music teacher /mentor alive through the Children’s Orchestra Society and her poetry.

Robert Meeropol (son of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were executed as spies by the US Government in 1953), who established the Rosenberg Fund for Children to help children whose parents are imprisoned.

Author, actor and raconteur Malachy McCourt, who presents his unique take on how he keeps alive the memory of his brother Frank (Angela’s Ashes) through the Irish tradition of song and story.

Not everyone can create a foundation, fund an orchestra or make a documentary film, but the authors’ hope is that readers will find inspiration from the wide range of actions they read about. The authors are currently compiling narratives for the second volume of The Living Memories Project and welcome input from readers.

Title: The Living Memories Project: Legacies That Last
Authors: Meryl Ain, Stewart Ain, and Arthur M. Fischman
Publisher: Little Miami Publishing
Pages: 196
Genre: Nonfiction
Format: Paperback
Purchase book at AMAZON

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking HERE

4.22.2014

April CSFF Tour ~ Numb Day 2

NUMB
By John Otte

He is numb.  Emotion is unknown.  Pain is not a problem.  He is an assassin for the Ministrix - the best they have until the unthinkable happens - he feels. 

But the travesty with Crusader's numbness is that it's not natural.  It has been created so that he will do the Ministrix's bidding all in the hope that he can fill the void that is within him.  Crusader is a pawn that can be disposed of at the whim of his religion - a religion that is a perversion of the Truth.  God and His words have been corrupted by the ruling powers of the Ministrix.

Such technology would be in high-demand in today's world.  The ability to erase a  person's identity, to hide their soul from them, all in the attempt to create the perfect living,  breathing weapon.  A weapon that obeys without question and experiences no guilt or remorse at the lives he has taken.

And if the ability to wipe-out pain and remorse was readily available I'm sure there would be people lining up to experience what they would view as freedom.  But at what cost would this freedom come?  To never experience joy.  Happiness would be unknown.  We would forever look through the glass darkly, face-to-face would have no meaning to us ever.  What a sad world this would be.  We would be empty, having within us the same void that haunts Crusader.

I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher Marcher Lord Press in exchange for my honest review and in conjunction with the April CSFF blog tour.



Save the girl...or his soul?
Crusader is numb. He feels neither emotion nor pain, a divine gift that allows him to be the Ministrix's best assassin. Whether it's heretics from within or heathen from without, Crusader is the sword in the True Church's hand. And if he remains obedient to his superiors, he will be able to let go of his guilt.

But then he's ordered to kill Isolda Westin. It shouldn't be a problem. A target is a target. When Crusader sees Isolda's image, though, something strange happens. He experiences a moment of panic, a wave of emotions, the first he's felt in as long as he can remember.

In that moment, he realizes he can't fulfill his mission. He can't kill Isolda Westin, even if it means he'll be condemned as an enemy of the Ministrix.

Soon Crusader and Isolda are on the run. Will they be able to learn why the Ministrix wants Isolda dead? Or will they both face the harsh justice of the "True Church"?

Be sure to visit all the tour participants during April's CSFF tour
April 21 - 23, 2014

4.21.2014

April CSFF Tour ~ Numb Day 1

NUMB
By John Otte

Crusader feels nothing - he is numb and has been as far back as he can remember.  This numbness makes him the perfect assassin for the Ministrix.  But this time something is wrong, he is unable to complete his assignment and he doesn't know why.

Why in this all important moment does Crusader suddenly feel something and why have the parameters of his mission suddenly changed from the norm. 

Who should Crusader trust?  And why has he suddenly become a target of the Ministrix?  Crusader and Isolda have questions and time to find the answers in running out.

I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher Marcher Lord Press in exchange for my honest review and in conjunction with the April CSFF blog tour.



Save the girl...or his soul?

Crusader is numb. He feels neither emotion nor pain, a divine gift that allows him to be the Ministrix's best assassin. Whether it's heretics from within or heathen from without, Crusader is the sword in the True Church's hand. And if he remains obedient to his superiors, he will be able to let go of his guilt.

But then he's ordered to kill Isolda Westin. It shouldn't be a problem. A target is a target. When Crusader sees Isolda's image, though, something strange happens. He experiences a moment of panic, a wave of emotions, the first he's felt in as long as he can remember.

In that moment, he realizes he can't fulfill his mission. He can't kill Isolda Westin, even if it means he'll be condemned as an enemy of the Ministrix.

Soon Crusader and Isolda are on the run. Will they be able to learn why the Ministrix wants Isolda dead? Or will they both face the harsh justice of the "True Church"?

Be sure to visit all the tour participants during April's CSFF tour
April 21 - 23, 2014

4.20.2014

Tide and Tempest ~ Review

Time and Tempest
Edge of Freedom Book 3
By Elizabeth Ludwig

Two years have passed since Tillie McGrath lost her fiance, Braedon on the journey to America.  But the past and all its pain come back when Captain Keondric Morgan comes to the boardinghouse where she's staying.  Tillie and Morgan are in danger because of Braedon's death.  But what does Braedon's death have to do with his ties with the Fenians?  And why the danger?

Keondric Morgan has just discovered the truth about the death of Braedon McKillop.  And what he has discovered concerns him, because it means Braedon's young fiance could be the next to die. For some reason Tillie has been on Morgan's mind and he can't get her out of it.  But he has responsibilities and Tillie is so much younger than him

Tillie is equally drawn to Morgan, but she refuses to acknowledge it.  She doesn't deserve happiness after what she's done.  And she has an orphanage to start if she can get the money together.

Keondric and Tillie's story is one of letting go of the guilt of the past and embracing the forgiveness that God so freely offers.  Both are offered second chances if they are willing to take the risk and accept what is being offered.

I haven't read the first two books in this series, so I don't think one has to read them.  But the references made about other characters has made me want to read the first two books.  Time and Tempest is set at the turn of the century (19th into 20th) in New York City.  I found this to be an enjoyable and enlightening book. The history of the struggle for Irish independence and its links to America are interesting and are fodder for research into Fenians and their struggles.
  
I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.

About

Two years ago, her fiance perished
during their voyage to America.

Now she discovers it may have been murder...

Dreaming of a better life, Tillie McGrath leaves Ireland behind and, with her beloved fiance by her side, sets sail for America. But when illness robs her of the man she holds dear, she's left alone with only a handful of tattered memories. While forging on proves difficult, Tillie soon finds some new friends at her New York boardinghouse, and begins pursuing a new dream--to open a home for orphaned children.

Despite two years passing, Captain Keondric Morgan has never forgotten the lass who left his ship so heartbroken. When a crewman's deathbed confession reveals her fiance's demise was the result of murder, the captain knows he must try to contact her. But his attention draws the notice of others as well--dangerous men who believe Tillie has in her possession something that could expose their crimes. And to their way of thinking, the best way to prevent such an outcome is to seize the evidence and then hand Tillie the same fate as her naïve fiance.

4.18.2014

Goldtown Adventures Book 3 and 4 ~ Review



Canyon of Danger
Goldtown Adventures #3
By Susan K. Marlow

With his dad away Jem Coulter is the man of the family for two weeks.  But just as his dad takes a prisoner to Sacramento trouble comes to Goldtown - starting with a wolf!  But Jem is sure he can handle the wolf until he shoots a stranger, loses his horse and Pa's rifle all on the same night.

What's a fella to do?  Well, for starters convince the deputies to do their job and then track down Cooper and find the riders who are stealing the horses in Goldtown.  And he has to get it done before Pa gets back and before Aunt Rose stops him.  And if he needs to go to Blackwater Canyon to do it, Jem is headed there no matter the danger.

Adventure is Jem's passion and the new former Pony Express Rider who's come to Goldtown has stories that will thrill and enthrall Jem, Nathan, and Ellie.  But just who is Rafe and why did he come to Goldtown and more importantly why is he creeping around on Coulter land?  Just another mystery for Jem to solve.

 River of Peril
Goldtown Adventures #4
By Susan K. Marlow


The Coulter family is making a trip to Sacramento.  And though he should be excited, something about this trip just feels wrong to Jem, starting with Pa's behavior.  And when the stagecoach is held up Jem knew he was right to be worried.

Gold for the Union is at stake and Jem, Nathan, and Ellie are about get caught in the Confederates desire to capture the gold.  And the Knights of the Golden Circle aren't about to be outsmarted by anyone.  And Ellie is just the leverage they need the find where the gold is being stored.

Can Jem find Ellie in time or will he lose his sister forever?  Take a trip into the past at the time of the Gold Rush when steamships and stagecoaches were the way to travel.  History comes alive in this book.

These are fun books that are sure to appeal to the middle grade boy in your life. These would also be a great supplement for homeschoolers studying California, the Gold Rush, the Pony Express and the Civil War. What better way to capture the attention of young men than with enjoyable and educational reading?

I was provided with a copy of both of these by Kregel in exchange for my honest review and participation in this blog tour.



About the Series:
It's 1864. The Gold Rush is about over, but there's still plenty of adventure for 12-year-old Jem Coulter. Whether panning for gold with his sister, Ellie, adjusting to Pa's new job as sheriff of rowdy Goldtown, or getting caught in the belly of an old mine, Jem's life is exciting, with plenty of opportunities to learn to trust God.

Be sure to check-out the Goldtown Adventures website here.

4.16.2014

A Sandy Grave ~ Spotlight and Giveaway


The anticipation of summer vacation can put anyone in a great mood with the
excitement of adventures to be had--especially at the beach. But what is a group of
friends to do when they discover mysterious men poaching whale teeth at the beach?

EXCERPT:

The lifeguards had their arms extended and attempted to move the crowd back. The tallest
lifeguard said, “People, please stay back. The authorities will arrive to examine the whale to
determine the cause of death within the hour. The whale must have died at sea and washed
ashore.”

PURCHASE AT:
GUARDIAN ANGEL PUBLISHING:
AMAZON
BARNES AND NOBLE

Title: A Sandy Grave
Author: Donna M. McDine
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing
Pages: 24
Language: English
Genre: Tween chapterbook
Format: Paperback, hardcover & eBook



Donna McDine is an award-winning children's author, Honorable Mention in the 77th and two Honorable
Mentions in the 78th Competitions, Literary Classics Silver Award & Seal of Approval Recipient Picture Book Early Reader, Readers Favorite 2012 International Book Awards Honorable Mention, Global eBook Awards Finalist Children’s Picture Book Fiction, and Preditors & Editors Readers Poll 2010 Top Ten Children’s Books ~ The Golden Pathway.

Her stories, articles, and book reviews have been published in over 100 print and online publications. Her interest in American History resulted in writing and publishing The Golden Pathway. Donna’s 2013 releases of Powder Monkey and Hockey Agony and the 2014 release of A Sandy Grave will be joined by an additional book to be published by Guardian Angel Publishing, Dee and Deb, Off They Go. She writes, moms and is a personal assistant from her home in the historical hamlet Tappan, NY. McDine is a member of the SCBWI, Children’s Literature Network, and Family Reading Partnership.

Visit Donna online at www.donnamcdine.com or her blog at www.donna-mcdine.blogspot.com

Donna McDine is giving you a chance to win a $50 Barnes and Noble Gift Card.
Terms & Conditions:
• By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
• One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $50 Barnes and Noble Gift Card
• This giveaway begins March 3 and ends on April 25, 2014.
• Winner will be contacted via email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway