Thank you all for entering the giveaway last week! Winners have all been notified, and books are on their way to deserving winners across the United States.
Congrats to our winners!
Winner #1: Kimberly
Winner # 2: Colleen
Winner #3: Amy
Winner #4: Diane
I will be incognito from now to the new year, but thank you for hanging around, and may you all enjoy the holidays, whatever you may celebrate!
Speak up: comment
| TAGS: Giveaway
, happy holidays
Today, let me get right to the point. In the season of giving, I have some awesome middle grade books to give away to four lucky blog readers!
A personalized signed copy of THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE OF THE PB&J SOCIETY by Janet Sumner Johnson (me!!)
A signed copy of THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY by Laura Shovan
THE DISTANCE TO HOME by Jenn Bishop
THE RAT PRINCE by Bridget Hodder
Simply enter using the Rafflecopter link below. The first winner will have first pick, the second winner will have second pick, and so forth. Sorry fourth winner, you get what’s left, but lucky you, it is bound to be fantastic!
Also, I have given the option to earn extra entries by posting a review. Just as an added incentive, if I get to 50 Amazon reviews (this is me being hopeful), I will release the never-before-seen final chapter that was cut before publication. Exciting, right??? To be clear, you can review PB&J Society however you would like, but every review is helpful.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Have a great day and good luck!
Speak up: comment
| TAGS: Bridget Hodder
, Janet Sumner Johnson
, Jenn Bishop
, Laura Shovan
, middle grade
, PB&J Society
Once upon a time there was a girl. And this girl had a dream.
The dream was so big, it leaked from her thoughts and colored everything in her life. It made her food tastier when she drew closer to it, but drained all the flavor when she stumbled in her efforts. It made the sun shine brighter on the best of days, but hid it away in gloomy clouds on the worst. It drew people to her when she succeeded in even the smallest of ways, but made her a hermit when she failed.
She began to wonder if this dream was really what she wanted.
But it had become such a part of her life, she couldn’t let go. She didn’t want to let go.
And then it happened.
She reached her dream! And everything was sunshine and roses.
Until it wasn’t.
Because reaching her dream was not an ending. It was simply a new beginning.
And she embraced it.
The End. (Or rather . . . The Beginning)
P.S. Today starts the first Goodreads giveaway for THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE OF THE PB&J SOCIETY. It runs through January 19th and is open internationally. Go forth and enter! And may your lucky socks be dirty enough, and your clovers all have four leafs.
Speak up: comment
| TAGS: Dream
, Goodreads Giveaway
Not quite two years ago, my blogging friend and I exchanged manuscripts. I knew hers was a novel-in-verse, but I didn’t know quite what to expect. Well. Let’s just say, I was blown away. Blown!
That, of course was a draft of Amy Sonnichsen’s RED BUTTERFLY. It was touching and delicate. Beautiful and surprising! I still think about this story. And even though Amy didn’t have an agent at the time, I knew it wouldn’t be long.
Last Summer it was picked up by Simon & Schuster, Books for Young Readers, and is slated for publication in Winter 2015. And I’m THRILLED to be part of her cover reveal! Go Amy!! [And I’m sure she’d love it if you stopped by her blog, The Green Bathtub, to congratulate her!]
So first, the book blurb:
Kara never met her birth mother. Abandoned as an infant, she was taken in by an elderly American woman living in China. Now eleven, Kara spends most of her time in their apartment, wondering why she and Mama cannot leave the city of Tianjin and go live with Daddy in Montana. Mama tells Kara to be content with what she has … but what if Kara secretly wants more?
Told in lyrical, moving verse, Kara’s story is one of a girl learning to trust her own voice, discovering that love and family are limitless, and finding the wings she needs to reach new heights.
And if that doesn’t have you dying to read it, just look at this beautiful cover!
A.L. Sonnichsen grew up in Hong Kong and then spent eight years in China as adult. She now lives on the dry side of Washington State with her dashingly handsome sidekick, five talented children, and a luxury cat. Red Butterfly
is her first novel. Learn more at alsonnichsen.blogspot.com
. Twitter: @alsonnichsen
And because I love this book so much, I want to give away a pre-order of it! Just enter in the Rafflecopter below, and feel free to spread the word. This contest is open to US and Canada addresses, and will close June 27th at midnight EDT. Best of luck!
Congratulations, Amy! I’m so excited for you and your beautiful book.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Speak up: 16 comments
| TAGS: A.L. Sonnichsen
, Amy Sonnichsen
, Cover reveal
, Red Butterfly
Back in August, one of my super sweet CP’s (Critique Partner’s), Angela Cervantes, published her debut middle-grade novel, Gaby, Lost and Found with Scholastic Press. If you haven’t read it yet, you should! It is a touching story about a girl trying to find her place when her life is flipped up-side down. Here’s the blurb:
Gaby Howard Ramirez loves volunteering at the local animal shelter. She’s in charge of writing adoption advertisements so that the strays who live there can find their forever homes: places where they’ll be cared for and loved, no matter what.
Gaby has been feeling like a bit of a stray herself lately. Her mother has recently been deported to Honduras, and Gaby is stuck living with her inattentive dad. She’s confident that her mom will come home soon so they can adopt Gaby’s favorite shelter cat together. But when the cat’s owners turn up at the shelter, Gaby worries that her plans for the perfect family are about to fall apart.
I’ll be honest, I’m not a crier, but this one had me all choked up. I’m not an animal person, but she had me falling in love with each stray as I read the adoption advertisements. Gaby is a spunky character full of heart, and I’m certain you’ll fall in love with her like I did.
begged asked Angela if she’d be willing to do an interview with Girlie (my 4-year-old daughter), and she obligingly agreed.
So this is Girlie, and I’m going to let her take it from here:
Girlie: I don’t know who you are. Who are you?
Angela: I’m Angela Cervantes and I’m author of Gaby, Lost and Found, which was published by Scholastic Press. 🙂
Girlie: I like to play Diego Wii with my friends. What do you like to do with your friends?
Angela: I enjoy going for coffee with my friends and playing tennis or baseball with them.
Girlie: I’m trying to make people happy by playing with them and sharing my stuff. How do you make people happy?
Angela: I think sharing things is a great way to make people happy. I’m going to have to do more of that. I also think people really like it when you’re a good, honest friend to them and you remember their birthdays.
Girlie: People can be nice to each other and don’t throw a fit. Is the girl with the cat in the backpack nice and doesn’t throw fits?
Angela: The girl on the cover is Gaby and she is super nice. She’s also brave, smart and a serious animal lover. She’d do anything to help a cat or dog if it were in trouble. I think the only time she throws a fit is when she feels an innocent animal has been poorly treated. I don’t blame her really.
Girlie: I like the kitty on the cover. I don’t have a kitty. Do you?
Angela: I don’t have a kitty either, but I’m glad you like the cat on the cover. That cat is named Feather. In this book, we find out that Feather was named Feather by the folks at the animal shelter because when she was brought into the shelter she was as light as a Feather. She and Gaby become good friends.
Girlie: You look cute in that picture and I like your skirt. Do you choose your own clothes? I do!
Angela: Thank you! I do choose my own clothes. I love picking out cute stuff to wear. I love bright colors like red, purple, pinks and yellows.
Girlie: Did you sign the book? Do we get to keep it?
Me: Sorry Girlie, I know you love this book, but we have our own copy. We’re going to give these ones to some people who haven’t read it yet.
Angela: I am always happy to sign a book for anyone who wants it. 🙂 It’s one of the nice perks of being an author.
Me: Angela, thanks so much for answering all of Girlie’s questions. She loves your book and keeps sneaking it from my room! But I have a couple of questions for you, too. As you know, I re-joined our critique group shortly after you got the offer from Scholastic, so I missed the whole writing process. How long did it take you to write Gaby, Lost and Found? And would you tell us about your revision process, too?
Angela: It took nine months to write Gaby, Lost and Found and another two years of revision. I believe the real magic happens during revision and I enjoy it. For me, it’s not as intense as the writing process. I go into revision knowing I have to chop away stuff. I go into writing never knowing what will happen so I definitely prefer revision. Although it can be painful– especially when you have to take out a character (I had to remove two characters from Gaby, Lost and Found) or remove a favorite scene–but it’s necessary if you’re committed to making the story stronger.
Me: Oooh! I love knowing secret stuff like about books, like characters that didn’t make the cut. I may have to hear about these characters at our next meeting. 🙂 Okay, so last question. I kind of have this thing about personalized license plates. So, if Gaby were old enough to drive, what would her personalized license plate be?
Angela: Gaby’s license plate would be GRLPWR.
Me: I love it! She definitely lives up to that. 🙂
Angela Cervantes is a poet, storyteller, and animal lover. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in various publications, including Chicken Soup for the Latino Soul. When Angela is not writing, she enjoys hanging out with her husband in Kansas and eating fish tacos every chance she gets. Gaby, Lost and Found is her first middle-grade novel. She is currently at work on her second book.
You can keep up with Angela at her website:
Now for the Giveaway! I have two signed (paperback) copies of Gaby, Lost and Found to give away to two lucky visitors. Just enter in the Rafflecopter below! The giveaway is open through March 31st. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Speak up: 10 comments
| TAGS: Angela Cervantes
, author interview
, Gaby Lost and Found
, Interview with Girlie
, personalized license plates
, Scholastic Press
So I’ve known Kimberly Afe for a while via her blog, and I’m thrilled to be a part of her Blog Tour for The Headhunters Race which was released Jan. 3! She’s all over the blogosphere this week, and having a fabulous giveaway with a chance to win her ebook PLUS a $25 Amazon gift card and other cool prizes. Totally awesome! So if you haven’t heard of it, here’s the blurb:
Avene was sentenced to prison at thirteen for a crime she didn’t commit. Now
she has a chance to win her freedom back – if she enters the Headhunters Race.
Second prize isn’t so bad either, an upgrade to the Leisure Prison if you make
it to the finish line. To win either prize, Avene and the other prisoners must
navigate one hundred and fifty miles of dense forest, desert, and worst of all,
With a mechanical collar timed to
strangle the prisoners if they’re not back in nine days, Avene allies herself
with seventeen-year-old McCoy, another prisoner that insists on helping her at
every turn and a boy she’s trying hard not to fall for. Together they battle
nature, other prisoners, and the timed death collars to win the coveted prize.
But when Avene is tested with one deadly conflict after another, she realizes
there is more at stake than winning her freedom – first she has to
And I love her story about how she came up with the idea in the first place. I’ll let her tell it in her own words:
The Headhunters Race has a bit of a long journey. The idea was born on June 26, 2011 after a Zelda game commercial inspired me. The commercial was brilliant and I thought why can’t they make a movie that cool? And then I thought, why don’t I write a cool adventure myself!
So I brainstormed this story with my son over a dinner of spicy spaghetti a couple of nights after the idea came to me. We worked out the entire novel: the characters and their motivations, the world, and the details of the race as I frantically wrote it all down. My husband and daughter also helped me brainstorm items that I needed worked out. I then spent a little while playing around with Avene’s voice and then wrote like crazy. I finished in December of 2011. I actually started having critique partners read it in November of 2011 and began querying agents in January of 2012 after more revising. I also entered it into a few popular contests around the blogosphere in early 2012. Then I took a very long break due to life circumstances with hubby’s heart and moving. Early this year I got back into writing. I’d been thinking about self publishing for quite awhile so when querying a few more agents and a handful of publishers didn’t work out, I decided to go for it, and now, 2 1/2 years later, the book is out there! Wahoo!
Kimberly is the mother of
two awesome kids, wife of the nicest man in the world, and her dog’s best
friend. She works by day and writes middle grade and young adult science fiction
and fantasy novels in her spare time. She lives with her family in the
beautiful Sonoran Desert.
Congratulations Kimberly! I’m really excited for you and wish all the best for you and your book. The rest of you, go forth and enter below. The last day to enter is Friday, January 10th!
There are 3 prize packs to
giveaway. The Giveaway includes a copy
of her eBook + the SAS Survival Handbook (2 of these to giveaway) and also
giving away a copy of her eBook + a $25 Amazon gift card – the Rafflecopter
lists all of these prize packs. 🙂 The
Survival Handbook is awesome. 🙂
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Speak up: 8 comments
| TAGS: Blog Tour
, Kimberly Afe
, The Headhunters Race
, YA Fiction
Thanks to everyone who entered my giveaway and helped spread the word. You guys are awesome!
Rafflecopter has chosen a winner . . .
Congratulations! I have e-mailed you with instructions to claim your prize. Thanks again to all who entered. Now go enjoy your day!
Speak up: 3 comments
| TAGS: Giveaway
So when I making plans to travel this summer, I had this conversation on Twitter:
So look who else I met this summer!
Yep, the one and only Elana Johnson (@ElanaJ), who may or may not be a long-lost distant relation (I mean, hey, if we go back to Noah, we for sure are!). She is just as cool in person as she is online. The type you want to cozy up with on a couch while eating a big plate of bacon while you watch crazy movies.
Right now she is up to her ears in WriteOnCon, which STARTS TONIGHT!! (Though the forums are already in full swing. Go check it out if you haven’t.)
I also met the amazing Kasie West (@KasieWest)! (And her super cute daughters). If there hadn’t been a line of people behind me waiting to get their books signed, we might have chatted all night.
And and and . . . I got to meet the super sweet Jenn Johansson (@JennJohansson), the crazy cool Natalie Whipple (@nataliewhipple), and the fabulous* Bree Despain (@breedespain).
Seriously, these are my people. And see that black bag in my hand in the picture with Kasie? Yup, totally swag I won. It even came with “Insomnia Pills”**
So of course, to celebrate having met so many amazing authors in one shot, I wanted to do I GIVEAWAY!! One lucky person will win their choice of any one book currently published by any of these authors:
- Elana Johnson (Possession, Surrender, Abandon)
- Kasie West (Pivot Point, The Distance Between Us)
- J.R. Johansson (Insomnia)
- Natalie Whipple (Transparent)
- Bree Despain (The Dark Divine, The Lost Saint, The Savage Grace)
This giveaway is open to anywhere The Book Depository delivers and is open through the end of August 2013. I’ll announce the winner the first Monday of September. Good luck!
I’m being all kinds of modern and using a rafflecopter, so just fill it out and I’ll cross my fingers it all works the way it’s supposed to.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
So what book would you choose if you won?
* Yeah, I couldn’t think of another good “F” word to go with “fabulous” to keep it all parallel. I debated “freakishly fabulous,” but that wasn’t quite right. “fascinatingly fabulous” was better, but a bit of a mouthful. “flailingly” just doesn’t fit, same with “flinchingly.” “Flightily” is really stretching things, “fantastically” felt a bit overdone . . . Well, you see my dilemma.
** Jenn Johansson ASSURED us that they were CANDY. Not real pills. And she was 100% correct. Candy. Not pills. 🙂
Speak up: 14 comments
| TAGS: Bree Despain
, Elana Johnson
, Jenn Johansson
, Kasie West
, Natalie Whipple
If you were anywhere on Twitter this past week, you surely know that the super fun Leigh Ann Kopans (@LeighAnnKopans) just released her debut novel, ONE. It’s been climbing all the Amazon charts, and has debuted with a smashing success! So excited for Leigh Ann. 😀
My luck pool has been filling up of late, and recently it splashed over the edges to land me a copy of my own. Woo hoo for me, because it’s been on my TBR list since I first read the pitch:
When having two powers makes you a Super and having none
makes you a Normal, having only one makes you a sad half-superpowered freak.
It makes you a One.
Sixteen-year-old Merrin Grey would love to be able to fly –
too bad all she can do is hover.
If she could just land an internship at the Biotech Hub, she
might finally figure out how to fix herself. She busts her butt in AP Chem and
salivates over the Hub’s research on the manifestation of superpowers, all in
hopes of boosting her chances.
Then she meets Elias VanDyne, another One, and all her
carefully crafted plans fly out the window. Literally. When the two of them
touch, their Ones combine to make them fly, and when they’re not soaring over
the Nebraska cornfields, they’re busy falling for each other.
Merrin’s mad chemistry skills land her a spot on the Hub’s
internship short list, but as she gets closer to the life she always wanted,
she discovers that the Hub’s purpose is more sinister than it has always
seemed. Now it’s up to her to decide if it’s more important to fly solo, or to
save everything – and everyone – she loves.
And now woo hoo for you, because I’m going to give away the copy I was planning to buy! WOO HOO!!
So if you want to win a copy of ONE, just leave a comment, and I’ll enter you into the drawing. Spread the word in any way (twitter, facebook, blog post, sidebar, word-of-mouth, etc.), and I’ll give you +5 extra entries. Just tell me what you did (or will do) in your comment. No need for a link, I trust you. 😉 Important: Please leave me a way to contact you, should you win.
Enter by Saturday, June 22nd, and I’ll announce the winner on Monday, June 24th. Good luck!
Speak up: 9 comments
| TAGS: Giveaway
, Luck Pool
, ONE by Leigh Ann Kopans
So Leigh T. Moore’s book, The Truth About Letting Go has been out
a couple of weeks and is doing awesome! Read all about it HERE.
So what else is there to do but have a
giveaway? Hurray! *throws confetti* One lucky commenter will win a copy of The Truth About Letting Go, just let me know in the comments you’re
interested, and leave me a way to contact you.
Last day to enter is March. 24, and
I’ll post the winner on Monday, March 25th. Best of luck!
In the mean time, since I already interviewed
Leigh HERE, I let my 3-year-old do the honors to give you a fresh perspective
on this amazing author. 🙂
Girlie, take it away!
What is your favorite color? Mine is pink.
imagining us sitting at a little white tea table with a few stuffed animals
joining us. I’m very big, and I’ve got my pink boa and tiara on…
(sips tea) I like pink, too. When I was
little, purple was my favorite color, though. You can be Pinkalicious and I can
be Purpleicious. Is that OK?
Girlie: Will you sing me a song?
OR Dance with me! I like being a ballerina. How do you like to dance?
Leigh: I don’t dance super well. My dancing
takes special medicine, otherwise I look like Kookoo the Bird Lady from Freaks.
Let’s play magic wands! Mine turns people into stones. What does yours do?
Leigh: Stones! Goodness.
Me: Yup, it’s true! I’ve totally been turned into a stone like 4 times just in the past week. Crazy.
Leigh: Did I mention I
really like this tea? And that’s a lovely dress you’re wearing. Umm… what if
my wand turns people into fairies? That’s fun, huh?
Me: If I don’t hear from you in a while, I’ll confiscate Girlie’s wand. See if I can figure out the reverse spell! 😉
Girlie: If I’m the princess, what does that
Leigh: I guess I’d have to be either one of
those little birds that help you get dressed or a mouse… I’m glad I’m not the
step-mom or anything. They’re always bad.
I like to cut things up and play with glue. What do you like to do?
Leigh: You know what’s fun to do with glue?
Put squiggly shapes on construction paper and then dump a bunch of glitter on
it and shake it around. It’s real, real messy. Ask your mom to show you how to
do this… LOL! 😀
Me: Um, thanks a LOT!
I can write the letter K. What can you write?
Leigh: Now that I’m big, I can write most of
my letters. But you know which one I still can’t write? Cursive Q. That’s hard
for me. Oh, and cursive Z. You’ll probably do those really well. I still have
to make those in print.
Me: Okay, I have to intervene, because
this is my blog after all. Last question:
What would Ashley’s personalized license plate be? Colt’s? Jordan’s? 8 letters
for each. Go!
Leigh: You know I HATE this!!!
Me: Bwah ha ha! I am evil incarnate. 🙂
Leigh: I’m not good
w/personalized plates. Urgh… umm… do they have to be 8 letters?
Me: Okay, okay, you have UP TO 8 letters.
Leigh: OK, here
Ashley would be REBLREBL (I’m
thinking “Rebel Rebel”–like the David Bowie song… does this look
like Robble Robble?)
Jordan would be HAVEF8TH (That’s not
very good. I know.)
Colt would be L8TRDUDE (OK, his would
be cooler than that, but I actually knew a guy who’s plate was that… LOL!)
Me: Awesome plates! REBLREBL totally came across right. 🙂 Now
aren’t you all wishing you could sit down to a tea party with Leigh, wearing a
pink boa and a tiara? I know I am!!
Thanks for visiting with us, Leigh! And the rest of ya’ll, don’t forget to mention in the comments if you want a chance to win Leigh’s latest.
Speak up: 7 comments
| TAGS: Girlie
, Leigh Moore
, The Truth About Letting Go