Tuesday, June 28, 2011

eBook Review: Angel in the Shadows by Lisa Grace

I have to say, this book really challenged me in the review department because I can't really fit this book neatly into one primary genre.  This book is definately Christian Fiction, but not your mama's Cfiction! It's teen Christian Fiction - younger teens primarily in the first half, but older teens would enjoy the second half. It also has YA Paranormal appeal because of the contemporary setting and good/evil angel battles. It definately has a refreshing approach to battling evil in fiction.

Megan starts seeing a glow around a camp counselor only to find out he's an angel. Not only does she have the gift to see good angels, she can also see dark angels. Because of her gift - the dark angels are after her. When school starts, she meets dark angel, Jude who wants company in his eternal lake of fire. Jude is posing as a student and doing everything he can to influence other students to make bad choices - some that eventually lead to death and eternity with him. Fortunately for Megan, she meets Johnny, a good angel also posing as a student, and forms a team of Christian friends that together come up with strategies to save their friends before Jude destroys them.

What stood out the most to me was the sheer creepiness of the evil - definately felt like I should wear something like this ...
Just kidding! I know you can't fight evil with jewelry (unless you are into vampires), but it would be a good reminder of who can overcome evil barehanded and blindfolded.

Megan - oh if I ever had a daughter I hope she'd be just like Megan! But for a main character I felt she was a little too perfect to relate to most of the time. Jude's character was very well written - his mannerisms, his sly tricks to get people to do his work and his brazen attack on Megan's character made me want to keep my eyes on him at all times and even after I put the book down I felt like he could be just around the corner.

The biggest surprise was the cliffhanger ending. Angel in the Shadows is currently in the top 20 for teen fiction at Amazon! Be watching for seven more books in the series - one every three months to satisfy readers of Christian fiction, Teen Christian Fiction and YA Paranormal lit. I have a feeling book two, Angel in the Storm, will be even more exciting. You can find Angel in the Shadows at Amazon and become an Angel-Friend of Lisa Grace at I give Angel in the Shadows four angel-glow stars!
Monday, June 27, 2011

....and this day has been saved! Thank you Kate Kaynak!

I'm going to spare you the details of the day and only say, it's a good thing I have a heart for animals and children because I have been experiencing a non-stop mess-fest and not the kind that smell like playdough or pancake syrup!

Thanks to Kate Kaynak, who was powerless to resist my secret remote ability (that I will not reveal for the sake of remaining alive) - look what arrived in the mail today....
We've got to bust Maddie out!

The ARC of Accused by Kate Kaynak. And to make it even better - there was swag and a blurb from my blog on the inside cover - WAHOOO!

Now if I could just use my ability to change my work schedule for the next few days, I'd have a lot to share with you all about Accused!
Saturday, June 25, 2011

It ain't summer until we have VBS!

Shout out to all my "Sanctified Servants" and our God's Army themed Vacation Bible School:

I love working with the kids each summer. No matter how tired I am from life - once I see their faces in the morning I am energized! Fortunate for me, I don't have to say goodbye when the week ends - see you all Sunday morning! OORA!

Oh, and on one additional happy note, our in-house stinker Deputy Dugan finally got saved  this week AND took a shower - wahoooo!
Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Hourglass ARC Tour by Fire and Ice & Myra McEntire

Thanks to Fire and Ice, I was given the privilege of  joining the Hourglass ARC Tour  and honestly, my head is still spinning!  Hourglass was like love at first touch, 4th of July, Bungee Jumping blindfolded, then pulling off the Italian Job! Myra McEntire pours out a story that keeps you on edge, makes you fall in love with the characters and weaves science and time travel together in a way the keeps your mind on its cerebral-toes.

First off we meet the recovering emotional-wreck Emerson. She's unique in that her life's circumstances have placed her in an emotional bubble with only one friend,  and her extremely protective brother and sister-in-law to relate to. She's sarcastic & witty, gorgeous, fashionable, and so adorably vertically challenged. Oh, and one tiny detail - she sees people from the past!

Buckle your seatbelt, because next comes the romance.    Michael, sigh, Michael is the most selfless, self-sacrificing character ever.  The minute their fingertips touch for the first time, they generate enough electricity to make Tesla emerald-green with envy.  Then add Michael's best friend Kaleb and his deeply hidden emotional gift and wow! Emerson, Michael and Kaleb were like a scalene triangle - with three unequal sides.

The only thing I had trouble with was that for never even having a date in her life, Emerson was a bit agressive and eager around Michael and Kaleb, but who could blame her? Towards the end though, she grew into her character traits and stole my heart too. Ms. McEntire takes those colorful characters, mixes in some mind-melding time travel science and descriptions that make you feel like you could step into the portal yourself. I wish I could read it again, but alas I must send it on to the next reader and buy my own copy. I cannot wait for the sequel!

Thank you Fire and Ice for sharing your copy of Hourglass!

Hourglass receives 5 time-rippling starsPhotobucket!
Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Any Horror Genre Experts out there?

I need a horror recommendation for a 12 year old that thinks he wants to read Stephen King (so not happening!)
Saturday, June 18, 2011

Congrats White Sox!

A huge congratulations to the White Sox for winning the Majors City Tournament First Place! 

"Man-Stuff" (Coach is telling him he's been swinging really well)

Let me tell you - these kids were INTENSE! Have you ever seen a team with FIVE coaches? They all worked really hard - practicing every chance they got, never compaining.  As they got further and further up in ranks they became more and more competitive - rain, snow, freezing wind and all! You earned your medals boys!
Friday, June 10, 2011

Hey Hey Boo-Boo, Is that a Pic-N-Nic basket I see?

Lettin' off a little steam at Yellowstone National Park....

Old Faithful - but according to the impatient boy next to us - Ol' Unfaithful!

Castle Geyser

Checking out this boiling pool next to the road

And the most amazing part was the Grand Prismatic Spring which I wasn't able to photograph because it was raining but here's a stock photo so you get the idea. This spring we actually felt the heat from and it was so steamy and rainy it felt like we were walking through a portal to another dimension!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

....And what could be better than.....

Buying a fabulous new release 
  AAAANNNND  your SISTER buying Entwined.....(for me to borrow, eventually)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mom Monday .....And back to the Raisin' Boys part....

Okay - I shared the part about the angels in the outfield, but maybe I should be praying over the playground!  Being a mom of an up and coming athlete as well as a kindergartener and 2nd grader left me standing in between the playground area and the opposing team's side of the baseball game for a bit of the game. I wanted keep an eye on both to let the younger ones burn off some energy before we took our seats and they were playing with another boy. The other team was up so I went to tell the younger boys that I needed to go deliver a water bottle to their brother in the dugout and not to worry I'd only be 45 seconds. (They tend to freak if I move from my designated spot).

I noticed that one minute Wyatt was hanging from thelittle monkey bar dome with his legs around the other boy's chest but he was laughing. Next time I look over, the boy is wrestling Wyatt to the ground on the grass but no one seems to be yelling for help - boy play. I figure they must know each other from school to be so physical.

Unneccessary Roughness!
Walking over to the monkey bars on the pea gravel, my 8 year old, Wyatt comes tearing in my direction yelling to his younger brother, "Just go!". I don't think he really saw me but was running for my direction. I looked up and here came the other boy crying and swinging his fists at Wyatt - huh? I said, "Whoa, whoa, whoa - what's going on here?" and got the boy to lower his arms and explain what was going on.

He claims that Wyatt "beat him up". Since Wyatt's  a "tuffie" I am aways sure to get all versions of incidents like this so I can correct fairly. Wyatt (and my younger son as witness) claimed that Wyatt dropped himself onto the boy from the  monkey bars and squished his chest. The other boy agreed that's what happened too. So, I tell all the boys we are going over to talk to his mom and apologize.

Talk about the hot seat - she was sitting front row in the bleachers for all baseball parents from both teams to witness our explanation, apology and her teary-eyed son. I felt so bad for her son seeing his crying face and swinging fists, he was truly upset.  I explained that it started out as rough play and got out of hand. It certainly took me by surprise. One thing for can never let your guard down when raising boys!

Have your boys taken you by surprise by getting physical or damaging property? Have they put you in the hot seat?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

e-Book Review: Solstice by P.J. Hoover

Okay, I love to gush about good books but this time you're getting a geyser! 

Author P.J. Hoover has written a thrilling, twisting-turning story about Greek gods living in the near future - two of which are fighting for the love of Piper. Piper's seemingly dull, sheltered life erupts into a fast-paced journey back and forth between the Underworld and her present-day teenage life. To say it was a journey of self-discovery is putting it mildly. P.J. Hoover BLASTS you with a shocking surprise about her main character and has you wondering night and day if she'll end up with Shayne or will Reese trick her into his arms? Oh, wait - maybe Reese is who she should be with?  Idunno - I'm with Piper, one minute I'm certain, the next not sure. All of creation depends on her choice. And for you adult-teenagers that love YA, Hoover ads just enough steam to keep the romance real and earth-crackin' hot.

And the settings - the seemingly-dystopian world (or is it really suffering a dystopian effect?) Piper keeps you imagining the heat, the protective domes over the city, and the urgency of seeking shelter from the sudden heat waves all give your imagination a work-out. Add to it the other happy/creepy she visits to the Underworld and you will be in fiction-opia yourself! 

And the Mythology - while I don't worship Zeus, I always loved Mythology - aren't they really just stories that we share with centuries past? Strong characters built in- imaginative stories passed on for generations to enjoy. I love that P.J. Hoover has resuscitated them and brought them new life - making them relevant in modern times. A refreshing change from vampires and dystopia.

An added thumbs up to the fantastic writing here. She kept me so engaged -  I read this on my phone! This was my first experience reading an e-book through and I read it everywhere  - at baseball practice, at work during lunch,  and even after work at 1:30AM. Dr. Seuss would have write a rhyme about me! I can't believe I got this much entertainment out of a $2.99 download that took me only seconds to purchase.

I can't say it enough don't throw away another $4.99 to rent a movie - download this book! Your summer reading list is begging you to put the cherry on top!

I give Solstice Photobucket in Orion's belt!

You can find Solstice at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Roots In Myth.  Also, if you are like me and can't get enough - you can sign up to receive a scannable trading card with story-extras. We're talking fun now! You have got to see these cards! Tanni (creepy-girl) and the beautiful Chloe and her beaus Shayne and Reese and more. See Roots In Myth for a chance to receive a card.