Sunday, September 30, 2012

Call Me...the Insatiable Reader


Hi guys!
Welcome back to the Sunday edition of Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place where just because it’s the LAST DAY of the month, doesn't mean we’re slacking off on the posts.  ^_^


 Wow, can you believe it?  It is the LAST DAY of September.  Is it just me or did this year seem to blow by at times?  Anywho, not being one to let the days pass me by if I can help it, I bring to you today a curious bookish treat.  How’s it curious?  Well wouldn't you like to know!  Of course, BECAUSE you’d like to know is why I’m about to tell you…hehe…and that reason resides within the genre of the book, the delivery of the well known story, and the visual presentation.  All the mumbo jumbo boils down to the fact that it’s a Children’s Storybook take on a classic many know and some love, but the illustrations really make this one pop.  Ready to take a look inside?  Here we go. 

Today’s book of choice is….


Chasing the Great White Whale
Paintings by


Told you it would be familiar!  Who hasn't heard of Moby Dick by Herman Melville?  Whether you've read it by choice, been forced into its pages by required reading lists and vindictive (just kidding!) teachers, or you've someone bypassed it in your bookish travels, you know the story…or at least the infamous opening line.

Call me Ishmael…

…so short and yet so recognizable, we are granted instant knowledge of what book is being referenced while being introduced to the main character if it’s your first time through.  Personally, I don’t believe I've ever read the original in its entirety (something I shall correct one day) but I have read bits in passing and certainly seen a silver screen take or two on the dramatic events covered.  For those not in the know, the book is about a young man and his adventure on the high seas aboard a ship named the Pequod, run by a man that could be pegged as the devil himself…or said to be chased by the devil himself because really his obsession turns PRETTY ugly and leads to some SERIOUSLY disastrous consequences.  So as not to spoil the story for those who've yet to explore it, I will refrain from revealing more…however there’s still MUCH to discuss on this one.

Obviously, this is not the original story (hence the author’s name being something other than Melville) but it has the charm of the tale it is wrought from with a twist that lightens the literary load both word and length wise.  I’m not afraid of BIG books but some younger readers are so what better way to make the gist of a hefty classic accessible than to put it in a storybook?  I can think of no other…especially since this one is creatively set to rhyme and meter.  That’s right!  A whale of a tale that puts men in small boats on the great big blue as a slightly demented captain seeks to right the wrong he was dealt so long ago.  The word pairings are clever and the overall story remains intact…a win win in my book!  Now the only thing that could make this any better would be pictures, glorious pictures of the men, the whale and the crew.  Oh look (glances at ARC)….

…they even thought of that!  But guess what?  These are not JUST pictures or illustrations though both are rather lovely, these are PAINTINGS…full fledged works of art that greet you wall to wall, err…cover to cover, page edge to page edge as you make your journey across the wild rough seas listening for that faithful call of “There she blows!”.  The images will have you turning through these pages at least another time or two even when you’re not in search of a story just to look at the art.  All the colors of the rainbow are present, each working with its neighbor to bring this story to life in a whole new way.  I’m amazed by the quality of each image as well as the time it must have taken to complete them!  Heck, it takes me long enough to draw a Pooh bear standing against the wind in a shower of fall leaves!  They are marvelous to behold and something that will make this classic into a more family friendly (aka all ages) read.

ARC for review courtesy of Ksenia at Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group.  (THANKS!)  For more information this title as well as their complete and wondrous collection of books for the tall and the small, be sure to visit them online, like them on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  This book released earlier this month and should be available now on a bookstore shelf near you.  One last note…to catch a glimpse at the artwork in a little more detail, be sure to check out the slide show now rolling over on the publisher’s website.

Until next time…go seek your own White Whale…and happy reading!


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Butterfly Tree by Sandra Markle


Hi guys!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the Saturday edition.


Today’s post will have you clamoring for your backyards, front yards and everything in between…depending upon which part of North America you currently reside in.  Why?  It’s Fall or at least the beginning of this (short lived) season in Florida and with it comes a remarkable occurrence.  No, I’m not referring to “love bug” season…though that coincides with it (*yuck*)…I’m talking about something much more beautiful, much more enchanting.  It’s something that when seen individually gives pause to the heart but collectively, stirs the soul. 



The event of which I speak is the Monarch Butterfly migration.  It’s one of nature’s beauties and the star of today’s post…only in storybook form.  That’s right!  It’s one of those two-for-one beauties where you learn a little something while basking in the wonders that exist in nature.  Ready to read all about it?  Here we go!  Today’s book of choice is….



By
Illustrated by

From the publisher
One late afternoon in early September, Jilly sees something. It looks like it's raining black pepper from a clear blue sky. Then the black rain becomes a wispy mist. And then a spooky orange cloud. What can it be? Jilly and Mom set out to identify the mysterious orange cloud. The closer they get, the more curious Jilly gets. Gradually, the hidden world of nature opens to mother and daughter.


…and so sets the stage for a day of unexpected exploration with Mom and a beauteous  look at a yearly event that passes most of us by. 

The story itself is written in a poetic format though no rhyming will be found.  It speaks softly to the reader so as not to disturb the mood it sets.  It wanders round to the outer edges of the page to allow the events to unfold center stage.  The sheer wonder Jilly experiences in the sights she sees combined with the boisterous reaction of her dog Fudge and the sharing of a memory almost forgotten but only just from dear old Mom make this a tale that the whole family can enjoy whether from their own experiences or the eyes of the illustrator.  Speaking of the illustrator…

While the story winds its way into your heart, if it wasn’t for the illustrations that accompany it…the effect would still be great but not nearly as lasting.  Each page is covered in a full color picture laying out the scene described before your very eyes.  From the slant of light through the trees to the slight feeling of foreboding Lilly experiences upon first entering the forest, all the feelings and magic moments are depicted vividly.  Most vivid of all however are the butterflies.  The color is rich, the amount of detail is just right.  To my untrained eye, the images appear not merely drawn but painted (perhaps oil paints if I had to hazard a guess), so that slight blur of a line or color speckled background benefits from the depth that occurs as a result of the technique.  Really something to see…

So, if you’re looking for a Fall title for readers of all ages, this might just be the ticket for you.  The story will capture the imagination in so few words while the images dance before your eyes in a swirling mass of deep oranges and burnt reds.  You can’t help but be whisked away by the beauty before you…I know I was, even though I’m not so certain I’d like to be IN the cloud of butterflies; more like from a short distance (^_^).  Oh and don’t be surprised if after all is said and done you feel compelled to investigate this yearly journey off the page…that desire was foreseen and a few handy sites to help you on your way are even included! 

Special thanks to Peachtree Publishers for the review copy. (THANKS!)  For more information on this title as well as their complete (and growing!) catalog of goodness, be sure to visit them online, check out their blog, like them on Facebook or follow on Twitter.  This book was released last year and should be available now on a bookstore shelf near you.

Until next time…happy reading!


Friday, September 28, 2012

BLOG TOUR: Fall of Eden by Michele Poague


Hi guys!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…or should I say BLOG TOUR central because that’s pretty much what we've been this week but with good reason!  There’s just THAT many books to share and really…what reader isn't constantly on the look out for their next read?  A show of hands?  That’s what I thought. 


 Today, we are playing host to a blog tour courtesy of Lexie over at The Book Bug (Hi, Lexie!) for the second book in a trilogy that I started once upon a time.  Yes, those were the days of having a bit more time and a few less books on your hands and…okay, so I’m not really reminiscing, I thoroughly enjoy my busy bookish life (if only the work part would sort itself a might better…hello?  Anyone need an avid reader/reviewer with creative passion looking to break into the publishing side of things? *ahem*) but once in a while, life gets in the way…such was the case with this book. 

I actually received it for a potential review some time ago from iUniverse.com and though my intentions to work it in some time were good, alas, it was not meant to be….until now.  As luck would have it, Lexie’s tour found its way to my email box and presto change-o the rest is history….or rather today’s post.  Ready to read all about it?  Hold your horses there mi amigo; if you haven’t checked out the first book, Heir to Power, you’re gonna wanna do that first.  Don’t have it in your hot little hands?  Too bad…but I've got you covered; just click HERE to check out my review of the first installment in this trilogy.  When you’re through, read on my friend….read on!

Today’s book of choice and blog tour guest is….


The Healing Crystal, Book 2:
Fall of Eden
By

About the book…
Myths are but shadows of a greater truth.
 What is the Healing Crystal and who is the rightful heir? Is it a religious object or a powerful weapon? Does it belong to a fallen line of kings or to the colonists of Survin? Should its fate be left in the hands of the young and inexperienced Kairma or to Narvin, the last descendant of a line of kings?
 Kairma holds the Crystal and believes she will become the next leader of Survin, while her younger sister Kinter, believes she, not Kairma, is the rightful heir. Narvin believes the Healing Crystal is the Star of Genesis, a powerful relic his ancestors have been seeking for centuries.
 Determined to possess the object that will return him to his glory, Narvin is unwavering in his quest to possess it, and Kairma is caught in a fierce race across barren deserts and rugged mountains to a shattering finish where the winner must decide the fate of the world.



Sounds exciting, right?  It IS…for the most part.  Allow me to explain.

When I embarked on my adventure with this developing trilogy once upon a time, I seem to remember it being more YA tinged and fantasy (sorta) than Science Fiction; the combination of the two is what made it an interest for me since I don’t usually gravitate towards the latter genre.  This time around, it’s showing its true Sci-Fi colors (when an appropriate cover color choice too! ^_^) and while it did confirm some of the things I was trying to sort out from book 1 (such as where the vault originated from and how as well as an explanation of why times are the way they are), it also began my quandary into would I or wouldn’t I continue the series.  By book’s hefty end (another chunk-ster at 439 pages), I can honestly say I was drawn back in enough to want, maybe even NEED to see this thing through.

The author has a way of combining cultures of old with flashes of what’s just on the horizon and times being what they are they explode in a most natural way.  Technology, advancement…all things that are foreign to the Survinee’s and yet they are a part of their past, nay their very roots.  (Yup….definitely a twist when THAT one is revealed.)  The only visible part of that mystery is the crystal passed from Miral to Miral (basically the leading lady of the healing family) and protected with their lives from the outside world.  Little did they know that the outside world was looking for the same said crystal just for much more devious reasons than healing powers.  The ironic part?  The tribe doesn't even know how to unlock the secrets of the stone (nor what they truly are) and yet they still have faith enough to believe it the right thing to do.  Much courage and strength abound within this tribe regardless of how many fall over the course of the story.

Whereas book 1 introduced us to the Survinees, their way of life, the White Ones, the future heir to the crystal and just what happens when outsiders are let in, book 2 shows us that a little bit of greed goes a long way…in destroying everything, and a little faith can move mountains.  Kairma, though fretting about her upcoming choice for Comad as any girl would (especially since he would be her mate as well as the male leader of the tribe), doesn't have a moment to spare for girly thoughts and desires as she is thrust into a position of power when invaders come seeking their fortunes based on the guidance of a liar.  There are hard decisions to make and she is more than able to make them if she’d only trust in herself.  Thank goodness for Kinter, her sister who…oh no, wait; she’s the one that gets them into trouble time and again despite how well she learned her lessons and the masterpieces in both medicine and meal she can create out of virtually nothing.  Tisk tisk Kinter…don’t you know why vanity is one of the deadly sins?

Perhaps we’ll have better luck looking for a “thank goodness” when our eyes are applied towards Naturi, the tribal hunk who’s been raised since birth to become the next Comad, therefore prematurely tying his heart to Kairma.  Think again folks.  He’s TOO focused and not in a good way either….he’s also a bit of a pushy fellow.  Hey, easy on the eyes only goes so far!  Let’s swing our gaze over to Collin, our Survinee rogue.  Yesiree, he’s not a bad visual choice either and how well he knows Kairma could definitely take him far, if only he’d pluck up his courage and realize he HAS a chance, a good one at that, if only he’d stand his ground…not to mention he’s much more balanced in my opinion juggling the values and traditions with the need to create some of their own.  Guess you know who I’m voting for….back to the story…

We already know their “Eden” was invaded by no good scoundrels and while that does provide for some dangerous and exciting times, I still wasn’t sold.  To me this book acted like so many second books in a trilogy do….mostly as a connection, a bridge from point A to point B.  How so?  Well for the most part, aside from the personal dramas following them like bees to a hive, the basic mechanics of the story were this…

Watch out, they’re coming!  Run!
Ooh look….there they are…follow!
Egads!  They are still chasing us!
Ooh look…we’re gaining ground!
If we go this way, maybe we’ll gain some distance.
There they are boys!  Ride faster!
I don’t see them, but I know they are close.
We can’t lose them; keep riding!

…and so on.  It was A LOT of cat and mouse without the diversion of traps along the way.  Then when things have traveled so far from where we started, the sci-fi bomb dropped and we’re dealing with another kettle of fish entirely.  Again, it could be simply that since I’m not accustomed to this genre, that’s where the miss fit is occurring….and yet as I said before, with all that IS revealed by the final chapter, I have been bound to this trilogy and desire to see it through to its last.  Who’d have thought?  Moving forward….

My final thoughts; it’s a story about how life can change for the better even when we are at our, or mankind’s, whit’s end if only we have the courage to follow our hearts.  The journey may be long and arduous but most often everything that’s worth fighting for is. The imagined history of our people is all too real and perhaps a wake up call for a world at odds’ gotta love when books make you think beyond its borders.  Fit for Sci-Fi fans from teens through adults; there’s not much “questionable” content but there is an instance where you really want to OFF one of the outsiders due to his unsavory behavior…plus it’s a wee bit heavy for the kiddos. 



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About the author…
Born Michele Rae Jeffryes in Newman Grove, Nebraska, Michele Poague has spent most of her life in Colorado, South Dakota and Nevada, and has lived in Denver, Colorado, since 1984. When she is not writing novels, researching a story, traveling, or working at her full time job as a nightclub manager, Michele volunteers her time as an advocate for the Libertarian Party.

To connect with the author, feel free to check out her site, stop by her blog, friend her on GoodReads, like her on Facebook, or follow along on Twitter.


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Now, it’s time for YOU to get your just desserts!  What desserts are those?  Oh, I don’t know…the wording just SOUNDED good, but it is time for a CONTEST and what better way to capture your attention then with something sweet?!  Let’s make it doubly sweet once you see what the prizes are.  Check it out….





As part of the tour, Michele is generously offering 3 AMAZING giveaways to the blog readers. The first winner will receive signed copies of the entire Healing Crystal trilogy. The second place winner will receive a signed copy ofFall of Eden as well as a $10 gift certificate and the third place winner will receive a signed copy of Fall of Eden


To enter to win these prizes, simply fill out the Rafflecopter form provided.
- Open from September 8 to October 8, 2012.
- Must be 13+ years of age to enter
- US mailing addresses only


Earn entries by doing any/all of the following:
- Leaving a blog post comment
- Liking The Healing Crystal Trilogy on Facebook
- Tweeting about the giveaway (once per day)
- Writing a review of Fall of Eden
(*remember guys, only post an HONEST review if you’ve read it!)
- Posting an interview, the book trailer, or a link to the tour.






Ready Freddy?  Alrighty then, clear the landing pad because here comes the Rafflecopter!





Review copy received courtesy of iUniverse.com; blog tour opportunity in conjunction with Lexie at The Book Bug.  (THANKS!)  For more information on either site, feel free to click the links throughout this post (promise, they’re safe!).  To continue on your journey through this blog tour, be sure to check out the official kick off post that includes the full listing of all the stops along the way and those still to come! 

Until next time…happy reading!



Thursday, September 27, 2012

Blaze-ing Paranormal Romance Giveaway with YA Author Kaitlyn Davis!


Why hello there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be if you suffer from the debilitating (not really) disease (more like affliction) often referred to as “there-are-never-too-many-books” syndrome.  Yep.  I’ve been stuck with this (most enjoyable) issue for many moons now and I do believe (if possible) it’s getting worse.  *-*  Oh well.  Guess there’s nothing to do about it but spread it across the miles to all of YOU.  (hehe)


Author Kaitlyn Davis

Today, we are playing host to a blogosphere celebration for author Kaitlyn Davis.  Does the name sound familiar?  It should.  She’s the creative mind behind the Young Adult series that goes by the name of Midnight Fire…and I just so happen to have hosted a blog tour stop for her with Tribute Books once upon a time.  It sure was A LOT of fun (just click HERE for a brief flashback of said fun) so when I heard from the author that book 3 was coming soon, I was SO there.  Yes…fan-girlish I know but hey, it’s a GOOD series!  Let’s take a look at things so far….


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 



Book 1:  Ignite

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble   |  iTunes   |   Sony   |   Kobo   |   Smashwords

“With one last look, one final search of the lines of his face for some sign, Kira turned and ran away from the sound of the man she loved laughing in the face of her death.”

When Kira Dawson moves to South Carolina, she meets Luke, a blond goofball who quickly becomes her best friend, and Tristan, a mysterious bad boy who sends shivers down her spine. Kira knows they're keeping secrets, but when she discovers Tristan's lust for blood and her own dormant mystical powers, Kira is forced to fight for her life and make the heartbreaking decision between the familiar comfort of friendship and the fiery passion of love.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~




Not exactly what one plans for when they move but umm, yeah…not too shabby either despite the fact that she might burst into flames if she can’t control her powers.  Now onward to book 2….




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Book 2:  Simmer

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble   |   iTunes   |   Sony   |   Kobo   |   Smashwords

Slowly, like a whisper almost blown away in the wind, two words streaked across her mind: "Kiss me."
 
Kira may have survived the eclipse, but her troubles are far from over. She's headed to Sonnyville with one goal in mind: to learn more about her parents. But with Luke and Tristan competing for her heart and Diana gunning for her head, time is running out on the search for her mother. And the closer Kira gets to answers, the more terrified she becomes. The conduits fear her, the vampires fear her, and Kira is starting to wonder if maybe they're right...



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Dangers lurk around every corner….even the hot ones.  *wink wink*  Her heart is up for grabs (sorta) as her family history unravels to reveal a story she never dreamt possible…and the possibility of a happy ending.  *dun dun dunnnn*  See?  How could you have read BOTH of these and not be clamoring for the next installment?  I know I couldn’t…and didn’t, hence today’s post!

Now, please join me in a celebratory yell, heck do the wave if you have enough people around, as we welcome the third book in this fiery YA series….




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~




Book 3:  Blaze

Amazon   |   Smashwords


“Kira gulped, unable to stop the growing sense that everything in her world was about to change...”
 
With Aldrich’s note burning a hole in her pocket, Kira is off to England to finally reunite with her birth mother. But what begins as a dream quickly turns to a nightmare and Kira is left questioning everything she has ever known. Can she be the conduit Luke wants her to be? Can she be the rebel Tristan needs her to be? Or is she something else? Something no one, not even Aldrich, ever saw coming…



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Wow.
*rereads*
That’s gonna be some family reunion…IF she’s really there and Diana wasn’t pulling her leg.  Who will win her heart?  What’s this “something else” she could be?  Is it those we learned about in book 2?  Curious minds want to know!  For a sneak peek at Chapter 1 of book 3, just click HERE and you’ll be whisked away to the author’s Facebook page for a little reading appetizer.  When you’re through, return here because the fun is not NEARLY through!









--- INTERLUDE ---







Alrighty, so…you’re back!
Way to follow instructions (hehe) and seriously, you won’t be sorry (^_^) because now is when you learn why this post had “giveaway” in the title.  That’s right!  This is not JUST another blog tour (though it is a pretty good one at that).  This is not just another book release (though it is EXCITING to say the least).  This is a CELEBRATION and author Kaitlyn Davis knows how to throw a party if I do say so myself.

Here’s your chance to check out the series, spread the word AND get yourself entered to win one of several FABULOUS prizes the likes of which will dazzle your eyes and your bookish minds.  Ready for a look at all the prizes?  I’m not one to make you suffer…much…here ya go!  Prepare to be dazzled….





Awesome, right?
(Just click on it for a larger image should you desire a close up...)

It boils down to this….
…10 E-Copies of Ignite and Simmer!
…The Paranormal Package!
…The Dystopian Package!
…The Angels, Demons & Magic Package!


You’ve got everything from the Midnight Fire series to LucidBloodlinesWitherStartersThe Raven Boys…and much MUCH more.


So, multiple prizes obviously means multiple winners and multiple ways to enter but they all start with the Rafflecopter below!  Now there is that one little thing we need to cover BEFORE you enter.  We may not love them but we know we need them...and need to know them.  Here are the rules...

- The giveaway runs from September 27, 2012 -October 27, 2012
- Winner breakdown:  TEN winners of e-copies of Ignite and Simmer, ONE winner of the Paranormal Package, ONE winner of the Dystopian Package, and ONE winner of the Angels, Demons & Magic Package.
- Winners will be notified on October 28th and will have FIVE business days to respond before the prize is forfeit
- International entries are welcome, but if you live outside of Canada/US, you are only eligible to win e-copies of Ignite and Simmer




We all clear?
GOOD!
Now, let’s get YOU entered to WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway







Special thanks to author Kaitlyn Davis for the chance to participate in this celebration  (THANKS!) and a very HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY to you as Blaze makes its mark on the reading world!  To find out more about the author, this series, and everything else life throws her way, you can find her online over at her blog, on Amazon, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Pinterest and on GoodReads.  You know….pretty much where all the cool bookish kids hang out.  ^_^


Oh…OH!  I almost forgot!  For those that are curious, THIS JUST IN!  There will in fact be ANOTHER book (the final book….~tear~) in this series to close things out.  It’s scheduled for some time in 2013 and is currently titled….


….Scorch.



~adds to wish list~



Until next time….good luck to all, spread the word….and happy reading!



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Taste Testing Tuesdays...on a Wednesday!



Good morning (or whatever time it is where you are), everyone!
Welcome to another installment of Taste Testing Tuesdays here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers! Taste Testing Tuesdays was inspired by 'Teaser Tuesdays', a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading


On the menu this week...the soon to be published sequel to an AWESOME-TASTIC Children's Fiction book that you HAVE to read.  No really...it's THAT good!  Here's a taste of my read in progress....


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The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland
and Led the Revels There
by
(ARC)


The Duke held his hand to his mouth as though he meant to blow a kiss, and blow he did, but instead of kisses, indigo and holly colored tea leaves spun up from his palm, dancing through the air toward September's cup.  The Vicereine made an outraged noise and snapped her fingers  Out of her hand whirled flaming rose - and tangerine-colored coffee beans, which ground themselves to powder in midair and outraced the tea to hover over the little cup, scorching the blue leaves as it shot by them.
-- pg 73



September thought this a sad, rotten thing to say.  She remembered the awful sawing that cut her own shadow from her, and she might have dwelt on that terrible pain and what it cost her, had not the Revelers struck up their singing and laughing and talking and dancing once more.  They shouted and whooped even louder than before, dancing as if to erase the memory of the Alleyman and his great dark wheels.
-- pg118




"A book is a door, you know.  Always and forever.  A book is a door to another place and another heart and another world...."
-- pg 144





Sorry for the number of teasers; I simply couldn't decide!
Think Alice in Wonderland combined with Peter Pan and....okay, so you're not even close as this is definitely an original, creative, imagination filled series but you'll at least have some semblance of the fun that your in store for.  This is a series great for kids of all ages and I do mean ALL ages because the word play and tongue twisters employed while fun will definitely give you a run for your money.  Guess it's never too early to start the little ones training for the SAT's!  ^_^  Release date scheduled for October 2, 2012....review to come!



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Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

*Grab your current read 

*Open to a random page 

*Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) 

*Share the title & author, too, so that other participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! 





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Until next time....happy reading!




Tuesday, September 25, 2012

BLOG TOUR: The Pack: Retribution by LM Preston


Hi guys!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be when you’re in the mood for a satisfying treat, bookish style.

Today, we’re playing host to a blog tour celebrating the release of author L M Preston’s latest Young Adult lit wonder.  It’s the second in her series featuring a kick butt heroine that will not take no for an answer and refuses to let anyone else carry the burden or fault for the events transpiring…even to her detriment.  If you need a formal introduction to the series, check out my review of book one from days gone bye by clicking HERE; if not, feel free to proceed.  Without further ado, today’s book of choice and blog tour guest is…


The Pack, Book 2:  Retribution
By

From the author…
Revenge has met its match, and she's got someone worth fighting for.
 Revenge doesn't have a name, but has chosen a victim - Shamira. But she's never been the type to lie down and let someone hurt her family or her friends. In order to find the mastermind behind the threat to all she cares about, she must give up the one person who's found his way into her guarded heart, Valens.
 Valens refuses to back off easily, and neither will Shamira's friends. They join forces with her in order to deal with a new enemy who seeks to kill everyone in Shamira's life that dared save the missing kids on Mars.



That’s right!  We’re back on Mars and things are just starting to heat up.  If you thought the enemies were bad in book one, well…you were right, they were!  This time around, they may not seem to be having as wide of an impact but their more focused energies are nothing to shrug off and more often than not have dire consequences….DIRE, as in several people will not make it out alive.  ~ dun dun dunnnn…..~

I love the way Shamira is cast in this series.  She started out all easily pitied simply because of the circumstances life dealt her, proceeded to give Johnny Q. Public’s idea of who she should be a run for their money and showed them what she could really do…sight or no sight.  Now that things have been righted in her world (for the most part), one would think…okay, the battle was won, her sight restored and we’ll go skipping through the Martian tulips.´ Right?  WRONG.  There are more bad guys to deal with than those initially off’ed in book one and this time they mean business….or more pointedly, they mean to take out the person who tried to end them as well as everyone and everything she’s ever loved.  Sticky situation especially when that circle of caring has grown to include a few friends and a boyfriend, but nothing she can’t handle…right?  Yeah, well let’s just say that if she doesn’t learn to trust SOMEONE soon, there won’t be anything worth saving.

The supporting cast play their roles and play they well; from friends to frenemies, authority figures to lying cheating scuz bags, they range wide and are varied but pull everything neatly together in the end.  My favorites (beyond Shamira of course) have to include Valens for one.  He may be the “love interest” but that’s not ALL he is.  He has the mind of an inventor, a heart of gold, and the know-how to seriously put a hurting on anyone who messes with those he calls friend.  I can’t see his foundation of truth ever being shaken, even if he is all too often having the wool pulled over his eyes in the case of Shamira’s independent nature.  You gotta love a guy for trying especially when we all know how great they would be together. 

Second spot on the “other favorites” list is claimed by David, Taren, and Manny.  Okay, so I’m cheating a bit….that’s three people crowding into spot number two but they are her siblings by birth or choice and I think of them collectively for the most part.  They are wonderful extensions of her family and the love they show for their sister is pure and true.  Even in the midst of all the chaos that ensues, there are moments of tenderness and joy.  They trust Shamira 100% and would do anything for her just as she would do for them.  It’s not often you see that dynamic in Young Adult books, where the family actually cares for each other greatly, especially between siblings! Moving forward…

In the end, a great addition to a growing series that you need to read to believe.  You’ll be whisked away to a planet beyond our own to a time and place not truly hard to imagine suffering from problems they had hoped to escape with its creation.  Silly planet builders…you should know you can’t run from the bad guys; only hope to control or eliminate them one by one.  Don’t worry, Shamira and her merry band of friends will show you how; after all why would you send a boy to do a woman’s job?  (hehe)

Review copy received courtesy of author LM Preston.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the growing series and her complete body of works, feel free to visit her online, check out her blog, stop by the party blog, like her on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  This book is available now and should be readily available via favorite online outlet or coming soon to a bookstore shelf near you.  Don't forget to check out the other sites on this tour including My Four Monkeys and The Magic Reads that happen to be celebrating with me today.  Now, for the piece de resistance….a CONTEST!



~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

Yep.  A contest!




First of all, there is this amazing contest going on over at the party blog as a part of this tour so be sure to check out the GRAND PRIZE…and believe me, it’s pretty darn grand! It includes: a Tshirt, $20 Amazon Gift Card, 1 Ink Pen, The Pack Series (Book 1 & 2 in print), and an ebook copy of Flutter Of Luv! To make things easy, you can even enter RIGHT HERE and then jet off to check out all the festivities...sound good? I thought it might. Here's CONTEST FORM NUMBER ONE...


Secondly…you now have a chance to win a copy of this book on my site…thanks to the generosity of the author.  To enter, just fill in the Rafflecopter form below and POOF….you’re entered!  There will be ONE winner;  US or Canada gets their choice of an ebook or print copy…International is ebook all the way.  Now this is a QUICK contest, so you have from now through midnight September 29th, 2012 to get your entries in…and if you’re so inclined, to spread the word!  Why the quickness?  Simple!  There’s an AWESOME Facebook party scheduled from 11am-11pm EST that day where you and the author can chat and make merry online so what better day to mark the end of the celebration…or perhaps, the beginning if you happen to be the winner.  ^_^


Until next time…good luck to everyone….and happy reading!


Monday, September 24, 2012

Can You Growl Like a Bear? by John Butler

Hi there!
Welcome back to another exciting week here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers. This week will be chock full of all the fun you've come to expect here at the site and then some. Oh yes, it will be bookish and it will be busy.

To kick things off, we're going a gentler route and exploring another Baby book that found its way to my door courtesy of the folks at Peachtree Publishers (thanks guys!). While it's intended for the wee one's, older folks will get a kick out of the reactions it causes in younger readers. Don't believe me? Check it out for yourself! Today's book of choice is...




CAN YOU GROWL LIKE A BEAR?
by
John Butler

This is one of those rare children's board books that is great for the little ones for a daytime activity as well as a sleepy time activity. It invites readers to make the sound along with the animals they see on the pages and at the very end gives a sweet good night to send them off to the land of dreams. So while you're both enjoying the adorable pictures, you'll also be engaging their minds and imaginations as they learn which animals make which sounds and try to imitate it. I can only imagine how well this would work for a story time group ...especially one that ends with nap time.

All in all, another cutesy read from the folks that aim to please the ever growing minds of childre the world over, Peachtree Pubishers. I can certainly see this being a popular favorite for all those beginning readers out there just starting to explore the world around them...as well as the parents and guardians who are cultivating our next generation. You're never too young to start engaging that imagination...you knows where those random thoughts and ideas will lead one day?

Special thanks to Peachtree Publishers for the review copy. (THANKS!) For more information on this title as well as their full catalog be sure to check out their official site (http://peachtree-online.com), or follow along on Twitter (http://twitter.com/PeachtreePub). This book was released last month and should be available on a bookstore shelf near you.

Until next time...happy reading!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

In the Woods by Elizabeth Spurr

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers...the place to be when reading is in order and you're just not certain what's on the menu.

Today, we're taking a look at a new title from Peachtree Publishers that's a perfect addition to the little guy's library in your life. That's right, we're talking baby books and an adorable one at that! Without further ado, allow me to introduce the board book ofbthe day...


In the Woods
by
Elizabeth Spurr
Illustrated by
Manelle Oliphant


This adorable book tells the story of one little boy's fishing adventure with dear old Dad. From the bees buzzing over the flowers to the fish wriggling on the line, it's one of many trips to the great outdoors for this little tyke and a wonderful way for wee ones to get acquainted with a few new words. The combination of setting, story and sights is enchanting as the illustrations bring a smile to your face and place you right next to the babbling brook or the warm glow of the camp fire. Whether your idea of roughing it is a tent and backpack or the local Motel 12, this tale will have little ones locked on in wide eyed wonder as their curiosity about nature grows...and will even work as a bed time treat with the sleepy time ending.

All in all a great book for the beginning reader in your life and an adorable addition to anyone's library. Review copy courtesy of Peachtree Publishers. (THANKS!) For more information on this title as well as their full catalog, be sure to check out their site (http://peachtree-online.com) or follow along on Twitter (http://twitter.com/PeachtreePub). This title celebrated its bookish birthday this month and should be available on a bookstore shelf near you.

Until next time...happy reading!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Starring Arabelle by Hillary Hall De Baum


Hi guys!
Welcome back to the weekend edition of Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers….where the bookish party is ALWAYS started and you are most certainly on the guest list. 

For many out there, summer time officially ended with the arrival of a new school year.  Me?  I LOVED the back to school shopping (new school supplies…YAY! _calms down_) and the anticipation of what we’d be learning that year (English Literature was also a fave subject…).  For Arabelle, the star of today’s book, her heart is set on making a good impression AND a name for herself in the school play (something I would have been WAY to shy to do)…but as a freshman?  Others are so thinking….AS IF!  Shall we have a seat in the auditorium to watch today’s production?  Let’s…or rather please do as I introduce today’s book of choice…


Starring Arabelle
By

From the publisher
Impulsive, romantic Arabelle Archer is determined to make the most of her freshman year. She'll audition for the school play and soon be on her way to the stardom she knows is her destiny.
Arabelle's year gets off to a unexpectedly rocky start, however, when all the roles in the play go to upperclassmen and she has to settle for prompting. And to make matters worse, her guidance counselor insists that she fulfill her community service requirement by volunteering at the Heavenly Rest Nursing Home -- the last place she wants to be.
But when a crisis puts the school play at risk, Arabelle realizes the true value of the friendships she's made at Heavenly Rest, and discovers that making a lasting impression isn't always about being a star.



The cover screams of cuteness but the story holds more depth than imagined.  This is the story of Arabelle Archer.  It’s her freshman year and she’s going to do things right like add to her circle of friends, perhaps catch the attention of the opposite sex (in a purely demure way…no risqué here, only good hearted fun!), and score a starring role (hence the title) in the school play.  Too bad for Arabelle that the Seniors in the Drama Club do NOT like newcomers, especially those that are lower in the high school food chain.  Yeah…it’s gonna be a GREAT year, simply marvelous….but you know what?  If you knew Arabelle, you might not be so skeptical of that statement…

She is a lean, un-mean, freshman machine sent to the hallowed halls of high school for higher learning (yes) and a chance to reach for the stars!  Her eyes are set on the stars of Hollywood Boulevard and she knows just how to accomplish her dreams…good for her!  It’s great to see a go-getter in this genre, which to me is a younger-ish Young Adult or older Middle Grade read.  Too often do we see the damsel in distress that can’t find her way out of a paper bag (not that I don’t like those stories too); it’s refreshing to see someone who has her head on straight…for the most part.  There is one area that Ms. Archer is lacking in and that my friends is compassion, or more pointedly, understanding.  It’s not that she doesn’t understand things, she does but in this instance I’m referring to the idiosyncrasies that reside in us all.  Those things we make exceptions for in others or love/like them in spite of them all; even she falls victim to these oddities that make us who we are.

Arabelle doesn’t see her love of the arts as anything but ordinary, yet to others, she can seem single minded to the point of obsession…especially when a monkey wrench is thrown in the works with the school play.  Her friends accept this and move on, happy to not rock the boat for something that is simply a part of her.  When the tables are turned and the spotlight is not on her or her passion however, now that’s when we run into trouble.  Poor Erna Sue…her best friend tries pretty hard to keep the peace but sometimes even she likes the limelight.  Boris, the new foreign exchange student, is happy to make friends, but when his struggles with our language get in the way of easy conversation, patience is the key not jumping off the handle.  Even Jeff who starts as an annoyance yet has potential to become something more catches grief from the storm that is Arabelle when things aren’t going her way.  Try as they might, until she has her “AH-HA!” moment, they are like actors in a silent film….screaming their heads off and nary an ear drum split in sight.

A bleak picture I have painted, but not all is lost!  There is hope for our star even in the most unlikely (in her mind) of places.  Its name is Heavenly Rest.  It’s a nursing home to which Arabelle has the pleasure of being assigned to fulfill her school’s community service requirement.  The good news?  Not much is needed and it’s only a few hours here and there.  The bad news?  She loathes nursing homes.  You see, she remembers spending time with her grandfather in such a place not so long ago and things did not end well and as some children are apt to do, she blames herself. Why?  That all comes out in the story as does the healing of her heart, but suffice it to say it was no more her fault than anyone else’s; sometimes people are simply called for greater purposes.  Her time spent at Heavenly Rest is not all down and out thought….especially with the “characters” that reside there.  They are a hoot and a half for certain!  You’ve got the older lady who won’t react to anyone, an older man who forgets his clothes half the time and let US not forget the uber cheerful Happy Holliday (Yes, that’s her name…^_^) who helps run the show!  It’s a varied cast but one you’ll come to love as each in turn grows from the experiences they share.

All in all, it’s an inconspicuous little book with a whole lot of heart and much fun to be had along the way.  You’ll blush at Arabelle’s brush with a crush, thrill at her first taste of young love, be excited for and with her as she follows her passions, all the while discovering that everyone is good at something and it’s our differences that make us the stars of our own shows.  Three cheers for Arabelle AND friends!  A book deserving of a standing ovation …

ARC for review won via LibraryThing Early Reviewers and received courtesy of Rachel at WM. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.  (THANKS!)  For your chance to win a title of your own from upcoming favorites, be sure to visit LibraryThing.com and connect with bookish friends the world over.  To discover more about the publisher, be sure to stop by their official site, check out their blog, like them on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  Don’t forget to pass a little bookish love to the author as well for creating this fictional world of possibility!  Author Hillary Hall De Baum can be reached online, or on Facebook.  This book was released just last month via Eerdmans Books for Young Readers and should be readily available on a bookstore shelf near you. 

Until next time…happy reading!


Friday, September 21, 2012

Tolstoy and the Purple Chair by Nina Sankovitch


Hello everyone!
Welcome back to the Friday edition of Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be when you’re ready to kick off your weekend with a good book.


Today’s featured title was a hard pick as I have a few “finished” books hanging about that need reviewing but once I caught a glimpse of the cover I said to myself....self, you HAVE to pick that one!  Why was this book so adamant to be chosen? Take a look at the cover and TELL ME that it doesn’t simply invite you in…and secretly want a purple chair of your own.  But as with all books, my fair readers, this story is about MUCH more than time spent in a gorgeous and comfortable chair doing the thing we all LOVE to do.  It’s about life and its many beginnings, those we welcome and those we try to startle away.  It’s about loss and forgiveness, for both actions taken and the times when action was taken from us.  It’s about discovering the gifts we are given unexpectedly and how the decision to utilize them to their fullest can be both enlightening and a welcome reprieve.  Ready to read all about it, especially since I’m pretty much giving you my review in the opener here?  Take a load off your feet, and open your hearts to today’s book of choice…


By

From the publisher
Caught up in grief after the death of her sister, Nina Sankovitch decided to stop running and start reading. For once in her life she would put all other obligations on hold and devote herself to reading a book a day: one year of magical reading in which she found joy, healing, and wisdom.


If the cover didn’t get your attention, the title certainly will, especially if you are a reader.  “My Year of Magical Reading”…sounds heavenly, no?  Agreed on the wording, but how she got to this place of bookish nirvana was anything but.  It took a life changing event, a loss felt so deep it shook her to her core to catapult this sometimes reader to a full time reader not merely as a way to simply bring some joy to her day but as a way of finding her way back to herself.  It was a long journey, taken one page at a time and 365 days/books later, she found her footing once again. 

Along the way, she made connections she never imagined with friends, neighbors, family and even perfect strangers….ever notice how books have a way of doing that?  The process of giving and taking suggestions for her next read helped forge friendships not formerly there and support systems that could be counted on when days proved harder than anticipated.  Literary wise, she took a chance on Edward and Bella, said “hello” to Abbot’s Ghost, joined the “Potato Peel Society” and several other groups on their adventures…a complete list of which can be found at book’s end (all 365 titles) and surprisingly enough, there are MANY I have yet to read myself!  (Talk about an instant TBR List enhancer….this is like a super dose of all natural bookish vitamins!) 

Though the journey was started for herself, in order to fully commit and not stray from the path she’d chosen, she decided to put her thoughts on each book read into words….and so the READ ALL DAY site was born.  On it, she chronicled her year in books thus allowing her projects reach to touch even more hearts and minds…and to this day, the purple chair is still warm and fresh reading material always at the ready.  With each entry, she was piecing another part of her own picture back together and in the end, she found the voice that would one day grace the pages of her own story.  The writing voice discovered was friendly and inviting, allowing readers to glimpse not only the pages that passed before her eyes (though I adored the quotes shared at the opening of each chapter) but the feelings and memories that went along with them.  We see a bit about the story she’s indulging in (thus adding to our own desire to read it as well) but we also get a clear view of the love shared between sisters and how deep that connection goes.  I don’t envy her her loss, but I am grateful she found the chance to work through it so eloquently. 

It’s not all heartbreak and revelations though; sometimes it’s simply a good time.  Of the many quotes I shared along the way through my GoodReads updates, there are moments that cover the whole spectrum of emotions; now I would like to add a humorous one to the fold. This one comes to us from her adventure through Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz…page 168 of this work…


To his grandmother, he is a “genius”; to everyone else, he is a mutant:  “You really want to know what being an X-man feels like?  Just be a smart bookish boy of color in a contemporary U.S. ghetto.  Mamma mia!  Like having bat wings of a pair of tentacles growing out of your chest.”





The magic that we glean from the written word serves as an escape from the day to day, allowing us to forget for at least a moment the troubles at our feet.  For Ms. Sankovitch, it was a way to reconnect with the memories of days gone by, a way to fill the hole in her soul left by the passing of her sister.  It was an unwanted yet, in the end, welcomed reminder that life is too short to let the moments pass us by.  Each one is precious and needs to be captured the best way we know how.  So, whether you share a few moments with friends or a loved one, partying like it’s 199…um, 2012…or relaxing in quiet solitude with a good book (the likes of which we will share later with friends, family, blogging buds and anyone who will listen…^_^), the way you choose to capture it matters not; the fact that you acknowledge its passing and celebrate it in your own way, however means the world. 

Review copy received courtesy of Regina at HarperCollins Publishers.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title as well as their complete catalog, be sure to visit them online.  This book was released earlier this year via Harper Perennial and should be available on a bookstore shelf near you.  To discover more about the author’s journey through the pages both past and present, be sure to stop by her official site, like her on Facebook, or follow along on Twitter.






One final note, besides the fact that I SO want a chair like that of my own…gotta say, I’m LOVING the author’s list of HOW TO READ ALL DAY ideas from her website.  Simply had to share it with you….



HOW TO READ ALL DAY
Always have a book with you.
Read while waiting.
Read while eating.
Read while exercising.
Read before bed.
Read before getting out of bed.
Read instead of updating FB.
Read instead of watching TV.
Read instead of vacuuming.
Read while vacuuming.
Read with a book group.
Read with your kid.
Read with your cat.
Read to your dog.
Read on a schedule.
Always have a book with you.



Let’s see, I already practice TEN of them. ^_^  How many do you already employ?

Until next time….HAPPY READING!





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