Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.” —Groucho Marx

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Battlefield by J F Jenkins--Book Tour








Cadence, JD, and Orlando couldn’t be more different from one another. Under normal circumstances, the three wouldn’t so much as say hi to each other if they could get away with it. Then an alien crashes through the roof of their local mall, and everything changes. Not only do the three teens gain new abilities, but they’re also chosen to help fight in an intergalactic war where the next chosen battlefield is Earth.
Reluctant at first, they change their minds when the fight hits close to home. Teenagers from school start to go missing, and some are dead. Together they must learn to work together and solve the mystery behind these disappearances before more lives are lost.
J.F. Jenkins lives in Minneapolis where she spends most of her time creating and plotting world domination – something that has been in the works for roughly 13 years.
In her free time she works as the local coffee wench and dominates the minions of the pixilated world on her PS3.
She’s also got a little man (J Walk) and a little man trapped in a big man’s body (J Dawg) to take care of along with her two fur babies Ushi and Tibu.



 Blog - http://jfjenkinswrites.wordpress.com/
Goodreads - http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4692735.J_F_Jenkins


Breathing Life Into Characters

The first character to be made from my “Battlefield” series was JD. When I first saw him in my mind, I pictured a young man of Hispanic origins wearing his boxers over his jeans, a t-shirt, and a long flowing cape, beaming in front of a group of photographers reporting on his most recent good deed.

Next to him was another young man, pale, slightly taller, with shaggy dark hair wearing some rather fancy clothes and a fedora hat to help hide his identity, Orlando. He stood coolly by his companion, trying to act as if their heroics wasn't a big deal.

Lingering towards the back was a girl, Cadence, dark skinned, beautiful like a model, but so incredibly shy. She tried to hide her face, not wanting to be a part of the massive media outbreak.

That night as I thought about this image, trying to figure out who these people even were, I had a dream about an alien crashing through the roof of my mall and that was how the story was born. But the story itself is more about the characters journey than it is an actual intergalactic war. And those characters were people I had to really dive into further.

The first thing to come was the personality. All of them had diverse personalities, itching to be explored. The fun one, the shy one, the cool one, and the alien who's the driving force to get them all to work together when they otherwise probably would
have never said so much as “hello” when passing in the halls.

After finding the personalities, which is the easiest part of the process, comes the task of diving into the back story. Why do the characters act the way they do? And it's so much more than coming up with all of the good stuff. Insecurities need to be explored as well. What kind of walls, motivations, and fears propel them forward?

Finally, comes the name. Well, in some cases, the name is the first thing to come if I'm being honest. But the name doesn't impact the development much. It's just a hint that was given from the character when they were introducing themselves to me. Some characters start with a “hi my name is ___” approach, and others would rather tell their whole life story before telling me what to call them. In the case of “Battlefield” the names came last.

The quirky one goes by the name of JD, or otherwise James-Deacon Baxter Smith. I contemplated adding on a “the third” or something else like that, but decided not to. His name comes from his large family, paying tribute to his ancestors. Because he's the fun loving, quirky guy, he doesn't quite like the formal version of his name. That's “boring”.

The shy girl is Cadence Marie Sinclair. A long sweet name to go with a sweet girl. She likes her formal name more than any nicknames that have come her way. For whatever reason, it suits her best.

Our loner goes by Orlando Torgen Holmes. A unique name to say the least, but his parents are a bit strange. I can't go into the full reasons behind his name because of spoilers unfortunately. Part of it is family, some of it is heritage, and some of it has to do with his parents work. He tends to go by his full name the most, but will allow a nickname from people he cares about the most.

Then of course there comes my alien, Alan, who's real name is so complicated I have to copy and paste it into the document every time I want to use it. In face when I'm writing, I usually make a special note in my document every time I need to use it. Something like (ALANFULLNAME) and I'll change it later. Naturally, my publisher told me to change it because it was too complicated. I told them I wasn't going to bend on this because the name is an important part of his culture. Plus he's an alien. He's got to have a different kind of naming system than what we use here on Earth! On his home planet, they essentially go: Family name first, middle second, personal name last. And it's all mushed together into one word. For example, my name would be: JenkinfranciJillia or something like that.

And they refer to each other by that full name naturally. On occasion, if it's a person who is dear to them, they'll use only the personal name. Sometimes as a form of respect to a loved one or mentor they'll refer to each other by the family name as well. In the book, Alan is referred to by his family name because it was the only part the teens could figure out. For those who are curious, his name is: Alanmendiquixanimackle.

Complicated, but it fits his character well.

Thank you so much Ms Jenkins for sharing this information with us.   Inquiring minds are always thirsty for how authors develop their stories and characters!


 For me, Battlefield was an enjoyable read.   It is straight out fantasy fiction, but it was told in a believable manner, and it was easy to lose myself in the story.   I liked our three teen main characters....their characters were done exceptionally well and I liked all three.   I was not as enamoured with their alien, Alan with a long surname.  Maybe he was supposed to be a weaker character, but it wasn't until near the end, that he seemed to grow into his position of leader.  I did enjoy the storyline, there was enough action and adventure and enough of the main characters trying to determine how much of themselves to give to the cause.  Because kids their age were dying and disappearing, they committed and agreed to help in the battleground Earth fight.   I assume there will be a sequel or maybe even more as the book ended abruptly with Orlando's date with the perky Tait, blonde cheerleader.   I wonder if he should trust her?   Hmmmm....good book!  I rate this book 4 winks out of 5!



  a Rafflecopter giveaway Our winner is Giedre Sliumbais!   Congratulations

Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Deadly Eyes by Michael Meyer....a VBTour CBLS

Title: Deadly Eyes
Author: Michael Meyer
Publisher: Self/Amazon Kindle
Length: 225 Pages
Genres: Mystery & Thrillers, Suspense (Non-Romance)

Available at:

James Cuffy, better known as Cuff, is living in paradise with his girlfriend, on the small Caribbean island of St. Croix, where the sky is as blue as Cuff's eyes, the ocean as pretty as Rosie's cheeks, where the gentle lapping of the waves is a lullaby, and the swaying of the palm trees is a dance. The sandy beaches are as white as sugar, and the horizon is a world away. St. Croix indeed is paradise, the perfect place for living, laughing, and loving.

But the sandy beaches and the turquoise sea can provide no cover from the deadly eyes of the unknown stalker pursuing Cuff. Murder leads to murder as he attempts to untangle the terrible web in which he has suddenly become entangled.

The twists and turns are relentless, the roads of the fast action leading in all directions, but time is running out, and Cuff, his faithful Rosie at his side, knows it.

These were not naked eyes, for the distance between these eyes and the beach bar at Cathy’s Fancy was too great for the naked eye to discern who was who. No, these eyes had planned meticulously. The eyes were glued to a pair of terribly expensive and unbelievably powerful Swarovski Optik binoculars. The balcony on which they now worked, taking in the scene before them, was the perfect place to see but not be seen. The powerful binoculars saw to that.

The distance, the palm trees, and the rays of the sun all helped. The position had been hand picked, after careful consideration. Every angle had been considered, and, one by one, they had all been discarded for one reason or another until this very spot, the perfect place to observe while not being observed, had been selected. 

Yes, the eyes had seen it all. The eyes had seen precisely what they had hoped to see. They were like a master puppeteer.  They planned, controlled, and observed, but from a safe distance. They did not miss a trick.
The eyes. The deadly eyes of St. Croix.

About the Author:

I have resided in and have visited many places in the world, all of which have contributed in some way to my own published writing. I have literally traveled throughout the world, on numerous occasions. I have lived in Finland, Germany, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, on the island of St. Croix, where DEADLY EYES is set. I gained the wanderlust to see the world, to experience other cultures, at an early age, and this desire has never left me. If anything, it has only gained in intensity as I have aged. I try to travel internationally at least once a year. In the interim, I spend lots of time traveling around both my home state of California and other nearby states.

I spent my early years in the small town of Lone Pine, California, the home of almost every western movie, in addition to a wide variety of other genres, made in the 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. In fact, Hollywood still films parts of big-time movies there today. My dad, the town’s lifeguard at the time, personally knew John Wayne, Lloyd Bridges, and Lee Marvin, all of whom came to the town’s pool, the Memorial Plunge, at times to cool off after a hectic day of working in the sun. I was even an extra in a movie filmed there in 1957, MONOLITH MONSTERS, a B-cult favorite even today. I was ten years old at the time. Even though I resided in a small town hours from the big city, I was exposed to the excitement of action and heroes at a formative age, and, thus, my interest in writing novels of suspense such as DEADLY EYES was born.

As a recent retiree from a forty-year career as a professor of writing, I now live in Southern California wine country with my wife, Kitty, and our two other cats. 

Pinterest writer’s site: http://pinterest.com/temmike/#

My Review:

Have I told you that mystery suspense is one of my favorites?  I am so glad that I read this book and I will try to tell you why without giving away any spoilers.   First of all, let me tell you that I borrowed the book from Amazon Prime/Kindle. (That was an experience for an old lady not technically inclined, but Amazon support is terrific and helped me through the first time process!)

Deadly Eyes was one of the best thought out books and offered so many twists and turns...the suspense was incredible!   When I first sat down to enjoy and savor this mystery suspense novel, it took me back to the 40's and 50's and I could literally hear the voice of Darren McGavin narrating the read in my head.   I liked that, as it used to be all the copper shows were narrated in similar style.   The characters were real, and I really enjoyed the character of James Cuff.  He was smart and trusted his senses but had no clue who was out to get him and it indeed was a perfect plan to destroy a life!   I liked his honesty with the women he was involved with.    I loved the plot line and the fact that for once, I hadn't figured the ending of the story!   As a mystery suspense novel this book was out of the ball park EXCELLENT!!!  oodles of suspense...a dash of horror and a mystery right up to the end!   Mystery suspense just doesn't get any better than this!

Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.










Saturday, July 28, 2012



Book Blurb :

Circus Summer (Circus of Curiosities Book #1) by Kailin Gow is a YA Dystopian Fantasy -
Releases July 2, 2012
In post-apocalypse America, every season, the Circus of Curiosities visits the city, bringing with it the most fantastic circus acts that are beautiful, majestic, curious, and death-defying. Every season performers for these acts are chosen from the young men and women in each town, trained, and sent to perform in a live grand performance, performed literally to the death. Two performers from Sea Cliff, a beach town at the outskirts of The Center find themselves chosen to be in this Summer's Circus Act. Both must win at any cost, but could they ignore their feelings for each other? Leela Sinclair needs to win in order to get to The Center where she can get medical help from the best physicians for her ailing mother, plague with a condition no one have heard of. For Zachary Nile, his reasons for becoming a performer at the Circus is more mysterious.  Only the ringmaster and the Circus of Curiosities owner Dex Hightower (Dr. Dex) knows what the touring Circus is really about amidst the magic and splendor.  Despite the Great War and the poverty surrounding the land except for the towns fortunate enough to be near the Center, Dr. Dex and the Circus performers all know, "The show must go on."

About Kailin Gow:

Kailin Gow is the author of over 100 books, with the majority of them for young adults. Her most popular series are:  The Frost Series, PULSE Series, Desire Series, Wicked Woods, Steampunk Scarlett Novels, and more.  A full-time author, she is also a producer, having worked in radio, television, and film.  She grew up in Southern California, lived in Texas and England, and had traveled extensively around the world.


Website: www.KailinGowBooks.com
Blog: http://KailinGow.Wordpress.com
Twitter: http://Twitter.com/KailinGow
Facebook: http://Facebook.com/KailinGowBooks
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/KailinGow
In the Kindle version there is a $100 Amazon Gift Card giveaway/contest!! it is found within the pages of Kindle editions of Circus Summer!!
All books on Amazon : http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=sr_tc_2_0?rh=i%3Astripbooks%2Ck%3AKailin+Gow&keywords=Kailin+Gow&ie=UTF8&qid=1337442917&sr=8-2-ent&field-contributor_id=B002BMAEH4
All books on B&N : http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/kailin-gow?keyword=kailin+gow&store=allproducts

Guest Post:

Please welcome Kailin Gow to my blog.  It's wonderful to have you with us today.  Please share with us
1) who was the biggest encouragement in your  life in respect to reading and writing your own books. What was that relationship like? Is that person still living? Are you still close?
My mother who gave me a solid sense of self growing up and never treated me differently than my brother because I was a girl. When my brother took kung fu and karate classes, she had me take them with him. When my mother entered me into a storytelling contest last minute and without any preparation when I was about seven, she told me I had it in me to do well. I did well enough to place in the finals. It is that confidence and that unshakeable belief in me that forms my backbone today. As a mother myself and a mother of a young child who was initially diagnosed as having autism, I understand how necessary it is for parents to instill this confidence in their children. Through trials and tribulations known as life, everyone gets tested. I thank God that my parents, especially my mother, was very encouraging. Our relationship is very close, and besides my husband who is my best friend, my mother is my bff for life.

When my mother got cancer and not just cancer of one kind, but three types; it was the hardest period in my life, along with finding out my daughter was autistic. My mother told me to start writing the kinds of books I felt compelled to write and to tell stories that will help people. These are the stories that matter, not the fame, not the glory about being an author; but the satisfaction that my stories about how people who are faced with incredibly bleak odds rise up to overcome them. I took that advice from my mother to heart, and began writing books, mostly in YA and now in Mature-YA/New Adult, that has this journey. My books reflect my life. I've had a lot of struggles and a lot of blessings. When my mother was going through cancer treatment and my baby daughter was going through speech therapy; I felt a lot like my MC in the beginning of each series...that there was a battle I must fight and an uphill one at that. But gradually, as I fought on, as I did my best and never stop believing there is hope, things got better. Just like in my book series. It's a journey and one that will test everything you have. This happened to me.

And while the end of each series has not yet concluded. Nor has my journey, I can say that when you least expect good things to happen in your life, that's when it does. Miracles happen. My mother fought back and won against cancer. Today she is cancer-free. My baby daughter who can barely talk when she was diagnosed, fought back with every ounce of her little body, and won. She is now a witty, self-assured, confident and strong little girl, who is learning three languages. She is no longer diagnosed as being on the Autism Spectrum.

I've been through some challenges in life, and I feel compelled to talk about it and to give the message of hope where I can, either through my books (not necessarily the first book but through the series) or through my visits with schools and other organizations, radio, and interviews.

2) Anything you would care to elaborate on?

In many ways, my books are an extension of myself, like children, as it is with all authors. It's also true what is written in my bio on Amazon that all my books are based on something real in my life.

All her books are inspired by personal experiences. Saving You Saving Me was inspired by her experience as a peer counselor for young women during college and from her psychology major college roommate's experience being in a relationship similar to the one portrayed by Sam and Collins in the book. Loving Summer was inspired by Kailin's experience growing up with a family consisting of a mother, two sons, and a daughter who went through a similar experience of tragedy in the book. Aunt Sookie is based on herself and some actor friends she knows. The Frost Series, Circus of Curiosities Series, and FADE Series came about through vivid dreams. Never Say Never was inspired by Kailin's experience as a radio host and working with and interviewing bands, as well as having college friends who were in bands. Kailin also played the drums and keyboard for a band she once started. A classically-trained musician, she was once led her school orchestra, playing first chair violin. Her experience in the music world and her love of Phantom of the Opera, inspired the Phantom Diaries. PULSE was inspired when Kailin was in the hospital suffering from heavy blood loss post surgery and needed several bags of blood to survive (like a vampire). Beautiful Beings was inspired by her college encounter with a young demon exorcist. A pastor once told her she had the gift of sight and that she was destined to become a prolific author, many times over."

My Review:

I am reviewing from an ARC copy of Circus Summer.  

So now what did I find ?   Kailyn Gow is an author who writes smoothly and develops her characters well.   When I picked up Circus Summer, I began the book one day and finished the next and I really enjoyed it.  And I really want to know what will happen to these characters as this will probably be trilogy.  Leela Sinclair is a strong female character.   Although she is in highschool, she is loyal to her family and wants to do what she can to help her mother get well.  Her lifelong friend Thomas, is fully aware of his feelings for Leela and will do anything to help her and continue to love her.    Zachary, however, holds her heart.   She has loved him since she was 6 years old.  Now at seventeen, it is lust.  But she has more on her mind than just boys.....the circus has come to town.   The offering of more money than she could ever earn in Sea Cliff, glitz glamour and physical challenges, draws her to sign up for the Circus of Curiousities.     All is not as it would seem under the Big Top, but can Leela live long enough to discover what it is?  And is there a place for her
there?  And why does it seem that Dr Dex, Circus of Curiousities Ringmaster, is everywhere at the same time?   I liked the premise of the book.   I loved the Characters.  I loved the storyline, although I couldn't help but feel similarities to the Hunger Games.   It's just enough different to be intriguing.   And I can't wait for the next installment, Circus Autumn! 


Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like.

Friday, July 27, 2012

We Have a Winner!

Congratulations go out to Marjorie Roy!!    Come on down!  You have just won the e-book, The Book of James by Ellen J Green!  I am so pleased for you and hope you love the read as much as I did!

In other News....
I have been nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award!   Thank you Alicia at Books are my Reality for nominating me!

The Award Rules:

  1. Nominate 15 fellow bloggers who are relatively new to blogging
  2. Let the nominees know that they've been nominated
  3. Share 7 random facts about yourself
  4. Thank the blogger who nominated you
  5. Add the Versatile Blogger award picture to your post
My fifteen nominees, (that's alot) are:
Bonnie at Sweet Tidbits
Renee at Succotash Reviews
Imo at Omnom Books
Helene at Helene's World of Books
Gen at Gen's Reviews

Preet at A Written Rhapsody
Pam at Moonlight Reader
Rachel at http://books.rachelcotterill.com
Anna at pocketfulofbooks.com

Sue at Coffee, Cookies and Chili Peppers
Valentina at  http://carabosseslibrary
Catherine at Cats Thoughts
Shane at Itching for Books
Kim at Kim Reads

So for my 7 random facts:

1.  I have four brothers, a spouse, 2 children...a son and a daughter, and four grandchildren and my mom is still living...my family!

2.  I love animals especially beautiful horses!

3.  My dislikes in life are doing dishes and cleaning house.

4.  Someday I hope to be a published author, when I grow up.

5.  My favorite color is all shades of purple.

6.  My favorite smells are rain, cut grass, babies skin and baking pies.

7.  I feel like I am a rebel at heart; definitely believing in smaller government and the good ole days when morals and righteousness meant something....advocate prayer for our country and saying the pledge of allegiance in school.

Thanks again Alicia for nominating me.   This was fun although it took time to participate.   Hope all that I've nominated take this in the spirit it was intended...fun and getting to know more of our fellow bloggers!   If any are offended at being nominated...I apologize now, but hope you aren't offended in any way.  I admire you!

Further news:

Hop on over to http://tributebooksmama.blogspot.com
for an opportunity to win a free copy of 

Sounds like an awesome book!

Happy Reading My Peeps!