Thursday, May 31, 2012

WINNER: Seal Team Six Outcasts

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.  It's time to announce the winner of a recently closed contest here on the site. This time around we had a win-it-before-you-can-buy-it contest for an action packed new novel that just hit store shelves this Tuesday.  The winner is...drum roll please....




 
Congratulations, Shauna!  You just won your very own copy of Seal Team Six Outcasts by Howard E. Wasdin and Stephen Templin!  Way to go!  Now if you'll kindly respond to the email I sent within 48 hours, you'll seal the deal.  ^_^
 
 
 
Special thanks to Ayelet at Gallery Books / Simon & Schuster for the chance to bring you this contest.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title as well as their full catalog, be sure to visit their official website, or follow along on Twitter.  Be sure to check back for a full review of this title coming next month right here on the site.
 
Now if you didn't win, no worries...there's still another contest going on RIGHT NOW and more to come on the horizon...but if you don't enter, you can't win!
So...what are you waiting for?
 
Until next time...happy reading...
 
 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

BLOG TOUR: The Good Father by Diane Chamberlain, Guest Post + Excerpt!

Why hello there!
Welcome back to another day here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers….where the posts are like a box of Mr. Gump’s chocolates; you never quite know what you’re gonna get. 

Yesterday, we took a stroll through the world of Children’s Fiction with a contemporary title that took us round the world.  Today, we travel back to the land of Fiction and land squarely on target with a BLOG TOUR!  That’s right.  We’ve got special guests in the house courtesy of the fabulous folks at Meryl L. Moss Media in the form of a blog tour featuring an author I had the privilege of reading some time ago…and thoroughly enjoyed.  This time around, we’re celebrating the release of another title from this prolific author that is sure to catch your attention as it did mine…and some might even relate to it personally in these trying economic times.  I was lucky enough to get on board with this tour to share with you a special feature or two, but first, let’s take a gander at the book itself, shall we?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`



The Good Father
By

A beloved daughter. A devastating choice. And now there’s no going back. Four years ago, nineteen-year-old Travis Brown had to make a life changing decision. While his friends were out partying and meeting girls, Travis was at home raising his newborn daughter on his own – changing diapers and working to keep food on the table.  But he’s never regretted his decision. Bella is the light of his life – the reason behind every move he makes – and so far, she is fed.  Cared for.  Safe. But when Travis loses his construction job and his home, the security he’s worked so hard to create for Bella begins to crumble…



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



Sounds like one devoted father, no?
I thought so…and you have to give him credit for manning up, taking responsibility and helping to make a life worth living for this precious bundle of joy.  So sad to see that sacrifice seems to be a prevalent fixture in their lives….but if I had to guess, by books end they’ll be better for it. 

Now for special feature number one…an excerpt!  Let’s take a peek behind the cover, shall we?



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



"Can you watch Bella a sec and I'll go get it? I can tell you the address and maybe you can tell me how to get there."           
"Sure," she said.                                 
I couldn't move all of a sudden. I wanted to take Bella back into the restroom and hug her so hard, but really, I had to get this over with. Just do it. I bent over and kissed Bella's head, then walked away fast. Out the door, across the parking lot, into my van.




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



Whoa.  *-*
Okay, now I’m concerned, confused and a few other “con-“ things.
Did he just leave her?  Was it only for a second?  With a stranger?!  Is he going back?  Of course he is…right?  Amazing how even a short excerpt like that can tease the brain and make it race to a hundred conclusions! 

Okay.
Let’s compose ourselves.
There…that’s better.
Now, on to special feature number two…a GUEST POST!

That’s right.
The author was kind enough to grace us with a post about a topic of her choosing and the results are below for your perusal.  It’s a personal share that fits rather well with the personal nature of this particular book, so I say BRAVA!  Ready?  Set?  READ!




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



How has rheumatoid arthritis affected your writing?

In the mid-nineties, I worked out every day and was in the best shape of my adult life. I was also newly married and a new step mom to three teenaged girls. I had published seven novels by then and life was looking good--until I noticed a twinge in my left foot. The twinge was the start of Rheumatoid Arthritis---a serious chronic disease that can affect internal organs as well as the joints. Within a few months, I couldn’t walk without excruciating pain—pain that quickly moved into my hands. In a few more months, my ankle and wrists fused as the cartilage disappeared. It was a frightening time, filled with uncertainty about the future. My days of working out were over. The most I could manage was hobbling to the mailbox. Worst of all, I couldn’t type. I had a story inside my head and no way to get it onto paper. It never occurred to me to quit, though. I was a writer and if I gave up my writing, all those ideas inside my head would have no place to go. So I bought voice recognition software and wrote all of my eighth novel by narrating the story aloud--and cussing at the software when it stubbornly refused to understand my New Jersey/California/Virginia accent.

Everything changed when the new generation of medications came along. In a remarkably short time, I could type again. I still have trouble walking (I wear a brace) and my wrists will never bend, but I can type nearly all day, which is a joy I will never take for granted.

The most profound impact of having RA, though, didn’t take place in my body but in my spirit. Being seriously ill made me see my life in a new way—a way filled with gratitude and acceptance. It also influenced my writing, as I better understood the struggles of my characters. Don’t get me wrong—I would have loved to come to these realizations without getting sick, but I’m not sure it would have happened.  Sometimes, a hardship can truly be a blessing in disguise.



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


See what I meant about a perfect fit?
I think she summed it up rather well with “a blessing in disguise”…something I have a feeling we’ll see proven within this book.  My thanks to Ms. Chamberlain for the personal share…it must have been a trying time indeed but one she not only made it through, but overcame with astonishing results.


Special thanks to Erin at Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc for the chance to bring this tour to all of you.  (THANKS!)  For more information on their services as well as their upcoming tours, feel free to visit them online or follow along on Twitter.  To check out the rest of THIS TOUR, be sure to visit the official blog tour site where you can see all the stops that have come and gone chock full of interesting information, reviews, and the like.  Now, one more bit of news that I KNOW you’ll want to clear your calendars for...




WHAT:  LIVE chat with author Diane Chamberlain!
WHEN:  Thursday, May 31st, 2012 at 3 PM EST
WHERE:  BookTrib.com




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


Be there or be…well, there.  ^_^
It’s sure to be a high-ho time you won’t want to miss.


In the mean time, if you’d like to discover more about this title as well as what the author is up to now, be sure to stop by her official website, like her Facebook, or follow along on Twitter.   



Until next time...happy reading!



Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Chained by Lynne Kelly

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be when the need to read comes a callin’ and you simply CAN’T say no. 


A quick reminder and a HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY to a book I’m working my way through now (off and on), Seal Team Six Outcasts by Howard E. Wasdin and Stephen Templin hits store shelves today…and you still have a chance to win a copy ALL YOUR OWN through midnight tonight!  Don’t miss out.  Just click on over to the contest post, tell me why you want to read this exciting new book and BAM, you’re in to win!  Spread the word and you gain even MORE chances.  Sound good?  Well then what ARE you waiting for?  Oh, the rest of this post.  Gotcha.  Good reader….awfully kind of you.  ^_^

Yesterday those of us stateside celebrated Memorial Day; a day to honor all those men and women who have, are and will fight for the freedoms we hold dear…and yet, not everyone is lucky enough to have someone fighting for them.  Some have to choose their battles wisely in the hopes of making it through just ONE more day both for themselves and those they cherish.  WARNING dear readers…you will need a box of tissues for parts of this one, especially if you love animals, but the conclusion is well worth the journey.  Today’s book of choice is…


By

From the publisher
After ten-year-old Hastin’s family borrows money to pay for his sister’s hospital bill, he leaves his village in northern India to take a job as an elephant keeper and work off the debt. He thinks it will be an adventure, but he isn’t prepared for the cruel circus owner. The crowds that come to the circus see a lively animal who plays soccer and balances on milk bottles, but Hastin sees Nandita, a sweet elephant and his best friend, who is chained when she’s not performing and hurt with a hook until she learns tricks perfectly. Hastin protects Nandita as best as he can, knowing that the only way they will both survive is if he can find a way for them to escape.


This story just about broke my heart (several times over) and surprised me from the start.  If you are one of those readers that believe a Children’s Fiction title can’t hold strong emotions, this one will prove you wrong.  Upon opening the book, we enter a world few are exposed to with such clarity without having actually stepped foot on their soil.  India; a land of mystery and cultural differences that present a stark contrast to the sensibilities of many Westerners but with a beauty all its own.  We catch a glimpse of their beliefs and social structures along with their ongoing battle to preserve not only their way of life but the sanctions put in place to protect those unable to protect themselves….but I digress. This tale belongs to Hastin as well as Nandita…but we’ll meet her in a moment. 

Hastin is a young lad of ten years living with his mother and sister in a village nondescript amongst the others in the area.  What it lacks in technology and advancements, it gains in familial connections and love.  The tight knit nature of the community shows when things get rough, but Hastin is a proud little fellow and doesn’t want the pity of neighbors or their helping hand; he wants to solve the problems on his own.  You see, his sister Chanda becomes gravely ill and the medical care required to even attempt to save her life is costly.  Unable to sit back idly and watch her expire, his mother enters into a deal with an affluent man from a nearby town…trading her freedom for her daughter’s life.  She won’t be a slave in so much as the word, but for all intents and purposes, she might as well be. 

Hastin visits, sees the conditions and is beside himself, vowing to find a way to aid in releasing his mother from her agreement and paying the debt; such strong emotions for such a little boy.  Flash forward to a chance encounter with a “business” man looking for a strapping lad such as himself for a life of adventure…well paid adventure, or so he says…and you’ve got your yellow brick road.  In fact, not only will his work pay off the debt to the penny, he’ll gain some valuable skills and get to work with animals he never dreamed of.  All of life’s a stage and the circus is a three ring wonder waiting to happen…but not here and not in this arena. 

The man behind this start up circus has been here before…and been shut down for reasons too unsavory for me to reveal.  Now Hastin has the best of intentions and despite the fact that the wool has been pulled over his eyes, he intends to inflict no harm upon the animals in his care…I wish has much could be said about the others souls (or perhaps soulless is the better term) in this outfit.  I’ll spare you the details as you’ll get a brief enough, yet still too much, glimpse upon reading this story, but suffice it to say this part is where some of those tissues come in.  The trapping, chaining, and training of the little elephant now in their grasp, known by those who care (and believe it or not there is another soul that does within the circus) as Nandita…or Joyful. 

She was named for the smile she shared when playing with her family as they traversed the forest on their daily travels for food, water, and a place to rest.  Unfortunately, within the fencing of her new home, that smile of impish youth is one of the first things to go.  Hastin cares for her, both body and spirit, but it’s not enough.  She wasn’t meant to be confined to a circular plot, poked and prodded to do tricks like a puppet on a string; she was meant to be free….much like another young soul trapped by circumstance.  Recognizing themselves in each other, Hastin and Nandita form a bond stronger than the harsh world surrounding them; both spiritual (seek out more on Ganesh to discover that aspect) and at the heart.  There are only two ways out for this duo because where one goes, the other will follow…and if Hastin has anything to say about it, it won’t be lying down.

The story is beautifully crafted and rich in details.  From the lushness of the forest to the barrenness of the hot lands, it’s not hard to conjure a picture within your mind’s eye; the emotional tug of war it plays on your heart though is the real jewel.  No matter the place you call home or the religious affiliations you identify with, the struggle to survive as seen here is common ground.  The desire to be free and see those less able than we achieve that same freedom is a shared goal.  Hastin may be a young boy but he has so much heart.  It brings tears to the eyes as we watch the struggles he goes through trying to keep his family together even though he is kept apart.  The sheer fact that he could name the little elephant Nandita…Joyful…despite all he was already going through was a miracle in and of itself.  It’s amazing the resilience of youth, yes…but it’s the humanity he shows when he is not shown the same that reveals his true character.  Speaking of Nandita…

I’m an animal lover (in case you didn’t already know…^_^) so I was curious to see how Nandita’s part of the story would be relayed.  I mean, this is more contemporary children’s fiction as opposed to fantasy so I knew we wouldn’t be hearing directly from her but at the same time, her voice was captured so well…we do.  Her actions or lack thereof, her reactions to the hardships presented to her as well as the love shown by Hastin, her overall demeanor as well as those quiet moments of reflection…they all shine back like the many facets of a diamond revealing her true form piece by piece. 

One of the many touching scenes occurs when Hastin is whittling in the shed…I mean “room” they call home.  His father was a great carver and he fancies himself carrying on the tradition one day and so he begins practicing by carving a little statue of home, something to remove obstacles….Ganesh.  His first attempt, a bit lopsided and out of proportion but Nandita likes it and promptly makes it her own; wrapping her trunk around it and holding it close like a child would a teddy bear.  That short scene provided such a big window into the character of not only her but Hastin all while making you grin at the sheer curiosity (okay, cuteness) of it all; you’re heart was theirs for the taking already, but that scene just clinched it (well, for me anyway).  But these two, despite being the “stars of the show”, are not the only noteworthy characters…there is but one more outside this conglomeration of dark souls that deserves mention; Ne Min.

Ne Min is a wise old man that serves many a function at this run down circus.  From cook to confidant, healer to helper, he wears many hats and wears them all quite well.  When Hastin first arrives at the circus, he is the only one that shows him any kindness, the only one to offer pointers when needed, and the only one that still seems to have the heart to care.  Nandita’s presence awakens another side of Ne Min, relighting the fire in his eyes and the wonder in his soul.  He knows A LOT of the care and keeping of elephants, so much in fact that Hastin begins to wonder how a cook obtained such skills.  I mean a jack of all trades is great, but even they have a stopping point of which Ne Min shows none. 

With a life well lived, comes secrets…sometimes those secrets are too much to bear yet despite everything we do to bury them, they eventually find the light of day….so the same can be said of Ne Min’s past.  Though not as dark as one might assume considering the company he keeps and with a fair amount of misplaced blame, his connection to the circus as well as his choice to remain with them for so long becomes clear giving you a new found respect for the old man even as he faces his greatest journey of all.  Once again it speaks to the author’s ability to capture the emotion of a moment so well that you can place yourself beside the characters, feel their every breath, share in their tears, and rejoice in their well deserved peace.

In short (which is ironic since this review ran long…sorry!), a moving story of fictional hardships steeped in a reality that is still being fought to this day.  You’ll marvel at the country and the unexpected riches.  You’ll feel for Hastin, Nandita and Ne Min as they struggle to do what’s right by all involved despite the same not being done for them.  You’ll stand up and shout at the atrocities that befall both man and beast and join in the celebrations both big and small all the more when they present themselves.  It’s a book of many colors for many readers that can connect you with a culture across the miles without ever leaving your favorite reading nook.  Would I recommend it?  You bet…to middle grade readers and beyond.  As I said, there are hardships, some certainly tear worthy, but as the descriptions and events only go so far, I believe this one would do well still for the younger crowd in not just the story, but in raising awareness.  Something to think about….

ARC for review courtesy of Ksenia at MacMillan Children’s Publishing Group.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title as well as their complete catalog, feel free to visit them online, like them on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  To learn more about first time author Lynne Kelly, connect with her at her official site, check out her blog, like her on Facebook or follow on Twitter.  This book was released earlier this month from Margaret Ferguson Books / Farrar Straus Giroux (an imprint of MacMillan) and should be available on a bookstore shelf near you. 

Until next time…happy reading!


Monday, May 28, 2012

A day of celebration and remembrance....


Today amid your holiday celebrations, take a moment to remember all those for whom this day was created.  The men and women who fought for the freedom in which you are reveling; some giving the ultimate sacrifice.  Don't let their efforts be forgotten


HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY





Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Roving Reader

Lookie lookie what I spyed on the shelf today...
FROM WHAT I REMEMBER
...congratulations on the new release Stacy Kramer and Valerie Thomas!

Reading through this one now....so far, so good!

^_^

Saturday, May 26, 2012

I Couldn't Love You More...the sequel

So.
Here it is.
Saturday night.
The blog has been quiet, no?
This was on purpose though...trust me.  Life was busy...well, is busy...but I wanted to finish to completion the book we last visited before moving on to something new.  That book (in case you forgot) was...

I COULDN'T LOVE YOU MORE
by
Jillian Medoff

When we last met, we were discussing the ladies of this book...their relationships, their hits and misses, and the small wonders that added up to lives worth following. Today, we take a turn toward the gentlemen.

Though the cast is more limited, their influence is no less impactive ...as is the frustration they can cause.  Barney, for example, only graces the pages in physical form for a few scenes but the effects of his presence are felt long after.  (Oh and Barney is the long lost father of the three sisters...long story ...) Finn Montgomery...for all the trouble, well distractions, he creates, it's more the memory of him relived over and over again that gives him power over Eliot.  She never truly moved on from him and so is doomed to repeat history all over again (maybe...sorry, not spoiling it!).  The biggest male presence is Grant.

Father of Gail and Charlotte (first marriage) as well as Hailey, he's a stand up Dad who wants the best for his kids but when faced with a crisis...he shuts down all reasoning leaving nothing but cold hearted logic behind.  Perhaps its because I'm not a parent (well except to my fur babies...^_^), but to me his reaction to the events that occur are a bit extreme....especially when he cuts her off completely, from the children no less! He even mentions his intentions towards the child they share biologically...and the thought sickens me. It was hard to read let alone "watch" Eliot go through all the guilt by her lonesome.  Maybe that's why marriage is in the cards for so many. That commitment, that til death do us part, sometimes acts as the glue that forces those in love experiencing hard times, to reconsider their circumstances a third and fourth time before calling it quits.  Should it be that way? Maybe, maybe not...but it certainly couldn't hurt when trying to keep together those we hold dear. 

By books end, I was ready to come through the page to give Eliot and Hailey a much needed hug (even her mother, Stella)...but the author surprised me yet again with the ending she had planned.  It was satisfying in a real life sorta way and the characters continued to amaze til the very last page.  There's not one person who doesn't experience some sort of growth and in a book with this many strong personalities, that's quite a feat.

All in all, a great summer read for older teens through adults.  This is one crazy family to be a part of but one you'll be all the better for knowing once you've walked a summer in their shoes.

Review copy thanks once again to Amy at KMSPR, LLC.  To see the rest of my experience with this book....be sure to check out this past Thursday's post.

REMINDER: Two contests going on now!  First...my three year blogoversary celebration; second...your chance to win it before you can buy it!  For all the details, just  check out the 'Current Contests' on my right hand side bar.

Until next time...happy reading!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

BLOG TOUR: I Couldn't Love You More by Jillian Medoff

Well hello there!
Fancy meeting you here on a day like today!  The sun is shining, the birds are singing, there is not a cloud in the sky.  Okay, so reality says the sun is glaringly bright and making it too hot too fast outside, the birds are singing because that’s their job and the clouds are probably on break and gearing up for an afternoon storm but hey, that’s not NEARLY as peaceful scene evoking as the first description, am I right?  Of course I am…but it also illustrates a point I unintentionally made.  Things aren’t always what they first appear to be and much is determined by interpretation…two things we shall discuss in today’s post, along with a few others.  First things first…


In an effort to ALWAYS be true to you my fellow readers and those bookish companies/people I am fortunate enough to work with on promotions and the like, I have a confession to make.  I DID NOT FINISH THIS BOOK….YET.  You see, for those of you that know me (whether online or in person), you know how crazy busy my life can be at times (okay, MOST the time) but my commitment to reading and sharing those adventures is true blue as well….there are times that one or the other simply has to be put on pause for a moment though; unfortunately, this was one of them.  As I write this post, I’m about 2/3, maybe ¾, of the way through and I fully intend upon finishing it because frankly I can’t put it down….I’m too invested in the story not to know how things pan out….but I read til the we hours of the morning and just couldn’t quite get it done.  So perhaps instead of a review, we should call this my observations thus far, deal? 

Today’s featured title is a Fiction book that just saw publication a week or so ago.  It features the life and times of Eliot Gordon…partner, mother, successful business woman, and one of three sisters to a slightly eccentric author mom that doesn’t know where the TMI line is.  Oh yes…there will be secrets told, rivalries played out and snotty looks/remarks given…but hey, THAT’S what makes life interesting!  Did I mention the potential affair?  Silly me…  ^_^  Today’s book of choice and blog tour guest courtesy of KMSPR, LLC is….


By

From the author’s site
Which child would you save? A decision no parent can even fathom.

Eliot Gordon would do anything for her family. A 38-year-old working mother, she lives an ordinary but fulfilling life in suburban Atlanta with her partner, Grant Delaney, and their three daughters. The two older girls are actually Eliot's stepdaughters, a distinction she is reluctant to make as she valiantly attempts to maintain a safe, happy household . . .

Then Finn Montgomery, Eliot's long-lost first love, appears, triggering a shocking chain of events that culminates in a split-second decision that will haunt her beloved family forever. How Eliot survives-and what she loses in the process-is a story that will resonate with anyone who has ever loved a child. With hilarious honesty, wrenching depth, and a knockout twist, I COULDN'T LOVE YOU MORE illuminates the unbreakable bonds of family and reveals the lengths we'll go to save each other, even as we can't save ourselves.



Sounds great, right?  So far, it is. From the mother that was there in body but absent in spirit to the rip roaring times the three sisters have, there is a lot of family drama playing out between these pages…and with this many females in a cast, how could they not?  (Oh admit it guys, you totally agree with me there…)  Let’s see, where to begin.  Well there’s the Sculptress (aka Gail and Charlotte’s mom…through biology only because SO much more goes into being a mom than merely creation and blood) who to put it frankly….never grew up and I don’t see her doing it any time soon…for anyone.  Her girls idolize her but I think its more out of a sense of rebellion to a degree and the need to claim something, someone as their own.  Then we have the girls Gordon…Maggie, Sylvia, and Eliot. 

All named after the authors that influenced their mother’s desire to become a writer (cool, right?), they are family and love each other through thick and then but BOY do they drive each other up the walls at times!  Maggie is the youngest and therefore constantly fills that role of tagging along no matter what the endeavor…she’s also forced into that follow-not-lead status by her more dominating sister, Sylvia.  Sylvia…wow, now there’s an interesting person.  No really…sometimes I just want to tell her enough with the drama already…you are NOT up for an Academy Award!  Her antics can be down right ridiculous at times (think Marsha Brady only older and WORSE) and if she ever gets the feeling that her elder sister is one upping her, she kicks into action faster than the fireworks burst on the Fourth of July.  She means well but…she definitely lacks the ability to reign herself in.  Then there’s the eldest, Eliot.

Here’s the thing.  I’m in a bit of a love hate relationship with our main character and narrator, Eliot.  On the one hand, I love the person she is when she’s with Grant and company (aka her kids….step and biological) despite his lack of putting a ring on it (sorry, I know it’s not for everyone but I think deep down, it really IS for Eliot).  On the other hand, I really don’t care for the person she becomes when she’s with Finn.  She’s irresponsible, easily distracted, suddenly indecisive, and basically drooling all over herself which when I last checked wasn’t an attractive package no matter how you look at it.  I know, gasp shock and awe…a spoiler point!  Not really….because you see by “with” I simply mean “spending any time in the vicinity of”…yes, that’s how bad she gets. 

I mean, I get it; he’s her “life long crush”, her high school sweetheart.  *blink blink*  Yeah…about using the term “sweet” with his name, is she even thinking of the same guy I’m reading about?  Really, that guy was pretty much a when it came to how to treat women….even Eliot for that matter.  Their “relationship” back then really amounted to unacknowledged feelings, a supposed desire to preserve what they had, and a half drunk one night stand; not really seeing the building blocks of a lasting relationship here.  Even now, his presence is always the catalyst for trouble intentional or not.

Anywho…it remains to be seen how it will all play out.  Will they continue to try to relive their glory days in the here and now, screwing up any chance they have at simply being friends and place their current relationships in final jeopardy?  Or will one (or both….hey, benefit of the doubt and all) come to their senses and realize that time marches on, people grow up (well, most anyway) and though once upon a time they may have seemed like a great romance waiting to happen….it just wasn’t mean to be?  Even if I had finished the final page, I wouldn’t tell you!  (^_^)  You’ll have to read it to find out…

Final discussion point and this is something I came to realize about 100 pages in, the title is something of a pondering point.  When I first read about this book, I took the title at face value….a simple statement of how much one person loves another, HOWEVER, knowing what I do know about each of the characters, there are actually many more layers to it than I first perceived.  You have the simple declaration it first appears to be, an affirmation of love.  You have it as a plea, a sorrowful way of saying why things didn’t work out or couldn’t be.  You also have it as a way to explain why someone acts the way they do in spite of themselves and despite the role they play in your life…they love you but they couldn’t love you more.  Something to think about both now and once you’re reading the book.

All in all, from what I’ve read thus far (which again is about 3/4ths of the book as we speak…err, read), it’s an enjoyable story perfect for a summer reading escape.  I’d classify it was Women’s Fiction through and through as you explore the dynamics of family both by blood and by love,  seek out love in all the right and wrong places, uncover the truth hidden before our very eyes and discover a little bit about ourselves along the way.  I will give a small warning to potential readers….there are a few instances of “colorful” language and a scene or two sensual in nature (ice bath not required but a fan, perhaps…she keeps it short though so we can get back to the plot), so my recommended reading age is OLDER teens at the earliest through adults.  If anything drastic changes in my continued reading, you best be believing an update to my review will be made but as the story goes, though we encounter ups and downs just as in life, the writing is done with a practiced hand…can’t wait to see just where the author takes us.


Review copies of this book (both ARC and final edition) received courtesy of Amy at KMSPR, LLC.  (Thanks, Amy! If you're not following her, you should...you're missing out, big time!)  For more information on KMSPR, LLC as well as current projects in progress, feel free to visit them online, like them on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  To discover more about author Jillian Medoff including her previously published works and those forthcoming, be sure to visit her official website, like her Facebook page, or follow her Twitter feed.  This book was released May 15th, 2012 from Five Spot / Hachette Book Group so be on the look out for it on a bookstore shelf near you.  To discover more about the publisher as well as their complete catalog, visit their official website.

Until next time…happy reading!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Go with the current...

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place you can always count on to have something fresh and new to start your day in a bookish sort of way.


Today…well, it’s already been one of “those” days and it hasn’t even reached the halfway mark (though it will have once this post goes live).  The bad day vibes are being fended off rather successfully though so I thought, why not push through all the crazy and get a review up for the day?  I pulled the book I was reviewing, gathered my notes and emails, and…discovered it was a title that I actually wasn’t scheduled to review for another month or two. Whoops…on my part (which totally explains why my reading schedule was so scrunched this month), but YAY on your part because you get to read all about this book all the earlier. 

We’re all over the board recently with the Young Adult series feature last week, and the Fiction contest running this week, but hey…that’s just how I roll.  (…and you KNOW you love me for it… ^_^)  Today, we’re stepping back to a Children’s Fiction selection, Middle Grade to be precise (though older readers will enjoy it was well), that incorporates a little magic, a little wonder, and a whole lot of mystery that plays out both above AND below the sea.  Grab your goggles and your fins, you’re gonna need them….might wanna bring that underwater flashlight over there too.  Today’s featured book of choice is…


By

From the author’s site
For a thirteen-year-old kid who lives right by the ocean, Ford Kahr has never been a great swimmer. In fact, he sinks like a rock in the water. He's actually afraid to swim in the ocean after his dad, a marine biologist and experienced scuba diver, disappeared off the shore of their hotel in Cape Lore, New Jersey, three years ago.

As klutzy as Ford is in the water, his older brother Jag is a junior swimming champ, and his younger sister Mercedes has a mystical connection to the water that Ford can't explain. But when Jag swims out to investigate the disappearing island past the jetty, Ford uncovers an amazing secret that puts a new spin on his relationship with the ocean. The ocean harbors a whole other world beneath its surface that Mercy and Ford must explore - hoping they'll find some clue to the disappearance of their father and the astonishing secret they share about the water.

Legends of underwater people and stories of scary sea monsters push Ford and his sister to discover the truth about what's really out there in the ocean depths.



The mystery is stated there, plain for all to see.  The father of this family has disappeared some time ago and the only clue left behind that things may not have ended well was a dive watch discovered in the belly of a shark.  *-*  Ominous, right?  Surely that would be enough to let them know that his plans went a bit…south; but no, as with most families, the children refuse to believe what’s before their eyes.  Good for them because you know what?  Though we’ve no proof to the contrary (yet), they may just be right. 

A rather unexpected read, this book deals with everything from the loss (maybe) of a family member to mysterious creatures under the sea (no, not mermaids exactly…), allowing it to take you on a journey beyond coral and into the stars…literally.  (Nope…I’m mum about how that figures in…^_^)  The three kiddos here are Jag (the swim star), Ford (the middle child and good kid, mostly), and Mercy (the youngest and only girl of the trio).  If you hadn’t noticed…yes, they are all named after cars, kinda ironic when their last name IS Kahr (pronounced C-A-R) though I’m sure they would disagree; call it an inside family joke.  Ford is the one who receives the spotlight in this story and he’s a great kid with the best of intentions, but Mercy is the one that steals the show.

Mercy is a special little girl; first in being the only daughter, and second due to her medical conditions.  She has to have a regular schedule or she gets flummoxed.  She takes medication with her snacks frequently.  She needs (though often doesn’t wear) a special shoe to help make walking a bit easier.  But in the water…the glorious water…she is FREE.  Free from all that is weighing her down on land.  Free to swim and play as good as anyone else (or at times even better!).  Free to just…BE Mercy.  It’s wonderful to see her gain her sea legs so to speak and really open up to the world around her and in doing so, embark on an adventure that’s been waiting JUST for her. 

The two siblings rely on each other very much, a nice break from the usual “at-each-others-throats” version we normally see (though Jag fills that role by himself), so when one gets into trouble, the other is sure to follow.  Mercy falls into the clutches of …an evil minded someone not of our planet (thought you could fool me into telling you who, didn’t you?) that has their eye on taking over our world as their own.  It’s not a simple conquest thing though as in move-over-here-I-come; in order for them to rule the land, the sea needs to displace or rather replace it…hence the book title.  Things get rough but these two are much tougher than they appear…especially when an unexpected alliance and the finding of something (*ahem* or someone *ahem*) puts the odds ever so slightly in their favor. 

By book’s end, you’ll have rooted for the good guys, faced down some wicked bad guys and discovered that although things are not always what they seem, where there’s a will (or Ford or Mercy) there’s a way.  A great summer read for middle grade readers and beyond.  The sea holds many mysteries, but it also holds some fascinating treasures…and I wouldn’t be surprised if it entices young ones to explore the world right below their fins.  What they discover may not be shape shifters and energy harnessing machines, but it will amaze all the same and who knows…it may even awaken the oceanographer in them!

Review copy received courtesy of author Sandy Green.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title as well as the author’s current happenings, feel free to visit her online, check out her blog, like her Facebook, or follow along on Twitter.  This book was released December 2011 via Penumbra Publishing, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf near you!  Can’t wait run out to the store just now?  Here’s a link or two to get you started online…AmazonPenumbra Publishing.

Now, I’m off to see if I can figure out how to grow some of my own seastar flowers because I’m jonesing for a mango pineapple smoothie right about now….

Until next time…happy reading!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

READ ALL ABOUT IT: Seal Team Six Outcasts + Giveaway!

It's Tuesday and you know what that means.

*silence*

What?
You DON'T know what that means?

*tisk*tisk*

If you do know, way to go!
If you don't, allow me to enlighten you...
^_^


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This is the (typical) day that new releases hit the book world. That means RIGHT NOW as you sit here reading this post, new titles are making their way to bookstore shelves near you. Tempted? You should be...there's always something to keep an avid reader in books but before I get too carried away (because really, it's BOOKS...how can you not?), allow me to shine a little light on a title hitting store shelves NEXT week.


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by
Howard E. Wasdin and Stephen Templin


From the publisher...





They are the Outcasts. Because people don’t want to know what they do.


Alex Brandenburg: SEAL Chief Petty Officer and Outcasts Team Leader. Disobeyed direct orders by refusing to let a deadly terrorist live to kill another day. Francisco “Pancho” Rodriguez and John Landry: SEAL Petty Officers First Class. Took the pursuit of justice into their own hands with explosive results. Catherine “Cat” Fares. Navy Petty Officer. Holds an unbeatable record for pissing off the top brass with her strongly stated opinions on the combat readiness of women.


The team’s mission: Take out the seven terror merchants vying to take Bin Laden’s place. The team’s status: Expendable.


When America’s controversial Phoenix Program was buried during the Vietnam War, a new program rose from its ashes. A top-secret Special Operations unit, with a core mission to combat terror wherever they find it, Bitter Ash grew ever more necessary in a new world of Islamic fanaticism. Now, Bitter Ash is forming a special team, a SEAL Team Six with a difference. It is Tier One, on par with SEAL Team Six and Delta, but it will report directly to Bitter Ash, and its fight will take place under the cover of dark.


With Bin Laden dead, the petty leaders within al Qaeda struggle to assume his role at the top. The president of the United States doesn’t want any of them left to dominate . . . and that means he has only one choice. But doing what’s needed without political repercussions will take a small team flying under the radar. A team capable of finessing the U.N.’s distinctions on national sovereignty and acts of war. A team like the Outcasts.


With no official support from their government and no one to rely on but themselves, the Outcasts must track down each target. Hot on the tail of the third, Brandenburg and the team start to realize that they are closing in on a larger plot, one that puts the security of the United States in dangerous jeopardy. The terrorists are threatening American territory once again, and the Outcasts will have to do what SEALs do best. Whatever it takes to keep their country safe.



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Sounds interesting, right?
Okay, so that's probably not the FIRST thing you're thinking.  The first thing is whether or not my site was hijacked by a space alien and I'm gagged in the corner wishing SOMEONE would see through the false posts...am I right?  I could totally see where you're coming from especially if you're not a frequent visitor...because if you were than you'd know my reading interests vary and I give serious consideration to every book that comes my way.




That being said, when I heard about this one I thought two things....first, a war type book yay (<- sarcastic, for certain); second, isn't that the same duo that wrote the historical book of a similar title?  If you said yes, you've done your homework...but even still, historical is not my genre; so why the interest?  The clincher was the excerpt...Chapter 1 in full.  Here, have a looksie.  After reading through that extended sample, I was A) intrigued to see what would happen next and B) amazed that despite the technical descriptions of the equipment and such (men and their toys...oye), I could breeze by that part (as I have little to no knowledge of the particulars of all that and don't plan on expanding my mental database on them any time soon) while still staying up to speed on the story.  You see?  Sometimes it's good to read outside the box, and that point is where this next part comes in.



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If you read through the synopsis, checked out the excerpt and are raring for more...this book releases next Tuesday, May 29th, 2012.  Circle the date, add a reminder to your calendar, or tie a string around your finger (just don't forget why its there), to note its impending arrival.



HOWEVER...
...in the mean time...
...I might kinda sorta maybe in some way have a chance for you to win it BEFORE you can buy it.
Interested?



I thought you might be.
Thanks to the great folks at Gallery Books / Simon & Schuster, YOU have the chance to win (1) copy of Seal Team Six Outcasts before you can buy it (though it won't arrive until after, it's still awesome-sauce!).  Now, I'm trying something a little different this time around....if it doesn't work, TELL ME, okay?  My email address is easy peasy to find plus I read ALL my comments; I'd rather find out sooner as opposed to later.  This time around, you'll be using Rafflecopter to submit your entries.  It's not that I don't adore Google docs (I do!) but there are a few entries that are made easier by clicking as opposed to copy, paste, and so on.

Here it is....






  The rules...
Entries accepted Tuesday, May 22, 2012 through Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at midnight CST.  US entries only; no P.O. Boxes please.  Winner will be selected and contacted no later than Thursday, May 31st, 2012 and have 48 hrs to respond to my email with their mailing information.  If no response is received in the given time frame, a new winner will be selected.




Special thanks to Ayelet at Gallery Books / Simon & Schuster for the chance to bring this contest to all of you.  (THANKS!)



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There you have it!
A new title to be on the look out for and a nother chance for you to win.  Speaking of that "other", don't forget to get your entries in for my 3 Year Blogoversary celebration giveaway!  For more details, click on the link in the right hand sidebar under 'Current Contests'.
Until next time...good luck...and happy reading!

Are you an avid reader looking for your next "fix"? Can't bear to be without some form of reading material in your spare time? Welcome to my world! Whether you are seeking a new book to "feed your need", or you are an author seeking an unbiased point of view on your own recent masterpiece, this is the place to be. With life as with books, you never know where the next step might take you...
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