Sunday Showcase #11

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve posted a Sunday Showcase. Well, I’ve whittled down some of the reads from Netgalley and thought it might be okay to put in a few requests. And so I did. 🙂 Surprise! They approved me for five more reads…

Okay… five is a little much. I think I’m going to have to double up on reads… two books a week to catch up on some of these Netgalley copies PLUS meet my Goodreads Reading Challenge.

And as folks know, Borders is closing. We don’t have a Borders, but we do have a Walden Books which is a store under it… so they’re having an going out of business sale also. It’s a shame. Last time I went in there (before the big announcement, I mean), I asked the salesclerk about the store staying open. That was around the time Borders was closing a mass of stores to cut costs. She was confident it would since the store pulls in pretty good business. <sigh> I guess the thought of the entire corporation going bankrupt didn’t occur to her.

Well that’s another story. I picked up one book for myself while I was in the area.

The Art of Steampunk seeks to celebrate the world of Steampunk: a world filled with beauty and innovation.  A world in which steam power and technology intertwine to create machines that are not only functional and practical, but unique and striking.  

Inside, you will find the fantastical and stunning artwork of Steampunk artists from around the world.  The 17 artists featured on these pages, among the frontrunners of the Steampunk genre, have had their work displayed at an exhibition at The Museum of History of Science at the University of Oxford, UK and have attracted the media attention of BoingBoing, one of the world’s largest blogs.  Their artwork consists of everything from clocks and watches to light fixtures and jewelry, but every piece demonstrates hours of painstaking work and devotion from its creator.  You will find that the artists themselves are just as unique and colorful as their masterpieces.  Fully embracing Steampunk ideology, many have adopted a Victorian alter ego—a mad scientist persona to match the complicated intricacies of their artwork.

The Art of Steampunk brings the vision of the Steampunk artist alive on the page, providing a unique insight into the captivating and dynamic world of a vastly underground genre.

Why I Picked It up: Lindsay Buroker, I BLAME YOU! That is all. I received this from NetGalley.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

McKinley challenges nominal Christians to take a deeper look at themselves.

Jesus divided the world into two groups—those who follow him and those who don’t. But what happens when someone thinks he or she is a Christian, but isn’t? With his witty, engaging style, Mike McKinley takes readers on a journey of what it means to be a Christian. He asserts that “manipulative evangelism techniques and a poor understanding of the gospel have resulted in an abundance of professing Christians who have no idea what it means to follow Christ.” 

Each chapter title begins with “You’re not a Christian [if/when/just because you]…” As he surveys what it means to be Christian, McKinley offers criteria for evaluating one’s standing before God. Readers are guided through a series of challenges to reflect, repent, remember, and report to another person. Am I Really a Christian? ends with chapters on salvation and the local church. This unique book is written for nominal or new Christians and can be used in personal or small-group study.

Why I Picked It up: Mostly because of America. Some statistics show about 75% of Americans believe they’re Christian and have a ticket to heaven. According to the bible, “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew 7:14 (NIV) So I want to see what this guy has to say. I received this from NetGalley.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

Two of today’s most popular genres–Romance and Amish fiction–together in one volume.

“Healing Hearts” by Beth Wiseman: Levina Lapp and her husband Naaman are alone for the first time in 30 years. When Naaman left to visit cousins in Ohio, Levina wasn’t expecting him to be gone a year. Now that he’s back, will they be able to move beyond this estrangement and fall in love again?

“What the Heart Sees” by Kathleen Fuller: A tragic accident rocks a peaceful Amish community, leaving Ellie Chupp blinded and Christopher Bender’s future shattered. But they find love and forgiveness in a place they least expect.

“A Marriage of the Heart” by Kelly Long: Rachel Yoder is tired of her Amish lifestyle and her domineering father’s ways. When handsome Joseph Lambert comes back from the Englisch, she lies to force a marriage of convenience, providing the perfect means to escape her father’s rule. But Rachel never imagined she’d fall in love with Joseph so quickly or irrevocably.

Why I Picked It up: After my first and only Amish read, The Promise of an Angel by Ruth Reid (see review here), I’m on an Amish kick. I received this from NetGalley.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

When 28–year–old Emma Donahoe becomes a nanny to John Chen’s daughter, Simone, she does not expect to be drawn into a world of martial arts, magic, and extreme danger, where both gods and demons can exist in the mortal world.

Emma gradually realises that John Chen is no ordinary businessman and that nearly all the demons in hell would like to see him dead. John and his American bodyguard, Leo, begin to teach Emma their particular brand of martial arts and special defensive techniques … they also begin to realise that there is something that is different about Emma but exactly what it is, nobody can say.

A fabulous, fast–paced and very entertaining fantasy adventure … a trilogy based on Chinese mythology, set in modern–day Hong Kong, where an ancient god falls in love with a young Australian woman …

Why I Picked It up: Okay. Here’s the thing. I don’t read too many Asian book, and this one looks freakin’ cool. So that’s the first thing. next, I saw on Goodreads that the reviews are pretty decent. I’m sold and can’t wait to get to this goodie. I received this from NetGalley.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

Although proud of living apart from the world, Marianna Sommer’s newly relocated Amish family is discovering that life in the remote mountains of Montana requires working together with the Englisch. As Marianna pours her life into helping those around her-and receiving their help-her heart further considers two directions. She’s torn between the Amish man from Indiana whom she has long planned on marrying and the friendly Englischer who models a close walk with God like she’s never seen before.

Who should have young Marianna’s heart? What is God asking of her through ongoing family struggles and this romantic and spiritual tension? The answer is found along the wooded paths.

Why I Picked It up: Stuck on Amish. So here we have, two more Amish stories. Let’s see if this genre will become my new love. 🙂 I received this from NetGalley.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She’s never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her…until Patch comes along.

With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment, but after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora’s not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can’t decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is far more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.

For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen – and when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Why I Picked It up: This one has been on my reading list for ALONG time. It just never made my purchase list. Well, the Walden going out of business sale reduced the price on this baby. I picked up the Hardback for less than $4.

Available at: The Book Depository and Barnes & Nobles

So that’s what I’ve received these past few weeks. I have got to get some major reading done. I think I’m 4 books behind on my 2011 Goodreads Reading Challenge.

In Other News

If you haven’t picked up I Loved You First, what are you waiting for? Use it for your next, In Your Mailbox Meme! I released it yesterday, and it’s available at Barnes & Nobles,Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon DE, and Smashwords. One thing I will mention, it’s on sale at Amazon for $0.99 for this week only. If you don’t have a Kindle, great news. For the same week, it’s on sale at Smashwords IF you use the coupon below:

Promotional price: $0.99
Coupon Code: FA89H
Expires: August 5, 2011

Add I Loved You First to your Goodreads List.

Special Post: Happy Release Day Plus Plus

This is a long post, so the main points are highlighted in bold for the skimmers. 🙂

Eagerness becomes me. So August 1 was to be the release date for I Loved You First. I got a little eager and uploaded the files yesterday. Surprise! Happy Release Day, I Loved You First.

Alexandria (Alex) Carmichael guards two secrets close to her heart. One—she’s in love with her best friend, Seth. Two—he’s gay.

As a freshman in college, Alex looks forward to fun times with her best friend. When Seth decides cycling through girlfriends is the way to fit in with the straight crowd, Alex must make a choice: watch Seth give his affections to another while her heart breaks or come clean with her feelings and risk losing his friendship forever.

I Loved You First is a new adult love story told through the eyes of an African-American/Caucasian student who takes a journey of self-discovery while watching her best friend come to terms with his sexuality. Turn the pages and find a message of hope, new beginnings, and positive change.

*Stay tuned for the upcoming blog tour

Available at:

Add I Loved You First to your Goodreads List.

************************

So I mentioned Plus Plus! Right. 🙂 If you haven’t picked up a copy of Shadow Cat, great news for you! Aobibliosphere is offering a copy at her blog. Yip yip! Head over there and check it out the giveaway.

Shadow Cat (Book One) Eric Randall’s plan is simple—fix the mess his researchers have created in Malaysia, experience the pleasures the country has to offer, and return to the comforts of America. All it takes is one beautiful aborigine, and Eric finds himself stranded in a world of Malaysian myths and legends.

A novice shaman amongst her people, Berani is free and independent. Yet all is not well in her homeland. Demons prey on her people, pushing them to extinction. When a strange speaking man invades her forest, she has one more worry to add to her already troubled life. Attraction or no, she will fight Eric tooth and claw to maintain her freedom. But will she destroy herself in the process?

If Berani wishes to save her family… if Eric wishes to reclaim his old life, they must stand together against the threats of encroaching wehr-tigers and bloodsucking demons… or perish.

************************

Last but not least! I’m participating in a blog hop event starting Monday. Exciting. 🙂 My job is to help secure as many votes as possible for my writing buddy, Lenore Wolfe, author of Doorway to the Triquetra.

Okay. So the voting doesn’t start until Monday. When the time comes, you can put in your vote for Doorway to the Triquetra–no other book, just Doorway to the Triquetra–and help my buddy win this thang. Yes… that’s spelled right, thang. 🙂 So remember, support and vote for Doorway to the Triquetra.

When an ancient medallion is passed down to her, Mira is not happy to learn she is the next Jaguar Witch, bound by the blood of the Jaguar, to cross the doorway and learn the Way of the Stone. She must find the Doorway of the Triquetra, but each move she makes only leads her to a deeper mystery, where all of her past lives are bound–to four immortal men.

When an ancient medallion is passed down to her, Mira is not happy to learn she is the next Jaguar Witch, bound by the blood of the Jaguar, to cross the doorway and learn the Way of the Stone. She must find the Doorway of the Triquetra, but each move she makes only leads her to a deeper mystery, where all of her past lives are bound–to four immortal men.

 Grab the button and add it to your blog! Support Doorway to the Triquetra!

Vote for Doorway to the Triquetra.
<div align="center"><a href="http://seeitorreadit.blogspot.com/2011/07/week-1-aug-1st-aug-7th.html" title="Vote for Doorway to the Triquetra." target="_blank"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-y-TGxKHjSc0/TjHLaO_9ULI/AAAAAAAAAJQ/lmQsAG5KbCU/s350/August%2BBlog%2BHop2.jpg" alt="Vote for Doorway to the Triquetra." style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Authors Helping Authors: C.A. Kunz — A Book Is Born!

Normally, I try to do an introduction, but C.A. Kunz gives one far better than I could possibly. So  I’ll just let them have at it. 🙂

***********************

Hello Blogosphere,

First of all we want to thank Reena Jacobs for allowing us to infiltrate her blog and plant this little number on here! So, I guess a little introduction is in order here. Well we are Carol Kunz and Adam Kunz, the mother and son author duo known as C.A. Kunz. Our debut YA Paranormal/Fantasy novel, The Childe, was published back in February of this year, and is the first book in a planned five book series. The Childe introduces the reader to our main character Catherine Colvin, AKA Cat, a fifteen-year-old girl entering her freshman year at Astoria High School. Like everyone else, she has her typical high school drama like a mean-spirited math teacher, a Goth clique that seems to dislike her instantly, and a popular trio, known as the Trifecta, who wants to be her to be their BFF. Unbeknownst to Cat though, she is also metamorphosing into the Childe, which only adds more complications to her list.

A Little Bit More About Us:

A total love of all things supernatural is what inspired this fifty-four year young mom and her twenty-six year old son to put this story on paper.

Carol Kunz was born in New Ferry, England. Her interest in the supernatural was first sparked upon meeting a ghost at the age of eight. As a teenager, she was always fascinated by the mythology behind vampires, werewolves and witches. Being an avid reader, Carol finds it easy to spend several hours wrapped up in a great fantasy novel.

Adam Kunz was born in Newport News, Virginia. Growing up, he was a huge fan of creature features and books about things that go bump in the night. When he is not busy writing, Adam enjoys his job at a certain theme park in Orlando, Florida as a décor consultant. This job brings him face to face with all sorts of nightmarish creatures, especially when he decorates the haunted houses for the park’s annual Halloween event.

Now, Onto The Meat And Potatoes Of Our Guest Blog Post! We’re Going To Spill Some Tea (Gossip and Details) About Our Writing Journey Together As A Mother And Son Author Duo. So, Without Further Ado…Consider Our Tea Spilt:

Carol: We started our adventure back in March of 2009, when Adam called me and said we were going to write a book together. Adam knew that my dream of writing a novel was something I had often talked about, but always put on the back burner as my ‘someday project’.

Adam: I knew my mom had this dream, and I wanted to write a story that I had already vaguely outlined. When I called her, I had decided that I wasn’t going to take no for an answer, and to my surprise she immediately said yes. I sent an email that night to her with the story idea and a rough outline. Then as she began writing down her own ideas, adding to my outline, and our story The Childe was born.

Carol: Our initial outline was only thirteen chapters. We agreed to each do six chapters, (alternating every two chapters) and then work on the last one together. Our first rough draft was 194 pages. Recently, I perused our first draft, and boy was it ROUGH!

Adam: Our first get-together, after finishing our six chapters each, lasted a whole week while I was off from work. We added, changed, disagreed, agreed, and then added some more. It was definitely an experience neither one of us had ever experienced. We ended the week with more notes of what we needed to do to improve our chapters, and then spent the next few months doing just that.

Carol: We had numerous mini meetings over many weekends, where we were holed up in my spare room (office), being fed by my wonderful hubby, and Adam’s awesome dad, Bob. Bob is also our brilliant illustrator. Stephanie, our daughter, was the first illustrator, but she moved and it was really difficult being so far apart. Then Bob stepped in and took over with a talent that Adam and I didn’t even know existed in him.

Adam: Yeah, good old Dad stepped in and saved the day, or days, as it were. Over those few months we worked very hard, calling each other everyday (thank goodness we have an unlimited family phone plan, haha). We finally (and I do mean finally) finished our novel in about nine months, and then shipped it off to one of our many editors/critics. We had a total of four people help us with this phase, and they were such a help indeed. Amanda Lynch, Charlie Steffy, Tim Coleman, and good old Dad, all gave us their honest opinions and much needed critiques.

Carol: Finally Adam was ready to format and publish our novel. The day he received the first proof he called me and told me how awesome it looked. He lives about 45 minutes away from us, and when he said he couldn’t bring it until the weekend, I almost had a meltdown. So jealous was I that he could hold our accomplishment, but I had to wait.  Now is the time I tell you that I have a very caring and loving son. One that wouldn’t dream of letting his mom wait a couple of days to see our creation. He tried to sneak into our house that evening, which is a little hard to do because of our three noisy, four legged babies (dogs), and brought me the book. I walked around with it all night, and it even laid next to my pillow that night while I slept. I couldn’t believe I had finally held my dream in my hands. Next to having my children, this was one of the best days of my life. Oops, sorry, have to mention marrying the hubby 35 years ago, don’t want him to think it wasn’t one of the best days of my life.

Adam: Yes, mom’s right, it’s practically impossible to sneak into their house with those four-legged alarms going off. I loved watching the joy on my mom’s face when she held our book in her hands, as both of us chanted ‘we wrote a book’. We’ve come a long way from March of 2009. We actually started working on the second book in The Childe series about five months ago, and now it’s been in the hands of our editing team for a few weeks now, so it will probably be published within the next couple of months or so. Also, I am working with my friend (an engineer and aspiring musician), Lee Wilson, on putting together a companion soundtrack for our series. Volume one of the soundtrack spans the first two books in The Childe series, and will contain 11 (or more) full length songs. The songs have full lyrics and were inspired by the words of the novels. They span several genres from pop, rock, r&b, punk, classical, and country. The Childe companion soundtrack will be available soon.

Thinking Of Writing Your Own Story…Well, Here Are Some Encouraging Words That Helped Us Get Through Our Tough Times:

If you have a story to tell, believe in it, and write it down. There will always be people who are critical of your work, listen, if it makes sense, learn from them.  If you are rejected, do not become disheartened! It only takes one person to accept your work. Remember, there are people who have been rejected numerous times, but persevered, and are now read worldwide.  Live your dream! Believe in your story and in yourself, you can make it happen!

Here Are Just A Few Places Where You Can Connect With Us:

Goodreads
Facebook (book page)
Facebook (author page)
Twitter
blog/website
The Childe (Book One in The Childe Series) is available at these locations:
Amazon.com (Paperback edition)
Amazon.com (Kindle edition)
Amazon.co.uk (Paperback edition)
Amazon.co.uk (Kindle edition)
Barnes and Noble (Nook edition)
Barnes and Noble (Paperback edition)

 

Well this has been tons of fun, and thank you again Reena for having us on your wonderful blog! Happy Reading Everyone! 😀C.A. Kunz (Carol and Adam Kunz)

S.W.A.G. for I Loved You First

S.tuff W.e A.ll G.et

SWAG

I think that sums it up, right? So I’m thinking of ideas. As some of you know, the I Loved You First blog tour is fast approaching. August 15 – September 15, if you haven’t heard.

Tell me some of the SWAG you’ve received in the past. What are your favorites. If you have pictures, leave a link! I want to see. Was there S.W.A.G you wanted but didn’t win? Let us in on it.

Some ideas I have on my mind right now are key chains, bookmarks, and postcards.

Don’t keep me waiting. I’ve had too much caffeine to stay focused very long.

Make this blog tour the bestest. Get your ideas to me. You just might see your favorite piece of S.W.A.G. in a giveaway!