Beth's Book-Nook Blog

Reviews of What I've Been Reading….

Book Shout Out: The Things We Learn When We’re Dead by Charlie Laidlaw

The things we learn COVER FINAL.jpg

The very pleasant Charlie Laidlaw reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in checking out his new novel. To be honest, I have not read it yet, but I’m happy to give a shout out as it sounds really interesting and Charlie seems like a super nice guy! (And quite honestly, in this volunteer business, people who are pleasant and friendly get more from me than complainers and demanders).

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

Intriguing and compelling… a tale that grips until the very last page – Jodi Taylor, bestselling author of The Chronicles of St Mary’s. 

On the way home from a dinner party she didn’t want to attend, Lorna Love steps into the path of an oncoming car. When she wakes up she is in what appears to be a hospital – but a hospital in which her nurse looks like a young Sean Connery, she is served wine for supper, and everyone avoids her questions. It soon transpires that she is in Heaven, or on HVN. Because HVN is a lost, dysfunctional spaceship, and God the aging hippy captain. She seems to be there by accident. Or does God have a higher purpose after all? At first Lorna can remember nothing. As her memories return – some good, some bad – she realises that she has decisions to make and that she needs to find a way home…

More information about the book The Things We Learn When We’re Dead is a modern fairytale of love and loss and, for those readers who want to make the connection, a retelling of The Wizard of Oz: how a young woman comes to reassess her life and find a new beginning. Lorna Love, born and brought up in small-town Scotland, is apparently killed in a car accident on the day of the London bus and tube bombings. But the afterlife isn’t quite what she expected. For a start, Heaven is a broken-down spaceship and God is the double of Sean Connery. However, the book is neither fantasy nor sci-fi; Heaven simply a dreamscape through which Lorna comes to see her life through new eyes – from the people she loved, to the death of her brother. In fulfilling familiar expectations, the book offers a counterpoint between the absurdities of Lorna’s imagined Heaven and banality of her rather ordinary life. The book, grounded in the 9/11 and 7/7 bombings, also offers the metaphor that we are all connected, even by distant events. It is, essentially, a humorous book, using an oblique construct to provide a new perspective on a familiar theme. But, while making the familiar unfamiliar, it also reassures them that Lorna will have her second chance.

“Intriguing and compelling… a tale that grips until the very last page.” Jodi Taylor, best-selling author

“Clever and compelling… this book is hugely original and well worth a read…hugely enjoyable.” Book Bag

“A gem of a book…a really good book about life and growing up.” Book Lore

Charlie Laidlaw was born in the west of Scotland and is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh. He has been a national newspaper journalist and worked in defense intelligence. He is married with two grown-up children. Visit http://www.charlielaidlawauthor.com

Available in the USA at:

Ebook  http://amzn.to/2xDBvkr

Print  http://amzn.to/2wUke2Q

 

Advertisements
Leave a comment »

Spotlight on BEASTIA by Zoe Cruz

beastia cover

So I’m spotlighting a new YA fantasy title today that sounds really good — BEASTIA by Zoe Cruz. I haven’t read it myself (yet), but here’s the overview:

What if beauty became the beast?

IN A DARK NEW RETELLING OF BEAUTY AND THE BEAST,

A MEAN GIRL FALLS PREY TO A MADMAN

The meanest of the mean girls, Rebekah Austin rules her Chicago school with sharp outfits and an even sharper tongue. She has a way of eviscerating even the most beautiful and brilliant girls in her class to maintain her cold grip on the high school social hierarchy. But underneath the queen-bee façade is someone who feels ugly, repulsive… beastly.

An edgy thriller from a dynamic new voice on the YA scene, Beastia by Zoe Cruz [March 17, 2017, Createspace] joins best-selling novels like Cinder and Princess of Thorns in the buzzy canon of modern fairytale retellings that explore deeper themes of the original story.

More than an exploration of Beauty and the Beast, Cruz flips the script by challenging the mainstream media representation of conventionally beautiful women falling in love with not-so-attractive men (in this case, literally a beast) when the opposite is so rarely portrayed. Love and friendship aren’t exclusive to the conventionally attractive, which is a subjective standard to begin with. As Rebekah learns lessons about beauty, love and self worth, the reader finds their own assumptions and prejudices challenged.

“Going through life alone is impossible, especially when dealing with heavy things like depression and/or anxiety,” Cruz says. “I think everyone needs and deserves to have people in their lives that are present through difficult times and that allow them to see life in a different way, more positively regardless of external signifiers.”

About the Author:

 Zoe headshot

Zoe Cruz is a writer, reader and self-professed geek who loves all things sci-fi and fantasy. She wrote Beastia while living in Spain working with humanitarian organizations. You can find her watching Star Trek, eating pizza or playing Skyrim.

Connect with Zoe Cruz on twitter.com/zoe_rogue and at https://zoecruzblog.wordpress.com.

Beastia [Createspace] will be released March 17, 2017, and will be available via Amazon.

Thank you to my friends at Smith Publicity for making me part of the tour and for sending me an ecopy!

Leave a comment »

Spotlight on the SPIRIT WARRIORS Series by D.E.L. Connor

I’m blasting it up today for the YA series: SPIRIT WARRIORS!

My daughter is a big fan of these books — teens join with their spirit animals to do good in the world.

Here’s the info – look for it at a bookstore/online/library near you!

Spirit Warriors Series #3: The Burning

26785774

About the Book

“Do you want to spend your life like Golden Flower pining away for the love you lost? Can you imagine how hard it is to be left behind when everything you loved has left?”

In the third book of D.E.L. Connor’s magical coming of age Spirit Warriors series, Emmeline and her friends find themselves still reeling from the loss and pain caused by the evil spirit, machayiwiw- but the danger is far from over. As Emme, Charlie, Bets, Ollie, Jack and their beloved Spirit Animals prepare for the final battle against the machayiwiw, Emme struggles with a battle within her own heart. She longs for the beauty and softness she feels around Charlie, but she can’t deny the burning passion that consumes her with Jack. Will she finally let Charlie go and give her heart to Jack?
Enthralling and passionate, Spirit Warriors brings the vibrant American West to life once again and whispers its ancient secrets of love and friendship.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1O4jREK

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/22FRwyi

Apple: http://apple.co/1OthM8R

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1Tyey4b

Book Links

Other books in this series include:

51LgSZiZKqL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

Spirit Warriors Book #1: The Concealing

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1mYCHq4

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1YZ7sqJ

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1YZ7Fue

Spirit Warriors Book #2: The Scarring

2bce720540d911f5f47bfee3f73b1a15

Amazon: http://amzn.to/22FUumB

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1mYDbfT

Apple: http://apple.co/1MOs91C

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1PG7seA

The Spirit Warriors Series is also available internationally.

Please contact us directly if you do not see it on your preferred book purchase website!

About the Author

13e6e01a0030834602f44f76131a1c78

Della Connor (D.E.L. Connor) was born in South Dakota and raised in Southeastern Montana where she acquired a keen appreciation for Western and Native American culture. She moved to Texas as a young adult and acquired her honorary Texan status. She became a registered nurse, a nurse practitioner and eventually earned her PhD in nursing. She still works as a nurse educator and as a nurse practitioner. Her nights and weekends, however, are filled with her stories and books. Her first book, “Spirit Warriors:The Concealing,” was published by Booktrope Publishing in November of 2014. The second book in the series “Spirit Warriors: The Scarring” published on July 21, 2014 and “Spirit Warriors: The Burning” rolled out on September 21, 2015. The Spirit Warriors series will consist of five books and a prequel.

The Spirit Warriors story evolved from a short story she wrote for a college English class in the early 1990’s. The professor read it, loved it and asked her to stay after class and discuss it. During this discussion, he told her that a “dark” story like hers, which was written for older children, would be unmarketable and unsaleable. The story kept floating around in her mind. Finally, J.K. Rowling, Stephenie Meyers and others stepped forward with amazing “dark” stories to create a new genre called Young Adult. The time was finally right for her book. She wrote book 1 in two weeks. It took another year and a half and about a 150 queries all with a “not interested” for her to find a publisher. She found Booktrope and as they say, it’s all history.

Contact Information

Website: http://dellaconnor.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DelconnorSpiritwarriors

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/D.E.L.-Connor/e/B00HVRGF4A

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7460124h

Twitter: https://twitter.com/del_connor

Instagram: https://instagram.com/delconnor/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/delconnorspirit/

Email: delconnorspiritwarriors@gmail.com

Publishing/Marketing Contact

Lauren Jones
Book Marketing Manager
Booktrope Publishing
lauren.jones@booktrope.com

About Booktrope

Booktrope is a new type of publishing company, founded in 2011 in Seattle, WA. Committed to the creation of quality books and to our unique marketing methods, we’re pioneering a book development process called team publishing. Learn more at www.booktrope.com.

 

 

 

1 Comment »

Quick Kids’ Review: NIGHTBIRD by Alice Hoffman

I absolutely adored this middle grade novel which I got from Net Galley.

Twig and her family live in Sidwell, Massachusetts, but her life is far from ordinary. Her brother is kept hidden because he bears the effect of a curse put upon the family years ago by witchcraft. When two young girls move in next door Twig wants to befriend them, but doing so may put her brother at risk. Even worse, the girls are the descendants of the witch who first cursed Twig’s family. Can Twig and her friends reverse the curse before it is too late?

Loved loved loved this beautifully written story about love, family, and self-acceptance.

Highly recommended!

Thank you, Net Galley and Random House, for my copy.

cover49014-mediumNightbird

Leave a comment »