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Showing newest 15 of 40 posts from January 2010. Show older posts
Showing newest 15 of 40 posts from January 2010. Show older posts

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Review~ Parenting With Pets by Christine Hamer & Margaret Hevel



Parenting with Pets beautifully details the never ending learning opportunities family pets naturally bring into the lives of their children. Parents will appreciate the many examples of challenging life lessons and how our pets can be the most effective teachers with our guidance and interactive dialogue with our children. Parenting with Pets will show you how pets facilitate social interactions, and how children from pet-owning homes have better verbal and nonverbal communication skills than those from non--pet-owning families. Pets can also help teens through awkward adolescence. This book will show you how pets augment the lessons we teach. Although they cannot take a parent's place in raising children, pets can help to remind parents that many of the things we find stressful, such as business meetings, traffic jams, frustrating coworkers, aren't really that important. Animals have a profound effect on human physiology. They slow the heart rate, lower blood pressure, and temper emotions. They remind us to laugh.Parenting with Pets beautifully details the never ending learning opportunities family pets naturally bring into the lives of their children. Parents will appreciate the many examples of challenging life lessons and how our pets can be the most effective teachers with our guidance and interactive dialogue with our children. Parenting with Pets will show you how pets facilitate social interactions, and how children from pet-owning homes have better verbal and nonverbal communication skills than those from non--pet-owning families. Pets can also help teens through awkward adolescence. This book will show you how pets augment the lessons we teach. Although they cannot take a parent's place in raising children, pets can help to remind parents that many of the things we find stressful, such as business meetings, traffic jams, frustrating coworkers, aren't really that important. Animals have a profound effect on human physiology. They slow the heart rate, lower blood pressure, and temper emotions. They remind us to laugh.




  • Paperback: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Book Publishers Network; 1st edition (October 10, 2007)
  • Language: English

My thoughts:

I found this book to be very informative for parents that already have or are thinking about getting pets. I loved how everything was in chapters and each chapter only focused on one or two things. My favorite part of the book was the chapter titled " Will Any Pet Do?" Christine lists some great questions to ask before getting a pet and also details some great pets to consider.

The only thing I found lacking with the book was it doesn't take into account much {fish and hermit crabs are mentioned} the reptile pets. Ad a mother of children with pet dander allergies, if it has fur or feathers we can't have it. So we are proud frog, fish, turtle and lizard owners.

The personal stories and thoughts added throughout the book are a great touch and we all loved sitting around reading!




Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review ~Countess of Scandal by Laurel McKee


As children, Eliza Blacknall and William Denton ran wild over the fields of southern Ireland and swore they would be friends forever. Then fate took Will away to England, while Eliza stayed behind to become a proper Irish countess.

Years later, Will finally makes his way home-as an English soldier sent to crush the Irish uprising. When he spies the lovely Eliza, he is captivated by the passionate woman she has become. But Eliza's passions have led her to join the Irish rebel cause, and Will and Eliza now find themselves on opposite sides of a dangerous conflict.

When Ireland explodes in bloody rebellion, Will's regiment is ordered to the front lines, and he is forced to choose between his duty to the English king and his love for Eliza and their Irish homeland.

Listen to an excerpt.
Five Fun Facts.
Author website.


My Thoughts:

I normally don't read historical romance. The cover of this book caught my attention and I just had to see if I could really get into it. To my surprise I couldn't put it down. I stayed up all night reading just to find out what Eliza would get into next, and if Will would surface again.
This is not just a love story, but at tale of the struggles faced when a rebellion is on the horizon. 
Between being on the side of the rebellion and loving an officer sworn by duty to stop said rebellion, can the two ever really just be together?
The ending has me wanting to read the next book "posthaste" and I know it will be a very long wait.



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Review~Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione


The Blurb!!!
A DEMON ENSLAVED
Lore is a Seminus half-breed demon who has been forced to act as his dark master's assassin. Now to earn his freedom and save his sister's life, he must complete one last kill. Powerful and ruthless, he'll stop at nothing to carry out his deadly mission.
AN ANGEL TEMPTED
Idess is an earthbound angel with a wild side sworn to protect the human Lore is targeting. She's determined to thwart her wickedly handsome adversary by any means necessary--even if that means risking her vow of eternal chastity. But what begins as a simple seduction soon turns into a passion that leaves both angel and demon craving complete surrender.
Torn between duty and desire, Lore and Idess must join forces as they battle their attraction for each other. Because an enemy from the past is rising again--one hellbent on vengance and unthinkable destruction.



My thoughts:
I love to read paranormal and romance novels, and when they are both put together it makes my day!! It's also the fourth installment of the Demonica supernatural romance series by Larissa Ione. Coming into the series cold as I did was a little challenging- after all, I knew about demons and angels, but not Larissa's demons and angels- but Ione had thoughtfully included a Demon glossary in the front of the book, which made following a bit easier. It was still difficult to get through some of the unanswered questions I had, but I surrendered to the story. I was enthralled with the romance between two seemingly opposite beings, a demon and an angel. I enjoyed the story once I got the hang of it, and I found myself torn as to which side I was cheering for. The ending was great (no spoilers here!), and I have to say that I never imagined demons could be so sensual. (Warning: this book is pretty explicit).

Now I'm heading to the bookstore to get the other three in the series!!!




Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Flaherty’s Crossing Virtual Book Tour February & March 2010







Join Kaylin McFarren, author of the women’s contemporary fiction, Flaherty’s Crossing(Champagne Books), as she virtually tours the blogosphere in February on her first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book Promotion!



About Kaylin McFarren

Linda Yoshida, aka Kaylin McFarren, is a rare bird indeed. Not a migratory sort, she prefers to hug the West Coast and keep family within visiting range. Although she has virtually been around the world, she was born in California, relocated with her family to Washington, and nested with her husband in Oregon. In addition to playing an active role in his business endeavors, she has been involved in all aspects of their three daughters’ lives – taxi duties, cheerleading coaching, script rehearsals, and relationship counseling, to name but a few. Now she enjoys spending undisciplined time with her two young grandsons and hopes to have many more.
Although Kaylin wasn’t born with a pen in hand like so many of her talented fellow authors, she has been actively involved in both business and personal writing projects for many years. As the director of a fine art gallery, she assisted in furthering the careers of numerous visual artists who under her guidance gained recognition through promotional opportunities and in national publications. Eager to spread her own creative wings, she has since steered her energy toward writing novels. As a result, she has earned more than a dozen literary awards and was a 2008 finalist in the prestigious RWA® Golden Heart contest.
Kaylin is a member of RWA, Rose City Romance Writers, and Willamette Writers. She received her AA in Literature at Highline Community College, which originally sparked her passion for writing. In her free time, she also enjoys giving back to the community through participation and support of various charitable and educational organizations in the Pacific Northwest.
You can visit Kaylin online at www.kaylinmcfarren.com or visit her book’s website atwww.flahertyscrossing.com.




Flaherty's Crossing



About Flaherty’s Crossing

From Pacific Northwest’s award-winning author Kaylin McFarren comes a powerful novel about love, loss, and the power of forgiveness…
Successful yet emotionally stifled artist Kate Flaherty stands at the deathbed of her estranged father, conflicted by his morphine-induced confession exposing his part in her mother’s death. While racing home, Kate’s car mishap leads her to a soul-searching discussion with a lone diner employee, prompting Kate to confront the true reasons her marriage hangs in the balance. When her night takes an unexpected turn, however, she flees for her life, a life desperate for faith that can only be found through her ability to forgive.
ON A PERSONAL NOTE
Kaylin sat before her computer writing FLAHERTY’S CROSSING as a source of personal therapy after losing her beloved father to colon cancer. You might say she was angry at him, at God, at the world in general. However, after writing this story, she had the opportunity to really look into her soul and consider the fact that so many other sons and daughters have had to deal with similar and even worse situations. Rather than a memoir, her novel evolved into a fictional journey which brought about the resolution she needed to find. She never expected this exercise in writing to go to press, touch lives, or win literary awards. But as a result of her good fortune, she has arranged for proceeds from the sale of this book to go directly to the Providence Medical Foundation’s colon cancer research department in her father’s name. She’s now convinced and proudly shares her belief that good things can grow out of the worst times in our lives if you just take the time to open your heart.

WATCH THE TRAILER!!





Blog Tour~Guest Post By Melissa Mayhue author of A Higlander's Destiny


I would like to thank Melissa for being here with us today. Make sure to check out all her books!!
A Highlander's Destiny (Daughters of the Glen, Book 5)Thirty Nights with a Highland Husband (The Daughters of the Glen, Book 1)Highland Guardian (Daughters of the Glen, Book 2)A Highlander of Her Own (Daughters of the Glen, Book 4)A Highlander's Homecoming (Daughters of the Glen, Book 6)Soul of a Highlander (The Daughters of the Glen, Book 3)






       Melissa MayhueThank you so much for inviting me to be here with you guys today! It’s been an exciting month with the release of A HIGHLANDER’S DESTINY on December 29 and then A HIGHLANDER’S HOMECOMING on January 26.
  These are the fifth and sixth books in my Daughters of the Glen series, set in a world that is identical to ours, except for the existence of Faeries! These two books are especially fun for me to have coming out back to back because, although they are both stand-alones which could be read all by themselves, HOMECOMING picks up where DESTINY leaves off, following different characters and viewing the action through a different set of eyes.
Also, while DESTINY is based in a contemporary setting, HOMECOMING is a time-travel to medieval Scotland.
I’ve loved to read Romance for more years than I can remember. And though I’ve read and enjoyed a variety of books from a variety of sub-genres within Romance, Paranormal is definitely my favorite.
Naturally, this leads to the obvious question… Why?
I’m not sure I have a good answer, though I have a suspicion as to why it works best for me!
First off, when I read, I want to be totally involved in the story. I want to get lost in world of those pages so that I don’t have think about any of MY problems! ( To me, that’s one of the big advantages of a Paranormal Romance. No matter how powerless I may have felt in some real world situation – kids’ problems at school, relationships, finances, work – the heroine in a Paranormal Romance is going to find she has the power to rise to defeat whatever is threatening her world. And she’s going to do it all with a Happy Ever After waiting for her! And since as a reader I’m putting myself in that Heroine’s place, well, what more could I ask for?
It’s the fantasy of the perfect love, the perfect man, a situation in which no matter how powerless you feel, you [the heroine] can rise to the occasion and control your destiny. Horrible evils may be out there waiting to defeat you, but Good will triumph in the end.




Book Tour~ A Highlander's Destiny by Melissa Mayhue


From the book:
Jesse Coryell, a descendant of the Fae, is a man in search of his destiny. He's tried to lose himself in his work, taking on the worst mankind has to offer, but what he really needs to find is his true love. When he sets out to help a mysterious woman find her sister, what he gets is much more than he bargained for: battling an undeniable attraction to his sexy new client while fighting an ancient evil to keep her safe.
 Destiny Noble, abandoned by everyone she's ever loved, will stop at nothing in her desperate quest to find her sister. Authorities have declared Leah a runaway, but Destiny knows better. Her dream visions have shown her the frightening truth. They've also shown her Jesse. But finding her Soulmate could result in the most painful loss of all, when she's forced to choose between loving Jesse and saving Leah.
 Jesse and Destiny race against time to save an innocent girl from a powerful ancient evil. Is true love their best weapon...or will they be required to sacrifice their own destiny?

My thoughts:

I loved this book, and even though it is the 5th in the series, I never felt like I was lost. The chemistry between Jesse and Destiny is amazing, and I felt like I was feeling most of what they were. 
 I am an avid reader of paranormal romance and Melissa didn't disappoint!! 

    Everyone in Destiny Noble's life has abandoned her and the only family she has left is her younger sister. When the Nuadian Fae kidnap her sister, Destiny uses her dreams to locate her, which leads her to Jesse Coryell, a member of Dallyn's Elite Guard. 

  Jesse Coryell owns Coryell Enterprises that specializes in tracking down captives held against their will. He takes on Destiny as an unofficial client and promises to help her locate her sister. He is used to calling the shots during the investigations but Destiny refuses to be a docile client with her sister's life in the balance.
    
   Jesse finds her stubbornness intriguing and dangerous. Women have wanted him for his unlimited back account, but not Destiny. She wants him to trust in her visions to help her locate her sister - something that he is not prepared to do. His lack of faith in her abilities causes her to follow her own path even when it leads her into danger forcing Jesse to rescue her.


Review copy courtesy of Sarah Reidy of Simon and Schuster.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Review~ Sleep No More by Susan Crandall



From the book:
DANGER NEVER RESTS
The night was always Abby Whitman's enemy. As a young girl she walked in her sleep, and one night, she started a fire that scarred her sister for life and left Abby with unbearable guilt...and a loneliness that echoes within her.
AND EVIL NEVER CLOSES ITS EYES
Now Abby has begun blacking out again-- with apparently fatal results. A car accident has killed the son of a prominent family. Even though the evidence seems to exonerate her, Abby is plagued by doubts-- and soon by mysterious threats. Psychiatrist Dr. Jason Coble is intrigued by Abby and offers to help her explore the dark recesses of her mind. Through this terrifying journey, Jason's interest turns to passion, and he yearns to give her the love she craves. But first, Abby must trust him-- and shed light on secrets that will rock this Southern town and reveal a danger that threatens them both.

My thoughts:


The hero in this story is not the typical cop/ ex- cop/ ex- marine. He is a psychologist who has worked with law enforcement before to help understand the minds of criminals. He carries a gun when it is necessary to protect loved ones, but he's not Rambo. It is a nice switch.


Dr. Jason Coble runs a small practice in a rural southern town. While helping other people get control of their shattered or confused lives, he is struggling to keep his own family stable despite being divorced from his kids' mom. His ex-wife is an alcoholic, his step-son is a 17-year-old discipline challenge, and his 7- year old daughter is caught in the middle of it all. The last thing Jason wants to do is put all of his troubles on someone elses shoulders, so he has chosen to remain single... A choice he has stuck to until meeting Abby.

Abby has spent her adult life alone because of her sleepwalking problem. As a child, she started a fire in her sleep that burned her little sister badly. Now Abby refuses to put anyone else at risk. Running her floral business gives her peace and purpose. Her heart aches at the thought of never having a family, but she won't take the chance of hurting anyone. Until she developed a crush on Jason, that vow was easy to keep.


Jason believes that Abby's sleepwalking can be dealt with differently. He is not afraid to have her in his home or his bed. Now he needs to help convince her of it. When Abby's life is threatened, he insists she stay in his home for safety. It is his only hope for keeping her safe, and for showing Abby that sleepwalking doesn't have to lead to harm. Together, they will investigate the crash and the threats to Abby's life.

Read this book on a weekend when you won't have to worry about getting a lot of sleep. It is very hard to put down. Susan Crandall can really tell a terrific story. Things continue to move as the pages turn. The reader gets a good sense of the characters thoughts, feelings and motives without becoming bored with excessive wordiness. There are varying clues dropped often enough to keep you guessing at who the "bad guy/gal" is. I like a good mystery mixed in with romance and action.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Hachette Book Group in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



Monday, January 25, 2010

Blog Tour~Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione~Giveaway/CLOSED






{Clicky here for my review}

Here is your chance to win this amazing book!!

Thanks to Anna and Hachette Book Group I have 3 copies to give away!!

MANDATORY ENTRY:
Comment this post telling me your favorite book. Make sure you leave your name and an email address so I can contact you if you win.

EXTRA ENTRIES:
Mandatory entry must be completed before any extras will count!!
1: Follow this blog via GFC { goggle friend connect} { +1 for new follow, +2 for old followers}
2: Go to Chaotic Mommy Reviews and enter any giveaway there {+5}
3: Follow @chaoticreviews on twitter {+2}


The giveaway will end at 11:59 PM (EST) on February 3, 2010. The main entry is a required entry, and it MUST be completed in order to have chance of winning and should be done before completing any extra entries. Also, if you’re the winner, we need a way to contact you, so please make sure that you have your email address somewhere we can see it (either in your comment or in your profile). The winners will be chosen by random.org. The winners will be contacted by email and announced on Chaotic Book Obsession. The winners will have 48 hours to respond or new winners will be chosen. This giveaway is open to residents of the US & Canada. No PO Boxes.



Review~Seduced By A Rouge by Amanda Scott




From the book:
Flaxen-haired and beautiful, Lady Mairi Dunwythie is heiress apparent to tge wealthy nobleman blocking Clan Maxwell's attempt to control much of southwest Scotland. Her first meeting with handsome Robert Maxwell ignites an attraction that is immediate, intense, and almost irresistible- until she learns he is asking her father to submit to the Maxwell demands.
Rob is a warrior, a man of action. So when Mairi's father stands defiant, Rob daringly abducts her. As clan tensions mount, passion escalates between the lovers, tempting them beyond reason. Soon they must choose between loyalty and love... before the eruption of an all-out clan war.

My thoughts:
 


In 1375, his beloved older brother Alex, the Sheriff of Dumfries, sends Rob Maxwell to collect money that clan Maxwell believes clan Dunwythie owes them. Lord Dunwythie rejects the claim stating he pays his fees and taxes to the king. He returns home empty pocketed to the admonition of his sibling.

Rob meets the heir to the Dunwythie estate, Lady Mairie. Though attracted to her, he places his clan above his libido and concocts a plan to use her as a pawn to obtain the money due his kin. He kidnaps her expecting her father to pay ransom for his beloved daughter. Alex offers to rescue Mairie from the unknown "stranger" for a fee. He knows that his brother is the kidnapper but his adversary does not know the identity of the abductor. Outraged by the mercenary demand, Dunwythie calls in a favor from Clan Douglas. With war brewing between the clans, Rob and Mairie fall in love, but both place their clan above their personal needs.

Seduced by a Rogue is a great Scottish medieval romance, as the lead couple finds love amidst their battling clans. Filled with fourteenth century history, the story line is fast-paced from the moment Mairie and Rob meet and never slows down as readers will wonder whether this pair will share the fate of Romeo and Juliet.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Hachette book group in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



Blog Tour~Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione~Author Bio








Author Bio:

I began writing the way so many writers do--the moment I learned to wield a pencil.But even as a child, I didn't write "kid" stories. I preferred something more dramatic. Something that didn't include Dick, Jane, and a dog named Spot. I wanted my characters to be named Dracula and my dogs to have names like White Fang or Cujo. I'll always have my parents to thank for that. They never censored my reading material {though I suspect if they had truly known what was between the covers of some of the books, they'd have been a little more careful,} so when other girls my age were reading Laura Ingalls Wilder and Judy Blume, I was immersing myself in Stephen King and Dean Koontz.
Later, after I'd joined the Air Force and was in dire need of something to read between shifts at the weather station, I continued to read horror, but I'd branched out into fantasy, and then, finally, romance { thought I admit I went kicking and screaming to the latter.}
Turned out that I loved romance! So I started writing it, but again, my style and voice leaned toward the dark, paranormal side. Fortunately for me, paranormal romance, as a sub-genre, was booming. I let my imagination fly, and soon I'd sold a series of dark, sexy paranormal romances to Grand Central Publishing.
I still read a lot of horror, science fiction, and fantasy, and in fact, one of my all time favorite books about writing is On Writing, by my favorite childhood horror author, Stephen King. If you're an author or a reader, I highly recommend this book for an insight into an author's mind--which can sometimes be a very scary place.
Go ahead; Seduce your dark side.


Author Website: LarissaIone.com

Author Article: Bond of Brothers
Follow @LarissaIone on Twitter


Passion Unleashed (The Demonica Series)Ecstasy Unveiled (The Demonica Series)Desire Unchained: A Demonica Novel (The Demonica Series)Pleasure Unbound (Demonica, Book 1)


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Fancy Pants Kids~~ product review


I know that all of my kids love to dress-up during their birthday parties! I wanted something that Quinten could use for his dinosaur party, but all the dinosaur costumes I saw were a little too kiddie for him. He wanted something that he could not only wear for his party, but just to play around in when the girls decided to play dress-up. So finding Fancy Pants Kids was a blessing!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Libman Freedom Spray Mop~product review


I really dislike mopping. Normally the hubby-to-be will do it, or one of the kids will want to. I refuse to stick my hand in nasty water only to spread the nasty water around on the floor. So when I was given the chance to use the Libman Freedom Spray Mop; I thought for sure that I was going to love it. No more sticking my hand in that nasty water!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

That's a Wrap! Cupcake wrap review


I always hate putting the cupcakes for parties on display in the plain baking cups. So when I found That's A Wrap, I couldn't wait to try out her adorable cupcake wrappers.
We got some dinosaur ones to go with the theme for Quinten's party of course, and they are darling!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Blog Tour~Knit, Purl Die by Anne Canadeo~Review

Knit, Purl, Die (Black Sheep Knitting Mystery)

Gloria Sterling had it all- money, looks, and a new sexy young husband. So when she's found floating face down in her own swimming pool, shock waves ripple through tiny Plum Harbor. At the Black Sheep Knitting Shop, Maggie Messina and her circle are devastated to lose their dear friend-a woman as colorful as her fabulous yarn creations.
The police are quick to call it an accident, but sorting out Gloria's final hours leaves too many loose ends to satisfy her friends. The vivacious, fifty-something cougar had her French manicured tips in more than a few pots, and the threads of some inside deals stashed in her chic knitting tote.
Who was the last person to see Gloria alive on that quiet summer night?
Two empty wine glasses suggest she wasn't home alone knitting the entire evening...The Black Sheep need to know the truth and set out to unravel- stitch by stitch- the weighty secrets that pulled poor Gloria under.



My thoughts:

I had a blast meeting the women in the Black Sheep Knitting group and getting to know them. This is the second book in the series, but for the most part I didn't feel like I was missing out by not reading the first book. Even though I have no idea how to knit myself, I would have loved to visit Maggie's shop and hopefully learn how to knit. The characters are all engaging and I enjoyed getting to know them. They are also quite funny women as I found myself chuckling while reading. 




The mystery itself was a good read. I was a bit disappointed at the ending and the ultimate culprit. I thought it was fairly predictable as to who the blame should lay on but the ladies in the story did not seem to pick up on clues as well as I did. This is not really a problem per se as I enjoyed reading the entire book but there were times when I wanted to be like "Seriously? You guys don't notice this?!" Maybe they are too trusting as they all seem like really nice women.

 Cozies are great to read because they have clean story lines but still have all the fun and action of a good mystery. This book was great fun to read and I really liked the recipes that were featured. Suzanne's pasta sounds delicious and I would love to make that in the future. Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It was a great intro for me into the cozy genre and I'm eager to get the first book and catch up on the series. If you are a cozy mystery fan or like books about knitting, this book is perfect for you.


Review copy courtesy of Sarah Reidy of Simon and Schuster.

Blog Tour~Guest Post by Anne Canadeo author of Knit, Purl, Die







I would like to take this opportunity to thank Anne for being with us today. Make sure you check out all her books!


While My Pretty One Knits (Black Sheep Knitting Mysteries)Knit, Purl, Die (Black Sheep Knitting Mystery)











“Where do you get your ideas?” Anne Canadeo
That has to be the question writers are asked most often. I’m probably not alone feeling it’s the hardest one to answer. I have no special methods, no tricks up my sleeve. I only wish there were. Out of many possible story ideas, or images that flit across my brain, one or two will capture my attention. I start seeing possibilities. If a situation or image draws me in I automatically assume it will hook readers too.

Stories ideas come at me from all different directions – true stories people tell me about their lives, items I read in the news paper or see on TV, even letters in advice columns. Some come from my own experiences, of course. Those are sometimes the hardest to write about. I’ve always enjoyed writing that contains many voices, from the work of Studs Terkel to Spoon River Anthology. I’m a natural observer and listener. And eavesdropper, I must admit. My family calls me Forrest Gump, claiming I’ll start a conversation with anybody. (Is that a bad thing?)

At times I feel as if my brain is sort of a big lint brush, rolling along, picking up all kinds of bits and threads of things. You never know what’s going to stick and turn out to be valuable fodder for a book.

For me it always comes back to developing strong characters. Some writers start with plot.
I work more by Henry James’s theory, “Plot is character.” I think a lot about each character’s personality – their personal histories, psychology, relationships, what they want and what’s in their way – and usually find that a good story evolves from there. Especially a mystery, since exploring the unknown about a person – the hidden parts of their past, secret relationships or business ties – is a crucial part of a murder investigation.

When I started off writing Knit, Purl, Die I knew that one of the Black Sheep knitters was going to find a corpse in a swimming pool while she was showing a house to prospective clients. That didn’t turn out to be the first scene of the book, as I had originally planned, but it did become the central image of the mystery. And the body floating in the pool turned out to be Gloria Sterling, an honorary member of the knitting group.

My next task was to develop the character of Gloria, the lovely corpse. I had some idea who she would be – wealthy, confident, successful. But she ended up to be much more and I really ended up loving her and totally enjoyed writing about her, especially the part of her life she kept hidden from her friends. She turned out to be a complicated, charming, larger than life woman. As her friends try to figure out what happened to her that final, fatal night, they discover that they didn’t know her nearly as well as they thought. So exploring Gloria’s character is really the heart of the mystery.

Trying to explain the process, it seems simple. I must remind myself of that the next time I feel like pounding my head on the computer keyboard.





Again, thanks so much Anne for stopping by and sharing with us!
Make sure to check out my review of Anne's book Knit, Purl, Die.








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