Tag Archives: books

Tucson Festival of Books –March 15-16, 2014

5 Mar

To all Book Lovers,

Time to load on books, Peeps! The Annual Festival of Books held at Univ. of Arizona in Tucson, AZ is fast approaching. Books and their lovely “parents” (yes, we writers call books our babies) will be present at one of the biggest events in the entire country. 

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Come join us on March 15-16 between 9:30am and 5:30pm for books, swag, giveaways, autographs and much more. All books will be sold at incredible affordable prices, you better plan on buying all presents on your Christmas list :)

Come see me in booth 107  where I’ll be selling books along with some of the most amazing authors: Kris Tualla, Morgan Kearns, Deena Remiel, Mimi Sebastian, Virginia Nelson to name a few, and many more. 

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See you all there!

The green blanket

25 Feb

Death scares me. Dead bodies scare me, a scare I’ve been living with ever since I saw my grandpa in a coffin. I was twelve at the time and still remember his stench, his body still, and decay distorting his face in ways for years I kept dreaming of.

The other day as I drank a cup of burnt coffee in the waiting room outside my nephew’s hospital room, a family walked in. From the conversation they had I understood that the older, limping woman just lost her husband. Her daughter and son held on both sides as she sat across the room, diagonally from me. I didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but being just them and myself in the room, crumbs of the conversation reached my hearing.

“You need to take better care of yourself, Mom,” the daughter sniffled.

“I will.” The woman sighed, looking down at her bony hands resting on her lap.

“You need to get out of the house, do something,” the son added.

The woman didn’t respond right away, staring at her fingernails as if she saw them for the first time. After a long exhale she said, “All these years, I’ve taken care of your father. I’ve stood by his side . . . Now he’s gone and I can live again. Maybe I’ll get that garden going. Maybe the library takes me back for volunteering. I have so many books I want to read. Or maybe I’ll travel. There are so many places I want to see . . . Or maybe I’ll have my hip replaced . . .”

“The pastor is here,” a hospital employee announced and the family followed her.

I remained in the waiting room, thinking about the widow, about the family left behind and how they coped with their loss. To the worries about my nephew’s life, somehow sadness snuck inside me. Hospitals—unless when a baby is born—aren’t happy places, and if I never step inside one, I won’t miss it.

I got up and stretched, walking down the hallway, my mind all over the place and nowhere in particular. I stopped at my nephew’s door to listen if he was awake, but he wasn’t, and so I continued my walk.

Patient’s rooms marked one side of the long hallway. Above some doors a red light signaled the occupant needed help. Nurses in colorful scrubs walked in an out, with either trays with meds or syringes peaking from their breast pockets. The other side of the hallway was reserved for offices some closed some open. Further down double glass doors lead to the ICU.

I turned to look at the ICU doors opening with a clicking sound. A nurse pushed a bed, a green blanket stretching over the entire bed. Underneath the blanket laid an obvious form of a body.

I froze in place, the memory of my dead grandpa flashing before me eyes. Walking right by me the nurse pushed the dead body, an emotionless smile plastered on her lips. She was doing nothing but her job, a job like any other job.

For a moment the urge to run strangled me, but fear crippled me, rooting me in that very spot. My own eyes refused to look elsewhere but at the motionless form beneath the green blanket. Feet, legs, protruding belly, shoulders, head, nose . . .

Life has never seemed so fleeting and fragile. One minute you’re here, the next gone. One minute you make plans, build memories, a family, love and work, and just as quick you become nothing more than an empty vessel covered with a green blanket.

I’m still here. Breathing, blinking, walking. And I’m still scared of death. I know it’s natural, irrevocable and part of the circle of life.

No one knows when we are sentenced to go, me included. But what I do know is that I want to live, feel every breath I take, every heartbeat, every tear and smile. Build a different kind of garden; read books, travel, work out, spend time with my parents. Go to happy hour with my girlfriends. Go on dates with my husband. Fall asleep resting on his shoulder. Watch Smallville with my son. See him become the man I raised him to be.

Because after all, life is fleeting and fragile.

Romance is in the Air Giveaway Hop

7 Feb

romance is in the air

Romance is in the Air Giveaway Hop
Featuring Young Adult & Clean Adult Romance
February 8th to 14th
I’m really excited about this giveaway hop because of it’s theme–romance. Can you live without love? I can’t. I’m surrounded by love in all forms and shapes, from the sun’s gold upon the world to the butterfly dance, to the soft touch of a hand. For as long as I can dig down the memory lane I loved, starting with kindergarten (and yes i still remember the boy’s name ;). I’m a sucker for books, all things romance and the road to finding love. I believe that love colors our lives, conquers all fears and makes us better individuals. I believe in its power to heal and make us stronger, unlike any other emotion. And a heart without emotions it’s a stony one.
I celebrate love in all my books, helping my heroes to find love and fall in love because as the Beatles song says, “All we need is love,” right?
And since today’s giveaway must feature YA & clean adult romance, I have the perfect books that fit the requirement. I’m giving away one e-copy of my historical romance Born In Vengeance (Dacian Legends–book# 1) and Born In Sin (Dacian Legends–book# 2). 
Premiere Of Paramount's "Stop-Loss" - ArrivalsBIS-web COVER
For your chance to win all you have to do is FOLLOW THIS BLOG BY EMAIL by clicking on the button to the right called “Sign me up!” (atop all images) and leave your answer to the question:
WHAT’S YOU FAVORITE ROMANCE NOVEL?

VBT– Sparks The Matchmaker by Russell Elkins. Interview

16 Dec
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Russell, thank you for stopping by my blog. Tell us what’s a day in the life of author Russell Elkins.
Being an author doesn’t make enough to pay the mortgage, so, like most authors, I have a day job. I own a dental lab, which means that I make teeth (veneers, gold crowns, etc.). I usually wake up about an hour before the rest of the family and get busy as fast as I can. I’ve found that I work most productively if I have an incentive, and the incentive that works best for me is time writing. I love to write. So, the faster I work on teeth, the more time I get to write. It works perfectly. On a normal day, I’m home by 5:30. Time with my two kids (2 and 3 years old) until they go to bed. Then some one-on-one time with my beautiful wife to finish the day.
I get easily distracted therefore when I write I need complete silence, door closed. The only person allowed in my office is Bella, my dog. When you write do you need complete silence around you or noise?
You and I are exactly the same. I need it quiet. Music is the biggest creativity killer for me. I’m a musician as well as a writer, so as soon as a note is played, my mind gets taken over. The only ones allowed with me are my two dogs- my boxer, Bogey, at my side, and my dachshund, Mulligan, at my feet. I have two locations for where I make teeth- a workshop at home, and one at a dental office. I do almost all of my writing in one of those two locations, depending on where I can have it quiet.
 
How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?
My wife made herself a t-shirt that said “My man is an author” and one for my little son that said “My Daddy is an author” and they showed up to my softball game with them on the day the book was scheduled to come out (my daughter wasn’t born yet). After the game, I came home to find my house full of friends. It was a fun surprise party my wife put together. The kicker was that there was a problem with the printing company and the release got delayed a week, so it ended up being a pre-release party. It was still a lot of fun.
 
What hobbies do you have?
Softball. Disc golf. But most of all I love to play guitar and sing. That’s my favorite hobby. I have three brothers, and we have a band together. We play in restaurants and bars two or three times a month. That’s my weekend alter ego. It’s funny, because I’m such a showoff ham up on stage, but in real life I’m pretty reserved and mellow.
 
I‘m not identifying myself with any of my characters, yet each one of them has a part of me. Can you see yourself in any of your characters? Which one and why?
Not all of my characters have some of me in them, but they all are based on people I know. Crazy roommate, Richie, is the spitting image of a roommate I had in college. Greg and Marie (the two mentally handicapped people in the story) are two people I worked with in college. The main character is mostly me. That’s my chance to make fun of myself and drag myself through the mud with all the drama I put him through. I guess that makes me a masochist.
 
What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors? 
 Just write it! Don’t worry about that first draft. Just get the whole story down, then you can worry about how much work it needs AFTER you get that first draft done. And don’t be afraid to completely overhaul that first draft.
What has been the toughest criticism you’ve been given as an author? What has been the best component?
Toughest criticism has come with my non-fiction stuff. I write a lot of books about our journey with adoption, and people aren’t always nice when they respond. 99% of people are supportive of those books, but the people who aren’t (believe it or not, there are a lot of people who are anti-adoption) don’t attack my writing style, they attack my character. I’d be lying if I said that stuff doesn’t hurt. Criticism about my fiction stuff usually rolls off my back. The way I see it, there are all kinds of writing styles, and not everyone is going to like the same authors. It’s that way with all art forms. If someone doesn’t like my writing style, that’s okay. Some people like Country, others like Heavy Metal.
The best boost has been the awards I’ve gotten for both my adoption books and fiction, including Sparks the Matchmaker being selected as one of the top ten fiction books written in my home state (Idaho) in 2013.
Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks or hardcover?
 ebooks ebooks ebooks. I read too many books at one time and I like to have them with me at all times. I read according to my mood, always having something fiction, spiritual, educational, and whatever else I feel like.
What projects are you working on and when should we expect another release?
My job is such that some months are super-busy, and others slow. October was slower, so I wrote a whole novel just in October. That book should come out probably early summer. If I had to compare that one to something, I’d say it fits along with books like the Hunger Games, which is very different from the book on this tour, which is a romantic comedy.
I also have a short book on adoption that should be out in January and another adoption. And I’ve recently started laying out the framework for the follow up book to the one on this tour, the running title right now is Sparks’ Dating Game. I’d hope for lat next summer with that one.
 
In a few words what is this story about.
Ollie is the kind of guy that you laugh at and root for at the same time. His girlfriend waits till he’s down on one knee with a ring before she dumps him. He wants to get his life back on track, which is where Sparks comes in. Sparks has a special ability, which could help Ollie get the girl, but he’s so much of a pest that Ollie can never really tell if Sparks is helping him or just jerking him around.
Thank you Russell and good luck with your novels!

Author Russell Elkins

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Russell Elkins has become a leading expert on open adoption through first-hand experience that he now shares in Open Adoption, Open Heart. Russell regularly contributes to Adoption.com. He also writes his own blog at russellelkins.com to educate others in the struggles and beauties of open adoption.

Russell has always been a family man at heart, looking forward to the day when he could be a husband and a father. It took him a little while, but eventually his eyes locked onto a beautiful blonde, and he has never looked away. Russell and Jammie were married in 2004. They had the same goals for their home and didn’t want to wait too long before starting their family. However, filling their home quickly with children wasn’t in the cards, and they found themselves weighing their options to overcome problems with infertility. Their lives changed dramatically the day they decided to adopt.

Russell and Jammie have adopted two beautiful children, Ira and Hazel, and have embraced their role as parents through open adoption. Both are actively engaged in the adoption community by communicating through social media, taking part in discussion panels, and writing songs about adoption.

Russell was born on Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, D.C., in the fall of 1977. Along with his five siblings, he and his military family moved around a lot, living in eight different houses by the time he left for college at age 17. Although his family moved away from Fallon, Nevada, just a few months after he moved out, he still considers that little oasis in the desert to be his childhood hometown.

Even after leaving home, Russell always stayed close to his family. He shared an apartment with each of his three brothers at different times during his college career. They formed a band together back in the 1990s and still perform on a regular basis under the name of the Invisible Swordsmen.

After nearly a decade of college and changing his major a few times, Russell received his bachelor’s degree in sociology from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. He later graduated from Ameritech College where he learned the trade of being a dental lab technician. Russell now owns and operates Elkins Dental Lab located in Meridian, Idaho.

4th Annual Gratitude Giveaways Hop

14 Nov
Here we are again for the 4th Annual Gratitude Giveaways Hop 

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This hop is organized as always by Kathy @ I’m A Reader Not A Writer and runs between 11/15 until 11/30.

As the title suggests this is a giveaway meant to reward my followers, my fans and my friends. Without you giving me a chance, my books wouldn’t be where they are today: on your shelf, on your tablet or on your TBR list. Without you stopping by my blog on a regular basis I wouldn’t have the connections I have and most importantly, the friends some of you became since the beginning of this crazy journey down the path of writing and publishing. And I THANK you ALL for that. Your are my rocks, each one of you!

To celebrate YOU here and now I chose to give away a $15.00 gift card of your choosing. You tell me which vendor you prefer and I will make that happen.

Sounds fun? I hope so. In order to enter the giveaway I won’t ask you to follow/befriend/tweet or the likes (but if you chose to do so, it’ll be highly appreciated). Instead I’m going to ask you: What are you grateful for this year? Your comment bellow is your ticket into the giveaway. I’ll announce the winner  on December 1st.

Good luck everyone!

Summer Kindle Fire Giveaway

17 Jul
Kindle-Summer
Kindle Fire HD 7″ Giveaway

The winner will have the option of receiving a 7″ Kindle Fire HD (US Only)

Or $199 Amazon.com Gift Card (International)

Or $199 in Paypal Cash (International)

Sponsoring Bloggers & Authors

  1. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
  2. Feed Your Reader
  3. New Adult Addiction
  4. Jessabella Reads
  5. The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Somthing Year Old Girl
  6. Books Unhinged by StacyHgg
  7. S.A. Larsen – Writer’s Ally
  8. Author Inger Iverson
  9. The Geeky Gamers
  10. annakyss
  11. Everyday Word Magic
  12. Candance’s Book Blog
  13. Page Flipperz
  14. SMI Book Club
  15. Laurie Here
  16. Feed Your Fiction Addiction
  17. Phantasmic Reads
  18. The Book Bellas
  19. Please Don’t Remove MarGreat’s Glasses
  20. Author Jennifer Laurens
  21. J.C. Valentine
  22. Holly Hood
  23. Young Adult Novel Reader
  24. Author Heather Bixler
  25. Literary Meanderings
  26. Suspense Author Kim Cresswell
  27. Mother Daughter & Son Book Review
  28. Meredith’s Musings
  29. Auggie Talk
  30. Author Camelia Miron Skiba
  31. Author Lena Sledge
  32. LoriTheAuthor
  33. Author Dianne Venetta
  34. Curling Up with A Good Book
  35. MyLadyWeb
  36. Fae Books
  37. Bea’s Book Nook
  38. Girls with Books
  39. Ketch’s Book Nook
  40. Turning Pages
  41. Bookhounds
  42. Karey White
  43. My Devotional Thoughts
  44. Author Talia Jager
  45. Author Helen Smith
  46. Sher A Hart: Written Art
  47. Author MK McClintock
  48. Word to Dreams
  49. Buku-Buku Didi
  50. Tasty Book Tours
  51. Readerlicious
  52. Romance Bookworm’s Reviews

Giveaway Details

1 winner will receive their choice of a Kindle Fire 7″ HD (US Only), $199 Amazon Gift Card or $199 in Paypal Cash (International). Ends 4/30/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareader.com and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. Prize value $199 US.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Virtual Book Tour–Immortal Eclipse by Author Sherry Soule

15 Jul

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Author Sherry Soule provides today’s post. She’s celebrating the release of her new novel, IMMORTAL ECLIPSE. If you like supernatural suspense mingled with a dash of chick-lit and a healthy dose of paranormal romance, then this is the book for you!

Sherry asked her snarky heroine, Skylar Blackwell to stop by. She has recently started her own advice column: “Dear Skylar.”

Since several people have asked Skylar for help with some very strange topics, she’s generously taken time away from her shopping cardio to answer them. Pasted below are some of the questions sent to her.

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 Question 1:

Q. Dear Skylar,

My boyfriend is in college and he likes to wear socks with sandals. When I complained about it, he just says his feet get cold. It’s so embarrassing! I refuse to go on dates with him until he buys a real pair of shoes. Any advice on getting him to stop?

Thanx,

Fashion-Clueless-BF

 

A. Dear Fashion-Clueless-BF,

Wearing socks with sandals has been a fashion faux pas forever, but that doesn’t stop people (generally men) from doing it. Unless you are walking outside to pick up the newspaper, socks with sandals are a big fashion no-no! First off, you don’t have to alert the fashion police—just throw out those sandals yourself! Then buy him some nicer shoes to wear. He’ll have new shoes, and you’ll have a fashionable guy—problem solved.

 

Question 2:

Q. Dear Skylar,

One day my sister Kate saw me enter the bathroom. She continued down the hallway, and to her surprise, she saw me inside my bedroom. Kate insisted I was in the bathroom, but obviously, I was lying on my bed doing homework. A few days later, Kate swore that she saw me watching TV in the living room, but I had been gone all day at softball practice. Later that same day, she also claimed that I ran past her and pulled her hair, but it wasn’t me! What do you think’s going on?

Kind regards,

Doppelgangers-Suck

 

A. Dear Doppelgangers-Suck,

Hmmm, you may indeed have doppelganger trouble. They are commonly considered an “evil twin,” unknown to the original person, who causes mischief by confusing friends and relatives. But some have more insidious intentions…especially, if they’re already dead. My advice? Get yourself a magical charm for protection, and fast!

 

Question 3:

Q. Dear Skylar,

I recently took over the family business, and although everything has been running smoothly, it feels as though the female employees haven’t quite accepted me as their new boss yet. In fact, they’ve been downright hostile and verbally abusive. And then there’s the little digs: one of them even asked how long I was planning to stay and told me that I was in over my head. How would you recommend I handle this situation?

Peace out,

Nobody-Likes-Me

 

A. Dear Nobody-Likes-Me,

Sounds like typical “Mean Girl” abuse. The pointed digs make some female bullies more toxic than the classic rageaholic. Well, I would advise you to fire all those hateful workers, but disgruntled employees can be nasty, too. Unfortunately, there’s no escaping your employees—unless you’re willing to quit or fight back. You’re just gonna have to dig in your heels—or Pradas—and get proactive. And try to keep in mind that life has a quirky way of working things out: When you’re dealing with a bitch, remember that karma is a bitch as well. Best of luck!

 

Question 4:

Q. Dear Skylar,

My husband, Tony, is a construction worker and he fell from a scaffold at work last week. His boss said he had broken his spine and that he was taken to the morgue. But when I arrived at the hospital, he was alive! He was walking around like nothing happened. And one other time, Tony was bitten by a poisonous snake and he didn’t get more than a slight headache from the venom. Am I going crazy or what?

Best,

Husband-Has-9-Lives

 

A. Dear Husband-Has-9-Lives,

That is strange indeed! Hmmm, let me think…since he can move about during the day, vampire is out. Government experiment doesn’t fit either, unless he escaped from the lab. Alien from Mars? Nah, he’d have green skin and big eyes. Or perhaps he’s a werewolf with regenerative powers. Whatever the case, the guy must have nine lives!

 

Hope you enjoyed this comical post! Now go feed your mind and read a book! Preferably one of mine. ;-)

 

Places you can cyberstalk Sherry Soule:

Official Blog: http://www.sherrysoule.blogspot.com

Twitter @WriterSherry: http://twitter.com/writersherry

Facebook: http://on.fb.me/tdro6f

goodreads: http://bit.ly/uzohif

 

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Read an excerpt: http://sherrysoule.blogspot.com/p/adult-urban-fantasy_11.html

 

BUY IMMORTAL ECLIPSE:

Paperback: http://amzn.to/1074dUY

Kobo: http://bit.ly/12BgpdY

Amazon Kindle: http://amzn.to/14IbgG5

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/11QIbnz

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/14edSHU

 

PSYCHED– Juli Caldwell’s newest release

10 Jun
We start this week with my dear friend and awesome critique partner Juli Caldwell presenting us her latest release, PSYCHED. I absolutely love the cover.
Here is the deal: When Juli introduced our group to her story I literally was in awe struck by her abilities to be such an incredible narrator, mystery builder, character creator and tension designer. I warned her that if I start sleeping with the lights on because of her book she’ll be in doodoo. Well, once I finished the book, I turned them off, but I now leave the hallway nightlight on and HATE to go potty middle of the night afraid some damn demon lurks out there. I hope she’s proud of herself.
If I’d have to choose one word and one word only to describe this novel I’d say: gripping. But I wouldn’t do it justice because Juli wrote a novel that was much more than that: it was fascinating, thrilling, scary, intriguing, mysterious, detailed. For those of you loving suspense, paranormal, thriller mixed with a hint of romance this novel is definitely for you. For my full review click here.
And now, without further ado, I give you PSYCHED.

 
Cover Art by Morteque

You can find it on Amazon, and look for it soon in paperback!

So far, great reviews for Psyched!

This is one of those books you just can’t put down. What I
love about Psyched in addition to a great, spooky story is strong characters
and narrative voice. Aisi is the most awesome chick, strong-willed, sassy, and
deals with some crazy stuff happening with a spunkiness that I loved…
Psyched is well-written, riveting,
surprising and genre-busting. Teens will love this book, but it definitely has
a more wide-ranging appeal
.”
and…
Aisi Turay is one awesome girl. She
has power to see the dead…as in their souls…This is a great read, filled
with suspense. I NEVER knew from one chapter to the next what was happening. It
is well written and a very enjoyable…and a bit scary!

Psyched is part ghost story, part suspense, part demon-hunting thriller, part budding romance, the story of a girl named Aisi who’s doing her best to keep it together for her wreck of a family. She is smart, sassy, and sarcastic enough to keep things interesting. When she meets Vance on the single worst day of her life, she finds a guy who just might be the first person ever to get her, to believe in her, and to out-random her with bizarre observations at the worst possible moment. There’s just something about him that she knows she can trust.

Together, Aisi and Vance wander through the memories of others to unlock the secrets of her past while battling a demon who wants to ensure she never finds what she’s looking for. Aisi vanquishes demons all the time, but Malus Indolus is too strong. And he has plans for her…and her family.

Psyched is Juli’s second novel, the first as an indie writer,
and her first experiment with her true love as a reader: paranormal
fiction. Her debut novel Beyond Perfection is also available.

You can find Juli on her webpage, Twitter, Facebook,  and blog.

From Caterpillar to Butterfly–Guest Post and Spotlight @ I’m A Reader Not A Writer

7 Jun

Happy and sunny Friday everyone!

I hope you enjoyed a tasty lunch, a delightful cup of coffee and your newspapers. Your laundry machine is humming and the kids are playing. Hubby is long gone to work. Now it’s your me-time.

For you to savor your me-time I wrote a guest post titled From Caterpillar to Butterfly hosted by the incredible Kathy @ I’m A Reader Not A Writer. I know everybody knows how a caterpillar becomes a butterfly, but I’m not sharing entomology 101, but rather, hmmm…. how should I call it… maybe a secret?

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Along with the guest post Kathy features my historical romance BORN IN SIN (Dacian Legends, #2) along with a generous giveaway: e-copies of BORN IN VENGEANCE (Dacian Legends, #1), BORN IN SIN (Dacian Legends,#2) and a $20.00 Amazon gift card.

BIV COVER

BIS-web COVER

Could your day be any better?

Spring Fling Giveaway Hop

1 May

spring fling

Spring Fling Giveaway Hop

May 1st – 7th

MY GIVEAWAY:

OPEN INTERNATIONALLY

E-COPIES OF JILLIAN DODD’S KEATYN CHRONICLES

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FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN BECOME A FAN OF AUTHOR CAMELIA MIRON SKIBA ON FACEBOOK.

HAVE FUN!