Friday, April 30, 2010

And the winners are...

Thanks to everyone who entered my latest giveaway!!! The winners of A Common Pornography by Kevin Sampsell are...


I have sent you all an email!! Thanks again to everyone for reading!!
Winners chosen using Sequence Generator.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Review and Giveaway: A Common Pornography

I actually had a hard time deciding what I wanted to say about A Common Pornography by Kevin Sampsell. It is a memoir, but nothing like I have read before. It seemed to cut through all the BS of typical memoirs and got right into the heart of who he is and why he is the man he became.

This book is written in a series of short vignettes, Kevin talks about his family, which is made up of several half-siblings (including a brother who is black) from his mom's previous relationships. The book starts out with a description of a panic attack that Kevin had shortly after his father's death - so serious that it drove him out of his house at 3:30 in the morning totally naked. After writing down some memories from his life, and finding out some new information about his father and family from his mom after his dad died, he realized that things might not have been as normal as once thought.

While many of these pieces are dark and serious, dealing with some major emotions and complicated relationships, there are also some lighter moments. For instance, the extensive porn collection he started hiding above a tile in his bedroom ceiling, but decided to move due to his fear that they would collapse the ceiling bury him in porn.

I really felt like Kevin exposed himself in a different way. It was one of the most unusual memoirs I have read, and I really liked that. It seemed new and interesting, and I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys memoirs - and something a little different.

I am excited to say that thanks to a very generous Erica at Harper Perennial, I have 3 copies of A Common Pornography to give away!! WOOHOO!!! And I'll throw in my very own gently read copy, too!!! Rock on, right? I just love giveaways! Anyway, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post! Be sure to leave your email address, because if I don't have a way to get a hold of you, then your name will be removed and you won't be entered in the contest. Last day to enter is Thursday, April 29th, and I'll announce the winners on Friday, April 30! This contest is open to everyone - if Harper Perennial won't ship it to you, I will!! =)

Good luck everyone!!!

Review: Motherhood is Murder: A Maternal Instincts Mystery

I was super excited to hear once again from Diana Orgain, author of Bundle of Trouble: A Maternal Instincts Mystery. I reviewed Bundle of Trouble back in September, and LOVED it, so I was really looking forward to the next installment, Motherhood is Murder. This book did not disappoint!!

Kate is still having a tendency to find herself in crazy mysterious situations! While attending a dinner cruise with a Mommy Group she has been newly invited to, one of the members, Helene, dies tragically. While it is initially believed to be an accident (she fell down the stairs), different clues lead Kate to believe there was something else going on.

After looking into the murder a little more, Kate comes to realize that there might be quite a few in the mommy group (and a couple of the husbands, too!), that might want Helene dead. But how to find the real killer? Especially when Inspector McNearny has warned her to stay off the case and stop meddling in police business!!

Once again, there are a lot of characters to keep track of in this novel, but they all seem to play significant parts. I especially loved Kate's best friend Paula and Kate's mom, both were fun to read and helped move the story along. Of course, Kate is just one of those characters that you can't help but love. She's charming and funny, a little off the wall, and totally focused on her family. She creates these "to-do" lists that always bring a little chuckle, and somehow manages to get herself, and sometimes her new baby, into some interesting pickles.

Motherhood is Murder is one of those fast and fun reads that you won't want to put down. I read it in one sitting! I definitely recommend this charming sequel in the Maternal Instincts series! Keep 'em coming Diana, I can't wait for the next mystery!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

TLC Virtual Book Tour: Seeing Stars by Diane Hammond

When I was asked to read Diane Hammond’s latest novel, Seeing Stars, for the TLC Virtual Book Tour, I jumped at the chance for a couple reasons. First, I had read and reviewed another of Hammond’s novels, Hannah’s Dream, and had really enjoyed it. Second, when I was a kid, I wanted to be an actress, move to Hollywood and make it HUGE. Well, that’s what this book is all about.

Bethany Rabinowitz is a thirteen year old girl from Seattle who has talent. Her mother, Ruth, has picked up, left her home and husband behind, and moved with Bethany to LA in order to follow Bethany’s dreams of making it in Hollywood.

The young actress goes through harrowing auditions where the casting agents don’t really care about anyone but the right one for the part. It certainly proves that you need to have some major thick skin in order to make it in this business!

Bethany is one of the lucky ones, though. You meet some characters in the book, for instance Quinn and Allison, who have been basically abandoned by their families due to new relationships or other family circumstances. These two are left to fight through the process all on their own (or with the help of their manager, Mimi), and it’s definitely hard to read about the struggles. You want so much for these kids, you want them to get the perfect role and make it big, but the reality is there are hundreds of kids who want the same part. It made me sad when the role wasn’t given to one of the main characters, but I guess that means I connected with them, right?

While Bethany and Ruth are the stars of this novel, there are some interesting and engaging side stories. You read about Quinn and his struggles with living alone in LA, Allison and the relationship she forms with Mimi, and also another mother and daughter pair, Angie and Laurel, who push for Laurel’s success harder than anyone due to some very personal reasons.

All in all, I really enjoyed this book. It felt very real and believable, and I just kept wanting the best for those kids. It’s all about finding your dream and doing what you can to make it come true! I highly recommend this novel to…well, anyone!!

Thanks to Trish at TLC Virtual Book Tours for sending me a copy of this book for review!!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Things I don't appreciate being left in the bookdrop

1. Dirty Kleenex

2. Used Band-Aids

3. Dusty Swiffer Cloths

4. Old used binders with cobwebs all over them

5. Bottle caps

6. School notebooks

7. Markers

8. Moldy books that don't belong to the library

9. Moldy books in general

10. Basically anything that isn't a library book, DVD, audio book or CD.

These are all things that I've found in the book drop throughout my library career. The grossest was today's nasty snotty Kleenex, though. Ew.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Another winner!!!

Hooray for giveaways!!! This is super fun for me, I just gotta tell you. Anyway, congratulations to the winner of the Crazy Heart giveaway:

I've sent you an email for your snail mail address!!
Thanks so much to everyone who entered the giveaway!!!
Winner chosen using Sequence Generator.

And the winners are...

I am so excited to announce the winners of The Bird Room!!! Congratulations to:

Kate Barber

I have sent you all an email asking for yor snail mail addresses!!! Thanks to everyone who entered!!!

Winners chosen using Sequence Generator.