Thursday, September 21, 2017

Introducing the Keeper Chronicles and Win an eBook!

Introducing the Keeper Chronicles Series
& Win A Threat of Shadows eBook!

A Keeper's Tale

A Keeper's Tale: The Story of Tomkin and the Dragon by [Andrews, JA]

About the Book:

Title: A Keeper's Tale | Author: JA Andrews | Pages: 163 | Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Book Description:

Tomkin Thornhewn, youngest son of the Duke of Marshwell, has a problem: he’s not heroic.

Regardless of his aspirations, the bookish, untrained young man is better suited to recording the deeds of heroes than being one himself.

Which becomes an obvious problem when he finds himself clinging to a ledge above a sleeping dragon. And instead of wielding his family’s great sword with valor and skill, he drops it—onto the dragon.

The problem grows immeasurably worse when Tomkin himself falls off the ledge—also onto the dragon.

And his problem reaches its peak when Tomkin, after being captured, discovers a maiden locked in a tower. But this is no sweet damsel. Not only does she refuse to be rescued, she refuses to even admit she’s in distress.

It’s too bad for the people of Marshwell that Tomkin is the only thing standing - or falling - in the dragon’s way.

JA Andrews introduced the world to the magic-wielding, world-saving, story-telling Keepers in A Threat of Shadows. Now you can enjoy one of the Keeper’s most beloved tales: The Story of Tomkin and the Dragon, in this engaging, lighthearted novel.

Purchase A Keeper's Tale on


My Review:

A Keeper's Tale is about the hilarious misadventures of Tomkin in "Tomkin and the Dragon." The damsel in distress doesn't want to be rescued from the dragon and Tomkin isn't a hero. He can hardly hold his sword, let alone wield it. This is a descriptive story with engaging characters, lively adventures, and a touch of romance for good measure. A Keeper's Tale is a companion story and can be read before or after Book 1. It's referred to as a well-loved story in A Threat of Shadows, the first book in the Keeper Chronicles.


A Threat of Shadows

A Threat of Shadows (The Keeper Chronicles Book 1) by [Andrews, JA]

About the Book:

Title: A Threat of Shadows | Author: JA Andrews | Pages: 452 | Genre: Epic Fantasy

Book Description:

When Alaric’s beloved wife is poisoned, he uproots his life as a Keeper and sets out to find a way to heal her. Along the way he befriends magical characters — and encounters an ancient evil that stands between him and a cure.

Alaric was a Keeper; a good man, protecting the land with knowledge and magic, until his wife was poisoned and he betrayed everyone and everything to save her — only to fail.

Now Alaric has one last chance at a cure, but it's buried in an ancient stone. To find it, he'll need the help of an enigmatic elf, a crotchety dwarf, and a bumbling wizard. However, Alaric isn't the only one seeking the stone; an old evil stirs, and one of Alaric's companions will betray them all.

The task would be nearly impossible for a Keeper; so what chance does the shadow of a former Keeper stand?

Alaric must find the strength to become the man he used to be, cure his wife, and save the world from the looming shadows — but he cannot have all three. Which will he sacrifice?

Join Alaric in a land of magic, elves, and the occasional dragon as he is forced to make impossible sacrifices to save everything he knows.

A Threat of Shadows is the brilliant introduction to the magical world of The Keeper Chronicles, a new epic fantasy series by JA Andrews. Fans of Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson, and Terry Pratchett will enjoy this unputdownable noblebright tale.

Purchase on Amazon:


My Review:

A Threat of Shadows is not a typical fantasy story with an essentially good hero or heroine who finds true love. It's not even a coming-of-age story, but it's still appropriate for young adults to read. The only elements of a typical fantasy are the elf, dwarf, and wizard. The rest of the story takes several unexpected twists and turns, keeping it new and interesting.

Love for his wife has driven Aleric, a tarnished Keeper, to do despicable things in order to try and find a cure before it's too late. With all the sacrifices that he has made, he still finds himself running out of time and options. He also has to make tough choices and many past choices have left him with regrets. He ends up joining a motley crew as they learn to work together toward the same goal. At least that's how it seems, but nothing is ever that simple.

This is the first book in the Keeper Chronicles and I'm looking forward to reading more from this talented indie author, JA Andrews.

My Favorite Quote from
A Threat of Shadows:

"If you don’t want to be a Keeper today, then don’t be one.
But if the only thing holding you back is choices you made
in the past, well, those choices are done. Let the past inform
your choices today, but don’t let it rule them."
(Page 248 Kindle Edition)


How JA Andrews began writing her first book:

My husband was out of town for an entire month and bored every evening. So I made it my goal to send him a chapter a night, just for pure entertainment. I think I ended up writing only about 10 chapters, but I liked them so much that even though I let them sit on a computer neglected for years, the characters and the story kept calling me back. Eventually I pulled them out again and decided to finish the story. It turned into my first novel, A Threat of Shadows. And those early chapters are still some of my favorites.


Win A Threat of Shadows eBook!

JA Andrews is giving away a digital copy of her book, A Threat of Shadows, to one of my lucky readers. Just answer the question below by leaving a comment and your name will go into a draw.
Question: What's the best book that you've read this year?
The winner will be announced on Friday the 6th of October on my weekend blog hop post.


About the Author:
JA Andrews

JA Andrews

JA Andrews is a writer, wife, mother, and unemployed rocket scientist. She doesn't regret the rocket science degree, but finds it generally inapplicable in daily life. Except for the rare occurrence of her being able to definitively state, "That's not rocket science." She does, however, love the stars.

She began writing stories and creating coloring books because these sorts of things need an outlet. And now good markers are a deductible business expense.

She spends an inordinate amount of time at home, with her family, who she adores, and lives deep in the Rocky Mountains of Montana, where she can see more stars than she ever imagined.

Disclosure: I purchased A Threat of Shadows and received a free copy of A Keeper's Tale. These are my honest reviews.

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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Multi-Colored Gemstones and a Linky

Multi-Colored Gemstones
and a Linky


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I am co-hosting this link-up
for the remainder of the year.





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Saturday, September 16, 2017

The Adventures of Zoe and Alex: The Disappearing River

The Adventures of Zoe and Alex:
The Disappearing River


About the Book:

Title: The Adventures of Zoe and Alex: The Disappearing River | Authors: David Mitten and Gail Mitten | Publisher: MakeThinkers | Pages: 106 | Genre: Children's Action Adventure

Book Description:

Help Zoe & Alex as they journey through magical hidden lands with invisible creatures to find the disappearing river!

The MakeThinkers Team - an MIT graduate with two children, and his mom, a highly experienced, elementary school teacher - created this adventure story with fun challenges and creative activities to help children unlock their natural creativity & powerful critical thinking skills.

Read ten exciting chapters. Answer the fun challenges. Do the creative activities.

Lexile Measurement: 730L

Each chapter takes less than 15 minutes to complete. It's perfect for parents to read to their children and for older children to read by themselves.

Zoe Flynn and Alex Everhart live on Harriet street, in a quiet town near NYC. They are best friends and enthusiastic adventurers. When they find a magnificent, golden colored wooden box in the attic, their lives change forever! Inside the box are the Enchanted Sweaks of Yellowfield which take them on a fantastic journey through magical hidden lands with invisible creatures to find the disappearing river.

Amanda's Review:

I liked it because it had lots of fun riddles that you had to figure out. They gave you three clues to help you. They gave you little projects that you could do if you wanted. The stories were interesting with things like magical glasses and magical creatures.

My Review:

I did not read this book, but only had a peek at it, because Amanda (age 9) was motivated to read this story without me. That is proof that it's a fun story. She even read some of the riddles to me, which I enjoyed trying to figure out for myself! What really impressed me was that the authors have a passion to create books that get kids thinking while, at the same time, enjoying the adventures of Zoe and Alex.


Purchase on Amazon:


About the Authors:

David Mittan

David was born in South Africa and he has lived in the US for almost 20 years. He is an avid cross-training fan, a voracious reader, loves learning new languages, and playing chess. David holds three degrees, including an MS from UT Austin and an MBA from MIT. He is a lifelong learner with interests in finance, human health, robotics and the future of education. He's also a highly experienced investor who enjoys solving problems. When he isn't busy sharing MakeThinkers with parents and educators across the world, David can be found spending time with his family, playing soccer with his two lovely daughters or strumming the guitar.

Gail is a superb elementary school educator with over 40 years of dedicated experience. She uses this extensive background to ensure that all our content is designed to maximize one goal — to help children unlock their natural creativity and powerful critical thinking skills while having fun. When she isn't busy creating delightful content with David at MakeThinkers, Gail enjoys spending time with her six grandchildren in New Jersey and continues to teach. She is also passionate about competing in walking races, crossword puzzles and gourmet cooking.

About MakeThinkers:

MakeThinkers grew out of my need to spend more quality time with my children in an impactful way. Using bedtime storytelling we were off to a good start. Its benefits were well known and widely published. Yet, it lacked that extra something. I'm sure you know about the eventual boredom that sets in with repetitive storytelling. Couldn't we use this time better? I set out to design and build a better experience.

During my time as a fellow at MIT, I began blending original storytelling with imaginative mental challenges. The goal was to combine creativity with critical thinking while forming a strong bond with my children. And, of course, short enough for me to complete in less than fifteen minutes.

I continued to experiment and tried many variations. I even asked some of my professors and friends around the world to try it out with their children. Finally, it happened! I hit the right combination.

My wife and I noticed that our family loved this new type of bedtime storytelling! Our children constantly yearned for more adventures and they were excited to solve the challenges at the end of each story! We also saw how they were beginning to mix creative thinking with logical reasoning. The way they solved problems blew our minds. On top of it all, we could also see them gaining confidence, patience, and focus. Naturally, we had a blast watching them flourish and our bond strengthened while having fun!

After experiencing this success, I had to share it with everyone. So, I started working with my mom to make it happen. She is a caring, passionate and highly accomplished elementary school educator. I grew up watching her teach and witnessing the smart ways she encouraged students to think. (Not to mention me - thanks mom!) She was a perfect fit to build out this vision.

Together we aim to take storytelling to a whole different level. We have made this entire activity straightforward and enjoyable for anyone to do. Our mission is simple: unlock the natural creativity and critical thinking skills in every child.

Through our first series, 'The Adventures of Zoe & Alex', we have put this mission into action.

We are thrilled to have you join us on this exciting journey. Get ready for a fantastic ride!

Remember, Great Parents MakeThinkers.



Disclosure: We received a free digital copy of this book and this is our honest review.

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Friday, September 15, 2017

3 Dragon Short Stories and a Linky

Welcome to my weekend blog hop -
Make My Saturday Sweet #236!


I don't have any original photos to share today, but I have included another poem of mine. I chose this one, because it's about having the courage to overcome whatever obstacles life may bring. And, why not slay a few dragons along the way?


With our God are all provisions
And the courage to make decisions;
To fulfil our purposes in life
And understanding to handle strife.

May we never cling to a victim’s view,
But being overcomers just as You.
Seeing the flower and not the thorn.
Having Christ’s glory us adorn.

We lay our inadequacies at Your feet.
Putting on Your armour we can defeat
Ghosts of the past, demons of the future,
With love and compassion our world to nurture.

Christina A. Morley


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Dragonslayer Stories: Two Short Stories by [Nelson, Resa]

My Review of Dragonslayer Stories:

"The Dragonslayer's Sword" is a provocative short story about love, responsibility, and self-esteem. Astrid is the blacksmith who once loved the town's previous dragonslayer who has recently disappeared. Now there is a new dragonslayer in town who is pursuing her. She wrestles with feelings of guilt and has to learn to care for herself. It's about appearances and what is truly inside a person. I really enjoyed this unique and refreshing short story with a twist.

"The Silver Shoes" is about a female customer who comes to see Astrid, the town's blacksmith, about making a pair of silver shoes. The customer explains to Astrid the events that brought about her unusual request. It's about love, friendship, valuing others, and staying true to yourself. It's an unexpected story with a twist.



Eydis: The Island of the Dragon Bride by [C. S. Johnson]

My Review of Eydis:

Eydis: The Island of the Dragon Bride is a prequel to Eydis, which is still to be released. Although the genre is horror, it's not too scary. The author has written many books with a Christian theme, so even this one has a moral to it. The characters are interesting and there is some great world building, which can be difficult to achieve in a short a story. It's a great short story with a dramatic twist.



Jade (The Book of Deacon series) by [Lallo, Joseph]

My Review of Jade:

Jade is a companion short story that takes place after the Book of Deacon Series. A young orphan girl is sent as a sacrifice to appease the dragon that has taken up residence near her village, but really it's just a reason to get rid of her. The dragon smells the girl's fear, but he also discovers that she is very brave. What will this dragon decide to do with her?

I really enjoyed the characters of Jade and the dragon, Halfax. I felt that the evil characters were vanquished too easily, but it was still an entertaining read and I loved the final ending.


More Reviews:
Books 1 - 3


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Make My Saturday Sweet is a weekend blog hop for all family friendly blogs. You are welcome to link your favorite post from the past week(s) and to visit the last link before yours and leave a sweet comment. It's a really easy and fun way to make new friends and to catch up on old acquaintances.

Now on to my blog hop...

Amanda’s Books and More

It's time for another Make My Saturday Sweet blog hop!

Join me (your host) for this fun and easy hop.
All family friendly blogs are welcome!

I would love for you to follow me on

Here are the easy rules:
  • Follow Tina (your host) on one or more links listed above.
  • Link up a post from your family friendly blog.
  • Please try to add my hop button on your post or side-bar.
  • Share about this hop on Twitter, Google+ or Facebook.
  • Visit the last link before yours and leave a sweet comment.
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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Our Cute Cats and a Linky

Welcome to the "Real Wordless
Wednesday" Link-Up! Hosted
by Grapefruit Princess Reloaded


It's been a while since I featured our cute cats on the blog. Here's Prince who made a bed in the clothes that I was folding. I also took photos of Prince and Sheela snuggling on Amanda's bunk-bed. Since Amanda moved down to the bottom bunk, we let the cats sleep on the top.

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2 eBooks are for Free on Amazon Kindle!



With a Nautical Theme



Silly Poems for Kids

ZEBRA SALUTATIONS by [DeZebra, Jocko]


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Welcome to the
"Real Wordless Wednesday"
Link-Up!

I will be co-hosting this link-up
for the remainder of the year.
The best part is that there are no rules!





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and
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Friday, September 8, 2017

3 Fabulous Fantasy Novels and More!

Welcome to my weekend blog hop -
Make My Saturday Sweet #235!


Before I get to the fantasy novels, I have sailboat photos and a poem to share, which are all by me. Little Amanda is even in one of the pics. The poem fits with my choice of today's books that have a nautical theme as well as romance in them. Also, my weekend linky is up and running once again. Thanks for your patience!

This blog is best viewed in Google Chrome.
Click on the images to see them at their best!





What is love?
But a powerful emotion
It rushes in
And sets things in motion
It can’t be quenched
By the mightiest ocean
So don’t play with love

For everything
There is a time and season
God’s laws
Are there for a reason
Don’t awaken love
Before it’s time
Or it could become
Tomorrow’s thrown-out dime

Love comes around once
It can come around twice
But be careful
Are you willing to pay its price?
It can level whatever stands in its path
Resembling the force of wrath
So don’t play with love

Christina A. Morley




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3 Fabulous Fantasy
Novels with a
Nautical Theme!

Click on the titles below
for more information.


Air and Ash - Book 1
by Alex Lidell

Air and Ash: TIDES Book 1 by [Lidell, Alex]

My Review:

Air and Ash was one of my favorite reads this year! I even went back and re-read sections and I kept re-visiting scenes in my mind for weeks afterwards. The characters were colorful, the magic and adventure was suspenseful, and the romantic bits made my heart flutter. Well done, Alex Lidell! I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series.


Burning Bright - Book 1
by Melissa McShane

Burning Bright (The Extraordinaries Book 1) by [McShane, Melissa]

My Review:

Burning Bright is a fascinating historical fiction novel with plenty of magical elements and clean romance. The characters are complex and likable. Vivid descriptions draw the reader into the story, so that you really experience the excitement and adventure. The ending was phenomenal. It can be read as a stand-alone, even thought it is part of a series. I'm certainly looking forward to reading more from this talented author!


Pirate's Vengeance - Book 1
by LJ Andrews

Pirate's Vengeance (The Djinn Kingdom Series Book 1) by [Andrews, LJ]

My Review:

Pirate's Vengeance is an exciting seafaring (or perhaps more like airfaring) tale that conjures up in my mind images of Pirates of the Caribbean and Treasure Planet. There are bucket-loads of adventure, plenty of bad guys, elements of magic, a splattering of romance, and fabulous world-building. I loved the protagonist, Nova, who teeters on the edge of becoming a villain herself as she tries to outsmart and outmaneuver the truly nasty characters. I can't wait to find out what happens next in the series!

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

Make My Saturday Sweet is a weekend blog hop for all family friendly blogs. You are welcome to link your favorite post from the past week(s) and to visit the last link before yours and leave a sweet comment. It's a really easy and fun way to make new friends and to catch up on old acquaintances.

Now on to my blog hop...

Amanda’s Books and More

It's time for another Make My Saturday Sweet blog hop!

Join me (your host) for this fun and easy hop.
All family friendly blogs are welcome!

I would love for you to follow me on

Here are the easy rules:
  • Follow Tina (your host) on one or more links listed above.
  • Link up a post from your family friendly blog.
  • Please try to add my hop button on your post or side-bar.
  • Share about this hop on Twitter, Google+ or Facebook.
  • Visit the last link before yours and leave a sweet comment.
Blog Button Code:

Amanda’s Books and More

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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Zebra Salutations - Poetry for Kids

Zebra Salutations
Poems, Doodles
and Tomfoolery
by Jocko deZebra 

ZEBRA SALUTATIONS by [DeZebra, Jocko]
About the Book:

Title: Zebra Salutations | Author: Jocko deZebra
Genre: Silly Poems for Kids | Pages: 43

Book Description:

There exists a strong possibility of multiple smiles ahead. Please take any imaginable precautions before spontaneous smiling occurs...

So begins the warning in the beginning of this comically entertaining collection of poems, doodles and tomfoolery. Laughable lyrics in abundance as you stroll through poems and drawings designed for guaranteed smiles.

Come and meet the flying penguin. Finally learn what trees dream of. Maybe have some eggs prepared by a spectacular dracula with his favorite spatula.

Whatever your breakfast tastes may be, this collection of intelligent hilarity is perfect for the young and the young at heart.

Purchase on Amazon Kindle

My Review:

Introduce children to the fun of poetry with Zebra Salutations! Some adjectives to describe the poems inside are silly, wacky, and zany. Amanda (age 9) and I both enjoyed "While Kite Watching" most of all, then "Cookies for Breakfast" and "Dressed Myself." Many of the poems will also suit older children. There's really something for everyone!

About the Author:
Jocko deZebra

Jocko DeZebra – A Virginia Beachian who hails originally from the suburbs of New England. Jocko enjoys snowboarding, rock-climbing and collecting 3 leaf clovers. And Jocko also likes bringing words together in fun fashion from time to time, then doodling them to life. That’s where you come in.



Disclosure: I received a free digital copy of this book for my honest review.

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