Giveaway and Book Tour: The Prophecy of Shadows

5:00 AM Sarah Koves 1 Comments

 The opinions and words here are 100% mine!  This post contains referral links that provide a reward for me at no cost to you if you choose to shop.

Filled with magic, thrilling adventure, and sweet romance, Elementals is the first in a new series that fans of Percy Jackson and The Secret Circle will love!


The Prophecy of Shadows
Michelle Madow
(Elementals #1)
Published by: Dreamscape Publishing
Publication date: January 26th 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult


When Nicole Cassidy moves from sunny Georgia to gloomy New England, the last thing she expects is to learn that her homeroom is a cover for a secret coven of witches. Even more surprisingly … she’s apparently a witch herself. Despite doubts about her newfound abilities, Nicole is welcomed into this ancient circle of witches and is bedazzled by their powers–and, to her dismay, by Blake–the school’s notorious bad-boy.
Girls who get close to Blake wind up hurt. His girlfriend Danielle will do anything to keep them away, even if she must resort to using dark magic. But the chemistry between Blake and Nicole is undeniable, and despite wanting to protect Nicole from Danielle’s wrath, he finds it impossible to keep his distance.
When the Olympian Comet shoots through the sky for the first time in three thousand years, Nicole, Blake, Danielle, and two others in their homeroom are gifted with mysterious powers. But the comet has another effect–it opens the portal to the prison world that has contained the Titans for centuries. After an ancient monster escapes and attacks Nicole and Blake, it’s up to them and the others to follow the clues from a cryptic prophecy so that they can save their town … and possibly the world.


“Elementals is going to blow your mind!”
-Crossroad Reviews, ★★★★★

“Five glittery stars for being such a compelling read!”
-Andrea Heltsley, Goodreads Reviewer ★★★★★

“A perfect mixture of magic and mythology. An entrancing story of trust, friendship and well naughty boys. WITCHES are not the only thing walking the earth!”
– BenjaminOfTomes, BookTuber ★★★★★
EXCERPT:
Everyone stared at me, and I looked to the front of the room, where a tall, lanky man in a tweed suit stood next to a blackboard covered with the morning announcements. His gray hair shined under the light, and his wrinkled skin and warm smile reminded me more of a grandfather than a teacher.
He cleared his throat and rolled a piece of chalk in his palm. “You must be Nicole Cassidy,” he said.
“Yeah.” I nodded and looked around at the other students. There were about thirty of them, and there seemed to be an invisible line going down the middle of the room, dividing them in half. The students near the door wore jeans and sweatshirts, but the ones closer to the wall looked like they were dressed for a fashion show instead of school.
“It’s nice to meet you Nicole.” The teacher sounded sincere, like he was meeting a new friend instead of a student. “Welcome to our homeroom. I’m Mr. Faulkner, but please call me Darius.” He turned to the chalkboard, lifted his hand, and waved it from one side to the other. “You probably weren’t expecting everything to look so normal, but we have to be careful. As I’m sure you know, we can’t risk letting anyone else know what goes on in here.”
Then the board shimmered—like sunlight glimmering off the ocean—and the morning announcements changed into different letters right in front of my eyes.



Author Bio:
Michelle Madow grew up in Baltimore, graduated Rollins College in Orlando, and now lives in Boca Raton, Florida. She wrote her first book in her junior year of college, and has been writing novels since. Some of her favorite things are: reading, pizza, traveling, shopping, time travel, Broadway musicals, and spending time with friends and family. Michelle has toured across America to promote her books and to encourage high school students to embrace reading and writing. Someday, she hopes to travel the world for a year on a cruise ship.
Visit Michelle online at www.michellemadow.com, and be sure to sign up for her newsletter and follow her on Amazon to get instant updates on her books!


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United Book Tour

7:00 AM Sarah Koves 0 Comments


 The opinions and words here are 100% mine!  This post contains referral links that provide a reward for me at no cost to you if you choose to shop.




When the United States of America crumbles under civilian protests and riots, a new United America rises from the ashes…
After a reformation, United America runs like a well-oiled machine. Solar power trumps fossil fuels, strict laws keep crime at an all-time low, and at sixteen, residents are assigned their role in society—and fulfill it without complaints. But unbeknownst to the citizens, they are also under constant monitoring, and reigning President Vaughn has eyes in every sector of the gleaming country.

When Rosaline Thatcher turns sixteen, it is time to receive her position in society…
When President Vaughn calls Rosaline to the stage, she dutifully follows orders. Though she dare not disobey, it’s unclear why she is being singled out. As she passes her best friend, Wesley, she’s reminded of what’s at stake. With her new role, she could be torn from her friends and family forever.

Rosaline goes from ordinary citizen to leader of the free world…
Shocked and overwhelmed, Rosaline can’t understand why she was chosen for the most vital position of all. But with great power comes great responsibility, and with the help of those closest to her, the fate of their thriving country rests in her hands.
When she discovers a secret location only known as the O.C., the United America Rosaline thought she knew may turn out to be history’s greatest fraud…

In a society where citizens obey without question, what will happen when one girl dares to defy, and what will that mean for United America?



Buy Links:

Free with Kindle Unlimited and available in paperback as well.




Jaci Wheeler lives in the Central Valley of California with her husband and two precious kids.
Her love of literature began in Jr. High when she was introduced to Lowis Lowry’s books. Since then she has had a passion for writing Young Adult books, and creating strong female leads. When she’s not writing she is advocating for Autism Awareness and involved in the deaf community.
Her favorite things to do are play with her children, craft with her friends, sleep while her husband watches movies and indulge in her favorite addictions: Coffee, candy and shoes.

Author Links:


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Classroom Games: Flip Stir Solve

9:22 PM Sarah Koves 0 Comments


Classroom games and puzzles are a great way to  fill those extra minutes at the end of class or to keep early finishers busy and engaged in mental activities.  The FlipStir Puzzle is one of those items that I keep on hand for my students, and they enjoy the tactile and mental combination of the puzzle.

I have received a complimentary game to review from FlipStir.
 The opinions here are 100% mine!  This post contains affiliate links.

When the box first arrived at my house, I was anxious to get it open and try it.  My first thought was that it was going to be a daunting puzzle.  My husband gave me a "yeah, right" look as I sat and worked on it.  I was pleasantly surprised at how fund it was.  He, of course, then wanted a try.

The next day I took it to school and set it on my desk.  It didn't take long for my students to ask me what it was.  A quick explanation resulted in a line forming to try their hand at it.



My favorite part of this puzzle is that it is challenging without being impossible and every attempt is different.


FlipStir® puzzle’s award-winning, patented design is fun for the family! No lost pieces. No batteries. No rules. Just use the wand, gravity and your own ingenuity to solve the puzzle.  

Shake. Stir. Solve. It's that simple! 



Made in the USA



FlipStir Puzzle is the winner of:
2015 Creative Child Magazine "Puzzle of the Year"
2015 Seal of Approval from The National Parenting Center
2015 Family Choice Awards Winner
2014 Tillywig "Brain Child" award
2014 Creative Child Magazine "Game of the Year - Puzzle Games Category" 



Find them on Facebook:  /enlivenze, /flipstirpuzzle

Find them on Twitter: @enlivenze, @flipstir


Level 1 "Rainbow Pencils"
Level 1 "Tyrannosaurus Rex"
Level 2 "Solar System"
Level 2 "Statue of Liberty"







The Glass Ceiling Book Tour

7:00 AM Sarah Koves 0 Comments

 The opinions and words here are 100% mine!  This post contains referral links that provide a reward for me at no cost to you if you choose to shop.

The Glass Ceiling
Release Date: December 11th 2015
Frost Books Group


Summary from Goodreads:

Pickaxes, grime, and watery oatmeal are all sixteen-year-old Heart has ever known. Growing up in the tunnels, the only breaks in her muscle-aching monotony are the numerous nights spent cramped in a metal box. Stupid runaway mouth. But when strange visions and a hidden map hint there’s more to life than she’s been led to believe — boys being one of them — only one thing weighs on her mind. Escape.

Yet freedom is a tease. Heart merely trades her small prison for a larger one — a transparent dome controlled by the Guardian, an aging leader bent on creating a genetically perfect race. Heart's birthmark on her shoulder? An abomination that carries a lifetime sentence of slavery for females.

Refusing to let a glass ceiling deter her, Heart searches for a way out of the dome. But unraveling the Guardian's secrets is a risky endeavor. Human skulls atop crude sticks serve as a warning: treason is punishable by death. When her new friends are captured, and escape is just an arm’s reach away, Heart must decide. Take the freedom she so desperately wants or save her friends’ lives?




Excerpts:
Just as Heart touched the doorknob, muffled voices sounded from the other side. Crap. She looked around her. The closest object was a trash can. She lowered herself behind it, wrinkling her nose at the putrid smell of dirty diapers. The door swung open and the Matriarch stepped out. A messy braid laid over one shoulder.
“We need to locate her. Check the bathroom. Check the tunnels. She couldn’t have gotten far.”
The woman stomped past the trash can without noticing Heart. In one bright flash, all the fluorescents came on. Chills spread through Heart like black oil. They were going to find her.
The dorm mother put one of the older girls in charge and rushed toward the east tunnels. Heart stayed in her kneeling position, frozen to her spot. Think, Heart, think. Going inside her dorm was out of the question. Her only choice was to go west. Her heart sank. The west tunnels were in the opposite direction of the Box. She couldn’t leave 176 behind.
Before she could change her mind, she abandoned her hiding spot and sprinted toward the common area. Luckily, everyone was already in the tunnels and she made it through without being detected.
She neared the Box and moaned. She’d forgotten about the padlock. How was she going to get 176 out? She banged her fist against the thick metal. “176, you in there?”
There was no response. Of course, 176 couldn’t talk. She placed her ear against the door, listening for movement. Three thumps came from within.
“The door is locked and I can’t open it.” Heart banged once more. “I have to go, but I’ll come back for you, okay?” She hesitated. Promises alone wouldn’t help 176 survive the Box. “Just concentrate on the sliver of light. Pretend it’s an angel, wrapping you with her wings. Protecting you. That’s what I do.”
A ball formed in Heart’s throat. “Stay strong. I know you can do it.”
A thump sounded. Heart sniffled and wiped at her nose. There was nothing more she could say.
With a final glance over her shoulder, she rushed toward the west tunnels, staying close to the walls. She made a note of the small alcoves she passed. If needed, she could easily squeeze into one.
Every couple of minutes, she stopped and listened for voices. Yells and the beating of feet into dirt bounced off the cavern walls. She couldn’t tell if they were ten feet away or a hundred. Adrenaline forced Heart forward and she quickened her pace. If the Matriarch caught her, losing her tongue would be the best scenario she could hope for.
The walls grew narrower and the path more treacherous. She’d never been this far into the tunnels. Looming rock formations snagged at her hair. What if she’d picked the wrong turn? What if it was a dead end?
She turned a corner and her stomach flipped. A wrought iron gate marked the exit, a six inch thick steel bar holding it in place. Beyond the gate, a pinkish purple glow filled the tunnel. Freedom? Heart grasped the cold metal bar. C’mon, c’mon, c’mon! She tugged until her veins threatened to pop out of her forehead.
It didn’t budge. She whipped her head back and forth, searching for something hard. She grabbed a rock and slammed it into the bar. A pinging sound echoed off the walls. She didn’t care that the commotion would attract attention. There was no other escape. No bright arrows pointing the way. Nothing left to do but hit that bar with every bit of strength she could muster.
The footfalls came quicker now. A whistle blew. Heart hit the bar faster. Harder. The sounds were closing in. Every hair on her head could sense her pursuers. And yet she continued. Bang. Bang. Bang.
The bar moved slightly and tears of hope stung her eyes. Please!
Her body jolted as someone grasped her arm. The rock, and her only chance of escape, slipped from her fingertips.

About the Author

Julie lives in historic Saratoga Springs, NY with the man of her dreams and their boys. Being surrounded by males, she overcompensates by owning everything pink. From her clothing, to purses, to even her pots and pans. She just can’t get enough pink. 

She enjoys taking long road trips with her family to the beach and to amusement parks. She has one cat that she showers with kissy-baby talk, but who only returns a non-amused glance every once in a while. It’s her third cat to act this way, so she’s wondering if perhaps she should get a dog next time.

From a young age, Julie’s vivid imagination constantly invented story lines. But it wasn’t until she began working in a career that required zero creativity, that her need to write poured out like a dam bursting. And she’s been writing ever since.

Author Links:



Book Tour Organized by:


Book Promotion: The X Factor

3:30 AM Sarah Koves 2 Comments

 The opinions and words here are 100% mine!  This post contains referral links that provide a reward for me at no cost to you if you choose to shop.

The X Factor: Confession of a Naïve Fashion Model
by Ivan Sivec

GENRE: Young Adult



It takes three mistakes to be swallowed up and spat out by the fashion industry.
You trust the wrong people.
You think you know everything there is to know about life.
You abuse drugs.

The almost 18-year-old Maja is a regular high-school kid, who at the threshold of adulthood thinks she knows everything there is to know about life. As she enters the world of fashion modelling she gets completely enchanted.

However, the more her career thrives she’s less able to see the danger lurking around fashion industry.  Maja starts falling in a downward spiral of drug addiction and is torn between the tempting dream of becoming a world famous model and the horrendous thought of destroying her body beyond the point of no salvation.

At a yacht party Maja gets drugged, assaulted and tossed overboard. She’s found the next day. Barely alive. Only a shade of her former self, in a gray space between life and death, she realises the fashion industry sucked everything out of her – except one thing – the will to live. Maja wants to be her old self again.

Ironically, it means losing the only thing that made her special. She has to give up on her hidden X Factor.

The X Factor: Confession of a Naïve Fashion Model is a psychological YA novel showing the glamorous fashion world behind its less glamorous scenes.


Excerpt:

The window scene.

It was like a scene from a film about the escape of prisoners. They tied four sheets together to form a rope and climbed down onto the pavement, one by one. It was easy, just as if they were shooting a commercial. Downstairs, they hugged, as if they had just saved each other’s lives.

“And now what?”

“Nothing’s open right now and we won’t make it far on foot.”

There was a bakery on the other side of the street. Every day they rushed past, as they were tempted by the wonderful smell coming out of it. They were too afraid they would give in to temptation.

“We’ll break in to the shop, end of discussion!” Maja was overcome by a divine power. “As soon as we get our first salary, we’ll pay the owner back everything, including a large tip. I’m sure he’ll be understanding.”

“But is there even any bread in there?”

“There must be! Old bread and bread rolls stay in the bakery until the morning, when the farmers from the suburbs pick them up. They must use them for pig fodder. I’ve watched them from our window many times.”

The bakery wasn’t built very solidly. They took out an old window, easily entered and rushed to the shelves.

“Wow, that’s a lot of bread!”

“Oh, I’m so happy!”

Sitting on the floor in the middle of the room they stuffed themselves with old bread rolls until their stomachs became blown up as if they were pregnant.

“Well, I won’t die after all!”

“I won’t die either!”

Feeling blissfully satisfied, knowing they were full, they fell asleep from exhaustion and all the bad things that happened to them.

The owner found them half lying, half sitting, surrounded by old bread rolls.

“Mamma mia, mamma mia! What’s the world coming to?” he said, wringing his hands.

“They’re wearing the most expensive clothes in the world, but they would have died of hunger if they hadn’t stolen some bread!”
He carefully woke them up and said with an understanding tone:

“Don’t be afraid, I won’t report you to the police. I’ve been observing you for a long time now. You’re as thin as rakes! Are you even women still?! I wouldn’t like to have such a woman for anything in the world. Oh, mamma mia, mamma mia, what’s the world coming to, what’s the world coming to…!”

They swore that when they get rich they would repay him for all the damage and add a prize on top.

“The biggest prize for me would be if you would buy some bread rolls each evening and start living a normal life.”

But despite the fact they were full, they couldn’t work that day. They were too full. They were so sick they vomited everything out, every last bite. They were too weak to even leave their beds. That was their first day without work. It was their own fault.

“A final warning before expulsion,” the director Monica let them know. “There are at least a hundred girls waiting in line who are serious about work. One more mistake like that and you’re out!”


Ivan Sivec is a writer, poet and publicist from Slovenia, Europe. People say he is ‘a man with a hundred stories’ and he has been sharing them with his audience, both young and mature, for over four decades now. He is listed under the top five Slovenian bestselling authors.

In his rich and thriving career he has written in many genres. As a poet he has written more than 2,500 lyrics for ethnic and entertaining music for which he received several awards. His broad prosaic ‘repertoire’ includes biographies, historical, psychological and adventure novels, travelogues, youth book series, picture books as well as humorous stories. To this date he published over 130 books and is considered to be one of the most popular Slovenian authors.

His particular interest goes to psychological novels on issues teenagers face today, especially topics like suicide, drug addiction, adoption, AIDS... He shares true stories to let the young reader know they’re not alone.

Sivec devotes his free time to his wife of 44 years, their two children and three grandchildren. Since his retirement a decade ago he enjoys his days hiking the Alpine peaks (he is especially proud to have conquered the tallest mountain in Europe, the French Mont Blanc (4,810 m/ 15,771 ft), together with his daughter-in-law Tina). When he is not gathering inspiration from the mountains he is soaking in the tranquility of the Mediterranean Sea with his wife. Nature is his source of creativity. It allows Ivan to gather his thoughts and pour them onto paper.




This book is free on Amazon on January 13 and 14.

 


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