December 17, 2018

Death by the River Spotlight and Kinda Force +GIVEAWAY

Publisher: Vesuvian Books (October 2, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 9781944109141
ISBN-13: 978-1944109141
ASIN: 1944109145


"... a thrilling psychological work ... Catching the current vogue of teen psycho and revenge tales like Bates Motel and 13 Reasons Why ... a horrifically brilliant book ... Beau Devereaux could have easily been a clich├ęd psycho, but the plot constructed around him and his development during the novel really shone as a masterpiece of character creation ... much in the style of Dexter or Hannibal." K.C. Finn, Multi-Award-Winning Author

"Rare is the story that simmers and rises to a boil so naturally and constantly that the reader manages to be repeatedly shocked ... a full-speed rollercoaster that doesn't slow down until the final page. Employing an evocative setting, powerfully defined characters, and taking along hard look at the darker side of human desire, this novel will catch your breath and hold it until the very end. RECOMMENDED" Michael Radon, US Review

"While the authors have written a chilling story here, there's more to Death by the River than thrills. It's actually a fascinating study into the effects of good and bad parenting on children. Do it badly and parents, children and society as a whole pay the consequences. This book is not just an exciting read; it's a sobering one." Viga Boland, Retired high school English teacher and Author of No Tears for my Father: Viga's true story of incest

"While the story follows compelling characters, it also plunges readers into an intriguing setting. It is ironical that the horrors are taking place along the river that runs so close to a seminary, an establishment that should evoke a powerful sense of God and reverence for life. The characters are sophisticated and readers will learn to honestly hate the villain of the story -- he is well imagined and developed with skill. In a subtle way, the authors allow his crooked mind to reveal itself. Like most serial killers, he is a charmer and an intelligent young man, but beneath the cool surface is a cauldron of simmering evil. Weis and Astor have written a riveting crime tale with strong psychological underpinnings. Death by the River is ingeniously plotted, written in gorgeous prose, and featuring a strong conflict that propels the narrative forward. The suspense intensifies as the story moves on, with the reader always feeling as though something awful could happen at any moment, and this feeling grows in intensity until the explosive climax. A real thriller!" Romuald Dzemo, Readers' Favorite

"A suspense-filled thriller steeped in equal parts atmosphere, insanity, and revenge." Mary Ting, Award-Winning Author of ISAN: International Sensory Assassin Network

"Weis and Astor have created something so dark, edgy, and gritty, it will stay with you long after you close the book." Julieanne Lynch, Dragon Award Finalist: Horror (2018)

"... a crime thriller that pulls readers into the twisted mind of the protagonist and holds them engaged till the exhilarating finish. The writing is flawless ... Death by the River is psychologically engaging, emotionally rich, and utterly absorbing." Christian Sia

Some truths are better kept secret.
Some secrets are better off dead. 

Along the banks of the Bogue Falaya River, sits the abandoned St. Francis Seminary. Beneath a canopy of oaks, blocked from prying eyes, the teens of St. Benedict High gather here on Fridays. The rest of the week belongs to school and family—but weekends belong to the river.

And the river belongs to Beau Devereaux.

The only child of a powerful family, Beau can do no wrong. Handsome. Charming. Intelligent. The star quarterback of the football team. The “prince” of St. Benedict is the ultimate catch.

He is also a psychopath.

A dirty family secret buried for years, Beau’s evil grows unchecked. In the shadows of the ruined St. Francis Abbey, he commits unspeakable acts on his victims and ensures their silence with threats and intimidation. Senior year, Beau sets his sights on his girlfriend’s headstrong twin sister, Leslie, who hates him. Everything he wants but cannot have, she will be his ultimate prize.

As the victim toll mounts, it becomes crystal clear that someone has to stop Beau Devereaux.

And that someone will pay with their life.

WARNING: Readers of Death by the River will encounter situations of violence and sexual abuse which could be upsetting.

Death by the River was born from a nightmare. Lucas Astor has strange dreams. After Alexandrea Weis teamed up with him on the multi-award-winning Magnus Blackwell Series, their agent felt her experience as a nurse with victims of sexual assault could breathe life into the characters who suffer at the hands of the psychologically twisted Beau Devereaux. Weis's understanding of mental health issues also brought to life Beau’s decline into depravity.

FANTASTIC NEWS BOOK NERDS!! We an awesome PROMOTIONAL BLAST for Alexandrea Weis and Lucas Astor's DEATH BY THE RIVER running from now until 11:59pm (PST) on the last day of the blast.

A special promotional price ($4.99) for DEATH BY THE RIVER E-book will be set for the duration of the event. Make sure you get your copy now!

You can purchase Death by the River at the following Retailers:

Photo Content from Alexandrea Weis and Lucas Astor

Alexandrea Weis, RN-CS, CRRN, ONC, PhD, is a multi award-winning author of over twenty-five novels, a screenwriter, ICU Nurse, and historian who was born and raised in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Having grown up in the motion picture industry as the daughter of a director, she learned to tell stories from a different perspective and began writing at the age of eight. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her novels, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story moving and memorable. A permitted/certified wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Weis rescues orphaned and injured animals. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans. Weis writes paranormal, suspense, thrillers, horror, crime fiction, and romance.

Lucas Astor, Lucas Astor is from New York, has resided in Central America and the Middle East, and traveled through Europe. He lives a very private, virtually reclusive lifestyle, preferring to spend time with a close-knit group of friends than be in the spotlight. He is an author and poet with a penchant for telling stories that delve into the dark side of the human psyche. He likes to explore the evil that exists, not just in the world, but right next door behind a smiling face.

Weis and Astor’s first collaboration was the multi-award-winning Magnus Blackwell Series.


*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
a Rafflecopter giveaway

November 29, 2018

Cover Crush: Tiny Infinities by J.H. Diehl

I love book covers! I love walking around Barnes and Noble just looking at all the different covers.  

A good cover will make me pull the book off the shelf!  It's almost like I have a crush on them :)

Today I'm crushin' on:

About the Book:
When Alice's dad moves out, leaving her with her troubled mother, she does the only thing that feels right: she retreats to her family's old Renaissance tent in the backyard, determined to live there until her dad comes home. In an attempt to keep at least one part of her summer from changing, Alice focuses on her quest to swim freestyle fast enough to get on her swim team's record board. But summers contain multitudes, and soon Alice meets an odd new friend, Harriet, whose obsession with the school's science fair is equal only to her conviction that Alice's best stroke is backstroke, not freestyle. Most unexpected of all is an unusual babysitting charge, Piper, who is mute—until Alice hears her speak. A funny and honest middle-grade novel, this sharply observed depiction of family, friendship, and Alice's determination to prove herself—as a babysitter, as a friend, as a daughter, as a person—rings loud and true.

Why I'm crushin':
We have this book in the media center and when it first came it I left it sitting out because it was so pretty.  In real life, it has glittery specks in the dark part towards the top.  Then the green against the dark is so rich and pretty.  I just love it! 

November 15, 2018

Cover Crush: Angel and Bavar by Amy Wilson

I love book covers! I love walking around Barnes and Noble just looking at all the different covers.  

A good cover will make me pull the book off the shelf!  It's almost like I have a crush on them :)

Today I'm crushin' on:

About the Book:
After the death of her parents, Angel has a lot to get used to: a new home, a new family, a new school. The last thing she’s interested in is making new friends. Until she meets Bavar, a strange boy who slips through the shadows, a boy who might understand her nightmares.

But Bavar doesn’t want to let anyone in. Everyone—and everything—in his enchanted house is already urging him to step up and protect the world from a magical rift and the fearsome monsters traveling through it, a responsibility he wishes he could ignore.

Then Bavar discovers that the monsters are the same ones that killed Angel’s parents. Determined to stop the creatures for good, he reluctantly accepts Angel’s help. Together, Angel and Bavar must find the courage to stand up for each other and themselves to repair the rift between worlds…before it’s too late.

Why I'm crushin':
So much is conveyed in this cover.  I can feel the main characters sadness or loneliness.  The way she's standing alone so small just draws me to her and makes me already begin to care about her.  Then the starkness of the rest of the cover - bare branches, dark house, snow - it just sets such a strong mood for the story.  BUT then that spot of sunlight coming out! Love it all. 

November 13, 2018

Graphic Novel Review: DC SuperHero Girls: Search for Atlantis

Title: DC Super Hero Girls: Search for Atlantis
Author: Shea Fontana 

Copy Obtained: From Publishers

About the Book from Goodreads
The team is back and ready to rescue Mera's home in DC Super Hero Girls: Search for Atlantis! 

Things are going swimmingly for new students Mera and Raven until afield trip to Mera’s hometown of Atlantis when they find that the underwater city has vanished! Batgirl, Supergirl, Wonder Woman, Bumblebee, Raven, Miss Martian, and Starfire discover that Atlantis has been shrunk and bottled by the powerful villain Brainiac. This gigantic problem calls for a small solution and to infiltrate Brainiac’s bottled city collection, Bumblebee and Raven combine technology with magic to shrink the heroes. But will they save the lost city of Atlantis or will their little plan lead to even bigger trouble?

Graphic novels are the thing in my media center right now, so I'm always learning for new and different ones.  This one is a good solid one to add to our collection.  Kids will love it, and girls will enjoy one focused on the girl superheroes.  I found it fun even though it was a bit predictable.  I'm not the target audience, and I don't think the target audience will notice that or even care.  The story is fun, has some action and it has a great little message about being proud of who you are.  And I'm sure it will make the reader want to read more in the series.  I think it's one I'd add to our ever-growing collection! And always a bonus that it's not focused on the boy superheroes! 

November 12, 2018

In the Spotlight: New Anne Ursu Book! The Lost Girl

Sometimes I come across a book that, although I haven't read it, it sounds fantastic and I just need to share.  

Today I have that book!

The Lost Girl 

Anne Ursu
Coming out: February 2019

When you’re an identical twin, your story always starts with someone else. For Iris, that means her story starts with Lark. Iris has always been the grounded, capable, and rational one; Lark has been inventive, dreamy, and brilliant—and from their first moments in the world together, they’ve never left each other’s side. Everyone around them realized early on what the two sisters already knew: they had better outcomes when they were together.

When fifth grade arrives, however, it is decided that Iris and Lark should be split into different classrooms, and something breaks in them both. Iris is no longer so confident; Lark retreats into herself as she deals with challenges at school. And at the same time, something strange is happening in the city around them, things both great and small going missing without a trace. As Iris begins to understand that anything can be lost in the blink of an eye, she decides it’s up to her to find a way to keep her sister safe.

I love Anne Ursu.  Love her.  As a person and an author.  I've met her a few times and both times she has been so kind and gracious. I hope she has a signing for when this one comes out! So when I saw she had a new book coming out I was so excited.  I cannot wait for this one to come out, and I knew I needed to share it with you.  

To see more of Anne Ursu check out my posts about her and her books:

November 8, 2018

Audiobook Review: Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman

Title: Book Scavenger
Author: Jennifer Chambliss Bertman
Narrator: Jessica Almasy 

A hidden book. A found cipher. A game begins . . . .

Twelve-year-old Emily is on the move again. Her family is relocating to San Francisco, home of her literary idol: Garrison Griswold, creator of the online sensation Book Scavenger, a game where books are hidden all over the country and clues to find them are revealed through puzzles. But Emily soon learns that Griswold has been attacked and is in a coma, and no one knows anything about the epic new game he had been poised to launch. Then Emily and her new friend James discover an odd book, which they come to believe is from Griswold and leads to a valuable prize. But there are others on the hunt for this book, and Emily and James must race to solve the puzzles Griswold left behind before Griswold's attackers make them their next target.   

One sentence review: For book lovers, this is a fantastic book, but also a great story about leaning into your circumstances. 
Best stick-with-you image: The bookstore that James and Emily visit.  Wish I had one like it near me! 
Thoughts on the audiobook: Very well done.  Lots of voices to differentiate, and she did a great job! 
Final Thoughts: I've been selling this one to all my huge readers knowing they'd love the concept.  They have! 

My 12-year-old self LOVED this book.  It had everything I would've loved as a 12-year-old.  It had books! Lots and lots of books.  And it had a game where you hide and find books! AND it had a mystery.  All those pieces were fantastically fit together to make a fun story that had laughter, tension, mystery and just plain fun.  I've been reading some super serious books lately and it was so great to listen to this book and just have it for enjoyment.  Not to say there wasn't some seriousness in it.  Emily has a learn how to be a good friend, and she's struggling with accepting her families lifestyle.  Her family moves a ton because her parents are on a mission to live in all 50 states.  This had gotten hard on Emily.  So yes some bigger topics, but it's also just fun and enjoyable.  I loved trying to figure out everything with Emily and James.  It really pulled me into the story even more.  I had a few things figured out before them but not all.  

Can I just say that I loved the story part of the story with Emily's brother Matthew? He's pretty cool.  I really liked how he explained to Emily how he came to accept all their moving.  He talked about leaning into the experience and how he realized he'd miss things staying and moving.  It was a great perspective.  Plus I loved his obsession with a band named Flush. 

I did have an issue with the parents moving the kids around so much - especially as they got older.  It seemed selfish.  I will say that was address to my satisfaction.  Thankfully.

Great book that I'll continue to hand sell! 

November 6, 2018

Cover Crush: Tangled in Time: The Portal by Kathryn Lasky

I love book covers! I love walking around Barnes and Noble just looking at all the different covers.  

A good cover will make me pull the book off the shelf!  It's almost like I have a crush on them :)

Today I'm crushin' on:

About the Book:
Life used to be great for Rose: full of friends, a loving mom, and a growing fashion blog.

But when her mother dies in a car crash, Rose is sent away to live with a strange grandmother she hardly knows and forced to attend a new school where mean girls ridicule her at every turn.

The one place Rose finds refuge is in her grandmother’s Tudor-style greenhouse. But one night, she sees a strange light glowing from within it. She climbs a ladder to investigate . . . and finds herself transported back four hundred years to Hatfield Palace, where she becomes servant and confidante of the banished princess Elizabeth, daughter of King Henry VIII. Rose soon discovers something else surprising—a locket with two mysterious images inside it, both of them clues to her own past.

Could her grandmother’s greenhouse portal offer answers to the mysteries of her family . . . and their secrets? And how will she ever unravel them all?

Why I'm crushin':
Have you looked at it??? I think it's clear why I'm crushin' on this one!  It's just so pretty.  I love the colors.  That color green is my favorite.  And then the smaller picture between the two girls - such an amazing detail! And finally the chain tangling the two girls together is so pretty and it really makes me wonder how the whole time travel works.  

November 5, 2018

MGM: Two Books Featured - The Lost Boy's Gift by Kimberly Willis Holt and The Miraculous by Jess Redman

Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday is hosted by Greg 

at Always in the Middle.

As a middle school media specialist, middle-grade books have a very special place in my heart.  I don't always feel they get the recognition they deserve, so I know want to do my part to promote them!For MMGM, on Monday bloggers promote middle-grade books.  For me, that might mean a review or a spotlight.  

To see other middle-grade books, check out Always in the Middle for links! 

Today I'm sharing two new middle-grade books I saw recently.  They both sound so fantastic and the covers are amazing.  I can't wait to get the chance to read them!

First one:

There are places where you want to go and places where you want to leave. There are also places where you want to stay.

Ten-year-old Daniel must move across the country with his mom after his parents’ divorce. He’s leaving behind his whole life—and he’s taking a suitcase of anger with him. But Daniel is in for a surprise when he settles into While-a-Way Lane and meets his new neighbor, Tilda Butter, and many other inhabitants. There are some people who can see into our souls and help make things better. Tilda Butter is that person. And While-a-Way Lane is that curious place where it all happens.

This one is coming out April 2019, so we've got a wait for it.  But I think it sounds so very very good! And that cover.  Just so makes me want to explore the book more!

Second One:

Eleven-year-old Wunder Ellis is a miracologist. In a journal he calls The Miraculous, he records stories of the inexplicable and the extraordinary. These miracles fill Wunder with the feeling that he is not alone, that the world is magical, that he is part of something brighter than he can imagine.

But then his newborn sister dies, at only eight days old. If that can happen, then miracles don’t exist. So Wunder gets rid of The Miraculous. And he stops believing.

Then Wunder meets Faye—a cape-wearing, outspoken girl with losses of her own. Together, they find an abandoned house by the cemetery and the old woman who lives there—and who might be a witch. The old woman asks for Wunder and Faye’s help. She asks them to go through graveyards and forests, to townhalls and police stations, by bike and by train. She asks them to believe. And together, they go on a journey that leads them to friendship, to healing—and to miracles.

We have an even LONGER wait for this one.  It doesn't come out until next June!  But it just sounds amazing and covers a topic not typically cover in middle-grade books.  I will be searching this one out come June.  

What are you thoughts on these two? 

October 30, 2018

Wicked Reads Blog Tour: Why Books are Better than Candy! Plus Highlight On Monstrous Devices by Damien Love @penguinkids #wickedreads

A few weeks ago I was approached by Penguin Young Readers to participate in a super fun blog tour called Wicked Reads. 
They paired candy up with several books.  I picked a candy and got that book. BUT the book was a surprise!  We then post about the book along with other fun material. 
I jumped at the chance to participate because it sounded like so much fun.  

I picked:

And got the book:
On a winter's day in a British town, twelve-year old Alex receives a package in the mail: an old tin robot from his grandfather. "This one is special," says the enclosed note, and when strange events start occurring around him, Alex suspects this small toy is more than special; it might be deadly.

Right as things get out of hand, Alex's grandfather arrives, pulling him away from an attack--and his otherwise humdrum world of friends, bullies, and homework--and into the macabre magic of an ancient family feud. Together, the duo flees across snowy Europe, unraveling the riddle of the little robot while trying to outwit relentless assassins of the human and mechanical kind.

Sounds like a super fun book!

But I have even more fun!  

As great as candy is (and trust me I love it!).
Here is why Books are Better than Candy

  1. First of all, books are calorie free!  Seriously all that fun and no calories!  How could you not be excited about that?!?
  2. Books are sugar-free.  Well ok, they may be sweet at times, but you won't get a real cavity from them! 
  3. You can borrow and return them!  Not so much with candy.  I don't think anyone wants me to borrow their candy and then return it!
  4. Books don't melt in your hands or pockets.  Can you imagine if they did! You'd never ever be able to read outside!
  5. Books can be read over and over.  Candy can't be eaten over and over. Yuck!
  6. Books last longer.  It would take me several hours to read Monstrous Devices and only about 5 minutes to eat a box of Whoppers!
  7. Books show you care more than candy. If my husband gave me a book instead of a bag of candy I would know he was thinking about me more!
  8. You want to share books!  I read a great book - I want to share it! I eat a great candy bar - no way I'm sharing that thing!
  9. No need to brush your teeth after reading a book! Read away!
  10. Lastly - books can take you on great adventures, allow you to meet famous people, let you solve mysteries, and learn new cultures.  Not so sure the last time my Milky Way let all that happen! 
So you tell me - for you why are books better than candy?????

October 29, 2018

In the Spotlight: Nonfiction Inspried by Halloween!

Sometimes I want to post about books that just need to be spotlighted.

In the spotlight today:

Halloween Inspired Nonfiction!

First are two books I've read:

Zombie alert! Meet the real-life monsters of the animal kingdom and explore the gory, gross, and creepy behaviors these creatures have honed in order to survive.
Do monsters really exist? Find out for yourself in this fun-filled book, featuring some real-life wonders of nature: zombifying parasites, bloodsucking vampires, aliens, sea beasts, ghosts, and more. Discover more than 50 creatures with unusual talents, find out what makes each animal tick, and whether they are truly "monsters" after all. Features include eye-popping photography, spine-tingling scientific info, the most up-to-date research, and fun facts for extra knowledge. You'll also meet the "Mad Scientist" experts who study these creatures, explore the creepy origins of their mythical counterparts, and learn how these spooky adaptations help them survive.  

I was sent this one for review and LOVED it.  I love zombies, so reading about real-world examples of zombie-like behavior happening the animal work was so cool! Note - it's all about zombie-like behavior.  It's just lots of other insects/animals that have bizarre and creepy or just plain annoying behavior.  There's a whole spread on mosquitos.  We have so many of them, so that was super interesting to read! 
As usual with the National Geographic books - amazing photographs to completely add to the information.  

Curious kids itching for real-life Indiana Jones-like intrigue will get swept away with the next book in this spine-tingling series about solving puzzles of the past--from whole civilizations that have vanished to mystifying monuments and urban legends.

Fans of Night at the Museum and the Indiana Jones saga will be fascinated by these real-life mysteries: Is there any truth to the legend of Bigfoot? Why have planes and ships suddenly disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle? Is there really a lost city of gold in the jungle of Central America? The next book in this exciting new series will cover even more of history's most fascinating head-scratching conundrums, including the curse of the Hope Diamond, King Tut's tomb, black holes, the puzzling disappearance of ancient civilizations, cryptic creatures of myth and legend, long-lost treasure, and so much more. Kids can dig into these mysteries, uncover clues, and ponder leading scientific theories to help decipher what really happened. Chock-full of cool photos, fun facts, and spooky fun, this book is sure to keep curious kids engaged as they try to piece together these puzzles of the past! 

Ok this book is great! I loved how it was organized.  It gives the background, the details and the theories on different mysterious places and events around the world.  I really liked the Shroud of Turin and Craters in northern Russia.  I think will really enjoy this one as well.  What's great is that can read the whole book or just the stories that interest them! 

Other Halloween Inspired Reads

Love to tell scary stories around the camp fire? Like to solve mysteries? Brave enough to hear the truth about some pretty freaky phenomena? Then cuddle up with this spooky spine-tingler, filled with delightfully frightful true stories of real-life monsters, doomed domains, menacing mysteries, strange disappearances, and so much more.

Meet ghosts, ghouls, and zombies. Go inside haunted houses, hidden graveyards, and deadly secret passages. The Fright-o-meter rates each story for its level of scariness. Full of thrills and chills, this book will have you sleeping with a nightlight for sure. Read if you dare, but don't say we didn't warn you!

Filled with broken hearts and black ravens, Edgar Allan Poe’s ghastly tales have delighted readers for centuries. Born in Boston in 1809, Poe was orphaned at age two. He was soon adopted by a Virginia family who worked as tombstone merchants. In 1827 he enlisted in the Army and subsequently failed out of West Point. His first published story, The Raven, was a huge success, but his joy was overshadowed by the death of his wife. Poe devoted his life to writing and his tragic life often inspired his work. He is considered to be the inventor of detective fiction and the father of American mystery writers. His work continues to influence popular culture through films, music, literature, and television. (less)

This series of books is great!  I love how factual they are at the appropriate level for the intended reader.  My son learned so much reading them.  And what one could be better than this one for Halloween! 

Featuring photos and stories from the world's scariest prisons, discover why prison is to be avoided at all costs!

World's Scariest Prisons will explore the most terrifying prisons of all time. From the Roman Coliseum to the Bastille, the Tower of London to Alcatraz, World's Scariest Prisons will captivate young readers! Each prison will receive its own photo-intensive overview as well as a sidebar, a break out fact box, and a quote. Each prison profile will be followed by a feature spread that explores high-interest topics such as prison slang, prison clothes, and prison food, as well as little known details about kids in prison, famous escapees, and ghost stories. World's Scariest Prisons will be equal parts informative and fun. Perfect for reluctant readers, the text will be simple and engaging.

Lastly, one for the candy we all enjoy on Halloween! 

So there you go! Some great nonfiction inspired by Halloween! 

October 26, 2018

BookNerd Book Blast: The Oracle of Doom by D.J. MacHale +GIVEAAWAY

Check out a book and read your future. . . . It’s another page-turning adventure from #1 New York Times bestselling author D. J. MacHale!

Marcus is an agent of the Library, a place filled with tales that don’t have an ending. Puzzles that won’t be solved until Marcus and his friends step in to finish them. This time it’s their own stories at stake.

Theo just visited the Oracle Baz, an old amusement-park machine that spits out fortunes for the cost of a quarter. Fun, right? The only problem is, the oracle’s cheap predictions have been coming true . . . and Theo’s fortune says that life as he knows it will end on his fourteenth birthday! Plus, Lu’s cousin, who also went to the oracle, is missing.

Marcus knows where to find help for his friends–the Library. It turns out that the Oracle Baz was a real man who died in a fire long ago. Can a glimpse into the fortune-teller’s past change all their futures?  


“MacHale once again pens a page-turner that adds just the right amount of humor.” —Kirkus Reviews


“MacHale deftly pulls readers into this page-turning adventure, well-choreographed chapter transitions defying them to put it down.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Readers who love action and adventure, lightened with a bit of humor, will look forward to meeting Marcus, Lu, and Theo again.” —Shelf Awareness  


D.J. MacHale is a writer, director, executive producer and creator of several popular television series and movies. As an author, his ten-volume book series: Pendragon: Journal of an Adventure Through Time and Space became a New York Times #1 bestseller.

He was raised in Greenwich, CT where he had several jobs including collecting eggs at a poultry farm; engraving trophies and washing dishes in a steakhouse…in between playing football and running track. D.J. graduated from New York University where he received a BFA in film production.

His film-making career began in New York where he worked as a freelance writer/director making corporate videos and television commercials.

D.J. broke into the entertainment business by writing several ABC Afterschool Specials. As co-creator of the popular Nickelodeon series: Are You Afraid of the Dark?, he produced all 91 episodes. D.J. also wrote and directed the movie Tower of Terror for ABC’s Wonderful World of Disney. The Showtime series Chris Cross was co-created, written and produced by D.J. It received the CableAce award for Best Youth Series.

D.J. created and produced the Discovery Kids/NBC television series Flight 29 Down. He wrote every episode and directed several. His work on Flight 29 Down earned him the Writers Guild of America award for Outstanding Children’s Script and a Directors Guild of America award nomination.

In print, D.J. also authored the supernatural Morpheus Road trilogy; a whimsical picture book The Monster Princess; and The SYLO Chronicles, a thrilling sci-fi trilogy. He also wrote Voyagers: Project Alpha, the first of a six-book science fiction adventure.

D.J.’s newest book series is The Library, a spooky middle-grade anthology about a mysterious library filled with unfinished supernatural tales, and the daring young people who must complete them.

D.J. lives in Southern California with his wife Evangeline and daughter Keaton. They are avid backpackers, scuba divers, and skiers. Rounding out the household is a spoiled golden retriever named Casey and an equally spoiled tuxedo cat named Jinx.  



Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter

-3 Winners will receive the Ultimate The Library Swag (Signed Copy of Black Moon Rising, Signed Audio Book of Black Moon Rising and Surrender the Key) from D.J. MacHale.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

October 25, 2018

Nonfiction Review: Food Fight: A Mouthwater History of Who Ate What and Why Through the Ages by Tanya Steel

Title: Food Fight: A Mouthwatering History of Who Ate What and Why Through the Ages
Author: Tanya Steel
Copy Obtained: From publisher

About the Book from Goodreads
Grab your knife and fork and get ready to dig into human history through the lens of food and the struggle to acquire it with award-winning celebrity food editor and author Tanya Steel. This book includes 30 kid-tested and approved recipes inside!

Did you know that Christopher Columbus set out on his most famous voyage in search not of the new world, but cinnamon? Or that rich people in the Middle Ages served flaming peacocks and spun sugar castles to their lucky dinner party guests? Did you ever wonder why M&Ms were invented? (Hint: That candy coating isn't just for decoration!) The quest for food has inspired all kinds of adventures and misadventures around the world, and this book explores the wildest and wackiest of them all, from prehistoric times through modern day.

Hungry readers can go on a finger-licking romp through the ages to discover the origins of today's common foods, yucky habits of yore, marvelous inventions that changed the way we ate and cooked, and the weirdest menus on record. Amazing stats and fast food facts are featured throughout, along with 30 original recipes, each specific to a particular time and place. So, if you are curious about how food shaped global history and culture, put this book on the menu.
One sentence review: Food.  Fights.  History.  Great recipe (yes, yes I did!)
Best for readers who: Love nonfiction and love learning about the unique parts of history. 
Best Stick-with-You Image: Some of the descriptions of historical food.  So different from now! 
Library Thoughts: I already have in the library and kids wanted it before it was even ready to go! 

National Geographic for Kids always does a good job with the books they put out.  This one is no exception.  From the color graphics to interesting facts, it's a book that teaches kids a part of history we don't always think about.  The organization is great and easy to follow, and the pictures just add to the understanding and fun.  I've had several kids already check this book out, and we haven't had it for long.  Our FACS teacher has also checked it out to look at and share as they start to move into their Foods unit.  As I continue to build a nonfiction section that is filled with high-interest books, this book is at the top of the list.  I know it's one that will be checked out a lot! But not just checked out and looked at - also learned from.  And that is what I appreciate - books that pull kids in AND teach them something.  Well done! 

October 24, 2018

Waiting on Wednesday: Other Words for Smoke by Sarah Maria Griffin

There are some books I just can't wait for.  

Here's where I share! 

Due Out:  March 12th, 2019
Years ago, the house at the end of the lane burned down. The townspeople never learned what happened, but Rita Frost and her teenage ward, Bevan, were never seen again. Only Mae and her brother Rossa know the truth of what happened that summer—and they’ll never say a word. When they were told they’d be spending their summer with their great aunt, Mae and Rossa were anything but thrilled. But nothing at Rita’s is as it appears. Bevan is enthralled by a dangerous power lurking behind the walls of Rita’s home. The power—known as Sweet James—is hungry, and what he wants most is a taste of the twins. And Bevan wants the magic and escape that Sweet James is offering her. But Sweet James is never satisfied, no matter what Bevan brings him. Mae would give Bevan almost anything—she is in the grip of first love, both dying for Bevan’s attention and worried she’ll get it. But Rossa is learning some of the terrible secrets the house is hiding, secrets that paralyze him with fear. As the summer draws to a close, Bevan tries to free Sweet James from his prison within the walls, but is thwarted by Rita and her cat (who is more than a cat), Bobby Dear.

Why I'm waiting: 
This sounds like it's got a bit of everything - tension, maybe spooky.  Plus there is some mystery.  A great combination! 
Also - I LOVE this cover!!!!! It's so cool!