Posts Tagged: blog tour

Slayers: Friends and Traitors Blog Tour Kick Off and Author Guest Post

15 Oct, 2013 by in Author Guest Post, Slayers: Friends and Traitors Leave a comment

Happy Book Birthday!
Fire and Ice is thrilled to announce, host and kick off the official blog tour for 
Slayers: Friends and Traitors by C. J. Hill 

Hardcover, 400 pages
Expected publication: October 15th 2013 
by Feiwel & Friends
ISBN 1250024617

The Slayers – teens who have powers to fight dragons—are back by popular demand in this high-octane sequel, now with a new cover package!

Tori is at a White House dinner party when she hears a horrifying sound: dragon eggs hatching. It means in less than a year, the dragons will be mature and dangerous. The Slayers are well-trained, but their group is not yet complete, and Tori is determined to track down Ryker Davis, the mysterious Slayer who has yet to surface.

What Tori doesn’t bargain for, however, is the surprising truth about her powers: she isn’t a Slayer after all, but a Dragon Lord, with a built-in predisposition to protect dragons, not kill them.

How will she overcome this to save the lives of her friends?

Today we have author C. J . Hill on the site to talk about…

The accidental love triangle
I didn’t mean to have a love triangle in Slayers. It’s not that I don’t like love triangles—as I reader, I think they can be great. If I’m living vicariously through the heroine, why shouldn’t two hot, awesome guys be fighting over me?
As a writer though, I hate them. I get involved with my characters and I care about them too much. When you create a love triangle, you’re going to break someone’s heart in the end. I hate that. I don’t want to devastate either Dirk or Jesse. They’re both great guys in their own way. 


This is how the love triangle happened:  I said Dirk looked like Dirk Benedict. Those of you who are old enough to have watched Dirk Benedict in either of his hit shows (Battlestar Galactica and The A-team) know that the man had irresistible charisma, charm, and good looks. Which is why you should never put him in a book as the hero’s friend. He will hit on the heroine, and she won’t be able to resist him. (Can you blame her, really? No, no you can’t.)
When I started the scene in Slayers where Dirk and Tori discover they’re counterparts, I hadn’t planned on having them kiss—but yeah, Dirk will be Dirk. It changed the whole dynamic of the series.
This might not have been such a bad thing, except when my teenage daughter read the book, she insisted that Tori should end up with Dirk instead of Jesse.  As I wrote Slayers: Friends and Traitors I realized my daughter might have a point. To tell you the truth, at this point, I don’t know who she’ll end up with. I guess we’ll all have to read book three when it comes out to see.


Author Bio: Janette Rallison (AKA C.J. Hill) writes books because writing is much more fun than cleaning

bathrooms.  Her avoidance of housework has led her to writing 20 novels that have sold over 1,000,000 copies. Most of her books are romantic comedies or action because hey, there is enough angst in real life, but there’s a drastic shortage of humor, romance, and hot guys who fight dragons.  Her latest series is Slayers. Booklist called it, “More than a worthy equal of the works of Rick Riordan or Christopher Paolini.”
Janette lives in Chandler, Arizona with her husband, five kids, and enough cats to classify her as eccentric.

Learn more: Book site/ Goodreads/ Author website/ Author Blog /Twitter/ Facebook

Visit all the stops on the Slayers: Friends and Traitors blog tour hosted by Fire and Ice

Heather at Fire and Ice– October 15- Guest Post
Taffy Lovell– October 16- Review and Interview
Elana Johnson– October 17- Interview
Rebecca Lamoureaux– October 18- Interview
Heidi at Geo Librarian– October 19- Review
Robin Ambrose-October 20- Character Interview
Rachel at Fiktshun- October 21- Guest Post
Kathy at I’m A Reader– October 22- Guest Post
Shanda at LDSWBR– October 23- Review
Kathryn at Clean Teen Fiction– October 24- Review and Character Interview
Sheila Staley- Why Not? Because I Said So!- October 25- Review
Heidi at YA Bibliophile– October 26- Guest Post, Tens List
Cindy Bennett– October 27- Excerpt
Tressa at Tressa’s Wishful Endings- October 28- Review
Tamera at Being a Mom and Loving It– October 29- Guest Post
Mindy Holt- Min Reads and Reviews– October 30- Review
Kelly at Kindle and Me– October 31-Guest Post
Elizabeth at Elizabeth’s Book Reviews– November 1-Review
Aimee Brown at Getting Your Read On- November 1- Review
Mindy from Magical Urban Fantasy Reads– November 2- Character Interview
Amber at Me, My Shelf and I– November 3- Guest Post

Pre- Order

Author Interview and Giveaway with Tonya Olsen- {Room Recipes} Blog Tour

07 Oct, 2013 by in author interview, giveaway, plain sight, Room Recipes, Tonya Olsen 5 comments

Fire and Ice is pleased to have author Tonya Olsen on the site today as part of the Cedar Fort Blog Tour for

Room Recipes: A Creative and Stylish Guide to Interior Design
by Tonya Olsen
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published September 24th 2013
by Plain Sight
ISBN 1462112560

From exciting entryways to DIY dining rooms, professional interior designer Tonya Olsen has just the right recipes to make every room in your home a showstopper. Room Recipes: A Creative and Stylish Guide to Interior Design is the ultimate resource for homeowners looking to spice things up or decorate a space from scratch. Inside this guide you’ll find: eye-catching examples of beautiful, budget-friendly designs, step-by-step instructions to recreate even the most elaborate rooms, palettes that break each room into individual patterns, colors, and textures


Create a kitchen or whip up a washroom with these no-fail design formulas and transform your house into your dream home, one room at a time.

We have Tonya here on site to answer a few questions in our exclusive interview…

Tell us about the process that led you to decorating and being an author.

I have always, always enjoyed interior design. On my blog, myroomrecipes.com, I talk about my first design project, my bedroom, when I was 8. My parents always let me decorate my bedroom and eventually relied on my direction for decorating the whole house. I had second thoughts about interior design when I was in college because I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to make a living at it. So, I got my undergraduate degree in public relations and got a “safe” 9-5 office job with a steady paycheck, benefits and a 401K. I was miserable! After getting married, I was able to go back to school and get my Master’s degree in Interior Design, and I have never looked back. It’s interesting how life works out because my degree in public relations, which requires a large amount of writing, came to benefit me when I was approached by my publisher, Cedar Fort, to write a book.


Do you draw inspiration from any other cultures or influences?

I draw inspiration from everything! People, places, things. My mind is constantly processing what I see, feel, and hear which eventually becomes part of my design. I grew up in the midwest (Minnesota and Oklahoma), so my style is a little bit different than most in Utah. My friends in Oklahoma are pretty eclectic and incorporate a lot of unique finds into their interiors. That’s why I wanted to include some spaces from my home state.

Ten must read books
( I LOVE to read, so bare with me… these are in no particular order)

Design Books:
1. Design Sponge at Home by Grace Bonney
2. Domino the Book of Decorating
3. The Not So Big House by Sarah Susanka (and all books in her collection)
4. Young House Love by Sherry and John Petersik
5. Decorate by Becker and Copestick
6. Life’s Too Short to Fold Fitted Sheets by Lisa Quinn
7. Better Homes and Gardens New Decorating Book
8. Good Bones, Great Pieces by Suzanne and Lauren McGrath
9. Pottery Barn series of books
10. Handbuilt Home by Ana White

Books in General:
1. I Knew Their Hearts by Jeff Olsen (my husband)
2. The Gift of Change by Marianne Williamson
3. The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani
4. The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman
5. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
6. Heaven is Here: An Incredible Story of Hope, Triumph, and Everyday Joy by Stephanie Nielson
7. The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom
8. Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks
9. Room by Emma Donoghue
10. These is My Words by Nancy E. Turner

Have any events, signing or store open houses coming up?

Yes! Next Thursday, Oct. 10 from 6-8 pm, Main Street in Bountiful is hosting an event called Shop Local, Save the Girls. It’s a fundraiser event for breast cancer awareness. Our store, LIV Showroom, will specifically be holding my Room Recipes book launch and signing, a huge floor model sale, and, drumroll please, the Waffle Love truck will be in front of our store from 5-9 pm!

What’s your favorite season and why?

Summer is my favorite season. I love the sun, heat and warmth! It’s a non-fussy time of year to decorate. Life is more laid-back. My home always feels open and clean. Guests casually come and go. Fall and Winter feel so suffocating. It’s cold. There’s pressure to decorate for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. I don’t like dragging temporary decor out and then having to clean it all up and put it away.

So far, what has been the most rewarding part of being an author?

Technically I’ve only been an author for a few weeks since my book has only been available since then! I’ve gotten some really nice comments and feedback via email and other book reviews, so that’s always nice. I’m glad people are able to find inspiration from my book.

What recommendations would you give a first time home decorator?

Use what you have, recycle, DIY and don’t get stressed out about it. Decorating should be fun and your space should reflect your personality. When I was in college, I decorated every apartment I lived in with hand-me-downs and DIY projects. I was creative with my limited budget. Design doesn’t have to be expensive and high-end.

How do you balance writing, working and family life?

Ugh! Good question! I’m still sorting that out. I’m very, very busy. We had the pleasure of hosting two teenage girls from England for three months while I wrote my book. They were able to assist with my boys, my house and even with projects in the book. My boys are a little older, so it’s a bit easier. My husband is super supportive of everything I do. Plus, I wake up at 5 am to get started on my day!

Favorite recipe?

My husband makes the most awesome chili. He actually named it Jeff’s Famous Chili. Anyone who has ever used it in a chili cook off has won! It’s so good! Let me know if you’re interested 😉

Meet the Author: Tonya Olsen has always had a passion for designing charming, budget-friendly rooms and projects. She loves to combine traditional interior design principles with personal, do-it-yourself flair. Tonya shares ownership of LIV Showroom, a full-service interior design firm and retail showroom, and holds a master’s degree in interior design. She is also the lead interior designer for Utah homebuilder, Rainey Homes. Tonya has over 20 years of professional design experience, bargain shopping fortitude, and do-it-yourself gumption. She spends her spare time gleaning inspiration from interior design books, magazines, blogs, and websites. Tonya and her husband have three boys and live in their recently renovated home in Bountiful, Utah.

Find Tonya on twitter/ instagram/ pinterest/ facebook/ website

Purchase Room Recipes


The Giveaway: One e copy of Room Recipes. To enter fill our the rafflecopter form below.

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Unbreakable by Kami Garcia~ Blog Tour, Top Ten and Giveaway

03 Oct, 2013 by in unbreakable Leave a comment

Fire and Ice welcomes Kami Garcia to the site today as part of the official blog tour for Unbreakable:The Legion Book One. Tour arranged by Fangirlish.

Kami is here with us to share two Top 5 lists and an awesome prize pack giveaway.

Kami Garcia’s Top 5
Urban Legends

1) The Clown Statue – A babysitter is freaked out by a family’s clown statue. When the parents call to check on the kids, she mentions it. They tell the babysitter that they don’t have a clown statue. In some versions, she leaves the house and learns that a midget has been killing people. In other versions, he kills her. * Another reason not to fill your house with creepy clown statues.

2) The Jersey Devil – Believed to be the abandoned child of a witch and the devil himself, the legendary creature is often described as having the head of a goat and bat-like wings. In the Pine Barrens of New Jersey, people claim to hear his blood-curdling cries.

3) Bloody Mary – I love this one because I think every elementary school kid has been dared to do this at one time or another. According to the legend, if you turn off the lights, face a mirror, and say, “Bloody Mary” three times, you will call up the ghost of a woman persecuted for witchcraft. In some versions, Mary’s ghost will kill the offender.

4) Vanishing Hitchhiker — A man picks up a woman hitchhiking on a deserted road. When they get to the address she gave him, he looks in the backseat and she’s gone.

5) Alligator in the Sewer – In one popular version of the story, a couple returns from Florida or Louisiana with baby alligators. Eventually, the gators get too big, and the couple flushes them down the toilet, Of course, the gators survive and thrive in the sewer, where they reproduce and  eat sewer workers.

Kami Garcia’s Top 5
Haunted Places

West Virginia State Penitentiary in Moundsville, West Virginia – Between the men executed in the “Old Sparky,” the prison’s electric chair, to the deaths from illness and torture, Moundsville is a breeding ground for paranormal activity. The Ghost Hunters even investigated the site. Open for guided tours. The prison is featured in Unbreakable.

The Sultan’s Palace in New Orleans, Louisiana – The house was owned by a sultan, who forced a harem of women and young boys to live their against their will, subjecting them to torture and his sadistic whims. Even more sinister was the way he died—buried alive in the yard, his wives and harem murdered. Visitors believes he haunts the residence.

Bell Witch House in Adams, Tennessee – Want to wake up with a few bruises or take a nap with thousands of cockroaches? That’s what happened to the Bell family when the Bell Witch haunted and terrorized them 1817-1822.  The Bell farm was located on the Trail of Tears, the route taken by the Cherokee, Seminole, Creek, and Choctaw tribes when they were forcibly relocated to Oklahoma by the US government. Tours are available.

Lilburn Mansion in Ellicott City, Maryland – The ghost of a girl in a chiffon dress, swinging chandeliers, and heavy footsteps in the tower are what homeowners can expect from Lilburn Mansion. The house was originally built in 1847 by iron trader Henry Hazelhurst, whose wife and daughter died there. Frequent hauntings were reported after a fire destroyed the Gothic tower, and the new owners rebuilt the tower in a different architectural style. Ghosts hate construction—and change. The house is featured in Unbreakable.

Winchester Mansion in San Jose, California – Want to wander through a labyrinth of rooms and hallways that often dead-end at brick walls? Once the residence of Winchester rifle heiress, Sarah Winchester, the Victorian house was under constant construction around the clock, from 1884 until 1922. Today it’s a tourist attraction.

Official Bio: Kami Garcia is the #1 New York Times & international bestselling coauthor of the Beautiful
Creatures Series and the author of UNBREAKABLE, the first book in the Legion Series, releasing on October 1, 2013.

 Kami is fascinated by the paranormal, and she’s very superstitious. When she isn’t writing, she can usually be found watching disaster movies, listening to Soundgarden, or drinking Diet Coke. She lives in Maryland with her family, and their dogs Spike and Oz (named after characters from the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

Lean more about Kami: Official Website/  Facebook 
Twitter: @kamigarcia
Tumblr: kamigarcia.tumblr.com

The Legion Series
Official Website/ Facebook
Twitter: @TheLegionSeries
Tumblr: thelegionseries.tumblr.com

As part of the blog tour there is a huge Unbreakable prize pack giveaway! To enter fill out the rafflecopter form below.

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Deliberate Motherhood by The Power of Moms- Blog Tour and Book Review

23 Sep, 2013 by in book review, The Power of Moms- 4 comments

Deliberate Motherhood: 12 Key Powers of Peace, Purpose, Order & Joy
by The Power of Moms
Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 1st 2013
by Familius
Non- fiction, Parenting
ISBN 1938301900
Book Source: Publicist
4 stars

Book Summary: The outstanding authors of Deliberate Motherhood have let the trials and hardships of motherhood mold them into better people. Whether the change includes learning patience when the two-year-old “paints” your walls with the black permanent marker or forgiving a teenager who screams “I hate you,” or loving more when that naughty child doesn’t really deserve it, it’s a change that refines us—or as the dictionary describes it, “removes impurities, makes something more effective or become more elegant.” That is powerful!

You may think that everything has been said about motherhood, but the delightful thing about Deliberate Motherhood is that every mother/author is one-of-a-kind. They each come from different backgrounds, have different parents, are married (or not) to different people, and certainly have “different” children.

Each of the 12 “Powers” provided in this book is a crucial component to help you in your motherhood. And the best part is that you don’t need to do it all at once. You can focus on one “power” a month, and over the course of a year, you’ll see great changes in yourself and in your family. The mark of a great book is that it makes you think . . . and it helps you change . . . which in the case of this book, is an absolute guarantee!

Review: My first contact with the Power of Moms came about three years ago when a woman in  my neighborhood invited me to join her learning circle– a group where women get together once a month, read an article and discuss their hopes, challenges and goals in motherhood. Over that year, I became more socially anxious and found that meeting together in a group wasn’t working for me at that time of life. We had another baby, adding number five to our family, and just this year decided to pick up the learning circles again and give it another shot. About the same time I was contacted by BookSparksPR to do a blog tour and review for a new book on motherhood published by the same group that puts on the learning circles. For some, reading a book or going online feels more comfortable than an in home gathering. So this book, Deliberate Motherhood is a great resource to put on the shelves of all women across the world “whose hands rock the cradle.”

Deliberate Motherhood explores 12 “Powers,” starting off with a large written section, family photos and blog links by each chapter author, and ending with personal stories from a variety of mothers. The chapter authors were most interesting to me as they had more time to fully explore acceptance, love, patience, balance. I most enjoyed the specific examples like what traditions they’ve found fun and how they’ve learned to find joy in the sometimes mundane tasks of everyday mothering.

This is a “take it a bit at a time kind of book”, rather than a “sit down and read it all in one day type of book.” I’d say leave it on your night stand or near a couch where you can refer to it often and soak in the principles one by one.

After reading Deliberate Motherhood, I found myself longing for more audio, visual content which can be found on the Power of Moms site. They have podcasts, instructional videos and a ton of material to choose from. The learning circles and retreats are wonderful for moms who like to be social and get out there to meet these wonderful women in person. But, had I not known where to look, (there is one referral sentence in the book’s conclusion), I wouldn’t have found it easily referenced through invitations to engage in the POM resources within the book. Would love to see some interactive QR codes with inspirational or life story links in the next publication.

Overall, I came away with a lot to think about and ponder. I looked up a few of the mother’s blogs to read more, but mostly turned to introspection…time thinking and praying about what needs to change and stay the same in our home.

My favorite quote from the book :  “Although I’m still resistant to change and not as flexible as I would like to be, I am a different mom than I was ten years ago. I’m different today because I have a different attitude toward parenting. Where I once sought control, now I seek to influence. Where I once thought I should intuitively have all the answers, I now realize I am still learning and ask for help when I get stuck. And where I once cared how others viewed me in my role, now I parent for my children and not the approval of other people…Today I know I’m a good mom.” Rachelle Szymanski

Thanks so much to Book Sparks PR for inviting me to be a part of the blog tour!

If you’d like to attend a bookish event for Deliberate Motherhood, check out at The King’s English book shoppe, October 24, 2013 at 7 PM.

                     

Giveaway:  For anyone who purchases the book in September and sends their receipt (or an email acknowledging purchase) to dm@powerofmoms.com, they’ll receive complimentary access to the Deliberate Mothering Podcast series (valued at $20). 

Also, on October 4th, 10 Grand Prize Winners will be selected to receive the Power of Moms Premium Package (valued at $224)! 

See the POM Store for all the fabulous programs in the Premium Package. For all the information on this special giveaway, visit here.


Learn more on The Power of Moms Website / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest

Purchase:


Fight For You by Misty Moncur Blog Tour, Review and Giveaway

19 Sep, 2013 by in book review, giveaway, misty moncur, ya Leave a comment

Fire and Ice is thrilled to be today’s blog stop for

Fight For You 
A Stripling Warrior Novel, #2 by Misty Moncur 
Kindle Edition, 265 pages Published August 31st 2013 
by Eden Books ASINB00EX0VQTM
Book source: author Age: YA
Genre: Historical fiction, romance
5 stars

Keturah fought her way into the army, but now she’s in Judea building fortifications, and the only thing she’s fought so far is boredom. The work is hard, and the other soldiers don’t think she can pull her weight. Her brothers are becoming strangers, and Zeke’s jealousy is getting worse – because Keturah is falling in love with the wrong warr


But she’s not about to let cruel pranks and hurt feelings keep her from doing what she knows to be right. She completes every order with faithfulness – a hasty retreat from the Lamanite army, a spy mission into the enemy stronghold, a midnight assassination. From burying the dead to whiling away hours on guard duty, Keturah will do whatever it takes to protect her religion, her freedom, her peace, and her family.

But in a camp of two thousand boys, the most important thing she has to protect is her heart.

Fight For You is the second novel in Misty Moncur’s Stripling Warrior series. Fall in love with these romantic novels set against a vivid Book of Mormon backdrop.


Review: 
Wow. Misty Moncur knows how to write! The second book in her Stripling Warrior Series is unforgettable. I’ve read over the war chapter in the Book of Mormon, I know the stories, but never have I seen them come to life in vivid color with emotions, romance and action. 

Keturah has entered the band of stripling warriors, boys ages 12-18 who are fighting for the liberty of their fathers, children, homes and religion. Kit is is a daughter of Helaman, the only female to join the ranks. And this is no longer training with Gideon in the forest or sparring with her camp…this is the real battlefield and the ravages of war. Amongst the action there are moments of clarity and faith that stirred the Spirit within me and made me so grateful for the fortitude of leaders like Gideon. Men who not only led and loved, but who also knelt in prayer before going out to meet the enemy. They did not doubt their God would deliver them and angels sent to fight beside them.

There are stolen moments of a love that is deepening and blooming like a moon flower.The tension is perfect. Kit has some hard decisions to make. Is she meant to be here? Will the man she loves return the commitment as a husband? And, will Zeke forgive her, can she accept the loyalty and attention of her childhood friend? 

I enjoyed the idea of healers who used herbs and the things of the earth traveling with the army to help. 

Wishing book three, which is due to be released in November were out today so I could keep reading. I’ll be passing the Stripling Warrior series on to my children and family. And, I will never read about the Title of Liberty or Helaman’s army the same again. 

Content: moderate war related violence, kissing 

About the Author: Misty Moncur wanted to be Indiana Jones when she grew up. Instead, she became an author and has her adventures at home. In her jammies. With her imagination. And pens that she keeps running dry.

Misty lives in a marsh near a very salty lake in Utah with her husband and children, where they cuddle up in the evenings and read their Kindles. Well, she does anyway.

Connect with Misty at the links below.

Visit Misty’s blog
Like The Stripling Warrior Series
Connect with Misty on Goodreads
Follow Misty on Twitter
Follow Misty on Wattpad

Purchase books one and two in the series:




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Deseret Book Blog Tour- Through Cloud and Sunshine by Dean Hughes

12 Aug, 2013 by in Through Cloud and Sunshine Leave a comment

Through Cloud and Sunshine
Come to Zion Volume #2
by Dean Hughes
Hardcover, 328 Pages
Published June 13, 2013
by Deseret Book
Book Source: publisher
Adult
Religious Fiction
4 stars

Book summary from Goodreads: Nauvoo was supposed to be the kingdom of God on earth, but Will and Liz Lewis are learning that it takes more than dreaming of Zion to make it a reality. Sickness, poverty, and just plain human nature add to the struggles for the Lord’s people, but every now and then a glimpse of heaven shines through. Just when things are starting to get settled, though, the old problems start rearing their heads, leaving Will and others wondering if they will be there to reap the harvest they have so carefully sown.

Meanwhile, Jeff and Abby—in modern-day Nauvoo—are dealing with challenges of their own. As their newborn baby fights for his life, they must come to grips with their personal faith. Can they, like their ancestors, continue to trust in God when there seems to be no trace of Him in their trials?

Beloved novelist Dean Hughes skillfully interweaves the stories of two couples separated by five generations and 150 years, providing a unique perspective on Church history and showing how much we can learn from those who went before us.


ReviewLiz and Will Lewis dream and hope for Zion, the gathering place of their followers and a warm nice, place to call home. Expecting their first child, father, Will feels he must make his promise to Liz’s family to build  her up a good home must be realized. But life in Nauvoo is hard, with land to be tilled and crops to be planted. And Liz, well with child feels she is seeing less and less of her husband and he works day and night. The moist land makes a breeding ground for disease and resentment. 

Volume two of Come to Zion, picks up right where book one left off, with a great synopsis in the first chapter for readers who haven’t had a chance to read the first in the series.  It is again written in dual perspective between two families, one living in the present day as descendants to another living in the historical time period of Joseph Smith.

Dean Hughes does a wonderful job of reminding us that Zion may not be a place, but rather a feeling and a hope as he outlines life in Nauvoo. There are ill feeling amongst neighbors, political unrest and rumor, as well as increasing religious intolerance. Each family struggles with their own trials of infant mortality and trying to make ends meet. Some arrive  to Zion with only the belongings they could bring from their own countries and no money or house to call their own.

I love the research Mr. Hughes puts in to all his book as well as the detail. He lived in Nauvoo, so is familiar with the streets, the shops and feel of the land. If you like historical fiction  you will love this series and I recommend Come to Zion volumes 1-2 to any who want to feel they are right there in the time and place of our early American Saints.
                                      

About the Author: Dean Hughes is the author of more than eighty books for young readers, including the popular sports series Angel Park All-Stars, the Scrappers series, the Nutty series, the widely acclaimed companion novels Family Pose and Team Picture, and Search and Destroy. Soldier Boys was selected for the 2001 New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age list. Dean Hughes and his wife, Kathleen, have three children and six grandchildren. They live in Midway, Utah.

Find out more about author Dean Hughes: Goodreads

Emma: A Latter- Day Tale by Rebecca H. Jamison Blog Tour

07 Aug, 2013 by in Rebecca H. Jamison 3 comments



Fire and Ice welcomes Emma: A Latter- Day Tale today for the official blog tour, an author guest post, excerpt and giveaway.


Why I Wrote about a Life Coach
A Guest Post by Rebecca H. Jamison

When I decided to write a book based on Jane Austen’s Emma, I knew right away that the Jane Fairfax character was going to be a country singer and that Emma hated country music. I did a lot of brainstorming while I was on vacation in Virginia, walking in the same neighborhood where Emma lives in my book. On one of these walks, my husband suggested that Emma should be a life coach. That made sense to me. At heart, Emma’s someone who wants to help others.

Coaches aren’t just for athletes any more. Average Americans are using coaches to help them with relationships, weight loss, career development, and many other areas. I have a health coach through my insurance company who helped me lose 30 pounds. I also subscribe to motivational e-mails from other coaches, who help me with other goals. 

In the beginning of the book, Emma isn’t anything like my coaches. She’s an embarrassment to the profession of coaching. She has such great intentions, but every time she tries to help someone, she makes the situation worse. I think we’ve all felt like that at times. Emma has to learn that it’s okay to be imperfect. Just because you make a mistake doesn’t mean you can’t improve and do a better job next time. While I wrote the book, I researched how to become a successful life coach, so that by the end of the book, Emma starts to get it right.

My coaches have helped me meet my personal goals to lose weight and become a writer. They gave me a more positive outlook on life, and that’s what I hope my book does for readers. Emma’s life isn’t perfect, but she learns to be positive anyway.


Rebecca H. Jamison Biography


Looking for love? Rebecca H. Jamison would love to set you up with that special someone, but you’re better off reading her books. She has a terrible track record as a matchmaker.


Rebecca grew up in Virginia. She attended Brigham Young University, where she earned a BA and MA in English with an emphasis in creative writing. In between college and graduate school, she served a mission to Portugal and Cape Verde.


Rebecca enjoys running, dancing, reading, and watching detective shows. She and her husband have six children. You can learn more about her on her website.



Emma: A Latter-day Tale

by Rebecca H. Jamison
Published by Cedar Fort Books
ISBN: 9781462112609
256 pages

Emma’s her name and matchmaking is her game! Quirky life coach Emma wants to help her first-ever client, a lonely nanny named Harriet. But all of her attempts at matchmaking result only in embarrassing miscues and blunders, leaving the pair disheartened and confused. This modern take on the Jane Austen classic shows that sometimes the greatest match is the one we make for ourselves.

Fans of Jane Austen’s Emma will love this modern retelling of the classic romance novel. Fall in love with Emma’s latter-day tale of redemption, forgiveness, and the quest for true love.


Excerpt:

It was amazing how much more snow Phil could pick up with his shovel than I could with mine. He cleared three feet of the driveway before I was done with one.
“When we’re done, if you have time, you should come in and meet Harri. I think you two will get along.”
Phil stopped and looked at his watch. “I’m planning to do a couple more driveways before it gets dark.”
“I’ll go get Harri now if you’re in a hurry. She wants to meet you.”
Phil leaned on his shovel. “Harry is a she?”
“Her real name is Harriet. She moved here a couple months ago and she’s hardly met anybody. I think you’ll like her.”
Phil threw his head back, laughed, and started shoveling again. “I thought you were trying to introduce me to your new boyfriend.”
“You think I would be out here shoveling snow while my new boyfriend stays inside?” I grabbed a handful of snow and threw it at him. I didn’t mean to hit him in the face, but that’s where it landed.
Phil wiped the snow off his face and grinned. “I wondered why you were dating such a loser.” I expected him to throw a snowball at me, but he just stood there. “So you don’t have a boyfriend?”
I giggled a little at his awkwardness. “Nope. Harri doesn’t either.”
Phil threw another shovelful of snow away from the driveway. “So you . . . I mean, you and your friend are . . . available?” Phil didn’t open his mouth enough when he talked. That was the one thing about him that always distracted me. I couldn’t help staring at his mouth.
I had to force myself to look into his eyes. “Why is that a shock, Phil? Every woman in that house right now is available. You can take your pick—Harri, me, or Barbara. You’re surrounded by single women.” It was safe to assume Phil wouldn’t pick me. I was at least three inches taller than he was, and it was a rare man who dated a taller woman.


The Giveaway: Cedar Fort is giving away an ebook of Emma: A Latter-Day Tale to one lucky Fire and Ice reader. Winners can choose among PDF, Kindle, and Nook formats. 

The winner will have 2 weeks to download the e-book from the Cedar Fort website.


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Shadow Mountain Blog Tour- The Mark of a Giant by Ted Stewart

25 Jul, 2013 by in Ted Stewart, The Mark of a Giant Leave a comment

The Mark of a Giant: Seven People Who Changed the World
by 
Hardcover262 pages

ISBN 1609071816 
Genre: Non- Fiction
Book Source : BEA
4 stars
Summary: Throughout the course of history, civilization has been blessed by strong-minded men and women who have impacted our world in extraordinary ways. Their imprint upon humanity is beyond dispute. And many would contend that they were no less than the result of Divine Providence—a gift of God to the human race. Who are these individuals? What is it about these few that make them different? Were they merely in the right place at the right time? Or were they somehow chosen? 

Review: To the reader who likes to sit down and digest small bits of history, this is  the perfect introduction to seven people who left a huge footprint. The author chooses Abraham of Ur, Pericles, the Apostle Paul, Sir Isaac Newton, Marie Curie, Martin Luther King Jr., and Mother Teresa and gives a biography as well as turning points in their lives. He opens us up to the philosophies they held that changed society.

In particular, I enjoyed the chapter on Abraham of Ur who rejected the teachings of his father and adopted monotheism as opposed to idolatry. Who had enough faith in his God that he was willing to sacrifice all he held dear, and who was given the opportunity to be a father of many nations.


I’ve always been a follower of Mother Theresa.  I had no idea she was born as Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu in Serbia, or that her Catholic faith was a minority religion in her country. Hearing how she was raised by a mother of greatness and some of the teachings in her childhood home really filled in the gaps of how she became such a world force.

 “When you do good, do it quietly, as if you were throwing a stone into the sea.” p.209 

Mother Theresa’s own mother, no doubt, had a great role in molding her into the selfless woman of God she became. 

I learned a great deal about the giants Ted Stewart picked! I would recommend reading this book a little at a time and pondering how the lessons these giants taught can be folded into our own life.

This book is about history. More specifically,it is a book about how strong-minded men and women have changed the course of history.” – introduction, page 1

Content: clean

Read Chapter one at Deseret Book.com here


About the Author: Ted Stewart was appointed as a United States District Court Judge in 1999 by President Bill Clinton. Prior to that, he served as chief of staff to Governor Michael O. Leavitt, as executive director of the State Department of Natural Resources, as a member and chairman of the Public Service Commission, and as chief of staff to Congressman Jim Hansen. He has been a visiting professor at two state universities, teaching courses in law and public policy. He is the New York Times bestselling author ofThe Miracle of Freedom: 7 Tipping Points that Saved the World.

Heaven’s Just A Prayer Away by Diony George- Blog Tour and Giveaway

24 Jul, 2013 by in giveaway 1 comment

Fire and Ice is pleased to have a chance to give away Diony George’s newest book as part of the official blog tour today! 

Heaven's Just a Prayer AwayHeaven’s Just A Prayer Away 
by Diony George
Paperback, 89 pages
Published July 9, 213
by Cedar Fort
ISBN 1462111890 

Sometimes we wonder how, with so many people on earth, we matter to God. Like birdsongs in a city of sounds, answers to our prayers are easy to miss—unless we’re listening. Through inspiring personal stories, scripture, and prose, Heaven’s Just A Prayer Away answers many questions about communicating with and drawing closer to Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven.

“Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let they heart be full of thanks unto God.” –Alma 37:37

Before we came to earth, we lived in heavenly realms. We knew our Heavenly Father. We walked and talked with Him. We heard His voice. We felt His love. In Heaven’s Just a Prayer Away, beloved author Diony George teaches us how to reestablish that relationship with Him here on earth.

With the help of this book you will:
• Learn that nothing is too small or unimportant to discuss with Heavenly Father
• Find peace and contentment through daily communication with God
• Gain a better understanding of why some prayers seem to go unanswered
• Develop a greater knowledge of the power of prayer
The inspirational and enlightening experiences found within these pages will change your life forever by strengthening your relationship with God and filling your life with peace, teaching us that heaven really is just a prayer away.

Praise for Heaven’s Just A Prayer Away:

Heaven’s Just a Prayer Away is a sweet, heartfelt book with author Diony George’s personal experiences intermixed with compelling stories about how prayer can shape our lives. I found myself either smiling or teary-eyed as I immersed myself in the stories, reminded that prayer is healing and sanctifying, prayer can bring inspiration, prayer can ease burdens, and prayer lets us feel the love of God for ourselves and those around us.
Heather B. Moore, author of Christ’s Gifts to Women


“In Heaven’s Just a Prayer Away, Diony provides a comprehensive discussion on prayer through inspiring stories, basic principles, and heartfelt testimony. Her personal approach makes answers to prayer and divine blessings seem more within reach.”

—John McConkie, stake president

184479_10200378155639170_1271385062_n.jpgMeet the Author:Diony George is a wife, stay-at-home mom of seven, grandmother of three, motivational speaker, and the author of four books. Through her writing and public speaking she loves helping others draw closer to God. An avid reader whose favorite genre is romantic suspense, Diony also loves to travel, sew, and bake—especially pies and homemade bread. Born and raised in Alaska, she currently resides in Salt Lake City with her husband and family. Mrs. George can be reached through her personal website at http://www.dionygeorge.com

Purchase at: This is the Place LDS Superstore AmazonBarnes and Noble

As part of the blog tour we are giving away on paperback copy to one lucky reader! Fill out the rafflecopter form below to be entered.

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Penumbras by Braden Bell- Blog Tour, Review and Giveaway

23 Jul, 2013 by in Penumbras, review 2 comments

Fire and Ice is thrilled to be today’s blog tour stop for Braden Bell’s Penumbras, sequel to The Kindling.

Penumbras 
Middle School Magic #2
by Braden Bell
Paperback, 304 pages
Published July 9, 2013
by Sweetwater Books
ISBN 146211220X
Genre: Fantasy
Age: Middle Grade
Book Source: Author
4 Stars

Book Summary: Conner Dell didn’t meant to blow up the school bus.

Or the bathrooms.

In fact, he only wanted to go to sleep and possibly dream about Melanie Stephens.

But explosions had a funny way of happening when Conner and his friends were around.


Conner Dell wants to be good–he really does. But he is terrified that he might be turning into a Darkhand, especially when new powers start to surface. What’s worse, the Stalker is following Conner, but no one else seems to be able to see him. The Magi think he might be hallucinating, the guilt of what happened in the Shadowbox keeps weighing on him, and his relationship with Melanie Stephens is complicating things. Even for a Magi, Conner knows his life is anything but normal. 

Review: It’s been quite a while since I read book one, The Kindling, but if there’s one thing this series has, it’s “stick-to-it-iveness.” The characters and plot are well crafted and so unique I was able to pick right back up with book two and remember what was going on. It’s also a book that once you put it down it stays with you. 

Conner and his twin sister Lexa are right in the midst of a battle between light and dark, good and evil, but this time around there is a blurring of the lines– shades of gray that are being fought on a personal battlefield deep within the soul. The team of brother  & sister, plus their sidekicks,  Pilaf and Melanie must retreat to Mockingbird Cottage ( don’t you love the name) to train a little harder and protect themselves from the shadows and dark hand forces which seek to destroy them from the inside out. 

Somewhere along the way Conner and Melanie begin to develop feelings for each other and the sweet middle school magic of first love starts to soar. Lexa won’t have it–she begins to feel jealous, like a third wheel and we really see her drama queen side start to come out. She is real, someone you can picture walking right out of your middle school cliques of friends, always thinking the world must revolved around her next starring role. And Pilaf…what can we say? I’m pretty sure he’s somewhere on the autism spectrum, as he is brilliant but admits he can’t read facial clues or nuances in social interactions. Thank you to Braden for painting imperfect people who are dealing with those trials and character flaws we all experience. 

What I loved is that this is a book that explores the trauma related to abuse in a easy to swallow yet understandable way for children. Conner is much more that he things he is–he has divine heritage and the supernatural assistance of workers of light to assist him in fighting those that work against him. While he is facing deep inner conflicts as a result of his time with Lady Nightwing, the evil mastermind of darkness, he also has the aid of light to help heal his soul. There is so much more than magic going on in this book!

Contentwise there was a little too much action for me in the ending scenes (the series really needs to be made into a movie…it would be awesome) and some moderate violence involving a knife and other weapons. But, I think it’s one your middle school children will enjoy.

I recommend it for ages 12 and up as well as adults.

There is much about Penumbras that I will never forget! Wonderful world building, colorful characters, rich descriptions and tons of action. Great job Braden!


EXCERPT:
CHAPTER ONE
SHADOW PUPPETS

Conner Dell didn’t mean to blow up the school bus.
Or the bathrooms.
In fact, he only wanted to go to sleep and possibly dream about Melanie Stephens.
But explosions had a funny way of happening when Conner and his friends were around.
It all started on the annual seventh grade science trip to the Sea Lab at Dauphin Island, Alabama. Fifty-four thirteen-year-olds on a five-day field trip. What could go wrong?
Especially when three of them happened to be Magi.
#
For a fraction of a second, Conner thought he saw shadows slithering along the base of the cinderblock walls. Tensing, he blinked and looked again.
Nothing. He was alone in the darkness of his dorm room.
Well, except for his friend and fieldtrip roommate, Pilaf.
Across the room, Pilaf disturbed the darkness by turning his flashlight on and digging through a giant floral print suitcase. Fishing a book out, Pilaf hunched over, tucked the flashlight under his chin, and read.
“What are you reading?” Conner asked.
“Sorry. Did I wake you up?” Pilaf squeaked. “I couldn’t sleep. I guess I slept too much on the bus.”
“No worries.” Conner burrowed into his sleeping bag. He didn’t like messing with sheets on these trips. The springs of the ancient bed creaked beneath him. “I’m not sleepy either.” Lexa? Can you hear me? Conner reached out in his thoughts, wondering if his twin sister was awake in her room on the girls’s floor. Head-talking was a cool benefit of being one of the Magi—a secret group of warriors who used the power of Light to battle evil.
No answer from Lexa. Her allergy medicine must have knocked her out.
Melanie? He tried Lexa’s best friend, Melanie Stephens—also one of the Magi-in-training. Conner listened for her response, trying to ignore the backflip in his chest that came when he thought of her. No answer. Melanie had taken something for motion sickness on the bus. She must be knocked out too.
Conner jerked up as something skittered across the ceiling right above him. No doubt this time. He grabbed his own flashlight, raking the beam across the ceiling tiles as someone whispered his name.
Coooonnerrrrrr.
“What?” Conner pointed his flashlight at Pilaf, who looked up from his book, blinking behind his thick glasses. Pilaf’s blinks always reminded Conner of the way a light on a computer blinked when it processed data.
“What?” Pilaf squinted back at him.
“Why did you call me?” Conner asked.
“I didn’t.” Pilaf looked down at his book.
On edge now, Conner lay back down, scanning the room for more shadowy movement, his fingers ready to snap his flashlight back on at any second.
Co-n-n-e-r-r-r-r-r-r D-e-l-l-l-l-l.
A whispered, hissing sort of growl sounded in his head as a flicker of movement caught his eye. He whipped his head around in time to see a shadowy tail vanish under Pilaf’s bed. Flipping his flashlight on, he investigated the space under the metal frame.
Nothing there.
“What are you doing, Conner?” Pilaf managed to blink and stare at the same time.
Trying to protect you from slithery shadow monsters that could slurp your soul like a slushie, Conner thought. How could he keep the flashlight on without alarming Pilaf? Out loud, he said, “Uh, it’s a game. Flashlight tag. You’re it.” He shined the flashlight at Pilaf.
“How do you play?”
“Well . . . one person’s it and he shines a flashlight all over the room.”
“That’s all?” Pilaf blinked until Conner wondered if he was broadcasting the telephone book in Morse code. “It seems kind of pointless.”
“Uh, yeah.” Conner said. “You’re right. Lame. How about shadow puppets?” He slipped his hand in front of the flashlight, wiggling his fingers until the shadow resembled a horse.
“Cool!” Pilaf shouted.
A knock at the door interrupted them and a tired-looking science teacher poked his head in, glaring beneath tousled red hair. “What’s going on in here?”
“Sorry, Mr. Keller,” Pilaf said. “We slept on the bus ride, so we’re not tired. Conner’s making shadows with his hands. Look, a horse!”
“Neeeiiiiggghhh.” Conner threw in sound effects as a special feature.
Apparently unimpressed with great art, Mr. Keller frowned. “Get some sleep. We have a full day tomorrow.”
“Yes, sir.” Conner swallowed his depression at the thought of a five-day science class. Five days of plankton, ocean salinity, salt marshes, and beach ecology. Five days of science, 24/7. At least they were close to the beach. That might be fun.
“Do another one,” Pilaf whispered as the sound of Mr. Keller’s footsteps retreated down the hall.
“Okay, but be quiet this time.” Conner opened his fingers, making a snake’s mouth, complete with a flickering tongue.
It seemed so real that Conner thought he heard a hiss. Unsettled, he dropped his hands, but the hissing noise continued, twisting into words.
Co-n-n-e-r-r-r-r-r-r D-e-l-l-l-l-l—
Trying to squash the sound, Conner raised his voice. “Here’s another one.” He cupped his hands on top of each other, stuck his thumb up, and opened his fingers slightly.
“Wow!” Pilaf yelled. “A wolf!” He giggled as Conner opened the mouth and growled. “Little pig, little pig let me come in.” Conner prayed that none of the other seventh-grade boys heard he’d been doing Three Little Pigs shadow plays. That would not be cool.
Co-n-n-e-r-r-r-r-r-r D-e-l-l-l-l-l—
The weird voice came louder. Conner dropped his hands away from the flashlight.
The wolf head stayed there.
Fighting panic, Conner switched the flashlight off, but the wolf head remained, darker than the darkest shadows on the wall.
It stretched and grew bigger, becoming life-sized within seconds. It turned and stared at Conner, a three-dimensional head sticking out of the wall like some kind of freaky hunting souvenir.
The wolf growled, then jumped off the wall, and sailed across the room toward Conner.


Author Bio: Braden Bell grew up in Farmington, Utah and graduated from Davis High School. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in theatre from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in educational theatre from New York University. He and his wife, Meredith live  with their five children on a quiet, wooded lot outside of Nashville, Tennessee, where he teaches theatre and music at a private school. An experienced performer, Braden enjoys singing, acting, reading, gardening, and long walks with the dog. 

Find out more on the Penumbras WebsiteAuthor Facebook/ Blog and Twitter
Purchase links: Braden’s website / Amazon / Barnes and Noble
Note: He will be selling both Penumbras and The Kindling through my website for a steep discount–$9.99 (plus s/h) 

The Giveaway: In connection to the Penumbras Blog Tour, author Braden Bell is giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card. To enter, fill out the rafflecopter form below.
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