Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Morrie Richfield guest post - With Giveaway!

Mr. Breeze

                           Dad What Is Family

I am a divorced dad of 8 year old twin boys, and I get asked a lot of questions and last week my sons asked me the meaning of family. I think they asked because both my parents have passed away, my father died before they were born and my mother died before they were old enough to remember her.
I thought about the question for a moment realizing my answer must be something that an eight year old can understand. I told them that a family is a group of people that love each other, that support each other in good times and bad and help each other if someone in the family needs help.
They looked at me in that this is now going through my brain look kids give you and they asked.  We are your family right they asked. I said of course you are. Then they asked me who else is your family.
Once again I thought about it for a second and I said well boys you know how I wrote the book Mr. Breeze, they nodded that they did. Well Mr. Breeze thinks we should all treat each other like family and we should all try to care about each other and try to live all together in peace.
One of my sons said, but Dad Mr. Breeze is not for real you made him up. They both found that funny. Yes I told them Mr. Breeze is not for real and yes I made him up but what he wants from all of us is not a bad thing is it.
They gave that I’m thinking look again and one of them said. That would be great if the whole world was like that, is that what you would want? I answered yes it is. You should do it then dad you should change the world my son said.
What is that expression out of the mouths of babes.
About the Author:

Morrie Richfield 3Morrie Richfield lives in Pennsylvania with his two sons, his dogs and his cat. He is working on his next novel, and he still dreams that someday the world will be a better place for all of us to live.
His latest book is the inspirational novel, Mr. Breeze.

Visit his website at www.mrbreezethenovel.com.
About the Book:
MR. BREEZE (the title is inspired by a song by the rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd) follows the increasingly amazing experiences of freelance photojournalist Michael Ryan as he hears of stories about a man named Zack, who can seemingly perform inhuman feats that could be called miraculous. Ryan eventually meets Zack and becomes, at Zack’s insistence, Zack’s messenger. Along the way, a dog named Rover, who also possesses otherworldly powers, joins Zack and Ryan in their adventures, which include a remarkable visit to the Centers for Disease Control, in Atlanta, in search of a cure for AIDS.
The secret of who Zack is and why he has chosen Ryan to tell his story to the world forms the surprising and moving climax to the book.
And there is a MR. BREEZE sequel in the works, Richfield notes. The working title is REVELATION:  THE RETURN OF MR. BREEZE. “The second book is about how we take that message (from the first book) and what we do with it.”
In the meantime, Richfield hopes that readers of MR. BREEZE find the storytelling compelling. I also would like them to be entertained and to want to tell others about it. If they come away wanting to be a better human being, that would be a huge plus.”

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Author & Book Spotlight - The Miracle Inspector by Helen Smith

All my books are set in London, including my latest, The Miracle Inspector, a dystopian novel that takes place in the near future. England has been partitioned and a big fence has been built around London. Schools and theatres have been closed down and women are not allowed to work outside the home. Parks are used like giant allotments to grow fruit and vegetables, and sheep are herded down Piccadilly towards Green Park to graze. It’s a kind of ghost town, with very few people on the streets unless they’re members of the ruling elite, travelling in official cars. This is because women are not allowed out of their homes unless they’re visiting members of their family (leading to all sorts of subterfuge, with women claiming to be related to each other so they can get out and about) and many of the men have been dragged off to prison on trumped up charges.

The real London doesn’t have a big fence around it, though it does sometimes feel as if the city is functioning like a separate nation state inside the UK, with people who live here only interested in what’s happening in London, and identifying as Londoners rather than English, British or (since many come from abroad) the nationality of their country of origin. Some have a kind of dual nationality – they’re Londoners and they’re Jamaican. They’re Londoners and they’re Welsh or Scottish or Sri Lankan or German.

But in all other respects, the dystopian London I have created in The Miracle Inspector is very different from the real London. The real London is a crowded place of intellectual and creative freedom. It’s a vibrant, diverse, crazy, exciting place that’s great to live in and fun to visit.

Though I was born here, I was raised elsewhere in England when I was a child, and returned to claim it when I was eighteen. I have considered living in New York, San Francisco and Paris (which city-lover hasn’t?) and I lived for a short while in Sydney, but I have never left London for longer than a year and a half, and then only for an exciting adventure that took me travelling around the world with my daughter when she was young.

One of the reasons I love London so much is that I knew about it from literature before I lived here. Though it was sometimes portrayed as dangerous and dirty, it was always an exciting place full of people from all over the world, a centre for culture and a place of freedom where inventiveness and creativity could flourish. Whatever you want, London has it, whether it’s art and culture, restaurants, nightclubs, concerts, parks, markets, beautiful buildings, history or(whether you want it or not, let’s face it, you’re going to need it) employment. It’s an expensive city but a lot of the entertainment is free, including all public art galleries and museums, and there are cut-price tickets available for the theatres. Or you can just walk around and look. It’s dirty! (Why don’t people pick up their litter? Why do they drop it in the first place?) But it’s beautiful.

Despite all the attractions it has to offer, what makes London such a special place is the people. There are people living and working here from every country in the world. Some have come to seek their fortune, some have come to study, some have found love, and some are seeking sanctuary. London is a city of immigrants – not just from other countries, but from other parts of our country. There are Londoners who were born and raised here, but still more, like me, have come to claim it. It means that Londoners are not particularly friendly to visitors (we’re all strangers here) nor unfriendly (it’s not my city; it belongs to all of us).

London is exciting to write about because of the landmarks and historical settings that are recognisable even to readers who have never been here; because of the eccentricities and diversity of the people; and because it’s constantly changing – pin it down, write about a moment in time, and you find you have recorded a moment of history to add to all the other literature about this amazing city.

London’s wonderful. Come and visit! 

 The Miracle Inspector banner

About the Author:
Helen Smith 2Helen Smith is a member of the Writers Guild of Great Britain and English PEN. She traveled the world when her daughter was small, doing all sorts of strange jobs to support them both – from cleaning motels to working as a magician’s assistant – before returning to live in London where she wrote her first novel which was published by Gollancz (part of the Hachette Group).

She is the author of bestselling cult novel Alison Wonderland. She writes novels, poetry, plays and screenplays and is the recipient of an Arts Council of England Award. She’s a long-term supporter of the Medical Foundation for the Victims of Torture and mentors members of an exiled writers group to help them tell their stories.
Her latest book is the dystopian thriller The Miracle Inspector.
Visit her website at http://www.emperorsclothes.co.uk.
Friend her on Twitter:  www.twitter.com/ emperorsclothes
Become a fan at Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/authorhelensmith
Friend her at Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2833648.Helen_Smith
Pick up a copy of The Miracle Inspector at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Miracle-Inspector-Helen-Smith/dp/0956517056

About the Book:

The Miracle Inspector 

The Miracle Inspector is a dystopian thriller set in the near future. England has been partitioned and London is an oppressive place where poetry has been forced underground, theatres and schools are shut, and women are not allowed to work outside the home. A young couple, Lucas and Angela, try to escape from London – with disastrous consequences.
“…this is an absolutely exceptional piece of fiction, a work of art befitting the best in socially-conscious literature.”

– Journal of Always Reviews
“…Only occasionally does a piece of fiction leap out and demand immediate cult status. Alison Wonderland is one.”

– The Times
“…Smith is gin-and-tonic funny.”

– Booklist
“Smith has a keen eye for material details, but her prose is lucid and uncluttered by heavy description. Imagine a satire on Cool Britannia made by the Coen Brothers.”

– Times Literary Supplement

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Angel & The Brow-Eyed Boy by Sandy Nathan REVIEW

The Angel & the Brown-Eyed Boy

"Eliana made her way along the sidewalk, knowing that she was dirty, feeling the grit in her hair and on her skin. When she had reached the planet's atmosphere, clothes and all sorts of things had rushed at her with great force, tossing her over and over. Dirt had come, too. She'd found the clothes she needed and put them on the way her teachers had shown her. Then her people had put her where she was...."NEW YORK CITY ON THE EVE OF ARMAGEDDON, IN THE LATE 22nd CENTURY--PERHAPS Mistaken for a Russian ballet dancer, Eliana finds her destination-the Hermitage Academy, a famous high school for the arts. Soon she discovers that this Earth is a strange and violent place, where people live in fear, and where her very presence makes some want to protect her and others want to hurt her.It is a century after the second Russian revolution, when technology was outlawed and Tsar Yuri took over most of world, ushering in the "Great Peace." For the U.S. president, Lincoln Charles, peace is doable-just focus on the positive, project a trustworthy image, and make sure that dissenters are taken care of quietly, permanently. Something terrible, though, is about to happen; and for Eliana, not much time remains to find the "Golden Boy..""

(another synopsis from Pump Up Your Book):
Tomorrow morning, a nuclear holocaust will destroy the planet. Two people carry the keys to survival: A teenage boy and an intergalactic traveler.
By the late 22nd century, the Great Recession of the early 2000s has lead to a worldwide police state. A ruined United States barely functions. Government control masks chaos, dissenters are sent to camps, and technology is outlawed. War rages while the authorities proclaim the Great Peace.
Finally it all breaks down. We’re in New York City on the eve of nuclear Armageddon. In the morning, ultimate destructive forces will wipe out all life on earth. Only Jeremy Edgarton, a 16-year-old, tech genius and revolutionary; and Eliana, the angelic, off-world traveler sent to Earth on a mission to prevent her planet’s death, can save the world.  Join Eliana and Jeremy as they begin a quest to save two doomed planets … and find each other.

When I pick up a book I want to and look forward to the emotional connection I'll have with the characters and how the books plot and characters will make me feel. I am always so happy when I find a book like that. I love it even more when I find a book series/trilogy that gives that to me. The author of The Angel & The Brown -Eyed Boy gives you that opportunity to connect with the characters in her book.
You immedietly get drawn into this book with realist characters in this futuristic style book.
What made this book a must read for me besides the realistic characters was the well written plot. Life seems great; no wars, no fighting. Life is a peach. As long as you don't question authority or ask questions period. I enjoyed this book so much that I have put it on the "must read" list for my book group.
I highly recommend this book.

I received this book for review from Pump Up Your Book