Sunday, January 31, 2016

*Platypire Read-A-Thon* January Results

Photo Courtesy of Platypire Maribel

January is over and I honestly somehow did not see that coming. That means it's time for my results from this months Platypire read-a-thon. Without further ado, here they are.

X - Read
R - Currently Reading
+ - To Be read


X - A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn*+
Read my review here.

X - The Gift of a Charm by Melissa Hill*
Read my review here.

X - Torrent (Slow Burn #5) by Bobby Adair*
Read my review here.

X - The Rewriting of America's History by Catherine Millard*
Read my review here.

X - Alistair Grim's Odd Aquaticum by Gregory Funaro*
Read my review here.

X - The Forgotten Room by Karen White, Beatriz Williams, and Lauren Willig*
Read my review here.

X - I Love You Already by Jory John and Benji Davies
Read my review here.

X - Worthy by Catherine Ryan Hyde*
Read my review here.

X - Far From Safe by Jillian Ashe*
Review will be posted soon.

X - Ask a Queer Chick by Lindsay King-Miller (Jan)
Read my review here.

X - The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah*
Read my review here.

X - The Bitter Side of Sweet by Tara Sullivan (Jan)
Read my review here.

X - Created to Shine by Julie Day
Read my review here.

X - A Message for Grandpa by Julie Guardado
Review will be posted soon.

*Denotes book from 2015
+Denotes book that was finished in December but reviewed in January

Currently Reading

R - Sector 64: Ambush by Dean M. Cole*
R - Sweetwater: The Kihn by Rivi Jacks*
R - The Voyage by Tammie Painter*
R - The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd*
R - Give Me Your Answer True by Suanne Laqueur*
R - Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning by Timothy Snyder*
R - The Road Home by Kathleen Shoop*
R - Buffalo Trail by Jeff Guinn*
R - Troll by Ashley C. Harris*
R - Christine by Stephen King*
R - Human: A Shadow Empires Book by S.M. Carriere*
R -  The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild*
R - The Sanctum of Souls by R.K. Pavia*
R - The Book Thief by Markus Zusak*
R - 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl by Mona Awad (Jan)
R - Killshot by Aria Michaels (Jan)
R - My Friend Hyman is Dead by Lee Ward (Jan)
R - Free of Malice by Liz Lazarus (Jan)
R - Dark Perception by Alexandrea Weis (Jan)(GR)

To Be Read

+ - Henchgirl by Rita Stradling
+ - Infinitas by David N. Sebastian
+ - Here to Stay by Suanne Laqueur
+ - Back Blast by Mark Greaney
+ - In a Different Key: The Story of Autism by John Donvan and Caren Zucker

Leftover from 2015
+ - The &Now Awards Volume 3 by Various Authors
+ - Shadows of the Unseen by Christine Steendam
+ - Drawing Heat by S.L. Dearing
+ - Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
+ - PrairyErth by William Least Heat-Moon
+ - House of Holes by Nicholson Baker
+ - Pieces by Maria Kostaki
+ - Summer Secrets by Jane Green
+ - Forgiveness by Chiquis Rivera
+ - The Summer After You and Me by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
+ - The Prophets of Eternal Fjord by Kim Leine
+ - Making Pretty by Corey Ann Haydu
+ - The Underwriting by Michelle Miller
+ - The Biology of Luck by Jacob M. Appel
+ - Omega City by Diana Peterfreund
+ - American Warlord by Johnny Dwyer
+ - When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi
+ - Bell Weather by Dennis Mahoney
+ - Deadly Design by Debra Dockter
+ - Unprocessed by Megan Kimble
+ - The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley
+ - The Sparks by Kyle Prue
+ - Take by Silvia Ami
+ - The Never-ending Story by Michael Ende
+ - Devil's Garden by Lance Tuck
+ - The Rumor by Elin Hildebrand
+ - It's You by Jane Porter
+ - Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
+ - Beautiful Girl by Fleur Philips
+ - The Witch of Bourbon Street by Suzanne Palmieri
+ - Killing Katie by B.A. Spangler
+ - A Hanging at Cinder Bottom by Glenn Taylor
+ - The Pianist by Wladyslaw Szpilman
+ - Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
+ - The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella by Stephenie Meyer
+ - Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead by Tom Stoppard
+ - Dracula is a Racist: A Totally Factual Guide to Vampires by Matt Melvin
+ - Steele Mackaye Investigations: The Tarot Problem by Barry H. Wiley
+ - The Age of Amy: Behind the Fun Zone by Bruce Edwards
+ - Jezebel: Defeating your #1 Spiritual Enemy by Bob Larson
+ - Fear Itself by Duffy Prendergast
+ - Anyone? by Angela Scott
+ - Silent Creed by Alex Kava
+ - The Sisters of Versailles by Sally Christie
+ - This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
+ - In the Dark by Chris Patchell
+ - Need by Joelle Charbonneau
+ - Gods of Anthem by Logan Keys
+ - Second Chances by Sarah Price
+ - A Bridge to Cross by Edward R. Hackemer
+ - The Fifth House of the Heart by Ben Tripp
+ - Diary of a Single Wedding Planner by Violet Howe
+ - The Curse of Crow Hollow by Bill Coffey
+ - Family Grandstand by Carol Ryrie Brink
+ - The Saturday Night School of Beauty by Marsha Mehran
+ - The Boss Killers by Keith Gillison
+ - Our Brothers at the Bottom of the Bottom of the Sea by Jonathan David Kranz
+ - The Phantom of the Earth (Omnibus Edition) by Raedan Zen
+ - Wynn in Doubt by Emily Hemmer
+ - Bloodlines by Lynn Lipinski
+ - High School Horror: Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker
+ - The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers by Alexander Gordon Smith
+ - Seaside by Wylde Scott
+ - Lydia's Enchanted Toffee by Neale Osborne
+ - Welcome to Monstrovia by Mark Newhouse
+ - Corr Syl the Warrior by Garry Rogers
+ - Christmas at the Vicarage by Rebecca Boxall
+ - Monsterland by Michael Phillip Cash

I read a total of 13 books in January (reviewed 14), and did a decent job of sticking to my list least the best job I've done of that since I started partaking in these read-a-thons. I completely read two books from my January list, and moved two others up to my currently reading list (which I hadn't really wanted to do, but those books have deadlines so it was necessary.) I didn't get quite as many books read this month and knocked off my list as I had hoped, but I still feel like I did pretty good. - Katie

*Review* Created to Shine by Julie Day

Genre: Religious Memoir
Published: January 21, 2015
Pages: 120


Julie uncovers the issues of shame and guilt that cause us to hide the hurting parts of our lives. She shares openly and honestly her journey about how the secrets in her life impacted on personal relationships and her Christian faith. Julie now has a testimony about how she emerged from the pain of the past and found the strength to shine.


I received a copy of this book through the Goodreads First Reads giveaway program in exchange for an honest review.

This book is written as if the author is sitting down with you, telling you her story over a cup of coffee and a scone. The events didn't seem to be recounted in chronological order, and that had me a bit confused at times (but when has anyone ever recounted their life story in perfect chronological order?). 

I do not like feeling preached to by books or people in general, and fortunately this book didn't feel like it was doing that, at least not to me. It was loaded with references to scripture, but it came off feeling like those were important to the author personally, so they didn't feel preachy. 

I liked the inclusion of the author's paintings at the beginning of each chapter, but I wish they'd been in color. I understand color photos would drive up the price of the book significantly, but I don't feel like the black and white did the paintings justice.

Structurally the book was fairly sound, although there were just a few too many spelling errors for my liking. Just small things like dept instead of debt, so most readers will probably not notice.

Overall I give this book 3 out of 5 stars because it was conversational and not preachy, but it didn't really pull me in that much in the end. - Katie 

Buy the Book

About the Author

Julie Day was born into a large family in Bendigo, Victoria, AU. She grew up in a family who displayed strong artistic talents, yet her own artistic journey began in her forties and it was some ten years later that she began the process of writing a book about her journey of faith. 

Julie has worked in Administration for many years where part of her job description was as editor and publisher of the quarterly newsletter, and weekly e-newsletter. She was also the author of some newsletter articles. 

She has volunteered at a number of community groups such as: Domestic Violence Action Groups, Safehouse Working Party in Clare SA, Women's Health Advisory Group in Clare SA. She held the position of Community Outreach Program Coordinator at a Community Centre and had facilitated Women's Group and Connect Groups.

Julie holds a Diploma of Community Services Coordination, Certificate IV Community Development, and assists in leading a fellowship group at Lifepoint Church, Adelaide, AU.


I read this book in about 2 hours, so I used it to fulfill my "book you can read in a day" category for the 2016 Popsugar reading challenge. 

Other categories it could fulfill include
A book that's under 150 pages
A book that takes place on an island (Australia IS an island)

Saturday, January 30, 2016

*Review* The Bitter Side of Sweet by Tara Sullivan

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Genre: Young Adult
Published: February 23, 2016
Pages: 320
Setting: Ivory Coast


For fans of Linda Sue Park and A Long Way Gone, two young boys must escape a life of slavery in modern-day Ivory Coast

Fifteen-year-old Amadou counts the things that matter. For two years what has mattered are the number of cacao pods he and his younger brother, Seydou, can chop down in a day. This number is very important. The higher the number the safer they are because the bosses won’t beat them. The higher the number the closer they are to paying off their debt and returning home to Baba and Auntie. Maybe. The problem is Amadou doesn’t know how much he and Seydou owe, and the bosses won’t tell him. The boys only wanted to make some money during the dry season to help their impoverished family. Instead they were tricked into forced labor on a plantation in the Ivory Coast; they spend day after day living on little food and harvesting beans in the hot sun—dangerous, backbreaking work. With no hope of escape, all they can do is try their best to stay alive—until Khadija comes into their lives. 

She’s the first girl who’s ever come to camp, and she’s a wild thing. She fights bravely every day, attempting escape again and again, reminding Amadou what it means to be free. But finally, the bosses break her, and what happens next to the brother he has always tried to protect almost breaks Amadou. The old impulse to run is suddenly awakened. The three band together as family and try just once more to escape.

Tara Sullivan, the award-winning author of the astounding Golden Boy, delivers another powerful, riveting, and moving tale of children fighting to make a difference and be counted. Inspired by true-to-life events happening right now, The Bitter Side of Sweet is an exquisitely written tour de force not to be missed.


I received a copy of this book through Penguin's First to Read program in exchange for an honest review.

I liked how the book started and ended with "I only count the things that matter." It really brought the story full circle and worked well to set the scene in each instance. It also helped to plant me firmly in the main character's shoes right from the start, and kept me from abandoning them before the book was ready to let me go.

The descriptions were vivid and I had a very clear image in my head of what the camp and la brosse looked like while I was reading. I felt the sting of the whip and cowered in fear from the bosses wrath. These are not things I have personal experience with, but I felt them anyway.

Although this book is fiction, it seems clear to me that the author did her research about this very real problem. I am ashamed to admit that this book was even eye opening for me. It never occurred to me to wonder under what conditions cacao is grown for our chocolate. I love chocolate and have a particular weakness for Reese's peanut butter eggs, but now I will be doing research to ensure that I'm only buying chocolate from companies that do not use cacao harvested by child slaves in the future. 

Overall I give this book 5 out of 5 stars because it was an engrossing read and socially enlightening for me. I would urge anyone that eats chocolate to read it, and at least consider changing your chocolate buying habits. - Katie 

Buy the Book

About the Author

Tara Sullivan is the author of the award-winning and critically acclaimed novel Golden Boy. She holds a BA in Spanish literature and cognitive science from the University of Virginia, and an MA in Latin American studies and an MPA in nonprofit management from Indiana University. Tara lives with her family in Massachusetts.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

*Review* The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Genre: Historical Fiction
Published:  February 3, 2015
Pages: 449
Setting: Paris and Carriveau, France


In love we find out who we want to be.
In war we find out who we are.

FRANCE, 1939

In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When France is overrun, Vianne is forced to take an enemy into her house, and suddenly her every move is watched; her life and her child’s life is at constant risk. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates around her, she must make one terrible choice after another. 

Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets the compelling and mysterious Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. When he betrays her, Isabelle races headlong into danger and joins the Resistance, never looking back or giving a thought to the real--and deadly--consequences.

With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah takes her talented pen to the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France--a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel for a lifetime.


This book utterly destroyed me. I read about the last five percent of the book in the morning right after waking up (the day after I was supposed to have it finished for our first book club meeting this month), and was completely useless for the rest of the day. I could not bring myself to do anything aside from feed my children (and I might not have done that had they not started whining about being hungry). That is not a normal reaction for me at all. 

The story alternates between the POVs of two sister's in France that lead very different lives during the war. Ivan does her best to keep her head down and stay mostly invisible to protect her daughter, while her sister, Isabelle, wants to rush off and join the resistance. As much as I want to believe that I'd be like Isabelle during the war because she's courageous and truly making a difference, I found myself relating to Vianne far more. 

I enjoyed how this book gave us insight into the lives of women and children in occupied France during the war. I learned about rationing in history class, I've even seen a couple of my grandmother's leftover ration books, but neither of those things taught me the reality of that rationing in Europe (and I realize this is a fictional account, but I'm trusting that the author did her research on this matter). This book was definitely eye opening for me.

Overall I give The Nightingale 5 out of 5 stars because it was engrossing, devastating, and a little bit enlightening. I would definitely recommend it to others who enjoy WWII era fiction. As an additional note, the ladies in my book club, all of whom claim to not enjoy historical fiction in general, loved this book. One of them even said she thinks it's the best book the book club has read yet. - Katie 

Buy the Book

About the Author

Kristin Hannah is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-one novels, including the blockbuster Firefly Lane and #1 bestsellers Night Road and Home Front. She is a former lawyer turned writer and is the mother of one son. She lives in the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii with her husband.


As this book takes place in France, I used it to fulfill my Book Set in Europe category for the Popsugar reading challenge this year. 

Other categories it could fulfill include
A New York Times Bestseller (47 weeks on the list)
A book with a blue cover (kind of, blue-ish)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

#IABBAddicts: Book Reviews: How to Get Them & What to Do with Them by Felita Daniels

Check out more information on #IABBAddicts here
Join us every Thursday for IABB #Confessions
Author: Felita Daniels

Title: Book Reviews: How to Get Them & What to Do with Them
Pages: 73

Genre: Non Fiction

Date publishedJanuary 26, 2016

Authors in today's environment are finding that they have to be their own marketing and public relations department. Many could use some guidance with these skills. This book grew out of a workshop I have done for local writer's groups. 
Inside you will find: 
* Tips on approaching blogs and reviewers 
* What not to do 
* Should you read your reviews? 
* Keeping out of Amazon 'jail' 
* Approaches to getting reviews- some common, some off the beaten path 
* Current Amazon review policies and what may be coming down the road 
Having a game plan to garner reviews will certainly get better results than doing nothing. This book will help you find some avenues you may not have thought of, or didn't know about.


Review Etiquette with Bloggers
You want to get this marketing stuff out of the way and get back to writing the next book. It is tempting to get an email list of book bloggers and blast to everyone you can. One email out to 30,000 bloggers and reporters and done in the time it takes to hit the send button.
I can tell you from being on the bloggers end opening the emails requesting a review, this is not an effective method. Bloggers consider their site unique and spend many hours on content, computer geekiness, and growing their traffic. It is their baby, just like your novel is a part of who you are.
Improve your response rate to your review requests by personalizing your emails to the writers of the blog. For a blogger, getting a pitch for an erotica novel, when their review policy clearly states they don’t cover that genre is the fastest way to put a bad taste in their mouth. Not only do you not get a review out of it, you come off as unprofessional. It’s easy to tell yourself you don’t need that blogger anyway if that’s the case. What if next year you decide to try your hand at contemporary romance? You have just shot that potential relationship opportunity.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Book Club Adventures: Episode 1

I have been an active member of a local women's book club for about six months now, give or take three months (I don't actually remember when the first meeting that I attended was, but I remember where it was and what book we were discussing, a book I still haven't finished by the way.) I am the kind of person that does not like change, and I do not like doing new things. When I have done something once, doing it again is not a problem at all, but that first step is agonizing for me, and I didn't go to book club meetings for several months after moving here because I could not get myself to take that first step. Now, while I look forward to each meeting, I still have a hurdle to tackle when attending because we have them at different restaurants every month, which means that every month I have to find whichever restaurant we're meeting at (and a place to park, which can be the real challenge in Germany).

For January, we had a pretty even split for dates for the meeting amongst our members, so we decided to have two separate meetings so that basically everyone could attend at least one of them. My husband is amazing and let me attend both, even though they were on consecutive nights (I even came home to a clean kitchen that had been getting increasingly cluttered over the past couple weeks after the first meeting at the Indian restaurant.) This month we were discussing The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, which is set in France during WWII.

For the first meeting, I parked outside another book club members house and walked to the restaurant with her and a third member of our club, because parking was free and then I wouldn't have to find the actual restaurant on my own (even though I already knew where parking was readily available nearby for this one). On the way back to her apartment, I noticed a Stolpersteine (stumbling stone) on the sidewalk, because I have a tendency to look at the ground while I'm walking. Stolpersteines are placed outside of houses and buildings where people (mostly Jewish people) were rounded up to be imprisoned or sent to concentration camps during WWII. They can be found in cities all throughout Germany and elsewhere in Europe where the Nazis terrorized the local populace. It is an ongoing project, so not every life is memorialized at this time. I thought it was rather appropriate that we stumbled upon this Stolpersteine after discussing The Nightingale though.

"Here lived Wilhelm Merk...Murdered 5 December 1940"
More information on Grafeneck
Our second book club meeting this month took place at an amazing sushi restaurant with a parking garage located less than a block away. I have lived in Germany for a little over 5 years now, and I have never found myself parked in a parking garage where the gates close at a certain time, until tonight. We were all getting to the garage at 9:05 (because we were all relying on transportation in that garage to get home), and noticed a sign indicating that the garage closed at 9 pm. We missed it by 5 minutes. I immediately panicked because not only have I never taken the public transportation in our current location (so I have no idea how to get home using it), but there was a good chance my husband would need our only car for work tomorrow. K, the member that carpooled with me to the meeting, suggested that I check my heart rate on my Fitbit and it was at 126 (my resting heart rate today was 73, which I blame on being destroyed by the ending of The Nightingale which I only read this morning). 

After a couple minutes of wondering what we were supposed to do, and if our cars were really stuck in the garage all night, C noticed a sign that said "nachtzugang" which means "night entrance" with a rudimentary map that indicated we needed to go to the side of the building. The adventure didn't end there, however, because the door was locked, and required a code to enter, a code from a parking ticket. Fortunately, we had those handy. 

Once inside we discovered a stash of liquor that likely belongs to one of the restaurants above the parking garage, but no clear signage to get us to the actual garage. Then an elevator door opened mysteriously (C said she pushed a button, but none of the rest of us saw that, so it still seemed mysterious at first). We took the elevator down to the correct floor, and it was still not immediately clear where we needed to go to get to our cars. 

We finally found the garage, paid for our parking, and were on our way. The rest of the trip home was uneventful. It was almost 10 pm when I made it back to my house (I had a slight detour to drop K off at home, and live about a 30 minute drive from where the restaurant is located to begin with), and everything was dark and quiet. I only turned on a few lights, one on each of the bottom two floors of my house because I needed to run upstairs and grab the empty laundry basket to move clothes from our washer to our dryer (because our dryer does not fit in the room where our washer has to be). I happened to glance at our whiteboard and saw this message from my husband.

Need vehicle tomorrow to pick up keys for BMW also to look @cars Love you!
My panic and increased heart rate were justified at that moment. And I am truly thankful that I was not the only person parked in that garage, because I may never have figured out how to get to my car if I were. Hopefully next months meeting is not quite so eventful. - Katie 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

#IABBAddicts: The Reapers by Ali Winters

Check out more information on #IABBAddicts here
Join us every Thursday for IABB #Confessions

The Reapers (The Hunted Series: Book 1)Author: Ali Winters

Title: The Reapers
Series: The Hunted, #1

Pages: 348

Genre: Paranormal

Date published: May 31, 2015

Having been a reaper as long as she can remember, Nivian knows that what she does is essential in maintaining balance. After being assigned to a rushed mark she finds that there is more to this human than any other she has encountered.

Kain had been living an ordinary life without a second thought until he meets Nivian who turns his world upside down. He is thrust into a world of hunters and reapers. The keepers of life and death have been feuding for centuries over a reason no one can even remember.

With Kain having been marked for reaping, and Nivian being hunted, they forge a friendship and together must find the truth in order to keep balance in check. Wrong choices could destroy everything. As they journey they discover hidden histories, powers, and lies and truths that have been spun since the beginning of time. The consequence of failure, unimaginable.

Nivian leaped over the edge of the bridge and landed with a soft tap on the surface of the water. She reached down, pulled the soul of the driver up by the collar of his shirt, and stood him up next to her on top of the water. She took the driver’s hand, palm up, in hers and waved her other hand over his. Pinching the air, she pulled and lifted up to expose his life thread. His wide eyes stared unblinking, hypnotized by the glowing string of light. Nivian reached behind her and grabbed the scythe strapped to her back, and swung. With a slow, deliberate movement, Nivian sliced the human’s life thread. The light formed into a ball and hovered between them. She pulled out a small pocket watch and guided the life energy down to the watch. It sunk into it and disappeared.
She snapped the watch closed and returned it to her pocket. “You should know better than to drink and drive. You could’ve seriously hurt someone.”
He gaped at her, his mouth opened and closed like a fish. “Yes, you really are dead,” she confirmed and gave him an apathetic look as she turned away.
“Are you … the devil?” he managed to sputter.
“No, of course not. I am just the natural order of things,” she said, looking back over her shoulder. “Wait here. Your spirit counselor will be here soon to guide you to your afterlife. I have other jobs tonight.” She spun on her heel and walked away, as she pulled her hood back up over her head and vanished.


What inspired you to become an author?
A fellow fantasy author. I just had an idea for a scene so I wrote it down, and showed it to a friend. She encouraged me to continue the story and that is how The Reapers came into existence. 

I assume all authors also love to read, so what book inspired your love of reading?
The Black Unicorn, The Last Unicorn, and Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy way back when. 

How old were you when you wrote your first story? 
I want to say I was in 5th grade. I wrote it for some assignment and ended up being sent somewhere for a state wide contest. I have no idea what that story was about now or what happened to it.

Who are some of your favorite authors now? 
Peter S. Beagle, Piers Anthony, and Douglas Adams. They are the writers that have inspired my sense of humor and the type of stories I love to read and write.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Hard core plotter. It keeps the pacing consistent and it’s so much easier to keep organized. 

Are your characters based on people you know?
Kain is based a bit on my husband. Not the looks, but his personality and how he handles things, and manners. 

What are some of your writing rituals?
Drink coffee, sit down and try my hardest to not become distracted by facebook. Evil time suck that it is. 

How do other books influence your writing? 
I grew up reading fantasy, so after spending so much of my life reading that genre, it’s where my imagination lives. Being able to create new worlds that no one knows is so much fun. 

How do you get motivated to sit down and write with all the real world interruptions? 
I just do it every spare second I get. I recently discovered evernote, I have it on my phone, my kindle and obviously on my computer. It makes taking notes and writing when I’m not at my desk so much easier and no more hording millions of sticky notes anymore. ( I may have already saved a small forest. 

Which one of your books is your favorite? 
The Reapers is my only full length book out right now, but I also have two more I’m working on that I love just as much. I guess The Reapers, since it’s published. ;)

If you could have a writing retreat anywhere in the world, where would you want it to be and why? 
Oregon, in/near a forest – just surrounded by trees. 

If your main character were an alcoholic beverage, which beverage would they be and why? 
Oh uhh, appletini? Because they are delicious and I only drink wine so I don’t pay attention to any of those fancy drinks. Except appletinis. 

If you could live in a fictional world, which world would you choose and why?
This is such a hard question. As much as I love fantasy and Sci-fi, there is some serious messed up stuff in those worlds. One with magic. I know, there are so many of them, but it’s impossible to pick!

What’s the best way to hide a body? 
Make sure none of your DNA has gotten on the body and hide it in the trunk of your enemy’s car. Call the cops.

This or That

Coke or Pepsi? Pepsi
Paperback or e-reader? Paperback
Facebook or Twitter? Facebook
Peeta or Gale? Peeta, no question. 
Edward or Jacob? 
Money or love? Love
Tattoos or bare? Either
Hairy or smooth? Smooth, but only natural, none of that shaved crap. (I dated a really weird runner once. >_> feeling man leg stubble is off putting.)
Call or text? Text. I hate talking on the phone.
Hot or cold? Hot. 
Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings? Lord of the rings.
Coffee or Tea? Both.
Halloween or Christmas? Christmas
McDonald’s or Burger King? Neither.
Batman or Spiderman? Batman
Oatmeal raisin or chocolate chip? CHOCOLATE CHIP!