Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Felicity and the Featherless Two-Foot

I am very excited to announce my latest book!  The title is Felicity and the Featherless Two-Foot, and it is available on Amazon as both a paperback, and as an ebook.  I hope you check it out!

Felicity hasn't had an adventure in months, and the little sparrow thinks that danger and peril are behind her for good, which is just fine with her!  She would rather hang out with her friends the fairies and read her books safe at home than go on dangerous quests!

But Felicity didn't count on one group of strangers showing up and causing more trouble than she ever imagined they could!  An odd, troublesome bunch that the fairies call... people.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Manu Bennett- Actor

Manu Bennett, an actor who has played in multiple movies, was gracious enough to come visit the school where I teach on September 28, 2015.  One of his roles was Azog the Defiler in the Hobbit movies.  (Those of you who know me, or have read this blog before, know my opinion of the Hobbit movies directed by Peter Jackson, but I do NOT hold that against Mr. Bennett.)  

In the morning of the 28th, we didn’t even have it planned, but we got a phone call saying that he was in the area, and would be happy to come visit with the high school kids.  Of course, we accepted, and were able to fit it easily into our schedule. 

Manu Bennett is from New Zealand, and is Maori.  One of the big reasons why he wanted to come to our school specifically, was because he wanted to get to know the Native Culture in the area; the Utes.  He was in Salt Lake for ComiCon, and wanted to come visit and connect with the People.  Maori culture, he pointed out, has very similar philosophies to Native American cultures. During his talk, he mentioned that he had participated in the sweat lodge the night before with Chief Henry and others, and had a very positive experience there.

One thing that stood out in his speech, was a belief that his grandfather had; a belief that while all humans are equal, we all have different stories.  No one is better than anyone else, though we all have different experiences.  All our stories are combining, and they are still combining.

During his visit with us, we learned that Mr. Bennett's life hasn't always been easy.  When he was young, for example, he lost his mother and brother in a tragic car accident.  But he talked about how acting helped him rise above negative experiences, and express himself in positive ways.

His career, he said, didn’t come quickly or easily.  But one day, while he was living on the beach, a mother whale and her baby came by.  He got to swim with them for a time, and he felt that it was a message from his people that he need to get doing things.

He talked about how in Maori culture it is important to “lift up your tongue” meaning, do what you need to do to express yourself.  And acting was that for him.  It helped him make good choices and stay away from bad things, like drugs and alcohol.

He stressed to the youth that they needed to live their lives so that they can be an asset to their people; that they needed to stay away from drugs and alcohol, because there is no future in those things.  And he reminded the youth that they need to know their people, their history and ancestors, and learn from the elders.

 One fun thing that he did with some of the boys before his visit with us finished, was the Haka.  The Haka is a traditional way for Maori men (only men do it) to get ready for battle.  He even taught the boys part of the chant for the Haka, so they were able to perform it with him.

The Haka most traditionally performed is called Ka mate.  It starts with the leader asking the rest of the men, “Ka rite?” (“Are you ready?”) Then all the men chant, “Ka mate, ka mate, Ka ora, Ka Ora!”  (“Will I die?  Will I die?  Will I live?  Will I live?”) and there is more to the chant, which Mr. Bennett did, though he only taught the first part to the boys.

During the questions time, one person asked him if he had a family, and he mentioned that he is married, and has three little girls, all given traditional Maori names.

One impressive thing about Mr. Bennett's visit, is that afterwards, he stayed for a very long time, signing autographs for every person who wanted one, and posing for pictures.  He was very kind, and treated each person like an individual, and he didn’t leave until everyone who wanted an autograph had one.  From what I have seen, Manu Bennett is a very genuine, sincere person, and I am grateful he took the time to come to our school.

I think this was a visit that will leave positive memories in the hearts and minds of the students of URHS for the rest of their lives.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Books on Sale!

A group of authors, including myself, are putting some of the ebook versions of our books on sale for the next couple of days.  Mine is down this list somewhere, but I hope you take a look at all of the books. 

Check out all these books!

Imperfect Love by Rebecca Talley 

Regular Price: $3.99
SALE Price: $.99 

Lauren Wilson is well on her way to her happily-ever-after. She’s passionate about her career as a middle school English teacher, she adores her handsome, hard-working husband, and with a baby finally on the way, her perfect life is within her grasp.

But then a devastating test result changes everything.

Forced to choose between her baby and her husband, Lauren makes the only decision she can live with, and she returns to her small hometown in hopes of rebuilding her shattered life.

Ethan Campbell is a gifted photographer who travels the world and has no desire to settle down. When his mother dies, he must go home to settle her estate. Then it’s back to exciting adventures across the globe.

When Lauren crosses paths with Ethan, her teenage crush, old feelings resurface—feelings she’s not prepared to face. Will Lauren have the courage to trust again or will she spend her life alone? 

Imperfect Love is a story about sacrifice, healing, second chances, and discovering that although love isn’t always perfect, sometimes it’s the imperfect love that’s the sweetest of all.

A Change of Plans by Donna K. Weaver

Regular Price: $3.99

SALE Price: $.99

Purchase A Change of Plans


(If you own the eBook, the audiobook is only $1.99)

When Lyn sets off on her supposedly uncomplicated and unromantic cruise, she never dreams it will include pirates. All the 25-year-old Colorado high school teacher wants is to forget that her dead fiancĂ© was a cheating scumbag. What she plans is a vacation diversion; what fate provides is Braedon, an intriguing surgeon. She finds herself drawn to him: his gentle humor, his love of music, and even his willingness to let her take him down during morning karate practices. Against the backdrop of the ship’s make-believe world and its temporary friendships, her emotions come alive.

However, fear is an emotion, too. Unaware of the sensitive waters he navigates, Braedon moves to take their relationship beyond friendship—on the very anniversary Lyn came on the cruise to forget. But Lyn’s painful memories are too powerful, and she runs off in a panic.

Things are bad enough when the pair finds themselves on one of the cruise’s snorkeling excursions in American Samoa. However, paradise turns to piracy when their party is kidnapped. Lyn’s fear of a fairytale turns grim. Now she must fight alongside the man she rejected, first for their freedom and then against storms, sharks, and shipwreck.

Salem Witch Haunt by Theresa Sneed

Regular Price: $4.99
SALE Price: $2.99

When she finds herself
thrust back in time, 17 year old Bess Martin, a senior at Danvers High, sets
out on a mission to save her 11th great-grandmother from the gallows-tree. With
a near-perfect knowledge of the historical events about to unfold, Bess knows
the untimely fate of many. 

The problem is that Bess has inherited her
grandmother’s sharp tongue—a tongue that caused her grandmother to be tried and
hanged as a witch in Salem Village, 1692. 

Can Bess stop the hangings and change
the course of history, or will she share her grandmother’s fate? 

Felicity A Sparrow's Tale by Loralee Evans

Regular Price: $2.99
SALE Price: $.99

Tales of adventure and
danger have thrilled Felicity since Augustus, her ivory-billed woodpecker
friend, taught her to read as a little nestling. She adores the tales of heroes
and heroines who forge ahead in spite of all odds, and who always seem to
succeed no matter what. More than anything, Felicity wants to be brave and
selfless like them. 

adventures are in short supply, especially for someone who’s just an ordinary

Until the
day an unexpected visitor shows up at her tree with an unusual request…

Newbie by Jo Noelle
Regular Price: $3.99
SALE Price: $.99
The housing market is crashing, and Sophie’s life is crashing with it. At twenty-four, her successful real estate career evaporates. She’s broke, can’t find a job, or pay her bills, leaving Sophie wondering how her successful lifestyle became so fragile.
At the urging of her roommate, Sophie accepts a job in her fallback career—teaching six-year-olds. She hopes it’s temporary. After all, how long can a tanking economy last anyway? The best part of the new job is Liam, another employee at Rio Grande Elementary. The worst part of the new job is, well, teaching.
Sophie has a surprise real estate closing from a contract she wrote months ago, leading her to a niche in the real estate market and to a new partner, Kevin. Sophie must choose between Liam or Kevin and between a lucrative career or recess duty.

Lost Without You by Annette Lyon

Regular price: $2.99
SALE Price: $0.99

For months, Christopher Morris has been Brooke's idea of the perfect man—attractive, charming, and fun to be around. But lately he's begun acting strangely, becoming possessive, controlling, and moody. Brooke feels she has no choice but to break up with him, but Christopher doesn't take it well. He drives her wildly back home and gets into a car accident. 

That's when Brooke first meets police officer Greg Stevens. After she keeps meeting him—at the worst possible times—they begin dating. Greg confesses he's a widower and that Brooke is the first woman he has so much as looked at in years. 

But as Brooke agonizes over whether Greg will ever be able to truly love her, Christopher makes a dangerous return into her life, deciding that if he can't have her, no one can.

The Man from Shenandoah by Marsha Ward

Regular Price: $2.99
SALE Price: $.99

When young cavalryman Carl Owen returns from the Civil War, he finds the family farm destroyed, his favorite brother dead, food scarce, and his father planning to leave the Shenandoah Valley to start a cattle operation in Colorado Territory.
But Pa does a bit more: he also chooses a suitable mate for both Carl and his younger brother, James.
With no one else in mind, Carl is agreeable to marrying the delightfully flirtatious Ida Hilbrands somewhere along the trail, but James is devastated. Ellen Bates isn't the girl he loves and must leave behind.
Making their way across the vast continent, the Owen family and their friends battle a prairie fire, internal strife, a band of vicious outlaws, and the land itself to try to achieve their goals, but before that can happen, the two brothers are fighting over the hand of one girl—and only one of them can win!

Dangerous Favor by Joyce DiPastena

Regular Price: $3.99
SALE Price: $.99

Mathilde needs a champion.

Her father has been accused of stealing from the king, an allegation that has reduced her family to poverty. She has one chance to find and marry a man who can help her prove her father's innocence. Lord Therri, heir to a rich barony, has the wealth and connections Mathilde needs to delve into the mysteries of her father's past. Furthermore, Therri embodies all her romantic dreams.

Etienne, the younger son of a disgraced family, has neither wealth nor connections, but is smitten with Mathilde at a glance. She finds the knight intriguing, but believes he is only out to seduce her. While she seeks for a way to win Therri's attention, Etienne tricks her into granting him her favor, an embroidered white ribbon, for a tournament, setting in motion a dangerous chain reaction of events. 

Can Etienne save Mathilde from a nightmare from her past and prove himself the true hero of her dreams?

With No Regrets (Book Two) by Julie N. Ford

Regular Price: $4.99
SALE Price: $.99


Living With No Regrets Is Harder Than It Seems

Finley isn’t exactly sure when her life began to feel unfamiliar. She suspects the transformation started long before she caught her husband and fellow garden club member doing the white-trash-two-step on her new Bernhardt sofa. Now free from the shackles of a loveless marriage, and with her children off to college, she’s finally able to go searching for the missing pieces of her heart.

Finley’s best friend, Cathyanne, is already working hard to ensure that Finley finds true love this time around. But when Finley is unwittingly tossed into the arms of two men—their sexy trainer and her neighbor, a popular country star—Cathyanne fears finding the right guy will be more complicated than she ever could have imagined.

For Finley, building a new life feels as impossible as flying a paper airplane to the moon. But maybe, just maybe, with the right help, she will find her whole heart—even if it’s in the very last place she thinks to look.

This Very Moment by Rachel Ann Nunes

Regular Price: 4.99
SALE Price: $.99 

A Compelling Story of Heartbreaking Loss, Inspiring Faith, and a Newfound Love Strong Enough to Heal All Wounds.

Bill Dubrey is a sought-after plastic surgeon for LA’s prestigious and wealthy, and an equally sought-after bachelor. On the surface it appears he has it all—money, respect, and fame. Yet behind his aloof exterior lurks a tragic past that prevents him from finding lasting happiness.

All that changes on the day Kylee Stewart reenters his life. She alone knows Bill’s secret agony, and she is determined to help him face his past. During the years they’ve been apart, Kylee’s own life has been far from easy, but unlike Bill, she has turned to God in her need, finding a faith to which she desperately clings.

The tentative friendship they begin has Bill rethinking his stark future, yet he keeps his heart in check—afraid to commit, afraid to lose again. During Kylee’s darkest moment, when she needs him most, will he be there for her? 

Shooting Stars by Philip Carroll

Regular Price: $3.99
SALE Price: FREE Sept 15- 19

Chuck McWilliams is fourteen years old and had just started high school in Washington State when his father lost his job and moved them to the hot, dry, valley of Central California. Starting his freshman hear six weeks after the rest of the students, Chuck is insecure about finding his way, making new friends and overcoming bullying from members of the cross country team. 

When he is invited to the Homecoming Dance by a strange girl in his English class, Kelsey Llewellyn, he can't think of any reason to say no. Later that day Dahlia Chand, an attractive girl on the cross country team, asks him to the dance, he wonders if he has made a mistake. 

How a secretive student, Doug Le Roux, avoids the notice of the rest of the students, yet stands out so clearly to Chuck makes him wonder if something extraordinary is going on at this high school. 

Chuck will become entwined in an ages old battle with werewolves, vampires and elves that most of humankind is unaware of in their midst. Remarkably, he will find the most enchanting magic comes from romance.

Ideal High by Valerie Ipson

Regular Price: $4.99
SALE Price: $1.99

There’s no way I’m taking Blake’s place as president of the student body. As soon as the memorial for him and six of our friends is over, I’m resigning as VP. Really.

Except people say the fire was no accident. (I say it’s way too easy to blame someone who’s dead.)

When I read the writing on the wall, literally, the bathroom wall, I know what it means. To get to the truth I have to come out from under my paisley comforter.

But, seriously, what stage of grief says I have to be the one to fix what’s wrong at Ideal High? Maybe I’m the one who’s broken.

First Love Second Choice by Lindzee Armstrong

Regular Price: $.99

First Love Second Choice (Audio!)

When wedding planner Keslee gets asked on a date by her long-lost high school crush, Bryce, everything should be perfect. But Bryce mistakes Keslee for her deceased twin sister, Jadyn. And Keslee doesn’t correct him. Talk about awkward. To make matters worse, she learns they’ll be seeing a lot more of each other because Bryce is the marketing director at the venue where Keslee’s new client has chosen to get married. Keslee knows the charade can’t last much longer, and fears she’ll lose Bryce forever when she tells him the truth.

Nightmare by Anna del C. Dye


What would you do if one night, life as
you know it changes and you are left alone in despair? That is how Emerine’s
nightmare starts and now all he does is run.

His family lived at the edge of the forest
until dark shadows killed them all. Now they want him, and so does a magic
tree. He has never seen dark shadows or enchanted trees before. Emerine has to
get to the heart of Red Forest, to the fairy people. Only then he will be safe.
Safe? He has never heard of fairies before and once he gets there what?

We have a fantastic line-up of great books that are on SALE! Everyone loves a sale, right? 

Cassandra Jones by Tamara Hart Heiner

Regular Price: $3.99
SALE Price: FREE Sept 16-17

What's special about Cassandra? Absolutely nothing. She's as ordinary as any other fifth grader. And yet her ordinary life is riddled with hilarious and sometimes heart-breaking mishaps as she guides herself through the world of pre-teens on the brink of adulthood. 

Cassandra Jones is the new girl at school. She's been uprooted from her beloved state of Texas and relocated to the hillbilly Ozarks of Springdale, Arkansas. She wonders if she will like her teacher or if she will have any friends. She can only hope school won't be harder than it was back home. 

She doesn't expect to have two close friends, and even worse, two friends that don't like each other. As she tries to make a spot for herself, will she keep her friendships intact?