Friday, March 18, 2011

Interview with....

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                                                                ~Linda Weaver-Clarke~

Linda is giving a Free Copy of the  book of Melinda and the Wild West away to a winner. All they have to do is make a comment to be eligible.

Bio: Linda Weaver Clarke travels throughout the United States, teaching a “Family Legacy Workshop,” encouraging people to write their family history and autobiography. She is happily married and is the mother of six daughters and has several grandchildren. Clarke is the author of eight novels: the historical romance series, “A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho,” which includes: Melinda and the Wild West - a semi-finalist for the “Reviewers Choice Award 2007,” and a new mystery series, “The Adventures of John and Julia Evans.”

Which social sites would you like them to visit you on?

1) What inspired you to write the books you write?
It all started when I began writing my own ancestor’s stories. Their stories were intriguing to me. After that, I couldn’t stop writing, so I turned to historical fiction. I tend to put true family and ancestral experiences in my novels. It brings my story to life. I felt close to my ancestors and wanted to add their experiences to my books. For example: my great grandmother, Sarah, lost her hearing at the age of one when she was very sick. Even though she was deaf, she was known as one of the most graceful dancers in town. She was a beautiful woman with black hair, blue eyes, and was 5’ 5” tall. Nothing held her back. She was an independent and spunky woman. One day, she felt that an intruder was in her home so she grabbed her broom and searched the house. She found him under her bed. With all the power and strength she had, she swatted him out of the house and down the street, pummeling him as she went. My great grandmother was an inspiration to me, so I gave her experiences to my character in David and the Bear Lake Monster: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho. I even named her Sarah, after my great grandmother.

Another example is the courtship of my parents. They didn't meet the conventional way. They met through letters. It was the most romantic story I had ever heard, so I decided to write a story with my parents' courtship in mind and I called it Edith and the Mysterious Stranger: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho. Why mysterious? Because she didn't know who he was? But each letter intrigued her more and more, revealing the soul of a man she never realized existed. My mother fell in love with my father because of his letters... before they ever met!

2} How did you start writing?
After writing my family history, I went to the library and read one book after another about writing historical fiction novels. I found out that it's very important to add bits of history from that time period. Using the inspiration of my ancestors and their experiences, I began my research. I needed some historical facts in my story. I put a great deal of research into my novels. For example, the subplot for Jenny’s Dream: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho is about Old Ephraim, the ten-foot grizzly bear. The research about this old grizzly was exciting to me because I grew up with the stories of Old Ephraim. He wreaked havoc wherever he went, slaughtering sheep and scaring sheepherders so badly that they actually quit their jobs. With one blow of his paw, he could break the back of a cow. I found that he was the smartest bear that ever roamed the Rocky Mountains. No one could catch him. Every bear trap they set was tossed many yards away from where they had put it, and the ones that weren’t tripped had Old Three Toes tracks all around it. He was too smart to be caught. It took one man to outsmart this bear: Frank Clark from Malad, Idaho! In this story, I included every detail about this bear and his deeds. Since my story is historical fiction and my hero is Gilbert Roberts, I renamed this grizzly “Old Half Paw,” in honor of “Old Three Toes.” To read excerpts from my books, visit

I did the same thing with David and the Bear Lake Monster. I found so much information about this monster and read many accounts of the sightings from different people. I even got an email from a woman who said that her grandfather had seen the monster and described it to her. It was exciting to research and I found many interesting facts, too.

3} Why did you choose this type of book?
I have always been interested in history but historical fiction brings it to life. I feel that I learn so much and I'm being entertained at the same time.

4} Who is your favorite author?
I have many favorite authors. It's hard to just name one. I absolutely love the historical fiction series Prelude to Glory by Ron Carter. He wrote about the Revolutionary War and how we received our freedom. His characters brought his novels to life and I learned about American history at the same time. He did great research and includes his bibliography at the end of the book.

5} What advice would you give a new author?
Research is so important. It brings that time period to life and you can understand what people are going through.

6} Out of the books you write what has been your favorite
and why?
Out of the "Family Saga in Bear Lake" series, my favorite is Elena, Woman of Courage. It was so much fun to research and write. For example, the “Roaring Twenties” was a time of great change, when women raised their hemlines and bobbed their hair. It was a time of independence, courage, and adventure. In the 1920s, the new generation spoke a language that their parents didn’t understand. They used words like: Cat’s pajamas! Ah, horsefeathers! Attaboy! Baloney! You slay me! When referring to a woman, they used doll, tomato, and bearcat. When a person was in love, he was goofy. If a person was a fool, he was a sap. And when a woman was not in the mood for romance, she would say, “The bank’s closed.” Elena, Woman of Courage: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho creates the mood of the “roaring twenties” and is filled with courage, romance, and humor.

Another thing that made it fun to write was the plot. Elena is a courageous woman who went to college during a time when women were not encouraged to be educated beyond high school. The 1920s was a time of change when women began fighting for their rights. After getting her degree as a doctor, she moves to the West to set up her own practice. When she arrives in a small town in Idaho, she meets those who oppose her from day one but Elena’s stubborn nature will not allow her to give up. In her fight for equality, she learns to love the people of Bear Lake Valley and realizes she has found a home at last. This is a love story, also. And I loved the romance and humor in this novel.

7} Was there a part that was hard to write in any of your books?
When I changed from historical fiction to mystery was a difficult change. The writing process between romance and mystery is quite a change with a completely different mind set. With romance, you plan out the plot around the meeting of a couple. As you write, you develop some sort of charisma between the characters, making the reader feel excited that one day they're going to hit it off and fall in love. You, as the reader, know the outcome.

But with a mystery, the reader is in the dark. The author has to come up with a plot that no one knows about until towards the end of the story and hope they haven’t figured it out. In a mystery, you may or may not allow your reader to know who the bad guys are, according to whether it’s just a mystery or mystery suspense. In a mystery, the reader doesn’t know who the bad guys are until the end of the book. With mystery suspense, the reader knows who they are and it makes for a more suspenseful outcome.

8] Is there anything you would change in the way you write the books?
Of course, every author notices that their writing abilities improve with each book they write. But other than that, I can't think of a thing. I like the plot of all my novels. The love stories all have different plots, according to the time period.

9} If you could ask any author dead or alive a question what would it be?
What was Jane Austin's family life like? What was her father and mother like? Were they like some of her characters in her novels? Why did she pick romances to write about? These would be my questions.

10} How has your life changed since becoming a author?
I now travel throughout the U.S., teaching people how to write their family history. I never dreamed this would be part of my life after raising my children. Who would ever have guessed? Not me!

11} What was the inspiration behind your first novel in the Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho series?
Teachers have a great responsibility. They are not only teaching young minds, but they are shaping the future. Teachers should not label their students. Once he or she is labeled, it’s a stigma that stays with him until something changes. Name-calling, labeling, and demeaning only hold a student back from a greater future. In my novel, Melinda and the Wild West, I included one of my own experiences as a substitute teacher in which an eight-year-old student had been labeled as a troublemaker by her teacher. The students had listened to the teacher and steered away from her, not wanting to be her friend. This not only made her feel degraded, but she wanted to fight back and she did. She stopped doing schoolwork, refused to be part of the class, and got into a few fights. She seemed angry at the world but after working with her for a while, I soon learned what a sweet and wonderful child she was. She had characteristics that I was impressed with. When she realized that I really cared, she was willing to do her work, just to please me.

When I wrote a note to her mother, telling her what a wonderful child she was, her mother came to me with tears in her eyes as she tried to express her gratitude for this little scribbled note. In turn, I tried to control the tears that stung my eyes, not wanting to show my emotions. I´ll never know how this young girl´s life turned out, but in my novel I chose a happily-ever-after ending, just because a new teacher cared and made a difference in the girl´s life.

12} What is your novel about?
In 1896 Melinda Gamble—a very elegant, naïve young woman from Boston—decides to give up her life of monotonous comfort for the turbulent uncertainty of the still untamed Wild West. Driven by her intense desire to make a difference in the world, Melinda takes a job as a schoolteacher in the small town of Paris, Idaho, where she comes face-to-face with a notorious bank robber, a vicious grizzly bear, and a terrible blizzard that leaves her clinging to her life. But it’s a rugged rancher who challenges Melinda with the one thing for which she was least prepared—love.

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March Madness Blog Hop~~~

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March Madness Blog Hop

Retail Therapy Lounge

It will be a 5 day event to hop and enter giveaway packages: March 15th - 20th!
The giveaways on Retail Therapy Lounge will consist of 10 giveaways from 10 sponsors totaling about $1000 in value.  Each blog participating in the hop will also offer MORE great giveaways to enter.  Readers will "hop" to each blog to enter giveaways form March 15th - March 20th.

If you are a blogger and want to participate there are only 3 simple rules:

1) Enter your Blog Title, URL and email in the linky below.
The linky will be open until March 10th for bloggers wanting to join.
2) Place the linky with the participating blogs on your site March 15th- 20th so
readers know where to hop for great prizes. I will email the linky to
bloggers to place on your site after you sign up.
3) Have a great giveaway (or giveaways) for your readers and blog hoppers to
enter that are posted March 15th - March 20th.
There are no other rules - just fun for bloggers, blog readers
and sponsors! Email me (retailtherapylounge at if you have questions.
~Mommie Point of View Giveways~
Sweet Carmel aple dip~ The Gourmet Cupboard

Spring Time book~ UBAH

St. Patty's Day book ~ BarefootBooks

BookReview~ABC Glenda Cates

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                                                              ~ Meet  Jennifer Pereyra ~
In terms of a summary of the book and the story behind it, well it all started when my oldest daughter, Rebeca, began questioning why my husband and I dropped her and her baby sister off at pre-school every day.  As I began to think of how I would respond to her, I was reminded of my own trials and tribulations as a five-year-old starting kindergarten. 
The year was 1983 and I wore my brand new red dress and Buster Brown shoes.  The first day of school wasn't altogether that bad.  However, the tearful days that followed culminated with my mother finding me on the front porch of our house crying my eyes out.  I had actually walked home from school, alone.  She had dropped me off one morning at the front door but I never made it all the way to my classroom.  I turned around and made my way back home, sure that I was never going to go back.  So here I am today, a college graduate, a wife, a successful working mother of two young daughters of my own, and a published author.  Obviously, I did end up returning to kindergarten.  It was all because of my teacher sharing with me the story of "The Little Engine That Could" by Watty Piper, and the words, “I think I can, I think I can”.  That book became my security blanket of sorts and ultimately helped to turn fear into strength and inspired a life-long love of learning.
Fast forward a few years (okay, many years), remembering how helpful that book was to me at that age, I began my search for a story that would help me to answer my daughter’s questions in a simple, yet entertaining way.  Shockingly, I found the children’s picture book market to be devoid of stories about families with two working parents.  As such, one sunny Saturday afternoon I sat down at the kitchen table with a carpenter’s pencil and a piece of computer printer paper and began to write.  Shortly thereafter I had to travel out of town for a national meeting and shared with some of my colleagues the result of my efforts.  Quite unexpectedly, I was met with incredible words of encouragement, many commenting, “you have to get this published…there’s nothing out there like this.”  I shared the story with the director at my daughters’ school who responded, “I have goose bumps.  That’s the kind of book I need.  That’s exactly what our parents go through every day.”  It is my dream that this book, and those I have in mind to follow, will be as influential in the lives of young children and their caregivers as, "The Little Engine That Could", was in mine.

Description of the book:
Rebeca doesn't want her parents to leave every day. But then Mommy explains why she and Daddy must go, to make a living and provide for their girls. Young children will love the fanciful rhymes and find reassurance when they understand why "Mommy and Daddy work to Make Some Dough". Jennifer Pereyra's charming tale is an excellent story for the children of working parents.

About the author:Jennifer Pereyra has sought balance between her career and home life.  While earning her B.A. from Lake Forest College, Jennifer studied in Madrid, where she met her husband, Ignacio.  They are now raising their daughters in Columbus, NJ.

Endorsement:"When I heard this story, I got goose bumps.  Jennifer has perfectly captured what our families experience every day.  The rhyming and authenticity will entertain both child and parent alike." --Denise Johnson, center director, The Goddard School, Bordentown, NJ

The official release date of the book is April 5th at which point it will be available to be ordered wherever books are sold.  For pre-release autographed copies, I can be contacted directly at or at

The book is also an eLIVE book, meaning each printed copy contains a special code redeemable for the free download of the audio version of the book.

The cost is $9.99+tax and applicable S&H.  For any of your readers who place an order directly through me, they should mention the discount code MPOV1 and I will extend a 10% discount.     

~Glenda's Point of View~

Mommy & Daddy Work To make Some Dough
Jennifer Lynn Pereyra
For parents who do have to work I know it is hard to leave our kids.
But this book helps us explain why we do leave them to go to work
in such a positive way that I think anyone who works should take the
time to check it out.
You can tell she has been there which is nice as it makes you able to
relate to the story in a much better way.
I also like the way she did the pictures and the colors they are so appealing.
I really think if you are a parent you should take the time to check it out.
If you do not wish to sit down and read it then at least download the audio
to listen to.
I have been lucky enough to give one of the books away
to win you must follow me on all three blogs
Then leave me a comment stating you are following me
and why you would like to win this book.
Glenda Cates

BookReview~ Curly Girl~

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Curly Girl: The Handbook
Curly Girl
by Lorraine Massey with Michele Bender
This is a book that teaches us how to Love the curls
most of us hate.
I look around me and I see so many who have such pretty
curls  and they are complaining about them.
Then I see others with straight hair wishing they had curly hair.
Wouldn't it be nice if we could just switch our hair with our friends
like we do our clothes?
If we could I know I would have long brown curls.
The thing is those of us that got the curls would be know how to take
care of them?
I know I would not and so I was so glad when I was asked to review the
book Curly Girl.
This book even has a DVD that I was able to sit down and watch and it helped
her come to terms with her curls and she was able to share it with some of her
friends who was as amazed by the book as she was.
Another part we liked was being able to identity her curl type.
Yes, did you know curls have types?
Plus there is a section on Homemade Recipes and I Loved it as it was stuff
my daughter and I could do together plus it helped us save money as well.
I would recommend this book to both men and women who have curly hair
as I know it can make your life easier.
  Please check out the book and let me know your thoughts
  I will be offering a question and answer section and a giveaway too
So Please check out the interview below then enter the lovely giveaway
they have allowed me to host.
two winners can receive a copy of the book and one special winner can receive a copy of the book AND a travel kit of Lorraine’s acclaimed products.

DevaCurl Travel Kit
The perfect way to bring DevaCurl with you wherever you go! Contains travel size (3oz.) bottles of our most popular products: One Condition, No-Poo, AnGel and Set It Free in a convenient travel bag. Also included is a Deva Recurlmendation card with curl advice and information about Deva's complete collection of products for a healthy, frizz free, easy to manage curly hair lifestyle.

is the unrivaled bible for everything related to the care, management, and styling of curly hair and you’ll find it in the January issues of Glamour and Cosmopolitan magazines and on NBC’s “Today Show”. This book includes a whole chapter devoted to hair care and management for curly kids and it also includes a wealth of helpful tips for busy parents on the go (fathers aren’t excluded, there’s a whole chapter for curly men as well).
An unbelievable 65% of women have curly or wavy hair, but you would never know it. That’s because so many curly- and wavy-haired women blow-dry their hair straight, hide it under hats, pull it back with rubber bands, disguise it with weaves and braids, or flatten it with anything they can find. Too many of us are at a loss about how to properly care for our hair. In CURLY GIRL, Lorraine Massey shows how to work with your curls instead of against them.
Some useful links:
Lorraine Massey’s book tour:
Going curly saves time and money:

Top Curly Hair Commandments from CURLY Girl Author~ Lorraine Massey
  1. Use sulfate-free cleansers/shampoos. Traditional shampoos contain harsh detergents called sulfates, foaming agents that strip curly hair of its natural oils causing frizz.
  2. Condition, condition, condition. Once curly hair fibers are sufficiently hydrated with conditioner, they will hold onto the moisture they need and the frizz will go away! Curly hair is porous, but the conditioner fills the holes a bit like spackle on walls and smoothes the surface so that light can reflect off it. Leave some or all of your conditioner in your hair rather than rinsing. Generally, the tighter or dryer the curl, the more conditioner you need.
  3. Don’t use a brush and comb (even those that claim to be made for curls). The act of brushing or combing the hair actually interferes with your curls’ natural formation and causes dispersed curls - otherwise known as frizz! Use your fingers to comb through the hair only when it’s wet and drenched with conditioner in the shower.
  4. Don’t use a conventional towel on curly locks. A terry-cloth towel will absorb too much moisture and its harsh fabric will ruffle the hair’s cuticle causing frizz. Instead, blot hair with a paper towel, old, cotton t-shirt, microfiber towel, old pillow-case or burp cloth. These are smooth and absorbant but won’t cause frizz.
  5. Apply gel to wet curls. Make sure it’s alcohol and silicone free to give definitive hold without leaving curls crunchy. Gel helps hold the natural curl formation until hair dries, protecting it from outside elements like wind and humidity.
  6. Don’t touch your hair while it’s drying. Again, this interferes with the curls’ natural formation, causing frizz.
  7. Cut curly hair only when it’s dry. Wet curls and dry curls are like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Curly hair may be half way down your back when wet, only to spring up as much as 6 to 10 inches when it’s dry.
Inspired by the Mayans, this rich avocado hair treat will nourish and moisturize dry ends.
Jojoba oil and agave can be found at most health
food stores.
1 ripe avocado, peeled and cored
3 to 4 teaspoons honey or agave syrup
8 to 10 drops olive oil or jojoba oil
1.         Put the avocado, honey, and oil in a blender. Blend briefly until combined.
2.         Apply the avocado mixture to your wet hair, especially targeting the ends.
3.         Wrap your hair with clear plastic wrap or a towel, making a turban. Leave on for 20 to 30 minutes.
4.         Rinse your hair thoroughly, cleanse and/or condition, then style.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Good Reads; Book Review

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By Princess Lola LeDeaux
My son and I got this book in the mail last week and since then I can not
keep ahold of it as he keeps taking it to go and look through.
I am glad he likes it so much as I did too and I know it is going to become
a family favorite.
If you have not seen it I suggest you look for it as it is really good.
It is a story as you can tell about a dog who blogs but it is also so
easy to follow and the pictures are wonderful to Love it.
.I Loved that it is about a Basset Hound as this is my husbands favorite
dog and even he will sit  down and read to our son which is so nice to see,
I am lucky enough to have one of the books to give away
The mandatory entry is to go to
Tell me who you would like to win the book for
Extra Entries:
Follow me on Goodreads
Good Luck

Monday, March 14, 2011

Indie Apperication & Blog Hop~ plus a giveway!

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a $20. Amazon Gift Card for the prize.   follow us on facebook and Twitter. 2 enter!!

Join Barb D. for Indie Read Appreciation Week.  I'm chatting with authors and giving away books.  Check out my review of Protecting Paige by Norah Wilson
Drop by and enter to win!

Indie Apperication & Blog Hop with Giveways Join Glenda and others for a exciting blog hop and book reviews. Visit our blog friends to learn more.
A Tale of Many Reviews~

That Bookish Girl~ Blog Hop
More coming soon so pleae DO come back later! ~ glenda c.
a $20. Amazon Gift Card for the prize.   follow us on facebook and Twitter. 2 enter!!


Show Me How! Build Your Child's Self Esteem Through Reading, Craftingand Cooking
By Vivian Kirkfield
This book is for children 2 to 5
As a parent of a soon to be 3 year old there is lots of things I wish
I new how to handle better and with this book I have learned so many
new ways to deal with these problems that I feel like I can be the
parent I always wanted to be.
I read the book cover to cover and was so intrigued that I sat down
and made a list of all the books she has listed in it to go with the
stories and I am buying them one a week so when I encounter any of the
problems I know will come along I will have a book to share with my
son. Which is nice as we are adding to his library and learning at the
same time.
Through the book I also have found a lot of new crafts he and I can do
together which is teaching him patience and also how to use scissors
and things which I had been wanting to teach him as he turns 3 this
One of my favorite parts of the book is it comes with recipes for each
story and with this I have been able to get my son to try new foods as
all he likes is Mac and Cheese and Chicken Nuggets. Now we have
discovered all types of foods he will try and that he actually likes.
I think the reason for this is the recipes in the book is ones he can
help me fix instead of always having to watch.
This is now one of my most favorite books of all times and I will
never be without it and I will be recommending it to all the parents I
I wanted to share with you a part of the I Am Really  Mad  Right Now
and what all it comes with as so many parents struggle with this
issue. I know I do as I hear this a hundred times a day from my son.
Only now I sit with him and we talk about why he is mad then we read
Where The Wild Things Are and I was able to share that this is
one of my favorite books then I pulled out a new book either of us had
read and we shared it together called
And My Mean Old Mother Will Be Sorry, Blackboard Bear and found we both loved this new
book as well and could not wait to share it with daddy.
How many of our children Love sidewalk chalk? Did you know you can
make your own? In this story you will learn how and it is so much fun.
I thought I would share the recipe with you:
Sidewalk Chalk:
1 box of Plaster of Paris
1 large plastic bowl
and a stirrer to mix
tempera paint ( liquid or powder)
an empty toilet paper roll reinforced with duct tape as well as over one end
a separate roll for each color
or small paper cups
I Wear old clothes or cover ups; mix a small amount of plaster of
Paris with water in the plastic container. The plaster should be stiff
but creamy... add a little more water if necessary and then add a
small amount of Tempura paint... stir well and pour into the toilet
roll or paper cup
Let the chalk harden about 30 minutes... you can use it then or wait
until it is completely dry (about 24 hours).
Now that this is done how would you like to make some Creamsicle Ice Pops??
Well you will find this in the book too only I will not post it as I
want one of my lucky readers to win the book and once they do they can
find it and make it thereselves.
2 of my winners will win one of these books thereselves.
If you are not lucky enough to win a copy you can purchase one off her
website at:
Mandatory entry:
Why would you like to win this book?

To enter Please follow me on:
Google Friend Connect
Then go add me as a friend on Facebook:
Then come back and let me know which ones you did and Please leave
your email in case you win!

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Luck of the IRISH.....

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Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop! 
Thursday, March 17 to Sunday, March 20th.  (Post goes up at midnight on Wednesday night).

ABC Giveways~

Saint Pattys book  from Barefoot Books 
Spring book from UBAH
Spring fun for kids from The Gourmet Cupboard
for entries they need to follow me on Twitter mandatory,  extra entries are Facebook and also write a review on Alexia