Thursday, July 31, 2014

Cover reveal - BREAKER by Emma Raveling #ya #fantasy

Welcome to today's cover reveal for BREAKER by Emma Raveling
BREAKER is the fourth book in the Ondine Quartet, an upper Young Adult Urban Fantasy series. 
Ready? Ta da!
War. Prophecy. Freedom.

She fought for herself.
She fought for friendship and love.
Now, Kendra Irisavie fights for the survival of her world.

War rages on, leaving no one untouched. Destruction rips through elemental communities and terror flourishes in its wake. Suspicion soars, order fractures, and loyalties crumble despite Kendra’s desperate attempts to protect everyone she holds dear.

 When an organized Aquidae army launches a series of merciless assaults, Kendra and her friends set out to end the bloodshed once and for all. With the fate of elementals hanging in balance, the Shadow and sondaleur hunt each other down in a brutal match of cunning and will.

Kendra has trained for this her entire life. But in a ravaged world where trust is scarce and no life is sacred, she soon realizes her battle may be against an invincible enemy and that her darkest days lie ahead.

Twists and turns shape her harrowing odyssey, leading to a stunning climax that challenges everything she believes in.

Torn between destiny and autonomy, Kendra must finally decide whether the cost of freedom is too high.

Heartbreaking decisions, turbulent alliances, and shattering revelations collide in Breaker, the explosive conclusion to the Ondine Quartet.

And now for an author interview and a more information about Emma Raveling:
Tell us about the covers in this series.
The main novels of the Ondine Quartet (Whirl, Billow,Crest, Breaker) have conceptual covers. Each cover’s imagery captures a particular theme or motif in the book, and the coloring conveys a sense of the story’s mood and emotional arc.
The shorter works/novellas in the series (Ondine,Chevalier, and Warrior Prince) are essentially character portraits and are told through the eyes of different characters in the series. Those covers use models.
The goal for Breaker’s cover was to visually convey high stakes, explosive energy, and a brilliant, sharp intensity.This is the epic finale to the series and everything that has happened in previous books has led to this moment.
Out of all the covers in the series, this one took the most amount of work. My designer and I went back and forth multiple times, going through several drastically different versions before finally arriving at the right imagery and coloring.
How does it feel to end a series?
It’s bittersweet. A part of me is thrilled to share the end of Kendra’s journey with readers. I’ve had the entire series planned since the very beginning so finally releasing what’s been in my head is a relief.
But the process of writing this final book has been a highly emotional one. There’s a personal attachment to the work itself. I’ve spent countless hours thinking and living with these characters and with this world over the past four years. It’s difficult to bring not only Kendra’s story, but my journey with her story,to an end.
A few easy questions:
Top 3 books?
Only 3?? Argh! There are so many books I love for different reasons and my list of favorites is always changing, depending on what’s going on in my life. Right now, if I had to name three, they’d be:
1. Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
2. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
3. And of course, the Harry Potter series
Top 5 movies?
1. Aviator
2. Mulholland Drive
3. The Matrix
4. The Breakfast Club
5. Okay, I couldn’t just pick five. So the last one is a tie between The Usual Suspects, Reservoir Dogs, Star Wars (ep. 4-6), and Catch Me If You Can.
Top 5 places in the world you enjoy visiting?
1.New York City
4.Kauai Island (Hawaii)
Top 5 foods?
1.Fresh basil pesto – I’ll add this on anything
2.Sashimi (Japanese-style raw fish)
3.Dark chocolate
4.Jamón ibérico(Spanish ham)
5.And my terrible guilty pleasure: pizza
Author Bio:
Emma Raveling writes a wide variety of fiction for teens and adults. Hopelessly addicted to coffee and diet coke, she is the author of the Ondine Quartet and Chancer young adult series, and is currently working on the first book in her new Steel Magic series for adults.
Here are Amazon links to the previous novels:
 and previous novellas (and Ondine is free!):

This event was organized by:

Monday, July 28, 2014

Weekend Warrior Monday #amwriting #mg #ya #horses

This turned out to be a fairly crazy week and, as usual, things didn't go to plan. On Thursday, I spent the morning in the ER with my mom. She choked on a piece of chicken and couldn't get it out. She could breath and talk fine, just not eat or drink. Found out her esophagus is half the size it should be. Now she knows why she has to chew her food really well. Glad I didn't inherit that - I love food too much to stop myself from gulping! She's fine and has some really neat pics now.
So my riding plans for Thursday got moved to Friday. No big deal except that it was exceptionally hot on Thursday and didn't cool off overnight. So Friday started hot and just got worse. I ended up riding Pico in 98 degrees. We did 10 miles, but I felt bad for him and ended up leading for 3 miles. Thank god for Gatorade!
When I finished the ride, I hid in the air conditioned house and stared at the monitor. Thanks to the lovely @Vicki_Leigh, I won a submission package critique during her cover reveal of CATCH ME WHEN I FALL (which I loved!!!).  She sent back my query and synopsis with very insightful comments for my MG ms, MIGHTY MIKE AND THE INTERGALACTIC CANDY DISPENSER. Oh, things are shaping up nicely. Watch out agents, queries coming your way.
My little mare Ava has decided she doesn't like riding alone, so I ride her days I can find a riding partner. Saturday I rode on the Air Force Academy, a 12 mile loop called the Falcon trail. It's tons of fun with hills and rocks and water and golf courses. I only had to sit a few bucks when Ava decided she wanted to gallop rather than trot nicely. Her race track brain surfaces occasionally.
I took Sunday easy and just rode Pico for 6 miles. We have an endurance ride coming up next weekend (ought to have some good stories from that) and try to give the horses a break for a few days before. This is all new to Pico. He'll be doing his first 25 miler. Ava will be doing 50 miles. My husband will be sitting in the horse trailer nursing his wounds and grumbling that he can't ride.

What did you do this weekend? Writing or a hobby or family/friend activities? Hope you had a good one and would love to hear from you all!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Cover Reveal/Giveaway: Fire in the Woods by Jennifer M. Eaton #M9BFridayReveals

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

Fire in the Woods by Jennifer M. Eaton

presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!


When a plane crashes in the woods near Jess’s home, the boy of her dreams falls out of the sky—literally. But David’s not here to find a girlfriend. He’s from another planet, and if Jess can’t help him get back to his ship, he’ll be stuck on Earth with nothing to look forward to but the pointy end of a dissection scalpel.
But her father runs their house like an army barracks, and with an alien on the loose, Major Dad isn’t too keen on the idea of Jess going anywhere. Ever. So how the heck is she supposed to help the sweetest, strangest, and cutest guy she’s ever met?
Hiding him in her room probably isn’t the best idea. Especially since her Dad is in charge of the squadron searching for David. That doesn’t mean she won’t do it. It just means she can't get caught.
Helping David get home while protecting her heart—that’s gonna be the hard part. After all, she can't really fall for a guy who’s not exactly from here.
As they race through the woods with Major Dad and most of the U.S. military one breath behind them, Jess and David grow closer than either of them anticipated. But all is not what it seems. David has a genocide-sized secret, and one betrayal later, they are both in handcuffs as alien warships are positioning themselves around the globe. Time is ticking down to Armageddon, and Jess must think fast if she's to save the boy she cares about without sacrificing Earth—and everyone on it.

add to goodreads
Title: Fire in the Woods
Publication date: September 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Jennifer M. Eaton


Jennifer M. EatonCorporate Team Leader by day, and Ranting Writer by night. Jennifer M. Eaton calls the East Coast of the USA home, where she lives with her husband, three energetic boys, and a pepped up poodle.
Jennifer hosts an informational blog “A Reference of Writing Rants for Writers (or Learn from My Mistakes)” aimed at helping all writers be the best they can be.
Beyond writing and motivating others, she also enjoys teaching her dog to jump through hoops—literally.
Jennifer’s perfect day includes long hikes in the woods, bicycling, swimming, snorkeling, and snuggling up by the fire with a great book; but her greatest joy is using her over-active imagination constructively… creating new worlds for everyone to enjoy.

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
(Winners will receive their book on release day)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Cover reveal! RIVAL LOVE by Natalie Decker #ya #romance

Rival Love
Release Date: 08/26/14
Swoon Romance

Summary from Goodreads:
Skylar Fletcher is a proud Harris Academy Bulldog! She has everything she’s ever wanted: a perfect boyfriend, great friends, and her dream college waiting for her in the fall. But nothing lasts forever. Skylar's world shatters when her mom decides it is time to move and drags Skylar, kicking and screaming, into Bobcat territory.

At Delmont High School, home of the Bobcats, Skylar has no friends and is often bullied. To make matters worse, her home life sucks thanks to all-star quarterback Caleb Morgan, nephew of her mom's live-in boyfriend.

At first Skylar and Caleb want nothing to do with one another. But they soon discover they're not that different after all--and each is harboring a secret attraction to the other. But can a Bulldog and a Bobcat ever really be more than friends? And are Skylar and Caleb willing to risk everything to find out? Rival Love is a debut young adult contemporary romance from Natalie Decker.

About the Author
Natalie Decker is the Author of Rival Love. She loves oceans, sunsets, sand between her toes, and carefree days. Her imagination is always going, which some find odd. But she believes in seeing the world in a different light at all times. Her first passion for writing started at age twelve when she had to write a poem for English class. However, seventh grade wasn’t her favorite time and books were her source of comfort. She took all college prep classes in High school, and attended the University of Akron. Although she studied Mathematics she never lost her passion for writing or her comfort in books. She’s a mean cook in the kitchen, loves her family and friends and her awesome dog infinity times infinity. If she’s not writing, reading, traveling, hanging out with her family and friends, then she’s off having an adventure. Because Natalie believes in a saying: Your life is your own journey, so make it amazing!

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png

Book Blitz Organized by:

Monday, July 21, 2014

Weekend Warrior Monday - opinions needed!

Blurry view from Pico's back!
I did get some riding in this weekend - this time alone since hubby is still recovering from last weekend's events. He is recovering quickly, so there may be a chance he'll be able to do our ride in two weeks.
The second weekend battle involved my YA WIP. I got some great feedback from my critique group and spent many hours tweaking and massaging. I'm feeling kind of good about this one.
Here is a link to my first chapter. I'd love to know what you think if you'd be so kind as to toss something into the comments. Or let us all know of your warrior writing activities!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Check out this reading from FERAL by Holly Schindler

You may remember the cover reveal and trailer posted here back in March for Holly Schindler's FERAL, coming August 26, 2014. Now we've got an exciting reading from the first pages. Check it out and post your thoughts in the comments, we'd love to hear from you, even if it's just a Hi, passing by!
You can pre-order FERAL here.

If you have trouble viewing, here's the direct link:
It’s too late for you. You’re dead. Those words continue to haunt Claire Cain months after she barely survived a brutal beating in Chicago. So when her father is offered a job in another state, Claire is hopeful that getting out will offer her a way to start anew.

But when she arrives in Peculiar, Missouri, Claire feels an overwhelming sense of danger, and her fears are confirmed when she discovers the body of a popular high school student in the icy woods behind the school, surrounded by the town’s feral cats. While everyone is quick to say it was an accident, Claire knows there’s more to it, and vows to learn the truth about what happened.

But the closer she gets to uncovering the mystery, the closer she also gets to realizing a frightening reality about herself and the damage she truly sustained in that Chicago alley….

Holly Schindler’s gripping story is filled with heart-stopping twists and turns that will keep readers guessing until the very last page.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Cover Reveal&giveaway-Lucas Mackenzie and the London Midnight Ghost Show by Steve Bryant #M9BFridayReveals

Another awesome middlegrade cover reveal. This book sounds like tons of fun and check out the author bio - no one better to write this story!
Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

Lucas Mackenzie and the London Midnight Ghost Show
by Steve Bryant

presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

Lucas MacKenzie eBook Final

Lucas Mackenzie has got the best job of any 10 year old boy. He travels from city-to-city as part of the London Midnight Ghost Show, scaring unsuspecting show-goers year round. Performing comes naturally to Lucas and the rest of the troupe, who’ve been doing it for as long as Lucas can remember.
But there’s something Lucas doesn’t know.
Like the rest of Luca’s friends, he’s dead. And for some reason, Lucas can’t remember his former life, his parents or friends. Did he go to school? Have a dog? Brothers and sisters?
If only he could recall his former life, maybe even reach out to his parents, haunt them.
When a ghost hunter determines to shut the show down, Lucas realizes the life he has might soon be over. And without a connection to his family, he will have nothing. There’s little time and Lucas has much to do. Can he win the love of Columbine, the show's enchanting fifteen-year-old mystic? Can he outwit the forces of life and death that thwart his efforts to find his family?
Keep the lights on! Lucas Mackenzie’s coming to town.

add to goodreads
Title: Lucas Mackenzie and the London Midnight Ghost Show
Publication date: November 18, 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Steve Bryant

Steve Bryant is a new novelist, but a veteran author of books of card tricks. He founded a 40+ page monthly internet magazine for magicians containing news, reviews, magic tricks, humor, and fiction; and he frequently contributes biographical cover articles to the country’s two leading magic journals (his most recent article was about the séance at Hollywood’s Magic Castle).

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
(Winners will receive their book on release day)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Top of my TBR list, #YA #amreading

I'm currently reading an ARC -  CATCH ME WHEN I FALL by Vicki Leigh, which will be out later this year. I'll post a full review at that time, but I'm reading now because I just couldn't keep my hands off this one. Ooh, that cover just gives me shivers! Here's the Goodreads link so you don't forget about it.
I'm not giving anything away right now, but the world Vicki Leigh has created where we're protected from Nightmares by Dream weavers and catchers is fresh and imaginative. The characters feel real, not clichés and the Nightmares are awful!
Since I am also studying story structure right now, I'm also impressed with this book from a technical standpoint. Back story is brought in smoothly and naturally, plot points occur at the right time and change the story in ways that make it hard to put down.
I'm a little over halfway through right now and can't wait to get back to it. Keep an eye out for my final review. CATCH ME WHEN I FALL releases October 23, 2014.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

I have found the ninth level of hell...

 ... and it is called fly season in Colorado, in the rainy season after a drought.

OMG, I've never seen so many nasty little biting flies that don't even remotely care if they're being swished or swatted at. My poor horses. Although I'm beginning to wish I had a tail - my ponytail isn't quite enough.

Okay, I will quite complaining. Rain is good, rain is good, I promise not to pray for drought.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Weekend Warrior Monday

Our weekend started on Friday - as all good weekends should! We finally got around to another tar-and-feather session by unloading six tons of hay. In 85 degrees and high humidity (well, high humidity by Colorado standards, it doesn't take much to feel yicky for me.)
Then time to re-shower and go out for date night. For those of you who have a Hu Hot Mongolian Grill in your area and haven't tried it - you MUST! It's so good. I'm a picky eater, so any time I have a chance to put together my own food, I'm happy. But once you choose your rice or noodles, meat, veggies, and sauces, the very entertaining cooks have fun cooking over and open grill and sometimes singing or shouting. Great atmosphere.
We're planning our next endurance ride for August 1st and 2nd. We plan to ride two backup horses for 25 mountainous miles the first day and our main horses for a 50 the second day. So four horses to get in shape.
Saturday we took the main horses to do 20 miles of the same trail the 50 will be on. As usual, things didn't go as planned. My husband is riding a relatively young horse who sometimes blows up when he doesn't get his way. This time he wanted to follow some joggers and didn't like hearing no. So he bucked hubby off bad. Knocked his breath out so hard it sounded like he'd punctured a lung. At least it wasn't that, but he sprained a wrist and wrenched his shoulder. I had to leave him on the trail near the road while I led the horses back 4 miles to get the truck. He's not moving so well today. Yay for Vicodin.
I knew hubby wouldn't be able to ride Sunday, but if Pico (pictured) is going to do his first 25, I need to get him a little bit in shape. So I took him out alone for the first time and found out what a brave boy he is. No spooking and he had fun. He's a little stumbly on the rocks, but his feet are still a work in progress. He was tired by the end, but not complaining about his feet, so I was happy.
With hubby unable to do fence work, I found a couple hours to rewrite the first chapter of a YA ms I started a few years ago. My first ms, actually. I'd shelved it and am hoping to pull something out of the quagmire. Critique group gave the opening a thumbs down, so I have another attempt. I hate beginnings!

Anyone want to sign up for one of my weekends?

Friday, July 11, 2014

Cover Reveal: Life AD 2: M.I.A.: Missing in Atman by Michelle E. Reed and Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals

Another great offering from Month9Books. And if this description makes you want to read book 1, here's the link on Amazon. Enjoy this awesome cover and please comment!
Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

Life AD 2: M.I.A.: Missing in Atman
by Michelle E. Reed

presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!


Dez is finally hitting her afterlife stride. She hasn’t missed a meeting or session in forty-two days, and she’s put the adventures and danger of her first days at Atman behind her. Life after death is becoming tolerable, yet nothing is quite what she’d hoped. Confusion over her feelings for Charlie, residual resentment over losing Hannah, and a continuous stream of unwanted assignments leave Dez restless and argumentative.
In a missed encounter with Crosby, her prying gaze lands upon a single entry in the datebook on his unoccupied desk. These few, hastily scribbled words reveal an enormous secret he’s keeping from her. Possessed by a painful sense of betrayal, she once again sneaks off to Atman City, determined to find answers to an unresolved piece of her life.
It begins as all their adventures do, but as light falls into darkness, a stop in an unfamiliar neighborhood sets forth a chaotic series of events. Dez will have to fight for her very existence, and will face painful, irreparable loss in an afterlife teeming with demons wielding ancient powers.
In M.I.A.: Missing in Atman, the second book in the Atman City series, Michelle E. Reed continues the story of Dez Donnelly, pushing her to her limits and surprising readers at every twist and turn of the vast world that is Atman.
Death was only the beginning.

add to goodreads
Title: Life AD 2: M.I.A.: Missing in Atman
Publication date: December 16, 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Michelle E. Reed


Michelle E. ReedMichelle was born in a small Midwestern town, to which she has returned to raise her own family. Her imagination and love of literature were fueled by a childhood of late nights, hidden under the covers and reading by flashlight. She is a passionate adoption advocate who lives in Wisconsin with her husband, son, and their yellow lab, Sully.

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
(Winners will receive their book on release day)

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Mortal Enchantment for sale for $0.99! #ya #paranormal

Great news everyone! Stacey O'Neale's Mortal Enchantment is on sale for $0.99 at Amazon.
This is a great time to pick up the free prequel Shadow Prince along with Mortal Enchantment. Spread the word, this price won't last!
Stacey O'Neale lives in Annapolis, Maryland. When she's not writing, she spends her time fangirling over books, blogging, watching fantasy television shows, cheering for the Baltimore Ravens, and hanging out with her husband and daughter. Her career in publishing started as a blogger-turned-publicist for two successful small publishers. Stacey writes young adult paranormal romance and adult science fiction romance. Her books always include swoon-worthy heroes, snarky heroines, and lots of kissing. Stacey loves hearing from readers. Follow her on Twitter @StaceyONeale, look for her on Facebook, Pinterest, and GoodReads. You can also visit her blog at


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

How writing a book is like training horses #amwriting

I often see comparisons to writing process when I'm training horses. Part of this is due to my personality, I'll approach different activities the same way, as do most people.
So far, I'm a punster in my writing. But I've started to study story structure while reading Larry Brook's books (check out his website Storyfix) and a lot of things are resonating with another part of my mind. The part that studied Physics and Math in school. The cool thing about Larry is that he doesn't completely pooh pooh pansting, so I've been able to weave his logic into what goes into my pansting subconsciously and what I must add later to create a whole, readable story. For future books, I'll plan some story points, then write to them while still letting my creative juices wander and find surprises. Which is what I think Brooks expects a punster determined to improve their craft to do.
I feel it works the same way with horses. Now, to be fair, I am not a full-time horse trainer. I take in horses for training when I have time, I buy problems horses and retrain them, and work with my own. I'm not on a schedule and neither are my manuscripts (yet) - which is the main reason these comparisons work. If I was trying to crank out four novels a year and train six horses at once, the comparisons would be different, but they'd still be there. Cross those goals and it all falls apart.
The way I approach a horse is with a very loose plan on what I need to accomplish that day. But sometimes the horse tells me they've got a hole that must be filled first. I can't throw a saddle on and tighten the girth if I've never despooked them (gotten them used to things touching them or flying around and hitting the ground). But there are still absolutely necessary skills a horse must have in order to be a safe animal to ride.
In the same way, I can't put a character in the middle of a crisis without providing the reader some background for why they should care about the character or the outcome of the crisis. But I absolutely must have a plot, turning points, pressure, and character development or it's not really an engaging story.
I can't walk into the arena and be determined the horse shall be ridden for the first time today. Yes, some trainers can. They're good (like some authors who can get away with prologues or skipping punctuation or are just great craftsmen) or they don't mind a little bucking while the horse deals with the new environment. I think a horse can be trained without ever bucking. I let them tell me when they're ready. When I'm done, all the pieces are in place and the result is a happy horse that's a joy to ride.
For writing, all the pieces still have to be there (in a reasonable order) but I can enjoy the ride of writing in the same way I hope my reader enjoys the read.
I also don't approach either with a recipe. Maybe I could spew out some cookie cutter books and horses if I did. But maybe I'll enjoy the process of creating an interesting story and watching the characters grow along with creating an amazing bond of trust with the horse and learn what story they want to tell me about their past and most importantly, where they want to go. Not all horses want to run barrels.
And in both cases, sometimes I need help. I'm working with a very sensitive mare with issues on a few things. I've laid all the groundwork, but I don't want to be the one in the saddle when she comes unglued. So I had a trainer friend work with her. Turned out she never blew up - only because I'd done a good job with the basics. Sometimes we have all the pieces of a story there, but either a critique partner or a professional editor needs to tug on one thread so the beauty of the whole tapestry falls into place. Don't be afraid to use you're resources!
What do you think? Do you have hobbies or jobs that you approach the same way as your writing, or are you forced to do things differently with either one? How does that make you feel? I'd really love to get some feedback in the comments so I know I'm not talking to the ether! Thank you so much for reading and commenting will just make my day!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Weekend Warrior Monday plus "cookie salad" recipe

I hope everyone enjoyed the 4th of July weekend and got to spend time with friends, family, and maybe even the great outdoors.

Our weekend didn't go as planned, but we still fun and accomplished a few necessary tasks. Originally we'd scheduled to take our horses to a 3 day ride in Wyoming, riding 25-30 miles each day. But the fire evacuation last week threw the schedule out of wack (still don't have shoes on both horses) and we really couldn't leave because although the fire is essentially contained, it's still burning. The heat and the wrong wind gust could cause a flare. My mom takes care of the other four horses and that would be pretty mean to leave her to evacuate them by herself.

Of course those of you on the east coast are thinking what heat? I hope everyone fared well through Arthur. Would love some of that rain.

So on Friday we decided to buy some hay before the good prices were gone and loaded 212 60# bales onto our trailer while it was 88 degrees outside. In case you've ever wondered what it feels like to be tarred and feathered - sweat and loose hay probably comes pretty close. But it is a great weight loss program so I won't complain - until we have to do the next load.

We celebrated the Fourth with my mom on Saturday. But first we got up early and worked on a fence before the bugs and heat got to be too much. Put in five fence posts - did I mention we live in the ROCKy mountains? Then hubby got an idea for a bathroom remodel and we yanked the cabinets and sink out of one of the master bathrooms. Silly house designer didn't realize that double sinks would be all the rage one day. This became the day. We ran down to Home Depot and ordered a custom cabinet that won't arrive for 4-6 weeks. Good thing we tore everything out ahead of time!

I'd gotten a recipe for "cookie salad" at one of our endurance rides. On the way home from the Depot, we stopped to buy the ingredients (recipe below, hang on to your pancreas for this one,) steaks, chicken, potato salad, and corn on the cob. Fire up the grill!

To avoid sitting in the house with full bellies, we decided to sit in our car and hunt down a road we thought might give us an additional exit route from our subdivision in case of a fire from the wrong direction (like there's a right direction for a fire!) The maps all showed a road - including the map one of the fire emergency crews was working with! From one direction the road was gated, so we decided to see what it looked like from the other side.

This is not and will never be an evacuation route! Even on horseback. From this road people can access world class four-wheel trails. We were in a Jeep. Sounds good? A 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee with all the bells and whistles and not a scratch that we're still paying on. Hubby was grinning from ear to ear as he finally got to put the thing in 4 Low and raise the ride height to max. It actually did pretty well. But I don't like tipping sideways. At all. In hindsight, he did force me to admit I had fun. I do like 4-wheeling. In someone else's purpose built truck. Where I can get out when it tips sideways and walk.

Sunday we went for a sedate trail ride, just 15 miles through some neat canyons, then edited the first chapter of an ms pulled a dark corner of my computer. I'm taking it to be shredded at my critique group on Tuesday. Oh yeah - that load of hay? Still sitting on the trailer waiting for a cool day.

Now for the cookie salad recipe:

1 3oz pkg of vanilla pudding
1 cup of milk
1 12 oz container of whip cream
1 can of pineapple chunks (drained)
1 can of mandarin oranges (drained)
2-4 bananas
optional nuts (I hate nuts)
Now here's where I went off recipe, when I first tasted this, I thought the cookie chunks were uncooked cookie dough. The recipe calls for crumbled shortbread cookies, they soften and taste doughy. Screw that advice about eating uncooked cookie dough, I crumbled uncooked sugar cookie dough into my cookie salad. Yummmm.
I also added mini-marshmallows and some frozen mix fruit (blackberries, strawberries, blueberries)

Eat carefully, share with lots of people so you don't go into a diabetic coma!

What did you do for the Fourth of July?

Friday, July 4, 2014

Cover Reveal: Avian (The Dragonrider Chronicles #2) by Nicole Conway and Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals

Ooh, dragons! Check out this new offering from Month9Books. Please share what you think about the cover in the comments and check out the giveaway!

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for

Avian (The Dragonrider Chronicles #2)
by Nicole Conway

presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!


What kind of power is lurking inside him?
After a year of training to become a dragonrider, Jaevid Broadfeather has been sent home to rest during a three-month interlude. But when he returns to find the king drake has chosen Beckah Derrick as his new rider, Jaevid realizes something big is about to happen. Every fiber of his being is pushed to the breaking point as Jaevid battles through his avian year, preparing for the final graduation test of the battle scenario. But there is more standing in his way than a few pushups and fancy sword moves.
Jaevid must face a new fear as he is tormented by a gruesome nightmare of a mysterious gray elf warrior murdering the royal family of Maldobar. It seems obvious to him that this is some kind of message about how the war started long ago—until Felix assures him the king is very much alive. With his strange powers growing stronger by the day, and that violent dream replaying in his mind every night, Jaevid no longer wonders if he will pass his avian year or not . . . he wonders if he will even survive it.
The truth will soon be set loose.

add to goodreads

Title: Avian (The Dragonrider Chronicles #2)
Publication date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Nicole Conway

NicoleConwayPhotoNicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.
Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.
She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.
Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
(Winners will receive their book on release day)