Thursday, August 2, 2018

Fireworks, Book Shopping, and Book Videos // My July Highlights

July has come and gone. It actually seemed like a longer month to me then the other ones have.  

--The 4th of July came and we got to celebrate the independence of our country. We had just a nice quite day at home, then in the evening my younger brothers, my mom, and I went with some friends to watch the city set off fireworks. They were so pretty!

--I made my very first book video! Well, I actually made two: The Books I Read in May & June and Summer Book Recommendations!

--My mom and I went to go see the play Seven Brides for Seven Brothers with some friends. Our friends had two extra tickets so they invited us along.

--My mom and I went into town one day and it was lots of fun. We went to the library, out to lunch, and book shopping. :)

--My brother and mom went to St. Louis. My brother went to Realm Makers, a writing conference. They had a nice time, but the rest of us at home missed them. But we did have a fun time too.

--I rearranged my bookshelves by color! I've seen people do it before, then a friend mentioned that she did it and I thought I'd give it a try as well. At first I wasn't going to because I knew it wouldn't last long since all of the series are out of order, but I couldn't resist! ;) It was pretty fun...and time consuming. ;)

--The new Signed, Sealed, Delivered To the Alter came out and it was SO good! I really enjoyed it.
--I've been re-watching season 2 of Chesapeake Shores with my mom and sister (it's their first time watching it) to get ready for season 3!
--I watched some Aurora Teagarden Mysteries that I hadn't seen before.

How was your July? What was one of your biggest highlights?

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Author Interview // Jonathan Hangstefer

I've been wanting do do an author interview with Jonathan for quite awhile now. I asked him awhile back and he said yes. Since his book just came out I decided now was a great time to do it.

Jonathan Hangstefer lives in Idaho. When he's not spending time with family, reading, running, or drinking coffee, Jonathan likes writing stories. Royal Fire is his first novel.
Jonathan blogs over at The Second Brother.

1.When did you first become interested in writing?
I first became interested in the beginning of 2015, but I didn't really start writing consistently until 2016.

2. How did you become interested in writing?
I don't really know. One day I just decided I was going to write a story.

3. Is there any specific authors/books that have inspired you?
My writing style is influenced by Cressida Cowell and Rick Riordan.

4. What is the hardest part of writing for you? (character development, story line, etc.)
I have a hard time writing the middle of the story, but I'm getting better at it.

5. What’s the easiest part?
Brainstorming. I love coming up with the story and characters.

6. Do you have a favorite time period that you like your stories to be set in?
When I write fantasy, I use a little bit of medieval influences. But when I write urban fantasy it is set in the modern world.

7. Are you currently working on a book? If so, when do you hope it will be done?
I am actually working on two books right now. One of them is middle grade and the other is young adult. I am almost done with the first draft of my middle grade story. I just started the first draft of my young adult book.

8. What was your favorite scene to write in Royal Fire?
I would have to go with the scene at the end of chapter 14 when Horcus goes and visits Traywet. It was super fun and easy to write.

You can buy his book here on Amazon.

Cedric Northchest and his friends Berne, Everett, and Winnefred have rather ordinary lives. Nothing remotely exciting ever happens to them until one day an elf named Ex-Tron shows up in their little town. Ex-Tron tells them that he needs their help finding the Guardian of Fire. Ex-Tron takes them to a once beautiful world called Arsought. Now the nights crawl with evil and each passing day grows darker. The Guardian of Fire protects a magical weapon called Royal Fire. Cedric and his friends must find the Guardian and learn how to use Royal Fire before the dark reign of Horcus is complete.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Summer Book Recommendations -- Book Video

There's nothing quite as fun as giving book recommendations!
While editing this I noticed that I say "so much fun" a lot. Sorry about that. ;) I guess I need to think of other words to use next time instead of just "fun".  ;)

Have you read any of these?
What's one of your favorite summer books?
Giving book recommendations is really fun, but I love receiving them too. If you have a fun summer book that you think I'd like, I'd love to hear it! :D

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Royal Fire // Book Review

Jonathan Hangstefer's debut novel, Royal Fire is now out!!! I was able to alpha-read this book last fall. Royal Fire is now available on Amazon in paperback and the kindle copy will hopefully be up by next week. The story even starts off in the month of July, so now is the perfect time to read it. ;)

From the Back Cover:
Cedric Northchest and his friends Berne, Everett, and Winnefred have rather ordinary lives. Nothing remotely exciting ever happens to them until one day an elf named Ex-Tron shows up in their little town. Ex-Tron tells them that he needs their help finding the Guardian of Fire. Ex-Tron takes them to a once beautiful world called Arsought. Now the nights crawl with evil and each passing day grows darker. The Guardian of Fire protects a magical weapon called Royal Fire. Cedric and his friends must find the Guardian and learn how to use Royal Fire before the dark reign of Horcus is complete.

Jonathan Hangstefer's debut novel, Royal Fire, is a really good book. I'll admit, I really don't care for fantasy. I love "real life" stories, but Royal Fire is very well written. I did have a bit of a harder time following the story at times, but not because of how it is written or anything. Just because I always have a hard time following fantasy no matter how well it is written. So even though I don't like fantasy, Royal Fire is very well written and I think most fantasy lovers will really enjoy this book!

I give this book 8 out of 10 R's

Monday, July 2, 2018

My Very First Vlog!

I've been wanting to make a book video for quite sometime now and I finally got around to doing it! It was fun to do and I hope you enjoy it! :D

Have you read any of these books? :)

Sunday, July 1, 2018

A Carnival, A Wedding, and Lots of Other Fun! ~ My June Highlights

June is already over and that means that we are already halfway through the year! That's kind of crazy!

// June started off with me being able to meet one of my favorite authors, Susan K. Marlow! I've met her before, but this time I was able to talk with her for a little while, get pictures, and she signed my books! :D She is such a nice lady and she writes the amazing Circle C series!

I got the last two Circle C Steppingstones books and lots of my books signed including the one in the picture. 

// A friend of mine got married! We've been friends since we were about 8 years old. She had a beautiful, outdoor, June wedding. The weather was great. Well, a bit hot during the ceremony, but thankfully no rain! I was one of the bridesmaids and it was such a fun special time.

My bridesmaids dress. 

// There was also lots of pre-wedding fun too. One day me and my three friends who are the bride and other bridesmaids got our nails done. There was also a personal shower for the bride, a dance practice, and then the whole wedding party went out to lunch at Chick-Fil-A then we went to an escape room. It wasn't quite what I was expecting, but still fun.

// My dad's work had a party for all the employees and their families at a super fun place called Wahooz.
There was bumper boats, bumper cars, go-carts, arcade games, a laser maze, and a super fun carnival ride!
James and I in a go-cart. It was a bit terrifying at first, but definitely fun! ;D

Me and three of my siblings. 

Me and my mom on a super fun ride called the Twister.

// Summer officially arrived. One of my favorite summertime things is all of the yummy fruit. Especially raspberries and watermelon. :) The downside of summer is all of the bugs. I had 27 mosquito bites at one time!

// The super fun Cherry Festival that our town puts on happened. It was super fun going on all of the carnival rides. I went with my brother and and some friends of ours.

// I watched some fun Hallmark movies. I watched the three new Hailey Dean mysteries: 2+2=Murder, A Marriage Made For Murder, and A Will to Kill. Then I watched The Perfect Bride 2: Wedding Bells, The Wedding March 4: Something Old Something New, and Love at First Dance.

// I had a really fun sleepover with a good friend! I picked my friend up from work then we went to the store and bought snacks for the evening, then came to my house.  We had so much fun together. She's my Full House loving friend so obviously we had to watch some Full House episodes. ;) We've never actually watched Full House together. We've talked about it and all, so it was super fun to watch it together. We also watched some other movies too, played a few games, and talked.

How was your June? What was one of your favorite things that you did this past month?
I have a really fun post coming tomorrow so be on the lookout for that. ;)

Thursday, June 21, 2018

By the Book Tag!

Today is the first day of summer!! Summer is perfect for going outside and reading a good book, wearing flip-flops, grilling hamburgers, eating watermelon, and lots of other fun summery stuff!
Today I am doing a tag that Victoria from Victoria’s Book Nook tagged me to do. I did this tag 2 summers ago, but obviously some of the answers have changed since then so I definitely had to do it again!

1. What is on your nightstand right now?
Love Finds You in Victory Heights, Washington by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss and Tearoom in a Tempest by Leslie Gould is what I’m currently reading.

2. What was the last truly great book you read?
I'm not sure, maybe The Accidental Guardian. That one was pretty good, but I wouldn't call it a truly great book, but I still liked it. :)

3. If you could meet any writer - dead or alive - who would it be and what would you want to know?
Beverly Lewis!! I would so love to meet Beverly Lewis and I would definitely ask her to sign some of my books and of course, get a picture with her. :)

4. What books might we be surprised to find on your shelves?
Maybe my Full House books. ;) Although if you’ve been reading my blog lately you most likely know I really like the show Full House. I was quite excited when I found out that there were books. I’ve found quite a few at thrift stores. :)

5. How do you organize your personal library?
I organize my books alphabetically by authors last name. Although I put my American Girl books with the A’s and Dear America books with the D’s. I also have a small bookshelf by my bed and that has my Circle C and A Life of Faith books on it.

6. What book have you always meant to read but haven't gotten around to it yet?
I have meant to read the Dear America book The Winter of Red Snow but have yet to do it.

7. Anything you feel embarrassed never to have read?
There’s not really any book I feel embarrassed not to have read. I haven’t read all of the Little House books though. I sort of feel like I should’ve read those books by now, but I’ve only read Little House in the Big Woods so far. I want to read the rest of the series sometime.

8. Disappointing, overrated, just not good: What book did you feel you were suppose to like but didn't?
Maybe The Blades of Acktar series? I heard a bunch of people saying how good they were so I was curious to try them. Don’t get me wrong, I found them to be quite intriguing, but they were a bit too violent for me. I’m really sensitive about violence and seriously can’t handle much and because of that I didn’t enjoy them as much as I would’ve.

9. What kind of stories are you drawn to? Any you stay clear of?
I am drawn to pioneer/Oregon Trail books and Amish fiction.
I tend to stay away from fantasy. I prefer real-life stories.

10. If you could require the president to read one book, what would it be?
The Bible.

11. What do you plan to read next?
I really want to read Grace and the Preacher by Kim Vogel Sawyer. I’ve been wanting to for quite some time now, but I definitely need to read it this summer for sure!

Also if you need a good book to read this summer keep your eye out for the release of Jonathan Hangstefer’s debut novel, Royal Fire! It is fantasy and I’m not too fond of that genre, but this one is worth checking out. You can read about the progress of it here.