Monday, April 29, 2013

Tour Stop: Mother Matters REVIEW

Motherhood Matters: Joyful Reminders of the Divinity, Reality, and Rewards of Motherhood
By Connie E. Sokol

Motherhood Matters Motherhood is a divine calling---but it may not always feel that way. Now you can show the women in your life how much they matter to you, with this delightful and heartwarming volume of wit and wisdom about the divinity, reality, and rewards of motherhood. Fresher than flowers and sweeter than chocolate, it's a perfect gift for the women who give so much. In these hectic days where life's demands can quickly become a heavy burden, Motherhood Matters helps you find more memorable moments and take the stress out of the to-do lists. Written with clarity, concision, and wit, this short, yet indispensable handbook is better than flowers, more guilt-free than chocolate, and gives back to the woman who sacrifices so much of herself every single day.  

Why I Picked This Book: When I was given the chance to be part of this blog tour, I couldn't resist.  A simple book reminding me why motherhood matters?  Just what I needed! (I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review.  I was not financially compensated in any way.)

My Thoughts:
Short, sweet and to the point.  Just like this book.  Motherhood Matters is a quick read, full of thoughts and lessons that all mothers should remember.  It is full of quotes from LDS leaders, Conference talks, and scriptures.  For those of you not religious, this may not be the book for you.  But me?  It was just right.  

I am LDS, so many of the talks and stories shared in Motherhood Matters were familiar to me.  At the end of each chapter (which were all short) I felt refreshed.  It is easy to be disgruntled as a mom.  Exhausted.  Wondering if you are doing this right and wishing sometimes that it was different.  This book is a simple reminder that the job of a mother is a divine calling.  There are many chapters I plan on reading time and again, especially on those days that I am beyond frazzled.

The only reason for the slightly lower rating is that most of the writing felt like it was mere recap of talks and scriptures.  While the author does weave in some of her own thoughts and stories, I felt like many of the chapters were a bit rushed and lacking.  Just as I was feeling the "Yes, this chapter is speaking to me" feeling, it would end.  I would have liked to see more writing between the quotes.  But honestly?  Even with that, I loved this book.  

I plan to snag a hard copy of it, to have on my bedside table at all times.  If you are looking for that little mommy spiritual and emotional pick-me-up, this is a great quick read to add to your pile.

My Rating:
(4 out of 5 stars)

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Blue Hearts of Mars TOUR: Interview with Nicole Grotepas

Welcome to my stop for the Blue Hearts of Mars blog tour.  Today I have been given the chance to interview Nicole Grotepas.  Are you ready to meet this wonderful writer lady?  Away we go!

Nicole wrote her first fantasy novel in 7th grade on her mother's old Brother typewriter. It was never finished but it strongly resembled a Dragonlance plot and she's forever wondered what happened to the manuscript and Tonathan--the handsome elven protagonist. After living in Nashville where she worked as an editor, she returned to the Utah desert where she was raised. Nicole now lives near the Wasatch mountains with her husband. She writes and raises her son and three cats full time.
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | 

How are you doing today? 

     Good! My father passed away this morning, but he's been sick for a while and so it was a tender mercy. I dedicated Blue Hearts of Mars to him and he got to see it before he died. I'm happy about that. 

My condolences.  I am so happy your father got to see your work!
Tell my readers a little about yourself:

     I'm a huge fan of Dr. Pepper and Celebrity Apprentice. I've lived in several cities, including Nashville, but I'm happiest in the desert. My son is almost two and so far he is the work I'm most proud of. My husband's name is Stoker and he still makes me laugh my head off, even though we've been together for eight years. Usually people become less funny, not more funny, right?

What is your writing process? Plotter… or pantser?

     I plot, but sometimes I don't know the ending till I'm halfway through. So, typically I plot as I go unless the story comes to me in one big rush. 

What sparked the idea for Blue Hearts of Mars?

     It was really a series of what-if questions after having the initial idea about a man being more machine than man. I'd been entertaining the question of what a soul is and if there's a point when very developed technology could harbor a soul or spirit. 

Do you see yourself at all in Retta? What trait do you wish you could steal from her?

     I see a little bit of myself in her but mostly she's a product of her environment and the life she's lived. If there's anything of me in her, it's her sense of humor. Her attitude is more optimistic than mine and that's something I'd like to take from her. She's determined and sure of herself in a way I never was at eighteen.

What has been one of the most rewarding experiences from being published?

     Having people read and enjoy the stories. I write them because I love doing it, but finding out that total strangers halfway around the world enjoy the stories is killer. 

What do you have in store for us in the future? Any new stories on the horizon?

     I'm considering a short story in the Blue Hearts world, and possibly a sequel. I never intended to write one, but I've been getting such positive feedback from readers that I feel like it would be fun to do it. The universe of Blue Hearts is pretty big and the possibilities are tantalizing. But, right now I'm working on a romance that's for an older audience. It's going to be epic and I'm insanely excited about it.  

Enough with the serious talk. Let’s do a fun question: Skittles or M&Ms?

     M&Ms! Peanut butter, peanut, or coconut flavor. 

If you were a superhero, what power would you have?


What takes over your life when not writing?

     My husband and son, who are so worth it. I write for them. I used to play video games A LOT, but there's no time for that these days. 

In one sentence, tell my readers why they should read Blue Hearts of Mars:

     When love is forbidden, there's only one thing to do: fall in love.


Thank you, Nicole!  It was so great to "meet" you, and I cannot wait to see what you have in store for your readers next!  (Coconut M&Ms are my favorite.  Just saying!)

Make sure to check out the other blogs part of this tour.
And, of course, don't forget to check out Blue Hearts of Mars as well!

Retta Heikkinen knows the unspoken rule of society: love between androids and humans is forbidden. A simple enough edict until Hemingway Koskinen spends an evening charming her with his intense gaze, bewitching smile, and sparkling conversation that hints at so much more than the usual obsessions of high school boys. Rules were meant to be cast aside, especially when love beckons.

If only it were as simple as being in love.

Trouble is brewing, not just for Hemingway--for all androids. Secrets have been kept, lies propagated, and Retta soon discovers that a frightening future awaits thousands of androids if she doesn’t do something to stop it. Worse yet, she will lose the one love she’s ever endangered herself for: Hemingway.


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