Stitch Says Book Review: Stone Faces #BeachBoundBooks

Hi it’s Stitch here:

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I love going to the beach, but never really look at the stones. I prefer to run in and out of the water. Maybe I should look at the stones next time, They certainly helped Alice out. Here’s the book, Stone Faces!

BeachBoundbooks is pleased to be coordinating a Blog Tour for the middle grade fantasy Stone Faces: An Alice and Friends Book by Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks. The tour will run September 19 – October 3, 2016

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About the Book

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Title: Stone Faces: An Alice and Friends Book| Author: Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks | Publisher: MuseItUp Publishing | Publication Date: July 12, 2016 | Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy | Number of Pages: 66

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Book Description: Stone Faces is the story of a ten-year-old girl named Alice who notices one day that her parents’ faces have turned to stone. Soon afterward, they tell her they are going to get divorced and, in reaction, she allows her own face to turn to stone because she doesn’t want anyone to know how much this hurts her. It is easier to deal with her friends when her stone face is in place, but she also begins to find herself alone more and more.

While on her summer vacation at her aunt’s house on Cape Cod, she sees a stone on the beach in the shape of a laughing man’s face (called Mr. Happy Man). She soon discovers that this stone can talk and that it has friends among the other beach stones, who play games in the sand when people aren’t around.

Together with Mr. Happy Man and his friends, Alice develops an ingenious scheme to help her parents resolve their differences. Their plans are thrown awry when a woman finds Mr. Happy Man in the sand and walks off with him. Alice decides to rescue the stone and sneaks into the woman’s house where she learns that the woman is actually a witch.

Read an Excerpt

Hi. My name is Alice, and this is the story of the worst summer of my entire life.

The trouble actually started way before the summer. In fact, it was early spring when my parents and I took that long walk in Central Park. We all should have been in a really great mood because (finally!) the sun was out and it was nice and warm. But I remember glancing over at my mom and dad again and again as we walked, thinking that both of their faces had changed. It’s tough to describe. Their features had gotten sort of hard. They looked a lot like the carved stone faces on some of the buildings in our neighborhood.

Anyway, I pretended that nothing was wrong and forgot about it until it was time to start planning our summer vacation.

Here’s the thing—I love going to the seashore more than almost anything in the whole world. Every summer for as long as I can remember, my mom and my dad packed up our car with all our beach stuff (and snacks for the long ride). Then, we drove the five and a half hours from New York City to visit my aunt in a place called Provincetown on the very tip of Cape Cod.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I love New York City. My mom and I can take the bus to my dance classes, and a subway to where I belong to a kids’ theater group on Saturdays. We can walk to my school, to the field house where my soccer team plays, and to the gym where my dad and I shoot hoops. So, yeah, I love New York City.

There’s just one problem. Until I’m older, I pretty much have to stay glued to an adult’s side whenever I leave our apartment. When I’m twelve, my mom says I can take the bus by myself to certain places. When I’m thirteen, I’ll be able to go on the subway. Depending. Depending on what, you might ask. Just depending my mom says back. Gag! I hate the word depending.

Anyway, here’s the point—in Provincetown I’m free. I can take walks by myself all over town. The only catch is that I have to stay within a block of Commercial Street, which is like the Broadway of Provincetown. It is usually so crowded that people can’t even fit on the sidewalks and so they walk in the street. It’s like a big pedestrian mall.

And best of all, I can go out to the bay beach by myself and swim, so long as there’s a lifeguard on duty. I love to be tossed by the waves and paddle through the swells in the deep water. I love to make sand castles and look for shells and stones and beach glass and driftwood. The beach is pretty much my idea of paradise.

So, maybe you can understand why I was really upset in early June when my mom and dad sat me down in our living room late one afternoon for a talk. It was getting dark outside. Thunderstorms were predicted, and the sky was almost black. I sat on the sofa by myself. They were each in their own chair across from me, and they were each trying to smile. But it was no use with those stone faces of theirs. I was so nervous I almost couldn’t hear what my mother was saying.

About the Authors

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When Anne Rothman was a student at Bryn Mawr College and Kenneth Hicks was a student at Haverford College, they began writing together in an independent-study course with one of Ken’s professors. A brief interlude ensued while Anne wrote wonderful poetry and Ken wrote a book about hitchhiking (The Complete Hitchhiker Tobey Publishing, Dell Distribution), but they soon got back together as writers when Ken was in law school at Columbia University and Anne was paying the rent by working in publishing. They have continued to write together for about forty years and in that time have published four adult novels, eleven non-fiction books for children, two fiction books for middle readers, and two photography books. They also produced three children whom they love even more than writing.

Between projects, they started a web site www.randh71productions.com. In case you were wondering about the address, “R” is for Rothman, “H” is for Hicks, and “71” is the year of their marriage. No secret codes or numerology anywhere.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Blog Tour Giveaway

Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize, winner’s choice Giveaway ends: October 3, 11:59 pm, 2016
Open to: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks and is hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to stacie@BeachBoundBooks.com.

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Stitch Says Review:
Stone Faces was an interesting read. Alice is upset because her parents are separating and looking at a divorce. While on a summer holiday she finds a stone on the beach that can talk (Mr Happy Man). With the help of all the stones Alice comes up with a plan to get her parents back together, only to find herself in a darker adventure.
Stone Faces certainly has a lot of depth and is written in a way that children will understand the emotion. This would be a good book for children experiencing divorce or other troubling times. Stone Faces had good characters, an interesting plot and the story flows well. Children will relate to Alice and her emotions.
Stitch Says gives Stone Faces 4 woofs!

Keep reading, keep writing!

Middle Grade Book About Life #Aussielife

It’s What You Do Next that counts
So many things can change in a year. For Callie everything has changed so quickly she no longer knows where she belongs.

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This is the story of one year in Callie’s life. It is full of teenage adventures, sport, friendship, bullying and the journey to find her own place in the world.

You can check out your own copy here:

https://www.createspace.com/4980310

If you prefer kindle then check out my author page at amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Ashley-Howland/e/B00BQA4XRO

Have fun!

Sick of Homework? #theperfectexcuse

The Perfect Excuse for not doing your Homework
Check out this one

THE HOMEWORK GOBLIN

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Jason has completed his homework for the first time, only to have it stolen by the Homework Goblin. He jumps out his window and into an amazing chase. Will he get his homework back in time?

Check out the perfect excuse here:
https://www.createspace.com/5513433

To grab a kindle copy and check out my other books go to my Amazon Author Page:
http://www.amazon.com/Ashley-Howland/e/B00BQA4XRO

If you live in Australia and would like a signed copy email me at:
ashley@ahowland.org

HAVE FUN!

Chewie’s News Book Blast: Pickled Pumpkin Pie #BeachBoundBooks

Hi Chewie here,

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I have another book blast for you today, check this one out…

BeachBoundBooks is pleased to be coordinating a Book Blast for the children’s picture book written by Deb Troehler & illustrated by Jaime D. Buckley, Pickled Pumpkin Pie: A Thanksgiving Treat. The blast will run September 26 – September 28, 2016.

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About the Book

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Title: Pickled Pumpkin Pie: A Thanksgiving Treat | Author: Deb Troehler | Illustrator: Jaime D. Buckley | Genre: Children’s Picture Book | Number of Pages: 38 | Publication Date: March 9, 2016

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Book Description: Thanksgiving is almost here and Dillon can’t wait to see his lovable Uncle Pete once again. Uncle Pete’s visits with his peculiar penchant for pickled pumpkin pie always bring an extra helping of laughter to the dining table. Join Dad, Mom, Uncle Pete, Dillon, and their dog, Baxter, for togetherness, laughter, and a dill-icious meal. Pickled Pumpkin Pie is a read-aloud book for children ages 3-7.

Pickled Pumpkin Pie will be FREE on Amazon September 27 & 28

Review by BeachBoundBooks

Pickled Pumpkin Pie is a charming picture book, told in delightful rhyme, and filled with colorful and fun illustrations.

It’s Thanksgiving and Uncle Pete can’t wait to eat, but it’s not turkey, potatoes, or cranberries he’s after. Uncle Pete is waiting for dessert and not just any dessert. He wants pickled pumpkin pie. As the scrumptious meal comes to an end Uncle Pete’s excitement builds. Will he finally get his Thanksgiving wish?

Pickled Pumpkin Pie is well written, engaging, and highly entertaining. The book also contains several activities and of course gives readers a chance to create their own pickled pumpkin pie. This is certain to become a fast holiday favorite among children and adults.

I recommend picking up a copy.

About the Author: Deb Troehler

stblogpicDeb Troehler has worn many hats over the years—teacher, fabric artist, author, illustrator, gardener, mother, and grandmother. Although each hat is unique, they are all stitched with a common thread—Deb’s connections to her loved ones and the world around her.

Mrs. Troehler was a special education teacher for 15 years. After leaving the classroom due to a recurrence of cancer, her family moved to West Michigan to spend time with her husband’s family. To help make ends meet, Deb wrote instructional material and stories for several trade magazines such as Doll Crafter, Doll Reader, and Soft Dolls and Animals. Eventually, the magic of West Michigan motivated Deb to put pen to paper and record the stories inspired by her treks up and down the shores of Lake Michigan. Pickled Pumpkin Pie: A Thanksgiving Treat is Deb’s third book for children.

Educational Blog | Twitter | Facebook

About the Illustrator: Jaime D. Buckley

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Jaime Buckley is an author, illustrator, father of 12 and the creator of wantedhero.com, which has been entertaining youth and the young at heart for over a decade.

Facebook | Twitter | Google+

Book Blast Giveaway

Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize, winner’s choice. Giveaway ends: October 10, 11:59 pm, 2016 Open to: Internationally. How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Deb Troehler and is hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to stacie@BeachBoundBooks.com.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sounds yummy…keep reading, keep writing!

One Goal Achieved #ChaBooChaLite

I have completed one of my goals for the September Chapter Book Challenge Lite….

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I completed the draft of my pirate book. That means I have actually drafted my whole pirate trilogy at last. It has taken a while and still needs lots of work, but it is done!

Now I have a few days to get my other goals completed…. Lots to do, but writing the draft has got me motivated and back in the swing.

These challenges are so great, they really back you focus on writing. I need that every now and then, just to get my head back in the right frame. Now I feel energised to keep going and the ideas are moving again.

To any writer out there I recommend becoming an active part of groups like the Chapter Book Challenge, simply because it gets you moving. It also gives you a great network of writers to ask advice, discuss writing and just share ideas. These networks make the hard parts of writing easier and help you celebrate your success!

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So check out the Chapter Book Challenge today and get writing – have fun!

Celebrating Obi’s Birthday #bestdogever #misshim

Today would have been Obi’s birthday… I miss this boy so much. He was the most beautiful dog. Now of course I have Stitch and Chewie, they are awesome too. It all started with Obi…

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He is one of the reasons I started writing, so on his birthday check out books one and two in the Obi the super puppy series!

Obi is not just any dog, he’s a super puppy. Check out his first adventure here:

Obi the Super Puppy and the Mystery of the Red Mist

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Obi tells his kids – Maddy and Aijay all about his first adventure. He discovers an evil red mist that possesses the toys of dogs. He recruits some friends as he battles to save the Labrador breed from destruction.

Grab your copy here:
https://www.createspace.com/5513431

Then check out Obi’s second adventure…

Obi the Super Puppy and the Quest for the Last Laugh

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The evil red mist is back, but this time it is taking over kids. the mist stops them playing with Labradors. Obi needs more help to defeat the red mist this time, but finds himself with more help than he can stand. Meet Rigger, an oversized puppy who loves to help. He’s one of a kind, but is he the right kind? Once again Obi tells Maddy, Aijay and their new puppy Stitch all about this amazing adventure.

Grab a copy here:
https://www.createspace.com/5417595

For more of my adventures and the kindle versions check out my amazon page here: http://www.amazon.com/Ashley-Howland/e/B00BQA4XRO

If you live in Australia and want a signed copy email me at
ashley@ahowland.org

HAVE FUN!

Keep the Writing Flowing #inthegroove #ChaBooChaLite

I haven’t been posting much lately, but the good news is I have been writing! I am into chapter nine of ten in my chapter book! Yay pirates are alive and the words are flowing. I love that feeling. The story buzzing in by brain and itching to get down on the keyboard. There is only one better feeling – that’s actually holding your book!!!!

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Of course it’s a first draft so long way to go before I am holding my book. That will never happen if I don’t finish the first draft though. It’s all part of the journey, but I love this part. Love it so much that I am getting back to it right now – hoping to have it completed tonight…. Wish me luck!

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Have Fun!

Getting my Writing Mojo Back #ChaBooChaLite #lovewriting

There really is nothing like a challenge to get the writing energy back. It’s been a while, but I have suddenly got ideas running through my head again. Love this feeling.

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I have started working on the last of my Pirate trilogy and it’s surprisingly easy to get back into. I know there will need to be lots of editing when I complete this draft. But at least I know feel I can actually complete the draft. It has sat there for a while and last time I looked at it, I had no idea where to go.

So how did I get my mojo back… I took some advice from Cedric Diggory…I took a bath. The Harry Potter fans out there will know what I mean. I’m reading book number four to my girls at the moment and for some reason a bath just seemed like a good idea. I was lying there when the rest of my story just started to form in my mind.

It possible helped that Pirates of the Caribbean has been on TV…

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Either way I’m just happy to be writing again and hopefully I can keep my mojo going and complete all of my monthly goals.

How is everyone else going?
Have Fun!

Spring brings new ideas #getmotivated #ChaBooChaLite

Wow the first week of spring is over and I’m only just starting my September writing projects. I am so far behind, but it’s just a crazy time of year. It looks like I wasn’t the only one making a slow start either. The Chapter Book Challenge Lite has made a late start, but the timing couldn’t be better. I need a challenge now to get myself motivated.

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First let’s re visit my goals for August…
I did manage to submit two fairy tales, a little late, but I got them in. Yay!
I completed all of my reviews, although I have a few books to read at the moment. This is a challenge in itself, but I will get there.

So I did achieve something. It’s funny how you can feel like you are doing nothing, but when you look back it’s a different story.
This year I have published two of my own books, an Anthology written by the students at my school and submitted four short stories to be published in three anthologies. I have also drafted a new book and am about to get the dust of some of my older manuscripts.
All in all that’s not bad, considering I am working full time, have two kids who do a multitude of sports, go to the gym, walk the dogs and am planning a humongous holiday at the end of the year. The year is not over yet, I still have goals to reach. So here is my plan for September (even given the late start:
1. Complete the third story in my pirate trilogy
2. Send my third and fourth Super Heroes books off to the editor – one last edit first
3. Sort the Illustrations for Books one and two in my Super heroes series
4. Plot book five and plot another series I have been playing with
5. Draft the second Not So Boring Book

Lots to do, so I better get started…. What are your plans? Have fun!

Got the Writing Bug? #NotSoBoringBook#1 #writingbook

Have you got a story busting to be written?

Check out the newest writing journal – it’s different and will get you writing.

The Not So Boring Book #1 – Write your own story

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Ten chapters full of writing activities designed to get the ideas flowing and help you create a story ready to be published. Each chapter gives you the opportunity to work on one story. Follow the book right to the end and bask in your finished product.

This book can be used by anyone (child or adult) who loves to write.

Just get your pencil and begin!

You can get your own copy here:

https://www.createspace.com/5050054

or visit my Amazon page:

http://www.amazon.com/Ashley-Howland/e/B00BQA4XRO

If you live in Australia and would like a signed copy email me at ashley@ahowland.org

Check it out today and get writing!
HAVE FUN!!!!