Archive for the ‘Pump up Your Book Promotion’ Category

The Sitting Swing by Irene Watson

In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on September 10, 2008 at 4:00 am


Paperback: 248 pages
Publisher: Loving Healing Press (July 16, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1932690670
ISBN-13: 978-1932690675
Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches

Book Synopsis:

Irene Watson’s pretentious life could go no further until she faced her past. Her moving and inspiring memoir begins at the end, in a recovery center, whe she has gone to understand a childhood fraught with abuse, guilt, and uncertainty.

Two distinct parts of the book look at abusive child rearing and the process of recovery years later. This story shows change, growth, and forgiveness are possible. It gives hope and freedom to those accepting the past and re-writing life scripts that have been passed down for generations. It’s never too late to change your life, never too late to heal.

This book was truly an eye opener. Upon hearing of Irene’s upbringing, I got tears in my eyes. My mother is not a whole lot older than Irene, and yet she had clothing bought for her and plumbing and electricity her entire life! She was the oldest of 6 children, but never felt neglected (maybe the first born syndrome was in play…even then). My heart broke for young Irene, constantly living in the shadow of a brother she never knew, and was never spoken of. She could do nothing right, yet had no freedom as both of her parents were afraid of what might happen to their daughter. Their fear may have led to their inability to show her the love she so desparately craved, and led to her seeking to find any way out of a miserable exsistence.

This books starts out with Irene enrolling in Avalon, a treatment facility recommended by her friends. She is leary from the very beginning as she looks up at the corner of the room and sees a video camera. There is no way she is going to consent to being videotaped, who do these people think they are? After dealing with Gilles for the first two weeks, she is ready to throw in the towel. She is not sure she believes anything that he is “preaching”, it is the same old, same old and he is harsh and demeaning in his delivery. After the first two weeks his wife Liliane takes over the sessions and it is a different world. Gone is the harsh and demeaning lessons, and the love and support that Irene felt so lacking in the beginning of her stay comes shining through…that is until she has to do a scripted session about a conversation she envisions with her husband. Liliane has words with Irene, words that shock Irene but in the end lead her to the breakthrough she needed all along.

There were so many parts of this book that I could relate to. I have some people in my family that struggle with alcohol, and it is heartbreaking to watch. It also is the reason that I don’t drink, something that Irene and I share. Don’t get me wrong, I will have an occasional glass of wine, but do not enjoy being around people that have had too much to drink. I also can relate to the overprotective aspect of mothering…but I am the culprit. I don’t seclude my daughters, but I do have a daughter with heart defects and there isn’t a day that passes that I don’t try to protect her just a little bit more than you might a “regular” child. I think the part that I could relate to the most was the Needs section from her stay at Avalon. After reading that I knew that this was my type of woman – it was exactly the way I thought of things.

This was an excellent book, and one I would recommend highly. Great job Irene, and I look forward to more from you in the future!

About the author:

Irene Watson holds a Masters Degree in Psychology, with honors, from Regis University in Denver, CO. Her life has taken her on many paths, with breakthrough results and exemplar growth, to find her authentic and true self. She lives with her husband in Austin, Texas. You can visit her website at

THE SITTING SWING VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR ’08 will officially begin on September 2, ’08 and end on September 26, ’08. You can visit Irene’s tour stops at in September to find out more about her and her new book!

As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author with a recent release or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available. The winner will be announced on our main blog at on September 26!

Irene’s virtual book tour is being brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion and choreographed by Dorothy Thompson.

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Win a copy of Read Well, Think Well by Hal Lanse

In book giveaways, contests, Pump up Your Book Promotion on August 13, 2008 at 7:58 am

Come on, everyone loves a chance to win a free book, right? Book Marketing Buzz is hosting a 10 book giveaway extravaganza and the ten books we’ll be giving away are being donated by education expert and author Hal W. Lanse, Ph.D. in his fight to help our children learn how to read!

Help Hal in his fight to promote his book and he’ll help YOU find out what it takes to teach your child how to read and understand what they’re reading!

To find out more about Hal and his book, visit his website at and don’t forget to leave your suggestion in the comments section!  What better way to end your summer with a free book that will help get rid of illiteracy in today’s children???

There is a slight catch on this one.  To get more details, please click on the Book Marketin Buzz link above.  Good luck everyone!

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Beneath a Buried House by Bob Avey

In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on July 15, 2008 at 7:01 am

  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Deadly Niche Press (June 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0937660817
  • ISBN-13: 978-0937660812
  • To purchase, click here.
  • Book Synopsis:

    Things aren’t always what they seem.  Tulsa Police Detective, Kenny Elliot’s qutes to uncover the truth behind the death of a transient makes him a target – from whom or what he isn’t sure.  When he brushes the dirt from the surface of an apparent John Doe overdose case, he finds a labyrinth of misdirection and deception beneath, and a trail, which leads him to an encounter with an aberration in human nature, the likes of which he’s not prepared to deal with.  Drawing on his strength of character, and sense of right and wrong, he wrestles with deep personal feelings to solve the case.

    Excerpt from the book:

    Chapter 1  
    People go missing. Llewellyn knew that as well as anyone but when a whole family fell victim to such a fate, that tended to get his attention. It had the interest of someone else as well. Threats had been made. But the way he saw it, with Millie gone, he didn’t have all that much to lose anyway.  
    Llewellyn watched his step as he moved from the sidewalk to the street, for it was dark, the sun skimming the bottom of the sky in a thin, red line, the color of embers clinging to life in a dying campfire. A disturbing thought—a deep suspicion that had grown to such proportion that he feared it might twist his reasoning—snaked through him. He’d previously abandoned the project with good reason.  
    At times like this, he would think back to when he was a boy, visiting his mother. Her house sat on a small hill and behind it was a pond with huge willow trees growing from its banks. It always struck him as odd that the surface of the water remained calm and never rippled, as if it were not real at all, but a painting, an artificial backdrop put there for the effect.  
    Llewellyn had resolved that he too would be like the waters of the pond, unmovable, unflappable, and later, during his adult life, he would call on that image, not every time the going got tough, but when life got particularly hard.  
    He stared at the dilapidated building with a sign hanging from it; a cheap plastic job with florescent lights inside that backlit the bar’s name: CYMRY’S.  
    He shook his head and pushed open the door, a heavy wooden model that looked out of place, as if it had been ripped from the hinges of an old house and brought there against its will.  
    Just inside the door, Llewellyn paused, and when his eyes adjusted to the darkness he took a seat in the second booth by the window, like the man who called himself Jerry Sinclair had told him to do. Llewellyn was five minutes late, and he hoped that wouldn’t matter, though he saw no one fitting Sinclair’s description. At least the darkness was explained. It was the décor, which included the walls and the ceilings, and even the floors. Everything was black with the exception of a large piece of red artwork that radiated from the center of the floor in a rather unprofessional manner, as if it were a bad afterthought, the awkward brushstrokes obvious even from a distance.  
    Llewellyn waited but no one showed. He checked his watch. Thirty minutes had passed. He slid out of his seat and went to the bar. The man had his back turned but a mirrored wall showed his face. He must’ve known Llewellyn was there though he did not acknowledge him. Llewellyn laid a five on the counter. “I’d like a beer, please.”  
    The man gave no visible indication he had heard the request.  
    “I’ll just cut to the chase then,” Llewellyn said. “What I really need is some information.”  
    Turning around, the man drew a pint of lager, then set it down and snatched up the five. “What kind of information?”  
    Llewellyn slid his hand around the cool, damp handle, then brought the mug to his lips, relishing the bitter yet soothing brew. After a few sips, he said, “Does the name Jerry Sinclair mean anything to you?”  
    “Doesn’t jump out at me.”  
    “He said he would be wearing blue jeans and a tan corduroy jacket. Have you seen anyone like that?”  
    “Not since the eighties.”  
    “Right, some people are habitually late. Perhaps Mr. Sinclair is one of those.” After a pause, unable to control his inquisitiveness, Llewellyn asked, “What’s up with the artwork on the floor?”  
    The bartender leaned forward, placing his beefy hands on the railing. “Don’t know. It’s always been there.”  
    Llewellyn had dealt with his kind before; smug, confident with his size, and, as with any animal, the less challenging you could make yourself the better your odds were. He slouched a little. “Do you know what it is?”  
    The bartender said this with a crooked grin, as if he and he alone were privy to the mysteries of the universe, which undoubtedly meant he knew nothing.  
    “If I had to guess,” Llewellyn said, “I’d say it has something to do with the occult. But what do I know?”  
    Llewellyn retrieved one of his business cards and held it out. “I’m a reporter, on assignment.”  
    Taking the card, the bartender examined it. “Florida? Long way from home, aren’t you?”  
    “I go where the story takes me.”  
    “Is that right?”  
    “So you haven’t seen him, the guy I asked about?”  
    “Jerry Sinclair.”  
    The bartender squinted. “Are you sure you’re in the right place?”  
    “I’m sure.”  
    “What kind of assignment are you on?”  
    Llewellyn sipped his beer, then set it down. “I look for the unusual. A few years back, I was working some leads, concerning a small town near here. You know, bizarre circumstances and all of that. Good Stuff. I decided to revive it, made a few phone calls, sent some e-mails, ran an ad in the paper. Then I get this reply from Sinclair. He claimed to have some information. It’s not unusual. I get lucky like that sometimes.”  
    Llewellyn heard the door and realized someone else had finally come into the place. The bartender had noticed as well, and Llewellyn took the opportunity to return to his booth by the window.  
    Three people had come in, and unlike Llewellyn they did not look out of place inside Cymry’s, which meant they were not wearing dress pants and button-down shirts. Nor were any of them wearing blue jeans and a corduroy jacket.  
    One of them, a tall, slender girl wearing tight leather pants, strolled across the floor, stopping in front of the jukebox. Llewellyn couldn’t imagine what kind of music might be popular in such a place, but it wasn’t the anticipation of the music that held his attention. Even dressed as she was, the girl captivated him and he could not stop looking at her, which was a mistake. That indefinable female sense that alerts a woman to a man’s attention seemed present in full force; she turned her head toward him.  
    Llewellyn looked away. He was asking for trouble. He thought of Millie. Not once during their thirty years together had he cheated on her, and he wasn’t about to start now. He heard someone walk across the floor toward him, and he prayed that it would be Sinclair, that he had come through the door while Llewellyn wasn’t looking and was even now preparing to slide into the other side of the booth across the table from him.  
    As a thick, musky smell of perfume crossed Llewellyn’s senses, desperation shot through him. He turned his head, looking at the smooth patch of skin between the bottom of her shirt and the beginning of her leather pants. A tattoo of Saint Brighid’s cross moved sensuously with the muscles of her stomach.  
    She said nothing. Llewellyn could feel her staring down at him, and when he finally raised his head, allowing for the first time their eyes to meet, he felt like the victim in an old vampire movie: frightened by the nature of his captor but hopeful that she would find him desirable and as he looked into her face, the thought occurred to him that if the eyes are truly the windows to the soul then hers was surely dark.  
    A color somewhere between purple and black graced her lips, as it did her fingernails. Her hair, which jabbed at the air in choreographed insolence, was as dark as either of these.  
    Llewellyn slid deeper into the booth, exposing an unused section of the vinyl cushion. She sat down. Llewellyn began to wonder, and not for the first time, what sort of person she really was and why was he, a slightly over-the-hill freelancer, entertaining romantic thoughts about a distant cousin of Vlad the Impaler? She was no teenager, but still half his age, twenty-four or twenty-five he suspected, and about as far away from his type as you could get. The pressure of her leg against his made none of that seem to matter.  
    She grinned. “You look a little out of place. Are you lost?”  
    “I’m here on business.”  
    She lit a cigarette, and in response to Llewellyn’s answer, she blew the smoke out a little harder than she needed to, the exhaust propelled into the air by something that could only be described as a prelude to a laugh. “What kind of business?”  
    Llewellyn checked his watch. Nearly forty-five minutes had passed and still his contact had not shown. In his opinion, that was late, even for the very lax. “I’m meeting someone, or at least I was supposed to.”  
    “Sounds to me,” she said, playing with the lapel of his jacket, “like maybe you just did.”  
    Llewellyn nodded. He tried to concentrate, but his thoughts were all over the place.  
    “Maybe your girlfriend changed her mind.”  
    “Come again?”  
    “Your little trick.”  
    Llewellyn shook his head. “There’s no trick.”  
    She leaned closer, bringing her shoulders forward in an unspoken offer.  
    Llewellyn glanced up to see the bartender hovering over the booth. He wasn’t sure how he’d gotten there without his hearing him or seeing his approach. “This guy bothering you?” the bartender asked.  
    The girl smiled and touched his arm, old friends apparently. “Nothing I can’t handle, Snub.” She reached over and took Llewellyn’s hand. “Just a little business.”  
    “You know this guy?”  
    She winked. “I do now.”  
    The bartender turned and stalked away. He acted protective, like an older brother, siblings from the dark side looking out for one another. It amazed Llewellyn that no matter how low you sank in life, you could still find evidence of a sense of community.  
    Llewellyn wondered what it might be like to be with this strange woman. Then, she leaned close, and with a kiss that teased with a slip of her tongue she said that she wanted him as well, or at least she intended to give him that impression.  
    He pushed away slightly. “Look, I’m not sure this is a good idea.”  
    “Yes you are. You’re just afraid to give in to it.”  
    “You read me pretty well.”  
    “I usually do.”  
    Llewellyn felt insecure, trapped. “I really am meeting someone.”  
    “So where are they?”  
    “I don’t know. I’m starting to have my doubts.”  
    She let go of Llewellyn’s hand and lit another cigarette. “Okay, I’ll lay it out straight. Sinclair sent me.”  
    “Is that right? Why would he do that?”  
    “I don’t know. But he said to tell you that he has the whole story, everything that you’re looking for.”  
    She took a long draw on her cigarette. Llewellyn usually felt a mixture of sorrow and disdain when he saw someone do that, but she impressed him as someone who could handle just about anything, and anyone. His sense of good judgment, what he had left of it anyway, was telling him to excuse himself from this odd encounter, yet he resisted that urge. He hadn’t told her Sinclair’s name, and yet she knew it. He certainly hadn’t said anything about a story. He’d always been drawn to the unusual, the unexplained, that which frightens most people—and here it all was, epitomized in this intimidating yet fascinating person. “So what happens next?”  
    “I’m supposed to take you somewhere. A private place where you can talk.”  
    “Thanks,” Llewellyn said, indicating with a nudge that he was ready to leave. “But I really should be going.”  
    He half expected her to move closer and refuse to let him out, but instead she slid from the booth. Llewellyn did the same and started for the door, and then it occurred to him that he had no car and there would be no cabs waiting on the street in this part of town. He signaled the bartender. “Could you call a cab?”  
    The strange girl put her arm through Llewellyn’s, and he realized that not only had they not exchanged names but he had anticipated her actions and welcomed her touch. She evaluated him with her gaze. “Save the call, Snub. I’ve got a car.”  
    The look on the bartender’s face said he was confused, and it seemed that in some strange way he might even be concerned for Llewellyn. “Whatever you think,” he said.  
    “It’s nice of you to offer,” Llewellyn said to the girl, “but I hate to impose.”  
    His resistance, though, was superficial at best. Still holding his arm, she shook her head and guided him through the door. Once they were outside, she pulled him close and they kissed again. He was in deep, and he knew it, but he kept going along with it. In the parking lot, they stopped beside a red Monte Carlo, and she did something that surprised Llewellyn. She tossed him the keys. “You drive.”  
    Llewellyn stuck the key into the slot and opened the door, and after getting inside he reached over and unlocked the passenger side. She gave him directions and Llewellyn followed them, driving farther from his place with every block. A little later she said, “Turn here. We’ll park in the back.”  
    When they got out of the car, Llewellyn glanced around the area, seeing a few spent wine bottles. “No offense,” he said, but I’m starting to have second thoughts about this. Maybe I should go.”  
    “All right, but come in for a quick drink. I won’t keep you. I promise.” She ran a long nail along his jaw, making it an almost predatory gesture and an enticing one.  
    As they approached the building, it occurred to Llewellyn that her place didn’t look much better than the bar.  
    She turned to look at him and caught him surveying the lines of the building. “Neat old place, huh? I like it here, love the vibes, if you know what I mean.”  
    “It does have character,” Llewellyn said.  
    She unlocked the door and they stepped into a small landing. The place was grim, and populated, Llewellyn suspected, by various strata of socioeconomic defeat, and as they walked the red, carpeted hallway, a red that reminded Llewellyn of blood, he thought of Dante’s Inferno, for as they walked deeper into the building each successive apartment appeared more steeped in despair.  
    The girl’s place was no exception, and once inside, Llewellyn could not imagine anyone actually living there. From a chip-edged kitchen table, she grabbed a bottle of bourbon and poured some into a glass, mixed in a little soda, and handed it to him.  
    He swirled the amber mixture, unable to meet her eyes. His heart pounded. Leave. Just gulp it down and leave.  
    Before he could consider other options, she took the untouched drink and placed it on the table. Then she took Llewellyn’s hand and placed it on her stomach, where she began to guide it upward, beneath her shirt, until it came to rest upon the warm, soft flesh of her breast.

    I try to pride myself on guessing the outcomes of books.  I am not always right, mind you, but I do have a pretty good track record.  But dang it all, this one really stumped me.  I made a few guesses and not one of them was right.  Bob Avey has done a fantastic job of developing his characters and storyline to enthrall the readers up to the unexpected ending.

    This is book two of a series, with the first book being “Twisted Perception”.  You will not need to read the first book in order to grasp the plot of this one, but I for one am going to make sure I read it so I can get some more background on Detective Elliot, a character that has all the right things.  Following a gut instinct has gotten him very far, as you will see in this book.  There are so many multiple twists in this one, if he had to go by evidence alone it may have never been solved. This was a quick read as the story grabs you and makes you want to keep reading right until the very last page.

    About the author:

    Bob Avey is the author of the Kenny Elliot mystery series, which includes Twisted Perception, released April 2006, and Beneath a Buried House, June 2008, several short stories and various non-fiction articles. He lives with his wife and son in Broken Arrow , Oklahoma where he works as an accountant in the petroleum industry, and when he’s not writing or researching mystery writing techniques, he spends his free time prowling through dusty antique shops looking for the rare or unusual, or roaming through ghost towns, searching for echoes from the past. Through his writing, which he describes as a blend of literary and genre, he explores the intricacies and extremities of human nature.

     Bob is a member of The Tulsa NightWriters, The Oklahoma Writers Federation (active board member for 2006), The Oklahoma Mystery Writers, and Mystery Writers of America.

    From Crayons to Condoms by Steve Baldwin and Karen Holgate

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 24, 2008 at 7:06 am

  • Hardcover: 293 pages
  • Publisher: WND Books (June 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979267110
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979267116
  • To purchase, click here.
  • Excerpt from the back of the book:

    What’s really going at your local public school? In From Crayons to Condoms: The Ugly Truth About America’s Public Schools, Steven Baldwin and Karen Holgate let parents, concerned teachers and students speak for themselves about the dismal state of government education in America today. The conclusion? Today’s schools are laboratories for disaster, where failed methodologies and policies continually find new life thanks to bureaucracies more interested in maintaining power than in educating.

    Lavishly armed with your tax dollars, government at every level encourages mass social experimentation on our kids – success optional. In From Crayons to Condoms you’ll discover…

      * The lesbian gym teacher who hands out a paper called “101 Ways To Do It Without Going All The Way” in every class.
      * The “Inventive Spelling” curriculum which demands of parents that they “avoid giving in to our natural desire to correct the mistakes” because it’s “harmful to the children”
      * The “innovative name-calling” program for kindergarteners and first graders that teaches new words and concepts like “dyke” and “faggot.”
      * The required courses in “death education” that actually encourage teen depression and suicide.
      * The math classes in which students write down how they “feel” about math problems…as opposed to learning fractions, algebra and multiplication tables.

    Today’s public schools are not just rife with bizarre, inaccurate textbooks and failed teaching practices – they encourage classroom activities that produce dangerous, even deadly, results.

    Can our schools be saved? Yes say the authors, but only if parents are informed and ready to fight for their children every step of the way. The stories in From Crayons to Condoms: The Ugly Truth About America’s Public Schools are sure to horrify and energize anyone concerned about today’s kids – and our nation’s future.

    I have two young girls and they have yet to reach the age where they will be going to school.  I have been fortunate to be able to stay home with them, but the time is drawing near where they will be leaving home to be educated.  This book was an eye-opener, but I must say that not all teachers or schools are run this way.  I do have 3 teachers in my family and I feel they do an excellent job of educating our children (granted, I am biased, lol).  Don’t get me wrong, I am not disregarding any of the information in this book.  It is truly helpful and will give you an idea of what can/may happen in your school district, just keep your eyes open because nothing is more important than the education of our children.



    About the Author
    Steven Baldwin
    is a long-time activist in the fight to reform America’s public schools. He served in the California Legislature, representing San Diego’s 77th District.

    As Chairman of the California State Assembly Education Committee, he initiated a series of hearings that demonstrated how fads, failed methodologies and political correctness have devastated the California public school system, the nation’s largest – and one of the worst.

    The co-author of “The Real Secret War,” Mr. Baldwin has appeared on numerous talk shows including Larry King Live, and has written articles published in the Regent University Law Review, Washington Times and Human Events. Mr. Baldwin is currently the Executive Director of the Council for National Policy (CNP).

    Karen Holgate became an educational activist after joining the fight against hardcore pornography. During public speaking engagements, she began hearing from parents concerned about the sex education curricula being promoted in the public school system.

    With her grandchildren in the public schools, she became involved in the myriad of problems besetting California’s education system. Soon she was traveling to Sacramento and Washington, D.C. to meet with legislators to discuss the declining quality of education and the growing emphasis of non-academic content.

    Mrs. Holgate’s articles and policy reports have appeared in publications including the Congressional Quarterly, Investors Business Daily, the Washington Times, and Insight Magazine. She has been interviewed by local and national radio shows, and has appeared on CBS, NBC and Fox News shows.

     Once again, thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotion!

    Mrs. Lieutenant by Phyllis Zimbler Miller

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 18, 2008 at 7:32 am

    Excerpt from the back of the book:

    They had their whole lives to look forward to if only their husbands could survive Vietnam.

    In the spring of 1970- right after the Kent State National Guard shootings and President Nixon’s two-month incursion  into Cambodia – four newly married young women come together at Ft. Knox, Kentucky, when their husbands go on active duty as officers in the U.S. Army.

    Different as these four women are, they have one thing in common: their overwhelming fear that, right after these nine weeks of training, their husbands could be shipped out to Vietnam – and they could become war widows.

    Sharon is a Northern Jewish anti-war protester who fell in love with and ROTC cadet; Kim is a Southern Baptist whose husband is intensely jealous; Donna is a Puerto Rican who grew up in an enlisted man’s family; and Wendy is a Southern black whose parents have sheltered her from the brutal reality of racism in America.

    Read MRS. LIEUTENANT to discover what happens as these women overcome their prejudices, reveal their darkest secrets, and are initiated into their new lives as army officers’ wives during the turbulent Vietnam War period.

    Vietnam was before my time.  I have heard the horror stories and one of my all-time favorite movies is The Deer Hunter.  It is frightening to think of what these soldiers endured, some drafted, others enlisted, but both seeing sights that no human being should be witness to.

    This book is about four very different women whose husbands are in officer training class in Kentucky.  As unlikely as it may seem, considering the background of these women, they become friends and bond during the six-week officer training course.   Thankfully they have each other, as the country is in turmoil due to the stress of being at war, a war that we were not wanted.  They each have a different set of circumstances they must overcome, but have their new found friends to rely on.

    The author has done an excellent job of helping to portray the other side of the war, the women behind the men who served and the hardships they endured.  Truly a wonderful read and an eye opener, I would highly recommend it!

     About the author:

    Phyllis Zimbler Miller is a former Mrs. Lieutenant and lives with her husband in Los Angeles.  The co-author of the Jewish holiday book “Seasons for Celebration,” she has written a success guide for teens (  She welcomes messages and visitors at

      Thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotion for this book!

    A Special Summer by Victoria Wells

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 13, 2008 at 7:53 am

  • Paperback: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Xpress Yourself Publishing, LLC (January 22, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979975778
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979975776
  • To purchase, click here.
  • Excerpt from the back of the book:

    In love with the man of her dreams, Summer Jackson’s world is perfect bliss…so she thought.  Devestation rocks her very existence when handsome Nick Stiles walks out on her, leaving her to put the shattered pieces of her life back together again.

    Month’s later, out of the blue, Nick reappears and is in for the shock of his life!  A love that once was so pure is plagued by heartbreak, deceit, and betrayal.  Will Summer and Nick find true love again?

    A Special Summer is the debut novel by Victoria Wells.  I have to admit that I am not always the biggest fan of romance books.  I am not sure what it is about them that I don’t like, but I usually struggle to get through them.  That wasn’t the case in this novel, in fact, I can’t wait until her next as I will be anxious to read about characters introduced in this book.

    Some might think that Summer Jackson and Nicholas Stiles are a match made in heaven.  Summer has her act together as a nurse but is extremely selective when it comes to the men she dates.  The last thing she wants is to be treated like a sex object, so when she collides with Nick at a charity event she dismisses their meeting, even though the attraction is intense.  Nick does coerce her number from her, and after hounding her for quite some time she finally relents to a date with him.  Once they are together it is obvious that they are perfect for each other.  They spend all of their free time together, which is limited due to Nick’s work habits.  Summer truly believes that she has found the man of her dreams, so when he abruptly ends their relationship claiming it is due to the fact that he has a business venture in Canada, and doesn’t believe in long distance relationships she is devestated.  He totally ignores her calls and tries to put her out of his life for good.  But it just isn’t that easy.

    Eight months pass before Nick is back in town and he has realized one thing, stubborn as he is.  Summer truly is the one for him- he has been with no one else and has no desire to.  So, when he stops by Summer’s apartment unannounced he is shocked when she opens the door.  A secret has been kept from him, a secret they may not be strong enough to overcome.

    The writing is exceptional and the characters, although flawed at times, are very real and easy to relate to.  Ms. Wells has done a fantastic job with this debut and I wish her all the success in the world!

    Once again, thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotion for bringing this virtual tour!

    About the author:

    Victoria Wells is a Philadelphia native. She has been an avid reader since childhood. Wells’ interest in writing took root while taking a creative writing course in college. Her most memorable assignment was the rewriting of the last chapter of The Color Purple. Though she did very well in this course it would be years before she would pen a novel. 

     Professionally, Wells (Gaye Riddick-Burden) earned a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Nursing from La Salle University. Over her seventeen-year career as a nurse, Wells (Riddick-Burden) has written, lectured, and presented at national conferences extensively on sickle cell disease. Her dedication to caring for patients with this disease earned her the Regional and National 2005 Nursing Spectrum’s Nurse of the Year Nursing Excellence Award in Clinical Care. Nursing Spectrum wrote, “Riddick-Burden is a strong advocate for patients with sickle cell disease. She was instrumental in designing and implementing the outpatient Sickle Cell Day Treatment Unit for these often underserved patients. The program is driven by Riddick-Burden’s desire to provide timely and effective care to patients with sickle cell crisis – decreasing long waits in the ED and avoiding inpatient stays that separates patients from their families.”  

      Wells’ dedication to the nursing profession and work in the African American community organizing and running a free Hypertension Clinic at her church, Refuge Evangelical Baptist Church earned her another award. On March 19, 2006, Wells was awarded the Movers and Shakers Award presented by the American Women’s Heritage Society, National Association of University Women, National Association of Phi Delta Kappa, Top Ladies of Distinction and Two Thousand African American Women. At this ceremony the City Council of Philadelphia also presented her with a Citation.  

     Using writing as a tool to escape the hassles and worries of everyday life, Wells decided to pen a novel. In November 2006 she released her self-published debut romance novel, A Special Summer.  After receiving positive feedback and believing her story portrayed strong, intelligent, self-sufficient African American characters dealing with and working through relationship issues, Wells decided to submit her manuscript for traditional publishing. In August 2007, Xpress Yourself Publishing made an offer to re-release A Special Summer, March 4, 2008.


    Wells works as an adult nurse practitioner. She is married and the proud mom of three children.




    Stand by Debbie Williamson

    In book review, non-fiction, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 6, 2008 at 7:55 am

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher:Souper Publishing (January 8, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0980123402
  • ISBN-13: 978-0980123401
  • To Purchase click here.
  • Excerpt from the back of the book:

    STAND one courageous woman shatters the chains of abuse that bound her family for generations and dares to:

    • brave the crippling memories of sexual abuse
    • shatter the illusions of denial
    • reveal her family’s bitter legacy of violence
    • reach for the healing and wholeness
    • take her place on a path to forgiveness and peace

    Reading books about abuse are always hard for me, but especially when children are involved.  How do you ever overcome such a traumatic experience and lead a life that is unencumbered by horrific memories of the past, memories that are sure to haunt your days and nights?  The amount of courage it must take to not only face your past but move on is amazing to me, and that is exactly what Debbie Williamson has done. 

    Debbie Williamson gives you and inside glimpse into her nightmare, a nightmare that includes being raped twice by her uncle at age nine, and a family that decides, through the advice of others, to just “let it be”.  After doing some research, Debbie learns that abuse is nothing new to her family – it goes back for three generations.  But, she is determined to break the cycle, and has done so!

    This story is about so much more than the rape of a young girl.  It is about how early abuse can effect so many aspects of your life, especially when your family chooses to turn a blind eye to the situation.  Debbie knows, after many rough years and experiences, that the only way to break free is to confront the man who has had control over her for so many years.  After seeing her uncle she is at last able to break down the walls he has created and open up to a new life, a new life that she now fully controls. 

    I truly recommend this book to anyone, and I mean anyone.  It is wonderful to read of one woman’s battles and triumphs when faced with so many people and things determined to see her fail.  Bravo!

    About the author:

    Debbie Williamson tours the Unites States speaking to groups about overcoming the effects of abuse.  She and her husband are the parents of 9 children and 11 grandchildren.  After generations of abuse, Debbie’s courage stopped the cycle before it was allowed to affect the next generation.

    Born in Salt Lake City, she grew up in southern California and now lives in Utah with her family and four miniature schnauzers.  Family is her number one priority and when not working with university and church groups, she can often be found golfing and sailing with her children and husband, Gary.

    Once again, thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotion for the opportunity!

    Belly of the Whale by Linda Merlino

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 5, 2008 at 2:06 pm

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher:Kunati Inc. (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601640188
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601640185
  • To Purchase, click here.
  • Excerpt from the back of the book:

    Hudson Catalina has given up—having lost both breasts to cancer, she is emotionally and physically exhausted, no longer willing to endure the nausea and crushing weakness of her grueling treatment. Nothing in her life—not even her beloved husband and children, her best friend, or her passion for teaching high school—will sway her decision to terminate her treatment. On the eve of her daughter’s fifth birthday celebration, a troubled former student confronts her, hell-bent on violent revenge and then suicide. Facing certain peril, Hudson vows to do whatever she must in order to survive and see her husband and children once again.


    Hudson Catalina is up against “the beast” – that is what she calls the cancer that has taken both of her breasts and is threatening to take her life.  She has already lost her grandmother and mother to this awful disease, and even though she has fought hard, she is ready to give up and give in.  In the midst of a raging New England blizzard, she decides she is going to go and visit Ruby Desmond, the owner of Whales Market, to pick up some supplies she needs to celebrate her daughters fifth birthday, quite likely the last she will celebrate with her.  While there she encounters trouble in the likes of Buddy Baker, the town hoodlum.  Buddy is truly armed and dangerous, and it is unsure whether any of them will get out alive.  


    I don’t believe in spoiling the fun for everyone, but this one got a grip and wouldn’t let go.  Whether the breast cancer was front and center, or the drama among the family, or the terror that encounters the participants at the market, the author has a wonderful ability to keep you on the edge of your seat waiting for what is to come.  Excellent job! 

    Thanks again to Pump Up Your Book Promotion – you guys ROCK!


    About the author:


    Life is our daily teacher. One lesson begets another and then another.

    Once-upon-a-time life kicked me off my writer’s path and led me to pursue a more practical profession. My childhood dream of becoming a journalist was silenced.

    Years later, I became a single parent, not by choice but by necessity, and my most trustworthy partner became a ballpoint. The fiction in my head turned into words on yellow legal pad. I wrote anywhere, any time, on my dining room table, and on my lunch hour. No place was my sacred space. I wrote in my car during soccer practices, under an umbrella on rain drenched sidelines, in fast food restaurants and in chain hotels. I wrote during championship after championship in cities and states, from Jersey to Phoenix.

    The quieted yearning to be a writer reawakened onto the pages of a novel. My first was self-published after five years of juggling work, kids and day-to-day. A flawed but beautiful story emerged onto paper and “Swan Boat Souvenir” enjoyed local acclaim and success.

    I knew there was more to do, more to write and that the next book would be published traditionally, that the next manuscript would have the benefit of an editor and the advice of professionals. After months of writing, Belly of the Whale went from paper, to computer, to draft after draft and finally into the arms of Kunati Publishers.

    My children are grown. My passion to write remains a constant. Each book I complete is dedicated to the magic of believing in my dream, to my son and to my daughters.




    When a Man Loves a Woman by LaConnie Taylor-Jones

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion on June 5, 2008 at 7:32 am

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Genesis Press (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1585712744
  • ISBN-13: 978-1585712748
  • To purchase, click here.
  •  Excerpt from back of book:

    Nursing administrator Victoria Bennett has soured on love.  She has sworn off men; they bring too much drama and too much pain into her life.  That is, until she meets pediatrician A.J. Baptiste, a single parent who is determined to woo her.  A.J. will stop at nothing to have her, and Victoria finds her resolve put to the test…but is this a fight she really wants to win?

    When Victoria and A.J. Baptiste (Vic and Baptiste) meet for the first time, sparks and words fly.  Sure there is chemistry, right from the very beginning, but they start arguing minutes after meeting, and continue their headstrong stubborn ways every time they encounter each other.  But, underneath all of this arguing, they both feel the heat and the connection, something Baptiste relishes in, and Vic fights tooth and nails to deny and fight.  After being betrayed and heartbroken by her husband, she isn’t willing to let another man, any other man, infiltrate her hard shell and get to the heart she has worked so hard to protect.

    While attending a party, Vic confronts Baptiste about his plans to stop her from relocating to Atlanta.  His goal is to do whatever he can to keep here near, and that means pulling out all of the stops.  As they are arguing, he begs her to let down her walls and let him in.  In a rush of emotion she breaks down and tell him why she has a hard time trusting men, a secret she has kept for over 8 years.  She is so distraught at revealing this information, she rushes out of the house and drives aimlessly, trying to get her thoughts and feelings in check.  She is distracted at a stoplight and is rearended when the light turns green, causing her to be pushed into the intersection and into a motorcycle being driven by none other than Baptiste.  What is she going to do?  And how will she explain this?  With a hit-and-run accident and drug dealing adding to the plot, there is enough to keep all readers satisfied.

    This is my first book by Ms. Taylor-Jones but will not be my last.  She has such a way of infusing suspense, love, drama and a familial bond you can’t help but being drawn in and wanting to find out more.  Great work! 

    About the author:

    LaConnie Taylor-Jones holds advanced degrees in community public health and has written for several scientific research publications for the past fifteen years.  An active member of the San Francisco Area chapter of RWA since 2003, Ms. Taylor-Jones has combined her writing skills with a twenty-five year passion for reading romance in the completion of her first full-length multicultural contemporary romance novel, When I’m With You.

    Once again, thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotion for the chance to read and review another winner!

    The Well-Fed Self-Publisher by Peter Bowerman

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on June 5, 2008 at 7:28 am

  • Paperback: 294 pages
  • Publisher: Fanove Publishing (August 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0967059860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0967059860
  • To purchase, click here.
  • Excerpt from the back of the book:

    Landing a publisher has never been harder…

    Even when you do, count on anemic royalty rates, 18 to 24 months to publication, and giving up the rights to your book.  And you’ll still be expectd to do most of the marketing yourself!  There’s a better way.  Thanks to the Internet, self-publishing (especially non-fiction) has become easier, more viable, and more potentially lucrative than ever before.

    Follow the author’s firsthand experience as you learn how to:

    • Develop a “marketing mindset” – minus the anxiety!
    • Create a book that turns heads and grabs eyeballs
    • Find tons of reviewers anxious to publicize your book
    • Get into the big bookstore chains and stay there!
    • Build a cash-generating web site that works 24/7
    • Minimize your dependence on fickle mainstream media
    • Parlay one book into multiple income streams
    • Separate the “Print-on-Demand” hype from reality
    • Dramatically simplify your marketing tasks

    Most importantly, you’ll learn a radical new approach to book promotion, one that keeps you in contorl.  The result: less anxiety, higher profits, and more!

    I have never written a book.  If I put my mind to it, I probably have some ideas swimming around in my brain but I just haven’t really put a lot of effort into writing.  My hubby on the other hand is very interested in writing.  But, even though I haven’t written a book, I do know the process and struggles that many authors face.  This book is orgainzed in such a way that it is possible for anyone to follow.  Really, publishing is all about business.  He lays the groundwork (and then some) for any aspiring author, and gives you a step-by-step guide on how to make your dreams come true.

    The author covers many aspects of the self-publishing world including how to approach writing, the marketing and selling of your book, and discussing publicity avenues including, the mainstream media, your own website, radio and bookstore signings.

    This is truly a well written and thought out book that lets the authors personality truly shine.  Excellent for anyone interested in hearing the ins and outs of the publishing world by someone who has been successful practicing what he preaches.

    Once again I want to thank Pump Up Your Book Promotion for hosting this author and allowing me the chance to read and review it.