Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Book Spotlight & #Giveaway - MS Madness by Yvonne deSousa

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Yvonne deSousa’s diagnosis of relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis came with an insightful declaration from a new doctor (“MS Sucks”) and a brother’s helpful advice (“You could totally get one of those handicapped parking plates now”). What followed was a year of MS-adventures: “accidentally” kicking an officious male doctor in the crotch, becoming an undercover agent to pay for medication made from Chinese hamster ovary cells, discovering the amazing effects of legal speed, and battling her arch-nemesis, the dreaded food group-vegetables. Throughout her MS journey, Yvonne learned how to use humor to find acceptance in her diagnosis and how to smile in the face of chronic illness. Life with multiple sclerosis can be daunting, but Yvonne shares her giggles at the bizarre world she has unwittingly entered and the new perspectives it has given her on life. MS Madness! makes us realize that with a sense of humor, we can survive anything. “MS Madness! A ‘Giggle More, Cry Less’ Story of Multiple Sclerosis combines defiance with humor, the secret weapon of the sick. Laughter has carried me a greater distance than conventional medicine ever will. In the end, attitude drives well being.” -Richard M. Cohen, NY Times best-selling author of Blindsided and Strong at the Broken Places
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Buy on Amazon Kindle | Amazon Paperback | B&N

Put MS Madness on your TBR pile

yvonneAuthor Bio Yvonne deSousa has worked as a street sweeper, a shell seller, a babysitter, a candy peddler, and a guest house manager, all before the age of sixteen. Later on she worked as a waitress, sales clerk, library assistant, victim’s advocate, and at the front desk of a doctor’s office. Two years before Yvonne’s diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, a relative volunteered her to write an article for a local newspaper. Little did she know it was the beginning of a writing career. When MS threatened to turn her into a lunatic, she started writing more frequently and quickly discovered that writing about the insanity that is MS was helping to keep her sane. Her work has appeared on CapeWomenOnline.com, and in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Finding My Faith and Something On Our Minds, Volumes 1 and 2. Yvonne also writes a weekly blog on www.yvonnedesousa.com the website that uses a giggle stick to beat up on MS. Since finishing MS Madness! A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis, she has started presenting programs designed to help others use humor to help cope with chronic illness. Yvonne enjoys writing, laughing, and resting. She lives by her personal mottos, “how you deal affects how you feel” and “my MS is not your MS and your MS is weird!” Contact her at Yvonne@yvonnedesousa.com
Find her on Twitter | Facebook | Literary Addicts | Goodreads

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Book Spotlight & #Giveaway - Sybrina by Amy Rachiele



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Genre: Historical Paranormal Romance


Fleeing for her life, Sybrina leaves behind everything to escape the dark and ominous creature that killed her family. 


It wants to finish what it started. 


Sybrina stows away aboard a clipper ship and poses as her recently murdered brother, Paul. 


The year is 1866, an age in which science is a man’s game. 


Can Sybrina solve the mystery of the creature that exsanguinates it victims?

SORM excerpt



War.It is a societal domination that never dies with the progress of mankind. It crafts a vampiric buffet table, blood-soaked earth the tablecloth. The meal encased in shiny metals forged to futilely protect its fragile hosts. Hunting is easy and enshrouded in the mayhem, despair, and fear that accompany battle. It disguises the vampires’ unnatural feast making us undetectable. The remnants left behind are contorted in some bizarre repose. The only indication of its death being of unnatural causes. A fruitless meandering brought me to the Russo-Turkish war. The plain lines of unremarkable uniforms jumbled against the ground piled two to three deep was like walking through a meadow of flowers, crowded together and all the same. My unhurried walk is slow for my kind. I have nowhere in particular to be or wish to be, filling my deathless body my only task.
A gloved hand rises, black and torn, changing the terrain before me. I walk to it and bend down. I know not what draws me to the dying Cossack but the hand beckons to me among the dead. The irony interests me. I flip off the rubble that is charred limbs and body parts of his deceased comrades. A young, clean, unlined face, chiseled as though made of marble, stares back at me. Eyes not clouded with the shadows of death, but vibrantly blue and warm with life.
In the cavalry’s haste, someone tasked with the gruesome ordeal of clearing the dead has mistaken this wounded man as a corpse. I shuffle more debris and expose the man’s legs. Beneath, they are attached barely by sinew and fragments of broken bone. My original thought of this man’s happenstance, being mistaken for dead, is quelled. The condition of his injuries, blood loss, and damage make him a worthless endeavor for a surgeon. Others in this situation would be pallid and unconscious, rapping on the door of death. This man’s spirit is strong.
“Are you death?” he asks me.
Contemplating his question, I stifle a sardonic chuckle. In the truth of my existence, I can be either, take life or give it, eternally. I take more time, as if I am drawn to this soldier, to examine him closely. His body is ready to face the other side, but his mind is not.
“No.” I smile weakly.
“What are you then?”
“What do you think I am?” I question back curiously.
“A wraith,” he surmises, looking thoughtful.
A ghost would be too easy of a life, I think as I laugh at his response. A phantom to walk among the living and not have to partake of their company, but watch them with curiosity and indifference, having no substance or feelings to interfere. I would welcome such an existence.
“I am neither wraith nor human.”
“Do you have a soul, sir?”
“I do. A spirit like any other man.”
A small breeze travels past our intimate meeting and the Cossack’s blond hair dances around his face. He casts his eyes away from me and peers up into the cerulean sky, thinking.
“Are you here to save me?”
“What do you need saving from? To be able to leave this world and pass on to another is the gift of being human.”
“That path… it doesn’t seem to be the right one.”
“I have seen a great deal of death in my long days, and I know very few are ever ready for it when it comes.”
The maimed soldier contemplates and answers surprisingly again. “I would say very few are ready for love when it comes.”
My cheek lifts, forming a half grin in amusement. “I believe that is true as well.”
“I feel nothing from my waist down. Can you help me?”
“I can. But what I have to offer comes with a heavy price.”
“Name it.”
“Eternal existence in this world.”

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SORM About the Author


Amy Rachiele is a military spouse and brat who spent many years volunteering and on staff for the Army National Guard and Department of Veteran Affairs with Family Support, Family Readiness, as well as, Families of the Fallen.
Amy devoted 10 years to teaching English to at-risk students in the Providence School System.  She holds a Master’s degree from Rhode Island College in English and Secondary Education.  Amy published book one in the Mobster Series, Mobster’s Girl, in 2012, and has continued to self-publish since.  Her novels have climbed to the bestseller lists nationally and internationally on Amazon.com for romantic suspense and family saga.  She is an active member of New England Independent Writers and has volunteered her time at her local library facilitating a writer’s group in the hope of inspiring other writers.
Amy hosts a public access cable show called Book Talk. Besides writing, she enjoys scrapbooking, sewing, and traveling.  Amy lives in Massachusetts with her son and husband.
Author Links:   Site    Twitter   Facebook   Facebook Mobster Series  Tumblr   Goodreads
SORM Giveaway

Amy is giving away an ECopy of Mobster’s Girl
For a chance to win please fill out the rafflecopter below.

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Allstate Foundation's Purple Purse Challenge

 




Domestic violence affects one in four women in their lifetime – that’s more women than breast cancer, ovarian cancer and lung cancer combined. While the physical and emotional scars are heavy burdens, many women find it's the financial burden that traps them in an abusive relationship. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Allstate is working to raise awareness this year with their amazing Purple Purse Campaign.  They will be investing more than half a million dollars to help victims get back on their feet. With Emmy-award winning actress and domestic violence activist serving as a Purple Purse ambassador, Allstate hopes to inspire women everywhere to reclaim their financial independence.  Go to PurplePurse.com between Sept. 2 and Oct. 3 to join the Challenge and help a nonprofit near you
 
 
 
 
Over the years,  the Allstate Foundation has invested more than $40 million across the country to help domestic violence survivors regain control of their finances and break free from abuse. The Purple Purse is the Allstate Foundation’s symbol for domestic violence. To help turn any bag to a symbol of inspiration, they are distributing these beautiful Purple Purse charms. Just attach a charm to your purse and show that you support the cause. It's a fun way to make a big difference and make a fashion statement at the same time!




 A majority of Americans agree that domestic violence is tough to talk about. More than one-third of Americans have never discussed the issue with family or friends and Purple Purse provides a conversation starter in addition to supporting victims.   Domestic Abuse effects millions of women every year. One in four women have been impacted and this issue has probably touched the life of someone you care about at one point or another. So do your part to spread hope by taking part in the Purple Purse Campaign. It only takes a minute, but the benefits will last a lifetime to the people it helps. 


If you or someone you know needs immediate help, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.

Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored campaign with The Allstate Foundation and MomSelect. All thoughts and opinions are my own.