Monday, April 30, 2012

Live Chat with Diane Chamberlain - May 31, 2012

Diane Chamberlain

A beloved daughter. A devastating choice.
And now there’s no going back.
Four years ago, nineteen-year-old Travis Brown had to make a life changing decision. While his friends were out partying and meeting girls, Travis was at home raising his newborn daughter on his own – changing diapers and working to keep food on the table.  But he’s never regretted his decision. Bella is the light of his life – the reason behind every move he makes – and so far, she is fed.  Cared for.  Safe. 
But when Travis loses his construction job and his home, the security he’s worked so hard to create for Bella begins to crumble… 
Bestselling author of The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes, The Midwife’s Confession, and The Lies We Told, Diane Chamberlain, returns with her latest and most gripping novel to date, THE GOOD FATHER (Harlequin MIRA; April 24, 2012; $14.95 U.S./$17.95 CAN.), showing the great lengths a father will go to provide for his little girl.
Just when Travis is at a loss for solutions, a job in Raleigh opens up with the power to change their situation.  It has to.  But upon arriving in Raleigh, there is no job, only an offer to participate in a onetime criminal act that promises quick money and no repercussions. 
With nowhere else to turn, Travis must make another choice for his daughter’s sake.  Even if it means he might lose her. 
By Diane Chamberlain
MIRA; April 24, 2012
368 pages; $14.95 U.S./$17.95 CAN.
ISBN-13: 978-0-7783-1346-5

I am participating in Book Trib's blog tour. Look for my review on May 5, 2012.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Trudeau Stress Less Product Line Review and Giveaway

Just in time for Arthritis Awareness Month (May 2012), the good people at Trudeau Corporation sent me products from their newest line of food preparation tools for review. These kitchen tools from the Stress Line product line are designed to reduce the strain on your hands and joints so it makes them ideal for those of us who struggle with arthritis and other limited hand conditions.

I received a complete set from the Trudeau Stress Less product line which included the six following products: 

1. Stress Less Safety Can Opener
2. Stress Less Garlic Press
3. Stress Less Easy Grind Pepper Mill
4. Stress Less Easy Grind Salt Mill
5. Stress Less Pizza Cutter
6. Stress Less Rotary Cheese Grater

The total retail value of the set is $143.00. In addition to my providing a review, the good people at Trudeau Corporation and J.M. Glass and Associates, Ltd. are giving away one complete set. READ MORE AND ENTER GIVEWAY.

Review of The Minefields by Steven C. Eisner‏

Welcome to stop #25 on The Minefields Blog Tour!!!  My stop involves an excerpt from the book and a review.

Excerpt from The Minefields: “I was working so hard to be his finest possible concertmaster, and I felt badly that I hadn’t as yet delivered his first violinist—the love of his life—to bid him farewell. The farewell business had always seemed like a lot of theatrics for the ‘big screen,’ the tearjerker ending with musical swells, sadness on steroids.”

Review: Sam Spiegel has it all – a great career, a beautiful wife and strong family connections. When his sick father, Harry, asks him to take over the family’s advertising business, Sam jumps at the chance.  However, despite being a loyal son and a man who appears to have it all, Sam is struggling to find his identity and there is a lot of tug of war involved in that struggle.

Harry is a Holocaust survivor who has remained entrenched in the old ways and for that reason, he and Sam don’t always see eye to eye on everything, including business.  Sam and his wife, Amy, leave New York and move to Philadelphia to run Harry’s advertising agency. The move and the running of the business cause problems between Amy and Sam.  Amy resents Sam’s decision to uproot their lives and move to Philadelphia.  Their marriage begins to take a back seat to the business leaving Sam wondering whether his marriage can be saved and whether it is even worth salvaging.  Sam flashes back to moments in this life that led him to make the decisions he made to be in the place he is now.

Sam’s is an intelligent character who is loyal to his family.  That loyalty makes him weak and defenseless when it comes to the people who he is loyal to. Sam’s loyalty goes back to the beginning of his career and something that happens to his brother, Mickey, whose role is vital factor in the storyline and Sam’s desire to understand his role in business and the complex relationships that he has.  It is evident that if not for what happens to Mickey, Sam would not have a desire to be successful nor would he struggle with his conscience.

My thoughts: The Minefields offers a complex look at a father and son relationship and the differences between two generations.  Sam and Harry are battling over the future of the family legacy.  Additionally, we see Sam taking a good look at his life and trying to figure what is next for him.  He has accomplished so much in his career but he is still doesn’t feel content.  He is also struggling with an unsatisfied marriage and trying to figure out where he should be and if what he has can be fixed.  If anything, Sam is struggling with the essence of humanity and what it is we all struggle with as we work to find ourselves and to build identities.

Steven C. Eisner did an amazing job looking that the reality of what many of us have experienced in our lives. The fact is that life drags all of us down.  We are always trying to good in our lives but things do not always go as we planned we see that in the character that Steven has created in Sam. Sam’s journey is personal and as he struggles to find himself, you can actually see realism in his character.  I think that is what makes this book so good – there is a part of Sam in all of us.

You can check out the next stop and even the previous stops in the blog tour by clicking HERE.

Purchase: You can purchase your copy of The Minefields at many fine retailers including Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

About the Author: “Before writing his novel and after learning the ropes at Doyle Dane Bernbach, New York, Steven C. Eisner created and led Eisner Communications, a Baltimore-based advertising agency, for more than two decades, creating hundreds of effective ad and PR campaigns for leading corporations and associations including Black & Decker, Marriot, McCormick Spices, PhRMA, US Airways, Lenox China, the Maryland Lottery, the Nature Conservancy, and the United Way. Eisner Communications won numerous industry awards including CLIOs, ADDYs, and EFFIEs, and the O’Toole for creative excellence across its entire client roster. The Minefields is Steven C. Eisner’s first novel.” From his website.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Stopain Review

I was contacted to review Stopain Cold a topical analgesic for pain relief. Stopain is available in four formulas: Stopain Spray, Stopain Extra Strength Spray, Stopain Extra Strength Roll-on and Stopain Gel. All the formulas provide fast, temporary relief of pain and stiffness associated with arthritis, muscle aches and back pain. What it does is stop the pain and allows you to get moving again. Sounds simple, right?

The best thing about Stopain is that it goes on cold. If you have arthritis, your joints are constantly inflamed so using a cold product makes a sense. (If you have arthritis inflamed joints, you know what I am talking about.) Further, it is not sticky so it doesn’t stick to your clothes. It is also non-drip so you don’t have to worry about it dripping as you apply. Last, it has a menthol scent that you only smell when you find apply it and I don't know about you but that is long enough.

I received the received the convenient hands free application roll-on. I loved that I didn't have to get my hands messy. No dripping, no stinky smell, and it did not stick to my clothes. It definitely helped me with my back, neck, and should pain and muscle aches. I saw relief within a few minutes.

You can buy Stopain at most pharmacies and drug stores including Wal-Mart, Rite-Aid, CVS and Walgreens. Further, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of Stopain are donated to the Arthritis Foundation with a minimum contribution of $25,000.00

For more information about Stopain you can visit their website or Facebook page, where there will also be ongoing sweepstakes.

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review. Robin Leedy Associates sent me Stopain Cold Roll-on to try out. The opinions expressed belong entirely to me.