Monday, December 31, 2012

Book Review: Rapunzel Untangled, by Cindy C. Bennett

Rapunzel Untangled, by Cindy C. Bennett

Rapunzel is not your average teenager. For one thing, she has a serious illness that keeps her inside the mysterious Gothel Mansion. And for another, her hair is 15 feet long. Not to mention that she’s also the key to ultimately saving the world from certain destruction. But then she meets a boy named Fane, who changes all she has ever known, and she decides to risk everything familiar to find out who she really is. Filled with romance, adventure, and mystery, Rapunzel Untangled is one story you won’t want to put down. Discover the true meaning of love and friendship in this modern twist to the classic fairytale.

Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Cedar Fort, Inc. (February 12, 2013)

My Review:

 I have to admit, I am a huge sucker for a retelling of a fairy tale.  Some of my favorite books are new versions of old stories.  Rapunzel Untangled has joined my list of favorite teen reads for the year.  

I found Rapunzel to be a little naive and blindly obedient, but she doesn't know anything else, so it makes sense.  She was a total sweetheart, and I just loved her.  Fane was a fantastic hero.  He was a typical teenage boy while still managing to be thoughtful and courageous.  

One of the enjoyable aspects of this story was that it takes place in the present day.  Rapunzel has a computer that is hooked up to the internet.  She gets a Facebook account and "friends" Fane.  I love her reactions to modern day technology (like cars) and other things like movies, pizza, and M&Ms.  I enjoyed the relationship between Rapunzel and Fane, and I loved that while they were instantly attracted to one another, it took time for their relationship to develop into something more than friendship.  The content was perfectly clean, and I really appreciate that in a young adult novel.  

Bit of a spoiler here:  I was frustrated with the mystery behind Rapunzel.  I think it worked, but it could have been more believable than it was.  Vedmak played too small a part in the whole thing.  I spent the entire book reading about Gothel and figuring out what her motivation and plans were, just to have Vedmak swoop in during the last couple of chapters and change the game entirely.  I thought that his motivations were solid enough, but I wish that I could have learned more about him throughout the rest of the book.

In all honesty though, I enjoyed the story far too much to really complain about Vedmak.  It was a delightful modern day fairy tale full of adventure, romance, and even Facebook!

The Cover: I absolutely adore this cover.  That hair is simply gorgeous!  I like the way the braid is loose and a little messy.  The blonde color contrasts very nicely with the darker background.  I also really like the title design.  Super cute and still easy to read.

Amazon | Goodreads | Website

About the Author:
Cindy C Bennett lives in the shadows of the majestic Rocky Mountains near Salt Lake City. She has spent several years doing volunteer work with teen girls, whom she finds to be fascinating creatures - hence, her writing stories for and about them. When not reading or writing, she loves to spend time with her family which includes a husband, two sons, two daughters, two daughters-in-law and two dogs. She thinks the best things come in pairs! She does her best creating while cruising down the highway on her Harley Davidson Fatboy. GEEK GIRL (a Sweetwater book) is her first published novel. HEART ON A CHAIN, IMMORTAL MINE, BEAUTIFUL BEAST (book 1 of Enchanted Fairytales), RED AND THE WOLF (book 2 of Enchanted Fairytales), RELUCTANCE (a Noble YA short story), IN THE BEGINNING (part of the It's a Love Thing anthology), and WATCHED (part of the Screams in the Night: Tales of Terror anthology) are her others.

Pin It

Friday, December 21, 2012

Book Review and Giveaway! The Sun Zebra, by R. Garcia

The Sun Zebra, by R. Garcia
The four Nell stories that marveled readers at are put together here for the first time in this collection, which also includes an all-new story, "Birdman and the Fairy Tale." 

This book is best described as a children's book for grownups. Its aim is to encourage us to discover (or rediscover) the amazing things that children and their magical carefree world can teach us, even as we try to teach them about the harsh realities of our own. The book is a collection of five stories that follow the "adventures in living" of an unusual little girl called Nell, her mother Rhonda, and Nell's father who is the narrator of the stories.

My Review:
This book was such a dramatic change of pace from everything I've read recently that I was surprised by it.  It was absolutely beautiful.

Told from the perspective of Nell's father, this collection of short stories are a perfect reminder that childhood is available to anyone brave enough to go out and take it.  I felt like I had rediscovered childhood as an adult and came to realize that it is never out of reach. The stories emanate a warm, loving atmosphere conducive to creating smiles and satisfaction.

This is not an action packed page turner, but rather a thoughtful exploration of the important things in life. It is the type of book that you will want to read slowly, digesting each word and absorbing their meanings.  It is a book that will leave you pondering and inspired to find joy in everyday miracles.

Please, treat yourself to this book. 


About the Author:

R. Garcia is the peculiar eclectic writer. He was born in Cuba and lived in several Latin American countries before residing permanently in the United States. Along the way he obtained a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and produced several highly technical publications. However, one fine day he decided to fulfill his dream of writing something besides technical articles. This he began to do by publishing his work under the pen name "Phantomimic" on the document sharing site, where his stories have accumulated more than one hundred thousand reads and hundreds of comments. Based in part on this enthusiastic response to his work, he decided to take it to the next level. His first book on the Amazon Kindle is the collection of short stories entitled: "The Sun Zebra".

What are 10 things that your readers might not know about you?
1) As my bio reads, I was born in Cuba. This was one year before Fidel Castro
overthrew the Batista dictatorship, and went on to establish a dictatorship of his
own. My parents finally decided to leave the country when I returned one day from
elementary school singing the International Socialist Anthem.

2) As you can figure out from #1, my first language is Spanish. This is probably
why I write and read English slower than the average person.

3) Each of the last 3 generations of my immediate family has ended up resettling in
a different country for one reason or another.

4) I myself have lived in a total of 5 countries throughout my life: Cuba,
Venezuela, Ecuador, Mexico, and the United States.

5) When I was a little kid I won second place in a Lego tournament. I built a
replica of the Apollo rocket that sent the astronauts to the moon.

6) I played chess in my youth (which is what nerds did at the time) reaching a rank
of first class player.

7) Talking about nerds, I am a bit of a quirky nerd like the character Sheldon
played by the talented actor Jim Parsons in the sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”. But
unlike Sheldon I am not so socially inept!

8) I also used to be an amateur astronomer. I would go to the top of mountains with
my friends and identify the constellations and the planets. When a small telescope
was available we would also look at nearby galaxies.

9) The first time I lived surrounded by snow was here in the U.S. I arrived in New
York State during winter to pursue graduate studies. I had a cold, and that day
there was a fire alarm at 2 AM. We had to leave the student residence, and outside
it was snowing. There I was, coughing under this strange, cold, fluffy, white stuff
falling from the sky while the Americans around me were dancing and yelling,
“Party, party, party!” This was an interesting cultural experience.

10) Although my first book, the Sun Zebra, which Dena has reviewed here (thanks
Dena!) is a collection of family-friendly stories, I am an eclectic writer. My second
book of short stories will be very different. They are going to be stories that deal
with the paranormal and the psychological. I will reveal what the name of my book
will be in a few weeks on my blog. So if after reading The Sun Zebra you are in
the mood for a change of pace, stay tuned for my next book!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Pin It

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Promo Blitz: The Silver Sphere, by Michael Dadich

Addiction Blog Tours

YA Fantasy

Evolved Publishing presents a wild journey to a sister planet of Earth, in "The Silver Sphere" by Michael Dadich. [YA Fantasy/Sci- Fi] Shelby Pardow never imagined she could kill someone. All she wants to do is hide from her troubled father... when she is teleported to awaiting soldiers on the planet Azimuth. Here she is not a child, but Kin to one of the six Aulic Assembly members whom Malefic Cacoethes has drugged and imprisoned. He seeks to become dictator of this world (and then Earth by proxy). His father, Biskara, is an evil celestial entity, tracked by the Assembly with an armillary device, The Silver Sphere. With the Assembly now deposed, Biskara directs Malefic and the Nightlanders to their strategic targets. Unless.... Can Shelby find the other Kin, and develop courage and combat skills? Can the Kin reassemble in time to release or replace the Assembly, overthrowing Malefic and restraining Biskara?

Links to Buy

I’ve been writing since first setting pencil to steno pad at age 8. A year later, I began developing the world of my current series-in-progress, and even created its title, The Silver Sphere. Now, with the support of years of experience, those early maps and back stories have progressed into what I hope is a fresh and entertaining take on the classic young adult fantasy adventure.

Despite my frequent escapes into parallel worlds, I
root myself firmly in my very real family and community. When not pacing the yard maniacally after every few pages of writing, I spend as much time as possible hanging out with my studly 9-year-old son, and my inspirational wife Jenna. I also coach several local youth sports teams in Beverly Hills, and alternate between yelling at my two crazy Corgis and hiking with my trained German Shepherd.
For more, join me in my favorite fantasy worlds, from Lord of the Rings to the creations of C.S. Lewis, Anne McCaffrey and Terry Brooks. Even more importantly, stop by and say hello on my Facebook page at AuthorMichaelDadich, tweet me at @MichaelDadich, and stalk my website at

Pin It

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Book Review: Gentleman of Her Dreams, by Jen Turano

Gentleman of Her Dreams, by Jen Turano

When Miss Charlotte Wilson asks God for a husband, she decides He must want her to pursue Mr. Hamilton Beckett, the catch of the season. The only problem? She's never actually met Hamilton. Fortunately, one of her oldest and dearest friends, Mr. Henry St. James—who has returned to New York after a two-year absence—does know Hamilton. Much to Henry's chagrin, Charlotte immediately ropes him into helping her meet Hamilton. However, none of her plans to catch Hamilton's eye go as she expected, and she is even more confused when her old feelings for Henry begin to resurrect themselves. In the midst of the mayhem Charlotte always seems to cause, she wonders if the gentleman of her dreams might be an entirely different man than she thought.

This novella is a companion to A Change of Fortune, Jen Turano's full-length debut novel, available fall 2012.


Short, sweet, and adorably funny, Gentleman of Her Dreams is a companion novella for the full length novel A Change of Fortune.  However, it is not necessary to read one to understand the other.  They are both fine on their own.

This quick read was an absolute delight and just what I was looking for.  I love historical fiction, and every now and again I feel the need to get away from all the paranormal and adventure and just read a good clean romance.  This short christian romance was exactly what I wanted.  It was humorous, witty, and super cute.  It was squeaky clean, too!  

It is FREE right now on Amazon.  Definitely worth the read.

File Size: 415 KB
Print Length: 81 pages
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (September 1, 2012)


Pin It

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Blog Tour and Giveaway: First Time, by Samuel Ben White

Tour Schedule

First Time: The Legend of Garison Fitch

"What if history didn't happen that way ... the first time?"

Garison Fitch was one of the most revered scientists in the Soviet Americas until he left fame behind to work on a secret project in his log cabin in the mountains of Marx.

But something went wrong. Instead of traveling interdimentionally, Garison has traveled through time ... twice.

Now, he's in something called "The United States of America" and a woman he's never met before is calling herself his wife. It it a hoax? Or, has he somehow changed history?

If so, can he return the world to what he believes is "normal", or must he live in this strange world he created?



"Sam continues to weave his magic as a storyteller. I always find myself anxious to find out what will happen next and what kind of twist will befall the adventurers. It helps to be familiar with the places that the heroines go, which adds to the story."
~Labdaddy, Texas

"I've had a few very unproductive but enjoyable days thanks to Samuel Ben White. If you haven't read Sam's books you have been missing a treat. These were funny, suspenseful, spiritual and kept you turning the pages."
~Karen S.

"Just wanted to say how much I have enjoyed your books. I have a Kindle and I have purchased all of the Garison Fitch novels. I am in Saudi Arabia and your books have really helped take me away from here."
~Scott, Saudi Arabia

Also Part of the Series:

Saving Time

Two years ago Garison Fitch traveled through time and rewrote history. An accident in the eighteenth century created a whole new world, and even gave Garison a wife he had never met before. Now, he’s got a daughter and he’s coming to enjoy this world he created. Until he’s attacked by men masquerading as Indians, and a funeral procession from out of the past enlists his help, and a tree grows from sappling to full-grown in a matter of minutes, threatening his daughter’s very life. Time itself is unraveling and Garison’s trips through time seem to be the cause. Garison must go back in time once again and keep himself from making the original trip that started the problem. But he can’t use his time machine to go back. How does one sew up a rip in time?

Lost Time

Jason Kerrigan and Brownwyn Dalmouth are pilots with the Republic of Texas Army Air Corps. A world war is going on and bombs have just brought an end to Crockett Air Field in south Texas. Jason and Bronwyn, though, are called away from the battle to be test pilots for a new aircraft that-they're told-will bring the war to an end. The experimental craft lives up to expectations in early tests, but then it lands them somewhere it never should have sent them. Another place? Another time? Another dimension? Somehow, they've taken a trip to the future and changed the past. Or did they? The answer to their change of reality may be known to a Justice of the Peace in Colorado named Garison Fitch. To figure it out, though, Garison may have to team up with his least favorite person: Bat Garrett.


"That's George Washington," she replied, surprised that he had never seen a dollar bill before. Although, she was becoming less surprised with each of these new revelations. His memory seemed to be as full of holes as a sponge, yet sometimes as solid as coral.

"Is he someone famous?" Garison asked. Inwardly he laughed as he mused that young George must have taken his advice and made something of his life to appear on currency.

Heather looked at him incredulously, but said, "Everyone in the world knows who he was—literally. Everyone. George Washington? He was the first President of the United States. Lead the Continental Congress when they drafted the Constitution. Held us together. Father of the country."

"I thought John Adams was the first president," Garison offered meekly, surprised he remembered even that little bit of historical trivia. He was embarrassed by his lack of knowledge of history—which in the last day seemed to have become even worse than he thought.

"No, John Adams was the second president, and George's vice-president before that. George was the man who, as general, turned the colonial rebels into a force coherent enough to beat the British off the soil. Then he brought us together as a nation."

"Uh-oh," Garison said, slumping to the couch.


Author Samuel Ben White

Samuel Ben White (“Sam” to his friends) is the author of the national newspaper comic strip “Tuttle’s” (found at and the on-line comic book “Burt & the I.L.S.” (found at He is married and has two sons. He serves his community as both a minister at a small church and a chaplain with hospice. In addition to his time travel stories, Sam has also written and published detective novels, a western, three fantasy novels and four works of Christian fiction.


Blog Tour Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card
Ends 12/18/12
Open to anyone who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent's permission. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

First Time: The Legend of Garison Fitch Tour Schedule:

Pin It

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Book Review: Masquerade, by Janette Rallison

When Clarissa takes a much needed job under slightly false pretenses, she doesn't think it will be such a big deal. She may have told her movie-star boss that she was married, but that shouldn't matter. After all, she doesn't want anything to do with men for a long, long time.

It's hard for a woman to keep up the masquerade when her boss is as handsome as Slade Jacobson and the job takes her to Hawaii with him. In between handling his whirlwind four-year-old daughter and dealing with a whole cast of Hollywood personalities, Clarissa has to keep a tight hold on her heart.


Another charming and clean romantic comedy by one of my favorite authors, Janette Rallison.  It had the same type of voice and wit as her young adult novels do, but with a grown woman stumbling through embarrassing situations instead of a teen. 

The story was completely enjoyable.  Rallison has the ability to make me forget that I am not part of the plot.  I melt into the world of the characters, and get lost in their ups and downs.  I laughed so much during this book, and it was refreshing to read something other than teen angst.  

I appreciated that both of the main characters were divorced (in a non-morbid way of course).  But it made the story less picture perfect and more believable.  I loved how neither Clarissa or Slade were flawless.  They were both just average people with regular problems that happen to land in one humorous situation after another.  

For only $2.99, you can't go wrong with this one.

Age Level: Adult
File Size: 496 KB

Pin It