Sunday, January 31, 2016

Crystal the Christmas Angel Virtual Book Publicity Tour!

Crystal the Christmas Angel
Virtual Book Publicity Tour!
Hosted by: 
Pump Up Your Books
Pump Up Your Books and Write More Publications presents the Crystal the Christmas Angle Book Publicity Tour! The tour will feature Crystal the Christmas Angel, by: Theresa Oliver and will run from Feb. 1-26, 2016! The tour features different interviews for Author CA Milson, The Literary Nook, The Story Behind the Book, The Writer's Life, and more! Please visit each stop on the tour for something different each day! The interview for The Writer's Life is syndicated into USA Today, Reuters, Chicago Times, Boston Globe, Washington Post, and other national publications! A copy of all of the stops are listed below. 

Also, if you would like to review Crystal the Christmas Angel, I will give you an e-book copy in exchange for an honest review! Just e-mail me at with "Review" in the the subject line. I look forward to hearing your thoughts! 

Also, visit the official Crystal the Christmas Angel Virtual Book Publicity Tour page at Pump Up Your Books! Special thanks to Pump Up Your Books for hosting my virtual tour! 

 All of the angels in Heaven are preparing for a big event, and Crystal, a little angel, wants to be a part of it. But the more she tries, the more the angels tell her that she is just too little. That is, until God himself gives her the biggest, most important task of all … going with the Archangel Gabriel to Mary, and bringing God’s greatest gift to the world. But can Crystal do what God asks? Journey with Crystal as she discovers that God sometimes chooses the most unlikely for the greatest tasks. Crystal also discovers that you are never too little to do great things. You just need to believe and never give up.


But Crystal didn’t pay attention to the other angels, concentrating on the task at hand. She followed Gabriel from Heaven through the stars and galaxies until they neared Earth. It was her first time away from Heaven. Crystal admired the sights — the beautiful stars and planets, and the lovely colors — but she concentrated on protecting the little ball of light within her arms.
“Where are we going?” Crystal asked as wind blew past her at the speed of light.
Gabriel smiled. “Israel.”  

Theresa Oliver grew up in southern Indiana, across from Louisville, Kentucky, in Clarksville, Indiana. In her childhood, she fell in love with the power of the written word, a love affair that has continued her whole life. She moved to Florida, where she has lived much of her adult life. She attended the University of Tennessee at Martin, Martin, Tenn., and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Communications degree, News Editorial sequence. She also earned a Master of Arts in Teaching degree, Early Childhood Education sequence, from Armstrong Atlantic State University, Savannah, Ga. She is currently a writer, a full-time teacher, and the owner of Write More Publications and TNT Author Services. However, her greatest adventure is as a mother of three beautiful boys. Oliver currently resides in Kissimmee, Florida, with her husband and children. 

Tour Schedule

Monday, February 1 – Interview & Tour Kick Off at The Writer’s Life
Tuesday, February 2 – Interview at The Literary Nook
Wednesday, February 3 – Book Featured at CBY Book Club
Thursday, February 4 – Guest Blogging at The Story Behind the Book
Monday, February 8 – Book Featured at Around the World in Books
Tuesday, February 9 – Book Review at Lighthouse Academy
Wednesday, February 10 – Interview at C.A. Milson’s blog
Thursday, February 11 – Book Review at The Blended Blog
Thursday, February 11 – Book Review at Books, Reviews, ETC.
Friday, February 12 – Book Featured at Hot Off the Shelves
Monday, February 15 – Book Review at Books Books the Magical Fruit
Tuesday, February 16 – Book Review at Seasons of Opportunities
Wednesday, February 17 – Book Review at Fascinating Quest
Thursday, February 18 – Book Review at Reviews by Crystal
Friday, February 19 – Book Review at Ali – The Dragon Slayer
Monday, February 22 – Book Review at Over the Rainbow Book Reviews
Tuesday, February 23 – Book Review at Our Family’s Adventures
Wednesday, February 24 – Book Review at The Children’s and Teens’ Book Connection
Wednesday, February 24 – Book Review at Book Babble
Thursday, February 25 – Book Review at The Avid Book Collection
Friday, February 26 – Guest Blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner

Special thanks to Pump Up Your Books: Virtual Book Publicity Tours for hosting this Virtual Book Tour! Also, special thanks to Dorothy Thompson for making this happen! Thanks, Dorothy!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Reblog: 33 of the Creepiest Lines in Literature

Original post by Buzzfeed here.

1. “Even the dead tell stories.”
—Marcus Sedgwick, Revolver 
Suggested by Tallulahmac

2. “Of all of them there at the bar that night, the bartender was the one who survived the longest. He died three weeks later on the road out of the city.”
—Emily St. John Mandel, Station Eleven 
Suggested by caitlinm18

3. “The man screamed and clawed frantically, like a drowning swimmer. The screaming filled the universe.”
—Ray Bradbury, Kaleidoscope 
Suggested by Jonny Lim

4. “With a mocking smile, he placed one hand upon my shoulder and, holding me tight, bared my throat with the other, saying as he did so: “First, a little refreshment to reward my exertions.”
—Bram Stoker, Dracula 
Suggested by Amy Wildman on Facebook

5. “True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.”
—Kurt Vonnegut
Suggested by kellym4af8fad7c

7. “But when the interrogator with less shiny shoes pressed the eel, teeth first, between the imam’s pale buttocks, it could be nothing else.”
—Anthony Marra, A Constellation of Vital Phenomea 
Suggested by sahelc

8. “For a moment she remained trembling and reeling to and fro upon the threshold, then, with a low moaning cry, fell heavily inward upon the person of her brother, and in her violent and now final death-agonies, bore him to the floor a corpse, and a victim to the terrors he had anticipated.”
—Edgar Allan Poe, The Fall of the House of Usher 
Suggested by haleyb4d0121d3f

10. ” At the same time a light unexpectedly sprang up, and I saw Carmilla, standing, near the foot of my bed, in her white nightdress, bathed, from her chin to her feet, in one great stain of blood.”
—Sheridan Le Fanu, Carmilla 
Suggested by jennywintersb

11. “She thought she heard a sound behind her—fragile, skittering. Amelia turned.
The sound had stopped. She felt a chill move up the backs of her legs. “It’s He Who
Kills,” she said with a smile.”
—Richard Matheson, Prey 
Suggested by tristinam

12. “There were times when John Wade wanted to open up Kathy’s belly and crawl inside and stay there forever. He wanted to swim through her blood and climb up and down her spine and drink from her ovaries and press his guns against the firm red muscle of her heart.”
—Tim O’Brien, In The Lake Of The Woods 
Suggested by kelseyanne7

14. “A cold hand fell on Louis’s shoulder. Rachel’s voice was grating, full of dirt ‘Darling’ it said.”
—Stephen King, Pet Semetary 
Suggested by linnea11

15. “I have been assured by a very knowing American of my acquaintance in London, that a young healthy child well nursed is at a year old a most delicious, nourishing, and wholesome food, whether stewed, roasted, baked, or boiled …”
—Jonathan Swift, A Modest Proposal 
Suggested by jamie102

16. “There were worse things than crucifixion. There were teeth.”
—Stephen King, The Stand 
Suggested by chrisw43af8432e

18. “Then we noticed that in the second pillow was the indentation of a head. One of us lifted something from it, and leaning forward, that faint and invisible dust dry and acrid in the nostrils, we saw a long strand of iron-gray hair.”
—William Faulkner, A Rose For Emily 
Suggested by kaleidoscopemind

19. “I thought that Mr. Clutter was a very nice gentleman. I thought so right up to the moment that I cut his throat.” 
—Truman Capote, In Cold Blood 
Suggested by Cecily Bohanek on Facebook

20. “Wandless, helpless, Pettigrew’s pupils dilated in terror. His eyes had slid from Harry’s face to something else. His own silver fingers were moving inexorably toward his own throat.” 
—JK Rowling, Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows 
Suggested by Tatiana Hernandez on Facebook

22. “I sent letters to the families of every service member who laid down his or her life in the war on terror. By the end of my presidency, I had written to almost five thousand families.” 
—George W. Bush Decision Points 
Suggested by Chuck Haint on Facebook

23. “Some humans would do anything to see if it was possible to do it. If you put a large switch in some cave somewhere, with a sign on it saying ‘End-of-the-World Switch. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH’, the paint wouldn’t even have time to dry.”
—Terry Pratchett, Thief Of Time 
Suggested by Trenton Taylor on Facebook

24. “Without passion or haste, they shot their prisoners, who were forced to approach the trench one by one and offer their necks. Infants were tossed into the air and used as targets for the machine guns.”
— Elie Weisel, Night 
Suggested by Jo Sam on Facebook

26. “Yesterday, upon the stair,
I met a man who wasn’t there
He wasn’t there again today
I wish, I wish he’d go away…” 
—Hughes Mearns Antigonish 
Suggested by Kristy Hopper on Facebook

27. “He had come like a thief in the night. And one by one dropped the revellers in the blood-bedewed halls of their revel, and died each in the despairing posture of his fall. And the life of the ebony clock went out with that of the last of the gay. And the flames of the tripods expired. And Darkness and Decay and the Red Death held illimitable dominion over all.”
—Edgar Allan Poe, The Masque Of The Red Death 
Suggested by Gabi Bisconti on Facebook

28. “I started from my sleep with horror; a cold dew covered my forehead, my teeth chattered, and every limb became convulsed: when, by the dim and yellow light of the moon, as it forced its way through the window shutters, I beheld the wretch — the miserable monster whom I had created. He held up the curtain of the bed and his eyes, if eyes they may be called, were fixed on me.” 
—Mary Shelley, Frankenstein 
Suggested by Suzanne Shedd on Facebook

29. “…I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”
— Psalm 23:4 
Suggested byGabby Arzola on Facebook

31. “I would imagine being tied up and put in a haystack while someone put the dry, stale straw ablaze. I would picture it perfectly while rocking on my hand. The daydream was about struggling to get free while the fire burned hotter and closer. I am not sure if I came when the fire reached me or after I had imagined escaping it. But I came. I orgasmed on my hand to the dream of fire.”
—Dorothy Allison, Bastard Out Of Carolina 
Suggested by Julie McCartney on Facebook

32. “The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far.”
—H.P. Lovecraft, The Call Of Cthulhu 
Suggested by Jared Johnson on Facebook

33. “It occurred to me that this might be the bed used by the resident of the house, whose monstrous anatomy was revealed obliquely by this object in much the way the anatomy of an animal, or a god, may be known by the shadow it casts.”
—Jorge Luis Borges, There Are More Things 
Suggested by Encyclopedia Brown on Facebook

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Author Resource: The Science of Getting Drunk

In all genres of literature, you'll often find that alcohol comes into the picture at some point. This is especially true of young adult stories, where alcohol can be used to portray peer pressure and create difficult situations for the characters you're writing about.

So here's a handy little tip about the science of getting drunk, for those moments when you need some more intense information about the experience (especially useful if, like me, you're a teetolaler. LOL.)

You can find the original post here.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Teaser Tuesday

#TeaserTuesday #WMP #YA #Romance

The Butterfly Who Didn't Want to Fly, by Theresa Oliver


George was like other butterflies of his age in so many ways. He loved to play Daisy Dodge with the other boys. He read lots of books. And after doing his homework, he loved playing his favorite video game, Knights and Castles. But George wasn’t like other butterflies. You see, George was the butterfly who didn’t want to fly.

In The Butterfly Who Didn’t Want to Fly, George learns that the first step is admitting your fears and the second step is facing them, but can George overcome his fear and save his friend in time?

The Butterfly Who Didn’t Want to Fly is an endearing story of courage and bravery that children of all ages will enjoy.


Saturday, January 23, 2016

Reblog: Severus Snape | Important Scenes in Chronological Order

I'm a big lover of Harry Potter - you've probably noticed. Well, when I came across this post, I just couldn't resist sharing it. Read, watch and have a peek at some of the related stories on the sidebar, too. You just might find something of interest.

Reblogged from:




J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series may center on the Boy Who Lived and his friends, but they’re far from the only heroes in the story. I’m not talking about Albus Dumbledore or members of the Order of the Phoenix. No, I’m thinking of Severus Snape. For the majority of the books and films, Snape is portrayed as a smug villain. He dares to be impolite to our protagonist and appears to have given his allegiance to Voldemort. But there’s so much going on underneath the surface, and YouTuber kcawesome13 put together an edit of the movies that showcases just how tragic the story of Severus Snape is. I’m not saying it completely absolves Snape of his often misguided actions, but boy, perspective is neat.

Kcawesome13 uploaded the video over a year ago, but it’s just now hitting the radar of the Internet at large. She’s put all of Snape’s most important scenes into chronological order. Meeting him as a young boy first rather than as a stern adult makes a world of difference. This cut makes you feel Snape’s struggle and love for Lily Potter so acutely that it aches. Yeah, it’s that intense.

A couple of notes before you press play: It’s heartbreaking. No, seriously. If you have any kind of appreciation for the Harry Potter story, this edit will punch you in the gut. At 14 minutes, it’s not the shortest thing on YouTube but sit down and give it your full attention. Are you ready? Here we go…
I need a spell to put my heart back together, please.

Now I want to take a similar approach with the books and string together Snape’s scenes in chronological order. It won’t have the same visual punch in the gut, but it would be an interesting exercise… that would probably also make me cry. Accio, tissues.

We’re here for you. Go ahead and share your Snape feelings in the comments.

HT: Dorkly


Also, stop by the original post to check out the video at the end.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Author Resource: Animal Instincts

Reblogged from The Conversation, about the UK TV program 'The Hunt'

The Hunt: a natural history series that challenges us to side with the predators

Author 3
We’re here to reveal another side to “nature, red in tooth and claw”. Predators are commonly perceived as being ferocious successful hunters and their prey as having little or no chance of survival once the hunt is on. The truth however, is that hunts often fail. Even for the most powerful and formidable predators, failure is more common than success.
The Hunt, a new OU/BBC series produced by Silverback Films and narrated by David Attenborough, looks at different habitats and the challenges each presents to both predators and prey. The show highlights how wild animals can only be understood by considering the habitat in which they evolved. While stealth, ingenuity or camouflage may work in one environment, stamina, strength or speed may be needed in another.

Arctic wolves have lots of stamina as there isn’t much food around. © Silverback Films

Both predators and prey are caught up in an “evolutionary arms race” where over time predators evolve traits that make them better hunters and prey evolve more effective defenses to evade capture, and so on. So, for an antelope that relies on speed and agility to avoid capture, only the fastest, most agile survive but the same also applies to their predators.
The upshot is that both predator and prey become better adapted, but neither attain a significant survival advantage over the other. As the Queen said to Alice in Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass: “It takes all the running you can do to stay in the same place”. This is known as the Red Queen hypothesis: organisms constantly evolve to keep up with their opponents who themselves evolve in response.
The series, which we worked on as academic consultants, captures hunting behaviour that has not been filmed and in some cases not even seen before: polar bears climbing 300 metres up a cliff in search of chicks and eggs; Darwin’s bark spider, only described in 2010, constructing a web by spraying a strand of silk 25 metres across a river to serve as a bridging line from which the web is hung (the silk is ten times stronger than Kevlar, the material used in bullet-proof jackets); and footage of Arctic foxes leaping vertically into the air, plucking auks out of the sky.

Cheetahs are nature’s sports cars

The series' “car chase” footage of African wild dogs, achieved using gyro-stabilised camera mounted on a vehicle, puts you alongside the pack as they hunt. It illustrates why they are the most successful hunters on the plains and can bring down prey ten times their size: they hunt in co-ordinated packs led by a dominant individual and have immense stamina, travelling up to 60 km/h for up to 5 km.

Strength in numbers means wild dogs can take on much larger animals. BBC/Silverback
Unlike wild dogs who depend on stamina and cooperation, cheetahs are mostly solitary hunters relying on speed and agility. They are recognised as the fastest land mammal on earth. A recent study of naturally hunting cheetahs recorded a male, named Ferrari, at a top speed of 93 km/hr (58 mph).
But in spite of their ability to run incredibly fast, cheetahs rarely hunt at top speed; to be successful, they have to balance pace with the agility needed to catch animals like gazelles that use quick turns as an escape tactic. When going flat out, cheetahs can’t track these turns efficiently. They therefore make a trade off – speed for manoeuvrability – which is a common strategy in biological systems.
The slow motion photography used to film their hunts gives a sense of both nimbleness and speed but also their astounding power – 120 watts per kg of muscle – twice that of greyhounds and four times that of racehorses. Usain Bolt generated just 25 watts/kg during his 100 metre world record.

It’s not just big mammals

The series also explores the tactics of some smaller, less familiar predators. Jumping spiders of the genus Portia feed on other spiders and display remarkably complex and flexible hunting behaviour for an animal with a brain made up of just a few neurons.

Smarter than it looks. © Huw Cordey/Silverback Films

In fact their capacity to innovate and learn is more reminiscent of dogs and cats. Their hunting behaviour is visually guided and includes aggressive mimicry, a form of deception where, on locating a spider, they manipulate the web by plucking it, imitating a small ensnared insect. Portia can generate an almost unlimited number of signals and adjusts them in response to feedback from prey. In other words, they derive signals through trial and error – problem-solving behaviour you wouldn’t expect from a spider.
If deception doesn’t work Portia switches tactic, planning the route to its prey and taking detours even when direct paths are available. For example when approaching a spitting spider they approach from the rear even if this means going out of their way. But even this behaviour is flexible, as spitting spiders that are carrying eggs and cannot spit are approached head on. Making pre-planned detours when hunting prey is the sort of sophisticated behaviour you see in lions; it seems by making best use of limited brain resources a small spider can achieve a predatory strategy that rivals that of a large mammal.

Predators under threat

The Hunt makes one acutely aware that many of the animals featured and many others on Earth are under threat because of conflict with humans. The final programme in the series addresses some of the conservation initiatives around the world that recognise many iconic predators are struggling to survive in a world that, for them, is shrinking rapidly.

Endangered lions are losing their status as Africa’s apex predators. © Ellen Husain/Silverback Films

Co-existing with big predators is possible, but requires commitment, compromise and dedication. Without concerted effort, large iconic predators such as lions, leopards, polar bears and harpy eagles as well as many small but equally important ones, could disappear completely from the wild.
The new series presents predators in a refreshing and thought-provoking way – they are not just relentless killers but animals that work hard for a meal, relying on stealth, stamina, speed, ingenuity, cooperation and sometimes just luck. At times, instead of rooting for the hunted, you’ll find yourself cheering on the hunter.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Teaser Tuesday

#TeaserTuesday #WMP #YA #Romance

Thou Shalt Not Kill, by Theresa Oliver


In Thou Shalt Not Kill, Catholic high school students are faced with a decision: do I kill to save my life and the lives of others or not, even at the cost of my own life?

Casey Nichols and her friends are forced to answer this question after finding themselves in the middle of WWIII when their school, their city, and their country are overrun by terrorists. The decisions they make have consequences, but can they live with the choices they make? Derek saves Casey’s life, but will another steal her heart?

In Thou Shalt Not Kill, some will live, some will die ... all choose to fight. When all hell breaks loose, which path will you choose?


Saturday, January 16, 2016

Author Resource: Human Eye Colour Chart

Sometimes, for a novel, you have to research some really obscure things that your normal, every day person wouldn't have to contemplate. Sometimes there are normal things that you need more information about, that you don't always think about that closely. Now, finding information on this is easy if you know where to look, but it's also something that not many of us know about, off hand. So research is always necessary.

Here are a few websites that might help you find what you're looking for.




Baby Med

All About Vision


Here's some of the information from All About Vision, that I found really useful.

"Contrary to popular belief, it's also possible for two blue-eyed parents to have a brown-eyed child.
Eye colors depend on the amount of pigment (melanin) found in the iris and how it is distributed. Light gray-blue eyes contain much less pigment than extremely dark brown eyes. And there are many shades of eye color in between.
Some people are even born with eyes of two different colors, a condition known as heterochromia."
"The colored part of the eye is called the iris, which has pigmentation that determines our eye color.
Human eye color originates with three genes, two of which are well understood. These genes account for the most common colors — green, brown, and blue. Other colors, such as gray, hazel and multiple combinations are not fully understood or explainable at this time."
(also from All About Vision)

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Book Recommendation: The Guardian Series, by Wendy Owens

This is the first of a new feature: Book Recommendations. These books are all YA novels and come highly recommended.

The Guardian series, by Wendy Owens

Book 1 – Sacred Bloodlines

sacred bloodlines


Tragedy has defined Gabe's short existence in this world. An ominous darkness lurked on the edge of his existence until one day in a subway, strange things start happening. A series of events lead Gabe into a new and fascinating life filled with angels and demons, but he isn't sure if he wants to be a part of it.
Gabe is thrust into the middle of this exciting world that is full of things he has longed for in his life but it comes with a price. This new life also promises constant terrifying dangers that Gabe fears he may not be able to survive.

Buy Links: Free Everywhere!

Amazon USA         Amazon UK            Barnes and Noble         Kobo


Book 2 – Cursed



Some people are born into love, some people are born into war, when Gabe discovered he was a Guardian Angel, his life was suddenly thrust into both. If this hidden war wasn't enough to deal with, Gabe learns he is fated to be the great protector who will one day deliver the last prophet to either safety or death. All of these revelations didn't matter for Gabe, he only cared that his new life included Sophie. 
Sophie and Gabe grew closer over the summer. She is now a fixture in his life that keeps him moving forward. Evil doesn't stop stalking him just because he found happiness. This time darkness finds it's way into Rampart manor and Gabe will have to decide if he is willing to risk everything to try and stop it.

Buy Links

Amazon USA        Amazon UK          Barnes and Noble           Kobo


Book 3 – The Prophesy

the prophecy


Five years have passed since Gabe abandoned Rampart, deserting his destiny and closest friends. The struggles Gabe has endured to stay alive have changed him, hardening him into a man unwilling to trust anyone or anything, dealing with difficulties connecting with the outside world.
Gabe has finally found a certain paradise--a peace in solitude--until a familiar stranger shows up on his doorstep, pleading for Gabe's help. Now he has to decide if he is truly content in his new life, or if he is willing to risk his solitary happiness for a little piece of the world he left behind. Should he choose to accept the most important duty of his life, one failure could mark the beginning of the end for all mankind.

Buy Links

Amazon USA      Amazon UK         Barnes and Noble         Kobo


Book 4 – The Lost Years

the lost years


Gabe's world was forever altered by the people he came to know and love at Rampart Manor. Although, it wasn't only his life that was changed when he made the choice to leave them all behind. During his five year absence, they each had a battle with personal demons. Dina is faced with a moral dilemma, the path of good leading to certain heartbreak, or evil, and a possibility of happiness. Uri meets a mysterious woman who seems to have a lot of the answers that he has been searching for, and she certainly has a place in his heart, if he can only hold onto her. Sophie is faced with choices she never knew would be so difficult. The question now is: will the personal demons of the remaining Guardians of Rampart be too much for them to overcome?

Buy Links

Amazon USA         Amazon UK           Barnes and Noble          Kobo


Book 5 – The Guardian's Crown

guardian crown


Gabe is finally forced to answer the ultimate question, will he give his life to save the world? What about just to save the one he loves the most? The Guardians struggle to find another way--ideas that don't involve Gabe's death--to defeat Baal. Time is running out. What will Gabe choose? What price will he pay for that choice? 

Buy Links

Amazon USA         Barnes and Noble          Kobo


Wendy Owens

wendy owens
Author Bio:
Wendy Owens was raised in the small college town of Oxford, Ohio. After attending Miami University, Wendy went on to a career in the visual arts. After several years of creating and selling her own artwork, she gave her first love, writing, a try.
Since 2011, she has published a young adult paranormal series, The Guardians, which will contain five books total, as well as a novella.
Wendy now happily spends her days writing—her loving dachshund, Piper, curled up at her feet. When she's not writing, she can be found spending time with her tech geek husband and their three amazing kids, exploring the city she loves to call home: Cincinnati, OH.
Author Links:
Website          Twitter          Facebook         Goodreads