Category: Podcast

#TwelfthNightReadathon | “Gifts of the Magi: A Speculative Holiday Collection” an anthology with a charitable heart benefiting Indy Reads Books!

Posted Saturday, 14 January, 2017 by jorielov , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 2 Comments

Twelfth Night Readathon badge created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: Ahead of Christmas 2015, I received a beautifully lovely gift: a specially released anthology celebrating Speculative Fiction authors and the gift of charity. Indy Reads Books is an independent bookstore in Indianapolis, Indiana giving back to authors, readers and members of their community on a yearly basis whereas the other half of “Indy Reads” is a non-profit literacy organisation. This is a bookstore I have come to know through the authors who are behind this anthology: Mr (RJ) Sullivan, Mr (John F.) Allen and Ms Chris (E. Chris Garrison) of whom I have had the joy of interacting with both on blog tours or outside of them for Tomorrow Comes Media and/or Seventh Star Press.

This particular book was offered to me knowing how much I love holiday stories and the beauty of having such a strong presence of Speculative stories contained in one singular anthology with the heart of the holidays a central theme running through them! I personally love reading anthologies within the Science Fiction, Fantasy and Cosy Horror genres, which in of itself felt like a good fit to read this collection. I was unexpectedly taken ill during December 2015 (my infamous thirty day flu!) and this past December, whilst I had re-scheduled this to be a part of my #ChristmasReads and #WYChristmasReadathon series of posts, I was otherwise distracted by the recovery process after my Dad’s stroke. You can read about the first twenty-four hours after his stroke (per this post) and a bit of a background on my inability to read during December (per this anchour section of a recent review). Thus, my idea of recapturing the Christmas Spirit during Twelfth Night weekend was bourne!

I received a complimentary copy of “Gifts of the Magi” direct from the author R.J. Sullivan in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

#TwelfthNightReadathon & what sparked the idea:

I personally love reading holiday stories around Christmastime, however, this year, proved to be quite a unique year all the way round; starting Thanksgiving weekend. I dearly wanted to dig inside these lovely stories which are winking at me to read but with a heavy heart and a mind weighed down by anxieties attached to stroke patient’s recoveries, you could say the timing was definitively ‘off’ this year for posting anything remotely lit with the Christmas Spirit in December. I had to fight my way back into reading just to secure a passageway back into the hours I love spending inside stories and the journey of characters; as let’s face it, I had a lot on my heart and soul this year.

The blessing is being able to find my bookish joy emerged through a succession of Rom Novellas through a blog series I entitled: #MidnightChocLit (see the thread). This enabled me not only to retrieve my bookish heart but my bookish joy – the curiosity about stories and the lives of characters started to renew inside my imagination and it started me off again on solid ground. Spending this past week tucked inside an INSPY #HistRom also provided me with the hours I needed to heal my nerves and resume enjoying the hours I could spend inside a fictional world (see also Review).

Despite my progress back to my blog and back into an active reading life, there were ebbs of guilt murmuring inside my heart because more than anything I had wanted this to be a December where I could fully embrace reading stories of the season. This is when a lightbulb flashed in my mind – wait! The Christmas season isn’t fully extinguished until Twelfth Night and Twelfth Night is a celebration of the three kings! I knew I should start by reading and live tweeting my responses to Gifts of the Magi on this particular Friday, as it marks Twelfth Night officially! Ergo, all the lovely stories of Christmas Spirit across genre and literary selections could now be happily read during my own personal #TwelfthNightReadathon!

Except to say, Mother Nature had other plans in store for me – we had an epic storm arriving in the afternoon hours of Twelfth Night itself and it continued into Saturday; therefore, my tweets were quite a bit delayed – thus kicking off this readathon as a ‘weekend’ celebration; perhaps it was meant to be all along, as this is what I had put on the badge I created to celebrate the series of reviews! My readings of this anthology truly were encased during #TwelfthNight weekend, however, my reviews I wanted to feature over the weekend are running this week instead. The best part for me – is to be able to recapture stories of a season I cherish so dearly during a year where my heart was full of anxiety and now just a stone’s throw in the New Year, I can reattach the joys of soaking into stories of Yule & Christmastide!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

This of course, would have remained true if my dear Maine Coon / tabby hadn’t been struck quite ill whilst I was trying to kick-off this readathon. Turns out, as a senior cat of nearly 13 years he’s developed horrid food allergies and was quite miserable; his sister-in-arms is one year his junior (my little Tux!) of whom now has ‘food intolerance’s’. Despite being earnestly hopeful to find something that would work for them (as in their kittenhood and early years of growth, they had (as did their two siblings) multiple health issues which is why Mum and I were consistently ‘on the road’ to new places to purchase high quality pet foods whilst the Vets and my fam were growing more discouraged by the hour when even the best quality you can find isn’t working for your four cats. Hence why we were advised to go with what worked for our darlings and not worry about what is working for everyone else. This worked out quite well – until now.

Turns out!? The *best!* cat food our cats need was developed by Rachael Ray! Her Nutrish line for cats (esp the Chicken and Potato dry food!) is what turnt this crazy insanity around in *one!* feeding! ONE! Our Coon / Tabby who was *always!* Alpha is now a Beta cat whose so relaxed and happy, his Tux of a sister is still trying to get used to him being less playful around her and just go with the flow. All his issues are gone as are hers, to such a degree it’s a true miracle. They used to eat only wet food, but this dry food has done so many marvels for their health (i.e. vision, fur, digestion, etc) I cannot see them returning to wet food! Their so happy right now, it’s a beautiful thing to see – ergo, I am continuing this readathon in the spirit of Twelfth Night – as a closing of the holiday season and the stories of Yule.

This is why you’ll see my tweets stopped for a short break – as everything prior to Unraveled was written by the 9th before I was able to resume and conclude my ruminations.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com#TwelfthNightReadathon | “Gifts of the Magi: A Speculative Holiday Collection” an anthology with a charitable heart benefiting Indy Reads Books!Gifts of the Magi
Subtitle: A Speculative Holiday Collection
by A.D Roland, Chantal Noordeloos, Debra Holland, Herika R. Raymer, John F. Allen, Katina French, Ms Chris (E. Chris Garrison), R.J. Sullivan
Source: Direct from Author

Stories for Christmas-- authors for the New Year!

Find within this magical tome 14 NEW original holiday-themed stories of fantasy, horror and science fiction by a talented group of authors--plus one holiday essay. The tales from our Magi vary from the light and satirical to the dark and serious, and we've shuffled the deck to keep you guessing.

· A time guardian may have to choose between preserving reality or destroying the man she loves.
· A snowman comes to life, but he's not a happy soul.
· Santa makes a terrible bargain in order to save Christmas.
· On Christmas Eve, a furious fairy princess attacks a double-decker bus.
· Two secret agents attend an exclusive Christmas party with an unusual price of admission.
· Soldiers in the midst of the zombie apocalypse try to find the Christmas spirit.
· A boy and his father confront an alien creature on the Longest Night.
· A mercenary packing magical pistols battles a monster while Christmas shopping for her werewolf boyfriend.
· Steampunk detectives find themselves fending off Christmas "elves."
· Humans exiled to an alternate world blend alien and human holiday traditions.
· A banished prince with a magic chicken finds a nearly drowned soldier--so says the storyteller.
· A bounty hunter searches for a rogue elf.
· A traumatized punk girl confronts the spirits from the worst night of her life.
· In a dystopian future, Christmas is outlawed.
· ...And Shirley Jackson Award-nominated author Nicole Cushing reveals the holiday specials that she feels deserve "lumps of coal."

100% of all proceeds from this book benefit Indy Reads.

Indy Reads is a not-for-profit organization that relies on volunteers to provide basic literacy tutoring to illiterate and semi-literate adults. Indy Reads operates a bookstore in downtown Indianapolis. Learn more at www.indyreads.org.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Find on Book Browse

ISBN: 978-1502902528

Also by this author: Hero's Best Friend: An Anthology of Animal Companions, Hero's Best Friend: An Anthology of Animal Companions, Blue Spirit, Guest Post (Restless Spirit), Restless Spirit, Road Ghosts : Omnibus Edition, Road Ghosts : Omnibus Edition, Virtual Blue, Darkness with a Chance of Whimsy, Author Interview (Red Lotus, Vol.1), Commanding the Red Lotus

Genres: Anthology Collection of Short Stories and/or Essays, Christmas Story &/or Christmas Romance, Cosy Horror, Fantasy Fiction, Science Fiction


Published by Speculative Fiction Guild

on Halloween, 2014

Format: Trade Paperback

Pages: 196

Published By: Speculative Fiction Guild | Facebook | @sfg2013

Available Formats: Trade Paperback and Ebook

Converse via: #SpecFict + #anthology (or #SpeculativeFiction)

About John F. Allen

John F Allen

John F. Allen is an American writer born in Indianapolis, IN. He is a member of The Indiana Writers Center, began writing stories as early as the second grade and pursued most forms of writing at some point, throughout his career. John studied Liberal Arts at IUPUI with a focus in Creative Writing, received an honorable discharge from the United States Air Force and is a current member of the American Legion. John's debut novel, The God Killers was published in the Summer of 2013 by Seventh Star Press. He also has published short stories in several anthologies including: Thunder on the Battlefield, Vol I, also by Seventh Star Press and In The Bloodstream, by Mocha Memoirs Press.

John currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana.

About Ms Chris (E. Chris Garrison)

Ms Chris Garrison

E. Chris Garrison writes Fantasy and Science Fiction novels and short stories. She used to publish as Eric Garrison, but has since upgraded.

Her latest series is Trans-Continental, a Steampunk adventure with a transgender woman as its protagonist. The series is set in one of the worlds in Chris’s dimension-hopping science fiction adventure, Reality Check, both of these series are published through Silly Hat Books. Silly Hat Books released Alien Beer and Other Stories, a collection of her short stories, in 2017.

Chris’s supernatural fantasy stories include the Road Ghosts trilogy and it's companion series the Tipsy Fairy Tales are published by Seventh Star Press. These Urban Fantasy novels are humorous supernatural fantasies, dealing with ghosts, demonic possession, and sinister fairy folk delivered with a “lightly dark” side of humor.

Her novel, Reality Check, is a Science Fiction adventure released by Hydra Publications. Reality Check reached #1 in Science Fiction on Amazon.com during a promotion in July 2013. Chris lives in Indianapolis, Indiana, with her wife, step-daughter and cats. She also enjoys gaming, home brewing beer, and finding innovative uses for duct tape.

*Biography updated: March, 2018

About R.J. Sullivan

R.J. Sullivan with his characters

R.J. Sullivan’s novel Haunting Blue is an edgy paranormal thriller and the first book of the adventures of punk girl Fiona “Blue” Shaefer and her boyfriend Chip Farren. Seventh Star Press also released Haunting Obsession, a Rebecca Burton Novella, and Virtual Blue, the second part of Fiona’s tale. The short stories in this collection have been featured in such acclaimed anthologies as Dark Faith Invocations by Apex Books and Vampires Don’t Sparkle. His next book due out very soon will be Commanding the Red Lotus, which collects the series of science fiction novelettes in the tradition of Andre Norton and Gene Roddenberry.

R.J. resides with his family in Heartland Crossing, Indiana. He drinks regularly from a Little Mermaid coffee mug and is man enough to admit it.

Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • #TwelfthNightReadathon
  • #WYChristmasReadathon
  • Sci Fi Experience 2017
Divider

Posted Saturday, 14 January, 2017 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, BlogTalkRadio, Book Review (non-blog tour), Cosy Horror, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore, Futuristic Fantasy, Guest Author on the Chamber, Indie Author, Parapsychological Suspense, Podcast, Supernatural Fiction, Telepaths & Telepathy, The Star Chamber Show, Vulgarity in Literature

*Book Cover Reveal*: Jackie Gamber’s “Reclamation” via Leland Dragons!

Posted Friday, 20 December, 2013 by jorielov , , , , , 0 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

*NEWSFLASH* | *NEWSFLASH*

Jackie Gamber’s Leland Dragons series is about to get a third installment, picking up where Book 2 {Sela} left off! IF you may recall, I had the extreme pleasure of reading Book 1 {Redheart} not too long ago! I was consumed by the visceral imagery Ms. Gamber paints into the breadth of her fantastical world! You drink in the narrative as a traveler would observe his surroundings whilst visiting a foreign land, wholly unknown and unfamiliar. She pulls you into the setting by directly etching your heart into being sympathetic to the plight of the Dragons! I have been dreaming of returning into the Provinces ever since I was pulled back into my own everyday reality!

About the Author | Jackie Gamber

Jackie Gamber

You can read Gamber’s Full Biography, on her website, however, I learnt quite a few things about her whilst I was composing my questions for an interview! For instance, the essence of what she knew of dragons that originated from a dream she had that was the impetus to create “Redheart” shattered the misconceptions and perceptions of dragons, thus known in fantasy! She has a wicked sense for knowing which teas pair nicely with the books your palette is whet to taste! She took up knitting for its meditative qualities. If music is in the background whilst she writes, it has to be instinctively nondescript and ambient in nature, as if she hears a curious lyrical line it could shift her scene whilst its being penned! She is a retired servicewoman, secretary, and beloved Mum! She finds a keen balance between her writing and her family life. She adores the zoo beyond what words can express. She is a prolific short story writer. She runs a multi-verse platform for story-telling entitled: Allotrope Media, alongside her husband. Believing that a story has the freedom to express itself through multiple mediums. Insofar as being an accomplished playright and screenwriter! She excels at genre jumping but her heart is attached to science fiction, fantasy, and horror.

“Reclamation” : Book Three

Reclaimation | Book 3 Leland Dragons by Jackie Gamber
Artwork Credit: Matthew Perry

Book Synopsis:

Leland Province remains in danger. The sinister Fordon Blackclaw has returned from the shadows to strike at the heart of neighboring Esra, killing its Venur and making clear his intentions to retake what was once his: Mount Gore, seat of the Leland Dragon Council.

All around, the land grows weaker and weaker. Leland, once thought saved by Kallon Redheart, is without purpose, and within its borders, Murk Forest, a place of mystery and danger, has driven its inhabitants to seek aid. Esra is in flames, and the Rage Desert grows. Dragon and human alike struggle to find their way, and the wizard Orman can sense that there may be more at stake than the affairs of dragons.

Hope remains, yet it is not without obstacles. In Esra, Sela, the daughter of Kallon and Riza, found the well, a source of life, and made herself whole again. But her homecoming is not what she had imagined.

Old wounds buried deep must reopen if life is to continue. Dragons, humans, wizards, and shape shifters are all at risk as the peace between dragon and human has finally been broken.

War is here.

The stakes?

Perhaps the whole world.

I am not sure about you, but as I haven’t yet had the pleasure of reading “Sela”, … I am a bit in the dark on full knowledge of Kallon & Riza’s daughter! Therefore, how do you think a happy-hearted reader reads this lovely wicked news!? She shouts out from the giddy bits of her soul, “EEK! They had a *daughter!* A daughter! Ohh, boy!” I was over the moon in merriment over this smashingly brilliant news because as foresaid, I simply adore this entire world of Leland Province! I didn’t want the narrative to end, nor did I want to exit the world completely once the story drew to a close! I felt akin to the principle leads in a way that I haven’t always felt connected to characters! Especially considering that I am re-discovering my niche in high fantasy and science fiction! Even if I am not able to read “Sela” in time, I have already put my hat into the toss to be included on the blog book tour for “Reclamation!” This book blogger is seriously stoked for its pending release!! And, she hopes you are too!

Shh!! I have a sneaking feeling I know what is behind “held on high” in this rather pivotal clue of the story!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Matthew Perry : Shines as Dragon Illustrator

Reclamation by Jackie Gamber | Illustration
Artwork Credit: Matthew Perry
Reclamation by Jackie Gamber | Ilustration
Artwork Credit: Matthew Perry

I am never fully prepared for what I am going to see included in the illustrative plates by Mr. Perry! He has a way of conveying emotional conviction and heart in each of his illustrations for the Leland Dragon series! The fullness of his designs, allow the reader to proportionate the action of the story against the innocence, joy, and terror of heightened danger! The dragons themselves are humanistic in quality, as you can see exactly what they are thinking, feeling, and conveying by body language and mannerism! A true gem to be inclusive of a series which paints such a hearty portrait of life not so very far away, in a world not entirely different from our own, where survival and the freedom to choose how one is meant to live is always in a constant battle against propriety and the struggle for power. I was enthralled with the first installment of this story, as you were able to absorb the scope of the history of this land without feeling as though you had to read a historical artifact to ascertain the depth of what was at stake. I credit this first to Gamber’s intuitive choices of narrative design and secondly, to Perry who takes her words and uses his palette of illustrative art to construct the realism which aides the reader’s journey!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Contact Information for Author | Illustrator

Official Author Websites: Gamber on Twitter; Personal Site;
Author Page: @ Seventh Star Press
Leland Dragons Official Website
Artist Page: Matthew Perry @ Seventh Star Press; Portfolio

[the Leland Dragons series (#LelandDragons)]

[Book One: Redheart]

[Book Two: Sela]

[Book Three: Reclamation]

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Book Cover Reveal Blog Hop courtesy of:

Tomorrow Comes Media Tour Host

Be sure to catch previous Gamber lovelies on JLAS:
Jorie reviewed Redheart {Book One}

and interviews Jackie Gamber, author of the Leland Dragon series!
This Book Cover Reveal was made possible by Tomorrow Comes Media. They have my full gratitude! And, Gamber is published by Seventh Star Press!

Similar to blog tours, when I feature a showcase for an author via a Guest Post, Q&A, Interview, etc., I do not receive compensation for featuring supplemental content on my blog.

Seventh Star Press

 Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

The Star ChamberIF you want to hang out with authors of Seventh Star Press, book bloggers, authors at large, as well as the serendipitous twist of conversations which erupt out of an internet radio show? You’ll settle into a wicked hour-long podcast full of bookish content to not only entertain you but enlighten you: hop over to The Star Chamber Show main page on BlogTalkRadio! Tune in Wednesdays, at 9p! {including *Christmas DAY!*} Jorie is the unofficial live-tweeting secretary of the Chamber! You can read ‘near-transcripts’ of each podcast whilst digging through her TW Feed: @JLovesAStory !! Her own appearance was in Episode 2!
Haven’t heard of The Star Chamber?
Check out my Bitly Bundle: The Star Chamber Show! Don’t forget to TWEET: @starchambershow
Hopeful to see Gamber make an appearance in an upcoming Chamber podcast!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Jackie Gamber Featured : The Star Chamber Show #21

Check Out Books Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with The Star Chamber on BlogTalkRadio

IF you’re a regular reader of Seventh Star Press titles, what draws you into their fantasy selections? What do you appreciate about Gamber’s visual scope of story-telling? Do you seek out other writers of dragon fiction? Which are your favourites? Stay and converse for a spell letting me know what gets you jazzed about stellar fantasy releases such as “Reclamation!”

{SOURCES: Cover art of “Reclamation” and the illustrations therein by Matthew Perry, Jackie Gamber’s photograph, and Book Synopsis were all provided by Tomorrow Comes Media and used with permission. Seventh Star Press logo badge provided by Seventh Star Press and used with permission. Post dividers were provided by Shabby Blogs, who give bloggers free resources to add personality to their blogs. Cover Reveal badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Podcast of Jackie Gamber on BlogTalkRadio was able to be embedded due to codes provided by The Star Chamber Show’s page on BlogTalkRadio.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2013.

Divider

Posted Friday, 20 December, 2013 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, BlogTalkRadio, Book Cover Reveal, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Guest Author on the Chamber, High Fantasy, Indie Author, Podcast, Seventh Star Press, The Star Chamber Show, Tomorrow Comes Media, Young Adult Fiction