Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Book Review - Cimarron Sunrise

I took a detour from my adult reading last night and read Cimarron Sunrise by Brenda Turner.  This is a delightful elementary-aged chapter book about a family's journey from Independence, Missouri to Arkansas City, Kansas to get ready for the first Oklahoma Land Rush in 1889.

The hopes, dreams, and fears of this story are told through the eyes of nine year old Maddy.  As readers, we get to experience most of the story through her point of view as she deals with the fear of traveling away from her familiar life at Granny and Grampa's.  Once the plans to move get going, she gets excited about the move West.  Even more refreshing is the fact that Maddy gets bored on the trail through the Nebraska prairie.  Most stories dealing with the westward expansion focus on the action and adventure.  Cimarron Sunrise deals with the boredom of day in day out travel across the limitless prairie.

Although most of the story is told through Maddy's point of view, boys will like reading this book as well.  There is plenty of adventure dealing with life on the trail, a bully along the way, and of course the Land Rush itself.  Maddy's brother, Nick, provides a character that young boys can look up to and admire while reading this story.

The heart of this story is an inspirational message of a young widow determined to make a better life for her and her children.  I've share before that I enjoy finding inspiration in fiction.  Brenda Turner provides two beautiful quotes that I've shared with my team at work:

"You are going to make history. Remember that and don't let fear take your dreams."

"We've got to have faith in our plan that things will work out."

If you're looking for a family story to read together this summer, Cimarron Sunrise is a great story that everyone can identify with and learn from.

Thanks once again, everyone, for sticking with me and returning to the blog.  Work is slowing down, team members are in place, and hopefully I'll be back on track with my blogging and writing soon.  Today's picture on the blog represents being back on track, enjoy!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Book Launch - Motion to Kill

It's been a crazy few weeks at work, thanks for sticking with me.  I am so excited to be back again helping to launch the Kindle Edition of Motion to Kill by Joel Goldman. If you like mystery and crime stories, you’ll love Motion to Kill.

I am absolutely a fan of fiction set in places that I live or places that I’ve been.  I’m new to the Kansas City area and I just think it’s the coolest thing to read stories set here in my new city.  Whether you live here or not, you get a nice tour of our city, it’s landmarks, and a bit of the history surrounding some of our neighborhoods.  And it’s not forced or contrived, it all fits nicely into the story.

As an aspiring author myself, I loved how his characters pause at different parts of the story and recount what they know about the mystery and crime.  They keep summing it up as they go and reviewing the information so you don’t forget what’s going on or what they do know.  I was able to use this device recently in my own work in progress, and it’s not going to be a mystery-crime novel.  As far as the who-done-it goes, Joel Goldman always keeps you guessing and I didn’t figure it out until it was revealed in the end.  I hate mysteries that make it too obvious who did it (but I love it when I figure it out!). 

If you haven’t read Motion to Kill yet, I definitely recommend you download it for Kindle today.  And remember, you don’t have to have a Kindle e-reader, you can download the Kindle app on your PC, smartphone, or tablet to enjoy Motion to Kill and thousands more Kindle titles.  Here's a link to Amazon: