Beck Valley BooksOnline BookstoreMVM Giveaway LinkupBook ToursiwnfGiveawaysGiveaway and Sweeps FB GroupBooksAliveBritish
Follow the Book Tours


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It's Our Weekly Book Blog Hop - Welcome Aboard!!

Welcome to our Weekly Book Blog Hop!!
This runs every Wednesday - Saturday
including a Book Giveaway linky, Goodreads linky
and Authors Who Welcome UK Reviewers linky
Beck Valley Books Weekly Book Blog Hop
Our Book Blog Hop is here to unite all booklovers worldwide,
readers, book reviewers, authors, publishers, book bloggers, book sellers,
putting you all in touch with each other
and keeping real books alive x

$200 Christmas Cash Explosion Giveaway - Enter to Win !!

Cash for the Holidays Giveaway
Cash for Holidays/Christmas Cash Explosion Giveaway
Enter to win: $200 cash paid via Paypal. 

Welcome to Cash for Holidays Giveaway hosted by Generations of Savings, Nifty Mom, and Beauty Brite .  We have teamed up with a first-class group of blogs to offer our readers an amazing prize just in time for the holidays!

Open  Internationally, until Tuesday, 12/20 at 12:01 AM
Winner must have a Paypal account!

Please enter on the form below. 
The first entry is to LIKE all of our Facebook pages and counts as 30 entries! 
The second entry is to FOLLOW us on Twitter and counts as 30 entries! 
Comments will not count as entries, but can be used for questions only.
You only need to enter once on any of the participating sites. The form is the same on all of the blogs.

Book Review - VIII by H M Castor

Book Review
VIII by H M Casto

About the Author    H. M. Castor has been obsessed with the Tudors since primary school. She studied Tudor History at Cambridge University, and despite spending time after that doing a variety of jobs - including teaching English in Prague. The Tudors have never lost their hold on her. In particular she has been fascinated by the story of Henry VIII. I've read a great deal about his life,A" she says, but still a huge question has remained: just how does this extraordinary boy become one of the most villainous kings in British history? He is hugely talented, has astonishing warrior skills, and is said to be a model of virtue. So what turns him into a monster? In writing VIII I've set out to answer that question.A" H. M. Castor has written many younger fiction and non fiction titles for HarperCollins, A&C Black, Carlton, Puffin and Usborne. VIII is her first novel for teenagers. She lives in Bristol with her husband and two daughters.
Follow the author     -       Facebook          http://www.hmcastor.com/          Twitter

Book Description
Destined for greatness; tormented by demons… VIII is the story of Hal: a young, handsome, gifted warrior, who believes he has been chosen to lead his people. But he is tormented by the ghosts of his family's violent past and, once he rises to power, he turns to murder and rapacious cruelty. He is Henry VIII. The Tudors have always captured the popular imagination. In VIII, Henry is presented afresh for a new generation of teenage readers.


Book Review
A descriptive and historical novel that not only kept me wanting to read it but it also taught me a lot more about one of our most famous monarchs.  The author writes as if she is Henry VIII himself, giving you a great insight into how his life was shaped for him, by the neglect of his father and the love from his mother.
His early life was always full of conflict between love and hate, but more importantly his belief in the prophecy and demons that haunted him.  Reading the novel you feel as if you are in the court and you can actually visualise the young king learning his trade, by watching him drawing the longbow, practising his jousting and seeking appreciation and love from all of those around him.  The trials and tribulations that faced him as his older brother was killed and the way that he was treated, shows how and why he reacted when he became King Henry VIII.

Although classed as a book for teenagers, I found it a must read for all royalists and people interested in the Tudor period.  Anyone who wants to try and explain this king to their children, will definitely benefit from this.  Really enjoyed reading this book.
Our rating Photobucket

 
More information can be found here:  http://www.templarco.co.uk/fiction/index.htm

Amazon.co.uk

Monday, November 28, 2011

A New Type of Christmas Tree with BOOKS!!!!!

FANCY SOMETHING DIFFERENT THIS YEAR??  :-)

We have our winner for our Signed Book Giveaway!!


CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR LUCKY WINNER
Aik Chien

You now have 48 hours to claim your price, well done!!

Thankyou to everyone who entered our giveaway xx
Special thanks also to our author Maria Sutton for kindly donating her book xx


You can buy this book at Amazon

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Kerouac's 'lost' debut novel is published 70 years later

Jack Kerouac on Manhattan's lower east side in 1953, eleven years afrter writing The Sea is My Brother.
Photograph: Allen Ginsberg/ Allen Ginsberg/CORBIS
The American beat generation author Jack Kerouac is said to have spent just eight days on active service in the US merchant marines on board the SS Dorchester in 1942; but his short stay furnished him with notes for his first novel and, after nearly 70 years, it has now been published for the first time.
 
The 158-page The Sea is my Brother, a tale of two young men serving on a voyage from Boston to Greenland, has been known about for some time, but is being described by Penguin, its publisher, as "a unique insight into the young Kerouac and the formation of his genius".

The author himself apparently noted: "It's a crock [of shit] as literature."

Literary critics appeared inclined to agree with the author that the text, although showing signs of Kerouac's future style, is raw and juvenile, as well it might be, given that he was 20 when he wrote it.
The literary critic Stuart Evers said: "It is not a great work of literature. It would never be published today if it wasn't by Kerouac, but it is fascinating as an insight into him as a writer … He was just jotting down ideas that he would explore with much more gusto in his later work. There is no real narrative, not much happens, but there are flashes of his later work."

Dawn Ward, the book's editor, said the novel shows a side of Kerouac not normally seen in his books. The manuscript was discovered in Kerouac's archive by his brother-in-law.

Ward said: "It was referred to briefly in letters, but nothing that led anyone to believe that there was this really large volume ... This book is really quite important as it shows how Jack developed his writing process."

The novel joins a growing canon of Kerouac's published works, though it seems unlikely that he ever bothered to lug the manuscript round to publishers, as he did in the 1950s while trying to sell the work for which he is best remembered, On the Road.

Even that book, famously written on a continuous scroll of paper, which brought him celebrity when it was finally published in 1957, was issued in an unexpurgated edition only four years ago and another early work, And The Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks, written with William S Burroughs in 1945, only saw the light of day in 2008.

Kerouac described The Sea is My Brother as being about "a man's simple revolt from society as it is, with the inequalities, frustration and self-inflicted agonies", which certainly makes it sound like an archetypal adolescent novel. He noted down such prototype characters as "the vanishing American, the big free by [sic], the American indian, the last of the pioneers, the last of the hoboes".

The book's chief protagonist, Wesley Martin, is, like the author, a college dropout, who he wrote, "loved the sea with a strange, lonely love, the sea is his brother and sentences. He goes down." By contrast, another character, Everhart, "escapes society for the sea but finds the sea a place of terrible loneliness".

The two spend the book arguing, drinking and contemplating isolation, which looks pretty much as though they mirror Kerouac's own life.

After many years mingling with and befriending other writers of the beat generation, such as Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder, and much time unsuccessfully trying to interest publishers in his work, he found himself disoriented by the fame On the Road brought him.

He became unbalanced by critics such as Truman Capote, who said of his much-honed, stream of consciousness writing style: "That's not writing, it's typing." Kerouac drank himself to death at the age of 47 in 1969, leaving behind a small oeuvre of semi-autobiographical novels and a host of devotees.

Paul Giles, professor of English at Sydney University, told the Australian network the ABC: "The Sea is My Brother will fit with the sort of American literary tradition of sea narratives, going back to Moby Dick and Richard Henry Dana and others. I think it's definitely worthwhile [but] I suspect the sales will be more to academics rather than popular audiences.

"I think Kerouac has taken on a kind of eminence gris aspect rather like Ginsberg and JD Salinger, and people who were once thought of as rebellious and counter-cultural and are now seen as very much part of the institutional formation of American culture after the second world war."

  • guardian.co.uk,
  • Book Review - Jack Christie Books by Johnny O'Brien

    Fantastic Gift for the Kids
    Photobucket
    The Jack Christie books are an action series for 10 to 14 year olds (and many adults!) which have a time travel theme involving modern teenagers in real historical events (e.g. the assassination in Sarajevo in 1914, the Battle of Britain and defeat of France in 1940, Elizabethan England and the Armada in 1588). This backdrop is used to explore 'turning points' in history'.
    Meet the Author


    Johnny O’Brien was born in Edinburgh and studied history at Cambridge University. He got the idea for the Jack Christie Adventures when he came across his grandfather’s medals from World War I. He lives in Surrey, England, with his family.
    http://www.jackchristieadventures.com/

    Check out the Facebook Site
    Book Reviews
    Imagine finding out that your school and the village you live in, is being protected by Secret Agents.  Why?  Because it has a time machine in it.  There are two forces at work - one called VIGIL, who have to not only protect the machine but also history as it stands and the second - Revisionists, who want to go back in time and change the course of history. building a rival time machine, TAURAS.

    DAY OF THE ASSASSINS - Book 1
    In the first instalment, Jack and his friend Angus not only discover the time machine, they are transported back to 1914, to try and stop the assassination of the Archduke Franz Joseph and therefore stopping World War I and changing the course of history.  Jack discovers on the trip why his dad left him - he is working for the revisionists.  On the trip Jack realises that he needs to make a decision - does he stop the assassination and change not only history but his own existence, or does he let the assassination happen?
    Our Rating  Photobucket

    DAY OF DELIVERANCE - Book 2
    In the second instalment Jack and Angus are transported back to 1587 as the revisionists are going to kill Queen Elizabeth I, in order for the Spanish Armada to defeat England and rule the world thus averting England's dominance over the rest of the world, which eventually leads up to the unrest and revolutions throughout Europe.  Facing sea battles, sword fights and working as undercover agents to survive.  With the Queen on edge and suspecting everyone being a spy, Jack and Angus not only have to fight the revisionists but also for their life.  Can they save the Queen and themselves?
    Our Rating  Photobucket .5

    DAY OF VENGEANCE - Book 3
    The year is 1940, Jack and Angus have to escape their school through the time machine as the revisionists have broken into the school and the Vigil security agency in order to try and take control the time machine.  They arrive in Paris and are captured by the secret army to protect them from the Nazis.  Soon after realising that the secret army and the revisionists plan to assassinate Hitler.  Do they let Hitler be assassinated or not?  During this instalment Jack finds out what his dad has been fighting for and why he left him as a young child.  Do Jack and Angus survive?  Are they Rescued?  Or is history changed forever?
    Our Rating  Photobucket

    Overall Thoughts
    Exciting, enthralling adventures.,  X-box meets HG Wells.   Re-enacting what they have learnt in the computer game as they are transported into earlier times.  The author provides a great journey through history which will hopefully provoke a genuine interest in major events that have shaped the world as it is, including the secrecy and betrayal of Elizabethan England and the hatred and injustice of Hitlers reign.

    More information can be found here: http://www.templarco.co.uk/fiction/index.htm

    Welcome to Sunday is Quote Day
    I absolutely love quotes, in fact I think I might be getting a little obsessed with them.
    They can be so powerful and life changing.

    This weeks subject is 'New Starts'

    Sunday Morning is like having the week's slate wiped clean so that I can start again.

    You'll never discover new horizons if you're afraid to leave the shore.

    Even though you can not go back and make a brand new start, you can always start NOW and make a brand new ending!

    Each new day is like a gift, you never know what it holds until it is opened.
    Don't take it for granted..life is too short!


    Every morning brings with it a new day full of new opportunities, experiences and, most importantly, a chance to start over fresh! Enjoy your new day!

    Just on the other side of today is a future worth seeking.

    Isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?"

    Just on the other side of today is a future worth seeking. We do not need magic to transform our world. We carry all of the power we need inside ourselves already.



    Do you have a favourite quote, share it with us xx

    Saturday, November 26, 2011

    Its The Weekend Gathering Hops - Now with Google+

     Welcome to our Weekend Gathering Hops!  This 5 way link up is hosted by Adventures of Frugalmom, Beck Valley Books, Beauty Brite, mumwrites, and Nifty Mom to help socialize with fellow bloggers, gain traffic, new followers, make new friends, and more!
    Beauty Brite Weekend Gathering Hops

    Friday, November 25, 2011

    And The Winners of the Huge 36+ Book Giveaway is?

    AND THE WINNERS ARE!!!!

    The first winner - Entry #1045J.C. Martin  - will choose 13 items from the prize list
    + US$10 Amazon.com gift card
    The 2nd - Entry #1004angel - will choose 12 items after the 1st winner has chosen
    + US$10 Amazon.com gift card
    The 3rd - Entry #927Velvet Hubler - will get 11 items after the 2nd winner has chosen +US$5 Amazon.com gift card

    And the gift card winners are…
    US$15 Amazon.com - Entry #1408DAYLE BUTLER
    US$10 Amazon.com OR Barnes and Noble - Entry #694Dinky
    Extra winner: US $5 Amazon.com - Entry #1480Miranda Sherman
    The winners have 48 hours from the date the email is sent to reply and claim their prizes. If you do not contact me within two days a replacement winner will be selected.
    NO EXCEPTIONS.



    results powered by Random.org
    contest powered by Rafflecopter

    And now it’s time to say another big thank you to our featured authors:



    Book Giveaway - SIGNED COPY of The Night Sky-A Journey from Dachau to Denver and Back by Maria Sutton

    Photobucket
    We're part of the Black Friday Book Bonanza
    25 - 27th November 2011 12.01am

    Once you have entered our fantastic giveaway please take a look at all the other book giveaways listed at the bottom of the post (after entering mind !!!)
                
    OUR GIVEAWAY
    SIGNED COPY of the memoir -
    
    The Night Sky: A Journey from Dachau to Denver and Back
    by Maria Sutton 
    Book Description
    This extraordinary and unflinchingly honest memoir takes us on a riveting journey into the hearts and souls of three enigmatic people whose destinies are forever changed by the events of World War II. The secrets of misguided love and passions are revealed as the author journeys between the past and the present to solve the mystery of a handsome Polish officer with piercing blue eyes and sun-colored hair. Maria Sutton takes us to the dark green hills and valleys of the ancient Carpathian Mountains in Ukraine, where the woody fragrance of birch trees and new-mown hay fills the fresh, crisp air after a heavy rain. Vicariously, we see a sunrise over Poland obscured by brightly colored swastikas on warplanes and then we will be taken into suffocating cattle cars, lice-infested stalags, and to the Dachau death camp. Further down a country road, the hearty laughter and beer steins clinking with each salute to the Fuhrer s astonishing victories can be heard.

    As Maria takes us on this odyssey to solve a decades-long mystery, she learns the family secrets of untold heroism, quiet courage, and a mother s love and of tragedy, disillusionment, and heartbreak. At the end of her long journey, Maria uncovers a shattering and painful truth. But the secret, however heartbreaking, would also become the greatest gift she would receive.

    Thursday, November 24, 2011

    Black Friday Gift Card Giveaway - And The Winner Is??


    AND THE LUCKY WINNER OF THE
    $100 BLACK FRIDAY GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY IS
     Jason H.
    PLEASE REPLY TO EMAIL ASAP


    CONGRATULATIONS!!


    Tuesday, November 22, 2011

    Its Time for the Weekly Book Blog Hop !!

    For Wordless Wednesday click here
    Welcome to our Weekly Book Blog Hop!!
    This runs every Wednesday - Saturday
    including a Book Giveaway linky, Goodreads linky
    and Authors Who Welcome UK Reviewers linky
    Beck Valley Books Weekly Book Blog Hop
    Our Book Blog Hop is here to unite all booklovers worldwide,
    readers, book reviewers, authors, publishers, book bloggers, book sellers,
    putting you all in touch with each other
    and keeping real books alive x

    We would love it if you could share our hop with all your booky friends
    and display are book hop badge (optional obviously x)

    A new lease of life for a forgotten Christmas classic

    The story that inspired It's a Wonderful Life is finally back in print

    One cold February night in 1938, Philip Van Doren Stern had a dream. In it, a family man at the end of his tether encountered a guardian angel who showed him what the world would be like if he had never been born. Sounds familiar? Of course it does. It's the plot of It's a Wonderful Life. Frank Capra's 1946 film was nominated for five Oscars, is frequently voted one of the best of all time and is now as much a part of Christmas as mince pies and Doctor Who. Stern's contribution has been largely forgotten. Now, the original short story that grew out of his dream is to be republished for the first time in decades.

    Stern, a publisher and editor of historical tomes who spent the war producing morale-boosting pocket books for soldiers, took several years to write his dream down on paper. When he finally completed his short story, The Greatest Gift, in 1943, he could not find a publisher or magazine willing to print it. Nothing daunted, he had 200 24-page pamphlets printed up at his own expense and sent them out to friends and family instead of a Christmas card.

    "I was in the third grade and remember delivering a few of these cards to my teachers and my friends, who were children from a variety of backgrounds and religions", says his daughter, Marguerite Stern Robinson. "My father, who was himself from a mixed religious background, explained to me that while this story takes place at Christmas time, and that we were sending it as a Christmas card to our friends, it is a universal story for all people in all times."

    A few months later, Stern was called up by RKO Pictures who bought his "Christmas card" for $50,000 and passed it on to Frank Capra. The rest is cinematic history.

    The publishing history of The Greatest Gift is rather less illustrious. Stern eventually sold it to Reader's Scope and Good Housekeeping magazines in 1944 and a book was published the same year, with illustrations by Rafaello Busoni. A small American edition came out in 1996 but the new book will be the first time in 67 years that Stern's creation is given a wide release, in accordance with his vision.

    It's all thanks, again, to that batch of Christmas cards. Among the 200 recipients was a publisher friend of Stern's called Bennett Glazer. When he died, his son, Tom Glazer, found the original in his belongings and decided to reprint it with his company Graphic Image Inc. He commissioned Finlay Cowan, who has previously produced album covers for Pink Floyd and Red Hot Chili Peppers to create the retro illustrations and asked Stern Robinson to write the afterword.

    In it, she recalls how her father, who died in 1984, developed the idea behind one of the greatest movies of all time while shaving on a Saturday morning. "In contrast to his other writings, mainly on history, he said that the idea for The Greatest Gift had emerged full blown, and he had never considered changing it. What he had to do, he said, was learn to write it." His first draft was, by his own admission, "terrible" and it took several more attempts before he was satisfied. Despite the knock-backs – from everyone from The Saturday Evening Post to farm journals – he became fond of the story that no one wanted and, like his hero, refused to give into failure.

    His persistence paid off. After the film's premiere in New York in 1946, Stern sent one of the original Christmas cards to Capra. "He replied, 'I thank you for sending it and I love you for creating it'," recalls Stern Robinson.

    'The Greatest Gift' is out now (Cluster Publishing, £11.99)

    Wordless Wednesday

    Billingham Beck Valley
    Which our name came from xx



    Sunday, November 20, 2011

    Book Review - Inner Pilgrimage Ten Days to a Mindful Me by Raji Lukkoor

    Book Review
    <><><><><><><><>
    Inner Pilgrimage Ten Days to a Mindful Me
     by Raji Lukkoor
    Meet the Author
    Hi I’m Raji Lukkoor, and I’m pleased to make your acquaintance.  A travel enthusiast, I was born and raised in Goa, India, but now call California, USA, my home, where I live with my husband and two sons.  I have loved to write since I was in the seventh grade, and although I went on to study and work in the field of environmental engineering, the art of communication always fascinated me and has consistently brightened my verbal, aural, written, and interpersonal competence. Travel- both physical and vicarious (although online volunteering)-across the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia over the years has given me perspective, motivation, a sense of achievement, the ability to connect to others, and deep regard for the world's cultures.  In summer 2008, when an opportunity for travel presented itself, I couldn't resist.  It was the trip of a lifetime - at a  vipassana meditation course. This compelling experience held up a mirror to the reality of my existence, furthering my spiritual evolution and helping resurrect the authentic me. Thus was born my first publication, “Inner Pilgrimage: Ten Days to a Mindful Me.”

    Book Description
    A profound human experience, a modern-day response to the primeval human quest for truth and meaning in life. By engaging in the author’s spiritual journey, readers learn about vipassana—a timeless, powerful, non-sectarian, and non-mystical tool for transformation. They see how the practice of mindfulness, nourished through regular meditation, can help anyone to live a life that is fully expressed, affirming, connected, healthy, compassionate, and vibrant. This book will appeal to all spiritual seekers and to anyone with an interest in Buddhism or meditation.

    Inner Pilgrimage in the hands of vipassana master His Holiness S. N. Goenka
    August 08, 2011
    My Review
    I have often watched documentaries on retreats with the secret yearning of wanting to attend one of these myself one day.  They show you the difficulties people have to overcome and the unbelievable transformations of peoples lives that can take place, it is simply amazing.

    What you don't actually think about is what it is really like to participate on such a retreat for the whole period, spending every minute there, on the personal journey you have to travel to get to your destination.  For anyone thinking of going on a similar retreat this is a great book to read, giving you an insight of what it genuinely feels like to the there, day by day, through the authors writings.

    When I first saw this book, for some reason I was immediately pulled towards it and couldn't wait for its arrival.  On opening the book two words struck out to me straight away 'inner war'.  The description was so clear and so close to home that the book grabbed my attention as soon as it had began.

    As well as explaining, in fantastic realistic detail, how living through the whole course felt - through the emotions, the ever so true worries the author felt, the pain and yet the enlightenment she felt, it also explains basic Buddha and meditation methods learnt.  These are the parts where you may have to re-read certain pages to fully understand.

    For me the main message in the Buddha teaching is that everything in life is impermanent and by not accepting this we create our own problems.  "Why agonize over that which is I, me and mine?  The body and the mind are mere wavelets of vibration and energy.  Egoism is futile because if brings unhappiness, disappointment, frustrations, sorrow, anxieties, and worries.  Happiness is to be sought not in the outside world where society judges you, but within the person, where eternal peace, compassion, equanimity, wisdom, joy and moral integrity flourish."

    A fascinating read and I have so much respect for the author, travelling through her own journey.

    "A beacon of spiritual light charted a new course for my life during the summer of 2008, when I attended a S. N. Goenka led, ten-day Buddhist meditation (vipassana) retreat. That experience sparked the writing of Inner Pilgrimage: Ten Days to a Mindful Me--a mindfulness triggered spiritual transformation."

     

    Sunday is Quote Day

    Welcome to Sunday is Quote Day
    I absolutely love quotes, in fact I think I might be getting a little obsessed with them.
    They can be so powerful and life changing.

    This weeks subject is 'Happiness'

    "Why agonize over that which is I, me and mine? The body and the mind are mere wavelets of vibration and energy. Egoism is futile because if brings unhappiness, disappointment, frustrations, sorrow, anxieties, and worries. Happiness is to be sought not in the outside world where society judges you, but within the person, where eternal peace, compassion, equanimity, wisdom, joy and moral integrity flourish."

    "We can travel a long way and do many things, but our deepest happiness is not born from accumulating new experiences. it is born from letting go of what is unnecessary, and knowing ourselves to be always at home."

    "Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower."


    "Happiness is like a butterfly.
    The more you chase it, the more it eludes you.
    But if you turn your attention to other things,
    It comes and sits softly on your shoulder."
     

    "Happiness is getting the clutter out of your life and hanging onto the treasures.
    You'll have a much better life."

    "In seeking happiness for others, you find it for yourself."



    Do you have a favourite quote, share it with us xx

    Saturday, November 19, 2011

    Its Time for the Weekend Gathering Hops

     Welcome to our Weekend Gathering Hops!  This 4 way link up is hosted by Adventures of Frugalmom, Beck Valley Books, Beauty Brite, mumwrites, and Nifty Mom to help socialize with fellow bloggers, gain traffic, new followers, make new friends, and more!
    Beauty Brite Weekend Gathering Hops

    Friday, November 18, 2011

    The Biggest International Bookish Giveaway Online - Enter Now

     

    The Biggest International Bookish Giveaway Online

    36 books split between 3 winners + 6 Gift Card Giveaways!

    Follow the event on twitter

    Follow Frenzy $150 Paypal or Amazon Giveaway - Enter Now

    Follow Frenzy November - Win $150!
    $150 via Paypal or Amazon TO BE WON!!

    Welcome to Follow Frenzy November!
    Hosted by Formula Mom and Tales from the Nursery
     

     Follow Frenzy brings you the chance to win cash or an Amazon gift card each month! 
    This month you can win $150 paid via Paypal or Amazon!   It's the winner's choice! 

    Each entry is another chance to win, so check out the Rafflecopter form below
    and get clicking to visit all of the amazing blogs participating in this event! 

    You will be able to enter until 11:59pm EST on Sunday, November 2oth. 
    At the end of the event, the winner will be drawn and notified via email.
    The winner will have 48 hours to confirm their win or another winner will be drawn.  

    Please note that you only need to enter on one participating blog.  
    All blogs are using the same Rafflcopter form!

    Please wait for the Rafflecopte to load, if it does not load please refresh page x

    Good Luck!!

    Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Its time for the Weekly Book Blog Hop!!

    Welcome to our Weekly Book Blog Hop!!
    This runs every Wednesday - Saturday
    including a Book Giveaway linky, Goodreads linky
    and Authors Who Welcome UK Reviewers linky

    Beck Valley Books Weekly Book Blog Hop

    Our Book Blog Hop is here to unite all booklovers worldwide,
    readers, book reviewers, authors, publishers, book bloggers, book sellers,
    putting you all in touch with each other
    and keeping real books alive x

    We would love it if you could share our hop with all your booky friends
    and display are book hop badge (optional obviously x)

    UK and International Book Giveaways Site

    UK Giveaways
    A blog specially for UK book giveaways!
    Here you will find links to UK and International book giveaways which include the UK.


    I am thrilled to be joining this fab group of bloggers running this great site.  Let me introduce the guys behind the blog.

    Books for CompanyThis fantastic giveaway site is owned by Jodie, from East Midlands, UK, who is also the owner of Books for Company, where she reviews of books and other fun posts.  She mostly reads YA, Fantasy and Romance.



    Jade, from Ink Scratchers, also helps out with the running of the blog.
    Once Upon A TimeHannah, from Leicestershire, UK, is another helper with the site!  She owns Once Upon a Time.

    Please support this site and its works!!

    To add your book giveaway all you need to do is

    And The Lucky 'SIGNED BOOK by Jerry Castaldo' Winner is?????


    And the lucky winner is ??????

    Ashlyn Williams

    Congratulations :-)
    (you now have 48 hours to claim your prize !!)

    Monday, November 14, 2011

    Europe's archived trove of rare Great War documents to go online

    Libraries across Europe are collaborating to make 400,000 documents available to the public.

    Remembrance Sunday was marked for the first time yesterday without the presence of a surviving serviceman from the Great War. Claude Choules, who served in the navy, died in May, aged 110.

    Living witnesses to the war may no longer be with us, but British archives still hold a wealth of original documentation from those years and, although much of it is in danger of crumbling away, the range of testimony held by the British Library helps to broaden understanding of the war.

    In an unprecedented effort to make this material available to the widest possible public, the library is to join forces with 12 European partners – including national libraries in Rome, Berlin, Paris and Copenhagen – to put key documents and images on the internet. The new three-year project, Remembering the First World War, will be finished in time for the ceremonies to mark the centenary of the outbreak of war in 2014.

    More than 400,000 first world war source materials, many of them rare and highly fragile due to the deterioration of the paper on which they are printed, will be freely available online for the first time. Those interested in finding out more about the conflict will no longer have to apply to see documents in person in the reading rooms of Europe.

    "It is particularly important that this project includes organisations that were involved in different sides of the conflict," said Jamie Andrews from the British Library, who is leading the British project.

    "We feel this is a special and important collaboration. There is a lot of surprising material here, including the letters and postcards of German prisoners of war.

    "Our German partners will also be releasing material about British soldiers held over there, as well as a lot of the fairly crude forms of propaganda that Britain dropped by balloon behind enemy lines."
    The digital collection will include books, newspapers, trench journals, maps, music sheets, children's literature, photographs, posters, pamphlets, propaganda leaflets, art, religious works, medals and coins.

    Sir Andrew Motion, the former poet laureate, is backing the launch of the scheme this weekend. "This is a tremendously important project that will transform access to Europe's shared cultural heritage in the run up to the anniversary of the war's outbreak in 2014," he said.

    For Andrews and his team, one of the highlights is the insight offered into levels of censorship across the theatre of war. For instance, more than 130,000 Indian soldiers served on the western front with the wounded being treated in British hospitals. An office was set up at Boulogne under Captain EB Howell to censor all "Indian mails" going in and out of France.

    The library's collection includes many letters that came under his scrutiny and which provide vivid testimony of how the Indian soldiers viewed the war, France and Britain.

    The letters also reveal how their authors sought to evade the censor's pen; a lull in shelling, for example, is described with the phrase "the rain has stopped".
    The Observer

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Its Time for the Weekend Gathering Hops!!

    Beck Valley Books Weekly Book Blog HopClick here for the Weekly Book Blog Hop


     Welcome to our Weekend Gathering Hops!  This 4 way link up is hosted by Adventures of Frugalmom, Beck Valley Books, Beauty Brite, mumwrites, and Nifty Mom to help socialize with fellow bloggers, gain traffic, new followers, make new friends, and more!

    Beauty Brite Weekend Gathering Hops
    Because we love everyone who links up, we also tweet your giveaways! Do you believe in Karma?  We are a group of bloggers helping each other build our blogs!  Join: KarmaBloggers

    Author Interview with Jerry Castaldo

    Today we have had the opportunity to interview
     author and entertainer Jerry Castaldo on his book 
    BROOKLYN NY : A GRIM RETROSPECTIVE - A MEMOIR
    Jerry has also been kind enough to donate his book for our current giveaway
    New York City born-and-bred. Jerry Castaldo is a well-reviewed musical entertainer, who consistently logs an average of 300 shows per year. He has opened for such stars as Jerry Seinfeld, David Brenner and Dom Deluise. 

    Welcome Jerry and thank you for talking to us
    Who was your inspiration when growing up?
    My dad and my mom. Growing up with a dad who played professional baseball made me want to play too. I learned to pitch and became a pretty good player, but I decided to go into music instead. My mom was a reader and seemed to know everything, so I wanted to someday have her knowledge.

    What did you like to read as a boy?
    Everything, including the entire volume of the World Encyclopedia.

    How did you get your first break as an entertainer?
    I started a band and started playing for money when I was about 12 years old. As far as “breaks”, I’m still getting them, it never ends. Just having the ability to work steadily and provide a nice home for myself is what I’m grateful for. Now it seems that my new book is taking me further, even in my performing career.

    Who has been your favourite act to work with?
    I recently opened for ‘60s superstar Lou Christie in February of 2011. He has sold millions of records through the years. His big hits are, “Lightning’s Strikin’ Again” and “I’m Gonna Make You Mine”, although there have been many other stars that I have enjoyed working with. The biggest star being Jerry Seinfeld, who I write an entire chapter about in my book. The relationship Seinfeld and I had together ended horribly with me being physically removed from his dressing room in NYC.

    What led you onto the different path of writing a book?
    Since I grew up in a violent, “Mafia-run” neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY, and was addicted to hard drugs and alcohol by the time I was 16 years old, I went through quite a number of horrifying experiences. When I got clean and sober years later, people would continually yell at me and say, “You have just ‘got’ to write a book about that!” So I did.

    How does writing a book compare with the life of an entertainer?
    It wasn’t much different for me. I had these incredible “street” stories and I wanted to tell them in an entertaining way, which I guess I did, judging by the over 200 “Five-Star” reviews I’ve gotten on Amazon.com. I’ve also had write ups in “The Village Voice”, “The NY Post”, “The Italian Tribune” and quotes by other celebrities like former “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson” host David Brenner. This is sort of the same thing that happened with my performing career. I’ve got pretty decent reviews from the NY Times and the NY Post for my show too.

    In one sentence, why should people read your book?
    In the first sentence, of the first paragraph, of the first story, on the first page, I’m being violently stabbed at with a large knife through the window of a car, while I desperately swing a huge carpenters hammer, bashing it repeatedly into the face of a dangerous drug dealer, and the book “never” lets up from there on.

    How did you feel when writing your memoir?
    Relieved. Relieved to be able to “explain” to the world why I was the way I was, and that it really wasn’t me. I was totally honest when writing this book and I knew that I was revealing things that many people could never say out loud to others. I was also afraid. Afraid that the police and the “cold case files” department might start investigating me.

    Do you have any plans to write another book?
    No, not at this time. Although I must tell you. I only used about 20 to 30% of my notes for this book. I wanted it to keep “moving” and didn’t want to bog it down with minute details. Although, now with its success, I see that I could have included more. So, who knows? Right now I have many industry people pushing me to write a screenplay and have just gotten a new agent in NYC who may help me to develop a one-man show for the New York stage.

    What else are you working on now?
    I tour with my music show to make a living, record music and video when I can and am always promoting the book. On January 21st, 2012, I will be speaking at a very popular writers’ seminar in Birmingham, Alabama. I’m honored to be asked to speak to these educated people, especially since I dropped out of school in the 9th grade.

    You live a very fast pace of life, what do you do to unwind?
    I work a bit more, ha, ha. Actually, the movies, the gym, running and building computers for fun when I can.

    What is your favourite book?
    Dr. Wayne Dyer wrote a wonderful book called, “The Sky’s The Limit”. I read it as a teenager when I was being put in and out of jail and was trying to figure out how to better my life. Also, “The Road Less Traveled” is another favorite of mine.

    Thanks for taking the time to talk with us Jerry, all the best for the future. x

    Friday, November 11, 2011

    It's Time for The Weekly Book Blog Hop

    For Wordless Wednesday click here
    Welcome to our Weekly Book Blog Hop!!
    This runs every Wednesday - Saturday
    including a Book Giveaway linky, Goodreads linky
    and Authors Who Welcome UK Reviewers linky

    Beck Valley Books Weekly Book Blog Hop

    Our Book Blog Hop is here to unite all booklovers worldwide,
    readers, book reviewers, authors, publishers, book bloggers, book sellers,
    putting you all in touch with each other
    and keeping real books alive x

    We would love it if you could share our hop with all your booky friends
    and display are book hop badge (optional obviously x)

    First  follow our blog using Google Friend Connect,
    leave a comment and I will always follow back,
    then add your blogs and giveaways below.....
    (please follow instructions for each linky)

    Remember to leave a comment on each blog for a follow back!!


    ** New Feature **
    **  Authors Who Welcome UK Reviewers Linky  **
    Authors will be added to our authors page here
    (Spread the word to help more authors and UK reviewers)


    Also new this week is our ' Goodreads Linky'

    and all Book Giveaways (UK inclusive) will NOW be added to

    The UK and International Book Giveaways Site




    UK Giveaways

    Home for the Holidays Book Reading Challenge 2011 by A Blooming Spirit


    Home for the Holidays Book Reading Challenge 2011

    This is what she writes:
    Christmas is just around the corner. Can you believe that? Where has this year gone? If you are a book lover as I am, you know that with the new season comes a whole new throng of holiday books. New releases abound, and for the minutes or hours that we read the books we seem to get lost inside the pages enjoying the magic of the holiday season through the eyes of our favorite characters. And it is because of my love for holiday books that I am having a Home for The Holidays Book Challenge. And I am hoping you will join me during this lovely season and take on the challenge of reading your favorite holiday books as well as some new ones. The rules are very simple:

    1. The start of the challenge is November 28, the Monday after Thanksgiving, because after all the Christmas season does not kick off until the Macy's Santa Claus makes his appearance on Thanksgiving Day ;-) And we will end on 31 December.

    2. You can read as many books as your little heart desires, but we are asking that you read from 1-5 books. I can tell you though, that I normally love reading Christmas books.

    3. And of course, it is the Christmas season, so the books have to be related to the holidays. Whether you call it Christas or Hanukkah, make sure it is holiday related.

    4. If you are reading a holiday book for another challenge or review, it is ok to include them as part of your challenge. Genre is up to you; read whatever you enjoy reading. If you are like me, there are books that you read every holiday season and that have become a family tradition. Those are acceptable also for the challenge.

    5. If you want to participate:
    Write a challenge post on your blog, and leave me a link - click here. I will set up a main linky where everyone can see who is participating and where they can follow along.
    • At the end of every week, you must post a review of the books you read during the week. I will also set up weekly linkies where you can link up your reviews click here.
    • What is a book challenge without gifts?! At the end of every week, I will choose one of the reviews as a winner, and you will get... you guessed it?! More books! So, that will be a book giveaway every week click here.
    When it comes to holiday books my favorites are Christmas romances and Christian books, and with the amount of books out there it was hard to decide. However, I managed and here are my books for this challenge:


    What do you say? Won't you join me and have some fun?

    Well here is my reading challenge, yes its only 1 book as I have comitted myself to a few review books.  This has been sitting on my shelf for ages now and everytime I look at it makes me smile, I have been wanting to read this since I bought it.

    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

    Latest Posts

    Welcome to Beck Valley Books
    visit our website and search for your books at http://www.beckvalleybooks.co.uk/