Growing Up Little

A woman exploring the world of BDSM and sharing what she discovers…

Saturday Progress – Bout of Books 8.0

I am very pleased to have participated in my SECOND Bout of Books 8.0 challenge this week!

I completed the Acrostic Book Poem Challenge.

Click on this link to see the poem I created from the book title The Picture Of Dorian Gray.

Saturday’s Progress

Read today:  The Ethical Slut
Pages read today:  50-ish
Thoughts on today’s Bout of Books 8.0 experience:  Had a lot of fun participating in the Acrostic Book Poem Challenge!
Goals accomplished today:  Entered another challenge – Acrostic Book Poem, hosted by I Read, Ergo I Write.
You can find my poem post by clicking this link:  Acrostic Book Poem Challenge.
I did read (although didn’t reach target page count).
Goals accomplished so far:

  • Post a new image to do with books, reading, etc. on my blog everyday that I admire/love.
  • Participate in TWO challenges during the week
Goals left to accomplish:  too many to face by listing them!   😦
To view my post of my entire week of progress (or more accurately LACK of progress)… check out my post:  Bout of Books – Goals and Progress
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Acrostic Book Poem Challenge!

Bout of Books banner

This challenge is part of Bout of Books 8.0 and the challenge has been hosted by I Read, Ergo I Write.

The instructions of the challenge are: 

– Pick a book! Any book!
– Write the title vertically on a sheet of paper.
– Next to each letter, write an adjective or a line or verse that describes the book.

So… without further ado…  here is what I came up with for my current read The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, which has become one of my favourite reads of all time.

 

Picture of Dorian Gray Book Cover  T – Thoughts and philosophies

  H – Heavily influenced by friends,

  E –  Erode away his vulnerable soul.

  P – Posing for the

  I –  Image painted by an adoring friend,

  C –  Captured his fleeting moment of youthful innocence.

  T –  Truth is hidden

  U –  Under lock and key

  R –  Revealed by drawing back the curtain –

  E –  Evil, misdeeds, guilt, and sin.

  O –  Obsessively

  F –  Fearing others will discover the

  D –  Destruction within his Adonis exterior.

  O –  Obvious to viewers of the portrait,

  R –  Reality of who he truly has become can not be

  I –  Ignored.

  A –  Art once created by an adoring friend,

  N –  Nourished his

  G –  Guilt

  R –  Ripping

  A –  Apart more than just his treasured

  Y –  Youth but his stained soul.

 

 

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Bout of Books 8.0 – Read-a-thon!

YAY!  I’m SO excited!

Bout of Books 8.0 is coming up soon and this is my official sign up post!

I have participated in previous Bout of Books Read-a-thons and they are ALWAYS so much fun!

Bout of Books banner

Check out the details about it below:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender  and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that  begins 12:01am Monday, August 19th and runs through Sunday, August 25th  in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the  only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books  read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but  all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 8.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

If you enjoy reading and enjoy challenges – all at your own pace – with absolutely no pressure – consider signing up!  Just click on the pic below:

Bout of Books 8

 Let the fun begin!!

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Bout of Books 7.0 Book Spine Poem Challenge!

 
YAY!

Today is the start of Bout of Books 7.0!  ONE of my goals for this week, is to participate in THREE challenges and I LOVE Book Spine Poems…

So… I gathered up a bunch of books I had close by and this is the pile I came up with…

Book Spine Poetry

Read the rest of this entry »

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Angel Falls – Review – WIN PRIZES!

Angel Falls

by Michael Paul Gonzalez

Angel-Falls-HI-RES-cover-194x300

My Rating:  3 Stars ***

A note about my rating:

What does a 3 star rating mean to me?  Pretty good.  Not great but not bad.  I would recommend based on certain tastes.

My Review

Angel Falls is Hell, renamed appropriately by its caretaker Satan.  Angel Falls isn’t such a bad place to be, in fact it’s more like a vacation or a resort and has all the fun and entertainment there that you might want.  There are bars, theaters, restaurants, clubs… everything to keep those who aren’t too eager or interested in beginning their Long Walk.  After all, Satan isn’t such a bad guy, he’s just misunderstood.  He feels like he was tricked into the responsibilities of taking care of Angel Falls and as he puts it:

I’ll be damned if I do anything other than the minimum required of me, which is to watch over these poor lost souls.

It was difficult trying to review this book because there were both some true strengths to it, as well as some significant weaknesses, which is why my rating isn’t higher than it is.  At first, I was pretty impressed and enthused about where the plot was going.  I was enjoying the characters and really liked the author’s clever use of humour.  There were some fantastic one liners.  Occasionally I groaned and rolled my eyes but for the most part the humour hit the mark and made the reading quite enjoyable.

While there are obvious biblical references, I didn’t feel as though you had to be super religious in order to follow along and understand.  However, it is likely that a deeper understanding of the biblical references, would likely add a more meaningful layer into the story.  I do not consider myself ignorant to what is contained within the Bible but I am certainly no biblical scholar either.

Another enjoyable aspect of Angel Falls was how the author used widely known characters, and put his own unique spin on each of them.  Characters such as:

  • Satan
  • Goliath
  • Eve and Adam
  • Cain and Abel
  • St. Peter at the Gates of Heaven
  • The Boss (aka God)

Michael Paul Gonzalez took these well-known characters, stripped away their stereotypes and created alternate personalities for them.  In addition, he developed unique dynamics between those characters.  This created a lot of interest for the reader.

My favourite character in the book was Eve.  The way the author portrayed her was brilliant.  We first meet Eve working as a waitress at the ‘Garden of Eatin’, a popular restaurant in Angel Falls.  As the story progresses, the character of Eve has the opportunity to reveal herself.  Her need to be surrounded by living things, her love of nature, the way she communicated with nature, were some truly beautiful moments in an otherwise lighthearted novel.  For example, Eve commands the trees to provide a layer of warm leaves for Satan to spend the night on and the trees out of reverence for her do just that.  She is gently rocked to sleep high in the canopy of the forest, the trees cradling her like a newborn child.  The respect between both Eve and nature is obvious and these interactions are beautiful and memorable.

However, there were periods of time in the novel when the interest and enthusiasm started to fade for me. I felt like there were events that just weren’t necessary for moving the plot ahead and it made me want to skip pages to get back to the ‘real’ story.  It felt as though, there was a bit of ‘filler’ used to extend the story, when it really wasn’t necessary and that is frustrating to me as a reader.

There were times in the story when things simply got confusing.  Normally I may have gone back, re-read or tried again to make sense of what the author was talking about but there just wasn’t enough interest in it for me to do that.  A bad sign indeed.

Another thing I didn’t care too much for in this book… there were times when I thought the author was simply in poor taste. An example of that would be when a Chihuahua dies falling off of a bridge.  Shortly after, a character retrieves the dead dog carcass and ‘plays’ with it and makes it dance.  I simply don’t see the humor or value to this scene at all.

So in summary, this novel certainly won’t be added to any of my favourites lists but I might recommend it to a certain type of reader… I just don’t happen to be one of them.

 

Some of My Favourite Quotes From Angel Falls

“That was beautiful,” The Righteous whispered.  “And everything beautiful dies.  See?”  He held the dog pelt towards her.  “It’s done everything it was meant to do,” Eve said.  “It’s still amazing to behold.  And it has the potential to grow again.”  (pg 82)

“There are no such things as mistakes and innocent bystanders.  We are where we are and when we are at all times.”  (pg 87)

“The air was perfectly still around us, the very essence of time and the universe waiting for the balance to shift, for life to return to the giant or dissipate forever.”  (pg 92)

Now would have been a perfect time to faint.  Just take a few minutes off, let my system regroup, start all over again.  Unfortunately, it didn’t happen.  This is Hell, after all.  Even I must suffer for my sins.  (pg 95)

“Flesh is pain.  It’s the hardest truth I’ve discovered.”  (pg 136)

“You turned gay just to get out of Heaven?”  “When you put it that way, it sounds wrong.”  (pg 156)

“Why would you create a race of creatures only to watch them struggle and fail?  Why would He have me be the fount of the entire human race, and then deny me the right to guide my children?  He made me a soul mate and tore him away.  Why?”  (pg 163)

 

 

About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!

Welcome to Novel Publicity’s first ever publishing house blog tour. Join us as three new titles from Perfect Edge–we’re calling them the Perfect Edge Trifecta–tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes!

 

About the book:

It’s been rough lately for the Lord of Darkness, with ex-girlfriend drama rearing its head at inconvenient moments, ancient gods returning to take over the universe, and Satan’s own unstoppable laziness. But whatever.

Satan is okay, and he thinks you’re okay, too. This whole eternal damnation thing is all a bit of a misunderstanding.

He runs Hell as a resort, kind of. A vacation spot. The point is, he’s not a bad guy. He’s trying to save Heaven and all of creation, and he only has a dimwitted giant, a surly waitress, and a monkey to help him. So, a thank you might be nice. Maybe buy him a cup of coffee next time you see him. And you will see him.

It’s the Apocalypse, and all that.

Pick up your copy of this Fantasy/ Satire through Amazon US, Amazon UK, or Barnes & Noble.

 

About the author:

Michael Paul Gonzalez lives and writes in Los Angeles. He is the editor at ThunderDomeMag.com, an online lit zine and small press. He is at work on his next novel as you read this. Seriously. He probably just rattled off a really amazing chapter, and someday you’ll read it and think back to this moment, and exhale. Connect with Michael on his website, Facebook, GoodReads, or Twitter.

Author Michael Paul Gonzalez

Author Michael Paul Gonzalez

 

About the prizes:

Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either of two $25 Amazon gift cards, an autographed copy of Angel Falls, or an autographed copy of one of its tour mates, The Sound of Loneliness by Craig Wallwork or Stranger Will by Caleb J Ross. Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
  2. Leave a comment on my blog.

That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found here. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form on the official Perfect Edge Trifecta tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!

Perfect Edge Books was founded in late 2011 to unite authors whose books weren’t “obviously” commercial. Our books tend to sit in various genres all at once: literary fiction, satire, neo-noir, sci-fi, experimental prose. We believe that literary doesn’t have to mean difficult, and that difficult doesn’t just mean pointless. We prefer to cultivate a word-of-mouth approach to marketing, and keep production as simple as we can. Learn more at www.PerfectEdgeBooks.com.

Learn more about Angel Falls‘s tour mates HERE.

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The Persnickety Princess Tour

The Persnickety Princess Tour

Persnickety Tour Badge (2)I have agreed to do my very first book tour blog review!  So… I will read The Persnickety Princess by Falcon Storm and give my honest opinion and post my review on March 30th.  Keep an eye out for it and please let me know what you think!

A brief summary of the book:

High up in the tallest tower of the purplest castle in the Kingdom by the Sea, Princess Lavender awaits rescue. Desperate as she may be, only the most dashing, well dressed, properly mannered prince will do. Oh, and he must stand exactly four and three-quarters inches taller than her. A princess has got to have standards, after all.

When, finally, one such prince comes to her castle—not to rescue her, but her younger sister—Lavender refuses to be ignored. Instead of waiting for the next suitor to come along, she devises a plan to put herself in danger, thus forcing the upstart prince to forget her sister and rescue her instead.

Well accustomed to getting her way, there is only one thing, unfortunately, that this princess can’t control—her luck. When her plans go awry, putting her in very real danger, will she allow the prince to rescue her as he sees fit? Will he even want to try?

And will anyone be able to find a way to rescue Lavender from her persnickety ways once and for all? Find out in this comedic tale of princes, dragons, and dreams that just may come true.

PRIZES:  Novel Publicity will have three standard $50 gift card prizes, but they’re also going to offer huge additional prizes to both blog tour reviewers and their readers (that would be YOU), to really make this one special. 

Which means – MY readers will get a chance to win prizes!  More information on what and how to enter during my upcoming post on March 30th!

The Persnickety Princess:  An Excerpt

Lavender hummed a peppy tune while thinking about how she could best put herself into some sort of peril that looked, but wasn’t too, dangerous.

At once, she remembered the time last month when the Witch’s cat got itself stuck in a tree. If she could get up a tree, the prince would have no choice but to help her down. What a perfect idea! Trees grew in abundance beside the road. A tallish oak looked particularly promising….

She moseyed up to the tree and eyed it cautiously. What was the best way to climb it? She needed to be careful not to damage her dress, and obviously her hair needed to stay flawless. Upon further inspection, she found a strong branch close enough for her to climb upon with ease. Better yet, a small outcropping of rocks lay near it. If she could position herself just right, she’d be able to jump from the rocks onto the branch and into a perfectly perilous position.

With a spring to her step, she sauntered out onto the rock outcropping. Balanced as well as she could, Lavender crossed her fingers and leapt for the branch. She plummeted for a split second longer than she thought necessary and almost gave into panic when—whoomp!– she landed on the branch.

She wobbled only for an instant, but it was enough to scuff her shoe. She fumed silently. If Prince Hugo had just rescued her properly in the first place, her outfit would still be intact and she wouldn’t be risking a twisted ankle from a bad fall.

“Oh, just perfect!” Lavender proclaimed, swinging her legs beneath her. “I do hope he hurries.” Recalling what Hugo had said to her when last they met, she scoffed and muttered to herself, “Not in danger, my royal patootie!”

Her language wasn’t appropriate for a respectable princess, but she felt she could get away with it this time, seeing as no one else was around.

A few moments passed, leaving Lavender with nothing to do but to wait and grumble to herself. It took about five grumbled rants before she spied the prince and his squire riding up the road.

Help! Help!” she cried at once. “I was chased by a vicious animal and had to take shelter in this tree. Help me, Prince Hugo. You’re my only hope.”

Hugo sat perplexed atop his stallion. “I, umm…you climbed a tree?”

Lavender huffed. “Of course I climbed a tree! There was a wild beast after me.”

“Then how did you stay so clean?” Hugo dismounted and handed his reins to Dave.

“A princess knows how to do all things in a princessly manner.” She folded her arms in a huff, which almost resulted in losing her balance.

Prince Hugo shook his head. “All right….”

“Are you going to rescue me now or what?” A foot stamp was out of the question up in the tree, so Lavender held one hand to her hip while keeping the other firmly planted on the tree’s trunk.

The branch Lavender was perched on was only about waist high. Hugo suppressed a chuckle. “You’re quite literally two feet off the ground. You can’t get down on your own?”

“I could break my legs!”

Hugo slapped a palm against his forehead and drew in a deep breath. “You can’t break your legs from a two-foot fall.”

“But I could seriously twist my ankle, which would be very dangerous if the—if the crazed animal comes back.” Lavender’s voice took on an impatient tone. “You know, I’m beginning to seriously wonder if you are, in fact, a prince—what, with the lack of rescuing going on here.”

“I assure you, princess, I am a prince.” Hugo motioned to Dave, who busily worked on tying the horses to a nearby tree. “In fact—”

Lavender interrupted him. “All right! Then hurry up and save me before that animal returns.”

Hugo narrowed his eyes and rubbed at his chin. “What kind of animal chased you up this tree?”

“You’re questioning me?” Lavender blinked in surprise.

“No, I’m just curious. What kind of animal was vicious enough to tree you, but somehow couldn’t reach you two feet off the ground?”

Lavender racked her brain for the name of a vicious animal native to these parts. An aardvark isn’t dangerous, an anteater is an aardvark, an armadillo just looks weird, a badger is… perfect

“It was a badger,” she declared with a smug smile.

“What were you muttering?”

“N-Nothing.”

“A badger, huh?” Hugo snorted. “What color was it?”

Lavender rolled her eyes. “Why do you care about its color? Like most badgers in the area…” She paused and made a mental note to have all the badgers in the land repainted after this misadventure. “Red! It was red.”

“A red badger?” Hugo assumed the princess was lying to him, but since he was new to the area, he couldn’t be sure whether she’d ordered all the badgers painted red in a fit of pickiness. Knowing her, she might have. So he asked, “And what about its antlers?”

Lavender had no idea whether badgers had antlers at all, but she thought it safest to provide an answer. “Oh, they were white. White antlers that almost got me, see? The horrible beast scuffed my shoe with its antlers.”

Once again, Hugo was in a pickle. Either Lavender had no idea what a badger looked like, or because she liked everything just so, she might’ve actually glued white antlers onto all of the badgers—after having them painted, of course.

Before he could formulate his next question, Lavender let out a shrill scream. “Ow! Ouch! Get away from me, you wretched beasts!”

Hugo looked up, half expecting to see red badgers with white antlers attacking Lavender.

 

 

 

 

 

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Bout of Books – Read-A-Thon Wrap Up Post

Bout of Books

Read-a-Thon Wrap Up Post

Bout of Books Read-a-Thon

MY GOALS  (red=not completed, yellow=partially completed, green=completed!):

  • Finish reading: Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy (currently on page 86 of 458 pages).
  • Read: Watch Mommy Die by Michael Benson.
  • Read Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins.
  • Listen to one audio book (start to finish).
  • Write a Review of at least ONE of the books and post the review on my blog.
  • Participate in at least ONE challenge/giveaway.
  • Comment on at least THREE Bout of Books participants blogs during the challenge.
  • Start following at least ONE new blog that is a Bout of Books participant.

This is how my Read-A-Thon Week Went:

Monday

What I’ve read today: Watch Mommy Die (read pages 1 – 99)

Total goals completed: 0 of 8

Comments: I’ve been checking out a lot of blogs and finding more reading challenges as I go! It’s eaten up quite a bit of time today – time that I could have spent reading or working towards my challenge goals BUT… it sure is fun to check a bunch of new blogs out and join (or consider joining) other reading challenges as well! No real regrets!

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Tuesday

What I’ve read today: Listened to about 2.5 hours of the audiobook ‘The Diary’. Read more of Watch Mommy Die (pages 100-150).

Total goals completed: 0 of 8

Comments: Not alot of internet time today to go blog searching 😦

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Wednesday

What I’ve read today: Listened to 30 minutes of the audiobook ‘The Diary’ (total of 3 of 5 hours).

Other Goals worked on: Participated in The Page 48 Challenge, hosted by Booking in Heels.

Total goals completed: 1 of 8

Comments: Falling behind…. eek! Did I bite off more than I could chew?

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Thursday

What I’ve read today: American Psycho (which is NOT on my goal list)

Goals I have completed: I have started following a blog that is a participant in this challenge AND I have commented on a participants blog (goal is 3… so 1 of 3 completed).

Other Related Activities: Participated in Book Spine Poetry challenge, hosted by Escape Through The Pages. First time I have ever written a Book Spine Poem – lots of fun!

Total goals completed: 2 of 8

Comments: Falling further behind. Reading books that aren’t on my goal list, likely isn’t helping me!

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Friday

What I’ve read today: About 100 pages of American Psycho (which is NOT a book on my goal list).

Other related activities: Entered the Rewrite The Synopsis Challenge using Far From The Madding Crowd.

Total goals completed: 2 of 8

Comments: Still reading a book that isn’t on my goal list!

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Saturday

What I’ve read today:  150 more pages of American Psycho (which is NOT on my goal list)

Goals I have completed:  Commented on two more Read-A-Thon participants blogs.

Total goals completed:  3 of 8

Comments:  Still reading a book that isn’t on my goal list!

********************************************************************************************
Sunday

What I’ve read today:  160 pages of Watch Mommy Die (pages 150-310)

Total goals completed:  Still 3 of 8

Comments:  It’s been a busy week!

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WRAP UP

This has been my very first blog reading challenge.  AWESOME!  I think I am addicted.  Although I didn’t do super great at completing all my goals… I did have alot of fun participating AND I did learn about making more realistic type goals for future challenges.  Something I really enjoyed about this challenge… were the mini-challenges that I particpated in.  Those were fantastic!  Thanks for all those that hosted!  It was super great!

I have decided that I will only do reading challenges from now on… on my OTHER BLOG:  Rabid Bookworm   I have already signed up for a few more challenges there.  So… if you want to read more about my reading and the challenges I join…. please… Follow Me there too! 

Total Number of Goals Created:  8

Goals Fully Completed:  3

Goals Partially Completed:  2

Goals Not Completed:  3

 

 

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Rewrite the Synopsis Challenge

Rewrite the Synopsis Challenge

Part of Bout of Books Read-a-thon

Bout of Books

The Challenge – Created by Daydreamer’s Thoughts
Your challenge, if you choose to accept it, is to take any of the books that you have read for this read-a-thon (or plan to read over the last three days), and re-write the synopsis just from the books cover. The aim is to make it sounding completely different from the original synopsis!

 

far-from-madding-crowd-thomas-hardy-paperback-cover-art

Katie Green sits and confesses to a young nun about the situation she finds herself in.  Hundreds of miles from home, three dollars in her pocket and a duffle bag full of blood stained clothing, along with a butcher knife.  Katie begins by explaining why she had to kill the father of the her unborn child… the child she is unsure she will be able to continue to carry within her.  Katie’s explanation and reasoning behind the murder… shocks the nun but what troubles her the most… is Katie telling the truth or is she truly losing her mind?

 

 

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Bout of Books Read-a-thon Update

 

Bout of Books

Read-a-Thon

Update DAY FOUR

Bout of Books Read-a-Thon

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week-long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 7th and runs through Sunday, January 13th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 6.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. -From the Bout of Books 6.0 team

 

MY GOALS:

  • Finish reading:  Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy (currently on page 86 of 458 pages).
  • Read:  Watch Mommy Die by Michael Benson.
  • Read Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins.
  • Listen to one audio book (start to finish).
  • Write a Review of at least ONE of the books and post the review on my blog.
  • Participate in at least ONE challenge/giveaway.
  • Comment on at least THREE Bout of Books participants blogs during the challenge.
  • Start following at least ONE new blog that is a Bout of Books participant.

UPDATE:

Thursday

What I’ve read today:  American Psycho (which is NOT on my goal list)

Goals I have completed:  I have started following a blog that is a participant in this challenge AND I have commented on a participants blog (goal is 3… so 1 of 3 completed).

Other Related Activities:  Participated in Book Spine Poetry challenge, hosted by Escape Through The Pages.  First time I have ever written a Book Spine Poem – lots of fun! 

Total goals completed:  2 of 8

Comments:  Falling further behind.  Reading books that aren’t on my goal list, likely isn’t helping me!

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For ALL updates check out my post at:  Bout of Books – Read-a-Thon

For Challenges check out:  The Page 48 Challenge and Book Spine Poem Challenge.

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Book Spine Poem Challenge

Bout of Books 6.0 Challenge – Book Spine Poem

Bout of Books

Click here to learn details and rules of this challenge:  Escape Through the Pages.

Book Spine Contest

Book Spine Contest

Meet me for murder

By nightfall

Who’s the American psycho?

Far from the madding crowd

Your skinny legs and all

There will be betrayal by blood

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