Posts Categorized: Uncategorized

How I Learned to Love Myself: Body Image, Self Love and more.

July 4, 2016 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

I wanted to take the time to share part of my journey so far. Today I’m talking about body image, how it has played a role in my life and the slow process of learning to love myself.

july4For as long as I can remember, I’ve struggled with body image, disordered eating and some mental illness that have all stuck with me in some way to form some pretty unhappy thoughts about my body. I’ve been diagnosed with type two diabetes and PCOS within months of each other. It’s been a rough road.

Most recently, I was seeing a new OBGYN to try and get some long term treatment for the severe endometriosis I am battling and advice on things I can continue to do dealing with PCOS and the issues I’m facing with it. It has been so bad in the last year and has sent me to the ER several times and left me with no help from a few medical professionals.

When I walked into the appointment, I was hopeful. My mom was with me for support and I left shaking – angry, upset and hurt. It started a downward spiral. The doctor I saw that morning flat out told me that I was fat, and she would do nothing to help me other than throw pills at me. She made it very clear she had no interest in helping me at all.

A few weeks later, I flew into Tennessee to visit my girlfriend and one afternoon while we are shopping I had a complete breakdown because I was so uncomfortable, but the outfits I loved just didn’t FEEL right. I went on and on about how this doctor had treated me, how it triggered a lot of horrible thoughts, had started a pattern of disordered eating.

I’m going to be completely honest – that entire situation with the doctor and what unfolded in the weeks following was probably one of the hardest things I’ve had to deal with. I was so unsure about my body, myself. I felt like a small, scared child unsure of what to do and the doctors words and treatment of me left me scarred and struggling.

For a while, I blocked it out. I was numb. I was upset. I was shocked. I was already uncomfortable in my own body. What that appointment left me with was a lot of hurt that surfaced again. I really struggled but I didn’t open up to people about the situation. I felt judged and looked down on enough with that single appointment.july2

When it all came floating to the surface, I had no choice but to face what happened. I had gone from someone who was constantly on the go, biking at least 20 miles a week for years to someone who had been in the ER several times in a year because of how severe the endometriosis had gotten.

Over the last year, I’ve become more comfortable in speaking out about my health. I’ve realized that by speaking out, I can help others. I can tell people how my life has changed. It’s also made me realize something huge. Something that within just a few days, has changed a lot of things for me.

My body is strong. It’s carried me this far already. It’s carried me through diagnosis after diagnosis. It’s carried me through some hard times growing up. It’s carried me even on the bad days where I can’t get out of bed.

I’ve started eating better. I’m doing some biking and walking. I’m not stepping onto that scale because it will only bring me back to where I was after the appointment. I’ve noticed small changes, small ones, but they are there.

I’m able to wear some of the pants I wasn’t able to wear a couple months ago, my shirts are feeling more comfortable. On the good days, I have more energy. I’m happier. I’m not looking at my body and thinking how much I hate this part or that part. I’m feeling more comfortable, and that is an amazing change for me.

I’m strong. I’m stronger than I realize and I have to thank my body for that. I have to take care of it. It’s carried me through a lot over the past year and I am thankful for that. It can carry me on the worst days.

While I’ve struggled with a positive body image, knowing that my body has carried me this far is enough to really think about doing the best I can to take care of my body and learn to love my body.july3

 

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Keep the Faith: How a PCOS Group Saved my Life

July 2, 2016 Katie A Chronic Illness, personal: health, Uncategorized 0 Comments

f85730b89d84c92fcefe4605d4a23549I was diagnosed with PCOS in September of 2015. It was eight months after I had been diagnosed with type two diabetes. Once again, I felt lost. I was scared. I was devastated. I felt like I was alone.

On top of all of that, I was told that becoming pregnant was something that would either not happen, or it would be very high risk (and the doctor who told me this, made it clear that it wasn’t the best option for me). Needless to say, by the time I got back into my car, I was a wreck.

For months, I had been staring at myself in the mirror – trying to figure out where this extra dark hair on my chin and neck were coming from. It was months of testing my blood sugar, taking medications and trying to hang in there.

I cried my entire way to work, cried at work and then cried even more when I got home from work. Eventually I calmed down and started searching for groups on Facebook. I was already in a few for chronic illnesses and spoonies, but now I needed to find a PCOS one that was right for me.

It was hard. There were so many of them. So freaking many.

A few hours later, I found myself reading up on a group called PCOS Positivity. I joined. I was hesitant to make that nerve wracking introduction post, but I did. I opened up and let these ladies into my life. I told them how lost I felt, how overwhelmed I was, that I wasn’t sure what to do, where to start or how to breathe through this new and scary diagnosis.

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In that group, I began to find myself. I had already been blogging about life and my health journey, but in this group, I was welcomed and I could share positive moments, welcome new members to the group, and grow into loving myself, encouraging others and seeing the love and positivity flourish in this group. I joined the group right in it’s infancy, and holy crap, we are now 6,000+ strong!

Let me tell you what this group has done for me:

The group has given me positive information about my diagnosis.

The group has welcomed me with open arms in one of the hardest times of my life (at that point in time, my life had become diagnosis after diagnosis).

The group challenged me to love myself, no matter how hard of a time I was having. These amazing ladies were always there for me.

I’ve met ladies I never would have met if I didn’t have this group, and so many of them have seen me at my worst, and my best.

I’ve seen the group grow, grow and grow some more. I’ve seen this group grow into a community of ladies who support each other, encourage each other and are there for each other.

I’ve seen how this group gathers around its members, spreading the love, opening up to the group about major life events or just when they really just need a friend.

I know that I am not alone in what this group has done for me. There’s thousands of us who call this group home, our family. There are thousands of us who found this group when they needed it. There are thousands of us who speak out about PCOS and raise awareness.

If I hadn’t found the group when I did, I don’t know where I would be today. It has had such an impact on my life and I’ve learned so much from it and the amazing ladies in the group. We’ve grown and grown and grown, we are entering a new phase and I cannot wait to continue to spread the love, positivity and inspiration that these ladies have given me.

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An Open Letter to Jeremy Camp: The Strength and Strain of Coming out

April 20, 2016 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

(for those who don’t know, I was a moderator for Jeremy Camp on his message board. He is a Christian musician and I loved being able to support him, his music, message and other members on the board. This open letter chronicles my coming out experience)

“Several years ago, I was one of the few in my area who would attend every local show you did here. I was there at the first show in Rancho Cordova when the power blew, I was at the shows at the huge church in Roseville. My brother and I went to the shows together, he even took photos at the show at UC DAVIS and hung with you and the crew backstage.

These years and moments were a huge part of my life. I worked tirelessly to promote you and the events, to attend them, to share the word and your music with others.

Not only that, but I was also a moderator on the message board. I loved it. I loved being there as an inspiration, a supportive person and to encourage others. I had late nights shutting down the spammers, I worked with other admins to dissolve drama. I shared my story, my testimony and my struggles.

I truly felt welcome, loved and supported there.

That all changed in an instant.

I started seeing so much hate on the board toward the LGBT community. It was shocking. Appalling. It blew my mind. For a group that felt called to love and support others, these members were doing the exact opposite of that. Instead of embracing everyone as Christ had, they turned their backs and spewed hateful words towards the community.

It was a personal blow.

For weeks and months I struggled with this. I spent nights crying, days trying to find a way to avoid the hate yet still be a moderator. I tried to show that love, compassion and acceptance Christ had. I was one of the few who did.

Eventually, it came to a breaking point. These members needed to see that a gay person was not some kind of monster. They needed to see that people of the community were normal, loving people who led normal lives and worked with so many in various communities.

As one of the main moderators in the Sisters in Christ board, I chose to come out as lesbian.

I couldn’t stand seeing the hate these members were spreading. They had to see they were damaging one of their own, hurting me down to the bones.

I knew that the post would be hard to swallow for many. I knew I’d likely face backlash from it. But Jeremy, I couldn’t hold it in any longer. They needed to know that I’m a normal girl who loves Christ, who loves encouraging and helping others.

I posted it, and shortly after, signed offline for the night – partly out of anxiety and because I’ve always struggled with chronic illness. I took a deep breath and knew that I had done what is best for me. I had to do this.

By morning… I woke and all hell had broken lose. While I had a few long time friends on the board supporting me, encouraging me and letting me know that while they didn’t agree with my “lifestyle”, they still cared about me.

Unfortunately, the bad outweighed the good.

Members of the message board started to harass me. I was threatened. I was told that because I was gay, I was going to go to hell. I was told that I could be stoned to death because I am gay.

Worse?

Worse was members of the admin and staff team lying to me. They told me they had sent an email explaining their stance and actions, but I never got that e-mail.

Even worse than that?

The main admin of the board, C (as we all knew him by), took to the general part of the forum and publicly humiliated me. The actions of the team made it very clear that I was never welcome on the board – the humiliation continued as members stalked me on forms of social media, sending me harassing messages. I had been publicly humiliated on a board with thousands of members…

All because of what I said. Yet, he (and others on the team) took that step to humiliate me. That? Jeremy, that’s what still stings the most. How is this showing Christ’s love? How is this loving others as He loved us? Jesus took the time and spent time with people no one else did… yet his followers, they did the exact opposite.

The situation came at a time where I was depressed. I was struggling and so much. The situation nearly pushed me to a suicide attempt. How was I supposed to feel like I am loved, cared about, and supportive when people who claim to show Christ’s love can act so cruelly?

It’s been several years now since this all happened… some days are better than others. Some are not. What remains is how hurt I am. It shows in the panic of coming out to others, to stepping foot into a church. It shows in the nights where I’m in bed crying.

What happened to me on the board should have never happened. The moderating team and admins should have treated me as a human being. Instead, I was lied to continuously about that “email”, I was publicly humiliated. I was stalked and harassed.

I am writing this because I need you to know what happened. I can’t get this closure without you knowing what happened. Maybe you already do, I’m sure you heard bits and pieces several years ago.. but I wanted you to hear it from me. I wanted you to know how hard this has been for me, that it hasn’t yet healed.

Since then, I have really struggled with my faith. I don’t feel welcome in a church. I’m scared to come out to people involved in church or the Christian music community. I still carry the weight and scars from the experience because people who claim to follow Christ quite literally made my life a living hell.

You may not even remember me, or even read this email, but I need to you know what happened, and how it has affected me over the last few years since it happened.”

Was this easy to share? No. In fact, I am anxious and terrified that some of these same people will come back into my life and start the same issues as they had when this situation first unfolded, but I also know that it is my time to speak up about this.

I won’t stay quiet anymore. I will speak up. I will encourage others. I will support others. If you are struggling with coming out and/or the aftermath? I am here and so are many others.

 

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LUX by Courtney Cole is Here!

October 29, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

You have no idea how much I have adored this series. The twists. The turns. The lingering questions. The nights I’m up aching for more, wondering what happens next… and now LUX is here.

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The dramatic series finale to Courtney Cole’s bestselling Nocte trilogy!

Get LUX on Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo
Add LUX to your Goodreads TBR

CourtneyCole-Lux-Cover-250pxMy name is Calla Price and I’m broken.

My pieces are all around me, floating on the wind, even as I desperately try to grasp them.

Who is dead? Alive? Insane?

What is the truth?

I don’t know.

I do know this: The darkness is strangling me. With every breath, I choke on another lie.

My mind has protected me, but that shield will soon be lowered.

All will be revealed.
Every answer to every question.

It’s all been leading to this.

Don’t be afraid.
Be terrified.

Get LUX on Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo
Add LUX to your Goodreads TBR

Series reading order: Nocte (#1), Verum (#2), Initium (#2.5), Lux (#3).

Get NOCTE: Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo | Audible (Add on Goodreads)
Get VERUM: Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo | Audible (Add on Goodreads)
Get INITIUM: Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo (Add on Goodreads)
Get LUX: Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo (Add on Goodreads)

CourtneyCole-Headshot250pxCourtney Cole is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling novelist who would rather write than eat chocolate. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business, but no amount of working in the corporate world could quell her urge to write.

Courtney was born and raised in Kansas, home of incredibly friendly people and the most horrendous weather on the planet. Because summer days were so hot, she grew up reading stacks of books… and when she didn’t like the ending, she wrote her own.

Courtney has relocated to Florida where she writes beneath palm trees. To learn more about her, please visit her website.  To sign up for her newsletter and receive exclusive sneak peeks and super-fan perks, click here.

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why my story is not an agenda

October 11, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 1 Comment

In light of recent events, I decided that writing this blog post was happening within minutes of waking up. This needs to be said.

Growing up, I didn’t have books that I saw myself in.

Wait. Let me explain. . .

I’m white, but I am not straight. I am not able bodied. I live with several chronic illnesses. I live with mental illness. I lived through a nasty divorce. I lived in a home that wasn’t safe. I lived in poverty. I lived day to day, wondering where my next meal would be – and if it was fresh enough to actually eat.

I never saw myself in books.

It wasn’t until late in high school where I finally found a book with a gay main character, but by then – it was too late.

I had already lived through hell. I was still living through hell. I was in a place where I couldn’t come out. I was self harming, I was knee deep in a dark depression. I lost about forty pounds. I wouldn’t eat when there was food. I watched a parent in and out of a psychiatric hospital.

All while trying to find a safe place to escape, and I turned to books.

I couldn’t find myself in them.

Not a single one.

My story is not an agenda.

My story needs to be heard. It needs to be told. This is a story that may save a life. This is a story that cannot be erased.

When we don’t see ourselves represented in the every day world, so many of us turn to books to find ourselves. And many of us, still struggle to find those books. To have them in our hands, to cry as they read because they’ve found themselves.

Not being able to see ourselves represented is damaging. It leaves scars. It isn’t something that disappears overnight. We fight daily to make our stories heard – we know how important they are.

We know that by sharing our stories,  putting books into hands that need these, we can change lives. We will change lives. We will save lives.

Our story is never an agenda. It never will be.

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Wednesday Words – A Letter to My Younger Self

October 7, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

(Wednesday Words was originally created by me when I was blogging for The Hunger Games fansite – The Hob. Now I’m hoping to use it here once or twice a month)

Dear younger Katie,
You have already been through so much. You’ve seen your parents divorce, you survived a messy divorce, and moved around a bit. You went through a period of time where there wasn’t enough food, lived in place to place, had some really, really rough times, but you stayed strong (even though you hid the truth from family).

You saw a parent in and out of a psychiatric hospital while you battled your first big bout of depression.

You struggled with an eating disorder (and still do) even after several doctors told you that there’s “nothing wrong”. You survived high school where you were bullied, humiliated by a teacher and began self harming.

You survived a break up that changed your entire life – in good ways and bad. It left you depressed and wondering what went wrong, but you learned that things were better now. It opened up the door to a new relationship – one that is healthy, full of love and with your soulmate.

You came out. As hard as it was, you knew it was something that had to be done. It was hard, and scary. You were publicly humiliated by people you thought were friends. You were called a liar. You were called disgusting. You were told you were going to hell. You were prayed for because it would “heal” you. These same people stalked and harassed you for months.

You survived, again and again.

You don’t know what lies ahead – you don’t know that you’ll be diagnosed as type 2 diabetic just months after your 30th birthday. It’ll come as a huge shock and will leave you wondering WHY. You’ll feel alone and ashamed when others tell you things like “you can’t be diabetic, you’re too young” or “you better get it together and make changes” or “you’re too thin and active to be diabetic”. It’s harmful. It hurts.

You don’t know that you’ll be diagnosed with PCOS just months later, even after the thought of it has lingered in the back of your head for a couple years. While the diagnosis is somewhat of a relief, it brings more hard news – between the diagnosis of PCOS, having endometriosis and being a diabetic… chances of having a pregnancy are slim. It crushes you. You knew there was a chance of this, but you didn’t want to think about. That news from a doctor hit you like a ton of bricks.

You’ll fall in love with an amazing woman, exchange promise rings on the beach in Florida, and make plans for “the big move”. The long distance is hard, but you two are meant to be. She’s your rock, your anchor, your strength when you are weak. She will always love you, for you.

You’ve survived so much already, and you’ll keep surviving. You’ll fight every day, no matter how hard things get. You keep moving – one foot in front of the other. One day at a time, even one second at a time.

Everything you go through now will lead up to where you’ll be later on in life – but don’t forget how strong you are.

One day at a time.

Love,
me.

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BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL by KK Hendin Release Day Post!

June 22, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

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Today is the release day blitz for BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL by KK Hendin. This book is not your typical romance with the perfect HEA, but if you are looking for something a little bit shocking, and evil, this is the book for you. It will be on sale for .99¢ for a very limited time!

 

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AUTHOR NOTE from KK Hendin:

Just a little warning when reading BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL.
Don’t trust anyone.
Don’t trust anything.
Don’t assume anything.
Don’t hope too hard.
You may be disappointed.
Good luck reading.

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BOOK BLURB:

Eighty seven billion dollars.
One dead New York business mogul.
No heirs.
No wives.
No relatives.
Eighty seven billion dollars.
Not hers yet.
He doesn’t deserve them.
He doesn’t know what to do with them.
She does.
She always has.
Eighty seven billion dollars.
He’s overwhelmed.
She’s prepared.
That will should have had her name.
Not his.
Eighty seven billion dollars.
His looks are a bonus.
Her looks are her weapon.
He’s fighting a losing battle against his heart.
He doesn’t know it yet.
Eighty seven billion dollars.
She gets everything she wants.
He’s what she wants.
Love has nothing to do with it.
To get to where you’re going, sometimes you need to step on a few people to get there.
Good thing her heels are sharp.

 

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ADD THE BOOK TO GOODREADS

SIGN UP FOR KK HENDIN’S NEWSLETTER

Join the BEAUTIFUL LITTLE STREET TEAM

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PURCHASE BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL NOW!

It will be just .99 cents for a limited time. Grab it while it’s on sale!

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | KOBO | iTUNES

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AUTHOR INFORMATION:

KK Hendin’s Bio:
KK Hendin’s real life ambition is to become a pink fluffy unicorn who dances with rainbows. But the schooling for that is all sorts of complicated, so until that gets sorted out, she’ll just write. Preferably things with angst and love. And things that require chocolate.

KK spends way too much time on Twitter (where she can be found as @kkhendin), and rambles on occasion over at www.kkhendinwrites.blogspot.com.

FIND KK HENDIN:

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

z-InkSlinger Blogger
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Worn Down Glories: My Life with Chronic Illness

June 19, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 1 Comment

Some of you may have seen my more frequent Instagram updates on my health and my struggle with several chronic illnesses. In an attempt to be more open and more brave – I’ve used that platform to begin documenting my struggles.

Then it dawned on me… I can still do that, but also use this blog to reach others who may not use Instagram and draw in a whole new crowd in addition to my beloved bookish community I am part of.

It’s been a rough road to get to where I am – to make this choice to incorporate my love with books and be more open about what I struggle with. It’s been back and forth, thinking I’ll do this, then the next day being utterly terrified about this change.

In order for people to know what I am going through, I realized that I need to speak about it. I need to talk about what I’m struggling with – the good and the bad, the ugly days, and the days where just getting out of bed seems impossible.

In order to reach a wider audience and reach out to those who are struggling as I am, I can’t keep quiet anymore. I have to step out, I have to speak up. No one will know what is going on with me, if I’m having a bad day if I don’t say it.

It’s terrifying.

It’s terrifying to start to become this open, to know that I may lose people. To know that when I open up this way, people could think “oh, she’s just making this up for attention” or “it’s all in your head, Katie”. I’ve been there. It hurts. It’s terrifying to know that it could happen again – but I know that I have to speak up.

This is me, being brave every day as I battle several chronic health conditions – none of which have a cure. This is still the same girl who loves to read and gush about books, who loves to support her favorite authors – but this same girl is sick. I may not look sick, but I am sick. Every day is a struggle.

All I want to do is to be able to inspire, encourage and be there for others going through similar circumstances. I want to show everyone that yes, you can live with chronic illness – it is hard, but I fight every day and I will never stop fighting. ♥

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THIS LOVE by Anna Bloom – RELEASE DAY LAUNCH!

June 2, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

We’re having the release day launch for THIS LOVE by Anna Bloom! We are so excited about this fantastic new contemporary romance. Anna is giving away a kindle, and sharing an excerpt with us! Be sure to check it all out!

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Release Day Launch Participants:

The Other Side of the Shelf

Stephanie Witter

Happily Ever After…Book Blog

Kimmy Loves to Read

Southern Belle Book Blog

kimberlyfaye reads

Mischievous Reads

This Wacky Momma Reads

Southern Vixens Book Obsessions

Comfort Books

Dayreader Reviews

Kelly’s Kindle Konfessions

Adventures in Writing

The Dark Realm

promoting authors with read along with sue

Lady Amber’s Reviews

Indy Book Fairy

Cocktails and Books

Boundless Book Reviews

Kindle and Me

Us Girls & A Book

Musings of the Book-a-holic Fairies, Inc.

Cosying Up With Books

Evermore Books

2 Greek Girls Reading

Between The Lines

Jackie’s Book World

Books, Coffee & Passion

Books Can Take You There

Battery Operated Book Blog

Bawaka’s Book Fair

reading away the days

Mikky’s World Of Books

Rusty’s Reading

An Aussie Girls WILD Boo Addiction!

Collector of book boyfriends

deal sharing aunt

I Bookin’ Love to Read

I Dare You To Read

Love Affair with Fiction

Got Nikki?

She Reads New Adult

What Is That Book About

Paola’s Bookshelf

I Read Indie

Musings In Fiction Alley

Lost in a Book Blog

The Phantom Paragrapher

Holly’s Hot Reads

Cafinated Reads

Country Gals Sexy Reads

Renee Entress’s Blog

A Cup and A Book

Best Book Boyfriends

Jax’s Book Magic

undercover book reviews

Reading Bliss

We’re Jumpin’ Books

Stephanie Witter

DANIELRIDING.com

Penny for My Thoughts

This Wacky Momma Reads!

I Dare You To Read

Between The Lines

Reads All the Books

Boundless Book Reviews

New Adult Addiction

Worn Down Glories

Ceres Books World

What Is That Book About

Romance Obsessed Book Blog

Writing Pearls

Kitty Kats Crazy About Books

Comfort Books

lustful literature

A Novel Kind of Bliss

Tifferz and Her Sisterz Book Reviewz

The Consummate Reader

Romance Bytes

undercover book reviews

The Other Side of the Shelf

Kelly’s Kindle Konfessions

Musings In Fiction Alley

Reviews from the Heart

Dark Seraph Book Blog

Short and Sassy Book Blurbs

The Dark Realm

Summers Book Blog

grownupfangirl

Book Butterfly in Dreamland

Best Book Boyfriends

Love Us Some Books

reading away the days

I Bookin’ Love to Read

my midnight fantasies

Book Starlets

Lady Amber’s Reviews

Zili in the Sky

Jax’s Book Magic

Books Need TLC

Books, Books The Magical Fruit

Love Affair with Fiction

G & Co. Book Blog

One Book Boyfriend At A Time

Nerdy Book Freak


This Love 2
This Love Synopsis:

Amber’s always planned to leave her overbearing mother and their stifling small town behind as soon as she graduates. That is until her car breaks down outside Bale and Son’s mechanics and she meets Freddy Bale. A boy who’d rather live in the moment than make a five-year-plan.

Ignoring her friends’ warnings, Amber puts all dreams for her perfect future on hold, and dives into the romance heart first. On their last day of school, however, Freddy decides to call off their relationship, and Amber does the only thing she can think of: Run away and never look back. Just like she’d always planned.

Ten years pass before Amber sets foot in town again, only returning to look after her ailing mother. While Freddy wants to make amends, Amber is confronted with her own wrong choices from ten years ago. Choices that could change the lives of everyone she’s ever loved.

When first love is given a second chance and the secrets of the past come hurtling into the present, will Amber and Freddy be able to lay their mistakes to rest and make this love the strongest one of all?

Buy Links:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Goodreads

Exclusive Excerpt:

My former home looked on the very edge of being derelict. The four walls have never provided the warmth and comfort a childhood home should, but seeing it in a state of disrepair, littered with dirty china, lined with old newspapers and filmed in a greasy layer of dust made me doubt my choice of leaving ten years ago more than ever, and my decision to come back.

I did the right thing. Didn’t I?

You see, I’m the grown up now. Ten years ago I left home, my heart broken, and my ego bruised. With the hindsight of age, I realise my heart wasn’t really that broken, I probably wasn’t even really that in love. For the last ten years I’ve only had room for Isaac in my heart. Isaac is mine.

 

Dragging my mind back from my sadly lacking welcome home yesterday, I keep my mind on the present and scan the shelves of the grocery store searching for anything my mother might like to eat. The shop hasn’t changed at all. The floor still has the same unique surface texture of sticky and slippery. The bread still has to be eaten today because tomorrow morning it will get a cloying smell that hits you in the face when you open the bag. And the shelves are all still precariously balanced with an unpredictable selection of tins: spam next to peaches, tinned spaghetti next to sanitary towels and shoelaces next to the cheese.

The question is, what do women with early onset dementia like to eat? This morning she was cooking cat food. I didn’t know she’d ever owned a cat. My shock at her deteriorated condition mingled in an unpleasant way with the stench of hot Whiskers, my anxiety and guilt quickly transformed into frustration when she kept calling me Cynthia, which is her sister’s name. “I’m Amber,”I kept saying over and over again, my attempt to keep my voice light seriously pushed to the border of shouting, but she just looked at me blankly with no flicker of recognition on her face.

I’m just grabbing another loaf of bread because I’m sure Isaac will want his standard half a loaf and marmite for breakfast, when the door of the shop chimes. Ignoring it, I continue to load my arms with pretty much anything I can see.

A packet of McVities Chocolate digestives wiggles it’s way free from under my armpit and rolls beneath a shelf just as I hear the shop assistant call to the newcomer, “Morning, Mrs. Bale, what can I do for you?”

Mrs. Bale. I stop.

Mrs. Bale.

Last time I was here, Mrs Bale was dead. Interesting.

Anna Bloom Bio:

anna bloom bio pictureAnna Bloom is a contemporary romance writer with the sole ambition of writing about life as it happens. Dedicated to real characters, real problems and real romance Anna writes tales to stir your heart and head. Combining a busy schedule of looking after two young children, working in a local school and writing swoon worthy romance for Mature Teen and Adult readers, she also spends a lot of time imagining kissing hot guys and talking to the voices in her head- all in the name of her art.

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NOWHERE BUT HERE by Katie McGarry RELEASE BLITZ!

May 26, 2015 Katie A Uncategorized 0 Comments

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We are absolutely thrilled to bring you the Release Day Launch for Katie McGarry’s NOWHERE BUT HERE! NOWHERE BUT HERE is a Young Adult Contemporary Romance and is a part of Katie McGarry’sThunder Road Series, published by Harlequin Teen. Grab your copy today!!

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About NOWHERE BUT HERE:

An unforgettable new series from acclaimed author Katie McGarry about taking risks, opening your heart and ending up in a place you never imagined possible

Seventeen-year-old Emily likes her life the way it is: doting parents, good friends, good school in a safe neighborhood. Sure, she’s curious about her biological father—the one who chose life in a motorcycle club, the Reign of Terror, over being a parent—but that doesn’t mean she wants to be a part of his world. But when a reluctant visit turns to an extended summer vacation among relatives she never knew she had, one thing becomes clear: nothing is what it seems. Not the club, not her secret-keeping father and not Oz, a guy with suck-me-in blue eyes who can help her understand them both.

Oz wants one thing: to join the Reign of Terror. They’re the good guys. They protect people. They’re…family. And while Emily—the gorgeous and sheltered daughter of the club’s most respected member—is in town, he’s gonna prove it to her. So when her father asks him to keep her safe from a rival club with a score to settle, Oz knows it’s his shot at his dream. What he doesn’t count on is that Emily just might turn that dream upside down.

No one wants them to be together. But sometimes the right person is the one you least expect, and the road you fear the most is the one that leads you home.

 

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NOWHERE BUT HERE Trailer:

 

Ready for more? Dive into a excerpt from NOWHERE BUT HERE!

From Oz’s Point of View. Set up: Emily has been separated from her parents and after a long night of worrying, her emotions and exhaustion catch up to her and it causes Oz to have his first fluttering of emotion for Emily.

WIND BLOWS IN FROM THE NORTH AND A FEW pieces of Emily’s dark hair sweep across her face. One min­ute Emily’s a bright flame, then a gust snuffs out her light. Her body sways like a top at the tail end of a spin and I lunge forward.

Emily’s knees give out and her eyes roll back into her head. I catch her inches before she crashes onto the porch. She’s light as I swing her into my arms and her head circles onto my shoulder, reminding me of one of those rag dolls Violet used to play with when we were kids.

“Emily!” Eli’s on top of me, attempting to yank her out of my arms. “Open your eyes.”

Her eyelids flutter, but remain closed as her hand limply clutches my shirt. Eli rams his arms underneath mine and he makes Emily a rope in a tug-of-war. I should let her go. I should want to let her go, but then Emily goes and screws it up for me. “Oz.”

It was a damn whisper, but I heard my name on her lips and so did Eli. His eyes flash to mine and Cyrus’s words repeat in my mind. That girl trusts you. And screw us both for that.

“She’s exhausted,” I say. “Hasn’t slept at all tonight.”

Eli’s expression hardens as he glares at me. I’ve seen Eli throw a coma-inducing punch for less defiance and I readjust the sleeping girl in my arms. A reminder if he decks me now, he’ll be putting his daughter at risk.

Temporarily surrendering, Eli cups Emily’s face in his hands and angles her toward him. “Emily, please open your eyes.”

She does. It’s barely a crack and they’re completely glazed.

“Everything’s going to be okay,” Eli affirms.

“I want my mom and dad,” she mumbles.

“You’ll see them tomorrow.” Eli pushes a strand of hair from her cheek. “You’re safe here. I promise.”

She rejects Eli by curling into me. Her head fits perfectly in the crook of my neck and I loathe the wave of protective­ness that rumbles through my body. Emily’s fingers tighten their grip near my shoulders and the impulse is to shield her from the guys gawking at this intimate scene. Yeah, this is club business, but Emily never asked for any of this.

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Katie McGarry Author PhotoAbout Katie McGarry:

Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Katie is the author of full length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON, BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine’s 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.

 

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