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Tuesday, March 15, 2022

WOW! Blog Tour for "Until Next Sunday" by Audry Fryer




I am thrilled to invite you to a WOW! Women on Writing Book Blog Tour with my dear friend and talented author Audry Fryer! This book is inspired by a true story. The novel is written by Audry and the story is by: 

Linda Kotowicz

Susan Schobert

and Laurie Shanaman


Letters have been translated by Biagio Dorso




Praise: “This inspiring love story of two young Italian immigrants in 1920’s Philadelphia sparkles with heart and authenticity.” ~ Award-winning Author Lark Brennan


Until Next Sunday

Inspired by a True Story


After bravely leaving the life she knew to come to America, illness threatens Rosina’s happily ever after.


When separated, will letters keep their love alive?

After bravely leaving the life she knew to come to America, illness threatens Rosina’s happily ever after. When separated, will letters keep their love alive?


Rosina leaves Italy to build a better life, but the reality in America is nothing like the dream.


She is far from the Italian countryside and the beautiful olive groves where she grew up. Here the work is endless, and the winters are cold and desolate. She never expects to find love in such a place.


Then she met him.


Gianni, the shoemaker’s apprentice, is gentle, handsome, and everything she never knew she needed in her life.


But when Rosina falls ill and is quarantined, their future is at stake. All she can do is cling to the beautiful letters Gianni writes. Each week she tries to survive the long, lonely days until next Sunday for his brief visit.


Will fate bring Rosina and Gianni together once more? Or are they destined to remain star-crossed forever?


Until Next Sunday is a sweet Historical Romance inspired by a true story. It is based on actual Italian love letters which were discovered a century after they were written (some of which are contained in this book.)


It is a portrait of the times, and a true immigrant experience. Feel the force with which these two lives find love, against all odds.


Get Until Next Sunday – Today!


Available in ebook, paperback, and hardback through Amazon(https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09QVMBXSD?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420) , Smashwords, and popular sites like Apple Books, Barnes&Noble Nook Book, Kobo, and more!


Add Until Next Sunday to your Goodreads shelf! (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60169629-until-next-sunday)



The Blog Tour will begin on May 9th and last until the first of the new year! You can participate by reviewing the book,  spotlighting the book, or interviewing the author. 


Publisher ‏ : ‎ Of Ink & Pearls Publishing Co (February 14, 2022)

Language ‏ : ‎ English

Paperback ‏ : ‎ 278 pages

ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09QVMBXSD

#History of Mid-Atlantic U.S.

#20th Century Historical Romance (Books)

#Victorian Historical Romance (Books)



Physical copies available in the U.S.  or PDF available for all!


I'd love to have you for this Blog Tour! 

Questions? Send me an email: crystaljotto@gmail.com or call/text: 920-645-7529


 If you'd like to participate in the tour - please complete this form!



Thursday, March 10, 2022

A Goat in the Kitchen?

 

So - I've been away from blogging for awhile - but I'm getting back at it!
If you want to know more about that story - you can find it here:

Basically life and my bad attitude was getting in my way...
Here I am with a fun story I hope my children will share
with my grandchildren 
who will share it with my great grandchildren
and so on...

Let me start by saying I wasn't always a dairy farmer. Several decades ago I was a Coach sunglass wearing business woman who traveled exotic destinations staying at expensive hotels - dining at elite restaurants and attempting to do it all. At that time, I was determined to have it all as a single mother. I wanted to prove I could climb the corporate ladder, raise children, own a home, have the perfect body, the right clothes, etc...

Then I got fired.

I had to start living the life I thought I had been living. Read that again. I thought I had my priorities straight. I thought my faith came first and then my family and then my career. What had actually happened was my career and the fancy clothes, balance in the bank, and the lifestyle and become so important to me that when I lost it, I considered taking my life. At that time, I owned a beautiful home, had healthy happy children, a supportive family, and everything most people want - but I couldn't see all those blessings because I had lost a JOB.

What a blessing it was that I had been fired! I can say that now! I spend every day being thankful for the things money can't buy. I'm still wearing the Coach sunglasses because somehow they haven't become lost ... but believe me when I say, there's no way this cow milking mama can afford to replace them. In fact, I just dug around in my purse to see if I had enough change to get gas station coffee. 

What's that got to do with a goat you ask?

Well... the girl I just told you about would NEVER in a million years have a goat in her kitchen. Not temporarily, not momentarily, not EVER!

Check this out!

Yup - this is ME...
Here's what's happening in this pic:
I am sitting on my bathroom floor at 11pm
WITH a goat.
This 3 week old baby goat nearly died.
After a visit from the vet and some medicine, 
it was my job to warm up the goat enough so she'd eat.
This is my pink hairdryer and my neighbors goat...
Who would have thought?

Long story short, the neighbors were gone on vacation and their teenage daughter needed help. Instead of heading to bed, I threw on my barn boots (and my hubby's sweatshirt - don't tell him) and headed to the neighbors barn where I found a lethargic baby goat. I snuggled her into my sweatshirt and called the Vet. He gave the baby (who we named Sweetie) some antibiotics and some sugar water to help her. She had gotten so cold she couldn't eat and because she wasn't eating, her blood sugar had dropped. She had been getting sicker and sicker. She was one of three babies and the stronger siblings were pushing her away from mama - so she was tiny and not doing well at all. 

Anyway - the Vet recommended at least 24 hours of a warm environment and bottle feeding and then she could potentially go back to her mom. The neighbors and I decided it might be best if I brought her home and kept her until they returned from vacation. I know nothing about goats by the way - but a baby is a baby, right?

I warmed her with my hair dryer, cuddled her on my chest while sitting on the couch, fed her with a bottle, etc... but once she was feeling better, she was a totally different animal (figuratively speaking). The laundry basket I thought she'd stay in became an obstacle to jump and climb and I found her attempting to eat my towels, garbage bags, hair, electric cords, etc... 

Did I mention it was 1am when all this was happening? 

We still had ONE baby gate I had forgotten about - it sure came in handy as I finally found a safe space for Sweetie. IN MY KITCHEN! Here I am, a neat freak ... and now there's a goat in my kitchen, but it seemed logical as the hand towels could be moved, the cupboards could be closed, and the floor is linoleum and could be cleaned easily. (yes, goats can wear diapers, but at 1am there wasn't a way to get disposable diapers)

With Sweetie settled in the kitchen, I thought I could head up to bed. 

Did you know goats (especially baby goats) really need other goats to be happy? We learned that quite quickly - we also learned that unhappy baby goats can make a lot of noise. Now it's 2am and my children and my husband are all awake and aware there is a goat in the kitchen (except my 13 year old son who is upstairs sleeping like a baby - this is just a superpower teenage boys have I guess)! 

The awoken children took turns petting Sweetie and helped me feed her and I chased them back to bed promising the goat would be in the kitchen in the morning! How exciting, right?

I tried putting the goat to sleep but just like an infant, every time I'd tiptoe out of the room, her eyes would open and the crying would begin. 

Guess who slept on the kitchen floor with the goat?

Yup...

When my farmer woke up at 5am and came in search of his coffee, he found his wife spooning with a goat in front of the dishwasher.

One of us slept like a baby and the other one slept for about ten minutes!

The next night, my 13 year old son graciously slept on the floor (it was a Friday night - so no school) after saying "mom, you're just too old to sleep in the floor". He really wasn't wrong and I appreciate his kindness.

So - that's the story.

Sweetie has since been returned to her family and we hope to visit her often - and we also hope she remembers her time on our kitchen floor very fondly.

I am not rushing out to get a goat or have another baby, but hopefully someday my family will say "she was always up for an adventure" and they'll laugh about the night they awoke to a crying baby goat int he kitchen!

That's all for now folks!

May your days be filled with love and laughter!

Hugs,
~Crystal



Tuesday, December 28, 2021

"I'd give it 6 stars if I could" says Michelle DelPonte as she reviews "Breaking the Silence" by Nancy King

 


Thank you WOW! Women on Writing for sharing the moving memoir, Breaking the Silence by Nancy King! I was excited to be one of the first to read this book and even more excited to share my 5 Star Review! and just when I thought things couldn't get any better, I was able to share this inspirational memoir with my friend Michelle DelPonte who couldn't get her hands on it fast enough! Before we get to Michelle's review - let's find out more about the book itself! 



About Breaking the Silence: 

Secrets. Lies. Silences. Stories told by parents and their families to protect themselves. A father who defends his wife despite her damage to their daughter’s health and welfare. A mother, shielded by her husband, who perpetuates murderous acts of violence against the daughter, and keeps secret her husband’s sexual “play” with the young girl.

And yet … Nancy King, determined to learn the truth of her childhood and the heartbreaking effects it has had on her adult life, uncovers the secrets. Sees through the lies. Breaks the silence.

Empowered by the stories she told herself as a child, she learns to use stories as part of her work as a university professor teaching theater, drama, world literature, and creative expression. Gradually, with the help of body work and therapy, she finds her voice. Says no to abuse and abusers. Reclaims herself and life. Writes a memoir.

She climbs mountains. Weaves tapestries. Writes books. Makes friends. Creates a meaningful life.

This is her story.

Publisher: Terra Nova Books (July 2020)
Paperback: 386 pages
ISBN-10: 1948749491
ISBN-13: 978-1948749497
Genre: Memoir

Breaking the Silence is available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Bookshop.org. Make sure you add it to your GoodReads list.

About the Author:


I was born in Brooklyn, NYC. From the time I was 8 years old, until I left for college at 17, I traveled by myself into Manhattan to take a dance, theatre, or music lesson. After class I was free to wander about the City until I had to leave for home at 4:30. I ate in small Mom & Pop ethnic restaurants, savoring food I could neither spell nor pronounce. Theatre and dance tickets in the balconies were cheap and museums were free. All I needed were two nickels for the train rides, a nickel in case I had to make a phone call, and a quarter for lunch. The City was mine to explore. These years made an indelible impression on me in many ways: I enjoyed being with a diverse group of people, attending a variety of arts performances, and making my way in unfamiliar worlds with confidence and curiosity. 

Early experiences with abuse both at home and school led me to becoming a teacher, writer, playwright, and essayist, always focusing on issues of empowerment. I have taught creative writing, storymaking, drama, and literacy workshops in schools, universities, professional development programs, prisons, Head Start, mental hospitals, recreational centers, programs for children and adults with learning differences, and older adult programs in the US and abroad. 

In 1985 I was diagnosed with a rare and anomalous form of leukemia. When treatment allowed me to think in terms of years rather than months, and ten years after becoming a full professor at the University of Delaware, I received my PhD, in multi-disciplinary studies focusing on literature, psychology, and philosophy. 

As an award-winning author of seven books of nonfiction, my focus has always been on developing creative expression, arts-based approaches to learning, and student-centered learning. I have also written five novels, one of which, The Stones Speak, has been optioned for a movie. The focus in all of my writing and teaching has always been on empowerment. My newest book, a memoir, Breaking the Silence, is about the healing power of stories.

Visit the author's website at www.nancykingstories.com.

--- 5 Star Review by Michelle DelPonte

I was ecstatic to be chosen to read this memoir! Yes, the subject matter may not be for everyone, but as an adult who had been sexually abused growing up, I needed to connect with someone who had been through similar trials. Nancy King's "Breaking the Silence" did not disappoint. Reading about King's difficult times and how she overcame them and moved forward was empowering to me. 

Let me assure you, some of it was emotionally tough, but the resilience and dedication to finding the truth that Nancy portrays in "Breaking the Silence" is astounding. This author uses her gifts to cope, heal, survive, and ultimately thrive in life. She also goes one step further by sharing her story - she helps others who are navigating their own traumas. She provides hope and potentially healing for her readers.

This is easily a 5 star book. I would give it a 6 if I could! 







 --- Blog Tour Calendar

November 29th @ The Muffin
Join us at The Muffin for an author interview, giveaway, and blog tour launch post for Nancy King's memoir, Breaking the Silence.

November 30th @ Mindy McGinnis
Mindy McGinnis interviews Nancy King about her recently published memoir, Breaking the Silence. Don't miss this engaging interview!

December 8th @ Lost Wisp of Cosmic Dust
Sreevarsha Sreejith shares her review of Nancy King's memoir, Breaking the Silence. Stop by Instagram to learn more!

December 9th @ KnottyNeedle Creative
Judy reviews and shares her thoughts after reading Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out what she thinks about this recently released memoir.

December 10th @ Madeline Sharples Choices
Fellow memoirist Madeline Sharples spotlights Nancy King's Breaking the Silence on her blog today. Readers will be inspired by this newly released memoir!

December 13th @ Lisa Haselton Reviews and Interviews
Lisa Haselton reviews memoirist Nancy King about her recently released Breaking the Silence. Readers won't want to miss this opportunity to be inspired!

December 16th @ Word Magic: All About Books
Today's book spotlight at Word Magic is Nancy King's memoir Breaking the Silence. Readers will also hear from Wisconsin student Carmen Otto as she shares her thoughts after reading this insightful story. 

December 17th @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto
WOW!'s very own Crystal Otto shares her insight into the beautiful and inspiring memoir, Breaking the Silence by Nancy King.

December 20th @ Author Anthony Avina's Blog
Author Anthony Avina spotlight's the newly released memoir Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out more about this moving memoir and it's inspiring author today!

December 24th @ The Faerie Review
Lily at the Faerie Review shares her book review of Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. This is a memoir about a mountain climbing author who has inspired many (despite all odds)! 

December 26th @ Author Anthony Avina's Blog
Author Anthony Avina reviews Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out more about this moving memoir and Anthony's thoughts after reading it!

December 27th @ Christy Flutterby
Fellow author Christy O'Callaghan reviews Nancy King's Breaking the Silence and shares her thoughts with readers on her blog. Find out more about this moving memoir and it's resilient author! 

TODAY!!!!! December 28th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte
Wisconsin mother and healthcare worker Michelle DelPonte couldn't wait to get her hands on Nancy King's memoir Breaking the Silence. Today Michelle will share her review of this touching memoir. Stop at Bring on Lemons to learn more!

January 1st @ Boots Shoes and Fashion
Readers at Boots Shoes and Fashion will be enlightened as Linda interviews Nancy King about her newly released memoir Breaking the Silence. Don't miss an opportunity to learn from someone who has overcome the odds!

January 2nd @ Linda Appleman Shapiro
Fellow memoirist Linda Appleman Shapiro hosts Nancy King and Breaking the Silence as today's feature book on her blog!


***** ABOUT TODAY'S REVIEWER



Michelle is a busy mom, healthcare worker, and autism advocate. Michelle lives on the shores of Lake Michigan with her beloved family. 



*****

Friday, December 17, 2021

"The First Chapter Had Me Hooked" said Cathy Hansen as she reviews "Blind Spot" by Robert Hoffman

 

Cathy Hansen is a mother and small business owner from the Midwest. She wrote me after reading the first chapter of Robert Hoffman's book "Blind Spot" - and said she was hooked and couldn't wait to find out how things played out. She knew from the very beginning she was going to love this week and I'm excited to share her entire review with all of you today!

xoxox
Crystal - the Big Lemon Herself!!!



But before we hear more from Cathy, a bit more from the author himself about Blind Spot:

In this comedy/drama, based very, very loosely on my own experiences, a middle-aged father of three named Doug Kaplan appears to have it all. An attractive and supportive wife, three healthy boys, and a successful career.  He doesn’t shy away from his responsibilities as a father or as a son to his aging parents, and he is valued and respected at work.  However, all his life he has been plagued by the accusation that he does suffer from one significant character flaw, a subtle but substantial penchant for being selfish, a flaw that he is largely oblivious to.

Doug Kaplan’s life was progressing about as well as he could have hoped for. In addition to his loving wife and family, he and his wife Kelly had finally purchased a house in lovely Seaford, Long Island, and while it may have been a fixer-upper, it was still going to be their dream home.  Despite his selfish streak, which by his wife’s own admission could be off-putting, he might never have found his blessed existence sidetracked, until he encountered the elderly woman next door who proved to be a seemingly unavoidable obstacle.  Who knew that their home on the cul-de-sac known as McGregor Court would be nestled next to the biggest know-it-all and budinsky in the entire Metropolitan area.  Yes, Trudy Fleischmann was a force to be reckoned with.  Emigrated from Germany as a little girl at the end of World War Two, Trudy has known suffering and sacrifice, but she is also wise and caring, and why shouldn’t she share her knowledge and opinions with the young couple who has just moved in next door.

Already having to look after Kelly’s widowed mother as well as their growing family, Doug and Kelly end up seeing their responsibilities increase exponentially as not only does Trudy’s husband Burt die, and remove the one pleasant buffer that lay between Doug and Trudy, but Doug’s father passes as well, and now he and Kelly must provide care for three elderly widows as well as their three young boys. However Doug’s entire existence will become, much to his chagrin, inextricably tied to Trudy after he accidentally runs her over with his car one beautiful summer’s day in a supermarket parking lot. Can Doug overcome his selfishness and provide the care and patience that the badly injured Trudy requires? Doug’s family, career, and sense of who he is as a person are all on the line as he tries to summon his better angels and do the right thing.

The Blind Spot is available on Amazon and Bookshop.org. Make sure to add it to your GoodReads reading list too.

Who is Robert Hoffman? 
It’s about time somebody asked that question.  Rob Hoffman is originally from a town on Long Island called North Massapequa.  He attended SUNY Oswego where he majored in Communications, a degree that it turned out he had little use for.  He did however meet  the woman who would eventually become my wife, the former Michelle Lindell.  Rob and Michelle lived in the aptly named Flushing, Queens for six years before moving to a town called Clifton Park, New York just south of Saratoga Springs.  Finding little value in his degree in communications, Rob became a social studies teacher, teaching in Long Island City, Queens for four years before spending the remainder of his career in Rensselaer, New York, a small city on the banks of the Hudson River just across the water from Albany.  Rob taught for 31 years before retiring in June of 2021, only to come back as a part-time teacher in September of 2021 at Rensselaer High School.  Rob had always been interested in becoming a writer and he began his blogging career as a contributor at the “Times Union” of Albany for six years.  In this time Rob also blogged for a variety of sites including Fark.com, Crooks and Liars.com, Albany.com, and Knees and Fists.com.  Rob has remained happily married to Michelle for 34 years and counting, and has two grown sons, Andrew and Alex, ages 29 and 23.  Most recently, Rob and Michelle became grandparents to the newest addition to the family, Sam Hoffman, son of Andrew and his wife Katie.

Blind Spot represents Rob’s first true attempt at writing fiction, an experience Rob both fun and exhausting. Rob had thrown around several ideas as he began to think about what it was he wanted to write about, and then one day his wife had sent him to the supermarket on an errand where he saw somebody he really didn’t want to spend anytime talking to, so he raced out of the store, got in his car, turned it on, slammed it into reverse and was about to speed out of the spot when he stopped himself and said, “Dumb-ass, be careful, you could hit somebody.” Then, as Rob began to slowly and carefully pull out of his parking spot, he thought for another second and it occurred to him how ironic it would be if he accidentally hit the person he was trying to get away from and “Blind Spot” was born.  The character of Doug Kaplan, while not autobiographical, is sort of based on the best and worst of Rob’s traits.  Doug is at times the guy Rob always wanted to be, and yet at the same time, Doug also represented the guy Rob was relieved to know he never became. The other characters according to Rob are combinations of people that he knew from his childhood, as well as college and work experiences.

Follow the author online at: 



--- 5 Star Review by Cathy Hansen 


I found The Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman to be a suspenseful read. From the moment I read the phrase, “on that fateful day,” in the very first chapter, I was hooked, first wanting to know exactly what terrible event was going to take place on that fateful day, and then excitedly reading to find out just what had happened to bring Doug and Trudy to the day of the accident. 

 I was initially frustrated with the changes in character perspective each chapter, because I was anxious to find out what had happened, but I soon realized that the author’s chosen approach to the story provided such an interesting wealth of information about what made the characters who they were. I settled in to enjoy the journey through what made Doug who he was and what made Trudy who she was, and was not disappointed. 

The backstory behind each character is essential to the story. I particularly enjoyed the historical and cultural details that shaped the characters’ lives. The characters were well-developed and thought provoking. The Blind Spot really makes one think about what motivates people to do what they do, and what makes them who they are, and how dealing with tragic events can affect a family for multiple generations. 

 Doug is a character that you want to hate at first. You want to know how he could be so selfish. Then you question if Doug is really that different than most people. Or if YOU might be like Doug. This book had me at the edge of my seat. It made me laugh, it made me want to cry, and at times it even made me angry with some characters. I won’t give any spoilers, but the last paragraph was the perfect ending! 

 I would love to read more from this author

 


ABOUT TODAY'S REVIEWER



Cathy Hansen is a wife, mom, teacher, independent beauty consultant, and small business owner. She and her husband operate SeedsNBeans, a local nature store, in Two Rivers, Wisconsin.



--- Blog Tour Calendar

November 22nd @ The Muffin
Join us at The Muffin for an author interview, giveaway, and blog tour launch post for Robert Hoffman's The Blind Spot.
https://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/

November 23rd @ Lisa Haselton Book Reviews and Interviews
Today, Lisa Haselton interviews Robert Hoffman about his humorous work of fiction titled Blind Spot. Find out more about this debut novel and it's author!
https://lisahaselton.com/blog/

November 24th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples
Readers at Choices will hear from guest author Robert Hoffman with his post titled " Man Plans and God Laughs. " Don't miss this guest post and an opportunity to hear about Hoffman's debut novel Blind Spot.
http://madelinesharples.com/

November 26th @ The Faerie Review
The Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman is the highlighted book today at the Faerie Review - don't miss a chance to learn more this work of humorous fiction by an accomplished blogger!
https://www.thefaeriereview.com/

November 29th @ Word Magic with Fiona Ingram
Robert Hoffman pens today's guest post at Word Magic (fellow author Fiona Ingram's blog). Don't miss this great article titled: "Sorry isn't Enough" and an opportunity to learn more about Robert and his latest work of humorous fiction - Blind Spot.
http://fionaingramauthor.blogspot.com

December 2nd @ The Knotty Needle
Judy reviews Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman for readers at the Knotty Needle. Don't miss this opportunity find out more about Hoffman's humorous work of fiction!
https://knottyneedle.blogspot.com/

December 3rd @ Beverley A. Baird
"Do I Have a Story to Tell" is today's post at Beverley A. Baird. This post is penned by none other than Robert Hoffman who recently released Blind Spot, a humorous novel readers are raving about! Don't miss your chance to learn more from Hoffman himself!
https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

December 4th @ Author Anthony Avina
Readers at Anthony's blog will delight in today's guest post "Woulda Coulda Shoulda" by author Robert Hoffman. Don't miss this guest post and opportunity to learn more about Hoffman's new book Blind Spot. Stop back in a few days (on the 11th) to read Author Anthony Avina's review of "The Blind" spot as well!
http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 7th @ World of My Imagination with Nicole Pyles
Readers at World of My Imagination are in for a special treat! Not only is Nicole going to review Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman, but she also will be offering a giveaway! This is your chance to learn more about this humorous book and maybe even snag a copy of your own!
https://worldofmyimagination.com

December 9th @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto
Crystal Otto reviews Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman for readers at Bring on Lemons - Otto has hinted that she would give this book 5 stars and said "it made me laugh out loud so often" - so don't miss your chance to hear more about this debut novel!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 11th @ Author Anthony Avina
Fellow Author Anthony Avina reviews "Blind Spot" by Robert Hoffman.
http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 14th @ Linda Appleman Shapiro
Fellow Author Linda Appleman Shapiro shares her thoughts about Robert Hoffman's Blind Spot. Find out what an accomplished Memoirist and Psychotherapist thinks of this humorous work of fiction.
http://applemanshapiro.com/category/book-reviews/

December 15th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte
Michelle DelPonte, a Wisconsin mother, healthcare worker, autism advocate, and history buff shares her review of Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman. You won't want to miss Michelle's insight into this humorous book!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 16th @ Bring on Lemons with 14 Year Old Carmen Otto
14 year old Carmen Otto heard her mom laughing out loud while reading Blind Spot and couldn't help from grabbing a copy to read for herself. Find out what a young reader things of this debut novel by Robert Hoffman!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

TODAY!!!!!!!! December 18th @ Bring on Lemons with Cathy Hansen
Wisconsin business owner and educator Cathy Hansen offers insight into what she thought after reading Robert Hoffman's debut novel Blind Spot. Will this be a lemon or sweet lemonade? Stop by Bring on Lemons to find out!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 24th @ Jill Sheet's Blog
Stop by Jill Sheet's Blog today and hear from Robert Hoffman as he pens his guest post titled "Aren't We All Just a Little Bit Selfish?" just in time for the holidays! Learn more about this topic as well as Hoffman's novel Blind Spot!
http://jillsheets.blogspot.com/


***** THANK YOU AGAIN ROB HOFFMAN AND WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING!!  *****

"Breaking the Silence by Nancy King is a book that will change you" says Crystal Otto in her 5 star review!

 


Thank you WOW! Women on Writing for sharing the moving memoir, Breaking the Silence by Nancy King! I was excited to be one of the first to read this book and even more excited to share my 5 Star Review!

But first... a bit about the book and it's brave author!

About Breaking the Silence: 

Secrets. Lies. Silences. Stories told by parents and their families to protect themselves. A father who defends his wife despite her damage to their daughter’s health and welfare. A mother, shielded by her husband, who perpetuates murderous acts of violence against the daughter, and keeps secret her husband’s sexual “play” with the young girl.

And yet … Nancy King, determined to learn the truth of her childhood and the heartbreaking effects it has had on her adult life, uncovers the secrets. Sees through the lies. Breaks the silence.

Empowered by the stories she told herself as a child, she learns to use stories as part of her work as a university professor teaching theater, drama, world literature, and creative expression. Gradually, with the help of body work and therapy, she finds her voice. Says no to abuse and abusers. Reclaims herself and life. Writes a memoir.

She climbs mountains. Weaves tapestries. Writes books. Makes friends. Creates a meaningful life.

This is her story.

Publisher: Terra Nova Books (July 2020)
Paperback: 386 pages
ISBN-10: 1948749491
ISBN-13: 978-1948749497
Genre: Memoir

Breaking the Silence is available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Bookshop.org. Make sure you add it to your GoodReads list.

About the Author:


I was born in Brooklyn, NYC. From the time I was 8 years old, until I left for college at 17, I traveled by myself into Manhattan to take a dance, theatre, or music lesson. After class I was free to wander about the City until I had to leave for home at 4:30. I ate in small Mom & Pop ethnic restaurants, savoring food I could neither spell nor pronounce. Theatre and dance tickets in the balconies were cheap and museums were free. All I needed were two nickels for the train rides, a nickel in case I had to make a phone call, and a quarter for lunch. The City was mine to explore. These years made an indelible impression on me in many ways: I enjoyed being with a diverse group of people, attending a variety of arts performances, and making my way in unfamiliar worlds with confidence and curiosity. 

Early experiences with abuse both at home and school led me to becoming a teacher, writer, playwright, and essayist, always focusing on issues of empowerment. I have taught creative writing, storymaking, drama, and literacy workshops in schools, universities, professional development programs, prisons, Head Start, mental hospitals, recreational centers, programs for children and adults with learning differences, and older adult programs in the US and abroad. 

In 1985 I was diagnosed with a rare and anomalous form of leukemia. When treatment allowed me to think in terms of years rather than months, and ten years after becoming a full professor at the University of Delaware, I received my PhD, in multi-disciplinary studies focusing on literature, psychology, and philosophy. 

As an award-winning author of seven books of nonfiction, my focus has always been on developing creative expression, arts-based approaches to learning, and student-centered learning. I have also written five novels, one of which, The Stones Speak, has been optioned for a movie. The focus in all of my writing and teaching has always been on empowerment. My newest book, a memoir, Breaking the Silence, is about the healing power of stories.

Visit the author's website at www.nancykingstories.com.

--- 5 Star Review by Crystal J. Casavant-Otto

I feel a need to begin this review with a disclaimer: As much as I enjoy memoir, I wasn't in love with the idea of this book at first. I was afraid of all the emotional triggers it may contain. I assume there are others who feel the same so I am writing this as a way to set your mind at ease - this is not a poor me book about someone who was abused. This is a beautiful book about finding what fills your life with joy and about resilience. Breaking the Silence is about triumph and empowering others. That said, I am incredibly thankful that I read this book and I hope others will do so as well. I am happy to give this book 5 stars. 

Breaking the Silence is a touching memoir about rising above the negatives of life and not allowing trauma and abuse to define you. Author Nancy King empowers her readers to share their experiences without fear and to find creative outlets. King's motto is: 

Compassion. Empowerment. Healing.

She most definitely is the Heroine in her stories and I am incredibly thankful for her bravery and willingness to share her life in the written word. When I finished reading Breaking the Silence I didn't have the happily ever after feeling, but I did feel empowered to take control of even the most difficult situations. King helps readers move beyond fear and shame to find a life full of joy and a spirit ready to meet whatever trials and challenges they come across! 

This book left me feeling changed. I am glad I read it - it was not a fast read. I set it down often to really absorb the feelings I was having. What a life changing experience.



 --- Blog Tour Calendar

November 29th @ The Muffin
Join us at The Muffin for an author interview, giveaway, and blog tour launch post for Nancy King's memoir, Breaking the Silence.

November 30th @ Mindy McGinnis
Mindy McGinnis interviews Nancy King about her recently published memoir, Breaking the Silence. Don't miss this engaging interview!

December 8th @ Lost Wisp of Cosmic Dust
Sreevarsha Sreejith shares her review of Nancy King's memoir, Breaking the Silence. Stop by Instagram to learn more!

December 9th @ KnottyNeedle Creative
Judy reviews and shares her thoughts after reading Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out what she thinks about this recently released memoir.

December 10th @ Madeline Sharples Choices
Fellow memoirist Madeline Sharples spotlights Nancy King's Breaking the Silence on her blog today. Readers will be inspired by this newly released memoir!

December 13th @ Lisa Haselton Reviews and Interviews
Lisa Haselton reviews memoirist Nancy King about her recently released Breaking the Silence. Readers won't want to miss this opportunity to be inspired!

December 16th @ Word Magic: All About Books
Today's book spotlight at Word Magic is Nancy King's memoir Breaking the Silence. Readers will also hear from Wisconsin student Carmen Otto as she shares her thoughts after reading this insightful story. 

TODAY!!!!! December 17th @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto
WOW!'s very own Crystal Otto shares her insight into the beautiful and inspiring memoir, Breaking the Silence by Nancy King.

December 20th @ Author Anthony Avina's Blog
Author Anthony Avina spotlight's the newly released memoir Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out more about this moving memoir and it's inspiring author today!

December 24th @ The Faerie Review
Lily at the Faerie Review shares her book review of Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. This is a memoir about a mountain climbing author who has inspired many (despite all odds)! 

December 26th @ Author Anthony Avina's Blog
Author Anthony Avina reviews Breaking the Silence by Nancy King. Find out more about this moving memoir and Anthony's thoughts after reading it!

December 27th @ Christy Flutterby
Fellow author Christy O'Callaghan reviews Nancy King's Breaking the Silence and shares her thoughts with readers on her blog. Find out more about this moving memoir and it's resilient author! 

December 28th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte
Wisconsin mother and healthcare worker Michelle DelPonte couldn't wait to get her hands on Nancy King's memoir Breaking the Silence. Today Michelle will share her review of this touching memoir. Stop at Bring on Lemons to learn more!

January 1st @ Boots Shoes and Fashion
Readers at Boots Shoes and Fashion will be enlightened as Linda interviews Nancy King about her newly released memoir Breaking the Silence. Don't miss an opportunity to learn from someone who has overcome the odds!

January 2nd @ Linda Appleman Shapiro
Fellow memoirist Linda Appleman Shapiro hosts Nancy King and Breaking the Silence as today's feature book on her blog!


***** BOOK GIVEAWAY *****

Enter to win a copy of Breaking the Silence, a memoir by Nancy King, by filling out the Rafflecopter form below. The giveaway ends December 12th at 11:59 pm. We will announce the random winner the next day in the Rafflecopter widget and follow up via email. Good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, December 16, 2021

"Blind Spot" is a GREAT BOOK says 14 Year Old Carmen Otto

 

Carmen is a 14 year old book lover from Wisconsin and she strongly suggests reading Robert Hoffman's book "Blind Spot" - she calls it GREAT!



But before we hear from Carmen, a bit more from the author himself about Blind Spot:

In this comedy/drama, based very, very loosely on my own experiences, a middle-aged father of three named Doug Kaplan appears to have it all. An attractive and supportive wife, three healthy boys, and a successful career.  He doesn’t shy away from his responsibilities as a father or as a son to his aging parents, and he is valued and respected at work.  However, all his life he has been plagued by the accusation that he does suffer from one significant character flaw, a subtle but substantial penchant for being selfish, a flaw that he is largely oblivious to.

Doug Kaplan’s life was progressing about as well as he could have hoped for. In addition to his loving wife and family, he and his wife Kelly had finally purchased a house in lovely Seaford, Long Island, and while it may have been a fixer-upper, it was still going to be their dream home.  Despite his selfish streak, which by his wife’s own admission could be off-putting, he might never have found his blessed existence sidetracked, until he encountered the elderly woman next door who proved to be a seemingly unavoidable obstacle.  Who knew that their home on the cul-de-sac known as McGregor Court would be nestled next to the biggest know-it-all and budinsky in the entire Metropolitan area.  Yes, Trudy Fleischmann was a force to be reckoned with.  Emigrated from Germany as a little girl at the end of World War Two, Trudy has known suffering and sacrifice, but she is also wise and caring, and why shouldn’t she share her knowledge and opinions with the young couple who has just moved in next door.

Already having to look after Kelly’s widowed mother as well as their growing family, Doug and Kelly end up seeing their responsibilities increase exponentially as not only does Trudy’s husband Burt die, and remove the one pleasant buffer that lay between Doug and Trudy, but Doug’s father passes as well, and now he and Kelly must provide care for three elderly widows as well as their three young boys. However Doug’s entire existence will become, much to his chagrin, inextricably tied to Trudy after he accidentally runs her over with his car one beautiful summer’s day in a supermarket parking lot. Can Doug overcome his selfishness and provide the care and patience that the badly injured Trudy requires? Doug’s family, career, and sense of who he is as a person are all on the line as he tries to summon his better angels and do the right thing.

The Blind Spot is available on Amazon and Bookshop.org. Make sure to add it to your GoodReads reading list too.

Who is Robert Hoffman? 
It’s about time somebody asked that question.  Rob Hoffman is originally from a town on Long Island called North Massapequa.  He attended SUNY Oswego where he majored in Communications, a degree that it turned out he had little use for.  He did however meet  the woman who would eventually become my wife, the former Michelle Lindell.  Rob and Michelle lived in the aptly named Flushing, Queens for six years before moving to a town called Clifton Park, New York just south of Saratoga Springs.  Finding little value in his degree in communications, Rob became a social studies teacher, teaching in Long Island City, Queens for four years before spending the remainder of his career in Rensselaer, New York, a small city on the banks of the Hudson River just across the water from Albany.  Rob taught for 31 years before retiring in June of 2021, only to come back as a part-time teacher in September of 2021 at Rensselaer High School.  Rob had always been interested in becoming a writer and he began his blogging career as a contributor at the “Times Union” of Albany for six years.  In this time Rob also blogged for a variety of sites including Fark.com, Crooks and Liars.com, Albany.com, and Knees and Fists.com.  Rob has remained happily married to Michelle for 34 years and counting, and has two grown sons, Andrew and Alex, ages 29 and 23.  Most recently, Rob and Michelle became grandparents to the newest addition to the family, Sam Hoffman, son of Andrew and his wife Katie.

Blind Spot represents Rob’s first true attempt at writing fiction, an experience Rob both fun and exhausting. Rob had thrown around several ideas as he began to think about what it was he wanted to write about, and then one day his wife had sent him to the supermarket on an errand where he saw somebody he really didn’t want to spend anytime talking to, so he raced out of the store, got in his car, turned it on, slammed it into reverse and was about to speed out of the spot when he stopped himself and said, “Dumb-ass, be careful, you could hit somebody.” Then, as Rob began to slowly and carefully pull out of his parking spot, he thought for another second and it occurred to him how ironic it would be if he accidentally hit the person he was trying to get away from and “Blind Spot” was born.  The character of Doug Kaplan, while not autobiographical, is sort of based on the best and worst of Rob’s traits.  Doug is at times the guy Rob always wanted to be, and yet at the same time, Doug also represented the guy Rob was relieved to know he never became. The other characters according to Rob are combinations of people that he knew from his childhood, as well as college and work experiences.

Follow the author online at: 



--- 5 Star Review by 14 year old Carmen Otto

The book Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman is a great book about how you shouldn't be selfish. After moving to a new house with his family he meets Trudy Fleischmann, his very proud opinionated German immigrant. He tries very hard to avoid his obnoxious neighbor but he is rarely successful. After an accident that involved Trudy getting hurt and Doug being the one who hurt her. Doug needs to overcome his selfishness and help Trudy even though he doesn't like her. 

My favorite character was Trudy because she is hardworking, caring, and strong willed. She had to step up as caretaker as soon as her mom died at 16 while her younger sister got to keep doing the things she loved. She is very opinionated, she likes to tell people exactly what she thinks. 

 I really enjoyed the part when Doug was talking about really liking Burt Trudy’s husband. I really enjoyed the part when Doug and Burt were standing by the fence and talking about how maybe Burt should stop smoking because of the cost and because of health issues that could form because of the smoking. There were multiple scenes that were written very well and they were very tense. The book made me laugh and cry all at the same time. As soon as I read the first chapter I knew that I couldn’t set this book down. 

 I really wish that the book had more to it because the ending was left on a cliffhanger. I would recommend this book to my grandma because she loves books that are easy to read and she loves a good laugh. I give this book 5/5 stars because it was super easy to understand and the characters were great. I also really enjoyed the way that the author wrote the book.

 


ABOUT TODAY'S REVIEWER





Carmen is a teenager from Wisconsin where she enjoys all the animals on her family farm, reading, swimming, and spending time with friends! 



--- Blog Tour Calendar

November 22nd @ The Muffin
Join us at The Muffin for an author interview, giveaway, and blog tour launch post for Robert Hoffman's The Blind Spot.
https://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/

November 23rd @ Lisa Haselton Book Reviews and Interviews
Today, Lisa Haselton interviews Robert Hoffman about his humorous work of fiction titled Blind Spot. Find out more about this debut novel and it's author!
https://lisahaselton.com/blog/

November 24th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples
Readers at Choices will hear from guest author Robert Hoffman with his post titled " Man Plans and God Laughs. " Don't miss this guest post and an opportunity to hear about Hoffman's debut novel Blind Spot.
http://madelinesharples.com/

November 26th @ The Faerie Review
The Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman is the highlighted book today at the Faerie Review - don't miss a chance to learn more this work of humorous fiction by an accomplished blogger!
https://www.thefaeriereview.com/

November 29th @ Word Magic with Fiona Ingram
Robert Hoffman pens today's guest post at Word Magic (fellow author Fiona Ingram's blog). Don't miss this great article titled: "Sorry isn't Enough" and an opportunity to learn more about Robert and his latest work of humorous fiction - Blind Spot.
http://fionaingramauthor.blogspot.com

December 2nd @ The Knotty Needle
Judy reviews Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman for readers at the Knotty Needle. Don't miss this opportunity find out more about Hoffman's humorous work of fiction!
https://knottyneedle.blogspot.com/

December 3rd @ Beverley A. Baird
"Do I Have a Story to Tell" is today's post at Beverley A. Baird. This post is penned by none other than Robert Hoffman who recently released Blind Spot, a humorous novel readers are raving about! Don't miss your chance to learn more from Hoffman himself!
https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

December 4th @ Author Anthony Avina
Readers at Anthony's blog will delight in today's guest post "Woulda Coulda Shoulda" by author Robert Hoffman. Don't miss this guest post and opportunity to learn more about Hoffman's new book Blind Spot. Stop back in a few days (on the 11th) to read Author Anthony Avina's review of "The Blind" spot as well!
http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 7th @ World of My Imagination with Nicole Pyles
Readers at World of My Imagination are in for a special treat! Not only is Nicole going to review Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman, but she also will be offering a giveaway! This is your chance to learn more about this humorous book and maybe even snag a copy of your own!
https://worldofmyimagination.com

December 9th @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto
Crystal Otto reviews Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman for readers at Bring on Lemons - Otto has hinted that she would give this book 5 stars and said "it made me laugh out loud so often" - so don't miss your chance to hear more about this debut novel!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 11th @ Author Anthony Avina
Fellow Author Anthony Avina reviews "Blind Spot" by Robert Hoffman.
http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 14th @ Linda Appleman Shapiro
Fellow Author Linda Appleman Shapiro shares her thoughts about Robert Hoffman's Blind Spot. Find out what an accomplished Memoirist and Psychotherapist thinks of this humorous work of fiction.
http://applemanshapiro.com/category/book-reviews/

December 15th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte
Michelle DelPonte, a Wisconsin mother, healthcare worker, autism advocate, and history buff shares her review of Blind Spot by Robert Hoffman. You won't want to miss Michelle's insight into this humorous book!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!! December 16th @ Bring on Lemons with 14 Year Old Carmen Otto
14 year old Carmen Otto heard her mom laughing out loud while reading Blind Spot and couldn't help from grabbing a copy to read for herself. Find out what a young reader things of this debut novel by Robert Hoffman!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 18th @ Bring on Lemons with Cathy Hansen
Wisconsin business owner and educator Cathy Hansen offers insight into what she thought after reading Robert Hoffman's debut novel Blind Spot. Will this be a lemon or sweet lemonade? Stop by Bring on Lemons to find out!
http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 24th @ Jill Sheet's Blog
Stop by Jill Sheet's Blog today and hear from Robert Hoffman as he pens his guest post titled "Aren't We All Just a Little Bit Selfish?" just in time for the holidays! Learn more about this topic as well as Hoffman's novel Blind Spot!
http://jillsheets.blogspot.com/


***** THANK YOU AGAIN ROB HOFFMAN AND WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING!!  *****