Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Winners Announced!

Hi everyone! Back from my trip to San Diego and I've chosen some winners. I hope one of the lucky ones is you, but if not, I've got some amazing books coming your way, including books from Amy Hatvany, Stacey Ballis, (whose new website design I LOVE!) newcomer, Charity Shumway, Snarky Mommy aka Amy Sprenger and loads, loads more! I can't wait to share them all with you. 


But for now, here are the two winners I've got for today. The first lucky winner will win a copy of WHERE WE BELONG, Emily Giffin's amazing book, which has sold out in stores across the country. That lucky winner is Cheryl B, who first felt like she belonged when she was in college, where she, like me, met her hubby! Congrats Cheryl -- send me your full name and address and I'll get your copy of WHERE WE BELONG out to you!


The next winner has won ELEVEN books from the Summer Book Celebration Major Giveaway. This one was so much fun to do, I think I may do this quarterly! I'll choose some of my faves and offer up a little 'gift' batch of books for you all to enjoy! The winner of the books by Megan Abbott, Sere Prince Halverson, Catherine McKenzie, Nichole Bernier, Tracey Garvis Graves, Rainbow Rowell, Sarah Healy, Anita Hughes, Zoe Fishman and Camille Noe Pagan goes to: EKB who entered the contest while she was vacationing in Cape Cod!

So ladies, please send me your full names and address to stephanieelliot@gmail.com and I'll make sure you get your books.


Thanks everyone for entering, and be on the lookout later this week for another great feature and giveaway!


Peace Up!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Summer Book Celebration MAJOR GIVEAWAY





Happy Middle of the Summer Book Celebration!

I'm on vacation and since I didn't want to leave you all hanging, I thought I would offer a fun giveaway while I'm lounging away on a beach. Sounds fun? Well, I hope you enjoy it because I've got a load of great books to offer to ONE LUCKY WINNER!

I decided to put all my new-found-faves into one batch of great reads for you. These are all relatively newly released books from authors I have recently discovered that I think would make great summer reads. Whether they have water themes (some of them do), or just were really great books with characters that I couldn't get out of my mind, I want someone to have a collection of them all. So, thanks to these authors and their publicists, it's going to happen for YOU!

Here is the list of books that are up for grabs to ONE LUCKY WINNER, in no particular order: 

(Click on the title of the book for the full previous Manic review)

Can I Get An Amen - Sarah Healy
I’m in love with Ellen who gets dumped by her husband because of their infertility problems and she finds herself back at home with her very God-loving, God-fearing mom, who spurts phrases about the Lord every other sentence, and suggests that Jesus will show Ellen the way. 


On the Island - Tracey Garvis Graves
People love this book. It's got a great catch to it -- two people are stranded on a deserted island -- a 16-year-old boy who's in remission from cancer, and his 30-year-old tutor. And yep, they get BUSY! But, Tracey doesn't get all Fifty Shades of Grey on us … however, I can guarantee there is some steamy scenes and you'll definitely be thinking about TJ and Anna long after you close the pages of On the Island

The Underside of Joy - Sere Prince Halverson
A stepmom loses her husband to a drowning, and the birth mother comes back to reclaim her two children. A custody battle ensues. It’s not your basic stepmom fights birth mother story – the writing is so lyrical and fluid, and the setting adds so much to the novel in the fictional Elbow, California, with its Redwood trees, the lush forest, and the flowing river that runs through it.

Saving Ruth - Zoe Fishman

 
A near-drowning at the pool occurs and the events that transpire afterward put the whole story into motion – Saving Ruth deals with issues of eating disorders, depression, racial indifferences, marriage problems, sibling rivalry, and family relationships. 



The End of Everything - Megan Abbott
The End of Everything is another one of those books that I read about and I KNEW in my gut I just had to read ASAP. There are very few books like this that I just feel in my soul when I read about it that I just KNOW I have to get my hands on it or I will die won't be able to stop thinking about it. (Megan's got another one I'll be featuring very soon called DARE ME that you'll LOVE as well!)

Attachments - Rainbow Rowell
The story is set in 1999 when email is just coming onto the scene. Two of the main characters, Beth and Jennifer, both who work at a newspaper, correspond with one another through email. The guy whose job it is to monitor email at the company, Lincoln, falls in love with Beth through her emails, never having seen her because he works nights.

The Art of Forgetting - Camille Noe Pagan
I cracked it open thinking I would take a sneak peek and suddenly I was on chapter six dying to know what was happening with the mystery behind Nathan, Marissa’s ex-love, and wondering about the brain injury that her best friend, Julia sustains. I read this book at a super-fast pace and couldn’t recommend it enough! Such a great read!

Monarch Beach - Anita Hughes
This is the one I have actually been savoring to take to the beach with me as a special present to myself to enjoy! Already going into second printing! Yay Anita! 

This is one of those books that I hunted down myself. I saw it on FB or somewhere on another author’s page and I knew I had to get my hands on it so I contacted the author’s publicist and asked for it. The whole mystery of the story caught my eye; the fact that the main character is already gone and her best friend has to put pieces of the mystery together by reading her journals, and the fact that it’s actually two stories in one. I just love journal stories! And I wanted this book!

Spin & Arranged - Catherine McKenzie
SPIN: I loved SPIN because it was a little like peeking into the life of a starlet like Lindsay Lohan or Britney Spears in rehab, and the ways that Katie matures during her rehab stint shows that it’s possible for even the most skeptical to gain a little insight in rehab. And yes, there’s also a little love connection going on in rehab too, so you won’t want to miss out on SPIN!

ARRANGED: Anne Blythe has just broken up with another one of her boyfriends and finds a business card in the street promoting what she thinks is a dating company. She keeps the card and eventually calls this ‘dating’ company only to discover they really arrange marriages. Tired of picking the wrong men, and after deep contemplation, she agrees to be matched for marriage. Soon, Anne is on her way to Mexico to meet, Jack, the man who’s the perfect match for her, sight unseen.

So, if you want to receive ALL 11 of these books by these 10 authors to watch for, leave me a comment on what the most exciting thing you've done or will do this summer! 

A random winner will be chosen when I get back from my very own summer week at the beach. 

Please note we can only send winning books to a U.S. or Canada winner!

Thanks, and I hope you've enjoyed this little extra surprise giveaway on Booking with Manic! 


If you're new to Booking with Manic, thank you for stopping by! We love new readers! Some notes - If you're entering to win a book, please use an identifying name and it's usually a great idea to include an email, which I will never give out to anyone else. You can only enter once please. You'll need to check back here in about a week or so to see if you've won the book -- I will highlight the winner's name at the top of this post. Most books are supplied directly through publishers, publicists and the authors. Winners will receive books directly from the publisher within 3 weeks from the time you provide me with your address, unless I send you the book (sometimes I will). Sorry, but we can only ship to U.S. and Canada so if you're from another country, thank you for coming by to read and discover new authors, but we can't send you a book. Any questions on how I run the blog or suggestions on who you would like to see featured, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com. Thank you for your support!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Quick Announcement

Hi everyone -- I'm on vacation and I've just picked the latest winners for ON THE ISLAND and WHAT I DID which I will list below. I was going to pick Emily Giffin's WHERE WE BELONG winner but didn't think that was very fair since I just put the post up yesterday so I'll maybe pick the winner while on vacation. If you haven't entered that one yet, you still have time, so click on over here to enter to win Emily Giffin's WHERE WE BELONG!

However, while I'm away, I have scheduled a REALLY BIG EVENT for WEDNESDAY so please come back.

ONE OF YOU will have a chance to win 10 of my favorites... a really fun post is coming your way! Don't forget to stop on by!

Now, here are the latest winners:

WHAT I DID goes to: LAURA who had strep throat! (I hope you are feeling better!) Please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com with your full name and address so I can get your book to you. But don't send your germs!

ON THE ISLAND goes to: Accidental Gypsy! Who has won on Booking with Manic before! It always pleases me when Random.org picks a number and I see that a person who's won is a winner again -- you keep coming back here to Booking with Manic, and your turn will come up, and sometimes your name will come up AGAIN! Lynn, I've got your address and have already put your book in motion!

Everyone, please stop by on Wednesday -- I put a lot of thought into this really fun giveaway on Wednesday and I hope you'll enjoy seeing what I have for you. A lot of fun books for ONE LUCKY WINNER!!!

Take care! GOOD LUCK!

If you're new to Booking with Manic, here are some important details for the giveaways:


If you're new to Booking with Manic, thank you for stopping by! We love new readers! Some notes - If you're entering to win a book, please use an identifying name and it's usually a great idea to include an email, which I will never give out to anyone else. You can only enter once please. You'll need to check back here in about a week or so to see if you've won the book -- I will highlight the winner's name at the top of this post. Most books are supplied directly through publishers, publicists and the authors. Winners will receive books directly from the publisher within 3 weeks from the time you provide me with your address, unless I send you the book (sometimes I will). Sorry, but we can only ship to U.S. and Canada so if you're from another country, thank you for coming by to read and discover new authors, but we can't send you a book. Any questions on how I run the blog or suggestions on who you would like to see featured, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com. Thank you for your support!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

WHERE WE BELONG by Emily Giffin





Well, it's here, another long-awaited Emily Giffin book! Waiting for an Emily Giffin book is like waiting for your very own birthday or for Christmas or for your summer vacation. It's just one of those things that as a reader, I anticipate now every year as something to be really excited about. And unlike birthdays, for me anyway, Emily's books do keep getting better year after year! Haha! (not that my birthdays are terrible, but getting older is not always the most fun thing to do. Getting a new Emily Giffin book however, is the most fun thing to do!).

I remember the first time I saw Something Borrowed in the store. It was the shiny pink and diamond embossed cover that got my attention, and then, like probably most of you, I was hooked with her endearing loveable characters, even difficult Darcy. 

I followed Emily and since I lived in what was once her hometown, I was fortunate to get to meet her at some signings. The first time I met her at a reading, she was sharing stories about SoBo and SoBlue, but I noticed her third book up on the podium. When she asked if there were any questions in the audience (which back then, it was held at the library where her mother worked and there were about 20 of us in attendance!), I boldly asked her, "What does one have to do to get that copy of that book right there?" and I pointed to her ARC of Baby Proof. 

She kind of smiled at me and said, "Email me and I'll send it to you."

She's just that cool of an author, and I emailed her and she sent me her original ARC of Baby Proof

The next time I saw her was at an Aurora Lit Fest and my dearest bestest friend Swishy was with me, and we hung out with Emily, and when she went up on stage, she asked us to hold her sweater. OK, we were giddy with excitement. Would we hold Emily Giffin's sweater!??!!

YES. We would. 

Because we were her original fans. 

That day she shared secrets with us on how to pose for best-ever photographs and told us about a reader who didn't care for her books because they were too "matchy-matchy." 

Later that year when she came back to town and did a bigger event, she invited me out for dinner and margaritas. What kind of author takes the time to make a fan feel THAT special? She's truly unique. The night before I moved from the Chicago area to Arizona she had a signing. I made sure I was there to let her know how much she and her books meant to me so I went there with my copy of Heart of the Matter. She knew I was moving away and leaving the very next day and she let me cut in front of everyone.
 
As an author, she means the world to me. She's inspiring, kind and good-hearted. I also consider her a true friend of mine. 

And now she's got a trillion fans and a trillion of followers but Emily makes time for so many of them, and she reaches out to them and is kind enough to share her life with them on Facebook and Twitter and she's doing it here today by giving away a copy of her latest, Where We Belong.

I'm so happy that I get to share her latest novel with you all!

Emily Giffin’s books unfold like a slow satisfying meal – one that you don’t want to end – but one that you can’t wait to get to the dessert. Where We Belong is one of those books where you can’t wait to find out how it ends but you also want to prolong the reading for the pure enjoyment of Emily’s words.

The summer Marian graduates from high school, she has a summer romance with sort-of-rebel-outsider musician and fellow classmate Conrad Knight, who she has known since sixth grade, and discovers that he is the love of her life. She knows he is not going to college and she is, and that their summer will only be that – a summer romance.

When she ends up pregnant, and he tells her that he loves her, she commits the biggest of lies and decides (out of love for him maybe, or fear for her own future – that’s for you, the reader, to decide!) to tell him that she is actually NOT pregnant.

Marian breaks things off from Conrad, takes a year off from college, has the baby, gives her up for adoption, then goes to college and goes on with her life, to become a famous TV producer.

Fast-forward 18 years and she’s in a committed and loving relationship with Peter, the CEO of her network, and hoping to get married and start a family of her own. Her television show is doing great, she lives in NY and life couldn’t be more perfectly scripted. 

Then Kirby Rose lands at her doorstep.

Kirby has never really fit in with her family – her perfect younger sister and her boisterous dad and protective mother. She’s always been a bit of a loner who loves playing the drums. After she turns 18, she decides to find her birth mother. 

When she heads to NY to meet Marian, Kirby will turn Marian’s world inside-out. Kirby has been Marian’s best kept secret, and only her mother knew that Marian had a daughter she gave up for adoption. This secret (or lie, as Marian’s boyfriend neatly points out) will bring to light the fact that keeping Kirby a secret was wrong on so many levels. 

There are layers to Where We Belong and surprises along the way that will keep the reader enthralled throughout. You will root for Kirby the whole way through, and find her endearing and brave. I can see how Marian made some of the decisions she made, and I was very sympathetic toward her. In fact, Emily writes all of her characters so that there is no one ‘bad guy’ and you will feel for each and every character, from Marian to Kirby’s adoptive  parents; and even Marian’s own mother, who while you might not like her very much, you will understand why she acts the way she does.

One caveat: As with all Emily’s leading men, you will fall in love with both Peter and Conrad – she writes such sexy men in such diverse ways. 

I have to say I closed the book and wondered where life was about to take some of these characters I had really come to care about. One thing I knew for absolute certain was that Kirby was going to be absolutely, 100-percent OK, and that made for a completely happy ending. After all, there would be no story had there been no Kirby.

I also think that Emily put her heart and soul into this book, as she has with her others, but in the case of Where We Belong, I think it will inspire people who have been adopted or even women who have given up babies to search for their biological children. And if Where We Belong brings a happy ending to even just one family who has felt the need to search, then that is an incredible gift of this book. 

Phew, this was one of the most emotional posts I've written. If you'd like to win a copy of Where We Belong, tell me about a time in your life where you've felt the most like you've belonged. It could be a moment, or an age, or an event, or a celebration … just somewhere or some time when you felt completely encompassed in the feeling of belonging!

And thanks Emily, for quitting being a lawyer! But also, it's time you come to Arizona for a book tour.

XO

Important note: 
Next week there will be a HUGE one-day book giveaway with 10 BOOKS BEING GIVEN AWAY IN ONE BOOK POST -- DON'T MISS IT! 


If you're new to Booking with Manic, thank you for stopping by! We love new readers! Some notes - If you're entering to win a book, please use an identifying name and it's usually a great idea to include an email, which I will never give out to anyone else. You can only enter once please. You'll need to check back here in about a week or so to see if you've won the book -- I will highlight the winner's name at the top of this post. Most books are supplied directly through publishers, publicists and the authors. Winners will receive books directly from the publisher within 3 weeks from the time you provide me with your address, unless I send you the book (sometimes I will). Sorry, but we can only ship to U.S. and Canada so if you're from another country, thank you for coming by to read and discover new authors, but we can't send you a book. Any questions on how I run the blog or suggestions on who you would like to see featured, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com. Thank you for your support!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

ON THE ISLAND by Tracey Garvis Graves

Congrats to Accidental Gypsy!




I know you're all going to be excited about this book and this is one that I really cannot stop talking about. Or thinking about! On the Island is a smash-hit runaway book that the debut author decided to self-publish after targeting a core group of agents she thought would be perfect for her book. They all sent her back form rejections. Not even bothering with a personal note of why they thought the book wasn't right for them or the market. 

What do they know? 

When none of them bit, she took publishing matters into her own hands, and now she is a true publishing superstar! The self-published edition of On the Island sold more than 350,000 copies and got the attention of movie-makers, agents and publishers and landed on the New York Times bestseller list. All because Tracey believed in her book and her story!

People love this book. It's got a great catch to it -- two people are stranded on a deserted island -- a 16-year-old boy who's in remission from cancer, and his 30-year-old tutor. And yep, they get BUSY! But, Tracey doesn't get all Fifty Shades of Grey on us … however, I can guarantee there is some steamy scenes and you'll definitely be thinking about TJ and Anna long after you close the pages of On the Island

Two people stranded on an island struggle to survive—and slowly fall in love—in the runaway New York Times bestseller, now available with a reading group guide and a letter from the author

Anna Emerson is a thirty-year-old English teacher desperately in need of adventure. Worn down by the cold Chicago winters and a relationship that’s going nowhere, she jumps at the chance to spend the summer on a tropical island tutoring sixteen-year-old T.J.


T.J. Callahan has no desire to go anywhere. His cancer is in remission and he wants to get back to his normal life. But his parents are insisting he spend the summer in the Maldives catching up on all the school he missed last year.


Anna and T.J. board a private plane headed to the Callahan’s summer home, and as they fly over the Maldives’ twelve hundred islands, the unthinkable happens. Their plane crashes in shark-infested waters. They make it to shore, but soon discover that they’re stranded on an uninhabited island.


At first, their only thought is survival. But as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

Learn more from Tracey:


So, if you'd like to win a copy of On the Island, you have to act like a COUGAR for this one and tell me who you'd want to be stuck on an island with, cougar-style -- pick someone YOUNGER than you are, but of course, LEGAL! Hahah. I'm choosing ZAC EFFRON for my Island LOVER!!

PS.  
The Cell Phone Lot is now available on Smashwords if you weren't able to get it previously because you didn't have a Kindle, you can now download it here for 99 cents, and an excerpt to my full-length women's fiction is also included!

PSS. 
Don't forget to head over to enter to win What I Did if you haven't already, and remember, US or Canadian residents only! Thanks readers! And be on the lookout for Emily Giffin's WHERE WE BELONG later this week too!

Friday, July 13, 2012

WHAT I DID by Christopher Wakling

Congratulations to LAURA with Strep Throat! You've won a copy of WHAT I DID! 
Please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com with your full name and address so I can send you a copy of the book! And get well soon! 




I love when I discover a new male author to share with you all and this book, What I Did, is an incredible book that I took with on a weekend getaway and read every second I could sneak into our mini-vacation. 

What I Did is so unique in that it’s narrated by 6-year-old Billy who is precocious and oh-so-smart that you kind of want to hug him and strangle him at the same time. And I don’t mean strangle him in a bad way, but as you’re reading and the story unfolds, you want to yell at the pages, “NO BILLY, DON’T TELL THEM THAT – THAT’S NOW WHAT YOU MEAN TO SAY! YOU’RE TELLING THEM WRONG!”

The book starts out early one morning when Billy wakes up full of energy and his dad takes him out for a walk and a trip to a cafĂ©. Billy isn’t much into listening to his dad that morning and as things progress, he ends up running out into the street, disobeying his father. This small act of defiance sets the whole novel into fabulous motion and I guarantee you it’ll have you turning pages so quickly you will ignore your family and responsibilities until you get to the end. So make sure to start the book when you know you have a huge chunk of time to sit and read without interruption. 

What I loved also about What I Did is that Billy has such a grand imagination – he compares everything to animals. He lives in London and his favorite TV show is something along the lines of The Animal Planet station and his imagination soars – he’s all about animals and everything he thinks about is animal-based. The people who he comes in contact are all compared to animals, and wonderfully so. And when he is confronted in the most dangerous way by certain adults, he explains about predators and prey, him being the prey.

Billy’s dad is flawed – he’s not a perfect dad – he’s the primary caregiver as his mom works nights and sleeps during the day. He’s got a stressed-out job and works from home, and yeah, Billy is a challenging kid. Maybe his dad doesn’t always make the best choices when it comes to parenting, but who does make the best decisions all of the time? Don’t we all just do our best and hope we’re making the right choices, and don’t we make our choices based on the immense love we have for our children?

This is ALL I can tell you – because it’s enough to get you reading and I promise, promise, promise you will ALL love this book so much. It’s not my usual women’s fiction but it’s definitely one of those golden nuggets that I was thrilled to discover and I’m so excited to share with you on the blog.

Here’s something though, you can learn more about 6-year-old Billy by reading his blog and seeing some of his colorings by going here. It’s his blog and it’s awesome. You’ll have a chance to see what Billy’s like, and truly, he’s real. I’m telling you, the kid is real. His blog is amazing. This is seriously one of the most real books I’ve ever read. It feels like a real person, a real 6-year-old telling his story. Here’s Billy’s blog

Here is the actual book blurb if you want to know more:

"This is a story about a terrible thing which happens to me. I have to warn you that nobody is bad or good here, or rather everyone is a bit bad and a bit good and the bad and the good moluscules get mixed up against each other and produce terrible chemical reactions. Did you know cheetahs cannot retract their claws?" 

Six-year-old Billy loves animals, David Attenborough documentaries, and sneakers that flash when he runs. He does not love sitting still, the blood-soaked sky in Watership Down, or his father's cell phone. 

When Billy runs into a busy street, ignoring his father's commands, he sets in motion a series of unexpected, family-altering events. What I Did is a heart-wrenching reminder of how best intentions can lead to disastrous consequences, and how one rash decision can take on a life of its own.

So, if you’d like to win a copy of What I Did, tell me, what did YOU do in the last 24 hours? Here’s WHAT I DID … stayed up way too late last night, slept til 11:30 a.m., got an oil change, ran to Target, the post office (books are on their way for anyone who is waiting for them from me, also so is the $15 Starbucks card Janet!), fed my kids a couple of times, DID NOT SHOWER, did some copy editing work, and now I’m in my pajamas catching up on the blog and other work stuff. Exciting huh? So tell me about your last 24 hours and WHAT YOU DID!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

LOTS OF WINNERS RIGHT NOW!!!!

Everybody! It's time to announce some winners, shall we already!

So, in June I posted every day for actually 28 different authors -- almost daily! I took Sundays off and I started at the end of May. I'm SOOO grateful to the authors and publicists who helped make this happen - I was able to give away some AWESOME books! If you were a winner and didn't get your book and it's been three weeks since you gave me your address, please let me know! If you didn't win, I'm sorry, I wish I could give every one of you a book. Keep coming back, I have seen persistence pay off here! I'm a FIRM believer in persistence paying off in life! : )

As promised, there is ONE Grand Prize winner. I also chose a second place winner who will receive a bundle of books as well. 

The Grand Prize winner will receive these books (in no particular order, I'm just yanking them from my floor!): 
The Arrivals by Meg Mitchell Moore
So Far Away by Meg Mitchell Moore
The Rock Star in Seat 3A by Jill Kargman
Keepsake by Kristina Riggle
The Art of Forgetting by Camille Noe Pagan
Can I Get an Amen by Sarah Healy
Head Over Heels by Rain Mitchell
The First Husband by Laura Dave
Wallflower in Bloom by Claire Cook
In The Bag by Katie Klise
Between You and Me by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus
Picture This by Jacquelin Sheehan
Skinnydipping by Bethenny Frankel

There are a bunch of books for the second prize winner but I'm not listing them all so you will just have to be surprised. I have a bunch of books left over so I may just run a random giveaway at the end of the summer. I LOVE SHARING BOOKS WITH YOU ALL!

As for The Cell Phone Lot contest where I asked you to please check out my enovella, The Cell Phone Lot, thank YOU to all who have supported my own writing. I have been REALLY depressed lately on my own publishing journey and I need to focus on that. I won't stop sharing great authors here though, that's a promise I'm going to keep. I'm just hoping that my "pay it forward" will someday come back to good karma for me. So thanks for taking the time to read my work too. I will also list that winner's name below too, and you will receive a gift card for $15 of your choice: Starbucks, Target or iTunes - just let me know!

The winner for Jennifer Weiner's The Next Best Thing is also listed below -- she is the one whom I owe this blog to - through her blog A Moment of Jen, I was inspired to start the original Manic Mommy, which was called Manic Mommy's Mental Myriads. Or something along those lines. There is an archive somewhere. I was really open about my family and my life. Really open. Now it's just books most of the time.

If you don't follow me on Facebook, or on Twitter please, please do! I am ALWAYS letting you know when I have a new post up and when I announce winners. And if you do follow me on Facebook already and haven't seen any updates, it might be because of Zuckerberg effing around with his little system. So go to my Facebook page and hit like or leave a comment on my page to activate it - just to let the people at Facebook know that you're interested in my newsfeed so they'll make sure you get the information ON YOUR NEWSFEED. Why does that guy have to make it sooo difficult for us to read about the friends we want to know about? Sometimes I think his last name should start with an "F!"

Coming up I have INCREDIBLE BOOKS FOR YOU! I have just finished ON THE ISLAND by Tracey Garvis Graves which is an incredible novel about a 30-year-old woman and a 16-year-old boy who are castaways on a deserted island - they fall in love - it's steamy and romantic and OH.SO.HOT!

And then I read WHAT I DID by Christopher Wakling - it's narrated by 6-year-old Billy who disobeys his dad one morning and sets the whole story in motion. You'll compare it to ROOM by Emma Donoghue in that they both have young boys as narrators but that's where the comparisons end and this one is another I could not put down. 

And my good real life friend, Amy Sprenger, also known as Snarky Mommy (can you imagine hanging out with MaNiC MoMMy and Snarky Mommy in one room together?) ... well, Snarky Mommy's debut novel came out yesterday and I'll be sharing THAT with you. It's called Baby Bumps, and the subtitle has the word BAT SHIT in it, if that's any indication of what kind of hilarity that will ensue when ready this sort-of-made-up-totally-true-fictional-memoir! Yep, that's what I'm calling Amy's book from here on out -- Baby Bumps, the sort-of-made-up-totally-true-fictional-memoir! 

Damn, I LOVE READING! I've often thought, "put me in a jail cell for just six months so I can catch up on my reading. Oh, and finish up this manuscript I am working on." Also, it feels so good to 'talk' to you all for once about my feelings, and not just report on books. Because you know, I have feelings too! Damn. I kind of miss my old style blogging. I wonder what would happen if I started another blog of just personal stuff... 

OK OK, get to the winner's names ALREADY...

OK, enough of that, here are the winner's names, and if yours is listed, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com and please be specific in your email as to what you have won.

The winner of THE NEXT BEST THING by Jennifer Weiner is: Rebecca E.

The winner of $15 gift card of your choice is: Janet Stec.

The SECOND PLACE winner of the June Book Giveaway is: Books & Reviews blogger

And the Grand Prize winner of all the books listed above is: Carol5814

Congratulations to you all, and look for the next Booking with Manic book hopefully later this week!

Peace to you all! Happy Summer! Be safe and well!

Thursday, July 05, 2012

THE NEXT BEST THING by Jennifer Weiner


 IMPORTANT NOTICE TO MANIC BLOG READERS: 
Before you read about Jennifer Weiner's amazing NEXT THING (heh heh!) make sure to check to see if you've won any of the remaining June books - the winners were recently announced!
Check out the latest winners here!
(Then come back to read about Jen's awesome new book and enter to win it!)




I’ve had mad love for Jen Weiner since her very first book Good In Bed, and her 10th book is out now, The Next Best Thing! I’m ashamed to admit that I haven’t had a chance to crack it open yet, but this one too is accompanying me on my beach trip to California in a couple of weeks (I better set some blog posts up to go live when I’m gone huh?!). Jen actually tweeted to me saying that I had written her one of the funniest notes about Good In Bed way back when – I just wish I could remember what the heck I wrote!

I’m excited about The Next Best Thing because I am sure that much of this story is a little bit about what Jen really experienced while she was in Hollywood working on her sitcom, The State of Georgia, which aired on ABC Family for a short while last year. It’s got to have some real insider stuff along with the great humor that we love Jen for.

Actors aren’t the only ones trying to make it in Hollywood.…At twenty-three, Ruth Saunders left her childhood home in Massachusetts and headed west with her seventy-year-old grandma in tow, hoping to make it as a screenwriter. Six years later, she hits the jackpot when she gets The Call: the sitcom she wrote, The Next Best Thing, has gotten the green light, and Ruthie’s going to be the showrunner. But her dreams of Hollywood happiness are threatened by demanding actors, number-crunching executives, an unrequited crush on her boss, and her grandmother’s impending nuptials. 

Set against the fascinating backdrop of Los Angeles show business culture, with an insider’s ear for writer’s room showdowns and an eye for bad backstage behavior and set politics, Jennifer Weiner’s new novel is a rollicking ride on the Hollywood roller coaster, a heartfelt story about what it’s like for a young woman to love, and lose, in the land where dreams come true.

If you’re lucky enough to live in or near one of the towns Jen will be visiting on tour, you’ll also get to enjoy cupcakes as this is going to be a Cupcakes Across America tour (sadly, it’s not including Arizona!). Of course, if I still lived in Chicago, I could see Jen, Jen Lancaster, Stacey Ballis AND Sarah Pekkanen together on July 13 at THIS AMAZING INCREDIBLE EVENT. If I were YOU, I would NOT MISS IT!

Check this list of events to see if you can make any of Jennifer Weiner’s other events, you lucky ducklings you! http://www.jenniferweiner.com/events.htm

Get The Next Best Thing on Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com.

In the meantime, you can read the first chapter of The Next Best Thing here:
www.jenniferweiner.com/thenextbestthing

And you can also go here to listen to the first and second chapters read to you here http://www.jenniferweiner.com/books.htm How cool is THAT!?

So, I know you’re all excited, and it’s a new month and all, but tell me what the Next Best Thing you are excited about? The next best thing I’m looking forward to is settling myself onto that beach in a couple of weeks and reading some great books!!!

Thanks for sticking around for the June Book a Day promo - don't forget to check to see if you've won a book over here  and for continuing to support the blog and checking out the authors and books!

Happy July, and here's to a bunch of new books coming your way and the Grand Prize announcement of June Book Winner very soon! 




Wednesday, July 04, 2012

THE LAST OF THE BOOK WINNERS FOR JUNE!


 More Book Winners Announced!

 Here are the last of the books that were posted in June! If your name/ID is on this list, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com. Put in the subject line: I WON A BOOK and the name of the book that you won! Include in your email to me your full name and address, and I'll make sure you receive your book! And if your name is not on this list, don't worry, we still have the grand prize to give away!

 

Monarch Beach: Nan from Alaska

Prosper in Love: Krystal (Kndyer)

What Alice Forgot: Tina B @ Brannanflooring

I Never Promised You a Goodie Bag: Your Invisible Pixie     

The Language of Flowers: Keltban

Wallflower in Bloom: Mon Cherie (sweeping news)

Skinnydipping: Mary Jo Burke

All the Difference: Accidentalgypsy

 

These people have still not claimed their books:

The Art of Forgetting: jerigraff

Between You and Me: Bernadette 7

The Objects of My Affection: Susieqlaw

Hand Me Down: Nancyecdavis

 

For the GRAND PRIZE DRAWING, I will put everyone’s name into the drawing however many times you left a comment on my blog. If you entered every single day, your name will be placed into the drawing THAT many times, so you’ll have that many chances of winning! I’m trying to get the drawing done as soon as I can so please be patient with me as I go through this process, but I still also have to keep up with the blog, and do other life stuff!


Monday, July 02, 2012

QUICK BLOG UPDATE!!!

Hi everyone! Happy July! Wanted to let you know that while the daily books are over, I will be bringing you some new ones later this week, beginning with Jennifer Weiner's The Next Best Thing so be on the lookout for that in a few days!


ALSO, I will be announcing the REST of the daily book winners in a separate post AND THE GRAND PRIZE winner sometime soon too, probably by Monday so please stop on back to find out if you are one of those lucky winners!

Thank you for your patience on this - I know you're anxious to see if you've won, but I just got done posting books for 32 days in a row and I need a chance to breathe but stay tuned as I will be bringing you the Grand Prize Winner's name soon along with the winner of the $15 gift card from The Cell Phone Lot drawing and also the last of the book winner's names too!



THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU and I am finding out about more great books every single day so please share the blog with your friends and family who love to learn about awesome authors and books!

Have a safe and wonderful Fourth of July and if you're not getting email alerts on when I post, make sure to "follow by email" at the top left on the blog!