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Thursday, February 23, 2017

BT Luna Rising by Selene Castrovilla {Book Review & Giveaway}






Title: Luna Rising 
Author: Selene Castrovilla 
Publisher: Last Syllable Books 
Publication date: April 25, 2017 
Target Audience: Adult 
Genres: RomanceWomen's Fiction 
Length: 450 Pages 
Source: Author 
Format: eARC 
Find It: Goodreads 
Buy It: Amazon|B&N 



My Rating:  



Life begins at thirty-eight for Long Island mom and writer Luna Lampanelli, when she kicks her secretly gay husband to the curb. She’s got her freedom, but what she wants is love.
Luna knows she doesn’t need a man to exist, but try telling that to her heart. Against the advice of Sunny, her snarky best friend, and Jiminy, the cautioning voice in Luna’s head that just won’t shut up, Luna sets course to find a mate.
Luna speed and on-line dates her way into several short-lived, surreal relationships. There’s Ari, the humorless Israeli who refuses to assimilate – to America, and to humanity. There’s Alex, the young and handsome ex-crackhead who informs Luna he doesn’t want to be monogamous while they’re in bed. There’s Memphis, the wild-eyed sadomasochist. There’s Red, angry and crippled, who becomes the catalyst for Luna to join Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous.
But before Luna can proceed to recovery, she meets the elusive but oh so appealing Trip. He’s emotionally unavailable and has the Madonna-Whore Complex, but how can Luna (aka “whore”) let him go when she enjoys his dry wit so much, and his naked body even more?
Humorously haunting and packed with unspeakable truths, Luna Rising follows a woman’s funny and heart-breaking struggle to relate with un-relatable men and an un-relatable world, and to figure out something even more un-relatable: herself.


I always make sure I read Selene's books as soon as they come out. I almost missed this one but luckily I was still able to get an early copy. I am so glad I did. I absolutely loved it as I knew I would. Selene's writing style never fails to impress me. She sucks me in from the beginning. This novel was a bit different than the ones I've read before but she still delivers a great story and even some funny quips along the way. 

Selene creates an interesting character in Luna Lampanelli, an almost-40-something mom who finds herself without a man after separating from her husband (who has kept the fact that he's gay a secret since before the wedding bells and after the birth of their two boys.) Luna is not a typical women's-fiction heroine. Though she's funny and smart, she's also deeply damaged. Her father was a heroine addict who left her in the hands of her narcissistic mother. Thus, Luna's obsessive desire for love is understandable, but her pursuit of it can be frustrating as she falls for one unsuitable man after another. You will find yourself shouting at her many times during the story "No, not him" "Stop the madness". Even with all this, Luna is still an enduring character that hooks the reader in. 

LUna kept seeking companionship over and over and just kept failing miserably each time. A funny part of the story is that she had an "inside voice" that desperately kept trying to teach her right from wrong although she rarely listened. I think many of us have been in LUna's shoes one time or another. Picking the wrong relationsips, going for the wrong guys, etc. It is exciting to see where Luna ends up when everything is said and done. 

I would highly recommend this new novel by Selene Castrovilla. She continues to be a favorite of mine. 



$25 Gift Card to Amazon or Book Depository (International)
a Rafflecopter giveaway


TOUR SCHEDULE 

Feb 1st – A Nook for Books
Feb 2nd – Her Book Thoughts
Feb 3rd – A Leisure Moment
Feb 10th – A Chick Who Reads
Feb 14th – The Invisible Diva
Feb 16th – Reese’s Reviews
Feb 24th – vvb32 reads


About Selene Castrovilla

Selene Castrovilla is the award-winning author of multiple narrative nonfiction picture books and young adult novels. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School and a BA in English from New York University. She lives on Long Island with her two sons and too many cats.

Monday, February 20, 2017

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

Last week, a friend of mine tweeted about setting up a Goodreads account for her one year old son for the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program, which she first heard about when Daliyah Marie Arana was “Librarian For the Day” at the Library of Congress back in January. Being an avid reader myself and hoping to instill the love of reading in to Teacup Human, I knew this was something we had to partake in too!

 

We've already read a few books here and there to her, but the thought to track them never occurred to me and I cannot wait to start adding these books to her own Goodreads page. A page I hope she'll continue on her own once she gets old enough. Not to mention, how cool will it be when she's older and looks back on all the books her father and I read to her when she was younger!?

On their official website, there is the option to Find a Program in your state and I was pleased to find my local library is a participant! This also led me to find out about their Baby and Me Storytimes, another opportunity to get Teacup Human into the library and developing a love of books!

If you have a child, grandchild, niece/nephew, etc. and so on, I highly suggest you check out this program! Or, if you are already participating in the program, share with us your favorite aspects and how you're doing thus far!
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Monday, January 23, 2017

Babies Are Hard Work

Well that's an obvious fact, isn't it?

I mean, who knew that a newborn would need constant attention and would be a drain on any energy you managed to syphon out of the universe? Okay, I knew that. But I didn't know-know that. You know going into parenting that it's going to be hard, but you don't know how hard it's actually going to be. Nobody can really prepare you for that.


And nobody can really prepare you for the amount of love and joy this teacup human is going to bring you either.  Sure, people tell you and you nod and smile because you know they're right, but until you actually see and hold your child, you don't know.

I'll tell you right now the reason for my almost radio silence is because being a mother is hard, time consuming work. (Another duh statement.) And maternity leave is not what I expected.

No, I didn't expect to sleep in all the day, lounge about while watching TV, read all the books, or take numerous naps because newborns "sleep all day." But I didn't expect to get zero reading done, watch nothing but HGTV and bad TV (I've not only "remodeled" my house 10 times, but I have sunk to a new low of trash TV that even I never thought possible), and have my sleep schedule completely fucked over in the way that some days I wake up at 8am still tired and some days I'm wide awake at 5am. Also, what's a hairbush?


Motherhood is one of those things where you know what to expect, but you don't know what to expect.

I've let a lot of my hobbies go to the wayside, especially in those first few weeks. I'm just now getting back to taking care of me. I know all the doctors and experts say that you need to take care of yourself before taking care of others, but keeping a teacup human alive is hard work! And when said teacup human doesn't need you for those few brief moments, the last thing you want to be doing is giving yourself an at home facial or manicure. You just want to sit and watch mindless TV.

In those early weeks, it was hard for me to just get away and take a shower. My husband is one of the good ones and does everything he can to help me keep my sanity. He loves our daughter and loves being a daddy. But before we found a bottle she liked, which was a task in and of itself, my "me time" only extended for so long. Joe does it all, but he can't breastfeed. Thankfully, we found a bottle/nipple she likes and I now have the ability for long hot showers and running to Target by myself. Who knew wandering around Target with a hot drink from Starbucks would feel like a vacation?! #momlife

I've had my highest-highs and lowest-lows as a new mom. It's hard. It's stressful. It's beyond rewarding and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Because when Teacup Human looks at me and smiles or has fallen asleep in my arms, I can't believe that I'm lucky enough to be her mom.

 
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