Thursday, April 14, 2016

Let's Spread Love, Not Hate. Bullying In Any Form Is Never Okay! - Special Giveaway

I fought myself on whether or not I was going to write this post or just let the incident go.  In this day and age where bullying is a huge epidemic, I felt the need to use my platform at Book Mama Blog to address something.  I have always tried my best to be kind, not to judge people and respect others’ uniqueness.  For me, I don’t smoke, drink, or do drugs.  However, I do enjoy the art of tattoos and have chosen, for many years, to express myself with them.  Ten years ago I lost my daughter.  She was the love of my life, my little side-kick and the person who brought me so much joy.  She was always by my side, and when I lost her, I lost a piece of myself.  I have chosen to add tattoos in remembrance of her.  Recently, I finished up a piece on my back that I call Samantha’s Garden.  It’s a grouping of bright, colorful, vibrant flowers (which my daughter always loved feeling and smelling flowers, as she was blind and it was her way of enjoying the beauty that they are), a butterfly with a halo (ever since she passed butterflies, specifically Monarch butterflies, make me think of her), and a leukemia awareness ribbon (the horrible disease that took her life).  After having my tattoo finished I shared it on Facebook, where I share much of my life with my “friends.”  I got many likes and comments to the tattoo.  Not just from people who knew my daughter, but from people who respected my choice in memorializing her with them.  However, I got one comment that was not very nice, that I chose to delete.  It was from an author that I was friends with on FB.  We were not close friends by any means, but being a book blogger I have many author friends on FB.  She commented on my picture with … I don’t understand the popularity of permanently scarring your body.  As stated, I deleted it and chose to address this in a more private manner.  This is how the messages went until she chose
to unfriend me:  Me:  Although I appreciate your opinion about tattoos, I deleted your comment.  My daughter suffered a horrific death after being diagnosed with leukemia.  This is the way I choose to memorialize her.  I know not all people enjoy the art of tattoos, but it's my way of saying that my daughter will always have my back.  Her: I had people die horrible deaths too. I don't feel the need to scar myself in their honor.  Me: That's your right to have that opinion, but you should be ashamed of yourself for passing judgement on how I choose to memorialize my daughter.  At this last message she did me a favor by unfriending me.  It really hurt my spirit for a moment that someone would be so cruel and insensitive to how I choose to grieve.  I am a firm believer that you should never judge a book by its cover.  We are all unique, beautiful creatures.  As long as we are good people and don’t do things to hurt others, who are we to tell others what to do or how to live their lives?  Because of this person’s comments that really dug deep, I want to do something to spread love and happiness.  Something I try to do on a regular basis.  One winner will win a basket full of things that make me happy.  I’m not sure what the contents are yet, but I assure you that it will be things that will bring a smile to the winner’s face.  Comment below and share something positive.  It can be anything and you are entered.  If you choose to share more than one thing, put each in separate comments.  That way each can be considered an entry.  Giveaway will be international and will close at midnight on April 21.  Let’s be kind to one another, respect the things that make us all unique and open your minds and hearts to new things.  There is too much hate in this world.  We need to flood the world with more kindness!   

The Tsarina's Legacy - Promo & Giveaway

Then...Grigory "Grisha" Potemkin has had a successful long association with the powerful Empress Catherine of Russia. But Catherine and Grisha are older now and face new threats, both from powers outside of Russia and from those close to them. Haunted by the horrors of his campaign against the Muslim Turks, Grisha hopes to construct a mosque in the heart of the empire. Unfortunately, Catherine's much younger new lover, the ambitious Platon Zubov, stands in his way. Grisha determines that to preserve Catherine's legacy he must save her from Zubov's dangerous influence and win back her heart.
Now...When she learns she is the lost heiress to the Romanov throne, Veronica Herrera's life turns upside down. Dmitry Potemkin, one of Grisha's descendants, invites Veronica to Russia to accept a ceremonial position as Russia's new tsarina. Seeking purpose, Veronica agrees to act as an advocate to free a Russian artist sentenced to prison for displaying paintings critical of the church and government. Veronica is both celebrated and chastised. As her political role comes under fire, Veronica is forced to decide between the glamorous perks of European royalty and staying true to herself.
In Jennifer Laam's The Tsarina's Legacy, unexpected connections between Grisha and Veronica are revealed as they struggle to make peace with the ghosts of their past and help secure a better future for themselves and the country they both love.

Purchase the book at:

About the Author:
Author Jennifer Laam has long been fascinated with Russian culture, particularly the Romanovs. In her novels, she explores the inner lives of historical figures and connects stories from the past to present day characters. Born and raised in Stockton, CA, Jennifer has lived in Los Angeles and the Detroit suburbs, as well as Central California. In her spare time, she enjoys line dancing, travel, celebrity gossip, and Netflix.

Connect with the author at:
Website * Facebook * Twitter

St. Martin’s Griffin is giving one lucky winner a print copy of
The Tsarina’s Legacy by Jennifer Laam

a Rafflecopter giveaway