Category: iRead tour

The Sand Pounder

“The Sand Pounder” is a Young Adult historical fiction set during World War II. 

About The Sand Pounder

Fearing an invasion by German and Japanese forces during World War II, the U.S. Coast Guard enlisted horsemen to patrol the beaches along the east and west coasts. The unit was called “The Sand Pounders” and they rode their horses up and down the beaches from 1942 to 1944.

In Tillamook, Oregon, a young equestrian decided to join them. There was only one problem…they were only accepting men. That didn’t slow her down.

“The Sand Pounder” is a Young Adult historical fiction set during World War II. 

My Thoughts

I loved every moment of this young adult historical fiction – it has action, courage and hope in the face of the uncertainty, racism and fear in World War II.

After reading this novel, I had to look up the term Sand Pounders. This was a new term to me and I didn’t realize that during World War II, the US Coast Guard launched a beach patrol. This group took over many functions of the Coast Guard as well as keeping an eye out for enemy ships, stopping communication from ships to land and reporting any enemy landings along the coastline of Oregon.

Jane is a young woman whose life has been turned upside down by the war. Her brother has enlisted and heads off to war efforts, she is a first hand witness to her Japanese neighbours being forced out of their home and to an internment camp, all while she herself is living alone. Jane is angry at the treatment of her neighbours, who are good American citizens and whose family name should not be held against them – they are American first, not Japanese. Jane wants to help out the war efforts but as a female she is not left with many options (and she is a very talented young woman). With the Sand Pounders only accepting males, Jane did what she had to do to join the group and to do her part (go Jane!).

I loved this novel and I strongly believe so will many young adults. We learn about a group of individuals that I had no idea existed during World War II and we also touch on some very important topics – racism, the treatment of Japanese Americans and sexism. Jane is the first to defend her fellow Americans – to her they are Americans first, not Japanese. These are good people that have contributed to their community and are facing persecution for their family history despite being contributing members for many years, business owners and friends. Jane is the perfect example that your gender does not impact your ability to succeed. She is just as smart, fast and good at her role as any other male.

This was a special novel that I enjoyed from start to finish – a great read for young adults (both male and female). It encourages you to learn more about the treatment of Japanese Americans, internment camps and even the war efforts at home. I think that this is the most important aspect of any historical fiction – that it empowers you to learn more and question what you do know. This is a definite must read novel for young adults.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4.5/5

About the Author

Award-Winning, Best-Selling author, M.J. Evans grew up in Lake Oswego, Oregon, and graduated from Oregon State University. She spent five years teaching junior high and high school students before retiring to raise her five children. She is a life-long equestrian and enjoys competing in Dressage and riding in the beautiful Colorado Mountains.

You can connect with the author on their website.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Chipper Makes Merry

iRead Book Tours

Chipper Makes Merry takes you on Chipper’s arctic quest filled with lessons of love, kindness and determination.

About Chipper Makes Merry

Tip toe, tip toe, crackle, crunch!

​Chipper the Fox sneaks through the forest to spread cheer to his weary friends. Will his merry making be a success? Or will a smelly fish disaster and a log pile tumble ruin his plans?

“Chipper Makes Merry” takes you on Chipper’s arctic quest filled with lessons of love, kindness and determination.

Our Thoughts

Small acts of kindness go a long way, especially now as we face uncertainty, and it can be hard to find the good each day.

Chipper the Fox is a kind-hearted little critter who just wants to help his friends find happiness at a very difficult time in the Arctic. All of his friends are sad for different reasons and he wants to add just that tiny bit of sunshine to their lives. Does he makes little mistakes during his adventure? He sure does – but his kindness and good spirit shines through.

This is an adorable children’s book for an important message to young children. It is so important to teach young children that kindness, thoughtfulness and giving to others goes a long way. We never know what is going on in someone’s life – it is always best to treat all with kindness. If you see someone having a bad day, week or even month, it is a small gesture that could make a difference in their life. And if you can do it together as friends, even better! It is also important for them to understand that sometimes our kindness doesn’t work out quite the way we wanted it too but that doesn’t mean it was wrong or bad, just different.

The illustrations are lovely and bring to life the compassion and warmth of the story. The story itself is easy to read with a young child, we loved the way the story flowed together. This will be a great addition to your home library for all year round.

You can purchase a copy on Kimber Fox Morgan and Amazon.

About the Author

Morgan is a fun wife, and imperfect mom of 3 crazy kiddos and 2 little lemon (problematic) dogs. She tries to live her strengths the best she can. She likes to say she is creative, not crafty. Morgan is a homemade Halloween costume type of mom. She lets her kids mix the play doh. She bakes fun birthday cakes (cutely, but far from perfection). She loves a homemade valentine and a school project. Chipper the Fox is an extension of Morgan’s creative strength. Originally designed as character to create merry during the holiday season, Chipper has grown and developed into a story of determination and love.

You can connect with her on her website, Instagram and Facebook.

The Giveaway!

Enter to win a signed copy of the book here.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership

iRead Book Tours

In Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership, culture change strategist Jason Richmond and coauthors Jeanne Kerr and Malcolm J. Nicholl reveal how companies whose leaders ignite their culture are able to weather any storm and get ahead of the competition.

About Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership

Corporate leaders need to be prepared for any crisis and have a plan in place to act quickly, decisively, and empathetically. In Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership, culture change strategist Jason Richmond and coauthors Jeanne Kerr and Malcolm J. Nicholl reveal how companies whose leaders ignite their culture are able to weather any storm and get ahead of the competition.

Based on hands-on experience helping senior corporate executives navigate the turbulence of the 2020-2021 pandemic, the authors distill their findings into five key disciplines.

They share how to:

  • Inspire and communicate a shared purpose
  • Build trust and authenticity
  • Hone your performance management skills
  • Develop your talent
  • Create belonging through diversity and inclusion.

The authors also explore how a crisis can be turned into opportunity and how to lead an organization in overcoming challenges never taught in business school.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon, B&N and Kobo.

About the Authors

Jason Richmond is an authoritative culture change strategist whose work over the past twenty-plus years has helped companies build strong, sustained revenue growth by empowering their employees and developing energizing office cultures. As President/CEO and Chief Culture Officer for Ideal Outcomes, Inc., he has worked closely with established Fortune 100 companies to create Leadership Development Journeys, and he has guided numerous start-ups on the path to become noted industry leaders. He has also provided thought leadership and innovative consulting services to a wide range of midsize companies.

Jeanne Kerr is the Director of Organizational Development and Culture Consulting for Ideal Outcomes, Inc. She also has been a Senior Faculty Partner with the Human Capital Institute since 2012. With over twenty years of organizational development and talent management strategy in a variety of industries, her expertise includes culture strategy, strategic workforce planning, leadership development, team building, and assessment solutions.

Malcolm J. Nicholl is a former award-winning international journalist whose career includes a two-year stint as Belfast Bureau Chief for London’s Daily Mirror. He has authored or coauthored seven books published in nine languages by international giants such as Random House, Bantam Doubleday Dell, Ballantine Books, and St. Martin’s Press and ghostwritten more than thirty books.

Connect with the authors on their website and Twitter.

The Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy here.

Disclosure: This is a spotlight tour, I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Blah, Blah, Blah: A Snarky Guide to Office Lingo

iRead Book Tours

Join the fun as the two lead authors and 50 other contributors offer their humorous take on how the workplace really operates in Blah, Blah, Blah: A Snarky Guide to Office Lingo. With almost 600 diabolical definitions to enjoy, you’re sure to find plenty to smile about.

About Blah, Blah, Blah: A Snarky Guide to Office Lingo

Need a laugh to get through your workday? You’ve come to the right place. Ambrose Bierce’s classic The Devil’s Dictionary took on life in general. Now a century later, it’s time to lampoon the business world. There’s no richer target than being told to think outside the box by leaders spouting off about synergy, teamwork, and innovation while at the same time exhorting you to stay in your swim lane. If as famed business guru Peter Drucker writes, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” then we’ve been asked to eat a dog’s breakfast at work for far too long! A little truth in every joke. Join the fun as the two lead authors and 50 other contributors offer their humorous take on how the workplace really operates. With almost 600 diabolical definitions to enjoy, you’re sure to find plenty to smile about.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon .

About the Authors

Dan Hill, PhD, is the author of nine books, including Emotionomics, which was an Advertising Age top 10 must-read selection and features a foreword by Sam Simon, co-creator of The Simpsons. In 1998, Dan founded Sensory Logic, Inc. whose clients represent over 50% of the world’s top 100 advertisers. Besides having spoken to audiences in over 25 countries, Dan has had media appearances ranging from ABC’s “Good Morning, America” to NBC’s “The Today Shows,” CNN, Fox, MSNBC, ESPN, and the Tennis Channel. Dan was also a regular guest on PBS’s “Mental Engineering” show, hailed by Bill Moyers as “the most interesting weekly half hour of social commentary and criticism on television.” In print, Dan has received front-page coverage in the New York Times for his work in pro and NCAA Division 1 sports and was a non-partisan columnist for Reuters during the 2016 presidential race. Nowadays he hosts the podcast “Dan Hill’s EQ Spotlight,” which appears on the New Books Network (NBN), the world’s largest book review platform with over 1.7 million downloads monthly. Dan was educated at St. Olaf College, Oxford University, Brown University, and Rutgers University.

​Howard Moskowitz is a legendary product market researcher, experiential psychologist, and inventor of world-class market research technologies used by virtually every company that matters. Howard earned his PhD in experimental psychology from Harvard University. In 2004, he was the subject of a New Yorker article by Malcolm Gladwell, “The Ketchup Conundrum,” which became the basis for Gladwell’s TED talk entitled “Choice, Happiness, and Spaghetti Sauce.” In 2014, Howard founded Mind Genomics Associates to investigate how people think about aspects of their daily lives. In addition to over 400 scientific articles about the minds of consumers, Howard has written/edited 28 books, a roster that features the very popular book Selling Blue Elephants.

Connect with them on their website, Twitter and Facebook.

The Giveaway!

Grand Prize: Signed copy of Blah, Blah, Blah: A Snarky Guide to Office Lingo + a copy also of my other recent book Famous Faces Decoded: A Guidebook for Reading Others.(one winner) 

Runner-Up Prize: a signed copy of Blah, Blah, Blah (one winner) (USA only) (ends Oct 12)

Enter this giveaway here.

Disclosure: This is a spotlight tour, I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Zither! Spotlight Tour

iRead Book Tours

A nutty religious cult rustles a herd of prime gazebos (huh??) and it’s up to bumbling P.I. Mars Candiotti to rescue them. Wannabe author Mars chronicles his quest in Jeffrey Hanlon’s rom-com mystery Zither.

About Zither

​A nutty religious cult rustles a herd of prime gazebos (huh??) and it’s up to bumbling P.I. Mars Candiotti to rescue them. Wannabe author Mars chronicles his quest in Jeffrey Hanlon’s rom-com mystery Zither.

Guided by his magically prescient IHOP waitress, Mars strives to mitigate the shocking global consequences of the gazebo heist, even though he has no idea what the word mitigate means.

As Zither swallows its own tale, Mars finds it increasingly tricky to distinguish between real people and his rambunctious fictional characters. Zither becomes the romper room where his reality meets fantasy – and get frisky with each other.

Mars’ international odyssey leads to an explosive conclusion in Panama. Teevees around the world tune in to watch live coverage of “Carnage in the Canal”.

And amid the lunatic havoc that is Zither there is (of course!) an epic love story as Mars meets Marian, the brainy librarian he had dreamt of. Marian says his books are “slapstick existentialism with subjective reality couched in parable”. (This is news to Mars). But is Marian real, or just another illusion in Zither World?

And in Mars’ klutzy (yet endearing) courtship of the enchanting Marian will he ever muster the nerve to ask her for a date???​

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon and Audible.

About the Author

I was born in a Southern California beach town.

My family moved to Northwest Oregon when I was 7. Or maybe when I was 8.

Had we stayed in the Beach Boys town, and knowing myself as I do now, I suspect I would have grown long hair, started a rock band, and been heavily into drugs. The rock band would probably have been pretty good. The rest of it, not so much. I’d likely have joined the ranks of those like Jim Morrison and Janis Joplin.

We moved to a mountaintop. The last five miles to get there were gravel. The final two miles were steep and to the end of the road.

That’s where we lived: the end of the road, 22 miles to the nearest town.

Our closest neighbor, about a mile down the road, was a hermit who lived in a shack. He had a goat. About once a month the goat would visit us. Then the hermit would show up to retrieve his goat. I think the goat liked us better than the hermit, which is why the goat kept showing up. Goats are funny animals. I think they aspire to be house pets.

And speaking of animals, we had cats. Lots and lots of cats. Because we were remote and at the end of the road, unkind people – and ‘unkind’ is the kindest description I can use here – would dump their unwanted cats on or near our property. The cats would find our house. We gave them Fancy Feast and our love, and in turn they loved us.

My childhood friends didn’t visit too often. That was at least partly because when they did show up my father would say something like this: “Great! We have a job that could use an extra hand. Won’t take more than five minutes.” Well, that five minutes usually turned into an hour or two – volunteer labor! – and that friend would seldom visit again.

So my favorite childhood playmate was a 2000 pound Hereford bull, a big boy with horns spanning three feet. I’d go out in the pasture and the bull would strike a pose not unlike what you’ve seen in the movies where the bull was ready to charge, head down, eyeing me. But he wasn’t going to charge me. He just wanted his forehead scratched. And so I would scratch his forehead. He liked that, shaking his head every so often to show his approval. Then we’d elevate to a game that the bull might have called ‘Let’s see how far we can toss this little kid!’ and I’d place my right hip against his massive head and he’d toss me into the air like a sack of flour. Over and over, farther and farther, higher and higher. I could have done that for hours – I can fly! – but after a few tosses the bull would grow bored with the game and wander off. Probably to chase some cute heifers.

The nearest library was 30 miles away, and we ventured there often. It was a majestic old building, and the Grand Room had books on all four walls with reading chairs in the center. But that was not where I wanted to be. I figured all those books were popular books or books I was supposed to read. I wanted something different, so I would enter the room with a small sign that said ‘Stacks’. It was row after narrow row after row of books, floor to ceiling, dimly lit, dusty. It was like entering a cave. Filled with treasures!
It was in those Stacks that I discovered the likes of Kerouac and Heller and Huxley and Fowles and Steinbeck and Ellison and Bradbury and Hemingway and many many others.

As Stephen King said, “Books are a uniquely portable magic.”

And those, each in their own way, was the inspiration for the first book I wrote at the age of eight or nine: ‘Pond Scum’.

It was illustrated.

Jeffrey currently lives at an undisclosed location on the shores of the Caribbean where he spends his days is shorts and sandals making up stories.

He has a pet goat.

You can connect with him on his website.

Book Trailer

Disclosure: This is a spotlight tour, I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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