Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Jen’s Jewels | Meet Deborah Bedford
Jen's Jewels / March 20, 2011

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season comes an endless To Do list for moms. Whether it’s staying up late to bake cupcakes for a class party or being volunteered to sew buttons on costumes for a play, the stress of the season gets to the best of us. Throw in a couple of last minute school assignments for the kids like book reports and science projects, it’s a wonder we manage to enjoy the spirit of the season at all. Blended families are very difficult to navigate especially when it comes to the role of mothering. Whether it’s the lingering aftereffects of the divorce or the deep resentment over the loss of control in their children’s lives, many women struggle to find an acceptable balance. There is no perfect answer due to the many challenges associated with moving on. However, the way in which these obstacles are met will ultimately determine the emotional well-being of the family. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Deborah Bedford addresses this very topic in her latest release, HIS OTHER WIFE. It’s the emotionally charged story of two women who love the same man yet desperately want what’s best for one teenage boy. When…

Jen’s Jewels | Meet Linda Francis Lee
Interviews , Jen's Jewels / March 4, 2011

There are many reasons why dogs are considered man’s best friend. Loyal, compassionate, and trustworthy come to mind; however, these are not their most virtuous trait. Without a doubt, it’s their innate ability to judge a person’s character that reigns supreme. If a dog senses evil, take heed and run in the opposite direction. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Linda Francis Lee agrees wholeheartedly with the power of a dog’s intuition in her latest release EMILY AND EINSTEIN. It’s the story of Sandy Portman and Emily Barlow who seem to have it all until an unfortunate accident leaves Sandy dead. When the truth behind her less-than-perfect marriage comes to light, it’s up to a lovable stray dog named Einstein to help Emily get right back on her feet. As part of this interview, St. Martin’s Press has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. And as always, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your reading adventure. Jen: A born Texan turned New Yorker, you have had the pleasure of living in two culturally diverse areas of the country. So that my…

Jen’s Jewels | Laura Alden Interview
Jen's Jewels / December 1, 2010

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season comes an endless To Do list for moms. Whether it’s staying up late to bake cupcakes for a class party or being volunteered to sew buttons on costumes for a play, the stress of the season gets to the best of us. Throw in a couple of last minute school assignments for the kids like book reports and science projects, it’s a wonder we manage to enjoy the spirit of the season at all. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Laura Alden knows firsthand what stress might do to a group of over-worked moms. In her debut novel MURDER AT THE PTA, the newly-elected PTA secretary Beth Kennedy must find out who killed Carver Elementary School’s most disliked principal. With a long list of harried mom as suspects, Beth must separate the good from the bad in order to solve this most nerve-wracking case. As part of this interview, Obsidian, an imprint of Penguin Books, has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. And, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your holiday reading list. Jen:…

Jen’s Jewels | Interviewing Leigh Brill
Jen's Jewels / October 27, 2010

Living with a chronic disease presents daily challenges. Whether it is learning to navigate life’s obstacles with a physical disability or simply coming to terms emotionally with the harsh realities of an unremitting disease, it’s never easy. The best plan of action that I have found is to try to make peace with your situation and put your best foot forward each and every day. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Leigh Brill discusses this very topic in her heartfelt new release, A DOG NAMED SLUGGER. Diagnosed with cerebral palsy, she tackles everyday activities with the help of an adorably smart guide dog aptly named Slugger. Through anecdotal tales of encouragement, she offers keen insight into the life of a person struggling with a debilitating chronic disease. Beautifully written from start to finish, her story is a true testament of courage, love, and hope. As part of this interview, Bell Bridge Books has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question. And as always, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your fall reading list. Jen: The challenges that life presents often turn out to be blessings…

Meet Jennifer Erin Valent
Jen's Jewels / October 1, 2010

Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you were born a different race? I think oftentimes we are so comfortable in our own skin that we neglect to acknowledge the adversity faced by others. For example, the civil rights movement seems like an event found only in the pages of a history book, but in reality, it happened not too long ago. If it weren’t for bright, courageous authors who challenge us to remember the road once taken, we might forever forget the struggles our country has faced. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Jennifer Erin Valent is an expert, in my opinion, in making the past come to life. In her latest release CATCHING MOONDROPS, she continues the story of a brave young white woman named Jessilyn Lassiter who comes face to face with social prejudices in Virginia in the 1930’s. The third book in the series, she takes the reader to a place where the Ku Klux Klan reigns supreme and the rights of those of a different race are put to the test. As part of this interview, Tyndale Publishers has donated five books for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget…

Meet Myla Goldberg
Jen's Jewels / September 22, 2010

The sight of leaves falling to the ground signals the arrival of fall. With the kids back in school, mothers can breathe a sigh of relief. That is until your son or daughter arrives home in tears with the story of how the school’s bully has ruined his or her life. It’s hard to believe that in this day and age of political correctness, bullying is still an issue. But, the fact of the matter is its real and it leaves deep emotional scars for years to come. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Myla Goldbergtackles this ever timely issue in her latest release THE FALSE FRIEND. It’s the story of a group of childhood girlfriends who are forced to come to terms with past school-aged transgressions. Emotionally gripping as well as painfully true to life, this book deserves a place on the top of your must-read list. As part of this interview, Doubleday Books has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, make a note to look for the trivia question at the end. You’ll be happy you did! And as always, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your reading adventure. Jen:…

Jen’s Jewels | Interview with Melissa Clark
Jen's Jewels / September 6, 2010

I have a confession to make. I am a Food Network junkie. If you ask me what Giada made on her show yesterday, I can tell you. Where was Guy Fieri on the latest episode of Diners, Drive-in’s and Dives? In Baltimore, of course! If it’s being sautéed, chopped, or stirred on the Food Network, I am most likely right there watching it. So, when the delectable cookbook by this month’s Jen’s Jewels Melissa Clark came across my desk, I couldn’t wait to check out her scrumptious recipes. You may recognize her name from the New York Times Dining Section. Her culinary writing career is quite amazing, to say the least. In her latest endeavor, she combines her favorite stories with the food she loves. Each recipe is a mouth-watering treat. As part of this interview, Hyperion Books has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. And, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your back-to-school reading list! Jen: Without a doubt, your writing prowess is synonymous with culinary expertise. Whether the topic is fine dining or homemade comfort food, you…

Interview with Corinne Demas
Jen's Jewels / August 19, 2010

As a writer, I am always looking for ways in which to fine-tune my craft. From professional groups such as Romance Writers of America (which I highly recommend) to educational seminars that teach how to avoid common first-time writing blunders, there are myriads of lessons to be learned, and there is always room for improvement. Not only is having the right tools an essential part of the process, but also having the desire to succeed is critical to a writer’s success. This month’s Corinne Demas touches upon this very topic in her latest release THE WRITING CIRCLE. It’s a fascinating story about a group of eclectic writers who come together on a literary journey like none other. From their diverse viewpoints comes a unique story with an unexpected twist. Emotional yet engaging, this novel is a must- read for every person who has ever contemplated becoming a writer. As part of this interview, Hyperion Voice has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. I hope you are enjoying the last days of summer. Happy Reading! Jen: The path to publication a writer…

Jen’s Jewels | Interview with Deborah Clearman
Jen's Jewels / July 19, 2010

Have you ever imagined what it would be like to start anew, even for just a few weeks, in a foreign country? A new identity, new customs to learn, and most especially a new lease on life! I guess if I really wanted to know the ins and outs, I could ask the members of the Russian spy ring! All kidding aside, life sometimes seems so fast-paced and all-consuming that it is difficult to find time to stop and smell the roses. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Deborah Clearman addresses this very topic in her debut novel, TODOS SANTOS. Set in Guatemala, it’s the story of one woman’s plight to start anew while coming face to face with adversity in the jungles of a third world country. Beautifully written with the richness of the countryside accenting the backdrop of her tale, it’s a novel worth the read. As part of this interview, Black Lawrence Press has generously donated five copies for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. And as always, thanks for making Jen’s Jewels a part of your reading adventure. Jen: In order to truly appreciate…

Jen’s Jewels | Interview of Cecily von Ziegesar
Jen's Jewels / July 1, 2010

If I were able to turn back the clock and revisit any period of time in my life, I would have to choose my college days. Words just can’t describe that feeling of exhilaration experienced when I first tasted the sweetness of freedom. Sure, I made mistakes (many of them); however, they were of my own doing. And somehow, that made them seem less painful and perhaps even okay. This month’s Jen’s Jewels Cecily von Ziegesar explores this very topic in her latest release, CUM LAUDE. Known as the mastermind behind the Gossip Girl series, she has written a hip, yet edgy look at life through the eyes of college-aged young adults. With a juicy storyline and salacious characters, she creates the perfect read for a hot July day. As part of this interview, Hyperion Books has generously donated five copies of CUM LAUDE for you, my favorite readers, to try to win. So, don’t forget to look for the trivia question at the end. And, thanks for stopping by and making Jen’s Jewels a part of your summer reading. Jen: Most readers would associate your name with your highly popular Gossip Girl series upon which the television show is…