Guest Post – Cami Checketts, author of THE COLONY



The Book Diva’s Reads is pleased to participate in this blog tour organized by Kathy at I Am A Reader and host a visit by Cami Checketts, author of The Colony. Ms. Checketts will be talking about an all-too important topic, “Helping Children Love to Read.” 



Helping Children Love to Read


My oldest son is addicted to reading. I started reading to him in the womb and he’s never stopped. I used to start a book with him and then he’d just take off. My second son – different story, until he was ten I read every book (except for his homework) aloud to him, but then something sparked and he is now an avid reader. My third son – struggles. I know it’ll click soon, but right now he’s in special programs at school and at the bottom of the curve. My fourth son loves listening to stories, but would rather play the iPad if given the choice.

We all know how important reading is, but how can we force (I mean encourage) our children to see the value. As those of you who have more than one child know, what worked with one will completely flop with another, so I try a lot of different techniques and sometimes one of them is effective. 


  • Read Aloud – Start reading aloud when they’re infants and don’t quit, unless they’re running away from you with fingers in their ears screaming, stop the madness. When they’re teenagers and no longer want you reading to them, maybe you could read the same novels and discuss them. 
  • Make the library and bookstore special treats. My younger boys love to ride our bikes to the library, the older boys prefer choosing an ebook to download to their iPod. They all know every holiday they’ll receive a book as a present.
  • Have books everywhere. The only room in our house that isn’t loaded with books is the kitchen and that’s only because we try not to ruin our books and because we need to actually talk to our oldest once in a while without his eyes glued to a book.
  • Be a good example. My husband isn’t a reader, but I remind him often to have the boys see him reading the newspaper or his scriptures or pretending to read one of my books (the romance is a bit hard on the tough guy). If your children see you finding joy from reading, they will usually want to explore that themselves.
  • Read age-appropriate books. I think this is one of the mistakes I made with my second son. My oldest and I were having so much fun with chapter books that I would read my second son’s books quickly and then settle down to read for hours with my oldest. My second guy would usually stay with us during story time, but I’m not sure he got much out of it. If you can, try to set aside a time to read to each child on their level. It’s also okay to read a bit above their level, but plan on explaining words or situations they don’t understand. When we read The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas it took us months, but my son still enjoyed it. We also enjoy reading below their level sometimes. Every one of my boys still laughs at Junie B. Jones, even if they won’t admit it.
  • Read what they want (most of the time) – I try to let my boys pick out their own books, but I also pick out one I want to read to them. They have to give my book forty pages. If they hate it, we quit. And sometimes I have to grit my teeth through their books (have you read Captain Underpants?), but that’s part of being a mom.
  • Keep it fun – I always ask the librarian or bookstore employee for humorous kids’ books. We also come back to some of our favorite funny series over and over again. The Fudge Series by Judy Blume and Chickens in the Headlights by Matthew Buckley make us laugh no matter how many times we read them. I would love to hear about your favorite children’s series, funny or not.


I am definitely not an expert on this subject, but with four boys I keep trying different things. Reading is such an essential part of development and success in school and beyond, I hope each of us can find the best way to instill a love of reading in each of our children. Please share what works for you and your family.


About the author:

Cami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Berenstain Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.

Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. Cami teaches strength training classes at her local rec and shares healthy living tips on her fitness blog

Cami and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn’t snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.


Connect with the author:     Website     |     Twitter     |     Facebook

Book Blast: THE COLONY by Cami Checketts



The Colony by Cami Checketts


To protect her sons from the mistakes of her past, Brinlee Trapper escapes to a secluded mountain home. But there are dangers lurking in the mountains she has never encountered. The little family is saved from injury by Jed, a mysterious hunter. Brinlee is drawn to him, but she worries about his involvement with a peaceful commune hidden deep in the mountains behind her property.

Lance, Brinlee’s attentive neighbor, has his own troubled history. Between his obvious attraction to Brinlee and his developing love for her children, Brinlee finds it more than difficult to guard her heart against this tender intrusion.

While Jed offers a life of excitement and freedom, Lance holds the key to the family Brinlee always wanted. When it comes time to choose, she learns that both men have secrets that could shatter her fledgling trust in men and the wrong decision could leave more than her heart exposed to danger.

Praise

“Cami Checketts is a genius! She writes about topics that aren’t widely discussed, in and out of books, and she does such a brilliant job of crafting these things into wonderful stories that touch your heart and remain with you for days afterwards.”  ~Myra, Reviewer, Pieces of Whimsy



Grab your copy for just $2.99!










Follow the Tour Schedule


Download a FREE copy of The Broken Path by Cami Checketts!


From January 7th to 11th The Broken Path is available for FREE on Amazon


Author Cami Checketts


Cami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Berenstein Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.

Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. Cami teaches strength training classes at her local rec and shares healthy living tips on her fitness blog: http://fitnessformom.blogspot.com/

Cami and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn’t snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.

Connect with the author: Website    |     Twitter      |     Facebook     |     Fitness Blog


BookBlast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/31/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Book Showcase & Giveaway: BLOG THIS by Cami Checketts





Will protecting children throughout the world cost Natasha her own family?
Devastated by the loss of her brother, Natasha Senecot works to expose the dangers of Matthew Chrysler’s violent video games, succeeding in bankrupting and humiliating him.
Chrysler retaliates and sends a hit man after her. Natasha is forced to fake her own death to protect her children, but after witnessing another tragedy, Natasha won’t hide any longer.
In a race against time, can Natasha expose Matthew Chrysler before his assassin murders her family and shatters her world?

Praise for Blog This
From the very first chapter, Blog This grabs your gut and your heart with surprising action and touching moments. Cami Checketts blends suspense, humor, and good clean romance into a story that will stick with you.
Daniel Coleman, Author of Gifts and Consequences

Loved it. Loved it. Loved it. Have read all of Cami’s books but Blog This is on the top of my list. Read it twice and enjoyed it just as much the second time. Just when you think you know what is going to happen you’re led into a different direction. Had a hard time putting the book down and was anxious to see how it was going to end.
Elsa Akinason





Blog This will be $2.99 during the blog tour – September 30th – October 16th. Click here to purchase or read the first few chapters.











About the author


Cami is a part-time author, part-time exercise consultant, part-time housekeeper, full-time wife, and overtime mother of four adorable boys. Sleep and relaxation are fond memories. She’s never been happier.


Please refer to her website – http://www.camichecketts.com for more information about her books.
 





a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Excerpt: THE BROKEN PATH

The Broken Path by Cami Checketts
ISBN: 9781481810791 (paperback)
ASIN: B00AS47TYS (Kindle ebook)
Publication Date: January 5, 2013 (paperback)
Publisher: CreateSpace (paperback)
Publisher: Birch River Publishing (Kindle ebook)

Injured in a debilitating accident at age six, Ethan Searle believes women eye him with a mixture of pity and disdain. He’s tried love before. He won’t again. He meets his match in a precocious two-year old who loves him despite his disability, even while her mother seems bothered by everything about Ethan. 

Autumn Reader escaped her abusive marriage with her beautiful daughter and a stack of fear. She can’t make the mistake of trusting a man again. Autumn’s daughter becomes enraptured by Ethan. Despite Autumn’s best intentions, she finds herself following her daughter’s example. When her ex-husband reappears, threatening everyone she loves if she won’t submit to his demands, Autumn has to learn to trust or lose her chance at real love.





Blurbs about the book:

“Characters to fall in love with, action to keep you turning pages, and the most adorable little girl ever, The Broken Path is a compelling tale of strength and trust, courage and heart. I truly enjoyed this book.” – Maria Hoagland, author of Family Size 

The Broken Path is sweet romance with heart, suspense, and plenty of story twists that kept me turning pages. Add in a romantic hero with a cane, a struggling single mom, and an adorable little girl and this book has it all!” – Heather Justesen, author of The Switch



Excerpt:

The door swung open. Her heart’s palpitations ceased. Ethan’s attire was simple, Levis and a white V-necked shirt. He’d never looked better.

“Autumn,” his deep voice warmed her more than the summer sun. “You look beautiful.”

She tugged at the hem of her shorts, glad her long legs were tan from playing outside with Brittan.

“You…you…” Autumn stuttered, trying to find the right words to express how he looked “…look beautiful, too,” she said. She barely caught her hand from smacking her head. What kind of an idiot tells a man he looks beautiful?

He chuckled.

Heat crept up her face. “I mean, thank you, um, you look nice, too.”

He opened the door wider, a grin splitting his face. “Thanks. Why don’t you come through this way to the garage?”

“Sure.”

They made their way through the large great room toward the garage entry, his braces rhythmically slapping the wood floor.

“I thought we’d drive to Pocatello,” Ethan said. “Is that all right with you?”

“It’s great.” Anything’s all right, as long as you keep smiling like that.

“I told Nancy I’d come pick you up,” Ethan said, “but she insisted you’d come here.”

“It wasn’t a problem to come here.” Autumn looked up at his profile. It wasn’t a problem at all. She’d go anywhere just to look at him.

“Your mom acted really odd about the whole thing.”

“Odd is a nice way of putting it.” Autumn shook her head, grinning. “She was outright rude to me.”

Ethan laughed again. “I thought she’d be happy you asked me out.”

“Happy? I asked you?” Autumn stopped and stared at him. “What are you talking about? You asked me out.”

“What?” He stopped as well, making a quarter turn with his braces to face her. “Nancy called me and said you were too busy with work so you couldn’t call. She said you wanted to take me to dinner for watching Brit.”

Autumn’s jaw dropped. “Why, that conniving, little…”

Ethan elevated one eyebrow. “I guess you didn’t ask me out?”

“No. I sure didn’t  I can’t believe my mother would…” Autumn’s voice faltered. Ethan’s shoulders drooped; his eyes filled with pain. “Not that I wouldn’t have asked you out, and I do owe you for watching Brit, it’s just I didn’t think you would want—”

“You don’t owe me anything,” Ethan interrupted her, his voice soft. “I’m sorry for the misunderstanding. Let me walk you to the door.”



About the author:

Cami is a part-time author, part-time exercise consultant, part-time housekeeper, full-time wife, and overtime mother of four adorable boys. Sleep and relaxation are fond memories. She’s never been happier.

A portion of the proceeds from Cami’s books will be donated to The Child & Family Support Center. For more information on this worthy cause, please go to www.cachecfsc.org


Connect with Cami:   Blog       |     Twitter      |     Facebook 




Buy the Book:

Book Blast: DEAD RUNNING by Cami Checketts



Dead Running

Cassidy Christensen is running.
Running from the mercenaries who killed her parents.
Running from a scheming redhead intent on making her life miserable.
Running from painful memories that sabotage her dreams of happiness.

With two very tempting men competing for her attention, she hopes she’ll finally have someone to run to, but can she trust either of them? When secrets from her past threaten her family, Cassidy decides to stop running and fight for her future.



Dying to Run

Cassidy Christensen wants to run.

Captured by the traffickers who killed her mother, her only hope is Dr. Tattoo, a man she loves but nobody trusts. When she finally gets a chance to run, someone else she cares about is taken. Running might be her only chance at survival, but she won’t allow another family member to be killed in her place.

This must-read sequel to Dead Running will have you laughing, biting your nails, and hoping for more.






Purchase








Author Cami Checketts

Cami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Bernstein Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.

Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. Cami teaches strength training classes at her local rec and shares healthy living tips on her fitness blog: http://fitnessformom.blogspot.com.

Cami and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn’t snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.


Links








#BookBlast Giveaway

Details
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
$50 Gift Card to Running Chics
Ends 1/31/12
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer http://iamareadernotawriter.blogspot.com and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



2012 Book 253: DEAD RUNNING Review



Dead Running by Cami Checketts
ISBN: 9781475166606 (paperback)
ASIN: B007PJ70MA (Kindle ebook)


Cassidy Christensen is running.

Running from the mercenaries who killed her parents.

Running from a scheming redhead intent on making her life miserable.

Running from painful memories that sabotage her dreams of happiness.

With two very tempting men competing for her attention, she hopes she’ll finally have someone to run to, but can she trust either of them? When secrets from her past threaten her family, Cassidy decides to stop running and fight for her future.


Prior to the night Cassidy Christensen witnessed an attempt on her father’s life, she was a woman with a plan. She lived on her on, was fiercely independent and was ready to set the world on fire. That plan went a little awry after that night and she moved in with her paternal grandmother, Nana Christensen. After the death of her parents in Mexico her plans all but died. She remained at her grandmother’s house, her business failed due to the economy and she became an office worker. Cassidy has lost her self-confidence. But things are changing . . . 

Raquel, Cassidy’s sister-in-law, has talked her into training and then entering a 5K race. That simple race will change Cassidy’s life in more ways than one. She meets not one but two interesting men as a result of the race, encounters two thugs that have begun to threaten her as a result of her father’s former work, and meets a woman that borders on crazy with her stalker mentality (all because of a guy). After the race Cassidy decides she’ll actually follow through on a promise she’s made to herself, she will become a runner and she will compete in the upcoming marathon. 

 As Cassidy begins to train in earnest for the upcoming marathon, her life becomes a tragic comedy worthy of an I Love Lucy episode. One of her romantic interests is Damon, a fellow runner that had agreed to train with the marathon entrant from the 5K race. Another romantic interest is Jesse, another runner and the doctor that treated her road rash after the 5K race. The only family member that seems to support Cassidy’s desire to train and run is her sister-in-law. Her brother Jared, her Nana and even her best friend Tasha all appear to suspect her motives for training and feel she’ll back out of this as she has so many things in the past few years. Cassidy must also fend off thugs from her father’s past and delve into the mystery surrounding her parents’ deaths. Will she be able to uncover the truth without putting her life in danger?

I found Dead Running to be a quick read that kept my attention from beginning to end. I was drawn by the descriptions of running and training preparation partially because my nephew runs cross-country and because Ms. Checketts did such an amazing job of making it interesting reading. Dead Running provides mystery, suspense, a light-hearted romance and just a touch of humor. 

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book free for review purposes from the author via I Am A Reader Not A Writer. I was not paid, required or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Ms. Checketts has graciously offered several giveaways during this virtual book tour. To enter for your chance to win your choice of  $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash, in addition to 3 sets of iFrogz earbuds and armbands, use the Rafflecopter form found here.

Buy the book:

Ebook Specials

There are several ebook specials being offered this weekend that may be of interest to you. 

The first book in the Subway trilogy, The Subway, a new YA series by Christopher Taylor (no relation) will be free to download December 1st – December 3rd on Amazon.


In the first book of a three part series, Stacy Martin, High School Freshman, copes with the pressures of the Ridgeland High social scene by escaping into the world of her creative writing.

Strange events in the classroom begin to blur the lines between the story she is writing and her real life. 

When she is summoned to ‘The Institute,’ Stacy travels to New York City in search of answers and along the way she learns the shocking truth that she is the subject of a sinister experiment.

At the end she must face a death-defying leap to get back to the beginning or remain forever trapped in a dream of her own creation.





Next up is a price drop by author Cami Checketts on her books Dead Running and Dying to Run. Both ebooks will be available for $0.99 starting December 1st on Amazon. (Dead Running will be reviewed on this blog on 12/30/2012 as part of a virtual book tour.) 

Cassidy Christensen is running.

Running from the mercenaries who killed her parents.

Running from a scheming redhead intent on making her life miserable. 

Running from painful memories that sabotage her dreams of happiness.

With two very tempting men competing for her attention, she hopes she’ll finally have someone to run to, but can she trust either of them? When secrets from her past threaten her family, Cassidy decides to stop running and fight for her future.




Cassidy Christensen wants to run.

Captured by the traffickers who killed her mother, Cassidy’s only hope is Dr. Tattoo, a man she loves but nobody trusts. When she finally gets a chance to run, someone else she cares about is taken. Running might be her only chance at survival, but Cassidy won’t allow another family member to be killed in her place. 



Ms. Checketts is also offering a giveaway associated with the ebook price drop. The prize is a $20 Amazon gift card. To enter this giveaway, please use the Rafflecopter form here.