Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Review: Crossing the Line by by Ellen Wolfson Valladares

Dear Ellen,


I read your YA novel, "Crossing the Line", and despite my hairy knuckles, I kinda liked it. As a writer, I'm envious of your ability to plot such a clean story. I tend to meander, but your storytelling is dead-on with every paragraph.

I got lazy a few times, like we all do when we read, and I skimmed a few paragraphs only to find myself lost because something happened and I missed it. I can skim pages and pages of other authors, but you broke me quick of that bad habit.

See, I had to go back, slow down and read every word, because you didn't waste syllables clucking about someone's sock drawer and their pretty dresses and how they plan to wear their hair tonight. Lean and mean. Well played. Keep that voice.

And then you wove parallel now-and-then plot lines about two groups of teens into a seamless story that on paper must have appeared redundant. I bet it did, if you plotted on story cards or such, because there were overt similarities between the past v. present characters that bordered on cut-and-paste. Still, I somehow had to read every word of both stories, because there were nugget differences buried beneath the sand that when overturned, turned over everything.

I was pleasantly surprised on several occasions. It's like a jack-in-the-box. The book is predictably unexpectable, but even though you know it's coming, you jump anyway.

Oh, and on the ghost part, I have to admit you got me good. Seriously, and this is not a joke or an exaggeration, you got me. I was reading the end of the novel in Chic Fila, letting my toddler, strike that, young son (he's four, not a toddler by God!) play while I found some peace in the chaos to finish your book. Ah, the end.

The end. The sweet, sweet ending.

I won't spoil it, but it triggered me, because we, too, lost a toddler back in 2012, and when I read your afterward, and realized you are an angel parent as well, the ending of your novel made a bit more sense to me. I felt your heart in that scene, and I bet you did, too.

But back to Chic Fila. I had to step into the restroom and cry. True story. That's not a common thing after six years for a man who's emotionally constipated. Again, well-played.

Enough about that, let's move into technical considerations. The editing was fabulous. I can tell you and your editors worked hard on getting it just right. Pace. Structure. Grammar. Plot. Story. Characters. All first-rate, and what I would expect from a professional author.

And as for the story itself, it was interesting and consuming, and I had no trouble suspending my disbelief and settling into your story. The supernatural elements felt a little rushed at times, but that's the pace of a YA novel, and again it comes down to skipping paragraphs. You did not waste time beating bushes. Maybe that's what I mean to say. I'm not complaining about the rush, but I sorta feel like the book was written at high speed with the windows down.

Sure, like that, and on a smooth, straight road. That there's the definition of a fast read, my friend.

Anyway, I enjoyed "Crossing the Line", and I hope other readers will enjoy it as much as I did. Good luck on the shelf, and here's to making a good run of it.


Your friend and newest fan,
 - Eric





Ellen Valladares
WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING TOUR
OF
Crossing the Line


Paperback:  300  pages   
Genre:  Fiction / Young Adult Novel
Publisher:    WiDO (March 2018)
ISBN-13:    978-1-937178-99-4
Amazon Link:



Laura, who died thirty years ago, enlists the help of a tenacious high school reporter named Rebecca, who is very much alive. Rebecca, although skeptical and conflicted by her supposed encounters with a spirit, determines to learn the truth about Laura’s tragic death. As the clues unravel and their worlds collide, Rebecca finds herself at a dangerous crossroads.

Laura, now pulled back into everything she left behind when she died – her old high school and memories of her life and death—has been in training for this exact moment. And nothing means more to her than succeeding at her assignment.

It is her one chance to make sure that what happened to her does not happen to anyone else, and especially not to her new friend, Rebecca.


About the Author:  
Ellen Wolfson Valladares is an award-winning writer/author, workshop facilitator, community volunteer, and mother. A native Floridian, she grew up in St. Petersburg and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Florida. She has worked as an editor, public relations professional, and freelance writer. Her first book, a children’s novel entitled Jonathan's Journey to Mount Miapu, received several awards, including a Mom’s Choice Gold Award and the 2009 Coalition of Visionary Resources Visionary Awards Book of the Year award. She also has a meditation CD, entitled "Healing and Manifestation with the Archangels."

Today, Valladares continues to work as a freelance writer. She also enjoys coaching high school students working on their college essays and helping other writers realize their dreams. She has been married to her husband, Manny, for 30 years and they have two sons, Gabriel and Michael, two dogs, Flash and Chili Pepper, and a crazy cat named Zelda. They live in Weston, Fla.



Find Ellen Online:

Twitter: @ValladaresEllen
FB: @EllenValladares444 (link: https://fb.me/EllenValladares444)

 


WoW! Women On Writing Blog Tour Dates

Monday, April 16th   @ The Muffin
Join us at the Muffin for an author interview and book giveaway for the fictional young adult novel by Ellen Valladares,  Crossing the Line.

Tuesday, April 17th @ World of My Imagination
Nicole Pyles reads and reviews "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares. This is a fun young adult novel that readers will be sure to delight in!

Wednesday, April 18th  @  Beverley Baird
Beverley Baird reviews "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares. Readers won't want to miss this fast paced young adult novel!
https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

Thursday, April 19th @ Memoir Writer’s Journey
Ellen Valladares pens today's guest post at Kathleen Pooler's Memoir Writer's Journey. Don't miss this great post titled "Your Writer's Purpose -- how creating your purpose/vision can keep you on target" and learn more about Valladares' latest novel "Crossing the Line".

Thursday, April 19th @ Write Like Crazy
Mary Jo reads Ellen Valladares' "Crossing the Line" and shares her thoughts with readers at Write Like Crazy.

Friday, April 20th @ BookWorm
Anjanette Potter delights readers at Bookworm with her review of the YA Novel "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares.

Saturday, April 21st @ Spark the Wizard
Brandi at Spark the Wizard shares her thoughts in a review of Ellen Valladares novel "Crossing the Line".

Monday, April 23rd  @ Bring on Lemons with Cathy Hansen
Wisconsin entrepreneur and school teacher reviews the latest novel by Ellen Valladares. Don't miss this opportunity to find out more about the YA Novel "Crossing the Line".

Tuesday, April 24th   @ Finished Pages
Today, at Finished Pages, readers have an opportunity to learn more about "Crossing the Line" the latest novel by Ellen Valladares. Don't miss Renee's review of this YA Novel!

Wednesday, April 25th  @ Reviews by Deb
Deborah Blanchard shares her thoughts after reading "Crossing the Line" by accomplished author and journalist Ellen Valladares.

Thursday, April 26th @ Digging with the Worms
Eric Trant reviews the latest novel by Ellen Valladares. See what Eric thinks of "Crossing the Line" and find out more about this great book and accomplished author.
http://diggingwiththeworms.blogspot.com/

Thursday, April 26th @ Phy Tallic
Phy reviews the delightful YA Novel "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares.

Friday, April 27th @ Write Happy
Today at Write Happy, Cathy Brown will be interviewing Ellen Valladares about her latest novel "Crossing the Line". Don't miss this opportunity to learn more about this YA Novel  as well as hear some tips from the accomplished journalist and author Ellen Valladares.
https://www.writehappy.net/blog

Monday, April 30th @ Ellen Valladares
Crystal J. Casavant-Otto from WOW! Women on Writing reviews "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares and shares her thoughts with readers at Valladares' blog.
http://ellenvalladares.com/ellens-blog/

Tuesday, May 1st @ I Just Want to Finish My…
Brittany shares her thoughts after reading "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares. Don't miss this insightful blog stop for this delightful Young Adult Novel!

Wednesday, May 2nd @ Hott Books
Don't miss today's guest post at Hott Books! Distinguished author Ellen Valladares shares her post titled: 'The Inspiration Behind Crossing the Line'. You'll want to learn more about this delightful YA Novel!

Friday, May 4th @ Frasers Fun House
Melanie at Frasers Fun House reviews "Crossing the Line" by Ellen Valladares.

Monday, May 7th @ Word Nerd Media
Elizabeth at Word Nerd reviews the latest novel by Ellen Valladares. You won't want to miss a minute of this captivating YA Novel "Crossing the Line".





Eric W. Trant is a published author of several short stories and the novels WINKSTEPS and RISEN from WiDo Publishing, out now! See more of Eric's work here: Publications, or order directly from Amazon, or wherever books are sold.

** BE A SUPER-HERO! BE AN ORGAN DONOR! **














Haunted by visions of a demonic angel and sold into servitude by his father, young Alberto battles to survive the horrors of a nineteenth century Sicilian sulfur mine. Suffering merciless brutality, Alberto must save not only himself but his deformed older brother, both pawns in their father's mad plan to overthrow a group of wealthy landowners.Bound by a death-debt to his hunchback master, Alberto discovers a door the miners call Porta dell'Inferno, the Door to Hell, deep within the sulfur mines. When he learns the demon-angel of his dreams stalks the caverns beyond the door, Alberto realizes a strange fate has lured him and his brother to the gates leading to the underworld.Now Alberto must face the creature from his visions and rise to become the man his father demands him to be, or remain forever trapped in a hellish world where none escape.









Sunday, February 11, 2018

Remember this on Valentine's Day


I know it's a manufactured holiday, and aren't they all, but still, Valentine's Day is a fine time to remember you should appreciate your significant other. See, not everyone found a partner with benefits, and a lot of couples don't even like each other. Plus, the axe man comes in the night and widowizes us all.

So, if you're thrice lucky -- you found someone, you actually ~like~ this human, and the axe man's still waiting outside your door, tapping his foot and whetting his blade -- then you should take some time out of your busy, tiresome, stressful, just-let-me-sleep day to show some dadgum love to this person.

Thing is, we sometimes believe we can do things like clean the house or cook a meal. Sure, that's nice, but anyone can do that. Hell, hire a maid and go out to eat. Boom. Done. Those are chores, not gifts.

We think maybe we can say nice things, but we all receive compliments (or should) from plenty of other folks. No big deal. Heck, gussy up and post a selfie, let the damn-girl comments roll in.

Buy a house together! Nope. Roommates do that. Boring.

Vacation? That's fun, but again, lots of folks join you on vacations.

I'm not saying those things don't matter, but they are not the most precious gifts you can provide. They're silver and bronze and copper offerings, and I'm saying you should dig up gold and platinum. Consider what you alone hold in your possession that no other person could or should provide to your partner.

How about this one. She's in the kitchen cooking. She's busy. You're busy. You sidle up behind her, hands on her hips, nibble her neck and say, I love you, baby.

Now, there's a gift you alone can give her. Easy, isn't it, and pure gold.

How about another one. He's in the shower, shaving. You stick your head through the curtain, say, Hey sexy, want some company? After he stops the bleeding (because he realized you were already undressed), you jump in and have some slippery fun-time with him.

How about this one. You wash her car. Fun, right? WRONG! Trick question and here's your neck-slap, because I wanted to see if you were paying attention. Take your damn car to the car wash, this doesn't count.

Try again.

She's on the couch watching her shows. She's under her blanket. She wants to be left alone, and you want to cuddle, but instead of messing with her, you sit down and massage her feet, because you know she's been pounding them all day and they're aching her. I know, a masseuse could do it, but it's the act of offering it freely and unsolicited that matters, along with the kind and meaningful words you say to her. Massages kinda go either way, if you ask me. Same with things like painting her nails, shaving his back, or giving her an enema because she's pregnant and three-days constipated. You know, all those blissful pseudo-intimate encounters that don't involve kissing.

In general, you're shopping for gifts that you alone can offer your lover, gifts that, if another person provided them, would breach the limits of your dedication to one another. The foot massage, for instance, would be very inappropriate if a co-worker did it at work, and who wants someone jumping into the shower while you're at the gym.

See, it's the uniqueness of your gift that matters. It's the fact that you alone can offer it. It is the fact that the gift is within the sacred boundaries of the relationship where the two of you reside alone, together.

Jewelry, cards, flowers, anyone can do that.

But nibbles and cuddles, whispers in bed and swinging from the rafters in scalp-numbing ecstasy, these are gifts you alone can give your most-prized and #1 guy or gal.

That right there, folks, is why we have a partner like this in the first place.


Monday, September 11, 2017

RISEN Review by Tara Forst

Today is a professional review of RISEN from Tara Forst.


I’m not sure what I was expecting when I picked up Risen, but I was more than pleasantly surprised. I found both the writing style and the content intriguing and unique. Initially I was a bit confused by the chapters going back and forth between past and present, but once I understood what was happening I was enthralled by the strange, sad tale told by Eric Trant.

I found the characters interesting and realistic and felt a deep sympathy for them. Alberto and his brother Paolo face horror after horror and beat the odds despite Alberto’s small stature and Paolo’s infirmities. Alberto and Paolo create a perfect team with Paolo’s physical strength and Alberto’s strength of character. Alberto defends and cares for his brother and Lena while their fathers rage and campaign against their neighbors.

I found the settings to be quite authentic and frightening as well. You could practically feel the heat from the “Porta dell’Inferno.” I never knew what to expect next. Risen kept me engaged with each new chapter. Though it was a fairly easy read, I found myself taking more time and care to read as the timeframes jumped around with each chapter.

One of my favorite chapters is chapter 12 (Bestie). So much happens in this chapter! Lena is introduced and is described in all her beauty from Alberto’s point of view. Alberto and Lena have an amusing encounter, and Alberto’s father is killed. If there was one point that I couldn’t put this book down it was after this chapter!

After reading Risen, I can’t wait to pick up another Eric Trant book soon!

Tara Forst

Thank you, Tara, for the kind review!




About today’s guest reviewer: Tara Forst lives in Wisconsin with her husband and their young son. Tara owns her own business Worn Forever - dedicated to helping mamas with babywearing and attachment parenting.










See some of our next stops on the blog tour here:


Monday September 4th (today) @ WOW! Women on Writing
Interview & Giveaway

Tuesday, September 5th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples
Eric Trant writes today's guest post at Choice "Is a Career in the Arts (writing) Realistic?". Readers can find out more about Trant and his latest book RISEN.

Wednesday, September 6th @ Mari McCarthy’s Create Write Now
"Say YES: Why Taking Chances is Imperative" is today's topic at Mari McCarthy's Create Write Now. Hear from author Eric Trant as he examines this important topic and shares more about his latest novel RISEN.

Thursday, September 7th @ Writer’s Pay it Forward
Eric Trant pens today's guest post at Writer's Pay It Forward. Today's post is titled: "Breaking In vs. Breaking Out: The Writer's Career Arc". Readers and Writers alike won't want to miss this opportunity to hear from Trant as well as finding out more about his latest novel RISEN.

Friday, September 8th @ BookWorm
Hear from Anjanette Potter of BookWorm as she reviews Eric Trant's latest novel RISEN- this historical supernatural work of fiction is sure to please readers!

Friday, September 8th @ Lisa Haselton
Lisa Haselton interviews Eric Trant about his latest novel RISEN. You'll want to learn more about this supernatural tale of fiction as well as the mastermind behind the dynamic writing.

Friday, September 8th @ Hott Books
"Life Gets Better: An Angel Dad Reports Five Years Later" is today's post title at Hott Books. This touching true life tale is told by guest blogger Eric Trant as part of his WOW! Women on Writing book blog tour of his latest thriller RISEN.

Monday, September 11th @ Tara Forst at Digging with the Worms
Crunchy Wisconsin Mama and Entrepreneur Tara Forst reviews RISEN by Eric Trant. Don't miss this review and giveaway of Trant's latest thriller!

Tuesday, September 12th @ Bring on Lemons with Tess Fallier
Tess Fallier is today's guest blogger with a review and her thoughts on Eric Trant's RISEN. Don't miss this blog stop!

Wednesday, September 13th @ Book Santa Fe with Crystal Otto
Reader and book blogger Crystal Otto reviews Eric Trant's RISEN and shares her thoughts with readers at Book Santa Fe.

Thursday, September 14th @ Memoir Writer’s Journey
Eric Trant visits Memoir Writer's Journey and shares his thoughts with readers of Kathleen Pooler's engaging blog. Today's post title is: "Setting: Its Role in Storytelling". Don't miss this chance to hear from the talented Eric Trant and find out more about his latest book RISEN.

Friday, September 29th @ Coming Down the Mountain
Eric Trant is today's guest author at Karen Jones Gowen's blog Coming Down the Mountain. Read Eric's guest post titled "Luck: Its Role in Success" and find out more about his latest thriller RISEN.


Wednesday, October 18 @ Shannon Muir
Don't miss today's author interview at the blog of Author Shannon Muir. Shannon will be interviewing Eric Trant about his latest thriller RISEN.



Eric W. Trant is a published author of several short stories and the novels WINKSTEPS and RISEN from WiDo Publishing, out now! See more of Eric's work here: Publications, or order directly from Amazon, or wherever books are sold.

** BE A SUPER-HERO! BE AN ORGAN DONOR! **














Haunted by visions of a demonic angel and sold into servitude by his father, young Alberto battles to survive the horrors of a nineteenth century Sicilian sulfur mine. Suffering merciless brutality, Alberto must save not only himself but his deformed older brother, both pawns in their father's mad plan to overthrow a group of wealthy landowners.Bound by a death-debt to his hunchback master, Alberto discovers a door the miners call Porta dell'Inferno, the Door to Hell, deep within the sulfur mines. When he learns the demon-angel of his dreams stalks the caverns beyond the door, Alberto realizes a strange fate has lured him and his brother to the gates leading to the underworld.Now Alberto must face the creature from his visions and rise to become the man his father demands him to be, or remain forever trapped in a hellish world where none escape.












Sunday, September 3, 2017

RISEN Blog Tour 2017 from WoW

Special thanks to Crystal J. Otto over at Bring on Lemons & WoW (Women on Writing) for organizing yet another wonderful blog tour for my latest release, RISEN, from WiDo Publishing.

Another huge thanks for everyone willing to participate, and especially to those offering professional reads and reviews of RISEN.

Below are the blog stops for the hop. I'll be cross-posting each day and stopping in, so take a look at some of the topics, then drop by and join us.



Monday September 4th (today) @ WOW! Women on Writing
Interview & Giveaway

Tuesday, September 5th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples
Eric Trant writes today's guest post at Choice "Is a Career in the Arts (writing) Realistic?". Readers can find out more about Trant and his latest book RISEN.

Wednesday, September 6th @ Mari McCarthy’s Create Write Now
"Say YES: Why Taking Chances is Imperative" is today's topic at Mari McCarthy's Create Write Now. Hear from author Eric Trant as he examines this important topic and shares more about his latest novel RISEN.


Thursday, September 7th @ Writer’s Pay it Forward

Eric Trant pens today's guest post at Writer's Pay It Forward. Today's post is titled: "Breaking In vs. Breaking Out: The Writer's Career Arc". Readers and Writers alike won't want to miss this opportunity to hear from Trant as well as finding out more about his latest novel RISEN.

Friday, September 8th @ BookWorm
Hear from Anjanette Potter of BookWorm as she reviews Eric Trant's latest novel RISEN- this historical supernatural work of fiction is sure to please readers!

Friday, September 8th @ Lisa Haselton
Lisa Haselton interviews Eric Trant about his latest novel RISEN. You'll want to learn more about this supernatural tale of fiction as well as the mastermind behind the dynamic writing.

Friday, September 8th @ Hott Books
"Life Gets Better: An Angel Dad Reports Five Years Later" is today's post title at Hott Books. This touching true life tale is told by guest blogger Eric Trant as part of his WOW! Women on Writing book blog tour of his latest thriller RISEN.


Monday, September 11th @ Tara Forst at Digging with the Worms
Crunchy Wisconsin Mama and Entrepreneur Tara Forst reviews RISEN by Eric Trant. Don't miss this review and giveaway of Trant's latest thriller!


Tuesday, September 12th @ Bring on Lemons with Tess Fallier
Tess Fallier is today's guest blogger with a review and her thoughts on Eric Trant's RISEN. Don't miss this blog stop!

Wednesday, September 13th @ Book Santa Fe with Crystal Otto
Reader and book blogger Crystal Otto reviews Eric Trant's RISEN and shares her thoughts with readers at Book Santa Fe.

Thursday, September 14th @ Memoir Writer’s Journey
Eric Trant visits Memoir Writer's Journey and shares his thoughts with readers of Kathleen Pooler's engaging blog. Today's post title is: "Setting: Its Role in Storytelling". Don't miss this chance to hear from the talented Eric Trant and find out more about his latest book RISEN.


Friday, September 15th @ Building Bookshelves
Eric Trant interviews the 5 Ws at Building Bookshelves, promoting his new supernatural, historical thriller RISEN.


Friday, September 29th @ Coming Down the Mountain
Eric Trant is today's guest author at Karen Jones Gowen's blog Coming Down the Mountain. Read Eric's guest post titled "Luck: Its Role in Success" and find out more about his latest thriller RISEN.



Wednesday, October 18 @ Shannon Muir
Don't miss today's author interview at the blog of Author Shannon Muir. Shannon will be interviewing Eric Trant about his latest thriller RISEN.





Eric W. Trant is a published author of several short stories and the novels WINKSTEPS and RISEN from WiDo Publishing, out now! See more of Eric's work here: Publications, or order directly from Amazon, or wherever books are sold.

** BE A SUPER-HERO! BE AN ORGAN DONOR! **














Haunted by visions of a demonic angel and sold into servitude by his father, young Alberto battles to survive the horrors of a nineteenth century Sicilian sulfur mine. Suffering merciless brutality, Alberto must save not only himself but his deformed older brother, both pawns in their father's mad plan to overthrow a group of wealthy landowners.Bound by a death-debt to his hunchback master, Alberto discovers a door the miners call Porta dell'Inferno, the Door to Hell, deep within the sulfur mines. When he learns the demon-angel of his dreams stalks the caverns beyond the door, Alberto realizes a strange fate has lured him and his brother to the gates leading to the underworld.Now Alberto must face the creature from his visions and rise to become the man his father demands him to be, or remain forever trapped in a hellish world where none escape.