Giveaway & Review – Keep In A Cold Dark Place by Michael F Stewart @MichaelFStewart @XpressoReads

Keep in a Cold, Dark Place by Michael F Steward is an irrestible story and I knew I had to have it. I mean…look at the cutie on the cover, with those eyes pleading at me to let out of the burlap bag it has been stuffed in.

Cover by Martin Stiff

Keep in a Cold, Dark Place
Michael F. Stewart
Publication date: May 18th 2017
Genres: Horror, Middle-Grade


The cover for Keep In A Cold Dark Place by Michael F Stewart is sooo good, I knew I had to read this. I immediately thought of Gremlins and figured I was in for one hell of an adventure…and I was right.

Limpy is a poor young girl with large dreams. I get very angry over the way most people treat her. It takes all kinds to make up this world, and she does more than her fair share. Here dead mother haunts her thoughts. She is devoted to her family and her art. Her creativity and originality would probably make her millions in the read world.

BUT…there are no monsters in the real world…are there? I was pleasantly surprised at what the monsters are and don’t want to spoil it, so I’m not going to tell you. For all you horror lovers, you DO want to know. I mean, just the title, Keep In A Cold Dark Place, is ominous, telling us there will be death and mayhem between ‘the pages’.

Michael F Stewart did a fabulous job with the writing and world he created. I felt anger and fear, worry and hope, and I was pretty sure the humans would prevail. I just wasn’t sure what humans would be left standing.

Lots of action and suspense kept me reading this cute and terrifying coming of age horror tale for Limpy and her family, friends and neighbors.

I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of Keep In A Cold Dark Place by Michael F Stewart.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos  4 Stars

Reaching for her dream, Limpy unleashes a cute, fluffy, NIGHTMARE …

Keep in a cold, dark place. That’s what’s written like some ancient law on every bag of potatoes the family farms. And it’s where Limpy fears she will always remain.

It’s also carved on a box of spheres she discovers in the cellar. Spheres that hatch.

Cute at first, the creatures begin to grow. Then the chickens disappear. The cat is hunted. And something sets the barn ablaze. To survive, Limpy will need to face her greatest fear. The whole family will. Or they may end up in a cold, dark place indeed.

Goodreads / Amazon


Author Bio:

Michael F. Stewart is winner of both the 2015 Claymore Award and the 2014 inaugural Creation of Stories Award for best YA novel at the Toronto International Book Fair.

He likes to combine storytelling with technology and pioneered interactive storytelling with Scholastic Canada, Australia, and New Zealand’s, anti-cyberbullying program Bully For You. In addition to his award winning Assured Destruction series, he has authored four graphic novels with Oxford University Press Canada’s Boldprint series. Publications of nonfiction titles on Corruption and Children’s Rights are published by Scholastic and early readers are out with Pearson Education.

For adults, Michael has written THE SAND DRAGON a horror about a revenant prehistoric vampire set in the tar sands, HURAKAN a Mayan themed thriller which pits the Maya against the MS-13 with a New York family stuck in the middle, 24 BONES an urban fantasy which draws from Egyptian myth, and THE TERMINALS–a covert government unit which solves crimes in this realm by investigating them in the next.

Herder of four daughters, Michael lives to write in Ottawa where he was the Ottawa Public Library’s first Writer in Residence. To learn more about Michael and his next projects visit his website at or connect via Twitter @MichaelFStewart.

Michael is represented by Talcott Notch.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter


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Friday 56 #106 – The Saga of Baby Divine by Bette Midler @BetteMidler

The Friday 56 is hosted by Freda’s Voice.The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your ereader and find any sentence or a few ( no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

Please join Rose City Reader every Friday to share the first sentence or so of the book you are reading along with you initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

Please include the title of the book and the author’s name.


I love Bette Midler. Her talent crosses many boundaries, from music, to movies to the written word.

I love her song, The Rose. It brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it.

Check out this cute illustrated story of The Saga of Baby Divine.

This is the cover for my 1st edition hardcover published in 1983.

Amazon Goodreads

My 56

“I am Anxiety, friend to Despair!

I appear when your Courage departs.

‘I find you whenever your Confidence fails you

And Fear makes a Home in you Heart!”

(Page 36 in hardcover, published in 1983)

Book Beginnings

The skies were ablaze with Disorder that Night,

The Planets, aghast and aquiver;

The Delirious Moon had the Brass to be Full

When it should have been only a sliver.

Do you have a favorite Bette Midler song, movie or book?

GOODREADS BLURB:  This book is divine, it’s simply sublime, As Baby Divine’s tale’s related in rhyme. Bette Midler inspires with her words full of charm. As she tells us how Baby Divine escapes harm. How so much talent could be in one girl? To fathom it makes my poor brain start to whirl. She not only acts, sings, dances and writes! She’s the brightest of stars in a world full of nights …

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Review & Giveaway: The Knights Before Christmas by Joan Holub

The Knights Before Christmas by Joan Holub is my holiday kickoff read.

 Be sure and check out my review, then:

You can read more and enter the giveaway here.

The Knights Before Christmas Joan Holub Scott Magoon 9780805099324 image copy 2About the Book

Title: The Knights Before Christmas | Author: Joan Holub | Illustrator: Scott Magoon | Publication Date: September 8, 2015 | Publisher: Macmillan / Henry Holt | Pages: 32 | Recommended Ages: 4 to 8

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million

Goodreads | Indiebound | iBook | Kobo


I saw The Knights Before Christmas by Joan Holub and I thought, what better way to kick off the upcoming holiday season than with a classic, of sorts.

Written with humor and wit, what child wouldn’t delight in feeling they are a hero by saving the castle from the invaders, even if it is Santa.


The Knights Before Christmas Joan Holub Scott Magoon pages 12

There will be “reindeer” and Santa and gifts galore.

They will cower with fear, yet man the walls.

The book is large and thin, making it easy for the small hands in the household to hold onto. My biggest concern is the pages in those grasping little hands, how well will they hold up.

The illustrations describe the action, word by word, in vivid color.

A fun book to add to a child’s reading list, but I was left a bit confused at the ending. Santa bad? And a Trojan Horse? How would a 5 – 8 year old child respond to it?

I have not reviewed many children’s books, but these are my thoughts. Am I being too harsh? Your thoughts may be quite different, so be sure and check it out for yourself.

I received a copy of The Knights Before Christmas by Joan Holub in return for an honest review.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos  3 Stars

You can read more and enter the giveaway here.


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Children’s Coming of Age Story

Flickering Hope by Naomi Kinsman
Flickering Hope

Sadie sets off to check on Patch. She knows Frankie’s dad, Jim, wants to get rid of Patch, so she has to be careful and cover her tracks. Jim thinks Patch is a problem to be taken care of, but Sadie thinks of her as a pet.

While she is out there, she runs into a young girl. Her family is living in a shack in the woods. The girl swears her to secrecy or she will expose Patch. Secrets have a way of coming out.

She loves visiting Helen and Andrew. Helen studies the bears. Sadie likes Andrew, she has a crush on him.

Secrets. Andrew’s secret. Frankie’s secret. Frankie is her enemy or is she? Does she want to be friends?

The girl in the woods says everything will be great if they find the bear. My bear?
Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos    3 Stars – Would Recommend to Others
Won in a Goodreads First Read Giveaway. A children’s book. Picked it up to read because the cover and title made it look like a fun, easy read. A short book to just relax with and enjoy a fun romp through Sadie’s mind. I could just imagine what the gravy looked like with all the different food colors added –  olives on their fingertips, playing as if they were finger puppets. A nice story about a girl questioning life’s reasons, God, friendship, faith. Fighting for what she believes in and never giving up.

I could feel empathy with the characters and thought the story covered the problems and confusion that all kids go through. It was well written and the story is something that kids can relate to.

All the wonderful things that involve the holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Does it bring back memories? The gift of giving, friendship and loyalty.

About the author

Naomi Kinsman is the author of Spilled Ink (winner of the 2009 Moonbeam Gold Medal for Educational/Activity book) as well as the From Sadie’s Sketchbook series (Zondervan). She has written and directed over 50 plays for young audiences, and has written for Highlights, Spider and Devozine magazines.

As founder of the Society of Young Inklings, Naomi shares her passion for writing and creativity with young people across the country. Society of Young Inklings offers game-based classes, unique resources, national club membership and publishing opportunities for young writers. Naomi has a BA in Theatre Arts from Seattle Pacific University, has studied theatre with the Piven Theatre Workshop and ACT, and has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Hamline University.

She is the Assistant Regional Advisor for the San Francisco South chapter of SCBWI. Naomi lives in Northern California with her husband, and identically colored pets: a tuxedo cat and a Portuguese Water Dog.

To get a copy of the book, just click on the link below.



twitter username:  naomikinsman