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books beautyWhen Elise’s great-grand-daughter comes skipping home from the marketplace one day with a tale told by a passing minstrel of a princess locked in a tower for a 100-year sleep, Elise is amazed. She was there and she alone knows the truth of the events that have given rise to this legend. She sits the girl down and traces back over her long life.

While Beauty Slept sets the tale of Sleeping Beauty firmly within the confines of our own reality, in a medieval kingdom plagued by war, the pox, political infighting and more. Elise is raised as a poor farm girl with an abusive father and a mother worn down by yearly pregnancies. When Elise, her father and one brother are the only ones to survive a bout of smallpox, Elise takes the opportunity to seek her fortune elsewhere–retracing her mother’s steps as a serving maid in the castle.

To read the rest of my review on this fairy tale retold as historic fiction, click on over to 5 Minutes for Mom where you can also enter to win a copy of your very own.

 



                               

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Smithsonian Discover and Young Explorers Series #Giveaway

If you’re still on the hunt for educational holiday gift ideas for the elementary school aged children in your life, the Smithsonian Discover and Young Explorers series give glimpses into themes of their world famous museums in book and puzzle form. Smithsonian Discover: Flight and Smithsonian Discover: Space are fabulous gifts for enthusiastic learners from about age 8 and up. Mixing historical information about the history of flight and scientific explanations for how various flight machines work, along with models for paper airplanes and even a large poster celebrating the concept of flight, Flight is a wonderful hands-on resource perfect for the emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education. Space follows the same format with the inclusion of fact cards and a poster, as well, with the focus on aspects
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David Baldacci Books for Everyone in the Family #Giveaway

David Baldacci is a familiar name to many adult fans of the legal thriller genre, but did you know that he has also written for tweens and teens? On 5 Minutes for Mom, we’re featuring two Baldacci novels as part of the ongoing Christmas Giveaway Event. While The Escape is his latest for adult readers, older tweens and teenagers are the target audience for The Finisher, released earlier this year. To read my full review and enter to win copies of both books, along with a $25 Visa card, head over to 5 Minutes for Mom. While you’re there, be sure to browse all the Christmas Giveaways going on this month.
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50 Years of Rudolph #Rudolph50 #Giveaway

When I sat down to write the post on 5 Minutes for Mom celebrating 50 years of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, the longest running special in television history, I wasn’t sure what to say. Sure, I grew up watching Rudolph, but could I get nostalgic about it?  It turned out I could, and the more I wrote, the more I realized what a big part that brave reindeer has had in my Christmases over the years. While we own the DVD of the Rankin/Bass special and have several Christmas decorations, we don’t have any Rudolph books, which is kind of amazing. So I was thrilled to receive a box of Rudolph books as part of the review and giveaway, featured over on 5 Minutes for Mom. The books
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Books for Little Women (Tweens and Teens) #Giveaway

I’ve written so much about this series, the Mother-Daughter Bookclub by Heather Vogel Frederick, that I don’t even know what to say anymore. That’s not really true. I get more and more excited, to be honest. Check out the related posts list below to find out more about mine and my daughter’s love for this series. I am beyond thrilled to be able to give away the complete set (well–as of now, since she’s announced that she’s writing another one, even though she thought it was over!), as well as a beautiful picture book, Little Women Christmas, AND her brand new novel (which looks wonderful and I hope to review within the next few weeks). Read my review of A Little Women Christmas over at
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The Red Book of Primrose House #Giveaway

I haven’t been much of a reader of cozy mysteries until recently, but I’m beginning to enjoy them as I get older. Marty Wingate’s Potting Shed mysteries feature Pru Parke, an American gardener who is realizing her dream of  living in England, her mother’s home. In the first in the series, The Garden Plot (linked to my review), Pru becomes involved in a murder investigation when a body is found in the shed of the garden’s been hired to renovate. In The Red Book of Primrose House, Pru has begun her job as head gardener at Primrose House, an eighteenth-century manor farm in the English countryside.  Following the plan laid out by famous landscape gardener Humphry Repton, Pru has her work cut out for her, as she must
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Hank Has a Dream #Giveaway

Looking for a new bedtime story for your little ones? Hank Has a Dream by Rebecca Dudley brings back the delightfully adorable Hank, a stuffed woodland creature who showed his compassionate side in Hank Finds an Egg (linked to my brief review). This time around, Hank is telling a friend about his magical dream, and the meticulously detailed dioramas that provide the images in the book add greatly to the magic factor. You’ll want to hear more about this picture book, so head over to read my full review on 5 Minutes for Mom today. Be sure to view the video trailer for this imaginative book, and enter to win a copy, too.  
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First Impressions, a novel of Jane Austen #Giveaway

The full title of Charlie Lovett’s novel is First Impressions: A Novel of Old Books, Unexpected Love, and Jane Austen, which sums it up pretty well, except I’d definitely add mystery to the mix. The Jane Austen parts dovetail with the present-day to an extent, as Sophie find out more about the rare book that she’s trying to find for a buyer. We are reading about Jane Austen’s special friendship with an older gentleman, and learning about how he might have influenced Sense & Sensibility and Pride & Prejudice. Go over to 5 Minutes for Mom to read my full review of Charlie Lovett’s First Impressions. You can enter to win a giveaway too.
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A Brief Moment of Weightlessness #Giveaway

In A Brief Moment of Weightlessness, author Victoria Fish takes us deep into everyday lives, into the thoughts and emotions of people facing various crises or developments, into the heads of children, the elderly, teens, mothers of grown children, and more. This collection of short stories deals with events as small as a girl dealing with her older sister’s adolescence, as momentous as a couple adjusting to life after an accident has left the husband missing a leg. Fish’s genius lies in her ability to plunge her reader down into the depths of the psyche. Her writing is lyrical and lush with description. Each story begins in the middle, as it were, and it only becomes clear as the reader opens herself up to it.
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A book and #FlatbreadMix breakfast #Giveaway

Disclosure: I received samples from Krusteaz in exchange for participating in their blogger program spreading the word about their new flatbread mixes, and I’m happy to share a giveaway with you as well. When I have time for a slow-moving morning (It’s rare, but it happens), I like to have a leisurely breakfast, often adding a book to the mix. In particular I like to have a little quiet time and read some sort of Christian discipleship before my day really begins. Lysa Terkeurst’s new book The Best Yes: Making Wise Decisions in the Midst of Endless Demands has exceeded my expectations. And what’s that on my plate? It’s a breakfast flatbread pizza I created with the leftover flatbread from the Krusteaz Flatbread Mix, Garlic
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If You Were a Dog #Giveaway

In the new picture book If You Were a Dog by Jamie A. Swenson, young children are asked to imagine how they might act if they were animals instead of little kids. As kids are usually among the most imaginative people I’ve ever encountered, I am a big fan of this unique format for a story book. I’m even more impressed with the fabulously fun and rich language that make up the descriptions of the animals, and those paired with Chris Raschka’s vibrant illustrations make for an engaging reading experience. Please see my complete review over on 5 Minutes for Mom, where you can enter to win a copy of the book for a child in your life!
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A Hundred Pieces of Me {Review and #Giveaway}

This is my first novel by Lucy Dillon, but in browsing her titles I see that she writes stories about heartbreak and loss and redemption, that seem to feature warm-blooded canines as well. Sounds like a pretty good formula to me! Those were the themes which drew me to A Hundred Pieces of Me. Gina Bellamy’s marriage is over in a flash. Instead of planning the next trip they’ll take or the next adventure they’ll have, she’s moved out of her house into a spare white apartment. She sees it as a chance to start over, to reevaluate each of her things. As the boxes from her old life literally fill her flat, she decides to work through them methodically, getting rid of things that
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