(Guest Post) Stephen Schochet

Title: Hollywood Stories: Entertaining Anecdotes about the Stars and the Legends of the Movies!
Author: Stephen Schochet
Pub Date: June 2010
Publisher: BCH Fulfillment & Distribution
Pages: 324

About The Book:
high noon on a cold November day in 1974, sixty-seven-year-old John Wayne faced off with the staff of the Harvard Lampoon on the famous campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The students had issued their challenge by calling the beloved American icon a fraud. Wayne, who had his new movie McQ to promote, responded by saying he would be happy to show his film in the pseudo-intellectual swamps of Harvard Square. After the screening, without writers, the former USC footballer delivered a classic performance. When one smart young man asked where he got his phony toupee, Wayne insisted the hair was real. It wasn’t his, but it was real. The appreciative underclassmen loved him and after the Q and A session, they all sat down to dinner. Later Wayne, who was suffering greatly from both gout and the after effects of lung cancer (sadly the Duke only had five years to live), said that day at Harvard was the best time he ever had.

Just when you thought you’ve heard everything about Hollywood comes a totally original new book — a special blend of biography, history and lore.

Hollywood Stories is packed with wild, wonderful short tales about famous stars, movies, directors and many others who have been a part of the world’s most fascinating, unpredictable industry!
What makes the book unique is that the reader can go to any page and find a completely engaging and illuminating yarn. Sometimes people won’t realize that they are reading about The Three Stooges or Popeye the Sailor until they come to the end of the story. The Midwest Book Review says Hollywood Stories is, “packed from cover to cover with fascinating tales.” A professional tour guide in Hollywood, Stephen Schochet has researched and told thousands of entertaining anecdotes for over twenty years. He is also the author and narrator of two audiobooks Tales of Hollywood and Fascinating Walt Disney. Tim Sika, host of the radio show Celluloid Dreams on KSJS in San Jose has called Stephen,” The best storyteller about Hollywood we have ever heard.”Full of funny moments and twist endings, Hollywood Stories features an amazing, all-star cast of legendary characters and icons and will keep you totally entertained!

Q: Will you share with us what’s your favorite decade or trend in Hollywood movies and why. What stands out the most during that time period?

The 1960’s for me stands out because it was when I was first introduced to movies and I love musicals; Seeing West Side Story, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, Mary Poppins, and Oliver on the big screen, just incredible experiences especially when you are a kid and every thing seems bigger. West Side Story is often made fun of movie because the gang members didn’t look so tough to everyone but the energy level of that movie is off the charts, especially if you can suspend disbelief:

When Robert Wise directed West Side Story, he was faced with the challenge of making cinemagoers believe that street hoods would suddenly burst into song. He insisted to reluctant studio bosses that the movie’s prologue be shot expensively on

location in New York. The musical started with panoramic views of Manhattan taken

from a helicopter, then seamlessly closed in on the dancing gang members. Later, all

the interiors were filmed on Hollywood sound stages. The only giveaway that the

company was no longer in the Big Apple came during the violent rumble scene.

Written on the wall, behind the on-camera knife fight, there was graffiti that clearly

said, “GO LAKERS!”

My Fair Lady was another favorite. I actually got to see Rex Harrison perform on stage as Henry Higgins; he was in his eighties so the potential love connection with a twenty-something Eliza Doolittle was a little hard to swallow so I was happy I got to see the film. Apparently in real life Rex Harrison had some real life Higgins-like qualities he saw right through Jack Warner’s companion at the premiere:

A lifelong gambler, seventy-two-year-old Jack Warner spent seventeen

million on My Fair Lady, more than any other film in his career. The wisecracking

tycoon had fallen in love with the story of a cockney flower girl who tries to better

herself by taking lessons from a snobbish English professor. Warner insisted that the

musical be a first-class production all the way. The cream of New York society was

invited to the premiere, the picture was well received and it went on to be extremely

profitable. But at the after party at the Sherry Netherland Hotel, there was a great

deal of talk about Warner’s companion. Who was this stunningly dressed, quiet

twenty-something beauty that looked like My Fair Lady’s fictional Eliza Doolittle at

the ball? The mogul referred to her as Lady Cavendish, but no one there had ever

heard of her. At the end of the night, Warner instructed his limo driver to return his

date home. The mysterious girl, whom Jack had met earlier that night in the lobby,

told the chauffeur, “You know, I had such a fun time; I’m not even going to charge


For production values The Sound of Music beat them all. One thing I learned though if I have tour customers from Austria don’t bring that movie up, they are tired of it. So apparently was Christopher Plummer who usually won’t speak about it interviews; over the years it became a bit of a sore spot:

Sixty-year-old Maria von Trapp had a great time watching Hollywood change her life

history for the 1965 musical, The Sound of Music. The escape from the Nazis in the

film was so exciting. Audiences would be bored to find out that the von Trapps left

Austria in 1938 with a tourist visa; no one had tried to stop them — the train station

was actually right behind their family estate in Salzburg. And they made her seem like such a wonderful governess and mother. Nobody wanted to hear how in real life,

Maria, the driven leader of the von Trapp Family Singers, verbally battled with her

stepchildren when they wanted to quit their music careers. While constantly touring

around America, the kids complained so much to her about living out of a bus for

eighteen years. The best thing about the picture was this handsome Christopher

Plummer who played her late husband, Captain von Trapp. So romantic was this

movie! In truth, young Maria had at first loved her seven stepchildren far more than

her twenty-five-years-older spouse. When introduced to the thirty-six-year-old

Plummer on The Sound of Music set, Maria, who once intended to be a nun, shocked

the actor by greeting him with a big kiss on the lips. “My God, darling, I wished my

real husband had looked as good as you!”

Mary Poppins was actually the first movie I ever saw. Again when you are a little kid tea parties on the ceiling are the bomb. It took me a long time to realize that Dick Van Dyke played not only Bert the chimney sweep, but also the avaricious old banker who steals the tuppence out of little Michael’s hand (reflecting Walt’s real life views about bankers). Van Dyke’s co-stars didn’t realize it either:

Thirty-nine-year-old Dick Van Dyke fooled both audiences and co-stars, playing an

old banker in the 1964 classic Mary Poppins. The TV sitcom star, who was already the

leading man in the film, donated four thousand dollars to Walt Disney’s newly

formed Cal Arts University in exchange for getting the secondary role. With his cane,

white hair and whiskers, the two child actors who had already worked with Van Dyke

had no idea who he really was. One day in front of the Disney Studio, a bus full of

tourists caught sight of the make-believe geezer just as he was about to cross the

street. Leaning on his cane, he slowly walked to his destination, pausing sometimes to clutch his chest for dramatic effect till he made it. As the vehicle pulled forward, the passengers’ sighs of relief turned to gasps of surprise when they saw the grinning

senior citizen running full speed alongside them.

Of all the 60’s musicals Oliver! was probably the scariest to me because of the chilling performance of Oliver Reed as the murderous Bill Sykes. One of my buddies who worked at a movie theater in Westwood met him and said once you got over the intimidation factor Reed was a great guy. He turned out to be quite the character:

When Oliver Reed joined an all-star cast in Madrid to film the 1973 version of The

Three Musketeers, the producers fretted about his hell-raising reputation. Yet, in

spite of his all-night booze festivals, the British actor endeared himself to his coworkers

by always being on time and knowing his lines inside and out. The biggest

hurdle for Reed’s bosses was keeping a roof over his head. One night, in the lobby of

the posh resort the cast was residing at, Oliver reached into an aquarium, pulled out

one of the tank’s inhabitants and appeared to bite its head off, causing some old

ladies standing nearby to faint dead away. It was revealed that Reed had gotten the

hotel chef to mash some carrots together in the shape of a fish, and after some hasty

bribes and apologies, he was allowed to continue staying there.

Extra: Playing the world-weary musketeer Athos in The Three Musketeers (1973),

Oliver Reed (1938-1999) had no prior experience with sword fight scenes. Yet he

refused to rehearse for them and insisted on performing his own stunts with great

ferocity. The Spanish extras who fenced with Oliver were literally shaking with fear

after their on-camera battles. Finally, one burly man stabbed Reed in the arm sending

the British actor to the hospital, where his room, not surprisingly, became the scene

of a wild, overnight booze binge for him and his pals.

I want to send out a huge thank you to Rebecca at Pump Up Your Books for contacting me and allowing me to showcase this book & author and for also allowing me to have Stephen guest post today.

I also want to thank Stephen for taking the time out of his busy schedule to do this guest post.

About the author:
professional tour guide in Hollywood, Stephen Schochet has researched and told thousands of entertaining anecdotes for over twenty years. He is also the author and narrator of two audiobooks Tales of Hollywood and Fascinating Walt Disney. His latest book, Hollywood Stories: Short, Entertaining Anecdotes About the Stars and Legends of the Movies!

Tim Sika, host of the radio show Celluloid Dreams on KSJS in San Jose has called Stephen,” The best storyteller about Hollywood we have ever heard.”

You can check out The Hollywood Stories webpage by clicking on this for more information.

You can check out Stephen Schochet’s page on Pump Up Your Book  to see the rest of his virtual tour.

Here is a clip about the book:

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Guest Post) Terry Spear

Title: Dreaming of the Wolf (bk 8 in the Wolf Series)
Author: Terry Spear
Pub Date: December 2011
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Pages: 384

About the book:

Alicia Greiston is a no-nonsense bounty hunter determined to bring a ring of mobsters to justice. Her dogged pursuit of the crime family has forced her to avoid relationships— any man would only become a target for retribution. Luckily, Jake Silver is more than a man, and his instincts are telling him to stop at nothing to protect her.


However, the mob isn’t entirely human either, and soon Alicia must flee for her life. When Alicia and Jake’s passion begins to spill over into their dreams, Jake learns he will have to do more than defend her— he’ll have to show his mate the way of the wolf.

Today I am truly honored to have Terry Spear stop by my blog once again for a guest post. I absolutely love, love, love Terry’s books as I am sure you have heard me gush about with all the reviews for her books and if you haven’t read any of them yet that I have to highly recommend them.

Interesting Wolf Characteristics! 

When I write my wolf books (werewolves, that is), I do a lot of research about their characteristics and use this in the development of the werewolf characters.

In my books, I try to show that the werewolf, when in human form, is still part wolf. They still have the heightened senses of the wolf, the enhanced sense of smell, night vision, ability to see movement, and hearing. But they also have some of the personality of the wolf.

All wolves do have their own personalities. They may look very similar, but each is a unique individual, just as humans are. Just as your pets are. Each has their own personality.

I often use something from research I’ve done on wolves in each of my stories. In the tenth book, A Highland Wolf Wedding, Duncan MacNeill (of Heart of the Highland Wolf), is searching for the crook that stole his pack’s money. The heroine is an American wolf who is a botanist doing research in the Grand Cayman Islands when he arrives.

Here is an excerpt from A Highland Wolf Wedding, due out in December 2012.

With his ground-eating stride, he raced to catch up to her. She was like a greyhound, and he loved stretching out his legs to join her. He definitely wanted to protect her from the sharks in the sea some more, but running as wolves was just as exhilarating.

In this excerpt, I described Shelley Campbell in her wolf form as being as fast as a greyhound. When doing research, I actually found a reference to a real wolf that was the sister of the alpha female that actually chased down more prey than her pack members and the biologist who studied the pack dynamics described her as being as fast as a greyhound.

In another wolf story, I mentioned a wolf who had hair that stuck out all over the place. This was also mentioned by another wolf biologist as he observed a different wolf pack. 

I often mention how curious wolves are, and werewolves are. In one case, a wolf biologist was trying to become one of the pack to observe them. He was wearing a cap and crouched down, trying not to upset the wolves. He saw the alpha male watching him, but didn’t make any move to look him in the eye, which could be considered aggression. After staying like that for quite a while, the alpha wolf finally approached the man. He finally looked the wolf in the eyes. And then the wolf lunged for his hat, but the man anticipating the lunge, quickly removed his hat and the wolf was startled to realize he didn’t have it in his grasp. From then on, the man was part of the pack.

I love stories like this because I use them to show the playful side, the humorous side, the serious side of pack dynamics, and how this becomes a werewolf’s characteristics too.

In Dreaming of the Wolf, I had to research about keeping wolves in confinement when Alicia Greiston is being questioned by a detective about a dead man found in her hotel room and another man who’s thought to have been bitten by a wolf.
Excerpt from Dreaming of the Wolf:
      “It’s not illegal to own a wolf,” Jake interjected, his voice quietly firm, as if he was a lawyer who knew her rights when it came to pet wolf ownership.

      She supposed that to protect themselves, Jake and the rest of the pack would know about such a thing for self-preservation.

      The detective switched his attention to Jake. She thought Detective Simpson was fighting a smile. Jake to the rescue. But it was more than that. It was as if the detective had caught them in a falsehood. But she wasn’t rolling over and playing dead yet.

      No, you’re right, Mr. Silver,” the detective said with emphasis, “not unless the wolf owner takes the wolf within the city limits of some cities, which is illegal. Crestview is not one of those cities. But the wolves have to be fenced in with at least eight-foot-tall fencing. Every access has to be locked to prevent the wolves from escaping.

      “Taking a wolf into a motel room isn’t legal, nor a safe thing to do. If Miss Greiston was afraid for her life and was using the wolf for protection, it wasn’t really a smart idea. Nor was it legal. The wolf could have injured anyone. Since it has bitten someone now, we’ll have to hunt it down and make sure it wasn’t rabid.” He sat taller and turned to Alicia. “So what about this wolf, Miss Greiston?”

      “He wasn’t mine,” she said stubbornly, head held high, voice confident.

So you see? Wolf research is extremely important, not only for creating werewolf characters, but for letting the werewolves know what they can and cannot do when it comes to “owning” wolves!

So what would you do if you were in Alicia’s place? Trying to explain how other hotel guests had seen a wolf race out of her room? Take the 5th? Or square your shoulders and well…what would you say?

Especially if it was YOU who had bitten the man and run from the room?

Terry Spear
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy IS reality.”

Here are some ways you can contact Terry:



About the author:

Award-winning author Terry Spear has written a dozen paranormal romance novels, with over 60,000 copies sold. She received Publishers Weekly’s Best Book of the Year in 2008 for Heart of the Wolf. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry is a librarian by day. She lives in Crawford, Texas. For more information, please visit http://www.terryspear.com/.

The next book in the Wolf Series is:
A Seal in Wolf’s Clothing (bk 9) and its set to release March 2012

Thanks so very much Danielle from Sourcebooks for arranging this guest post for and thank you Terry for taking the time out of your busy writing schedule to do this guest post for me. I truly appreicate all that you do for me and my readers.

Check back later this morning for my review of Dreaming of the Wolf.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Guest Post) Yona Zeldis McDonough

Title: Cats In The Doll Shop (book 2)
Author: Yona Zeldis McDonough
Publisher: Viking
Pub Date: November 2011
Pages: 144

About The Boook:
Young readers joined nine-year-old Anna as she helped turn her family’s doll repair shop into a doll-making shop. Now, Anna finds herself in an all-new adventure in The Cats in the Doll Shop. In this “quiet treasure” (Kirkus), World War I is still raging, and Anna’s cousin Tania leaves Russia to live with her family in New York City. Anna is so excited for Tania to arrive and be her new best friend. When her cousin finally moves in, Anna quickly discovers that Tania doesn’t respond to her friendly gestures and her sisters don’t seem to like her at all. Luckily, Anna finds a creative way to use her love of dolls and cats to bring everyone together. Inspired by her own experience with an injured kitten many years ago, Yona Zeldis McDonough offers a gentle story rich with history, family, and love. The Cats in the Doll Shop is a story that will be a favorite of readers for generations to come.

Today I am honored to have Yona Zeldis McDonough, the author of The Doll Shop Downstairs (book 1) and The Cats In The Doll Shop (her latest book) stop by to share with us her holiday guest post. Thanks so much Yona for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do this for me and my readers. Happy Holidays.

We didn’t “do” holidays when I was a child. No Christmas (well, we were Jewish) but no Chanukah, Passover, Rosh Hashanah either. I grew up bereft in this regard, resigned to wishing for the sort of large-scale family celebrations that never, alas, were ours. As an adult, I’ve finally got the holiday thing down pat: I married a Catholic and so feel that along with his name, I’ve assumed his holidays too and I “do” Christmas in an over-the-top festive fashion worthy of anyone who’s grown up in the tradition.

But here’s a funny thing: in my writing, I am and remain stubbornly Jewish, a fact that is made particularly evident in my fiction for children, which tends to revolve around Jewish themes, characters, locales and yes, Jewish holidays.

In my most recent book, THE CATS IN THE DOLL SHOP, I have a scene in which the Breittlemanns and their friends celebrate Rosh Hashanah with a traditional meal, music and song. And here is how the family celebrates Chanukah:

We light candles in menorah at sundown, and the smell of Mama’s crispy brown latkes and cinnamon-laced applesauce is in the air. There are small gifts for us to share, too, like a bag of almonds, and orange and, best of all, pieces of chocolate Chanukah gelt, wrapped in shining gold foil.

We use the gelt as part of the game we play with the wooden dreidel that always comes out of the cupboard on holiday. It’s a game of chance that involves winning and losing the chocolate coins. First Sophie is winning, then Trudie and finally Tania. But when we are done, we divide up the gelt again, so everyone gets the same number of pieces. I eat of mine right away but decide to save the rest. I’ll be glad I have some left for tomorrow.

Later, Papa comes in to say good night. He sits down on Trudie’s bed and starts telling us the story of Chanukah…A long, long time ago, Papa begins, the holy temple in Jerusalem was destroyed and the eternal flame was in danger of going out…As Papa talks, my mind drifts. Maybe there is room for a little miracle in our lives. Maybe Plucky will come back, safe and unharmed, and Papa will let him stay. Now wouldn’t that be a miracle? I cannot help wishing.

It’s all there: the menorah, the latkes, the dreidel, the gelt, the story of the lamp that burned for eight nights even though there was only enough oil for one. I seem to gravitate back to these rituals, giving myself in fiction what I was denied in fact. I’ve read that writing is a form of redemption, and that through writing, we can restore what has been lost, or in my case, never been. And as the holidays come around again, I know that this is true. I am grateful for the chance to recreate once more the life I had longed to live.

Thanks again Yona. I loved your guest post and how even though you are doing things differently you have stuck to your roots.

Check back tomorrow for my review on The Cats in the Doll Shop.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Guest Post) Whitney Stewart

I am excited to be a part of the tour for Give Me A Break by Whitney Stewart. To find out where else Whitney will be touring this month you can check out her page Pump Up Your Book site.

About the Book:
Whitney Stewart’s straightforward, non-denominational guide makes meditation simple. It covers the basics in a concise thirty-three pages: Why meditation is good for you, how to sit, how to let your mind rest, even what to do if you feel weird or uncomfortable during meditation. Most important, it provides sixteen accessible, useful meditations you can easily learn at home. Age ten to adult.

Stewart’s top reasons to meditate:
*To focus inwardly
*To slow down internally
*To develop awareness
*To understand your mind
*To increase tolerance
*To experience “BIG MIND”

About the Author:
Whitney Stewart began writing young adult biographies and meditating after she met and interviewed the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet, the subject of two of her books, and lived with a Tibetan family in India. For her next biographies, she trekked with Sir Edmund Hillary in Nepal, interviewed Burma’s Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi in her Rangoon home, and climbed along China’s Great Wall to research the lives of Deng Xiaoping and Mao Zedong. In 2004, Stewart published a picture book about the Buddha, which contains a foreword and a meditation suggestion from the 14th Dalai Lama. In addition to nonfiction books, Stewart has published three middle-grade novels. In August 2005, Stewart was trapped in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina and evacuated by helicopter from a rooftop. She returned home and volunteered as a creative writing teacher in the public schools. She discovered that her students suffered from post-Katrina stress. Using meditation, improvisation, and word play, Stewart taught her students to write about their lives.

Her latest book is Give Me a Break: No-Fuss Meditation.

You can find more about Whitney Stewart at her website at http://www.whitneystewart.com/.
Follow her at Twitter at www.twitter.com/mindfulneworlns
 and www.twitter.com/whitneystewart2
 Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/New.Orleans.Kids.Author.

I want to thank Dorothy from Pump Up Your Book for contacting me and asking if I would host Whitney on her blog tour. I also have to thank Whitney for taking the time out of her busy schedule to write up this guest post for me.

Wishing you both a Happy Holiday.

Time Out from Holiday Stress

      You shop. You cook. You wrap.

      You skip the gym, guzzle caffeine, eat too fast, or too much. You run errands, fight traffic, wait in lines, unpack groceries, vacuum the house, make the guest bed, iron holiday clothes, and WORRY. About money. About presents. About not being able to do everything. You snap at the kids. At your spouse. At the check-out lady.

      Stress makes you jumpy, agitated, and depressed. You don’t have enough time. You don’t get enough sleep. Dark circles form under your eyes. But you smile and make the best of the holiday. Then you vow that next year you’ll be nicer. You’ll make time for yourself, for your friends. You’ll simplify. You’ll enjoy the holidays.

      BUT WAIT! There’s still time to unhook for this holiday. There’s a way to be more mindful and create peace.




      I know what you’re going to say. You don’t have time to meditate, not with everything else going on. I’ve said the same thing, but it’s not true. Even ten minutes of meditation a day will change your heart rhythm and your brain waves. Ten minutes will allow you to experience deep relaxation and heightened awareness. And you don’t have to go anywhere to meditate. You can do it at home, in your pajamas, on the floor, in a chair, even in bed.

      Meditation is mindfulness. It’s a gentle unhooking from your mental stream, your inner babble, your mind’s construction of yourself and your life. Instead of listening to your recitation of a holiday to-do list, listen to your breath. Feel the bumping of your heart. Soften the muscles in your shoulders. Allow space to move into the corners where stress was hiding, and you’ll find that you control less and flow more.

      And when you shop and cook and wrap and clean and eat and entertain, you’ll find room for the joy.

Thanks so much Whitney this is perfect advise for this stressful holiday season.

here is the trailer:

A quick guide to simple mediatation:

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Guest Q&A) Julie Kagawa

Recently I was asked if I wanted to be a part of the promotion for:

I didn’t have to think twice about being a part of this because I had Julie’s previous books that I bought sitting on my bookcase waiting to be read and what perfect time to read them then this.

So check back later today for my review of The Iron Knight.

I am honored to have guest Q&A with Julie Kagawa. So thank you Julie for being able to answer these questions and for stopping by my blog today.
1. What is your favorite part of being an author?

I don’t know if I have a favorite part; I just love it all so much. This was what I always wanted to do, and now that I’m here, it’s a dream come true for me. =)

2. If you could pick one of the characters from The Iron Fey series to have dinner with, who would it be and why?

I’m going to have to go with Ash, because I know he’d at least be polite. Unlike a certain faery prankster, who might put something in my food or turn the waiter into a hedgehog. Meghan would also be a good choice, we could catch a movie afterwards. Grim…not so much; he’d order the most expensive thing on the menu and then turn up his nose at it.

3. When you first started this series, with The Iron King, did you know then that there would be multiple books? And did you know you’d want to write them with a changing point of view?

When I first began The Iron King, I knew I wanted to write at least a trilogy, but I left an open ending on the first book in case the publisher didn’t want to buy the whole series. Fortunately, they did, though I did intend the series just to be a trilogy. I didn’t think I would write a fourth book from Ash’s POV, but it made the most sense to continue the series with him.

4. Being that the Iron Knight is written from Ash’s point of view, was it easier or harder to switch over and tell his story?

It was a little harder, initially. I knew Meghan; after three books I knew her voice and her personality and her quirks. It was difficult with Ash, because he was such a guarded character, and he never was really chatty. And because he’s lived such a long time, and is an Unseelie fey, he’s done some things in his life that might change how some people view him. It was actually kind of scary putting his story out there; what will people think now that they know the real Ash? But I wrote his story as honestly as I could, and I hope they will come to love the Winter Prince as much as I do.

I want to thank Julie Kagawa for taking the time out of her busy schedule to do this and to Erin from Meryl Moss Media for asking me if I wanted to be a part of this and for all that she has done to make this possible.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Guest Post) Robert Manni

Today I am honored to have Robert Manni stop by to do a guest post for Cindy’s Love of Books.

This is Robert’s debut novel The Guys’ Guy’s Guide to Love and I was honored to have been asked to review this book and have Robert stop by to do a guest post for us.

The topic I picked for Robert to write on was “Dating Tips Based on the Principles of running an ad campaigne”


In my novel, THE GUYS’ GUY’S GUIDE TO LOVE, our main character, Max Hallyday, writes a column for a women’s magazine doling out regular guy-style sagely advice to the ladies about how men think and how to get them eating out of your hand. He takes a tough love approach, but he is honest and well-intended, and as a result…well, you’ll have to pick up a copy of the book to find out what happens.


Probably, but that’s good. Max is an ad guy who frequently points out the similarities between connecting with the opposite sex and running an effective advertising campaign. He constantly waxes on about being mindful of his clients’ needs and proactively addressing them… to the point that his client says, “So it sounds like advertising is kind of like dating and taking the time to understand a woman.” Well, that’s how advertising works and it can work for you if you run an honest campaign that focuses on how your partner is going to benefit by being with you.
How many times have you obsessed over what you want instead of the qualities that your potential mate is seeking? Admittedly, ladies are a lot better at this than guys (we can be pretty selfish), but it’s easy to fall into the “why am I still single?” or “why haven’t I attracted The One yet?” syndrome which only serves to keep you wanting rather than receiving. Yes, you watched Oprah and read The Secret, but have you really considered what only you can offer your potential partner?


As soon as you are ready to hit the billboards the airwaves or the internet, you need to hone your message to be positive, fun, and consistent. Those are three attributes that guys really are drawn to (and tend to make for good campaigns), and if you feel good about yourself, the fellas will feel it. And regardless, you should feel good about yourself.  Yes, you ladies live in a hyper-competitive world where you are forced into striving to have hair like Jennifer Anniston or a booty like Kim Kardasian (preferred by dudes over the Jen hair, by the way).

So check into your happy place and send out those positive vibes. Sure, life is way more complicated than that, but we’re talking advertising here and everyone needs to know his or her brand and feel great about it.

A guy’s guy knows who he is and that’s why people like him. Their brand is authentic and it’s about being comfortable in their own skin. You are authentic, too. You are special and guys want to be reassured that you know who you are. Then you will be giving them what they need… a special woman called you.


Be sure to check out Robert Manni’s site.

Thanks so much Robert for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do this for me and my readers.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

Excerpt from The Guys’ Guy’s Guide to Love

Robert Manni has graciously allowed me to post one of the main characters, Max Hallyday’s, insightful column excerpt from the book as a sneak peak into the book.



Your letters say that you want the truth about men. I’m warning you—it ain’t pretty. But okay, here goes. Modern man is weak and increasingly susceptible to temptation. Look at the newspaper and you’ll see how men continue to succumb to their addictions of sex, greed, violence and hypocrisy. It’s time for women to rule this world in a better way—one man and one relationship at a time. And I’m here to help.

Fact: men lie—constantly. They do it to subdue the truth inside their poisoned consciousnesses. They hide. That’s why you must confront and unmask your man. Think of their heroes—Zorro, Batman, The Lone Ranger, Spiderman. They all wore masks, and for good reason. To hide their identity. Okay, it’s a metaphor, but it’s true. For you to build a successful relationship, you need to unmask your man and make him reveal himself, even if he doesn’t want to show you what’s inside. Don’t let your man get away with secrecy, because regardless of how much time you spend with him, you’ll remain alone if you let him hide what’s inside his heart. Why do men hide? Isn’t it obvious? Because they’re insecure and afraid they’re not good enough for you. They do it because they can—because you let them.

But if you succeed in discovering his truth, you’ll help your man become the person he wants to be—and the partner you deserve. Men need your help more than ever. Now, the good news. You can win. For the same reason a porcupine has quills and a turtle burrows into his shell for protection, women have been equipped with superior intuitive powers. While men waged wars wielding their brute strength and force, women were developing their sixth sense.  And the more you trust your gift—the one that tells you “I just know”—the more you’ll be rewarded.

Here’s a way to supercharge that gift. Men aren’t that complicated, not the way you and your friends think or hope they are. They’re creatures of habit who spend most of their lonely lives thinking about sex, eating, sleeping, drinking, thinking about sex, watching sports, listening to music, playing sports and video games, thinking about sex, and repeating the cycle. That’s about all. Don’t believe me? Just ask.

An endless stream of available gratuitous sexual imagery, rump-shaking hip-hop videos, and the nihilistic drone of heavy metal music choke the minds and lower the vibrations of modern males. And the declining standards propagated by reality television have taken their toll. Men are caught in a web of misinformation that force-feeds their lowest common denominators. They’ve lost touch with our values and respect for themselves…and for you.

How can you make it work? Simple—ask questions. And then ask more questions, and in a gentle yet determined way, keep asking, until you’ve pushed aside their fragile egos and revealed the man inside. And remember, you have to listen to what he says, not judge him. Really listen or else he won’t open up. Then it’s up to you to decide if he is worthy of your love. Sound easy? It is. Whatever answers you receive, even if they’re non-answers, the man is revealing himself. Find out how he feels about everything important in his life. If you stay on him, he’ll be grateful because—more good news—they really want to open up to you.

When you call at eleven, and above the background noises he tells you that he’s out with a few colleagues, that little voice inside you may have its doubts. Start asking him questions. Which bar? What’s the occasion? Who’s there? And don’t forget to follow up the next day, to make sure he was telling the truth. I’m not suggesting that you jack up the poor guy the minute he walks through the door, but over time, you can ferret out the seemingly innocuous information that will tell you what makes men tick.

Listen to your man—really listen! Then, heed your gift of intuition. When you do, you’ll know if he was out for an innocent night of beers and male bonding or trolling the bars in search of a little “something something” while you were curled up in your jammies watching Glee.

You deserve better.  You deserve the best—so start asking questions. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll learn—the good and the bad. And you’ll discover the man inside of your man. And if you’re not satisfied with what you find in his heart, let him go. Your heart is too wonderful a gift to open up for anything less than an honest man.

Until next time,

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.