Horsin Around ThursdaysEdmund Pickle Chin: A Donkey Rescue Story

Today Im taking a break from young adult novels to introduce a very special picture bookEdmund Pickle Chin:  A Donkey Rescue Story, co-authored by Clara Bowman-Jahn and Susan April Elwood. Im deviating slightly from my Thursday horse theme, too, as this picture book is about a donkey, not a horse. But Ive never met a horse-lover who doesnt also love donkeys! Not to mention, Im a sucker for animal rescue stories. Clara Bowman-Jahn is a talented author and former online critique group member of mine. Im so happy to help spread the word about her sweet and heartwarming book, which has been tested and approved by my very own children.

Summary:  Edmund Pickle Chin, A Donkey Rescue Story is based on a true story. Edmund is an abused donkey who is the first of many animals to call Evermay Farm, a small rescue in central Georgia, home. Susan, Edmund’s care giver in the story, not only gives the shy donkey the time and patience he needs but gives him a new name every day of the week. The title takes on one of those nicknames she so lovingly calls him. As Susan starts to take in new critters, Edmund finds himself changing. As his name grows, so does his trust and acceptance. Edmund soon learns that he is not only needed but wanted. This confused, frightened donkey’s life changes as he becomes a hero, a babysitter, and a companion to the other residents at Evermay Farm.

Age Level:  5-12

Publisher:  eTreasures Publishing, LLC (December 12, 2014)

About the Author:  CLARA BOWMAN-JAHN worked as a registered nurse for thirty-two years, finally trading that job for her true love, writing. Clara’s short stories have been published in the anthology of the “Campaigner’s Challenges Book.” When Clara is not writing, she does volunteer work for a local elementary school and her church. She also likes taking long walks with her husband, blogging, and reading books. She is a member of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and Round Hill Writer’s Group. She lives in rural Loudoun County, Virginia with her humorous husband, a senior dog and two cats. And she is the proud mother of two wonderful grown sons and one delightful grandson.

Connect with Clara on her Facebook Page and her website

Happy reading!

Cover Reveal and #Giveaway!

There are few things more exciting than finding out that one of your former critique group members is getting her book published! So, obviously, I was thrilled when Catherine Bailey contacted me about the upcoming release of her picture book, MIND YOUR MONSTERS! (Sterling, August 2015). Today is the big cover reveal, and I wanted to be a part of it. As if the cover reveal wasnt intriguing enough, Catherine is also hosting a GIVEAWAY on her Facebook page! Without further ado, feast your eyes on the cover below. Then read Catherines message about how to enter her GIVEAWAY!

Message from Catherine Bailey: 

Here it is – my official, final, fabulous cover for MIND YOUR MONSTERS! I am so, so excited to finally share this wonderful artwork. Thank You Dani and Oriol! I am celebrating with a giveaway. To participate, visit my Facebook page at catherinebaileybooks. Then share this cover on Facebook, Twitter, or any social media, let me know in the comments on Facebook, and Ill make sure youre entered to win. The winner will also receive a monstrously cute goody bag to help pass the time until MIND YOUR MONSTERS stomps forth in August. The deadline to enter is 3/13/15 and the winner will be announced the next day.

Good luck everyone!

Perfect Horsey Picture Book Friday

Today, Im presenting my own special version of Susanna Leonard Hills Perfect Picture Book Friday.  Mine is called Perfect Horsey Picture Book Friday!  Actually, lets make it three Perfect Horsey Picture Books because I could not choose just one.  I buy a lot of picture books for my kids and, I admit, Im often drawn to the ones involving horses and ponies.  I use these books as inspiration for what I want to achieve in my writing.  More importantly, my kids (ages 3 and 5), love to listen to these books over and over again.  So, without further ado here we go!

1.  MY PONY by Susan Jeffers, Disney Hyperion (May 27, 2008)

I love the simplicity of this book, the timeless message, and the dream-like quality of the illustrations.  A must-read for anyone who has ever dreamed of having a horse or pony.

Amazon.com Description:

I want a pony.

I want a pony more than anything in the world.
A little girl who longs for a pony draws pictures of a dappled mare she names Silver, then rides her through a magical countryside in her dreams.  At the heart of Susan Jefferss exquisite picture book lies the idea that in her imagination, a child can journey anywhere and do anything— even fly through the stars on her very own pony

2.  EVERY COWGIRL NEEDS A HORSE, by Rebecca Jani, Dutton Juvenile (February 23, 2010)

This story always reminds me of something my parents would have tried to pull on me giving me a bike for my Birthday and telling me that it is my new horse.  Very clever . . .

Amazon.com Description:

In Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse, Nellie Sue does everything with a western flair. Whether it is cleaning up the animal sty (picking up her stuffed animals) or rounding up cattle (getting the neighborhood kids together for her birthday party), she does it like a true cowgirl. All she really needs is a horse. So when Dad announces at her birthday party, “I got a horse right here for you,” Nellie Sue is excited. But when her horse turns out to be her first bicycle, it will take an imagination as big as Texas to help save the day.

3.  Ponyella, By Laura Numeroff, Hyperion CH (January 18, 2011)

You cant go wrong with the classic Cinderella story retold with a horsey twist!  I confess, my 3 year-old daughter enjoys this book more than I do, but it is fun to read nonetheless.

Amazon.com Description:

Which pony does the diamond horseshoe fit?

In this clever retelling of Cinderella, Ponyella longs to show Princess Penelope her fabulous leaps and jumps at the Tippington 25th Annual Grand Royal Pony Championship. But Plumpkin and Bun Bun, the mean ponies she shares a farm with, say that Ponyellas farm chores make her too dirty to be a champion.
With a little help from Ponyellas fairy godmare, her coat becomes marshmallow white once again, and her mane silky and beautiful. Its love at first sight for Princess Penelope and Ponyella — but what will happen when the magic runs out at noon?
So, there you have it!  Happy Friday and Happy Reading (and writing) (and riding)!