Guest post: Teresa Richards

The Windfall App-eBook-Cover

The Windfall App, by Teresa Richards, released this week and I’m participating in her blog tour to celebrate! Enter to win some cool prizes through this Rafflecopter giveaway:

Here’s what you could win!!

The main character in The Windfall App is a girl named Marina, who’s a piano prodigy by day and an alternative rock junkie by night. But there’s so much more to her than just the music, and she wishes more people knew the girl behind the keyboard.

What better way is there to get to know someone than to snoop through their Pinterest pages? Here’s a sneak peek into Marina’s life through what she’s got pinned:

Family is important to Marina, as are her Chinese roots. But, as with all good things, sometimes it takes losing them to fully appreciate them.

1 chinese roots

Marina loves edgy guys and thinks leather arm bands are super sexy. So when she meets a guy who wears one, well, he had her at hello.

2 leather armband

Marina loves unique eyewear. In fact, glasses are her favorite accessory, and she changes them like most girls change their earrings.

3 glasses

Marina loves hiking, and she loves her City by the Bay. She spends a decent amount of time online finding new trails to hike.

4 hikinh

Marina loves alternative rock and, especially, the bass player from the band Walk the Moon. (He’s the one on the far right).

5 walk the moon

The piano is a huge part of Marina’s life. She loves playing, even though she feels suffocated by the expectations that surround her. Throughout the book, she realizes it’s okay to love the piano on her own terms.

6 piano

Marina’s dad started a company called Beanies, which makes organic beanbag furniture. Her favorite Beanie is a giant gray one that sits in the family’s living room.

7 bean bag

Marina’s favorite place to go for a treat is called The Cookie Crumb, where they serve giant chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches.

8 ice cream sandwich

Marina’s been dreaming of attending Juilliard school of music since she can remember. She and her best friend, Darya, are planning on heading to New York City as soon as they graduate high school.

9 juilliard


Thanks for giving us a peek into Marina’s head, Teresa! Readers, check out the blog tour schedule here for more opportunities to win the awesome prize pack:

Don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter!

The Windfall App is available now on Amazon.

Add it to your Goodreads list.


Stony Kill: A Novel by Marie White Small

Stony KillHello readers! I am going to try to be more consistent about posting book reviews here. I received this book, Stony Kill: A Novel, from the author, Marie White Small in exchange for an honest review. I feel bad because she gave this to me about 16 months ago. I remember because it was a week or so before I had my baby, who is now 15 and a half months old. As anyone who has children knows, life gets a good shake-down when a baby arrives, and on top of that I had some complications afterward. Everything is ok now, it just took me a year of off-and-on reading to finish this book!

For backstory, here’s the summary from Amazon:

“After the sudden death of her mother, Joss Ryckman finds herself running away from everything—the life she did not choose of managing the family bakery in Brooklyn, the troubled relationship with her sometimes violent father, and her conflicts with Wyatt, a lover who always wants more. But when she flees to the country farm of her childhood in upstate New York, will she finally find the truth of dark events in her family’s past? Or will all that she has held at bay for twenty years come crashing down? As Joss comes to terms with her loss, she is forced to confront memories of a childhood steeped in both joy and sorrow. As the past seeps in through the rich farmland and the landscape of the treacherous, churning Stony Kill, Piecing together the broken past and her family’s dysfunction, the dark secrets of a family submerged in a history of violence and regret begin to take shape, and the reality of two brutal killings can no longer be denied. Joss must make her own choices and, ultimately, let go.Rich with beautiful language and immersed in powerful descriptions of Joss’s feelings, Stony Kill tells a powerful story of the heartbreak and suffering from violent acts of a dysfunctional family, and ultimately her hope and choice of a better life.”

Overall, this was a beautifully written book: the perfect lazy summer read. I liked how thoroughly I got to know the characters, who were quite well-rounded.

The main criticism I had was that I wanted to pick up the pace–quite a bit. I enjoyed the meandering pace for awhile, but by about halfway through, I started to get a little impatient, which is probably my personality showing through more than anything. The book starts out with a murder that happens at Stony Kill, then flash-forwards to our main character. In my opinion, this murder scene is misleading. It makes it seem like the book will have an element of whodunnit mystery, when in reality, it’s a very different type of story. I spent the rest of the book wondering what that scene had to do with the story I was reading, and honestly, the main reason I stuck it out and finished the book was because I stubbornly wanted to know the resolution for the opening scene.

My criticisms, however, are not indicative of the quality of this book. The writing is strong and beautiful and is probably the perfect fit for many readers. It’s not exactly my cup of tea, but that doesn’t mean it’s not someone else’s!

4 stars out of 5

About me



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Hi, I’m Cindy; mom of 2 littles and life-long book addict. When I was young I slept with a nightlight; not because I was scared of the dark, but so I could have a way to keep reading my books after my parents declared “lights-out.” I love books of many different genres, but I keep going back to YA and general fiction. I am always on the hunt for the next book that I cannot put down and stories that make me fall in love with the characters.

In between having babies I enjoy training for and participating in sprint-length triathlons. Someday I hope to complete an Olympic distance tri! I love singing, especially in choirs, and I eat more chocolate than is considered healthy.

Thanks for checking out my blog! I hope you find your next good tale!