Giveaway celebrating Debbie Macomber’s ‘Cedar Cove’

Sometimes you need a feel-good watch.

Like a feel-good story, certain movies and TV shows evoke that warm, cuddly, snug-under-a-blanket feeling that can’t be replicated elsewhere. You know the one. And while I enjoy witty repartee and medical dramas as much as the next person, sometimes a show like “Cedar Cove” is just what the tender-hearted ordered.


Cedar Cove


Based on Debbie Macomber’s popular book series, Hallmark Channel’s original television series “Cedar Cove” debuted Saturday. Andie MacDowell plays Judge Olivia Lockhart, whose Cedar Cove Municipal Court is the professional milieu and social microcosm of issues the judge will face in her own day-to-day life with family and friends. Jack Griffith (Dylan Neal), the editor of the Cedar Cove Chronicle, is a new friend and potential love interest for Judge Lockhart.

I watched the almost-two-hour opener with my mom and sister Saturday and got engrossed. Aside from the gorgeous scenery, I was really impressed with the acting and multiple plots drawing us into the story. It’s obvious that Olivia’s artist daughter is dating a jerk and should totally be with her first love, but I like that the answers don’t seem to come easy. And working for a newspaper, of course, I liked the journalistic element.

After just one episode, I already feel attached to the characters and invested in Olivia’s fate. Cedar Cove evokes the warm feeling I got when visiting Stars Hollow through “Gilmore Girls,” and I love when a show’s setting becomes a character in itself. I’m definitely looking forward to the next installment! And it’s nice to have a summer show to watch with the girls — especially when it’s mostly lighthearted while still having heart. (And it’s totally not cheesy.)

If you’re intrigued, too, perhaps some prizes will entice you? Courtesy of the Hallmark Channel, one lucky winner will receive . . .


CedarCove-Prizing

• $15 Amazon Gift Card to start the Cedar Cove book series
• Recyclable shopping tote
• Debbie Macomber’s 16 Lighthouse Road Book
• Micro-Fleece winter beanie

Giveaway is open to U.S. entrants only through 12 p.m. EST on Friday, July 26. One entry per person. One winner will be randomly selected and emailed by Meg for their mailing address.


To enter, please fill out this form!


Feel free to leave a comment below, but your form submission is the only way to enter the contest.

Watch “Cedar Cove” on Saturday nights at 8p/7c on the Hallmark Channel, and check out the show’s trailer below!



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Giveaway: Fun with ‘Admission’

If you’ll allow me a moment to explore a girl crush, I’d like to bring Tina Fey to the front of the room.

With her trademark self-deprecating wit, humor and guile, Tina is my hero. I listened to Bossypants, her memoir, on audio last year, and it was just as quirky and hilarious as I expected. As a “30 Rock” devotee for a number of years, I was thrilled that the iconic Liz Lemon found happiness by the series’ end . . . but I’ve mourned the end of the show as though I’ve lost a friend. Because it totally feels like I have.

AdmissionBut Tina continues to take over the world. Her new movie “Admission,” co-starring Paul Rudd, is “about the surprising detours we encounter on the road to happiness.”

“Straight-laced Princeton University admissions officer Portia Nathan (Fey) is caught off-guard when she makes a recruiting visit to an alternative high school overseen by her former college classmate, the free-wheeling John Pressman (Rudd). Pressman has surmised that Jeremiah (Nat Wolff), his gifted yet very unconventional student, might well be the son that Portia secretly gave up for adoption many years ago.

“Soon, Portia finds herself bending the rules for Jeremiah, putting at risk the life she thought she always wanted — but in the process finding her way to a surprising and exhilarating life and romance she never dreamed of having.”


Sound like fun? I think so, too. And courtesy of Focus Features, I have a giveaway prize pack to get you extra pumped about the movie, which hits theaters March 22! One lucky winner will receive . . .


Admission prize pack

Admission (movie tie-in book)
Bossypants by Tina Fey
• Folder, notepad, pen, drawstring bag and toothbrush


Giveaway is open to U.S. residents only through 12 p.m. on Friday, March 15, when a winner will be randomly selected from submissions received and emailed for their mailing address by Meg.

Want more “Admission”? Visit the official website, like the film on Facebook — and check out the trailer below. Good luck!

EDIT on 3/15: Congrats to Karen, our randomly-chosen winner! I’ve emailed you.



Act Regency right with ‘The Jane Austen Handbook’ (giveaway)

Jane Austen HandbookIn honor of our dear Jane Austen and Pride & Prejudice’s 200th (!) anniversary, I have a special giveaway from our friends at Quirk Books today: three copies of Margaret C. Sullivan’s The Jane Austen Handbook.

With advice as varied as “how to ensure a good yearly income; how to behave at a dinner party; how to ride sidesaddle; and how to indicate interest in a gentleman without seeming forward,” Sullivan’s fun collection “offers step-by-step instructions for proper comportment in the early 19th century. … Full of practical directions for navigating the travails of Regency life, this charming illustrated book also serves as a companion for present-day readers, explaining the English class system, currency, dress, and the nuances of graceful living.”

Sound like your type of tea and crumpets? I thought so. To enter, simply fill out this form by 12 p.m. on Tuesday, January 15. Three random winners will be selected and contacted for their mailing addresses by yours truly. Giveaway is open to U.S. entrants only, please (sorry, international friends). Comments have been closed to avoid confusion. Good luck!


Edit on 1/15: Out of 47 entries, the lucky winners are Anita, Donna and Alexandra — who will soon be strutting in Regency style! Ladies, I’ve emailed you.


Great big ‘Pitch Perfect’ giveaway

You like music, right? And laughing? I’m assuming you do since, you know, you’re human. And if that’s true, you’re probably going to like “Pitch Perfect” — in theaters Oct. 5 — and the book based on the real world of a cappella. In that vein, I have an exciting prize pack up for grabs this week: goodies to celebrate the opening of “Pitch Perfect”!

Here’s what the book — and movie — are all about:

Get ready to be pitch slapped.

The roots of unaccompanied vocal music stretch all the way back to Gregorian chants of the Middle Ages, and collegiate a cappella is over a century old. But what was once largely an Ivy League phenomenon has, in the past twenty years, exploded. And it’s not what you think. Though the blue blazers and khakis may remain, a cappella groups at colleges across the country have become downright funky.

In Pitch Perfect, journalist Mickey Rapkin follows a season in a cappella through all its twists and turns, covering the breathtaking displays of vocal talent, the groupies (yes, there are a cappella groupies), the rock-star partying, and all the bitter rivalries. Rapkin brings you into the world of collegiate a cappella characters — from movie-star looks and celebrity-size egos to a troubled new singer with the megawatt voice. Including encounters with a cappella alums like John Legend and Diane Sawyer and fans from Prince to presidents, Rapkin shows that a cappella isn’t for the faint of heart — or lungs.

Sure to strike a chord with fans of “Glee” and “The Sing-Off,” this raucous story of a cappella rock stars shows that sometimes, to get that perfect harmony, you have to embrace a little discord.


Here’s what I have for two fine readers, courtesy of Universal Pictures:

• A copy of the book Pitch Perfect: The Quest for Collegiate A Cappella Glory (movie tie-in edition)
• “Pitch Perfect” T-shirt
• Aca-Awesome Magnetic Poetry
• Plus ear buds, sunglasses, pen and Post-It notes

Giveaway is open to U.S. residents only (sorry, international friends), and you can enter by filling out this form before 12 p.m. EST on Friday, Sept. 28. One entry per person. Two winners will be randomly selected via Random.org and emailed for their mailing addresses.



For more about the film, check out the official website, like on Facebook, follow @PitchPerfect on Twitter or see the trailer below. Remember to keep an eye out for the film, opening everywhere Oct. 5!



EDIT on Sept. 28: Congrats to Jennifer and Geza, our winners! I’ll be emailing you both shortly.


Your turn to listen: Audiobook giveaway of ‘Cinder’

Where do all the little audiobooks go after they’ve been given a good listen?

Well, how about to you?

Marissa Meyer’s Cinder, a futuristic cyborg retelling of “Cinderella,” has been all over the book world lately — and I have one gently listened to copy of the unabridged audio CD. Though not completely my cup of tea, the story has been embraced by many other readers — and perhaps it’s time you see for yourself! I originally won my copy from Capricious Reader and am happy to share the book love.

Giveaway runs until Wednesday, April 11 at 12 p.m. (noon) EST, at which point I will randomly select one winner and email them for their mailing address. One additional entry per person will be granted for sharing the contest via the social media of your choice (Twitter, Facebook, etc.). Please leave a link on the form.

As the prize will be coming from yours truly, I’m afraid I must limit entries to those from the U.S. and Canada (sorry, international friends!).


EDIT on April 11: Congrats to Kristi, winner of Cinder! And thanks to all who entered.

Can one life story have two authors? Giveaway of ‘Being Flynn’

Can one life story have two authors?


Based on the memoir by Nick Flynn, Being Flynn is a new film I’m excited to see — and I’m pumped to have a copy of the book on which it is based up for giveaway. The movie stars Robert De Niro, Julianne Moore and Paul Dano — woo, wee! — and sounds like an emotional, fascinating ride. Here’s our premise:

Nick Flynn (Paul Dano) is a young writer seeking to define himself. He misses his late mother, Jody (four-time Academy Award nominee Julianne Moore), and her loving nature. But his father, Jonathan, is not even a memory, as Nick has not seen the man in 18 years.

Jonathan Flynn (two-time Academy Award winner Robert De Niro) has long defined himself as a great writer, “a master storyteller.” After abandoning his wife and child, Jonathan scrapes through life on his own terms, and ends up serving time in prison for cashing forged checks. After prison, he drives a cab for a number of years, but with his drinking and eccentricities now accelerating, he loses his job. Despite the occasional grandiose letter to his son, he has remained absent from Nick’s life.

Suddenly facing eviction from his apartment, Jonathan impulsively reaches out to Nick and the two come face-to-face. The older man is eloquent and formidable; overwhelmed, Nick nonetheless prepares to integrate his father into his own life. But, as quickly as he materialized, Jonathan flits away again.

Moving on, Nick takes a job at a homeless shelter, where he learns from Captain (Wes Studi) and Joy (Lili Taylor) how to relate to the guests who arrive night after night. Seeing the homeless — some permanently, some temporarily so — and hearing their stories, Nick finds purpose in his own life and work. He also sustains a romance with a co-worker, Denise (Olivia Thirlby). Then one night, Jonathan arrives, seeking a bed, and Nick’s senses of self and compassion falter. To give the two of them a shot at a real future, Nick will have to decide whom to seek redemption for first.

Evocatively told, ruefully funny, and moving in its depiction of the ties that bind, “Being Flynn” tells a story that reveals universal truths.


Writers! Family drama! Evocative stories! I’m in.

Want to win a copy of the movie tie-in book edition and $25 worth of Fandango bucks, all courtesy of the publisher? You’ve come to the right place.

Entries are limited to U.S. residents only, please. Contest is open today, March 16, through 12 p.m. EST on March 21. One winner will be randomly selected via Random.org and emailed by Meg for their shipping address.

Check out the film’s trailer below — it’s in theatres now.

EDIT on 3/21: Congrats to Bonnie, our randomly selected winner! I’ll be emailing you shortly.



Literary Giveaway Blog Hop: ‘The Lost Wife’ by Alyson Richman

This giveaway is part of Leeswammes’ Literary Giveaway Blog Hop, happening now through Feb. 22! Visit for other great giveaways.


Sometime last fall, I began seeing reviews for Alyson Richman’s The Lost Wife. A longtime fan of both love stories and historical fiction, reviewers seemed to be enamored with this work focused on the fate of first love in war-torn Prague.

When I signed up for a blogger gift exchange at Christmas, I eagerly placed The Lost Wife on my list — and was delighted when it appeared in my mailbox! Sadly, I’ve yet to mention a little . . . well . . . quirk of mine: I’m shockingly impatient. Forgetting I’d placed the book on my wishlist, I’d bought my own copy days before.

But no matter: my mistake is your gain! I have one new paperback copy of The Lost Wife to give away to one lucky reader in the U.S. As the prize is coming from me, I’m sorry to say I must limit entrants to those in America.


Description from Goodreads:

“In pre-war Prague, the dreams of two young lovers are shattered when they are separated by the Nazi invasion. Then, decades later, thousands of miles away in New York, there’s an inescapable glance of recognition between two strangers. Providence is giving Lenka and Josef one more chance. From the glamorous ease of life in Prague before the Occupation, to the horrors of Nazi Europe, The Lost Wife explores the power of first love, the resilience of the human spirit — and the strength of memory.”


Comments on this post are welcome, but will not count as entry. Winner will be randomly selected at 12 p.m. Feb. 22 and emailed for their mailing address. Your information is confidential and will be viewed only by me. Good luck!


EDIT on Feb. 22: Congrats to Hannah B., entrant No. 49! Random.org selected her as our winner. Thanks to all who visited and entered — check back soon for another giveaway.