Monday, 29 October 2018

Recommended Reads by Book Bloggers

Recommended Reads: Books Selected by Book Bloggers. Featuring @robdog60 @EntertaininglyN  @LiteraryElf @Chrikaru

I love to find out what other book bloggers are reading, and what they thought of books. I've discovered some awesome reads by checking out book blogs and reading reviews. This is why I like to do these round up posts to showcase the books that other book bloggers rated highly.

It also gives me the chance to spread the love to the book blogging community. I love how supportive everyone is and this is just a little way I can give back.

So here we go, prepare yourself to add more books to your TBR...

You might also like: Ways To Get Out Of A Reading Slump

Recommended Reads by Book Bloggers

Recommended Reads Selected by Book Bloggers
About the book:

My little boy’s room was empty, his bed neatly made. Alarm bells should have rung immediately. Then the knock on the door came. All I remember is a thick fog wrapping itself tightly around me. This couldn’t be happening to us.

Three years ago, nurse Zoe's son Ethan was found drowned in a muddy river by their home, along with his best friend Josh. With no witnesses, their deaths were ruled a tragic accident.

Heartbroken, Zoe and her family, move away from her home. They’re just beginning to get back to some kind of normality, when, out of the blue, Zoe receives an anonymous email: 

You need to find out the truth about what happened to your son. Don’t let this rest. Don’t believe the lie.

Shaken, Zoe starts an obsessive hunt for the truth. But why is her husband so reluctant to help?
And why is Josh’s mother so determined not to believe her?

An absolutely unputdownable psychological thriller about a mother’s desperate search for the truth. Fans of The Girl on the Train, and Gone Girl will be hooked from the very first page.

Recommended Reads Selected by Book Bloggers
About the book:

Ever since Riley Thomas, reluctant medium extraordinaire, accidentally released a malevolent spirit from a Ouija board when she was thirteen, she’s taken a hard pass on scary movies, haunted houses, and cemeteries. So when her best friend pressures her into spending a paranormal investigation weekend at the infamous Jordanville Ranch—former home of deceased serial killer Orin Jacobs—Riley is one-hundred-percent not ready.

Shortly after their arrival at the ranch, the spirit of a little boy contacts Riley; a child who went missing—and was never found—in 1973.

In order to put the young boy’s spirit to rest, she has to come to grips with her ability. But how can she solve a mystery that happened a decade before she was born? Especially when someone who knows Orin’s secrets wants to keep the truth buried—no matter the cost.

About the book:

Recommended Reads Selected by Book Bloggers
'If The Book Thief was a novel that allowed Death to steal the show... [its] brilliantly illuminated follow-up is affirmatively full of life.' Guardian

'This is a tale of love, art and redemption; rowdy and joyous.' Times
'Bridge of Clay is one of those monumental books that can draw you across space and time' Washington Post
Here is a story told inside out and back to front
Five Dunbar brothers are living – fighting, loving, grieving – in the perfect chaos of a house without grown-ups. Today, the father who left them has just walked right back in.
He has a surprising request: Who will build a bridge with him?
It is Clay, a boy tormented by a long-buried secret, who accepts. But why is Clay so broken? And why must he fulfil this extraordinary challenge?
Bridge of Clay is about a boy caught in a current, a boy intent on destroying everything he has in order to become everything he needs to be. Ahead of him lies the bridge, the vision that will save both his family and himself.
It will be a miracle and nothing less.
At once an existential riddle and a search for redemption, this tale of five brothers coming of age in a house with no rules brims with energy, joy and pathos. Written in Markus Zusak's distinctive style, it is a tour de force from a master storyteller of the heart.

Recommended Reads Selected by Book Bloggers
About the book:

'This thrilling space odyssey will keep you turning pages late into the night' C. J. Daugherty, author of NIGHT SCHOOL

Six girls, six boys. Each in the two separate bays of a single spaceship. They have six minutes each week to seduce and to make their choices, under the unblinking eye of the on-board cameras. They are the contenders in the Genesis programme, the world's craziest speed-dating show ever, aimed at creating the first human colony on Mars.

Leonor, an 18 year old orphan, is one of the chosen ones. 
She has signed up for glory.
She has signed up for love.
She has signed up for a one-way ticket.
Even if the dream turns to a nightmare, it is too late for regrets.

Recommended Reads Selected by Book Bloggers
About the book:

A companion tale to Sarah J. Maas's #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Rosesseries that takes place several months after the explosive events of A Court of Wings and Ruin

Told from the perspectives of Feyre, Rhys and other key characters, this story bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming novels in the series. 
Feyre, Rhys and their companions are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can't keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated – scars that will have a far-reaching impact on the future of their court.

Have you read any of these? Which ones will you be adding to your TBR?

Sunday, 28 October 2018

On My Shelf: The Prophet by Ethan Cross

On My Shelf: The Prophet by Ethan Cross

On My Shelf

On My Shelf is a series to showcase some of the books that are sat on my shelves. Each Sunday I randomly pick a book from my shelves to show you. Some will be books that are on my TBR, others will be books I've read in the past but that deserve a little love.

This week's pick

This week I picked The Prophet by Ethan Cross

On My Shelf: The Prophet by Ethan Cross

Francis Ackerman is America’s most terrifying serial killer. Brutal and cunning, he is ready to take his evil games to a new level.


Special Agent Marcus Williams cannot shake Ackerman from his mind. Yet now he must focus on catching the Anarchist, a new killer who abducts women before burning them alive.


The Anarchist will strike again soon. And Ackerman is still free. But even worse than this is a mysterious figure, unknown to the authorities - and his plans are more terrible than anyone imagines.

Friday, 26 October 2018

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

I love learning new things and sharing them with you so, for today's post I'm going to show you a little trick I picked up this week that will improve your video branding and make your YouTube videos look more professional. 

How To Add a Logo To  Your YouTube videos

This week I added my own logo so it now shows on all my videos uploaded to my YouTube channel. I learnt this little gem by doing a quick search on Google and visiting their help page.

You can use a branding watermark to embed your channel logo across all videos on your channel. When you add a watermark, viewers can directly subscribe to your channel if they hover over the watermark when using YouTube on a computer. It won't show to users who are already subscribed to your channel.

How to add your branding watermark
- Sign in to YouTube.
- Go to Creator Studio by clicking your account icon > Creator Studio.
In the left menu, select > Settings

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

- In the menu, select  Channel Branding.

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

- Click Add a watermark.

- Follow the on-screen instructions to add a channel branding element that will appear in all your uploaded videos across devices.

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

How To Add a Logo To Your YouTube videos

Thursday, 25 October 2018

20% off Literary Book Gifts

20% off Literary Book Gifts

I missed yesterday's post for Blogtober due to an evil stomach bug. Luckily it was a quick recovery and we're all now doing much better.

This means I owe you a post. It's a good post though so hopefully you'll be OK with my late posting ;)

I got contacted a while back by the lovely people at Literary Book Gifts and have organised a special offer just for you!

N.B. I'm not an affiliate and so don't get anything for sharing this with you other than a warm fuzzy feeling of spreading the love of all things book related, and helping a new small business get a bit of extra exposure.

Literary Book Gifts

Literary Book Gifts is a brand new company that specializes in bringing books off the page and onto bags and shirts. There are a wide range of authors and titles ranging from Shakespeare to The Velveteen Rabbit.

Use the code JOLINSDELL20 for 20% off anything in the store, no minimum, and can be used unlimited times!

See, I told you it was a good post ;)

Website Link:

Being a fan of Sherlock Holmes I personally love this T-shirt:

This Alice in Wonderland vest is cute too:

So if you fancy doing some early Christmas shopping for your book loving friends go check out the Literary Book Gifts website.

Booktastic Thursday: A Link Up for Book Bloggers (25th October 2018)

Booktastic Thursday: A Link Up for Book Bloggers (25th October 2018)

Welcome back for another Booktastic Thursday Link Up!

I'm looking forward to seeing what bookish posts you have to share this week. 

I'm now heading into the home stretch for my October challenges and I'm happy to report I'm really pleased with how things are going. 

Blogtober has been great. Exactly the type of challenge I needed to motivate me to improve my blog. It's making me think more about the sort of content I post and the more technical aspects of blogging as well. 

I've been making progress with BYOBthon. You can check out my progress report of week 3 here if you missed it.

The BOOkish Blog Hop this month has also been fun and it's been great connecting more with the other book bloggers to answer all the bookish questions. The blog hop is organised via the Facebook group Bookish Blog Hops. Come and join us at There are blog hops organised throughout the year and daily blog support threads.

Booktastic Thursday: A Link Up For Book Bloggers | Jo Linsdell

And now for Booktastic Thursday Link Up!

For those of you that don't already know, every Thursday I host this meme to give my fellow book bloggers the chance to share some of their bookish posts and connect with other book bloggers.

How to take part:

Post your book related blog post links directly into the comments section of this post.

I just ask you to link back to the weekly blog post here on my blog some where in the post you're linking up. You can see an example of how a past participant, 
Veronica from The Burgeoning Bookshelf, included it in her post at

I ask that you link up blog posts ONLY please. Other types of links will be deleted.

I'd also appreciate it if you follow me on any social media of your choice (I'm JoLinsdell everywhere). Of course, I would love it if you subscribed to my newest posts ;)

Please grab the Booktastic Link It Up Thursday button and share it somewhere on your blog (sidebar, post, bottom, etc.) and please share about this party with any book-lovers you know.

Booktastic Thursday: A Link Up For Book Bloggers

Let's grow this party!

Click to tweet:

Everyone works hard on their posts and loves visits/comments/pins from others. Please visit AND comment on at least one other linked post if not more.

Now on to the party!

I'm looking forward to seeing all your book related posts.

Booktastic Thursday: A Link Up For Book Bloggers

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

How To Raise A Reader: Tips For Getting Kids To Read

How To Raise A Reader: Tips For Getting Kids To Read

Tips For Getting Kids To Read

I love spreading the joy of reading, even more so when it's to children. It's a special feeling as an author when someone tells me they read one of my books to their kid and the kid asked to read it again... and again... and again.

Beginning a child's favourite author is one of the best feelings ever. You become part of their magically journey to becoming a future reader and book lover.

For today's post I wanted to share some ideas for how you can encourage a love of reading from a young age, and raise your own bibliophile. 

Read to them/together

Introducing kids to books at a young age is the first step. It's never too early to read to them. I started reading books to my kids when they were babies. It was soothing for them to hear my voice, and as they got older they knew that books meant quite time to snuggle with mummy. 

Just because they might be too young to read themselves doesn't mean they won't enjoy being read to. 

Rhyming books tend to go down particularly well with younger kids. Books by Julia Donaldson were (and still are) household favourites for us. I know The Gruffalo off by heart from having read it to them so many times. My kids do too.

Explore alternative ways of enjoying a story

Not got a lot of free time to sit and read to them? We all lead busy lives and finding the time, and energy, at the end of a busy day is not always easy. The good news is you can still build your child's love of reading by getting them some audio book versions. My kids loved (and still love it) when they have an audio CD to go with the book. These are great for the evening to get them to relax before bed. You tuck them in and let them fall asleep listening to the story. 

Encourage independent reading

They should also have the chance to "read" for themselves as they get older. There are a lot of cardboard, and plastic covered soft books available. These formats allow the child to explore the book by themselves without the risk of damaging it or hurting themselves (no paper cuts :)). Perfect for toddlers.

Make reading fun

Interactive books are great for younger kids too. There are lots of books out there that have different textures and materials on the pages, buttons to press, etc... Some even come with a built in puppet to make reading time extra fun. They all have in common the fact that they teach the child that reading and books are fun.

Go beyond the book

Another way to encourage a love of books in children is to create activities to go with the book they're reading. This is why I set up a board on Pinterest to go with my children's picture story book The Box (check out the board here). It's packed with ideas of crafts you can make with a simple cardboard box. 

I'm not the only one that thought to do this. 

Jennifer Miller (@jlmiller516 ) from  shared this will me:
"I make reading into an event with my three-year-old. When we read Blueberries for Sal for the first time we made blueberry muffins. "

I've also had reviews posted to the Amazon page of The Box that comment on this. Here's an example of one of the reviews:

"The Box took me right back to my childhood and my children's childhood. Now, I can read it to my grandchildren and tell them how I played with a box and how their Mom or Dad did. Jo Linsdell has written a fun book with illustrations that will touch your heart and take you back in time. It has just the right number of words and sentences to connect to your toddler's imagination and stay within their attentive span. When I get a new book for the grandchildren I often bring something to go with it like seeds and a shovel for a book about a garden. How neat is this. I will only need to find a discarded box! Imagination is a wonderful thing to promote. This really does deserve 5 stars."

Jennifer Miller (@jlmiller516 ) from  also had a suggestion for slightly older kids. 

I teach graphic memoir at a university. To get students engaged I have them create their own graphic memoirs. They love it and get a better sense of how to read a memoir when they write one.

Visit the library

Take your kids to your local library when you can. A lot of libraries offer group reading sessions and other activities. It also means you'll have a large supply of reading materials to discover. Our local library is specifically for children (you can take a behind the scenes tour here), but many libraries have a special children's area.

Let them pick their books

Whilst you can suggest books you think your child might enjoy reading, it's best to let them choose their own books.

My 10 year old loves reading the Scooby Doo mystery series, as does his 7 year old brother. In fact, they often read them together, and have read most of the series. Here's an example of one of the books. Whilst the eldest is at an age where he can read more grown up books (less pictures, more text), he still enjoys reading these. As long as he enjoys reading I don't care what type of book he chooses. He has plenty of time in the future to discover other books for the older age range.

Show YOUR love of reading

Kids learn by example. If they see you reading, and enjoying/talking about books, they will most likely want to read more themselves.

Books are a big part of my life and so my kids have grown up seeing me reading most days, and a house full of books. They ask about the books I'm reading, especially if it's one they have an interest in themselves e.g. The Percy Jackson series.

Whilst we don't go into details about the thrillers I read (I don't want to scare them), they will ask what the book is about and I'll give a very simplified version to them. They will then ask every so often if I've worked out who did it.

They get particularly excited when I manage to read a book in one sitting. To them this means I have some kind of super power, and usually leads to a discussion about the book, reading, and/or books in general.

How To Raise A Reader: Tips For Getting Kids To Read

Got any tips of your own for turning kids into readers? Have you tried any of the above mentioned tips with your own kids?

You might also like:

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