Tuesday, 30 July 2013

The Bachelorette, Season 9, Finale Part 1 "The Crying Game"

ABC has been teasing us with a big twist that is so shocking they had to split the finale into two shows.

Drew, Chris, and the Brookster

Here's my guess, Des picks Brooks, but he confesses that although he enjoys making out with her in exotic locations while being filmed, he doesn't want to give her special naked hugs for the rest of his life.

Des has narrowed the list down of twenty-five freakish men to three; Brooks, Drew, and Chris.

Before you can say beach blanket bingo, Des packs her bikini and whisks us and her camera crew off to Antigua.

She tells us, “This week is going to be the next step in my life. I can't think of a better place for my fairy tale ending to come true.”

Des does a quick recap about her potential soul mates.

She says, “Chris has all these masculine qualities that I admire, but he's also boyish and silly.”

She also thought he was the guy with the biggest masculine quality. He was also the first to tell her that he loved her. “I could trust Chris with my heart,” she says, “and I'd be very lucky to end up with him.”

Gee, why doesn't she pick him?

Next she tells us Drew has always struck her as someone who is passionate and romantic.

“His body is off the charts, but he's so humble and sweat. He'll be a great husband and father. If Drew and I end up together, we'll have a deep connection and a very happy life.”

Gee, why doesn't she pick him?

Then she tells us this, “I separate Brooks from the other guys. When I'm with him, I see my future. He's one of a kind. I love that about him. And even though he hasn't told her that he's loves her, she can tell by the way he kisses her.”

Gee, why would she choose him?

Drew is first up for the overnight date. He's all Colgate smiles and loveliness. They explore the island, party with the locals, buy souvenirs, and make out.

Drew says, “Today is about living in the moment.”

Good because this is probably your last date with her.

They have a picnic and Drew tells her his family LOVES her, like with a capital 'L'.

Des is probably imagining what Brooks looks like while he's napping.

They were supposed to have a romantic dinner on the beach but it rains. Poo. So they hurry speedy quick to the fantasy suite. She gives Drew the opportunity to stay the night and he takes her up on it.


Drew repeats how much he loves her and he tells her that he's ready to marry her.

Des is probably wondering if Brooks is a boxer of brief kind of guy.

Next, we're treated to a painful therapy session back home with Brooks. He spends a lot of time walking by himself trying to figure out if he's in love with Des. He visits his mom and sister for advice.

Dear ABC,

I totally see through your plan. This is all a set up to drive ratings.

Brooks spends way too much time talking about himself. I'm already bored. He says he wants to be in love. His sister tells him, “At this point you should know if you're in love, dummy.”

Okay, I added the dummy part.

There's a lot of guitar strumming in the background as Brooks continues to talk about his needs and how he's so confused. Blah, blah, blah...

Chris is the next to land on the island of Des.

She says, “He expresses how much he loves me every time I see him. So I just want this day to be about having fun.”

Translation, “I like Brooks the best, so I'm just going to make out with Chris until he gets here.”

They tour the island by helicopter and Chris spends most of the time, trying to come up with rhymes for 'helicopter'.

He says, “I have no doubt she's sharing the same feelings of love that I have.”

Meanwhile, Brooks is trying to decide which socks to pack.

Des makes a toast to Antigua, beaches and spending more time with Chris. And silently in her heart, that Brooks's plane lands early. They eat a picnic of fruit and giggle about how fun it was to impress his family with her effortless charm.

Chris tells us, “I'll be there with her in the sad times, to give her a hug and be with her for the good times. I can see myself with her for the rest of my life.”

Sad times, huh? I think there might be one coming up soon.

Meanwhile, Brooks is trying to decide how much sugar to add to his coffee.

During the romantic dinner, Chris mentions he has a great job prospect in Seattle and he asks Des if she would consider moving there. He also throws in a cute house by the water. Des smiles and says California is her home.

Translation, “Seattle is too far from where Brooks lives.”

She pulls out the fantasy suite key and Chris says it's a great opportunity to spend more time with her.


Meanwhile, Brooks is trying to decide if he should go to the bathroom before leaving the house.

In the fantasy suite, Chris pulls out his secret weapon...another poem.

Okay, enough we get it, you can rhyme. Please stop.

Des tells us, “Chris is so perfect for me in so many ways.”

Translation, “I'll still pick Brooks.”

Guess who's next????

The Brookster arrives and Des can barely contain herself. “Even though I'm falling in love with the other guys, I have a deeper feeling for Brooks. I'm so excited to see him.”

Brooks and the host have a little interview.

Dear ABC,

I'm on to you! You're adding drama to fill in the second hour.

I won't be duped by ABC, I fast forward though the Brooks-is-confused- interview. I check at the three minute mark and the host says, “If you're not ready, then spend some time in the fantasy suite with her.”

Brooks responds with, “If I don't feel it now, I won't feel it with more time.”

Too bad he didn't realize this BEFORE he got on the plane.

I fast forward again and at the ten minute mark Brooks says, “I just wish I were there.” There's a sad piano solo in the background as the host tells Chris to man up and tell Des the truth.

Here we go, it's the moment ABC has been teasing us with all week!!!!

Des is expecting a date and Brooks is preparing to break up with her...or at least what you call not planning on dating the girl who is dating two other guys.

She rushes down to the beach to great Brooks. The sad piano begins to play. That was her first clue. The second clue was Brooks showing up with tears running down his face.

Aw, her heart melts because she thinks he's so enraptured. Then he says, “I just want to talk to you about how I feel.”

Red flag! Red flag! Red flag!

Brooks does a lot of sighing and squirming, he can't even look at Des. His speech totally sucks. He goes with the 'you're a much better person than I am'. The camera zooms in and you can actually see the moment that Des's heart breaks.


He stumbles through his words and it makes no sense. He finally tells her that when she's not around he doesn't think about her. He really wants to be madly in love with her, but...

Dear ABC,


I kind of wish Mikey and James were there to beat the crap out of him.

Des asks the million dollar question, “Why now?”

His answer, “I didn't know until I saw you today.”

Des tells him that she loves him. Then they both break down crying into their elbows because neither one can cry on each others shoulder.

The locals gather around the white couple sobbing on the bench.

Here's how the next ten minutes play out; Des creaks out how much she loves him between sniffs, and Brooks sits with his head in his hands.

He tells us, “I'm surprised at how much she loves me.”

Not by the time this airs, I'm guessing.

Des drops the bombshell that she's been holding back and not falling for the other guys because she was saving her heart for HIM.

I'm surprised there isn't blood coming out of his nose.

Then he asks her, “Should I go home?”

Joe Jeezer! Can this guy not make a decision about anything? This is how I'm imaging Des's life with Brooks would be like:

“Honey, is it time to take out the garbage?”

“Des, should I walk the dog now?”

“Am I thirsty for milk or water?”

“Do I like Chinese or should we order pizza?”

Des tells him to sit on the bench, then she leaves him crying in the middle of the palm trees. He walks around aimlessly, I'm guessing because he can't decide which bench to choose.

Des tells the camera she's now left with the task of letting down two awesome guys because she doesn't love them as much as Brooks. She says the journey for her is over.

I guess not for ABC though, because next week there's another two hour finale.

What will happen? Will Des dump both guys?

Monday, 29 July 2013

Five Books That Made Me Cry

Oh my, nothing better than a good cry over fictional characters, especially if you're on an airplane or waiting in the doctor's office....*ahem*

Anyway, if you're in need of a good emotional heart wrenching sob, check these titles out.


#1. The Fault In Our Stars

It's not the fact that the kids have cancer, it's that they fall in love so beautifully. I knew it wouldn't end well, yet I kept reading...I HAD to! And even though I can go back and read it all over again, in my heart, that character is gone. *sobs*

#2. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

In particular Chapter 13 

Every frickin' time I read this I cry...tears of JOY! Harry saves the day and manages to look cook in front of Cho Chang when he catches the snitch during a particularly troublesome Quidditch match. Plus, he produces a patronus so strong Malfoy and his cronies end up in the infirmary. *fist pump*

#3. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

The ending...just stop. I can't. My kids and I cried together at bedtime reading this one.

#4. Anne of Green Gables

One word. Matthew. *sniff*

#5. A Fine Balance

So many heartbreaking moments. It's not necessarily a crying book, but more like the author reaches through your chest and twists your heart, squeezing it tightly. The ending scene with the chess set and the speeding train lingered with me for a long time after I closed the book.

Which books made you cry?  

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

The Bachelorette Season 9, Episode 9 "The Men Tell All"

Or Better Title, "The Men Are Still Boring"


This is the episode where all the dudes who have been kicked off return for their chance to pick more fights and continue to be jerks...just like on the show. 

The good news is I missed the first half of the show, the bad news is I started watching during Zak's musical tribute to being dumped.

I think it was called, “Moving On” At least that's the phrase he kept repeating.

He seemed pretty calm, I guess the new medication is working.

Apparently I missed Des having cocktails in the hot tub with former Bachelorette, Emily Maynard and a few other women who have been on this terrible show. They dissed the dudes and drank from plastic wine glasses. I'm not sure if any of them are in a happy relationship.

Ben, James and Mikey T prove that they really are dirt bags in real life and took every opportunity to smear each others reputations. There was yelling and finger pointing.

Surprise! Surprise! Just like on the show.

Jonathan, the creepy mouth kisser who kept trying to kidnap Des on the first episode, apologized and everyone felt their skin crawl.


Juan Pablo (above) speaks and all the women in the audience melt. He was kicked off in episode 6. It remains one of the greatest mysteries of the season. He talks with the host about his daughter and how hard it is for him to date.

Probably won't be an issue anymore since he's America's latest crush.

They showed the Blooper reel and the guys were even less interesting in spontaneous moments of foolhardiness...if that's possible.

The Host drops a lot of hints that this Bachelorette finale has such a shocking twist they had to film it in two shows.


They tease us with a clip involving beaches, Des in a bikini, Des crying, Des kissing Brooks, Des running into Drew's arms, Des crying in a red dress, Des kissing Chris, then Des wiping her eyes and saying she just wants to go home.

Damn! Where is her brother? He'd fix that up speedy quick.

She says she always falls in love with the wrong people.

Here's my theory, Des chooses Brooks and he tells her he's just not ready...you know like he has from the very beginning. Then she confesses to Drew and Chris she can't possibly be with them when her heart is with snot face Brooks. So everyone goes home upset and no one gets lucky.

Way to go, Brooks. Thanks for ruining everyone's free vacation. Dummy.

Dear Brooks, why did you even sign up for the show? Oh, right. The beaches...never mind.

Who do you think is the bigger dirt bag, Ben or James? And who is Des going to end up with?

Monday, 22 July 2013

Top Five Survival Tips THE CONJURING Taught Me

I love scary movies (even the stomach twisting moments when everything is calm, but we know the killer is behind the door ready to jump out).

I saw THE CONJURING over the weekend and I'm glad to say I'll be having traumatic flashbacks for sometime—my washer and dryer are in the dark spooky part of the basement.

Seriously, the freaky doll in the very beginning was enough to make me avoid Toys R Us for a long, long time.


However, I'm not worried if my house does become infested with demonic souls from hell, I'll have plenty of time to pack my bags and head for the Vatican because THE CONJURING not only entertained me to the brink of incontinence, but it also taught me some very valuable tips on surviving a haunted house.

Top five survival tips I learned from THE CONJURING:

#1. If the family dog refuses to enter the house...move out.

#2. If you bought the huge farm house at a bank auction dirt cheep because none of the locals would bid...move out.

#3. If you discover a boarded up entrance to a secret basement...move out.

#4. If the youngest sibling starts talking to an imaginary friend who knows all kinds of hiding places in the house...move out.

#5. If invisible hands push you down stairs, break all your picture frames, and leave unexplained bruises on you at night...move out.

BONUS! If the creepy old furniture starts moving around on its own...move out.

What have scary movies taught you?

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

The Bachelorette, Season 9, Episode 8 "Penguins, Promise Rings, and Popped Vertebrae"

The four remaining dudes; Zak, Drew, Brooks, and Chris, take Des to meet their families.

Zak is up first. He tells us he has a crazy family, even crazier than him.

Oh dear. 
 He asks Des if she's nervous, but she isn't.

Hasn't he watched the show? She's the one who is in demand, not him.

Zak tells her this bizarre dream, and I wonder why this wasn't edited out since it made no sense and there wasn't any point. Before things get too weird (too late) Zak comes around the corner in his family's snow cone truck.

They go to an elementary school where Des gets to serve thirty screaming kids. Then Zak turns up dressed like a huge penguin.

This is getting tired.

Des is more optimistic and says she could serve snow cones to kids all day long.

That's good since it's the family business.

When they finally visit Zak's family, they scream more than the kids around the snow cone truck.

Sugar anyone?

Zak's mom, Maryann, takes Des aside. I'm waiting for the interrogation, but Maryann's eyes are twinkling and she talks about sparks and love.

Des and Zak's sister, Carly, have a giggle fest, but she tells us off camera that she's afraid of her brother getting hurt.

At least there's always the penguin suit.

The evening ends with Zak and his siblings singing a song for Des—actually written for her.

This is creepy. Can you say, “Take our brother please!”

Zak tells her that he loves her and gives her a ring that he bought in Atlantic City. The black suburban of love pulls up and it's time for Des to go.

Why? Because she has to meet her other boyfriend's families, silly!

Des travels to Arizona to meet Drew's crowd. There's a lot of kissing at first, then Drew explains all the family dynamics of step-parents and in-laws and Des starts to look worried.

Does this mean no song?

But things go more perfectly than the Arizona weather. Drew's Mom takes him aside and he confides that he's shared all their family history with her and she's totally cool with everything.

Of course his amazing abs help, plus he's the best kisser and has the best bod.


Drew's Dad thinks he and Des are a perfect match. Des wants to stay with his family FOREVER.

Zak who?

Drew makes it official and he tells Des he loves her and wants her to be his future.

PICK DREW! Sorry, just yelling at the TV.

Oh dear. The black suburban of love pulls up. Time for another family to charm.

Chris takes Des to his neighborhood baseball park. Chris is overjoyed when he discovers Des can catch and hit. Then they enjoy some time getting to second base.

Chris's family must have been spying on Zak's family because they squeal and jump in the air even higher. Chris's dad is a chiropractor with an office in the basement. He gives Des a back treatment. Between the cracks and snaps they talk about Chris.

His mom is hesitant and is concerned because his last girlfriend really broke his heart. Everyone is on egg shells, waiting to hear mom's judgment. And....it's an A+! Mom has been very stoic up until this moment, but now she can't stop crying.

Des does it again!

Oh my God! So many hearts are going to be crushed!!!


Brooks welcomes Des to Utah. She jumps into his arms like none of the other guys and their crying moms exist. He explains that they have a great relationship, but you know, she's also dating other guys.

Yeah, dude, that's the show.

They go canoeing and I check my e-mail. Brooks warns Des that his family is super excited to meet them. And he isn't lying, they swarm Des like a mob of school kids around a snow cone truck.

And everyone is wearing name tags.

Janice, Brooks' mom, interviews Des, but Des turns the tables and asks if she thinks Brooks is ready for marriage. When Brooks meets with his mom, there's a lot of ambiguity, but she sort of gives her blessing for Des to join their family. It seems everyone is on board except for maybe Brooks.

I don't get the fluffy happy feelings from him.

Des returns to her home in L.A. She has a meeting with her brother before the rose ceremony. She hasn't seen him since the Sean debacle.

Really? I thought he saved her.

He asks her who she loves the most, and she gives each guy nice compliments. He wants to meet them, but Des is hesitant since she doesn't realize he was absolutely right about Sean. She tells him she'll think about it.

YES! LET YOUR BROTHER MEET THEM. I bet he'd tell her straight up that Brooks isn't the one.

Before the rose ceremony, Des sits with the host. She admits that she loves Brooks, yet he hasn't reciprocated. Then I fast forward because I'm sick of hearing the same stuff.

Here's what we've all been waiting for:

Brooks gets the first rose.

Chris gets the second.

And the third rose goes to...Drew.

Zak is going back home to the snow cone truck alone. Des tells him that she doesn't feel as strongly and he is so great that he deserves to have someone love him as much. Then she gives back the ring.

*Cue the sad piano solo*

Zak does his best monologue hoping to get a chance to be the next bachelor.

I'd say he has a snow cone's chance in hell.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Make Out Music For Writers

Now that I have your attention...

Today I'm writing a particularly intense scene for THE ASP that involves lips touching. And there's no better way to capture ALL of my character's senses (it's not all about the mouth's, darling) than listening to a schmexy song at the same time.

I LURV this Bryan Adam's song for so many reasons, and I thought it would be nice to share it with you.

If you need a little more inspiration on how to write a simply unforgettable kissing scene, check out this post on that very important topic.

What do you listen to when you're writing?

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

The Bachelorette Season 9, Episode 7 “Like, Love, and Mr. Lonely"


Des and the boys go to Madeira Island!

She says this is a pivotal week to see how the guys really feel about her.

Um, I think they like you. That's the whole point of signing up for the show.

Des has invited some pals from last season's The Bachelor to help her decide.


Catherine is there with her BIG engagement ring, plus the one with red hair and a blond chick. Catherine talks about how she and Sean are each others best friend.

Who cares? I've moved on.

Des needs advice about the guys who are left. The blond one says, “It's nice that you like them, but are you falling in love with anyone?”

Good question.

Des confirms that yes indeed, she is in love...with one of them.

The guys come out for some swimsuit time and the girls get out the binoculars. Immediately they let Des know which one they would pick. They ask Des very important questions about each guy.

Here are the results:

           Drew, best kisser and most outrageous abs.                

Drew is the best kisser.

Michael is the most successful.

Chris is the most athletic.

Drew has the best body.

Zak is the most adventurous.

And she guesses Chris may have the biggest man part.

Well, I think that covers it.

Brooks is chosen to go on a solo date.

Chris says it's obvious they have a connection and it makes him nervous.

I guess he doesn't know he has the biggest, ahem...asset of the group.

Des and Brooks travel to the edge of a cliff.

How is ABC going to give them a private concert on a cliff?

Then they discuss the difference between like and love—there's a lot of awkward giggling. They take a drive way up to the top of the clouds.

During the picnic, Brooks and Des seem like they're trying hard to convince each other they're in love, or falling in love, or ready to fall in love.

Then they talk about clouds...a lot.

Their evening dinner date consists of Des talking about falling in love. I'm too distracted by Brooks's creepy Freddy Kruger sweater.


Brooks talks about his family and gets weepy.

Des makes it obvious she's falling in love, but he tells the camera he's a few steps behind. When she asks if he wants her to meet his family, he takes a long pause then says, “Yeah.”

Poor Des.

Chris gets the next solo date. And he is super excited! He's ready to propose.

Take that Brooks and your stupid sweater.

They take a yacht to a deserted island, but still have time to slather sunscreen on each other and make out.

They have a picnic on a flowery bank. When they drink all the wine, Chris suggests they write a message and put it in the empty bottle. They create a poem together about love. It sounds very grade ten, but he's a mortgage broker, so well done.

Then Chris tells us he has something to share with Des.

His big...secret?

It's time for the candlelit dinner. Chris is ready to tell Des that he's in love with her. After a lot of sweating and talk about kids and families, he whips out his...poem.

Oh my nerves. Another poem.

At the end, he finally tells her he loves her.
Des tells us he has all the qualities she's looking for.

Yeah, we know. He has a big personality.

Michael gets to go on the next solo date. They explore the local shops.
Mr. Lonely
I'm confused. Why isn't she out with Drew? I really like Drew.

They have a little wine on a private bench with a waterfall in the background.

I'm shocked no one has said, 'amazing' yet.

Des is worried that she hasn't seen any vulnerability from him.

He stares at his salad and tells her how grateful he is for the time they spent today. He talks about his family and he assures Des, his mom would totally love her. Then he brings up the diabetes again.

Des says, “Michael is always positive.”

Except when he has to go on dates with Ben.

Michael then tells her about his big break-up with his last girlfriend, and how he's been Mr. Lonely for the last year and a half. But he confides that he's feeling all the feels with her, and it's lovely, happy times.  

Des eats it up.

Drew and Zak are going on the two on one date with Des. Both dudes are psyched to get the date rose.

They arrive at a go-cart race track. Des makes things exciting by telling the guys whoever wins the next face gets a surprise. Zak is a speed demon and wins the race.

All three enjoy a picnic, or rather Des enjoys having two guys constantly vie for her attention. Zak's big prize is to meet with Des first.

Hey, don't worry, Drew. Des has lots of practice making out with guys one after the other.

Zak shows her his sketch book with his drawings of all their dates.

Don't forget Zak is the dude who came out of the limo with no shirt.

Next, it's Drew's turn.

One of Drew's qualities is that he is very articulate. If anyone can woe her with words, it's him. And he does. Nothing says, I love you like whispering 'I love you' right before you kiss her.


Des give the rose to Drew.

And the peasants rejoice.

The rose ceremony is next!

Des has a little chat with the host. She tells him Drew is definitely husband material, but she begins to cry when she admits to being in love with Brooks.

Maybe she's crying because he doesn't love her.

Or maybe she's crying because Brooks doesn't have Chris's personality...in his pants.

Brooks gets the first rose. Chris gets the next one. It's down to Michael and Zak!

Zak gets the last rose.

Michael, the prosecutor from Miami, who just learned to love again is once again crushed by cruel Cupid and his cruel ways. He does his best to lay on the guilt about how much his mom would have loved her and how no girl from now on will ever, EVER measure up to Des.

“I wish you the best,” he says.

Case closed.
Mr. Lonely calls him mom from the limo, and he's crying about how he's tired of woman breaking his heart.

Oh dear.

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Writer Of The Week!

You may have seen my post when I announced my two book deal with Nimbus Publishing. I've been writing for five years...FIVE years, people. Anywho, becoming a writer seemed like the logical thing to do after nursing for over twenty years (which I still do, by the way).

My mom, who has been tremendously supportive of every story and every character I've ever put on paper, tells anyone who will listen that she's not surprised, since I've been writing from an early age.

I don't remember this. I don't remember making exceptionally good marks in English, either. In fact, I was a lousy speller...still am.

What I do remember is Travis F. throwing up in grade two—he had hot dogs and grape juice for lunch that day, apparently. And I remember when the boy I had a huge crush on actually made eye contact during History class.

But, the writing stories bit? Not so much.

I always thought my mom was biased and exaggerated the degree of my talents, as good mom's usually do...until the other day when she sent me this.

Okay, actually my dad scanned it and e-mailed it to me, but it was my mom who had kept it all these years, stashed away in her cedar chest of treasures.

Oh my nerves.  This newspaper article is over thirty years old, folks.

Let the prophecy be fulfilled!!!

I have no idea what "The Rock Collection" was about, but I'm guessing from the genre it was short and spooky. It was probably also riddled with spelling mistakes. I'm glad I earned points for my house team, it kind of makes me feel a bit like Harry Potter, but without all the cool magic and stuff.

I guess it shows that even though I wasn't paying attention, my mom was.

Thanks, Mom.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

How you can get free awesome swag for PLAYING NICE...

It’s the Very Merry Unbirthday for Rebekah Crane’s novel PLAYING NICE!

PLAYING NICE has been out for six months and it’s time to CELEBRATE! What better way than to host a GIVEAWAY of some awesome things: e-book copies of Playing Nice, skull bracelets just like Lil would wear, and a very special hard copy of PLAYING NICE annotated by Rebekah filled with notes, doodles, and secrets only the author would know!



Martina "Marty" Hart is really nice. At least, that's what people think.

It's Marty's junior year at Minster High. Minster's a small town where making great grades, smiling pretty, helping old people, running the new-student Welcoming Committee, and putting up decorations for all the dances--including the totally awful Hot Shot fall hunting celebration--gets you ... what?

Marty's not sure. Instead of dreaming about a sororities-and-frats future at nearby University of Michigan, she's restless, searching for a way out of the box her controlling mother and best frenemy Sarah have locked her in.

When Lil--don't call her Lily!--Hatfield transfers to Minster, Marty gets her chance. Lil's different. She smokes, wears black, listens to angry punk records, and lives in a weird trailer with her mother. Lil has secrets--secrets that make her a target for all the gossiping and online bullying Minster can muster. But so does Marty. And Marty sees something different in Lil. Something honest.

Something real.

PLAYING NICE is the achingly true story of a girl who's been following the rules for so long she's forgotten who she was when she started. It's about falling in love with the wrong people and not seeing the right ones, about the moments in life when you step out of line, take a chance ... and begin to break free.

Event Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


In addition to winning cool stuff, we’re gearing up for the publication of Rebekah’s next novel, ASPEN. The cover is coming and will be revealed on September 5th!!  We’d love for you to join us (we’re giving away stuff then, too! PARTY!) Sign up below to participate and get a sneak peak at ASPEN’s badass cover!

Sign Up for the Cover Reveal of ASPEN here:

About ASPEN:

You know your life's going to have some strange twists when your hippie mom names you after the tree she gave birth under at a stoner concert. She didn't know she was pregnant; you end up being named Aspen….

Next thing you know, you're seeing ghosts.

Before their cars collided, Aspen was the nondescript slacker flying under the radar, Katelyn the sleek-haired popular girl, one half—with gorgeous boyfriend Ben Tyler—of Boulder High’s “It” couple.

After the accident, Aspen is unexpectedly popular, her new lab partner Ben, as in Katelyn’s Ben, is unexpectedly interested in her … and in the biggest twist of all, Katelyn’s ghost appears unexpectedly at every turn. At first, Aspen feels badly.

Then she starts to feel annoyed.

With the help of best friends Kim and Cass, her childlike mother, Ninny, and Ben, Aspen must learn the difference between an accident and fate, while defining the role she wants to take in an indefinite world. It might just be the only way to banish Katelyn from her life forever.

Rebekah Crane’s darkly humorous new young adult novel, ASPEN, is the story of an accident and its aftermath. It's about a girl struggling to forget the past while being deathly afraid of the future. But most of all, it's the story of what comes next.

Thanks for being a part of PLAYING NICE’s giveaway and the exciting cover reveal for ASPEN! Let’s get this unbirthday party started!

About Rebekah

Rebekah Crane fell in love with YA literature while studying Secondary English Education at Ohio University, but it wasn't until ten years and two daughters later that she started to write it. Inspired by her past students, growing up in Cleveland with its fabulous musical theater community, and music of all kinds (particularly the Avett Brothers), she created PLAYING NICE.

It is her first published novel, but having an unbridled imagination, it's not the only fantasy world she's lived in (just ask her husband). ASPEN, her second YA creation, is set to release in January 2014. She now lives in Colorado, where the altitude only enhances the experience.  
Follow her on twitter, facebook, and tumblr


The Bachelorette Season 9, Episode 6, "Licks, Kicks, and Dicks"

Des and Brooks kick it up in Spain!

Des and the dudes go to Barcelona, Spain.

She tells us, “These guys are amazing. I'm invested in these guys.”

Des has used the word 'amazing' one million and six times this season.

Zak is feeling the romance of Spain, but Michael wastes no time in letting everyone know that they
should all hate James now.

I think he's crowned himself the master of scruples, or at least the master of being the biggest tattle tale.

Evil James
Drew is chosen for the solo date. He decides to use his time alone with Des to talk about her, and NOT how James is the new Ben.

He kissed her right away and said he hasn't been able to stop thinking about her. They have hot chocolate and kiss the whipped cream off each others lips. Then they sip water from a fountain and kiss the drips off each others chins.

But before anything else can be licked, things get serious when Drew confides to Des that his father is a recovering alcoholic. Now an advocate for others, Drew says his father is his hero. He gets emotional when he continues to relate that his dad has just been diagnosed with cancer.

Des nods sweetly and says, “You're a great person. Thanks for sharing that.”

Excuse me, I've got something in my eye...

Des feels comfortable with Drew and is impressed with his 'depth'.

Is that what the kids are calling it these days?

They have a dinner of large glasses of wine. Suddenly, like without warning and totally spontaneous, Drew whisks Des away and down a cobblestone alley. He presses her up against a wall and they make out like there aren't five camera men filming.

Des is clearly impressed and she gives him the rose. They make out again. Carefully, Drew tells Des he'd heard James and Mikey discussing their business and romance opportunities after the show. She's upset, but is grateful Drew told her how much of a dick James turned out to be.

It's time for the group date with Juan, Michael, Brooks, James, Chris, and Kasey. Des tells us she's not ready to kick James off. She meets the guys at a soccer dome.

Michael is wearing a sweat band around his head...again. What??

Juan is in his element and if I were Des, I'd drop the other dudes, and have a little one on one scrimmage of my own with him. Des returns with a few of Spain's national women's soccer team.

I predict Michael's headband will be the only thing that survives.

Juan scores a few goals, but that's about it. James is a terrible goalie and is too busy pouting between the goal posts. The girls win 10-2.

It's time for cocktails!
Des and Chris hang out and she tells him he's really athletic. Then she reads him a poem she wrote for him.

Roses are red,
Violets are blue.
I like making out with you,
And the other guys, too.

Meanwhile, Kasey and Michael plan to confront evil James and his biceps.

Personally, I'd leave the strongest guy alone. Doesn't Des already know he's a creep?

Kasey ignores my warning and asks James point blank about what he and Mikey discussed.

While Kasey is flirting with disaster, Des and Brooks cuddle on the pillows, oblivious to the heated debate in the other room.

James and Michael get all Gossip Girl in each others faces. Things escalate quickly to Jersey Shore level.

Des has had enough. She doesn't give out a date rose and makes the other guys leave early so she can talk with James.

*Cue the scary violin music*

Des confronts James and he does a song and dance that he was just playing around and joking with Mikey. When she doesn't buy it, he starts to cry.

He rubs his head and says, “This is giving me a headache. I don't know what to say to you.”

That's because you're a dick.

Des gets weepy because all the guys ABC picked for her and turning into losers. She decides to sleep on it and make a decision in the morning.

Back at the hotel, Michael is re-enacting the whole scenario for the other dudes. James walks into the room and everyone craps their pants.

Zak gets to soothe Des on the solo date and help her forget about you-know-who, Lord Voldemort.


They have an artistic themed date and spend the afternoon sketching. They shared some laughs, and then a male model comes in and drops his robe.

Nothing says romance like a naked stranger in the room with you and your date.

Zak leaves and then puts on his own robe and models in his underwear for Des.

I'm bored.

Finally it's the dinner portion of the date, which means it's almost over.


Des is impressed with how much fun Zak can make any event. He lets her know he has a great relationship with his parents. He's also a wandering spirit that doesn't want to settle too soon. They make out and his hands do some wandering.

Des gives him the date rose.

Meanwhile, James talks with Drew and it's soon obvious he can't explain his side without blowing up. Plus, he uses words in a way that make no sense. The next morning, Des arrives and takes him for a walk.

James talks quickly, like most guilty people do. He stammers about being in love with her and their future together.

Des confesses that she's confused because ABC wants more drama to stretch out the episode.

There's more tears.

*Cue the sad piano music*

James smells victory and says that her qualities of being able to make hard decisions are what he's looking for in his wife and the mother of his children.


They cuddle and kiss. The guys watch from the balcony and want to drop water balloons.

When they depart, she's more confused and he has man boob sweat.

Each of the guys are wondering if they want to be with Des if she's so stupid. I fast forward through the continued argument back in the hotel room. James uses the reality of dating hot chicks after he's kicked off the show as his reason for...?

...being a dick?

Michael says the obvious, “This is absurd.”

Drew gets the trophy for stating, “Why hasn't she slapped him?”

Indeed. From the mouths of babes.

It's time for the rose ceremony.

Des looks at each picture and monologues, which I fast forward through.

Chris gets the first rose. Brooks gets the second. And the last rose goes to...Michael.

Going home are Kasey, Juan, and evil James.

I'm surprised she chose Michael over Kasey considering Michael is gay, but whatever.

Juan gets weepy because he realizes he wasted a lot of time when he could have been with his daughter.

James tries to plead his case in the limo and leaves us with these wise words, “Why me?”

Oh my nerves, ABC. Why us?

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