Tuesday, May 1, 2012

VBT: "Full Snow Moon" by Lisa Begin-Kruysman Guest Post/Review

Full Snow Moon
by Lisa Begin-Kruysman
Published by Bradley Publishing
Contemporary Historical Paranormal Young Adult

A hapless surfer, restless spirit and Native Son dig up some controversy when they unearth a National Treasure buried at the Jersey Shore.

Cocky surfer Alex only cares about the future. Who cares about the things of the past like an old house or an old friend? But one February night as he recklessly takes to the road during a snowstorm, he discovers that the past may have some plans for him. When his life is saved by the troubled spirit of a local youth who perished during the historic “Blizzard of 1888,” he agrees to rescue a house from the hands of a greedy land developer. But when he enlists the help of some forgiving friends, they dig up a National Treasure… and some controversy.

With assistance from a “hottie” of an Historian and a colorful antiquities dealer, Alex hopes to ride a wave of redemption. Can he rescue a piece of local and national history, reunite his boyhood friend with his native roots and regain the respect of friends and family? 

Guest post:

Thank you for the opportunity to chat about my new novel, Full Snow Moon. It’s a young adult book that has been appreciated by more “mature” audiences also.
There are so many themes touched upon in the book, but I’ll focus on something I haven’t written about.
In the story, one of the main characters, Eli Hampton, is crushed in the fury of the Great Blizzard of 1888. He left home to pursue his dream of working as an artist. But Mother Nature had other plans for him and he never did get that chance.
I thought about Eli’s demise the other day. Someone had asked me why his body had never been found. I won’t say much more, but it worked for the plot that readers assume his body, if found, probably ended up in a Potter’s Field. For those who don’t know, a Potter’s Field is a burial site for unknown or indigent people, in areas filled with soil that was only of use to potters. It is referenced in Matthew 27:3-8 in the New Testament.
By story’s end, Eli gets the attention and respect he deserves, over one-hundred years later, when he is brought home, literally, in spirit. The same questioner asked me if it wouldn’t have been nice to have Eli’s Memorial placed in a family plot outside of his home, buried near his family members as had been customary in the late 1800s.
It was an intelligent inquiry; I wish I had thought about it sooner. But perhaps that would have been too compact, too neat an ending. But the question did make me realize that the character of Eli in some ways was my way of dealing with the loss of my own brother years earlier.
There are no neat answers to the mysteries and vagaries of life, and when we lose someone close to us, things change forever and the dream of a being a “whole” family is lost. Cemetery plots and headstones are very important to some, but for me, it really doesn’t matter where a body comes to rest, but where the spirit resides eternally.
Each day in my writing, I see a little of those who have gone before turn up on the pages. In those words, they can find ongoing relevance, inspiring me to be a better human every day we get to spend on earth.
A book I am currently writing is proving to be a bigger project than I ever imagined. It is dedicated in memory of my brother, Matthew, and that is one of the reasons I remain motivated.
I hope readers will give Full Snow Moon a read. At about 45,000 pages, there is a lot of real and fun history to learn and some characters I think you’ll really care about.

Available at:

Full Snow MoonFull Snow Moon by Lisa Begin-Kruysman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a different kind of book than I would normally read in that there are paranormal elements (that I should have been expecting but was not). But there was enough history in tthis book to make it worth the read.

I was most fascinated by the history of the blizzard of 1888 and the Native Americans. In fact, I would have enjoyed more information about both of these. It was clear that the author has done her research. I hope she writes more historical fiction!

There was a part of me that would have liked to have seen things not work out so well.  After all, that is not realistic.  But I am one of those strange people who really don't go for happy endings unless they actually make sense.  Again, I think the issues revolved around the brevity of the story.

I was not bothered by the paranormal bit in the book, but I was surprised that the story was shared and so widely accepted. I did like how the experience changed the people in the story for the better even though it seemed a little too rushed at times. I think that if the story had been extended by another 100 pages, I would have rated the story higher. But it was a quick read.

The profanity was very mild, and there were no sex scenes--big plus for me! I felt the characters were somewhat two-dimensional, but I think a longer story would have made the characters better.

In conclusion, this was a quick read with a nice story with historical elements. The author writes with a very easy-to-read style, and fans of history and paranormal should enjoy this book.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.

View all my reviews


When Alex regained consciousness, pinned between the driver’s seat and the dashboard now compressed within two inches of his chest, he had no way of knowing how long he had been stuck in the motionless Jeep. He tried to rub his aching head, but any attempt at movement shot a bolt of pain through every inch of his body.
Where’s my cell phone?
He pictured it lying useless, somewhere in the back of the jeep. Then, as if on cue, it began to ring and ring and ring, haunting and taunting him with a steady chorus of Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow.
Alex felt victimized. He wouldn’t have ended up in this situation if his parents hadn’t grounded him, or if Denis hadn’t argued with him – or if that fool hadn’t run right in front of his car!
But, no matter whose fault it was, Alex knew that he couldn’t talk his way out of this one. The Jeep had been an early high school graduation gift from his parents, given with reluctance, accompanied by a list of rules and driving restrictions that he had spent the past hour disregarding. In that short time, the Jeep had gone from sporting a slight ding to being totally destroyed. Nothing in Denis’s toolbox was going to be able to fix this mess.
“Help!” Alex called, but it came out sounding weak. Maybe someone up on the road would hear him, if he could just shout louder. Clearing his throat, he tried again. “I’m down here!”
Fear began to color his anger. What if he couldn’t make anybody hear him?
Then he heard a noise, just inches from his face.
For a scary moment, Alex couldn’t place the sound. Then, like the whack of a snow shovel across his head, it hit him: someone was clearing his windshield!
“Hello?” he called with renewed energy.
Through a snowy film, Alex made out the silhouette of a young man wearing a weird-looking hat. It looked out of place. Alex remembered seeing hats like that in old Charlie Chaplin movies, or maybe in a museum. Whoever was out there held a peculiar lantern that looked like the oil-burning one his great-grandfather had owned. It cast an unearthly light on the interior of the car.
“Nice hat, dude,” Alex mumbled, then regretted it, since it wasn’t a good idea to insult his potential rescuer.
But the person outside didn’t seem to have heard. He just stood like a statue, holding the lantern close to the cleared windshield.

About the Author:

Lisa Begin-Kruysman lives in Ocean County, New Jersey, with her husband Rich and Portuguese water dog, Hooper. Her short fiction has garnered national recognition in writing competitions sponsored by Calliope Writers and Writer’s Digest Magazine.
Her highly-acclaimed, Something’s Lost and Must be Found was released in the summer of 2011 to glowing reviews. A collection of seven short inspirational stories, the book was inspired by her blog site established two years ago to promote the mission of National Dog Week and her biography of its Founder, Will Judy.
Currently, she is working on a sequel to Something’s Lost and Must be Found and her second Young Adult Novel.
Bradley Website: http://www.bradleypublishings.com/

See the full tour schedule HERE.


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