Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Author Interview with Christine Cruz

1. Congratulations on both your books, Can I Always Come Back Home? and ABC Questions! We've had the pleasure of reviewing Can I Always Come Back Home? and find the book quite charming. Tell us about the inspiration behind this book.
I wrote Can I Always Come Back Home? after speaking with my youngest. I have three children, all boys. By the age of five, they all seemed to ask the same question, just presented in different ways. They all wanted to know if they left home, could they come back? I thought how wonderful it would be to answer this question in the form of a book.

2. Will we be seeing the main character Tyler in any future series?
Can I Always Come Back Home? was created as a stand alone book. However, based on the reactions I have received, there's a possibility we will see Tyler again.

3. The book offers assurance to sensitive children experiencing anxiety. How is the feedback so far on this book? Do you think parents and teachers find the book helpful?
I have received wonderful reviews. Teachers have used Can I Always Come Back Home? at circle time to reassure new students. I had a Family Worker approach me at a school I was working at. He told me he bought Can I Always Come Back Home? for his Mother. He explained that he was moving out and it was hard on her. He bought her the book to reassure her he knew where his home is. She loves the message Can I Always Come Back Home? sends. The moment they both shared over my book is priceless.

4. Tell us a little about your recently released ABC Questions, and how is it different from other alphabet books?
ABC Questions is about a girl named Beverly, who is starting school for the first time. One of her first lessons is the Alphabet. Beverly is filled with amusing questions about her ABCs. Instead of a traditional A is for Apple book, I take the letters of the alphabet and make them a part of the story highlighting the alphabet in color and capitalization.

5. What do you want young readers to learn from this book?
I want them to learn that learning is fun. Their ability to imagine can take them through anything.

6. What's next for Christine Cruz? What are you working on now?
I am working on three bilingual books (English and Spanish) that celebrate Grandparents. I am hoping that all three will be out in 2017. I am currently researching book charities in Honduras, Ecuador and Puerto Rico. I will be donating books to each charity. If anyone knows of a charity, please take a moment and email me at

See our Book Review of Can I Always Come Back Home?, here.
Check out the author's website for upcoming new releases.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Author Interview | Diane Solomon - What to Expect When Adopting a Dog!

1. Congratulations Diane on your recent book release, What to Expect When Adopting a Dog! We've had the pleasure of reviewing two of your previous books, which were quite charming as we met JJ the American Street Dog. Tell us a little about this new book.

JJ was the inspiration for this new book too. When we accidentally adopted him 21 years ago, I learned all about animal rescue, which ultimately led me to writing the JJ series. I was speaking at schools and over time I became the “go to gal” for all things dog and rescue related in my community. I realized that if the people I knew had these questions, what about the thousands of people that I didn’t know? Surely they had the same and plenty of other questions. I had so much experience and access to other professionals, so I wrote What to Expect When Adopting a Dog to answer many of the questions that come up before, during and after adopting a new dog.

2. As a Certified Humane Specialist what do you wish for readers to take away from the information you've provided in this book?

There are so many loving people that can offer great homes to a currently homeless dog. If it’s not the right time then people need to be responsible and wait until their circumstances are more favorable. But the majority of people who are ready that don’t have experience can save themselves and the dogs a lot of angst by reading this book. And even experienced dog parents might learn something they didn’t know before. I’m constantly learning! Ultimately, Humane Education Specialists want people to know how to treat animals (and other people of course) with kindness. That means that not only are their basic needs met, but they live in a warm comfortable home with a loving family, quality food, regular veterinary care and a whole lot of love. This book offers tons of suggestions on how to achieve that. In 5 modules, I take you through the whole process from that first question “Am I ready?” all the way through advanced dog parenting even if you’ve already adopted a dog.

3. As a Specialist you've seen the growing number of stray and abandoned pets. Other than adopting (some children have allergies), how else can families offer their help?

The numbers of animals being euthanized in the shelters has gone down significantly over the last 20 years - in large part due to education, spay and neuter programs and adoption events. But there still are millions of animals that enter the shelters that never leave so there’s still more work to be done. Families can foster a dog in need - there are many breeds that are hypo allergenic too. You can volunteer or take up a collection of blankets, towels or food to donate to your local shelter. And you can donate money to rescue groups and shelters, which allows them to continue education and adoption efforts in every community.

4. Your books are quite informative. What has been the response of your readers so far in regard to pet adoption? Do you find children and parents find the books helpful?

People are so excited that a book like this finally exists. Professionals in the rescue arena want everyone who comes through their doors to have access to this book. The cool thing about this book is that if anyone is just considering a new dog, they need only check out the first part of the book to get started. And if they already have a dog, the latter part will be helpful. So it doesn’t need to be read all at one time. Busy families appreciate that! And parents love that there is information about safety for humans - especially children.

5. Will there be any future series on cats?

I love cats and used to have cats, but we haven’t had a cat in a while. I should probably stick to what I know best for the moment, but never say never!

6. What are you working on now?

I’m mostly blogging since this book is brand new to help get the word out. I do hope to get back to a human animal bond project I started last year but had to shelve while I finished up this book.

See JJ the American Street Dog book review here. 

Friday, September 9, 2016

DB-R Designs on Facebook

Hi there!

DB-R Designs is now on Facebook! Yesterday we officially launched our Facebook page and we are excited about it! Here's your invitation to LIKE us on Facebook.

Our new Facebook page will keep you in the know of what's happening at DB-R Designs and DBRBooks. We'll also keep you updated on new and exciting products and new book releases. Be in the know and sign up for our latest news, offers, and products on our website.

We look forward to hearing from you!

DB-R Designs

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Cannon & Durnam Textile Legacy - Books 1& 2 Now Available!

Now Available - The Virtuous Husband, Book One in The Cannon & Durnam Textile Legacy romance series!

The series begins with the letter which Elizabeth Durnam had been dreading to receive for the past three years. Now it has finally turned up on her doorstep, and her fear becomes a reality. The choice is hers, choose to live life on her own terms or carry out her father's dying wish and marry the rogue Rhys Cannon, to secure the future of her family's company!

The request is a hard one to fulfill. It goes against every grain in her body to wed the egoist Rhys Cannon. However, to complete the merger of Durnam Fabrics and Cannon Textiles, Elizabeth and Rhys must put their differences aside. But not before Elizabeth gives Rhys a lesson in virtue! 

On their wedding day, it’s no deal until Rhys signs The Virtuous Husband Clause, and may God help them to learn to love each other for better or for worse.

The saga continues!
Now Available - The Love Inheritance, Book Two in The Cannon & Durnam Textile Legacy romance series!

Going along with a coup d’├ętat to conquer armed with the love of 1 Corinthians 13 seems to be the only way textile heir Hunter Cannon of Cannon & Durnam Enterprise can get his hands on his inheritance. The Love Inheritance, that is. But is Hunter a match against Myra Durnam, dubbed The Ice Princess, whose defensive wall against love appears to be an impenetrable fortress?

Suddenly Myra’s world is turned upside down when she contemplates entering into a love contract that is attached to the acquisition of a small knit company. The Ice Princess is caught in the rogue’s lair and resisting The Love Inheritance seems futile.

They say love never fails, but can love really conquer all?

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Book Review | Megan's Troublesome Pronouns by Dr. Julia E. Antoine

Once again, Dr. Julia E. Antoine creates a story that resonates with readers. In her tenth book Megan’s Troublesome Pronouns, in the Too Clever series, Dr. Antoine uses a very interesting mechanism to help her eleven year old character, Megan Moffat, deal with the loss of her father – association. Association causes triggers to be ignited in our brain, thereby affecting our responses or answers to certain events, incidents, or questions. Megan Moffat uses association, a trick she learned from her father, not only to help her with those troublesome pronouns but also to keep the memory of her father alive.

Appropriately titled, Megan’s Troublesome Pronouns gives the reader a detailed analytical view of Megan coping with the loss of her father through mastering her understanding of pronouns. It may seem unrelated and one may wonder what does understanding pronouns have to do with coping with loss? Writing and reading were the common thread that connected Megan and her father. In developing her writing skills and mastering the English language, Megan felt she was forever linked with her father and that she was making him proud.  Also, in choosing the topic “Coping with Change” for her writing project, Megan is able to use the method that allows her to express her feelings freely. Here she chronicles the memory of a father who had impacted her life greatly.

Megan’s Troublesome Pronouns educates readers on the healthy ways of coping with the loss of a loved one, and this is especially seen in Megan’s connection with others around her. Megan was able to see that her actions also affected those around her; that while she grieved, others like her mother and brother Dilan, and her best friend Hailie were grieving too, each in their own way.  Antoine shows that coping mechanisms vary and children should be encouraged to embrace what works for them, as long as the coping mechanism is not a destructive one. The book deals with death, a delicate subject matter, in a very age appropriate way. By highlighting Megan’s struggles and emotions, a touching realistic story emerges, and Antoine once again captures the hearts of her readers. 

Megan’s Troublesome Pronouns is available, along with other books in the series, on the author’s website, .

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Book Review: Can I Always Come Back Home by Christine Cruz

What child doesn’t wonder if he/she can always return home? Christine Cruz’ illustrated children’s book Can I Always Come Back Home? relieves such fears and ease the worrying minds of young readers.  

As far as a child’s imagination soars in conjuring up all the places he can possibly go and wonder if he can ever return home, Cruz has creatively tapped into that sphere setting a loving tone to her book which parents will appreciate.

Appropriately written for preschoolers to first grade, Can I Always Come Back Home? not only makes for great bedtime reading, but it helps parents reaffirm security and stability in their young child’s mind. This book is great for preschoolers especially those entering daycare for the first time and experiencing anxiety issues. Having such assurance makes the transition from home to daycare a bit easier. 

The book is interactive too! During readings, parents can supplement or encourage their children to stretch their imaginations to the places they may go. This kind of interactive reading encourages bonding. 

The plot and language are simple, appealing to kids because the story is child-like, familiar, and an easy read. Amidst soaring imaginations, there is no shortage of artistic appeal thanks to the illustrator's (Daniela Frongia) vibrant, bold, colorful illustrations, which are definitely part of the appeal and charm.  A wonderful addition to your summer reading collection!

Check out the author’s website for more about her upcoming books.

Happy Reading!

Monday, April 18, 2016

The new Hardy Boys Clue Books release, plus a kids’ mystery clue book sale!

Aladdin Publishers is getting ready to release the new Hardy Boys clue book series, authored by Franklin W. Dixon and illustrated by Matt Dixon! The first two, The Video Game Bandit and The Missing Playbook will be released on April 19, 2016, and two more are scheduled to be released later within the year.
For those of us who grew up on The Hardy Boys mystery series, we are happy to see a new look introduced to appeal to the younger generation. This new series is more interactive – space is included in each installment for “readers to jot down their own ideas and solutions to the case!” The books are for age range 6 to 9 years – grades 1 to 4.

Everyone loves a good mystery, even kids, and that’s why we are throwing in a third mystery book – The Secrets of Aunt Norah’s House by Dawnette Blackwood-Rhoomes; all three for a low price of $19.99! See our offer at this link – Kids’ Mystery Clue Book Sale!

Book Descriptions:

The Video Game Bandit (Hardy Boys Clue Book) - Book 1

Frank and Joe are on a mission to track down a thief in the first book in an all-new, interactive Hardy Boys chapter book mystery series.

Bayport Elementary is throwing a fundraiser so they can go on an end-of-the-year trip. Ellie Freeman’s parents have volunteered their house for the event, and neighbors have donated all sorts of prizes to be raffled off including movie tickets and gift certificates to Fun World. But the best prize of all is a brand-new ZCross50000, a video game system that every kid has been drooling over.

But sometime during the event, the ZCross goes missing. Can Frank and Jo figure out who took the prize before it’s too late to save the big school trip?”

Softcover, 96 pages.

The Missing Playbook (Hardy Boys Clue Book) – Book 2

“Frank and Joe try to hit a home run by figuring out what happened to the Bayport Bandits’ playbook before the first big baseball game in the second book in an all-new, interactive Hardy Boys chapter book mystery series. Includes space for readers to jot down their own ideas and solutions to the case!

Frank and Joe and the rest of their Bayport Bandits teammates can’t wait for Little League to start! Everyone is celebrating the beginning of the season at Speedy Zermino’s house. While they’re all together, Coach Quinn shows off the Bandit’s new playbook that contains all of the new strategies and plays that will help them to a winning season.

The next day at practice, Coach Quinn realizes the all-important playbook has gone missing! With their teammates counting on them to get the book back, Frank and Joe must take a swing at cracking this case…or their season will be over before it even begins.”

Softcover, 96 pages

The Secrets of Aunt Norah’s House

“An almost 200 year house plus a book of clues equals mystery! What would you do if someone left you a book of clues, an old house with its secrets, and a letter which leads to a treasure hunt? Go sleuthing of course!

With seven bedrooms, a den, a dark spooky basement, and a creaky old attic to look for a treasure, who knows what secrets this old house has tucked away in its many hiding places! Ten year old Ossie and eight year old Cody are in for an adventure! Their mystery begins with a mischievous cat covered in flour and ends with the treasure of a lifetime!”

Softcover, 88 pages

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

It’s a Giveaway!

Not just one, but two!

DBR Books is hosting two Giveaways on Goodreads and you’re invited to join in the fun. You never know, you might just win a book or two!
(1)   Giveaway for The Virtuous Husband. It is scheduled to open for entries at midnight on Wednesday, April 13 and end at midnight on Saturday, April 30. 1 copy to give away to Goodreads members in United States and Canada.
Book Description:

The Virtuous Husband (Book 1 in the Cannon & Durnam Textile Legacy series by Dawnette Blackwood-Rhoomes

“The letter which Elizabeth Durnam had been dreading for the past three years, has finally turned up on her doorstep, and now her fear is her reality. Elizabeth dedicates her time to working on her designs in the family textile mill, Durnam Fabrics. However, one thing weighs heavily on Elizabeth’s heart. To complete her father’s dream and textile legacy, she must first comply with his one request.

The request is a hard one to fulfill. It goes against every grain in her body to wed the egoist Rhys Cannon. However, to complete the merger of Durnam Fabrics and Cannon Textiles, Elizabeth and Rhys must put their differences aside. But not before Elizabeth gives Rhys a lesson in virtue!

On their wedding day, it’s no deal until Rhys signs The Virtuous Husband Clause, and may God help them to learn to love each other for better or for worse.”

Softcover, 258 pages.

(2)   Giveaway for Why Should I Believe You?. It is scheduled to open for entries at midnight on Thursday, April 14 and end at midnight on Saturday, April 30. 1 copy to give away to Goodreads members in United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and Australia.
Book Description:
Why Should I Believe You? by Dawnette Blackwood-Rhoomes

“Do you believe anything the Bible says?
Have you ever been angry with God?
How did you cope with it?
Read the story of a child's disappointment in God's broken promise; and a woman's face to face encounter with the real truth about God, His love, and His promises.”

Inspirational reading; finding peace amidst anger and disappointment.
Softcover, 66 pages.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Book Review | Too-Clever IX: Darell and Bobo by Julia E. Antoine

Darell and Bobo is the 9th installation of the Too-Clever series, which is written by Dr. Julia E. Antione. The series is a winner in The Mom Choice Awards.

Do you remember when you were twelve going on thirteen; how excited you were that you'd embark on the momentous journey of adolescence? It seemed as if twelve was the magic number when everything suddenly shifted into perspective: attitudes change, responsibilities taken more seriously, hormones rage, and the list goes on. Well, we all awoke soon enough to realize that things did change, but for the most part life suddenly got more complicated.

Eleven year old Darell Ruben is looking forward to turning twelve, and like boys his age, he is excited to finally leave childhood behind and walk the plank of 'teenagedom'. Life is about to get a little more interesting and adventurous, or so he's told by the adults around him; but for Darell he is more intrigued to see if the story about body hairs and raging hormones is true!

Darell and Bobo's author Julia E. Antoine, cleverly addresses issues of emotional and biological change in boys as they approach adolescence. Although the story is centered on what will happen once Darell turns twelve, it also pinpoints sensitive subject matters such as the importance of parents talking with their kids about the kind of changes to expect. The book also addresses some emotional setbacks boys can face when a responsible father figure is not in the home, as in the case of Darell's friend Jonas. In covering these issues, Antoine's storyline developed around the key character's problem while weaving in a clever sub-plot and secondary character.

When Darell finally turns twelve, he suddenly learns that there are some decisions he will have to make on his own; like choosing between friendships and relationships. Antoine's insightful inclusion of a girl between friends shows also that pre-adolescent change is not only biological and emotional, but that it also affects social dynamics. A sudden interest in the opposite sex may have taken Darell by surprise, but Antoine shows the reader that this too is a normal part of the 'big' change.

Too-Clever IX: Darell and Bobo by Dr. Julia E. Antoine is an insightful read, dotted with instances of humor despite the sensitive issues addressed in the book. On his twelfth birthday, did Darell finally get the body hairs he was long awaiting? We won't tell; you'll have to read the book to find out!