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Book Giveaway: ‘Chasing Zebras: The Unofficial Guide to House, M.D.’ by Barbara Barnett

Medical students are taught that when they hear hoofbeats, they should think horses, not zebras, but Dr. House’s unique talent of diagnosing unusual illnesses has made House, M.D. one of the most popular and fascinating series on television. In Chasing Zebras: The Unofficial Guide to House, M.D., Barbara Barnett, co-executive editor of Blogcritics magazine and widely considered a leading House expert, takes fans deep into the heart of the show’s central character and his world, examining the way this medical Sherlock Holmes’s colleagues and patients reflect him and each other; how the music, settings, and even the humor enhance our understanding of the series’ narrative; what the show says about modern medicine, ethics, and religion; and much more. Complete with an episode-by-episode guide and quotes from her numerous Blogcritics interviews with cast members, producers, and writers, Chasing Zebras is an intelligent look at one of television’s most popular shows.

Read the Excerpt!

“It is an axiom of medicine: “when you hear hoofbeats, you think horses, not
zebras.” Dr. Gregory House and his elite team of diagnostic fellows chase medicine’s “zebras” — the anomalies, the odd presentations, the diseases so rare that most doctors would not have encountered them in a normal medical practice.House, M.D. is, itself, a zebra in a herd of horses. It is a rare find of a show
blessed with consistently sharp, intelligent writing: densely packed and multifaceted. It features one of the most complex characters ever to have been written for the small screen, Dr. Gregory House, brought to life through Hugh Laurie’s brilliant and nuanced performance.I grew up on TV. By age nine, I was hooked on The Man From U.N.C.L.E. and by 11, I was addicted to Star Trek classic. Nowadays, I have little time for series television. But when I get hooked on a television show, I really get hooked, and so it is with House, M.D.Whenever the media say that women are attracted to House because he’s a
“bad boy,” I tend to cringe first and then shake my head in disagreement. I don’t like “bad boys” — real or fictional. I like my heroes, well . . . heroic. Heroic, but tragically flawed: equal parts Mr. Knightley and Edward Rochester; Mr. Spock and Rick Blaine.

House has a “public persona” and also one he keeps tightly under wraps, reluctant to reveal — to anyone. Publicly, he’s a brilliant diagnostician, intuitive, deductive, and eerily smart. He’s also a risk taker and more than a tad reckless.

In many ways he’s an adolescent boy constantly hatching his next manipulation or elaborate game. He’s crude and rude. House’s closest associates tell us that House cares only about the puzzle. No messiah complex for him; he has a
Rubik’s complex instead. But how does this image reconcile with the times we’ve seen him gazing yearningly from behind the glass into patient rooms,
watching them with their families? How often do we observe the arrogant and
egotistical Gregory House late at night, alone in his office or apartment, desperately searching for answers inside himself long after everyone else has gone home? Like the show that bears his name, House is as complex and rare as the medical cases he takes on: a zebra amongst the horses.

This book is a highly subjective look at a great television series through one fan’s perspective. Another writer might focus on the medicine, the humor, or
the mysteries. But I view House, M.D. fundamentally as a detailed character study: House’s journey, his struggles, and the people in his orbit. This is the
lens through which I enjoy House — and through which I understand it.

There are chapters here on the writing, the structure, and the elements that
make House, M.D. such a fascinating series. There are chapters on each of the
characters and some of the show’s oft-visited themes viewed through “closer
looks” at key episodes. I’ve also included an extensive six-season episode guide.

Although there are episode guides all over the Internet offering episode recaps
and credits (and even in-depth analyses, including my feature at Blogcritics), this guide is slightly different. It’s a road map through the series, showing you the highlights from six seasons: memorable scenes, House’s patented eureka
moments, clinic patients, relationship highlights, music, and more — all from
a fan’s perspective.”

Here’s how to enter to win a copy of Chasing Zebras: The Unofficial Guide to House, M.D. by Barbara Barnett!

  1. Leave a comment below including your email address.  All entrants with no email addresses will be null and void.
  2. For an additional entry, follow Barbara on Facebook at
  3. One additional entry if you follow her at Twitter at
  4. One additional entry if you “like” Pump Up Your Book at Facebook at
  5. Deadline is midnight on April 22, 2011.  Winner will be announced on April 25, 2011.

Good luck!


Congratulations to Carol Wong for winning a copy of Chasing Zebras!


Book Giveaway: Night Knight: Therapeutic Bedtime Stories

These stories are aimed towards helping children ages 5 – 11 years develop confidant, happy and peaceful self identities, particularly during challenging times. The stories explore four themes common to many children; childhood bereavement, separation, bullying, and childhood anxiety and depression. Written in third party to enable the child to impersonalise themselves from the story content, rich metaphor and imagery is used through out to help the child absorb healing messages that are helpful to them.

The author uses her background experience in counselling, to help children who are struggling with feelings like guilt, shame, depression, and other immobilising and self destructive emotions. During times of change and challenge, it is very easy, and often inevitable, that a child can assume they they’ve done ‘something wrong’ and there’s ‘something wrong ‘with them. The author uses various fantasy characters who undergo various challenges, and are shown by their friends, in ways that children can respond and relate to easily, that they are not the cause of the circumstances. The book has been carefully crafted to help children develop a sense of wholeness, happiness, peace and self confidance. This helps them avoid self injurious preoccupations with seeking other’s approval, or need to control and dominate, as they become older.

Read the Excerpt!

Deep within the shadows of the huge oak tree, the ground itself seemed to be alive. Leaves, twigs and ferns were flying about. They could have been helpless victims caught up in the winds of wild tornadoes! Even the tangled roots that lay bare above the ground were writhing and moving around like angry snakes amidst the chaos. All the while delicate rays of sunlight shone down through the tree’s branches. They pierced the shadows like dancing fireflies.

What was that – over there? Did you notice those ears? Those pointed ears. A little body was moving clumsily through the undergrowth.

“Orion, what are you doing?” A small and very beautiful elf with the shiniest, blackest hair you’ve ever seen suddenly appeared. Where had she come from? It was Rosador.

“You’re causing a right kerfuffle you know!” she said to her friend.

The tree shouted out, “Hey, bro, that hurts!” as her friend Orion tripped clumsily over its roots, half falling into the clearing to join Rosador. As soon as she saw him, she noticed a grey shadowy outline on his left shoulder. One moment it was there, the next it had gone. Completely disappeared. Rosador recognised the cruel dark figure straight away. Orion’s dark fairy. It had come to try and do him some real harm.

Read the Reviews!

“This collection of bedtime stories is designed for children facing particular challenges in their lives, such as bereavement or bullying, but would be a perfect addition to any child’s library.The stories work well whether they are read to the child or the child reads to themselves. The characters are engaging, their adventures exciting without being frightening, and the stories will draw children in from the very beginning. The artwork is superb and is an ideal accompaniment to the stories. For any child, but especially one going through a difficult time, these stories are an excellent source of comfort. Highly recommended bedtime reading.”

– Willow T.,

“These bedtime stories are a wonderful method of inspiring a sense of safety and open communication between children and the parent / carer who is reading the story. The expression of difficult feelings is encouraged and accepted, and the stories leave the listener with a great sense of safety and security. I recommend these stories to young people up to the age of twelve, and their carers. Everyone is likely to benefit for those undergoing difficult life experiences, losses and transitions.”

– Dr Julia Ronder, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist

Watch the Trailer!

Here’s how to enter to win a copy of Night Knight: Therapeutic Bedtime Stories by Emma K. Piers!

  1. Leave a comment below including your email address.  All entrants with no email addresses will be null and void.
  2. For your first entry, visit Emma’s website at and hit the Facebook graphic at the bottom to tell your followers how to download a free story from Night Knight: Therapeutic Bedtime Stories.
  3. One additional entry if you follow her at Twitter at
  4. One additional entry if you “like” her at Facebook at
  5. One additional entry if you “like” Pump Up Your Book at Facebook at
  6. Deadline is midnight on March 24, 2011.  Winner will be announced on April 1.

Good luck!

2 Book + 1 T-Shirt Giveaway Today at Pump Up Your Book

We’ve got three giveaways going on at Pump Up Your Book today!

Kaylin McFarren, author of the women’s fiction novel, Flaherty’s Crossing, will be giving away a t-shirt at Pump Up Your Book

Judi Moreo will be giving away a copy of her book, Life Choices, at Examiner

Misa Ramirez will be giving away a copy of her book, Hasta la Vista, Lola!, at Jen’s Book Talk
Good luck everyone!

Embracing Your Freedom’s Susie Larson is still marching to her own personal freedom

About two years ago, Susie Larson had an idea for a book that directly connects our personal freedom to the freedoms of authors. As an author and speaker, she travels around the country speaking at women’s conferences and retreats. In her travels, she has found that though American women are literally free, most are not totally free. In fact, Susie feels she is still marching towards her own personal freedom as a lot of women and authors are doing themselves.

Susie says freedom is something for which we must contend and that all of us have been beaten up and bruised by life. “We’ve all had experiences that have affected us in a negative way,” she tells us, “and most times, without realizing it, we allow those painful experiences to stunt our growth, confirm our fears, and minimize the impact we could make in this world. We tend to make rules around our insecurities. We make excuses for why we don’t venture out into the unknown places God has for us. But to truly be free is to believe that Jesus can redeem every shred of our painful pasts. If we really want to be free, we have to walk by His side and face the lies we picked up when life let us down. As we experience new freedom and courage, we will grow in our conviction to see others know this same liberty. Most often, our world-changing call is directly connected to one of our painful life experiences.”

Embracing Your Freedom, Susie’s latest book, calls women to tenacious courage and gritty faith that we might live free and content for the freedoms of others.

On another note, we asked her how she was promoting her new book so that it will help other authors learn through experience. She says, “Writing a book is a significant endeavor, but some books simply take more out of us than other books do. Embracing Your Freedom was one such project for me. Though each of my books involved certain challenges, none of them stretched me, drained me, or cost me as much as this one did. But that’s okay. The opposition I faced while writing this book only confirmed to me the importance of its message.

“Since the release of the book, I’ve done a number of radio interviews, speaking engagements, blog interviews, and book giveaways. I will travel to ICRS this summer for a book signing and more media interviews. I’ve highlighted the book in my weekly devotional blog and my quarterly E-zine. Friends have promoted the book on Twitter and I recently joined the rest of the Tweeters out there!

“In about a month, my next book Growing Grateful Kids hits the bookstores. This book releases right when my busy spring speaking schedule kicks in. Already, there is a lot of buzz around this book and we are excited about it! Our efforts to market this book will include speaking engagements, radio interviews, blog interviews, online promotion, and book giveaways. We will do a number of book signings and will most likely plan a book release party to celebrate the release of Growing Grateful Kids.

“Marketing books is like raising children. Certain principles apply across the board, and yet each one is so different, so unique, it requires special attention and special direction to ensure the best possible outcome.”

If you would like to find out more about Susie Larson and her new book Embracing Your Freedom, visit her website at Susie will be on virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book in January and February 2010. If you would like to visit her official tour page, click here!

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