Friday, August 7, 2009

Alive Day GIVEAWAY!! CLOSED

This giveaway is now CLOSED! Congratulations to Jayne for winning. Jayne was chosen as the winner via random.org.


Alive Day

A Story of Love and Loyalty

Based in part on a true story, Alive Day is an inspiring, affirming tale about the power of love, loyalty, and living full-out.

A Marine's "Alive Day" celebrates the survival after an almost certain death. It's a time of hope and joy.

But Antwone Carver isn't celebrating. Home from war but not quite whole, Antwone's having trouble dealing with his new physical limitations.

Psychiatrist Brenden McCarthy can relate. He thought he'd lost everything when he was blinded in a mountain climbing accident. But with God's help, he's now living a satisfying life and feels called to help Antwone do the same. Problem is, he's hit one dead end after another trying to reach this bitter young Marine.

Enter Brenden's big-hearted and courageous black Labrador, Nelson. With boundless energy, contagious optimism, and a big heart, Nelson shows them both what it means to live a truly abundant life.

The journey Brenden began in the heartwarming novel Together continues with Alive Day.

- information taken from the Harper Collins website

MY REVIEW

I have not read the prequel to this book and I think that would have been helpful... but overall it didn't effect my understanding of Alive Day. It is an easy read with a very positive message. I enjoyed it.


Q & A with the author...

Tom Sullivan, known to many as an actor, singer, entertainer, author, and producer was born prematurely in 1947 and given too much oxygen while in an incubator. Though it saved his life, it cost him his eyesight. Tom spent the early part of his career pursuing music and eventually gained national prominence with appearances on The Tonight Show, a major recording contract, and a steady stream of gigs in Las Vegas. From there he would head to TV as a special correspondent for ABC's Good Morning America while guest starring in Designing Women, Highway to Heaven, Fame, M.A.S.H, Mork & Mindy, and WKRP In Cincinnati. Tom has been nominated twice for Emmy Awards, is the only living recipient of the Helen Keller Lifetime Achievement Award, has spoken at over three thousand corporations and universities and has written nine books for children, youth, and adults.
Visit the official Tom Sullivan web site here!

Q: What sparked the idea for writing ALIVE DAY?

A: I wanted to place public focus on every American GI that is sacrificing on behalf of this Nation. Also, I wanted Brenden McCarthy to evolve both as a professional, and a person, and I believe we see his growth and maturation in these pages.


 
Q: How did you conduct research for ALIVE DAY, particularly the military angle?

A: First, I talked to public information officers at Marine Corp Bases, and gained access to wounded vets, their stories, and a number of clinical professionals to discuss PTSD. I also am fortunate to have two special friends very involved in VA issues. Senator Max Cleland is a Vietnam amputee who became Administrative Director for the VA, and has been invaluable in my knowledge pursuit. Also, my life was profoundly changed by a relationship with Clebe McClary, the most decorated, living Marine, who lost an eye and an arm while saving a Squad in Vietnam. Along with all of this, my daughter, Blythe, arranged for me to view a number of up-close documentaries on Iraq and Afghanistan wars…painful to watch, but helpful.

Q: How similar are you to Brenden? What are your major differences?

A: The principle difference between Brenden and Tom is that Brenden goes blind as an adult and has to adjust. Tom learned the drill right from the beginning, so it was much easier. Beyond that, Brenden’s personality is largely drawn from my own, especially his love of family, sports, music, and people.

Q: Just as losing his sight has sharpened the rest of Brenden’s senses, it has also brought to him a moral and emotional focus that is absent in characters like the perfectly able, but morally and emotionally shallow Dr. Craig. How much of your work on ALIVE DAY was meant to show the deepening of life through desolation?

A: The only way to find peace and growth as a human being is to have experienced the desolation of loneliness and loss. Very Tolstoy, very Freud. There is no question that Craig and Brenden are clear contrasts in medicine, and I did not back away from making this point because it is central to my feelings about what’s wrong with healthcare. We need Marcus Welby with a touch of Ben Casey. Those names go back a long way, but so do I.


 
Q: ALIVE DAY addresses many of the problems wounded soldiers are facing when returning from the war. Were you worried about covering such a controversial topic in your novel? What solutions do you feel need to be implemented in order to help correct these problems?

A: In writing “Alive Day,” I was very concerned about the credibility of the work. The truth is, how can any of us know what it feels like to go to war, lose friends, or experience being wounded and coming home if you haven’t participated yourself? The principle reason I was able to commit to the writing was because I felt that my knowledge of disability and clinical approach was important enough to let me take a chance and write the novel. Also, thanks to an eminent psychiatrist, Dr. Michael Schwartz, I communicated with him daily as I wrote the course of treatment for Antwone Carver, including all of the drug protocols. A novel is a work of fiction, but scrupulous attention to detail is necessary to maintain credibility, and I’m very proud of this work.

Q: Antwone Carver replaced the false family of gang life with the Marines, but finds himself abandoned by the government after his injuries. In the end, it’s the people he learns to trust as he adjusts to his new life that become his real family. Was this a theme you worked to consciously develop, or did it grow naturally as you told the story?

A: This question is easy to answer in that I have an abiding faith in the goodness of the American people, and grave concerns when it comes to government intervention. The truth is, large bureaucracies though often well-intentioned, simply don’t work. I guess I’m a Jefferson Republican, and I suppose that bias affected the way I developed the characters and their engagement with the system. Let me hasten to say that I believe we are the most caring Nation on earth, and I treasure my role and my rights as a committed American citizen. So, don’t confuse where I’m coming from.



Q: Brenden explicitly voices his concerns that he might have trouble getting through to Antwone due to their racial differences. Did you have similar concerns about writing characters who came from different backgrounds than your own?

A: In Brenden’s conversation with Bad-news, Barnes in Chapter 9, he is asked by the big man if he is “color-blind.” Of course, he says. In my own case, I have no bias or prejudice, and my blindness allows me to be uniquely objective when writing racial character differences. Also, my life as an artist and an athlete has given me special insight into the nature of African American culture.



Q: Do you have a "Nelson" in your life?

A: His name is Edison, and he’s a 6 year old German Shepherd, but there was a Nelson who was my guide dog and black lab friend for nine years. So the profile of this marvellous dog is perfect.


 
Q: Brenden is honest with himself that he still has a hard time accepting certain aspects of being blind such as being reluctant to counsel disabled people. Did you have similar feelings even though you lost your sight as an infant? What advice would you give to other people who may be struggling with similar emotions?

A: It is very difficult to accept disability and more complicated to engage in supporting other people with the same struggle. The road to independence is difficult and until you come to terms with the idea that none of us are truly independent, but are inter-dependent, can we begin to interact openly on behalf of others with common issues.


Q: Kat and Darla are both strong women who are committed to their husbands, despite the difficulties caused by their husbands' disabilities. Who were your inspirations for these characters?

A: There is only one major inspiration in my life and it’s my wife of over 40 years, Patty. She has Darla’s appreciation of beauty, and Kat’s wit, strength, and sense of humor. Like Robert B. Parker and his wife, all my women are drawn from Patty’s character.



Q: If there is one take home message from ALIVE DAY, what would you want it to be?

A: Through faith, communication with others, and the astounding power of human beings to overcome adversity, any physical trauma or mental anxiety can be overcome by turning our disadvantages into advantages. “Alive Day” makes it clear that nothing can conquer the human spirit.


 
Q: What are you working on now? Would you like to share any details about your upcoming projects?

A: As I write this piece, I’ve begun the third novel in the Brenden series entitled “A Holy Spirit,” and I’m more excited about it than either of the first two works. It’s my greatest challenge as a writer, and the rest is a secret.

(thanks to the publisher for this interview)

WOULD YOU LIKE TO WIN MY COPY OF ALIVE DAY?

~Leave me a comment here telling me you would like to win!

Would you like extra chances to win?

~ Subscribe to this blog via the reader of your choice

~ Follow this blog

~ Subscribe to this blog via email (link on my sidebar)

~ Add my button to your site

~ Follow me on Twitter and tweet this giveaway (as many times as you like)

~ Become a Fan on Facebook

~ Share this giveaway on Facebook or another social networking site of your choosing

~ email a couple friends about this giveaway and let me know that you did

~ stumble or digg or whatever this site or giveaway in whichever way you choose and let me know you did so.

This giveaway will end on August 28 th, 2009. This giveaway is open to readers in Canada and the USA.

Don't forget to enter my other giveaways too:

Win Deadly Intent by Camy Tang HERE.
Win an aden + anais hooded towel set HERE.
Win The Unexpected Gift by Atha & Wagar HERE.
Win ready to eat meals from GoPicnic HERE.

133 comments:

Debs Desk said...

What a great cover. Please inlcude me in your giveaway.
Thanks
Debbie
debdesk9(at)verizon.net

Debs Desk said...

I am a subscriber.
Thanks
Debbie
debdesk9(at)verizon.net

Debs Desk said...

I am a follower.
Thanks
Debbie
debdesk9(at)verizon.net

Debs Desk said...

You button is on my blog.
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Debbie
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Debs Desk said...

I am following you on Twitter.
Thanks
Debbie
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Neas Nuttiness said...

Thanks so much for another great giveaway. Please count me in.

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Neas Nuttiness said...

I'm a follower - thank you.


libneas[at]aol[dot]com

Neas Nuttiness said...

I subscribed via email.
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Neas Nuttiness said...

I have you button at:

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and
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Neas Nuttiness said...

I"m a fan on Facebook - thanks!

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ANovelMenagerie said...

I'm a subscriber and a follower! I'd love to win!

Sheri
A Novel Menagerie

AmandaSue said...

I'd like a chance to read this thanks.
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AmandaSue said...

I'm a follower thanks.
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scottsgal said...

sounds like an inspirational story - please count me in

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scottsgal said...

already a follower

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scottsgal said...

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tawnda said...

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tawnda said...

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Anonymous said...

I would like to win. This sounds like a compelling story.

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Beth said...

This looks great! Please enter me!

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Beth said...

I'm a follower.

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abfantom said...

This sounds like an interesting book that I'd like to read. Please enter me in the giveaway.


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I would like to win con5459(at)gmail(dot)com

linett said...

would love to read this.

Anonymous said...

Enter me please
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Jefftexas said...

Thanks for the chance to win! jefftexas(at)suddenlink.net

Jefftexas said...

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Wanda said...

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Misusedinnocence said...

I would like to win. :)

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Sweeter the berry said...

I would like to win it. Thanks.
letessha@yahoo.com

Sweeter the berry said...

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Anonymous said...

Would sure like to have this please, thanks.

Winning Readings said...

I would love to read this book!

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etirv said...

I would like to win this book!

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Waiting for a little Reker said...

I would love to win.

ChristyJan said...

Please enter me

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targetmom said...

I'd love to win.

targetmom said...

I follow tarasview on twitter and tweeted.

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Nickolay said...

I am looking for some late summer reading. Thanks for the chance

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Erica G said...

I would love to win!

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Carol EL said...

This sounds like an inspirational story,gotta love dogs and soldiers. jelly15301@gmail.com

Carol EL said...

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Carol EL said...

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Sue said...

Alive Day sounds like a novel I want to win. I thank you for the chance.

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Lee P said...

I would love to read this because it is such an uplifting story. To go from the horrors of war and to be healed by the love of a dog, among other things, makes me interested in seeing how it all ends. Thanks for this giveaway and please count me in.

chinook92(at)gmail(dot)com

Lee P said...

I subscribe to your blog via Google Reader.

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Linda K said...

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Kimberly said...

This looks like a great, inspiring read. :) The world would be a better place if everyone had a dog.

Anonymous said...

love to win
conector43@yahoo.com

Abby said...

I'd love to win this book!

Abby said...

I follow!

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I subscribed via e-mail!

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Paula said...

I love to read. Now that the children are back in school, I have more time to enjoy a book.

Jeff said...

I have just recently rediscovered the joy of reading and cannot get my hands on enough good books - this sounds like a good read ...

A Stationary Addict said...

I'd love to win.

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A Stationary Addict said...

I am an email subscriber.

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A Stationary Addict said...

I am a follower.

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Lee P said...

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Anonymous said...

I follow-
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NGS said...

I'm an avid reader who is always looking for a new book to read!!

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erma said...

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CanAmBlond said...

I'm already an email subscriber at the following email:

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kngmckellar said...

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sherri419 said...

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prplrush said...

I would love to win this book, because I love books about dogs! Well i really love almost all books, but especially those talking about stories involving dogs lol.

Jayne said...

I would like to win this book. I remember when he was on Fame and M*A*S*H.

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I follow your blog.

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FDP 4 Life said...

this is going to be a great read, that's why i want to read

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I would love to read this! Thanks!
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Anonymous said...

SOUNDS INSPIRING

LUCKYGATORGIRL@AOL.COM

bridget3496 said...

I'd love to win this book

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amyinkamloops said...

Thanking you for posting such a wonderful contest. ~ Amy (amyinkamloops *AT* gmail.com)

Oneangel said...

I would love to enter. This looks like a great book!

Miranda said...

looks like a great read I would love to ass this to my collection

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ZESTYWONDERLAND said...

I would love to win! I would love to read such an uplifting novel!

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I subscribe!

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lilyk said...

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