Category Archives: Blog Hop

Welcome to the No Strings Attached Giveaway Hop!

No Strings Attached Giveaway HopThis week, Making the Grade is participating in the No Strings Attached Giveaway Hop, which is hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer. Here on the blog, we are giving away a copy of the Limited Wedding Dress Edition of Breaking Dawn Part 1 on DVD to one lucky winner as part of the hop.

This hop ends on Sunday, April 22, 2012, at midnight.

So here is the “No Strings Attached” part of this giveaway:

Earlier today I posted my Dream Cast for the leading couple of Twilight, Bella and Edward.

To enter this giveaway all you have to do is comment either on that post or here on this post with the following items: 1) While NOT  required to enter, let me know which two actors you would have had play the parts of Bella and Edward, instead of Kristen or Robert. ALSO (and here’s the important/required part) 2) leave an email address so that I may contact you if you win. THAT’S IT! No following, no subscriptions, no strings attached!

I can’t wait to hear your thoughts (and good luck to all who enter!)

Open to US residents aged 13 and older only.
ONE entry per person.
Giveaway ends at midnight on Sunday, April 22, 2012.

View the other blogs participating in this Hop (and enter to win even more giveaways!) by visiting the No Strings Attached Giveaway Hop page over at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer.

Autism Awareness Giveaway Hop

April is Autism Awareness Month.  To help spread the word about autism, Making the Grade is taking part in the Autism Awareness Giveaway Hop, which is hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer. Here on the blog, we are giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card to one lucky winner as part of the hop.

This hop ends on Tuesday, April 17, 2012, at midnight.

Though involving a controversial topic, the point of this giveaway hop is simply to make people more aware about autism by sharing information and experiences.

When thinking of the topic of autism in film and literature, two specific stories come to my mind.

First is the 1986 film, The Boy Who Could Fly. I am sure that this shows my age, considering this is a movie that many teenagers today have probably never even heard of. (Correct me if I am wrong about this.) But if you HAVE heard of the movie, then you would know it tells the story of 15-year-old Milly Michaelson and Eric Gibb, a boy with autism. After the suicide of her terminally ill father, Milly becomes friends with Eric, who lost both of his parents to a plane crash. Together, Eric and Milly find ways to cope with the loss and the pain as they escape to faraway places. The story is both touching and realistic in its approach to covering sensitive topics such as loss, suicide and mental conditions, even if there are also elements of fantasy within the story.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-TimeSecond is the 2003 book, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. This story is a murder mystery told by an autistic boy named Christopher John Francis Boone. He knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow. This improbable story of Christopher’s quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighborhood dog makes for one of the most captivating, unusual, and widely heralded novels in recent years involving the subject of autism. While “technically” an adult book, the story would appeal to teenagers. In fact, I believe that many high schools currently have students reading and discussing the materials.

If you are able to check out both of these titles, I highly recommend that you do. They tastefully address the topic of autism and combine it with storytelling that is both entertaining and thoughtful.

The Boy Who Could Fly: Instant Download on Amazon
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time: Hardcover | Paperback | Kindle

Enter for your chance to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

You must fill out this form to enter.

ONE entry per person.
Open to US residents aged 13 and older only.
Giveaway ends at midnight on Tuesday, April 17, 2012.

View the other blogs participating in this Hop (and enter to win even more giveaways!) by visiting the Autism Awareness Giveaway Hop page over at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer.

Charity Hopping Around the World Giveaway Hop: Cancer Stories

This week, Making the Grade is participating in the Charity Hopping Around the World Giveaway Hop, which is hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer. Here on the blog, we are giving away an ARC of Radiate by Marley Gibson to one lucky winner as part of the hop.

This hop ends on Wednesday, April 4, 2012, at midnight.

I am so excited to be a part of this particular Hop this week, as it involves a topic dear to my heart. At only 10 years of age I lost my grandmother to breast cancer. And just this year, my husband and I found out that his mother has been diagnosed with endometrial cancer… It is because of incidents such as this that I am an active participant in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day. The 3-Day is a nationwide event that strives to raise money for breast cancer research. In October 2011, I joined thousands of others here in Tampa Bay, Florida and walked 60 miles in 3 days in order to raise money for the cause. All-in-all, I managed to raise over $3,300 dollars last year for breast cancer research.

Help me reach my goal for the Susan G. Komen Seattle 3-DayThis year I am participating once again, only this time I will be participating as a crew member in both the Tampa Bay and Seattle 3-Day events. Once again I strive to raise money for breast cancer research. If you have any funds to spare, please consider donating to the cause today. You can donate as little or as much as you like, but please, I encourage you to help me in my fundraising efforts if you can.

Click here to donate to the 3-Day today

(NOTE: You are not required to make a donation in order to participate in the giveaway being held as a part of the hop, but a donation would certainly be appreciated! Thank you in advance. Your donation WILL NOT go unnoticed.)

Here are four books on the topic of cancer that I recommend you add to your reading list this year. They are each vastly different stories, with only one thing in common: the devastating diagnosis.

RadiateRadiate By Marley Gibson
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | April 3, 2012
Order on Amazon  |  Add to Goodreads

Hayley Matthews is determined to be the best cheerleader she can. She works hard and pushes herself 110% all the time. Then Hayley finds a lump on her leg. The diagnosis is cancer. The prognosis is unclear. She could lose her leg. Or maybe her life. At first Haley is scared, terrified. In an instant, everything she’s worked for seems out of reach. But Haley is strong. She’s going to fight this disease. She will not let it take her life or her dreams.

Making the Grade Book Score: 4 stars

The Fault in Our StarsThe Fault in Our Stars By John Green
Dutton Books| January 10, 2012
Order on Amazon | Add to Goodreads

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs… for now. Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault. Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.

Read Our Review | Making the Grade Book Score: 5 stars

The Probability of MiraclesThe Probability of Miracles By Wendy Wunder
Razorbill | December 8, 2011
Order on Amazon | Add to Goodreads

Dry, sarcastic, sixteen-year-old Cam Cooper has spent the last seven years in and out hospitals. The last thing she wants to do in the short life she has left is move 1,500 miles away to Promise, Maine – a place known for the miraculous events that occur there. But it’s undeniable that strange things happen in Promise: everlasting sunsets; purple dandelions; flamingos in the frigid Atlantic; an elusive boy named Asher; and finally, a mysterious envelope containing a list of things for Cam to do before she dies. As Cam checks each item off the list, she finally learns to believe – in love, in herself, and even in miracles.

Making the Grade Book Score: 5 stars

Me and Earl and the Dying GirlMe and Earl and the Dying Girl By Jesse Andrews
Amulet Books | March 1, 2012
Order on Amazon | Add to Goodreads

Up until senior year, Greg has maintained total social invisibility. He only has one friend, Earl, and together they spend their time—when not playing video games and avoiding Earl’s terrifying brothers— making movies, their own versions of Coppola and Herzog cult classics. Greg would be the first one to tell you his movies are  terrible, but he and Earl don’t make them for other people. Until Rachel. Rachel has leukemia, and Greg’s mom gets the genius idea that Greg should befriend her. Against his better judgment and despite his extreme awkwardness, he does. When Rachel decides to stop treatment, Greg and Earl make her a movie, and Greg must abandon invisibility and make a stand.

Making the Grade Book Score: 3.5 stars

Enter for your chance to win an ARC of RADIATE!

You must fill out this form to enter.

Open to US residents aged 13 and older only.
ONE entry per person.
Giveaway ends at midnight on Wednesday, April 4, 2012.

View the other blogs participating in this Hop (and enter to win even more giveaways!) by visiting the Charity Hopping Around the World Giveaway Hop page over at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer.