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Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston - Countdown to Christmas 2010

6 days until Christmas!

I'd like to tell you about a little book I just read. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston (author of Surviving Columbine) is a quick read at 88 pages, though Liz manages to pack a lot of story into those pages.

The Christmas Stone is the perfect size for gift giving, and by purchasing it as a gift you are actually giving twice, as Liz has agreed to donate all author proceeds from The Christmas Stone to Primary Children's Medical Center.

Because it is basically a short story, there isn't a lot of time for character development and history-building, so Liz trusts the reader's intelligence to fill in the rest and dives right into the story, though she does include a couple of flashbacks so the reader can understand the characters' history a little better.

She even manages to work a little romance in there. (Don't worry guys and gals who don't care for romance- it's nothing mushy or detailed).

Liz Carlston is a national speaker and author. She served a mission in the Oakland, California Temple Visitors Center, Spanish-speaking. Liz has been seen on CNN, ESPN, CBS Early Show, and Good Morning America in conjunction with her book, Surviving Columbine. Most recently, she has written articles for The Daily Utah Chronicle and New Era Magazine. Liz has been spotlighted in the New York Times bestselling books Columbine by Dave Cullen (p. 38-39, pb) and Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague (p.417-418 , 446, 454, tc) by Brandon
Mull. Liz is from Littleton, Colorado, but has also lived in Oakland and Palo Alto California. She currently resides in Salt Lake City, Utah.

You can learn more about Liz on her website/blog, on Facebook and Twitter @lcarlston_CSton. View the trailer for The Christmas Stone here.

LDSWBR: What author/book had the most impact on you this year?

LIZ: I really enjoyed the memoir, It’s Good to Be Alive: Observations from a Wheelchair by Jack Rushton. Despite being paralyzed from the neck down for the past 21 years, he is one of the most optimistic people I know. I appreciate his wit, wisdom and commitment to live with faith in the Savior. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3HnUfqCBfc)

LDSWBR: What books are you giving/asking for this Christmas?

LIZ: Of course I’ve given several copies of The Christmas Stone away as gifts this year (why not right? :) ). The other book I’ve been giving away is The Fourth Gift by Tucker Davis. This is a heart-warming story about a little Sheppard boy who became friends with Joseph and Mary. He wanted to give the baby Jesus a hand-carved wooden lamb. His attempt didn’t turn out too well, so he gave the Savior an even better gift. I appreciate the idea that while life doesn’t always go according to plan, we can still offer our very best to the Lord.

LDSWBR: If you could only participate in one Christmas activity or tradition this year, what would it be?

LIZ: I always look forward to watching “The Nativity” on Christmas day. It’s a great time of year to touch base with family, to think of others, and most importantly, to remember the Lord’s hand in our lives.

LDSWBR: Do you prefer eggnog or warm apple cider?

LIZ: I’d have to go with the eggnog, but just because I’m a warm apple cider drinker during the rest of the year.

LDSWBR: Liz, thank you so much. Have a Merry Christmas!

The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston (Cedar Fort; Sept 2010) is available for purchase from Barnes & Noble, Borders, Amazon, Mardel and Seagull Book.

Have you or your family and friends ever had need of the services provided by Primary Children's Medical Center? Have you had the opportunity to donate to Primary Children's Medical Center in the past?

Find more gift ideas for the readers in your life in the sidebar of the blog under "More Great Books by LDS Authors."

***Countdown to Christmas 2010 Contest***

LDSWBR will hold a drawing on December 26, 2010 for a $50 Amazon Gift Card, as well as a variety of books being offered by some great LDS authors.

Book prizes generously donated by the authors:

  • Oh, Say Can You See? by Laurie (LC) Lewis
  • Backlash by Traci Hunter Abramson
  • Alma the Younger by Heather (HB) Moore
  • True Miracles with Genealogy by Anne Bradshaw
  • Dingo by Anne Bradshaw
  • Second Kiss by Natalie Palmer
  • Cross My Heart by Julie Wright
  • Cold As Ice by Stephanie Black
  • Meg's Melody by Kaylee Baldwin
  • Save the Child by Margaret Turley
  • Anasazi Intrigue (ebook) by Linda Weaver Clarke
  • Mayan Intrigue (ebook) by Linda Weaver Clarke
  • The Star Prophecy by Joan Sowards (and Walnut Springs Press)
  • A cute, handmade apron by Joan Sowards

How to enter:

  • Post a thoughtful comment on the Countdown to Christmas 2010 posts. Comments can be added on any of the countdown posts at anytime during the contest period (December 1, 2010 through December 25, 2010). Only one comment per person per "Countdown to Christmas" post will be entered into the drawing. Feel free to comment more than once per post if you'd like, but only one comment will be accepted as an entry.
  • Follow us on Twitter: @LDSWBR - then send us a direct message to let us know you want to be entered in the Countdown to Christmas 2010 Contest. If you are already a follower send a direct message telling us you want to be included in the contest.
  • Tweet this message each day (one entry per day). Just copy and paste into your twitter message window to send it (LDSWBR must be able to see the tweet): LDSWBR Countdown to Christmas 2010 at http://ldswbr.blogspot.com! Enter to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card & great books! @ldswbr
  • Follow LDSWBR on Facebook, then send an email to ldswbr at gmail dot com that you’d like to be entered into the Countdown to Christmas 2010 Contest. If you already follow LDSWBR on Facebook, send us an email to let us know you’d like to be included in the contest.
  • **BONUS +5 entries**- Blog about this contest on your blog in a post that includes a link back to the LDSWBR blog, then send us the link to your specific blog post.

Here are the rules:
  • Contest ends at 12:00 Midnight MST on December 25, 2010. Drawing winners will have until 12:00 Midnight MST on January 3, 2010 to claim their prize. After that time, another name will be drawn to receive the prize.
  • LDSWBR reserves the right to decide what determines a "thoughtful" comment.
  • Physical book prizes can only be shipped within the contiguous United States.
  • Authors taking part in the countdown are eligible to participate in the contest.
  • The drawing held on December 26, 2010 will be a raffle-type drawing. All entries will be combined and names drawn for the prizes.

Please join us in counting down to Christmas with some great reads!


  1. I have had at least one person I know need help from Primary Children's. I go to Festival of trees to support some years.

  2. No one I know has had to go to Primary Children's, but I have only heard great things about it.

  3. Yes, my niece's young son got a brain tumor and he had great loving care at the Primary Children's Hospital. He is no longer with us and we miss him a lot, but thanks to those at Primary.

  4. My little boy had seizures when he was younger and had to get a bunch of tests done at Primary Children's. I was very impressed at the care he received. :) I go to the Festival of Trees every year to support them. :)