Year of the Bookwormz: 2011

52 weeks. 2 friends. 1 challenge.

Summertime Giveaway: FREE Garth Stein Swag Bag! ***Winner just announced*** May 26, 2010

Ok guys. Are you ready for this??

I’ve been bursting at the seams with excitement over here and can finally announce this exciting giveaway!

Thanks to Garth Stein and his publicist, Sarah at Terra Communications, I am excited to announce our first contest here at Year of the Bookwormz. One OH-SO-LUCKY winner will receive a FREE Garth Stein  ‘’  SWAG BAG (pictured below) with a stunning red Raven Stole The Moon umbrella AND autographed hardcover copy of Garth Stein’s prolific New York Times Bestseller, Art of Racing in the Rain!

How can you win this fantastic booty?
It’s SUPER EASY! Just leave a comment  and tell us:

1) Your name

2) The name of your favorite pet (past or present)

3) Something funny or cute or anything at all this pet did/does to make you smile

If you’ve never had a pet, you can still enter– use your vivid imagination and make something  up!

This contest will be open until Wednesday June 9th.

After the contest closes, a winner will be chosen using Random.Org. Please check back here to find out if you’re the lucky winner of this fantastic prize pack!

Not only is my favorite author of my favorite novel an amazing writer, speaker, and chef, but he’s extremely generous, humble and kind. If you follow this blog, you know I had the honor of meeting Mr. Stein last month at the Bethesda Writer’s Center where he made all the girls cry (ok but then he made us laugh immediately after). I look forward to supporting his future endeavors, including attending his event in September. After viewing this blog and my photos from the event, Sarah, Garth’s publicist,  approached me asking if she could use my photos in Garth’s newsletter. (No brainer!) I was honored and told her yes immediately! She then gave me the opportunity to host this giveaway.

Where would we be without technology?! Social media and Web 2.0 afford me the platform for promoting someone I believe in and support so much. Being able to reach out to our readers and give one of you the gift of this compelling novel  is a privilege. The Art of Racing in the Rain changed my life and I believe if you read it, it will change yours as well.

Good luck! Please share this with all your friends!!



PS- Here’s a photo of one of my favorite pets. His name is Zumo and his strength amazes me. Zumo is our 18-month-old rescue Akita. He loves his weekly hydrotherapy rehab sessions and this photo just makes me smile every time I see it, because it’s like a circus just getting him into his “swim gear”. One afternoon, while unloading the dogs from hydrotherapy, one of the young neighborhood girls asked, “So Zumo is a rescue? He, like, jumps in pools and saves kids and stuff?” I laughed and replied, “No sweetie. We rescued him.” 🙂


18 Responses to “Summertime Giveaway: FREE Garth Stein Swag Bag! ***Winner just announced***”

  1. Carolyn Chaffin Says:

    Love this contest as I have been wanting to read his book!! We adopted a puppy from the local animal shelter 2 months ago and everything he does makes me smile – knowing that he has a forever home and how happy he makes my 4 children. His name is Triscuit (he was already named) and my children adore him and he adores them!!

  2. Planet Books Says:

    Very cool!! My name is Karen, my favorite pet’s name is Rocky and Rocky SINGS. Yup! He sings with his opera trained Mama!!

  3. Heather Says:

    My name is Heather. It’s sooo hard to pick a favorite pet, but if I HAVE to choose, it would be Sadie. She is always doing things to make my husband and I laugh/smile. She lays in a really cute position with her hind legs completely behind her so that she is flat on her stomach. She even gets off of the couch or ottoman in that way. She also dances around the house with my husband and I as we sing to her.

  4. Dara Lambert Says:

    I have many favorites since I know so many wonderful pets (including all of mine)! My very favorite is my big mutt Rudy who went to doggy heaven just this past February at the age of 14. When I would tell her that I loved her, she would let out a big sigh and say “I love you” right back. Now when I see cute videos of dogs saying “I love you” I both laugh and cry.

    I’m looking forward to reading all of the comments AND this book whether I win or not!

  5. Rebecca Glasser Says:

    I hate to pick a favorite but my cat Tigger was definitely one of the best cats I will probably ever have. He had me so well trained! After his surgery he had no appetite. He would sniff his food, then look at me and hop into his little bed. One night I knew he had to eat so I started hand feeding him his wet food. The next night he didn’t even look at his food – he jumped right in his bed and looked at me expectantly. I’ll never forget either how he had me trained when we went to bed – if I got in bed first I HAD to be on my right side. Otherwise he’d walk counterclockwise around me purring until I turned over. I smile every time I think of those memories – he was such a good boy!

  6. Becky Says:

    It really is hard to pick one favorite out of the many we have, but I would have to say my Jakie…He is a momma’s boy. I will never forget when Jake was a puppy. He is quite the little hunter of wildlife in our backyard, well this one day there was either a dove or some other type of bird flying about 20 feet in the air…well Jake thinking he had some type of chance goes running across the yard following below the bird looking up at it, instead of paying attention to where he was going, the all of sudden ..WHAM !!! right into the cherry tree……he got up shook it off and just kept looking for the bird…typing this still makes me laugh….good luck to everyone.

  7. Nicole Langan


    I miss how he used to crunch water bottles before I’d put them in the recycling bin.

  8. Caralyn Bushey Says:

    I have had so many special animal companions over the years that it is difficult to choose one to single out; makes me feel kind of guilty! However, I will share something about Eddie, a recently rescued tabby-cat. For some reason, Eddie has a special fondness for baby carrots. Not to eat, but to fight. He loves to attack the bag of baby carrots when I am unloading groceries. He will even reach into the fridge and try to do battle with them.

  9. Arawn Says:

    I love all my akitas, past and present, so I’ll limit myself to the living akita that has been with me the longest … Lupercus. He’s more than a therapy dog; he’s empathic and knows when someone needs a hug, a laugh, companionship, a good run, or a dose of reality — and he gives it to them. A 90 (approximately) year old woman rescued him and told me he would be good for me: no discussion, do negotiation, no turning down her offer. She was right. He instinctively knows to bring meds when needed, talks like Scooby-Do, keeps the Jehovah Witnesses from my door, and does the happy dance (bouncing and twisting with great passion so his legs are out of sink; paws thumping the ground to the beat of his own drummer).

    • Arawn Says:

      As I start reminiscing, I have sooo many memories of Lupercus that delight me. Once he was following a squirrel on a power line that ran through my friend’s back yard. Lupercus was looking up rather than at where he was going. He walked right into the pool. We all laughed, but he was so indignant. How dare we laugh at an akita. He swam to the stairs, got out of the pool, shook of the water, and marched himself over the side of the house to endure his shame in solitude. Total akita attitude!
      Another time we were in the woods. It was autumn. We were alone and not near civilization, so he was off-leash and walking a little ahead of me. He stopped, fixed on something I could not see. Then I realized there was a resting stag in the leaves staring back at Lupercus. Suddenly the stag jumped up and bolted away … with Lupercus in hot pursuit. I wish I had a camera, because it was one of the most beautiful nature scenes I’ve ever experienced — the grace, the power — completely awe-inspiring.

  10. Ashly Says:

    I cannot choose one favorite, so I am going to cheat and say both Marley (our 3 year old daschund beagle mix) and Ginger (our 6 year old cat) are my favorites.

    My favorite Ginger story dates back to 5 years ago when my husband and I lived in our apartment and we had only had Ginger for a couple of weeks. Ginger was sitting on the dresser minding her own business, when my husband went up to her and put his face right up to hers and said “Hello Ginger, how are you doing this morning” and right on cue, as if she knew exactly what he was saying, she reached up and smacked him across the face. Ever since then, Ginger has been the boss of the house! =)

  11. Puller Lanigan Says:

    I have lots of stories of lots of pets from raccoons and coyotes to dogs, cats, goats and guinea pigs. Kashi was my first rescued Akita. She had been a horrific cruelty case, but I saw her inner beauty and persevered in bailing her from the shelter. She was my heartstrings. We had lost one of our cats (died) and my husband dug a hole to bury him. I retrieved Trix’s body and when I returned, Kashi and Koko were sitting at the edge of his grave waiting. We buried our kitty and said a prayer and cried and after the hole was filled, both Kashi and Koko stood up, sniffed the grave of their friend and retreated to the house. I was stunned. They had been ‘in attendance’, it wasn’t curiousity, it was respect. She went on to ‘attend’ many other little services, not to mention welcoming our son into our home. She was his ‘Rock of Gibralter’ and between her and MeiMei, I never feared for his safety. Kashi is long gone, but my memories of her remain. It was because of her I started Akita Rescue.

  12. Heather Says:

    Hello!!! My name is Heather and my favorite pet of all time was my first dog, Ginger Brown Rocket Chipman 🙂 Ginger used to get her nose up under her bowl and push it up and down the wall to get our attention and let us know that it was time for her dinner. So funny!

  13. Kerry O'Neill Says:

    Hello! My name is Kerry and my favorite pet was Coco. Coco LOVED steak but was taught to stay away from the table during meals. Once dinner was over my father would cut up a small amount of steak and look at Coco who would be sitting patiently outside of the kitchen. My father would say “OK Cococ, do the steak dance!” and Coco would break loose and run all over the house and jump up and down and come skidding back to his bowl and devour his special treat. Coco has been gone for over 10 years now but everytime I smell steak on the grill Coco’s steak dance brings a smile to my face.

  14. Amy Says:

    Hi! I’m Amy and I have two dogs–Cassie & Madalyne and a cockatiel named Kylie.

    What I love about my pets is their “advanced” communication system. Kylie is the first to hear my roomie or me come home, she issues an “alert” chirp which causes the dogs to come running to the door like panting maniacs to greet us. It’s HILARIOUS! Gotta love the inter-species communication.

    Thanks for the awesome giveaway!
    artsyrockerchick at aim dot com

  15. Deb Says:

    My name is Debbie, My favorite pet was a Brittany Spaniel named Clem. Clem was a sweetheart of a dog. In his youth he was easily excitable and you could usually count on him piddling on you or something in his glee. As he aged, he was gentle and loyal. He had eyes that could see into your soul.

    I read Mr. Stein’s book at your recommendation and I truly enjoyed it! Thank you.

  16. Drum roll please……………….

    Congratulations to our lucky winner- DARA LAMBERT!!!!!!!!!! Dara, you’ve just won the free Garth Stein Summer Swag Bag with autographed hardcover first edition copy of Art of Racing in the Rain, red umbrella inspired by Garth’s other fantastic novel Raven Stole the Moon, AND the super handy tote bag for carrying around all your Garth Stein goodies!!!!!!!!! I hope you love the book as much as I did.

    For the rest of our fantastic entrants- thank you SO much for making our first giveaway a huge success! Don’t be discouraged if you didn’t win- we’ve got a few more fun giveaways planned in the near future AND maybe, just maybe, Garth & Sarah will let us host another giveway with their goodies! If you’d like to be notified of upcoming contests, events and book reviews, scroll to the upper right corner and enter your email address to subscribe to this blog by email.

    Thanks for sharing your heartfelt ‘furbaby’ stories for our readers to enjoy. I laughed, cried, and smiled when I read through all your lovely entries.

    Happy summer!


    Ps- please Please PLEASE spay and neuter your pets!

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