Blood TypeBlood Type by Melissa Luznicky Garrett

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

About the Book
Since getting attacked by a vampire, I didn’t believe in beginnings. Only endings. Every person born to this world comes with an expiration date, but I had never considered mine. At least not until I met John.

Now the end was all I ever thought about. I woke up every morning wondering if that day would be my last. Venom pulsed in my veins and seeped into my bones, infecting all my vital organs and changing me from the inside out. Slowly killing me.

But I’d welcome death in the end, if only because the alternative was even more frightening.

Popular girl Blake Ehlert has it all: a prime spot on the cheerleading squad, a jock boyfriend who’s strong and sensitive, and the winning vote for Homecoming Queen two years in a row. But when she strikes up a conversation with loner John Kelly, her entire world starts to crumble.

John Kelly is a vampire—what’s known to his kind as a Compeller. It’s his job to recruit human Donors with a particular blood type.

And Blake is his next target.

My Thoughts:
Another great YA novel from an up and coming author! In Blood Type, Garrett gives us her take on the popular vampire story, with this one centering on a young girl who has been infected by a vampire and now has to decide whether to allow herself to die or choose to be turned into a vampire.

The details of the vampire society in this book were fascinating, with each one having a different role to fulfill as they attempt to live undetected by the humans. I also enjoyed the way the plot unfolds, alternating between the present time when she is trying to figure out what to do and the recent past so we can understand how things got to this point.

Most importantly, I can safely recommend it as appropriate for my teenage friends as there is nothing too explicit or adult taking place!

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Editors Note: This is a guest post on a topic that affects us all in one way or another. I received no compensation for posting this, but simply wanted to share it because I think it’s an important issue in our society.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), and this year’s theme is “A Strong Workforce Is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?” The topic couldn’t be more salient. A job is a precious commodity, but never more so in a slowly recovering economy; and it is up to each of us to insure that the economy we’re reviving is predicated on jobs that are open to all qualified applicants.

NDEAM is a national campaign sponsored by the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP). It originates from a 1945 law declaring the first week of October “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week” and has undergone several permutations since then. The campaign’s current primary aim is to educate and empower the public, employers, and individuals with disabilities in order to celebrate diversity and safeguard equal opportunity to work.

The first step we can all take this month is to acknowledge that the biggest barrier to employment many individuals with disabilities face is not always, in fact, a disability: it’s a stereotype.

Human beings are quick to label, and when a job applicant discloses a disability, the disclosure can often overshadow the applicant. Even conscientious employers may unintentionally focus more on the disclosure—or some of the most pervasive myths about hiring individuals with disabilities—than on the unique skills, knowledge, and other qualifications the applicant may possess.

Individuals with disabilities also face practical obstacles, such as transportation or scheduling issues. They may have had fewer opportunities to cultivate and refine skills essential to their fields, and their resumes may not reflect continuous employment (or the entirety of their professional worth). It is therefore the responsibility of employers and human resource administrators not only to fully adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but also to foster an inclusive professional culture.

This means more than disregarding pervasive myths, such as the idea that people with disabilities have a higher absentee rate than employees without disabilities or the fear that employing people with disabilities will be more expensive than not. In fact, according to a 2008 Rutgers University study, employees with disabilities have a lower absenteeism rate than other employees, and ODEP reported the same year that most large and mid-sized companies report no significant increase in cost with the addition of employees with disabilities.

A truly inclusive professional culture can only be attained when human resources administrators undergo appropriate training and education. Some of the requisite subjects in which human resources administration should be fluent include disability etiquette and “person-first” perspectives; ADA and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance; tax incentives that support the employment of individuals with disabilities; and all relevant ethical and legal perspectives on wages, benefits, and job-evaluation equity.

Human resources administrators can further enrich the workplaces they oversee by exploring the ways in which diversity and accessibility build business. For instance, an inclusive and vibrant workplace leads to greater employee engagement—which leads to greater productivity and fewer turn-overs. That’s because all people, with and without disabilities, flourish in communities that honor diversity, inclusion, and individual recognition. In other words, we all stand to benefit by adopting NDEAM’s mission not just in October, but every day of the year.

About the Author
Dafe Ojaide writes on human resources degree and training programs for University Alliance on behalf of Florida Tech. For more information visit Florida Tech.

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Editor’s Note: I’m sharing this announcement on behalf of the wonderful ladies at Litfuse, who are going beyond just bringing us great books to providing this opportunity to connect and find healing from our past hurts.

Join authors Kim Ketola, Teske Drake and Dawn Scott Jones for an evening of encouraging chat about healing and hope for women on the evening of October 10th. The authors will join together for a Live Webcast Event to share their stories.

BUT WAIT … there’s more! Between 10/1 and 10/10 enter to win a brand-new iPad from Women Redeemed!

One fortunate winner will receive:

  • iPad with Wi-Fi
  • Cradle My Heart by Kim Ketola, Hope for Today, Promises for Tomorrow by Teske Drake and When a Woman You Loved Was Abused by Dawn Scott Jones

Hurry, the giveaway ends on 10/10/12. Just click one of the icons below. The winner will be announced that evening at the Women Redeemed Webcast!

In coordination with the launch of their fall releases, Kregel will be hosting a live webcast event on October 10th at 8 PM EDT featuring authors Kim Ketola (Cradle My Heart), Teske Drake (Hope for Today, Promises for Tomorrow), and Dawn Scott Jones (When a Woman You Love Was Abused). The webcast will allow women to come together to share their struggles and fears in order to move toward healing and hope. Women will able to support one another and discuss shared experiences in a non-threatening, open and loving environment.

Don’t miss a moment of the fun, RSVP today. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 10th!

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With You Don’t Know Me, Susan May Warren takes us back to the northern Minnesota town of Deep Haven. This time, we meet Annalise Decker, a picture-perfect wife and mother whose husband Nathan is running for town mayor. Hidden behind the facade is a secret no one in her current life knows, not even Nathan.

For Annalise used to be Deirdre O’Reilly, until she testified against a dangerous criminal and was put into the witness protection program to be relocated in Deep Haven. She met and married Nathan shortly after arriving in town, never telling him anything real about her past.

To read my full review and enter to win a copy of this book, please visit 5 Minutes for Books.

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Be Still My Soul is the debut novel by Joanne Bischof, and the first in what will be her Cadence of Grace series. As the book opens, we meet Lonnie Sawyer, an almost-eighteen year old girl living with her family in the hills of Appalachia a little over a century ago. Although she does not have a boyfriend, she is forced into marriage by her father after Gideon O’Riley, a bluegrass musician and the local ladies’ man, steals a kiss one evening.

Lonnie finds herself an unwelcome addition to the O’Riley household, and it’s not long before Gideon decides they will strike out on their own to find a future somewhere else.

To read my full review of Be Still My Soul, and enter to win a copy for yourself, click through to 5 Minutes for Mom.

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