Exclusive – New Rick Riordan E-Book Available!

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As a member of the PERCY PACK I have the inside scoop on a brand new Rick Riordan’s brand new e-book that I wanted to share with all my readers.



Title: The Demigods of Olympus: An Interactive Adventure

Price: $8.99 / $7.99

On-Sale: July 14, 2015

Your quest begins! Use your demigod skills in this interactive and customizable adventure story written by New York Times #1 best-selling author Rick Riordan. Combining four short stories, The Two-Headed Guidance Counselor, The Library of Deadly Weapons, My Demon Satyr Tea Party, and My Personal Zombie Apocalypse, your choices will have consequences in this first interactive demigod adventure.

Find it on Amazon Today!!



The first look at Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard was revealed last week on USA Today.



Title: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard

On-Sale: October 6, 2015


Magnus Chase has always been a troubled kid. Since his mother’s mysterious death, he’s lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, keeping one step ahead of the police and the truant officers. One day, he’s tracked down by an uncle he’s never met—a man his mother claimed was dangerous. His uncle tells him an impossible secret: Magnus is the son of a Norse god. The Viking myths are true. The gods of Asgard are preparing for war. Trolls, giants, and worse monsters are stirring for doomsday. To prevent Ragnarök, Magnus must search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years. When an attack by fire giants forces him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents, Magnus makes a fatal decision. Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die . . .


Pre-Order this on Amazon



Don’t forget to pre-order Percy Jackson’s GREEK HEROES, the companion to the national best seller Percy Jackson’s GREEK GODS available on Percy Jackson’s birthday, August 18, 2015.



Title: Greek Heroes

On-Sale: August 18, 2015


Who cut off Medusa’s head? Who was raised by a she-bear? Who tamed Pegasus? It takes a demigod to know, and Percy Jackson can fill you in on the all the daring deeds of Perseus, Atalanta, Bellerophon, and the rest of the major Greek heroes. Told in the funny, irreverent style readers have come to expect from Percy, ( I’ve had some bad experiences in my time, but the heroes I’m going to tell you about were the original old school hard luck cases. They boldly screwed up where no one had screwed up before. . .) and enhanced with vibrant artwork by Caldecott Honoree John Rocco, this story collection will become the new must-have classic for Rick Riordan’s legions of devoted fans–and for anyone who needs a hero. So get your flaming spear. Put on your lion skin cape. Polish your shield and make sure you’ve got arrows in your quiver. We’re going back about four thousand years to decapitate monsters, save some kingdoms, shoot a few gods in the butt, raid the Underworld, and steal loot from evil people. Then, for dessert, we’ll die painful tragic deaths. Ready? Sweet. Let’s do this.


Preorder Percy Jackson’s GREEK HEROES on Amazon

Preorder Percy Jackson’s GREEK GODS on Amazon


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The Teen Beach 2 & Disney Summer of Creativity,

Disney | ABC Television Group is mobilizing its division-wide resources to champion the potential of young, socially conscious individuals and their creative approach to strengthening their communities and changing the world. Through its newly launched “Summer of Creativity” initiative, Disney | ABC Television Group will commit programming content and public service announcements highlighting how creativity and action can inspire a better future. Disney | ABC Television Group will also fund over 100 Youth Service America grants to support individual youth-led projects that help make communities greener, safer, smarter, healthier or cleaner. Winners will receive $500 “Summer of Creativity” grants.  More information, including the grant application with an August 10, 2015 deadline, is available at www.YSA.org/BeInspired.


During the week of July 13, several non-profit organizations that take creative approaches to building stronger communities will be showcased on ABC programs including “Good Morning America.”



Disney | ABC Television Group’s David Ambroz, Executive Director, Corporate Citizenship and Social Responsibility, said, “Across Disney, our concern for kids and families extends beyond their entertainment to the communities in which they live.  Through our group’s powerful reach and impact, we can inspire and support individuals to create change in their lives and the world around them.”


A special one-hour broadcast, hosted by superstar Selena Gomez, originating from Free the Children’s “We Day” 2015 event in Chicago, will spotlight young change makers that embody the “Summer of Creativity.” The special will be presented Friday, August 21 (8:00 p.m., ET/PT) on ABC.


To invite applicants for the Youth Service America grants, Disney | ABC Television Group will showcase the “Summer of Creativity” initiative in its programming content and via public service announcements across its cable, broadcast and online platforms, including ABC Primetime, ABC News, ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior, Radio Disney and related WATCH apps. ABC’s eight owned television stations and participating ABC affiliates will award Youth Service America grants to non-profit organizations that offer creativity-based programs.

Take RC Action To The Next Level With V-Thunder!

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The V-Thunder RC Truck (Aff link) that I tried from Velocity Toys was a ton of fun. I can say that as a kid I always wanted one of these. I begged and pleaded to my parents, to no avail, and I never seemed to be able to make enough to purchase one. So I was excited to try this out with my girls and see what they thought! The V-Thunder was large and lightweight. The controller is easy to use and even my youngest who is seven was able to control the V-Thunder without a big issue. That being said, both girls loved taking the truck out, turning on the music and putting the truck into high gear to have blast down our neighborhood road.

I did come to find that the V-Thunder could handle some off-road action, but was challenged in taller grass – just so that you are aware.


I also have to mention that the LED lights in the wheels were a nice touch. We tried the V-Thunder out in our basement where it was much darker too and they loved seeing the LED’s flashing along with the truck!

Best of all, the truck itself was reasonably priced so that most kids could even save enough to purchase this themselves.



  • Electric Powered (Rechargeable) Full Function! (Go Forward and Backward, Turn Left and Right) Big 1:14 Scale!
  • Flashing LED Wheel Lights, Plays a Variety of Songs! Perfect for Outdoor Use, On and Off Road Racing! Working Front Independent and Rear
  • Hinged Suspension with Spring Shock Absorbers All Around! Chrome Wheels with Premium, Semi-Pneumatic Rubber Off Road Tires
  • Custom Painted, High Gloss Paint Job! Durable, Lightweight Body Shell Recommended Ages 3+
  • Requires 6v 700mAh Battery to run (Included) Remote Control requires 9V Battery to run (Included)
  • Length: 13.5″ Width: 9″ Height: 7.5″
A Short Video Review on the V-Thunder Remote Controlled Truck



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Teen Beach Movie 2 Brought Great Music & Fun

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Dive in and rock out with the hottest surf sequel under the sun, Teen Beach Movie 2 ! Now that summer ‘s over and school has begun, Brady (Ross Lynch) and Mack’s (Maia Mitchell) relationship seems headed for a wipeout – until Lela, Tanner and the “Wet Side Story” kids show up! Dazzled by the novelty and variety of the modern world, Lela wants to stay, but the real world and the “reel” world just don’t mix. Can Mack and Brady find the magic to get the kids home and get their own romance back on track before it’s too late? Packed with electrifying song & dance numbers and hilarious fish-out-of-water wackiness, Teen Beach Movie 2 is “wow-abunga” fun for everyone.


Director:                            Jeffrey Hornaday (“Teen Beach Movie,” TV Movie “Geek Charming,” Carlito’s Way)

Writers:                             Teleplay by Billy Eddy, Matt Eddy and Story by Dan Berendsen, Robert Horn


Cast:                             Ross Lynch (Muppets Most Wanted, Disney Channel’s “Austin & Ally”) as Brady; Maia Mitchell (ABC Family’s “The Fosters”) as Mack;; Grace Phipps (Fright Night, TV’s “The Nine Lives of Chloe King”) as Lela; Garrett Clayton (ABC Family’s “The Fosters,” Disney Channel’s “Shake It Up”) as Tanner.


Choreography:                Christopher Scott (TV’s “So You Think You Can Dance” and “Dancing With The Stars,” Step Up franchise)



My Take on the Movie

We ended up watching this movie together as a family and we loved it! While the kids said that they still thought the first movie was better, I will say that we all loved the premise of the movie, the music and the characters. Also, the end message of the movie was powerful and allows all girls and really anyone to see and hear when it comes to writing your own story and not being constrained to what is “written” for you. Get ready to smail, tap your feet and hum along – you will love this!



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Dads in the Limelight ( #limelightdads ) – Rich Bennett ( @ColoradoRich ) #DadSpotlight

Dads in the Limelight Series

Our 552nd Dad in the Limelight is Rich Bennett. I want to thank Rich for being a part of this series. It has been great getting connected with him and now sharing him with all of you.


Rich-Bennett 1) Tell me about yourself, (as well as how you are in the limelight for my readers knowledge)

I am passionate about ‘doing family’ well. A lot of us come from a place of brokenness when it comes to family. As a child of divorce, and seeing the long-term consequences it can have on a family, I am committed to not repeating that cycle – and helping other dads do the same.

As part of that commitment, I am a regular contributor to a blog for dads called Dad Matters. For two years, my fellow writers and I have endeavored to encourage dads on their journey, regardless of their age, stage or life situation.


2) Tell me about your family

My wife and I celebrated twenty years of marriage last year by taking our whole family on a cruise. When I asked her where she wanted to go, she pointed out that it wouldn’t be long before our 15-year old son and 12-year old daughter would be heading off to college, so she wanted to create a memory we’d all enjoy. She’s smart like that.

Living in Colorado, we enjoy most all of what the mountains have to offer: camping, skiing, hiking and biking as a family.


Rich-Bennett 3) What has been the largest challenge you have had in being a father?

There are so many. Keeping your cool when you feel like your kids have disrespected you. Asking for their forgiveness when you’ve clearly blown it.

Early in my fatherhood journey, I had to come to terms with the reality that my interests and passions are often not the same as my son’s. I was really into sports. I loved going to sporting events … watching sports on TV … and collecting baseball cards. If it was sports-related, I was generally all about it. My son has lots of interests, but really can take or leave the sports scene.


4) What advice would you give to other fathers?Rich-Bennett

Be intentional. Good parenting, and being a good spouse, doesn’t just happen. You don’t just wake up one day, and you’re a spectacular home builder … a concert-level pianist … or an accomplished business professional. You have to seek out ways to improve. Talk to other dads. Seek the wisdom of those who’ve been there. Read good books, blogs or websites.

And cut yourself a break. You’re going to blow it. It’s OK. We all do. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Instead, do something about it. Commit to change, and get better. Talk to your spouse, or other dads, when you need ideas on how to navigate certain situations.


5) How have you come to balance parenthood and outside life?

I have to be careful about managing my tendency to work late to stay on top of things. If you struggle with that like I do at times, check out Andy Stanley’s book Choosing to Cheat, where he talks about cheating the less important things. Hint: it’s not your family.

Another thing … if you’re married, don’t stop dating your wife. Perhaps the best thing you can do for your kids is to have a healthy marriage. Plan one date a month. And keep chatter about the kids to a minimum when you are out on your date.



6) What have you learned from the fathers that you have interacted with?

Most of us fathers struggle with a lot of the same things – and then we can struggle to talk candidly about that. It’s not really a winning combination. But once you are willing to talk about that inspire, challenge, and confuse you as a dad – and ask for ideas and advice — it opens the door to the reality that we all need help. Talking with other dads candidly is a great place to start.


7) What else would you share regarding your experiences as a father thus far?

I love being a dad. I truly do. Most of us struggle with selfishness. If getting married doesn’t begin to whittle away at your selfish tendencies, having kids can chip off big chunks off the reality that it’s not all about you.


Rich-Bennett 8) What have been the most memorable experiences that you have had thus far as a parent?

My top 5

  • The day they are born. There’s nothing like it.
  • Vacations together.
  • Serving the community together as a family.
  • Reading with your kids. My 12-year old daughter and I still read virtually every day. It’s our daily special time. I read aloud with my son for more than a decade, and sometimes he still lets me.
  • Watching them become their own little, quirky, quality, God-honoring people. Just like us, they don’t always ‘get it right.’ But when they do, it’s cool to see.

If you have any questions for Rich, please leave a comment here and I will make sure that he gets them so that he may be able to respond!

Also, do you know a Dad in the Limelight? If so, please email me their contact information so that they too can be a part of this series!

Dad of Divas, dadofdivas.com

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Paddington Throws First Pitch at Cubs v. Dodgers Game





10,000 fans at Wrigley Field

received a Paddington plush bear


As fans in the stands wished a happy birthday to Paddington, the Chicago Cub’s Mascot, Clark, escorted him to the pitcher’s mound and coached Britain’s Marmalade-loving bear on how to throw an American baseball.  Paddington tossed out the game’s ceremonial first pitch, followed by taking photos with Clark and kids at Wrigley Field.


PADDINGTON tells the story of the comic misadventures of a young Peruvian bear who travels to London in search of a home.  First introduced to children in Michael Bond’s 1958 book, A Bear Called Paddington, and the subsequent Paddington Bear series – which has sold over 35 million copies and been translated into 40 languages – Paddington is now an utterly charming and fun hit film, available on Blu-ray™, DVD and in Digital HD for all to enjoy at home.


From writer-director Paul King and producer David Heyman (Harry Potter Films), the film features a stellar cast with Emmy® nominee Hugh Bonneville (TV’s “Downton Abbey”), Oscar® nominee Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine), Oscar nominee Julie Walters (Billy Elliot, Educating Rita), Oscar winner Jim Broadbent (Iris), Peter Capaldi (TV’s “Doctor Who,” “The Musketeers”) with Oscar winner Nicole Kidman (The Hours), and Ben Whishaw (Skyfall) as the voice of Paddington. The Rotten Tomatoes Certified Fresh film has earned over $259 million worldwide at the box office to date.

Dads in the Limelight ( #limelightdads ) – J. Scot Heathman ( @jscotheathman ) #dadchat

Dads in the Limelight Series

Our 551st Dad in the Limelight is Scot Heathman. I want to thank Scot for being a part of this series. It has been great getting connected with him and now sharing him with all of you.


Jeremiah-Scot-Heathman1) Tell me about yourself, (as well as how you are in the limelight for my reader’s knowledge)

My name is Jeremiah “Scot” Heathman, I go by my middle name and yes there’s only one “T” in Scot. I am a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Air Force having served nearly 18 years. I’ve also been a pilot for many of those years flying the KC-135 Stratotanker which is essentially a 55 year old flying gas can that can air refuel other aircraft. I’ve also flown the C-17 Globemaster III which is like flying a massive house that’s able to airlift tanks, boats, patients and Martian Spacecraft. The latter is true, as I’ve airlifted two: the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Phoenix Mars Lander. This all sounds a bit militaristic so when people ask me what I do I simply say I’m a Servant-Leader for some amazing Airmen and that I’m an expert at passing gas and delivering hope.


2) Tell me about your family

I grew up in Rochester, MN. Upon graduating from John Marshall High School I earned an ROTC Scholarship to the Illinois Institute of Technology, from which I earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering and received my commission into the USAF.


After graduating college, I attended pilot training in Southwest Texas (Del Rio) and went on to fly the KC-135 at Fairchild AFB in Spokane, WA. That’s where I met my wife. Well….not really. Our meeting was a game of chance. Literally, I met her while at a casino in North Lake Tahoe [I was attending a wedding and she was on vacation]. We spoke for a few minutes, exchanged contact information and then she went back to Boston and I went back to Spokane. We had no clue that a near 2,800-mile relationship would work out so well. We were engaged the Summer of 2001 with plans to marry over Thanksgiving that year. Little did we know the events on September 11th, 2001 would be the driving reason we decided to accelerate our vows. Both of our worlds were suddenly thrust into a direction neither of us could’ve imagined. As I sat alert on the days following 9-11, I wondered if I would ever see her again. We made plans for her to fly out to Spokane during the last week of September and were married on 27th. After our courthouse wedding, she flew back to Boston. We would spend the entire first year of our marriage apart as I deployed to several locations in the Middle East.


Eventually, I moved her from Boston to Spokane so we could start a family. And that’s exactly what we did. In the summer of 2004, I moved the three of us from Spokane to Charleston AFB, SC. That wasn’t a typo….the three of us moved as Mary was pregnant with our soon to be little boy, Joshua.


Joshua was born in October 2004. He is, in the immortal words of Data’s father from Goonies, “my greatest invention.”


3) What has been the largest challenge you have had in being a father?

At age 3, our son was diagnosed with Autism. I will never forget the day I found out. I was actually living on base for the week sitting an Alert Tour. My wife called to tell me the diagnosis. We knew something was up and he did several unusual things as a child and we decided to get him screened. Upon hearing the words, my life turned upside down. I was confused, angry, and sad. The news also left me with a sinking feeling that too may unknowns still lie ahead. In typical Type-A fashion, I initially thought I could fix this, but deep down I knew there was no fix. I sat in the alert dorm and just stared off into nothing for the next several hours and finally settled in on the thought that I had no control over this. I sat there a until I couldn’t sit in that room any longer. So I went to the local bookstore and started reading books on Autism. Today, we are now 7 years into our Autism journey. I know a lot more than I did that day. But we’ve spent thousands of dollars on trips to his specialist in Kansas City and all the necessities he requires for his special dietary needs. We’ve also experienced countless hours of stress and anxiety, as each day is a challenge for Joshua. The greatest stress is not knowing how I will handle it.


Jeremiah-Scot-Heathman4) What advice would you give to other fathers?

I know I’ve painted a picture of doom and gloom here, but Joshua and his Autism is a gift. I know I am capable of being there for him and our family, but I don’t always execute that plan properly. I’m not the patient one nor do I handle the stress that well. My wife is truly the rock through all of this, but I know I can do better. I must continue to educate myself, practice a little patience, find constructive means to manage the stress. More importantly, I should never stop fighting for that little guy. As a father, you need to play an important role in your child’s life and realize when you’re not. You need to be the protector, the mentor, the playmate, the father and the listener. We all make mistakes, but we can always make ourselves better if we’re willing to identify our faults and make the effort to remove them from our lives. It’s never too late to improve yourself….this is my best advice on your fatherhood journey.


5) How have you come to balance parenthood and outside life? Jeremiah-Scot-Heathman

This is a tough subject for me….especially being in the Air Force for nearly 18 years. I’ve been pulled in many different directions and it’s easy to say my family has sacrificed just as much as I to support my career. But even through the deployments, late nights and finishing the work days at home, I’ve learned that I have to exploit every means to show my family just how much I love them. I’m far from perfect in balancing my life, but what I can do is spend those unpredictable moments with them enjoying life. Here are some things I do: find a project that Joshua and I can work on together. Play Mario Kart and get my butt kicked on a fairly routine basis. Leave some notes of encouragement on the counter as I leave to go to work or on the road. Just being ‘Present’ is a big step in balancing parenthood and an outside life. When I’m not ‘Present’ that’s when things seem to fall apart for me and those around me. I’m still learning to better balance my home life.


6) What have you learned from the fathers that you have interacted with?

Just have fun! Laugh, smile, relax and be goofy! It’s not all about discipline for the sake of disciplining. Let the small things roll off your back and don’t take it out on your little one’s who are looking to you for comfort. I learned that lesson from my wife. Your children shouldn’t fear you, but know that they can count on you. Walking on eggshells throughout life is no way to live. It’s the worst way to live! Perhaps the most important piece of advice I’ve received was to “take care of yourself first.” If you’re not doing this how can you expect to take care of the one’s who rely on you?


7) What else would you share regarding your experiences as a father thus far?

You are never too old, too stubborn, or too set in your ways to learn something to make yourself a better father. We should take solace in those humbling moments that come our way. These are the life lessons we need…even when we don’t want them. I’ve learned never to stop looking for help and support. I can’t be expected to know all the ins and outs on how to best support a child with Autism but I should never stop trying. His personal experiences are different than other children on the Autism Spectrum. They are as unique as you and I and deserve intense study and understanding. Don’t be afraid to show and talk about your emotions with your little ones. They are very smart and often just want to understand what is stressing you out. My son is incredibly empathetic which is not a common trait among Autistic children. He takes great pride in supporting my wife and I when we are sad, tired, sick and stressed. He wants to feel like he can support his family despite all of his social challenges. Give your kids the opportunity to show they can play a critical role in the family.


Jeremiah-Scot-Heathman8) What have been the most memorable experiences that you have had thus far as a parent?

My most memorable moment was watching my son at a Tae Kwan Do tournament. He was literally kicking butt in every event….took four Gold medals and was on his way to a fifth and final medal. When he entered his last event [board breaking], he didn’t do all that well…and he knew it. There were five children in his belt class competing and he clearly finished last based on my assessment. During the judges decision Joshua was awarded a Silver Medal. I was confused, my wife was confused and even Joshua was confused. He walked away from the judges table but stopped and went right up to his Master. He told her that there must be a mistake and that he didn’t deserve this medal. It turned out the judges made a mistake. There were two Joshuas in group and they announced the scores for the wrong Joshua. They corrected the problem and awarded the other Joshua Second Place. Our Joshua finished dead last. Our son took off his medal off and gave it back with a smile on his face. Instead, he earned a participation ribbon. At the end of the tournament, the Master thanked everyone for attending but had one more presentation to make. She picked up a medal and asked that our son come forward. Because he stepped forward and told the judges and Master he didn’t feel he deserved his medal and that there must have been an error, Joshua was awarded a Gold Medal for his Act of Integrity. My wife and I were instantly overwhelmed with tears. How could a young boy with Autism, with all his social challenges and behavior struggles in life pull off such a selfless act? Perhaps we as parents have done something right for him and taught him some of life’s most important lessons. As I said earlier, his Autism is not a burden…it is a gift. And one that keeps me humble and wanting to be a better father each and every day!
If you have any questions for Scot, please leave a comment here and I will make sure that he gets them so that he may be able to respond!

Also, do you know a Dad in the Limelight? If so, please email me their contact information so that they too can be a part of this series!

Dad of Divas, dadofdivas.com

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Skylanders Teams with Nintendo for SuperCharged Collaboration


Skylanders® is packing some major star power with the introduction of two of Nintendo’s iconic characters — Donkey Kong and Bowser — as guest stars in Skylanders SuperChargers. The characters will be available exclusively in Skylanders SuperChargers Starter Packs for the Wii U, Wii and Nintendo 3DS family of systems, available now for pre-order. E3 2015 attendees will be the first to get their hands on the characters and their specially created vehicles.


Developed by Vicarious Visions, Skylanders SuperChargers introduces Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser, which usher in a first-of-its-kind collaboration for the Skylanders franchise. These new characters will be exclusive to the Nintendo platforms.  As the pioneers of the toys-to-life category, Skylanders is innovating yet again by infusing magic into the Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser figures, enabling them to be playable in both Skylanders SuperChargers and select amiibo compatible games with a simple twist of the characters’ bases.


“Activision Blizzard has always cherished our collaboration with Nintendo, and we are grateful for decades of partnership,” said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. “Since we made the first toys-to-life game, some of our most dedicated players have been Nintendo fans around the world. Skylanders is delighted to welcome beloved guest stars Donkey Kong and Bowser into its magical world.”


The goal with this creative collaboration is to honor the personalities and heritage of Donkey Kong and Bowser that fans have come to love from previous games, while creating a fresh look and feel for the guest stars in Skylands. For example, Turbo Charge Donkey Kong’s powers and attacks include barrel throws and exploding bongos and other classic Donkey Kong powers that pay homage to the lore of the character, as well as exciting new moves for the iconic character. Hammer Slam Bowser’s powers range from commanding Koopas, summoning Warp Pipes as well as fierce fire-breathing attacks.


“Activision’s Skylanders games have been very popular on Nintendo platforms, and we hope this collaboration will delight fans of the franchise,” said Satoru Iwata, President of Nintendo Co., Ltd. “We believe this unique approach will help expand the entire category and make it appealing to even more players.”


The trailblazing vehicles-to-life innovation of Skylanders SuperChargers is realized when players take the helm of powerful, tricked-out land, sea and sky vehicles.
Skylanders SuperChargers is a high octane action-adventure videogame where fans have the freedom to speed across Skylands’ roads in vehicular combat, race down roaring rapids and engage in aerial dogfights as they barrel roll through enemy swarms.


Skylanders SuperChargers gameplay is revved up on Nintendo platforms, as Portal Masters can also pilot and steer Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser’s custom designed, never-before-seen vehicles, Barrel Blaster and Clown Cruiser. The special Skylanders guest stars and vehicles will be playable, cooperatively or alone, in Skylanders SuperChargers on the following Nintendo platforms: Wii U, Wii and the Nintendo 3DS family of systems.  Both characters and vehicles are playable in Skylanders SuperChargers across all three Nintendo systems.


In Skylanders SuperChargers, the evil Kaos has unleashed The Darkness to take control of Skylands. Fortunately, a special team of Skylanders known as the SuperChargers has been assembled to pilot an incredible fleet of vehicles with the power to travel through the destruction – over land, sea, and sky!  But with Skylands on the verge of collapse, the Skylanders have reached out across all dimensions to call for reinforcements.  Answering the call is the most unexpected duo – Donkey Kong and Bowser!  Using their own elite vehicles to magically travel between worlds, they have joined the epic battle against Kaos and The Darkness!


Skylanders is bringing another trailblazing innovation with the launch of Skylanders SuperChargers on September 20, 2015 in North America. The new game supports all 300+ Skylanders toys from previous games, enabling all Skylanders characters to pilot land, sea or sky-based vehicles. The vehicles are playable in-game and many feature moving parts, making them also fun to play with in the physical world. Players will also have the ability to customize all vehicles in-game with super cool modifications and upgradeable weapons.


For the ultimate gameplay experience, players can pair a SuperCharger Skylander with its signature vehicle to create a SuperCharged combination, unlocking exclusive mods that rev up the performance of the vehicle and abilities of the character.  Players can also have fun seeing Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser pilot any of the 20 SuperCharger vehicles available in the new game.


Fans can pre-order Skylanders SuperChargers at select retail destinations worldwide. The Skylanders Wii U Starter Pack’s suggested retail price is $74.99 and includes Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and his signature vehicle, Barrel Blaster. The Skylanders Wii and 3DS Starter Packs’ suggested retail prices are $74.99 and $64.99, respectively, and include Hammer Slam Bowser and his signature vehicle, Clown Cruiser. All three Skylanders SuperChargers Starter Packs for Nintendo platforms also include Super Shot Stealth Elf, newly designed Portal of Power®+ and the full AAA game*.

Skylanders-SuperChargersAbout the Skylanders® Franchise

The award-winning, $3 billion Skylanders franchise has sold through more than 250 million action figures1 since pioneering the toys-to-life category in 2011 with the debut of Skylanders® Spyro’s Adventure. The game originated a play pattern that seamlessly bridged physical and virtual worlds across multiple platforms. In 2012, Skylanders® Giants further evolved the genre and added LightCore®characters to the collection of interaction figures.  Skylanders® SWAP Force, which launched in 2013, introduced an all new play pattern – swapability. In 2014, Skylanders® Trap Team reversed the magic of bringing toys to life by allowing players pull characters out of the digital world into the physical world and became the number 1 kids’ console game globally1. The game was also the first console game to simultaneously bring the entire AAA experience to tablets.

My 10 Favorite Greek Gods – Beyond The Lightning Thief!

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I have always been a fan of history and mythology. That being said I read The Lightning Thief when it first came out ten years ago. Rick Riordan did an amazing job at bringing together mythology and present day together with characters that all readers could relate to. All of the books that came to follow  were action-packed thrill rides that not only were entertaining, but they were also educational.

To celebrate the 10 years of The Lightning Thief I wanted to share my Top Ten Favorite Greek Gods (In no Certain Order)!


  1. Zeus  King of the gods, the ruler of Mount Olympus and the god of the Sky, Weather, Thunder, Law, Order and Fate.
  2. Poseidon – God of the Sea, Rivers, Floods, Droughts, Storms, Earthquakes and Horses.
  3. Hermes – Hermes was the god of Travel, Messengers, Trade, Thievery, Cunning Wiles, Language, Writing, Diplomacy, Athletics, and Animal Husbandry
  4. Hephaestus – Hephaestus was the god of Fire, Metalworking, Stonemasonry, Sculpture and Volcanism.
  5. Hades – Hades was the King of the Underworld and the god of Death, the Dead, and the Hidden Wealth of the Earth
  6. Athena – Athena was the goddess of Wisdom, Warfare, Strategy, Heroic Endeavor, Handicrafts and Reason
  7. Apollo – God of Music, Healing, Plague, Prophecies, Poetry, and Archery, Apollo is most notably known as the Sun god.
  8. Aphrodite – God of Love and Beauty
  9. Dionysus – God of Wine, Parties and Festivals, Madness, Civilization, Drunkenness and Pleasure.
  10. Ares – Ares is most famously known as the god of War, Bloodlust, Violence, Manly Courage, and Civil Order





Catch a sneak peek of Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, Book One: The Sword of Summer available online at ReadRiordan.com!



The perfect gift for new and faithful Percy fans: Barnes & Noble offers customers an exclusive Collector’s Edition of The Lightning Thief to celebrate the 10th anniversary. This version includes extra content from both author and illustrator as well as a specially designed jacket and endpapers. Purchase here.



Available starting June 12th, visit ReadRiordan.com to download a special 10th anniversary Percy Pack Activity Kit.



Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse–Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy’s mom finds out, she knows it’s time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he’ll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends–one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena–Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.


CELEBRATE PERCY’S 10TH ANNIVERSARY with The Lightning Thief, the book that started the internationally best-selling Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.


THE LIGHTNING THIEF has sold millions of copies worldwide, appears on school reading lists nationwide, and inspired a major motion picture. Accolades include:

  • Included in Time Magazine’s 2014 List of 100 best Young-Adult Books of All Times
  • A New York Times Notable Book of 20015
  • A Child Magazine Best Book of the Year
  • A School Library Journal Best Book of 2005
  • More than 6 year on the New York Times Best Sellers List (and counting!)



Visit the Official Website

Follow Rick Riordan on Facebook, Instagram and TwitterPercy-Jackson


How would you like to win the above book set for yourself or for your family? All you need to do is fill out the below form to be entered.  The contest will run until July 31, 2015.


Percy Jackson and the Olympians box set!

Winner must be a resident of the U.S.

Winners are chosen at random, if you want all your chances counted, make sure you leave individual comments, not all of them in one!

Winner has 48 hours to contact me or another name will be chosen.



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Having Fun With The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

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You all know that my family and I are BIG readers. We love to get into a good book, and get lost in the story and the characters in general. That is why we love to take part in the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge. With it now being in its’ 9th year,  the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge is a free online reading program dedicated to stopping the “summer slide” by encouraging kids to read throughout the summer months when school is out. This year’s challenge theme is “Power Up & Read,” powered by ENERGIZER®.

We are parents that continually try and provide learning opportunities for our kids, whether in or outside of books. Why do we do this? We do not want our kids to fall prey to what is called “summer slide,” or the common loss of skills due to being out of school, when they do not read over the summer. As educators ourselves, we have read the research that shows that teachers spend four to six weeks re-teaching materials to students because of the “summer slide” (Alexander et. al, 2007), and we definitely did not want our own kids to be part of these statistics. So we find that summer is the perfect time for our kids to discover the power of choice. We let our kids ry out as many and as variant topics of books as they can think of. You see, according to the Kids & Family Reading Report, 5th edition, 91% of kids (ages 6-17) say that their favorite books are the ones they pick out themselves, so we indulge this and allow them to explore and see the world in different ways and the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge helps us in this pursuit.


  • So How does it work?
    • Starting May 4, 2015 – September 4, 2015, kids can log their reading minutes (online and via mobile) as they read to break last year’s world record of 304,749,861 minutes.
    • Parents can sign-up their kids at www.scholastic.com/summer. It’s FREE!
    • Kids can also enter monthly sweepstakes to win fabulous prizes, and earn digital rewards when they complete weekly reading challenges.


  • What’s new this year for kids?
    • Kids can unlock 12 original short stories (exclusively for this year’s challenge) from favorite children’s authors and access never-before-seen videos from the authors! Each of the authors has written a unique short story using the same opening sentence, which is, “I glanced over my shoulder to make sure that no one had followed me into the shadowy library, then took a deep breath and opened the glowing book…”
    • The authors include Blue Balliett, Patrik Henry Bass, Varian Johnson, Gordon Korman, Michael Northtrop, Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pierce, Roland Smith, R.L. Stine, Tui T. Sutherland, Lauren Tarshis, Wendy Wan-Long Shang and Jude Watson.
    • Each story has a “read along” audio component, inviting kids of all ages and reading levels to enjoy these highly engaging stories.
      • They can play the new “innovation machine” game, an interactive creative writing game, and enter its contest to win prizes.
      • Kids can log minutes on-the-go to earn digital rewards and badges as they hit reading milestones.


  • What’s new this year for parents?
    • The parents site features new, daily tips for parents called “The Daily Digest.”
    • Parents can enter weekly sweepstakes to win a “Power Up & Read Kit” and watch videos about summer reading activities to keep you “innovative” all summer long. The prize pack includes: Scholastic tote bag, water bottle, a copy of Reading Unbound by Jeffrey Wilhelm and Michael Smith, $10 gift certificate to Scholastic Store Online, Energizer® brand batteries, Scholastic books, and more.
    • Parents can download free resources, including printables and booklists for kids of all ages.



FIND OUT MORE *please include*

Sign up for the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Find more Scholastic Resources to keep your kids reading all summer long!

Learn more about the Energizer® Instant Win Game

Follow @Scholastic on Twitter

Like the Energizer® Bunny on Facebook



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