Thursday, October 19, 2017

Book of the Week: JOAN, Quarry Hall #1

Excerpt:

What kind of villain used twine to tie up his victims?
Joan's wrists itched from the fibers as she hobbled down the aisle between tall metal shelves full of grimy crates and packing boxes, and gave another experimental tug with her wrists bound behind her back. A sharp sensation flashed up her arm, followed by warm wet. Either sweat, or she had cut herself with the effort. She was betting on blood, because she had sat for four hours in a dark, grimy storage shed, sweating. The only thing that kept it from being a sweatbox straight out of a prison break movie was that it was made of plastic, not metal. All the time she sat there, no one had asked her any questions. She could have been another crate stored in the shed, for all the attention her captors paid her.
That was about to end, obviously. She would have preferred that they had put a hood over her head, but maybe that was a waste of time, since she had seen three of them. They didn't care what she saw, meaning they could keep her quiet and unable to use what she knew against them.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The War Room



Please mark the date for the Faith and Fellowship Book Festival, and plan on attending!

Where is Etna? Look for Columbus, OH and then look to the right. Better yet, just plug the address into your map app. Check out this link and see all the authors, all the different kinds of books, the panel discussions available. Oh, yeah, and BOOKS to buy.

I mean, come on, it's almost time to start CHRISTMAS SHOPPING!!

I'm gonna be there -- I hope to see YOU!


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Book of the Week: JOAN, Quarry Hall #1

The next five weeks will feature Quarry Hall books, because in November, JENNIFER, Quarry Hall #11, will be released from Desert Breeze Publishing.

Book #1: JOAN

Under a false identity, Joan finally has the life she has always wanted. With pressure to deepen a relationship on one side, and the threat of an old nemesis finding her on the other, she refuses to run, no matter what it costs her.
Into this chaos comes a letter from a man claiming to be her unknown father, and an invitation to visit him at Quarry Hall. He has a proposition for her.
Joan can make a big difference for good in the world, using her father's money. She hungers for the family and sense of belonging that Quarry Hall offers. To rescue her closest friend, she would sell the soul she doesn't believe she possesses.
In the end, Joan will have to give up the lies that have kept her alive all these years.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Off the Bookshelf: FAIREST, by Marissa Meyer

FAIREST is a play on, "Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all," and gives it a really wrenching twist.

How?
Well, to start with, the "fairest" of them all doesn't look in mirrors. In fact, by the end of the book, all mirrors are outlawed.
The face she shows the world isn't hers -- stolen, in fact.
"Fair" has so many different connotations.

Meyer shows just what a talented writer she is by making us LIKE the evil stepmother/wicked witch/cruel enchantress character, Queen Levana, of the Lunar Chronicles. How? By showing how she became what she was, the reasons for the things she did. Seen through Levana's eyes, feeling her pain, you almost want to root for her. It's hard to hate someone who seems to have the whole world and all the cards stacked against her.

In many ways, yes, she is the best ruler Luna ever had ... but considering the self-centered, egotistical cretins who came before her, that's really not saying much. Maybe the worst kind of criminal is the one who honestly has good intentions. Or at least has convinced herself her intentions are good. But you know what they say about a road paved with good intentions.

If you love the Lunar Chronicles, you don't want to miss this part of the story, no matter how much it makes you squirm.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

New Book: MUSIC IN THE NIGHT

From Desert Breeze Publishing

Madame Collete informed Carmen that her pay was being applied to the dresses Frierri wanted her to wear when she entertained. She smiled warmly enough, but the warmth never reached her eyes. She added that if Carmen did well, she would be offered a room at the hotel, so she wouldn't have any expenses to worry about besides "making pretty." Carmen complied with the fittings for the dresses and tried to calculate how much money she had saved. If only she hadn't bought new boots last week, and a cloak to replace her threadbare shawl. Precious little remained of her pitiful savings, compared to the distance she had to travel to evade Gio Frierri's reach.

"Cleveland certainly isn't far enough," Carmen whispered now, staring at the condensation on the window.

She stood up straight, frowning. When had the idea of Cleveland come into her head? If anything, she should head west, maybe try to reach her father's friends in Denver.

Carmen shivered, hearing Essie, her make believe friend, insisting she had to go to Cleveland. Perhaps the strain of her circumstances had become too much for her and she had broken, at long last? She was losing her mind, imagining a friend who came to her in the darkness and shadows and promised help and whispered advice. Yet what if she weren't losing her mind?

Her mother had always told her to pay attention to her dreams, and to never dismiss the impossible when it happened in front of her. Anna had taught her to search for details and patterns and think about the why and how of things. Otherwise, how would she have realized that wonderful, small, helpful things happened when she sang?

Friday, October 13, 2017

New Book: MUSIC IN THE NIGHT

From Desert Breeze Publishing

When he asked her to sing again, she hesitated. He rapped out the titles of songs she had never heard of, but didn't look upset when each time she shook her head and told him she didn't know them.

"That's all right. You'll learn them, and right quick," he said, looking her over again. "Get rid of those widow's weeds and put on some decent clothes."

"These are all I have, and I'm still in mourning," Carmen had said. "Why should it matter what I wear in the kitchen, or what I sing, for that matter? My friends haven't complained about the songs I sing."

"Yeah, but my friends will." He grinned at her, and she shuddered with the momentary illusion that his teeth were pointed. "You're gonna be the new, private entertainment for special guests."

"Thank you, but no." She wished she had held onto the paring knife, even knowing it wouldn't have done her any good. "I'll stay here in the kitchen, if it's all the same with you."

"It's not." He snatched hold of her by her elbow and yanked her up off the stool, kicking aside the bucket with the potato peelings. "You work in the special parlor, or you don't work at all. Understand?"

"Yes, I understand."

He left with a chuckle. Carmen waited until the break after the lunchtime rush, then went to the manager to ask for her pay up through that morning. Frierri must have anticipated she would try to run. The manager, who had always been kind to her, looked afraid when he told her to report to Madame Collette. He whispered that if she was smart, she would leave town tonight.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

New Book: MUSIC IN THE NIGHT

From Desert Breeze Publishing

She had grown comfortable enough with her surroundings and her fellow laborers in the enormous hotel kitchen that she had ventured to sing over her work, peeling and cutting and kneading. She had been happier than she had felt since before her father died. Since before Richard Boniface whispered his sweet, false promises of love. Her co-workers liked her voice and requested songs from her. The last few days, other workers came in during breaks, hoping to hear her sing. They didn't even mind that all the songs she knew were hymns and spirituals and camp meeting songs. Carmen had thought perhaps she had a chance to plant some spiritual seed, and she had felt that sweet contentment she thought she would never feel again.

A man in a slick black suit, with a red silk vest and a pointed black beard came into the kitchen yesterday, while she sang in rhythm with the potato peelings falling from her knife. He didn't make his presence known until she finished, though she thought she had sensed something, some change in the comfortably steamy atmosphere thick with the smells of good cooking.

"Very nice," he said, his smile cold when his voice startled a squeak out of her. He came around to stand on the other side of the table from her. "You should be singing upstairs."

"I'm a cook."

"Yes, with those clothes, what else would you be?" His upper lip curled as he looked her over. "I'm Gio Frierri. You know who I am?"

"You're the owner." Carmen set the knife down on the table and wiped her hands on her apron, then kept her hands on her lap, hidden under the table, so he wouldn't see them shaking.