Showing posts with label romance. Show all posts
Showing posts with label romance. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Goodreads Giveaway -- Capricorn Cravings

Capricorn Cravings was published in print format 10 months after it first hit the Kindle market, and with two new books being released over the holiday season I am only just now scheduling a giveaway.

Riley Shaughnessy has the perfect life. Her veterinary practice is thriving, and she loves living in the small town in the Colorado mountains, where no one knows the shocking secret of her past. She loves to gallop her palomino mare across the vast expanse of public land bordering the town, and after a long period of self-denial, she has even committed to a date with handsome horse wrangler, Randy Hansen. But now, she knows her assistant, Jamie, would never willingly abandon her child, so why has she disappeared? Something dark and sinister is taking place, and it all started on the day hunky Powell Stewart, with the piercing blue eyes, came into her life in a strange and unexpected way. Her inner voice tells her to stay as far away from him as she can...

Here are the details of the Giveaway:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Capricorn Cravings by Trish Jackson

Capricorn Cravings

by Trish Jackson

Giveaway ends March 20, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Valentine's Day -- Dedicated to Romance

With Valentine's Day being just around the corner this seemed like the perfect time to write about my passion--romance. 


So what exactly is romance? 

Romance is a noun. Put an 'A' in front of it , as in they had a romance, it means a relationship or attachment that is usually between lovers, but it may also be used in an abstract way to describe someone's passion, as in she had a lifetime romance with historical homes.  

Valentine's Day has been so commercialized that people have lost its true purpose and today they give gifts to anyone they love, whether it be a lover, a child, a sibling, a parent or even a friend, but true romance between lovers is to do with the emotional side of love. It may include passion, excitement, allure, and desire among other things, but it is also encompassed in the little things lovers do to show their affection.

He may spontaneously pick a bunch of wildflowers and present them to her while taking a walk, or she may turn the lights down low and set the dinner table with candles and include a bottle of champagne with the meal. Little romantic acts show your partner that you care, and keep the romance alive in a relationship.

Here are a few ideas for putting the romance back into your life--or keeping it there this Valentine's Day.


  1. If you plan to ask her to marry you, get down on your knees (that is so romantic and never goes out of style) and pop the question some place crazy on Valentine's Day.
  2. Fill your Jacuzzi with something fragrant, and light some candles, or go skinny-dipping on a deserted beach. Or, if it's cold, light the fire and lay a blanket on the carpet in front of the fireplace. There's something very romantic about real wood fires.
  3. Take him to a wildly expensive restaurant on Valentine's Day night and pay for the dinner. Remember, a little champagne buzz does wonders for romance. 
  4. Send her dozens of red roses and a giant teddy bear.
  5. Get tickets to his favorite sporting event. It may not seem like a romantic idea, but it will show him how much you care about his happiness.
  6. Buy your special someone something that sparkles--like diamonds or any jewelry. 
  7. Chocolates have always been a favorite, especially for women, but be sure she isn't trying to lose weight before giving them to her. Chocolate covered strawberries go well with bubbly.
  8. Do something outrageously crazy, like skydiving, or take a romantic horse-drawn sleigh ride in the moonlight.
  9. Send an anonymous Valentine's Card to someone you secretly admire.
  10. Buy a couple of cans of whipped cream and let your imagination run wild...

So how about some comments about what you do to make Valentine's Day romantic with that special someone. Don't forget to get your lover in the mood -- buy them a romance novel.

Get mine Here 




Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Aquarius Addiction - Review by Joan Ellis

UK psychological thriller author Joan Ellis just sent me this wonderful review for Aquarius Addiction. I am thrilled with it. 


Tight, taut and thrilling, Trish Jackson at her best.

Trish Jackson can tell a tale. Birth, death, love and hate form the bedrock with a generous helping of Voodoo, kidnap and murder thrown in to spice things up. Trish Jackson deals as expertly as ever with all the elements in this fast, sexy romance. Her fans will love this book and the gutsy story-telling is guaranteed to garner her even more readers.

Meet FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander. No ordinary agent.

When she discovers she’s terminally ill, far from buckling under, she behaves like a typical Aquarius, telling no-one, fighting back and vowing to beat the disease.

What a time for her to meet the gorgeous Andre who needs her help finding his sister who has been missing for four years. She feels an electric connection with him and puts him first on her Bucket List. Just one problem - his fiancée.

Of course, nothing is quite what it seems and there are plenty of twists and turns along the way.

Trish Jackson does what she does best, expertly leading the reader through a maze of events before finally, wrapping up the loose ends as neatly as any good cop.

To give more clues to the story would spoil the plot.


If you like your romances tinged with danger, told tight and taut, this one’s for you.

Get it now from Amazon

Friday, January 30, 2015

It Matters Radio - Trish jackson

Last night I had the privilege of being interviewed by Ken Weene on It Matters Radio, about my new Redneck P.I. Adventures book, Backwoods Boogie.


First I have to thank all three presenters -- Ken, Monica and Kerry. They are so warm and friendly, it's like being invited into their homes. There's even a cat called Punky who manages to get into a lot of the coverage, which made me feel more at home since I love animals.

We discussed the salient points of Backwoods Boogie -- first about the unlikely Picadilly Tearoom -- a British tea room in a little redneck town in Alabama called Quisby.  Ken asked what they were serving I said probably cucumber sandwiches and scones with strawberry jam and thick cream. Of course the interview took place at my time 9:30 pm so I actually had a glass of wine in front of me. Monica was in central time, and hour behind me, and Ken was in mountain time, and Kerry in Pacific time. Before my interview, a very talented musician, John Cee Stannard was the musical guest, broadcasting from London, England where it was some ungodly hour of the morning.

Some of my family members and friends attended and I wished I could have interacted more with them and the others who were there. 

We talked about Twila's mission to rescue almost 100 abused and mistreated dogs from an illegal puppy mill, and her venture with biker Bart and his vigilante's gang to take down a dog-fighting ring. It just happens to be Superbowl weekend and we discussed the fact that Godaddy agreed to remove their ad from the Superbowl because it depicted puppies being sold over the Internet -- which is how a lot of puppy mill dogs are sold.

Then we discussed my newest book, Aquarius Addiction, which had just been released the same day. 


Here's a link to the show: http://www.spreecast.com/events/talent-of-john-cee-trish-jackson/clips/fun-time-from-talent-of-john-cee-trish-jackson

Backwoods Boogie on Amazon

Aquarius Addiction on Amazon


Thursday, January 29, 2015

Aquarius Addiction

Woohoo! My newest romantic suspense thriller, Aquarius Addiction has been released!


Anyone who thinks God doesn't have a macabre sense of humor answer this—why did he bring Andre Rossouw into Arlette's life on the same day her doctor told her she was about to die?
Attractive FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander displays all the character traits of her star sign, Aquarius, being feisty, eccentric, freedom-loving, flirtatious, rebellious and unpredictable. She may be only five feet tall, but she epitomizes the old adage that dynamite comes in small packages.
Her emotions rage between denial, anger and tears when her doctor tells her she is suffering from a rare terminal disease.  When hunky Andre Rossouw asks her to help find his sister who has been missing for four years, Arlette makes two decisions. To beat the disease and find a cure, and to have wild and passionate sex with him.

Then she finds out he has a fiancée.

Arlette's country home on the banks of Bayou LeGue was left to her by her mysterious aunt Lucie, whom she never met, and whom her dysfunctional parents have never been willing to discuss. She often wakes in the dark hours of the night to hear ghostly voices downstairs, and wishes she could find out who they are and what they want.

A mysterious letter arrives from her aunt, hinting at a secret in the house, and her friend, Reay, agrees to research her home's recorded archives, while Arlette plans to dig into her family history. She starts by visiting her aunt's grave, where she finds a mysterious woman wearing a hooded cloak, who leaves in a hurry.  Arlette's instincts tell her the woman holds the answers to all her questions, but how can she find her?

Click here to buy it now

Friday, January 23, 2015

Review -- Letting Evil In by Ellie Eden

Kristin, wife and mother of three, tries to be understanding when her husband, Michael decides to travel to Rio de Janeiro on his own. He hasn't been himself since his accident.


The problems start when he disappears. Kristi and her teenage son, Josh, travel to Rio to try to find him, and against all advice, they head into the crime-ridden slums or favelos.  After some very harrowing experiences, Kristi finds solace and a broad shoulder to lean on in Brazilian Federal Agent, Tony Lamazzo. But is he really to be trusted, or is he on the payroll of the cruel and malicious drug lord O Dentista?

The author has done a wonderful job of describing life and death in Rio's underworld, and she ratchets up the tension to a terrifying climax. It was hard to put the book down.

Being an animal advocate, I was happy when the homeless kid's dog found a happy ending.


I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

You can buy the book here.

Follow her bog here

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Review - Murder, Madness and Love



Murder, Madness and Love Is Yolanda Renee's first novel and she did a wonderful job.


Detective Steven Quaid is following the trail of a serial murderer. The only clues seem to point to Sarah Palmer, the recently widowed wife of executive Michael Palmer, who died suddenly in a car accident. Could she be a black widow? If she is, then why is someone stalking her?

The author has done a great job of creating a number of potential and very valid suspects, and ratcheting up the tension. The gruesome murders and terrifying stalking and kidnap scenes lead to an exciting and totally unexpected conclusion.

This is a great debut novel and I look forward to reading the next book in the series, which is currently available. 

Buy now on Amazon

Monday, December 22, 2014

Aquarius Addiction Cover Reveal

I;m getting excited about my next novel in the Zodiac Series, Aquarius Addiction, now that the cover is done.



FBI psychic Arlette's Xylander's life changes dramatically when her mysterious Aunt Lucie, whom she has never met, dies, and bequeaths two things to Arlette--her country home on the banks of Bayou LeGue, and an ancient spell book. 
Then, on the same day she meets hunky Andre Rossouw, her doctor tells her she's suffering from a terminal disease. 


The house holds many mysteries, including the ghosts she hears meeting in her dining room in the dark hours of the night, and why is there a gris-gris -- the talisman of a voodoo curse -- outside in her yard? Could it be something to do with the mysterious, cloaked woman she sees at her aunt's graveside?

She displays all the character traits of her star sign, Aquarius, being feisty, eccentric, freedom-loving, flirtatious, rebellious and unpredictable, and she determines two things; to beat the odds of the disease, and to have wild and passionate sex with Andre.

Then she finds out he's engaged.

Get the prologue, Arlette's Story absolutely free here.  


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Paper or Plastic? Capricorn Cravings in Print

I'm very pleased to say romance thriller Capricorn Cravings is now in print. It was released by Soul Mate Publishing in February for Kindle, and now it is also in print.


Riley Shaughnessy has the perfect life. Her veterinary practice is thriving, and she loves living in the small town in the Colorado mountains, where no one knows the shocking secret of her past. She loves to gallop her palomino mare across the vast expanse of public land bordering the town, and after a long period of self-denial, she has even committed to a date with handsome horse wrangler, Randy Hansen. But now, she knows her assistant, Jamie, would never willingly abandon her child, so why has she disappeared? Something dark and sinister is taking place, and it all started on the day hunky Powell Stewart, with the piercing blue eyes, came into her life in a strange and unexpected way. 
Her inner voice tells her to stay as far away from him as she can, but his magnetism drags her toward him and she cannot find the power to resist. 

Click Here for Details

You can also download Riley's Story FREE from my website Here


Friday, November 14, 2014

Backwoods Boogie Released Today!

Backwoods Boogie released. I'm very excited that November 14th finally arrived, and my third book in the Redneck P.I. Series is now available for download.

Redneck P.I. Twila Taunton sets out to rescue tea shop owner Pam Taylor from prison, and she ends up rescuing a group of abused animals at the same time.
If you love mysteries, romance, humor, animals, and quirky characters, you will love this story. 


The characters include:





Octogenarian Great Aunt Essie -- Harley-riding, hard-drinking toker --
  

Gasser Cunha, mean guitarist, hacker and master farter --


Mad Maddie -- the nympho cop --


Bart Drummond and his biker gang, the Justice Enforcers --

and nutty black goth vampire Xylophone Adams --


It will be available in print format very soon.



Click here to Buy it Now:


I also got a brand new website today, and the feature I love the best about it is that my blog posts show up there. Head on over there and take a look: www.trishjackson.com 

Happy reading!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Amazon Puts the Power in Readers' Hands

Amazon's new Kindle Scout Program has effectively taken the power away from the publishers and placed it squarely in the hands of the readers.


Here's a summary of how it works:


Authors are invited to submit a full length fiction manuscript plus book cover and blurbs.  Amazon's reviewers read the manuscript and if it meets their standards, they create a 'campaign' for the book. This is made up of the cover, a one-line description and a longer blurb about the story, plus the first 5,000 words. 


Anyone with an Amazon account can login, read what has been posted, and nominate the book, assuming they like it. 


Each reader can nominate only three books. If they have already nominated three and then find one they like better, they can drop one of their previously nominated books and nominate the new one instead.


At the end of the 30-day campaign, the book with the highest number of nominations wins a publishing contract with Amazon for it's author, with a $1,500 royalty advance.


Readers who nominated a winning book get a free copy and are asked to provide a review.


Campaigns are ongoing and any author can submit their book (but only one book per author) any day of the year.


This program is brilliant because it puts the readers (who are the customers) in charge. They collectively and democratically choose the best stories, and help weed out the mediocre, the bad and the unfinished stories. The author has no way of knowing who has voted or canceled their vote, and readers cannot collaborate online.


It also takes the power away from the publishers. Twenty years ago, publishing houses and their editors were like Gods. Writers submitted their work and were told to expect rejection. A handful of  professional 'readers' had the power to accept or reject every manuscript they reviewed. 

Then came POD or Print On Demand, and the selection process became a lot less stringent. 

When self-publishing became a reality, it brought out a lot of talented authors who would never have been published in the past, but it also brought a horde of books that should never have seen the light of day.


My hope is that Kindle Scout will even the playing field for authors and readers.


Here is my campaign:



VIRGO'S VARIANT is a romance thriller or suspense thriller with romantic elements.The first 5,000 words are on the site at Kindle Scout for people to read. (No Kindle is required). If you like what you see, you can nominate the book.

Here is the link to my book. 

https://kindlescout.amazon.com/p/1JKUU4V1XP5OL


I would LOVE to have your vote and I thank you very much.
Please share with any other readers you know.



Thursday, November 6, 2014

Interview with NZ Author Claire Plaisted

Claire Plaisted is a multi-talented author from New Zealand, who has written several books in different genres and for totally different audiences. Just looking at a list of the titles can tell you a lot -- Garrett Investigation Bureau – Malachy’s Unit, Rosetta’s Lot, Joseph’s Story, Ryan’s Madam.  And still to be published -- Mascosta’s Dreamgirl & Renegade Jones.  Other titles. - Zoe’s Journey, Charlie Girls First Summer Christmas, The Diary of a Psychotic Killer.


It's great to have you here on my blog, Claire. Could you give us a little more info about the various genres do you write?

Historical Romance Mystery, Mystery Romance, Sci Fi Young Adult, Children’s. I haven’t settled into any one Genre, and probably never will.


Are you a pantser? (You write by the seat of your pants and the story is all there in your head.)  

I’ve always wondered what to call myself!  My fingers do the talking. I open a word document and write whatever is there.


How about plotting? Have you ever tried it?

I sometimes chuck ideas around with friends if I get a bit stuck. I have never really plotted anything,


Do you think it's important to write a detailed list of your character's habits, likes, dislikes and family members? Why?

I did try this once at a suggestion of another friend who is also a writer, it didn’t really work for me.  These days when I write a book draft I sometimes open Notepad to write their names down and what they look like.


Writing in first person, present has been controversial in the past, but now it seems to be the trend for best-selling authors. (I look into the closet and recoil when I see what looks like a dead body.) Do you think it is more powerful than other tenses?

Is it more powerful?  No I don’t believe it is.  Some people enjoy reading a book as if they are doing the deed; others enjoy reading a book as if they are watching a movie.  I do have one draft where one character is in first person and all the others are in third.  It can get complicated, though it’s been fun to do.


What do you think today's readers want and how does it differ from readers of the past?

In many books I read I must admit to getting bored from all the descriptive writing.  I like to read a book which has twists and turn, lots of dialogue.  Entertaining, taking you out of your own life and into another world.  As a writer I want you to see what is happening.  My readers wanted sex scenes, so I gave them what they wanted.  Going back even fifteen years and those types of scenes were not acceptable.  The English language has also change a lot over the years, especially with the different types of English used in different countries.


I totally agree with you and I think it's something a lot of authors don't seem to get. Readers today don't have time for long-winded passages that don't advance the storyline. What book are you going to feature in this post? Tell us its genre and write a short paragraph about it.

“Girlie and the War of the Wasps.” This is a young children’s story which I wrote for a friend’s grandchild.  Since then I have had young beta readers who have been enthralled with it. 

 Girlie is a bright blue Ladybug who sees her best friend Grassi the Grasshopper kidnapped by nasty wasps.  Girlie follows them to their hive where she finds all different types of insects been used as slaves to look after the Queens and her babies.  Girlie has to find a way to save all the insects and stop the war. She goes on a quest to find a healthy diet for the Queen so her worker and drone wasps behave and do their own work.  Along the way she meets Sammie the kitten, Pedi the Centipede and many more.  She even drops in at an orphanage where there are many different coloured ladybugs. (The book cover below is a concept drawing and as you can see, it hadn't been completed yet.)


Can you tell me about your ideal reader? You probably have a few different ones.

Yes. With writing all different types of genres, my market is quite wide.  My children’s books have been well accepted by 6 – 10 year olds so far.  Parents saying to me “They won’t put it down, it’s amazing.”  One parents has a daughter who dislikes reading, I gave her a copy of my book “Zoe’s Journey,” her daughter read two chapters every night, and loved it.  ‘Zoe’s Journey’ is about myths and legends, strangely enough, the young girl’s class at school had studied this topic a few months prior.  

My adult books are suitable for anyone who wishes to read about murder, mystery and mayhem.  Suitable for anyone over 18 years.


Also, romance readers want steamy love scenes. Do you agree? Do you think your books meet their expectations?

Well you can certainly get steamy love scenes in my adult books.  The first time I was so embarrassed, it took a while to pick up the courage to self-publish one of the books.  I can however, write without steamy sex scenes as well.  Yes my books met the expectations of those who have read them so far.  All I get is – “I want more!”  Though I think that is more to do with the twisted plot rather than the sex scenes.


Children's books usually include pictures. How did you find an illustrator/photographer?

For my first little children’s book, which I hope to publish by Christmas, I have done my own drawings and with the help of a local Artist enhanced them, at present he is doing the colouring.  I met him at a networking meeting for local businesses.  Another idea I have looked at is helping art students at the local college and schools to build their portfolios, helping to build their experience.


Do any of your books have a message? 

The only books which will have messages in them are my little children’s books.  The first story called “Girlie and the War of the Wasps, is about eating healthy and playing nicely with others.  The second in the series is about biting and kicking and how unkind it is.  They are both adventure stories in the garden world of insects.


I like that. If you could choose one character from the book, what would he/she say to you if he/she was to meet you?

Out of all my characters I would like to meet Yuri.  I have no idea why, he is a good man caring for his boss and his staff.  I’d like to hug him and thank him for all his hard work.  What he would say to me?  I’m not sure he would, I thinks he’d just smile and salute with a twinkle in his eye.


Did you self-publish or query and hope a publisher would accept your work and how did that work out for you?

With my very first book, I did try and find an agent and get it published the old fashioned way, without any progress.  It taught me a lot about setting my work out; it didn’t help with my English or Grammar due to the fact they give no feedback whatsoever.  They never tell you why your book is not acceptable.   Since that time I have taught myself how to format books for eBook and Print versions.  It has been a hard road though enjoyable.  I no help other local authors get their books online.


What do you do to promote your writing?

I mainly use social media, Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Smashwords.  I will be adding a few more sites as I gather experience.  I also have a Writers Website, Blog and a Business Website.   On a local base I contact the local reporter and ask if they are interested.  I have participated in one article this year though my name has been in four articles with various clients.


What advice do you have for your fellow writers/authors?

Don’t let anyone tell you, you can’t write.  Find someone who will help you perfect your writing, use a program like “StyleWriter” to help with grammar and sentence length.  I have seen some great stories, though they needed a lot of work to get them publishable.  Be it the flow or grammar.  YOU CAN WRITE.  Get positive feedback and feed forward.  I dislike negativity it is not needed.  Read “On Writing” by Stephen King.  It is great.  It certainly helped me a lot.


Tell us about your next project.

I have several projects on the go at any one time.  I don’t concentrate on any one story unless I am in the mood to do so.  My fingers do the talking.  I have around 20 drafts on the go.  My aim though is to finish my little children’s book, “Girlie and the War of the Wasps,” and publish my next book in “Garrett Investigation Bureau” (GIB) series, called “Mascosta’s Dreamgirl.”  Hopefully by Christmas time.


Wow!! Prolific is not enough to describe that! But why should we buy your books?

I write a good book, with a good storyline; they tend to twist and turn when you least expect it.  They finish with a reader usually wanting more.  I’m good at keeping people on the edge of their seats.  This is with my adult book series (GIB)  They are interesting to read, you can learn a few things from each book even though they are fiction I try and get my facts right.  They are entertaining, romantic and in some cases horrifying.  They are also well priced in print and eBook versions.


They kind of sound like mine. Perhaps readers who like my books would also like yours, and vice-versa. Thank you so much again for this wonderfully entertaining interview. I hope readers will go to your sites and check out your books.


CLAIRE'S BIO

My name is Claire Plaisted.  I am married with three children and live in Rotorua, New Zealand.  I have been writing novels since 2011 and have self-published 7 in that time.
 I fell into writing whilst waiting for Family History Research information from a client.  I wrote a Regency Romance which is still to be published.  Since then I’ve not stopped writing.  At first I was writing for me, I first published for my own satisfaction.  The feeling of having your first printed book in your hands is amazing.  It was only at friend’s insistence that I published for everyone. Hobbies can vary these days.  I love to spend time with my family and two cats.  I like to garden in the summer and reading is a must.  I like to cook and bake, crochet and knit.  It depends on my mood. In the past I have supported.  Heart Children New Zealand, Parent to Parent and I was a Trustee at a local school for 6 years.  Today I write a community newsletter and volunteer a half day in a local charity shop.


Where can we find out more about you and your work?


                    

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Backwoods Boogie Countdown...

It's not long now before Backwoods Boogie is released by my publisher, Uncial Press on November 14th, 2014.  I will be hosting a launch party on Facebook and I'll give away free downloads of this and the prior books in the Redneck P.I. Series -- Redneck P.I and Kick Assitude.



Redneck P.I. has been off the market for a while in e-book format, and it will come back on the same day as Backwoods Boogie and with a brand new, very fancy cover. I think Twila looks pretty tough in it!



(The print version has not changed and will keep its old cover.)








BACKWOODS BOOGIE is getting not one but two covers. As you will see, in the two years that have passed since Redneck P.I. was released, Twila has grown her hair quite a bit and she wears it in a different style.
This is the third book in the Redneck P.I. Mystery Series.


Redneck P.I. Twila Taunton cannot believe she is working for Jimmie-Ray, the man who stood her up on her wedding day. But she can't allow gentle Pam Taylor to go to prison for a murder she did not commit. Twila sets out to hunt down the real killer, with the help of hacker and mean guitarist Gasser Cunha, her hard-drinking great aunt Essie, and office assistant LaMercy Howard, who reluctantly agrees to go Goth. When she discovers an illegal puppy mill, and a possible dog fighting ring, Twila calls on a vigilante biker gang and her long distance lover, Harland to help. 
Oh… and she might be pregnant. 

20% of the author's proceeds will be donated to the ASPCA to aid in their fight against the disgusting cruelty and deplorable conditions of illegal puppy mills in the US.



Click on the Link below to get your copy:





Friday, September 12, 2014

Review -- The Killing of Mummy's Boy by Joan Ellis

When Sandra's only son witnessed a murder, and testified about it in court, he had to go into the witness protection programme. Also fearing retribution, single mum Sandra has moved to a remote village on the Isle of White.She has not seen her son for more than three years.

A stranger strikes up a conversation with her on the train. He tells her his name is Ben, and that he once killed a man.  Despite her immediate fear of him, when he reaches up to stow her luggage, she is attracted to him. "Her eyes tracked the thin line of black hair that ran from his navel and disappeared under the waistband of his jeans."

While on the train, Sandra discovers she has lost her Oyster Card (travel card), and makes a phone call to order a replacement.

When she finally arrives home, she finds a new card has been slipped under her doorway. She realizes she gave out her address over the phone, and Ben—who admitted he is a murderer—must have made a note of it. The thought is both scary and exciting.

Her son calls and tells her he has given up the witness protection and is back in London, and someone breaks into Sandra's house, and starts stalking her…

I couldn't put this book down. It was impossible to guess the identity of the stalker, and the author did a wonderful job of projecting Sandra's terror, her protectiveness toward her son, and the emotional turmoil she experienced when she realized she was attracted to Ben.

I received a copy of the book in return for an honest review.

***** Five stars -- I loved it!!

Buy it on Amazon -- Click Here

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Review -- Loving Adonis by Sandi K. Whipple

Loving Adonis is a beautiful but frustrating love story about poor communication and jealousy.


Angie and Gary get together early in the story and over time they develop a deep and sensuous relationship. They don't just hop into the sack together. They go out, spend time getting to know one another, and do crazy things before their relationship turns serious and culminates in delicious, passionate and loving sex. A great, solid base for a lasting connection, you're thinking.


But no. One day Gary simply says "See Ya," and walks out on Angie.


She has no idea what has caused the sudden change in him, and although she tries to get on with her life and build up her flower business, she cannot forget the handsome man she has privately named 'Adonis'.


Gary cannot put Angie out of his mind either. But when they get back together, and things seem to be running smoothly again, the same thing happens. Just those two little words and everything is thrown into turmoil again.


Their greatest problem is that they do not communicate well. This leads to all sorts of wild and incorrect assumptions, which damage their relationship over and over until you, as a reader feel as frustrated as them.


The happy ending is full of twists and surprises that I couldn't foresee, and it made up for all the frustration.



Saturday, August 30, 2014

Review - Bluebonnets for Elly by Sandra Nachlinger

A Southern Romance.

Elly McCauley is helping her granny while she recovers from a broken ankle, and is living illegally with her in the senior complex in a small town in Texas.

When she meets the local landscaper, Derek White, tall, dark and deliciously Southern, the attraction is instant and mutual. They go out on a couple of dates and one thing leads to another… But they both have baggage from the past that hinders their relationship.




Elly moves out and doesn't give Derek her new address. She starts a new business helping seniors to sort through their junk and make money selling it on eBay. But she cannot forget those steamy kisses. Neither can he.

The characters are very real and most of them are such likable people I found that I just wanted things to work out for them. The author's depiction of life in a senior complex is very vivid and true to life, and I loved Granny.

The love scenes are passionate, but tastefully written, and the author makes good use of sexy nuances.

Get it here on Amazon

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Interview with Charline Ratcliff, Author -- Part 3

I'm happy we have finally arrived at the information about Charline's writing, which I find fascinating because she writes about vivid dreams she has had. The dreams are so detailed, they could even be glimpses of past lives, if you believe in reincarnation...

We touched on the subject of dreams and past lives in the previous post, and now to continue:

8. You write historical romance, and when I was reading your book, The Curse of Nefertiti, I remember thinking you must have spent hours doing research, and yet you say you hardly had to do any. Is that really true? Tell us a little about the book, and how your Prologue is a direct translation of the dream.

(The entire prologue can be viewed here: http://www.thecurseofnefertiti.com/Prologue.html )


Actually, I would say that I write historical fiction as not all of my books will feature romance. The Curse of Nefertiti just happened to have a romantic aspect, especially since I needed to show an amazing bond with enough strength and passion to have endured for several millennia. Unfortunately, due to life happening, coupled with a low back injury, A Life in the Age of Pompeii, (a story that’s more biographical in nature), isn’t quite finished for publication. But, it’s close!

As far as research for The Curse of Nefertiti… Truthfully, I spent the majority of my time researching what I had written; after I wrote it. At times, the accuracy, or the reason for the why of a passage, (or a character), was exceptionally eerie.

Let me provide you with an example. Were I to choose an ancient Egyptian deity who I could identify with, I would choose Isis. (She does, of course, appear in this tale). I’ve also mentioned in previous interviews and/or discussions, that: “while writing The Curse of Nefertiti, I allowed the book to write itself.”

To the reader, as they make their literary journey, the various characters and deities will make sense; but to me, while I was writing it, they didn’t always. I never expected Sekhmet to make an appearance, and certainly not on page twenty-one. After she arrived in the story, I never expected her to play such a huge part; yet she did.

So, finally, two-thirds of the way through my writing, I went and researched Sekhmet to better understand why she was such an integral part of this tale. What I discovered was quite surprising…

According to Ancient Egyptian history, the father of Akhenaton, (King Amenhotep III), ‘especially revered Sekhmet.’ In fact, some of the historical inscriptions described him as: ‘beloved of Sekhmet who smites the Nubians.’ Additionally, I discovered that more than 730 life-sized statues of Sekhmet had been erected in King Amenhotep III’s mortuary temple.

After learning this, I understood why Sekhmet would have displayed such ferocious care and concern for Akhenaten, (and subsequently Nefertiti). Akhenaten was the son of one who was most favored by her. I also understood why Sekhmet would have been an important deity to Akhenaton; even with the monotheism of the Amarna period. Just because you state that there is one main God, doesn’t mean you lose all fondness and love for the other deity’s you were raised with; especially when those deities are devoted to you.

And to answer the last part of your question: how is my Prologue a direct translation of my dream… Well, the Prologue itself is the actual dream and not just a translation. The parts that weren’t kept in the Prologue were used throughout the remainder of the story, including that last “ending” line. And yet, the end of my dream didn’t quite wind up being the book’s end… It was the end of my dream, but it didn’t feel right for the book’s end. Several days later, midway through a shower, (since water is my muse), the final closing story came to me and then I knew the book was completed.

9. You've written down five other dreams. What historical times and locations are we talking about here? How do you know the approximate dates?

Well, let’s see…

The second dream I had written down, actually occurred the night after my Ancient Egyptian dream. This dream though was set in an older Ireland; an Ireland of around 1200BC. This was a rugged and treacherous land; one that did not allow the ignorant or foolhardy to live long. At this point in time, Ireland was home to the Celts, and they embraced their own deities: Dagda, Brigit, the Morrigan and countless others…

While this book will certainly feature the historical aspects of that age, the main storyline will focus on the in-fighting between the Gods. And also on some of the creatures they created; such as werewolves. However, you should know that the werewolves of Celtic lore were not evil fiends, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t embellish the mythology…

Another dream is set in Atlantis, the city of myth. Yet, one must wonder if it really is… After all, Pompeii was real, but then it was lost to fables only to be found again.

The Atlantis of my dream was an amazing city. Full of knowledge, and with no limits. Anything was possible because each of us intrinsically understood the workings of the universe around us. We had the mental ability to affect change; to bend the world to our will. Yet, even as our now-vast-knowledge allowed us a transcendence of sorts, our understanding of: right vs wrong, good vs bad, positive vs negative, or light vs dark, had not evolved much beyond something akin to today’s 21st century.

In the Atlantis of my dream, humanity had access to everything they could think to desire; but still there were those who could not, or would not, release those darker, base human desires. The Atlantean High Council felt they could overcome this aspect of the human psyche; but … pride doth always goeth before the fall.

In the end, Atlantis was lost. Not due to some catastrophe of nature, (we had already conquered and manipulated the world to suit our needs), but because we chose to remove that level of knowledge from the world. We did not wish to be responsible for the possible demise of future civilizations; therefore we destroyed Atlantis in her entirety.

Mankind will again attain that level of intelligence, but we realized that they would need to find it on their own. We hoped that with the many millennia necessary to reach those heights of intelligence; mankind’s darker parts would evolve for the better…

There is also a dream that begins in Romania, (in the mid to late 1800s), then moves to America before returning to Romania in the early 1900s.

A quick synopsis:

Queen Elisabeth (of Romania) had a daughter. A curious and independent child from birth, she left Romania to go visit the Americas. (To see what all the fuss was about).

The Queen’s daughter, (Maria), had a beautiful voice; and at night she sang in a saloon. One night, one of the patrons, (James), stayed after closing to ask if she would accompany him to dinner the following evening. She agreed, they courted and over time they fell in love.

Several years later, during the spring of 1912, Maria received an urgent communication that her mother was ill. At this point she was forced to explain to James who she really was and that she had to leave. Her time in the Americas was finished. Needless to say, he was devastated beyond belief.

Maria hurriedly packed and departed, and James was there to see her off. But, when the boat finally docked in the Port of Canstanta, Maria was nowhere to be found.

This novel will be written from the perspective of James, and the reader will not know who Maria is until that fateful day in 1912. And even though James watched her leave, he doesn’t believe she really left. This also seems to be validated by her lack of arrival in Romania. So for these reasons plus love, he wanders the streets every night, hoping to again hear her voice. And who knows if he ever will…

I will leave off with three of the five, (not including Pompeii), so that I can answer the final part of your question. How do I know the approximate dates?

My dream of Ancient Egypt was easy to identify as the dream included the famed bust of Nefertiti. (Although in the dream it was a different color). Pompeii was also easy because of the culture, garb and gee, the volcanic eruption… *chuckle*

However, when I have less historically altering information then I must become a history sleuth. This means that once I’ve written the specific dream out, I will take any and all pertinent information I’ve been provided and backtrack through time until something starts to fit.

Then I will take the additional information and verify that also fits. Everything must fit together, (kind of like the pieces of a puzzle); otherwise I know I’m not in the right time period. And then, the final piece of the puzzle is me. I can think I’ve found the right location, the right time period, or the right history, but if it feels “wrong” to me with regard to that “physical recognition” I have previously mentioned, then I know I need to keep looking.

That’s also why I started writing my Pompeii book prior to my Ireland book, even though the Ireland dream came first. I still can’t locate the correct recognition within myself. I can see the lands. I can see the high, jagged cliffs and the stark white rocks. I can see and feel parts of the Celtic history and mythology and yet I cannot pinpoint the location within Ireland. Due to the fact that so much of early Celtic history has been lost, or hasn’t made it outside of the country, I have this sense that I won’t find/recognize it until I actually stumble upon it in person. I guess I’m going to need to spend some time in Ireland. Oh, darn…

10. I'd love to hear about your next book, which is also the result of one of those dreams and is about Pompeii before the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Please tell us more, and give us your first paragraph.

Well, A Life in the Age of Pompeii, provides a “biographical” story of a woman who was brought to Pompeii as a slave, yet was raised as the daughter of an influential town councilman. This is a fictional tale, but it is historically accurate to the occurrences of the age; whether culturally, politically and/or religiously. Setting aside my back injury, (which has significantly impeded my writing progress), this tale has been immensely difficult to write.

My dream for this book came about as a dream within a dream, within yet another dream, (mine). Consequently, I had to work exceptionally hard to convey that “dream within a dream” aspect in the Prologue.

The first half of A Life in the Age of Pompeii was a joy to write. The various experiences of this young child easily filled the beginning chapters. But then this child began to grow up, and my writing began to slow; for there is only one end to work toward. This is no happily-ever-after story… There is no future for this woman. No husband to love and bear children with. No grandchildren to fawn over in her old age.

This is the story of a life lost; a life of but one among the thousands. An ending suspended in time; without even the dignity of burial. A life, and a city, that were forgotten through the centuries; finally rediscovered and put on display for the world to gawk at in horrified fascination. Pompeii did not die in a fiery volcanic eruption; instead she, and her citizens, languished away under a smothering blanket of ash; twenty feet deep in some places.

The book’s blurb is written as if from the archaeologists who unearthed this woman’s subterranean tomb; while the story is written first-person, from her.

Here’s the link to the jacket blurb: http://charlineratcliff.com/jacket-blurb.html

To partially quote the back cover’s last line: “…this is her story. Will you listen?”

And here’s the link to read the Prologue: http://charlineratcliff.com/prologue.html

Thank you so much for agreeing to the interview, Charline. I look forward to your next book with great anticipation.

Trish, this interview was truly my pleasure, and I sincerely appreciated the honest interest of your questions. Thank you very much for your time in formulating them as well as for featuring me on your blog.

And! I’m almost done with the writing of A Life in the Age of Pompeii, and I look forward to having you read it. (I’ll even include a box of Kleenex as you might need them. I know I have).


CHARLINE'S LINKS:
www.CharlineRatcliff.com                                           
(personal website)
www.CharlineRatcliffBlog.com                                      
(blog)
(facebook author page)
(goodreads)
https://twitter.com/CharlineRatclif                                   
(twitter)
http://www.pinterest.com/charlineratclif/                         
(pinterest)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Interview with Charline Ratcliff - Author - Part 2


Do You Believe in Reincarnation? This Writer's Stories Reflect Past Lives. Charline Ratcliff, author of The Curse of Nefertiti has such an interesting life story I have to split the interview into three parts.


Part 1 addressed Charline's young life, her father's abuse, and her life criss-crossing the USA and literally living in the woods. 

Part 5 continues the story...


5. I understand why you left your parents' 'home' at age sixteen. You survived by cleaning houses and working at Burger King. How and where did you live at that time?

Well, long story short, when I managed to leave home it was with the help of two older women who sold regularly at the same Ocala, Florida area Flea Market where my parents had decided they would sell at for a while.
And just to clarify, it was not like I sought either of those women out. They were just older, and more experienced at viewing life. The both of them, (separate from each other), recognized the signs of physical and sexual abuse that was consistently exhibited in the dynamic of my family.
Feeling nothing save for empathy and compassion, each of them approached me in as non-threatening a manner as they were able. Having been hidden away from society’s gaze as much as possible by my parents, I was completely stunned when the older of the two women, (the one who several weeks previously had suggested that I just think of her as family and call her “grandma”), pulled me aside one afternoon when my father was busy with customers.
She sat me down, away from the hustle and bustle of the market, touched my shoulder and said: “Honey, I need to ask you a question.” Now, I’ve always been an intuitive child, and at her words my heart felt like it dropped twenty feet. I’m pretty sure I heard my rib-cage rattle as my heart plummeted past… (Even now as I write this, I’m re-experiencing those same feelings).
If it were physically possible for a person to turn to stone, I’d have turned into a statue at what she asked next: “Has your dad ever sexually abused you?”
I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know what to feel. I didn’t know what to think. I didn’t know how to answer her. Without thought, I wept and take note that I chose that word carefully. This wasn’t the crying that comes from normal sadness, nor was it the heartfelt sobbing of someone who has just lost their one true love, instead this was the quiet weeping that comes from feeling the heavy burden of shame. I daresay that only those, unfortunate enough to have experienced this same type of abuse, can fully understand or appreciate the sentiment that I am attempting to express.
She took this moment to wrap her arms around me, holding me as I cried; and she cried with me. Eventually I managed to ask her how she’d known. She told me it was obvious; that anytime any man started to talk to me, my father would appear out of nowhere and then send me away to do something out of sight. “That’s not normal father behavior,” she stated.
She then sent me down to the public restroom, so that I could wash my face and try and sort myself out before I had to return to my parent’s selling space. Before I left though, she told me that she was going to talk with her friend, (the other woman), and that the two of them would figure out some way to help me. Because of her words, I walked away with a much lighter step. I now had something different for which to hope. Up until this point, the only thing that gave me a sense of comfort and control was the calendar that I had previously made for myself that showed me, (daily), the number of days until I turned eighteen. Around that point I was down to 535 days…
She was as good as her word too. The very next weekend, she motioned me over to her booth. Her friend’s daughter, Tenowah, lived in North Jacksonville Beach. She couldn’t get away from work to drive down to get me on that current weekend; however she would be able to the following weekend.
You have no idea how excited I was. And I knew that I would be safe. And that my parents couldn’t find me this time. You see, I had run away twice before; when I was twelve. My first attempt happened on a Friday afternoon, when a class friend and I rode the school bus to her house. My father was there in a matter of hours. I got in major trouble for running away and … for painting my fingernails with a really pretty light pink colored nail polish.
I, of course, always learn from my mistakes. Consequently, when I ran away again a couple of months later, (while it was still planned for Friday after school), this time I went home with a friend whose parents always drove her to/from school. Huzzah! It worked!! I stayed the entire weekend at their house, but I was not entirely without a sense of dread. Just as animals are able to sense what is later recognized as the calm-before-the-storm, so too can I. When Monday arrived, she and I were dropped at school and there was my father… (This was also my last day in public school).
Anyway, the following weekend finally arrived, and wow, had the time dragged by! Around midday, I was covertly informed that Tenowah had arrived; that she was waiting for me in her car by the restrooms. I’d previously gotten my birth-certificate as well as my social security card out of my mother’s filing box, and with those both in my pocket, (and only the clothes on my back), I told my parents that I needed to go down to use the restroom. (This flea market was at a drive-in movie theater. Vendors were allowed to set up their tables in the back section of the drive-in, and the restrooms were attached to the concession building).
As luck would have it, my mother decided that I needed to take my five, and seven year-old brothers with me to the restroom. Thankfully there were only two stalls in the ladies room, so I sent a brother into each one and then sent them back up the hill to where our parents were; on the pretext that it was my turn to use the facilities. Instead, I watched them to ensure they arrived safely and then got into Tenowah’s vehicle. She, (and her roommate Sharon who made the drive with her), were happy to see/help me and we spent the slightly more than two hour drive getting acquainted with each other.
Due to my age, I couldn’t legally work without a parent’s signature on my job application. I did manage to get a work permit because, being sixteen, I was not required to have a physician sign off on my ability to work. And … since you are allowed to pick the application form up and return with it later, I was able to forge my father’s signature. There you have it; I’m now an admitted forger…
I searched the classifieds, plus the various shops in this new location for work, but no one wanted to hire a sixteen-year-old. Luckily, Tenowah was friends with a man named Jed; he was the manager for a Burger King fairly close to us. (This was good as I walked). Burger King was only part-time, and Tenowah recommended me as a house-cleaner to a couple of her friends. They definitely weren’t the most enjoyable jobs, but at least I was able to earn some money.


              6. You wrote and published two children's books. What was the inspiration for those? Did you illustrate them yourself? You are obviously very artistic and right-brained. Do you want to tell us about your photography, art and interior design?

Well, truthfully it was my cat Oreo who inspired The Princess, The Toad & The Whale Series. She was/is just this huge and loveable, yet slightly not-quite-with it kitty. She started out as a short-hair kitten that, ten months later, grew some of the longest fur I’d ever seen on a feline. Consequently, not only was she quite the character, but she was constantly struggling to tame her wild and unkempt hair. Of course, she was never successful in this endeavor… *chuckle* Plus, she truly was a Princess, let me tell you. Although, I do need to state that she was never a Diva. Her personality has always been loving and sweet and if you have food she’s your new forever-friend. She loves wadded up newspaper or sheets of paper and if you throw them she’ll even go fetch them. The Princess in the storybooks truly embodies Oreo’s personality and crazy essence. (Toad and Whale were also inspired, and based on, the other two cats in the household).
As far as illustrating, while I could have eventually gotten to the illustrations myself, I opted to let someone else draw them. (Delegation from a Type A personality, now that’s some personal growth on my part). However, I did work hand-in-hand with my illustrator to ensure that the finished illustrations matched the vision in my head. And yet, I did give her creative license... (Another Type A personality shocker too, right)? This was also a good thing because she remembered that I needed to have those little touches: things like windows and/or artwork on walls, rugs, etc.
Thank you for your compliment re: very artistic/right-brained. In actuality, I am both left and right-brained, but the truth of the matter is that I much prefer to live in the right-side of my brain. Although, I oftentimes wind up becoming an interpreter-of-sorts between those who are extremely left-brained, and their extremely right-brained counterparts… It can be quite difficult for these two types to converse effectively, because their manner of thinking/seeing/relating to the world around them is so much different. Since I speak the “language” of both, I’m a great mediator.
I remember attending a business meeting with a very right-brain only, creative friend of mine. This particular meeting dealt with the technical side of her business and midway through it she became overwhelmed and began to cry. Not because anything untoward had been said or done, but because that was how she coped with what she couldn’t understand. Of course, the poor left-brain, engineer-minded businessman sat across from her; open-mouthed with shock, wearing a deer-in-the-headlights expression of absolute terror…
After everything had been sorted out and cross-explained, she apologized to him for crying. Which in turn prompted him to ask, “Do you always cry in business meetings?”
The truth of the matter is, if one person only speaks Latin and the other speaks only in mathematical equations, without a Rosetta Stone to bridge the languages, how do these two people communicate cogently?



7) Now let's get onto your dreams. You started having vivid dreams of ancient times that you describe as "like going to a theatre and looking at a sped-up five+ hour look at someone's life." Your friend told you your dreams are actually memories of past lives. When you finally started writing down your dreams, you found something amazing. Please explain.

Yes, well there’s a real can of worms… I have consistently found that the topic of dreams can be a controversial and challenging subject. So much can be taken from them, they can have so many meanings, their meanings can change with time, and no one can experience an exact dream or have the same understanding as anyone else.
Dreaming is much like reading a book. Your brain will process the experience based on all the factors of what makes you, well, you. (Life experiences, how you were raised, your personal beliefs, et cetera).
And, let’s face it, the conscious brain can only think about a very limited amount at a time, while the subconscious brain can handle much more. I believe a University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine study has estimated that the conscious brain can only process around 2,000 bits of information per second whereas the subconscious brain processes about 400 billion bits per second. Kind of makes me wonder how much information someone like Einstein could process through his conscious brain per second…
Anyway, with all that said:
I do believe that people can dream about things that will happen in the future; providing they are open to it.
I do believe that dreams can be a way for a “higher power” to communicate with us; if we are open to it.
I do believe that dreams allow the subconscious mind to process past, present and future experiences and then “dumb them down” so our conscious minds can, (hopefully), understand them. I think that one possible reason for recurring dreams, (and only in certain instances), is because the subconscious is trying to get the dreamer to realize and/or understand something that he/she still isn’t grasping.
I do believe that dreams affect our day-to-day lives in a myriad of ways that we may never fully be able to understand.
I do believe that some dreams are also memories of, or from, previous lives.
With regard to my vivid dreams, (the ones that I use as the Prologues for my books), they each feel as though I’m walking through the tired, worn and familiar halls of memory. In these dreams, I feel what happens around me. I hear the birds, smell the water, and feel sand crunch underneath my feet. I can smell the world around me. I can touch and taste; and I have memories within those memories.
In some of my dreams, I’ve watched the library at Alexandria burn; smelled the acrid smoke as it billowed forth. I’ve experienced being a simple scribe and detailing a horrific war between Greeks and Phoenicians. I’ve heard the screams of battle and of the dying.
When I looked for information on this particular dream, I was taken aback to discover how much of it had been reality. The Phoenicians were first known as the Canaanites; it was the Greeks who began calling them Phoenicians, (meaning purple-red), for the dye extracted from the shell-fish.
Later on, the Phoenicians became Carthage/Carthaginians and due to certain Greek factions, and then later the Romans, Carthage and her people were completely eradicated. As in the genocide of an entire race/culture…
Are they past lives? I don’t know. Maybe… My physical body, (taking my brain/logic out of the equation), feels the memories of them; it feels like something akin to having “muscle memory.” Example: you may forget how to ride a bike, but if you get on the bike, your body will remember it for you.
Or, maybe they are simply genetic memories stored within my DNA. Some scientists believe that prehistoric man used to pass down genetic memories…
Or, maybe I just have a great imagination. *chuckle*
Yet, when I attempt to view these dreams as only imagination, my logical side objects on the basis that I should know some/any/most of a dream’s information prior to the experience. Just for the record, wars, (ancient or otherwise), were definitely not one of those subjects that I ever strove to read up on…

See the facinating continuation to this and other questions about Charline's life in the next installment.

LINKS:
www.CharlineRatcliff.com
                                                
www.CharlineRatcliffBlog.com  
                                      
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2930204.Charline_Ratcliff        
                                
https://twitter.com/CharlineRatclif