Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wednesday Reads and I'm Wearing a Heart Monitor

You know, you tell your cardiologist that you might have felt some fluttering in your chest since you last saw her six months ago and the next thing you know, you’re wearing a heart monitor.

This thing is itchy. I wasn’t expecting that. But then it’s taped on, so why wouldn’t it itch, right? And it’s bigger than I thought. I’m supposed to wear it for 14 days (if it stays on that long—I’ve been warned it might come off before then) and push the device if I feel anything … different. Considering the differences I feel every now and then are not all that frequent, I’m wondering if I’ll push it at all. But we shall see.

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #37

Dates read: August 5-8
Title: The Fractured
Year of publication: 2018
Author: Brett Battles
Genre: Suspense thriller
Series:  Jonathan Quinn #12
# of Pages: 351
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Jonathan Quinn has had better years… But now most of the trouble is behind him, if not forgotten.
    There is one issue that remains unresolved—the break between him and his partner, Nate. Quinn has come to accept the only potential path to healing the wound is via the passage of time.
    The secret world has other ideas.
    Quinn and his girlfriend, Orlando, are hired for a new mission, but they must include on their team the operative who is one of the few to have ever seen the face of the job’s target. This operative is unknown to the client, but not to Quinn and Orlando.
    Now, to stop a plan that could slaughter tens of thousands of people, they must turn to the one person who wants nothing to do with them.
    If they can even find him in time.
My thoughts: It’s always a joy to return to Quinn’s world. And I hated putting this book down (but of course, you know, I have other things I have to do, like…write). If you’re looking for a good suspense thriller series, start this one at the beginning. You won’t be disappointed. It’s one of my favorite series.

My only qualm with Brett Battles is that his books show up on Amazon first and I have to wait for the paperback to appear on Barnes & Noble. I was notified last month that his latest Quinn book (The Damaged) was released when I realized I never got the one before that (The Fractured). I’m sure I had forgotten about it after searching a few times. So I made sure to save the latest e-mail to remind me to search B&N for the newest book until it shows up and I can purchase it. And it’s a good thing I don’t normally read on my Nook, or I’d never be able to read this series again. That’s how much I refuse to buy books from Amazon. Even when the books are written by one of my favorite authors.

Last weekend we went to Nashville to watch Daughter play Footy on Saturday. Both the women and men lost to the Nashville teams, and it was a stinkin’ hot day, but we had fun. Hubby and I got to sit in the shade at least (no sunburn for us!) and root for Columbus. What we don’t do for our kids, huh?

So… Did you know Dragon Con is only 15 days away? Fun fun! Maybe one of these days I can go as a guest. But I think I need to either sell more books or write more books before my application gets notice. And since I can only control the writing portion, I guess I better get to it, huh?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Wednesday Reads and Weekend Trips

When August rolls around, it seems our weekend trips pick up. We can thank Daughter’s footy team for part of it, I suppose. An unanticipated trip (well, unanticipated on our part, she knew about it and said she put it on our calendar) is because of an away game.

This weekend we’ll be in Nashville watching her play. Thank goodness it’s only a five-hour drive, so we don’t have to leave until Saturday morning (her game is at 3). The following weekend is my family reunion in New Jersey (a longer trip, so we’ll leave on Friday). I’m looking forward to seeing all my cousins again (the ones on my father’s side—he had four sisters and one brother, so lots of cousins!).

We get a little reprieve as the weekend after that is free, but then on the 28th we leave for Dragon Con! This will be my tenth year!! I see some photo opportunities this year (David Tennant for one) and lots of fun ahead.

What a busy month. Sure hope I get some extra reading done (like, maybe in the car when I’m not the one driving). I’m so far behind on my reading goal.

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #36

Dates read: July 26-August 4
Title: Shadow Game
Year of publication: 2003
Author: Christine Feehan
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series:  GhostWalkers #1
# of Pages: 323
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: The classified experiment is the brainchild of renowned scientist Peter Whitney and his brilliant daughter, Lily. Created to enhance the psychic abilities of an elite squadron, it can transform their natural mental powers into a unique military weapon. But something has gone wrong. In the isolated underground labs, the men have been dying—victims of bizarre accidents. Captain Ryland Miller knows he is next. When Dr Whitney himself is murdered, Ryland has only one person left to trust: the beautiful Lily. Possessed of an uncanny sixth sense herself, Lily shares Ryland’s every new fear, every betrayal, every growing suspicion, and every passionate beat of the heart. Together, they will be drawn deeper into the labyrinth of her father’s past…and closer to a secret that someone would kill to keep hidden.
My thoughts: I almost did not finish this book a few times. It was torture for me to read. The story was interesting, but the head hopping was annoying. It was so bad that I couldn’t really get into either character. I don’t know if this will keep me from reading any more of her books, but I’m not going to bother with this particular series. Maybe her newer stuff isn’t so annoying? I don’t know. I hear such good stuff about her books, but it’ll be awhile before I chance another one.

So… What are you reading now? Anything good? I’m reading a good one now. Know how I can tell? I don’t want to put it down (and I was half-way through it in the first day of reading it).  

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Wednesday Reads and a Duck Update

Ducks are not graceful fliers. And their landings? Almost comical. But they sure do like black sunflower seeds. We’ve had up to 24 ducks milling around the bird feeder, foraging for droppings (which the smaller birds oblige). We’re the popular spot, I suppose. And it’s so great. We love seeing all the ducks. But now the Canadian geese want in on the action.

They’re messy, though. Hubby has already complained about the droppings they’re leaving on our patio. But it’s not like he can control them. Well, unless he stopped filling the feeders and he’s not about to do that. That would make the other birds sad. Especially the ducks. They have gotten spoiled.

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #35

Dates read: July 16-24
Title: Shadow and Ice
Year of publication: 2018
Author: Gena Showalter
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series:  Gods of War #1
# of Pages: 480
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Knox of Iviland, the most ruthless warrior in All War history, has spent his life fighting others to the death, winning new realms for his king. Now the stakes are higher than ever. If he prevails in the battle for Earth, his slave bands will be removed. Victory is his sole focus…until he meets her.
    On an arctic getaway with her foster sister, street tough but vulnerable Vale London is shocked to stumble upon a cave filled with ancient gods waging epic combat. When she is inadvertently drawn into their war, she is forced to team up with an unlikely ally—the sexy god who makes her burn with desire.
    Though Vale is his enemy, Knox is consumed with lust and a fierce need to protect her. But only one combatant can triumph, and he will have to choose: live for freedom, or die for love.
My thoughts: Wow! Lots of action and sexy scenes in this book. And of course overall story is not finished, because it’s a series and there’s this war going on, so basically the war hasn’t ended yet, but it did have a satisfying ending, so all’s good. I guess I better see if Book 2 is out there (it is, but not available until September!!!) because yeah, I’m buying it. I’d never read anything by Gena Showalter before, but I really like this book and I want to read the rest of the series.

So… Do you enjoy watching birds? They are very interesting creatures. It’s a good thing I don’t let them distract me too much, though. I’d never get any writing done!

Happy Reading!


Monday, July 29, 2019

Where Have I Been?

In case you were wondering where I went off to (because it’s been awhile since I last posted), I went to Savannah for the Literary Love: Authors Rock Savannah book convention.

And I had a lot of fun!

I even sold books! The most at any convention. I can’t tell you how shocked I was. These readers were awesome. I really do believe I’ll go back next year, especially if I can talk my friend in going with me (she loves these kinds of conventions).

Savannah was a lot of fun, too. Did so much walking! My FitBit probably wondered who stole it.

Last Tuesday, Hubby and I went up to Hilton Head Island and checked out the beach there. Wow. I can see why people like to stay there. Huge beach. Warm water. I thoroughly enjoyed walking up and down the coastline (and I made sure to wear my sunscreen). The wind off the water was lovely, but once we got away from the water, boy did we melt! I think it was in the 90s until Thursday, and by then I was staying inside, since the convention started.

But I’m home now (and posting late, because I couldn’t remember I wanted to post this on schedule—guess my brain is still on vacation) and it’s time to get back to writing. I haven’t done it in a week!

So…What have you been up to this past week? As you can see I didn’t even get a book read, that’s how much fun I was having!

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Wednesday Reads, Happy Birthday to Me, and Release Day!

Tomorrow is my birthday. Oh, and tomorrow is also release day for Biting the Curse!

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #34

Dates read: July 8-15
Title: Deadly, Calm, and Cold
Year of publication: 2014
Author: Susannah Sandlin
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series:  The Collectors #2
# of Pages: 270
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased from author
Blurb from book: How far will ordinary people go to protect their secrets? The Collectors’ games are as much about manipulating lives as finding lost treasure. Everyone is expendable as the ruthless C7 pushes people into gambling with their lives in order to find priceless objects lost to history.
    Samantha Crowe’s secrets could ruin her career, while Brody Parker’s could get him killed. They become pawns for two Collectors seeking Bad King John’s crown jewels, which disappeared in rural England back when Robin Hood roamed Nottingham. This time, however, the Collectors—a ruthless dotcom billionaire and a desperate London detective—might not be playing for the same team, leaving Sam and Brody trapped in the middle.
    One thing’s for sure: if either hopes to survive, Sam and Brody will have to find a way to overcome their distrust—and their growing attraction—in order to succeed on this winner-take-all treasure hunt.
My thoughts: I liked this one a lot more than the first book in the series. Probably because the first book didn’t really mention the C7 until near the end. This time it’s up front and so much more suspenseful. I liked Sam and Brody, too.  

Tomorrow is RELEASE DAY for Biting the Curse. Last chance to get it at $2.99, too. By Friday it’ll be at its regular price of $4.99. So far my advertising garnered around 20 pre-sales. That’s the best I’ve ever done (that I know of). Didn’t make my advertising money back, but I rarely ever do. I think I just need to get more books out there. And I’m working at it (slowly, but surely).
Here are the buy links:


Barnes & Noble:




On Thursday I turn 62. I start collecting Social Security in September (apparently I have to be 62 for a WHOLE month before I can claim it, and September is actually August’s payment). I’m taking a chance I won’t make $17,000 a year in book royalties. And if I do, well, I’ll have myself a happy dance and then worry about the consequences!

So… What age do you think you will retire? I don’t really consider myself retired, but in a way I am, since I don’t have to work if I don’t want to. Semi-retired, maybe? I doubt I’ll ever give up writing and selling books. It’s who I am now.

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Wednesday Reads and I'm Finished!!

I finished the first draft of Finding the Perfect Mate! Well, I sort of finished it yesterday. I still have to go over what I wrote yesterday because I always find stuff wrong the next day. Always. So I’m finished, but not officially finished. Does that make sense?

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #32

Dates read: July 2-6
Title: You Can’t Hide
Year of publication: 2006
Author: Karen Rose
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series:  Romantic Suspense #5
# of Pages: 497
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Terror has forever changed the life of psychiatrist Tess Ciccotelli. Someone is tormenting her patients, pushing them to commit suicide, and setting her up to take the blame. But Tess can’t break her oath to protect her patients’ privacy at all costs. Even when detective Aidan Reagan demands a list of everyone she’s treating. Even when the mounting danger threatens Tess herself.
    Aidan doesn’t like anyone who stalls his cases. Still, he can’t help but admire Tess’s fierce loyalty to her patients, especially when it becomes clear that a nameless, faceless enemy is set on destroying her career, her family, and, finally, Tess herself. As Aidan’s heart softens, the killer’s will hardens, and one thing becomes clear—the noose if tightening around Tess’s neck.
My thoughts: Wow. I did NOT see that end coming. And I had a lot of guesses, too (all wrong, of course). Nice meaty romantic suspense. I highly recommend her books.  

Book #33

Dates read: July 6-8
Title: The Friend Zone
Year of publication: 2019
Author: Abby Jimenez
Genre: Romantic comedy/Contemporary romance
Series:  N/A
# of Pages: 361
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Kristen Peterson doesn’t do drama, will fight to the death for her friends, and has no room in her life for guys who just don’t get her. She’s also keeping a big secret: facing a medically necessary procedure that will make it impossible for her to have children.
    Planning her best friend’s wedding is bittersweet for Kristen—especially when she meets the best man, Josh Copeland. He’s funny, sexy, never offended by her mile-wide streak of sarcasm, and always one chicken enchilada ahead of her hangry. Even her dog, Stuntman Mike, adores him. The only catch: Josh wants a big family someday. Kristen knows he’d be better off with someone else, but as their attraction grows, it’s harder and harder to keep him at arm’s length.
My thoughts: I followed the author before she became an author. She’s the owner of Nadia Cakes and became kind of viral after her geode cake became better known as vagina cake. It was hilarious on Facebook. She was hilarious. And then I found out she wrote a book. It wasn’t a surprise she got a publishing deal. She was FAMOUS! Then she got raving reviews. Well, I just had to see what it was all about. And wow! Am I glad I read this. It’s great. Made me laugh. Made me cry. It’s a great story. I did NOT want to put it down (and for the most part, I didn’t).

I can’t believe it only took 5 months to write Finding the Perfect Mate (my ninth book). I haven’t written a book that fast since 2012 (my fifth, and that book took 6 months to write). It’s a great feeling and very motivating. I kind of want to start on the next ghost book. And I may do that in a few days. But Finding the Perfect Mate will simmer until I get back from the convention later this month. And then it will be time for rewrites!

Tonight Hubby and I are going to see Sheryl Crow in concert. I loved her concerts (we’ve been to two), but was sad to see she had switched over to country. But she’s back now and I really liked her last album. Now I just gotta hope it doesn’t rain. The Fraze Pavilion isn’t covered (boo!).

So… Have you ever gone to a concert? Which one was a favorite of yours?

Happy Reading!


Monday, July 8, 2019

A Workshop featuring Damon Suede!

Central Ohio Fiction Writers (a chapter of Romance Writers of America) is having a workshop in November featuring Damon Suede. I figure since I have this blog, I’d use it to help get the word out (in case there are any writers out there that just might be interested).

This is what Damon Suede will be talking about:


Your A-Game explains the tools and rules of kickass genre marketing to let you make your best next move. He breaks down the tricks and traps facing all novelists so you can:

·       Build your personal brand into a professional force

·       Polish your public presence, online and in person

·       Reach your ideal market and access your fans

·       Raise each project to the next level


Uses and abuses of form and formula in genre stories. Narrative patterns and recurring structures specific to certain subgenres. Trope history and evolution. Navigating the border between cliché and archetype.

And here are the details:

Location: The Dublin Rec Center, 5600 Post Road, Dublin, Ohio 43017
Fee: $75 for COFW members, $85 for non-members (price includes lunch)
When: Saturday, November 2, 2019, 9am-4pm

Sign up at the website

You can find out more about Damon Suede here:

Space is limited! If you’re interested, don’t wait to register.


So… Did you watch the USA women win the World Cup Soccer? I don’t usually watch soccer, but I watched from the quarter-finals up. Exciting!  

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Wednesday Reads and Happy 4th of July!

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #30

Dates read: June 25-29
Title: After Dark
Year of publication: 2000
Author: Jayne Castle (Jayne Ann Krentz)
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series:  Ghost Hunters #1
# of Pages: 332
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Life is tough these days for Lydia Smith, licensed para-archaeologist. Seriously stressed-out from a nasty incident in an alien tomb, she is obliged to work part-tie in Shrimpton’s House of Ancient Horrors, a very low-budget museum. She has a plan to get her career back on track, but it isn’t going well. Stuff keeps happening
    Take the dead body that she discovered in one of the sarcophagus exhibits. Who needed that? Finding out that her new client, Emmett London, is one of the most dangerous men in the city isn’t helping matters either. And that’s just today’s list of setbacks. Here in the shadows of the Dead City of Old Cadence, things don’t really heat up until
After Dark.
My thoughts: This book was NOTHING like I thought it was going to be. I was looking for a ghost book (something similar to what I write). Not even close. I can’t even say that the things that are called ghosts are actual ghosts (or at least what we consider ghosts). This book is set in a futuristic time, on a planet we apparently populated a couple of hundred years before. Yet, everything is kind of old-fashioned (no space ships, no internet, no cell phones???) with some magic stuff thrown in. I enjoyed it okay, it was cute, but I won’t bother with the rest of the series.

 Book #31

Dates read: June 30-July 2
Title: Dirty Secrets
Year of publication: 2014
Author: Karen Rose
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series:  Romantic suspense #4.5
# of Pages: 130
Paper or plastic: Nook book
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from Goodreads: Emma Townsend is astonished when she comes across a love letter tucked away in an old high school year book, written by her once dear friend Chris Walker. Having never seen it until now, the letter has taken seventeen years to touch Emma’s heart. Now she’s determined to find Chris and maybe even get a second chance at romance.
    For Chris, now a college professor, seeing Emma again has brought back a flood of memories, rekindling a passion he thought was long gone. But in the shadows, someone is watching Emma and Chris, someone nursing revenge, and plunging Emma into a nightmare where no one can be trusted and every dirty little secret is sealed with a kiss.
My thoughts: Mmmm… A nice little romantic suspense to whet my appetite for a larger romantic suspense. I’m hooked on Karen Roses’s stories so I think I’ll read a few in a row now.

I am sooooo behind in my reading. Thirteen books behind schedule! But you know what? I don’t care. I always seem to panic around this time and then I manage to reach my goal. And I should do the same this time because you know why? I’ve got two cruises coming up this year! Getting my Nook stocked up for them, too. Even I have to admit it’s easier to carry around. I still don’t like them, but it’s better than lugging books around.

So… Got any plans for the 4th of July? Tonight we’ll be going to the Dragons game, which will feature fireworks. And then when we leave the park, we can enjoy Dayton’s fireworks. But tomorrow? Nope, not doing a darn thing (although Hubby does want to use the grill).

Happy Reading!


Monday, July 1, 2019

A Pre-Order, a Review, and Duck Drama

Biting the Curse is up for pre-order!

I didn’t realize until just this past weekend that I had the ability to see what I sold during pre-order status (am I dumb or what?—don’t answer that). And I didn’t remember putting Ghostly Interlude up on pre-order last year, either (see, my memory is really sucking!). I sold 5 copies (that I know of) of Ghostly Interlude during the pre-order, but I don’t believe I had it at a cheaper price, either. Biting the Curse is $2.99 during the pre-order and will go up after release day to $4.99. So far I’ve sold 4 copies (that I know of) of Biting the Curse, but I’ve got the book scheduled in a few newsletters for the next couple of weeks, so we’ll see if it gets any more traction. I sure hope it does! I’d like to think this book will get people interested in reading the others.

If you’re interested in getting your copy, here’s the blurb and the buy links:

Can a vampire break a curse?

When Janie Robinson says “I do,” she might as well call the morgue. Two days after her wedding, David died in a car accident. The day after she accepted his proposal, Justin fell to his death at work. The day after she agreed to move in, Aaron died in a freakish drone accident. Now Sam wants to date her because she’s some kind of Perfect Mate. If she’s perfectly anything, she’s perfectly cursed and she’s not about to risk Sam’s life.

Sam Kincaid is a vampire. He has been searching for Janie since the day he let her go. Her so-called curse doesn’t bother him until he becomes the killer’s next target. He’s never feared for his life before, but if he lets her go again, it wouldn’t be worth living.

Barnes & Noble:

And I already have one review posted on Goodreads (you can see it HERE!). How awesome is that?

The price won’t be this low again for quite some time (if ever). So tell all your friends!

We had some duck drama here on Sunday. Mama and her ten ducklings (there were eleven on Saturday, so something had to have happened Saturday night) were using our house for shade for a time. They would then waddle down to the pond and swim around. They waddled back up later on and headed for the neighbor’s house (the house between us and the complainers of the bird feeders). They were just about to a shady spot when the dog inside started barking.

You should have seen them fly. And scatter! Hubby and I were laughing. Mama went off one way, a couple of ducklings followed her, some went the opposite direction and two stayed behind in the yard (guess the dog didn’t scare them so much). It took them about an hour to get all back together.

In our yard. In the shade.

Guess they feel safer at our house.

I’m super close to finishing up Perry’s story (Finding the Perfect Mate). The ending is coming clearer to me, which is a huge step in finishing! I figure I’ll finish the first draft in the next week or two. I’m so excited! It’s been way too long since I wrote a book this fast. And to think, it only took writing 500+ words a day! I started this practice on March 12th and only missed three days! It was just going to be a trial thing to see if I could write every day. Guess I can. And now it’s just normal to get up and write first thing.

So… Have any excitement at your place this weekend?

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Wednesday Reads and the Ducks are Back!

Took a weekend trip to Chicago and actually got a lot of reading done during the drive (the portion I wasn’t driving, of course). Helped that I was reading a good book, too.

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #29

Dates read: June 18-24
Title: Mark of the Demon
Year of publication: 2009
Author: Diana Rowland
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series:  Kara Gillian #1
# of Pages: 370
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Why me? Why now? That’s what Beaulac, Louisiana, detective Kara Gillian was asking herself when an angelic creature named Rhyzkahl unexpectedly appeared during a routine summoning. Kara was hoping to use her occult skills to catch a serial killer, but never had she conjured anything like this unearthly beautiful and unspeakably powerful being whose very touch set off exquisite new dimensions of pleasure. But can she enlist his aid in helping her stop a killer who’s already claimed the lives—and souls—of thirteen people? And should she? The Symbol Man is a nightmare that the city thought had ended three years ago. Now he’s back for an encore and leaving every indication on the flesh of his victims that he too, is well versed in demonic lore.
    Kara may be the only cop on Beaulac’s small force able to stop the killer, but it is her first homicide case. Yet with Rhyzkahl haunting her dreams, and a handsome yet disapproving FBI agent dogging her waking footsteps, she may be in way over her head….
My thoughts: I followed a funny story about the author on Facebook during the Christmas season. She put up some Christmas dragons in her yard that one neighbor took offense, saying they weren’t very Christmas-y. Did she take them down? Heck, no. She added halos to them and put up more! She sounded like a fun person to me, and I bought her book. Boy, am I glad I did, too. This was so good. I’ll be getting the rest of this series now!

And if you’re interested in reading the article, you can find it here:

Good news! The bird feeders are popular once again and the ducks are back. In fact, Momma brought her ELEVEN babies (which are probably more like teenagers—they’re big!) with her. The neighbors haven’t said anything … yet. But I did notice a few birds perching on their patio. Oh well. J

So … What’s the strangest reason you bought a book? Did you read it? And if so, did you like it?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Wednesday Reads and Helping a Friend

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #28

Dates read: June 12-18
Title: Deseré
Year of publication: 2017
Author: Maria McKenzie
Genre: Historical romance
Series:  N/A
# of Pages: 295
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Deseré, a skilled seamstress and slave, lives on a South Carolina cotton plantation. Fair-skinned and astonishingly beautiful, she is owned by a kindly master and given his permission to marry the man she loves, a carpenter enslaved on a neighboring plantation. Yet when her master dies before her wedding and his nephew inherits the plantation and its slaves, Deseré’s marriage is indefinitely postponed, pending consent from her new owner.
    Lawyer Anthony Sinclair arrives from Ohio on the mend from a broken heart, leaving behind a career derailed by scandal. Owning a plantation presents a vibrant opportunity. Yet torn by inklings of abolitionist beliefs, Anthony struggles with the damning prospect of owning human beings.
    Upon first seeing the alluring Deseré, Anthony is immediately dazzled by her golden skin, shimmering blond hair and ocean blue eyes. Yet Deseré perceives the tall, dark-haired and handsome “Masta” Anthony as rather stupid. He knows nothing about running a plantation, nor being a planter. But as long as he allows Deseré to marry the man she loves, she will be happy.
    Anthony, however, desires Deseré for himself. To what lengths will he go to win the forbidden love of a slave? Will owning Deseré be the only way Anthony can ever posses her while her heart belongs to another man?
My thoughts: Historical books tend to have a lot more detail than contemporary, which is probably why I don’t always pick up historical books. But Maria is a writer friend. We both belonged to the now defunct Cincinnati chapter of RWA and I’ve sat next to her at a book signing. I never bought her books before, though. Now her home and others are being threatened by a landslide. They are trying to raise $300,000 to fix it (since the city isn’t stepping in) and I donated what I could. But I thought, why not buy one of her books, too? So I picked the one with the pretty cover (and it is pretty, isn’t it?). There are portions in this book that did drag on for me (because…historical), but it sure picked up speed toward the end. I enjoyed reading this and if you like reading historical romance, I highly recommend this one. And if you’re interested in helping the author and her neighbors save their homes, you can find out more about the fundraiser here:

So… Hubby moved the birdfeeder on Saturday. The birds are back and happy (haven’t seen the ducks return, though). We’ll see if the neighbor still complains. And if they do, should we care?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Wednesday Reads and Going Slower

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #27

Dates read: May 31-June 11
Title: Lovely, Dark, and Deep
Year of publication: 2014
Author: Susannah Sandlin
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series:  The Collectors #1
# of Pages: 306
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased from Author
Blurb from book: When biologist Gillian Campbell makes an offhand comment about a family curse during a TV interview, she has no idea what her words will set in motion. Within days, Gillian finds herself at the mercy of C7 a secretive international group of power brokers with a dangerous game: competing to find the world’s most elusive treasures, no matter the cost, in money or in lives. To save her family, Gillian teams up with Shane Burke, a former elite diver who’s lost his way, navigating the brutal “death coast” of the North Atlantic to find what the collector seeks: the legendary Ruby Cross of the Knights Templar, stolen by Gillian’s ancestor and lost at sea four hundred years ago.
My thoughts: It was an entertaining read, and definitely a romance, but not near as suspenseful as I’d hoped. But if you like books with divers and lost treasure, this is a good one to read.

I’m taking this class (on-line) on how to write effective, pithy blurbs for books (to sell or pitch to an agent). 55-68 words long. That’s it. You really learn how to just look at one distinct part of your book so you can sell it. Well, at least I hope I learn it. I’m still struggling with the word count. Writing books are much easier!

But hey, maybe I’ll share some of my “outtakes” later on. That should be fun.

So… Do you find you read slower this time of year? I am. Or maybe I’m just too busy with writing, editing (yep, Biting the Curse is back in my hands), and taking classes to get busy reading. I’m so behind in my goal, it’s pathetic. I need a vacation now so I can get caught up. Which is silly because I’m technically semi-retired—I should read at home!

Happy Reading!


Monday, June 10, 2019

Bird Feeders and Time

Only 10 ducks here. One waddled off
to the pond by the time I got my camera.
We put up a bird feeder last month. Went through the bag of bird seed in about two weeks. Maybe less.

Bought more bird seed. Big bags of the stuff.

Seems ducks like what’s being dropped to the ground. Found 11 of them munching away the other morning. All males, though. What’s up with that?

But then our neighbor, two doors down, stopped us one morning and politely asked if we can either not fill the bird feeder or relocate it. Seems the little brown birds (sparrows? Not sure) like to perch on their patio furniture and have been leaving a mess.

And here I thought the birds were perching on our roof waiting their turn at the feeder.

I don’t know if this issue is because of our feeder or because of the pond behind us. These are new neighbors (just moved in a few months ago) and I don’t think the former neighbors were living there (there had been a for sale sign up on that house before we moved into ours). Oh, and there are bushes in their back yard (where there aren’t any in ours, just the feeder).

What would you do? Hubby said he would stop filling the feeders and see if that helps.

So now the bird feeder is hanging empty. I think the birds are sad. I’m not too happy, either.

By the way, we’ve officially lived in our new house a year now. Sheesh! Is time flying fast or what?

I know that has to do with age (which I don’t understand at all) and it makes me wonder how quickly time must pass for my vampires. I mean, they’re all centuries old! Would something that happened ten years ago feel like it was a year to them? Hell, it feels like that to me sometimes NOW. I still can’t believe this is the 20th year I’ve had to write 20 instead of 19 for the year. Twenty years! Celebrating 2000 doesn’t seem like THAT long ago!

So… Do you have birdfeeders in your yard? Do your neighbors complain? And how fast is time moving for you? Do you wish it would slow down just a tiny bit?

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Wednesday Reads

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #26

Dates read: May 24-30
Title: Nothing to Fear
Year of publication: 2005
Author: Karen Rose
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series:  Romantic Suspense #4/Chicago #3
# of Pages: 507
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: As director of an inner-city women’s shelter, Dana Dupinsky safeguards many secrets. Some are new identities; some are new addresses; and some are even hidden truths about herself. Passionately dedicated to Hanover House and the women she protects, Dana has always been reluctant to look for love. But now, just as a case puts her and a child in mortal danger, it seems that love has come looking for her.
  Security expert Ethan Buchanan learned to stalk men in the Afghan desert. Now he vows to track down the ruthless woman who kidnapped his godson—and falling for Dana is not in the plan. Yet her very presence seems to chase away the ghosts that haunt him, and her skillful evasion of personal questions raises his hunting instincts. For there’s a deadly new secret at Hanover House. A brutal killer is weaving a web of revenge with a stolen boy at its center. And Dana is the next victim on the list…
My thoughts: Finally, a book I looked forward to picking up! Lots of sexy romance. Mmmm… just what this reader/writer needed. Oh yeah, lots of suspense, too. This was a joy to read.  

I ended a 77-day writing streak on Monday. That's because we spent the day at the Columbus Zoo. Couldn't have asked for better weather, either. High 60s to low 70s. Sunny. And no humidity! The animals didn't all seem dead to the world. It was a lovely day.

So... When was the last time you went to the zoo? And which one was it?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Wednesday Reads and I’m Safe from Tornadoes…so far

Storms ripped through Dayton on Memorial Day evening, including tornadoes. One came as close as four miles from our house (closer to our previous residence). Hubby’s work was affected in that they didn’t have any water or internet, and the new manufacturing plant they were planning on opening in 30 days was pretty much destroyed.

At first I was annoyed at all the weather alerts, and the fact the local NBC station took over the hockey game after the first period (yes, I was watching the Stanley Cup Finals). Why the station couldn’t scroll the information, or even show picture in picture, I’ll never know. It’s not like the information wasn’t on five other stations (the storms were still in Indiana at this time, not exactly the Dayton market)!

Once the game was over (which we were able to stream via the NBC Sports App), I paid more attention to the storms. Then again, they were almost in our area by that time (although, if we had lost power at any time, I would have headed for the closet—the only place in this house that doesn’t have a window). We were the fortunate ones, though. Never lost power. Wind barely kicked up. Lots of lightning, though and the rain was very heavy (but no hail, whereas it hailed about three miles from us).

More storms are expected as I post this, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed it ends up being a quieter night.

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #25

Dates read: May 13-23
Title: Deadly Curiosities
Year of publication: 2014
Author: Gail Z. Martin
Genre: Paranormal mystery
Series:  Deadly Curiosities #1
# of Pages: 458
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Welcome to Trifles & Folly, a store with a dark secret.
    Proprietor Cassidy Kincaide continues a family tradition begun in 1670 – acquiring and neutralizing dangerous supernatural items. It’s the perfect job for Cassidy, whose psychic gift lets her touch an object and know its history. Together with her business partner Sorren, a 500-year-old vampire and former jewel thief, Cassidy makes it her business to get infernal objects off the market.
    When a trip to a haunted hotel unearths a statue steeped in malevolent power, and a string of murders draws a trail to the abandoned old Navy yard, Cassidy and Sorren discover a diabolical plot to unleash a supernatural onslaught on their city.
    It’s time for Kincaide and her team to get rid of these Deadly Curiosities before the bodies start piling up.
My thoughts: I didn’t enjoy this so much. Not because it’s a bad book, because it’s not the type of book I enjoy reading. But I wanted to give the author a try since I’ve seen her at Dragon Con several years (and I am trying to read more new-to-me authors this year). Well, now I can say I read one of her books. No, I won’t keep reading the series. That’s not to say you wouldn’t enjoy the book. If you like detailed mysteries, with a lot of magic, then give it a try. It’s a very well written book. Heads up: there is a bit of gore, but absolutely no romantic anything in this book (which isn’t why I didn’t like it—it was just too detailed for my taste).  

So… What’s the closest you’ve been to a tornado? I think one went over our home while we were stationed at Ft. Rucker, Alabama back in the late 80s. It was night and very windy and I heard what sounded like a freight train. There were no reports of one touching down, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t there. Those suckers scare me.

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, May 22, 2019

No Wednesday Reads But I Won!

I haven't finished the book I'm reading, but this happened on Monday:

Ghostly Interlude Won in the Strut Your Stuff Contest! I even got a badge! See?

This is the very FIRST contest I have ever won. EVER.

And in case you were wondering, it came in third in the Readers Choice portion (the voting portion). Not too shabby, huh?

In other good news... St Louis Blues won the Western Conference last night. Whoo hoo! Now I have a team to root for in the finals. Go Blues!!

And finally, my short story, Savannah's Destiny (a mix of my Bitten by Love and Ghostly Encounters series), is available to preorder (is that how you say it?).

Here's the blurb:

Darren, vampire and bartender at the Savannah Riverfront Hotel, has a ghost problem by the name of Austin that won’t go away. He’d love nothing more for the ghost to move on, but Austin is keeping mum. That is until his sister, Savannah, attends a book convention that is held in the same hotel. Darren believes she’s the ticket to get rid of the ghost as well as a reward for putting up with the spirit for so long.

Austin doesn’t want the blood sucker’s help, but he doesn’t want his sister hurt, either. Now that his body has been found by the police, he’s forced to cooperate, but does everything he can to keep the vampire from sinking his fangs in Savannah.

And here are the preorder links:

Barnes & Noble:

So... Are you going to watch the Stanley Cup Finals? Who are you rooting for?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Wednesday Reads

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #24

Dates read: May 6-12
Title: Nothing to Hide
Year of publication: 2019
Author: Allison Brennan
Genre: Mystery/Suspense
Series:  Lucy Kincaid #15
# of Pages: 406
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: With a background in psychology, FBI Agent Lucy Kincaid is good at getting into the heads of killers and victims both. Still, her latest case is leaving her stumped. A third body has turned up in San Antonio—and it bears the same unique and troubling M.O. as the first two. The killer is clearly trying to send a message. But what is it—and to whom? All roads keep leading Lucy down a dead end…
    The victims are all married men who led honest lives alongside their adoring wives but have nothing else in common. When Lucy catches each widow in a lie, she realizes that things are not at all as they seem. What begins as a seemingly straightforward investigation turns into something far darker and more sinister than Lucy could have ever imagined Can she solve this case before more lives are lost..including her own?
My thoughts: The romance part of this series is long gone, but that doesn’t keep me from wanting to keep reading these books. I love Lucy and Sean and their whole family and friends. Not a lot of major suspense in this one, but still a good read. And I couldn’t figure out whodunnit until Lucy and her partner did.

So… do you like reading series books? I enjoy them. I must. I read a LOT of them!

Happy Reading!


Monday, May 13, 2019

Electrical Mystery

So… the circuit breaker to the kitchen island has been blowing (or is that tripping?) a lot recently. The island consists of the dishwasher, garbage disposal, and two outlets. It seems to go out when I’m not using anything electrical.

I called the builder (since the house is still under warranty). They sent an electrician. He pulled stuff out from under the sink and did his thing (whatever that thing is). Went into the garage and looked at the breaker box (or I assume he did, because he went into the garage—it’s not like I followed him in there). Came back and said it was the dishwasher since all the wiring was fine. Said he would put the order in and I should hear back from the appliance people.

Two days later, still no call. So I called the builder back. They knew nothing of this and said I had to call the appliance people. Sure, fine, give me the number.

Appliance guy came over on Friday. Plugged his little doohickey into the dishwasher and connected it to his laptop. Nothing. No surges. No outages. Nothing listed to show that anything went wrong. The dishwasher is fine. In fact, when I told him when the circuit was blowing, that it happened after the dishwasher ran (and the dishwasher always finished the cycle), he said it couldn’t possibly be the dishwasher. Still, he did his thing and checked everything twice. Wasn’t happy that the garbage disposal and outlets were on the same breaker as the dishwasher, but there wasn’t anything he could do about that. And since I wasn’t using anything when it blew, said it was most likely a bad breaker.

Hmmm… Wouldn’t the electrician have noticed THAT???

Appliance guy said for us to call our project manager and let him know what’s going on. But as he was leaving, he asked if I was okay with the rest of the appliances (range and microwave). I told him I didn’t like the fact that the microwave didn’t have a light, otherwise they were fine.

He stopped. “It should have a light,” he said. “Let’s go check it out.”

Sure enough, he pointed to where the light is located (which is not easy to see since the inside of the microwave is a dark grey and the bulb is covered with a black mesh thingy). The light should come on when the door is open. It never had (which is why I thought one didn’t exist).

He looked up the model and confirmed it did indeed have a light. He ordered one and will install it this Wednesday. Yay!

After appliance guy left, I called Hubby and told him about calling the project manager (since he had his number on his phone). Nothing the PM can do, but he said to call the builder and he would put a push on the request. So I called the builder. An hour later I get a call from the electrician.

I like it when the PM pushes! The electrician wil be back today to replace the circuit breaker. I hope. And then I hope it doesn’t happen again, because our warranty is almost up (we closed on May 29, 2018).

I guess it could be worse. The circuit could have waited until after the warranty had expired. Isn’t that what stuff does when they’re under warranty? Wait for the expiration date? Sure feels that way sometimes.

So… how was your weekend? Do anything fun? It was pretty quiet here, which was fine by me.

Happy Monday!


Friday, May 10, 2019

I Hate Spectrum

Today is a ranty post. Because I’m mad and need to get it off my chest.

I hate Spectrum. I’d probably hate any other TV provider, too (because they’re all a pain in the ASS), but we feel cable is a little better than a dish, especially around here when the weather gets bad (I’ve seen what happens to those dish providers during a storm).

We have three DVRs. Before Spectrum took over Time Warner, we used to have a whole house system. Where we could watch any show recorded on any DVR from any DVR. It was great. We weren’t forced to watch it on the DVR that did the recording. Then Spectrum took over.

They didn’t support whole house systems. They don’t have anything that sophisticated. Why would a company get rid of the BEST FEATURE of DVRs???? We only got to keep the one we had because we were grandfathered in. Then we moved.

Yeah, we lost our whole house system. So we’re stuck with three separate DVRs and we have to go to that DVR to watch the shows we had recorded, which is another pain in the ASS. We moved the bedroom DVR into the Great Room so our TV can use both DVRs (and because we didn’t want to have to watch our recorded shows in the bedroom).

Problem was… the bedroom DVR didn’t record all that well. I’d set it up to record a show and sometimes it would record it all and sometimes it would only record five minutes of it. We couldn’t rely on it for our series, but we had shows on the DVR that had recorded correctly. Daughter and I finally watched the last show last week. The DVR was now ready to be replaced.

You’d think this would be a joyous time. Nope. I followed the INSTRUCTIONS that the clerk at Spectrum HANDED me when I exchanged DVRs. I spent all day waiting for the DVR to show the time so I could call to activate it. Waited for the message on the TV to say it was ready to be activated. I unplugged/plugged it several times. Reconnected the cables. Nothing was working.

Hubby called Spectrum, which is something we really hate to do. I think they purposely use that recorded voice to repel callers. I know I think long and hard before I have to call them.

After answering all the questions and telling robot lady we needed technical support, the recording said that we had an outage in our area (we didn’t) and kept telling us there wasn’t anything they could do. You know, if we could have talked to a real person, they would have KNOWN why we were calling.

Hubby almost had to start over, but managed to get in line for a real person. And then we find out… the INSTRUCTIONS WERE WRONG!!!

You see, their DVRs don’t have clocks on them anymore.

And that right there really pisses me off. Used to be all the electronics had clocks on them. Now, NONE OF THEM DO!!! What, don’t people like to see what time it is? I certainly do.

I hope our older DVR never dies (it’s the one we use the most). I will not be happy without a clock. There’s nowhere behind the TV to hang one (since there are three windows there).

By the way, do the other TV providers have clocks on their devices? That would be a big selling point to win me over.

Anyway, both boxes are now working, but I don’t know if I want to use the new one. It has a completely DIFFERENT menu system! Why?????

I was going to set up to record Season 6 of SHIELD on that one (since we haven’t seen Season 5 yet—have to get that on Netflix). I may still do it, but gee whiz, why does Spectrum have to make everything so complicated?

Oh, and the real kicker after all this? The guide on the old box now has a stupid advertising line between the channels. An ADVERTISEMENT! I pay a lot of money for cable. I don’t think I should have to be forced to see an ADVERTISEMENT on the stupid GUIDE!

If I didn’t like watching TV so much, I’d give it up.

Thanks for letting me rant. I just hope I don’t write another ranty post on Monday. The appliance repair person is supposed to come by today and find out why our dishwasher keeps blowing the circuit breaker. The electrician already said it wasn’t the wiring. And yes, it’s still under warranty. So at least we have that going for us.


Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Wednesday Reads and I’m Crocheting…Again

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #23

Dates read: April 28 – May 5
Title: The Trouble With Vampires
Year of publication: 2019
Author: Lynsay Sands
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series:  Argeneau #29
# of Pages: 380
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: For close to three thousand years the imposing, impossibly handsome Santo Notte has fought in armies across the world and battled his own, more personal enemies. Of all the places he might expect to encounter his life mate, a quiet corner of upstate New York doesn’t seem likely. But as soon as he makes contact with history professor Petronella Stone, while hunting down a suspected rogue immortal, he knows that she will be the greatest adventure of his eternal life.
    He expects her to be surprised, confused, even overwhelmed. What he doesn’t expect is that Pet has a secret history of her own. There’s no mistaking the mind-blowing, mutual pleasure they share. But as Pet struggles to protect her nephew from a danger lurking too close to home, Santo realizes there’s another threat to her safety—him. And claiming their passionate future will be impossible until he leaves his past behind, forever…
My thoughts: You’d think after 28 books in this series that the 29th might just feel like the same ol’ same ol’. But NOPE! Still hot romance. Still humorous. Still suspenseful. But a different story every time. I love the Argeneau family and hope the books continue for a long time to come.

Well… the Blue Jackets are out of the playoffs, so I guess I’ll be rooting for the Canes (sorry, Jeff, I just don’t like ANY Boston teams!). Don’t know how much I’ll sit and watch them, though. I probably will if the daughter comes home to watch. But alone? Nope, not likely. I’m not THAT big of a fan. Of the Canes.

I started a crochet project. I wasn’t sure I’d ever crochet again, but this yarn and pattern has intrigued me (for a baby blanket—like I know anyone having babies!!!). I’m starting small first, though, making a scarf for my granddaughter (the yarn color is called Pegasus, and it’s her favorite creature, so I thought…why not?). Once I determine my hands will not turn into two painful fists (can’t tell if it’s arthritis or the stupid pills I have to take for another FOUR YEARS, but my hands get stiff easily), then I will make that baby blanket. Which really won’t be for a baby. Probably more for my lap. Or a gift to someone. I haven’t decided yet. What I do know is that when I finish it (and see, I’m being positive here), I will take a picture and show you all how neat it turned out (because I only make neat things, didn’t you know??).

So… Are you a crafty person? What do you like making?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Wednesday Reads and Other Stuff

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #22

Dates read: April 22-27
Title: Crashing Heat
Year of publication: 2019
Author: Richard Castle
Genre: Mystery
Series:  Nikki Heat #10
# of Pages: 234
Paper or plastic: Hardback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Marriage. It’s a double-edged sword, or at least it is for Nikki Heat. Her husband, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jameson Rook, infuriates her in a way no one else in her entire life has ever done. He also takes her to heights of pleasure she has never experienced. But most of all, she loves the man with all her heart and she’d do anything to protect him—which is just what she has done not so long ago. It almost cost them everything.
    Now Rook is given the honor to be a visiting professor at his alma mater, and he can’t pass up the opportunity to mentor burgeoning writers at his award-winning college newspaper. But shortly after his arrival on campus, a female reporter for the paper is found dead…naked…in Rook’s bed.
    Dealing with betrayal from any man is not Nikki’s style. She and Jameson have had plenty of conflicts during their complicated relationship, but none like this. Is her husband keeping secrets, or can she really trust him? In order to find out, Nikki gives Jameson the benefit of the doubt and digs into his theory of a secret society within a secret society. What she finds puts her investigative skills, and her marriage, to the test.
My thoughts: A little more tame than the other books in this series. No thrilling suspense in a life-and-death adventure. Just a straight-up mystery. It was okay, but not as good as the others. And apparently a character has been brought back from the dead, but funny thing, I didn’t notice. Shows you how much I pay attention to minor characters.

I’m down to one project again since I returned Biting the Curse to my editor for another look. Almost feel free! Working on two projects takes up more time than I imagined. But I met my goal and that makes me HAPPY!

Know what also made me happy? Watching the Blue Jackets win last night. Whoo hoo! I’m also rooting for St. Louis, Carolina, and Colorado (in case you were wondering).

So… Whatcha reading now? Anything good? How did you find the book?

Happy Reading!


Monday, April 29, 2019

Biting the Curse Cover!!

I’ve shared this with my newsletter subscribers and added it to Goodreads, so I thought it would be nice to share the cover to Biting the Curse with you, too! So…here’s the cover for you to enjoy. Ain’t it pretty???

I think Maria Zannini ( did a great job. Here’s the blurb (or description or cover copy or whatever you call it):

When Janie Robinson says “I do,” she might as well call the morgue.
Two days after her wedding, David died in a car accident.
The day after she accepted his proposal, Justin fell to his death at work.
The day after she agreed to move in, Aaron died in a freakish drone accident.
Now Sam wants to date her because she’s some kind of Perfect Mate.
If she’s perfectly anything, she’s perfectly cursed and she’s not about to risk Sam’s life.

Sam Kincaid is a vampire.
He has been searching for Janie since the day he let her go.
Her so-called curse doesn’t bother him until he becomes the killer’s next target.
He’s never feared for his life before, but if he lets her go again, it wouldn’t be worth living.

And if you’re so inclined, you can add the book to your WANT TO READ stack over at Goodreads. Here’s the link:

I’m still debating (with myself, of course) on whether or not I should put this up for pre-order. My estimated release date is July 18 (my birthday!!) and I’m really hoping I have the paperback ready for the Literary Love: Authors Rock Savannah convention. Nothing like putting that kind of pressure on myself to finish this thing, huh? But preorders? I don’t know. I’ve never done them before. What do you think?

So… Are you watching the Stanley Cup Playoffs? My Penguins (and Golden Knights) may be out of it, but the Columbus Blue Jackets are still going strong. And yes, I am rooting for them. I just don’t like them when they play the Penguins! Can’t believe they went into overtime against Boston in both games, though. In fact, I’m amazed at how many overtimes there have been in the playoffs this year. Just goes to show that all the teams are so evenly matched, huh? I just didn’t think I’d get stressed out over the Blue Jackets playing. Yikes! I’ll just blame it on playoff hockey.

Happy Monday.