One Night With A Duke: The Duke Series Book Five by Sandra Masters

Reclusive, cold as ice, the politically powerful Raven, Duke of Ravensmere, denies love after the tragic deaths of his duchess and baby. He is bound by his vow never to allow love to enter his heart again. Samantha Winston permits him to seek refuge in her carriage in a time of need, and what started as a kiss in the name of safety, becomes something more pleasurable and not so safe after all. In spite of every caution, his interest escalates into unexpected desire.

Samantha, a young widow with a secret, irreverent and high-spirited, has constructed impenetrable walls against all men. When she and Raven meet again, strong wills clash. Political intrigues and a dreaded nemesis place his life at risk, and Samantha finds herself in a dire predicament. All the while, passion soars.

Book Review: One Night With A Duke is the fifth book The Duke series. Author Sandra Masters sums up book five her series which takes place in London 1816 by this statement: “Can Samantha’s barriers fall with more kisses? Can Raven be released from his deathbed vow?”

Chapter one opens with action “The decision to walk to the gala had been a colossal mistake. The Tenth Duke of Ravensmere ducked into the shadows. Seven against one not good odds.”

Those who follow this series already know the well-developed characters and great story telling. Whether you start with book one or book five you will travel back into a period of time where romance was divine and acts played out in the bedroom were expressions of one’s heart and soul. Let me draw you into the story with a delicious romance from chapter thirty three:

“Raven growled as she screamed his name over and over again and considered it a benediction. Then and there, he knew there would never be any other woman for him. Her every reaction became an aphrodisiac. He prepared to ascend into sublime bliss, plunged his manhood into her again and again, and before he could exercise any control, released his seed.

“Each thrust seemed to reward them with multiple orgasms. His voice roared in strong satisfaction, desperate to breathe in gulps of air. She was velvet. He was iron. The look of passion on her sweet face pleasured him. This experience didn’t disappoint. Not what he expected, and perhaps too much more. Raven felt her muscle tighten around him and contract, tighten, and then bind him yet again. She coiled around his shaft. Paradise attained. He didn’t want the moment to end. What man would?

“After a few long moments, he rolled off her and brought her close to him, their bodies naked and moist from their lovemaking. “I hope I wasn’t too heavy. Admittedly, I dealt with a few unexpected issues.” He kissed her forehead and fondled her silken hair. Raven gazed at her face when she leaned back in repose, skin kissed by the moonlight, her lips rose-colored and lust-swollen. Her hair now pooled into strands of red curls wound in laziness and reminded him of a burning forest fire as it crested. The flames of the fireplace’s glowing embers cast a color spell of reds, orange and yellow on her tresses, radiating and beckoning his fingers to romp through. He knew the touch of it would feel like silken threads. Fascinated, he stared as her finger teased away ward tendril away.”

I invite you to enjoy this book along with the entire Duke Series by romance author Sandra Masters. I am enjoying the entire series. I, Theodocia McLean endorse ‘One Night With A Duke’ as a refreshing Regency Romance set in the 1800s. At the end of this book, Author Sandra Masters will whet your appetite for book six titled The Blue-Eyed, Black-Hearted Duke. I purchased this book from Kindle on June 21, 2017 and this review was completed on June 23, 2017

Genre: Romance, Historical, Regency Romance

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The Mystery Of The Lost Avenger by Linda Maria Frank

Good news for all Annie Tillery Mystery Followers. The Mystery Of The Lost Avenger (book 4) is finally here. This book educates young minds using this fictional mystery that involves NCIS investigating the crash site of a World War II plane.

Turns out the pilot was Annie Tillery’s great-grandmother Charlotte who was a test pilot for Grumman and actually flew in battle. Annie, her mother Carol are intrigued by Charlotte’s note and decide to dig through the old family attic to see what they can find out about this mysterious family member. What they discover in the attic only adds to the mystery and soon Annie suspects that Charlotte’s ghost is reaching out to them from beyond the grave with an important message.

Annie’s decides to get her boyfriend Ty Egan who happens to be a pilot involved. Here is their conversation.

“Ty, you won’t believe what Mom has been telling me about a mystery concerning my great-grandmother. Mom, this is your story, and maybe Ty can see something we don’t. Can you fill him in on the details, so far? I’m just hearing this story for the first time, too.”

“Well, let me start with . . .” She shuffled the papers in her lap. “Here’s the letter we received from the Department of the Navy. And here’s a copy of a note we found in the plane. The note is written on some sort of a company form with and identification number on it. The number belonged to Charlotte, my grandmother.”

“I also have a letter from the Naval Crime Investigation Service about the condition of the plane where they found the note, and the pilot they found in the wreckage. There are skeletonized remains of a person whose identity they are trying to confirm. They know who flew the plane when it went missing, but they must confirm that it is that person. It is a woman.”

Mom added a new thought, “You know, it’s ironic. Charlotte did die in a plane crash many years later. She continued to fly recreationally after the war. When I went to Maryland to see if there was any record of her time at Grumman, I found these letters in the house where Charlotte spent her last years.”

Students and young adults of all ages will enjoy The Mystery Of The Lost Avenger. Although a series each book is unique and stands alone with no need to read in a particular sequence.

Theodocia McLean endorses The Mystery Of The Lost Avenger and all the books in the Annie Tillery Mysteries by Linda Maria Frank. This review was completed on June 24, 2016.

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Secrets In The Fairy Chimneys by Linda Maria Frank

Annie Tillery Mysterys book three ‘Secrets In The Fairy Chimneys’ can be summed up as Indiana Jones meets Nancy Drew with the skills and precision of CSI. A mystery unfolds amidst a mix of ancient history and modern innovation, in an ageless Eastern country where time moves at a camel’s pace.

Dedicated research by author Linda Maria Frank leaves no stone unturned while great description text transports the reader to the streets of Turkey with it mosques and minarets, towers and modern buildings. One of my favorite quotes from the book is “Water droplets plunked into the pool from the vaulted ceiling. After the heat of the bazaar and the street chase, it was deliciously cool. Ornate columns with carved capitals supported the ceiling. The bases were decorated with animal and human figures. There were a few visitors, but the enormity of the space muffled their conversations.”

Strong characters with great dialog brings us to dusty archeological site in one of the oldest towns in human history called Catalhoyuk. Nothing can explain it better than this quote: “We were in a valley of shapes I couldn’t believe were not made by humans, humans with a fabulous imagination. Conical formations called fairy chimneys in various sizes spread away from us in every direction. The color of bleached bones, they sat majestically among the gray-green brush and white claylike soil. The air shimmered from the heat. I could smell the odor of clay mixed with a faint herbal scent that must have come from the brush.”

Cosponsors from Vermont University are looking for a DNA connection between residents of Catalhoyuk and our original nomadic ancestors in Africa. Annie Tillery and her team go to work excavating this archeological site with all its inherit dangers and a mystery brings out the detective in Annie.

From the spell of an Ouija board to a magical balloon ride in the sky nothing is lost as this time and space makes all their senses come alive with amazing black and white graphics that bring the main characters to life.

Students and young adults of all ages will enjoy Annie Tillery Mysteries. Although a series each book is unique and stands alone with no need to read in a particular sequence.

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘Secrets In The Fairy Chimneys’ and the Annie Tillery Mysteries by Linda Maria Frank. This review completion date February 5, 2015.

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Girl With Pencil, Drawing by Linda Maria Frank

Annie Tillery Mysterys book two Girl with Pencil, Drawing is a spectacular read for students and young adults of all ages. Each book in the Annie Tiller Mystery Series is unique and stands alone with no need to read in a particular sequence.

The story line in ‘Girl with Pencil, Drawing’ by Author Linda Maria Frank draws the young reader into an adventure where young Annie Tillery goes for her first art lesson at a prestigious Art Gallery. With youthful exuberance and an eagerness to advance her drawing skills Annie arrives early. When she enters the studio she overhears a heated argument between two people who turn out to be her Art Instructor Francesca Gabrielli and the Art Gallery Director John DiCristiani.

Annie’s empathy for others and her sleuth personally draws her into a murder mystery when John DiCristiani turns up dead and Francesca Gabrielli is the prime suspect, Annie enlists the help of her Aunt Jill who is a NYPD Detective to help clear her new found friend and art mentor’s name.

With strong characters, flowing dialog and layers of mystery, soon everyone is caught up in a real who-dun-it that involves a long lists of suspects and hidden clues. Twists and turns with all the dangers that come into play when an International Art Fraud has been perpetrated.

I invite you to go beyond this headline: “Manhattan Business-Man Found Slain in Chelsea. John DiCristiani, a wealthy business man, whose financial interests reached as far as Hong Kong and Istanbul, was found shot to death in his posh apartment overlooking the Hudson River. Mr. DiCristiani’s body was found by an employee from his Soho gallery. The police questioned the employee, Ms. Francesca Gabrielli, at headquarters, but subsequently released her. Police would only confide that the murder weapon was found at the scene and that all other leads were being investigated. Mr. DiCristiani is survived by a son, Mark, twenty-five, a law student at New York University.”

Learn the ins and out of the art world that include how scientists tests for authenticity in original paintings by world renown artist like Renoir and the lucrative forgeries that make this underworld as treacherous as any international mob association.

Follow the clues, wait for the DNA evidence and sift through the ashes left by an arsonist. Inspire a young reader to discover the innate detective skills of Annie Tillery who is fast becoming the next Nancy Drew. This series should be placed on our schools’ summer reading list.

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘Girl with Pencil, Drawing’ and the Annie Tillery Mysteries by Linda Maria Frank. This review was completed on March 24, 2015.

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The Madonna Ghost by Linda Maria Frank

Come on vacation with Annie Tillery and her Aunt Jill to Long Island’s Fire Island. Stand with Annie on the Ferry and recall what she sees; “Looking out across the Great South Bay, I could see Fire Island in the distance, a long stretch of dunes and scrub pines across the horizon. At the western end of the island, was the black and white striped tower of Fire Island lighthouse, blinking away. Sailboats maneuvered across the dark blue waters of the bay in ballerina fashion, their sails puffed out by the wind like dancers’ gauzy skirts.”

Walk along the boardwalk which “opens onto a broad cement lane where homey little cottages, each with a tiny garden” stretch as far as the eyes can see. Relax with Annie and Aunt Jill in the charm of “Windalee” one of the oldest houses on the island where secret a secret passage was used to smuggle liquor onto Long Island in the twenties. The Long Island coastland has always been the perfect environment for shipwrecks, lost treasure, pirates, bootleggers, drug runners, kidnapping and terrorists.

Learn the history of settlers coming to Long Island as far back as the early 1800s and how Fire Island got its name. Become aware that men, women and children enduring treacherous seas in wooden ships came to Fire Island and some were forced to wade cold ocean water to make it to Bay Shore. Join Annie and TY on their quest to see ‘The Madonna Ghost’ as past accounts and island legend recalls seeing her walking on the Bay Shores in the mist of the salt water air to protect the grave of her infant child who perished while she was trying to make it to shore.

Mystery and suspense develops when Annie discovers that her Aunt Jill, who is a NYPD detective is not really on vacation, but working an active case. Watch Annie’s sleuth abilities interrupt her own vacation when her beloved Aunt Jill is missing and some unscrupulous neighbors beside “Windalle” are on the top of her short list.

Enjoy a youthful budding romance and see for yourself that “Fire Island must indeed be a paradise where dreams come true.”

Annie Tillery Mysterys book two ‘The Madonna Ghost’ is an enjoyable read for students and young adults of all ages. Each book in the Annie Tiller Mystery Series is unique and stands alone with no need to read in a particular sequence. Author Linda Maria Frank uses her own background in forensic science, great research, delightful writing skills, intensive character development and interesting dialog to keep her readers engaged in each one of her mysteries. The Annie Tillery Mystery series should be placed on our schools’ summer reading list.

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘The Madonna Ghost’ and the Annie Tillery Mysteries by Linda Maria Frank. This review completion date March 27, 2015.

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Within Her Grasp by Joanne Simon Tailele

Mari-Rae Sopper knew what she wanted to be since she was ten-years-old, when she watched Nadia Comãneci score that “perfect ten” at the Montreal Olympics. She wanted to be a professional gymnast. So she made a plan.

Driven by excellence and determination, “Mari-Rae put Fremd on the map,” according to Larry Petrillo, her high school coach. She moved on to be a formidable opponent in college gymnasts at Iowa State University and an impressive defense attorney for the Navy JAG core.

Within Her Grasp chronicles Mari-Rae’s journey to reach her dream while battling emotional issues that soared her to the skies and plunged her into the depths of despair, drove her to veer from her plan, but never from her dream.

“A beautiful thing about Mari-Rae was that she did more than get upset when she saw injustice – she acted on many of her convictions. She had an undying belief in doing the right thing, regardless of mainstream thinking.” Jennifer Eichenmueller

“Mari-Rae was known for a dramatic flair. Her letters were no postcards – five pages front and back, hand-written and smeared because she was a lefty. They were her manifestos, read and re-read with notes in the margins, until they were perfect, because she wanted you to know exactly where she stood. And that’s what we could count on, her honest opinion.” Dave Eck

“She lived her life basically like she wasn’t going to be here tomorrow. If she believed in something, she went all the way, and I think if more people did that, they’d be happier.” Mari-Rae’s mother, Marion Kminek

Genre: Biography

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Town Without Mercy by Joanne Simon Tailele

Is it nature or nurture that drives Adele Baxter Warren’s teenage daughter, Mercedes, to become a mass murderer? Town Without Mercy, a complete novella,is contemporary women’s fiction dealing with current event drama of mass shootings and gay marriage. Told through the eyes of the mother, a TV news correspondent, Adele must find the answer, even as it takes her away from Mercedes’ deathbed where she lays in a coma from the police bullet that stopped the carnage. If Adele follows the leads, the cost could be her seventeen-year-old marriage to same-sex partner, Jodi Warren. The townspeople of Concord Park wants revenge. They blame Adele and Jodi’s lifestyle as the cause of their daughter’s actions, but are they innocent of all blame?

From the Author: This book is dedicated to the twenty children and six adults that were victims of the December 14, 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

The inspiration for this book began on that fateful day. Although the story differs greatly, the premise of what prompts a person to kill innocent people, remain the same. Is it nature or nurture?

About the Author: Joanne Simon Tailele wrote her first short story at the age of ten, in blue colored pencil. Then life got in the way and she did not pursue her dream of publication until her family was grown. Ms. Tailele likes to write controversial issues, stories that will make you think, “What would I do in that situation?”

Genre:  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender, Literature & Fiction, Lesbian Fiction

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Accident by Joanne Simon Tailele

Imagine spending the next ten years of your life in a cell the size of your walk in closet.

Susan Jennings, an alcoholic soccer-mom buried her secret past behind the bottle until one fateful day when her addiction caused a fatal car accident.

Now Susan must find a way to survive inside the dangerous prison walls and win her teenage daughter’s forgiveness before Deanna also falls prey to the devil hiding behind the clergyman’s collar.

From the Author: Accident is my debut novel. It addresses the challenging issues of alcoholism in middle class America and sex abuse in the clergy. It’s the cause and effect of how these events can change the lives of entire families and the struggles to keep the cycle from repeating.

About the Author: Joanne Simon Tailele, a midwest girl from Youngstown Ohio, wrote her first short story at the age of ten in blue colored pencil. For most of her life, writing was private, for her own enjoyment and therapy. In 2010, she challenged herself to write a 50K novel in 30 days. Two and a half years of edits and rewrites later, it was ready for publication. Accident is the reincarnated version of that story.

Her second novel, Town Without Mercy, was released January, 2014. Joanne currently resides on Marco Island on the SW Gulf coast of Florida with her husband. The proud the parents of 8 his-and-hers kids and 9 grandkids, they spend their time boating and enjoying the white sandy beach of Marco Island when she is not writing.

Genre: Parenting & Relationships, Family Relationships, Conflict Resolution, Nonfiction, Dysfunctional Relationships, Literature & Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Domestic Life

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Rehoming Pigeon by Joanne Simon Tailele

When Cecile Boudreaux and husband, Armand, adopt six-year-old Natalia from Russia, they think their dreams of being a whole family are complete. But things don’t go exactly as planned. Natalia has her own agenda to get back to her brother, Nikolai no matter what.

When things reach a breaking point, unthinkable decisions have to be made. It will take love and loss before everyone recognizes the many faces of family.

Review: Joanne Tailele’s novel, Rehoming Pigeons: I was happily engaged in the story’s clever melding of seemingly unconnected events. And, those taking place inside dark Russia. Not only of the vivid physical descriptions but of the social/political environment of the time. I felt I was actually there experiencing it.

Genre: Literature & Fiction, Genre Fiction, Family Life, Literature & Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Contemporary Women, Domestic Life

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Once Upon A Duke: The Duke Series Book One by Sandra Masters

Serena, an artist and widow, has no desire for another husband. When she meets Geoffrey Austen, attraction sizzles to a scorch. Stolen days and nights ignite forbidden passion. Geoffrey asks Serena to be his mistress, but she wants commitment, love, and marriage, not an affair with a notorious rake.

Geoffrey realizes Serena might be the one woman who can care for his tortured soul, and maybe release his demons. The magic they shared is shattered when he learns she has been forced into an engagement with another. He vows to save her even at the cost of his own life.

Will Geoffrey’s gallantry prove he truly loves Serena?

If he survives, will Serena surrender all to him?

Book Review: Bring regency romance into your life with Once Upon A Duke. Each book in the Duke Series stands alone for your reading pleasure.

Warm, realistic characters in book one bring the reader back to London 1817. Lady Serena Worthington Durand is a strong independent woman ahead of her time, but she faces demons from the past. I quote: “If Lady Serena could be granted one wish, she would ride off into the morning mist and vanish. That, of course wasn’t possible, but here in her favorite lakeside retreat, she could relax in safety.”

Legendary Duke of Sutton, Geoffrey Austen has a chance encounter with Lady Serena and I quote: “Allow me to introduce myself, Lord Geoffrey Austen, at your service.” He swept off his hat and bowed. “I am Henry Worthington’s hunting guest for the week.”

More than a romance story, it is an adventure that will make your heart pound, your emotions run wild and your spirit soar.

The combination of remarkable storytelling, easy going to face paced reading, true to time period dialog and settings along with extensive research by Author Sandra Masters engages the reader in the life and times of Lady Serena Worthington Durand.

I invite you to light a fire, pour a glass of red wine (Sandra Masters would join you in the wine, but hers would be a white fruity glass) and relax with romance as it should be. Author Sandra Masters states it best: “Every woman should have a divinely decadent Duke in her life.”

Theodocia McLean endorses Once Upon a Duke by Sandra Masters as a true Regency Romance that will leave you wanting more. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on October 7, 2015.

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The Duke’s Magnificent Bastard (The Duke Series Book 4) by Sandra Masters

After three years in England, Thorn Wick, the duke’s bastard son, perfectly flawed, still fights for acceptance in his father’s world as a renowned Argamak Turk horse trainer. Just when he starts to believe in fairy tales, another obstacle looms to thwart his plans: on a dangerous mission to Barbados, Thorn is stunned when secrets are revealed about his mother. Will he exact revenge for the foul deed?

Alicia Montgomery, ward of the duke, is in love with Thorn. Strong willed and adventurous, she determines she can convince him to admit his feelings. But the reality of loving Thorn too much almost destroys her.

Can Alicia quell Thorn’s demons and prove love can pave the way to their happiness?

Book Review: The fourth book the Duke Series is set in Porticio of Beckamhouse, London, England, 1820. The book opens with a romantic interlude between Thorn Wick and Alicia Montgomery.

Travel back into a period of time when men and women behaved elegantly and letters were more than mere words, they were the expression of one’s heart and soul. Let me draw you into the story with this quote:

“Chester announced that the visitor the Marquess of Montgate, had arrived, and he’d shown the gentleman into the room. She smiled a warm greeting to him.

“Dear, dear Alicia, I’ll be the envy of every man at the ball tonight. You look ravishing in that goddess-like gown. How will I keep all the men away from you?” He bent low and kissed her extended hand.

“I will assist by exhibiting the manner of a shrew if necessary. Now, Percival, give me a proper hug. I promise not to bore you about horses, but I will keep you engaged in conversation about my schoolmistress duties. I confess I’m worn out. I wonder how our tenants are able to cope with so many children without servants.”

Percival smiled. “We aristocrats do have some advantages.”

“That may be, but I look forward to our time tonight. Thorn gave you a letter for me?”

“Yes, he did when last we met.” He grinned. “He also gave me instructions that I was to protect you from any man who would try to woo you to a balcony or some such thing. Especially I’m to keep Claven, that scoundrel, a good distance from you. Please don’t encourage the rascal. I’m too young to die in a duel.” He walked toward her. “Thorn’s much in love with you, my dear.”

“And I am with him.”

“Alas, it’s my sad fate to relinquish you. Here is his letter.” He withdrew it from his breast pocket. “Now if you will direct me to the duke and duchess, I’ll extend my greetings while you read the contents.”

“Percival, you’re a good friend of his. I thank you. I’ll be with you shortly. Just follow the conversations, and they’ll lead you to the grand drawing room. Gordon is with them. I’ll join you in a few minutes.”

He turned to leave.

“Percival,” she called out. “Thank you for this wondrous gift. I shan’t forget you.”

“It’s my pleasure, Alicia. Thorn is my dearest friend. I know how much he loves you, and I’m happy to help him attain his goals.” He winked, and left.

She ran into the library where she could read his letter in private. She carefully opened it and her heart lifted at its prose.

You must read the book to find out what this letter said and how Alicia responds.

Theodocia McLean endorses The Duke’s Magnificent Bastard by Sandra Masters. One Night with a Duke, is promised for release in 2017. I purchased this book and reviewed it form a Kindle format. This review was completed on November 6, 2016.

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Thorn, Son Of A Duke (Duke Series Book Three) by Sandra Masters

Mini novella prequel to Book Four

At the age of seventeen, Thorn Wick made a promise to his dying mother that sends him sailing from Barbados to England to meet the man who sired him, the aristocratic Duke of Althorn, who never knew of his son’s existence.

Alicia Montgomery, ward of the Duke, develops a deep affection for the Anglo Indian who protects her from advances by other men. She wants him to acknowledge his feelings for her, but he insists on ignoring the chemistry between them.

Despite the intrigue, revelations, and revenge, will their passion and love for each other conquer all?

Book Review: The third book (mini novella prequel to book four) in the Duke Series is here and Author Sandra Masters delivers another true regency romance with Thorn, Son Of A Duke.

The book opens with Thorn Wick aboard his Majesty’s Ship en route to England, 1817. “Thorn Wick leaned over the railing of the ship. A queasy sensation roiled in his stomach as he watched the swelling of the seas. He closed his eyes and hoped he’d wake up and find himself in his sunlit room in Barbados on firm ground listening to island chants.”

Enjoy regal characters and superb story telling that will keep you invested in the plot. Let me share with you a passage from the book as tension builds at ‘London Wharfside’.

“Thorn stood by the railing and scanned an old road that gave access to wharves and docks on the north bank of the River Thames. The panorama before him amazed. Busy docks men and porters hustled large cases and bales from the ships to the waiting warehousemen. Men shouted while clerks with inventory lists directed longshoremen to the appropriate buildings.

“Sir Tomas, what is that large building to the right of us? Never have I seen such a large structure.”

“That’s the East India House owned and operated by the company. I would venture to say the wealth that passes within its portals is unsurpassed in the world. They are a powerful force with which to reckon. Fortunately, your forefathers had the good sense not to invest in India and chose Barbados.”

Thorn’s eyes widened at the activity; excitement overtook him. He didn’t know where to look first.

“Do you see that black coach with the Lion crest waiting?”

“Yes. Is that my father’s?” he asked with a bit of trepidation.

As they spoke, a tall aristocratic gentleman departed the coach, his beaver top hat and greatcoat an admission of his wealth. The coach driver was armed and one footman was on the back board. The other footman walked behind the man. A gold dome-topped cane glistened in the sunlight.

“Is that my father, Sir Tomas?”

“Yes, it is. He’s come to greet you personally.” Tomas grasped Thorn’s shoulder in convivial support. “Just be yourself, Thorn. Everything will be fine.”

The gangplank was lowered, and the passengers prepared to depart. Thorn and Tomas waited for the others to precede them.

“Courage, little lion,” Tomas joked.

“I will need more than that,” Thorn replied, unable to keep his eyes off the aristocratic gentleman who waited patiently on the dock.

I now understand what my mother saw in him.

Thorn took a deep breath. “I’m ready, Sir Tomas. Let us greet the great lion.” He smiled with an inquisitive stare at the man who gave him life and wondered what future awaited him.

I invite you to follow this father and son reunion and see what lays in store for this son of a duke. Read the entire Duke Series by Sandra Masters at Amazon. Each book stands alone for your regency romance enjoyment.

Theodocia McLean endorses Thorn, Son Of A Duke (The Duke Series Book 3) by Sandra Masters. I purchased reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on March 10, 2016.

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My Divinely Decadent Duke (The Duke Series Book Two) by Sandra Masters

Orphaned and abandoned by family, Lady Cassandra Montgomery yearns for love. Beautiful and innocent, she attracts the attention of a renowned rake, the Duke of Althorn. When her security is threatened, she offers him a proposal for an arranged marriage in exchange for his guarantee of safety for her and her ward. After her first taste of desire in his arms, she finds the sexual attraction irresistible. Finding herself in a family way, she leaves his home, unsure of his love.

The Duke is at first enraged by the brazen behavior, yet he sees Cassandra as a captivating caregiver for his mother and impossible to resist. He agrees. The arrangement becomes inconvenient because love and sex enter the equation.

Will she believe her husband truly loves her and return to his waiting arms?

Will the Duke admit his love and use his rakish skills to woo Cassandra back to his bed?

Book Review: Follow-up regency romance Once Upon A Duke with My Divinely Decadent Duke (Duke Series Book Two).

Back in London in 1822 arranged marriages of even royalty doesn’t mean the woman (seen as a possession) is secure in life or love, in fact the beautiful Lady Cassandra Montgomery yearns for love.

At the ballroom “Cassandra turned to her brother. “Brent Montgomery, Earl of Stratton. May I introduce you to his Grace, Duke of Althorn.”

Later “The Duke stared at the sun-dappled ocean from his balcony residence as the evening hour approached. The ever-present restlessness was his companion. He took deep breaths, prepared to harness his energy and put it to work for him. His beloved dog Clayo lay at his side. He knelt to pet her head. She was one of his prized possessions; there could never be a doubt of the indisputable fact. The animal gave him a lick on his hand. His gentle creature with the name of a temptress Egyptian Queen was dedicated in her affection for him.”

“The Duke decided to walk the beach again. This time he took Clayo, and his attire was indeed informal. He’d left his jacket at the villa, but was still dressed in his waistcoat appropriate to his rank. Crop in his right hand, he strode quickly. Although he would be loathed to admit it, he wanted to see if his Enchantress of the Sea would be out and about. He invited her the night before to walk along the beach, but she didn’t present herself. In his heart, he didn’t think she would tonight, but nonetheless, it didn’t hurt to ask. Clayo plodded alongside him and wagged her tail. He kept at their “stick into the ocean” game, and she promptly retrieved. They played most of the time until either he became bored or Clayo tired.

His heart leaped when he saw Cassandra. This time the outfit was a dark azure skirt with the same white balloon sleeve blouse, a light blue jacket, and a fetching azure hat with her blonde hair tucked under it. The children were with her. Alicia, wearing a white ruffled dress with many petticoats, ran barefoot and giggled. A huge white bow accented her blonde braid so the wind wouldn’t whip hair in her face. Blue eyes that matched the sky, soft creamy white skin, and a delicate frame gave the girl an impish look. It then occurred to him how much Alicia resembled Cassandra. Could it be a coincidence? Or was there more to it? Was there a secret somewhere?

More than a romance story, it is an adventure told with remarkable storytelling, easy going to face paced reading, true to time period dialog and settings along with extensive research by Author Sandra Masters engages the reader in the search for true love between Lady Cassandra Montgomery and Duke Gordon Althorn.

Relax into a deep, hot bubble bath with a glass of red wine (or drink of your choice) and relax with romance as it should be. Author Sandra Masters states it best: “Every woman should have a divinely decadent Duke in her life.”

Theodocia endorses My Divinely Decadent Duke by Sandra Masters as book two in this Regency Romance. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on February 6, 2016.

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Moonstone: Wolfmoon Book One by Nikki Broadwell

Is magic gone from the world? Was it ever here? Read Moonstone and you might just believe in magic again! Fans of Juliet Marillier’s ‘Daughter of the Forest’ series will find themselves right at home.

Finna is pregnant and proud of herself for being strong enough to kick out the father of her child. But when her absent mother shows up and tells her that her baby needs to be blessed by the moon goddess to keep her safe, Finna’s newfound confidence disappears. The Otherworld her mother describes sounds tantalizing. And by the time Finna discovers the truth it is too late. Her only hope is to make it out alive.

Genre: Religion & Spirituality, New Age, Goddesses, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Adult & College

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The Skies Of Time by Russell F. Moran

Ashley and Jack have traveled back in time again. They went from 2016 to 1940, just before America’s involvement in World War II. They were on a public relations flight dreamed up by the Pentagon to celebrate Ashley’s promotion to rear admiral, making her the youngest admiral in history. They’ve time travelled before, but this time it’s different – they encountered a time portal, or wormhole – in the sky. They have a duty – to warn the authorities of the coming war. They also have a duty to themselves. They want to return to their home, their home in 2016. Their plane had a cockpit data recorder, a Black Box, which would give them the coordinates to find the wormhole and return home. But they’re horrified when they realize that 1940 technology could not read the data on the Black Box. They’re stranded – 76 years in the past. Will they have to restart their lives from 1940 and never return home? Or will they find a way to read the secrets of the box?

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science Fiction-Time Travel

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I, Hero – Nathan Returns by Jason Zandri

Nathan is back in New York City; the place where it all started, nearly one year later. While he has been away, he has been establishing a base of operations and trying to follow the direction his life has taken – making a difference and answering the call for help where and when he is needed.

He has returned to this birthplace of his powers with more questions of why he is on the path he is on and what is expected of him.

During a dangerous rescue, his powers dissipate, and leave him critically vulnerable.

He connects back with old friends who help him rediscover the man he used to be to in order to help him be the man he has become and the man who he must be.

Magical forces come into play, pulling on nature itself, which introduces an unexpected challenge to Nathan while he is at this perilous juncture.

The pendulum swings even farther out of alignment; it is up to Nathan to respond before forces are set into motion that cannot be countered.

Genre: Literature & Fiction, Mythology & Folk Tales, Mythology, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Fantasy, Superheroes, Fairy Tales

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The Thanksgiving Gang by Russell F. Moran

The Thanksgiving Gang, Sequel to The Gray Ship Book Two of The Time Magnet Series Jack Thurber has traveled through time – again. This was his fourth journey through time, earning him a nickname The Time Magnet. But this time he’s traveled into the future. He discovers that he and his Navy Captain wife Ashley were killed in a terrorist nuclear attack on Ashley’s ship on Thanksgiving Day, 2015.

Four other ships were attacked in what became known as the Thanksgiving Attacks. Jack’s got to find a way back to the past, the past when he and Ashley were still alive. To do that he forms a group of people to help him. They call themselves The Thanksgiving Gang. Dare he change history? Dare he not? Rip roaring, gut wrenching suspense wrapped in a story of friendship and courage.

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science Fiction, Time Travel

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Wednesday’s Child by J. A. Carlton

The world and the United States of America as we know it in 2015, is unrecognizable in 2055. The CIA, Homeland Security, ATF and DEA are all merged into one body now called the U.C. or Upper Command.

The Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines are merged into the New United Military Alliance or NUMA which is under the control of President Clayton Maxwell in 2055. History had repeated itself with mandatory DNA collection and the desire to create a perfect race. During this engineered holocaust America’s population was decimated forcing many of the remaining citizens’ into catacombs and tunnels, where they later became known as “Unders”.

Lieutenant Jade McKay is a trained assassin working between NUMA and the Unders to ‘take back the topside’. She has been implanted with a microscopic computer chip with “binary coding tendrils attached along her visual pathway” which make her memory almost photographic. Jade is able to carry out any mission as long as it doesn’t conflict with her basic principles. (Jade is not only hyper-kinetic and telepathic, she has to contend with the side effects of a hybrid drug that suppresses her neural impulses that cause nightmares.)

Upon return from an assignment to protect Darien Rivers, the man most directly responsible for helping NUMA break away from Maxwell’s control, Jade finds herself arrested and charged with the murder of her Commander, Harold Mitchell. But like all superior soldiers Jade has an enemy named Elija Tyrell who is out to destroy and even kill her. Working with the local UC branch Elija takes Jade prisoner determined to find out whether or not she can be compromised.

This adversary will stop at nothing to accomplish his goals including going back in time to change history. I like this quote from Jade, “Something’s going to happen today. I swear I’ll kill him if he keeps pushing.” The sense rushed through her veins, carried in every cell of her blood to every nerve fiber, axon and dendrite. As sure as she was breathing, something huge lay in the shadows of this little corner of the universe. “I wonder if anyone else feels it. Whatever it is, I’m not gonna like it.”

What a great read. Become mesmerized in Jades ice green eyes and her abilities as ‘Wednesday’s Child’ continues with book two of the series called ‘Into the Fire’ and book three ‘Fortune’s Tide’ in the ‘Freedom Fighter Series’.

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘Wednesday’s Child’ by J. A. Carlton as a science fiction, action, suspense, mystery thriller. This review was completed on March 19, 2015.

Genre: Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Thriller, Contemporary Fiction

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Books Available To Purchase
Broken (psychological thriller)
Fortune’s Tide (Third – Freedom Fighter Series)
Into The Fire (Second – (Second – Freedom Fighter Series)
Nick, Of Time (First -Heroes Of The Line Series)
Second Hand Heroes (Second – Heroes Of The Line Series)
The Third Race (Third – Heroes Of The Line Series)
Touch Me-Nurturing Your Relationships Through Positive Touch (Stand Alone Book) 
Soul Hunter (psychological thriller)
Wednesday’s Child (First – Freedom Fighter Series)

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Still Wilde In Outlaw River (The Outlaw River Wilde Volume 2) by Mike Walters

Nine long months have passed since I read The Outlaw River Wilde (Volume One) by Mike Walters. Settling back to read Still Wilde in Outlaw River (Volume 2) it was comforting to be able to quickly immerse back into the story line.

Author Mike Walters will draw you into the story with descriptive writing, well developed characters that seem like old friends and you will turn every page with the desire to learn more about the circumstances surrounding the small Oregon Town of Outlaw River. The author’s ability to draw on the Native American culture, especially the Klamath Tribes makes the story line more credible.

It is hard to share a quote with you without spoiling the story, so I have decided to share a perspective from Mitch’s wife Mabey. I quote:

“The Rabbit Moon looked majestic as it highlighted the towering pines standing tall and firm. Mabey was hungry and emotionally shaken. Physically she felt decent but not great like she was used to. Her hands and a tender ankle were her biggest concerns at the moment. She knew resting a bit more would put her in a better state mentally. Mabey held out hope a break would also help her gain insight as to which direction to go. She hunkered down among some thick ferns in a bed of pine needles. Lying on her side, she made a pillow of her slightly swollen and sore hands. She was cold, but not shivering, and knew sleep would give her body the needed strength to recover.

Then her head reflexively raised off her hands. The noise coming down the road started as a low growl, and as it got closer, the vibrations in the earth confirmed something was coming.”

If you love fast paced drama, a good love story, humor, rough language, and a supernatural mystery that will take you out of this world, this duology is a must read. I highly recommend you read The Outlaw River Wilde first. Better yet, purchase The Outlaw River Wilde and Still Wilde in Outlaw River from Amazon and get ready for the ride of your life.

I sincerely hope that Author Mike Walters will bring us another series not far in the distant future.

Theodocia McLean endorses Still Wilde in Outlaw River (The Outlaw River Wilde-Volume 2) by Mike Walters. I purchased and reviewed this book from Kindle format. This review was completed on July 2, 2016.

Genre: Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Romance, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

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Assimilation: An Axe of Iron Novel by J. A. Hunsinger

Third Book In An Axe of Iron Series

Assimilation will wet the appetite of the fans that have developed a fascination with the plight of the Greenland Viking settlers in the first two novels of the series, The Settlers and Confrontation.

The twists and turns of this continuing tale will engage the reader from the outset as the tall, fair-skinned invaders, knowing it is their key to survival, gradually assimilate with the savage natives of the pre-historical land that will become the Hudson Bay and Great Lakes regions of Canada and the US.

In a scenario ordained by the gods, this assimilation process has a thin chance of success through the forced involvement of two of the Viking settlers with tribes of natives that are habitual enemies of one another. Against overwhelming odds that can have but one successful outcome for the settlers, daily life becomes a balancing act where one word, one gesture, one innocent mistake, can spell disaster in this hostile setting.

Book Review: Assimilation is the final novel in the Axe of Iron series by J. A. Hunsinger. The author asks that you read or reread the ‘Historical Perspective’ that is located in ‘The Settlers’ which is the first volume in this series. The author’s research into the historical time frame and authentic pre-historical Indian names is irrefutable. The ‘Historical Perspective’ goes into the whole concept of the Norse sagas. Even though each book stands alone, as a reader who has enjoyed the entire series, I encourage you to purchase all three books.

As the author states in his book’s description, the first two books in this series (The Settlers and Confrontation) “dealt with the plight of the Greenland Viking settlers”.

Assimilation begins with a map showing where the settlements are and opens with two Naskapi warriors hidden from view, surveying the river valley below. The saga continues with descriptive writing that puts you the reader on the ground experiencing the mysteries of the Viking period. Smell the earth and lush dense forests, travel the routes carved out of the land by natives and take up residence in the villages and experience the hardships of this pre-historical land that we now call the Hudson Bay and the Great Lakes of Canada and the US.

Eavesdrop on Nipishish and Ingerd as they lay in each other’s arms, engaged in whispered conversation like couples do.

Join warriors in their canoes as they glide in the chill of pre-dawn morning heading toward the Haudenosaunee Village.

Stand at the rail of a Viking ship called Steed of the Sea and feel the motion of the sea as the ship heads towards a distant beach.

After the storm, the Norse society dries out and attends to the damage that Njord and Thor (the gods of weather) have forced upon them. Catch a glimpse of the smoke that curls into the calm skies over the cook fires where fish, meat and stew aroma awaits the barley bread and other leftovers that will nourish the community and reward the daily chores.

Reconnect with the characters that you have come to know like Halfdan, his dog Fang, Tostig, and experience the council meetings where men discuss their destiny, when in reality it is the gods like the “mighty Thor” who have the final say.

Strong women who cook and weave on looms by the light of seal oil lamps, teach their girls to spin fibers of wool into skeins of thread, care for the children and their men with tenderness in a world where both beauty and harshness intertwine. Communities where communication and yes even gossip are the norm, and where the outsider might find rest if assimilation is acquired.

Drumbeats of war are as common as the moon rising over the snow, so too are the tracks of snowshoes where the trappers are as important as the warriors for a civilization that exists within a fine balance between preservation and extinction. Here is a quote: “Nipishish, Kejo, and Lothar returned to their village as quickly as possible after the parley with Nesatin. Word spread faster than normal through the Nitassinan that the Anishinabeg had rejected Sachem’s peace offering regarding the people of Haldansfjord.”

I invite you to read Assimilation and discover for yourself where the legend of the Death Wind came from and what it meant for the earliest American colonies. Enjoy the detailed glossary at the end of this book which will help you understand the authentic names and terms used in this book series.

Let me take this moment to thank Author J. A. Hunsinger for his time, research and engaging storytelling that has made An Axe of Iron series possible. I sincerely hope that he will continue to write as some storytellers have one story to tell, others have infinite stories that need to be told and preserved for generations to come. The Axe of Iron novels are one of those series that time will not forget.

Theodocia McLean endorses Assimilation: An Axe of Iron Novel by J. A. Hunsinger. Assimilation is book three in the fictional historical accounting of exploration and settlement of Vinland (North America). I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format on October 1, 2016.

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Confrontation: An Axe of Iron Novel by J.A. Hunsinger

Second Book In An Axe of Iron Series

In Confrontation, two calamitous events occur that pave the way for the hostile beginnings of an assimilation process between the Greenland Norse settlers and the natives of Vinland. The first mixing of cultures occurs when a woman of the Northmen, Thora, and Deskaheh the Haudenosaunee, marry. This union, accepted enthusiastically by the Northmen, opens a window into the native mind.

For all the people of this land the way is rocky and fraught with danger at every turn, but the acceptance and friendship that develops between the Northmen and the Naskapi, another native tribe, over an affair of honor, the eventual acceptance of a young boy of the Northmen by his Haudenosaunee captors, and a scenario that seems ordained by the will of the gods, makes it all begin to fall into place, as it must for the Northmen to survive.

Will this developing relationship allow the Northmen to remain in the homeland of the Naskapi, or are they doomed to failure? The settlers must deal with that question on a daily basis.

Standing in their way are uncounted numbers of indigenous peoples, the pre-historical ancestors of the contemporary Cree (Naskapi), Ojibwa (Anishinabeg), and Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) Indians. From the outset, the warriors of these various tribes violently resisted the incursion of the tall, pale-skinned invaders. The overwhelming numbers of the native peoples in Vinland hold the fate of the Northmen in their hands. The success or failure of the settlement at Halfdansfjord hangs in the balance.

Book Review: This character driven, action packed historical fiction saga continues from ‘The Settlers: An Axe Of Iron Novel’ where 163 Greenlanders and 152 Icelanders (including men, women and children) set sail with horses, cows, pigs, chickens, dogs, cats, equipment ( tents and parts to horse drawn carts) and supplies to explore areas of what they call Vinland (North America).

Confrontation – An Axe Of Iron Novel cover with the Viking battle axe reflecting warriors gives us the first clue regarding the brutal facts of survival and desperate measures taken by men to protect their women, children and settlement with blood sweat and tears. Author J. A. Hunsinger has provided an in-depth ‘Glossary of Norse Terms’ and ‘Native Terms’ to help readers understand the people and culture.

Settling into a new land will prove challenging when the indigenous tribes who have a distaste for any fair skinned men due to those who cheated them in trade, abused them and killed their tribesmen in the past. Apart from expected interaction with the variety of native cultures, life in the new settlement is forced into daily and seasonal routines out of necessity.

Halfdan Ingolfsson and Gudbjartur Einarsson (his second in command) walk the settlement commons overseeing the duties pertaining to survival like the grueling process of filling the Kiln (furnace) with dry birch wood, burning the wood until only charcoal is left and then storing this precious commodity under the shed roof to be used for heat and cooking during the harsh winter months.

Children in the settlement (especially the boys) had to earn their place in their family and settlement by moving from boyhood into manhood by demonstrating skills taught and mirrored to them by their fathers, brothers, cousins and other men around them. Skills like hunting which was the core of survival. Unfortunately dangers exist when dealing with wild animals like a Bull Moose protecting his territory, cow and calf. Death can be mercifully quick and brutal. The burial ceremony, reverence for even the youngest hunter/warrior, tradition and spirituality (Gods Will) play a role for the dead and those who remain.

Seasons marked by the moon predict work, trade, play, marriage and birth. I quote Bjorn “as a pleasant smile curved his lips”. “Yes, it is time I thought of a mate. Another long winter comes and company in my bed would be welcome. Perhaps this is the one (as he recalls the tall blonde woman)”.

Confrontation is inevitable, warriors’ attack, prisoners taken, injuries sustained, spoils of battles and questions about their ability to live in peace brings us to the anticipation of the third book in An Axe Of Iron Series titled “Assimilation”.

A. Hunsinger’s series ‘An Axe Of Iron’ has been exhaustively researched and parallel the actually events as close as a historical fiction can. I recommend this series to both men and women and suggest that the series be placed on a high school/college reading list.

This reviewer is looking forward to ‘Assimilation – An Axe Of Iron Novel’ which is the third book in the series.

Theodocia McLean endorses Confrontation: An Axe of Iron Novel by J.A. Hunsinger’s book two in the fictional historical accounting of exploration and settlement of Vinland (North America). Review on October 20, 2014.

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The Settlers: An Axe of Iron Novel by J. A. Hunsinger

First Book In The Axe Of Iron Series

The Settlers: Axe of Iron is a tale of survival, strife, love, and the quest for a new home in the face of hostile opposition. Conditions of manifest destiny propel a large contingent of Norse Greenlanders from relative security into an odyssey of exploration and settlement out over the unknown waters of the North Atlantic, to a North America of one thousand years ago, to a land they called Vinland. The chieftain, Halfdan Ingolfsson and his second-in-command, Gudbjartur Einarsson, spend a winter gathering 315 men, women, and children from the two Norse settlements on the southwestern coast of Greenland.

Early in the spring of A.D. 1008, the company sets sail aboard six large cargo ships. Five days into the voyage, in the strait between Helluland and Markland, present day Hudson Strait, a gale holds the flotilla in its grip for four long and arduous days. Halfdan decides to seek shelter in a protected bay, so they can rest, repair the storm damage, and replenish food stores lost in the storm.

During the following weeks, the settlers reap a harvest of fish and game that is the best in living memory. When hunters discover a sheltered fjord, Halfdan orders a move. Tornit hunters from far to the north venture south to hunt, and the Northmen strike up a friendship with them. The Tornit tell the newcomers much about the local area and describe coastal waters far to the south.

It is this thought-provoking insight into the geography of this new land and the dawning realization that the storm god, Njord, seems to have led his people to this place, that cause Halfdan to revise his thinking and propose a new plan to Gudbjartur and the council of ship’s captains: sail south before choosing where to build their settlement.

Genre: Historical Fiction

Book Review: The Viking ship called ‘Steed of the Sea’ sailing in the cold dark waters in the foreground of tall glaciers under a foreboding sky on the cover is just the beginning.

Whether you sat under the history lessons of Columbus discovering America or are more adventurous in your approach to history and have a yearning to know who was here when Columbus arrived and where did they come from, ‘The Settlers’ is a tale that should be on a mandatory reading list in all schools in order to provoke thought and discussion on native North America in the latter half of the tenth century. Scholars can’t agree but this tale offers a new perspective about America’s indigenous people, how they viewed explorers, handled settlers and coexisted on a bountiful body of land with all its beauty and treacherous environment.

It is important to read the ‘Author’s Note’, ‘Historical Perspective’ and the ‘Glossary Of Norse Terms’ provided by the author to educate the reader. In the Author’s Note you will meet Gudbjartur Einarsson who is an Icelander, a Northman or Norseman who is second in command under Halfdan Ingolfsson. Chapter one unfolds six wooden ships carrying 163 Greenlanders and 152 Icelanders (including men, women and children) set sail with horses, cows, pigs, chickens, dogs, cats, equipment ( tents and parts to horse drawn carts) and supplies to explore areas of what they call Vinland (North America).

Exhaustive research, realistic characters garbed in functional layers residing in a true to life story line that allows the reader to experience the sea voyage and land exploration with exquisite writing that creates a sense of being present in the story even when this first book in ‘An Axe Of Iron Novel’ series has been closed on a night stand.

Here’s a few of my favorite quotes from the book:

“He whistled tunelessly to himself, the notes blown away on the wind. His eyes darted over the sea ahead and aloft at the trim of the sail and rigging. The heart of the ship pulsed through the soles of his feet, vibrated up through the steering oar and the palms of his hands, an inaudible hum that told him all was well in his world.”

“Wind driven rain stung exposed skin like bees protecting their hive.”

“Several kettles of whale blubber boiled over individual fires on the beach to render the valuable oil. The thick, rich oil, skimmed of the connective tissue – the crunchy fried meat and curled pieces of skin were a delicacy-had many uses. It was a valuable food source, preservative, and lamp fuel.”

After the journey across treacherous seas land was a welcome sight with all of its wild game like “Grunting herds of Reindeer” not to mention the predators like wolves and bears. Women and children scour rocky cliffs for seabird eggs to add to their food supply giving the kids some stress relieving egg throwing activity.

Unforeseen and inevitable injuries, herbal treatments, Viking burial ceremony amidst deep held Christian beliefs.

Attraction and a “bed of soft, furry skins nestled in the scrub brush, well protected from the north wind’. Passion, “eyes smoldered with lust” hands explore, tongues probe, “locked bodies swayed in the throes of passion”.

Hunting and cooking for survival, sewing for protective covering, animal pelts and jewelry making for trade commodity. The best and the worst of human nature revealed in a hostile new world.

Now heading into the reading of ‘Confrontation: An Axe Of Iron Novel’ book two of the series gives clarity as to the sequence of history, characters and events that readers should follow in order to understand and digest the fiction history which is laid out in great detail, humanity and historical correlation regarding much debated events.

Theodocia McLean endorses The Settlers – An Axe of Iron Novel book one in the fictional historical accounting of exploration and settlement of Vinland (North America). Review date October 18, 2014.

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http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/
http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/reviews/
http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/order/
http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/articles/
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The Outlaw River Wilde by Mike Walters

The Pacific Northwest is Under Attack. Ancient Alien Intrigue: Can Mitch Wilde save humanity?

A very impressive debut. Original and impressively well written novel! – Portsmouth BOOK REVIEW

An original and impressively well written novel, “The Outlaw River Wilde” is a deftly crafted and highly entertaining story by an author who will leave his readers looking eagerly toward his next effort. – Midwest Book Review

Mitch Wilde never believed in aliens, that is, until he was left with no other way to explain the strange events happening around his small Pacific Northwest home. With scattered appearances of ghostly Native American riders, a series of odd break-ins by unknown intruders, and hints that more could be coming, Mitch, along with his cantankerous old neighbor who is quickly becoming a new friend vows to unravel the mysteries and preserve the comfortable life he has worked so hard to build.

When an unexplained attack leaves his long-time best friend acting quite unlike himself, Mitch knows he has to act fast or risk losing everything. The only question is: Does he have what it takes to conquer the mysterious, potentially powerful force once and for all?

Ancient Alien Intrigue long-time Pacific Northwest resident Mike Walters found his first love in dogs, and then quickly followed up with photography, bicycling, globetrotting, and library software development. He would finally find his true calling at the tender age of 45 while settling in to watch a program on the History channel. It was then that the concept for his debut novel, The Outlaw River Wilde was born. “What if we’re not alone in the universe?” he asks of readers who dare to venture into his Science Fiction Thriller world. “And what if our forgotten past was the link to our probable future?” Mike intertwines his love of Native American culture and a passion for the Pacific Northwest setting that he called home as a child in his original tale of intrigue and adventure guaranteed to keep readers guessing until the very last page. Of course, he continues to honor his first love of dogs by donating 10% of all proceeds to the Westside German Shepherd Rescue in Los Angeles where he also volunteers as a photographer.

Book Review: Outlaw River, a small town in the Pacific Northwest’s Outlaw River Valley. This community is no different from most small American towns that depend a fair amount of tourist trade. Outlaw River is a community of 1800, comprised of farmers, ranchers, loggers and hunters. Like most rural communities, everyone knows and looks out for their neighbors, attends annual events and go to bed at night without locking their doors.

While biking the river trail, Mitch Wilde loses control and falls when something swishes by him with an intensity that breaks his concentration. Rattled, Mitch looks around and spots a man on a horse across the river. An uneasiness causes him to look up high in a tree where he spots a shimmering arrow with a sparrow sitting on it. As he watches the bird flies away and the arrow seems to dissolve leaving only a trace of glowing liquid.

Mitch successfully put the simmering arrow, tree phenomenon along with the man on a horse out of his mind until his neighbor Jack is struck in the shoulder by an arrow while in his yard. Mitch goes to render aide and observes that it isn’t a normal arrow. The shaft and feathers almost seem alive. When touched, the shaft goes from cold to hot. When Mitch decides he can safely pull the arrow out of Jack, the arrows mysteriously disappears into Jacks body.

If it were just he and Jack it would be one thing, but other members of the Outlaw Rivers community report sightings of famous Indians like Sitting Bull in full battle dress. To add to the local stress, ongoing news reports indicate that Native American Indians in the Pacific Northwest are simply disappearing without warning.

This phenomenon extends to sightings of strange creatures around Crater Lake and objects which seen to collide with the mountain range. Legends compare tales of local Indians guiding settlers away from Crater Lake. Is it meteor strikes? An alien invasion? Kachina Indian Spirits? Perhaps it is shape shifters or even the apocalypse?

The Outlaw River Wilde by Mike Walters in an introduction and cliff hanger to his sci-fi, mystery series. Still Wilde In Outlaw River (Book Two) is scheduled to arrive in 2016. In some series, authors design each book to stand along with separate stories using many of the same characters. This author has chosen a continuing saga approach where the reader needs to read this book before the next.

Theodocia McLean endorses The Outlaw River Wilde by Mike Walters as a paranormal mystery that presents a series of unexplained phenomenon. I purchased and reveived this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on October 13, 2015.

Genre: Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Romance, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

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Key Witness by Sandra Bolton

Key Witness by Sandra Bolton is gaining mixed reviews which shows that readers are talking about this book.

A cross country trip starting in New Jersey with Patch, his three legged dog, Abe Freeman, an unassuming gentle Jewish man seeks mind and spiritual healing after he successfully assisted in his girlfriend’s death when she was dying with cancer. The trip into the desert of New Mexico goes terribly wrong when he becomes a suspect in the murder of Easy Jackson.

Unsure of his arrest, Abe struggles with these logical questions: Had they linked him to Sharon’s death, where is Patch, and what is the penalty for possession of personal use marijuana in New Mexico?

Strong characters, good dialog and descriptive writing keep readers turning the pages with a plot that involves the incendiary mix of FBI, Navajo Nation Tribal Police, Aryan Brotherhood, Mexican Mafia and Kansas City Mafia.

Author Sandra Bolton grew up in northern California’s Sacramento Valley. After marrying her high school sweetheart, she spent 25 years traveling from coast to coast and one country after another during her husband’s Navy career. She received BA’s in Elementary Education, Special Education, and Science Education as well as a Master’s Degree in Guidance Counseling. Perhaps it is her service in the volunteer Peace Corps in Honduras from 1985-87 or her residence in Raton, New Mexico that gives her the inspiration for her descriptive writing, strong characters and complex plot.

I share with you this passage from the book. “Darkness descended on the mountains, carrying with it a sudden influx of cold. Abe shivered and cursed himself for having left his jacket in the Bronco. But the cool air provided clarity to his thoughts as he puzzled over the significance of the key. Abe’s dog ran ahead, sniffing at new intoxicating smells. Without realizing it, he and Patch had walked far from the hunter’s cabin. Deer had recently used the trail, cluttering it with their brown-bead droppings. Now, however, nothing moved in the forest. Even the small gray juncos had given up scratching the ground for seed. They perched in silent groups on pine branches, as if anticipating some unknown danger.”

Theodocia McLean endorses Key Witness by Sandra Bolton. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on December 5, 2015.

Genre: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Crime Fiction, Organized Crime, Police Procedurals

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EVANGELINE: The Seer of Wall St. by Clint Adams

“Six thousand five hundred and seventy days remain in my life, according to my astrological calculations.” This is a quote from Evangeline Adams who becomes famous as the seer of Wall Street. Not only is she a descendant of President John Quincy Adams, she one of America’s first female entrepreneurs.

Author Clint Adams has learned through thousands of hours of research and development that he is not part of Evangeline Adams’ lineage. His diligent research births this incredible historical fiction based on facts that he presents extremely well while telling Evangeline Adams’ life as an American astrologist.

Evangeline navigates adversity at the threshold of the Twenty Century in American society where women just acquired the right to vote, where women were not acknowledged as business professionals and where astrology was kept in the shadows due to “witchcraft” references by the religious and sometimes elite.

To help you understand that Evangeline is not a fortuneteller here are a couple of quotes from Evangeline herself as she explains differences between astronomy and astrology to a judge.

“Astronomy is the study of all objects outside our world. It, too, is a science. Astronomy, you could say, came from astrology. Yes, you are correct when you mentioned interpretation. Astrology is the oldest, most ancient, of all sciences.”

“Yes. Astrology is the science which describes the influence of the heavenly bodies upon mundane affairs, upon human character and life. To be most clear-cut, it is a mathematical or exact science deciphered via astronomy, which describes the heavenly bodies and explains their motions, etc.”

If you have an interest in history as it relates to the mindset of the most powerful people on Wall Street and on the world stage this is a must read. Learn how astrology influenced the business decisions that have affected trade, commerce and currency, influence and wealth in America and around the world.

Real life influential people including J.P. Morgan, King Edward VII, Enrico Caruso, Rudolph Valentino, Charles Schwab, Mary Pickford, Charlie Chaplin, Emma Sheridan-Fry (who was known to have been a ‘companion’ of Evangeline’s) and occult figure Aleister Crowley sought the expert advice from “Evangeline: The Seer of Wall St.”

Get to know Miss Evangeline Adams’ life, business, relationships, romance and internal struggles for answers of her own. This is an interesting quote from Evangeline. “What can be understood is what the stars have in store, the free will we possess and how it affects our destiny. But the ways in which the Almighty intervenes is a concept that left even me baffled. Speaking to clergy had led me nowhere, since every member I’d ever sought out had refused interaction with me. This was what upset me most, for my beloved astrology to be confused with demonology, in addition to me time and time again being written off. How very unfair.”

Theodocia McLean endorses EVANGELINE: The Seer of Wall St. by Clint Adams for his ability to bring the reader into this period of time in U.S. History where Evangeline’s services were not commercial entertainment, but surprisingly essential and routine for our country’s, and the world’s, most influential people. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on June 22, 2015.

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Author’s Published Books
Don’t Be Afraid of Heaven
EVANGELINE: The Seer of Wall St
Fear Ain’t All That
Just Say Mikey
My Watch Doesn’t Tell Time
The Seventh Ritual

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Confessions of a Transylvanian: A Story Of Sex, Drugs and Rocky Horror by Kevin Theis and Ronald Fox

Unique story, a memoir of men, women and yes, teenagers who worked and lived backstage as well as those who sat in the audience and participated in the live Rocky Horror Picture Show, performing their roles as a shadow cast in front of the big screen as the movie played.

Many of us remember this “cult movie phenomenon” but for those of you who either don’t remember, or are too young, let me quote the description of the Ultravision Theatre:

“A few words about the Ultravision Theatre before we proceed. Remember, this was in the early 1980s; in the days before the mega-plexes and maxi-houses. The Ultravision was an old-school auditorium movie house, the kind the I-Max theaters are now trying, unsuccessfully, to mimic. The screens at the Ultravision were simply enormous, stretching well over a hundred feet across and over thirty feet high, surrounded on all sides by a set of lush, red curtains that encircled the entire room.

The sound system was something else, too. These speakers didn’t simply squeak out the score of the film on some tinny little low-rent system; these babies blasted you right out of your f****** seat. If you saw “Raiders of the Lost Ark” at the Ultravision (which I did, five times), you knew what a true movie-going experience was supposed to be like: The sound hit you in the chest like a sledgehammer and the screen pinned your eyes open wide, filling your entire periphery, making it feel, at times, as if Indiana Jones was kicking you’re a**.

Another distinctive feature of the Ultravision was that it was its own building. It wasn’t connected to a mall or attached to some corporate complex. This entire structure—this huge, sprawling edifice—was built to be nothing more than a place to show movies. That was it. End of story.

Imagine you’re standing in a gigantic round room, fifty feet high and 300 feet across. Just a colossal seating area, okay? As you strolled past the door, you’d find yourself in a gently curving aisle on the outer perimeter of the theater. The seats themselves stretched across the entire width of the circle with no center aisle, so the rows are forty, fifty, sixty seats across. And there are dozens of rows.

The seats were big and comfy; old fashioned movie-house seats with plush cushions that actually rocked back and forth”.

Now let’s go back in time and focus on the stories of those who worked behind the scenes and even the audience members who were drawn into the drama of the live performance aspect. The language in this book fairly depicts the times, times where sex, drugs and self-expression were part of this cult movement. I quote.

“Clearly, joining the Rocky cast involved on-the-job training. We were going to learn how to swim, but the teaching method this cast employed was to throw you in the deep end of the pool, lob an anvil at you and wish you good luck.

In defense of our friends and colleagues in New York: Doing Rocky can get to be a drag after a while.

I know it sounds like Rocky blasphemy (if there is such a thing), but the truth is that performing the same show, week after week without any variation at all, can be draining and demoralizing. This is true of live theater, rock music and dolphin acts. Doing each and every piece of Rocky choreography, by rote, each and every night leads inevitably to boredom and stagnation. You think Keith Richards likes playing “Satisfaction” at every single concert while he’s on tour? No. He f****** hates it. But he does it because that’s what the people want. And, you know, for all the money and stuff.

Fortunately, the people who perform the Rocky show on a regular basis know that atrophy can set in after constant and mindless repetition. And their solution to this malady is: Mix things up every once in a while.”

If you have ever felt left out, ostracized especially in your youth, this story will strike accord in your heart. When all is said and done, this is a coming of age memoir as a young man finds he can be part of something spectacular and cultivate lifetime friendships.

Theodocia McLean endorses Confessions of a Transylvanian: a story of Sex, Drugs and Rocky Horror by Kevin Theis and Ronald Fox. The characters are real, the stories are true and times have changed as this generation has moved on with their lives. As dramatic as this story is, it is a part of a generation’s history which this book chronicles. The authors invite you to visit “RockyConfessions.com/extras for pictures of the original Wild and Untamed Things along with a few more stories and other goodies from the Ultravision years”.

I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on December 3, 2015.

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http://www.RonFoxMedia.com
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My Watch Doesn’t Tell Time by Clint Adams

“What if time runs out?” is the question that makes 14-year old Miguel Estes sweat every night. Miguel’s certain of three things though: he’s here to learn lessons, he lives with a fatal form of the skin-blistering disease E.B., and the clock never stops ticking. In his quest to learn everything from the challenging life he’s been given, Miguel discovers who’s responsible for time being over.

My Watch Doesn’t Tell Time is the third in a series of muti-cultural, fear-eliminating teen novels, which includes Fear Ain’t All That and Don’t Be Afraid of Heaven.

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Don’t Be Afraid of Heaven by Clint Adams

How in the world did fear ever become so popular, especially when it never should have existed in the first place?

Why were we put here to do what we want, if we end up being too afraid to do it? In DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN, 13-year old Miguel Estes feels that being “scared to death,” and having “the life scared out of me,” are no longer just tired, old expressions, they’ve become part of a world-wide epidemic. Now rid of the fears that once paralyzed him, Miguel decides to help others eliminate theirs; he founds F.A.A.T. (Fear Ain’t All That), an after-school group with his eccentric but wise Aunt Shirley.

In its first meeting Miguel befriends Samantha, a girl diagnosed as having an exotic variety of phobias, fears, and anxieties. With a fierce determination, Miguel helps Samantha rid her life of one debilitating fear after another. Together, Miguel and Samantha learn much about life, fear, and death. Revelations from Aunt Shirley, and recurrent dreams of his brother Jorge (who already lives in heaven), also remind Miguel that “heaven is a far better place than here. It’s nothing to be afraid of; it’s the perfect place to be. Everything about it is perfect.”

After undergoing a radical transformation, a stronger-than-ever-before Samantha, grows to be ill. As her condition worsens, Aunt Shirley informs Miguel that the greatest lesson he can possibly share with his dear friend is to help her be unafraid of going to heaven. Of course he’s uncertain about accepting this task. But, paradoxically, it ends up being Samantha who teaches Miguel. Prior to leaving, Samantha feels only joy, excitement, and relief about her upcoming journey; Miguel, due to Samantha’s experience, becomes unafraid of his own mortality. Samantha, now completely fearless, moves on; although left behind, Miguel celebrates Samantha’s life as well as her death.

DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN is the sequel to FEAR AIN’T ALL THAT, two multicultural fear-eliminating novels for teens.

AUTHOR INFO: Born in Oakland, California, Clint Adams, now lives in Viareggio, Italy. Having authored numerous academic publications while at the Washington Post and McGraw-Hill, Clint now actively markets his two fear-eliminating novels for teens, FEAR AIN’T ALL THAT and its sequel, DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN. Before writing, Clint was a professional actor with over 100 credits in TV, film, and theatre. Clint earned a bachelor’s degree in drama from the University of California at Berkeley, and his master’s in marketing from San Francisco’s Golden Gate University.

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Welcome To Harmony: A Tale From The Town Of Harmony by Dan Trumpis

Being twelve years old is already hard enough. Being a werewolf makes it even harder. Dillon Howell and his parents have just moved to Harmony, a small town in Northern California. Like all kids, he just wants to fit in and make friends, while keeping his “condition” a secret, of course. But Dillon quickly finds out he’s not the only person in town who isn’t what he appears to be. Welcome to Harmony, Dillon Howell. Your life is about to change forever.

Book Review For Welcome To Harmony by Dan Trumpis

The township of Harmony in Northern California could be like any small town in America, but it isn’t. Like in most small towns secrets are desperately tried to be kept and the Harmony forest is the keeper of many secrets. For Dillon Howell moving to Harmony with his parents gives him a new chance to fit in and make new friends. If just being a teenager isn’t enough of a challenge for Dillion, being a Werewolf presents its own set of challenges. As Dillion and his family settle into the normal day-to-day life at home and at school the supernatural forces in the dark forest beckon to him and he finds that he is not the only one in this town with a secret. Come with Dillon to Harmony and see what life has in store.

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘Welcome To Harmony’ by Dan Trumpis. The author skillfully writes this epic middle grade fantasy (PG) in a way that encourages teens to read. Life in Harmony might mirror their life in some routine ways and then again it might just be a little darker, more intense, and hairier than normal. This review was completed on November 6, 2014.

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http://www.harmony1855.com
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Steel, Blood & Fire (Immortal Treachery Book 1) by Allan Batchelder

On the march, around the campfire, and in the taverns, they tell incredible stories about Tarmun Vykers, the Reaper – how he’s never been cut in battle, how he once defeated hundreds of men by himself, how he exterminated an entire people over an insult. These stories make Vykers seem like a god, but he is a man, an arrogant, ruthless and bloodthirsty man. For all that, he may be the only thing standing between the human race and utter annihilation at the hands of the mad wizard who calls himself the End-of-All-Things. Against this backdrop, smaller, lesser folks struggle to fulfill their own destinies, folks like Aoife, burdened with a secret so dark she is driven to do the unimaginable and seek an alliance with fey powers no mortal has ever encountered.

Are you a fan of: Grimdark, Joe Abercrombie’s First Law series, Steven Erikson’s The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Glen Cook’s Chronicles of the Black Company, or Patrick Rothfuss’ Kingkiller Chronicle? If so, grab your copy of Steel, Blood & Fire now!

Book Review: This book has a very well thought out plot engaging the reader in unexpected twists and turns including love stories and epic battle scenes involving twenty-four well developed characters.

Steel, Blood & Fires opens with unspeakable violence as Tarmun Vykers, A.K.A, “the Reaper” a legendary warrior is in the stocks (in bonds, under guard). One must be warned that this is a work of dark fantasy, horror and mythology with adult language and graphic violence.

Author Allan Batchelder has done very well laying out this book with easy to follow headings (much like the way a play production might be laid out). The story pivots back and forth from what is happening with his main characters:  the legendary warrior named Tarmun Vykers, Aoife Cestroenyn (An A’Shea or “Mender,” sister of Anders), D’Kem (a washed up Burner), Janks & Company, Long, A.K.A, Long Pete, Spirk Nessno (An idiot and friend to Long), Anders Cestroenyn (the self-proclaimed “End-of-All-Things) and Arune (A spectral Burner who shares Vykers’ body).

I would like to share a quote from this book that will help draw you in without spoiling the story. This quote come from one of the the chapter four headings titled ‘The End, On the March’.

“After seeing his general off, Anders climbed a small hillock and surveyed his host. What they lacked in training and skill, they more than made up for in numbers and ferocity. Either his magic had worked especially well upon his unwilling draftees, or humans were all more savage than they cared to admit. Looking out upon them, he saw them huddled in large, teeming masses around myriad bonfires. They were always ravenous for food, of course, but also for sex and violence. The End-of-All-Things would be happy to destroy them all, once they had served their purpose.

Pivoting to his left, he held out his arms and a slave laid the infant into them. It was a funny looking thing, this child. And would get funnier still, by the time Anders was through with it. He had decided, after some thought, that it was time he created something for a change. He would be the end of all things presently in existence, but this child would be the first of his new race, beings made especially to serve and obey him. Worship would not be required, as he felt he would probably kill large numbers of them whenever he got bored. Perhaps he should also create a competing race and pit them against one another!”

A must read for those who want to remain on the edge of your seat.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse Steel, Blood & Fire is book one in Author Allan Batchelder’s Immortal Treachery series. I purchased this book from a Kindle format on June 11, 2017 and wrote this review on June 15, 2017.

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Mackinac Triangle by Clint H. Dunshee

This fictional account is set on Mackinac Island which is located at Lake Huron in Michigan. Lake Michigan and Lake Huron are joined through the 5-mile wide, 20-fathom deep, open-water Straits of Mackinac. Author Clint H. Dunshee points out in his prolog that the “area is rich with military history and Americans did occupy the fort located on the island at one time.”

Becky Vasquez was seeking relief from her nightmares, physical and emotional trauma related drug runners that left her for dead in El Salvador while serving as a medic in the US Air Force. She applies for the job as tour guide at the Great Lakes Research Lab on the quiet island of Mackinac. She knows the island, the tourist industry, Victorian architect, walk and bike trails, the sound of horses instead of vehicles and longs for the quiet, scenic surroundings that will bring peace to her mind and body.

Tim Green is running from his own problems when he applied for a position as security officer at the same research facility on Mackinac Island. From day one Tim is struck by Becky’s attractive features and personality, but getting over the wall that Becky has constructed around her heart is going to be a challenge.

Soon their quiet day jobs turn into mystery and suspense when people, ships and planes in the area start disappearing. An old legend from the 1800’s tell about a Lieutenant on board the ship Voyager who made a deal with local Indians and pirates to steal a chest full of gold coins. The Voyager along with the coins sank in the deep waters. Not everyone perished and the Lieutenant was captured, put on trial and died at the hands of a firing squad. The legend says that his last words cursed the Straits of Mackinac and tales of his ghost wreaking havoc on ships are quickly blamed on these current disappearances.

The characters, dialog and story is as unique as the story teller. I quote from the book to whet your appetite.

“Becky walked through the bedroom to her balcony and looked out over the darkening straits.  She could see the lights of businesses lining the main street of Mackinac Island.  Her thoughts changed, and she wondered about the disappearances.  All that water out there.  The Great Lakes were basically fresh-water oceans.  In fact the early explorers thought they had indeed discovered small fresh-water oceans.  What could be causing these people and ships to vanish?  Was there a curse?  If they dove for the gold tomorrow would they too become statistics?  Becky shook her head and laughed lightly.  Just dive, pay attention, and use proper dive techniques and you’ll be fine, she counseled herself.”

I invite to enjoy Mackinac Island with Becky and Tim. There is fun, danger and a little romance, not to mention a mystery that has to be solved.

Theodocia McLean endorses Mackinac Triangle by Clint H. Dunshee. While purchasing this book, pick up his second book titled Dark Autumn as well. I purchased this book and reviewed it from a Kindle format. This review was completed on June 1, 2016.

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The Underground (Second Edition) by Roxanne Bland

Roxanne Bland does bestselling authors Charlaine Harris, Kim Harrison, J.R. Ward, and Laurell K. Hamilton one better with The Underground–rocketing into the upper ranks of urban dark fantasy and paranormal romance by adding a touch of science fiction to the fantastic, horrific, erotic mix. Set in an alternate Seattle, Washington, Bland’s heart-pounding, deliciously sexy adventure imagines a city where communities of “exotics”–shapeshifters, witches, elves, and vampires–live among the murderous human population and are ruled over by the cruel, insatiable vampire, Kurt.

The powerful alpha male of the city’s werewolf pack, Parker Berenson, is one of the Master’s enslaved servants, and he would like nothing better than to hasten the downfall of the vampire overlord who stole his love, the beautiful mage Garrett Larkin. But in a night city already on the razor’s edge–in the midst of a spate of inexplicable bloody murders–the alpha wolf’s passionate encounter with a stunning interstellar assassin could upset the very delicate balance and ignite a war that neither exotics nor humans can survive.

Warning: Profanity, Violence, Graphic Adult Content

Cold Coffee Press Book Review: The Underground (Second Edition) by Roxanne Bland is a blend of genres which include science fiction, dark urban fantasy and paranormal romance with an adult theme which includes profanity, violence and graphic erotic content.

It is not lions and tigers and bears, but rather werewolves, vampires, witches, and shape-shifters called “Exotics” that rule the night. You will either love it or hate it depending on your ability to meld into the author’s fantasy world and find something strangely different about her cast of characters.

Set in an alternate Seattle Washington where the night hours are more than bewitching, they are truly murderous. The book opens with Parker Berenson, alpha of Seattle’s werewolf fighting to stay in human form. Like many good stories, a love has been lost and someone or something must pay. Parker has anger issues and Garrett (Powerful Witch) is his former girlfriend and perhaps the only one who can truly see “the big picture”.

I always quote a passage to reveal the Author’s writing style without spoiling the story. With ninety-one chapters in this book, I chose an excerpt from Chapter 10.

“At nine a.m. on February second, a cinquet of five witches arrived to fetch Garrett for the first of her many ritual baths. They discovered her sitting naked in a half lotus on the floor, deep in a meditative trance.

Garrett had been awake for hours. She’d had too much on her mind the night before and hadn’t slept well. At five, she’d gotten out of bed and showered. After that, she’d meditated on the silk prayer rug next to the bed, hoping she could replace at least some of her lost sleep. The last thing she needed was to be incapacitated by fatigue when she channeled Goddess.

The cinquet waited in respectful silence until Garrett came out of her trance. Her gaze settled on Paul. “Good morning, Garrett,” he spoke for the other four witches.

Rising from the prayer rug, Garrett stepped over to Paul and kissed him on both cheeks, and then did the same to the others. Pinkie pre- sented her with a pair of soft indoor moccasins. Georgia held up a white, silk-lined satin robe and helped her put it on.

Paul smiled. “Ready, my Lady?” “I’m ready.”

The elder turned and with Garrett walking behind, led the group out of the bedroom to the purification room. The room’s most prominent feature was a square, white, marble Jacuzzi large enough for two people. One side was set into a wall covered with a slab of marble that rose half- way to the ceiling. Neck-sized indentations had been scooped out along the tub’s upper edge. From there, the tub sloped to its bottom, providing back support.

The rest of the wall to which the tub was attached, as well as the room’s other three walls, was covered in dense, dark blue carpet. The floor was laid with waterproofed linoleum in the same color. A series of wall sconces provided a dim light.

I love being in here. The room always evoked in Garrett a sense of inviolate safety, a comfort she never felt outside the Temple’s walls. This must be the way a baby feels in its mother’s womb.”

I, Theodocia McLean endorse The Underground (Second Edition) by Roxanne Bland as an adult dark urban fantasy that will either grab and hold your attention or turn you off depending on your appetite for violent, graphic and erotic content. I purchased this book in a Kindle format on June 7, 2017 and this review was written on June 9, 2017.

Genre:  Science Fiction & Fantasy, Fantasy, Paranormal & Urban, Science Fiction

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http://roxannebland.com
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The Witch Within Her by Nick Iuppa

The Witch Within Her (sequel to Taken By Witches).

SEXY, STUNNING, RELENTLESS HORROR

A possessed child is caught in a war between witches!

Spanning centuries of horror and witchcraft, the powerful sequel to Taken By Witches tells how Babcia Czarownica, the greatest of all witches, does battle with far more seductive members of her craft. She must confront a lustful priest, a predatory lover, a vengeful undead beauty, and the unspeakable evil hiding at the top of Rapunzel’s Tower… all to save her beloved grandson and his family from utter annihilation. And she must accomplish all this while sharing the body of an eight-year-old girl.

Book Review: As a fan of Nick Iuppa’s books I can say without hesitation that his latest release ‘The Witch Within’ is another great “sexy, stunning, relentless horror” that brings a ‘Grimm’s Fairy Tales’ feel with an adult theme.

‘The Witch Within Her’ is the sequel to ‘Taken By Witches’. Even without reading the first book the author’s writing is so good that you can jump right into the book and enjoy the well-developed characters, and complex story with twists and turns that include the old fables of Hansel and Gretel and Rapunzel.

Author Nick Iuppa includes a wonderful introduction and summary that will refresh your mind and continue the story on from ‘Taken By Witches’. This is storytelling at its best as both books are centered on a tale being told by an evil warlock to an old gift store owner named Michalowski in the village of Zakopane Poland.

With eighty-three fast paced chapters, this novel is nearly impossible to put down. The evil witch Babcia is obsessed with and will use any measure to protect her beloved grandson Niko from any harm that might befall him even to the point of living inside the body of his little daughter, Joy.

If you want an adult fantasy horror witches tale, this is a must read. I always share a quote to draw you into this author’s writing style without spoiling any part of the story. So here goes.

Quote One: “Twisted branches seemed to claw at the windows of John Hunter’s Ford Crown Victoria as it struggled up the deeply rutted gravel road that led to the upper cabin at Crystal Lake. Perhaps the branches were trying to unlatch the door and catch hold of him, Hunter thought for a crazy moment, pull him out from behind the steering wheel, drag him into the marshes that stood along the sides of the road, plunge him down among the gnarled roots and hold him under till he drowned.

Christ, what’s happening to my mind? He wondered.

Quote Two: “Mother Black’s garden was not unlike other witch’s gardens hidden away in the San Fernando Valley. There may have been as many as a hundred of them at that time, planted mostly by witches who were forced to accompany their families into the California sunshine. Occasionally, a young woman of Marla Morrison’s coven succeeded in making things grow and using them to expand her knowledge of The Craft. But the real successes were the old crones who took their work seriously and limited their ambitions.

That’s how it was with Mother Black. Sally Fukes had found her deep in the mountains of Tennessee and told her all about her adventures in Hollywood and how her friend Marla had died at the hands of Witch Babcia who now inhabited the body of Niko Madonie’s daughter.

Mother Black hadn’t known much of Babcia’s long history and so she wasn’t concerned. Until now!”

I invite you to read this tale, but if you repeat it, be careful of youngsters who might be listening.

I, Theodocia Mclean endorse The Witch Within Her (sequel to Taken By Witches) by Nick Iuppa as an adult fairy tale. I purchased this book from Kindle on May 24th and this review was written on June 1, 2017.

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Esteban’s Quest by Nick Iuppa

Magical Madness

A fireball launches itself from the Arizona desert leaving behind three camels, a magical jukebox, and a five-year-old girl who only speaks Italian.

Soon, the nearby town of La Sentencia is reeling from a series of disasters. The copper mine, which supports the town, shuts down leaving most of the population unemployed. Massive sandstorms batter the place. And then the Devlin Lucero shows up. He seduces a pretty substitute teacher and then uses her to spread greed, anger, and vengeance everywhere.

In the face of all these trials, Esteban Dorantes decides to retrace the steps of his great, great grandfather, who once led a quest to find the Seven Cities of Gold. Aided by the camels, the wisdom of the little girl, and the spirit of the magical jukebox, he hopes to locate a great treasure and bring it back to save La Sentencia.

Esteban is accompanied by Ceci Moreno, his old high school sweetheart, the only person in town who doesn’t think he’s a madman. But Ceci is still in love Gabriel Romo, another dreamer who somehow feels he can bargain with the devil to save the mine and the town.

Wacky, scary and spectacular, Esteban’s Quest blends science fiction, Aztec lore, classic horror, and offbeat humor into an unforgettable tale of love, destiny, magic, and redemption.

Book Review:  Step aside Indiana Jones. There’s a new adventurer in town. Esteban Dorantes may be a little more reluctant, but he has an even greater sense of destiny than even Dr. Jones. Dorantes is goaded by the desperate needs of his impoverished hometown and visions of his great, great grandfather… an African slave who once led Spanish Conquistadors on the first quest for the Seven Cities Of Gold.

The story opens in the Arabian Desert where a wall of wind a mile high and a hundred miles wide, roars though an oasis carrying off a husband and wife team of archeologists but leaving behind their five-year-old daughter.

We move to La Sentencia, a small town in Arizona, which is devastated by its own windstorms and other disasters including the immanent closing of a copper mine… the only business in that part of the state.

What’s the link between these two desolate desert locations… the little Italian girl who suddenly shows up on the winds of a sandstorm to advise the residents in Arizona? And then there’s an ancient artifact that may have been left by space travelers. Does it hold the key to the building of great earthly civilizations… and the salvation of La Sentencia?

Esteban Dorantes must have some sense of all this as he decides, at the little girl’s bidding, to takes up his great grand-fathers quest for The Golden Cities and save his home town in the process.

The novel’s fifty-six chapters of action-packed adventure may surpasses some of the greatest quests ever told, with its Aztec lore, science fiction spacecraft, magical jukebox, a destiny that spans generations, horror, humor, three camels, talking coyotes, a very sexy substitute high school teacher, the devil himself, and, of course, a love story.

I invite everyone to read Esteban’s Quest and experience this compelling tale for themselves.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse Esteban’s Quest by Nick Iuppa and John Pesqueira. And we encourage you to purchase other books by the team including: The Carlos Mann Trilogy (Alicia’s Ghost, Alicia’s Sin, Alicia Bewitched) and Avenging Adelita (romance), in addition to the stand-alone novels by Nick Iuppa include Bloody Bess And The Doomsday Games (fictional horror drama featuring ancient vampires, teenage romance, and a top-secret military project) and Taken by Witches (a modern horror story based on Grimm’s Fairy Tales). I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on July 26, 2016.

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Author Nick Iuppa’s Published Books
Alicia Bewitched
Alicia’s Ghost

Alicia’s Sin
Avenging Adelita
Bloody Bess and the Doomsday Games

Esteban’s Quest
Taken by Witches

Author Nick Iuppa’s Websites
http://www.nickiuppawrites.com/
https://www.nickiuppa.com
http://aliciasghost.com/Welcome.html
https://www.facebook.com/NickVIuppa

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Author Nick Iuppa’s Blog
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Avenging Adelita by Nick Iuppa and John P. Mendoza

Avenging-Adelita-–-by-Nick-Iuppa-John-P.-MendozaA tender romance with a ticking time bomb at its heart. There’s a bomb on this train. It will explode before you reach your final destination…because you murdered my wife. University professor Tom McKeever has just lost his wife Adelita to cancer. But the more he thinks about it, the more he realizes she didn’t have to die. The faculty and administration of the university where he teaches in Mexico played a major role in causing her death. Now, Tom relives powerful memories of his life with Adelita as he and the rest of the faculty take a train ride into the mountains. He plans to gain revenge by blowing up the train, killing all those who have wronged him and everyone else on board… including himself.

Book Review: Nick Iuppa, Author of ‘Bloody Bess And The Doomsday Games, has teamed up with John P. Mendoza to bring us another fast-paced, action suspense thriller that will keep readers turning pages and biting their nails.

There’s a large cast of unique characters, many of whom are confined to business class cars on the Copper Canyon Railway as it speeds through the Grand Canyon of Mexico, unaware of the impending man-made disaster that’s about to shatter the serene environment.

Somewhere in the process of grieving for his lost wife, Adelita, his “warrior woman” love, Professor Tom McKeever walks a thin line between reality and golden memories that keep pulling him back into his her beauty, delicious aroma, and open arms. The gut wrenching knowledge that there was an experimental cancer treatment that might have saved Adelita’s life, had it not been for the decisions of one man, is more than Tom can bear. The need for revenge seethes like red-hot embers but conflicts with thoughts dredged up from a Catholic School upbringing: “Vengeance is mine, saith the lord!”

Time is running out, but somehow the collateral damage begins to seem more and more defensible… a justifiable murder suicide. Is it? Find out; come ride the rails into Copper Canyon when time is definitely not on your side.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse Avenging Adelita by Nick Iuppa & John P. Mendoza as these two authors give the reader what they have come to expect; great descriptive writing, with dialog and startling transitions from present to past and back again placing the reader in the mind of this widower. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on December 15, 2014.

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Bloody Bess And The Doomsday Games by Nick Iuppa

Bloody Bess And The Doomsday Games is a magnificent fictional horror drama featuring ancient vampires, teenage romance, and a top-secret military project. The Doomsday Games, as the project is called, involves a team of international scientists, engineers, and military personnel who gather in the ancient town of Murdenwald, Switzerland, to do no less then put an end to war.

Nick Iuppa developed a cast of authentic and unique characters like Elizabeth Laskaar (Duchess of Hungry) known as “Bloody Bess” to her victims in 1580 in the small village of Nyirbator Hungary. She prowled the streets of Murdenwald seeking out young women to murder so that she could bathe in their blood. Her husband Ferenc, some say, is still the director of the town’s ancient library. A most beautiful man with midnight blue eyes, he waits for naïve young women to come to his tower and aid him in his evil work. Then there’s Donny Vito, the world’s greatest film producer, called upon by the U. S. President to breathe life into the Doomsday Games. Elli Capadonico is the girl Donny loved in his youth; she fell victim to Arnie Cudgel, an obsessive young man with both romantic and sadistic intentions. The cast also includes scientists, mathematicians, military personnel, writers, artists, technicians, Chu Yun Trang (the director of a rogue nation seeking to build nuclear weapons), and a myriad of simulated characters who populate the virtual Armageddon.

Nick’s highly descriptive writing takes the reader from the Middles Ages to a 1950s high school romance, to mysteries surrounding the ‘knowledge’ held in the ancient Murdenwald library, to the International Simulation Center itself where the final challenge becomes solving “the God Problem.” Nick weaves these stories together so skillfully that the separate lines merge to become plot twists in an amazing and unexpected ending.

The author, Nick Iuppa, is the son of a prominent Rochester, New York doctor. Nick attended the University of Notre Dame and did his graduate work at Stanford. Nick’s first job was at MGM Studios in Hollywood where he worked on TV specials with Dr. Seuss and Chuck Jones (creator of the Road Runner). He also had the privilege of writing for the Wonderful World of Disney, working as an instructional designer for Eastman Kodak, leading Bank of America’s in-house TV production group, managing the Learning Technologies Group within Apple Computer, and finally returning to Paramount Pictures in Hollywood where he designed Internet entertainment and built Hollywood-style simulations for the military.

Nick’s extensive travels to Europe have inspired some of his characters and settings. His work history, technical knowledge, and experience have given him the tools and concepts for his novels.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse Bloody Bess And The Doomsday Games by Nick Iuppa for the creative genius of the Doomsday Game. This review was completed on October 2, 2014.

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Author Nick Iuppa’s Websites
http://www.nickiuppawrites.com/
https://www.nickiuppa.com
http://aliciasghost.com/Welcome.html
https://www.facebook.com/NickVIuppa

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Cold Coffee Press

A Berlin Of The Mind by A. Colin Wright

The novel is set largely during the last days and immediate post-war years of WWII, in the British and Soviet Zones (later German Democratic Republic) of Berlin. Hermine (whose name comes from a novel by Hermann Hesse, proscribed by the Nazis) marries an English academic, Duncan, who encourages her to write her own account. This relates to her complicated experience of (English) Michael, his brother Henry (Heinrich), her German father Wartmann and others. Falling in love with Henry, she heartily dislikes Michael, whose only desire is to seduce as many women as possible.

From the Preface: “If one looks at the events leading to World War Two and resulting from it, it is all too easy to condemn the Germans. How could a highly civilized people have turned to the doctrine of Fascism as dictated by a vicious racist and psychopath? All of this, though, leads to a more basic question: could I, had I been brought up in a different society, ever have behaved in a similar fashion?”

“Henry found himself dreaming: “Oh I’m clever, oh I’m great. I rule. Eurore shudders at my might. I the Fuhrer, the artist they rejected: fools like all rest. I the people, I the nation, I the leader. Cheering me, admiring, fearing me. . . A Berlin of the mind, split between East and West, two hemispheres, left and right, now with an irrevocable dividing wall and the greatest tension at the crossover from one side to another. A peaceful man, a dull man even … A house in the country, and if I had children there’d be… what is it? . . . 1.7 of them. And there were no signposts. That was the thing about wartime Britain too: so as not to assist the enemy should he invade across the divide all the signs were removed.”

From Chapter One, Hermine:” I was raised in a concentration camp, without which my whole story would have been different. North of Berlin, Ravensbrück was specifically for women and, of course, their children. You can visit the museum there today and see the memorial, which was set up by the Soviets when Berlin was part of East Germany, and part of my story too.”

Book Review: As the author says in the book description and I quote, “The novel is set largely during the last days and immediate post-war years of WWII, in the British and Soviet Zones (later German Democratic Republic) of Berlin.”

I found this part of the Author’s Preface most interesting: “A friend of mine once suggested that the period in question was comparable to the Trojan War in the minds of those who lived through it. But I simply do not believe that Germans are fundamentally worse than other people. There are, to my mind, arseholes in all countries: it all depends on historical conditions leading to particular societies. The British can be as bad as Germans, sometimes more so, with their neo-Nazis, soccer riots, etc. The U.S.A has its deep-seated racist attitudes and violent gun culture. Canadians by and large are fortunate, except for their country’s residential schools and relations with its indigenous peoples. And Israel, which suffered more than any country in the holocaust, is unforgivingly anti-Arab. All of this leads to all kinds of abuses, which I have no intention of listing here, for a little thought will reveal them. As for Russia, or the most extreme manifestations of Islam and other religions with their sects—one thinks too of Christianity with Catholicism and others—well, again their problems are evident.”

Prologue, 1945, sets the stage where in the next seven chapter tell the stories of Hermine (survived Ravensbrück), Dr. Michael Warner (the antagonist) and Henry Warner or (again) Heinrich Werner.

The Interlude states: “I learnt later that there were other players in that ultimate drama: Henry’s first wife, Estelle, amongst them.” Chapters Eight to Ten bring us back into Michael’s, Henry’s and Hermine’s life. The book concludes with Epilogue One: Michael and Epilogue Two: Hermine.

This is intense and satisfying reading for history buffs.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse A Berlin Of The Mind by A. Colin Wright as an intellectual read. As intense as this period of time so is the knowledge and passion with which the author writes. I have had the pleasure of reading the authors other book titled Veronica’s Papers. It is important to know his bio and I quote.

“A. Colin Wright was born and raised in the county of Essex, England. After serving as a linguist in the British Royal Air Force, Wright attended Cambridge University, where he earned undergraduate and graduate degrees. In 1964, he was appointed a professor of Russian at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. He remained at Queen’s until his retirement in 1999 and still resides there today. Dr. Wright is married and has two grown sons. He acts and directs in the local theatre. With a love of languages (he speaks English, French, German, Russian and Italian, with a smattering of Spanish and Scottish Gaelic), he is adamant about correct grammar in his writing. This unfortunately also makes him highly critical of others! He also loves travel and has led various groups for Craig Travel in Toronto to Russia, Ukraine, China, South Africa, Southern India, Alaska and the islands of the North Atlantic.”

This review was completed on May 28, 2017.

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Professional Websites:
http://www.veronicaspapers.com/a-colin-wright
http://www.canadianauthors.org/national
http://www.sardiniansilver.com
http://www.cupboardfulofshoes.com

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Bloody Klondike Gold: A Randi Braveheart Mystery Short Story by A. K. Taylor

A summer trip to the Klondike can be deadly…

Randi and her friend go to the Mineral Creek mining claim in the Klondike to visit her father during the mining season. Sabotage, theft, and a death threat turn wilderness summer fun and normal mining operations into a fight for survival…

Bloody Klondike Gold is an introductory short story to the new Randi Braveheart Mystery Series by award winning Teen/YA author A.K. Taylor! Stay tuned for the first installment To Catch a Catfish coming in 2017.

Book Review

Short stories are to an avid reader like chocolate to sweet tooth. Bloody Klondike Gold by A. K. Taylor is a short Story introduction to the Randi Braveheart action suspense mystery thriller series.

Two teenage friends, Randi and Brittany drive the long 2, 700 mile trek from San Francisco to southeast Alaska. Randi’s father, William Wallace Braveheart was already on location as his reputation for finding gold at any location made him a valuable asset.

Mining communities are tight knit as the environment, equipment and the mining processes inherit dangers make mining for Gold a driving force with the claim crews but also a draw for the darker side of human nature.

The summer starts out as an adventurous vacation with Randi dreaming of fishing in cool streams to a mining community’s worst nightmare.

If you enjoyed Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys mysteries then I invite you to read ‘Bloody Klondike Gold’ to prepare for ‘To Catch A Catfish’ scheduled for release in 2017. If this short story is any indication of what is to come with ‘To Catch A Catfish’ then prepare yourself for an action packed, suspense mystery thriller.

Theodocia McLean endorses Bloody Klondike Gold: A Randi Braveheart Mystery Short Story as the introduction to A. K. Taylor’s new action suspense mystery thriller series coming soon. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on September 23, 2016.

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A Matter Of Justice by Larry Auerbach

This is a story of justice delayed, and how each person’s life can intersect with another, with a varying degree of impact.

Jonah Berryman is a former Union sniper, who is hunting for someone out of his past. He has some unfinished business with the doctor who saved his life and allowed his cousin to die. When he went to find the doctor later, he learned he had never even existed…except for saving his life and his sight.

After the War, Jonah became a bounty hunter, and whenever he rides into a town, anyone who has something to hide gets nervous and lead begins to fly. Willow Springs was no exception. In A MATTER OF HONOR, after receiving wire saying he was in Willow Springs, Jonah rode in looking for the doctor but he found a whole lot more than he was bargaining for. People began dropping like flies from the moment he hit town, and most of the lead that was flying through the air appeared to be coming his way. It didn’t take long for him to discover there were a lot of players in this game, and that there were more than two sides in this war. In the exciting conclusion of this story, Jonah has already figured out that nobody is who they appear to be. Now he has to end someone else’s war if he is going to save his own skin. That’s going to be hard, since he can’t really be sure who is a friend and who isn’t.

There are hidden players in this game, and they all have their own agenda for how this will end. Jonah didn’t realize it at the time, but he was actually lured here because of his reputation. Someone wanted him to be the catalyst to bring A MATTER OF JUSTICE to this town for a lot of people.

Kindle

A Matter Of Honor by Larry Auerbach

Set in 1877, in New Mexico Territory, former Union sniper Jonah Berryman is presently working as a bounty hunter who is known for bringing his man in alive, but Jonah is here on personal business and is hunting someone on his own time. He has some unfinished business with a doctor who saved his life but left his cousin to die. He has been looking for this doctor ever since the War ended, but not knowing what the doctor looked like has been a big problem.

Now he is here in the town of Willow Springs because someone sent him a wire saying the man was here. But as soon as he arrived in town someone started shooting at him. Now he is the middle of another war, and Jonah can’t tell which side is which…or even who is one what side. All he knows for sure is that he is in the middle. As the lead continues to fly his way, Jonah realizes someone has set him up to be the next casualty of their own private war. He has to figure out who it is that is behind all of this, if he has any hope of getting out of town alive. And he still has to find out who put him in the middle of this and why.

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The Spirit Of Redd Mountain by Larry Auerbach

Redd Mountain is a famous multi-mountain resort in western Montana, that boasts skiing on one side and hunting on the other, with a wide neutral zone between the two mountains.

Thirty years ago, Warner Barney, a world class big game hunter, came to Redd Mountain on a hunting trip. His narcissistic belief that rules of safety did not apply to him led to the death of several people, as a result of his reckless behavior in the pursuit of his single-minded goal. When Warner barney left the mountain, he left death and chaos for many in his wake.

In the months after he left, two legends began to grow. One is the story of a magnificent elk who is possessed of a singularly reddish color coat. No hunters have been able to take him, although many have seen him, because he always seems to be just out of range or behind a tree. The locals have dubbed him the protector of the forest, as hunters pass on the other animals in their efforts to bring him down, all of them failing.

There is also a legend of a mysterious red-jacketed skier who has been sighted for years, intervening in the activities of other skiers who are in danger of losing their lives, due to their recklessness or the unpredictable whims of nature. No one knows who he is, or where he comes from, or where he goes, but all are very grateful for his unexpected appearance whenever it comes. Every year, both of them are seen by skiers and hunters alike, and their legends grow bigger each year with every drink in the resort lodge.

Now Warner Barney is back, supremely confident in his belief that he is the one to claim the legendary trophy elk that has been a part of this mountain for almost as long. He has not changed at all, he still believes that rules do not apply to him. He wants this elk for his trophy wall, but there are forces standing in his way, including the chief ranger and safety supervisor for the resort, a party of conservationists and wildlife experts who are determined to rescue the elk and take him to a preserve. Also on this expedition is Warner’s old guide from his previous hunt, who has a debt to pay and hopes to find some answers of his own on the mountain. Some of these people have their own reasons for being on this hunt, to resolve old wounds and out an end to old debts.

This party also includes a newspaper journalist who is determined to use this hunt to advance her own career, regardless of the cost to others. After agreeing to follow the rules of the non-lethal hunt, Warner breaks away on his own to follow his own path to claim this magnificent animal. His blind obsession leads Warner to find his destiny, and to discover the truth of the old saying that time heals all wounds, and wounds all heels. Warner Barney, and these two local legends, have a date with destiny to resolve some old wounds, and they will do this on Redd Mountain.

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The Nettle Tree – Editor Clayton Bye

Strangely Different Stories …

The Nettle Tree, edited by Kenneth Weene and Clayton Bye, is a collection of genre stretching and busting stories by some of the most talented writers we have.

Their challenge was to write strangely different western stories in a format of 3,000 words or less and to take you to places traditional westerns have never taken you.

We think they have succeeded admirably.

And with powerhouse writers, some known and others whom readers will find delightful discoveries, you will not be disappointed.

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Free To Be Me: A Book For Teens & Tweens by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA

Free To Be Me: A Book For Teens & Tweens by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA

Being a teenager has its ups and downs. Being stuck between childhood and adulthood, it’s hard to know where to fit in. It’s an awkward and insecure time of life. There is the desire for independence coupled with a fear of standing out. Free to Be Me: A Book for Teens and Tweens uses relatable cartoon characters to discuss real issues such as stress, peer pressure, bullying, and teen fears. It also offers constructive ways adults can better support teens.

Free to Be Me validates the thoughts and experiences teens face on a day-to-day basis. While individual experiences may differ, the overall issues faced do not. Hopefully, the discussions within the book’s pages prove helpful not just to teens but also to the adults in their worlds.

Book Review: This small book is packed with information for teens and tweens.

The ‘Free To Be Me’ book cover along with the illustrations inside the book are hand drawn.

Great Advice For Teens Quote: “Embrace Your Individually”.

Subjects Covered:

  • What Issues Are Important To You As A Teen?
  • Stress
  • Bullying
  • Peer Pressure
  • Are These Issues Gender, Race, Socio-Economic Or Demographically Specific?
  • What Is Your Biggest Fear Or Concern As A Teen?
  • What Can Adults Do To Support Teens Better?
  • What Programs or Systems Could Be Implemented To Support Teens Better?

My thoughts: This book is as much for parents as for teens. The best scenario would be for a teens and parents to read this book together and have open and safe dialog. In addition, I think adults who work with tweens and teens such as school teachers, school counselors, church leaders, scout leaders, civic organization youth leaders, librarians and all care givers should make this book available to youth and provide a safe place for discussion.

I (Theodocia McLean) endorse Free To Be Me: A Book For Teens and Tweens by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA. When you purchase this book for your teen please download the author’s first book titled ‘Let The Sun Shine In: A Book Of Positive Affirmations For Kids’. As a grandmother I have purchased both these books and highly recommend them. I purchased this book from Kindle on May 11, 2017 and the review completed on May 24, 2017.

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Let The Sun Shine In: A Book Of Positive Affirmations For Kids
by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA

Inspired by Louise Hay’s message, “Your thoughts create your life”, Let the Sun Shine In was created as a tool for children to learn and understand that they have control over their thoughts and words and, ultimately, what happens in their life.

Within the pages of Let the Sun Shine In, kids will learn the difference between negative thoughts and positive affirmations. Child-inspired illustrations and simple text demonstrate how to make the change from negative thoughts and words to positive ones. The happiness, freedom, and confidence that come from this ability are beneficial for children for their entire lives!

Genre: Children’s Non-Fiction

Book Review:  From a Grandmother’s point of view the book cover and title got my attention right away.

The title “Let The Sun Shine In” is above a child’s drawing of two children standing on a green landscape with flowers and blue clouds with the sun’s yellow rays permeating their world brought a smile to my face.

No greater time has our children, grandchildren and adults needed “Positive Affirmations”. The very fact that LifeRich Publishing (trademark of the Reader’s Digest Association Inc.) picked up this book tells me that they have put their stamp of approval on this book.

Author Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA, dedicates this book, “For the children-may you always cherish the gift of your uniqueness, and know that only you define you.”

Simple, positive life affirmations fill 24 white pages of this book with beautiful, colorful childrens’ drawings (with actual words from the children) will uplift children and adults. The drawing on each page has a border that makes me think they should be sewn into a patch work quilt. My grand-kids will love this book. Every child needs to read and hear these positive affirmations every day.

Tara L. Kay is a licensed clinical pharmacist who has been practicing for over fifteen years in various settings. Additionally, Tara is a certified Reiki master of Dr. Usui’s System of Natural Healing, and she has certification in craniosacral therapy with the Upledger Institute. Tara also practices EFT/tapping, a hands-on healing technique that balances and realigns energy. Tara incorporates alternative therapies into the scope of her practice as a pharmacist to improve the health and well-being of her clients. Tara strives to educate her clients and to facilitate their physical, spiritual, and emotional health and growth as they move along their own path toward enlightenment.

I (Theodocia McLean) endorse ‘Let The Sun Shine In: A Book Of Positive Affirmations For Kids’ by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA. I purchased this book from Kindle and the review was completed on July 31, 2016.

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Cold Coffee Press Spotlight Interview With Author Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA

Tara Kay grew up in Southern Connecticut and currently resides in North of Boston, Massachusetts. She has been a practicing pharmacist for over 15 years in various settings. Tara received her Bachelors in Pharmacy from the University of Connecticut at Storrs, her PharmD from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy/Allied Health, her MBA from Fairfield University and her Ayurvedic Health Practitioner certification from the Natural Healing College. Additionally, Tara is a certified Reiki Master of Dr. Usui’s System of Natural Healing and she has certification in Cranio-sacral Therapy with the Upledger Institute. Tara also practices EFT/Tapping, a hands on healing technique that balances and realigns energy.

Tara incorporates Alternative Therapies into the scope of her practice as a Pharmacist to improve the health and well-being of her clients. Tara strives to educate her clients and to facilitate their physical, spiritual and emotional health and growth as they move along their own path towards enlightenment.

Tara’s practice is inspired by her life-long commitment to health and wellness. She is a dedicated, compassionate and devoted healthcare professional and healer. She takes a unique approach to healing with each client based on their need by using both her knowledge of medications, herbs and supplements and Alternative Therapies.

Tara believes that each individual holds the power to heal themselves and that by honoring the body, mind and spirit many miraculous awakenings can occur.

Tara published her first book entitled, “Let the Sun Shine in, a book of positive affirmations for kids” in June 2016. It was inspired by Louise Hay’s message, “your thoughts create your life, as well as Tara’s own experience with positive affirmations.

Interview:

What makes you proud to be a writer from Massachusetts? The North Shore is an incredibly beautiful and inspiring place to live. I feel very fortunate to have moved here 6 years ago. It is a summer destination for many avid beach goers and outdoor enthusiasts, of which I am one and it also offers many cultural, educational and social activities.

What or who inspired you to become a writer? I believe my writing endeavor was divinely inspired. I have been a pharmacist for over 15 years and I have incorporated a number of alternative methods into my practice along the way. My focus has always been on health and wellness. While I have benefited from the messages and teachings of authors such as Louise Hays, I never thought about writing. After my divorce, I began using positive affirmations on a daily basis to help me through my healing process. Earlier this year, I took an amazing trip to South Africa where I was deeply moved by Nelson Mandela’s story. I returned home, sat down one evening and wrote the first draft of my book.

Did your environment or upbringing play a major role in your writing and did you use it to your advantage? I’ve always had an awareness level beyond my years. I knew this even as a child but didn’t fully understand it. I grew up in a home with a very controlling father and a mother whose voice was rarely heard. I can’t say my upbringing played a conscious role in my writing but it obviously sparked something within me.

When did you begin writing with the intention of becoming published? I returned home from an amazing trip to South Africa at the end of January 2016. In February, I left a job of 8.5years, started a new job and moved. During this time of transition, I came home from work one night and wrote the first draft manuscript. By the beginning of March the illustrations were complete. I secured a publisher at the end of March.

What has been your most rewarding experience with your writing process? The outpouring of support, encouragement, enthusiasm and excitement. This is my first book. I realize it will be for some and not for others. I’m ok with that. I know in my heart that it will get into the hands of those that need and desire it.

What has been your most rewarding experience in your publishing journey? Navigating the world of self-publishing. At first it seemed overwhelming but I had the pleasure of working with a great team at Life Rich Publishing. They guided me step by step and made the process seamless.

How many published books do you have? Two.

Which book title would you like featured in this interview? Free To Be Me: A Book For Teens & Tweens by Tara L. Kay PharmD MBA

What one positive piece of advice would you give to other authors? Believe you can and you will.

Who is your favorite author and why? Harper Lee because she never gave up on her dream of being a writer. She persevered at a time when women’s rights are not what they are today. She achieved great honor and success and yet never got caught up in it.

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Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously by Linda Diane Wattley

Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, the hidden love killer, is instrumental in creating a world of alienation in the human experience.

Soldier with a Backpack, Living and Dying Simultaneously is written to form a silent unity of hope and understanding for individuals experiencing or knowing someone with PTSD and to reveal a needed truth about it.

Linda D. Wattley grew up with a tainted trust in adults, now that she has become one herself; Author Wattley began to learn why adults were so unhappy. She realized that stress and trauma had molded her into someone who felt unworthy of love, yet there was still something else willing her to life, telling her to share with the world that sufferers of PTSD, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder are more than words could ever describe.

Author Wattley shares the experienced impact stress and trauma has on the human soul and the price we pay ignoring this reality. It is with great urgency she intimately shares her plight in life with her readers. Being mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically raped as a child, she survived by learning to exist in an inner world of divine peace.

Something happened to that little girl; she didn’t die nor did she live, yet much was lost while much was gained.

Book Review

Author Linda Diane Wattley’s memoir ‘Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously’ is packed with nuggets of pure truth meant to expose the evil that was meant to destroy her, show God’s greatness and attest to her healing from PTSD. Once I started reading, I couldn’t put her story down. I especially love memoirs, because it takes a special kind of strength to write a memory and share raw emotion and experience with the world.

If you enjoy reading memoirs that are a journey from hell into healing with ordained, anointed prayer behind the words to encourage others along their journey, this book is a must read.

Linda says, “Out of trauma, much drama occurs. Trauma has so many levels of appearing in our lives from the war zones where our soldiers witness death and the survival of death, vehicular accidents, murders, catastrophic disasters, illnesses, rape, sudden deaths of our loved ones; the list is unending.”

“Cycles can be broken when light is shined on reality. This is my purpose to shine light on the personal aftermath of trauma. ‘And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’ John 8:13.”

Follow Linda through her life, learn from her healing and willingness to share what most people would hide in the darkness. Enjoy the short, direct poems scattered throughout the book and learn how Linda activated the love of God in her life, so she can be a beacon of light (“messenger”) to those seeking healing form PTSD.

I (Theodocia McLean) endorses Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously (After The Storm Publishing Presents) by Linda Diane Wattley as her memoir from darkness into light. I purchased and reviewed this book from Kindle format. The review was completed on January 30, 2016.

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(click to listen in)

Let’s talk about PTSD

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http://collectivefaith.com/universalove1957/
https://www.gofundme.com/ptsdfreedom
http://blackauthors.ning.com/profile/LindaDWattley
http://www.faithwriters.com/websites/my_website.php?id=19419
https://www.instagram.com/lindawattley
http://www.thecheers.org/contributors/author-profile-339.html

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http://anndandridgepublicrelations.ning.com/profile/LindaDWattley?xg_source=activity
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Charge Of An Angel: Love and Redemption Series Book 1 by Linda Diane Wattley

My name is Leona Tillard and I need your help. You see, I have been spending my whole life trying to know who I am. I was born and raised in Akron, Ohio, and a product of a temporary single-parent home, I was left without some pertinent information that could have possibly told me who I am. Eventually, still a child, my family structure evolved into a blended family situation. In silence, I cried far more than I laughed.

Don’t get me wrong, there was much love for me. I learned early in life that I was a very special little girl. People loved being in my presence, but more than anything, my body was always desired. I didn’t want for anything, life was good to me, I just didn’t understand love and what is considered being a normal human being. This is where I need your help. Will you listen to me as I tell you my story about my life? Tell me who really loved me. Am I really an angel or a freak of nature? Your help will be highly appreciated. In return, I promise to entertain you from beginning to end. Below find one of my thought processing moments. It came during a time I needed understanding. Until we meet, enjoy!

My body was betraying me in the worst way. “Oh, God, help me! I face you now in my naked and weakened state and beg you to save me.” I prayed silently.”

Book Review

Charge Of An Angel is book one in Linda Diane Wattley’s series titled Love and Redemption.

This is an important quote directly from the book: “Charge of an Angel will reveal why the urgent questioning of sexuality from the home to the pulpit. The children in this story have a lot to show us, let’s get started. They are anxious to share their stories even their parents are going to be in awe when they see who they really are.”

Character Leona Tillard will touch your heart as you read her childhood account. I am certain that as you read this book, you will either relate to some of the family dynamics from your own life or you might know a family with similar dynamics.

Sadly, families usually look wholesome and intact when viewed by an outsider. However, when you pull back the layers like an onion, the raw truth can burn your soul. In Leona’s story, her family has many layers and although she felt loved as child, her perceptions were from a child’s point of view.

Right from birth (like you and me) Leona was set on a path and her encounters wrote on the pages of her life’s story and deep in her heart and soul. The most telling thing that you will discover as you read, is Leona’s perception of herself, her deep questions and even conflicting messages that cause her to even question God.

For children who grown up in a dysfunctional home, this is how they think. I quote not to spoil the story, but to enlighten you so you will want to read further.

“We didn’t hear any more words after that. Sarah and I were just as quiet as Daddy and Priscilla.

In fact, Sarah was already asleep. I could hear snoring from across the room, which was something she normally didn’t do. I couldn’t believe what I had seen between her and Daddy.

I closed my eyes and tried to will myself somewhere other than where I was. I couldn’t help but wonder where my brother and my mother were. This new family thing just did not make me happy at all. I mean, trying to know myself was hard enough without this family mix. One minute I had a mother and then I had no mother. I had a big brother, then no big brother. Now I have two sisters and a brother to go with the one I already had. We were all lost and confused.

We just wanted to know where we belonged.

After that night, we did what we had to do to keep Priscilla and Daddy happy. Nobody cared how we felt. This life was about them. None of us should have been born. We had no parents. All of us were victims of circumstance. We were just sheep—sleeping, eating, and doing what we were told. If Daddy and Priscilla hadn’t gotten married, maybe Momma and Mark might have come back. We could forget about ever seeing them now.”

While reading I was faced with the core truths written on the pages and maybe more importantly between the lines. I wait for Book Two to be published, as I will need to find out where it goes from here. I invite you to read and open your heart and eyes to children around you in your life. This book has adult content.

I, (Theodocia McLean) endorse ‘Charge Of An Angel: Love and Redemption Series-Part 1’ by Linda Diane Wattley. I purchased this book from a Kindle format. Review was completed on March 28, 2017. I also read ‘Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously’ by Linda Diane Wattley (Great Read).

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Professional Website Links
http://www.lindadianewattley.com/
http://collectivefaith.com/universalove1957/
https://www.gofundme.com/ptsdfreedom
http://blackauthors.ning.com/profile/LindaDWattley
http://www.faithwriters.com/websites/my_website.php?id=19419
https://www.instagram.com/lindawattley
http://www.thecheers.org/contributors/author-profile-339.html

Professional Blog Links
http://www.lindadianewattley.com/blog/
http://anndandridgepublicrelations.ning.com/profile/LindaDWattley?xg_source=activity
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Cold Coffee Press

The Troll Bridge by Larry Auerbach

In 1935 west Texas, two teenagers — Duane McCathern and Tony Picano — decide to go search for a lost treasure of Confederate gold based on an old tale told by a retired Texas Ranger, involving Indians and a mysterious spirit. As their hunt starts, another boy, a long-time rival, finds them in a cave and they must reluctantly include him in their hunt, It doesn’t take them long before they realize they need more help so their new partner brings in someone, an A. B. Conway, that he says has the expertise and the skills they need to get the gold they believe is hidden in that cave. The only problem is that A. B. Conway is Abbie. Tony is at once smitten and Duane is clearly annoyed.

Once they get the hunt underway, Abbie proves her skill at fabricating machinery is beyond their expectations. And that is a good thing as the hunt suddenly takes an unexpected turn as all of them begin to have out of body experiences and they run into other supernatural problems. As they get closer to the gold, the problems mount and Duane and Tony start showing signs of stress. Then things really start getting strange as all four start having visions of the past. A spirit from the past begins influencing their actions, leading Duane in one direction and Tony in another. As both the distant and the recent past begin to reveal themselves, all of them must make decisions that will have long lasting results. Abbie has to choose between Duane and Tony, and Duane must choose between Tony and Abbie. Who, if any, will make it out of the cave and who will make a deal with the Devil.

Book Review

Raised in Vermont I have always been fascinated with covered bridges, railroad bridges and river bridges. So the title ‘The Troll Bridge’ by Larry Auerbach caught my attention right away. The prologue hooked me and it was very hard to put this book down for any reason.

Larry Auerbach is a master story teller and if you ever loved exploration as a kid and dreamed of finding something of value while exploring the farm yards, local woods, railroad tracks, old buildings, river banks etc. around your town, this book will draw you into this teen adventure that involves a hidden cave in West Texas.

Well-developed characters like Duane McCathern, Tony Picano find they need some help when the old town’s folklore about a hidden cave may have more merit than just to spook kids. Here is a quote from the book to peak your interest.

“We’re here, we’re a team, and we’re all going to watch each other’s back. We all share the risk, we all share the rewards—equally,” Duane told him. He put out his hand to Ron, who took it and held it in affirm grip. Tony put his hand over theirs, and all three of them put their other hand on the pile of hands. It was done. Tomorrow they would go to school, and come Friday, the adventure would begin for real. Fame and fortune awaited them in that hole. It was a sure thing, they were all certain. What could possibly go wrong?”

Eleven fast paced chapters will take you on an adventure of paranormal (supernatural) intrigue written for Tweens, Teens and Young Adults along with you if you are young at heart, spirit and mind.

I invite you cross over ‘The Troll Bridge’, feels the spray from the raging water below, walk the river banks if you dare as “Trolls” are known to live under bridges where people and things go missing. Join these teens as they use every creative bone in their bodies and life skills to explore a hidden cave in the hopes they will all make it out alive with treasure worth dying for.

I (Theodocia McLean) endorse ‘The Troll Bridge’ by Larry Auerbach as an adventure worth taking. Other books by Larry Auerbach include Common Threads, The Spirit Of Redd Mountain, A Matter Of Justice, and A Matter Of Honor. I read and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on 02/20/2017.

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Ritual of the Lost Lamb (Legends of Windemere Book 13) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Start Reading The ‘Legends of Windemere’ Today!

Dedication: To everyone who enters Windemere and leaves their mark upon its soul.

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Ritual of the Lost Lamb (Legends of Windemere Book 13) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Death is a blessing that the Baron is not ready to bestow upon his precious guest.

In the aftermath of the Baron’s attack, Luke Callindor has disappeared and the only clue is a psychic scream of agony that Dariana cannot ignore. Fearing that a journey to Shayd will start their final battle before they are ready, the champions have devised another way to rescue their friend. With permission from the gods, Nyx has begun the long-sealed Ritual of the Lost Lamb. It is a complicated and exhausting spell, which is made even more difficult by a new enemy whose only goal is to make all of the Baron’s enemies suffer.

It is a race against time where every passing minute brings Luke Callindor one step closer to a fate worse than oblivion.

Book Review:  Let me begin where Author Charles E. Yallowitz starts and I quote: “The gods and goddesses of Windemere begin the unexpected council meeting with a flurry of heated arguments. It is no different than their normal gatherings, but they soon realize there is a blossoming strangeness to their surroundings. For some, it is merely that Ram the War God is not on his metallic throne, the stallion-headed primordial nowhere to be found on Ambervale.”

That quote should have stirred your restless Windemere soul as you have no doubt been waiting for book thirteen in this Legends If Windemere series titled ‘Ritual of the Lost Lamb’. I am so careful not to spoil the story for those of you who follow this series, but feel it is my task to bring your mind back to Windemere with the writing that you have come to appreciate and the main character that you know so well. I quote from chapter three.

“Delvin stares out the window at the bizarre landscape that has become a combination of the Chaos Void and an evergreen forest. He can hear the others snoring from wherever they decided to sleep since Nyx and Zephyr have been given the bed. All attempts to get out of the pocket cabin have been met with failure, but the warrior considers it a good sign that there have been no violent outbursts from the magic that has them trapped. The worst they have seen is a spell getting reflected off the door and bursting into a swarm of butterflies. He still sees one of the insects fluttering around the ceiling, the others having left through a crack in the window that is no longer there. Delvin takes a sip of his drink before attempting to use a fraction of his fount powers to probe the trap. As with the previous times, his energy is redirected to another target, which turns out to be Kira. The heiress shifts against the wall as the crimson line along her spine heats up and leaves a temporary burn mark on the wood.

“I do not believe we need to keep watch in here, but I assume it helps when one cannot sleep,” Timoran says as he joins his friend. The barbarian stands with his back to the window, his eyes locked on Nyx. “I am sure she is the key to getting out of here. Again the fire sprite takes everything on her shoulders and leaves little for the rest of us. This worries me because it is becoming more common.”

The author’s cover creator creates these amazing the book covers where each one is its own snapshot of a legend theme within Windemere.

Besides reading, I have been noticing the movies scheduled to be released this summer and yawn. So many lack originality as film makers re-make old movies at great expense and try to motivate us to pay money to watch. I challenge you movie directors and investors to look at this Legend of Windemere series as it is an original adult fantasy series that would garner global interest. I can assure you that it would be worth your time and money.

I, (Theodocia McLean) endorse Ritual of the Lost Lamb (Legends of Windemere Book 13) by Charles E. Yallowitz. Each book in the Legends of Windemere series stands alone, so I invite you to read book one through book 13 so you will be ready for when book fourteen titled ‘Path of the Traitors’ comes out. I purchased this book from a Kindle format on May 16, 2017. This review was completed on May 17, 2017

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The Spirit Well (Legends of Windemere Book 12) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Born from the light and darkness, Dariana can no longer avoid her fate.

The final corrupted temple stands between the champions and Baron Kernaghan having their great battle. Only one problem: the Compass Key refuses to work with Dariana, who long ago wiped all memories of the Spirit Well from her mind. Now, they are forced to follow a trail of clues that Dariana’s former self left behind centuries ago. It is a path that will lead the champions into a part of their friend’s past that could tear them all apart.

Will the bonds of friendship be stronger than the call of blood?

Book Review: Welcome back to the mystical world of Windemere where author Charles E. Yallowitz does an outstanding job transporting his readers from reality back into the story that in conjunction with all his stories will make the Legends Of Windemere famous.

Let’s begin where “Arthuru claims he will conquer Windemere and contain us on Ambervale unless the Law of Influence is revoked.”

The story opens with a barrage of questions and accusations has brought the raven-haired Nyx to the edge of her temper.

Join the champions in a city of criminals as they approach Pazel Laufeia (Mayor of Rodillen). Follow the clues that left centuries before. With Dariana’s memories Gone, Can Friendship Prevail?

Careful not to spoil the story for all you fans, let me quote one passage and like a puzzle piece, I will let you read and find out how and when it fits into the story.

“With a wide yawn, Delvin whistles and waves for his friends to join him near a mushroom- covered tree. He crosses his arms and leans against the old oak, making it clear that he is not moving until he gets to speak his mind. Kira grumbles and kicks at whatever is in front of her as she trudges back to the warrior, the impatient woman spinning her sabers. She is already starting to complain about the delay, but her venomous words are stopped when the brown-haired man tosses her the last of the cupcakes that Sari packed. The treat is skewered on the end of her blade and she quietly eats it, her lips and tongue coming dangerously close to the keen edge. Timoran is more appreciative of the break since the trio has been fruitlessly scouring the forest for the last five hours. The barbarian’s knees pop and his lower back aches as he stretches, which makes him consider that he is getting too old for the tedious part of adventuring. When they are all gathered around the tree, Delvin gestures for them to kneel and sit into an awkward huddle. With the warriors sweating in the unseasonal heat all day, the smell is distracting so they separate and give each other some space.

“Being the least skilled tracker here, I have a few questions,” Delvin says, picking at the leaves on a small branch. He plucks one that is covered in ants, the insects crawling around his hand until they drop to the ground. “Do ghosts make any noise when walking? Do they create tracks in the dirt? Can they break branches or scuff trees when they pass? Do ghosts leave any evidence that they have come through an area?”

“No,” his companions sheepishly answer in unison.

“Then how in all of Windemere are we tracking Luke?”

I invite you read The Spirit Well (Legends of Windemere Book 12) by Charles E. Yallowitz. Each book in the Legends of Windemere series stands alone, so I invite you to read book one through book 12 so you will be ready for when book thirteen titled ‘Ritual of the Lost Lamb’ comes out. Theodocia McLean endorses The Spirit Well (Legends of Windemere Book 12) by Charles E. Yallowitz. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on December 10, 2016.

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Charms of the Feykin (Legends of Windemere Book 11) by Charles E. Yallowitz

To make a champion fall, one must wound their very soul.

Nyx is leading the charge to rescue Delvin and Sari, who have gone missing in the southern jungles of Windemere. Battling through the local predators, the champions are surprised when they reunite in the Feykin city of Rhundar. Instead of captives, the missing heroes have become the city’s rulers and are on the verge of starting a war with those that want to exterminate their new followers. Even with such a noble cause, Delvin and Sari have changed into brutal warlords that may kill each other and their friends long before they step onto the battlefield.

Have Delvin and Sari really changed for the worst or is there a greater threat pulling the champions’ strings?

Book Review:  Welcome to the jungles of Windemere where Delvin and Sari have gone missing.

Escape reality and enter into this mystical world where the author’s story telling will draw you into a fantasy world that you will never want to step out of.

The story opens with Baron Kernaghan surveying his kingdom from his balcony expecting visitors with gifts for his infant noble son.

Join Nyx in the jungle where the champions execute a plan to rescue Delvin and Sari. Without spoiling the story, let me draw you in with this quote.

“With Dariana meditating on a log and the others sleeping in a sealed tent, Luke keeps watch from the branches. The end of summer heat has forced him to shed his shirt and boots, the damp clothes left on the ground with his friends. Unlike the trees of his homeland’s forests, the jungle flora is denser and their levels are much more distinct. At first, the half-elf tried to stay in the highest branches, but he quickly realized that he could not react to any danger below. Now Luke remains hidden among the leaves of the lower canopy, his sound sight and Stiletto’s borrowed sense of smell working hard to decipher every noise. The warrior’s eyes are practically useless in the thick darkness, which puts his nerves on edge. Only a single shaft of red and yellow moonlight is coming through the trees due to a hole in the network of branches that will be closed within a week. Even with the constant threat of an attack, Luke is in awe of the jungle’s natural beauty. The vivid noises and scents of life are intoxicating, every piece of the tapestry making him want to wander blindly into the wilderness. His excitement sours when he senses a fist-sized spider that has snared a bat only a few feet above his head.

“So much for spending more time here,” Luke whispers, his dry throat quenched by a sip of water. Movement in the lower branches causes him to freeze, but he relaxes when a familiar voice curses under her breath. “Do I have to ask why you’re climbing a tree in the dark, big sister? You’re going to hurt yourself.”

“I can see in the dark,” Nyx declares as she inches around the vine-covered trunk. The channeler’s eyes have become yellow and cat-like, which matches the retractable claws that help her cling to the tree. “Transformation isn’t something I do a lot, but small things are easy. I decided to imitate a calico, which wasn’t a great idea. I went too far and gave myself a tail that keeps tickling my leg. Makes me think those fuzzy caterpillars we keep seeing are crawling up my skirt, but I’m too tired to fix it. Anyway, I couldn’t sleep and you’re the only one awake. Do you want to talk or sit quietly?”

Important questions to answer:

Will they find Delvin and Sari?

What surprises will they encounter?

What threats do the Champions face?

I invite you read ‘Charms of the Feykin’. Each book in the Legends of Windemere series stands alone, so I invite you to read book one through book 11 so you will be ready for book twelve where the final temple will be challenged in ‘The Spirit Well’. This 5 star book series is worthy of the silver screen.

Theodocia McLean endorses Charms of the Feykin (Legends of Windemere Book 11) by Charles E. Yallowitz. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on September 16, 2016.

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Legends Of Windemere: Book Nine And Ten

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The Mercenary Prince (Legends of Windemere Book 9) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Delvin Cunningham has left the champions.

Lost to his tribe in the Yagervan Plains, fear and shame have kept the former Mercenary Prince away from his homeland. With his confidence crumbling, he has decided to return and bring closure to his past. Reuniting with his old friends, Delvin’s timing could not be worse as a deadly campaign is brewing within Yagervan’s borders. Dawn Fangs are on the march and these powerful vampires are determined to turn the entire region into a graveyard.

To protect his family, friends, and two homelands, Delvin will have to push his doubt away and become the cunning Mercenary Prince once again.

Book Review:  Follow-up The Merchant of Nevra Coil with The Mercenary Prince as it rings in 2016 for Author Charles E. Yallowitz’s loyal fans yearning for another episode in the Legends of Windemere. True to form the reader will be drawn even deeper into this mystical world of Windemere where each character casts you under a unique spell.

Delvin, given the title Mercenary Prince struggles within his mind as he sets out on a rigorous journey that will bring him back home, reunite him with old friends and bring reconciliation from his past. The warrior within comes to life as he runs through Visindor Forest. He instinctively focuses on the sound of his boots hitting the ground and the rhythm puts his mind into a trance allowing him to ignore his aching body.

I quote the section below to whet your appetite without spoiling the story.

“The banyan tree sits among the maples and oaks, its horizontal branches with aerial prop roots giving it a unique appearance among the other plants. Delvin groans as he touches the smooth trunk with his forehead and he gladly lets the metal orbs fall to the ground. Songbirds flit through the treetops and fill his ears with a soothing song, which nearly causes the warrior to fall asleep. Tearing strips off his shirt, he binds his bleeding hands and massages his arms to prevent them from getting stiff. He spends the next hour lifting the orbs like weights, stretching his legs, and using a low branch to do pull-ups. A skunk wanders over while Delvin is hanging from the tree, forcing him to remain in the air until the animal waddles out of spraying range. Dropping to the ground, his knees buckle and the forest seems to spin haphazardly around him. Expecting to find a waterskin, he reaches for his side, but the warrior realizes he left it behind in his rush to clear his mind.

‘Guess it’s to the pond with me,’ he mutters as he gathers the orbs.

Delvin grabs a fig off the banyan tree as he jogs to the west where he knows a decent-sized pond can be found. As he moves through the forest, his mind wanders to thoughts of his friends who he hopes are still recovering in Nevra Coil. He is struck by a pang of guilt for not letting them know that he arrived at Hamilton Military Academy. The warrior can only imagine how angry at least one of them might be considering it has been over a week since he left the other champions. His thoughts continue down a path of worry, so he is caught by surprise when he comes to the pond and finds a slender figure with short, black hair at the shore. Delvin sees pointy ears and what he thinks is a red shirt, which causes him to skid to a stop and nearly crash into the woman. His battle-honed reflexes are the only thing that allows him to spin to the side and avoid a humiliating collision.”

Whether this is your first or the ninth book in this epic 5 Star Legends of Windemere fantasy series; you will become one with this mystical world and you will follow the path where The Hobbit and Dungeons and Dragons once took you. Join with me and the band of followers that hunger for Legends of Windemere.

Theodocia McLean endorses The Mercenary Prince (Legends of Windemere Book 9) by Charles E. Yallowitz as the author’s imagination brings legends to life. Purchase and read all nine books in this series from Amazon. I purchased and reviewed this book in a Kindle. This review was completed on January 11, 2016.

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Tribe of the Snow Tiger (Legends of Windemere Book 10) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Timoran Wrath has a shameful secret that is about to see the light of day.

The noble barbarian has always been a constant source of strength and wisdom for his beloved friends. His loyalty has been unwavering and they know that he would never hesitate to lay down his life for them. Even in their darkest hour, the champions know that Timoran will come through and fight to the bitter end. Now they must return the favor as he reunites with his tribe and willingly faces the executioner’s blade.

Is it possible that the honorable Timoran was nothing more than an illusion?

Book Review:  For all you loyal fans of the Legends of Windemere series, book ten titled Tribe of the Snow Tiger has just been released.

You will find yourself once again drawn into the imagination of the author who brings legends to life. I hope the following quotes will pull you back into the mystical world of Windermere.

The prologue finds: “Baron Arthuru Kernaghan rises from his throne and takes Trinity by the hand, she stares out at Shayd’s stony landscape, an emerald lightning storm in the distance mesmerizing her for several seconds. Groups of her people toiling in the dirt can be seen in every direction and the nearest ones risk a glance at their beloved queen.”

The story continues, “Delvin yawns and rubs at his eyes, his fingers lingering on the dark circles that have appeared after several days of exhausting travel. Glancing out the tavern window, he watches waves of heat rise off the river that cuts through the coastal city. “It looks like Queen Ionia called in a favor to get us a ship,” Delvin says as he picks up his shield. Seeing a scrap of pie left, he spears it with his fork and eats it before the groggy drite can stop him.”

Now home he can put worries to rest for a while: “Sitting cross-legged at the cliff’s edge, Timoran enjoys the peaceful evening that has enveloped his homeland. The snow has melted to reveal crisp grass and rocky patches of earth, which lead to the lower mountains. Being on the southernmost cliff of the curved range, the mellow warrior can see the vast expanse of wilderness to every side, except behind him where the encampment sits among the stones. The grunt of a bear rumbles over the mountains, the large predator a faint shadow among a collection of boulders atop a distant rise. A herd of caribou are grazing to the west, the cautious beasts close enough for him to make out their antlers in the crimson moonlight. Huddled on a lower cliff is a snow leopard and her cubs, the family feasting on a recent kill that threatens to topple over the edge. The other goats have already galloped along the sheer cliffs to seek refuge within the craggy walls, only the occasional bang of butting heads revealing their presence. After watching the calming display of brutal nature for several hours, Timoran finds himself happy to be home and his worries remain shoved to the back of his mind.”

What secrets are Timoran Wrath pushing to the back of his mind? How will this affect the champions?

Adventure consumes them: “Lightning strikes the earth and thunder rumbles, causing the travelers to sprint along the flooded path. Risking the use of her powers, Sari runs along the top of the water while Delvin sloshes behind and waves for her to slow down. They take the crumbling stairs in twos as another bolt hits the top of the ruin, the electricity absorbed by metal veins that run along the stone structure. Desperate to get out of the storm, the trio burst into the building and are met by a wave of sweltering heat. They find themselves in a chamber where the gentle echoes of the rain hitting the roof bounce from corner to corner. A small dais is in the back with a large sconce built into the wall, a piece of moldy wood still set in the metal holder. Two wide stairwells are built into the floor, their shadowy entrances flanking the doorway. Bones and other signs of animals living in the ruin can be found in the unfurnished room, but the champions can only see a few snakes and a small tortoise. If there is a predator calling this building home then it is either downstairs or out on a hunt. Either way, the travelers are too tired to go searching for a new refuge.”

I invite you to read Tribe of the Snow Tiger and see for yourself how they fit into Windemere?

If you are just beginning your journey into the Legends of Windemere and you love fantasy, author Charles E. Yallowitz’s imagination and great story telling will keep you engaged. I encourage you to purchase and read all ten books in this 5 Star Series.

Theodocia McLean endorses Tribe of the Snow Tiger (Legends of Windemere Book 10) by Charles E. Yallowitz. I purchased and received this book in a Kindle format. This review was completed on June 1, 2016.

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Legends Of Windemere: Book Seven And Eight

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Sleeper Of The Wildwood Fugue (Legends Of Windemere Book 7) by Charles E. Yallowitz

The final champion stirs and reaches out to any who can hear her voice. Yet all who heed her call will disappear into the misty fugue.

Awakening their new ally is only the beginning as Luke, Nyx, and their friends head south to the desert city of Bor’daruk. Hunting for another temple once used to seal Baron Kernaghan, they are unaware that the game of destiny has changed. Out for blood and pain, Stephen is determined to make Luke wish he’d never set out to become a hero.

By the time the sun sets on Bor’daruk, minds will be shattered and the champions’ lives will be changed forever.

Book Review: Experience for the first time or continue reading as the ‘Legends Of Windemere’ captures your imagination as ‘Sleeper Of The Wildwood Fugue’ continues this epic fantasy with book 7 by Charles E. Yallowitz.

If you were mesmerized by the game ‘Dungeons and Dragons’ or enjoyed reading ‘The Hobbit’ series you will not want to miss the mystical inhabitants of Windemere! Author Charles E. Yallowitz weaves an intriguing tale in a world where good and evil collide and is quite often underestimated.

Well defined characters who add depth, personality and the ability to draw the reader into the fantasy world of Windemere will hold your attention as the drama unfolds in this mystical place. The creative thought process of the author brings Windemere to life with fast paced descriptive intrigue. I quote two sections below to show the author’s writing style without spoiling the story.

“Several silent minutes after Gabriel disappears, Zaria lets out a musical sigh and merges with the mist. She weaves among the trees and cursed mortals, none of them noticing her presence. The goddess is near the edge of a clearing when a purple barrier appears and deflects her rapid approach. She returns to her solid form and gets as close to the powerful shield as she can. Sparks of magic burst from the glistening dome, leaving burn marks on her dress that she ignores. All of Zaria’s attention is on the canopy bed in the middle of the clearing where a cloaked form is sleeping.”

“Only a matter of days now, Dariana,” the goddess whispers, wiping a pristine tear from her cheek. “Only a matter of days.”

I invite you to start reading the Legends Of Windemere’ series today!

Theodocia McLean endorses ‘Sleeper Of The Wildwood Fugue’ (Legends Of Windemere Book 7) by Charles E. Yallowitz as an epic fantasy where the author’s imagination brings legends to life. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This reviews was completed on April 12, 2015.

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The Merchant of Nevra Coil (Legends of Windemere Book 8) by Charles E. Yallowitz

When the mischievous and random Goddess of Chaos gets angry, all of Windemere becomes her plaything.

It all starts with a collection of toys that have taken the populace by storm. People of all races flood the marketplaces to gather figurines of the champions whose adventures are starting to spread across the land. Stemming from the flying city of Nevra Coil, these toys bring with them a terrible curse: Fame. Every town becomes a mob of fans that hound their new idols and the delay is bringing the world closer to the hands of Baron Kernaghan. Perhaps worst of all, the creator of these toys forgot to include a certain exiled deity who is now out to earn herself a figurine.

Who would have thought a bunch of toys could cause so much trouble and lead to the breaking of a champion’s confidence?

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Legends Of Windemere: Book Five And Six

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The Compass Key (Legends Of Windemere Book 5) by Charles E. Yallowitz

The city of Gaia will be rocked by battles now that the Compass Key has awoken beneath her cobblestone streets.

From the Caster Swamp to the Island of Pallice, the race for the long lost relic has begun and only one side can claim victory. The Compass Key will open the path of destiny for Luke and his friends, but it may also awaken an ancient monster. With Queen Trinity and the chaos elves invading Gaia, every misstep will be costly and each battle will bring the weakened champions closer to exhaustion.

Each hero will need to draw from the depths of their soul to survive, but will it be enough when they face an enemy more sadistic than anything they have ever fought?

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Curse Of The Dark Wind (Legends Of Windemere Book 6) by Charles E. Yallowitz

With every putrid belch, Gale Hollow spews more of the toxic Dark Wind into the winter-chilled breeze.

To control Nyx, Stephen has unleashed a sentient curse on Luke, her ‘little brother’. As the infected warrior battles against the Dark Wind coursing through his veins, his friends will do whatever it takes to keep him alive. Time is steadily running out and sacrifices will have to be made to prevent Stephen from removing two heroes of Windemere.

Luke’s courage and defiance have always seen him through his adventures, but where will he find strength when his own body fails him?

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Legends Of Windemere: Book Three And Four

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Allure Of The Gypsies (Legends Of Windemere Book 3) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Reeling from broken trust and a battered spirit, Luke leads his surviving friends to the town of Haven where his past will catch up with him.

While Luke faces his family and the woman he abandoned at the altar, his enemies have recruited a deadly ally. Kalam the vampire marches on Haven with an army of undead that will leave a hero at death’s door. To revive the fallen warrior, Luke and Nyx must plunge into the mountain lair of Kalam and steal his spellbook. Exhausted and lost within enemy territory, the pair are going to need the help of a gypsy girl named Sari who may be more trouble than her new friends expected.

Against a strong and experienced adversary, what will Luke and Nyx need to claim victory on the charred battlefield?

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Family Of The Tri-Rune (Legends Of Windemere Book 4) by Charles E. Yallowitz

In Windemere, not every mistake disappears into the past. Some return with sharp teeth and ravenous appetites.

With Luke Callindor and Sari by her side, Nyx returns to the city of Hero’s Gate to face her nightmares. Cursed by her accidental unleashing of the Genocide spell, the land has been invaded by threats that have plunged the people into misery. The deadliest of all are the Krypters, a new breed of undead born from Nyx’s corrupted magic. These terrifying creatures want to devour the flesh and spirit of their ‘mother’ and the only thing they fear is a solitary warrior named Timoran Wrath.

On a quest for redemption, how much will Nyx have to sacrifice to earn the peace she desperately desires?

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Legends Of Windemere: Book One And Two

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Legends Of Windemere: Beginning Of A Hero (Book 1) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Every hero must take the first courageous step into adventure. For Luke Callindor, it’s more of a blind stumble.

Depending more on bravery than common sense, Luke sets out to protect a royal heir who is attending the prestigious Hamilton Military Academy. With a demonic assassin in the shadows, the determined warrior will have to think on his feet to defend his charge. If only he waited long enough to find out which student is the hidden noble.

With Luke’s dream on the horizon and a deadly enemy on his path, how will he transform from a reckless adventurer to a true hero of Windemere?

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Legends Of Windemere: Prodigy Of Rainbow Tower (Book 2) by Charles E. Yallowitz

Luke Callindor and his friends are about to learn that the life of an adventurer can be brutally unforgiving.

Hungering for another adventure, Luke agrees to escort the heir of Serab along the L’dandrin River and into the safety of Gods’ Voice. A deadly gauntlet of cunning traps and savage creatures lay before the young warrior and his companions. Lacking the powerful magic needed to combat his enemies, Luke’s survival and victory may be in the hands of his newest ally. That’s if the temperamental Nyx doesn’t set him on fire first.

Luke will bravely face everything that is thrown at him, but how can he defend himself when he’s ignorant of the truth behind his mission?

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Stand Alone Novels by Charles E. Yallowitz

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Bestiary Of Blatherhorn Vale by Charles E. Yallowitz

Found in a battered notebook, these poems are the remnants of an expedition to the legendary Blatherhorn Vale. Cut off from human contact, the creatures of this mysterious land are nothing more than rumors. At this time, we cannot determine if these are true reports of unknown creatures or if they are the ramblings of a madman. You be the judge.

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Catalysts by Charles E. Yallowitz

When trapped in an elevator together, Jeffrey and Darla learn that misery doesn’t always love company. With the screams of death and chaos echoing from outside, they find themselves slowly slipping into a world of fear and darkness they may never recover from. All the while, something is terrorizing the convention outside and turning the guests and celebrities into psychotic monsters.

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The Hopeteller by Charles E. Yallowitz

Humanity has been driven into the wilderness by the ‘Invaders’. They have been forced to live as colonies in the wilderness where survival is a daily struggle. Hope becomes harder and harder to hold onto as the years pass.

Then one day, a young man tells a story to an injured friend and the Hopeteller is born. Unsure of the power of his words, he finds himself moving the colony with his fairy tales. He will see his people through death and fear as they continue to fight for survival.

Enjoy this novella that is part post-apocalyptic journal and part fairy tales.

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Crossing Bedlam by Charles E. Yallowitz

The United States of America has been crippled. Violently contained by a global military force and left without its leaders, the country has become shattered and chaotic. A decade has passed since the first strike and a new landscape has emerged where survival is more important than anything else. Who will uncover the truth behind the attack and revive this once great nation?

It certainly won’t be Cassidy and Lloyd since they couldn’t care less about that stuff. She is a young woman on a mission to honor her mother’s dying wish, which is to toss her ashes off the Golden Gate Bridge. He is an infamous serial killer she broke out of Rikers Island since hiring a bodyguard wasn’t working out. Not the perfect plan, but having an insane, oddly charming murder-junkie on your side is a plus in the Shattered States.

Bullets and swear words are going to fly as Cassidy and Lloyd travel coast to coast, facing one challenge after another . . . including Nebraska.

Genre: Rate R, Action & Adventure, Apocalyptic Action, Comedy Adventure

Book Review:  Author Charles E. Yallowitz moves away from his usual epic fantasy novels to write this Apocalyptic Action Comedy Adventure. The Cover Design & Illustration is the creation of Jon Hunsinger.

Sixteen chapters of adventure where the characters are raw, rough and tough in a world where the United States is now under the control of a global military force where the borders are defined by a new meaning and the States are on their own.

Main character Cassidy is a young woman on a personal mission “tempted to draw her gun and make a stand, but she knows the prison guards are only doing their job.” She is among the escapees from Rikers’ Island. Even though they are all “Sadistic murderers and traitorous thieves though they may be, she broke them out for a reason.” “There is an air of tension and aggression that is growing stronger by the hour even though nobody has spoken since escaping Rikers Island.”

I quote Cassidy here, “Then you’re not going to like being out in the real world,” the young woman replies, her fingers tracing random designs on her mug’s condensation. Seeing the question on the tip of the man’s tongue, she runs her hands through her hair and taps at her forehead scar. “Money is useless in most of the Shattered States. That’s what the country is called now because every place has its own laws and systems. One of the few things that carries over the borders is bartering. For example, this meal is being paid for by a full set of silverware and two packages of pre-sliced pepperoni. It’s why we’re eating a full pie and can get another for the road. You’ll either figure things out or become a violent scavenger to survive. Everyone picks one way or the other at some point.”

Follow Cassidy and the others in this new world where law, order and survival take on a new meaning. “Standing at the street corner, Cassidy stares at the lakeshore building that is on the other side of a concrete clearing. A garden is in the center of the circular area, half of it an attempt at nurturing vegetables and the other an array of flowers. The distant structure is like nothing she has ever seen before with the more visible part a glass pyramid and a square tower on its backside. Blocky additions are on the right hand side of the building, which has been covered in vivid pictures that make Cassidy think the residents keep changing their minds about the decorations. Coming off the left and sitting on Lake Erie is a circular structure that is adorned with a patchwork of old concert posters. With the warm and calm weather, there are people fishing along the shore and in small boats, which are meticulously tethered to pylons to avoid floating away. Far in the distance, the outlines of military vessels can be seen waiting to stop anyone from trying to escape into Canada. Not wanting to dwell on darker times and how the rest of the world is going on without her, Cassidy turns her gaze back to their destination.”

If you like reading action adventure and epic fantasy tales, please read Crossing Bedlim and all the novels in Charles E. Yallowitz’s Legends Of Windemere series.

Theodocia McLean endorses Crossing Bedlam by Charles E. Yallowitz as a new Apocalyptic Action Comedy Adventure where violence and language create an adult reading experience. I purchased and reviewed this book from a Kindle format. This review was completed on February 16, 2016.

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Charles E. Yallowitz-SmallCharles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn’t working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. ‘Legends of Windemere’ is his first series, but it certainly won’t be his last.

Interview:

What makes you proud to be a writer from Long Island, NY? I never really factored in my location before, so I think I’m just proud to be a writer in general. Long Island is where I grew up, which does have a level of familiarity and comfort that helps me keep some semblance of sanity when writing. My time in Upstate New York and Florida helped me grow as an author too, but there is definitely something about being back here that soothes me when I’m stressed.

What or who inspired you to become a writer? I’ve loved writing since I was a kid, but it wasn’t until I read books by Fred Saberhagen that I decided to become a fantasy author. That was the spark and I’ve absorbed inspiration from so many other sources. Not just authors in my genre, but anything that tells a good story and entertaining characters. Timeless figures such as Conan the Barbarian or Indiana Jones really make me want to create something that will last long after the books are done.

When did you begin writing with the intention of becoming published? My second year of high school is when I outlined my first story and began writing with no clue what I was doing. It was about teenagers with super powers that protected the universe from evil immortals. I read a lot of comics back then. I didn’t go beyond self-publishing the first book through a Vanity Press and learning some hard lessons on how the industry works. By the time, I had designed Windemere and was improving through my college courses.

Did your environment or upbringing play a major role in your writing and did you use it to your advantage? There is definitely an environmental factor with my writing. I was never dissuaded from using my imagination, so I’ve retained a lot of the childhood wonder and craziness that I had in my youth. This helps me with world creation and coming up with monsters for my action scenes. I think it also helps me think on my feet, so I can handle plot diversions without running into a wall. There’s always an answer somewhere in my head as long as I remain calm.

Do you come up with your title before or after you write the manuscript? I come up with a title before I make an outline. Then I make a new title once I finish the outline. After that, I have a 50/50 shot of needing another title once I finish the first draft.

Please introduce your genre and why you prefer to write in that genre? My genre is Epic Fantasy. I really enjoy building a world from the ground up and I’ve always loved tales of magic. Fantasy is my comfort zone and I feel my strongest when writing in the genre.

What was your inspiration, spark or light bulb moment that inspired you to write the book that you are seeking promotion for? I was in a college Dungeons & Dragons game and I thought it would make a fun story. The other players agreed to let me be the group scribe and I started taking notes. Early on, I realized that a game doesn’t translate well to a book and I had the series go in a different direction. At this point in the story, we’re only seeing scraps of the final adventure in the game and everything else was created from various inspirations. In terms of the characters, I did a lot of alterations with permission from the players behind them. Especially with story romances because that didn’t really happen in the game.

What has been your most rewarding experience with your writing process? Interacting with readers through my blog and getting feedback. Discovering that readers are continuing with the series makes me happy since it’s nice to know people are getting invested in the adventure. My favorite thing to hear is if a person really connected to a character or an event caused an emotional reaction.

What has been your most rewarding experience in your publishing journey? Seeing my book appear on Amazon after hitting publish and waiting for it to go live. I always get a thrill from that every time I do it. There’s this sensation of taking a big step that many people never get to.

What one positive piece of advice would you give to other authors? Never give up and stick to the story that is in your head. You know how it is supposed to work out, so trust in your own abilities. I’m not saying an author doesn’t evolve, but you need to remember that you’re the one in charge of your books.

Who is your favorite author and why? This changes so often for me. I could probably fill several pages with a list of authors that I love because I try to take something from each one. I love the world-building and mythology of Tolkien and Lewis. The solid character of Conan makes me enjoy books by Robert E. Howard. Mark Twain, Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Louis Stevenson, and the list keeps going for me. As long as the author writes a great story that makes me want to read it again, I’m hooked.

Is there anything else that you would like to share with us? One of my biggest focuses in my stories is the evolution of my characters and how their adventures shape them. It has made it that the actual story isn’t so much ‘good vs. evil’, but how the heroes handle their roles. For example, Nyx is an extremely powerful caster and has worries that she is nothing more than a living weapon. This affects her actions and mentality, especially when somebody treats her like a tool. So each character has a fight for identity as well as against the outside forces that threaten Windemere.

How many published books do you have? I currently have 16 books published. 13 volumes of LEGENDS OF WINDEMERE, 1 fantasy poetry book, 1 horror novella, and 1 fairy tale/post-apocalyptic novella. The last three were experiments in genres outside of my comfort zone.

Start Reading The ‘Legends of Windemere’ Today!

Author Charles E. Yallowitz’s Published Books:
Legends Of Windemere: Beginning Of A Hero
Legends Of Windemere: Prodigy Of Rainbow Tower (Book 2)
Allure Of The Gypsies (Legends Of Windemere Book 3)
Legends Of Windemere: Family Of The Tri-Rune (Book 4)
The Compass Key (Legends Of Windemere Book 5)
Curse Of The Dark Wind (Legends Of Windemere Book 6)
Sleeper Of The Wildwood Fugue (Legends Of Windemere Book 7)
The Merchant of Nevra Coil (Legends of Windemere Book 8)
The Mercenary Prince (Legends of Windemere Book 9)
Tribe of the Snow Tiger (Legends of Windemere Book 10)
Charms of the Feykin (Legends of Windemere Book 11)
The Spirit Well (Legends of Windemere Book 12)
Ritual of the Lost Lamb (Legends of Windemere Book 13)

Stand Alone Books
Bestiary Of Blatherhorn Vale
Catalysts
The Hopeteller

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Professional Website
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Beginning Of A Hero (Legends Of Windemere Book 1) by Charles E. Yallowitz

beginning-of-a-hero-legends-of-windemere-by-charles-e-yallowitzEvery hero must take the first courageous step into adventure. For Luke Callindor, it’s more of a blind stumble.

Depending more on bravery than common sense, Luke sets out to protect a royal heir who is attending the prestigious Hamilton Military Academy. With a demonic assassin in the shadows, the determined warrior will have to think on his feet to defend his charge. If only he waited long enough to find out which student is the hidden noble.

With Luke’s dream on the horizon and a deadly enemy on his path, how will he transform from a reckless adventurer to a true hero of Windemere?

Kindle Purchase Link
Amazon Author’s Page

Cold Coffee Café
Cold Coffee Press