#ShareAReviewDay Tuesday – TheGlade by Harmony Kent

So happy to get back into the swing of things with a wonderful–and wonderfully funny–review of Harmony Kent’s apparently very scary book, The Glade. This is the kind of review most of us would love to get, and I know you’ll enjoy reading it. I did! Please pass it along far and wide so the rest of social media can enjoy it, too. Thanks!


The Very Scary Book Cover!

REVIEW:

Colm Herron
5.0 out of  5 stars
This book scared the pants off of me

(i) I didn’t enjoy this book
(ii) I highly recommend it
(iii) I didn’t enjoy it because it scared the pants off of me
(iv) This author, Harmony Kent, the lady who wrote The Glade, has a lovely charming face. I saw it. There’s a kind of kindness about it too … something good and wholesome
(v) And then you start to read The Glade and discover what goes on behind that charming face. You’ll be drawn into a plot that will probably frighten you half to death. Helen and her husband Geoff get away from stress (ha!) by renting an idyllic country cottage and that’s how they discover the glade
(vi) Ah yes, the glade. Don’t go there. It’s terrifying enough to read about it. No need to go there. Better not
(vii) Did I tell you that Geoff gets murdered and Helen gets blamed? No? Well, I’m telling you now. And her friends rally round. As well as her enemies. But which are which? That’s the question: which are which?
(vii) I’ve given away too much. And the little cottage in Donegal that my wife and I were planning on renting for two weeks next summer …. well, I’ll have to think about that.

BLURB:

“Readers who like to curl up during the long winter evenings and feel the delicious chill of fear running up and down their spines need only turn to The Glade to have all their expectations fulfilled.

“The Glade is a horror story in the mould of Stephen King, and rendered the more so by its faint echoes of Pet Cemetery and the even stronger resonance of the pervasive malignancy of It.”—Review by Brian O’Hare

This gripping, edge-of-your-seat mystery/thriller will have you thinking twice about booking that idyllic cottage in the country. Nothing in this woodland paradise within the Forest of Dean is what it seems. 

The Wenstrops have it all: health, wealth, and happiness. Until everything falls apart. Helen gets arrested for murder, and yet is either unable or unwilling to give a defence. During her detention, vital evidence goes missing and tensions run high.

Meanwhile, in the woods, malignant forces gather power. 

This sensational second novel by acclaimed author Harmony Kent will have you alternately laughing, crying, and gripping the edge of your seat as this roller-coaster ride of a plot unfolds. It will keep you guessing through its many twists and turns, and hijack your attention right up until you turn the final page. This book has it all: murder, intrigue, the supernatural, a broken marriage, a love affair, courage against impossible odds, suspense, and high drama. 

“Expertly written, the book keeps you guessing at every turn. What can I say? You really have to read this book … if you’re brave enough!”—Review by Fantasy Queen

The Glade is an IndieB.R.A.G.Medallion honoree, and an Official Selection for the New Apple Book Awards 2015.

Praise for Harmony Kent: 

“Kent gives the reader mystery, intrigue, sex, action and characters risking their lives for a greater good. Kent’s writing is an immersive experience.” T. Dewhirst (Rabid Reviews) 

“With a very contemporary voice, Ms. Kent has found a place in this genre as she easily entertains and captures the reader…” J. Malinoski 

“Kent…is a master of her craft. There is magic in her writing.” J. Brooke 

Buy The Glade HERE


Author Harmony Kent

After spending around thirteen years as an ordained Buddhist monk, living in a Zen Buddhist temple, and six years after a life-changing injury following a surgical error, Harmony Kent returned to the world at the tender age of forty.

Now, she is famous for her laughter, and has made quite the name for herself … she’s also, um, a writer … and fairly well known for that too. She’s even won a few awards. Harmony lives in rural Cornwall with her ever-present sense of humour, adorable husband, and quirky neighbours.

Harmony is passionate about supporting her fellow authors.

Find Harmony on Social Media here:

Website | Story Empire (co-authored) | Amazon Author Page | Goodreads
Twitter: @harmony_kent
LinkedIn: Harmony

 

 

 

Happy News! #MondayBlogs #amwriting

Happy Monday, Everyone. That’s possibly contradiction in terms for some of you, but for me, this is a happy day, indeed.  I am finally feeling well enough to get back to my WIP, which I had hoped to send off to editing a week ago, but which is still (sadly) lacking a final chapter and epilogue. SO, feeling up to writing–looking forward to it, in fact–is a big step forward from where I’ve been for the last week.

When they tell you a blow to the head can scramble your brains, they aren’t kidding. While I didn’t have any memory lapses, I’ve had trouble concentrating and have done some really odd things over the last week. But finally, I seem to be able to organize my thoughts and think creatively. Maybe. 😀 

I do want to let you all know that I’m taking things one step at a time, with the first one being to finish this long-overdue book. I do have a guest scheduled tomorrow for #ShareAReviewDay, but I’m not ready to commit to any other specific blog features, like #FirstLineFriday. I might put that off another week. A tortoise once told me slow and steady wins the race. 🙂

As I return to my normal blogging routine, I’m planning to make a change or two. For some time, I’ve featured mostly writing-related memes on Mondays, but I’d like to expand that to include more than memes. Articles, tips, shared posts, etc, related to writing might become part of Mondays going forward. We’ll see how that goes. #ThorsDaySmiles will stay focused on anything I think might make you smile. Smiling is good. Laughing out loud is even better. And because I enjoy it so much,  #FirstLineFriday WILL resume, I’m just not sure when. 

So with those thoughts in mind, off I go to work on that last chapter of The Light, and to think about what I need to do to get this one “out there.” But I’ll be at least a bit more visible here from now on, I think. 

Thank you all for your support, healing thoughts, prayers, and encouraging words over the last week. I may or may not be able to respond to you individually, but please believe I read and appreciated every single comment! 

Hope you all have a great, productive week! Go get ’em, guys! ❤ ❤ ❤

(And btw, does anyone know why all our sweet little hearts turned black all of a sudden? I mean, it’s really pretty sinister looking now, isn’t it??? 😀 )

Update: Laughing at What Ails Ye – It’s Good for Body and Soul!

It’s been my lifelong belief that you can handle anything thrown your way once you reach the point where you can laugh about it. Laughter is a saving grace we have all been blessed with, but the importance of which is often forgotten. I honestly do not know how anyone who can’t laugh at themselves, and at life in general, can survive, though I see plenty of evidence today that many people have lost the ability.  My heart goes out to them, for they apparently lack one of the greatest survival tools of all.

😀 😀 😀

Granted, as I was lying on the floor Tuesday, in blinding pain and with the mounting fear that I had fractured my skull in the worst fall I’ve ever taken, I was not laughing. Nope. Way too soon. Nor did I laugh while struggling to get to my feet and into some clothing,  so I wouldn’t have to go to the ER in my nightgown. Still too soon. I did start making a few feeble jokes with the good folks in the ER. Maybe not too soon for a dark chuckle or two, but definitely too early for anything resembling clever humor. 

And so it went for three days, as I reflected on how lucky I was to still be alive and possessed of functioning brain cells, though a few of those may have abandoned ship in the great tumble. But actual humor was still a struggle. It kept being drowned out by the mother of all headaches, some pretty extreme fatigue, and  a lot of overall shakiness. But guess what? It’s baaaa-aaaaack!

😀 😀 😀

Yes, my sense of humor–weird and slightly twisted as it often is–has returned! I’m laughing again this morning! And after a conversation with my very good friend and cover designer, Nicki Forde-Ficocelli (who says she is going to paint a flowered helmet for me), I realized I’m laughing all over the place. It was the vision of me wearing said helmet while riding around on a tiny tricycle a la Arte Johnson from the old Laugh-In show that did me in, and is still making me giggle. (Hey, I never said all my jokes  were genius quality!)

The upshot of this is, I’m feeling much more stable on my feet, much more certain that my life will return to something resembling normal, and pretty darn sure that no matter what’s going on, if I can find something about it to make me laugh, I can survive!

My sense of humor has stood me in good stead for 75 years, and hopefully, I’ll get a bit more mileage out of it, yet. And my hope for you is that no matter what life throws your way (or where life decides to throw YOU), you’ll be able to find the humor in the situation at some point. Laughing will save your sanity, and it has the added bonus of making everyone around you wonder what the heck you’re up to. Try it. I heartily recommend it. 

😀 😀 😀

Our regularly scheduled programming will resume on Monday! Have a great weekend!

Personal & Blog Update, and THANK YOU!

Just wanted to let you guys know that I’m doing better each day. I am stiff and sore ALL OVER–like every muscle in my body–but so far, I’m free of the warning signs for various complications that I was given at the ER. And after checking with all my doctors, the spell that brought me down appears to have been caused by a combination of low blood sugar and postural hypo-tension.  I’d gone too long without eating (never a good idea for a diabetic) and that other thingie is just a long way of saying standing up too fast after bending over. (I’ve had that problem all my life, and as my husband can tell you, I fall down a LOT.)

Tuesday, I’d gotten so busy organizing boxes of folders and files that I forgot to stop for lunch. I was bending over and standing up repeatedly, packing and unpacking various things, and did it one time too often. (For those who aren’t familiar with what happens, think of it as the blood rushing to your head when you bend over, and draining  out again really fast when you stand up again, leaving you dizzy.) I’ve only just developed the diabetes issue, but I’ve had the other for most of my adult life, and have the banged up knees to prove it. (Usually I fall forward and catch myself, instead of being poleaxed and landing flat on my back.)

My new plan is to have my iPhone alert me when it’s time to eat, and to sit DOWN when doing things like unpacking boxes. I’m being very, very careful, and I’m not tackling anything strenuous or tiring yet, not even blogging, other than this update. With that in mind, there will be no #FirstLineFriday this week, but assuming all continues improving, things will be back to normal on Monday.

And I do want to thank every single one of you for your kind comments and well wishes. I’m doing a blanket thank you because I don’t yet have the energy to reply individually to all your wonderful responses, but believe me, I read them all! You are such nice folks!! Thank you!

See you next week. 🙂 ❤

#NewRelease – Creative Solutions by Harmony Kent

This morning, I’m very excited to be sharing the news of Harmony Kent’s latest release: Creative Solutions.

I just got my copy today, and I already know I’m going to enjoy reading this one, and learning some new tricks, along the way! Without further ado, I’ll turn the digital floor over to Harmony now.

~~~

Hello everyone. Harmony here. I’m excited to share my latest non-fiction book with you all today. Huge thanks to Marcia for hosting me today.

Creative Solutions for the Modern Writer does what it says on the tin (or cover, lol), and offers tools to fire your imagination. With chapters on things such as using chess and tarot to develop stories, plots, and characters—as well as adopting the principles of nursing triage, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, horoscopes, and more—this little guide is full of fun tips and tricks to get your muse working overtime.

This excellent writer’s companion is available to purchase from October 9th in both ebook and paperback.

Here’s an excerpt for you:

I got the idea for using the ancient game of chess for storytelling while playing the game with my husband one day.

Truly, I’m no expert. I’m still learning and lose frequently, lol. All you need is a rudimentary understanding of the pieces, which I list below for you:

  • Pawns
  • Knights
  • Castles
  • Bishops
  • Queen
  • King

You have eight Pawn pieces, two Knights,  Two Castles, Two Bishops, one King, and one Queen. Of all the various pieces, the Queen has the most flexibility and manoeuvrability. In a nutshell, that’s all you need to know to begin making up a story from the different players.

You can write a character for each and every piece if you want, or keep to the main players. I like to include the lowly Pawns because they can show the smaller picture within the bigger picture. And, who knows, perhaps the little unknown soldier will end up saving the day.

… Here, you can see two Queens facing off with each other while the King and his courtiers stand by and watch. Meanwhile, the Castle threatens the King. This scenario fired my writer’s imagination. Needless to say, having gotten so distracted making up stories, I lost this particular game!

Even though I lost this round, my King stood bravely to the end with one last pawn by his side. The battle was bloody and bitter … utter carnage. All the big guys, generals, bishops, etc., bragged and boasted, thinking they would win the day, but it just goes to show. The battlefield isn’t necessarily where you’ll find all the action.

To use chess as a story prompt, arrange the pieces randomly on the board and ask yourself some questions about what you see.  First up, assign identities to your pieces. Using my layout as an example, you might ask:

  • What are the two Queens saying to one another?
  • How did the Light Queen get all the way into the Dark Court?
  • Is the Light Queen a hostage or a negotiator?
  • What manipulations and subterfuges might the other pieces be up to? The Bishops? The Knights? Etc.
  • Choose one of your Pawns. What’s his or her story? Could that player end up as the new leader?
  • What subplot could a Pawn offer to the main plot of the power players?
  • What started this conflict?
  • What might resolve it?

You don’t have to stick with these classic court interpretations of your pieces. You can set them in the future in settled space if you so wish, or on an alien planet. It’s your game and your imagination, and you can do whatever you want when creating storylines.

Buy Creative Solutions HERE


Author Harmony Kent

After spending around thirteen years as an ordained Buddhist monk, living in a Zen Buddhist temple, and six years after a life-changing injury following a surgical error, Harmony Kent returned to the world at the tender age of forty.

Now, she is famous for her laughter, and has made quite the name for herself … she’s also, um, a writer … and fairly well known for that too. She’s even won a few awards. Harmony lives in rural Cornwall with her ever-present sense of humour, adorable husband, and quirky neighbours.

Harmony is passionate about supporting her fellow authors. 

You can reach Harmony on Social Media here:

Website 
Story Empire (co-authored)
Amazon Author Page 
Twitter: @harmony_kent
LinkedIn: Harmony
Goodreads: Author Page
BookBub 

 

 

 

It’s Always Something

Just a quick post to let you guys know that I took a bad fall a few hours ago, and the back of my head took the full blow on our ceramic tile floors. I just got home from the ER where they did a CT scan to rule out fractured skull and/or brain bleeds. The good news is, it came back clear. I’m home now, with orders to take it easy for a couple of days (like I have the energy/strength to do anything else right now). No driving, or exertion of any kind.

Sorry I can’t answer all your great posts, but I guess I need to rest. Will see how I feel in the morning. Thanks for your understanding and patience. I WILL be back as soon as possible, I promise.

#ShareAReviewDay Tuesday – The Curse of Time by M. J. Mallon

This afternoon, please help me welcome Marje Mallon who is sharing a lovely review of her book, The Curse of Time. Hope you’ll enjoy reading this as much as I did, and will pass it along on all your favorite social media haunts. Thanks!

REVIEW:

Kevin Cooper
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical
30 August 2019
EditionVerified Purchase

This is a wonderful YA fantasy read. It’s very different from others I’ve read and I say this in the most positive manner. One way or is unique is through the use of original short poetry at the beginning of each chapter providing a clue to the chapter content. It is very well done. I do love originality.

The whole work has a magical feel about it which draws the reader in with a yearning to learn more about all of the characters and their plight.

My favourite characters are, Esme… The girl trapped in the mirror, and Shadow, the black cat. These two characters alone were enough to keep me rooted.

Meanwhile, on the serious side of things, there are so many issues going on in this work in addition to that of dealing with a dysfunctional family. One’s familiarity will be tested and emotions may arise.

That aside, when you add magic, a black cat, and a guitar and music into the mix… What is there not to love about this work?

Kudos!

BLURB:

A unique, imaginative mystery full of crystal magic-wielding, and dark elements.

Fifteen-year-old Amelina Scott lives in Cambridge with her dysfunctional family, a mysterious black cat, and an unusual girl Esme who’s imprisoned within the mirrors located in her house. When an unexpected message arrives inviting Amelina to visit the Crystal Cottage, she sets off on a forbidden pathway where she encounters Ryder, a charismatic, but perplexing stranger. With the help of a magical paint set, and some crystal wizard stones she discovers the truth about a shocking curse that has destroyed her family’s happiness. A magical YA/paranormal fantasy with dark elements set in Cambridge, England.

Buy The Curse of Time Here:
Amazon UK 
Amazon USA 


Author M. J. Mallon

I am a debut author who blogs at: https://mjmallon.com.

My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy/Paranormal YA, and middle grade fiction as well as micropoetry – haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews: https://mjmallon.com/2015/09/28/a-z-of-my-book-reviews/

My alter ego is MJ – Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheros! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my parents Paula and Ronald. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong with my elder brother Donald. 

It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters. 

When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.

Authors Website  | Collaborative Blog  | Goodreads | Facebook | Instagram

#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time

 

#ShareAReviewDay Tuesday – Amanda in Holland by Darlene Foster

This morning, I’d like to share Darlene Foster’s latest review of Amanda in Holland. These books sound so good, I’ve started sending them to my daughter to read to her my grandson. I know you’ll enjoy this one, too, and will share it all over the place. Thanks!

REVIEW:

5.0 out of 5 stars  A tour of Holland
September 25, 2019
Verified Purchase
D. W. Peach

This book was quite a bit of fun. Foster combines a middle-grade fiction plot with a colourful tour of Holland, including its famous sites, snippets of history, and its wonderful flowers and food. I had the great fortune of visiting my grandparents in Holland when I was Amanda’s age, and her experiences in the book mirror my memories in great detail. It was a blast to traipse along beside Amanda and enjoy the country once again.

The main plot focuses on the recovery of a lost puppy, but secondary plots weave through the story, and all come together nicely at the end. There’s a bit of mystery and some danger to keep the tension up. There are also some very moving scenes when Amanda visits Anne Frank’s home and a war memorial dedicated to the Canadians who helped liberate Holland during WWII. A lovely book for young readers and absolutely perfect for readers who plan to travel the world.

 

BLURB:

Alongside her best friend Leah, Amanda is in Holland to see the all the sights: tulips, canals, Anne Frank House, windmills, and even a wooden shoe factory. She is also keen to find out what happened to her great uncle, who never returned from World War II. What she doesn’t expect is to find and fall in love with an abandoned puppy named Joey. While trying to find a home for him, she meets Jan, a Dutch boy who offers to help, a suspicious gardener, a strange woman on a bicycle, and an overprotective goose named Gerald. Follow intrepid traveler Amanda around Holland as she encounters danger and intrigue while trying to solve another mystery in a foreign country

Buy Amanda in Holland HERE


Author Darlene Foster

Brought up in southern Alberta, Darlene Foster dreamt of writing stories, travelling the world and meeting interesting people. It’s no surprise that after a number of interesting jobs, she’s now an award-winning author of the exciting Amanda Travels series featuring spunky 12-year-old Amanda Ross who loves to travel to unique places. Readers of all ages enjoy travelling with Amanda as she unravels one mystery after another. When she isn’t travelling herself, Darlene divides her time between the west coast of Canada and the Costa Blanca, Spain with her husband and entertaining dog, Dot. She believes everyone is capable of making their dreams come true if they´re willing to step out of their comfort zone. 

Find Darlene on Social Media here:

Amazon Author Page 

Website  |  Goodreads | Blog | Twitter | Facebook

I’m Baaa-aaaack! Sort of!

Yep! My week long absence from blogging has come to an end, and the good news is, nothing earth-shatteringly dreadful  happened to me (nor to you guys) because I took a break from social media (mostly) for seven days! AND I achieved my goal of finishing Chapters 31 and 32 in my WIP, The Light.  The bad news is, that wasn’t quite enough to finish the book! I realized that I’d have to jam too much into those two chapters to get to the end of the story, so decided there will also be a Chapter 33, and if needed, a Chapter 34. It takes what it takes, as we all know. 

Overall, though, I’m very happy to have accomplished what I did, and I think my beta readers enjoyed what I produced, so all is well. I also learned a valuable lesson. It’s OKAY to step back from the sometimes addictive whirl of online activity when you need to, whether it’s to work on an overdue project, to take care of personal business, or just to give your mind a break. Things will go on without your constant oversight or presence, and with any luck, you’ll be welcomed back by smiling friends offering virtual hugs and chats. 

And I looked up from my writing long enough to realize it’s autumn again! My favorite season! Crisp, cool days, filled with leaves swapping their summer outfits for glorious reds, and golds! Happy sigh! No, wait. That must have been my screensaver! 😯 Here in Florida, it’s still in the mid-to-high 80s every day and mostly miserable outside, but it started raining Sunday night. And yesterday. And this morning. Yep. We’ve officially gone from drought to monsoons, so true summer has ended. We can expect some days in the 70s to get here any time now. Better drag out my winter clothes. Oh, wait again. I don’t have any. Well, at least I’ll be able to turn off the a/c soon. Or not. 😀

And with that, I now return you to your regularly scheduled programming. 😉

Happy Fall, Y’all!

Week In Review

No, I’m not back to my normal blogging routine, folks, but I had to share this great weekly round up from Joan Hall. Check it out! So many great links you’ll want to visit and pass along to others. Enjoy! And thanks, Joan, for ending the week with another super photo and fantastic list of goodies! 🙂 ❤

Joan Hall

Hey, everyone. It’s Friday and I’m glad to be wrapping up the week with you.

A few years ago, I was in one of those, “I want to write but the words won’t come,” stages. Getting away from the house often helps, so I decided to take a Saturday morning drive and ended up at one of the numerous nearby country cemeteries.

Naturally, I snapped a few photos. Nothing particularly spooky about this one. Even with the unmarked graves that lie beneath piles of rocks. Or the old, rusting fence that surrounds another one. It was a bright, clear morning when everything in the world seemed cheerful.

But a few adjustments to the color and the shading makes the atmosphere completely different.

Same photo. Different mood. You can almost imagine being in the cemetery at night by the light of the moon. Sort of creepy, isn’t it?

And now, to…

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