I read 5,532 pages across 29 books
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Barker tells the tale quickly and succinctly of the Iceni tribe under the leadership of Queen Boudicca. Her bravery, courage, and need for revenge did not save her people, but will live on in history and tradition as the most incredible stand of the Celtic people against tyranny. They fought and died for freedom.
Why is it that when we conjure up the term “adult fairy tale” the erotic comes to mind rather than the esoteric, classical, or mystical? Do naught legends and myths for all age groups, sung by repetition and rhyme for centuries by traveling Bards, have a certain moral code and morale?
Being whimsical and child-like by nature, I dream that I’m talking, dancing and singing with the wee people, ethereal spirits, and creatures of the forests in the most dignified and respectful manner possible. I am so delighted by “Tales From The Garden” because author Sally Cronin depicts her characters with utmost courtesy and responsibility. These are truly the fairy tales of folklore from long ago, telling their ancient stories up to and including the modern era in which we live.
Such are the stone guardians of a Spanish garden where the statues have watched over and protected the fairy kingdom of Magia under the expanse of a regal magnolia tree for countless decades and centuries. Cronin richly tells how each masterpiece was created, some shaped and carved by craftsmen, artists and masons; some flesh-and-blood lost, dismayed or ill-treated humans, animals, and birds as well as long forgotten mythical creatures magically transformed by the fairies.
Sally Cronin’s creative little book packs a huge message on life, love, respect and honor.
I don’t know whether to refer to Cronin’s delightful, endearing tales as Literary, Poetic Prose, or the Songs and Lyrics of the wind, the sun, and the moon as each and every glorious sunrise and sunset allows the stones to come to life at night. They flourish under the last emperor and old master, Moyhill Royal Flush, or Sam as the stalwart wardens call him, whom they respect and adore even long after the master’s lifespan is over; it being so much less than their own. But Sam has his own royal stone plaque.
I’ll cite but few of Cronin’s Creatures so as not to spoil the stories of the eloquent, meaningful cast of characters. Just keep your eye on the dwarf band with the pearly girl vocalist and rabbit backup singer, who are prone to be devilish tricksters as surely as modern musicians. All in good fun, of course. Be ever watchful of the witch who feeds the ducks and swans, only to have them end up in her large pot to be deep fried. ‘Tis said she has a new broom. Before you depart the spacious garden pay homage to the Queen of the fairies and her new young prince husband. The Queen will tell you all about her previous wayward King. Her majesty finally giving the stone-frozen, banished King happiness and love in the modern world after eons of silent reflection, transforming him and his ever-watchful paramour to our lot with warmth, breath and death as humankind. And be sure not to miss the summer Fairy Ball!
The book concludes with the history of the garden and its family, bringing reality home.
All may not live happily ever after, but you as readers most assuredly shall. Whenever the mundane or sadness beckons at your door, reach for this volume and let your imagination soar to lofty heights. We all can be whimsical and child-like to the end of our days. I highly recommend you indulge in this Tome of Enchantment.
From the onset one can tell this author has a writing pedigree
The “STROKE OF” novella series is unlike anything else I’ve ever read. I don’t read a ton of Paranormal literature, but I’ve read enough to have covered most of the major tropes in the sub-genre. STROKE OF FEAR employs several common tropes to great effect, including a physically disabled psychic, lucid dreams, second sight, and dreams a harbingers of future (or current) events. What makes STROKE OF FEAR unique isn’t the setup or the characters, but rather the style of the writing and the way the story is told. BOWMAN has found a way to marry some pretty dark thematic material to a lighthearted writing style. Somehow it works. I didn’t know what to think of it at first, but BOWMAN won me over, and by the time I finished this relatively short novella, I was ready to read the next two.
MR. RIGHT, WHERE ARE YOU? PAGING MR. RIGHT!
If it were only that easy! But, of course, it is not.
Carol Balawyder has captured the psychological and the emotional, two strong detrimental or favorable adherents to how to succeed in finding Prince Charming. This book is more truth than fiction, and one or more of the main characters will resonate within you in the dating/relationship/marriage arena.
Do you sabotage your own chances for happiness? Do you have a father or lack-of-father complex? Do you fall in love too easily and unrealistically? Or will this wonderful storytelling open your eyes to what you are really looking for? Of course, first, you have to know what that is.
Campbell, Felicity, Suzy, and especially recently separated Missi are thrown together in a scientific study to debunk the Prince Charming myth. Surprises are in store galore as everyone’s perceptions are altered by their personal choices and the push-me/pull-me energy of the group. Readers will all learn valuable lessons–some are happy; some are sad. Just as readers will identify with the great research that has gone into this novel.
Truth may be stranger than fiction, but fiction allows truth to surface in amazing ways.
I highly recommend this great read for women of all ages and men who may want to understand us female creatures from Venus a little better. Enjoy the ride!
I was in a little car mishap about 14 months ago. Tendon and ligaments were torn in my right wrist. The doctor and I have tried everything to keep me typing…with no success. Surgery is tomorrow. 6 weeks in a cast from my fingertips to almost up to my shoulder. What’s a girl to do who’s a writer/editor/publisher/book reviewer? Maybe lots of time to read! Type reviews one-handed? I CAN DO THAT!
I purchased the DRAGON software/speech-to-text last year when I originally hurt my wrist, but since I could still type, albeit painfully, I never set it up completely. NOW I HAVE TO DO IT!
I’ll try to update with reports on the DRAGON for those of you out there interested in it. I actually think it could be a good editing tool. As I written about many times before…you can’t edit or proofread your own copy, no matter how good you are at spotting errors. If you wrote it…if you typed it…it’s engrained in your gray matter. When you try to proofread or edit, your brain automatically reads over the typos and errors. Your physical organ, the brain, sees what it thinks is there, not necessarily what is there.
WITH THE DRAGON, you’ll be using a completely different set of senses. You’ll be speaking. The more senses you can use to learn something or remember something (seeing, hearing, touching through typing), the more thoroughly you retain the information, which can be great if you want to memorize something, but not so much if you want to proofread or edit like it’s the first time you’ve seen the material. So, that said, tell stories or relate nonfiction to your heart’s content to get your initial ideas on screen with DRAGON. Then, look at it for your initial edit and rewrite. It will be fresh, new, and not all bogged up in your brain. It may look terrible for the first go-round, but that in itself can inspire your brain to see where it needs work.
I’ve learned much of this through trial-and-error, but just for those who need credentials, I have a master’s equivalent in Writing/Editing from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Graduate School (back when I went, it wasn’t counted as college credit as it is now) with a minor in Psychology and accredited ACPH–Advanced Clinical Psychological Hypnotherapist. Believe it or not, my hypnotherapy classes from the National Guild of Hypnotists is where I learned most of the brain retention/learning information. I specialized in ADHD teenagers. Please refer back to some of my previous blogs on editing and proofreading if this fascinating subject interests you.
I hope to stay in touch with everyone, and thank you all for checking out my blog.
DEBORAH A. BOWMAN
Book Reviews, two small words . . . one BIG subject!
We all write because we have to . . . keeping the feelings and descriptions within us would be detrimental to our health, and I am being serious, not “flip” or comical.
Of course, once you write, you want someone, anyone, to read your words. You want to share. You write because you care . . . about humanity, about life, about others in your chosen craft. We write because we are readers first! We are not competing–we are giving. Only life experiences have brought me to this comfortable place.
So how do you get others to read what you write? How do you get Book Reviews? This seems to be the question I hear most from authors of all genres–fiction and nonfiction.
I can’t speak for anyone else. I can only tell you what I choose to do. I review at least one book a week. Please bear with me, just a few more moments, a few more sentences so I can share . . . this time.
I’m retired, though slightly younger than retirement age–not much–and my mobility is somewhat restricted, not as bad as it once was. Yet, I’m not slowing down–I’m speeding up–busier than I’ve ever been when I worked full-time.
In retirement, all I wanted to do was write fiction–the one form of writing that eluded me during my entire working career. I wrote for others and made their words and images look nice, made them accurate, took pride in them, regardless of the subject matter. So now I thought I had time to write my own words and I have. I felt true freedom for the first time since I wrote poetry as a child, wrote songs and lyrics as a young performer, and wrote silly notes to my friends to make them laugh. But that was a long time ago.
Then, somehow, just recently I returned to my roots. My fiction writing was temporarily halted as I began ghost writing for someone else, using “his” voice–not mine–laying out the pages, making “his” words and the images I selected to enhance “his” words look nice, made them accurate, took pride in them . . . I’m not quite finished with this project, but I’m pleased with it. Upon completion, it will be camera-ready, published as an eBook by myself as a gift to my client, and ready for him to use for his own personal crusade–and it is a very noble one.
Even though my time is scarce, and my personal writing is crying out to me for attention, I still review one book a week. I hope to be able to do more in the future. After all, I’m going to be reading anyway. I still write fiction in little “snippets.” It’s progress.
There is so much to learn, so much to share, so much to give. I want to “learn” something from every book I read.
There is a massive amount of writing out there to be read. It was different when I first started writing. Fiction was hard to publish, finishing a book of any genre was a massive accomplishment, many people started books and never finished them, myself included.
I started my first novel on a $99.00 Montgomery Wards portable typewriter, then I paid someone to put it on a word processor. I rewrote it five times. Then I helped launch an eBook site in the late 1990’s, a little premature for eBooks. But, I began learning how to use my skills in editing, writing, layout, format, etc., on a computer with other people’s books. It allowed me to list my own. I introduced one novel and one anthology of short stories that no longer exist, but still live inside me.
Book Reviews . . . two small words . . . one BIG subject!