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#BookReview of A Perfect Square by @IBlackthorn

A perfect square book coverA Perfect Square

by Isobel Blackthorne

Fiction: Literary Fiction/Metaphysical & Visionary. 242 Pages (KINDLE). Odyssey Books (August 27, 2016)

4_stars_gold

Author Biography

A Londoner originally, Isobel Blackthorn currently resides in Melbourne, Australia. She received her BA in Social Studies from the Open University, and has a PhD in Western Esotericism. She has worked as a high school teacher, market trader and PA to a literary agent. Her writing has appeared in Backhand Stories, The Mused Literary Review, On Line Opinion and Paranoia Magazine online. She is the author of the novels, Asylum, A Perfect Square and The Drago Tree, and the short story collection, All Because of You.

Book Description

When pianist Ginny Smith moves back to her mother’s house in Sassafras after her breakup with the degenerate Garth, synaesthetic and eccentric artist Harriet Brassington-Smythe is beside herself and contrives a creative collaboration to lift her daughter’s spirits: an exhibition of paintings and songs. Ginny reluctantly agrees.

Mother and daughter struggle to agree on the elements of the collaborative effort, and as Ginny tries to prise the truth of her father’s disappearance from a tight-lipped Harriet, both are launched into their own inner worlds of dreams, speculations and remembering.

Meanwhile, another mother and artist, Judith, alone in a house on the moors, reflects on her own troubled past and that of her wayward daughter, Madeleine.

Set amid the fern glades and towering forests of the Dandenong ranges east of Melbourne, and on England’s Devon moors, A Perfect Square is a work of remarkable depth and insight.

 

Book Review

A Perfect Square combines two mother-daughter stories into one book. Are their similarities? Yes, but not as many as you might think. Both mothers are artists and accustomed to living alone when the daughters decide it’s time to move back home due to the ending of relationships. There ends the similarities.

My favorite storyline was that of mother Judith and the young somewhat rebellious daughter Madeleine. The Judith/Madeleine story flowed well in the alternating structure the author chose. One chapter you have Judith and Madeleine, the next is Ginny and talented pianist daughter Harriet.

The two stories are linked by a mystery that is revealed in the final chapters. It was a surprise to me, although I think I should have realized if I had only known to look for it. The Ginny/Harriet story is obviously well researched from the various subjects discussed and how the author weaves them together to unite mother and daughter.

Review by: Ronovan Hester

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#BookReview of Cluster of Lies by @SamMarquisBooks

cluster-of-liesCluster of Lies

by Samuel Marquis

Fiction: Thriller/Suspense/Environmental/Action. 326 Pages (PRINT). Mount Sopris Publishing (September 15, 2016)

five gold stars image

Author Biography

Samuel Marquis is a bestselling, award-winning suspense author. His books include “The Slush Pile Brigade,” “Blind Thrust,” “The Coalition,” and “Bodyguard of Deception.” He works by day as a VP–Hydrogeologist with an environmental firm in Boulder, Colorado, and by night as a spinner of historical and modern suspense yarns. He holds a Master of Science degree in Geology, is a Registered Professional Geologist in eleven states, and is a recognized expert in groundwater contaminant hydrogeology, having served as a hydrogeologic expert witness in several class-action litigation cases.

Book Description

In this second thriller in the Joe Higheagle Environmental Sleuth Series, mysterious deaths are taking place in the Rocky Mountain region outside Denver, Colorado. Joe Higheagle–a full-blooded Cheyenne geologist who has recently become an overnight celebrity for bringing down a billionaire corporate polluter–is hired to investigate Dakota Ranch, where four boys have recently died from a rare form of brain cancer, and Silverado Knolls, a glitzy soon-to-be-built development. He quickly finds himself entangled in an environmental cancer cluster investigation as well as a murderous conspiracy in which friend and foe are indistinguishable and a series of seemingly impenetrable roadblocks are thrown in his path.

Book Review

Cluster of Lies is a well plotted, fast paced, story of conscious versus greed. Marquis brings back Environmental Geologist Joseph Higheagle in what seems to be a simple case of reading reports and giving a high paying client his professional opinion, but if it were that simple, I wouldn’t be talking about it. Higheagle has to deal with some deep moments during the book that involve a lot of people. Keep quiet, go public, threaten, what should he do? The problems he faces involves a woman he’s falling for and her son that has developed cancer, most likely due to illegal dumping on the planned community they live in. Another problem is the man apparently responsible for it is the woman’s ex-lover.

Marquis gives us a great supporting cast with the telling of five main stories all linked together through Higheagle and the illegal waste dumping.

I liked Higheagles romantic interest and her son. It was a well used plot tool to discuss issues that one would want to know about while reading the book.

The antagonist of the book is more complex and disturbed than you think at first. Marquis surprised me with this one.

I read this one in about a day. It’s that fast paced and I think you’ll enjoy it.

Review by: Ronovan Hester

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#BookReview of Blind Thrust by @SamMarquisBooks

Blind Thrust by Samuel Marquis Cover imageBlind Thrust

by Samuel Marquis

Fiction: Thriller/Suspense/Environmental/Action. 307 Pages (PRINT). Mount Sopris Publishing (October 1, 2015)

five gold stars image

Author Biography

Samuel Marquis is a bestselling, award-winning suspense author. His books include “The Slush Pile Brigade,” “Blind Thrust,” “The Coalition,” and “Bodyguard of Deception.” He works by day as a VP–Hydrogeologist with an environmental firm in Boulder, Colorado, and by night as a spinner of historical and modern suspense yarns. He holds a Master of Science degree in Geology, is a Registered Professional Geologist in eleven states, and is a recognized expert in groundwater contaminant hydrogeology, having served as a hydrogeologic expert witness in several class-action litigation cases.

Book Description

Blind Thrust by Samuel Marquis is a suspense/thriller set in Colorado that paints a picture of what could happen when greed overrides common sense. That’s a simple way of saying it. But then, I’m a simple speaking kind of guy. Environmental Geologist Joseph Higheagle has a problem, keep his mouth shut and keep a nice paying job, or go with his conscience and do what’s right for thousands of people.

The choice might sound easy but when you factor in a billionaire bad guy, corrupt senators, evil security bad boys and a hired assassin sent to shut you up, you might think twice, at least.

Book Review

In this first Joseph Higheagle adventure Sam Marquis does a great job introducing the core of the main character, as well as his grandfather/father figure Chief John Higheagle, a retired lawyer who now lives with him and acts as his sounding board when the young Higheagle is faced with moral forks in the road.

Combine that with some great supporting characters like the EPA agent Nina Curry, a romantic interest for HIgheagle, the younger one, not the old chief, and the USGS director Nickerson and you have a great story that’s well developed and fast paced.

You might not think an environmental thriller would be very thrilling, but Marquis puts his years of experience as a geologist to work and it is very apparent in the technical speak that’s in the book. Sometimes that sort of becomes a bit heavy and repetitive but I see it as being legitimate to the conversations occurring.

One thing I like about the antagonists in a Marquis novel is that they are not one dimensional. You almost see the humanity side of them and in Blind Thrust it’s very apparent. Charles Quantrill is a powerful man that ends up in a situation that he never saw coming, but that doesn’t make it any better nor does it make him any less guilty.

I read this one in about two days. It’s that fast paced and I think you’ll enjoy it.

Review by: Ronovan Hester

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Taken by Her Unforgiving Billionaire Boss by @NadiaLee. #BookReview

Taken by Her Unforgiving Billionaire Boss Image4 Gold Stars Image

 

Taken by Her Unforgiving Billionaire Boss

by Nadia Lee

Fiction: Contemporary Romance/Sagas. 256 Pages Print. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 12, 2016)

Author Biography

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Nadia Lee writes sexy, emotional contemporary romance. Born with a love for excellent food, travel and adventure, she has lived in four different countries, kissed stingrays, been bitten by a shark, ridden an elephant and petted tigers.

Bilingual and formerly a management consultant Nadia Lee currently shares a condo overlooking a small river and sakura trees in Japan with her husband and son. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading books by her favorite authors or planning another trip.

Stay in touch with her via her website nadialee.net or her blog nadialee.net/blog.

Book Description

Alex Damon is the self-made billionaire who has been possessed in recovering his father’s reputation and attaining not only the wealth his father lost but surpassing it beyond imagining, all while exacting revenge on the woman he lays the blame for his father’s ruin and death.

Natalie Hall is an intelligent executive, the loyal adopted daughter of a powerful political father, and hated by her father’s wife and sister. She’s the object of more plots and secrets than she could know possible and caught in the middle of a fight she has nothing to do with. Where will his loyalties end up?

Why I Picked Up the Book

I first picked up this book for three reasons: 1) It was written by a New York Times bestselling author, 2) It was free (and still is as of this review), and 3) I wanted to see how romance and seduction was written by a woman. You see, I write romance and wanted to see if I were getting it right on a certain level. I wanted to see how the seduction parts were written.

What I ended up finding was a good story that could have been taken to a whole new level if the author had that intention. I mean new level as in this could easily have been a political thriller. However, a full blown political thriller was not her intent. I honestly could see this being a movie.

Book Review

Natalie Hall is a strong character who is not only intelligent but independent as well. Her life does not depend on her family ties. Her career has been built on her own merits. Alex Damon is more complex than one first thinks. He has some typical aspects I’ve seen in other books of this genre, but I think Ms. Lee has taken steps to give him a touch more depth than I expected. I was very pleased. I could see the truth in a lot of his motivations, thoughts, and actions from a male perspective. Nicely done.

The supporting characters are well done, for the most part. Alex’s best friend is just what a powerful corporate raider needs. Natalie’s family is dysfunctional at best, except for her father who loves her, but holds a secret that may just tear the entire family apart. Her godmother is very proud of Natalie but holds secrets of her own that end up causing problems in Natalie’s life.

Alex never suspects that his plans to ruin a family name and business would end up with his own agony and need for something he never knew he wanted. Something he never knew he needed before.

I would recommend this book for a quick escape and lovers of the alpha male with an independent woman thrown in the mix.

DID IT DELIVER

Did the book give me what I wanted when I chose it? I have to say the romance and the “scenes” as I call them are well done, descriptive without being over the top. Except for some word choices for things, I would say she nailed it. (Pun unintentional, sort of.) And I don’t mean the use of profanity, which there was very little of, almost to the point I can’t even say specifically where some may have occurred.

RATING: 4 out of 5

When determining a rating I look at the book itself and not my expectations. Honestly, I didn’t know what to expect. The writing was strong, as was the plot and main characters. A couple of the supporting cast were a little weak, but I saw why things were done from a writer’s view point. The ending was good and no real loose ends were left to wonder about. But I could see where another book could come about with these two as main characters. (The rating was very close to a 4.5, which surprised me since this is not my usual sub-genre to delve into.)

Review by: Ronovan Hester

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The Judas Apocalypse & Can’t Buy Me Love Q&A @DanMcNeil888

A lover of history who says his books don’t have a message, they’re entertainment. Honesty. Gotta love that, right? I will repeat that phrase later. Dan McNeil is someone I would hate if he wasn’t such a nice guy. He’s writing the dream I want and am working to achieve. He’s even picking subjects that I’m in to. If I were a betting man, which I’m not, I would bet that some of you buy at least one of his books after reading this interview. I’m still waiting on the autographed Kindle version. Personally signed no less.

RW: What is your favorite word?

DAN: Most of my favourite words are unprintable. I also make up a lot of my own words (usually when I’m driving) but they’re unprintable too. “Cacophony” is pretty cool – I like the hard “c” sounds and it sounds like what it is, in an onomatopoeia-ic kind of way…

RW: And with that answer, Dan, I have no idea where this is going to go, but I imagine it will be entertaining. You gotta love honesty. Let’s jump straight into your books. You have two to share with is. Tell us about The Judas Apocalypse first.

author Dan McNeilDAN: It’s basically an adventure story (about a treasure hunt during World War II), but there are many layers to it (secrets, hidden truths, etc.) The title refers to a hidden truth they ultimately discover. The Judas Apocalypse is the story of an archaeologist with a passion for a long lost religious group known as the Cathars. He gains possession of a Knights Templar document that, when deciphered, could lead him to the fabled Cathar treasure. After he is captured by a group of GI’s just after the Normandy invasion, they all form an alliance to hunt the treasure. However, what they find is not what they believed it would be. It was inspired by a number of things, but the main inspiration would give away too much. I will say though, that there is a definite Indiana Jones/Kelly’s Heroes influence that runs throughout the novel.

“Simply, I enjoy a book that draws me into the story and takes me to a different time and place. This book made me forget I was sitting in my own bed and had to go to work in the morning.
That is what a good book can do for you.
Loved this book!”~Amazon Review

Gerhard Denninger is the protagonist of “The Judas Apocalypse.” He is a dedicated archaeologist whose passion for the history of the Cathars has led him to search for their legendary lost treasure all of his life. I purposely made him an older character because I wanted to avoid the young hero stereotype. He’s made many choices in his life and career that may have been clouded by his passion. I think readers connect to characters like this because they are not perfect and I think more believable.

“I picked up this book as probably one of the millions for whom the genre’s pack leader, Dan Brown, leaves an aching void. I’m delighted to say this story is so much more believable than the Hollywood twaddle we are fed by the other Dan. Dan McNeil is a darn good story teller, and weaves this gripping tale from the Crucifixion itself to the Cathar tragedy of the Middle Ages then with exciting twists and turns through both World Wars.”Amazon Review

RW: So far you’ve got me and I am angry you didn’t offer a copy for me to review. Just kidding, a little, sort of. Okay, the sulking is over with. Tell us about your second book.

DAN: Can’t Buy Me Love,” is about a hapless group of crooks hoping to rob a bank during the Beatles’ Dan McNeil Authorfirst appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in ’64, so I knew it would have to be a Beatles song title. I think “Can’t Buy Me Love” is certainly apropos. It was inspired by something I read in “The Love You Make” by Peter Brown (with Steven Gaines.) In it, Brown references the Beatles’ performance on the Sullivan show in ’64. There is an urban myth that says that in the hour they performed, not one major crime was committed in New York City. In fact, not even a hubcap was stolen (presumably, because everyone was huddled in front of their television sets watching the show.) When I read that, I immediately thought “that would have been a great time to rob a bank” – hence, the plot for the book.

“I read this in 2 days, couldn’t put it down. Absolutely a great story with the a moment in history as a backdrop. I think it would make a great movie. Great job, hope Dan has more stories to tell.”~Amazon Review

Sonny Carter, the protagonist of “Can’t Buy Me Love” is also an older “hero” but it was necessary to make him this way because of his twenty five year incarceration. Like Gerhard Denninger, he’s made some questionable decisions in his life (like trying to rob a bank, for instance). His single mindedness in knocking over the same bank he tried to rob in 1939, and his quest for revenge against the stool pigeon who ratted him out, while not exactly heroic qualities, I think make him, in strange kind of way, a rather fascinating character. The reader essentially pulls for him to be successful.

“With an action driven plot, characterisation often takes second place, but I thought some of the characters here were well drawn and very believable. My favourite was Provenzano the mob boss whose command of English gave Dan McNeil the chance to show that he can also write comedy with the best of them.
And the Beatles? I expected their inclusion in this book to be no more than window dressing. In fact we meet the boys on several occasions, where they are not only characters in their own right, but become an intrinsic part of the plot. If you want to know more, well you’ll just have to invest in a copy of Cant Buy Me Love yourself, won’t you? It really is money well spent.
In short, this is an excellent book which is not only a thoroughly entertaining and enjoyable read, but one that deserves to take its place in the library of literature inspired by the Beatles.”~Amazon Review

RW: It’s official, I am one unhappy guy. Not a single book given to me. Sigh. I may have to actually buy them at;

The Judas Apocalypse

Amazon

Barnes&Noble

Can’t Buy Me Love

Amazon

Barnes&Noble

www.shop.pulsepub.net

(Just so people know, I am joking about being upset about no book. I never asked for one. But in truth, they both look great from what I can see of them. He nailed the subject to catch my attention for sure. I know that’s why he picked what he did. Just for me!)

RW: Dan, you have a very unusual path to becoming a novelist. One I can appreciate. Share part of that with our Readers today.Dan McNeil Author Photo

DAN: My cousin and I used to write songs, hoping to strike it big with a #1 hit. Although we seemed to do very well with contests, winning five for five different tunes, the big hit song somehow still eluded us so I decided that I would try my hand at novel writing. Very different beast but just as satisfying creatively.

RW: Where did you write these undiscovered #1 hits?

DAN: I was born in Toronto, Ontario but I’ve made Ottawa my home since 1970.

RW: What does an Ottawan like to quench his thirst with?

DAN: I have a couple – it all depends on my mood. Given the choice, if an exceptional scotch or bourbon came my way, I wouldn’t say no. Alexander Keith’s Pale Ale is my go-to beverage.


 

That one gave me my “search for this” moment for the interview. “Alexander Keith arrives in Nova Scotia from Scotland in 1817 and opens his brewery in 1820.”~From the Alexander Keith’s website.


 

RW: Who are your favorite authors?

DAN: My favourite book is “Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger and I am a big fan of Jeffery Deaver. I also love Stephen King’s early work.

RW: And what’s on the nightstand for reading at this moment?

DAN: I’m actually helping a fellow writer friend (Jasmine Aziz, author of Sex and Samosas) edit her current manuscript so I’m not actually reading anything at the moment. The last book I read was Jeffery Deaver’s “The Cold Moon.” After I’m done with the manuscript editing, I have about 4 or 5 books to get to.

RW: Writing, editing, and a good deal of time with the social network aspect, I can attest to that, with all of that writing aspect what do you do when you need to step away from it for a bit?

DAN: I used to go to movies all the time, but all that CG stuff they’re making these days really bores me. I prefer the films of the 60’s and 70’s. I also love music (I used to write songs many years ago) so that’s a really big passion of mine.

RW: Since I mentioned the social networking thing, this is how to connect with Dan:

Twitter – https://twitter.com/DanMcNeil888

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/dan.mcneil

Website – http://www.danmcneil.ca/

Blog – http://dmcneil888.wordpress.com/

RW: What did you learn about yourself from writing this book?

DAN: I really surprised myself with the fact that I was able to write a book. I always thought writing would be a tough gig, and of course it was! After I started, I wasn’t sure that I could even finish it so when I typed the words “The End,” I was both shocked and absolutely pleased with myself. I learned that I could do it and so I wrote a second book.

RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?

DAN: This may sound flippant but make sure the book is as great as it can be. Make sure you rewrite it as many times as necessary and get a copy editor to go through it. I can’t stress that enough.

RW: Describe your book in one word.

DAN: “The Judas Apocalypse” – provocative

“Can’t Buy Me Love” – entertaining

A big thank you to Dan for the interview and giving all of us books to add to our to read lists. Make sure to click and get those books at the links above and watch the Book Trailer for The Judas Apocalypse Book Trailer.

 

much-respect-ronovan

 

 

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My Grl by John Howell @HowellWave Interview

my girl coverReviewed by Faridah Nassozi for Readers’ Favorite – Rating – Five Stars

My GRL by John W. Howell is a fast-paced thriller that shows how your life can be turned upside down in the blink of an eye. John J. Cannon was looking forward to a long island vacation but instead ended up chasing and hiding from the bad guys. From losing Gerry who he was getting close to calling a friend, to discovering the real truth behind her death, to discovering who Sarah, Gerry’s friend really was. It is a well-written story that kept me glued, page after page. 

 

Anonymous Amazon Customer-Rating 5 star The author John W Howell has constructed his thriller very cleverly and created a truly pleasurable reading experience. I found myself suspecting just about everyone of something and being right only about half the time, which is probably in itself one of the marks of a very good thriller.

john howell author my girl

RW: John, what is your background in writing, what makes you a writer other than your ability to hold a pencil, type a writer or in some other way make words appear on a page?

JOHN: What really makes me a writer is I do it every day. Besides that, I have studied the craft and have written four books now. One published, one at the publisher for release (heaven knows when) and one just completed. The other one? Holding the laundry room door open in a breeze. (yes it is that bad)

RW: Where do you live and that will tell us how big that laundry room book needs to be?

JOHN: I was born in Detroit Michigan but have lived in Illinois, Indiana, Connecticut, Ohio, and California. I currently reside in Texas on a barrier island off the coast of South Texas 

RW: So you write all the time and live on an island. I always ask what an author does to get away from writing when they need a break from it, when it’s just frustrating them for the moment, I think I can guess yours but tell us anyway.

JOHN: I usually don’t take a break from writing. I do take a break from novel writing by doing short stories. When I really need to get away for a few I take a walk on the beach 

RW: Okay now into the real reason people are here. What is the title of your book and why did you choose that name?

JOHN: The title of the published book is My GRL. I choose the title since the story is about a guy who buys a boat and he names it My GRL.

RW: What genre does your book fall into?

JOHN: My GRL is a thriller.

RW: Why do you write thrillers?

JOHN: I find the Thriller genre open enough to allow me to create the kinds of situations that are interesting to the reader while challenging myself to insert the kinds to twists, turns and excitement the reader is looking for.

RW: Tell us a little about My GRL and what inspired the idea.

JOHN: John Cannon is a San Francisco Lawyer who wants to take a leave of absence from the firm. He buys a boat he names My GRL unaware a group of terrorists want to use his boat to destroy a symbol of America’s greatness. His first hint of trouble is when he wakes up in the hospital and learns he was found unconscious next to the young woman who sold him the boat in the first place. The only one standing between the terrorists and the successful completion of their mission is John Cannon.

I was on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier Lexington which is moored in Corpus Christi. My sister and I were touring the boat since our father had served on her as a naval aviator during World War II. I was struck to see all the armament was no longer in place. This symbol of America’s military might was defenseless to any attack. After leaving the boat, I constructed a story on how to attack the Lexington and then a story on how to prevent such a thing. The story of My GRL fell into place.

RW: Tell us about your John Cannon and also who you envision playing him in a movie.

JOHN: I think I would like to see Bradly Cooper play John. He has the kind of seriousness coupled with humor that is the essence of John’s personality. John J. Cannon is a normal person caught up in extraordinary circumstances. He is a guy who wants to become a charter captain and ends up having to deal with a bunch of pretty bad characters. John is not a superhero nor does he possess secret abilities that allow him to overcome his adversaries. He is slightly OCD and is worried about many of the same things that we all are. He has a dry sense of humor and his legal training allows him to keep a fairly even disposition while things around him become increasingly complex. He loves good food and is especially fond of a Tanqueray martini on the rocks

RW: What message do you think your book delivers to the reader?

JOHN: The basic message is people with a cause are convinced righteousness is on their side. The terrorists are firmly convinced that because of past offenses, their current plan to kill innocent people is just. So we cannot hope to convince these terrorists to give up their cause simply because we don’t think it is lawful. I would hope anyone reading this book would come away with the feeling that military solutions are not always the way to stop hostilities. It might take a deeper understanding of the motivation of the adversary to successfully come to a peaceful solution.

RW: Describe your book in one word.

JOHN: Intriguing

RW: What did you learn about yourself from writing this book?

JOHN: The first thing I learned was I could, in fact, finish a book that was readable. Up to this point my efforts were not what I would describe as stellar. The second was I could write about a subject that I knew little about. People who don’t know me think I have been around boats. I really had to research all aspects of the book since none of the hardware and software related items were in my experience profile.

RW: How did you end up with MSP?

JOHN: I did a number of queries and for whatever reason never connected. I then went and did some research on publishers who would accept a first-time author who did not have an agent and found Martin Sisters Publishing

RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?

JOHN: Too often, authors rush to get a book published with some disastrous results. The author must do the research necessary to find out how they want to be published. If they want to self-publish that carries one set of responsibilities. Traditional publish is another option but does have certain requirements. So my tip is to take the time necessary to determine the path that is right for the person. There is no real right path, but a path chosen that is done in haste could be very disappointing.

RW: When you’re not writing who are you reading?

JOHN: I am reading Allure of the GypsieS by Charles Yallowitz. It is his third story in the Legends of Windemere series. He has actually published five books, but I’m a little behind since my TBR pile gets higher by the day.

RW: Who are your favorite authors?

JOHN: I have three current favorites, Charles Yallowitz author of the Legends of Windemere series, Kevin Brennan Author of Yesterday Road and Occasional Soulmates and Andra Watkins author of Not Without My Father: One Woman’s 444-Mile Walk of the Natchez Trace and To Live Forever: An Afterlife Journey of Meriwether Lewis.

RW: How do you like to keep hydrated?

JOHN: I love to drink water while working and a margarita after. 

RW: What are you working on right now?

JOHN: I have finished the third book in the John Cannon trilogy and it has a working title of Our Justice. The next book explores the daughter father conflict in a world filled with bad choices. We’ll have to see how it works.

My second book in the John J. Cannon Trilogy is titled His Revenge. It is the story of John’s efforts to bring the terrorist leader to justice with the help of the FBI. The title is a little bit confusing in that we are not sure whose revenge is eventually satisfied Johns or the Terrorist leader? When the book is launched the answer will be apparent to the reader.

RW: What is your favorite word?

JOHN: Impecunious.(poor) I loved the word ever since studying for the GMAT. I used to love to say “In my current state of impecunity ….” I could then beg off anything. 

Acquire My GRL at:
Amazon:  US Canada UK Australia
Barnes and Noble
iBooks
Kobo

Make sure to CONNECT with JOHN at:
My Blog Fiction Favorites
Facebook
Twitter 
LinkedIn
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Authorsdb
Goodreads
Shelfari

Living on an island, writing and walking on a beach? John, you’ll have a visitor soon. Ah, the dream life. And John, I have plenty of door holders so pick that one up, dust it off and get to revising it.

As always . . .

Read a Book, Write a Review.

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Relating to John’s suggestion about knowing your path and role in traditional and self-publishing, check out Choose Your Publishing Option. Free for ebook or pdf at Smashwords here.

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Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love @BeckyDue Q&A

“The most rewarding thing about being an author is when one of my books makes a positive impact on somebody’s life.”~Becky Due, Author of Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love

Becky Due Author Profile Photo Head ShotThat is Author Becky Due and the theme that runs through her interview and seemingly her life. Taking the bad or anything really and turning it into something to move forward with. That makes me instantly want to buy a book. With that attitude and philosophy you know what you will get, you just don’t know how or when you will get it. That’s the part that makes her an award winning author. Then you find out about the humorous side of Becky. You’re going to love it. Get ready for everything you want to know about this amazing author. Read to the end and not only learn some very nice inside reveals, but also see her interview on Lifetime for a previous book. That’s RIGHT! You get to actually hear her. I love hearing the writers voice. Then I can hear them narrate the book as I read.

 

Asking where an Author is from is normally my way to simply give you a connection to them, give them an actual sound to their voice maybe. As of late actual connections to their writing have been coming out.

My latest novel takes place in Minnesota and a few other places, but I think home is where the heart is, and my heart is in Minnesota. I was born in Minnesota. Moved to Colorado with my mother and two older sisters when I was about seven years old. At twenty-two, I moved back to Minnesota to get away from an abusive relationship. My childhood best friend and other family members still lived in Minnesota, so I had a wonderful network of people around to support me. In my thirties, I needed a change and moved back to Colorado where I now live most of the year.

Her book we are discussing today is Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love.

“Several reviewers have favorably compared Traveling for Love to Eat, Pray, Love“~Becky Due

I chose Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love because my main character, Amanda, is going through a divorce and realizes that she has lost herself in her marriage. As she starts to drift away from Nick, she finds herself day-dreaming of traveling and experiencing the world. So after the divorce, she takes a job as a travel agent. Traveling had become not only her goal but her passion. And although Amanda isn’t purposely looking for love, she does hope for it. But during this phase of her life, Amanda has to discover through heartache who she is and what she really wants.

Traveling for Love deals with many tough issues; divorce, dating, sex after dating and really how important it is not to lose touch with who we are once are in a relationship. After all who is the one constant in your life?

I write the books I want to read. I want to follow a woman’s life who is going through hard times and I want to learn from her mistakes. I want to connect to her, relate to her and I want to use her life to improve my own. My characters are strong yet fun and do not need to be rescued. They rescue themselves. These women go through some challenges but they find the answers they are searching for and find a better way of living.

I’ve always had a passion for women’s issues. When I was a little girl, I saw things I didn’t like, things that didn’t seem right, like the way girls and women were sometimes treated in relationships and in the media—magazines, TV and movies. Although I have experienced abuse, I’ve never thought of myself as a victim of anything. Life is way to fun to believe that we should be miserable because of what somebody did to us. So I stay pretty close to women’s fiction because I love writing about the strength of women. Even though there is occasionally love and romance in the story, the main issue is never about my character needing somebody to complete her or take care of her.

How does Amanda find herself where we find her in the book and how much of you is in the story? I mean this sounds like you in some ways even if not the actual events but the overall ending of a relationship and that journey afterwards.

Well, I’ve made so many mistakes in my life and I’m grateful for every one of them. But we usually don’t see it that way when we’re in the middle of the chaos or heartache. When I started this book, I was feeling a little older and maybe slightly lost in my life so I decided to tap into my childhood. I wanted to feel young and carefree again. I used to love roller-skating, so I bought a pair of skates online. When they were delivered, I was so excited, I put them on right away and took off down the driveway. Sadly, I was out of practice and I fell hard. I was determined to, you know, “If you fall off the horse, you get right back on” so I decided to find a better, flatter place to skate and I fell down again, this time hurting my wrist. Yikes! I was suddenly scared of roller-skates and I didn’t want to be scared. And that’s how this story begins… I don’t ever want to be afraid to fall, or to love, or fear I can’t do something. I dTraveling Love Searching Self Hoping Love Cover Image Author Becky Dueon’t want to be lost in my life, I want to take risks and that’s what Amanda tries to do while she is finding her own happiness.

Traveling for Love is a feel-good story about finding ourselves after divorce. Amanda is unhappy in her marriage, but when Nick tells her he wants a divorce, she is completely lost. Her life revolved around her husband. She had put her life on the back burner. Now she has to start all over again in every way, and she has to make peace with what feels like wasted years of her life. And so starts her journey of trying to figure it all out. She has to find a job that gives her life meaning and figure out where she will live. Should she have a rebound like her friends are suggesting or should she avoid dating for a while? Nothing seems to fit, and she continues making bad decisions, and spending time with the wrong man. Amanda goes through a lot of heartache before she finally figures out her life and what she wants.

Becky writes Amanda in a positive way, as the quote to begin this article should have hinted, I asked her about Amanda and the people she saw in the role of Becky, well her idea and one obvious one.

Heartaches and mistakes. Amanda gave so much in her marriage that by the time Nick wanted a divorce, she knew she had to start taking care of herself. She didn’t want to be resentful. She didn’t want to live in anger or bitterness. She wanted to get on with her new life. Amanda goes slightly crazy in her decision making, and she wastes time on the wrong man, but it’s all a learning experience for her—the pendulum has to swing the other way for a while so Amanda can find balance and meaning in her life.

I could see Jennifer Aniston playing Amanda. In fact, I think it would be a perfect fit. It seems Jennifer Aniston is willing to step away from the romantic comedy and this story is more about Amanda finding herself, and less about romantic love. Eventually Amanda realizes that the two wrong men in this story were stepping stones to her learning more about herself. Several reviewers have favorably compared Traveling for Love to Eat, Pray, Love. And I’m ok with that. J So I guess it would be Jennifer Aniston figuring out her life instead of Julia Roberts. 

I of course asked the question I always do. With Becky it seemed most appropriate considering her attitude about her writing. I asked her what she learned about herself from writing this book in particular?

Great question. I think for me it was more of a reminder how people in our lives are here to teach us how to be better, not bitter. I thought back on some of my own fears, mistakes and failed relationships. These people and experiences have made a positive impact on my life, even the seemingly hurtful, bad relationships. I’m grateful for every broken heart I’ve had. I know the pain, that unbearable pain when we lose somebody we love because they have decided we’re not good enough or we fight more than we love and can’t get it together. That pain is insane… but I look back on those feelings and I like those memories. I’m glad I’m capable of that deep love and even that deep pain. That’s living life fully! I’m grateful. I hope I never have to go through it again, but if I do, I know I’ll survive and grow and be thankful in the end.

The theme of Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love isn’t just in this one book. The word Becky used to describe her book was “Empowering”. Here are her other books and you will see what I mean. Each are described in her own words. And remember you can get any books by Becky Due by going to her Amazon Author Page, here or Barnes & Noble, here. Most of her novels are available in audio form as well with Traveling for Love: Searching for Self, Hoping for Love narrated by actress, Anne Johnstonbrown, which if she’s the one I am thinking of this would be an amazing listen.

Novel is The Gentlemen’s Club: A story for All Women covers many women’s issues and turns knowledge into power. Angie doesn’t want to be a victim anymore and wants to escape the cycle of abuse. Deep down she hopes for a good man to love and to feel safe and protected in this crazy world, but her fears take her down the wrong path and she continues to abuse herself by making poor choices. Angie befriends other women down on their luck and they team up to get revenge, but will they go too far?

Touchable Love: An Untraditional Love Story: All about choices, fear and facing our past. Christy’s secret is forcing her to avoid love and relationships. If only she had made better choices, respected her body and slowed down enough to realize what she truly wanted… Love. With the help of two men Christy must face her past so she can look forward to her future.

Returning Injury: A Suspense Celebrating Women’s Strength: Deals with the topic of stalking and protecting ourselves. Rebecca is happily married, loves her career, but she has one huge problem—a stalker. With Jack away on business, she’s home alone, and feeling like she’s going crazy, she has to learn how to take back her life and regain her strength. Is Rebecca strong enough to protect herself?

The Dumpster: One Woman’s Search for Love: Is a fun-loving comedy about family issues, great friends and searching for real love. Nicole is an average American woman who is looking for love in all the wrong places with all the wrong men. She falls for every man she meets and every line they use. But when a dumpster is placed below her bedroom window, she starts to solve her patterns of self-destruction.

The Woman’s Handbook: Everything You Want to Say to Your Daughter, Sister, Niece, Friend in One Simple Book: Is a great gift book for the young women in our lives, great stocking stuffer.

Children’s book Blue the Bird on Flying: Is a great picture book for teaching shapes, colors and a lesson in self-esteem and independence.  

I also have 2 short 99¢ booklets: 2 Days to healthy Self-Esteem and Secrets of a Thin Woman both to help motivate, inspire and empower.

Remember you can get any books by Becky Due by going to her Amazon Author Page, here or Barnes & Noble, here.

Connecting With Becky Due

Becky Due Author Photo From Amazon

Blog: BeckyDue.WordPress.com

Website: www.becky-due.com

Facebook: BeckyDue.Author

Twitter: @BeckyDue

 Amazon: Author Page Becky Due

 

Now for my OTHER questions, you know those not totally about books and writing. The fun little things that make us go, “Oh, she’s just like me.” Yeah that stuff. Some fun facts I’ve stolen from here and there and everywhere. The names of those places will be with held to protect me. Okay so I got them from Becky’s site. Just don’t tell her.

•I love to travel. I’ve traveled most of the United States and Canada, and several Caribbean Islands. I’ve been to Bermuda, London, Istanbul, Dubai, Tanzania, Kenya, Cairo…(No wonder Amanda is a Travel Agent in her book. I wonder if I can be a travel character in one her books?)

•I have OCD type issues that cause people to be very uncomfortable in my house… or is it that I’m uncomfortable? (I think I live with a herd of Becky type people.)

•I have a mean cat and a friendly dog… they make me laugh. (I have a very friendly cat that thinks its a dog.)

•I eat cereal for dinner almost every night. (Yes! She is like me!)

•When I’m nervous, I laugh. Unfortunately, that means if somebody trips in front of me, I might laugh… But I am CPR Certified so I’ll try to help.(ooo, she is still like me. I even know baby CPR stuff.)

•I’m an author. Writer. Struggling artist. This should explain a lot…

•My novels deal with tough issues, but you’ll always find a little humor mixed in.

•I’m a very private person and therefore I’m good at keeping secrets. (She’s telling us all her secrets now. I wonder . . .)

•I’m a loyal friend. (I want to be her friend! And I am a loyal friend on days I remember I am one. Amnesiac joke there, folks. Have to have fun with it sometimes.)

•My biggest pet peeve is when people generalize. All Women are ________. All Men are ________. All Republicans are ________. All Democrats are ________. (I am now in love with Becky Due! I am so in agreement with this.)

•I don’t drink, smoke, or do drugs. (I hear Adam Ant for some reason. And again, she’s like me!)

•My books, especially the first one, might lead people to believe I have an issue with men… I don’t. I love men, I’m crazy madly in love with men… and women.

•I’m heterosexual. (I am so laughing out loud now. See previous reveal.)

•I workout at least 5 days a week and I’m a Certified Personal Trainer—A certificate I don’t use but continue to update year after year. (I umm, well cool. Just saying. You’ve seen my picture. I am NOT a trainer of anything. Okay, I lost 70 lbs in 5 months. So maybe there is something there too.)

•I love love love art; I love looking at it and I love creating it.

•I have my real-estate license—inactive. (I have insurance agent license–inactive.)

•I don’t like mushrooms or onions. (I guess I must now give up mushrooms and onions since I am now in love with Becky Due.)

•I love hip-hop and R&B music though I often listen to the 90s station and Love Songs.

•I’m a true romantic. I love Romance. (Check.)

•BlackBerry or IPhone? BlackBerry. (I have a dumbphone.)

•I decorated my home in muted earthy tones that I find soothing. I painted my garage neon green, yellow and turquoise, which stirs excitement every time I come home or go out.

• I’m an early riser. I love mornings. (Becky and I were made for each other . . . each others tweets that is.)

•One of my daily goals is to laugh out loud—a goal I always achieve. (I achieve this when I look in the mirror after a shower.)

Now for actual questions I asked Becky.

RW: Who are your favorite authors?

BD: I love all authors especially after realizing what a challenging career it is. But I do have a handful of favorite books that made an impact on me during some of the hardest times in my life. I’m not sure if reading was an escape or a way to learn the lessons from the character, but I love books and novels that filled me with hope and inspiration and motivate me to be better. I enjoy self-help and biographies too. Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Illusions are two of my all-time favorite books.

RW: What is your escape from writing when you are at that about to explode point?

BD: Whenever I need a break from writing, I love hanging out with my man or other fun friends who make me laugh. I also have to workout for my sanity and well being. It’s important that I step away from my computer and have some fun, get some exercise, and let loose a little. As much as I love what I do, keeping balance is very important to me. I try not to be fanatical about anything. No pressure. If I’m having a great writing day and feel like skipping the workout, I skip the workout. If I’d rather hang out with friends or pig out in front of the TV with my man, that’s what I do.

RW: What is your favorite word?

BD: I don’t have a favorite word, but I love Intensifiers SO much. LOL Maybe it’s because I’m excited and dramatic. What can I say, life is exciting! When I finish a new manuscript and it’s time to edit, I usually start by crossing out half of my intensifiers. Reluctantly.

RW: What book are you reading at this time?

BD: Right now, I’m reading, editing, rereading and editing my next book. I won’t pick up another book until this one is back with my editor. I’m eying a few of the bestselling women’s fiction right now, but not sure which one I will choose.

RW: What is your favorite beverage to drink, any kind?

BD: I know this is boring but my favorite beverage is water. I used to drink coffee and Diet Coke often but as I’m getting older I’m trying to be healthier. I drink green tea once in a while, I don’t like it, but I drink it. LOL I enjoy coffee and pop as an occasional treat, especially when I need a caffeine boost.    

RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?

BD: Try the traditional publishing route first and if that doesn’t work, and you love what you’re doing, don’t give up. Either self-publish, find a publisher or try the print on demand. You just never know if you’ll have the next bestselling book.

Do you want to hear Becky? Watch her interview on Lifetime’s The Balancing Act for a previous book Returning Injury.

Well I had fun with this interview. I hope Becky doesn’t go and unfriend me on Twitter. You got the seriousness of her writing, which does have humor in it, and you got to see that quirky lady behind the professional smile. I loved the message of her book because as an Amnesiac I look at my situation and make good from it and move forward. Get all of her books for you and a friend for Christmas. I think it’s great she has audio books as well. Once you read her books make sure to do one thing . . .

Read a Book, Write a Review.

Much Respect

Ronovan

Ron_LWI

@RonovanWrites

RonovanWrites.WordPress.com

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